The public has now heard live testimony from more than a dozen witnesses and seen clips from the recorded depositions of more than 40 others, including members of the Trump family, former administration officials, GOP officials from key battleground states, and members of the former President’s legal team.
The through line? An exhaustive demonstration of how Trump was repeatedly told by his own advisers that the 2020 presidential election was not stolen, and yet he continued to plot for how to stay in power. The former President knew the protesters who showed up in Washington on January 6 were armed. He not only urged them to march on the Capitol, but had hopes of joining them.
The committee’s last planned public hearing will be held on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET. It has all the makings of a potential blockbuster.
What to expect
Thursday will be the panel’s second prime-time session, an effort to maximize viewership and attention.
The committee plans to zero in on Trump’s conduct on January 6, 2021, focusing specifically on his response — or lack thereof — as rioters breached the Capitol walls and forced lawmakers to flee their chambers.
“He was doing nothing to actually stop the riot,” the Virginia Democrat told CNN’s Dana Bash on “State of the Union.”
The Secret Service has been in the spotlight since witnesses described how Trump angrily demanded that his detail take him to the Capitol following his speech at the Ellipse — shortly before rioters breached the building.
Trump’s Bannon problem
Earlier this month, Bannon, who has pleaded not guilty, told the committee that he is willing to testify, ideally at a public hearing, according to a letter obtained by CNN.
The reversal came after he received a letter from Trump waiving executive privilege, although both the House select committee and federal prosecutors contend that privilege claim never gave Bannon carte blanche to ignore a congressional subpoena in the first place.
At a pretrial hearing on Thursday, US District Judge Carl Nichols said he was not deciding yet whether Bannon’s recent bid to testify would be admissible at trial. But by not immediately shutting down Bannon’s efforts to present that evidence, Nichols kept the possibility open that Bannon might have an additional defense to put forward.
Nichols said the trial would begin with jury selection on Monday, as he rejected a second Bannon request to push back the start date.
The work continues
While this week is the last of the January 6 committee’s planned series of public hearings, the panel has said all along that that won’t be the end of its investigation.
Both Kinzinger and Luria suggested Sunday there could be more to come.
“Whether it’s in the form of hearings or other methods to present the evidence,” Luria told Bash, “we have a responsibility to present the things that we’ve uncovered and we are talking about how the best way to do that is moving forward after this hearing.”