During its final hearing on Thursday, the Jan. 6 committee played behind-the-scenes video of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other lawmakers during the riot. Pelosi is seen on the phone with Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, asking for the kind of aid the former president refused to seek out as a mob of his supporters stormed the building.
CNN aired more footage of Pelosi on Thursday night, including a clip of her saying she “hoped” Trump would come to the Capitol. “I’m going to punch him out,” she says, visibly enraged. “I’ve been waiting for this, for trespassing on the Capitol grounds. I’m going to punch him out, and I’m going to go to jail, and I’m going to be happy.”
Pelosi had just been informed by her chief of staff that though Trump wanted to come to the Capitol, the Secret Service had “dissuaded” him from making the trip because they “don’t have the resources” to protect him. The Jan. 6 committee both in past hearings and on Thursday explained that Trump very much wanted to join his supporters as they stormed the Capitol, both when they first began to march to Congress and after the violence had commenced.
The most shocking evidence of Trump’s desire to go to the building came in testimony delivered in June by former Mark Meadows aide Cassidy Hutchinson, who recounted a story she heard from the Secret Service about Trump “lunging” at an agent. “The president said something to the effect of ‘I’m the f’ing President, take me to the Capitol now,'” Trump had said before trying to grab the steering wheel of the presidential vehicle, according to the account.
On Thursday, the committee played testimony of former White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, saying that Trump wanted to go to the Capitol even after he was back at the White House and that the presidential vehicle was kept on standby in case the move was made.
The committee spent its final hearing largely recounting previously revealed information, although it did play alarming clips of longtime Trump allies Steve Bannon and Roger Stone laying out plans for Trump to claim victory regardless of the election results, all but proving “election fraud” has nothing to do with his push to stay in power. The committee concluded the hearing by voting unanimously to subpoena Trump. “He is the one person at the center of the story of what happened on Jan. 6,” Chairman Bennie Thompson said. “So we want to hear from him.”