January 6, Committee downgrades Secret Service Story, Seizing the Wheel to “Heated Discussion”


The eighth hearing of the January 6 Committee on Thursday, February 6, produced testimony from witnesses that there had been a heated discussion between Donald Trump and Secret Service officers during the Capitol Riot — but not that Trump attempted to take the steering wheel.

The testimony represented a substantial step back from last month’s claims by Cassidy Hutchinson, a former White House adviser. These were based upon hearsay and suggested that Trump tried to seize control of the car from Secret Service.

Hutchinson claimed that he was “irate” and they were instantly disputed by Bobby Engel and Tony Ornato, Secret Service agents. Rep. Elaine Luria, D-VA, cited Ornato’s claim in an earlier interview she claimed that Trump was “irate.” However, she did not mention Hutchinson’s claims.

Rep. Luria then mentioned another witness, retired D.C. Metro Police Sergeant Mark Robinson who although not in Trump’s vehicle, was present in his motorcade. Sgt. Robinson, who was unable to provide any hearsay evidence, said that Robinson heard the president being “upset” about the situation and that there had been “heated discussion or argument about going up to the Capitol .”

Although Robinson was named as a witness against Trump by the committee following months of closed-door testimony, his testimony contradicted Hutchinson and undermined credibility at the hearing.

Though the Thursday hearing was scheduled as the last public hearing of the committee, Rep. Liz Cheney (R.W.Y.) stated that public hearings would resume in September. The committee has yet to resolve any of the evidentiary issues that have arisen.

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Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. PST). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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