The House Jan. 6 committee concluded its more than a year and a half long investigation Monday on a high note, urging the DOJ to bring criminal charges against Trump for his role in the insurrection at the Capitol Building. Rep. Bennie Thompson, chair of the nine bipartisan panel, summed up the hearings, stating that he believed “nearly two years later, this is still a time of reflection and reckoning. If we are to survive as a nation of laws and democracy, this can never happen again.”
Republican Liz Cheney, the committee’s vice chairwoman, concurred and placed Trump in a singularly ignominious position as the only president to ever violate an orderly transition of power. He is also the only former president to be indicted and faced with criminal charges.
At the heart of the panel’s 154-page summary, they found that Trump had engaged in a “multi-part conspiracy” to overturn the election. The findings add another stain on Trump to go along with a couple impeachment attempts. Since the panel has no power to convict and bring Trump before the bar of justice, the charges are merely symbolic, and now the nation waits to see how Attorney General Merrick Garland will respond to the referral.
Trump’s response, as expected, was gruff and shrugged off the charges. “These folks don’t get it that when they come after me, people who love freedom rally around me,” he wrote in a statement posted on his Truth Social account. “It strengthens me. What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.”
He claimed to have deployed 20,000 troops to prevent the violence and then went on television to disband them. “The people understand that the Democratic Bureau of Investigation, the DBI, are out to keep me from running for president because they know I’ll win and that this whole business of prosecuting me is just like impeachment was—a partisan attempt to sideline me and the Republican Party,” he concluded.
If recent polls have any validation, his claim that he is being prevented from seeking the Oval Office will be academic since the polls have him trailing Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida.
Trump won’t have to worry much longer about the Jan. 6 panel, which will soon dissolve as the Republicans take charge of the House. Despite the length of the investigation the public gave it more than a passing nod, particularly when many of the Republicans were subpoenaed and testified. New Yorkers will be interested to see what happens with Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani, who could be debarred for his role in the uprising. Curiously, the panel did not approve bringing charges of seditious conspiracy that the DOJ used to convict members of the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys.