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To the editor:
When I read conservative opinion pieces, I have to wonder whether we all live in the same reality. Following Cassidy Hutchinson’s damning testimony before the January 6th committee, former President Donald Trump complained, “There is no cross-examination of this so-called witness.”
This sentiment went viral throughout the conservative echo chamber. However, let’s be very clear — the committee is conducting an investigation, not a trial. The January 6 committee is analogous to a grand jury proceeding, in that witnesses are not cross-examined and only the prosecutor asks questions. In the American jurisprudence system, cross-examination happens at trial, after an indictment.
I have also seen perennial Trump-apologist Alan Dershowitz speculate that the evidence presented by the committee would not be admissible in a court of law. God willing, we will soon see if that is true.
Evidence that has been dismissed, by some 60 courts of law, is Trump’s lie that voter fraud cost him the election. What we also know for certain is that numerous Trump loyalists haven’t had the guts to fully testify, under penalty of perjury, to the committee.
Over 30 of these cowards, including Michael Flynn, Roger Stone and Alex Jones invoked their Fifth Amendment rights protecting against self-incrimination, as many as 100 times each. We also know that others with direct knowledge of Trump’s plans for and actions on January 6, including Kevin McCarthy, Steve Bannon and Mark Meadows have refused to testify by ignoring subpoenas, with some requesting pardons following the events of January 6.
Lastly, we know, conclusively, that the most damning witness evidence to the committee has come from Republicans who worked directly for Trump, including White House, DOJ and campaign staff.
I don’t know why I should be surprised by conservative revisionism. Nearly every conservative I know personally has told me that Mueller’s Russia investigation was a hoax. I respond yes! — a hoax that yielded 34 indictments of individuals (including 12 Russian agents charged with conducting “large scale cyber operations to interfere with the 2016 U.S. Presidential election”), three Russian businesses and the conviction of seven Trump associates, including his campaign manager. This is reality.
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