Explosive claims were made by Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, against former President Donald Trump during her testimony in front of the January 6 select committee. Hutchinson claimed that on the day of the rally, which later turned into a riot, Trump tried to get Secret Service to take him to the U.S. Capitol building, and that he became enraged when they would not do it because the area was not secure.
Trump tried to grab the steering wheel of an armored presidential limousine, Hutchinson claims, and that Bobby Engel, who was the lead security detail, had to tell him, “Sir, you need to take your hand off the steering wheel,” which was followed by Trump then lunging at the agent.
She also claimed that Trump was “furious” that apparently many of his supporters did not want to enter the rally space on January 6, 2021, apparently because there were magnetometers, also known as “mags,” that were being used to screen for weapons.
Hutchinson then claimed she heard Trump tell the Secret Service: “I don’t f***ing care that they have weapons. They’re not here to hurt me. Take the f***ing mags away. Let my people in. They can march to the Capitol from here.”
Her claims got strong push-backs online from many on the political Right who questioned whether some of her claims, including that “Trump grabbing the steering wheel,” was even possible. For example, how could Trump reach the steering wheel from the back, let alone get by a Secret Service agent if one was present in the vehicle?
But there were also a couple of supporting former White House staff members who came out and listened to her give her testimony.
“My guess is that before this is over, we will be hearing testimony from Ornato, Engle, and Meadows. This is explosive stuff. If Cassidy is making this up, they will need to say that. If she isn’t they will have to corroborate. I know her. I don’t think she is lying,” said Mick Mulvaney, who previously served as Trump’s acting chief of staff.
Sarah Matthews, former White House deputy press secretary, tweeted: “Anyone downplaying Cassidy Hutchinson’s role or her access in the West Wing either doesn’t understand how the Trump WH worked or is attempting to discredit her because they’re scared of how damning this testimony is.”
“For those complaining of ‘hearsay,’ I imagine the Jan. 6 committee would welcome any of those involved to deny these allegations under oath,” she added.
To Hutchinson’s dismay, a top Secret Service agent is prepared to testify to dispute her claims.
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