Trump considering public appearance to try to 'counterprogram' January 6 hearings: report
Donald Trump at the Elysee Palace. (Frederic Legrand - COMEO /

On Thursday, Axios reported that, as part of Republican efforts to "counterprogram" the House January 6 Committee's public hearings, former President Donald Trump is considering making a public appearance at the same time they are going on.

"Trump and his inner circle will rely heavily on members of Congress — from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Jim Banks (R-Ind.) and Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) — to drive counterprogramming, sources familiar with their planning tell Axios," reported Alayna Treene and Andrew Solender. "Trump himself has not ruled out making some sort of an appearance, one of the sources says."

"People close to Trump have been working closely with members of Congress, the RNC and outside groups like the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) to collaborate on their offensive narrative," said the report. "Matt Schlapp, former Trump White House political director and chairman of CPAC, has been a leader in the effort, sources say."

According to the report, Republicans are planning to paint the hearings as "rigged" against them and hyperpartisan, with the GOP messaging offensive spread mainly through friendly networks like Fox News, Facebook, Trump's "Truth Social" network, and right-wing talk shows like that run by former White House adviser Steve Bannon.

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"The RNC has also circulated a one-page memo outlining its messaging points, according to a copy of the document obtained by Axios and first reported by Vox," the report noted. "The talking points include 'RNC Goals' and 'Requests from [Trump]': 'Attack Nancy Pelosi's committee and its members, portraying them as partisan, illegitimate, and a distraction for real issues' ... [and] 'Brand these as rigged hearings' and 'Define Democrats being the real election deniers.'"

This comes amid widespread speculation that new evidence and facts revealed at the public hearings will be extremely damning to the former president regarding his efforts to overturn the election and his actions around the attack on the U.S. Capitol, as well as former GOP Rep. Denver Riggleman, an adviser to the committee, warning that he was sickened by the evidence the committee uncovered.

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