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What congressional investigations are revealing about the Capitol insurrection

Supporters of former President Donald Trump protest outside the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC. (Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images)
Supporters of former President Donald Trump protest outside the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC. (Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images)

Just how far was President Trump – and his team – willing to go to overthrow the results of the 2020 election?

“What we’re what we’re finding out is that Trump wasn’t just making throwaway lines at rallies, he was actually giving instructions to people at the highest levels of the U.S. government. And they followed his orders,” professor Brian Klaas says.

Newly released documents in a congressional investigation show that at some point, it was suggested that Trump declare a National Emergency to overturn the election.

There’s more. Text messages to former chief of staff, Mark Meadows.

“Quote, ‘Mark. The president needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home. This is hurting all of his. He is destroying his legacy,'” Rep. Liz Cheney read at a  committee hearing.

Today, On Point: The latest on investigating January 6th.

“It’s blatant corruption,” Klaas adds. “It’s blatant attempts to rig elections, and it’s blatant attempts to turn American democracy into an authoritarian mess.”

Guests

Quinta Jurecic, fellow at the Brookings Institution. Senior editor at the Lawfare Blog. (@qjurecic)

Brian Klaas, professor of global politics at University College London. Author of “Corruptible: Who Gets Power And How it Changes Us.” (@brianklaas)

From The Reading List

The Atlantic: “Why the January 6 Investigation Is Weirdly Static” — “It was almost a year ago that rioters forced their way into the United States Capitol, smashing windows, threatening the lives of Vice President Mike Pence and members of Congress, and aiming to overturn the results of a democratic election in order to keep Donald Trump in power.”

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.