The legislative committee investigating the Capitol takeover plans to focus Thursday on Donald Trump’s pressure campaign against his former vice president to rescind his defeat in the 2020 presidential election.
Liz Cheney, deputy chair of the committee dealing with the January 6, 2021 attack, said the third hearing will address Trump’s efforts to persuade Mike Pence to reject a Joe Biden win.
The hearing of the commission investigating the invasion of the US Capitol opens on June 9, 2022. – Photo: Reuters
“As a federal judge pointed out, this is likely a violation of two federal criminal laws,” Cheney said. “Trump had no factual basis for what he was doing, and he was told it was illegal.”
“President Trump conspired with a lawyer named John Eastman and others to nullify the January 6 election result,” he said.
A committee aide said the hearing would inquire about Eastman’s role in the plot.
Cheney’s publication included a sentence that Eric Hirschman, Trump’s White House attorney, told Eastman the day after the rebellion: “Get a good criminal attorney. You’ll need one.”
The committee is holding a series of hearings regarding the seizure of the Capitol by a mob of Trump supporters to nullify the results of the 2020 election.
Allies told Trump he lost
Several close allies of Trump confirmed that they told him that Biden won the election fairly, but despite this, the former president promoted his version of election fraud.
With dozens of Trump lawsuits overturning the results failing, he turned to Pence for help.
Donald Trump speaks at the NRA event on May 27, 2022 – Photo: Brandon Bell/AFP
Trump has put intense pressure on Pence, both at rallies and on Twitter, to use his position as speaker of the Senate to reject the results of the January 6 election.
“We will show that this pressure campaign directly contributed to the attack on Capitol Hill and the endangerment of the life of the vice president,” said a committee aide.
During the “Stop the Robbery” rally before the hearing to certify the results and Biden’s victory, Trump mentioned Pence several times when he called his supporters to march to the Capitol.
But Pence wrote to Congress that the Founding Fathers never intended the vice president to have “unilateral power” to cancel a recount, adding that “no vice president in the history of the United States has asserted such power.”
The mob threatened to hang Pence for not cooperating when they stormed the Capitol and put a noose in front of the building.
Cheney said last week that when chants of “hang Mike Pence” were heard, Trump responded, “Maybe our supporters are right” and Pence “deserves it.”
With the dust settled days after the uprising, Pence accused the media of excessive coverage of the attack, but has since taken a more aggressive stance toward Trump in an effort to pave the way for the 2024 White House race.
“The presidency belongs to the American people and only the American people,” said the former vice president of the Conservative Federal Assembly. “Frankly, there is no idea more un-American than the idea that one person can elect the president,” he said.
The Committee will hear from C. Michael Lutigue, the conservative lawman and retired federal judge who reported this to Pence He had no authority to interfere in the election results.
“The sole responsibility and authority of the Vice President under the Constitution is to honestly count the Electoral College votes,” Lutegues said the day before the rebellion.
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