In what is likely a grand finale, the House’s January 6 Select Committee has some real surprises for Americans concerned about whether the nation’s democracy can survive. The Secret Service has not been able to retrieve its deleted January 5-6, 2021 phone records, but it did hand over a real trove of documents. And that is where the thunderbolts lie.
The Secret Service under new leadership gave the January 6 Committee new “video footage and internal Secret Service emails,” among its a million-plus pages of documents. The crucial video showed the discussions of “sensitive internal records.” The Washington Post reported that the records also included:
‘Internal communications from the same time period. Voluntarily, the agency has turned over every record it kept of logistical planning, security concerns, and private discussions related to the scheduled protests and president’s movements.’
The FCC demanded the Secret Service preserve all government documents. So when the organization’s leader, a close confidant of Donald Trump, destroyed the agent’s phone records, the FCC launched an investigation. Head of Trump’s Secret Service Detail Tony Ornato claimed it was an accident.
Thursday’s revelations will include, according to the Washington Post:
‘[S]urveillance footage before Trump’s speech and shows throngs of his supporters clustered just outside the corralled area for his “Stop the Steal” rally.’
The emails show Trump’s staff alerting him to:
‘[T]he risk and then the reality of violence that day, as he continued to press nervous Secret Service agents to take him to the Capitol to join his supporters marching there, the three people said.’
The Select Committee received one email showcasing how alarmed the Secret Service had been that Trump would, indeed, prevail and lead his followers into the Capitol Building.
Then the ex-president sent out a tweet to his followers decrying his Vice President Mike Pence’s failure to halt the certification process. It was gasoline on dry kindling.
The January 6 Committee will end on that crescendo and summarize its previous hearings. The January 6 will give its “closing arguments” even as Americans have begun heading to the midterm voting booths. The new records will show:
- ‘New evidence gathered by investigators that corroborates the committee’s key findings about Trump and the Jan. 6 insurrection.
- [Trump] sought to rile up his supporters to help block the certification of Joe Biden’s electoral victory.
- [He] used his bully pulpit to encourage a fiery showdown at the Capitol.
- [The ex-president] then refused to budge to help rescue thousands of lawmakers, staff members, and police officers on Capitol Hill who were either fleeing or fighting for their lives that afternoon.’
The Secret Service screened people entering to hear Trump’s speech for arms. Officials watching the video saw “Trump supporters with plastic shields, bulletproof vests, and other paramilitary gear.” They also spotted people outside of the rally to avoid confiscation of their weapons. Some in trees.
The Washington police testified that enforcement arrived at 1:00 pm EST to find the Capitol Police in “hand-to-hand combat. The Secret Service had” just then offered to send reinforcements to help…then-Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund.” They faced:
‘[T]ens of thousands of protesters in downtown Washington, and D.C. police being dispatched to help Capitol Police with protesters breaking through barricades, D.C. police declined the Secret Service’s request.’
Ornato was at the heart of the FCC investigation and has since retired. According to The Guardian:
‘He began as head of Trump’s Secret Service detail but in an unprecedented move in December 2019 became deputy chief of staff in the White House.’
in addition, the records showed “an enraged Trump:”
‘Trump’s detail leader, Bobby Engel, riding with Trump in his sport utility vehicle, told an enraged Trump that they were heading back to the White House and it was not safe to take him to the Capitol.’
The young woman who was the top aide to former chief of staff, Mark Meadows and testified flawlessly to the January 6 Committee, Cassidy Hutchinson’s comments drew darker implications, MSNBC reported:
‘[S]ome of his (Trump’s) supporters were armed for battle, demanded they be allowed into his rally and insisted he wanted to lead them on their march to the Capitol.’
Between 1:30 and 2:00 pm:
‘[A] senior Secret Service supervisor for protective operations emailed Engel with an urgent update and seeking to know if Trump’s plan to go to the Capitol was successfully quashed. It came after a tumultuous hour for the Secret Service detail, which had effectively ignored a command from the president.’
The new evidence will be damning.
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.
Christie writes Gloria Christie Reports & Three White Lions Substack newsletters and a Three White Lions podcast available on Apple, Spotify, etc. She is a political journalist for the liberal online newspaper The Bipartisan Report. Written in her own unique style with a twist of humor. Christie’s Mueller Report Adventures In Bite-Sizes a real-life compelling spy mystery (in progress). Find her here on Facebook. Or at Three White Lions her book on Amazon Kindle Vella and the Gloria Christie Three White Lions podcast on Apple, Spotify, etc.