Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s hand-picked House Select Committee on January 6 recently revealed details that President Donald Trump’s White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows had been warned about the possibility of unrest at the Capitol. Pelosi was also provided warnings but refused repeated requests to prepare for the possibility of a disturbance.
Former Meadows advisor Cassidy Hutchinson reportedly told the committee after being subpoenaed that Meadows was cautioned about possible violence related to Trump’s January 6 rally in Washington. In testimony last month, Hutchinson said she was aware that there were “concerns brought forward to Mr. Meadows” but added she was not sure what he did with the information.
Her testimony was described in a court filing from the committee’s attorneys in the ongoing dispute with Meadows regarding disclosure of White House records. Multiple corporate media outlets immediately highlighted the narrative that Meadows was warned of possible violence.
The initial release of documents from the committee last December indicated that Meadows pledged the National Guard would be ready and available to maintain peace as needed. The committee spun that information to make it appear that Meadows only wanted the National Guard to protect “pro-Trump people.”
Despite the sensationalism by the committee, it is now apparent that virtually everyone in Washington knew of the possibility of unrest with a large crowd assembling at the conclusion of a tense and highly contested election cycle. Even the House Parking Team issued an email discussing restricted access to the Capitol Plaza due to the “possibility of large-scale public protests.”
Pelosi clearly had knowledge of the possibility of violence and the authority to prepare for it. However, she intentionally refused to do so.
The U.S. Capitol Police asked Pelosi to deploy the National Guard six times before January 6. However, she and leading House Democrats had previously spoken out against the use of federal troops in Washington during previous violent outbursts. Pelosi’s House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving stated that deployment would be “bad optics” two days before the disturbance.
Pelosi’s committee members have shown no interest in questioning the Speaker’s culpability in failing to prepare for civil unrest. Committee Chair Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) told CNN last year that he does not see Pelosi “being part and parcel” of the “facts and circumstances” involved with January 6. In other words, the committee only has Republican targets.