When Cassidy Hutchinson testified about a story she had been told about the traitor Trump wanting to go to the Capitol with the insurrectionists so badly he grabbed the steering wheel of ‘The Beast,’ (the Presidential limousine) and then attacked the driver, I didn’t really believe it. You see, I have Trump down as an avowed coward. I never believed he intended to go to the Capitol with the crowd. I believed he said it to whip them up, then went back to the White House to enjoy the show – on TV. I could understand that he knew those armed, crazy bastards weren’t there to hurt him. He said so. That means he wouldn’t have needed bravery to go with them. But to attack a Secret Service agent? No. That’s not the act of a coward. Sure, he might have screamed and shouted, bitched a LOT, whined, cried, and stormed, but he wouldn’t physically attack anyone. My actual guess is that he jumped into the back of the limo, laughing at the ease with which he had whipped the ‘don’t-undertand-things’ crowd into a frenzied mob, and told the driver to get him back to the White House as quickly as possible.
But when Hutchinson testified that she had been told this story by Anthony Ornato, former White House deputy Chief of Staff for operations, in front of the driver in question, Secret Service agent Bobby Engel, who didn’t dispute the tale, I had a little re-think. I considered the possibility that Trump might have wanted to get an historic, once-in-a-lifetime photo of his glorious self standing atop the Capitol steps in victory as his followers overthrew the Constitution and installed him as the new “fearless leader” for life. It still seems like a big risk to take, being there with all those rioters but, again, he didn’t feel danger from the throngs of anti-American madmen. So…maybe?
Fortunately (for me and my original assessment), the Secret Service agent in question and Mr. Ornato have both come out and said the story isn’t true. The Secret Service agent has even said he’ll testify to that fact under oath. Okay, granted – he isn’t actually under oath right now so at this point so his words are just words. But the denial fits better with my image of the lily-livered Trump than the story repeated in the testimony. Coward. Send the rubes, run to safety. But here’s the thing: the planners of this insurrection, Trump included, knew they needed a cover story about why Trump hadn’t gone with them after he said he would – and they have already offered it up. “Oh, Trump wanted to go but the Secret Service wouldn’t let him.”
It’s a good story. It makes sense. After all, the Secret Service really wouldn’t let the President of the United States of America – any President, go to the scene of a riot – most especially when they KNEW the crowd included armed crazies. “Oh, but he really wanted to…” Uh-huh. It seems, to me, that the “attack the driver” story was concocted as additional support and “fed,” without challenge, to a well-placed underling with the intent of having it repeated anecdotally, after the fact. She could go on Fox “News” starting on January 7th and regale the rapt, deluded acolytes with the tale of Trump’s efforts and everyone believes he tried. But she didn’t repeat the story on Fox “News.” She repeated it under oath, in testimony to the January 6th Committee.
Now Ornato and Secret Service Agent Engel are out insisting the story isn’t true in an effort to undermine her testimony and make her look bad. But the recipient of a lie doesn’t “look bad” for being told a lie. It’s always the liar who should look bad. I’ll tell you this: I know that neither Ornato nor Engel aren’t under oath. But at this point? I think I believe them when they say it didn’t happen, if for no other reason than it fits better with my previous understanding of Trump as a sniveling coward…