'Connecting the dots': Jan. 6 committee promises to show Trump's role in Capitol attack at Thursday's hearing

WASHINGTON — The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol plans to open its case to the public Thursday night by “connecting the dots” between then-President Donald Trump’s efforts to overthrow the 2020 election and the deadly insurrection.

To illustrate Trump’s role in the violence, the committee will employ a multimedia presentation during a primetime hearing that will be carried live on most networks Thursday. It will feature taped testimony from former Trump officials as well as from the president’s own family, according to aides for the committee.

While many details of Trump’s efforts to overturn his election loss and prevent the peaceful transfer of power have already been laid out in public, the House committee is promising to provide explosive new revelations that it obtained during its months-long investigation.

“We will be revealing new details showing that the violence of January 6th was the result of a coordinated multistep effort to overturn the results of the 2020 elections and stop the transfer of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden. And indeed that former President Donald Trump was at the center of that effort,” a committee aide said Wednesday. “What we’re going to sketch out tomorrow night is connecting the dots.”

Members of the January 6 committee attend a meeting.
Members of the Jan. 6 committee at a meeting on March 28. (Eric Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images) (Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Documentary filmmaker Nick Quested, who was embedded with the extremist group the Proud Boys when they sacked the Capitol, and Capitol Police Officer Caroline Edwards, one of the first officers attacked by the mob, are set to be the only witnesses providing live testimony Thursday.

The highlight of the hearing is expected to be a multimedia presentation put together by the panel that will include video of interviews conducted by the committee. An aide for the committee said that footage of Trump’s children, who testified in the investigation, would feature prominently.

Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., his daughter Ivanka Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, each sat for recorded interviews with the committee this spring. The committee aide did not say which of Trump’s children would be featured in Thursday’s presentation.

In a piece written for the latest reissue of their Watergate-era book “All the President’s Men,” journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein wrote that the months-long effort by Trump and his allies to defy the election results was the definition of “sedition.”

“Thus, Trump became the first seditious president in our history,” the reporters wrote.

Trump supporters, some holding banners and flags, gather around a makeshift gallows near the Capitol.
Trump supporters gather around a noose near the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Shay Horse/NurPhoto via Getty Images) (NurPhoto via Getty Images)

In the coming days and weeks, Trump and a team of allies, including longtime conservative activist and former White House political director Matt Schlapp, will mount an aggressive effort to push back on the committee’s findings.

Trump has continued to push unfounded allegations that rampant voter fraud cost him the 2020 election, and has launched an effort to help install candidates who share that view in state offices nationwide. Some of his fiercest adherents, including Pennsylvania’s Republican nominee for governor Doug Mastriano, have campaigned on what Democratic and Republican members of the committee have called the “big lie.”

House GOP leaders, including Minority Whip Steve Scalise, Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks and others, are also planning to push back against the Jan. 6 panel’s findings.

“House Republicans will be all over the airwaves setting the record straight, telling the American people the truth, sharing the facts, and asking the real questions like why Nancy Pelosi is the only person off-limits from this investigation,” Stefanik told Fox News this week.

The rioters got within two doors of Vice President Mike Pence’s office. See how in this 3D explainer from Yahoo Immersive.