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tv   NBC Bay Area News at 11AM  NBC  June 28, 2022 11:00am-11:30am PDT

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which was causing them to have to clean. i grabbed a towel and started wiping the ketchup off the wall to help the valet out and he said something to the effect of, he's really ticked off about this. i would stay clear of him for right now. he's really, really ticked off about this right now. >> and miss hutchinson, was this the only instance that you are aware where the president threw dishes? >> it's not. >> and are there other instances in the dining room that you recall where he expressed his anger? >> there were several times throughout my tenure with the chief of staff that i was aware of him throwing dishes or flipping the table cloth to let all the contents of the table go on to the floor and likely break or go everywhere. >> and miss hutchinson, attorney general barr described to the committee the president's angry
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reactions when he finally met with president trump. let's listen. >> and i said look, i didn't know that you were dissatisfied with me and i'm glad to offer my resignation. and he pounded the table very hard. everyone sort of jumped. he said accept it. >> mr. chairman, i reserve. >> gentlewoman reserves. the chair requests those in the hearing room to remain seated until the capitol police have escorted our witness from the room. pursuant to the order of committee of today, the chair declares that committee in recess for a period of approximately ten minutes. we have been listening to
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the -- listening to testimony of cassidy hutchinson, a former executive assistant to then white house chief of staff, mark meadows. testimony that can only be described as explosive. chuck todd, not sure where to start. >> i am -- explosive almost underplays what we just heard. i mean, look, before the description of the former president's unhinged behavior where he attacked his lead secret service detail, which i'm still trying to digest, she does make it clear in a very compelling way that for day, everybody in and around the president knew january 6th was going to be potentially explosive. knew it could become violent. the opening, i mean, every part of this testimony sort of had revelation after revelation beginning with that opening about rudy giuliani essentially informing miss hutchinson of what they at least thought the plan would be. so you know, as far as building
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the case about what the president knew and when he knew it and how illegal his acts were, boy, did she paint a damning picture. she connected a bunch of dots. but then you throw in the sort of physical, unhinged behavior with those two anecdotes, throwing a plate of food in reaction to bill barr's interview where he stated there was no widespread election fraud, but then the incident with the secret service detail. she's in the office of mr. ornato who was former lead to the president. he's in the room as she's being told this story. the point is it really paints a damning picture of the president and you know, it's interesting, lester. we go through this and nothing
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shocks when it comes to the former president, but the idea that he tried to grab the wheel. this was clearly she is painting a picture of somebody who was very unhinged. i don't know what other word to use. based on her testimony, that is an unhinged actor. >> let's not forget, she doesn't describe, we hear the radio transmission of police as they're spotting people in the crowd at the ellipse with high powered weapons. as she tells it, the president gains knowledge of what's happening there. wants to press forward to set aside the magnatometers and let people in even after reports of ar-15s. >> i think this testimony is so important and that because one of the argument that is many republicans try to make that attempt to defend the former
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president, maybe not his personal actions, but this place was unprepared. we now have testimony that essentially, it's clear that knew this was going to happen and clearly they withheld some of the most biggest concern. that the capitol police should have known about. you think the police knew of what rudy giuliani said to miss hutchinson? had they known that four days before, that puts everything in a different context for me and i assume a lot of people because again, this is not a security failure that everybody at the capitol should have been prepared for. this was an intentional act by trump and his cronies to essentially make sure that they could cause a ruckus at the capitol. she's connecting that dot with more than just dots. dashes there. it's a pretty straight line. >> let me bring in peter alexander.
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we were remarking to each other, it's a 25-year-old young woman who is at literally the center of power. witness to these events and around these powerful people. >> well, it's stunning courage for anybody, especially a 25-year-old. she wasn't a fly on the wall. she was an insider in those communications where messages were being communicated to her by the top lawyer for the white house to the chief of staff and what she did is gave voice to those individuals who have not come forward. most notably, president trump. we've been trying to see, and the keywords to watch today were if she could say i heard him say. and she says i heard the president say, when they were standing behind the curtain on the january 6 speech at the ellipse. she said i don't care if they have weapons. take the mags away. they aren't here to hurt me. they can march from here.
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those are the words that she says she heard the president communicate even after it was shared with him that there were individuals carrying ar-15s, brass knuckles, other weapons that were just outside the gates of where he would be delivering that speech. she said about pat cipollone, that he communicated to her series legal concerns about the president's desire to go up to capitol hill that day. he said they were going to get charged with every crime imaginable if they did that. that is the white house counsel telling her we cannot do this for all these reasons. to say nothing of the moments communicated to her with mr. engel and mr. ornato about that dramatic moment that played out inside the president's limousine when he put his hands on the wheel, on the neck of his top security individual aide as described, saying send this thing up to the capitol. >> and when people think of the
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beast, the presidential limo, very big sedan. in this case, we saw the picture of the president being wheeled away, he's in an suv, which is used from time to time. >> which would have enabled him to reach up. in the beast, i've never been inside, but there's glass. he could have reached to the steering wheel if it was in the front and the security aide who would have been sitting in the front. >> let me bring in -- very specific about what she heard and what she heard second hand. this was not a trial, we keep pointing out. it's not an impeachment, but it's interesting in terms of how we weigh her credibility. >> you will hear people complain, probably on the right, that a lot of this is here say. it's hutchinson reporting to her what was told to her by someone else. it's true here say is often excluded, but it has so many
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exceptions. there are so many holes in the rule. so many that could scarcely be said to be a rule anymore. but the reality is we're not in court and sometimes here say is totally reliable and that's why we have so many exceptions to the rule. some of this may be reliable. you look at the source itself and if that source is checkable, verifiable, it's not going to be discarded. here, you should take it for what it's worth. >> thank you. let me go to ali who's outside the hearing room. i've got wonder what you were seeing inside the room. the reaction to some of the bombshells she dropped, describing this picture of a president lunging for his secret
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service protector. >> you saw people's eyes almost pop out of their head as she described that moment of the former president lunging for the steering wheel and security saying i'm going to need you to take your hand off that steering wheel. i've been in the room at every one of these hearings and what i can tell you is there's always an anticipation and almost excitement in the room, but this had such a heavyness to it. the seating arrangements were different. the officers were no longer at the front of the room, but towards the back because they meant for this to be something that the focus was only on cassidy hutchinson and certainly that was the case. i do think that everyone in there, sometimes people might zone out, look away, they look at their phone. instead during this hearing, every single person in that room was glued to the screen. they were perked up and listening the entire time. almost as if they were afraid to miss the bombshell and certainly
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bombshell after bombshell has happened in the hearing. the committee not overpromising when they said they were going to have this surprise witness here in the room. i thought the whole thing was striking and as the chairman gavelled to a recess, we had at least one democratic lawmaker stand an applaud for hutchinson as she left the room. it sort of speaks to the feeling of gratitude among those who have been impacted by this day, that this young woman would go through so much. we know there's security threats here. you guys have all spoken to the fact it must be so hard and pressure filled to be a young woman at the center of this right now. but certainly there was a feeling of gratitude in that room from so many of the people impacted by january 6th, that she would be here and testify to so many of these striking moments that she's already spoken to. it's clear they're not yet, lester. >> a ten-minute break, thank you so much. let me go to our washington
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correspondent. how are supporters characterizing what we're seeing? >> well, lester, supporters of former president trump and even aides who were helping try to contest the election on his behalf are shocked by what they just heard. i've been getting text message, wow, the truth is come out. he only cared about his own safety. not only lunge add the neck of a secret service agent, but the steering wheel. he was saying i'm not at risk. they're not going to hurt me. even though they had ar-15s and backpacks that was making the secret service very, very nervous. violence had already broken out at the capitol. when i'm talking to the people closest to president trump and aides on his campaign, they said it really hurts to think about the fact this was the president of the united states only thinking about his own safety.
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the committee really did set the stakes really, really high here and based on the reactions i'm getting from people, a lot of them trump supporters, they are really meeting the bar here for a history making session of all eyes were on this young woman. she is part of the republican establishment. even though she's young, she worked for steve scalise, so many people know who she is. to see her look sad in some ways, also stoic when she is quoting directly what she quoting from the president. there was that scene at the end where president trump is throwing plates, where he's throwing his lunch against the wall. another instance where he is having to confront the fact his election lies are just that. no fraud in the 2020 election and here was bill barr trying to explain that to him and there are a lot of people in trump world saying this is another key
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part here where people are feeling like they were useful idiots. they feel like former president trump was only worried about himself. drunk off of power, wanting to stay in office no matter what it took including physically attacking a secret service agent. so remarkable and it's going to take a lot of time for people to process how far former president trump was willing to go. >> yamiche, i'm going to ask you a question, based on what we've seen, these stories would have been as shocking two weeks from now, three, four weeks from now. are we getting an understanding of why they wanted this out now? >> it's great question. at least in talking to folks, i get the sense that hutchinson, her security and her sort of where she, how she felt about this information being out and what her life might be like now that she's spoken out with her name and face out there
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publicly, that lawmakers wanted to make sure she had this opportunity and she could go to some safe location. that's all at this point not clear. it's unclear what the lawmakers were thinking, but my sense in talking to sources were that they were really concerned about her safety and thought this was urgent information. this is a committee that's on a timetable. there's this sort of midterm elections all the way in the fall in november and lawmakers want enough time as possible for the public to really digest what our as you describe them, explosive details on the actions of former president trump. >> all right. the witness walking back in along with members of the committee. let me get chuck todd in here. a lot of this has been about are question going to hear the magic words of what the president knew. his acknowledgment of him doing things wrong. are they close or has it happened yet? >> they're closer and as one trump supporter told me, everything she testified to -- it was just a speech.
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it's not longer just a speech now on that ellipse. >> we are waiting now for this session to resume. we don't know where they're going to take it, but what we've heard will fill conversations for many hours. there's the gavel. >> convene in order. chair recognizes the gentlewoman from wyoming, vice chair cheney. >> thank you, mr. chairman. before we turn to what miss hutchinson saw and heard in the white house on january 6th, let's discuss certain communications white house chief of staff mark meadows had on january 5th. president trump's associate, roger stone, attended rallies during the afternoon and evening of january 5th in washington, d.c. on january 5th and 6th, mr. stone was photographed with multiple members of the oath keepers who were allegedly serving as his security detail.
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as we now know, multiple members of that organization have been charged with or pled guilty to crimes associated with january 6th. mr. stone has invoked his fifth amendment privilege against increme nation before this committee. general flynn has also taken the fifth. mr. stone previously had been convicted of other federal crimes unrelated to january 6th. general flynn had pleaded guilty to a felony charge, also predating and unrelated to january 6th. president trump pardoned general flynn just weeks after the presidential election and in july of 2020, he commuted the sentence roger stone was to serve. the night before january 6th, president trump instructed his chief of staff, mark meadows, to contact both roger stone and michael flynn regarding what
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would play out the next day. miss hutchinson, is it your understanding that president trump asked mark meadows to speak with roger stone and general flynn on january 5th? >> that's correct. that is my understanding. >> and miss hutchinson, it is your understanding that mr. meadows called mr. stone on the 5th? >> i'm under the impression that mr. meadows did complete the calls to mr. stone and general flynn the evening of the 5th. >> and do you know what they talked about? >> i'm not sure. >> is it your understanding that mr. giuliani, mr. eastman and others set up what has been called a quote, war room, at the willard hotel on the nigh of the 5th? >> i was aware of that. >> and do you know if mr. meadows intended to go to the willard hotel on the night of the 5th. >> mr. meadows had a conversation with me where he wanted me to work with secret
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service on a movement from the white house to the willard hotel so he could attend the meeting or meetings with mr. giuliani and his associates in the war room. >> and what was your view as to whether or not mr. meadows should go to the willard that night? >> i had made it clear to mr. meadows that i didn't believe it was a smart idea for him to go to the willard hotel that night. i wasn't sure everything that was going on at the willard hotel although i knew enough about what mr. giuliani and his associates were pushing during this period. i didn't think it was something appropriate for the white house chief to have staff to attend or consider involvement in. i made that clear to mr. meadows. throughout the afternoon, he mentioned a few more times going up to the willard hotel that evening then eventually dropped the subject the night of the 5th and said he would dial in
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instead. >> so general flynn has appeared before this committee and when he appeared before our committee, he took the fifth. let's briefly view a clip of general mike flynn taking the fifth amendment. general flynn, do you believe the violence on january 6th was justified? >> can we have a minute? >> yes. >> all right. i'm back. could you repeat the question, please? >> yes. general flynn, do you believe the violence on january 6th was justified? >> is that, can i get clarification? is that a moral question or -- >> i'm asking both.
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do you believe the violence on january 6th was justified morally? >> take the fifth. >> you believe the violence on january 6th was justified legally? >> fifth. >> general flynn, do you believe in the peaceful transition of power in the united states of america? >> the fifth. >> let's move on now to january 6th and the conduct of donald trump and mark meadows during the attack on the capitol. miss hutchinson, i'd like now for us to listen to a description, your description of what transpired in the west wing during the attack.
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your context in this clip, you describe the type frame starting at about 2:00 p.m. >> i remember mark being alone in his office for quite some time. i know we spoke about going at one point and i don't personally remember ben going, but i remember him being alone in his office for most of the afternoon. around 2:00 to 2:05, you know, we were watching the tv and i could see that the rioters were getting closer and closer to the capitol. mark still hadn't popped out of his office or said anything. i went into his office and saw he was sitting on his coach on his cell phone, same as the morning when he was just scrolling and texting. and i said, hey, are you watching the tv, chief?
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tv was small. you can see it. i didn't know if he was paying attention. you watching the tv, chief? like, yeah. rioters are getting really close. have you talked to the president? no, he wants to be alone right now. still looking at his phone. so i start to get frustrated because you know, i felt like i was watching a -- this is not a great comparison, a bad car accident that was about to happen where you can't stop it but you want to be able to do something. i remember thinking in that moment, mark needs to snap out of this and i don't know how to snap him out of this, but he need to care. and i sort of blurted out, mark, you know where jim's at right now? he looked up at me at that point and said, jim? i said, mark, he was on the floor a little while ago giving a floor speech. did you listen?
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he said, yeah, it was really good. did you like it? i said, yeah, do you know where he's at right now? he said no, i haven't heard from him. i said, you might want to check in with him, mark. i remember point at the tv, the rioters are getting close. they might get in. he said something to the effect of all right, i'll give him a call. >> not long after the rioters broke into the capitol, you described what happened with white house counsel, pat cipollone. >> no more than a minute, minute and a half later, i see pat cipollone barrelling down the hallway towards our office and rush right in, looked at me, said, is mark in his office? i said yes. he just looked at me and started shaking his head and opened mark's office door. stood there with the door
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propped open, mark's still on his phone. i remember glancing and he's still sitting on his phone. and i remember pat saying to him something to the effect of the rioters got into the capitol, mark. we need to go down and see the president now. and mark looked up and said, he doesn't want to do anything, pat. and pat said something to the effect of and very clearly, said this to mark. something to the effect of, mark, something needs to be done or people are going to die and the blood's going to be on your f-ing hands. this is getting out of control. i'm doing down there. at that point, mark stood up from the couch, his glasses on, he walked out with pat. he put both phones on my desk and said let me know if jim calls and they walked out down to the dining room. >> a few minutes later, representative jordan called back.
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>> a couple minutes later, so likely around between 2:15 and 2:25. i don't remember if i was there when the tweet went out or it happened right afterward, but jim had called. i answered the phone. said one second. i guess he -- i introduced myself, but i don't remember if he called my cell phone or called one of mark's. but i answered the phone, i'm going to go hand the phone, he said, okay. so i went down, i asked a valet if mark was in the dining room. valley said yes. i opened the door to the dining room, briefly stepped in to get mark's attention, showed him the phone, slipped the phone his way, jim jordan, he steps to where i was standing there holding the door open, took the phone, talking to jim with the
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door still propped open so i took a few steps back. probably was two feet from mark. he was stand ng the doorway going to the oval office dining room. they had a brief conversation and i heard briefly what they were talking about. in the background, i heard conversations in the oval dining room at that point talking about to hang mike pence chants. >> that clip ended with you recalling that you heard the president, mr. meadows and the white house counsel discussing the hang mike pence chant then you described for us what happened next. >> wasn't until mark hung up the phone, handed it back to me. i went back to my desk. a couple minutes later, him and pat came back, possibly eric hirshman, too. pretty sure eric hirshman was there.
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but i'm confident it was pat that was there. i remember pat saying something to the effect of, mark, we need to do something more. they're literally calling for the vice president to be f-ing 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, this is f-ing crazy. we need to be doing something more. briefly stepped into mark's office and when mark had said something to the effect of he doesn't think they're doing anything wrong, knowing what i had heard briefly in the dining room, coupled with pat discussing the hang mike pence chants in the lobby of our office and then mark's response, i understood there to be the rioters in the capitol that were
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chanting for the vice president to be hung. >> let me pause here on this point. rioters chanted hang mike pence, the president of the united states, donald trump, said that quote, mike deserves it. and that those rioters were not doing anything wrong. this is a sentiment that he has expressed at other times as well. in an interview with abc news correspondent, jonathan carl, president trump was asked about the supporters chanting hang mike pence last year. instead of condemning them, the former president defended them. >> hang mike pence -- >> it's common sense, it's common sense that you're supposed to protect -- how can you, if you know a vote is fraudulent, how can you pass on a fraudulent vote to congress? >> president trump's view that
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the rioters were not doing anything wrong and that quote, mike deserved it, helps us to understand why the president did not ask the rioters to leave the capitol for multiple hours. in fact, he put this tweet out at 2:24 p.m. miss hutchinson, do you recall seeing this tweet in which the president said the vice president did not have the courage to do what needed to be done? >> i do. >> miss hutchinson, what was your reaction when you saw this tweet? >> as a staffer that worked to always represent the administration the best of my ability and to showcase the good things that he had done for the country, i remember feeling frustrated, , and


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