The January 6th Commission, once again getting the spotlight from broadcast and cable networks for its latest hearing, focused its attention on the pressure that President Donald Trump placed on Vice President Mike Pence to reject the electoral vote count in favor of Joe Biden on January 6.
“Donald Trump wanted mike pence to do something no Vice President has ever done,” said the committee’s chairman, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS), at the outset of the hearing.
“Mike Pence said no — he resisted the pressure., he knew it was illegal. He knew it was wrong,” Thompson said, adding that the president then “turned the mob on him,” a mob that was captured on video outside the Capitol chanting ‘Hang Mike Pence.’”
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) said that “what the president wanted the vice president to do was not just wrong; it was illegal and unconstitutional.”
The featured witnesses were to include Greg Jacob, Pence’s former counsel, and J. Michael Luttig, a retired judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals and informal adviser to the then-vice president.
Cheney has suggested that laws were broken as Trump, with the advice of attorney John Eastman, urged Pence to reject the electors, something that the vice president ultimately determined that he did not have the authority to do.
In the days leading up to this latest hearing, its vice chair, Cheney previewed its focus, dropping a clip on Twitter in which a White House attorney warned Eastman, in the aftermath of January 6, “Get a great f-ing criminal defense lawyer. You’re going to need it.”
New revelations about January 6 have emerged even outside the committee’s official proceedings.
As the Capitol was attacked, Pence was whisked away to his Senate office. ABC News’ Jon Karl released photos of Pence, as his wife, Karen, shut the curtains in the office, apparently concerned that they could be spotted by the mob below.
On Thursday, Axios reported that the committee would seek to interview Ginni Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, after reports that she contacted Eastman. Ginni Thomas had also contacted then-Chief of Staff Mark Meadows in the weeks after the election, as she embraced election fraud conspiracy theories.