Former Trump White House aide expected to testify to Jan 6 panel

The surprise sixth hearing of the month will show ‘recently obtained evidence’ about the 2021 US Capitol attack, House committee says.

  • The committee investigating the January 6, 2021 attack on the United States Capitol abruptly announced Tuesday’s surprise hearing less than 24 hours before its scheduled starting time.
  • Numerous US media outlets have reported that Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to ex-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, will testify at the hearing.
  • Tuesday’s session will “present recently obtained evidence and receive witness testimony”, the House of Representatives committee says.
  • Previous hearings have focused on Donald Trump’s push to overturn the 2020 election, including pressure campaigns against the Justice Department, state officials and his own vice president, Mike Pence.

Here are the latest updates:

Ex-Trump White House aide set to feature as star witness

While the committee has not publicly previewed the hearing, multiple US media outlets have cited unidentified sources saying that the star witness at Tuesday’s session will be Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to ex-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows.

Hutchinson had appeared at last week’s hearing when snippets of her recorded interview with the panel were played.

Hutchinson testified that Republican Congressmen Matt Gaetz and Mo Brooks had “advocated for there to be a blanket pardon” for January 6.

“Mr Gaetz was personally pushing for a pardon and he was doing so since early December. I’m not sure why,” Hutchinson told the panel. “Mr Gaetz had reached out to me to ask if he could have a meeting with Mr Meadows about receiving a presidential pardon.”

Cassidy Hutchinson
Cassidy Hutchinson is shown on a screen during a hearing on Capitol Hill on June 23, 2022 [Demetrius Freeman/Pool via Reuters]

Surprise hearing to feature ‘recently obtained evidence’

The congressional committee investigating the Capitol attack was set to pause its public hearings until next month before abruptly announcing Tuesday’s hearing.

The committee said it will “present recently obtained evidence and receive witness testimony” in the previously unscheduled hearing.

FBI seizes former Trump election lawyer’s phone

FBI agents have seized the phone of Trump’s former election attorney, who the panel says played a key role in the ex-president’s efforts to overturn the 2020 vote.

Attorney John Eastman’s lawyers confirmed the seizure of the phone in a lawsuit filed in federal court this week. Eastman is referred to as “movant” because he has a motion before the court.

“On the evening of June 22, 2022, federal agents served a search on movant while movant was exiting a restaurant,” the filing says. “Movant’s phone — an iPhone Pro 12 — was seized.”

A committee hearing earlier this month examined Eastman’s efforts to pressure then-Vice President Mike Pence to refuse to certify incoming President Joe Biden’s election victory based on false fraud claims.

John Eastman
John Eastman speaks next to Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani at a rally protesting the 2020 election results in Washington, DC on January 6, 2021 [File: Jim Bourg Reuters]

Key takeaways from last hearing

In the last hearing, US legislators investigating the deadly riot at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021 turned their attention to Trump’s pressure campaign on the Department of Justice to overturn the 2020 election.

The House committee held its fifth public hearing this month on June 23, once again laying out what it knows about Trump’s efforts to overturn the results of the US presidential election he lost to Biden.

Read the key takeaways from that hearing here.

Welcome to Al Jazeera’s live coverage of a United States congressional committee’s public hearing on its inquiry into the January 6, 2021 US Capitol riot.

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