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Trump’s ire at VP a focus of U.S. Capitol riot hearings -Breaking


© Reuters. A screen shows former U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence’s speech at the U.S. House Select Committee hearing on January 6, 2022, Capitol Hill, Washington. Jabin

Richard Cowan, Patricia Zengerle

WASHINGTON, (Reuters) – A congressional panel that was investigating the attack on the U.S. Capitol last year by Donald Trump supporters gave evidence during its prime-time hearing. It found evidence that Trump posed a threat to both American democracy as well as his vice-president Mike Pence.

Representative Liz Cheney (Republican vice-chair of the House of Representatives Select Committee probing the attack on Jan. 6, 2021) told Thursday’s hearing that Trump spoke in support of mob chants to “hang Mike Pence.”

This month, the Democratic-led committee will hold six hearings to discuss the nearly one-year-long investigation it has done into the events that occurred before and on the day of the attack.

Cheney said that Trump was shouting and “really mad” at his advisers, who told him to do more to stop the riot. The president was aware that rioters were shouting to “hang Mike Pence,” and responded by saying, “Maybe our supporters are right in thinking, Mike Pence deserves it, perhaps.”

Dick Cheney, the congresswoman’s dad, was U.S. Vice President from 2001 through 2009 under President George W. Bush.

In an unsuccessful attempt to prevent members of Congress decertifying, in a process oversaw by Pence, the Republican Trump’s defeat to Democrat Joe Biden in November 2020 was the catalyst for the Capitol Attack.

Normally a mundane event, Trump made the certification a focal point of his campaign. He saw the certification as a last chance to hold onto the presidency even though he lost the election. Trump supporters came to Washington in large numbers to support him, who repeatedly falsely claimed the election had been stolen by widespread fraud.

Trump supporters made a mass invasion of the Capitol. They sent journalists, staff and lawmakers fleeing. It demanded that the vice president be executed. The crowd also set up a temporary gallows at the Capitol.

The committee showed a clip of Trump’s speech at the rally, in which he encouraged supporters to march onto the Capitol (the seat of Congress) and “fight like Hell.”

We will win the election if Mike Pence does what is right. Trump spoke to the crowd, saying that Vice President Pence needs to send the document back to the states for re-certification. Then we are president.

Trump stated, “Mike Pence has to be there for us. And if he does that it will be a very sad day for the country.”

Bennie Thompson (Democratic Representative) and Cheney were the chairmen of the committee. They laid out plans for the hearings. One hearing will be about Trump’s attempts to press Pence into refusing to count electoral votes. Cheney showed a clip from Pence’s remarks in February, where he said: “President Trump is incorrect.” “I had no rights to reverse the election.”

Greg Jacob will be testifying at other hearings about Trump’s requests. Marc Short (Pence’s former chief-of-staff) is expected to also testify.

Cheney claimed that the hearings would reveal to Cheney how Trump was repeatedly told by his former vice-president and staff members, “Witnesses” in these hearings.

Short stated in deposition that Pence knew, ultimately, that his fidelity was the Constitution’s “first and most important oath.”