Former President called the Capitol riot ‘the greatest movement in the history of our Country’ – shortly before the January 6 committee held its first public hearing.
The ex-president on Thursday also lashed out at the House Select Committee that has been investigating the insurrection for a year, calling it the ‘Unselect Committee’. Trump then praised the rioters.
‘January 6th was not simply a protest, it represented the greatest movement in the history of our Country to Make America Great Again,’ Trump wrote on his social media platform Truth Social.
Trump attacked the panel hours before its members started the first of at least three public hearings set to take place over the next week.
The committee intends to ‘provide the American people an initial summary of its findings about the coordinated, multi-step effort to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election and prevent the transfer of power’.
The riot left seven dead, including three police officers and four protestors. More than 100 police officers were injured.
At the first, the committee focused on highlighting how Trump continued to support the ‘Stop the Steal’ movement even though close advisors continued to tell him that there was no evidence of fraud.
‘I did not see evidence of fraud that would have affected the outcome of the election,’ former Attorney General William Barr told the committee. ‘And frankly a year and a half later I haven’t seen anything to change my mind on that.’
In one startling revelation, the Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump told the committee she was swayed by Barr’s perspective.
‘It affected my perspective,’ she said. ‘I respect Attorney General Barr, so I accepted what he was saying.’
The committee, convened by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi despite objections from Republican leadership, consists of seven Democrats and two Republicans. Pelosi refused to seat any member of Congress that voted to decertify the election.
Many Republicans refused to cooperate with the committee, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who ignored a federal subpoena to testify in April.
Additional hearings are scheduled for June 13 and June 15, and more could be held that week.
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