Hype, Politicization Surrounding Jan. 6 Panel Hearings Could Backfire, Warns Ex-Obama Adviser

Stories hyping the January 6 commission hearings, set to begin Thursday on prime-time television, as a “political cudgel” could backfire on House Democrats, a top party adviser warned.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) is promising bombshell new revelations, the panel has hired a former ABC television producer to quarterback the made-for-TV event, and committee member Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) is lobbying members to use the findings to change the way presidents are elected. But David Axelrod, once a top adviser to former President Obama, said Democrats should stick to presenting the facts and let the public decide.

“If I were a member of the 1/6 committee, stories like these, casting the hearings as a political cudgel, would make me very unhappy,” Axelrod wrote. “Conversely, Rs, who hope to dismiss damning findings as partisan, will seize on them. Let facts speak for themselves.”

Over the last year, the committee of seven Democrats and two Republicans — both estranged from the party — has interviewed 1,000 witnesses and assembled 140,000 documents on the Capitol riots that came two weeks before President Joe Biden’s inauguration. The panel intends to present its findings in as many as eight prime-time hearings to air live on multiple networks, starting Thursday at 8 p.m. ET. Raskin promised that the hearings would “blow the roof off the House.” – READ MORE