The former US president refused to say the scripted line ‘the election is over’ in his speech condemning the Capitol riot
Former US President Donald Trump refused to say the scripted line “the elections are over” in his Jan. 7 speech following the Capitol riot, according to never-before-seen excerpts that were presented to the House Select Committee on Thursday.
The footage, which was recorded just over 24 hours after the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, was released in what is now the panel’s ninth hearing investigating the unrest. In the clips, the 45th president could be heard objecting to scripted remarks he was reading from a teleprompter.
Trump began the statement by saying “I would like to start by talking about the heinous attack yesterday.”
“And to those who broke the law, you will pay. You don’t represent our movement, you don’t represent our country. And if you broke the law -,” Trump paused, shook his head, and pointed out that he couldn’t say that because he “already said ‘you’re going to pay.'”
Elsewhere in the video, he said: “But this election is now over. Congress has certified the results,” before stopping once more to protest, “I don’t want to say that the elections are over. I just want to say that Congress certified the results without saying the election is over, okay? »
Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, could be heard off-screen confirming her father’s changes to the script.
In another take, Trump said, “I would like to start by talking about the heinous attack yesterday,” before going off script: “Yesterday is a harsh word for me.”
“Just take it off?” » Ivanka asked.
“Ah, well, take the word ‘yesterday’ out because it doesn’t work with that,” said Trump.
As the former president tried to read the line: “My only objective was to ensure the integrity of the vote” he stopped again and, visibly frustrated, slammed the music stand.
The final cut of the speech released on January 7, the day after the Capitol riot, ended up being less than three minutes long.
Excerpts from Trump’s speech were presented to the Jan. 6 committee as potential evidence that the former president failed to sufficiently condemn the riots and was unapologetic about what led to the unrest, namely his refusal to accept the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Throughout the hearing, House members took turns arguing that Trump was unfit to return to office after teasing a possible 2024 presidential bid.
Thousands of Trump supporters and election integrity advocates descended on Washington DC on January 6, 2021 to protest what they believe was a stolen election after Democrat Joe Biden claimed to have received the most votes in the history of the United States. President Trump addressed the crowd outside the White House before heading to the Capitol. A group of protesters were able to enter the building while Congress was in session and the resulting chaos claimed several lives, including Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt, who was shot by Capitol Police.
The Special Committee on the January 6 Uprising began holding hearings last July. Its leading lawmakers attempted to portray the events of the day as “An Attack on American Democracy” orchestrated by Trump and his allies.
Meanwhile, Republicans still aligned with Trump dismissed the Jan. 6 inquiry as an attempt to distract the American people from more crucial issues such as inflation and soaring gas prices. According to CNN, the GOP also reportedly plans to launch its own select committee to investigate issues such as voter fraud and the mistreatment of those imprisoned for their part in the attack on the Capitol.