January 6

Trump Was Privately Chanting for Mike Pence’s Hanging on January 6, Says Former White House Aide Cassidy Hutchinson

Just something to think about as the guy argues he should be president of the United States again!
Cleveland Ohio USA July 20 2016 Republican Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump congratulates his running mate Indiana...
Cleveland, Ohio, USA, July 20, 2016 Republican Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump congratulates his running mate Indiana Governor Mike Pence after Pence formally accepted the nomination during the third day of the Republican National Convention in the Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland Ohio, July 20, 2016. (Photo by Mark Reinstein/Corbis via Getty Images)Mark Reinstein/Getty Images

In March 2021, less than three months after?the January 6 attack on the Capitol, Donald Trump was asked about the matter of his supporters chanting “Hang Mike Pence” as they stormed the building. Obviously, this presented an opportunity for the ex-president to disavow the violence of that day in general as well as the threats of violence that had been directed at his VP in particular. But rather than take that opportunity, the former guy defended?the people who had literally called for the vice president to be hanged, claiming, incredibly, that it was “common sense” for them to threaten Pence’s life over his failure to overturn the election results. And on Monday, we learned that he wasn’t just fine with said threats; he was allegedly cheering them on from afar.?

Opening her interview with Cassidy Hutchinson last night, Rachel Maddow read an excerpt from the former White House aide’s new book, in which Hutchinson recounts a hugely disturbing moment on January 6:?

The TV in the Oval dining room is blaring. The president is yelling. What’s he saying? I can’t make it out.?I hear him say “hang” repeatedly. Hang? Hang? What’s that about? Mark [Meadows] hands his phone back to me, the cue for me to return to my desk. Back in my office, my phone notifies me of a Trump tweet: “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!”?

I’m struggling to process what’s happening as Mark, Pat Cipollone, Pat Philbin, and Eric Herschmann stumble back to the office. I overhear their conversation, and suddenly everything makes sense. They are calling for the vice president to be hanged. The president is okay with it. He doesn’t want to do anything. He doesn’t think they’re doing anything wrong. He thinks Mike is a traitor. This is crazy. We need to be doing something more.?

During her testimony before the January 6 committee in June 2022, Hutchinson told the panel, “I remember Pat [Cipollone, the White House counsel] saying something to the effect of, ‘Mark, we need to do something more. They’re literally calling for the vice president to be fucking hung.’?And Mark had responded something to the effect of, ‘You heard him, Pat. He thinks Mike deserves it. He doesn’t think they’re doing anything wrong.’?To which Pat said something like, ‘This is fucking crazy. We need to be doing something more.’”

But this appears to be the first time we’ve heard that Trump was chanting about hanging Pence while at his perch in the White House. (A year after the attack, former?White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham, who also served as chief of staff to the first lady,?told CNN that as Trump “gleefully” watched the insurrection unfold on TV, he happily remarked on “all of the people fighting for me” and hit rewind to watch it again.)

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