A key Republican member of the Jan. 6 committee presents the message lawmakers on the panel are sending as they push forward public hearings: Donald Trump should face criminal charges for his role in the attack on Congress.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger argued there was enough evidence to charge the former president with the Justice Department’s strongest charges in relation to the Jan. 6 attack so far, that of conspiracy seditious criminal, during an interview Sunday on ABC. This week.
“I certainly think the president is guilty of knowing what he did – a seditious conspiracy, to be involved in these kinds of different segments to pressure the DOJ, vice president [Pence]et cetera,” Mr. Kinzinger said.
“I think what we are presenting to the American people definitely rises to the level of criminal involvement by the former president,” he added.
He noted, as others have, including Rep. Bennie Thompson, the panel’s Democratic chairman, that the role of the House select committee is not to formally indict the ex-president or people; that role is held by the Justice Department, which will review the case presented by the committee as well as its own investigation into the attack as the agency determines whether notable people in the administration or Trump campaign will be held responsible for the deadly attack on Congress that resulted in the deaths of several Capitol police officers and the injuries of more than 100 other law enforcement officers.
More than a year after the attack, no members of the White House or Donald Trump’s campaign teams have faced criminal charges for inciting an attempt to stop the 45th’s peaceful transfer of power. president to Joe Biden, who now holds the position.
The January 6 committee has passed three public hearings so far detailing how Donald Trump has pursued a path of baseless conspiracies and rumors of voter fraud against the advice of his own advisers and top experts, including Attorney General Bill Barr, and sought to undermine trust and spread misinformation. allegations of voter fraud for months after the 2020 election. And on Thursday, the panel explained how Mr. Trump’s legal team pressured then-Vice President Mike Pence to interfere in certifying the election, even though they had privately expressed doubts about the legal validity of their actions.
While the panel is expected to lay out more revelations about Donald Trump’s actions in the attack itself during the three remaining hearings to be held in the coming weeks, a new ABC News/Ipsos poll finds that 58% of Americans now believe that Mr. Trump bears a great deal of responsibility for the attack and should face criminal charges as a result. That number has only increased by four percentage points since January 2021, but could rise further as the committee’s public hearings continue.
A similar number, 60%, said they believed the House select committee conducted a fair investigation.
Disagreement over Mr. Trump’s role and responsibility comes mostly from Republicans, as six in 10 independent voters said in the poll that Mr. Trump should face criminal charges. Nearly one in five Republicans said Mr Trump was largely responsible for the attack.
However, the poll also found that 51% of voters said the hearings would not affect their voting plans for the upcoming midterm elections.
The ABC/Ipsos poll polled 545 adults living in the United States between Friday and Saturday. The survey’s margin of error was 4.5 percentage points.
The Justice Department has remained tight-lipped about its plans for its own investigation of Jan. 6 in the future; most recently, in January, Attorney General Merrick Garland promised to follow the investigation wherever the facts lead, but so far there are few public indications other than that pointing to the possibility of criminal charges against the members. of the former administration. Hundreds of participants in the riot itself have been charged by the agency since January 2021, and more continue to be charged as they are identified by investigators.
“The actions we have taken so far will not be the last. The Department of Justice remains committed to holding all Jan. 6 perpetrators – at all levels – accountable under the law, whether they were present that day or were criminally responsible for the assault. on our democracy,” Mr. Garland promised earlier this year. “We will follow the facts, wherever they lead.”
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Post expires at 12:48am on Thursday June 30th, 2022