What to Watch for at the Committee Hearing on Thursday, January 6th

Aides said the hearing will also scrutinize discussions within the White House about appointing a special counsel to investigate Trump’s allegations of voter fraud, which came at a heated meeting in the Oval Office in December 2020 with Sidney Powell and Trump’s national security adviser, Michael. cork.

Trump’s push began during a turbulent period in the Department of Justice in the lead up to January 6, 2021, when the then-president was considering replacing Rosen with Jeffrey Clarkthen the department’s chief energy attorney who pushed Trump’s allegations of fraud within the Department of Justice.

Justice Department officials, along with attorneys in the White House Counsel’s Office, participated in a sensational January 3, 2021 meeting in the Oval Office with Clark and Rosen in attendance, as Trump eventually backtracked on his plan to install Clark as Justice Department chief — after Rosen, Donoghue and Engel threatened resign in protest.

According to a transcript of his written statement he will deliver at Thursday’s hearing, Rosen will assert that the Justice Department has not been provided with any evidence of widespread voter fraud.

Rosen will say, “Some argued to the former president and the public that the election was corrupt and stolen. That opinion was wrong then and it is wrong today, and I hope our presence here today helps to reaffirm that fact.”

Thursday’s session is the committee’s fifth this month to reveal the results of its investigation, building on previous sessions that focused on other aspects of Trump’s pressure campaign. It will also likely be the last hearing of the month, with Final hearings have been postponed until July.

The schedule remains flexible and subject to change, but the July round of hearings is the committee’s current goal, select committee chair Benny Thompson, a Democrat from Mississippi, told reporters Wednesday.

Clark will be a major focus

The committee’s previous two hearings on the lobbying campaign against then-Vice President Mike Pence and state election officials often diverted to the efforts of Trump’s lawyers. John Eastmanwho played a key role in putting forward theories about how Trump could replace or reject presidential voters who were won by Joe Biden.

On Thursday, Clark’s behind-the-scenes efforts to help the Trump campaign sabotage the election will likely be the main focus.

Committee aides said the hearing will focus on the role Clarke played within the Department of Justice in pushing Trump’s false allegations of fraud. Clark planned to “reverse the department’s investigation findings regarding election fraud,” according to committee aides, and wanted to send letters to states indicating fraud had occurred.

Rosen and Donoghue soon refused to pay him, leading to an Oval Office confrontation as Trump considered putting Clarke in charge of the oath.

While serving as the acting chief of civil issues at the Justice Department at the end of Trump’s presidency, Clark floated plans to give the Georgia legislatures and other states support to undermine the results of the popular vote. A Senate investigation this month found that he gave credence to unfounded conspiracy theories about voter fraud, according to Justice Department documents, and reached out to Trump about his taking over as attorney general.

The extent of Clarke’s talks with Trump in the days leading up to January 6 is not yet known.

Clark appeared before the commission to testify in February and demanded a fifth, aides said.

The Justice Department’s chaos has previously been scrutinized

Last year, the Senate Judiciary Committee A long report has been issued He details how Trump tried to use the Justice Department to advance his efforts to overturn the 2020 election. The Senate investigation included interviews with Justice Department witnesses who will testify publicly on Thursday.

Committee aides said January 6 that the committee’s investigation answers a different set of questions about the Senate investigation, noting that at every previous committee hearing, there have been parts of the story known and some unknown.

The committee was provided, for example, with text messages explaining how former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows had connected to Clark through Pennsylvania Republican Representative Scott Perry, CNN previously reported.
Perry was one of three people cited in the Senate Judiciary Report for further scrutiny, along with Pennsylvania Republican Rep. Doug Mastriano – Now the Republican candidate for governor Trump’s legal advisor Clita Mitchell.

“Because the events of January 6 are outside the scope of the committee’s direct investigation, this report is available to the House Select Committee on the January 6 attack, as well as to the public, to assist in their investigation,” the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote.

In addition to providing new details about how Perry was the liaison between Trump and Clark, Meadows’ text messages and court filings helped the House committee fill major gaps about the key role the little-known Republican congressman played at nearly every turn. Planning to reverse or delay the ratification of the 2020 elections.

Kinzinger will preside over the hearing on Thursday

Representative Adam Kinzinger, a Republican from Illinois, will be the committee member doing most of the questioning during Thursday’s hearing focused on the Justice Department.

This may mean that the commission will provide more information on what it says is evidence of Republican lawmakers demand amnesty From the Department of Justice, including Perry.

The committee raised the amnesty in its opening session. Afterwards, Perry denied that he had asked for pardon, calling it a “shameless and soulless lie.”

On CBS’ “Face the Nation” earlier this month, Kinzinger said that more information about the pardon will be released at the hearing he will lead.

When asked about Berry’s denials, Kinzinger said, “I don’t want to walk my hand on this. We’ll put out what we need to put out. But we won’t make accusations or say things without evidence or he-she support.”

Former White House Adviser Still A Question Mark

Together with the leaders of the Department of Justice, then the White House counsel Pat Cipollone He played a significant role in fending off Trump’s efforts to install a loyalist at the head of the Justice Department – and joined their threats to resign.

However, Cipollone is not testifying at Thursday’s hearing, and it is not clear if he will do so at the committee’s hearings.

Thompson said he hoped Cipollone would testify at a public hearing, “But you know, it can happen, it can’t.”

Asked if the commission had video testimony for Cipollone to play during a hearing in the event he declines to testify publicly, Thompson said, “I’ll do that later.”

At Tuesday’s hearing, the commission’s vice chair, Republican Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, called out Cipollone, saying the commission was working to secure his testimony.

“The American people have yet to hear from Mr. Trump’s former White House adviser, Pat Cipollone. Our committee is certain that Donald Trump does not want Mr. Cipollone to testify here. Indeed, our evidence shows that Mr. Cipollone and his office have tried to do what is right. They have tried to stop A number of President Trump’s plans for January 6th,” Cheney said. “We believe the American people deserve to hear from Mr. Cipollone personally. He must appear before this committee, and we are working to secure his testimony.”

CNN reported on Tuesday that Cipollone resisted giving public testimony, believing he had sufficiently cooperated with the commission by sitting in a closed-door interview.

The timetable for the hearings is still work in progress

Thursday’s session was initially supposed to take place last Wednesday, but the committee postponed it the day before.

The commission had initially said it would hold all hearings in June, but the timetable is now likely to be pushed back to July.

There are at least two more Post-Thursday sessions that the committee has previously set up — one focused on the extremists who attacked the Capitol on January 6, and the other on what Trump was and didn’t do in response to the attack.

But as new information came to the committee, aides refused to say on Wednesday whether those were the only remaining hearings or when they would take place, adding that the timetable for hearings was prompted by the investigation.

In fact, committee members said they needed more time to see new documentary footage the committee had received Alex Holder documentary, who had never seen footage of Trump and his family. Thompson said he reviewed some of the footage and called it “important.”

“There’s been a deluge of new evidence since we started,” committee member Representative Jimmy Raskin, a Democrat from Maryland, said Wednesday. “And we just need to catch our breath, go through the new evidence and then incorporate it into the hearings.”

CNN’s Evan Perez and Brian Ruckus contributed to this report.