Former President Trump had a busy day Sunday, first closing out the annual CPAC gathering in Orlando, Fla., where he offered a very forward looking message on the future of the Republican Party, and then doing a phone-in interview later in the evening on Fox News.
It was toward the end of that interview on “The Next Revolution With Steve Hilton,” that Trump spoke about the storming of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. for the first time, putting to rest some rumors — see fake news — about his actions.
Host Steve Hilton said the media reported that Trump was watching events unfold and liked what he was seeing “because you felt that it was your people fighting for you.”
“Do you get how bad it was? And is there anything, looking back on it now, that you would have done differently that day?” the Fox News host asked.
(Source: Fox News)
“Well, that’s incorrect reporting,” the former president replied. “First of all, I wasn’t watching TV. I turned it on later on when I heard about it and did a lot of moves.”
Trump said “we” talked to the “top person” at the Department of Defense about the expected crowd size “days before we had the rally.”
“I requested, I said, ‘Look, this rally is going to be bigger than anyone thinks’ … and it was, I think, the largest crowd that I’ve ever spoken before … and I said that I think you should have 10,000 — I think I gave the number, I definitely gave the number of 10,000 National Guardsmen — I think you should have 10,000 of the National Guard ready,” he said.
“They took that number, from what I understand, they gave it to the people at the Capitol, which is controlled by Pelosi,” Trump continued. “And I heard they rejected it because they didn’t think it would look good. So, you know, that was a big mistake.”
Not exactly the actions you would expect from someone who was allegedly trying to incite an insurrection.
Perhaps, this explains why Democratic impeachment managers suddenly backed off on calling witnesses during Trump’s Senate impeachment trial — it was reported at the time that his defense team planned to call Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Pressed on how he felt about what was taking place that day, Trump was very clear in saying he hated what had unfolded.
“Well, I hate to see it. No, I hate to see it,” he said. “I think it’s terrible, I hate to see it.”
“I will tell you that it’s very interesting, however, when you see Washington burning and when you see Seattle burning and Portland burning and all these other places burning with Antifa, and the radical left, nothing seems to happen,” he said, speaking of the double standard in the media. “Nobody seems to be bothered by that.”
The full Fox News interview can be seen here:
With Pelosi forming a 9/11-style committee to investigate the riot at the Capitol, the question remains how much focus will there be on what actions she took ahead of the rally.
The Democratic speaker has said the committee will “investigate and report on the facts and causes relating to the January 6, 2021, domestic terrorist attack upon the United States Capitol Complex … and relating to the interference with the peaceful transfer of power.”
Hilton closed out the interview Sunday by asking Trump about reports that he’s happier not being on Twitter and whether there is part of a Trump 2.0, “less is more” strategy in the works.
“Well, it could be — I mean, I have much more time,” the former president said. “I can now speak to you a little bit, and I can do things that, frankly, when you’re tweeting, does take up time. And you want to make it perfect because if you make a spelling mistake or you put a comma in the wrong location, they go wild.”
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