The January 6 committee will be holding its first public hearings on Thursday, June 9, but after so many leaks and bombshell books that have come out since the committee was formed, is anyone really interested in what they may yet reveal?
“The committee will present previously unseen material documenting January 6th, receive witness testimony, preview additional hearings, and provide the American people a summary of its findings of the coordinated, multi-step effort to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election and prevent the transfer of power,” the committee said in a statement.
With the first prime time hearing being broadcast live, on Thursday, June 9, at 8pm, Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) told NBC News that there could be “eight hearings throughout June.”
The committee has not released any information about what witnesses viewers can expect to hear from during this first scheduled hearing.
The primetime slot indicates the committee is eager to make a case to a broad audience, including many who watched the events unfold live on television as rioters stormed the Capitol.
That could present a challenge for the panel to reach those who feel they already understand what transpired that day. Polling has also found that many right-leaning respondents believe it’s time to “move on” from reviewing the attack. And even many on the left that feel Donald Trump and others who were responsible for inciting the events have not been held accountable, feel there are more urgent matters to be addressed right now, particularly gun violence.
With Americans on both sides, feeling “we have heard enough” about Jan 6. Political pundits and media experts suggest that the committee will need to question a “high profile” witness in order to draw the level of viewership it would like. This has caused many to speculate we could be seeing former Vice President Mike Pence called to testify on Thursday.
Indeed, Axios reported Thursday that the committee has been in discussions with J. Michael Luttig, a former judge on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals appointed by George H. W. Bush, who helped provide Pence with legal reasoning to resist former President Trump’s suggestion he bucks his ceremonial duties in certifying the election results. Luttig has previously said he would be willing to testify.
CNN also reported Thursday that the committee has likewise been talking to Pence’s former Chief of Staff Marc Short and Greg Jacob, chief counsel to the former vice president, who has already spoken to the committee about his pushback against Trump campaign attorneys.
Chairman Thompson would only say that the hearings will include testimony from witnesses “we’ve not heard from before.”
“We’ll tell the story about what happened,” he told the press. “We will use a combination of witnesses, exhibits, things that we have through the tens of thousands of exhibits we’ve interviewed and looked at, as well as the, you know, hundreds of witnesses we’ve deposed or just talked to in general.”
Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., a key member of the committee, said that the hearings would include explosive revelations.
“The hearings will tell a story that will really blow the roof off the House,” Raskin said.
Will they? Or will the hearings turn out to be a snooze fest? I guess we will all have to tune in to find out!