Advertisement

Panel has 'firsthand' testimony Trump was asked to stop riots

1/5
Panel has 'firsthand' testimony Trump was asked to stop riots
Chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson said Sunday that the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol has received testimony that former President Donald Trump was asked to call for them to end. File Pool Photo by Chip Somodevilla/UPI | License Photo

Jan. 2 (UPI) -- Members of the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol said they have testimony stating that former President Donald Trump was urged to order an end to the insurrection.

Chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., told CNN's State of the Union that the committee had received "significant testimony that leads us to believe that the White House had been told to do something," to quell the rioters.

Advertisement

"We want to verify all of it so that when we produce our report and when we have the hearings, the public will have an opportunity to see for themselves," he said.

Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., one of only two Republicans on the committee told ABC News' This Week that the committee has "firsthand testimony" that Trump was sitting in the dining room next to the Oval Office watching the riots unfold on television, noting that the White House briefing room was "just a mere few steps" away.

Advertisement
RELATED Jan. 6 committee asks Supreme Court to reject Trump's request to block records

"The president could have at any moment, walked those very few steps into the briefing room, gone on live television and told his supporters who were assaulting the Capitol to stop," she said. "He could have told them to stand down. He could have told them to go home -- and he failed to do so. It's hard to imagine a more significant and more serious dereliction of duty than that."

Cheney added the committee had received testimony that members of Trump's family, including his daughter and adviser Ivanka Trump, had asked him to call for an end to the violence.

"We have firsthand testimony that his daughter Ivanka went in at least twice to ask him to please stop this violence," she said.

RELATED Ex-executive branch lawyers ask high court to release Trump records to Jan. 6 panel

Thompson on Sunday also told NBC News' Meet the Press that the committee has asked the National Archives for videos Trump made at the White House during the riots, saying the former president made "several videos" before sharing a one-minute clip on social media calling for the rioters to disperse.

Thompson noted it took trump about 187 minutes to tell his supporters to leave the Capitol.

"We have now determined he was in the White House, we've determined that a number of people made attempts to contact him through his chief of staff," Thompson said. "Some of those text messages we share on our presentation of the contempt citation for Mark Meadows. We also have information, other individuals, who made calls trying to get some semblance of response out of the White House, but for that 187 minutes nothing happened."

Advertisement
RELATED Jan. 6 committee defers requests for some Trump records at Biden's request

Thompson also said the committee planned to recommend new intelligence-gathering legislation as a result of the probe, noting that it was the "worst kept secret in America" that people planned to travel to the Capitol as Congress worked to certify the results of the 2020 presidential election.

"We want to make sure that never happens again," he said. "In addition to that, we want to make sure that the line of communication between the Capitol Police and the structure of how we make decisions is clear. Right now, it's kind of a hybrid authority. And that authority clearly broke down, the training components for our Capitol Police, a lot of things that we don't have right now."

He added the committee would also recommend legislation to address "the coordination of resources to protect the Capitol" after its investigation found "significant inconsistencies in coordination" during the Jan. 6 riots.

"The first legislation would be the coordination of resources to protect the Capitol. There were significant inconsistencies in coordination, that the National Guard from the District of Columbia was slow to respond, not on its own, but it had to go to the Department of Defense," he said.

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement