Jun 28, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Meadows warned Jan. 6 could be "real, real bad," former top aide testifies

Cassidy Hutchinson, a top former aide to Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, is sworn in as she testifies during the sixth hearing by the Jan. 6 select committee June 28, 2022 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Brandon Bell via Getty Images

Cassidy Hutchinson, who served as a top aide to former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, testified to the Jan. 6 committee on Tuesday that Meadows warned Jan. 6 "might get real, real bad" in the days before.

Why it matters: The testimony indicates that former President Trump's top aide was aware of the risk of violence on Jan. 6, placing the White House's delayed reaction to the Capitol riot in a new light.

What they're saying: Hutchinson testified that Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani said to her on Jan. 2, "are you excited for the 6th? It's going to be a great day ... We're going to the Capitol, it's going to be great, the president is going to be there, he's going to look powerful."

  • Giuliani told her to "talk to [Meadows] about it ... he knows about it," she testified.
  • When she asked Meadows about Giuliani's comments, Meadows didn't look up from his phone but said, "There's a lot going on, Cass, but I don't know. Things might get real, real bad on the 6th."
  • Hutchinson said that she had been "apprehensive about the 6th" during that period, but that Giuliani's and Meadows' comments made her "scared and nervous for what could happen."
  • "I recall hearing the word Oath Keepers and hearing the word Proud Boys closer to the planning of the Jan. 6th rally when Mr. Giuliani would be around," she said. The rally preceded the march to the Capitol.

On Jan. 6, Meadows and Trump both knew about the rally-goers' weapons, which included knives, spears, guns and more, Hutchinson said.

  • Trump, who was "furious" that his rally on the ellipse wasn't at capacity, later wanted the Secret Service to "take the mags away," referring to metal detectors, she added.
  • "I was in the vicinity of a conversation where I overheard the president say something to the effect of, 'You know, I don't f'ing care that they have weapons. They're not here to hurt me. Take the f'ing mags away. Let my people in,'" Hutchinson recalled.
  • She said Trump added, "Then they can march to the Capitol."

Editor's note: This is a breaking story. Please check back for updates.

Go deeper