On Wednesday, speaking to The New Republic, experts and analysts broke down the importance of the final stretch of the House January 6 Committee — and what lawmakers need to show the public as the probe is concluding.
"I hope the J6 commission produces a definitive historical account of the whole plot to overturn a free and fair presidential election leading to and including the violent insurrection, lays out the evidence showing exactly who was responsible, diagnoses the weaknesses in our legal and political structures that made the attempt nearly successful, identifies the ongoing efforts to launch an even deadlier assault on the system for peaceful transitions every four years, and makes concrete proposals for shoring up that system going forward," former Harvard Law professor Laurence Tribe told TNR.
"I’ll be watching to see if they attend to their last major piece of unfinished business: establishing that the attempted coup they have documented never ended, simply evolved — and is now targeting our elections and our democracy," said former White House ethics czar and impeachment lawyer Norm Eisen. "The Committee needs to lay out a roadmap of the evidence against Trump and others for prosecutors, civil litigants, and regulators such as state bars. Whether they make formal referrals matters less than presenting the relevant evidence in detailed form — a 21st-century version of the Watergate Road Map."
And MSNBC analyst Mehdi Hasan had a simpler take: the Committee should deliver "accountability for Trump and his acolytes, plus a clear, coherent, and concise description for the American public of how close we came to losing our democracy, and embracing full-blown fascism, on Tuesday 6th January 2021."
In recent months, the public hearings have detailed devastating new information about the attack and prior efforts to overturn the election, including the extent to which right-wing figures pressured or were pressured to throw out election results, and how Trump himself egged on the rioters and even wanted to join them.
Polls indicate the former president's standing with the public has slid as more details about the attacks, and his involvement in them, have become public. Republican lawmakers remain largely unmoved, however, with even those who initially wanted Trump to resign after the attack, like House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), remaining committed to him.