Donald Trump aimed to stomp out the democratic election process last year and enter the U.S. Capitol like Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his fascist blackshirts took over Rome, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) said Thursday.
Raskin revealed what he suspects Trump envisioned that day following testimony before the Jan. 6 House select committee by Robert Engel, who was the lead Secret Service agent for Trump the day of the insurrection. Engel was with Trump in the presidential vehicle when Trump demanded to be taken to the Capitol after a mob of his supporters breached the building.
Raskin said on MSNBC that he couldn’t provide details of Engel’s testimony.
“I will tell you that from everything we’ve learned, we know that the former president was incensed and enraged when he was not being taken to the Capitol,” Raskin said. “He was adamant that he be able to join the mob and approach and enter the Capitol with them.”
There was “conflict about whether or not he would go to the Capitol, and he was adamant that he be able to do that,” Raskin added. “I imagine that he thought that he would enter like Mussolini being carried on the shoulders of his supporters and enter the Capitol.”
Cassidy Hutchinson, an assistant to Trump’s Chief of Staff Mark Meadows on Jan. 6, testified in June that Anthony Ornato, then-White House deputy chief of staff for operations, told her that Trump was furious when his demand to be taken to the Capitol was denied.
Trump lurched forward from his back seat to attempt to seize the presidential vehicle’s wheel, and he also grabbed for Engel, Hutchinson testified.
“The president said something to the effect of, ‘I’m the fucking president, take me up to the Capitol now.’ To which [Engel] responded, ‘Sir, we have to go back to the West Wing,’” Hutchison testified.
Raskin said Trump apparently believed then-Vice President Mike Pence would reject electoral votes certifying Joe Biden as the winner that day.
“Donald Trump really went to bed the night before, on the evening of Jan. 5, believing that he was going to be staying in office for another four years,” Raskin added. “And he believed that through the day.”