Trump shouldn't have listened to a "definitely intoxicated" Rudy Giuliani
The second January 6 hearing established that Trump should've known better in the weeks leading up to the insurrection.
The second January 6 hearing began Monday with Liz Cheney talking about how Trump listened to “an apparently inebriated Rudy Giuliani” ahead of his deranged speech on election night 2020 — one stuffed with lies about how he actually won the election and was the victim of fraud. The rest of the hearing was about the more sober voices Trump refused to hear.
Monday’s hearing established that Trump forged ahead with inciting an insurrection as part of a last-ditch effort to stay in power even after a range of authorities within his own administration and campaign told him there was no basis for doing so. And as the committee did during its inaugural primetime hearing last week, they used the voices of former Trump officials to make their case.
The aforementioned Giuliani was one of the wacky (and in his case “definitely intoxicated,” as former Trump campaign official Jason Miller put it) voices filling Trump’s head with far-fetched, evidence free ideas about election fraud that never held up in court. But while Trump heard what he wanted to from the lunatic fringe, he ignored more rational officials within his administration who told him the truth — that there was no evidence fraud played any role in his loss to Joe Biden.
Throughout Monday’s hearing, January 6 committee members used clips from depositions conducted with the likes of attorney general Bill Barr, former White House lawyer Eric Herschmann, former acting deputy attorney general Richard Donoghue, and former Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien to establish that Trump radicalized his followers with the big lie ahead of the January 6 insurrection despite knowing it was just that — a lie. (You can check out my comprehensive thread of highlights from Monday’s hearing starting here.)
“The claims of fraud were bullshit,” Barr bluntly told the January 6 committee during a clip of his deposition played during Monday’s hearing.
Yet the very day after Barr told Trump this, Trump posted a bonkers pre-recorded video on Twitter pushing the idea that “a vote dump” involving Dominion Voting Systems cost him Michigan. (As Lofgren later noted, even Sidney Powell later distanced herself from this claim under legal duress.)