The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol will hold the third in a series of public hearings Thursday beginning at 1 pm ET.
CBS News will broadcast the hearing as a special report.
committee vice chair saying it would focus on “President Trump’s tireless effort on January 6 and in the days leading up to pressuring Vice President Pence to refuse to count legal electoral votes.”tweeted a preview of the hearing,
Pence’s ex-lawyerand conservative legal scholar J. Michael Luttig, who has advised Pence, are scheduled to appear. Two people familiar with Luttig’s expected testimony, who were not authorized to discuss details of the hearing, told CBS News that “America’s democracy was almost stolen from it.”
Luttig is also likely to state that the Republican National Committee was wrong in referring to some of the events of January 6, 2021, such asand he will warn his fellow conservatives not to ignore the seriousness of what Trump did as he fought to cling to the presidency that day.
Luttig will also reveal how he advised then-Vice President Mike Pence to resist Trump’s pleas for Pence to block Congressional certification of Joe Biden’s election victory.
There will also be video of Pence’s former chief of staff, Marc Short, declaring, but he will not be a live witness, committee aides said Wednesday.
Committee aides also said there will be four sections of the hearing. First, the committee will explore what the theory looks likeand others that the vice president could unilaterally reject the voters. Aides then said the committee will focus on the rejection of that theory by Pence’s lawyers, a “group of committed public servants who kept their oath” and gave Pence “strong advice” that he had no The authority.
Third, attendees said the committee will present the Pence pressure campaign, with Trump participating and trying to rally his supporters to pressure the vice president. The committee will argue that this directly contributed to the attack on Capitol Hill and put Pence’s life in danger.
Lastly, the attendees said that the committee will present that there is a constant threat to democracy because there are still people who defend that the elections were rigged, while at the same time there were people in the White House who had the opinion, expressed by the former senior White House official. adviser and attorney Eric Herschmann, that Eastman was going to need a good criminal defense attorney.
Cheney on Tuesday showed a video clip of Herschmann’s testimony talking about a conversation he had with Eastman on Jan. 7, 2021, the day after the riot. Herschmann said Eastman mentioned something about Georgia and preserving something for the appeal, and Herschmann said he replied, “Are you crazy? I said I just want to hear two words come out of your mouth from now on: Orderly transition.”
Herschmann added that he told Eastman, “‘Now I’m going to give you the best free legal advice you’ve ever received in your life: Get a great criminal defense attorney, you’re going to need one.’ And then I hung up on him.”
The inclusion of the Herschmann clip suggests that Thursday’s hearing will be looking at Eastman’s role. CBS News has obtained records showingthe Pennsylvania House of Representatives to help overturn Biden’s victory in the state and send “an alternative list of electors” to Trump.
Cheney said in his opening statement last week that the committee will present email exchanges between Eastman and Jacob, Pence’s attorney. “Jacob said this to Mr. Eastman: ‘Thank the f**k of him, we’re under siege,'” Cheney said.
On Wednesday, the committee released surveillance footage showingof people on a tour of the Capitol complex the day before the attack, with some of the guests documenting places like stairways, security checkpoints and hallways.
The committee denied who once gave a tour of the Capitol on Jan. 5, when it was closed to tourists due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After a review of security footage, U.S. Capitol Police last month determined there was “no evidence” Loudermilk led the group to the Capitol, saying “we do not consider any of the activities we observed to be suspicious.” “.for information on a tour he took of the Capitol complex prior to the assault. strong milk
But the committee suggested otherwise in a letter to Loudermilk on Wednesday. The new video shows the congressman leading “a tour of approximately ten people led by you to the Rayburn, Longworth, and Cannon House office building areas, as well as the entrances to the tunnels leading to the US Capitol.” .” said committee chair Rep. Bennie. Thompson wrote. The group stayed for “several hours,” she wrote, with some “photographing and recording areas of the complex not normally of interest to tourists.”
Thompson said Wednesday that the video will not be used at Thursday’s hearing.
What was scheduled to be the third hearingon Tuesday, the committee said. There was some uncertainty behind the reason for the delay. Committee member Rep. Zoe Lofgren said the delay was due to “technological issues” with the staff who prepared the video presentation. But a committee spokesman said the postponement was due “to a number of scheduling factors, including the production schedule and the availability of members and witnesses.”
Meanwhile, committee member Rep. Pete Aguilar said Tuesday that the schedule “has always been smooth.”
The committee has two more public hearings scheduled: Tuesday, June 21 at 1 pm ET and Thursday, June 23 at 1 pm ET. Thompson said Wednesday that the committee plans to wrap up the hearings this month, meaning two more still need to be scheduled.
Zak Hudak contributed to this report.