The Capitol Police repeatedly asked them to approve Jan. 6 security footage that they intended to release publicly. House Republicans refused, according to a Friday sworn affidavit.
According to Thomas DiBiase, Capitol Police general counsel, only one of the 40 riot clips Fox News’ Tucker Carlson aired this month via access granted by House GOP was previewed and approved before airing. DiBiase stated that none of the rest were shown to him or anyone else from Capitol Police.
DiBiase outlined the process by which Republicans were able to access the 41,000 hours of video captured by Capitol security cameras Jan. 6. The Capitol Police is uncomfortable about the filing. They have been forced to openly describe their private interactions with staff and members of the Capitol Police as a result.
Because the department relies on the majority party to fund its budget, and is charged with protecting its members, they are often reluctant to disagree with House leaders.
The Jan. 6 select committee was granted access to the same footage by Republicans last month. Those requests were first made by Tim Monahan, who serves as Speaker’s top aide and also as a staff director for House Administration Committee. Then they were made by Rep. Bryan Steil (R-Wis.), who is the chair of the panel that has jurisdiction over Capitol security.
DiBiase stated that three terminals were installed by Capitol Police in an office building of the House within days to allow access to the footage. DiBiase also stated that he provided four hard drives that he received from the Democratic-led Jan.6 panel following its completion.
“At no point was I or anyone else from Capitol Police informed that any other than personnel of [the House Administration Committee] would review the camera footage,” DiBiase stated.
Media reports later last month indicated that McCarthy granted Carlson’s producers access to the footage. DiBiase later discovered that Tucker Carlson Show personnel were permitted to view any footage while being supervised by [the House Administration Committee] staff, but that no footage was physically handed over to the show.
Monahan asked for a list of Capitol Police camera locations that were considered “sensitive” as they contain information about evacuation routes and other locations, including those belonging to intelligence committee facilities.
DiBiase stressed that in “numerous discussions” over “several week”, he told Monahan that Capitol Police wanted to “review every footage clip, regardless of whether it was on Sensitive List, or if it would be made public.” DiBiase also said that federal prosecutors had been involved in cases against hundreds Capitol riot defendants.
He continued, “Of all the clips shown on Tucker Carlson’s March 6th and 7th 2023 shows, I was only shown one clip, and it was from the Sensitive List.” “I approved the use of that clip because it was similar to one used in the Impeachment Trial. I was never shown the other 40 clips that were not on the Sensitive List.
DiBiase did not answer key questions about his interactions with House Administration Committee. He didn’t say whether any member of the panel had consented to him asking for a preview.
DiBiase noted that the Capitol security camera clips used by the House managers in Donald Trump’s impeachment trials after the Jan. 6, attack were not reviewed with the department prior to their use in the February 2021 proceedings. These clips contained “some clips from the Sensitive List.”
Thomas Manger, Chief of Capitol Police, stated in a statement that he had little control over the footage after it was provided to lawmakers.
Manger fiercely criticised Carlson’s and Fox News’ handling. He said it minimized violence and chaos on Jan. 6, and presented Capitol Police officers’ actions as “misleading and offensive”.
DiBiase made the statement in the case William Pope, Jan.6 defendant who is representing himself. He has asked for public release of a trove Jan.6 security footage. Numerous Jan. 6 defendants also cited Carlson’s access to the trove footage in their pending cases and stated that they will seek access.