The DOJ has finally disgorged some exculpatory evidence about January 6
For a long time, based on a few short snippets of random videos that people outside and inside the Capitol shot on January 6, conservatives have been arguing that significant numbers of the people who entered the Capitol that day did so because the Capitol Police let them in. Their presence there wasn't an insurrection or even an unauthorized trespass — they had a right to be there once the "guardians" of the Capitol opened the door. Now the official video from the Capitol confirms that those snippets were accurate.
January 6 defendants and conservative media outlets have been demanding for ten months that the Department of Justice release the 14,000 hours of footage it has showing what happened at the Capitol on that day. An administration dedicated to truth and a prosecution abiding by the principle that the government must make exculpatory material available to the defense would have long ago complied with those requests.
But the Biden DOJ is made of sterner, and possibly more corrupt, stuff. It took a court order to make the DOJ disgorge just some of the footage it has. And let me note that the motion to produce that Ethan Nordean, a defendant, filed asking for material to which he is entitled under the law wasn't enough. Instead, the "Press Coalition," which includes CNN, The New York Times, and broadcast news networks, had to add its voice to the motion before the judge. (I happen to think it's noteworthy that the media's demands had more weight before the judge than the defendant's rights.)
BuzzFeed posted two 40-minute-long videos, one of exterior footage and one of interior footage, that the DOJ finally produced, claiming that they show "A Breach By Jan. 6 Rioters From Start to Finish." However, according to Julie Kelly, whose word and analysis I trust a lot more than anything from BuzzFeed, the videos, which run for about 35 minutes, actually show quite a different story:
At the start of the video, one officer held open the interior door that accesses the Capitol Rotunda, a space between the House and Senate wings. Five or six unidentified men exited the door and spoke to the officer before leaving. Those men held open the exterior double-doors, where protesters began filing into the building. Nordean's lawyer said his client is recorded entering the building, with the consent of police, between 2:37 p.m. and 2:38 p.m.
Capitol Police officers stood in the small hallway between the exterior and interior doors for the next few minutes; dozens of people entered as police did not attempt to stop them. At one point, several officers can be seen talking with a crowd of people attempting to come inside. One officer then pulled aside another officer speaking with the protesters — this appeared to be shortly after Ashli Babbitt was shot by Officer Michael Byrd outside the Speaker's lobby — and the officers retreated. Protesters followed the officers inside.
Kelly explains that this footage is entirely consistent with what Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), who has had access to these recordings, already said about the event. He estimates that the recordings show an estimated 309 people entering the Capitol with permission from the Capitol Police officers.
The fact that we have 35 minutes of footage showing police cooperation with the protesters, rather than just a few snippets, lends credence to the claim that the DOJ is on a vendetta against Americans who did nothing more than leftists have been doing for almost two decades: enter the Capitol building to protest government policies with which they disagree.
If anyone should be in the dock, it's the people in Congress who made the judgment calls that led to a low level of security — everyone from Nancy Pelosi to the head of the Capitol Police to anyone else involved in these decisions. These people were incredibly negligent not to have better security in place when they knew there was going to be a big rally in D.C. Alternatively, they deliberately assisted in entrapping Trump-supporters to create the illusion of an insurrection in order to quash any opposition to the Biden administration.
What's happening now is entirely un-American: people are being targeted not for what they did, but for supporting the "wrong" political candidate — and the DOJ is assisting in this total denial of due process by hiding potentially exculpatory evidence.
Image: Police letting protesters into the Capitol. DOJ video.
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