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Jan. 6th Committee Corroborates Trump’s SUV Outburst

Plus: a look behind the scenes at how the committee operates.
July 21, 2022
Jan. 6th Committee Corroborates Trump’s SUV Outburst
U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) speaks during a hearing by the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol on July 27, 2021 at the Cannon House Office Building in Washington, DC. Members of law enforcement testified about the attack by supporters of former President Donald Trump on the U.S. Capitol. According to authorities, about 140 police officers were injured when they were trampled, had objects thrown at them, and sprayed with chemical irritants during the insurrection. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

On today’s Bulwark Podcast, Representative Adam Kinzinger gave a preview of tonight’s hearing of the House January 6th Committee, on which he serves.

Kinzinger told host Charles Sykes that the committee will present testimony corroborating former Trump aide Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony about a confrontation she had heard about between former President Donald Trump and Secret Service agents:

Kinzinger: So the MAGA folks in the right-wing media went out and just started unleashing on her credibility, and that’s just angering because this is not a woman that is super-excited to go out and to trash her former boss that she, believed in up until not that long ago and lose all her friends and be known as a anti-MAGA person or anything. . . .

So tonight, we’re going to play some testimony from people that in essence confirms the limo incident. . . . We know that there was some heated stuff going on in the limo. . . . They can keep coming out and saying, you know, “Cassidy this, Cassidy that.” They find little side things.

But nobody has come in to refute her. And just as you have said, nobody has come in from the Secret Service on the record under oath, and refuted what she has said. There’s been anonymous sources. That’s it.

Sykes: So you will be playing testimony that essentially corroborates her story?

Kinzinger: Yeah, yeah. . . .

The Jan. 6th Committee Behind the Scenes

Sykes: It seems like [committee members] are working together and that there is a rather disciplined plan. I mean, behind closed doors are you, throwing ketchup against the wall or anything? . . .

Kinzinger: And watching it slowly come down. No, look, I don’t want to use the term “they’re gonna write books about this,” because I’m sure they are. But it is pretty amazing to me that this is something that’s never existed, as far as I know.

And it’s something that I highly doubt will ever exist again, which is a bipartisan committee that really is pulling in the same direction. Have there been squabbles behind closed doors—of course, right? There’s been some disagreements. There will be some disagreements going forward—probably particularly when we start talking about what are some of the fixes, right? And you have some people that, you know, want to get rid of the Electoral College, some that don’t. And that’s fine. That’s okay. That should be the case. But the fact that we have all pulled in the same direction to get accountability has just blown me away.

And I’ll give a lot of credit here to, well, to Bennie [Thompson, the committee’s chairman] for, I think, allowing Liz [Cheney, the committee’s vice chair] to have such a prominent role. Because you know, as a chairman, you could be like, “Look, I want to be in the spotlight the whole time.” I gotta give credit, frankly, to the speaker for putting, you know, Liz in that position. But she has really done a good job of keeping people together, keeping us focused and digging in areas that, you know, maybe we wouldn’t think to dig in otherwise. So, when that whole story is written, she’ll come off, I think, very well, and people will see what all she’s been able to pull off.

But this committee is just like, this is like an aurora borealis. It’s like a moment; it’s a beautiful thing. And you may never catch anything like this again. . . .

The Verdict of History

Sykes: [The New York Times has] a profile of your colleague Liz Cheney, and she’s quoted as saying, “I believe this is the most important thing I’ve ever done professionally and maybe the most important thing I ever do.” Do you feel the same way, Adam, about what you’re doing and what you’re going to be doing tonight?

Kinzinger: I think on a professional [level], yes.

You know, there are moments where it kind of sets in like, “Wow, this is somewhat historic.” Other times, you’re in the malaise of kind of everyday doing something. I think after tonight, it probably will set in a little bit more.

It’s like, look, whatever this democracy, this republic ends up being after this is now out of my control, but I will have been. . . . God has put me in a place—and I say this to all those Christian nationalists that somehow believe that, you know, Donald Trump is the new god—God has put me in a place to counter that narrative and to just be clear that, look, no matter how angry you are, no matter how much, or how good, a cheap political thrill feels, at the moment, a cheap political win, an enduring democracy is the legacy you leave for your kids.

And I think it is apropos, frankly, that I just had my first kid who’s six months old now. He’s pretty awesome.

But I know that when he reads about this point in history, whatever grade they insert this into in the history lesson, he will not be ashamed to be a Kinzinger. And that means something to me, because I think there are a lot of people out here whose kids would be very ashamed to be, you know, have their last name after this is all written.

Listen to the whole episode here.

Adam Kinzinger

Adam D. Kinzinger is currently serving his sixth term in the U.S. House of Representatives, representing Illinois’s 16th Congressional District. He serves on the January 6th Committee, the Energy and Commerce Committee, and the Foreign Affairs Committee.