Cassidy Hutchinson disclosed that Donald Trump had privately admitted to his defeat in 2020 and related how Trump aides took advantage of her financial situation to influence her testimony to Jan. 6, according to a new batch of transcripts from this panel.
Two transcripts from September closed-door interviews with Hutchinson were dropped by the Jan. 6 committee panel. This was in response to Hutchinson’s appearance at the public hearing this summer. Many of the transcripts were rehashed her public testimony, and explain the final straw that led to her decision to appear before the panel publicly.
These are the top lessons from the transcript dump.
Trump admitted his loss
The panel discovered that Hutchinson, Alyssa Farah and a former White House aide testified that Trump had privately admitted to his defeat in 2020 during the ninth public hearing. Hutchinson recalls Trump telling Mark Meadows, her former chief of staff at the White House, that she didn’t want anyone to know. This is very embarrassing. It is embarrassing.
Meadows was not the only one who heard Trump’s sentiment. She recalled John Ratcliffe, former Director of National Intelligence, recounting Trump’s private admission that he lost his election.
She recalled that Ratcliffe is a diplomat and has a way of approaching problems. “He’s like, “I’ve had several conversations with the President in which he acknowledged that he’s lost — although he hasn’t admitted that he wants concede but he admits that he lost his election — but then, he’ll instantly backpedal.”
“Less is more”
Hutchinson, who was scheduled to appear before the Jan.6 committee in February to take a private deposition said that she had lamented to her mother, “I am f***ed”. She tapped Stefan Passantino, a Trump-aligned lawyer, out of concern that she wouldn’t be able to afford other lawyers. Passantino was previously an ethics lawyer for the Trump White House.
Hutchinson reached out to Trumpworld to get help, but was eventually referred to Passantino. Passantino refused to reveal the source of his pro bono funding. He seemed to have strong ties to Trumpworld, and even offered to help her get a job.
They know that you are loyal. She recalled Passantino stating in March that they want to take good care of you… and have many opportunities for you. We want you to remain in Trumpworld and have jobs. We will find something that is really great for you.
It became apparent that Passantino used stonewalling as a key strategy to deal with the Jan.6 committee. Hutchinson recalls asking for a calendar to be printed after she was subpoenaed by the late 2021 committee.
Passantino said, “No, no. No,” she remembered. “Look, we want you in, get out. Your role will be minimized. You were a secretary. You held an administrative position. This is a common issue. It is unfair that you are being placed in this position by the committee. This is a complete waste of time.
Hutchinson was uncomfortable with Passantino for much of their interactions. But her “breaking point” came when he suggested she stop speaking with them. According to CNN, “contemptism is a small danger, but running to your right is better for yourself.” She stressed that Passantino never told her to lie.
She decided to change lawyers after consulting her friends. Passantino was like Trump looking over her shoulder. In June, she switched to Jody Hunt as her chief of staff.
A Republican member of Congress guided her to the committee
Hutchinson’s willingness to be more open with the panel was a key factor in her decision. She claimed that she had been friends with the Republican member for many years. The Republican prodded her initially to not seek Trumpworld’s assistance in dealing with the committee.
“When I spoke to this Member in January about possibly getting money from Trump World to pay my legal bills, I was confused. This Member told me that if you do that, you’re making your bed and getting back into Trump world, Cassidy. Hutchinson said that the lawyer wasn’t going to just be working for him.
Hutchinson sought advice from the member and then adjusted her approach to the panel.
“Yeah Cassidy, you have to — you’re going to have to deal with the mirror test all your life. I know you feel that way because you didn’t manage things correctly. This is why I understand that you are stressed. Is it possible to accept yourself and move on, or do you want something to change? The member asked.
Conflict and guilt
Hutchinson was a victim of an internal conflict due to being caught between Trumpworld’s panel and Trumpworld. She remembered reading about Watergate and focusing on Alex Butterfield’s role, which she said was similar to her role in Nixon’s Nixon administration.
“After reading all of this, I realized that he had spoken about things like his moral struggle and how he felt he still had the Nixon White House to loyalize, but he also talked about many of the same things I was feeling. She explained that although it was not an identical situation, the importance he put on the moral questions he was asking resonated with her.
Visit to the National Archives
Hutchinson and Meadows went to the National Archives and Records Administration to “discuss record retention” shortly after the 2020 election. Her testimony was included in the transcripts after the Aug. 8 bombshell raid on Mar-a-Lago to seize classified documents. Meadows told Meadows that Trump had not informed him of his trip, and that Trump would not likely be pleased with the visit.
Hutchinson revealed that her aunt and uncle believed in QAnon conspiracy theories during testimony, as she discussed her struggle to pay for a different lawyer to help with the Jan. 6 committee.
“I was talking to my aunt and uncle. They are QAnon fanatics, but they wanted to refinance their house so they could make more money so that I wouldn’t have to return to Trump world. She explained that they understood why I did not want to, but she didn’t go into detail about their beliefs.
QAnon is a conspiracy which posits a corrupt cabal of elites that secretly runs the country. They also participate in satanic child eating practices and pedophilia. Trump is often portrayed as a hero who works to subdue the evil cabal. To justify the Capitol ransacking, many Capitol rioters flouted QAnon theories.
Hutchinson revealed that she had reached out to her biological dad to borrow money to pay off the Trumpworld lawyer. He “didn’t get it” and Hutchinson left feeling “defeated.”
“I don’t have a relationship to my biological father but I did go to his house one evening. I drove up to New Jersey and went to his home one night. He said yes, but I begged.
He had replied, “No, he doesn’t. He will probably hear it later in the afternoon. However, the President won’t be very happy about me meeting with him. Hutchinson said Meadows told him that he didn’t want to see us continue working on a postelection period.
Hutchinson’s transcripts were released following a dump of 34 transcripts on Wednesday. This was the day that the committee was originally expected to release its final reports, but it was delayed. As the Republican takeover of lower chamber approaches, the committee is working behind the scenes to complete its work.