Legal analysts have said that allies of former President Donald Trump are working to run out the clock on the Jan. 6 House Committee. Speaking to MSNBC on Sunday, Washington Post reporter Carol Leonig characterized the appeals courts as being completely unwilling to give Trump a break on his lawsuits to protect any evidence from being exposed by the committee.
"A lot of people were listening in, if you will, as advisers to Donald Trump, as cheerleaders for Donald Trump's effort to claim that the election was rigged and stolen, especially in late December," she began. "And this PowerPoint presentation, which my colleagues so, you know, explosively, as you say, report, was one in which it was promulgating ideas and options for how to change the electors, how to claim that there was hacking that made the election corrupt. And Mark Meadows, to our understanding, was being briefed on ways that perhaps the government could help Mr. [Philip] Waldron, this retired Army colonel, help him establish that foreign governments or others had hacked the election."
She then issued a reality check, saying that the 2020 election was one of the most monitored elections in history because of what happened in 2016. U.S. intel and national security agencies all monitored and coordinated with those on the ground to ensure it wasn't rigged or corrupted.
"And yet, the chief of staff and other lawmakers were listening to the ideas of how to basically block [President Joe] Biden from being formally declared the president-elect on the argument that perhaps this election was stolen in certain states," Leonig continued. "Perhaps voting machines were hacked and the results were tampered with. All of which had been rejected, resoundingly, by the Department of Homeland Security's election interference team."
MSNBC host Alicia Menendez noted how unusual that someone would have such access to the White House that they met with Meadows eight to ten times over the course of just a few weeks.
"I mean, first of all, eight to ten times with a chief of staff," said former deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes. "That's a lot of face time with anyone that works in the White House, definitely the chief of staff. I mean, what we're probably going to see play out is probably how it played out with Steve Bannon, right?"
He noted that the committee intends to show that people can't thumb their noses at Congress and ignore them when compelled to testify.
"I think what's really important here, and Mark Meadows knows this, as a former member of congress, is that one of congress' sole jobs is to investigate, is to hold accountable other branches of the government," said Rhodes. And I think the fact that you have members of Congress, former members of Congress, who are saying that they're not going to participate, they're not going to give information, even though Meadows has given quite a bit of information to this committee, is proof how far the Republican Party has gone in making sure that it's almost sole job is protecting Donald Trump, following Donald Trump, and kind of doing his bidding."
Leonig also said that she thought "it's pretty huge" that the Appeals Court shut Trump down.
"The Appeals Court does not spin on a dime the way they did on this," she explained. "They do not move with this kind of alacrity, which is essential in a judicial speak, a smack back in the face of the plaintiffs in this case, against the president, former president, and his lawyers. They're basically saying, you've got nothing here. And legally, they don't."
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