Raskin on anonymous pushback to Cassidy Hutchinson testimony: She ‘has no motivation or interest in lying’
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) pushed back on anonymous sources disputing former top White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony that former President Trump tried to grab the steering wheel of the presidential vehicle and lunged at an agent when informed he would not be able to join his supporters at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
Raskin, a member of the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” show Wednesday that Hutchinson, a former special assistant to Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, is an “entirely credible witness.”
“She has no motivation or interest in lying in any way. What we have on the other hand is some anonymously sourced rumors of feelings of particular agents. Look, anybody who wants to testify, can come forward and testify under oath about what happened. All we’re interested in is the truth,” he added.
Raskin added, “I sort of expected Hutchinson as a young woman telling the truth would come under fire from anonymous sources, but you know, that’s Washington for you.”
The Maryland Democrat said that Hutchinson testified under oath in front of the entire country and that the country was able to “judge her demeanor.”
According to Raskin, nobody is challenging the “central material facts” of her testimony: that “Donald Trump and Mark Meadows were perfectly aware that there were armed people in the crowd” on Jan. 6.
He added that Trump wanted to allow the crowd access to his speech that day in order to “swell the force of that crowd,” which he said the former president then “aimed like a missile at the US Capitol.”
Raskin emphasized that Trump wanted to lead the march up to the Capitol, and that nobody is challenging the assertion that he became irate when he was told he couldn’t join them.
The congressman reiterated that while he fully expected that Hutchinson would come under attack, she spoke not only with credibility but authenticity as well.
MSNBC’s Wlllie Geist also noted that the anonymous sources will be used in “certain quarters as evidence” that Hutchinson is not a credible witness if the story about the altercation turns out to be untrue.
Geist asked Raskin if he was “confident” there will be additional testimony that corroborates her story.
Raskin responded that he has heard nothing so far that contradicts her testimony.
“It’s consistent with multiple accounts we have of the President being incensed and outraged that armed people were being kept out of the crowd and also that he was unable to participate in the march, Mussolini style, on the way to the Capitol, so he could go in, presumably [to] seize the presidency.”
Hutchinson testified on Tuesday that she learned of the episode from Tony Ornato, Trump’s then-deputy chief of staff, and that neither Ornato nor Robert Engel, the special agent in charge for Secret Service on Jan. 6, had disputed the description of the incident.
It has since been reported by several outlets that Engel and the driver are prepared to testify that neither was assaulted by Trump and that the former president did not try to grab the steering wheel.
The Secret Service said on Tuesday that it will have more to say about the allegations and that it has been cooperating fully with the select committee since its inception in spring of 2021.