WASHINGTON — Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., reinvigorated her call Wednesday for former Trump White House counsel Pat Cipollone to testify before the House Jan. 6 committee in the wake of damning testimony from former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson.
Cheney, the panel's vice chair, said Hutchinson's remarks about Cipollone being concerned about former President Donald Trump's plans on Jan. 6 shows it's important to hear directly from him.
"As we heard yesterday, WH counsel Pat Cippollone had significant concerns re. Trump’s Jan 6 activities," Cheney tweeted Wednesday morning. "It’s time for Mr. Cippollone to testify on the record. Any concerns he has about the institutional interests of his prior office are outweighed by the need for his testimony."
In bombshell testimony before the committee Tuesday, Hutchinson detailed what she witnessed as a top aide to then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows before and on Jan. 6. She said, for example, that Cipollone was very concerned about the legal consequences if Trump went to the Capitol after his rally that day at the White House Ellipse.
Hutchinson said that on Jan. 3, 2021, Cipollone approached her after hearing that Meadows had floated the idea of going to the Capitol on Jan. 6 and told her, "This would be legally a terrible idea for us, we have serious legal concerns if we go up to the Capitol that day," she told the committee.
On the morning of Jan. 6, before Trump's rally, Hutchinson said she saw Cipollone near the White House. "Mr. Cipollone said something to the effect of, 'Please make sure we don’t go up to the Capitol, Cassidy, keep in touch with me. We’re going to get charged with every crime imaginable if we make that movement happen.'"
Asked what those crimes could entail, Hutchinson said, "In the days leading up to the sixth, we had conversations about potentially obstructing justice or defrauding the electoral count."
Cheney also publicly pleaded for Cipollone to come forward at the end of the committee's hearing last Thursday, saying, "Our evidence shows that Pat Cipollone and his office tried to do what was right. They tried to stop a number of President Trump’s plans for Jan. 6" and deserved to hear from him personally.
After that hearing ended, a person close to Cipollone told NBC News, "Pat has been cooperative with the committee with President Trump’s permission, but there are serious institutional concerns and privilege issues, and those have been recognized by the committee."