Exclusive Details Emerge: Trump’s Inaction During Capitol Attack Revealed by Special Counsel Investigation

WASHINGTON (AP) — Previously undisclosed details have emerged regarding former President Donald Trump’s response to the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol three years ago, according to sources familiar with the investigation. Special counsel Jack Smith’s team has uncovered exclusive information about Trump’s refusal to intervene as the assault unfolded, while he watched the events unfold on television inside the White House.

The sources reveal that much of this information came to light during the questioning of Trump’s former deputy chief of staff, Dan Scavino, who has worked for Trump for three decades and currently serves as a senior adviser to his reelection campaign. Scavino declined to cooperate with the House select committee but did provide testimony to Smith’s team after executive privilege claims were overruled.

Other White House advisers and lawyers who had previously avoided questions about Trump’s actions and statements on January 6, 2021, also provided new details during interviews with the Smith team. Their statements corroborate Scavino’s account that Trump showed little interest in taking action as the violence escalated.

Sources reveal that Scavino described informing Trump about the chaos at the Capitol, saying, “This is all your legacy here, and there’s smoke coming out of the Capitol.” Scavino hoped that Trump would intervene and help facilitate a peaceful transfer of power. However, Trump remained focused on watching television coverage of the events and did not take immediate action.

Former Trump aide Nick Luna also stated that when he informed Trump about Vice President Mike Pence being moved to a secure location, Trump responded with indifference, saying, “So what?” This raised concerns about Trump’s willingness to allow harm to come to his loyalists.

While House Democrats and other critics have accused Trump of a dereliction of duty, it is significant that these new revelations come from his own advisers who had direct contact with him that day. The small group that interacted with Trump included his former Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, former White House counsel Pat Cipollone, Cipollone’s former deputy Pat Philbin, and Scavino.

It is important to note that Scavino and other loyal aides have not seen evidence to support Trump’s claims of election fraud that would have affected the outcome. As for Trump, he released a video several hours after the attack, urging peace but maintaining that the election was fraudulent.

The new details shed light on Trump’s actions and demeanor during the assault on the Capitol, revealing a lack of interest in intervening and a focus on watching the events unfold on TV. Despite pleas from his aides, Trump chose not to take further action to quell the violence. Instead, he posted a tweet attacking Pence and only released a video calling for peace several hours later.

These revelations provide insight into Trump’s handling of the situation and raise questions about his response to the threat facing the Capitol and its occupants.

The House committee’s report emphasizes the gravity of the events of January 6, with law enforcement agents being harmed and the democratic process being disrupted. These new accounts from Trump’s advisers contribute valuable firsthand information to the ongoing investigation.

It should be noted that representatives for Trump and his associates declined to comment on the specific details revealed in the sources’ accounts. The special counsel also declined to provide comment.

As the investigation continues, the examination of Trump’s response to the attack remains a critical aspect of understanding the events of that fateful day at the Capitol.