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New Jan. 6 Testimony Suggests More Criminal Exposure For Trump

Donald Trump and his two closest advisers could face widening criminal exposure over the Capitol attack after ex-White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson testified to the House January 6 select committee, The Guardian reports. Testimony revolved around the disclosure that the former president directed supporters to descend on the Capitol even though he knew they were armed and probably intended to cause harm. Hutchinson testified that Trump was deeply angered by the fact that some of his supporters who had gathered on the National Mall were not entering the secure perimeter for the Save America rally at the Ellipse where he was due to make remarks. Hutchinson said they did not want to enter the secure perimeter because many were armed with knives, blades, pepper spray and, as it later turned out, guns, and did not want to surrender their weapons to the Secret Service.

“I don’t fucking care that they have weapons. They’re not here to hurt me,” Trump exclaimed, according to Hutchinson. “Let my people in. They can march to the Capitol from here. Let the people in. Take the fucking mags [magnetometers] away.” Trump's response is significant because it makes clear that he had been informed that his supporters were carrying weapons, and that he knew those armed people intended to make a non-permitted march to the Capitol. White House counsel, Pat Cipollone desperately tried to stop Trump and Trump’s chief of staff, Mark Meadows, going to the Capitol for fear of potential legal exposure. “We’re going to get charged with every crime imaginable,” if Trump went to the Capitol, Hutchinson said Cipollone told her. The disclosure from Hutchinson marked a new degree of apparent consciousness of guilt among Trump’s closest advisers or fear that they might have committed a crime.


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