House Speaker Mike Johnson Releases 44,000 Hours of January 6 Capitol Attack Footage, Drawing Mixed Reactions

Mike Johnson, Speaker of the House, has released tens of thousands of hours of previously unseen footage from the insurrection on January 6. Here’s the whole story.

Promises Kept

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In a shocking development, House Speaker Mike Johnson has announced the public release of 44,000 hours of footage from the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol. Johnson aims to fulfill a promise made to far-right Republicans, including Matt Gaetz and Donald Trump. 

Reject the Evidence of Your Eyes and Ears

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“This decision will provide millions of Americans, criminal defendants, public interest organizations, and the media an ability to see for themselves what happened that day, rather than having to rely upon the interpretation of a small group of government officials,” stated Johnson. 

90 Hours of Footage

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The first installment of approximately 90 hours will be available on a public committee website, with the remaining footage expected to be released over the next several months. A public viewing room will also be established in the Capitol for those interested. 

Limited Audience

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Previously, the GOP-led House Administration Committee allowed access to the footage by appointment only for media, criminal defendants, and a limited audience. 

Failed Insurrection

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The videos capture the intensity of the events as President Donald Trump’s supporters breached the Capitol, engaging in violent confrontations with police officers. 

With Friends Like These

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By expanding access to the general public, Johnson is honoring a commitment made to conservative party members, including Representative Matt Gaetz, who played a role in removing the former speaker, Kevin McCarthy. 

From the Horse’s Mouth

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Both Gaetz and Trump applauded Johnson’s decision. In a post on his Truth Social platform, Trump commended the speaker “for having the courage and fortitude” to release the footage. 

Thrown Under the Bus

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However, this move raises concerns as it grants unprecedented access to sensitive January 6 security footage. Critics warn that this could potentially jeopardize the safety of Capitol staff and members of Congress if the footage falls into the wrong hands. 

Retaliatory Attacks

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Johnson mentioned that the committee is taking measures to blur faces in the footage to address these concerns, preventing individuals from being targeted for retaliation. 

Footage Withheld

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Approximately 5% of the footage will not be publicly released due to concerns about sensitive security information related to the Capitol’s architecture. While images and videos from the Capitol attack have circulated widely, officials had previously withheld much of the surveillance footage. 

Ministry of Truth

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The decision to release the footage follows earlier controversy when former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy granted exclusive access to footage to Fox News host Tucker Carlson, drawing criticism for its potential security implications. 

Forget What You Saw

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This release is part of a broader Republican effort to reshape the narrative around the deadly insurrection following the House January 6 committee’s findings. 

“Multi-Part Conspiracy”

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Despite this attempt to reclassify the events of that day, the committee concluded that Trump engaged in a “multi-part conspiracy” to overturn the 2020 election and recommended federal prosecutors investigate him on four charges, including aiding an insurrection. 

Attack on Democracy

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In August, Trump was indicted on four felony counts related to his role in the attack, accused of assaulting the “bedrock function” of democracy.

Changing the Narrative

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Online, the news led to an immediate backlash from many commenters, with one typical post reading, “The Republicans goal here is to flood the market with the thousands of hours of video of people literally standing around doing nothing. They will show those clips over and over again in an effort to say that it was peaceful. They’re hoping that people will ignore or forget the violent parts.”

Gaslighting the Nation

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Another user was more succinct in their scathing criticism. Their post stated simply, “They’re still trying to gaslight us about what we all watched on live TV.”

The post House Speaker Mike Johnson Releases 44,000 Hours of January 6 Capitol Attack Footage, Drawing Mixed Reactions first appeared on Wealthy Living.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / lev radin. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.