The Department of Justice is taking its own sweet time prosecuting the January 6th insurrectionists, but apparently getting closer to the former president and his co-conspirators. Meanwhile, a member of the House January 6th committee says they’ll have big news starting in June. From NBC News:
Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., suggested that the House Jan. 6 committee’s upcoming hearings will be dramatic and include explosive revelations that the panel has been piecing together behind the scenes for months.
“The hearings will tell a story that will really blow the roof off the House,” Raskin said Thursday at an event . . . in Washington.
Members of the committee plan to hold those hearings in June and aim to have a report out about their investigation by the end of the summer or early fall, said Raskin, who sits on the panel.
“No president has ever come close to doing what happened here in terms of trying to organize an inside coup to overthrow an election and bypass the constitutional order,” he said. “And then also use a violent insurrection made up of domestic violent extremist groups, white nationalist and racist, fascist groups in order to support the coup.”
Raskin said the committee will present “evidence” that proves there was coordination among then-President D____ T____ and his inner circle and his supporters who attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6 in an attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election.
The plan was to use then-Vice President Mike Pence to try to get President Joe Biden’s electoral vote tally below the 270 majority needed for victory, Raskin said, which under the 12th Amendment would shift the contest to a vote in the House. If that occurred, he said, Republicans would have the majority to seize the presidency because the votes would be cast by the state delegations, and the GOP controls more state delegations than the Democrats do.
“It’s anybody’s guess what could have happened — martial law, civil war. You know, the beginning of authoritarianism,” Raskin said, speculating on what might have unfolded if the plan was successful. “I want people to pay attention to what’s going on here, because that’s as close to fascism as I ever want my country to come to again.”
“This was not a coup directed at the president,” Raskin said. “It was a coup directed by the president against the vice president and against the Congress.”
The plan was coordinated “most tightly by T____ and his inner circle,” Raskin said, adding that the committee faced the most difficulty in this aspect of its probe. The panel has interviewed more than 800 witnesses, but he said, “The closer you get to T____, the more they refuse to testify.”
Speaking about the threats to Pence on Jan. 6 and the chants by rioters to hang him, Raskin said the vice president’s Secret Service agents — including one who was carrying the nuclear football — ran down to an undisclosed place in the Capitol. Those agents, who Raskin said he suspects were reporting to T____’s Secret Service agents, were trying to whisk Pence away from the Capitol.
Pence then “uttered what I think are the six most chilling words of this entire thing I’ve seen so far: ‘I’m not getting in that car,'” Raskin said.
“He knew exactly what this inside coup they had planned for was going to do,” Raskin said.
So Pence didn’t want to leave the Capitol. The scary interpretation is that he thought he was being kidnapped by the Secret Service. At a minimum, he knew that if he wasn’t at the Capitol, the Electoral College proceedings would go on without him, allowing Republican senators to disqualify the votes of selected states, the first step in overturning the election (the plan his corrupt boss had been trying to convince him to go along with for weeks). It hasn’t received much attention, but the oldest member of the Senate, 88-year old Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) admitted as much the day before the insurrection:
During an exchange with reporters on Tuesday [Jan. 5th], Grassley was asked how he plans to vote [on Jan. 6th].
“Well, first of all, I will be — if the Vice President isn’t there and we don’t expect him to be there, I will be presiding over the Senate,” according to a transcript of his remarks sent by a spokesperson.
Grassley serves as the president pro tempore of the Senate and will preside over any portion of the debate that Pence does not attend.
“We don’t expect him to be there.” Those words are just as chilling as “I’m not getting in that car”.