Key moments from the January 6 committee riot video | News, Sports, Jobs
In presenting its case to the American public, the House committee investigating the January 6 insurrection made a central argument: Watch the tape.
The centerpiece of Thursday night’s hearing was a video re-enactment of the attack on the Capitol. In 10 minutes, it unfolded point by point, showing the rioters running down and beating the police as the crowd stormed the building to prevent the certification of Donald Trump’s election defeat.
The video had a powerful impact in the courtroom and among Democrats. The police present in the public consoled themselves by reliving the violence. United States Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn cried during footage of rioters beating fellow officers with flagpoles and baseball bats.
Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York posted a photo on Instagram from her television with footage of the riot. “There was (and still is) a widespread campaign by the GOP to downplay the scale of this attack,” she wrote in a caption.
“We were trapped on campus with no way out,” she added. “This is what an American terrorist attack looks like.”
Meanwhile, many Republicans downplayed the new footage or didn’t watch it at all. Unlike other networks, Fox News did not broadcast the committee hearing and allocated hours to hosts and guests who bashed it. Taylor Budowich, a Trump spokesperson, said: “This is not a legislative hearing, this is a production.”
Here are some of the key moments from the committee video.
THE PROUD BOYS
Three months after Trump said they should “stand back and stay away”, the Proud Boys had many members stationed in Washington.
The committee’s video shows members of the far-right extremist group gathering on the National Mall hours before Trump’s speech urging his supporters to “fight like hell.” By the time Trump spoke near the White House, members of the Proud Boys had already reached the Capitol several blocks away.
The former top leader of the group is now accused of seditious conspiracy, as are other members. Federal prosecutors allege they carried out a coordinated attack on the Capitol.
By 1 p.m., as Speaker Nancy Pelosi began certifying electoral votes, rioters had already broken through police lines east of the Capitol.
A riot was declared at 1:50 p.m. and lawmakers were quickly moved to safety. New video released Thursday shows people running through the office of Republican House Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Understaffed officers fought off attackers who came with guns and pepper spray. Officers’ body cameras and aerial security footage captured much of the melee.
Why the National Guard wasn’t already there and why it took so long for Guard members to arrive are questions that remain controversial among key figures. The United States Capitol Police Chief that day alleged that the House and Senate Sergeants-at-Arms were slow to respond to his calls, which those officials denied. The Pentagon said it did not have full forces ready and needed several hours to deploy.
The chief and the two sergeants-at-arms resigned after the attack.