Wednesday, May 11, 2022

January 6 Committee Witness List And Topics For June Hearings

The first Hearing, set for June 9, will be a broad Overview of the panel's 10-month investigation and set the stage for subsequent hearings, which are expected to cover certain Topics or Themes including what Trump was doing as the Riot unfolded, the pushing of baseless Election Fraud claims that motivated Rioters, how Law Enforcement responded to the attack, and the Organizing and Financing behind the January 6 Rallies.

While the setup of the Hearings is still a work in progress and evolving, sources note, the Presentations will likely feature Video clips from January 6, as well as some of the nearly 1,000 Interviews the Committee has conducted behind closed doors. That could help the Committee share more Testimony, as well as deal with potentially recalcitrant Witnesses.

Among the Witnesses whose Testimony was videotaped were Members of Trump's Family, including recent Interviews with: Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, and Jared Kushner.

At least One Fact Witness, who has been Deposed by the Committee behind closed doors, already told the Panel they will Refuse to Testify Publicly if asked. Other Witnesses, including Rally Organizers, have indicated they may be willing to participate in Public Hearings under a certain set of Ground Rules.

Among the Key Witnesses who are likely to be called for the Public Hearings are: former Justice Department Officials Jeff Rosen and Richard Donoghue; the interim Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General during the Final month of the Trump Administration. Both have Testified to the Committee about Trump's efforts to Pressure the Justice Department to Investigate unfounded Allegations of Voter Fraud after the 2020 Election. But Neither Rosen nor Donoghue have been asked to Testify at a Public Hearing yet.

Also expected to be on the Final Witness List for Public Hearings are Top Aides to former Vice President Mike Pence, including his former Chief of Staff Marc Short, and former General Counsel Greg Jacob.

It's unclear if the Committee will ask Pence to appear. "We understand the interest in talking to the vice president, and we haven't made decisions at this point," Committee Member Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-CA, 31st District) said. "But I can tell you that we continue to receive ample evidence that will help us in this discussion.

In January, the committee's Chairman, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS, 2nd District), said the Panel wanted to hear directly from Pence, but last month Thompson walked that back. "There's no effort on the part of the committee to get him to come in" Thompson said.

The Committee is interested in calling back for the Public Hearings, former White House Staffers who observed Trump during the Attack. The Committee has long sought to determine what the Trump did and did not do during the Riot.

Planning Sessions have become so demanding, Committee Staffers have been locked in all-day Meetings to sort through Key Details including Witnesses and Hearing Topics. Some of the Panel's Nine Members have instructed their Personal Offices to clear their Schedules for the whole month of June.

Each of the Committee's Nine Members has been assigned to Lead Presentations of different Topic areas, similar to how Impeachment Managers led certain portions of the Two Impeachment proceedings against Trump.

The Committee is still considering whether to Subpoena any House Republicans who have Refused to Cooperate Voluntarily, and if the List of Lawmakers it wants to talk to should expand.

The June Hearings will incorporate the work of the Panel's Investigative Teams, which have been designated different colors.

The Gold team, has examined efforts by Trump and his Allies to pressure Justice Department Officials, as well as those at the State level, to Overturn the Results of the Election. Thompson said in January, that the Hearings would likely include Testimony from State Election Officials, as well as former Top Members of the Trump Justice Department. "They will be a combination of exhibits, staff testimony and outside witnesses," Thompson said last week. "Some of them will be people that people have not heard from before, and I think their testimony will be on point as to why this investigation was so important."

The Blue team, has been examining how Government Agencies and Law Enforcement prepared for, and responded to the January 6 Attack.

The Green team, was tasked with Tracking Money connected to January 6, including the Funding behind the Rallies.

The main Goal of the Committee in holding the Hearings, is to show that even though Trump was told repeatedly there was No Election Fraud, he continued to push forward with his Campaign to Overturn the Election.

Looming over the June Hearings will be a number of questions. Chief among them is whether the Panel intends to make Criminal Referrals to the Justice Department, either for Trump or anyone else.

In March, a Federal Judge said that it was "more likely than not" that Trump attempted to Corruptly Disrupt the January 6 Congressional Certification of the 2020 Election. A key Goal for the Hearings will be shedding light on what Trump was doing as the Riot unfolded, including establishing a Timeline for the 187 minutes between when the Violence began, and when Trump finally released a Video telling Rioters to go home.

Then there is this Problem for Trump: When he told the Rally to go to the Capital, he was asking them to perform an Illegal Act, per the Rally Permit: No March allowed and Indiduals could go to the Capitol after the Vote Count finished, and under Law he is also accountable for the acts of the Riot that followed.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker

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