With Republicans poised to take control of he U.S. House of Representatives in January, the committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol will likely be dissolved in the coming weeks.
But Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) told constituents this week that the committee will issue a final report that draws damning conclusions about former President Trump’s efforts to block the peaceful transfer of power following the 2020 election.
“We are going to have a report that will state our findings, that will summarize the action. You will be able to access different parts of the hearings in order to make vivid what it is we’re talking about,” he declared. “And then we’re going to talk about the clear and continuing present danger of the forces that have been unleashed against us.”
A constitutional scholar and a leading member of the panel, Raskin made his remarks during an appearance before the Democratic Club of Leisure World in Silver Spring Thursday night. The Montgomery Democrat was greeted as something of a hero by members of the club.
In addition to cataloguing the efforts Trump and his allies made to block Joe Biden from taking office, the Jan. 6 committee will lay out the role played by leading social media sites. Those sites, Raskin said, “were perfectly aware, from their own employees, that danger was coming, that there were ultra-right-wing forces calling for race war, calling for civil war, calling for revolution against the American government, and yet did nothing.”
The lawmaker said the committee’s upcoming report “will make a bunch of recommendations” for the country and its leaders to consider, but he conceded that “we’re not going to be able to get all of them — or even most of them — done before the end of the Congress” because of Republican gains in November.
The Select Committee on the January 6 Attack was formed six months after a violent mob breached the U.S. Capitol, delaying by hours the certification of Biden’s win. Five people lost their lives in the melee.
The panel interviewed more than a thousand people and reviewed more than a million pages of documents. The public hearings that the panel held riveted the American people, drawing them deep inside the bloody siege, including the former president’s steadfast refusal to get his supporters to leave the Capitol complex.
Although many Republicans and conservative opinion leaders accused the panel of engaging in partisanship, Raskin noted that two GOP lawmakers serve on the committee. Nearly all of the panel’s most dramatic moments came during testimony from former Trump loyalists.
Raskin predicted that Republican voters “will continue to follow the Big Lie” about the 2020 election, which Biden won, “and they will continue to follow every form of propaganda and disinformation against us.”
“The political scientists tell us that the signs of an authoritarian political party are this: 1) they don’t accept the results of democratic elections if they don’t go their way; 2) they embrace political violence or refuse to disavow it…; and 3) they are organized around a charismatic or allegedly charismatic political figure.”
Raskin said the report would be released in the coming days, though he didn’t say when. He answered several question from the audience, but when he was asked if the Jan. 6 committee will recommend “criminal action” against the former president, he declined to say.
“This is probably the first time I’ve ever had to say ‘no comment’ at Leisure World,” the lawmaker said to laughter.
Several published reports this week have suggested that the committee may make a handful of criminal referrals to the Justice Department.
“We’re going to put this [report] to the American people and it will be a challenge for everybody across the political spectrum, across the country, to stand up for democratic institutions,” he said.