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Secret Service let down Capitol cops who feared a 'bloodbath' if they fired on Jan. 6 protesters: reporter
The Washington Post reporter who won a Pulitzer for her stories on the Secret Service on Wednesday questioned why agents had not apprehended pro-Trump insurrectionists who brought weapons to the U.S. Capitol.
"Individuals who were with Donald Trump on Jan. 6th essentially did their job," Carol D. Leonnig said during an appearance on MSNBC. "They blocked the president despite him apparently roaring in their faces from going with the rabble, the mob that was heading to the Capitol. They said no, sir, cannot do that insane thing that you are proposing. So, that is, check. Mission accomplished. You know, their civil servant job performed. However, there is a problem in all of this which is the Secret Service uniformly kept enabling Donald Trump all along the way in the final year of his office. Doing things that were extremely dangerous and to his own agents, to his own health, to the health and safety of peaceful protesters."
She named some of the more egregious things they did like the clearing of Lafayette square, and the campaign rallies during COVID-19 that ultimately gave the virus to many of the advance agents. All of those were due to Anthony Ornato, the person that Trump appointed to be the assistant director of the Secret Service and who is still in his position today.
"Tony Ornato who was also with Donald Trump on Jan. 6th," Leonnig continued. "And the question becomes: did he do what he was supposed to do to protect the public and protect democracy? And we will see if he and also the security detail leader for President Trump testify before the committee. The agency, the Secret Service has said that they will make themselves available to testify under oath and they dispute some of Cassidy Hutchinson's allegations and accounts and they say they do."
IN OTHER NEWS: Fox News flips on Donald Trump during Jan. 6 hearings
She went on to ask why the Secret Service failed in their jobs on Jan. 6.
"So, let's see what they have to say about what happened that day because first off, sorry to be long, but it's a crime to have a gun on federal land," said Leonnig. "Why didn't the Secret Service do anything about that? It's a crime to assault a federal officer. If Donald Trump laid hands on his detail leader inside the SUV in which they were traveling in on Jan. 6th as Cassidy Hutchinson was told, that's a crime. So, a lot of things need to be vetted and explained and we'll look for what those Secret Service agents have to share with the public."
MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace wondered why it isn't a crime to send violent and armed people to where the vice president is.
"I mean, on the act of now knowingly sending armed supporters who were committed to hanging Mike Pence, I wonder if there's any examination or Inspector General that is looking at Trump's role in endangering the life of a sitting vice president," Wallace considered.
Leonnig explained that the Justice Department will likely get to the bottom of everything but behind close doors the Secret Service is pooh poohing a lot of the Jan. 6-related stuff.
"There's a lot of oh, well, Donald Trump may have said that he wanted to take down the MAGs. He wanted to let people continue to carry weapons and come to his rally, but we just — we just dissed that. We'll never violate our protocols," Leonnig explained. "But where were the arrests of these people with weapons? Because the reason Capitol Police did not fire on anybody that day who were literally almost killing their own soldiers in arms, killing the police, they were almost at the stage of killing multiple police officers, heart attacks, spears, bear spray, heart attacks, everything. Why didn't they do that? Because they were afraid of a bloodbath. They were afraid if they pulled the trigger it would start all of the people who were armed who they knew were armed in the crowd firing back and then it would have been civil war on the steps of the Capitol."
See the discussion below:
The Secret Service let down the Capitol Police youtu.be
Ammon Bundy and associate Diego Rodriguez are not following legal processes in a lawsuit that stems from a child protection case, according to new court filings.
Bundy ignored a court order, and Rodriguez is nowhere to be found, according to motions and affidavits filed this month by St. Luke’s Health System and its fellow plaintiffs — St. Luke’s CEO Chris Roth, the health system’s Boise hospital, and two health care providers.
The lawsuit filed in May accused the men and their closely linked political organizations — People’s Rights Network and Freedom Man PAC — of defamation and harassment.
Rodriguez’s grandson was hospitalized in March at St. Luke’s with severe malnourishment, and was taken into child protection.
Rodriguez, Bundy and their followers urged people to protests at St. Luke’s, doxxed health care providers associated with the boy’s medical care and, according to the lawsuit, disrupted operations at the Boise hospital.
The hospital at one point went on lockdown for an hour and was unable to accept patients in ambulances.
Bundy, Rodriguez and their organizations launched “a knowingly dishonest and baseless smear campaign,” the lawsuit said. The men made false claims, including that St. Luke’s “engaged in widespread kidnapping, trafficking, and killing of Idaho children.”
St. Luke’s on Friday asked an Ada County court to impose sanctions on Bundy because he refuses to respond to the lawsuit or provide information, “despite acknowledging to the public that he is aware of the lawsuit and stating in interviews that he plans to ‘expose’ the hospital,” one of the documents said.
Bundy “continues to make false and defamatory statements” and refuses to comply with court orders to hand over documents, St. Luke’s argued.
Indeed, court files show nothing submitted by Bundy or Rodriguez in their defense. There is no record of Bundy following the court’s order to give St. Luke’s documents they could use as evidence. (Bundy and Rodriguez can also demand documents from St. Luke’s but don’t appear to have made an attempt as of Tuesday.)
The attorney for St. Luke’s had requested documentation about Bundy’s People’s Rights Network and Rodriguez’s Freedom Man PAC, including: who manages or holds ownership interest in their websites; the legal structure and people in charge of both organizations; and the identities of people who wrote or posted the allegedly defamatory statements. They had until June 17 to respond.
The health system and its fellow plaintiffs asked the judge to impose sanctions on Bundy for flouting his legal obligations.
Instead of responding to the lawsuit in court, Bundy has spoken about it while campaigning for governor. He said in an interview that the lawsuit is “an opportunity to further expose (the hospital and other plaintiffs) because they are pretty wicked,” the motion said.
They asked the judge to order Bundy to sit for a deposition where he would have to respond to their questions about the website and who controls People’s Rights Network, and to order him to pay the costs of the deposition.
“Bundy has demonstrated a pattern of ignoring court orders,” it said, citing the jail sentence Bundy received after trying to claim hours he spent on his gubernatorial campaign as community service, against a judge’s instructions.
That history “demonstrates that lesser sanctions than requested would not be effective,” the motion said. Bundy’s “obstructionist and deceptive behaviors (have caused St. Luke’s) to waste time and money,” it said.
“Because Bundy’s actions demonstrate an indifference to the judicial process and a disregard for the harm he is causing others, and because Bundy’s failure to obey the court’s order is not substantially justified … (St. Luke’s and its fellow plaintiffs) are entitled to their reasonable expenses, including attorney fees,” the motion for sanctions said.
According to Idaho’s rules for civil lawsuits, the judge could consider Bundy’s conduct to be contempt of court, could skip the trial process and simply rule in favor of St. Luke’s and the other plaintiffs, or could impose other kinds of sanctions.
Bundy was served with the lawsuit on May 12. But Rodriguez has managed to avoid being formally served with the lawsuit since mid-May.
The person hired to find and deliver the lawsuit and summons tried to serve Rodriguez at three different addresses over a two-day period. At each address, a person opened the door but said they didn’t know Rodriguez, or a neighbor said they didn’t know “if anyone lived in that apartment,” the summons record said. The server went to one of Bundy’s campaign events in Meridian a week later, on May 21, but couldn’t find Rodriguez there, either.
Finally, he sent the summons by certified mail to addresses in Boise and Orlando, Florida.
Earlier this month, the attorney for St. Luke’s asked to have Rodriguez served via publication in a newspaper.
“It appears that Mr. Rodriguez may no longer reside in Idaho,” Holland & Hart attorney Erik F. Stidham wrote in an affidavit.
“Further, I have learned that there appears to be a significant tax lien against Mr. Rodriguez put in place by the State of Idaho,” Stidham wrote. “The existence of the tax lien creates concern that Mr. Rodriguez has left the state to avoid legal proceedings in the State of Idaho.”
The Idaho State Tax Commission filed a lien in November against Rodriguez for $138,392 of unpaid taxes, according to a search of tax liens by the Idaho Capital Sun.
The affidavit notes that Rodriguez publicly commented on the lawsuit and, after reading it, continued to make allegations similar to those described in the St. Luke’s complaint.
“Despite being aware of the lawsuit, Mr. Rodriguez has made no effort to contact me or my firm,” Stidham wrote.
A hearing is scheduled for July 12 in Ada County on the motions to sanction Bundy, and to serve Rodriguez with the lawsuit by publishing a notice in a newspaper.
Idaho Capital Sun is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Idaho Capital Sun maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Christina Lords for questions: firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Idaho Capital Sun on Facebook and Twitter.
A Florida man who was the former chief of staff for Maryland's Republican governor was hit with a superseding indictment late Tuesday.
"Roy C. McGrath, Gov. Larry Hogan’s former chief of staff, is facing a new federal charge of allegedly falsifying and backdating a document that he said was from the governor about a large severance payment he received from his previous job," The Washington Post reported. "McGrath is facing dozens of charges in state and federal court, including wire fraud and embezzlement, stemming from his departure from Maryland Environmental Service, a quasi-public agency he led before becoming the governor’s top aide."
McGrath was initially arrested in October.
“Together with our federal and state partners, our office will continue to investigate and prosecute public officials who attempt to violate their trusted positions," First Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland Phil Selden said in a statement.
IN OTHER NEWS: Fox News flips on Donald Trump during Jan. 6 hearings
The Maryland U.S. Attorney's office explained the initial charges in October.
"According to the six-count federal indictment filed today in U.S. District Court and the 27-count criminal information filed in the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County, on December 27, 2016, McGrath was appointed by the Governor of Maryland to serve as Executive Director of Maryland Environmental Service (MES), a corporation owned by the State of Maryland to provide environmental services such as water and wastewater management, solid waste management, composting, recycling, dredged material management and other services to state and local government agencies, federal government entities, and private clients," prosecutors explained.
"The federal and state charges allege that from March 2019 through December 2020, McGrath personally enriched himself by using his positions of trust as the Executive Director of MES and the chief of staff for the Governor of Maryland to cause MES to make payments to McGrath, or on his behalf, to which he was not entitled," prosecutors said. "Specifically, the federal indictment and state criminal information allege: that McGrath caused MES funds to be paid to a museum where he was a member of the Board of Directors instead of using his personal funds to pay his pledge to the museum; that McGrath caused the MES Board of Directors to approve paying McGrath a $233,647.23 severance payment—equal to one year’s salary—upon his departure from MES by falsely telling them that the Governor was aware of and approved the payment; that McGrath caused MES to pay tuition benefits for McGrath after he left MES by personally approving reimbursements for payments made by Subordinate Employee #1 on McGrath's behalf; and that McGrath falsified his time sheets, reporting that he was at work while on two separate vacations in 2019."
McGrath also worked for Wayne Gilchrest, who represented Maryland as a Republican congressman from 1991 to 2009.
“Roy McGrath is an experienced public and private sector leader with a proven track record of managing at every level of government and a passionate commitment to public service,” Hogan said when appointing him chief of staff