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tv   The News With Shepard Smith  CNBC  June 9, 2022 8:00pm-10:00pm EDT

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anyone, people around the president or the white house or the campaign or anyone else to those who went to the capitol that day who clearly, many of them, had a plan and can they lay it all out for us coming right up many of you are tuning in tonight for "shark tank. on many of you are tuning in tonight to shark take on this evening, shark tank will not be seen on cnbc because it is 8:00 on capitol hill, and we are just moments away from the january 6th committee delivering its evidence in a public primetime hearing for the very first time. as mentioned, we will cover it live without commercial interruption throughout the evening. the committee members promising to lay out new details about the attack on the capitol and the coordinated effort to undermine the certification of the 2020 election.
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a live look here as the caucus room on capitol hill where this hearing is to take place. tonight, the committee chair, the democrats eddie thompson of mississippi, will warn that our nation remains in danger. and that now, january 6th and the lies that led to insurrection have put 2 1/2 centuries of constitutional democracy at risk. we also expect to hear from witnesses in public for the very first time. one of them, a capitol police officer who said she suffered a traumatic brain injury after rioters knocked her to the ground. another, a documentarian who said he was embedded with the proud boys and followed them into the capitol that day and videotaped all of it. lawmakers are set to show the video of that evidence tonight. but first, several hearings we expect the committee to hold laying out its findings a year and a half after rioters stormed the united states capitol in the worst attack on democracy in 20 years. betty thompson is at the chair and being seated now.
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as is the republican liz cheney. and now, the hearing begins. we are 30 seconds behind. a man with a camera is in the middle, but it sounds as if betty thompson will begin speaking. >> the select committee to investigate the january 6th attack on the united states capitol will be in order. without objection, the chair is authorized to declare the committee in recess at any point. the house deposition authority regulation team announces the
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committee approval to release the deposition material presented going in tonight's hearing. thanks to everyone watching tonight for sharing part of your evening to learn the facts and causes of the events leading up to and including the violent attack on january 6th , 2021. our democracy electoral system and country. i am betty thompson, chairman of the january 6th 2021 committee. i was born, raised and still live in mississippi. a town with a population of 521, which is midway between jackson and vicksburg, mississippi. and the mississippi river. i'm from a part of the country where people justify the actions of slavery, the ku klux klan and lynching. i am reminded of that dark history as i hear voices today
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trying to justify the actions of the insurrection on january 6th, 2021. over the next few weeks, hopefully you will get to know the other members, my colleagues up here, and me. we represent a diversity of communities from all over the united states, rural areas and cities, east coast, west coast, and the heartland. all of us have one thing in common, we swore the same oath. that same oath that all members of congress take. and afterwards, every two years that they are reelected. we swore an oath to defend the constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. the words of the current oath taken by all of us that nearly every united states government
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employee takes have their roots in the civil war. throughout our history, the united states has fought against foreign enemies to preserve our democracy, electoral system, and country. when the united states capitol was stormed and burned in 1814, foreign enemies were responsible. in 1862, when american citizens had taken up arms against this country, congress adopted a new oath to help make sure no person who had supported the rebellion could hold a position of public trust. therefore, congress persons and united states federal government employees were required for the first time to swear an oath to defend the constitugainst all enemies
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, foreign and domestic. that oath was put to test on january 6th , 2021. the police officers who held the line that day honored their oath. many came out of that day bloodied and broken. they still bear those wounds, visible and invisible. they did their duty. they repelled the mob and ended the occupation of the capitol. they defended the constitution against domestic enemies so that congress could return, uphold our own oath, and count your votes to ensure the transfer of power, just as we have done for hundreds of years. but unlike in 1814, it was domestic enemies of the constitution who stormed the capitol and occupy the capitol
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. and so they did so at the encouragement of the president of the united states. the president of the united states, trying to stop the transfer of power. a president that had stood for 220 years, even as our democracy had faced his most difficult test. thinking back again to the civil war in the summer of 1864, the president of the united states believed we would be doomed his bid for reelection. he believed his opponent, general george mclaren, would waive the white flag when it came to preserving -- but even with that grim face hanging in the balance, >> president lincoln was ready to accept. he made a quiet pledge.
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he wrote down the words, this morning, as for some days past, it seems exceedingly probable that this administration will not be reelected. then it would be my duty to so cooperate with the president elect. it will be my duty. lincoln fielded that memo and asked his cabinet secretaries to sign it sight unseen. he asked them to make the same commitment he did to accept defeat if indeed defeat was the will of the people. to uphold the rule of law, to do whatever every president did before him, and whatever president who followed him would do. until donald trump. donald trump lost the presidential election in 2020. the american people voted him
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out of office. it was not because of a rigged system. it was not because of voter fraud. don't believe me? here with his former attorney general had to say about it. i warn those who are watching that this contains strong language. >> i had three discussions with the president that i can recall. one was on november 23rd. one was on december 1st, and one was on december 14th. and i have been through sort of the give-and-take of those discussions. in that context, i made it clear, i did not agree with the idea of saying the election was stolen and putting out this stuff, which i told the president was --. and i didn't want to be a part of it. and that is one of the reasons that went into me deciding to
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leave when i did. i observed, i think it was on december 1st, that, you can't live in a world where the incumbent administration stays in power based on its view, unsupported by specific evidence that the election, that there was fraud in the election. >> bill barr was the attorney general of the united states, the top law-enforcement official in the country, telling the president exactly what he thought about claims of a stolen election. donald trump had his days in court to challenge the results. he was within his rights to seek those judgments. in the united states, law- abiding citizens have those tools for pursuing justice. he lost in the courts, just as he did at the ballot box. and into this country, that's
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the end of the line. but for donald trump, that was only the beginning of what became a sprawling multistep conspiracy aimed at overturning the presidential election, aimed at throwing out the votes of millions of americans, your votes, your voice in our democracy, and replacing the will of the american people with his will to remain in power after his term ended. donald trump was at the center of this conspiracy, and ultimately, donald trump, the president of the united states, spurred a mob of domestic enemies of the constitution to march down the capitol and -- american democracy. any legal jargon you hear about conspiracy, objection of a official proceeding, conspiracy to defraud the united states,
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january 6th was the culmination of an attempted coup, a brazen attempt , as one writer put it shortly after january 6th, to overthrow the government . the violence was no accident. it represents trump's last stand, most desperate chance to halt the transfer of power. now, you may hear those words and think, this is just another political attack on donald trump by people who don't like him. that's not the case. my colleagues and i all wanted an outside independent commission to investigate january 6th . similar to what we had after 9/11. but after first agreeing to the idea, donald trump's allies in congress put a stop to it. apparently, they don't want january 6th investigated at all
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. and in the last 17 months, many of those same people have tried to whitewash what happened on january 6th , to rewrite history, call it a tourist visit, label it legitimate political discourse. donald trump and his followers have adopted the words of the song writer. do you believe me, or your lying eyes? we can't sweep what happened under the rug. the american people deserve answers. so, i come before you this evening, not as a democrat, but as an american who swore an oath to defend the constitution. the constitution doesn't protect just democrats or just republicans. it protects all of us. and this was an attempt to undermine the will of the people.
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so, tonight, and over the next few weeks, we are going to remind you of the reality of what happened that day. but our work much must do much more than work backwards. because our democracy remains in danger, the conspiracy to thwart the will of the people is not over. there are those who thirst for power, but have no love or respect for what makes america great, devotion to the constitution. allegiance to a rule of law, a shared journey to build a more perfect union. january 6th and the lies that led to insurrection have put 2 1/2 centuries of constitutional democracy at risk. the world is watching what we do here. america has long been expected to be a shining city on the hill, a beacon of hope and
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freedom, a mile for others when we are at our best. how can we play that role when our house is in such disorder? we must confront the truth with candor, resolve and determination. we need to show that we are worthy of the gifts that are the birthright of every american. that begins here. and it begins now with a true accounting of what happened and what led to the attack on our constitution and our democracy. in this moment, when the dangers of our constitution and our democracy looms large, nothing could be more important. working alongside the public servants has been one of the greatest honors of my time in congress. it has been a particular privilege to count as a partner in this effort and count as a
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friend. ms. cheney, she is a patriot, a public servant, a devotion to her oath and the constitution. it is my pleasure to recognize ms. cheney for her opening statement. it's been my thank you very much, mr. chairman. and let me echo those words about the importance of bipartisanship and what a german is honor it is to work on this committee. mr. chairman, at 6:01 p.m. on january 6th, after we spent hours watching the violent mob the siege, attack and invade our capitol, donald trump tweeted that he did not condemn the attack. instead, he justified it. these are the things and events that happened, he said, when a secret landslide election victory is so unceremoniously and viciously stripped away
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from great patriots who have been badly and unfairly treated for so long. as you will see in the hearings to come, president trump believed his supporters at the capitol , and i quote, were doing what they should be doing. this is what he told his staff as they pleaded with him to call off the mob, to instruct his supporters to leave. over a series of hearings in the coming weeks, you will hear testimony live and on video for more than half a dozen former white house staff in the trump administration. all of whom were in the west wing of the white house on january 6th . did not really want to put anything out calling off the riot or asking his supporters to leave. you will hear that president trump was yelling and, quote, really angry at advisers who told him he needed to be doing something more.
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and aware of the writers' chance to hang mike pence, the president responded with this sentiment, quote, maybe our supporters have the right idea. mike pence, quote, deserves it. you will hear evidence that president trump refused for hours to do with his staff, his family, and many of his other advisers begged him to do, immediately instruct his supporters to stand down and evacuate the capitol. tonight, you will see never before seen footage of the brutal attack on our capitol. an attack that unfolded while a few blocks away, president trump sat watching television in the dining room next to the oval office. you will hear audio from the brave police officers battling for their lives and hours, fighting to defend our democracy against a violent mob donald trump refused to call off. tonight, and in the weeks to
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come, you will see evidence of what motivated this violence, including directly from those who participated in this attack. you will see video of them explaining what caused them to do it. you will see their posts on social media. we will show you what they have said in federal court. on this point, there is no room for debate. those who invaded our capitol and battled law enforcement for hours were motivated by what president trump had told them, that the election was stolen, and that he was the rightful president. president trump summoned the mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack. he will also hear about fox to commit conspiracy on january 6th. the crimes defined in our laws as conspiring to overthrow, put down, or destroy by force the government of the united states, or to oppose by force the authority thereof.
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multiple members of two groups, the oath keepers, and the proud boys have been charged with this crime for their involvement in the events leading up to you and on january 6th . some have pled guilty. the attack on our capitol was not a spontaneous riot . intelligence available before january 6th identified plans to, quote, invade the capitol , occupy the capitol, and take other steps to halt congresses count of electoral votes that day. in our hearings to come, we will identify elements of those plans, and we will show specifically how a group of proud boys led a mob into the capitol building on january 6th. tonight, i am going to describe for you some of what our committee has learned and highlight initial findings you will see this month in our hearing. as you hear this, all americans should keep in the back of the
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mind this fact, on the morning of january 6th, president donald trump's intention was to remain president of the united states, despite the lawful outcome of the 2020 election, and in violation of his constitutional obligation to relinquish power. over multiple months, donald trump oversaw and coordinated a sophisticated seven part plan to overturn the presidential election and prevent the chance for a presidential power. in our hearings, you will see evidence of each element of this plan. in our second hearing, you will see that donald trump and his advisers knew that he had in fact lost the election. but despite this, president trump engaged in a massive effort to spread false and fraudulent information to convince huge portions of the u.s. population that fraud had stolen the election from him. this was not true.
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jason miller was a senior trump campaign spokesman. in this clip, miller describes the call between the trump campaign's internal data experts and president trump a few days after the 2020 election. >> i was in the oval office, and at some point, the conversation -- believe that a person was brought on. i remember he delivered to the president in pretty blunt terms that he was going to lose. >> and that was based, mr. miller, on -- the assessment of the county by county, state-by state results as reported? >> correct. >> alex cannon was one of president trump's campaign lawyers.
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he previously worked for the trump organization. one of his responsibilities was to assess allegations of election fraud in november, 2020. here is one sample of his testimony, discussing what he told white house chief of staff mark meadows. >> i remember a call with mr. meadows where mr. meadows was asking me what i was finding and if i was finding anything. i remember sharing with him that we weren't finding anything that would be sufficient to change the results in any of the key states. >> when was that conversation? >> probably in november, mid-to- late november. it was before my child was born. >> what was mr. meadows reaction to that information? >> i believe the words he used were, so there is there.
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>> the general counsel matt morgan gave similar testimony. he explained that all of the fraud allegations and the campaigns other election arguments taken together and viewed in the best possible light for president trump would still not change the outcome of the election. president trump's attorney general bill barr also told donald trump has election claims were wrong. >> repeatedly told the president in no uncertain terms that i did not see evidence of fraud. that would have affected the outcome of the election. and, frankly, a year and a half later, i haven't seen anything to change my mind on that. >> attorney general barr also told president trump that has
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allegations about dominion voting machines were groundless. >> i thought absolutely zero basis for the allegations, but they were made in such a sensational way that they obviously were influencing a lot of people, members of the public, that there was this systemic corruption in the system and that their votes didn't count and that these machines controlled by somebody else actually was governing at, which was complete nonsense. it was being laid out there. i told him that it was crazy stuff and they were wasting their time on that. and it was a grave disservice to the country. >> the president persisted, repeating the false dominion allegations in public at least a dozen more times, even after his attorney general told him they were, quote, complete nonsense.
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and after bill barr's resignation on december 23rd, the acting attorney general who replaced him, jeff rosen, and the acting deputy, richard onisiwo, told president trump over and over again that the evidence did not support allegations he was making in public. many of president trump's white house staff also recognized that the evidence did not support the claims president trump was making. this is the president's daughter commenting on bill barr's statement that the department found no fraud sufficient to overturn the election. >> how did that affect your perspective about the election when attorney general barr made that statement? >> it affected my perspective. so, i accepted what he said. >> as you will hear on monday, the president had every right to litigate his campaign claim. but he ultimately lost more than 60 cases in state and
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federal courts. presidents claims in the election cases were so frivolous and unsupported at the president's lead lawyer, rudy giuliani, not only lost a lawsuit, his license to practice law was suspended. here is what the court said of mr. giuliani. giuliani communicated demonstrably false and misleading statements to courts, lawmakers, and the public at large. his capacity of lawyer for parmer president donald trump and the trump campaign in connection with trump's failed effort at reelection in 2020. as you will see in great detail in our hearings, president trump ignored the rulings of our nations courts. he ignored his own campaign leadership, has white house staff, many officials, he ignored the deferment of justice and the department of homeland security. president trump invested millions of dollars of campaign funds purposely spreading false
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information, running ads he knew were false and convincing millions of americans that the election was corrupt and that he was the true president. as you will see, this misinformation campaign provoked the violence on january 6th. in our third hearing, you will see that president trump corruptly planned to replace the attorney general of the united states so the u.s. justice department would spread his false stolen election claim. in the days before january 6th , president trump told his top justice department officials, quote, just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the republican congressman. senior justice department officials, men he had appointed, told him he could not do that because it was not true. so, president trump decided to replace them. he offered jeff clark, an
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environmental lawyer at the justice department, the job of axing attorney general. president trump wanted mr. clark to take a number of steps, including sending this letter to georgia and five other states saying, the u.s. a permanent justice had, quote, identified significant concerns that may have impacted the outcome of the election. this letter is a lie. the department of justice had in fact repeatedly told president trump exactly the opposite. they had investigated his stolen election allegations and found no credible fraud that could impact the outcome of the election. this letter and others like it would urge multiple states to withdraw their official and lawful electoral votes for biden. acting deputy attorney general richard donahue described jeff clark's letter this way, quote, this would be a great step for the department to take and
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could have tremendous constitutional, political, and social ramifications for this country. the committee agreed with mr. donohue's assessment. clark assumed the role of attorney general in the days before january 6th and issued these leaders. the ramifications could indeed have been grave. mr. donohue also said this about clark's plan. >> i was saying, what you are proposing is nothing less than united states justice department meddling the outcome of a presidential election. >> in our hearings, you will hear firsthand how the senior leadership of the department of justice threatened to resign. how the white house counsel threatened to resign, and how they confronted donald trump and jeff clark in the oval office. the men involved, including acte attorney general rosen and donahue were appointed by
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president trump. these men honored their oath of office. they did their duty, and you will hear from them in our hearing. by contrast, jeff clark has invoked his fifth amendment privilege against self incrimination and refused to testify. representative scott perry, who was also involved in trying to get clark appointed as attorney general, has refused to testify here. as you will see, representative perry contacted the white house in the weeks after january 6th to seek a presidential pardon. multiple other republican congressmen also thought presidential pardons for their roles in attempting to overturn the 2020 election. in our fourth hearing, we will focus on president trump's efforts to pressure mike pence to refuse to account electoral votes on january 6th. vice president pence has spoken publicly about this. >> president trump is wrong. i had no right to overturn the
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election. the presidency belongs to the american people and the american people alone. and frankly, there is no idea more un-american than the notion that any one person could choose the american president. >> what president trump demanded that mike pence do wasn't just wrong, it was illegal, and it was unconstitutional. you will hear this in great detail from the vice president former general counsel. witnesses in these hearings will explain how the former vice president and his staff informed president trump over and over again that what he was pressuring mike pence to do was illegal. as you will hear, president trump engaged in a relentless effort to pressure pence both in private and in public. you will see the evidence of that pressure from multiple witnesses live and on video. vice president pence demonstrated his loyalty to donald trump consistently over
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four years. but he knew that he had a higher duty to the united states constitution. this is testimony from the vice president's chief of staff. >> >> i think the vice president was proud of his four years of service. and he felt like much had been accomplished in his four years. i think he was proud to be beside the president for all that had been done. but i think he ultimately knew that the infidelity of the constitution was first infamous. and that is what he articulated, probably. >> his fidelity to the constitution was more important to his fidelity to president trump. >> yes. >> you will hear about a lawyer named johnny eastmond. he was involved in president trump's plan. he will hear from former circuit federal judge michael, a highly respected leading conservative judge. john eastmond -- judge provided
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counsel to the president's team. the judge will explain how easement, quote, was wrong at every turn. and you will see the email exchanges between eastman and the vice president counsel as the violent attack on congress was underway. mr. jacobs said this to mr. eastman, thanks to your -- we are under siege. you will also see evidence that john eastmond did not actually believe a legal position he was taking. in fact, months before the 2020 election, eastmond took exactly the opposite view on the same legal issues. in the course of the select committee's work to attain information from him, we have had occasion to present evidence to a federal judge. the judge evaluated the facts, and he reached the conclusion that president trump's effort to pressure vice president parents to act illegally by refusing to count electoral
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votes likely violated two federal criminal statutes. and the judge also said this, if dr. eastman and president trump's plan had worked, it would have permanently ended the peaceful transition of power, undermining american democracy and the constitution. if the country does not commit to investigating and pursuing accountability for those responsible, the court fears january 6th will repeat itself. every american should read with this federal judge has written. the same judge, judge carter, issued another decision on tuesday night, just as we, enters the that smith and other trump lawyers knew that the legal argument had no real chance of success in court, that they relied on those arguments anyway to try to, quote, overturn the democratic election. and you will hear that while congress is under attack on january 6th, and the hours following the violence , the
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trump legal team in the willard hotel war room continue to work to halt the count of electoral votes. in our fifth hearing, you will see evidence that president trump corruptly pressured state legislators and election officials to change election results. you will hear additional details about president trump's call to georgia officials, urging them to, quote, find 11,780 votes. votes that do not exist. and his efforts to get states to rescind certified electoral plates without factual basis and contrary to law. you will hear new details about the trump campaign and other trump associates efforts to obstruicials in multiple states, to create intentionally false electoral slates and transmit those to congress. the vice president and the national archives. falsely certifying that trump won the state he actually lost.
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in our final two june hearings, you will hear how president trump summoned a violent mob and directed them illegally to march on the united states capitol. while the violence was underway, president trump failed to take immediate action to stop the violence and instruct his supporters to leave the capitol. as we present the findings, keep two points in mind, first, our investigation is still ongoing. so what we make public here will not be the complete set of information we will ultimately disclose. and second, the debarment of justice is currently working with cooperating witnesses and has disclosed to date only some of the information it has identified from encrypted communications and other sources. on december 18th, 2020, a group, including general michael flynn, anthony powell,
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rudy giuliani, and others, visited the white house. they stayed late into the evening. we know that the group discussed a number of dramatic steps, including having the military sees voting machines and potentially rerun elections. you will also hear the president met with that group alone for a period of time before white house lawyers and other staff discovered the group was there and rushed to intervene. a little more than an hour after ms. powell, mr. giuliani, general flynn, and the others finally left the white house, president trump sent the tweet on the screen now, telling people to come to washington on january 6th. be there, he instructed them. it will be wild. as you will see, this was a pivotal moment. this tweet initiated a chain of events. the tweet led to the planning for what occurred on january 6th, including by the
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proud boys who ultimately led the invasion of the capitol and the violence on that day. the indictment of a group of proud boys alleges that they planned, quote, deposed by force the authority of the government of the united states. and according to the department of justice, on january 6th , 2021, the defendants directed, mobilized, and led members of the crowd onto the capitol ground and into the capitol. leading to the dismantling of metal barricades, destruction of property, the breaching of the building, and the assault on law enforcement. although certain former trump officials have argued they did not anticipate violence on january 6th , the evidence suggests otherwise. as you will see in our hearing, the white house was receiving pacific reports in the days leading up to january 6th , including during president trump's rally indicating that elements in the crowd were preparing for violence at the
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capitol. and on the evening of january 5th, the president's close adviser, steve bannon, said this on his podcast. >> all -- is going to break loose tomorrow. just understand this. all -- it's going to break loose tomorrow. >> as part of our investigation, we will present information about what the white house and other intelligence agencies new. and why the capitol was not better prepared . but we will not lose sight of the fact that the capitol please did not cause the crowd to attack. and we will not blame the violence that day, violence provoked by donald trump on the officers who bravely defended all of us. in our final hearing, you will hear moment by moment accounts of the hours-long attack for more than half a dozen white house staff, both live in the hearing room and via videotape
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testimony. there is no doubt that president trump was well aware of the violence as it developed. white house staff urged president trump to intervene and call off the mob. here is a document written while the attack was underway by a member of the white house staff advising with the president needed to say. quote, anyone who entered the capitol without proper authority should leave immediately. this is exactly what his supporters on capitol hill and nationwide were urging the president to do. he would not. you will hear that leaders on capitol hill that the president for help, including robust and later mccarthy who was, quote, scared and called multiple members of president trump's family after he could not persuade the president himself. not only did president trump refused to tell the mob to leave the capitol , he placed no call to any elements of the united states government to instruct that the capitol be
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defended. he did not call his secretary of defense on january 6th. he did not talk to his attorney general. he did not talk to the deferment of homeland security. president trump gave no order to deploy the national guard that day. and he made no effort to work with the department of justice to coordinate and deploy law enforcement access. but vice president pence did each of those things. for example, here is what general millie, the chairman of the joint chief of staff testified to this committee. >> two or three calls. he was very animated. he was very explicit, very direct. there is no question about that. and i can get you the exact quotes from some of our records somewhere. he was very animated, very direct, very firm.
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get the military out of there, get the guards out of there. put down this situation. >> by contrast, here is general milley's description of his conversation with president trump's chief of staff meadows on january 6th. >> he said, we have to kill the narrative that the vice president is making all the decisions. we need to establish the narrative that the president is still in charge and things are steady or stable, or words to that effect. politics, politics, politics. red flag for me personally. no action. but i remember it distantly. >> you will hear from witnesses how the day played out inside the white house, how multiple white house staff resigned and
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discussed. i know president trump would now ask his supporters to not leave the capitol. it was only after multiple hours of violence that president trump finally released a video instructing the riotous mob to leave. as he did so, he said to them, quote, we love you, and you are very special. you will also hear that in the immediate aftermath of january 6th, members of the president's family, white house staff, and others tried to step in to stabilize the situation. quote, the land the claim before the presidential transition on january 20th. you will hear about members of the trump cabinet discussing the possibility of invoking the 25th amendment and replacing the president of the united states. multiple members of president trump's own cabinet resigned immediately after january 6th . one member of the cabinet
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suggested that the remaining cabinet officers needed to take a more active role in running the white house and the administration. but most emblematic of those days is this exchange of texts between sean hannity and former president trumps secretary. sean hannity wrote in part, no more crazy people, no more stolen election talk. yes, impeachment and 25th amendment are real. many people will quit. ms. mac and amy responded in part, love that. that is the playbook. >> white house staff knew that president trump was willing to entertain and use conspiracy theories to achieve his ends. they knew the president needed to be cut off from all of those who had encouraged him. they knew that president donald trump was too dangerous to be left alone. at least until he left office on january 20th. these are important facts for
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congress and the american people to understand fully. when a president fails to take the steps necessary to preserve our union, or worse, constitutional crisis, we are at a moment of maximum danger for our republic. some of the white house took responsible steps to try to prevent january 6th . others and the president on. others who could have acted refused to do so. in this case, the white house counsel was so concerned about potentially lawless activity that he threatened to resign multiple times. that is exceedingly rare and exceedingly serious. it requires immediate attention, especially when the entire team threatens to resign. however, in the trump white house, it was not exceedingly rare. and it was not treated seriously. this is a clip of jared kushner
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addressing multiple threats by white house counsel and his team of lawyers to resign in the weeks before january 6th. jared, are you aware of instances where pat the baloney threatened to resign? >> like i said, my interest was getting as many elevators done. him and the team were always saying we are going to resign, we aren't going to be there if this happens, if that happens. i took it up to just be whining to be honest with you. >> whining. there is a reason why people serving in our government take an oath to the constitution. democracy is fragile. people in positions of public trust are duty-bound to defend it, the step forward when action is required. in our country, we don't swear an oath to an individual or
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political party. we take our oath to defend the united states constitution. and that oath must mean something. tonight, i say this to my republican colleagues who are defending the indefensible, there will come a day when donald trump is gone, but your designer will remain. finally, i ask all of our fellow americans as you watch our hearings over the coming weeks, please remember what is at stake. remember the men and women who have fought and died though that we can live under the rule of law, not the rule of men. i ask you to think of the scene in our capitol on the night of january 6th . they are in a sacred space in our constitutional republic, the place where our president watched over by statues of washington and jefferson lincoln and grant, eisenhower, ford, and reagan, against every wall that night encircling the room, there were s.w.a.t.
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teams, men and women in tactical gear with long guns deployed inside our capitol building. these brave men and women rested beneath paintings depicting the earliest scenes of our republic, including one painted in 1824 depicting george washington resigning his commission. voluntarily relinquishing powe , handing control of the continental army back to congress. with this noble act, washington that the indispensable example of the peaceful transfer of power. while president reagan called nothing less than a miracle. the sacred obligation to defend the peaceful transfer of power has been honored by every american president except one. as americans, we all have a duty to ensure that what happened on january 6th never happens again to set aside partisan battles, to stand
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together to perpetuate and preserve our great republic. thank you, mr. chairman. >> as we provide answers to american people about january 6th, it is important that we remember exactly what took place, that this was no tourist visit to the capitol . most of the footage we are about to play has never been seen. at the select committee obtained it as a part of our investigation. this isn't easy to watch. i want to warn everyone that this video includes violence and strong language. without objection, i include in the record a video presentation of the violence of january 6th.
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>> there is probably about 300 proud boys. they are marching eastbound. it's a 400 block toward the united states capitol. >> i am not allowed to say what is going to happen today. everyone is just going to have to watch. it's going to happen. something is going to happen. >> 20 bucks for pictures. >> i hope mike is going to do
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the right thing. i hope so. i hope so. because if mike pence does the right thing, we win the election. all vice president pence has to do is send it back to the dates to recertify that we become president, and you are the happiest people. mike pence is going to have to come through for us, and if he doesn't, that will be a sad day for our country. you have to show strength and you have to be strong. >> it does look like we will have an ad hoc march stepping off. there is a crowd surge heading east. >> we love trump. we love trump. we love trump. we love trump. >> mike pence, i hope you are going to stand up for the good
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of our constitution and for the good of our country. and if you are not, i am going to be very disappointed in you. i will tell you right now. >> we need backup. madam speaker, the vice
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president and the united states senate. >> declaring it a riot. >> be advised they are trying to reach into the capitol. >> hold the line! hold the line! >> we are trying to make our way through.
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>> we have a breach of the capitol! breach of the capitol! >> be advised, they are requesting additional -- on the east side as they have broken the window and they're trying to kick it in. >> without a check-in . >> mike pence didn't have the courage to do what should have
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been done to protect our country and our constitution. the u.s. demands the truth! >> bring out pans. bring out pans. bring out pence. bring out pence. bring out pence.
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>> there is too many people. look at this. we are -- we need an area. they are all walking over now in the tunnels. we are trying to hold now.
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we need to hold the doors of the capitol . i need support. we lost the line.
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the adviser capitol please are moving inside. the door is barricaded, people in the hallways outside, we have no way out. >> officers remaining on the floor, it's time to evacuate so we can secure the members on the other side. copy . >> one more time?
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>> whatever it takes i will lay my life down, if it takes. >> absolutely. >> that's why we showed up today >> bring her out! >> you backup! get them up! >> usa! usa! usa!
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>> these were great people. the crowd was unbelievable. the love, the love in the air,
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i've never seen anything like it. >> pursuant to the order of the committee of tonight, the chair declares the committee and recess for a period of approximately 10 minutes. >> the first hour of the first hearing on the attack on the united states capitol , and a profoundly moving reliving of that very dark day. i'm shepherd smith at cnbc global headquarters, for the next 10 minutes we will discuss what we've just seen with a number of guests and we will rejoin the committee hearing, they will be having witnesses in a short time, first of all caroline iglesias with us, federal attorney, watching along with me.
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i felt like there were some big news items in there, one was this meeting on december eighth. >> absolutely, really, really big bombshells, liz cheney did an extraordinary job laying out a roadmap, you mentioned, giving us just enough new information to draw the lines and put everything together. big meeting, that she discussed between mike flynn, sidney powell, rudy giuliani, late night clandestine behind closed doors, nobody knows what's happening. >> let's play that, please. >> oh, we don't have it quite yet. >> i mean yeah, she really set the stage, they had this private private meeting and literally thereafter, liz cheney and the committee put up this tweet that donald trump put out, essentially, inviting people to come on january -- >> i think we have the tweet,
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i'm pretty sure. there it is. >> be there, it'll be well, big protest in d.c. on january 6th, i mean, i've not seen a drawing of so clear a line between these two conspiracies we talked about pay >> big protest in d.c., be there, it'll be a while. it's important to keep in context, what happened right before that. i think we have the video now, let's play it. >> on december 18, 2020, a group, including general michael flynn, sidney powell, rudy giuliani, and others visited the white house. they stayed late into the evening. we know that the group discussed a number of dramatic steps, including, having the military sees voting machines, and potentially, rerun elections. you will also hear the president trump met with the group alone for a period of time, before white house lawyers and other staff discovered the group was there and rushed to intervene. a little more than an hour after ms. powell, mr. giuliani, general flynn, and the others, finally left the white house,
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president trump sent the tweet on the green now, telling people to come to washington on january 6th, be there, he instructed them, it'll be wild. as you will see, this was a pivotal moment, this tweet, initiated a chain of events, the tweet led to the planning for what occurred on january 6th, -- >> well, you know, the application is clear. >> up until that point, honestly, i didn't know if the committee was going to be able to draw this line so clearly between the seditious conspiracy, the right on january 6th, and this other conspiracy to in interrupt it proceeding, this legal, back room dealings that were also going on. you have it right there, plain as day. i suspect we will get more information about that but the kicker of that, just very moving montage of what actually was
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taking place on the ground there. i mean, you got to see up front, up close and personal, that's never before seen footage , it's bone chilling. >> the reference to the proud boys, remember it was during the first presidential debate, that president trump made a statement about them, listen to what he said in the first presidential debate. here we go . >> what do you want to call them -- >> white supremacist! >> proud boys, standby, and standby, but i'll tell you what, i'll tell you what, somebody's got to do something about nt for and the left, this is not -- >> proud boys, stand back and standby. she seems to me, to be making the indication that they cooked this all up that night on december eighth, and the proud boys were sort of their army,
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to go carry it all out and now the leader of the cowboys, for other members of the public, arrested, days ago that's the point she's making, it's clear. >> it couldn't be clearer. i suspect, i hope that it will be clear, in terms of, she also said a lot of either -- clear points, one of the things you noted, they have a lot of metadata, those types of things in terms of email, evidence that can put a clear link there. she noted the doj -- >> this was big. >> up until this point, many people have noticed, there seems to be a lot of daylight between doj and the january 6th committee not the least of which was implied by the declination on the part of merrick garland, to move forward with the charging of the contempt of congress with two individuals but, it's a bombshell that liz cheney is up
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there, essentially speaking for the doj, and i don't think she would have done so without the blessing of merrick garland, quite frankly. it tells you, we know they have been sharing information, but it does tell you that they are sort of working in parallel, and to have cooperating grimaces, witnesses, they are deciding instead of being charge, by the government, with a seditious conspiracy charge or any number of other charges, they are choosing to cooperate with doj, give them information, you know, in my line of business, people call them, people who flip, but essentially, going up the chain, giving you know, damaging information about potential crimes that could have taken place, bombshell. >> to save your butt, spill your guts. they made a lot of promises, and that was their delivery, you thought? >> as you mentioned, they promised there would be new information that the committee would deliver another nugget that vice chair liz cheney pointed out, several republican lawmakers had sought sought
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presidential pardons for their part in january 6th, she called out scott perry of pennsylvania is not been cooperating with the committee despite receiving a subpoena, so, the information, the video, as powerful as it was, i think the one tactic the committee is taking, is to let those images and let those voices of the witnesses that they've been interviewing over the past 10 months, speak for themselves. the tone for the committee is extremely calm and measured, even though at the very beginning, he laid out where the hearings are going to go, they will attempt to show the january 6th, it was a combination of an attempted coup, and it was trump's last stand, they said he had a sophisticated seven-point plan that they will methodically lay out in the hearings to come. but again, taking that very calm, nonpolitical tone, in their opening remarks, in their opening statements but then playing such a powerful video,
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that i'm sure, took everyone in that committee and in that audience, many members who were in the gallery on that day, they were in the audience, watching the video as it occurred, taking them back to those events, and making it real and live for them once more . >> difficult to watch. it felt like benny thompson, the committee chair for mississippi, was sort of the scene set her, the historian, if you will, and liz cheney, the republican, the one wielding the sledgehammer. tick by tick, moment by moment, a.b. stoddard, calmness for real clear politics, a.b., your thoughts? >> we talked about the challenge of the committee, it would be to get people to watch the hearings, and i think the way they designed this opening night, was very shrewd, it was so methodical. as we noted, seven-point plan, and then going through all of the people that told president trump, that this wasn't true, and he proceeded anyway.
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going after her colleagues in the house, talking about how they sought pardons, talking about their dishonor that will never be wiped away, long after trump is gone. this will raise the stakes and keep people engaged with these hearings. they made clear they have the goods. i was surprised, i didn't expect this much and of course, the footage at the end, was so upsetting. i think there's no question that will go viral tomorrow, and people who are not watching tonight will end up seeing it. >> besides the december 8th meeting and the doj with cooperating witnesses, was there another point that stood out to you? >> well, when she said that trump said in the oval office, it looks like he deserves it, and those people are right, she says, the morning of january 6th, trump intended to remain president. to me, it sounds like they have a lot more about what he was
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saying and doing on that day. but they were just giving us a few breadcrumbs tonight . >> she said they were chat shouting hang mike pence and coded trump as saying maybe they are doing the right thing. mike pence deserves it. the choreography of all of this, you know, it felt almost like a newscast run down to this anchor. anchor tossing to soundbite, tossing to video as liz cheney went through it and we all know jane golson, did a lot of the choreography, so let's hear what comes next. >> i want to thank our witnesses for being with us this evening to share their first 10 accounts of that terrible day. i know some of the witnesses from our first hearing are in the room with u , along with some of the family members, friends and widows, of
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the officers who lost their lives, as a result of the attack. thank you all for being here for us and the american people. officer carolyn edwards has been with the united states capitol police since 2017. on january 6th, officer edwards was assigned to the first responder unit, which serves as the first line of defense at the capitol complex. she also served as a member of the civil disturbance unit. a special subset of the uniform division trained to respond to mass demonstration events. officer edwards is a graduate of the university of georgia, and currently, is working on a masters degree in intelligence and analysis from johns hopkins university. nick krista is an acclaimed
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filmmaker, who whose credits include documenting stories, from war zones and afghanistan, syria and iraq. on january 6th, he was working on a documentary about, quote, why americans are so divided when americans have so much in common,". during that day, he had interviewed and documented movements of the people around the capitol, including the first moments of the violence against the capitol police and the chaos that ensued. i will now swear in our witnesses. the witnesses will please stand and raise your right hand. do you swear and affirm on the penalty of perjury that the testimony you are about to give
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is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you god? let the record reflect the witnesses answered in the affirmative, without objection the witnesses statement will be included in the record. pursuant to section eight of house resolution 503, i recognize myself for questioning. as you saw just a few minutes ago, proud boys instigated the first reach of the capitol, just before 1:00 p.m. , where rioters pushed over barricades near the peace circle at the foot of the capitol. our two witnesses tonight, were
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both there at the time of that first breach. officer edwards was standing with other officers behind a line of bike racks, that marked the perimeter of the capitol grounds . she bravely tried to prevent an angry crowd from advancing on the capitol. unfortunately, she was overrun and knocked unconscious as the crowd advanced on the capitol. mr. quested was a few yards away from officer edwards , taking footage of the proud boys, as part of his work on a documentary film. most of his footage has never been shown publicly, before we shared it this evening. officer edwards, i'd like to start by asking if you can tell us why you believe it's important for you to share your story this evening with the
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committee and the american public? your microphone. >> thank you mr. chairman, i really appreciate it, and thank you to the committee for having me here to testify. i was called a lot of things on january 6th, 2021 and the days thereafter. i was called nancy pelosi's dog, called incompetent, called a hero, and a villain. i was called a traitor to my country, my oath, and my constitution. in actuality, i was none of those things. i was an american, standing face-to-face with other americans, asking myself how many times, how we have gotten here. i've been called names before, but never had my patriotism or duty been called into question.
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i, who got up every day, no matter how orally the hour or how late i got in the night before, to put on my uniform and to protect america's symbol of democracy. i, who spent countless hours in the baking sun and freezing snow, to make sure that america's elected officials were able to do their job. i, whose literal blood, sweat and tears were shed that day defending the building that i spent countless holidays and weekends working in. i am the proud granddaughter of a marine, that fought in the battle of the chosen reservoir in the korean war. i think of my papa often in these days, how he was so young and thrown into a battle he never saw coming. and answered the call at a great personal cost.
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how he lived the rest of his days with bullets and shrapnel in his legs. but never once complained about his sacrifice. i would like to think that he would be proud of me. proud of his granddaughter, then stood her ground that day and continued fighting, even though she was wounded, like he did, many years ago. i am my grandfather's granddaughter, proud to put on the uniform and serve my country. they dared to question my honor, they dared to question my loyalty. and they dared to question my duty. i am a proud american, and i will gladly sacrifice everything to make sure that the america my grandfather defended, is here for many years to come. thank you. >> officer edwards, your story and your service is important. and i thank you for being here tonight. mr. quested, i'd also like to ask you to introduce yourself. can you tell us, how you found
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yourself in washington, d.c. on january 6th? >> good evening, chair, might've but madam vice chair, thank you for the introduction. as stated in the winter of 2020, is working on a documentary, as part of the documentary, i filmed several rallies and d.c., on december 11th and december 12th. i learned there would be a rally on the mall on january 6th . my three colleagues and i came down to document the rally. according to the permit, the event that was going to be a rally&, we arrived at the mall and observed a large contingent of proud boys marching towards the capitol. we filmed them, and almost immediately, i was separated from my colleagues. i documented the crowd turn from protesters, to rioters, to insurrectionists. i was surprised at the size of the group, the anger and the profanity. and for anyone who didn't
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understand how violent that event was, i saw it, i documented it and i experienced it. i heard incredibly aggressive chanting and i shared that footage with the authorities. i'm here today, pursuant to a house subpoena. thank you so much. >> thank you mr. quested, the select committee has conducted extensive instances investment of work to understand what led the proud boys and other writers to the capitol on january 6th. we've obtained substantial evidence, showing that the president december 19th tweet calling his followers to washington, d.c. on january 6th, energized individuals from the proud voice and others, other extremist groups. i like to play a brief video highlighting some of this evidence they >> my name is marcus childress
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and investigative counsel to investigate the january 6th attack on the capitol pay >> give me a name pay >> white supremacist -- >> proud boys, stand back, standby, >> after he made this comment, enrique tarrio, chairman of the proud boys said standing by, sir. during our investigation, we learned this comment during the debate actually led to an increase in membership in the proud voice. >> would you say that proud boys members increased after the stand back, standby comment? >> exponentially. i say, triple, probably. with the potential for a lot more, eventually. >> did you sell any stand back and standby merchandise? >> one of the vendors on my page beat me to it. but i wish i would have made a stand back, standby sure. >> president from tweeted about the rally and told attendees,
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be there, it will be wild. many of the witnesses we interviewed were inspired by the president's call and came to d.c. for january 6th but the extremist took it a step further, they viewed this as a call to arms, a day later the department of justice describes how the proud boys created a chat called the ministry of self-defense and they established a command structure, in anticipation of coming back to d.c. on january 6th. the department of justice describes mr. taranto coming into possession of -- which describes individuals occupying key buildings around the capitol, the oath keepers are another group the committee investigated. >> you better get your to d.c. folks this saturday >> if you don't, there will be no more republic. it's either president trump is bolstered and strengthened to do what he do or we wind up in a bloodied fight. >> the oath keepers began to plan blocking of the transfer
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of power, stuart rhodes, the oath keepers leaders said to his followers, we are not going to get through this without a civil war. in response to the december 1920 23 five tweet by from, they focus on january 6th and washington, d.c., in response to the tweet, one member the president of the florida chapter put on social media, the president called us to the capitol. he wants us to make it wild. the goal is for the oath keepers to be called so they could keep the president in power although president trump had just lost the election. the committee learned the oath keepers set up quick reaction forces outside of the city in virginia where they stored arms. the goal of these quick reaction forces was to be on standby, just in case president trump invokes the insurrection act. >> to the oath keepers provide weapons to members? >> i'm declining to answer that. >> and footage obtained by the
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committee, we learned on the night of jan fifth enrique tarrio and stewart rhodes met in a parking garage in washington, d.c. >> we are fighting the same fight and i think that's important. >> the committee learned the oath keepers went into the capitol through the east doors, and to stack formations, the doj alleges one of the stacks went into the capitol looking for speaker pelosi although they never found her. as the attack was unfolding, esther taranto took credit, he said in an encrypted chat make no mistake, we did this later on that evening, mr. tarrio posted a video which seemed to resemble him in front of the capitol with the black cape and the title of the video was premonition. the evidence developed with the select committee and the department of justice, it
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highlights how each group participated in the attack on the capitol on january 6th. >> in fact, the investigation revealed it was individuals associated with the proud boys, who instigated the initial breach of the peace circle at 12:53 p.m. >> within 10 minutes, rioters had already filled the lower west plaza. by 2:00, the rioters had reached the doors on the west and the east plazas. and by 2:13, rioters had broken through the senate wing door. a series of breaches followed. add to: 25 p.m., rioters breached the east side doors to the rotunda. and right after 2:40, rioters breached the east side doors near the ways and means room. once the rioters infiltrated the capitol, they moved through the crypt , the rotunda, the hallways in the hall chambers
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and even inside the senate chambers. >> individuals associated with two violent extremist groups, have been charged with the dishes conspiracy in connection with the january 6th attack. one is the oath keepers, they are a group of armed antigovernment extremists, the other group, is the proud boys, they promote white supremacist beliefs, and have engaged in violence with people they view as their political enemies. members of both groups, have already pled guilty to crimes associated with the january 6th attack. mr. quested, as part of the documentary, you've been filming, you gained access to the proud boys and their leader enrique tarrio. your crew
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filmed them in washington, d.c., on the evening of january 5th, and then on january 6th, on january 5th the night before the attack, you are with the head of the proud boys, mr. tarrio, in washington, d.c. what happened? >> we picked up mr. tarrio from jail . he had been arrested for carrying some magazines, extra capacity magazines, he took responsibility for the burning of the black lives matter flag that was stolen from the church on december 12. we were attempting to get an interview with mr. tarrio. we had no idea of any of the events that were going to subsequently happen . we drove
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him to pick up his bags from the property department of the police, which is south of the mall. we picked up his bags and went to get some other backs from the phoenix hotel. we encountered mr. stewart rhodes, from the oath keepers. by the time i have gone to park the car my colleague was saying, what gotten into the car with mr. tarrio, that they had moved to a location around the corner, the parking garage of the legends, i believe, so so we quickly drove over there, we drove down into the parking garage and filmed the scene of mr. tarrio and mr. rhodes and certain other individuals in the garage. we then continued
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to follow mr. tarrio, there was discussion about where he was going to go. he ended up going towards a hotel in baltimore , and we conducted an interview with him in the hotel room, and then we returned to d.c. for that nigh . and what was interesting that night, it was the first indication that d.c. was much more busy than it had been any other time that we have been here because we couldn't get into the hotels we wanted to, and we ended up at a hotel tha , was not as satisfactory as we had hoped. >> thank you, so, what you are saying is, you filmed the meeting between mr. tarrio and oath keepers leader , mr. rhodes ? >> and d .
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>> you couldn't hear what was said but according to the justice department, the indictment of mr. tarrio, a participant reference the capitol . in the morning on january 6th, we learned the proud boys would gather near the rally schedule, to take place near the white house. what time did you meet out up with the proud boys? what was happening when they met? >> we met up with the proud voice, somewhere around 10:30 a.m., and they were starting to walk down the mile, in an easterly direction towards the capitol. there was a large contingent, more than i expected, and i was confused to a certain extent why we were walking away from the president's speech because that's what i felt, we were there to cover . >> sort 10:30 a.m., that's early in the day, that's even before the president had started speaking, am i correct?
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>> that's correct. >> how many proud boys would you estimate, were what marching together, to the capitol? >> a couple of hundred. potentially, yeah, a couple of hundred proud boys were marching towards the capitol at that point. >> at the time, was the area heavily guarded? >> no, i remember we walked past , we walked down the mile, we walked to the right of the reflecting pool, and north along the road that leads to the peace circle, and as we were walking past the peace circle, i framed the proud boys to the right of my shot with the capitol behind, and we see one soul police officer at the barriers, which subsequently were breached. we then walk up and passed a tactical unit preparing, and you see that in the film, where the man questions them, and you see may be a dozen capitol police , putting on their riot
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gear. >> so, how would you describe the atmosphere at that time? >> the atmosphere, it seemed to be much darker, i made efforts to create familiarity between myself and my subjects, to make them feel comfortable, and the atmosphere was much darker this day than had been in these other days. and there was also a contingent of proud boys that i hadn't met before, from arizona, who appeared to where these orange hats, and had orange armbands. >> so when the proud boys went back down the hill, to the peace circle, did a larger crowd start together? >> first of all we went around
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to the back and down the steps, then we took photographs on the east side of the capitol and then we went for lunch. we went for tacos. >> so mr. quested, you are a journalist, so you are careful to stick to things that you have observed . but what you've told us, is highly relevant. let me highlight a few key facts that you and others have provided the committee. first, there was a large group of proud boys present at the capitol . we know that from multiple sources. you now estimate that there were around 250, to 300 individuals, that you've testify. they were therefore president trump's speech. we know this, because they left the area, to mashed arched for the capitol before the speech began . they walked around the capitol that morning , i'm concerned, this allowed them to see what defenses were in place
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and where weaknesses might be. and they decided to launch their attack at the peace circle , which is a front door of the capitol complex. if the first security perimeter that those marching from the ellipse, would have to come to, as they moved toward the capitol. the peace circle walk away was always where the thousands of angry trump supporters would arrive after president trump sent them from the ellipse. the proud boys timed their attack to the moments before the start of the joint session in the capitol. which is also where president trump directed the angry mob, quote, we fight like ,". he told them before sending them down pennsylvania avenue,
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right where the proud boys gathered and where you are filming. the central question is, whether the attack on the capitol was coordinated and planned. it was a combination of a month- long effort spearheaded by president trump. mr. quested, thank you for your eyewitness account of the lead up to the breach of the peace circle. this brings us to a point in time, where you and officer edwards were in close proximit . at this point, i reserve the balance of my time, pursuant to five see, the chair recognizes gentlemen from wyoming, liz
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cheney, for questioning. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. officer edwards, i want to start by thanking you for your service and thank you for your courage, thank you for being here this evening. i know that it's not easy to relive what happened for you and for the officers behind you, and for the family members of the officers in the audience this evening. but, it's really important for the country, to have a full accounting and understand what happened. i want to start, officer edwards, with a short clip that shows the horrible moment when you were injured, as the peace circle was breached. >> usa! usa! usa! usa! usa! move!
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>> officer edwards, can you describe the crowd that had assembled at the peace circle as you and your fellow officers stood behind and guarded at the peace circle? >> yeah, so, there were about i want to say, about five of us, on that line. and there were, there was our bike rack and the bottom of the pennsylvania avenue walkway, right by peace circle, there was another bike rack, and so, the crowd had kind of gathered there, it was the crown, led by joseph biggs, and they were mostly in surveillance civilian close, there were some who had military fatigues on, you could see people with bulletproof vests on, you know, things like that. they didn't seem you know,
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extremely cohesive, but they had gathered there, in their outfits, but they had gathered there together and joseph biggs started, he had a megaphone, and he started talking about you know, first, it was things kind of relating to congress. and then, the tables started turning once, what is now the arizona group, that's what you said, the crowd with orange hats, they came up, chanting, -- and tivo, and they joined that group, and once they joined that group joseph biggs rhetoric turn to the capitol police . he started asking us questions like, you didn't miss
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a paycheck during the pandemic mentioning staff about our pay scale, that was mentioned. and, started turning the tables on us. i've worked, i can conservatively say, hundreds of civil disturbance events, i know when i'm being turned into a villain, that's when i turned to my sergeant and i stated the understatement of the century, i said, sarge, i think we are going to need a few more people down here. and so, after that, you know, they started conferring, they went silent, among each other. i saw the person now identified
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as ryan sampson, he put his arm around jason biggs, they started approaching the first barricade, they ripped the first barricade down and they approached our bike racks. you know, at that time, we started holding on, grabbing the bike racks, there weren't many of us, so i grabbed the middle between two different bike racks and you know, i wasn't under any pretense that i could hold it for long but i just wanted to you know, make sure that we could get more people down, and get our units time to answer the call, so, we started grappling over the bike racks. i felt the bike rack come on top of my head, and i was
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pushed backwards and my foot caught the stair behind me and, my chin hit the handrail, and then, at that point, i have blacked out, but the back of my head clipped the concrete stairs behind me. >> you were knocked unconscious, is that right? >> yes ma'am. >> but then when you regain consciousness, even with the injuries, you returned to duty, is that right? >> yes ma'am, at that time, adrenaline kicked in. i ran towards the west front and i tried to hold the line at the senate steps, at the lower west terrace. more people kept coming at us, it just seemed like, you know, more and more people started
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you know, coming onto the west front, they started overpowering us, and that was right about when mpd's officers showed up. they are bike officers, they push the crowd back, and allowed our cdu units as well as theirs, to form that line that you see on that very thin line between us and the protesters were the rioters, you know, at that time. i fell behind that line and for a while i started decontaminating people, who have gotten sprayed, and treating people medically, who needed it. >> and then you are injured again, there, on the west
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terrace, is that right, officer edwards? >> yes, ma'am, after a while, i got back on the line. it was on the house side of the lower west terrace. i was holding that line for a while, there weren't many of us over there and officer sicknick was behind me for most of the time, for about 30 to 45 minutes that i was down there. we were just, the best we could, we were just, you know, grappling over bike racks, and trying to hold them as quick as possible. all of a sudden, i see movement to the left of me and i turned, and it was officer sicknick with his head in his hands. and, he was ghostly pale. which,
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i figured at that point, that he had been sprayed, and i was concerned. my cup alarm bells went off. because if you get sprayed with pepper spray, you are going to turn red. he turned just about as pale as this sheet of paper. so i looked back to see what had hit him, what had happened, and that's when i got sprayed in the eyes as well. i was taken to be decontaminated by another officer, but we didn't get the chance because we were then tear gassed. >> we are going to play a brief clip of that moment that you just described, officer edwards.
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officer edwards, i just want to thank you for being here. and i now, again, how difficult it is. i know the family of officer sicknick, who is here tonight, and, one of the things the capitol police officer said to me recently was, to ask me whether or not, as members of congress, all of us understood that on that day, january 6th, when we were evacuated from the chamber, we were led to a safe, undisclosed location, whether we knew that so many of you had rushed out of the building and into the fight and i can assure you that we do know that, and we understand how important your services. thank you for your continued
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work with our committee, and the interviews, and thank you very much for both of you, for being here this evening. mr. chairman, i yield back. >> thank you very much. miss edwards, can you give us one memory of that awful day, that stands out most vividly in your mind? >> i can. that time, when i talk about falling behind mpc's line. i remember because i have been kind of shielded away i was holding those stairs, so i wasn't able to really see what
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was going on over here. when i fell behind that line, and, i saw, i can just remember, my breath, catching in my throat, because what i saw was just a war scene. it was something like i had seen out of the movies. i couldn't believe my eyes, there were officers on the ground, you know, they were bleeding, they were throwing up, they, you know, i saw friends with blood all over their faces, i was slipping in people's blood, you know, i was catching people, as they fell, you know, it was carnage, it was chaos. i
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can't even describe what i saw. never in my wildest dreams, did i think that as a police officer, as a law enforcement officer, i would find myself in the middle of a battle, you know, i'm trained to detain, you know, a couple of subjects and handle a crowd, but i'm not combat trained. and that day, it was just hours of hand-to hand combat, hours of dealing with things that were way beyond any law enforcement officer has ever trained for. and i just remember, i just remember that moment of stepping behind the line, and just seeing the absolute war
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zone that the west front had become. >> let me thank you for your service and obviously, your bravery, that you have told the world about tonight. it's unfortunate that you had to defend the capitol from fellow americans, none of us would ever think that would have to happen, but it did. so let me think our witnesses for joining us tonight, and sharing their experiences with america. throughout my chairmanship of this committee, i've continuously vowed that this committee will ensure a comprehensive account of the heroic acts on january 6th, and that we will follow the facts, wherever they lead. your testimony is an essential part of that record and helps us do our job. mr. quested,
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thank you for sharing your footage and your account of the days events with us. the images you recorded, and have shared with the committee, do a better job than any of our words and reinforcing the violence of january 6th. we hope that the power of your footage helps encourage all americans, to consider how citizens with so much in common could viciously brawl at the seat of their democratic government. officer edwards, thank you for your brave service as i indicated on january 6th, and all you did to protect us, and most importantly, our democracy. if you and your fellow officers hadn't held the line against those violent insurrectionists, we can only imagine the disaster that would have ensue
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. your heroism in the face of danger is admirable. and your will to continue to detect and serve, despite your serious injuries, should be an inspiration to all of us. we wish you a continued recovery, and look forward to seeing you back in uniform, sometime soon. the members of the select committee may have additional questions for tonight's witnesses, and we ask that you respond expeditiously, in writing, to those questions. without objections, members are permitted 10 business days to submit statements for the record including additional marks for the witnesses, the witnesses have just told us, when they heard the rioters saying, when they stormed the capitol on that day, now we will hear it from the rioters
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themselves, without objection, i include in the record, a video presentation. >> we were invited by the president of the united states! >> what made me want to, the fact that you know, i have supported trump all that time, i did believe you know, that the election was being stolen. and trump asked us to come. >> he personally asked for us to come that day. and i thought, for everything he's done for us, this is the only thing he's going to ask of me, i'll do it. >> we are going to walk down to the capitol . >> that's one of my disappointments, he said he was going to go with us, he would be there. >> i know why i was there, and that's because he called me
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there, and he laid out what is happening in our government. he laid it out. >> i remember donald trump telling people to be there to support. >> you mentioned the president asked you. do you remember specific message? >> basically, he asked for us to come to d.c. i think big things are going to happen. >> what got me interested, he said i have something very important to say on january 6th, or something like that. that's what got me interested to be there . >> proposal he asked me for two things, he asked me for my vote, and he asked me to come on january 6th. >> when the committee reconvenes next week, we are going to examine the lies that convince those men and others, to storm the capitol , to try to stop the transfer of power. we are going to take a close look at the first part of trump's attack on the rule of law.
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when he hit the fuse that ultimately resulted in the violence of january 6th. without objection, with that, the committee stands adjourned. >> congressman thompson of mississippi, the chairman of the committee, on a night in which we heard, january 6th was the culmination of an attempted coup. people closest to president trump knew nothing that he was saying wastrue, try to convince him of it, and congresswoman cheney said, president trump created a moment of maximum danger. it was interesting to hear, that the white house, according to congressman jamie had intelligence prior to january 6th, that violence was possible, and did nothing, then
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as the attack was happening, trump called no one and tried to prevent having. it was vice president pence who made the calls to the military and otherwise we heard the testimony, and president trump's chief of staff, mark meadows, said it was time to change the narrative, to make it seem like the president was still in charge. they made a lot of promises, they delivered on quite a few tonight. >> it's clear now, the thread that the committee is trying to weave, from former president trump, to the oath keepers and the proud boys, to the riots and the insurrection on the capitol, on january 6th. they are trying to argue that this was not just a frenzied and spontaneous mob, that this was a coordinated and multipronged attack. you heard from the documentary filmmaker, mr. quested, say that the oath keepers arrived at the capitol, any to stack information, this was something that was meditated. the committee to the committee laid out the personal consequences of the actions of that day, the riveting testimony we heard from officer
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caroline edwards on how she was injured, blacked out, and when she woke up, went back to work, slipping in blood, as she tried to hold back the rioters for as long as humanly possible. there were tears in and around the committee room during the hearing, both from members who were there on that day, and from other officers who were there, who fought against the rioters, who tried to secure the capitol on january 6th, the committee also tried to lay out the consequences for democracy and for the country, but it's unclear, if any of that is going to break through to the american public. we will have to find out, as the hearings continue over the next few weeks. >> hearing congresswoman cheney say, that the white house was aware that the possibility for violence was good and did
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nothing about it, that was new to me. >> yeah, the committee has promised many revelations, that was one of them, and i think what's important to remember is that this committee is not a law enforcement body. they are not a prosecution, they are here to make an argument, what they can do is apply pressure, public pressure and the bully pulpit on the department of justice, to carry out some of those criminal investigations. by laying for this evidence, in clear evidence and testimony from compelling witnesses, that is how they can make the argument to the people, and then we will have to see what the justice department does. so as you've discussed on the show over the past hour, there are parallel tracks here, this committee is here to make a legislative recommendation, but clearly, the case they are making is a powerful one. >> thank you. >> as the mentioned, the next hearing will be 10:00 eastern, 7:00 pacific, in the morning,
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on monday, june 13th, coverage on msnbc on cable, and nbc news now online, i'm sheppard smith, good night from cnbc tank,
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