Don’t blame the House January 6 committee for burying Capitol security video that devastated its “violent insurrection” narrative. Turns out members had never seen it either, according to the chairman.
Tucker Carlson on Monday aired footage that showed rioters clashing with police and scaling walls, but we had already seen that, courtesy of the committee. However, the Fox News host also ran footage of alleged rioters, including so-called “QAnon Shaman” Jacob Chansley, peaceably filing through the building as police officers milled passively around them. In some clips, Chansley, bare-chested, face-painted, and wearing a horned headdress, even seemed to be escorted through the building by police, and at one point was alone in the proximity of nine cops.
Although police officials have since said cops were simply trying to de-escalate the situation, it was still confusing to anyone who had bought the committee’s claims that a horde of marauding maniacs tore through the building like Visigoths sacking Rome. We knew there was a riot, but some of these folks sure didn’t look dangerous.
Panel Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) was apparently as surprised as anyone by the new video. Although he and other top Democrats are furious that Americans got to see the footage, he admitted that neither he nor anyone else on the committee had seen it, either.
“I’m actually not aware of any member of the committee who had access,” Thompson said Wednesday. “We had a team of employees who kind of went through the video.”
🚨BREAKING: Never before seen video of January 6 shows Jacob Chansley, the QAnon Shaman, being led through the Capitol by police the entire time that he was in the building. pic.twitter.com/rikoRMWezF
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) March 7, 2023
That explains it! The Democrats on the committee, who hired former ABC News president and onetime “Good Morning America” producer James Goldston to turn raw footage into a grand, prime-time-style production showing American democracy on the brink of collapse, never saw video that proves the day’s events weren’t quite as black and white as we were told. They didn’t even have “access.”
It was a faceless “team of employees” who presented footage of actual rioting while hiding from the public — and allegedly from criminal defendants – video that showed not everyone who entered the Capitol was a wild-eyed, violent insurrectionist. Chansley’s lawyer told The Daily Wire Wednesday he, like Thompson, never had access to video that could have helped him defend his client, who is now serving a 41-month sentence after pleading guilty to obstructing an official proceeding.
Carlson did not condone the riot or claim it never happened, but said the video showed that the media and the House committee had not told the whole story. While a violent riot most certainly did occur, the video shows that dozens and maybe even hundreds of people, who mistakenly thought their protests could convince then-Vice President Mike Pence to block Joe Biden from becoming president, had good reason to believe they were not breaking the law.
The investigation by the panel formally known as The United States House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol lasted 18 months and helped shape the perception that January 6 was a 9/11-level attack on America, and the biggest attack on our democracy since the Civil War. It was bad, but it was neither of those things. Not even close.
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You might think that over the course of a year and a half, some members of the committee, oh say nominal Republicans, Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney, might have personally reviewed security footage. But according to Thompson, they weren’t allowed to. The all-powerful “team of employees,” led by Goldston, apparently forbade them from seeing for themselves what really happened.
Who knew it would take Tucker Carlson to show Thompson that despite what his “team of employees” said, not everyone who entered the Capitol on January 6 was a threat to democracy? He must be so grateful.