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J6 Committee Says Cipollone “Did Not Contradict” Hutchinson But Sources Say He Was Not Asked

J6 Committee Says Cipollone “Did Not Contradict” Hutchinson But Sources Say He Was Not Asked

Authored by Jonathan Turley,

There is a new controversy over the alleged bias of the J6 Committee and the extreme measures used to avoid alternative or conflicting accounts.

On Friday, Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), a member of the House select committee, declared that former Trump White House counsel Pat Cipollone” did not contradict” the testimony of previous witnesses like Cassidy Hutchinson.

However, the New York Times is reporting that he was not asked about statements that the Committee knew he would contradict. 

The controversy comes at a time when the head of the Oath Keepers has offered to testify, an extraordinary move since he is facing criminal charges. However, he has one big demand: it must be live and in public. In other words, it cannot be edited or tailored by the Committee.

Lofgren told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer “Mr. Cipollone did appear voluntarily and answer a whole variety of questions. He did not contradict the testimony of other witnesses. And I think we did learn a few things, which we will be rolling out in the hearings to come.”

The problem is how such information has been “rolled out” in a committee with no dissenting or Republican-appointed members. Many of us support the effort to bring greater transparency to what occurred on Jan. 6th and these hearings have offered a great deal of important new information. Indeed, it has proven gut-wrenching in the accounts of lawyers and staff trying to combat baseless theories and to protect the constitutional process.

Yet, the heavy-handed approach to framing the evidence has been both unnecessary and at times counterproductive. The strength of some of this evidence would not have been diminished by a more balanced committee or investigation.

One of the most persistent problems has been the failure of any member to raise opposing views or contradicting points. That issue is now whether the reason that Cipollone did not contradict the testimony of Hutchison was that he was not asked about points of disagreement.  Here is what the New York Times reported:

That does not mean that Cipollone did not confirm much of the prior accounts including the refusal of former President Trump to recognize the lack of credible evidence of systemic voter fraud or the dubious basis for challenging the certification of the election. I am not particularly alarmed by this contradiction, even it is in fact a contradiction. Rather, it highlights a process that continues to be more persuasive rather than investigative in presenting testimony.

The contradictions with Hutchinson are important after other witnesses contested her account on a key point of her testimony.

This brings us back to the offer of  Stewart Rhodes to testify live. That is an extraordinary offer for a criminal defendant. No defense lawyer (including this one) would support such an appearance before a criminal trial. If the Committee is truly interested in getting to the truth, why wouldn’t it hold an open hearing? It has suggested that Trump was in collusion or a conspiracy with this group. It also alleged that the Oath Keepers came to Washington to commit an armed insurrection. We could now, for the first time, hear from one of the leaders of the two groups on that very subject. It would ideally allow him to make an opening statement and offer a full account on whether he coordinated with anyone in the White House on January 6th.

If Rhodes is willing to take this risk, the Committee should be willing to give up control over what the public can see and hear in the J6 investigation.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 07/11/2022 – 13:50

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