The President Who Stood Still on Jan. 6


This exhibit from video launched by the House Select Committee, exhibits President Donald Trump recording a video assertion on the White House on Jan. 7, 2021.


/Associated Press

No matter your views of the Jan. 6 particular committee, the details it’s laying out in hearings are sobering. The most horrifying up to now got here Thursday in a listening to on President Trump’s conduct because the riot raged and he sat watching TV, posting inflammatory tweets and refusing to ship assist.

Shortly after Mr. Trump urged protesters to march on the Capitol, he was instructed violence was breaking out. At about 1:30 p.m. he went to the eating room, the place he stayed till 4 p.m. There is not any official file of what he did, and the photographer was instructed no footage.

All of MAGA world was texting Chief of Staff

Mark Meadows

that Mr. Trump wanted to name off his supporters. White House Counsel

Pat Cipollone

testified that he argued internally “there needs to be a public announcement, fast, that they need to leave the Capitol.” He added that Mr. Meadows joined these calls all through the day, as did

Ivanka Trump.

By 2:13 the Capitol was breached. The committee performed radio site visitors from Vice President

Mike Pence’s

safety element. “I’ve got public about five feet from me down here below,” one voice stated. Another warned: “If we lose any more time, we may lose the ability to leave.”

At 2:24 Mr. Trump issued his tweet saying Mr. Pence “didn’t have the courage” to cease the electoral depend. The VP was evacuated from a Capitol workplace at 2:26, in line with the committee. What if that route had been blocked? Would the mob have harmed Mr. Pence? Would the Secret Service have opened fireplace?

At 2:38 Mr. Trump tweeted: “Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!”

Sarah Matthews,

a White House communications aide, didn’t assume Mr. Trump was doing sufficient, and he or she recounted a dialog with Press Secretary

Kayleigh McEnany.

“She looked directly at me and, in a hushed tone, shared with me that the President did not want to include any sort of mention of ‘peace,’ in that tweet,” Ms. Matthews stated. “It took some convincing on their part, those who were in the room.” The group tried to search out some language Mr. Trump would consent to publish, and “it wasn’t until Ivanka Trump suggested the phrase ‘stay peaceful’ that he finally agreed to include it.”

How did rioters react to the tweet concerning the Capitol police? The committee performed what it stated was radio chatter by Oath Keepers. “He didn’t say not to do anything to the Congressmen,” one voice chuckled. Another added: “Well, he did not ask them to stand down.” Not till 4:17 did Mr. Trump publish a video telling rioters to go residence, whereas justifying their actions, since “this was a fraudulent election.”

The committee’s critics are proper that it lacks political steadiness. It is making an attempt to make a legal case that could be exhausting to show and may tear the nation aside. It undermines its argument by not releasing full transcripts of testimony. Why depend on what Ms. Matthews stated that Ms. McEnany stated that Mr. Trump stated? The committee interviewed Ms. McEnany.

Still, the brute details stay: Mr. Trump took an oath to defend the Constitution, and he had an obligation as Commander in Chief to guard the Capitol from a mob attacking it in his identify. He refused. He didn’t name the navy to ship assist. He didn’t name Mr. Pence to examine on the protection of his loyal VP. Instead he fed the mob’s anger and let the riot play out.

In the 18 months since, Mr. Trump has proven not an iota of remorse. On Thursday he claimed to be vindicated by a invoice to make clear the Electoral Count Act. “Mike Pence told me, and everybody else, there was nothing he could do,” Mr. Trump wrote. “If so, how come the Democrats and RINOs are working so hard to make sure there is nothing a VP can do.”

Character is revealed in a disaster, and Mr. Pence handed his Jan. 6 trial. Mr. Trump totally failed his.

Review & Outlook: While Democrats wish to use the Jan. 6 investigation to color the opposition as a gang of insurrectionist nuts, Republicans can’t ignore the accumulating proof concerning Donald Trump’s conduct. Images: Press Pool/Reuters/Getty Images Composite: Mark Kelly

Copyright ©2022 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8