Liz Cheney Targets Trump WH Lawyer For In Jan 6 Escalation

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Ex-White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson told the House riot panel Tuesday that then-White House counsel Pat Cipollone told her regarding the possibility of Trump going to the Capitol on January 6 that “we need to make sure that this doesn’t happen… We have serious legal concerns if we go up to the Capitol that day.” Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) wants Cipollone’s testimony.

“As we heard yesterday, WH counsel Pat Cippollone had significant concerns re. Trump’s Jan 6 activities,” Cheney, who’s vice chair of the panel, remarked on Twitter. “It’s time for Mr. Cippollone to testify on the record. Any concerns he has about the institutional interests of his prior office are outweighed by the need for his testimony.” Per Hutchinson, Cipollone wanted her to bring the pushback against the potential of Trump going to the Capitol on January 6 to then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows. Hutchinson also indicated that on January 6 itself, before she left the White House for the rally where Trump spoke that day, Cipollone raised fears of getting charged with “every crime imaginable” if Trump later went to the Capitol. Hutchinson cited “obstructing justice” and “defrauding the electoral count” as among potential charges she’d spoken of with Cipollone.

As for what Trump would have actually done had he made it to the Capitol, it’s not clear. Asked about whether anyone said what Trump wanted to do at the Capitol, Hutchinson said in earlier testimony: “No, not that I can specifically remember. I remember hearing a few different ideas discussed with — between Mark [Meadows] and Scott Perry, Mark and Rudy Giuliani. I don’t know which conversations were elevated to the president. I don’t know what he personally wanted to do when he went up to the Capitol that day. I know that there were discussions about him having another speech outside of the Capitol before going in. I know that there was a conversation about him going into the House chamber at one point.” What would he have done in the House chamber? Sat in the corner and sulked? Trump, meanwhile, seems to have been seriously intent on actually going to the Capitol on January 6, a possibility he referenced in his speech on January 6.

Hutchinson shared details on Tuesday of an incident she was informed of involving Trump getting into a physical altercation with the head of his Secret Service detail while in a rage over that agent attempting to get him to go back to the White House instead of to the Capitol. A Secret Service-connected source said personnel in Trump’s vehicle were prepared to testify under oath they weren’t assaulted — although relying on a strict definition of assault sounds like it could be a method to try and evade acknowledging what happened. Nobody’s alleged to have punched each other out. Even with that pushback from a source not yet identified publicly, the agents apparently don’t “deny that Trump was irate and demanded they drive to the Capitol,” according to NBC’s Peter Alexander. In other words, despite claims to the contrary from Trump, there’s been no comprehensive debunking of Hutchinson’s claims, which she was clear she was sharing based on what she’d been told. She traveled elsewhere in the presidential motorcade on January 6, when it all went down.