Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday abruptly canceled his plans to hold a press conference on the first anniversary of the Capitol riot.
Trump had invited reporters to attend a defiant event at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla., where he was expected to bash House Democrats for investigating his actions on Jan. 6, 2020.
“In light of the total bias and dishonesty of the January 6th Unselect Committee of Democrats, two failed Republicans, and the Fake News Media, I am canceling the January 6th Press Conference at Mar-a-Lago on Thursday,” Trump said in a statement.
“What has become more and more obvious to ALL is that the LameStream Media will not report the facts that Nancy Pelosi and the Capitol Sergeant-at-Arms denied requests for the D.C. National Guard or Military to be present at the Capitol. Their emails and correspondence with the Department of Defense exist, but the media won’t ask for this evidence, or report the truth!” Trump added.
“This is the Democrats’ Great Cover-Up Committee and the Media is complicit. Why did Adam ‘Shifty’ Schiff forge and change the statement of Congressman Jim Jordan without any consequence? Why will Crazy Nancy Pelosi not provide her communications with the House Sergeant-at-Arms and the House Chief Administrative Officer, or promise to retain these vital messages, which many feel she has already destroyed — perhaps illegally?”
Before the deadly riot, Trump told thousands of supporters near the White House that the election was “stolen” and urged them to march to Capitol Hill to support objections lodged by Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) against the certification of electors from key swing states.
The mob subsequently stormed the Capitol — sending lawmakers and Vice President Mike Pence fleeing to safety and disrupting certification of President Biden’s victory in the Electoral College.
A Democrat-led House committee is seeking Trump’s presidential records pertaining to the riot. Trump is suing to assert executive privilege over those records held by the National Archives.
The House voted last month to hold in contempt former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows for declining to testify to the committee about his activities during the riot.
Meadows handed over nearly 9,000 pages of emails and text messages before cutting off contact. Those documents included desperate pleas from journalists, politicians and even Donald Trump Jr. asking Meadows to get Trump to help calm the mob.
Trump’s former White House strategist Steve Bannon was indicted last month by a federal grand jury on two counts of contempt of Congress after he refused to testify before the committee — in the first such prosecution since 1983. Bannon was not a White House employee at the time of the riot.
If Republicans retake the House, they’re expected to disband the select committee upon taking office in January 2023.
According to a Reuters report, the FBI has found no evidence that the riot was an organized coup attempt.
An analysis of video by the Wall Street Journal found that members of the Proud Boys group were key players in initiating clashes with police, including helping collapse an outer perimeter while Trump was still speaking to a large crowd near the White House.
Trump supporter Ashli Babbitt was fatally shot during the mayhem and three other Trump supporters died of medical emergencies. US Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick died of a stroke after battling the rioters and several police officers, and at least one accused rioter later died by suicide.
House Democrats joined by 10 Republicans impeached Trump last January for allegedly inciting the riot. Trump was acquitted by the Senate in a 57-43 vote, with seven Republicans finding him guilty — short of the two-thirds threshold required by the Constitution.