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Donald Trump’s adviser Stephen Miller asked about the rally that preceded the January 6 uprising

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawmakers pressed Stephen Miller, a top aide to former President Donald Trump, during a day-long closed-door interview about Trump’s speech at a rally that preceded the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection on Capitol Hill, according to two people familiar with Miller’s testimony.

Miller was questioned for about eight hours Thursday by the House committee investigating the riot, which occurred when large crowds of Trump supporters stormed the building in hopes of prevent Congress from certifying the results of the 2020 presidential election won by Democrat Joe Biden.

Miller’s appearance has become controversial at times, particularly when he pushed back against claims that Trump’s speech contained inflammatory and coded language that prompted action by his supporters, according to two people familiar with the interrogation. They spoke on condition of anonymity to describe the back and forth during the closed-door interview.

READ MORE: Reenacting Donald Trump’s 8-hour gap during the January 6 insurrection

This language included Trump’s repeated use of the word “we” to address his supporters. At one point during the speech, Trump said, “We are fighting like hell. And if you don’t fight like hell, you won’t have a country.

Miller dismissed the significance of that language, the people said, arguing that personal rhetoric like this has been used in American politics since the Declaration of Independence and the Gettysburg Address.

Miller’s attorneys, who served as Trump’s domestic policy adviser and speechwriter, also asserted executive privilege several times during the session.

A spokesperson for the committee declined to comment on Friday. The New York Times earlier reported Miller’s testimony.

Miller is the latest in a series of meetings the committee has marked with those in Trump’s inner circle as lawmakers get closer to the former president by interviewing people who were with him on the day of the attack or were his confidants in the weeks leading up to this.

In demanding his testimony last November, panel chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said Miller knew about and participated in “efforts to spread false information about alleged voter fraud” and had encouraged state legislatures to change the result. of the 2020 election by appointing alternate electors.

Thompson also said Miller helped prepare Trump’s remarks at the Ellipse.

Associated Press writer Farnoush Amiri contributed to this report.


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