Trump Indicated Support for Hanging Mike Pence During January 6 Insurrection

From a Washington Post story by Jacqueline Alemany and Josh Dawsey headlined “Jan. 6 panel is told that Trump indicated support for hanging Pence during insurrection”:

The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol collected testimony that then-White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows remarked to others that then-President Donald Trump indicated his support for hanging Vice President Mike Pence after rioters who stormed the Capitol on that day started chanting “Hang Mike Pence!”

The account of Meadows’s comment characterizing Trump’s reaction to his vice president was provided to the committee by at least one witness but those people did not describe the tone with which the comment was made.

The committee declined to comment. In a statement, Trump claimed the probe was “just an extension of the Democrat smear campaign.” A spokesman for Meadows did not respond to a request for comment.

Meadows was in and out of the dining room off the Oval Office on the day of the attack and in Trump’s presence as the riot unfolded, according to testimony provided to the committee by former White House staffers who were in the West Wing that day.

The Washington Post previously reported that Trump vented to those around him about Pence as he watched on television as rioters besieged the Capitol. At 2:24 p.m., minutes after the vice president and his family were endangered by the pro-Trump mob and forced to flee the Senate chamber, Trump tweeted that Pence lacked “courage”:

“Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify,” Trump’s tweet said. “USA demands the truth!”

Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to Meadows, was asked by the committee about the account and confirmed it, according to two people familiar with the investigation. Hutchinson sat for multiple interviews with the committee and provided detailed information about the lead-up to and happenings on Jan. 6, 2021.

People familiar with the committee’s work said they view Hutchinson, a longtime Meadows aide, as a key witness.

Hutchinson was in a number of meetings in the White House and had extensive access to Meadows, one person said.

The committee is particularly interested in Meadows’s role in Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election, this person said, and has put together a detailed account of his behavior during that period. Some witnesses have said Meadows used his fireplace to burn documents, the person close to the committee said.

Jacqueline Alemany is the author of The Early 202, an early morning newsletter featuring news critical to the nation’s many power centers, including the White House, Capitol Hill, government agencies, the Pentagon and more. Alemany is also an on-air contributor to NBC News and MSNBC.

Josh Dawsey is a political enterprise and investigations reporter for The Washington Post. He joined the paper in 2017 and previously covered the White House. Before that, he covered the White House for Politico, and New York City Hall and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie for the Wall Street Journal.

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