Four key takeaways from the first January 6 hearing

Four key takeaways from the first January 6 hearing
Key takeaways from US Congress hearing on January 6 Capitol riot

On Thursday night, the first public hearing for the January 6, 2021, US Capitol attack was held lending more insight into the House Select Committee's investigation.

Members of Congress and the public were able to hear some of the testimony the committee conducted over the last year including Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, son-in-law Jared Kushner, former Attorney General Bill Barr, and more.

This is the first of six public hearings the Select Committee will lead which will tell the story of January 6, 2021, and divulge evidence indicating whether or not former President Trump allegedly broke the law.

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Here are the key takeaways from the first hearing.

"Donald Trump was at the center of this conspiracy"

Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) gave opening statements alongside Vice Chairwoman Liz Cheney (R-WY) regarding the investigation and began detailing the day as an intentional plot by Trump.

The committee explicitly put the blame for the Capitol attack on the former president who Thompson said, "was at the center of this conspiracy."

People close to Trump did not believe the election was stolen

In never-been-seen video testimony, several people close to Trump such as his daughter and Attorney General Barr indicated that they never believed the 2020 election was "stolen" from Trump.

In Barr's testimony, the former Attorney General said he had three discussions with Trump in 2020 where he called the stolen election "bulls***". Barr said he told the former president he did not agree with the idea of putting the stolen election theory out in the public and did not want to be part of it. Barr ended up resigning in December 2020.

Similarly, Trump's daughter Ivanka said she had accepted the election results after Barr indicated the election was not stolen.

In Kushner's testimony, he said he took White House Counsel Pat Cipollone's threat to resign as "whining" in the days before the attack. Cipollone had posed multiple threats to resign when Trump began pushing the narrative that the election was stolen from him.

Other Trump aides' testimony echoed that of Barr and Ivanka.

Former Trump campaign advisor Jason Miller told Trump "in pretty blunt terms that he was going to lose."

Alex Cannon, a former campaign lawyer for Trump, was tasked with finding voter fraud after the election results. Cannon testified that he told White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows "we weren't finding anything that would be sufficient to change the results in any of the key states."

Far-right organizations seemingly led the attack

British documentarian Nick Quested was filming various Trump rallies held and attended by members of the far-right group The Proud Boys as part of a documentary

Quested testified under a subpoena on Thursday that he filmed leaders of The Proud Boys and another far-right organization The Oath Keepers on January 5th, the night before the attack, seemingly referencing an "inevitable" event.

In his testimony, Quested tried to emphasize how violent the day actually was. The committee showed never-before-seen footage of people at the Capitol that day and indicated that members of The Proud Boys and The Oath Keepers were at the forefront of the attack.

The committee also tied Trump to the groups saying his statement to The Proud boys, "stand back and stand by", led to an increase in membership.

Unseen footage depicts an extremely violent attack

Capitol police officer Caroline Edwards testified to her experience with the attack. Edwards described an extremely brutal and violent situation.

“There were officers on the ground,” Edwards said. “They were bleeding. They were throwing up. I saw friends with blood all over their faces, I was slipping in people’s blood. I was catching people as they fell. It was carnage. It was chaos.”

The committee said they believe Edwards was the first Capitol officer injured during the attack after the mob of people pushed and other officers back.

Edwards says he hit her head on concrete stairs before losing consciousness and suffering a traumatic brain injury. Three other officers lost their lives in relation to the attack.

The committee's next hearing will be Monday, June 13 starting at 10 am.

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