Subscribe to Here’s the Deal, our politics newsletter for analysis you won’t find anywhere else.
Thank you. Please check your inbox to confirm.
Erica R. Hendry
Erica R. Hendry
Leave your feedback
Upon hearing that his security detail could not authorize a trip to the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 after his speech on the Ellipse, former President Donald Trump lunged at the Secret Service agent in charge of his security that day, according to testimony on June 28 from a former senior aide.
Watch Hutchinson’s remarks in the player above.
Cassidy Hutchinson, who worked for former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows, told the House Jan. 6 committee that the Secret Service, advisers and lawyers to the president had all warned him about traveling to the Capitol with rioters that day during Congress’ official count of Electoral College votes.
Security reports from that morning indicated protesters along the National Mall had weapons, including knives, guns, pistols and rifles, body armor, spears and flag poles. Hutchinson said security officials warned multiple times they could not make a trip to the Capitol happen, guidance she relayed to Meadows both before and after Trump’s speech, in which he told rallygoers he would join them in a march toward Congress.
WATCH: Jan. 6 committee Chairman Bennie Thompson introduces former White House aide as key witness
On the way to Trump’s vehicle, Meadows told the president that the head of his detail, Bobby Engel, had more information about the trip to the Capitol.
When Trump got into the car, Engel told him they didn’t have the assets for the trip and that it wasn’t secure. Trump became “irate,” Hutchinson said White House deputy chief of staff Tony Ornato recalled to her after she returned to the White House.
Trump said something to the effect of, “I’m the f***ing president, take me up to the Capitol now.” After Engel relayed they had to return to the White House, Trump reached up to the front of the vehicle to grab the steering wheel. Engel grabbed the president’s arm and said “Sir, you need to let go,” Hutchinson recalled. Trump then used his free hand to lunge toward Engel’s neck, Ornato reportedly told Hutchinson.
Erica R. Hendry is the managing editor for digital at PBS NewsHour.
Support Provided By:
Additional Support Provided By: