Investigation January 6, 2021, the House of Representatives election committee laid out a damning 800+ page case that former President Donald Trump’s efforts to disrupt the 2020 election led to violence in the U.S. Capitol and recorded the actions of the former chief executive. and for potentially criminal investigators.
On Monday, the committee referred Trump to the Justice Department on four charges. On Thursday, the committee effectively demonstrated its work on why it believes Trump is criminally responsible for his actions.
In its report, the committee recommends that Trump be prevented from being reinstated.
Trump quickly attacked the report on the Truth Social platform with false allegations about the riot and the 2020 election. He did not address the specific findings of the report, which he called “highly partisan”, instead falsely accusing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for the security disruption that day, and resurfacing false allegations of election fraud.
Here are key takeaways from the committee’s final report:
The committee spared no words as it took responsibility for the violence that took place directly at Trump’s feet on January 6.
After holding nine public hearings earlier this week and publishing a summary of the report, the final document reads like an indictment from Trump, explaining every aspect of his plan to disrupt the 2020 election – drawing a clear line between Trump’s indictment. election denial and resulting violence.
The panel focuses on the section of the Constitution that states that a person who has sworn to support the Constitution but is “engaged in rebellion” or “providing aid or comfort to enemies of the Constitution” can be removed from office.
The former president and others were referred by the committee to the Department of Justice to aid or aid an insurgency. The panel urges congressional judicial committees to establish an “official mechanism” to consider whether people who violate this section of the 14th Amendment should be barred from future federal or state office.
Despite Trump’s attempts to put the blame on Democrats for security failings that day, and a GOP rebuttal report released earlier this week that completely covered up the former president’s role in the attack, the elected committee report is an effective result of the panel’s 18 months of work. long investigation
There is no doubt that the committee believes that Trump, and Trump alone, was responsible for the January 6 attack.
“None of the events of January 6 would have happened without him,” the report says.
The committee’s report, released Thursday, lacked any significant new bombs — instead, the committee focused on revealing the depth and details of its work in its investigation.
The report offered the most comprehensive account to date of what happened in the two months between Election Day on November 3, 2020, and Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20, 2021.
It’s a narrative that extends the committee’s public hearings over the summer, taking readers step-by-step through the various plans Trump has orchestrated and the help he has received from allies inside and outside his administration.
Along the way, the committee cited more details about what it learned from interviews with more than 1,000 witnesses conducted over the 18-month investigation, including minor details that Trump’s attorney Eric Herschmann had not previously made public, such as a phone call with Rudy Giuliani. On the morning of January 6, and that Trump and his inner circle had targeted election officials at least 200 times.
The committee’s public hearings focused largely on Trump’s role, and in the weeks before the report was released there were questions about how far the report would surpass the former president.
But while the main headlines of the report are all about Trump, the final report also provides a definitive picture of the attack on Congress, the contributing factors in American rhetoric, as well as the preparedness and failures of law enforcement.
The report collects in one place intelligence assessments from the federal government prior to January 6, including key messages that law enforcement saw among Trump supporters on online forums.
The committee also met with leaders of the agencies managing the law enforcement response, such as Washington DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser, and the heads of the police force.
The selection committee also said it interviewed 24 witnesses and reviewed 37,000 pages of documents for a review of the DC National Guard’s response, which sought to explain the force’s belated response to the Capitol.
For example, the committee was told that the commander of the DC National Guard, Major General William Walker, was “strongly” considering sending troops to the US Capitol without the approval of his superiors on the afternoon of January 6. resign the next day
The committee was unable to verify a secondhand account of former Trump aide Cassidy Hutchinson, who was told that Trump attacked the chief Secret Service agent while in the presidential SUV on January 6 and tried to hold the wheel because he was angry. To be taken to the Capitol.
The elected committee, perhaps in an attempt to go beyond the explosive anecdote, stressed that their aim was to discover the intent behind Trump’s actions on the SUV. Several witnesses, including Trump’s press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, and the Secret Service press secretary, said Trump was angered when told he wanted to go to the Capitol and couldn’t.
Robert Engel, both the driver of Trump’s SUV and the leading Secret Service agent that day, told the panel that they did not remember the events of that day in the way Hutchinson described.
“Engel did not characterize the swap on the vehicle as Hutchinson (White House deputy chief of staff Tony) described the account he heard from Ornato, and stated that he does not remember President Trump gesturing to him,” the panel wrote.
Engel also told the panel that he did not remember being there when Ornato told the story with Hutchinson in the room.
Hutchinson testified that throughout the summer he had been told the story by Ornato while Engel was in the room, and that he did not dispute Ornato’s account.
The driver of the vehicle told the committee he did not remember seeing what Trump was doing or whether there was any movement.
However, the driver described Trump as “alive and angry” and said Trump said shortly after getting in the car, “I am the President and I will decide where I go”.
According to the report, Ornato told the panel that he did not remember communications about the incident in the SUV and had no knowledge of Trump’s anger.
The committee clearly states in its report that it does not find Ornato’s testimony credible.
The committee’s report underscores how the successful House’s tribunal’s struggle to spy on loose documents, emails and phone records has played an important role in helping the committee elaborate on its January 6 narrative.
Some of the most explosive moments of the committee’s investigation stemmed from recordings obtained from text messages from former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and other top aides to conservative attorney John Eastman’s emails about Vice President Mike Pence’s role on Jan.
The committee received Eastman’s emails after he sided with the House in a case in which the committee accused both Eastman and Trump of criminal conspiracy to obstruct Congress and defraud the government.
The report included some new details from the emails; These include how Eastman emailed Trump’s assistant the day he drafted his memo, falsely claiming that Pence could block the approval of the January 6 election. Eastman received a call from the White House switchboard shortly thereafter. phone records reached the commission.
In addition to Eastman, the committee determined that a little-known pro-Trump lawyer was the original architect of the legally dubious fake voter plot: Kenneth Chesebro. “The phony voter plot emerged from a series of legal memoranda written by Kenneth Chesebro, an outside legal adviser to the Trump Campaign,” the report says.
Thursday’s report will be the committee’s final word on January 6th – but the committee has yet to finish releasing the documents.
In addition to its summary and report, published this week, the committee began providing some transcripts of statements made behind closed doors, including interviews with multiple witnesses using Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination, and Hutchinson’s explosive statements.
As expected in the new Congress, more details are expected to come from other witness statements in the last days of the committee, in the hours before the committee is dissolved.
Many parties will eagerly await their release, including GOP lawmakers and Trump himself, who is still facing legal scrutiny on several fronts over his role in the January 6 uprising and efforts to disrupt the 2020 election.
The committee has already begun sharing evidence with the Justice Department and special counsel Jack Smith, CNN reported this week.