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Tag: january 6th riot

House Select Committee Urged To Subpoena Ginni Thomas

Legal experts are encouraging the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack to subpoena far right-wing activist and lobbyist Ginni Thomas, now that she is backing out from appearing barely weeks after saying she “looks forward” and “can’t wait” to testify.

In an 8-page letter, her attorney says he needs “a better justification for why Mrs. Thomas’s testimony is relevant,” The Washington Post reports.

The Committee has been interested in speaking with her since at least last summer but had declined to invite or subpoena Thomas, the spouse of a sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justice. After evidence of email correspondence between her and the infamous “coup memo” author John Eastman, the Committee said they would like to talk with her. She quickly told the right-wing Daily Caller she “can’t wait to clear up misconceptions. I look forward to talking to them.”

Virginia Thomas, who goes by “Ginni,” is a longtime and powerful name in Washington who actively, according to reports, pushed dozens of state and federal officials to overturn the 2020 presidential election. Her attorney says he sees no reason for her to speak with the Committee.

“Mrs. Thomas has expressed a willingness to try to come before the Committee as a means of clearing her name,” Thomas’ attorney Mark Paoletta wrote in a letter, HuffPost adds. “But, based on my understanding of the facts … I do not believe there is currently a sufficient basis to speak with Mrs. Thomas.”

Former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, now a law professor and MSNBC/NBC News legal analyst, is calling for Thomas to be subpoenaed.

“Thomas said she’d testify during the uproar,” Vance said via Twitter. “Now, she’s hoping to duck under the radar with so much other news. She should be subpoenaed like any other witness & if she fails to appear, treated like Bannon and Navarro, as she has no privilege to avoid testimony.”

Attorney, MSNBC anchor, and legal analyst Katie Phang tweeted, “SUBPOENA her. Now.”

Seth Abramson, an attorney and author said: “Only by issuing a subpoena to Ginni Thomas *now* does Congress have a chance of being able to work through her inevitable legal challenges and refer her to DOJ for a Criminal Contempt indictment *before* a possible handover of Congress to the insurrectionists in early 2023.”

Miranda Yaver, PhD, a political science professor who teaches courses on law at Wheaton also tweeted, “Subpoena Ginni Thomas.”

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Trump Lashed Out At 'Total Phony' Cassidy Hutchinson During Testimony

Former President Donald Trump lashed out at ex-White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson during her explosive testimony before the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol on Tuesday afternoon.

Hutchinson worked closely with Trump in the West Wing and was also a special assistant to then-Chief of Staff Mark Meadows. Her office was only a few yards away from Trump's.

Hutchinson's appearance at the Committee's unscheduled sixth session – which was announced on Monday – provided new insight about what went on inside Trumpworld in the leadup to, on, and following the events of January 6th.

Her sworn statements included recollections of Trump throwing his lunch against a wall, demanding that armed supporters be permitted to attend his Stop the Steal rally so that he could deploy them to the Capitol, and one incident in which Trump tried to grab a Secret Service agent's clavicle and commandeer the presidential limo when his security detail refused to drive him down the street.

Hutchinson further stated that White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and other senior staffers believed that Trump felt that his mob's threats to assassinate Vice President Mike Pence were justified.

"I remember Pat saying something to the effect of, 'Mark, we need to do something more, they're literally calling for the vice president to be f*cking hung.' And Mark had responded something to the effect of, 'You heard him, Pat. He thinks Mike deserves it. He doesn't think they're doing anything wrong.' To which Pat said something -- 'This is f*ckng crazy. We need to be doing something more,'" Hutchinson said.

CNN reported prior to the hearing that Trump was 'nervous' and 'blindsided' by the news of Hutchinson's cooperation. And as he has frequently done in the past, Trump engaged in what his long-term personal lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen recently described as a "distance, disparage, and destroy" effort against Hutchinson.

"I hardly know who this person Cassidy Hutchinson, is, other than I heard very negative things about her (a total phony and "leaker"), and when she requested to go with certain others of the team to Florida after my having served a full term in office, I personally turned her request down," Trump wrote on his Twitter-knockoff Truth Social app.

"Why did she want to go with us if she felt we were so terrible?" Trump continued. "I understand that she was very upset and angry that I didn't want her to go, or be a member of the team. She is bad news!"

Read it below or at this link.

Meanwhile, the Select Committee tweeted after the conclusion of its hearing that unnamed individuals whom they have interviewed may be victims of witness tampering by Trump and his associates.

Another possible instance occurred on Monday in an angry missive directed at Meadows that Trump posted to Truth Social.



Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Former Stone Aide Confirms GOP Plot To Steal 2020 Election

A recording made by a disgruntled election conspiracist is the strongest evidence yet that operatives in Donald Trump’s orbit summoned supporters to Washington on January 6 for the express purpose of coercing lawmakers into overturning the 2020 election.

News broke late Tuesday afternoon, whereupon this bombshell of a story was promptly buried under an avalanche of other news.

The main characters aren’t household names, but this story is every bit as important as the earlier revelation that Donald Trump, Jr, was pushing a detailed plan for a coup to his father’s chief of staff before the election had even been decided. And it’s even more important than the late-breaking news that Sen. Mike Lee talked up Trump lawyer John Eastman’s plan for a procedural coup in late November.

The star of the secret recording is Jason Sullivan, one-time aide to dirty trickster and longtime Trump confidante Roger Stone.

Sullivan told the Times he was invited to speak by a group of anti-vaccine activists, who were planning a permitted event in the capital on January 6. (By amazing coincidence, Stone was scheduled to speak at an anti-vax event on the afternoon of January 6, an engagement he missed, for reasons that are surely of great interest to the January 6th committee.)

The call was made a week before the insurrection.

Sullivan repeatedly urged the other callers to intimidate the lawmakers who were meeting to certify the election. He told them they needed to make them feel like the people were “breathing down their neck.”

“If we make the people inside that building sweat and they understand that they may not be able to walk in the streets any longer if they do the wrong thing, then maybe they’ll do the right thing,” Sullivan said.

“We have to put that pressure there.”

This recording was made by a woman named Staci Burk, a former school board official turned election conspiracist. Burk filed an anonymous affidavit supporting one of Trump lawyer Sidney Powell’s many election conspiracy theories. Whereupon heavily armed paramilitary operatives calling themselves the 1st Amendment Praetorian (1AP) moved into her home for several weeks, ostensibly to guard her. Burk told the Times a 1AP member joined the call, and she made the recording because the armed men were making her feel unsafe. Members of 1AP were in the capital during the insurrection and members of the group have been subpoenaed by the House Select Committee.

This recording partially corroborates previous claims by Ali Alexander, another one of Roger Stone’s associates. He said he schemed with members of the Congress to gather a crowd to pressure lawmakers into overturning the election during the certification ceremony.

In a video made before the insurrection, Ali Alexander claimed that he and Reps. Mo Brooks, Andy Biggs, and Paul Gosar “schemed up putting maximum pressure on Congress while they were voting.”

The video circulated on social media but was later deleted. The plan was to “change the hearts and the minds of Republicans who were in that body, hearing our loud roar from outside,” Ali Alexander said.

The Sullivan call proves there was an inside-outside game on January 6.

The inside game was the procedural coup devised by John Eastman that was unfolding inside the Capitol on January 6th as GOP legislators raised spurious claims of election fraud to overturn a free and fair election.

The outside game was the mob deliberately assembled in order to pressure legislators to go along with Trump’s illegal scheme.

Ex-Cop Who Stormed Capitol Goes On Trial

The trial for Thomas “TJ” Robertson, a former cop and U.S. Army veteran who prosecutors say stormed the U.S. Capitol with tactical gear and gas masks in hopes of obstructing the certification of the 2020 election, begins this week.

Jury selection kicks off the proceedings for the third trial mounted from the Justice Department’s massive investigation of the January 6 attack incited by former President Donald Trump.

Robertson has a steep hill to climb: He has entered a not guilty plea to six counts after violating the terms of his release earlier this year, and his alleged cohort—another police officer, Jacob Fracker, who has already pleaded guilty—is expected to testify against him.

Robertson’s trial could last for the duration of this week and according to NBC4 Washington, presiding U.S. District Judge Christopher Moore told attorneys Monday he anticipated the trial could pour over into next week.

According to his indictment, Robertson traveled from just outside Roanoke, Virginia to the Capitol with fellow Rocky Mount Police Department officer Jacob Fracker on January 6. Both men were fired after being arrested in the immediate weeks after the riot.

Robertson, a veteran of the U.S. Army who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, allegedly brought a large wooden stick with him to the Capitol on January 6. Prosecutors say he used it to beat back Metropolitan Police Department officers defending the complex alongside U.S. Capitol Police in the melee.

He also brought three gas masks with him that day. According to Fracker’s admission last month when entering his guilty plea, Robertson gave Fracker and another person the masks as they marched into a restricted zone near the west terrace of the Capitol.

Fracker faces up to five years in prison and will be sentenced on Apr. 28, potentially just after the jury issues its verdict for Robertson. Fracker has agreed to cooperate with the Justice Department’s sweeping probe in exchange for leniency, and he could receive just 15 to 21 months.

At trial, in addition to key testimony from Fracker, U.S. attorneys will present a variety of exhibits to make the case against Robertson.

The former Rocky Mount police sergeant has made some of that work easy: He took a selfie with Fracker in the crypt of the Capitol after breaching it and then sent it to other officers at the department.

The men posed before a bust of John Stark, a decorated major general of the Continental Army during the American Revolution. Robertson is seen making an obscene gesture there.

He posted the selfie with Fracker to his own social media account after it was leaked online.

“Here’s the picture in question and I am fucking PROUD of it,” he wrote. It shows 2 men willing to actually put skin in the game and stand up for their rights. If you are too much of a coward to risk arrest, being fired and actual gunfire to secure your rights, you have no words to speak I value.”

Instagram exchange

He also wrote online about how he “took the fucking Capitol” and how he “attacked the government” on January 6.

All of this evidence cuts against his defense that he was actually escorted into the Capitol by police and milled about peacefully. Robertson denies reveling in or participating in any violence, and his attorney has emphasized how Robertson was only inside the Capitol for 10 minutes.

Jurors will also see timestamped video footage provided by U.S. Capitol Police as well as bodycam footage from the Metropolitan Police Department, security footage from the Senate and House, and a bevy of Robertson’s disturbing Facebook posts and other social media messages.

Two days after the attack, he unloaded on Facebook, prosecutors say. In one post, Robertson railed that “being nice [and] polite, writing letters and sending emails hasn’t worked.”

An FBI lab report from last July noted Robertson had a metal pipe with two metal end caps, a fuse and a piece of a fuse.Robertson was outraged, writing:

Robertson was outraged, writing:

“All thats left is violence and YOU and your ‘Friends on the other side of the isle have pushed Americans into that corner. The picture of Senators cowering on the floor with genuine fear on their faces is the most American thing I have seen in my life.” : [Punctuation, spelling, emphasis original]:

Jurors may also see records tied to Robertson’s account for an online assault rifle “discussion and resources” forum, his bank statements, information found on his cell phone, and photographs of items found at his home two weeks after the Capitol breach.

Robertson was initially on pretrial release following his arrest but was thrown back into detention when officers with a search warrant found an M4 Rifle, over 50 cans of gunpowder and the makings of a pipe bomb at his Ferrum, Virginia home. Officers also turned up four silencers. The weapons and materials violated an order from the court that he not have access to firearms or destructive devices.

Prosecutors fought to keep him in jail as well because Robertson ordered ammunition and some 37 firearms after he was indicted. He spent nearly $50,000 on the haul and had the guns and ammo sent to a federally licensed firearm dealer in Roanoke, Virginia.



He claimed the rifle found in his bedroom belonged to his son. His attorneys argued the materials were part of his training equipment for a law enforcement rapid response training program. The mass of guns he ordered he chalked up to being part of his growing collection of World War II memorabilia. Court records show Roberts tried to obscure the purchase on Venmo, at one point labeling a more than $3,000 purchase as “Wedding Photos.”

Judge Cooper told Robertson he likely committed a felony by having the weapons shipped on his behalf.

Robertson appeared flagrantly remorseless about his conduct on the online gun forum, too.

At one point, he posted a screenshot of his charges to the gun broker site, adding that he was “sure as fuck” proud of his charges.

“I’ve said it before. They are trying to teach us a lesson,” Robertson wrote on Jun. 10. “They have. But not the intended lesson. I have learned that if you peacefully protest than you will be arrested, fired, be put on a no fly list, have your name smeared and your address released by the FBI so every loon in the U.S. can send you hate mail.”

He continued:

“I have learned very well that if you dip your toe into the Rubicon… cross it. Cross it hard and violent and play for all the marbles,” he wrote online six months after Jan. 6.

Robertson insists he is innocent and told ABC13 last year Capitol police invited him inside and offered him water.

U.S. Capitol Police did not immediately return a request for comment to Daily Kos on Monday.

Robertson maintains “there was absolutely no indication” he or Fracker were “anything but welcome to check out certain places” and he insists he “did not participate in any violence or property damage.”

Prosecutors allege Fracker, Robertson, and an unidentified neighbor drove to Washington early on the morning of January 6 and started the day listening to speeches near the Washington Monument. Before they arrived, Robertson was raging on Facebook that the 2020 election had been stolen, echoing false claims by then-President Trump.

Published by permission of Daily Kos.