House Republicans have launched a website to release thousands of hours of footage from inside the Capitol during the January 6, 2021, attack by Trump supporters. The decision was made to allow millions of Americans, criminal defendants, public interest organizations, and the media to see the events firsthand, rather than relying on the interpretation of a select group of government officials. House Speaker Mike Johnson announced the website and stated that the faces of private citizens would be blurred, and about 5 percent of the footage would be redacted for security concerns. The committee’s website released about 90 hours of footage on Friday, with the full release expected to be completed by Monday.
The Capitol riot resulted in over 1,100 people being charged. Since then, there has been a growing divide over the severity of the attack and what actually occurred inside the Capitol building. Lawmakers and Vice President Pence had to be taken to secure areas to hide from the mob, while Capitol Police clashed with protestors who used various items to break through barricades. A House committee led by then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi investigated the events and released some of the most dramatic footage in its final report. However, those involved in the attack have demanded access to the full footage, especially those facing charges.
House Administration Committee Chair Barry Loudermilk had previously announced that his panel was working on providing access to the videos. The release of the footage comes amid backlash faced by House Speaker Mike Johnson, who brokered a deal to approve government funding with the help of Democrats. Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy also faced criticism for not immediately releasing all the January 6 footage to the public and instead offering exclusive access to conservative pundit Tucker Carlson.
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