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Monday, July 25, 2022
MRC's Attempt To Discredit 1/6 Hearing Witness' Testimony Doesn't Age Well
Topic: Media Research Center

How devastating was former Mark Meadows aide Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony at the June 28 hearing of the House committee looking into the Capitol riot, particularly her account of Donald Trump lunging at the steering wheel of a presidential vehicle driven by a Secret Service officer when told he was being taken back to the White House instead of to the Capitol to egg on rioters? The Media Research Center -- which had been vociferously denying that the hearings even qualified as news in order to conform with mandated Republican narratives -- saw fit to attack Hutchinson. Kevin Tober led the attack:

On Tuesday, it was revealed that former President Trump had allegedly lunged at his Secret Service limo driver and attempted to grab the steering wheel on the morning of January 6, 2021, when he was told he wouldn’t be allowed to go to the Capitol after his speech at the White House Ellipse. 

This was made public by former top aide to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, Cassidy Hutchinson during Tuesday’s congressional hearing into the January 6 Capitol riots. 

Predictably all three evening news broadcasts led with the allegations against former President Trump. Six minutes before the three networks went live, NBC’s chief White House correspondent Peter Alexander tweeted that both Secret Service agents involved “are prepared to testify under oath that neither man was assaulted and that Mr. Trump never lunged for the steering wheel.”

CBS Evening News anchor Norah O’Donnell and congressional correspondent Scott MacFarlane were quick to hype the now false allegations[.]


While ABC’s World News Tonight and NBC Nightly News both reported on the testimony given by Hutchinson but each noted that the Secret Service denies it and both agents are willing to testify under oath. 

On World News Tonight, chief justice correspondent Pierre Thomas reported that “a source close to the Secret Service just told me to expect that the Secret Service will push back against any allegation of an assault against an agent or President Trump reaching for the steering wheel.”

Note that Tober immediately labeled Hutchinson's testimony "false" despite having no evidence in hand to prove it. And doesn't the MRC repeatedly warn us about the "liberal media" citing anonymous sources -- no alleged Secret Service agent purportedly willing to testify against Hutchinson was identified by name -- as being self-serving and designed for ratings? Nevertheless, Tober self-satisfyingly ranted: "All three networks have spent the entire duration of the Pelosi-picked January 6 hearings hyping every allegation that it spewed. With the fact that none of these hearings allow for any cross-examination of witnesses, a blunder like this was only a matter of time."

Tober's post has not aged well, because as of this writing, the Secret Service agents who declared they would testify to the committee that Hutchinson was lying have yet to do so nearly a month later; instead, they have lawyered up and refused to testify and they have been identified as Trump loyalists and yes men.Meanwhile, other witnesses have corroborated key parts of Hutchinson's testimony.

A June 29 post by interns Wallace White and Michael Ippolito compiled right-wing tweets attacking Hutchinson, none of which prove her wrong. Curtis Houck did a time-count follow-up later in the day:

With the liberal media all-in on Tuesday’s January 6 Committee hearing featuring former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson, it wasn’t a surprise Wednesday morning to see the “big three” networks of ABC, CBS, and NBC downplay the strong pushback from the Secret Service regarding Hutchinson’s tall tale that President Trump assaulted a Secret Service agent and tried to seize the steering wheel of his presidential SUV on January 6.

A NewsBusters analysis found that ABC’s Good Morning America (GMA), CBS Mornings, and NBC’s Today spent four minutes and 42 seconds on Hutchinson’s claim, but only two minutes and 33 seconds on the pushback from her colleagues and the Secret Service, including offers from the latter to have the agents involved testify under oath that none of that was true.


The liberal media have harped on the January 6 Committee and its members as harbingers of truth. But if they’re unwilling to firmly call out and push to correct the record on a claim that’s on rapidly thinning ice, it should serve as a reminder that they continue to suffer from Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS).

Yeah, that one's not aging well either.

Mark Finkelstein served up some serious whining in a July 2 post:

Never pass up an opportunity to plug your book—even when discussing what you consider to have been a grave national crisis!That would appear to be Mika Brzezinski's credo. On Wednesday's Morning Joe, Brzezinski managed to work the title of her book into her praise of Cassidy Hutchinson, the former Trump White House aide who testified before the House January 6 committee hearing on Tuesday.

The praise for the anti-Trump witness was extravagant. Joe Scarborough called it "some of the most compelling testimony on Capitol Hill since Watergate." Willie Geist touted "a White House aide became the conscience of the nation! She's a couple years out of college, and she was the adult in the room, surrounded by those ostensible adults and ostensible leaders of our country who stood by and let it happen."

Aside from a couple passing references, the MRC hasn't touched Hutchinson's testimony since. And it has offered nothing so far beyond passing references to new revelations that the Secret Service deleted text messages from its agents that day. Remember, the MRC's mission is to protect Trump and Republicans, not to do "media research," so don't expect them to correct the record.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:24 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2022 8:27 PM EDT

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