The House select committee investigating what transpired at the U.S. Capitol on January 6 is holding its first public hearing today, and it’s expected most of the testimony will come from police officers serving in the departments that were called to protect the Capitol on that fateful afternoon.
But in the days and weeks yet to come, there will be many more hearings — some public and some held behind closed doors for security reasons — that will widen the scope of inquiry for the committee and hopefully provide us all with more information about what happened that day and how we can prevent such a horrific event from taking place again.
Just Security had two former U.S. Attorneys (Barbara McQuade and Joyce Vance) sit down with Ryan Goodman, who serves as co-Editor-in-Chief of Just Security, and come up with questions that need to be asked by the committee.
At one point in their extensive document, we learn that on the day of the Capitol insurrection, former President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, was given Secret Service protection, which is highly unusual. That led to these questions:
“Are you aware that Rudy Giuliani received Secret Service Protection on Jan. 6? Were you aware of communications as to whether he should receive Secret Service Protection? What senior U.S. officials were involved in that decision? Were you aware of anyone raising concerns about whether it was appropriate to provide Secret Service protection to someone so far outside the ambit of normal protectees?”
We have this information thanks to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by public advocacy group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW):
Giuliani played a key role in the buildup to the Capitol riots, giving a speech with then-President Donald Trump’s blessings in which he urged the crowd:
Giuliani will likely be called (or subpoenaed) by the select committee, and considering the fact that he received Secret Service protection on the very same day he basically called for the violent overthrow of the government, he damn well should be.
But why was that protection afforded to him, and who ordered it? Only a few high-ranking White House officials could have made such a request of the Secret Service.
The fact that Giuliani was given such enhanced security suggests that the person or persons who thought that necessary knew in advance that actions were planned which would put him at risk, and that points to a larger conspiracy that may well reach all the way to the Oval Office.
The House select committee has its hands full. But as McQuade and Vance rightly suggest, they shouldn’t be satisfied until they get the answers the American people deserve.