Surprising testimony before the commission in the January 6, 2021 case clearly exposes Trump and his entourage to criminal charges.
Eighteen months after the attack on the Capitol, it is the testimony of a 26-year-old young woman that could tip the balance of charges against Trump.
We thought we knew everything about these events, but this testimony added several layers, including a layer of ketchup on a wall of the White House where Trump had out of control throwing his food.
Trump wanted to lead the attack
We already knew Trump had a hot temper that should have disqualified him from the presidency in the first place, and that caused many to think of the 25th Amendment to neutralize him in his final weeks. This latest testimony adds evidence showing the ex-president knew there were armed protesters among the crowd, whom he encouraged to storm the Capitol and insisted on leading himself.
Trump’s defense relied on the thesis of an impromptu demonstration of honest citizens, into which a few disgruntled supporters and “Antifas” disguised as Trumpists wormed their way. Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony shatters that scenario. The storming of the Capitol was the culmination of a seditious conspiracy in which it has become virtually impossible to argue that Trump did not play a central role.
- Listen to Thomas Mulcair’s political column at the microphone of Yasmine Abdelfadel on QUB radio:
Other shocking revelations
Cassidy Hutchinson was an assistant to Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and was close to Trump on several important points. His testimony will offset the opposing testimony of those who refuse to testify under oath.
For example, she claims to have heard from Meadows and Rudy Giuliani that they asked for a presidential clemency, which legally constitutes a strong presumption of “guilt.”
We also learned Tuesday that several people being heard by the commission were pressured by Republican officials who tried to silence them. Witness intimidation is a crime.
Trump’s reactions suggest he appears distraught and can’t help but continue digging his own hole in the coming months.
So what ?
Normally, such a barrage of incriminating revelations should have disastrous consequences for the Republican election, but they continue to sail swiftly toward regaining control of Congress in November, riding the wave of runaway inflation.
The Supreme Court’s sweeping crackdown on abortion rights may lose them a few points, but the impact of potential criminal prosecutions against Trump and his entourage remains difficult to gauge.
Elected Republicans must now carefully maneuver between two pitfalls. Standing in solidarity with a Trump mired in his crimes risks losing support at the center, but admitting evidence of the ex-president’s criminality will alienate supporters locked in the Trump cult.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Democrats are trying to keep the Jan. 6 commission in focus…and Republicans are praying for gas prices to keep rising.