Responding in real time to the damning testimony of former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson, former President Donald Trump claimed on Tuesday that he “barely knows[s]Hutchinson, and personally rejected a request she had made to join his post-chairmanship staff at Mar-a-Lago.
“When she asked to go to Florida with certain others on my team after I served a full term in office, I personally declined her request,” Trump said on Truth Social during Hutchinson’s live testimony before the House panel investigating the crime. 6 January. , 2021, Uprising at the Capitol.
Trump on Tuesday attempted to retaliate against Hutchinson’s testimony, claiming she was “very upset and angry that I didn’t want her” at his Palm Beach residence.
The former president’s attempt to distance himself from Hutchinson, whom he described as “bad news” on Tuesday, came after the commission showed views of the West Wing to show how close she was to the Oval Office as an assistant to Meadows. Multiple former White House staff members also publicly vouched for Hutchinson’s closeness to Trump and his chief of staff before and during her appearance on Tuesday.
“Anyone who downplays the role of Cassidy Hutchinson or her access to the West Wing also doesn’t understand how the Trump [White House] worked or is trying to discredit her because they are afraid of how damning this testimony is,” tweeted former White House deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews.
In response, a former White House aide said, “Everyone high up in the White House knew her. And even if Trump didn’t know her name, he certainly recognized her. She traveled with Mark on Air Force One before every trip.”
Hutchinson may not be a household name outside of the Trump world, but she was an entry point to its insides when Meadows was the former president’s chief of staff. When lawmakers wanted to contact Trump, they called Hutchinson, not the White House switchboard. When they had to send a message to Meadows, they called Hutchinson, not the Legislative Affairs staffer, as reported by DailyExpertNews’s Kaitlan Collins.
Trump has previously downplayed his relationship with key witnesses who participated in the House investigation.
Days after the commission revealed that Nick Luna, Trump’s former funeral director, testified that he called then Vice President Mike Pence a “sul” on January 6, 2021, the former president denied that, saying he didn’t know who the aide was. .
“A guy stood up and said he heard I called Mike Pence a wimp…I don’t even know who these people are,” Trump told a crowd in Nashville earlier this month.
But days later, British filmmaker Alex Holden, who also testified before the committee, released a music video of Trump personally — by name — directing Luna to properly stage one of his on-camera interviews for Holden’s documentary.
Trump has often tried to downplay his familiarity with aides and allies with whom he was once intimate.