In the final days of former President Donald Trump’s administration, members of his family, cabinet, and White House staff attempted to convince him to accept his 2020 election loss. The comments provide additional evidence that Trump was privy to detailed information disproving his allegations of election fraud.
Tuesday, the Select Committee investigating the Capitol Riot of January 6 released new video testimony from Trump’s advisors detailing their efforts to convince him to abandon his efforts to overturn the election results.
Ivanka Trump, former press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, and Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia, son of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, were among those who testified.
On the 14th of December, when the Electoral College certified Biden as the winner, the aides all testified that they realized that Donald Trump’s efforts to contest his loss were futile.
McEnany stated that she began “planning for life after the administration” on this date.
Ivanka Trump, Trump’s eldest daughter and a White House adviser, stated that she realized the term had ended on December 14. She stated, “I believe that was my sentiment, and probably prior to that as well.”
Ivanka Trump’s testimony expands on her earlier statements to the committee’s investigators, in which she stated that she believed the election to be over when then-Attorney General Bill Barr stated that the Justice Department had found no evidence to support Trump’s claims that the election was stolen. Donald Trump dismissed his daughter’s statement to Barr as “polite” and countered that by late December, she had “long since checked out.”
Ivanka Trump’s statements to the committee, however, contradict statements she made to British filmmaker Alex Holder for his series “Unprecedented” on the Trump White House. Holder noted in an interview with the Washington Post that Ivanka Trump echoed her father’s election-related talking points even after Barr’s conclusions were made public.
Others reported attempting direct intervention with Trump. McEnany’s deputy Judd Deere testified that he told Donald Trump that after the Electoral College certified Biden’s victory, “the means for [Donald Trump] to pursue litigation were likely exhausted.” Donald Trump disagrees with the assertion, according to Deere.
Scalia, whose father is still revered in conservative legal circles, also stated that he urged Trump to concede.
“I told him that I believed that once those legal processes were completed, if fraud had not been established, that had affected the election’s outcome,” Scalia told committee investigators. “Unfortunately, I believe that what had to be done was can see the outcome.”