MAGA influencers on Twitter and the media are focused on the allegation that Trump lunged to grab a Secret Service agent’s throat. They are pointing to one anonymous source who is only “close to the Secret Service,” who stated to one reporter, that the agents in the car will testify that the assault did not happen:
🚨 A source close to the Secret Service tells me both Bobby Engel, the lead agent, and the presidential limousine/SUV driver are prepared to testify under oath that neither man was assaulted and that Mr. Trump never lunged for the steering wheel.
— Peter Alexander (@PeterAlexander) June 28, 2022
And yet Politico reported that Robert “Bobby Engel” has already testified to the Committee on June 6th. It is all but impossible that the Committee would allow Hutchinson to give such inflammatory testimony if that testimony was not backed up by Engel’s account. From Politico’s June 7th report:
The Jan. 6 select committee has interviewed the top Secret Service agent on then-President Donald Trump’s protective detail during the Capitol attack, according to three people familiar with the probe.
Robert Engel was the special agent in charge on Jan. 6, 2021, meaning he was responsible for protecting the president from “socks on to socks off” — the whole work day. In that role, he rode from the White House to that day’s “Stop the Steal” rally with Trump in the presidential armored car called “The Beast.”
The only official response from the Secret Service to yesterday’s testimony is that provided here by CBS News:
“The United States Secret Service has been cooperating with the Select Committee since its inception in spring 2021, and will continue to do so, including by responding on the record to the Committee regarding the new allegations surfaced in today’s testimony
That is not a denial. The only “denial” is still coming from an unnamed source, outside the Secret Service, stating that he or she knows how two other people will contradict the story. Alexander who is a professional reporter for NBC News should have known better than to tweet what he did and he doesn’t acknowledge that Engel already testified to the Committee.
Now, the Right-Wing influencers are picking up on Peter Alexander’s tweet and running with it because they understand the emotional impact of such testimony is the type that “sticks,” even if it’s not the most serious crime. Jonathan Turley is a law professor who knows far better than to put out the tweet below:
Peter Alexander just reported that the Secret Service is categorically denying the testimony of Hutchinson that Donald Trump tried to grab the steering wheel of the Beast. https://t.co/eXXCzffefx
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) June 28, 2022
That is how influencers “work” and Turley should never be allowed to comment on television again. No Peter Alexander did not “Just report that the Secret Service is categorically denying Hutchinson’s testimony.” The Secret Service has only “categorically agreed” to continue to cooperate.
And yet the Right Wing protection racket continued to run with the assertion that the story has been “debunked.”
…It is curious that the Committee would air the account without confirming from the Secret Service, particularly since Bobby Engel appears willing to testify. This is the danger of using witnesses to repeat third party accounts.
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) June 28, 2022
Evidently, Turley is willing to stake his entire reputation on defending Trump without knowing Engel already testified.
And this is how it spreads:
If what Peter Alexander says is true….
The J6 Committee did not interview the Secret Service agents about what actually happened before asking a person, who wasn’t there, what she ‘heard’? Absolutely Unreal https://t.co/Z1j2yAroBO
— ❤️🇺🇸Anne🇺🇸❤️ (@USA_Anne711) June 29, 2022
And then it just gets crazier:
Hutchinson lied. Secret Service confirmed. Peter Alexander, (NBC,) reported.
The J6 Select Committee paid Hutchinson how much to perjure herself?
All Committee Members should have already been peep walked, tonite.
— Paul Bastkowski (@PaulyBowz) June 29, 2022
Suddenly, the focus is on whether Hutchinson lied about Trump lunging for the wheel and the throat of a Secret Service agent. The Right Wing understands that the imagery packs a powerful punch and had someone “report” to Alexander that “it didn’t happen.” But there is no chance that the attorneys on the Committee would allow Hutchinson’s credibility to be damaged so easily. Attorneys spend hours making sure that each witness’s testimony aligns with the others and any contradictions are left out of the case, it is too dangerous.
But much more importantly, Trump is never going to be charged with assaulting a Secret Service Agent (or at least unlikely). Yesterday’s hearing opens the doors to far more serious charges, the elements of which are all but admitted by those same Right Wing influences, seditious conspiracy.
Trump knew that many people in the crowd were armed. Trump did say that the people who were armed were not there to “hurt me.” Trump did demand to be taken to the Capitol (Trump admits that much), knowing that he had just told the armed crowd to go to the Capitol and fight like hell. Trump wanted to lead his troops into battle and was only turned around by the Secret Service. Upon returning to the White House, Trump did nothing for 187 minutes while Meadows took text after text asking him to call it off, fitting every element required to be charged with conspiracy to commit sedition.
Those facts, the most important facts constituting the most important crime are being all but admitted to by those same right-wing influencers.
Jason Miciak believes a day without learning is a day not lived. He is a political writer, features writer, author, and attorney. He is a Canadian-born dual citizen who spent his teen and college years in the Pacific Northwest and has since lived in seven states. He now enjoys life as a single dad of a young girl, writing from the beaches of the Gulf Coast. He loves crafting his flower pots, cooking, while also studying scientific philosophy, religion, and non-math principles behind quantum mechanics and cosmology. Please feel free to contact for speaking engagements or any concerns.