Jamie Raskin: Donald Trump must be prosecuted 'because of the magnitude of the attack on democracy'
Representative Jamie Raskin (D-Maryland) explained on Sunday's edition of Face the Nation why the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol recommended to the Department of Justice that it should indict former President Donald Trump for four crimes against the United States.
The bipartisan panel submitted its findings and suggestions earlier this week ahead of the Friday release of its final 845-page report on Trump's multifaceted scheme to nullify his 2020 election loss to President Joe Biden and remain in power. The Committee's 18-month probe included interviews with more than a thousand witnesses and Trump Administration officials. It also held a series of hearings to help the public understand what happened during the leadup, execution, and aftermath of Trump's failed coup.
CBS moderator Margaret Brennan recalled to Raskin the unprecedented nature of the Committee's objectives.
"Let's get back to the work that you have just concluded because you did make this historic decision to refer to the Justice Department – for potential prosecution – a former president of the United States. It's never been done before, but in doing so, it doesn't have the requirement that the Justice Department act," she said.
"Why did you think making that referral was necessary?" Brennan asked. "Why not just let your work stand on its own with the public hearings?"
Raskin explained that "because of the magnitude of the attack on democracy," Trump and his enablers must face justice:
You know, we don't have a formal statutory offense called 'crimes against democracy.' But that's what everything was together and then there were hundreds of actual statutory offenses under that and we identified four.
There was a deliberate attempt by Donald Trump to interfere and obstruct and impede a federal proceeding. That was the whole plan – 'Stop the Steal' – meaning go in there and blockade the House and Senate and the vice president from doing their job. It was an attempt to defraud the United States.
There was a conspiracy to defraud the United States, to exchange an honest-to-goodness presidential election for a counterfeit election complete with fake electors, and forcible violence being used to overthrow the process. It involved the introduction of false statements, these fake electors that were put in.
And finally, there was aiding and abetting an insurrection, giving aid and comfort to insurrectionists. That's an old crime in America. Our Constitution repeatedly opposes insurrection and condemns it. And of course, we thought we had solved that problem in the Civil War. But that statute that we referred to there was passed after the Civil War to make sure that people who incite insurrection, and aided and abetted and give aid and comfort to the insurrectionists by saying things like, 'I love you, you're very special,' those people are guilty of an offense against the United States – even if you're president when you do it.
Watch below or at this link.
\u201cRep. Jamie Raskin, House Jan. 6 committee member, says that the panel made the historic decision to refer charges against the former president to the DOJ because \u201cthere was a deliberate attempt by Donald Trump to interfere and obstruct and impede a federal proceeding.\u201d\u201d— Face The Nation (@Face The Nation) 1671982938
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