The person former President Donald Trump allegedly tried to contact who wasis a White House staffer, a source familiar with the committee’s investigation told CBS News.
The person did not return the call and later contacted his attorney, who contacted the House committee on Jan. 6, the committee’s deputy chair, Rep. Liz Cheney, said Tuesday.
The call came shortly after Cassidy Hutchinson, former senior assistant to Trump’s White House chief of staff,, the committee said. Hutchinson’s explosive testimony included that Trump wanted to join the crowd heading to the Capitol on January 6 and that the former president threw his lunch against the wall in December 2020 after then-Attorney General Bill Barr granted an Associated Press interview saying there was no widespread evidence of voter fraud.
The person Trump contacted was potentially willing to corroborate parts of Hutchinson’s hit testimony, the source said.
This is not the first time the Jan. 6 committee has alleged potential witness tampering. During the June 28 public hearing, Cheney said some of the witnesses who appeared before the committee received messages from some members of Trump’s inner circle. She read some of the texts, including one that read “he wants me to let you know he’s thinking about you. He knows you’re loyal.”
“Most Americans know that trying to influence witnesses to testify falsely presents very serious concerns,” Cheney said in closing, noting that the committee will discuss how to proceed.
Representative Adam Schiff, a member of the committee, told CBS News on Thursday that they were “absolutely concerned” about the safety of some of the witnesses.
“So we’re going to do everything we can to protect them,” Schiff said. “We will pass on to the Department of Justice any information we have about anyone trying to influence or intimidate a witness.”
The January 6 committee plans to hold the last of this summer’s public hearings next week. The prime-time hearing will focus on what Trump was doing at the height of the Capitol riot, Cheney said last week.
Previous public hearings showed never-before-seen footage from the Capitol on January 6 and included testimony from a Capitol police officer, a documentary filmmaker who was with the Proud Boys and a former Trump supporter who pleaded guilty on a disorderly disorder charge. conduct for his conduct that day.
The public hearings also focused on Trump’s behavior between Election Day 2020 and Jan. 6, 2021 — in particular, a plan by Trump allies to offer alternate voters in battleground states and pressure campaigns of Trump on former Vice President Mike Pence, the Justice Department, state lawmakers and local election officials.