Having watched all of the January 6th Committee hearings, I must say that there hasn’t been
much that surprised me. There were a few things that surprised at previous hearings, like finding out that Trump almost got into a fistfight with his secret service driver because he wouldn’t take him up to the Capitol.
Now that was revealing!
(What did Trump think he was going to do there once he got there? Command an army of insurrectionists, like some Junior Napoleon?)
I pre-ordered the official report from the January 6th committee on Amazon back in March. While I don’t anticipate reading anything that is completely new, I still look forward to having it all set forth in a clean and orderly narrative, with all the details filled in.
In any case, there were a few interesting things that came out of Thursday’s hearing:
The Subpoena of Trump
This does feel a day late and a dollar short. Trump is not going to comply, of course. He never complies with anything, why would he comply with this? Unless he is so desperate to be the center of attention once more, and thinks he can outsmart the people in Congress, and wants to tell his own story to the public.
But he would probably have to walk over the dead bodies of a few of his own attorneys, whatever ambulance-chasing sleazeballs are left who are actually still willing to represent this guy.
So I think this was mostly political theater. But political theater has its virtues, so good for the Committee for going there.
The Secret Service knew of the coming violence
It appears that the Secret Service knew well in advance of January 6th that this kind of violence was coming. I thought that the Secret Service protected the Congress as well, but according to Wikipedia:
The Secret Service is tasked with ensuring the safety of the president of the United States, the vice president of the United States, the president-elect of the United States, the vice president-elect of the United States, and their immediate families; former presidents, their spouses and their minor children under the age of 16; major presidential and vice-presidential candidates and their spouses; and visiting foreign heads of state and heads of government.from Wikipedia
Okay, I guess that is a more limited role than I thought. Still, you’d think that they would be a little bit concerned about an effort to prohibit a peaceful Presidential succession, the kind we have had — checks notes — 44 times before, over the last 224 years.
I guess not.
Trump’s plan to declare victory was months in the making
Again, not a huge surprise for anyone who has followed Trump’s career. I mean, the bloody fool launched an investigation of the 2016 election, which he won, because he was convinced that he has won the popular vote as well, and he was sure that there thousands of undocumented immigrants who had been bussed up to New Hampshire to vote, and so on and so forth. (The resulting investigation found . . . wait for it . . . no voter fraud at all. Zilch. Nada.) Still, it was interesting to see how clearly his people (Roger Stone, Steve Bannon and the rest of his lot) had made it clear months before that Trump was simply going to declare victory regardless of the outcome.
If Trump does run in 2024 that won’t be so easy, because this time he will not be in control of the government when he makes his false declaration. And if he were to win, maybe the Democrats should just refuse to accept the results, give him a taste of his own medicine. Personally I hope that by that time he will be (1) under indictment, and (2) dead (if we’re lucky!).
Then we would have to deal with the likes of Ron DeSantis, but I’d still much rather deal with some Trump-wannabe than with the original Obergroppenführer.
Video of the Congressional Leadership Team trying to deal
Finally, it was interesting — if not particularly informative — to watch the Congressional leadership from both parties try to deal with the situation. The video was shot by award-winning documentary filmmaker Alexandra Pelosi, who just happened to be there with her mom that day, and so was able to shoot this behind-the-scenes footage.
This group is — whatever their other shortcomings — a group of mature adults, unlike the Narcissist-in-Chief, who (as expected) spent almost three hours watching television, and surely enjoying the desecration of the Capitol building and the mob going after his own Sycophant-in-chief, the Vice President.
(I’d love to be there when these two are next in a room together. Awkward!)