In the days leading up to Donald Trump’s failed coup, Stephanie Grisham testified to the House January 6 Select Committee that there were “off-the-books meetings in the White House,” according to one The Guardian source. As press secretary to first the previous first lady and then to the president, Grisham was one of the very few who were privy to the ultra-secret meetings.
Grisham said that those meetings were usually set up by Trump Chief of Staff Mark Meadows. Then long-time trusted Chief Usher Timothy Harleth waved the attendees upstairs, according to The Guardian source.
She continued, saying that the former president made “several phone calls to lieutenants at the Willard Hotel in Washington” the night of January 5th:
‘Trump made several phone calls from the Yellow Oval Room and elsewhere in the White House residence to lieutenants at the Willard hotel in Washington the night before the Capitol attack, telling them to stop Joe Biden’s certification.’
A Select Committee spokesperson said that Grisham explained to the Committee investigators in some detail about one specific comment made by the ex-president. That was when he told the crowd that he would join them marching to the rally, according to a source:
‘Over the course of her hours-long interview, Grisham told House investigators that the mystery surrounding Trump’s promise at the Ellipse rally that he would march with his supporters to the Capitol might be resolved in Trump White House documents.’
Did Trump intend to march with them to the Capitol Building? The Select Committee has been deep into the issue of whether Trump was one of or the single coordinator of the “criminal conspiracy.”
The January 6 Committee wanted to understand whether the march coordinated the various militia organizations, such as the Oath Keepers and ultra-right activists marching toward their ultimate defeat.
Specifically, the Select Committee wanted to understand whether Trump ever intended to march with his followers, or he heeded the Secret Service’s warning to avoid the march. The Secret Service assigned to the former president told him they could not assure his safety should he join in the march, according to Reuters.
Regardless, Trump went back to the White House to watch the events he had kicked off via his television and out a dining room window:
‘What was his motivation? Was it to “incite an insurrection that stopped the certification?” Then, he would be installed as president for a second term.’
According to the House January 6 Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MI), they had been looking at the Secret Service’s plans that day and what if any “evacuation strategies” were in place for former Vice President Mike Pence. That information was contained in the document of Trump’s daily movements.
Grisham testified to the Select Committee that the White House, Secret Service, and organizers of the rally needed to coordinate. They wanted to make certain that Trump showed up on the Elipse for the Save America rally held before the failed coup:
‘The former Trump aide suggested to the select committee that Trump was determined to speak at the rally once he heard about its existence, the sources said, and was constantly on the phone to oversee the event’s optics.’
After January 6, Grisham returned to Melania Trump.
Three White Lions podcast, Gloria Christie reads a chapter from her book of the same title. She also writes for the liberal online newspaper The Bipartisan Report. Gloria Christie Report her newsletter for people on the go. Written in her own unique style with a twist of humor in a briefer version of Bipartisan Report. Christie’s Mueller Report Adventures In Bite-Sizes a real-life compelling spy mystery (in process). Find her here on Facebook.