‘Surreal’: Trump’s Italian satellite conspiracy theory stuns during Jan. 6 hearing
President Donald Trump walks from the west wing of the White House to Marine One in 2017. (Shutterstock.com)

A bizarre conspiracy theory that Italian satellites hacked voting machines during the 2020 presidential election was a focus of Thursday's televised hearings of the House Select Committee Investigating the Jan. 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol.

"Surreal to hear about conspiracy theories we were seeing between the Election Day and Jan 6th that seemed too batsh*t to even try to debunk (like Italian satellites) — only they were being taken seriously by Trump and his circle," said CNN's Donie O'Sullivan.

In defense of the conspiracy theory, Trump reportedly told a Pentagon official, "You guys don't follow the internet the way I do."

Former Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue called the claims "pure insanity."

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The whole situation stunned people commenting on social media while watching the hearings.

"If the idea that the Italians were switching votes with satellites sounds crazy, it is. But that's why it's even crazier that the theory traveled from the recesses of the internet fever swamp to the Oval Office, and then the Pentagon/DOJ," wrote Politico's Kyle Cheney.

"Let that sink in — the White House chief of staff demanding DOJ and DoD to investigate whether Italian military satellites where used to manipulate voting machines in the USA," wrote ABC News Chief Washington correspondent Jonathan Karl.

"The sheer desperation of Trump to hold onto power.... a president getting Cabinet secretaries to call another government to follow up on a fringe Internet conspiracy theory that Italian satellites were changing votes is a new low for the U.S," wrote NPR's Domenico Montanaro.

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"Trump's acting Secretary of Defense, Christopher Miller, called a high-ranking Italian official and asked if Italian satellites were changing votes from Trump to Biden because Trump had scoured the internet and found a bizarre conspiracy theory. Yes. You read that right," wrote government ethics expert Walter Shaub.

"Also anyone who seriously thinks Italian satellites and technology could pull off an American vote-rigging from space... Has obviously not spent much time in Rome," added Michelle Kosinski, the host of the tech podcast “The Perfect Scam.”

Former prosecutor Katie Phang wrote, "This has to be theft of American taxpayers' dollars wasting time on such BS."

"Italian. Satellites. You can’t make this up. Or I guess you can — and they did," wrote Politico congressional reporter Andrew Desiderio.