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Biden: Jan. 6 hearings important so 'American people understand what truly happened'

President Biden on Friday emphasized the importance of the House select committee hearings on the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the Capitol, warning the same forces that led to the riot are still a threat to U.S. democracy. 

Biden, speaking at the Port of Los Angeles, opened his planned remarks about inflation by addressing the the select committee’s first public hearing, which had taken place the night before.

“The insurrection on Jan. 6 was one of the darkest chapters in our nation’s history,” Biden said. “A brutal assault on our democracy, a brutal attack on law enforcement, some losing their lives, and we heard about it last night again.”

“It’s important that the American people understand what truly happened,” Biden continued. “And to understand that the same forces that led Jan. 6 remain at work today. It’s about our democracy itself. We have to protect our democracy. I know it sounds corny to say it.” 

Biden, who centered his campaign around healing the “soul of the nation,” acknowledged he did not expect defending U.S. democracy would be “this straightforward a challenge,” and he warned “the battle for the soul of America has been far from won.” 

The president said he did not have time to watch Thursday night’s hearing, which was held in prime time on the East Coast. But he indicated the American public would learn much more in the hearings to come, with three of them scheduled for next week. 

The committee laid out its case with video depositions, footage from the insurrection and witness testimony in the room to describe how former President Trump’s repeated false claims about the 2020 election led to his supporters storming the Capitol complex. 

The committee showed footage of multiple former Trump officials, including former Attorney General William Barr and former White House senior adviser Ivanka Trump, who is also the president’s daughter, saying the former president’s claims that the election was rigged were baseless. 

One witness in the room was Capitol Police Officer Caroline Edwards, who testified about the chaos that unfolded on Jan. 6. Edwards, who sustained a concussion during the riot, likened it to a “war scene.” 

Source: The Hill

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