New Jan. 6 Tapes Coming ‘As Soon as Possible,’ House Speaker Says

New Jan. 6 Tapes Coming ‘As Soon as Possible,’ House Speaker Says
People gather on Capitol Hill to protest election results in Washington, on Jan. 6, 2021. (Leo Shi/The Epoch Times)

House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) said Monday that more surveillance footage captured during the Jan. 6, 2021, breach at the U.S. Capitol will be soon released, adding that thousands of hours have been uploaded so far.

About 13,000 hours of surveillance footage have been released, he told Newsmax on Monday, providing the most substantial update on the release in weeks.

“We’re releasing them … as fast as we possibly can,” Mr. Johnson said. “We had to hire new staff to do it. They’re uploading it. It’s a 24-hour operation, and all that tape will be out there as soon as possible.”

After being elected speaker last year, Mr. Johnson said that he would release all 40,000 hours of footage that was captured during the breach. He added that the entirety has not been released because it takes time to process the footage and upload it online.

“We’re releasing them in large batches, I think 13,000 of the 40,000 hours have been released so far,” Mr. Johnson added Monday. “The only reason they’re not all out there—I wish I could wave a wand and do it all today—is that it takes a while to upload and process them. If you do the math, it’s five years’ worth of videotape,” he said.

“Originally, we were trying to blur some of the faces to protect the innocent, you know, people who were just there and just happened to be walking through the building,” Mr. Johnson told the channel before stipulating that “we realized a lot of this is out there in the public anyway.”

Last month, Republicans released about 5,000 hours of footage, according to Mr. Johnson and House Administration Committee Chairman Barry Loudermilk (R-Ga.), who said at the time that his office will “significantly expedite CCTV footage releases, all of which will be made available to the American public within the next few months, without blurring or editing.”

“The first batch is already available on our Rumble page,” Mr. Loudermilk said at the time. A review of the panel’s Rumble page shows that the last Jan. 6-related videos were uploaded in early March.

Last year, a spokesman for Mr. Loudermilk, told CBS News that there were plans to upload new videos every week but noted that it’s taking time.

“Each video must be converted out of the proprietary CCTV format and into a format that can be uploaded. Unfortunately, when the video is converted, it doesn’t retain the time stamp,” the spokesman said. “This is an issue we are aware of and plan to embed time stamps in the videos in the future. For now, the title of each video indicates down to the millisecond what time the clips start.”

After Mr. Johnson announced he would release more of the Jan. 6 tapes, the move was praised by former President Donald Trump.

NTD Photo
House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) speaks at the Capitol in Washington on March 20, 2024. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

“Congratulations to Speaker of the House, Mike Johnson for having the Courage and Fortitude to release all of the J6 Tapes, which will explicitly reveal what really happened on January 6th!” the former president and presumptive Republican presidential nominee wrote in a post on Truth Social at the time.

The plan to release the footage was announced by former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) last year, first giving some of the tapes to then-Fox News host Tucker Carlson in March 2023. During a segment, Mr. Carlson showed the new video footage on his program, arguing that the Capitol breach was not an insurrection as claimed by House Democrats.

“They are lying,” he said at the time, coming just weeks before Fox News unexpectedly parted ways with the host.

After the Carlson segment, U.S. Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger wrote in a memo that his coverage was “filled with offensive and misleading conclusions” and claimed it “conveniently cherry-picked from the calmer moments of our 41,000 hours of video,” it was reported last year. Previously, U.S. Capitol Police officials had warned that releasing the footage would contribute to a possible security risk for the building.

The ranking Democrat on the House Administration subcommittee also criticized the move to release the taps.

“By providing unfettered public access to Capitol security footage from the violent insurrection of Jan. 6, despite legitimate security concerns from the U.S. Capitol Police, he is prioritizing partisanship over safety,” Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.) said last December. “There is nothing transparent about this—it is irresponsible and dangerous.”

As of this month, well over 1,300 people have been charged in connection to the U.S. Capitol Breach, according to statistics provided by the Department of Justice. Around 500 people have been sentenced to incarceration, while more than 900 have been convicted.

On March 11 President Trump vowed that one of his first acts as president if he is reelected would be to “free the January 6 hostages being wrongfully imprisoned,” referring to defendants who were sentenced in connection to the incident.

His post came on the same day House Republicans released a report that found the Democrat-controlled House Jan.6 subcommittee allegedly omitted key details, namely regarding whether the former president authorized 10,000 National Guard troops to head to the Capitol and Washington. The report also cast doubt on a witness account that claimed President Trump tried to grab the wheel of a presidential car on Jan. 6.

From The Epoch Times

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