Will the January 6 Committee have any long-term effect on Trump?

David Pakman
Liberal Opinion

David Pakman

Host of The David Pakman Show
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What kind of impact will the Jan. 6 committee have on former President Donald Trump? The hearings uncovered substantial details that were not previously known about the Capitol riot. Testimony from Mark Meadows’ former aide Cassidy Hutchinson indicated members of the Trump White House knew the protests on Jan. 6, 2021 could turn violent and did nothing to stop it. The committee also had witnesses expose the pressure campaign from the West Wing on then-Vice President Mike Pence to get him to interfere with the election certification process. Despite the revelations, Straight Arrow News contributor David Pakman does not expect the Justice Department to bring charges against Trump. He says if the hearings lead to any fallout on Trump, it will come from the voters.

As I’ve previously talked about, these coming midterm elections could be the most important that I can remember. And one of the reasons that they will be important is that they will potentially answer the question, “Is there accountability?”

Okay, even if the Department of Justice is a “no” on prosecution, even if there’s not going to be anything formal, have the American people — and not all of them, there will be tens of millions who still love Trump — but have enough of the American people decided there can be no more of this? There needs to be something that happens and we’re gonna vote all of them out. We’re not voting for any of these Trumpist lunatics.

We don’t know the answer to either, but those outcomes may set up very different-looking 2024s. If the Justice Department does nothing and the American people are sort of like, “Eh, okay, yeah, maybe something went on or maybe it was a witch hunt, but I’m voting for Trumpists in 2022,” this will embolden Donald Trump, make it more likely that he will run in 2024, make it more likely, arguably, that he will win. I mean, if people show in ‘22 that they’re willing to vote for Trumpists still, then it’s completely plausible that they would be willing to vote for Trump again in 2024. So that wouldn’t be so good.

But also we will be empowering individuals in 2022 who could influence the outcome in 2024. Pennsylvania gubernatorial is a perfect example. In Pennsylvania, Doug Mastriano is the Republican nominee. Josh Shapiro is the Democratic nominee. Josh Shapiro is just a normal, boring Democrat. He wouldn’t try to steal any elections. He would just be the governor. Whereas Doug Mastriano has made it clear he believes the big lie that Donald Trump actually won in 2020 but had the election stolen from him. He would act to the extent that he’s able, if he were governor, to try to give the Republican candidate the Pennsylvania electoral votes in 2024, no matter what the election result is. So these aren’t isolated questions.

What will be the long term effects, if any, of the January 6th Committee? Well, it really depends on two different groups of people or people. Number one, the Justice Department, and number two, the American people. The January 6th Committee has revealed first, that much of what we already believed to be true, to be true, but it also has revealed much more. Witnesses have come forward, previously unknown witnesses, Cassidy Hutchinson, and many others to tell us that Donald Trump was even more of an immature man-child than we thought. That Donald Trump was even more willing to forego reality and the Constitution to say, “I won, give me the presidency,” than we knew from his four years in the Oval Office. It was all much worse than we imagined. And the question will now be, has the Justice Department seen evidence of criminality through the January 6th Committee? And are they willing to prosecute it? That’s question number one. 

And question number two, is whether the American people have seen material from the committee that makes them disgusted with what took place and ready to say, I’ve gotta vote for something different this November. As I’ve previously talked about, these coming midterm elections could be the most important that I can remember. And one of the reasons that they will be important is that they will potentially answer the question, “Is there accountability?” Okay, even if the Department of Justice is a no on prosecution, even if there’s not going to be anything formal…have the American people and not all of them, there will be tens of millions who still love Trump, but have enough of the American people decided there can be no more of this? There needs to be something that happens and we’re gonna vote all of them out. We’re…not voting for any of these Trumpist lunatics.

 

We don’t know the answer to either, but those outcomes may set up very different-looking 2024s. If the Justice Department does nothing and the American people are sort of like, eh, okay, yeah, maybe something went on or maybe it was a witch hunt, but I’m voting for Trumpists in 2022; this will embolden Donald Trump, make it more likely that he will run in 2024, make it more likely arguably, that he will win. I mean, if people show in ‘22 that they’re willing to vote for Trumpists still, then it’s completely plausible that they would be willing to vote for Trump again in 2024. So that wouldn’t be so good. 

But also we will be empowering individuals in 2022 who could influence the outcome in 2024. Pennsylvania gubernatorial is a perfect example. In Pennsylvania, Doug Mastriano is the Republican nominee. Josh Shapiro is the Democratic nominee. Josh Shapiro is just a normal, boring Democrat. He wouldn’t try to steal any elections. He would just be the

governor. Whereas Doug Mastriano has made it clear he believes the big lie that Donald Trump actually won in 2020, but had the election stolen from him. He would act to the extent that he’s able, if he were governor, to try to give the Republican candidate the Pennsylvania electoral votes in 2024, no matter what the election result is. So these aren’t isolated questions. 

Do the Trumpists go for it in ‘22, and then does Trump go for it in ‘24, and does he have their support? Trumpists going for it in 2022 will allow them to have a better shot at stealing the 2024 election. This isn’t hypothesis. They are saying this. Donald Trump is on video saying we have to support the people who run the elections in ‘22 so that then we are in charge of those elections in 2024. Now going back briefly to the legal question. Will the January 6th Committee lead to charges against the top people in the Trump Administration from the Justice Department?

I’m not a betting man, but if I was betting just straight 50-50, no odds, I believe that Merrick Garland and the Justice Department will not be bringing any real serious charges to anyone even remotely high up in the Trump former Administration. The reason I say that is there is no evidence that he’s interested, and there’s no evidence that he’s willing. The most we’ve gotten from the Justice Department and Merrick Garland is,
“We’ve been paying attention to the January 6th Committee hearings.” Okay. 

And what? And therefore what? So until I see evidence otherwise, I am not expecting charges to come from the DOJ. I think accountability will come from one of two places. One is Georgia. The Georgia fraud investigation is getting very close to Trump and Fani Willis, the DA there, does not seem as hamstrung about doing what the facts point to, as the DOJ has seemed. So that’s one possibility. And secondly, it’s voters. It’s the American people. That’s where I expect to see accountability. If you expect to see it from the DOJ, let me know.