WASHINGTON – The House committee investigating the Capitol attack on Jan. 6, 2021, released its long-awaited final report Monday, the final product of the panel that unveiled never-before-seen details of former President Donald Trump’s attempt to hold on to power after losing the 2020 election.
The report concluded with “an overriding and straightforward conclusion : the central cause of January 6th was one man,” Trump. “None of the events of January 6th would have happened without him,” the report said.
- The report provided 17 findings, including that Trump plotted to overturn the 2020 election despite knowing he lost, sent an angry and armed mob to the Capitol and failed to respond to the violence as it unfolded.
- The report recommended the Justice Department investigate Trump for a handful of criminal charges including inciting insurrection, obstructing Congress and attempting to defraud the United States.
- The report recommended the House Ethics Committee investigate four GOP lawmakers including Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, who is in line to become the next speaker, and Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, the incoming head of the Judiciary Committee, because they defied the panel’s subpoenas.
- The report’s release follows a series of public hearings held this year focusing on several ways Trump and his allies allegedly used to overturn President Joe Biden’s win. The panel interviewed more than 1,000 witnesses, obtained phone records through court battles and received texts and emails witnesses volunteered.
- The committee found Trump and his allies tried to send fake electors to Congress, pressured Vice President Mike Pence to reject certain states’ electoral votes and pressured local officials to do his bidding, among other accusations.
- The committee formed in the summer of 2021 to investigate the deadly insurrection attempt in full. Committee Chair Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and Vice Chair Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., led the 9-member panel of seven Democrats and two Republicans.
- The committee will dissolve in January because Republicans, many of whom opposed the committee and dismissed its work as partisan, will take control of the House after winning a majority in fall elections.
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Trump central to election plot, committee says
Donald Trump was the center of a months-long, well-funded conspiracy to overturn his loss in the 2020 election with a violent mob hurled at the Capitol to block the peaceful transfer of power to President Joe Biden, according to the House committee investigating the attack Jan. 6, 2021.
Trump laid the groundwork months before the election by claiming the only way he could lose was through fraud. On election night Nov. 3, campaign aides urged him to wait for the count, but his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani recommended declaring victory without justification – and he did.
Even before all the votes were counted, his private lawyers began advocating slates of alternate electors supporting Trump in key states Biden won. A federal judge ruled later that Trump and one of the lawyers, John Eastman, “more likely than not” acted unlawfully in the scheme to obstruct Congress.
By Dec. 14, 2020, when states officially certified Electoral College votes, Trump’s campaign and administration officials told him repeatedly he had lost. Then-Attorney General Bill Barr called Trump’s subsequent “avalanche” of claims “nonsense,” “absolute rubbish” and “bull—-” before leaving the administration that month.
Trump lost 60 court cases, half for not having the legal standing to bring a case and others for lack of evidence of fraud. As tensions rose around the holidays, aides including Cassidy Hutchinson grew increasingly uncomfortable as White House meetings with lawmakers aimed to overturn the results.
Trump called Georgia officials Jan. 2, 2021, and urged state Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” 11,780 votes. His supporters continued to organize slates of fake electors for the congressional count Jan. 6.
On Jan. 3, 2021, Trump held a tense Oval Office meeting to discuss replacing Acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen with Jeffrey Clark, an assistant attorney general for the environment, who was more eager to challenge the election results. But Trump didn’t act after Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue warned that leadership of the Justice Department and White House counsel’s office would all resign.
The Jan. 6 committee unanimously voted Monday to recommend the Justice Department investigate Trump for possible criminal charges. Attorney General Merrick Garland said prosecutors were monitoring the committee’s work and would follow the facts and law wherever they lead.
Trump blasted the panel as a partisan investigation.
Story Credit: usatoday.com