At this point, the pace of revelations from the January 6 committee in the House could be compared to a fire hose. In ongoing public hearings, the committee is laying out how ex-President Donald Trump, when still in office, drove a multi-faceted, purposeful scheme to essentially undo American democracy, no matter some of the serious consequences.
And that’s not just an abstract concept. Despite his loss and the mountain of evidence indicating the presidential election results were legitimate, Trump wanted to secure another term in office, meaning the will of the people essentially wouldn’t mean anything anymore and the connection between U.S. residents and their government would be fundamentally broken. A meaningful response to crises like the war in Ukraine? Worldwide inflation? Decaying infrastructure? Nope. With four more years of Trump, it would’ve been more focus on personal relationships with dangerous people — like Putin, placements of incompetent people in key positions, and favors to the far-right. Towards the close of a Tuesday hearing of the riot committee, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said:
‘For more than 200 years, our democracy has been distinguished by the peaceful transfer of power… When Donald Trump used the power of the presidency to try to stay in office after losing the election to Joe Biden, he broke that sacred and centuries-old covenant. Whether his actions were criminal will ultimately be for others to decide. But what he did was without a doubt unconstitutional, it was unpatriotic, and it was fundamentally un-American. And when he used the power of his presidency to put the enormous pressure on state and local elections officials and his own vice president, it became downright dangerous. On January 6, that pressure became deadly.’
Referring to a former Georgia elections worker targeted by Trump for supposed involvement in imaginary election fraud, Schiff added:
‘Ruby Freeman said the president is supposed to protect every American, not target them, and she is right. If the most powerful person in the world can bring the full weight of the presidency down on an ordinary citizen, who is merely doing her job, with a lie as big and heavy as a mountain, who among us is safe? None of us is… In city councils and town councils, on school boards and election boards, from the Congress to the courts, dedicated public servants are leaving their posts because of death threats to them and to their families. This is not who we are; it must not become who we are.’
We are blessed beyond measure to live in the world's greatest democracy.
It's a legacy to be cherished, and protected.
That we have enjoyed a democracy for more than 200 years does not mean we will tomorrow. All of us must play a part in its preservation.
My closing statement: pic.twitter.com/Lo5jnPQEhX
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) June 21, 2022
The Tuesday hearing focused in part on pressure imposed on state elections officials to meddle with the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. None of that pressure was ever successful; not a single state where Biden won saw its presidential election outcome overturned, no matter the frenzied efforts from Trump and certain prominent allies of his. Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger was among Tuesday’s witnesses, and he went over how his team had “nearly 300” investigations connected to the 2020 presidential election — and not a single one turned out to show any kind of systematic fraud that would’ve changed the outcome.
Raffensperger ran through some of the details. Asked Tuesday by Schiff if there was “any way that you could’ve lawfully changed the result in the state of Georgia and somehow explained it away as a recalculation,” Raffensperger explained: “No, the numbers are the numbers, and the numbers don’t lie. We had many allegations, and we investigated every single one of them. In fact, I challenged my team, “Did we miss anything?” [Election conspiracy theorists] said that there was over 66,000 underage voters; we found that there was actually zero. You can register to vote in Georgia when you’re 17 and a half; you have to be 18 by election day. We checked that out, every single voter. They said that there was 2,423 non-registered voters; there were zero. They said that there was 2,056 felons; we identified 74 or less that were actually still on a felony sentence. Every single allegation we checked. We ran down the rabbit trail to make sure that our numbers were accurate.”