The final report of the legislative commission charged with investigating the attack on Capitol claims that Donald Trump criminally participated in a “multi-party plot” to overturn the legitimate results of the 2020 presidential election and took no action to prevent his supporters from storming the headquarters of the Congressat the conclusion of an 18-month investigation of the former president and the violent insurrection of two years ago.
Trump “lit that fire,” the committee chairman wrote, Bennie Thompsonlegislator from Mississippi.
The 814-page report released Thursday night is the product of more than 1,000 interviews, 10 hearings and more than 1 million pages of documents. The witnesses — who include Trump’s closest associates, security agents and some of the insurgents — detailed Trump’s “premeditated” actions in the weeks leading up to the assault and the direct influence his attempts to undo his defeat had on the who brutally broke through police lines and smashed doors and windows of the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
The central cause was “one man,” the report says: Trump.
The insurrection seriously threatened democracy and “put the lives of US lawmakers at risk,” the nine-member bipartisan panel concludes, in its definitive account of a dark chapter in modern American history. It is not only a compendium of the most dramatic testimonies in testimonies over months, but also a document that will serve as a warning to future generations.
In a series of recommendations, the committee’s seven Democrats and two Republicans suggest that Congress consider permanently disqualifying Trump from public service. The conclusions should be a “wake-up call to all Americans: to watch over our democracy and vote only for those who do their duty in defense of our Constitution,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
The eight chapters of the report essentially tell the same story as the panel hearings earlier this year: They describe various aspects of the plan put together by Trump and his advisers to try to overturn Democrat Joe Biden’s victory. They detail how the then-president pressured states, federal authorities, lawmakers and Vice President Mike Pence to game the system or break the law.
In the two months between the election and the insurrection, the report says, “President Trump or his inner circle engaged in at least 200 apparent acts of public or private contact, pressure, or condemnation, whether against state legislators or state or local election officials. to overturn the state’s election results.”
Trump’s repeated false allegations of widespread voter fraud reverberated with his supporters, amplified by social media, taking advantage of the distrust of the government generated by him during his four years in office. He did little to stop them when they resorted to violence and stormed the Capitol to disrupt Biden’s certification of victory.
The damning report comes as Trump is running for president again as he faces several federal investigations into his role in the insurrection and also into the presence of secret documents at his Florida estate. This week has been particularly stressful for him, as a legislative committee has resolved to release his tax returns, which he tried to hide for years. At the same time, many Republicans are blaming Trump for the worse-than-expected results in the midterm elections. His political situation is the most vulnerable since his election in 2016.
Going forward, the commission suggests several measures, including a comprehensive reform of the Electoral Recount Act, which Trump tried to sidestep. A bipartisan bill that will make it more difficult for lawmakers to challenge the results of the presidential election and the vice president’s intervention is about to be approved and sent to Biden for his signature.
The panel notes that under the 14th Amendment to the Constitution anyone who has sworn to uphold the Constitution and then participated in an insurrection or rebellion can be disqualified from public office.
Trump “is disabled from public service,” wrote the committee’s vice chair, Republican lawmaker Liz Cheney.