Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) remains here to remind observers of the truth around January 6 no matter the pace of lies from former President Donald Trump about that day and surrounding circumstances.
In comments on MSNBC after Trump made an appearance in recent days on CNN for a town hall special featuring an audience of hundreds of conservatively minded people, Raskin noted how the evidence contradicted Trump’s insistence he had actually been trying to summon a protective military presence for the Capitol. If he’d wanted to preemptively deploy troops from at least the D.C. National Guard, it’s not clear he’d have been able to be stopped from making that move because of the command structure! And yet, it didn’t happen. In the event with CNN, Trump also repeated the false characterization of what happened on January 6 as fundamentally or largely peaceful. It’s a deceptive and frankly bonkers line of rhetoric with which now former Fox News host Tucker Carlson has also run.
“He is now repeating these promises to pardon the January 6 rioters,” Raskin added. “He makes no distinction between violent insurrectionists and those who may have been convicted for non-violent offenses, and he also said that he would conceivably pardon the Proud Boys. He said he was uncertain about that, but obviously didn’t want to commit to pardoning the Proud Boys or the Oath Keepers at this point. So, look I think that he is running on an explicitly authoritarian program… The whole GOP, at least by the evidence of the Republicans in that room, seem to be wrapping themselves around the package of lies and propaganda and disinformation that he wants to run on.”
Trump’s description of the few he did distinguish from the crowd of rioters he’d be inclined to pardon was that they simply got “out of control,” so yes, he didn’t meaningfully acknowledge the brutality of the physical violence many of these people committed or with which they explicitly or tacitly agreed. Members of the extremist groups Raskin referenced have been convicted of seditious conspiracy in connection to the riot, so just to be clear, that’s where Trump is staking his rhetorical claim, and any insinuation trying to gloss over that fact is BS. The evidence seems to indicate he’s with the jury-declared seditionists and those who’ve violently attacked police officers — if they support his cause. Many Republicans stick with him.
Watch Raskin’s MSNBC interview below: