In a few days it will be the first anniversary of Donald Trump's attempted coup and his violent January 6th insurrection in Washington, D.C. In that time Trump and his seditionist cult disciples have only become more deranged and hostile toward democracy and America. To commemorate the occasion, Trump has scheduled a “news” conference that will certainly be devoid of both news and conferring.
Trump's media charade was purposefully scheduled as a distraction from the more solemn observances previously announced by Congress and the White House to honor the sacrifices of the heroes who defended the Capitol and democracy. His phony affair should therefore be ignored by the press since they already know that it will be nothing but more of the same self-serving, ego-satiating lies that Trump has been disgorging for the past year. Along with some new lies wherein he is buying into Tucker Carlson's “false flag” conspiracy theory.
In a pre-anniversary interview on ABC News' This Week with George Stephanopoulos, Rep. Liz Cheney explicitly articulated some of the reasons that the nation needs to be concerned about Trump and his persistent authoritarian aspirations. Cheney is one of two Republicans on the House Select Committee that is investigating the January 6th insurrection, and which has Trump fulminating in fear of what he childishly calls the Unselect Committee. Cheney's words need little elaboration (video below):
“The Committee has first hand testimony now that he was sitting in the dining room next to the Oval Office watching the attack on television as the assault on the Capitol occurred. We know, as you know well, that the Briefing Room at the White House is just a mere few steps from the Oval Office.
“The president could have at any moment walked those very few steps into the Briefing Room, gone on live television, and told his supporters who were attacking the Capitol to stop. He could have told them to stand down. He could have told them to go home. And he failed to do so. It's hard to imagine a more significant and more serious dereliction of duty than that.”
Not only did he not immediately tell his StormTrumpers to stand down, instead he waited for three horrifying hours and then told them that they were special and that he loved them. Cheney went on to assert that Trump's failure to act could constitute criminal negligence. And she also made the point that…
“It's important for the American people to understand how dangerous Donald Trump was. We know, as he was sitting there in the dining room next to the Oval Office, members of his staff were pleading with him to go on television to tell people to stop. We know Leader McCarthy was pleading with him to do that. We know members of his family – we know his daughter – we have first hand testimony that his daughter Ivanka went in at least twice to ask him to please stop this violence.
“Any man who would not do so; any man who would provoke a violent assault on the Capitol to stop the counting of electoral votes; any man who would watch television as police officers were being beaten as his supporters were invading the Capitol of the Unites States; is clearly unfit for future office. Clearly can never be anywhere near the Oval Office ever again.”
It wasn't just members of his staff and family who were begging Trump to do the right thing. It was also his Ministry of Propaganda (aka Fox News) who were sending him frantic emails as the invasion was going down. And when asked if she shared Hillary Clinton's recent statement that if Trump were to win a second term that could be the end of our democracy, Cheney answered simply…
“I do. I think it is critically important, given everything we know about the lines that he was willing to cross – he crossed lines that no American president has ever crossed before.”
There is no question that Trump is both dangerous and criminally negligent. And there is abundant evidence of it. But it's still good to hear a staunchly conservative Republican saying it on national television. Now all we need is for the Attorney General to get the message and issue some indictments before Trump has a chance to cause more trouble.
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On ABC, Liz Cheney says Jan 6 committee has first-hand testimony that Trump watched assault on the Capitol on TV & resisted pleas from McCarthy & Ivanka asking he call for a stop to the violence.
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