A CNN legal analyst took aim at Thursday evening’s hearing held by the Jan. 6 Select Committee, calling it “one-sided.”
“A prosecutor has to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt, the standard for a member of Congress saying it’s a crime is they feel like saying it’s a crime,” Elie Honig, a senior legal analyst and former prosecutor said on CNN’s “New Day” Friday morning. “Also important to keep in mind last night’s presentation was bipartisan, yes, but one-sided. There was no push back, there was no cross-examination.”
Committee chairman Bennie Thompson of Mississippi invoked slavery in his opening statement during the hearing, which aired on multiple broadcast networks. Democrats told media outlets that they hope the hearings will influence the 2024 election, Politico reported.
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Republicans boycotted the Jan. 6 committee after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused to appoint Republican Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Jim Banks of Indiana. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy pulled the three remaining nominees for the committee in the wake of Pelosi’s refusal.
The only Republicans on the committee are Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, both outspoken Trump critics.
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“There’s been a change of tone,” Honig said. “If you think to the early days of the committee when the members were asked do you think this is a crime, they were circumspect, they would tip toe around, they would say ‘that’s not for us, the evidence will speak for itself.’ Now they’re outright campaigning to DOJ which calling the conduct illegal and criminal.”
Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik criticized the select committee as a “sham” and “illegitimate.”