House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy while the Capitol was under attack, called Trump who said the rioters cared more about the election results than McCarthy did.
McCarthy insisted that the rioters were Trump’s supporters and begged him to call them off. A furious McCarthy told Trump the rioters were breaking into his office through the windows. Trump responded,
“Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are.”
To which McCarthy said,
“Who the fuck do you think you are talking to?”
The newly revealed details of the call, described to CNN by multiple Republicans briefed on it, provide critical insight into the President’s state of mind as rioters were overrunning the Capitol.
The existence of the call and some of its details have been previously reported and discussed publicly by McCarthy and GOP members of Congress said the exchange showed Trump had no intention of calling off the rioters even as lawmakers were pleading with him to intervene. Several said it amounted to a dereliction of his presidential duty.
A Republican member of Congress said,
“He is not a blameless observer, he was rooting for them.
On January 13, Kevin McCarthy said on the floor of the House that the President bears responsibility and he does.”
Trump’s comment about the rioters caring more about the election results than McCarthy did was first mentioned by Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, a Republican from Washington state, in a town hall earlier this week, and was confirmed to CNN by Herrera Beutler and other Republicans briefed on the conversation.
Herrera Beutler told CNN,
“You have to look at what he did during the insurrection to confirm where his mind was at.
That line right there demonstrates to me that either he didn’t care, which is impeachable, because you cannot allow an attack on your soil, or he wanted it to happen and was OK with it, which makes me so angry. We should never stand for that, for any reason, under any party flag.
I’m trying really hard not to say the F-word.”
Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, an Ohio Republican who voted to impeach Trump last month said,
“I think it speaks to the former President’s mindset.
He was not sorry to see his unyieldingly loyal vice president or the Congress under attack by the mob he inspired. In fact, it seems he was happy about it or at the least enjoyed the scenes that were horrifying to most Americans across the country.”
As senators prepare to determine Trump’s fate tomorrow, multiple Republicans thought the details of the call were important to the proceedings because they believe it paints a damning portrait of Trump’s lack of action during the attack.