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“SUPREME DERELICTION”: First hints of Cipollone testimony to Jan 6th panel emerge

“SUPREME DERELICTION”: First hints of Cipollone testimony to Jan 6th panel emerge

"SUPREME DERELICTION": First hints of Cipollone testimony to Jan 6th panel emerge

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After the ground breaking testimony from former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson before the House Select Committee investigating the January 6th insurrection, the public has been eagerly awaiting news of what the next big witness in the probe would say in his long delayed appearance before the panel. But news of what former White House Counsel Pat Cipollone said in his testimony before the committee on Friday was initially quite scarce.

Only with the tug of Sunday morning network news programs did the first inklings of the details of Cipollone’s revelations to the House committee during his 8 hour interrogation begin to leak out.

While Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) told NBC‘s Meet the Press that the former Trump White House counsel gave the panel “relevant information about what was happening in the White House,” she also confirmed that Cipollone had refused to answer some questions posed to him, claiming executive privilege “related to the advice he provided directly to the president or conversations with the president.”

“I think we still got a lot of relevant information from him,” Rep. Murphy told Meet the Press.

Committee spokesperson Tim Mulvey expanded on Cipollone’s testimony in a statement summarizing his appearance before the panel.

“In our interview with Mr. Cipollone, the Committee received critical testimony on nearly every major topic in its investigation, reinforcing key points regarding Donald Trump’s misconduct and providing highly relevant new information that will play a central role in its upcoming hearings. This includes information demonstrating Donald Trump’s supreme dereliction of duty. The testimony also corroborated key elements of Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony. Allegations of some pre-interview agreement to limit Cipillone’s testimony are completely false,” Mulvey said in the statement.
Congresswoman Murphy confirmed that the public is likely to see videotaped excerpts from Cipollone’s testimony as soon as this Tuesday when the committee resumes its televised public hearings.
“I imagine that you will be hearing things from Mr. Cipollone, but also from others that were in the White House,” Rep. Murphy said.
Murphy also revealed that the former White House Counsel had been quite forthcoming regarding his opinions about the Trump campaign’s scheme to overturn the election results through the use of phony electors from contested swing states.

“He made very clear that he thought the [John] Eastman theory, which was this idea that the vice president could somehow unilaterally declare the president the president elect, or that the pressure on the Department of Justice, he sided with the Department of Justice on their findings of no fraud in the election,” Murphy explained.

“He made very clear that he took the side of many of the folks that you’ve already seen come before the committee, and was asserting that there wasn’t enough evidence to prove that the election was not free and fair. And that, you know, the right thing to do I think for democracy is to have a peaceful transfer of power, especially after December 14th, when the states have certified their electors,” she added.

When Murphy was asked whether Cipollone confirmed any of Hutchinson’s explosive testimony, she replied:

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“I think there was a lot of information that fit into this bigger puzzle that we’re putting together.”

Murphy later summarized what the committee has discovered so far.

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“The overall message that we have been gathering out of all of these witnesses is that the president knew he had lost the election, or that his advisers had told him he had lost the election, and that he was casting about for ways in which he could retain power and remain the president, despite the fact that the democratic will of the American people was to have President Biden be the next elected,” she said.

Murphy’s insight into Cipollone’s testimony was confirmed by another member of the committee, Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), in an appearance on CNN‘s State of the Union.

Rep. Lofgren was generally circumpect as to the content of what the former White House lawyer told the committee, citing the committee’s prohibition on disclosing testimony without a vote to do so. She did, however, confirm which topics were discussed and the overall usefulness of Cipollone’s appearance before the panel.

He was able to provide information on basically all of the critical issues we’re looking at, including the president’s, what I would call, dereliction of duty on the day of January 6th. So, yes, that was important.”

“Let me just say this, I think he did provide important insights on those subjects,” she added later in response to questions about Trump’s plan to seize voting machines and declare martial law.

These teasers of Cipollone’s sworn testimony make this Tuesday’s televised hearings by the House Select Committee all the more “much see TV” than ever.

Stay tuned for more sordid details in the days ahead.

In the meantime, you can watch an excerpt of Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy’s appearance on NBC‘s Meet the Press in the video clip below.

Original reporting by Caroline Vakil at The Hill, by Pamela Brown at CNN, and by Tom Boggioni at RawStory.

Follow Vinnie Longobardo on Twitter.  

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