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On Tuesday, the Jan. 6 committee highlighted the way violent far-right extremists answered Donald Trump’s “siren call” to come to Washington for a big rally, as some now face rare sedition charges over the deadly U.S. Capitol attack and effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election.
Watch Murphy’s remarks in the player above.
The panel investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol siege convened Tuesday for a public hearing probing what it calls the final phase of Trump’s multi-pronged effort to halt Joe Biden’s victory. As dozens of lawsuits and false claims of voter fraud fizzled, Trump tweeted the rally invitation, a pivotal moment, the committee said. The far-right Proud Boys, Oath Keepers and others now facing criminal charges readily answered.
“The president’s goal was to stay in power for a second term, despite losing the election,” said Florida Rep. Stephanie Murphy. “The assembled crowd was one of the tools to achieve that goal.”
She laid out a series of facts that pointed to the people who told Trump he had lost the election fair and square. Taped testimony of former press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, Trump’s daughter and advisor Ivanka Trump, and Pat Cipollone, former White House counsel, backed up these claims.
“Did I believe he should concede the election, at a point in time? Yes I did,” Cipollone said. “I believe [Republican] Leader [Mitch] McConnell went onto the floor of the Senate, I believe, in mid-December, and basically said the process is done. That would be in line with my thinking on these things.”
Murphy also played clips of former Attorney General Bill Barr, as well as former aide Cassidy Hutchinson, both of whom said they had told Trump the election was called and that it was time to move on.
This is the seventh hearing in a series that has presented numerous blockbuster revelations from the Jan. 6 committee. Over the past month, the panel has created a stark narrative of a defeated Trump “detached from reality,” clinging to his false claims of voter fraud and working feverishly to reverse his election defeat. It all culminated with the deadly attack on the Capitol, the committee said.
“Never before in American history had a president called for a crowd to come contest the counting of electoral votes by Congress or engaged in any effort designed to influence, delay or obstruct the joint session of Congress in doing its work required by our Constitution and the Electoral Count Act, ” Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin told the hearing.
It’s the only hearing set for this week, as new details emerge. An expected prime-time hearing Thursday has been shelved for now.
Casey is a producer for NewsHour's digital video team.
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