The House Select Committee investigating the January 6, 2021 insurrection released its final report on Thursday evening, concluding an 18-month probe into the plot to overturn the 2020 Presidential election and the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol.
The culmination of the Committee’s efforts, based on more than 1,000 interviews, extensive videos and millions of documents, asserts that former President Trump criminally engaged in a “multi-part conspiracy” to overturn the election and failed to stop his supporters from attacking the Capitol.
Trump “lit that fire,” wrote Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (R-MS).
The 845-page report was issued three days after the bipartisan Committee voted unanimously to refer Trump to the Department of Justice for criminal investigation for his role in January 6.
Among its recommendations the Committee suggested that congressional committees with such authority consider creating a “formal mechanism for evaluating whether to bar” Trump—who has already announced he’s running for reelection in 2024—from holding future federal office due to evidence that he violated his oath to support the U.S. Constitution while engaging in an insurrection.
The first of the report’s eight chapters is entitled, “The Big Lie,” referring to Trump’s false claims that he won reelection in 2020. It notes his efforts even before Election Day to “delegitimize the election process” by suggesting it would be marred by ballot fraud, particularly mail-in ballots.
The second chapter, “I Just Want to Find 11,780 Votes”—quoting what Trump said in a call to pressure Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on January 2, 2021—refers to his efforts to subvert the Electoral College, and to replace legitimate slates of electors with fake ones.
The report goes on to detail the plan to pressure Vice President Pence not to certify the Electoral College slates on January 6.
On Thursday, the Senate voted to pass the $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill which includes reforms to the 1887 Electoral Count Act, intended to ensure that actions taken by Trump and his associates leading up to January 6 can never occur again. The House must pass the omnibus by midnight Friday to keep the government running.
Among the Electoral Count Act reforms is language clearly stating that the Vice President’s role on January 6 is entirely ceremonial.
The final chapters in the January 6 Committee report detail the lead-up to the riot at the Capitol, and Trump’s “dereliction” of duty by refusing to call off the mob for hours.
Posting on his social media site, Trump called the report “highly partisan” and falsely claimed it didn’t include his statement on January 6 that his supporters should protest “peacefully and patriotically.” The Committee did, in fact, include that statement. It then further noted that he followed that comment by again falsely stating that he’d won the election. The Committee also noted that in his speech earlier in the day he’d used charged language exhorting the crowd to “fight like hell.”
The Committee has already begun sharing its evidence with the DOJ. Last month Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed veteran career prosecutor Jack Smith as special counsel to determine, among his duties, whether criminal charges should be filed against Trump for his role in January 6.