Why You Need To Know Who Cassidy Hutchinson Is

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One name that is certain to be filling your social media feed in early 2023 is Cassidy Hutchinson.

Hutchinson is a former aide to then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows. She interned for House Republican Whip Rep. Steve Scalise as well as Sen. Ted Cruz in 2018. She said that she planned on heading back into government after graduating from Christopher Newport University, and did.

Once she had her degree, Hutchinson began a role within the White House’s legislative affairs office in 2019. She was then promoted to Meadows staff in March 2020 and served until the end of the Trump administration.

Hutchinson Recently Gave Updated Testimony.

The committee investigating what role former President Donald J. Trump may have had in the Jan. 6 incident at the Capitol had to make an impromptu change last week. It was set to recess until July 2023 but based on Hutchinson changing her story it had to reconvene. She is the first live witness to the events and her willingness to take the stand prompted the committee to begin early.

Two of the things that she addressed were both her own change in testimony as well as her representation. Hutchinson said that when she previously testified — while being represented by Stefan Passantino — she was instructed to lie.

Committee member Rep. Zoe Lofgren spoke to CNN and said, “She was advised to say that she didn’t recall something when she did. So that’s pretty serious stuff.”

Hutchinson said that her going along with the original representation was part of being inside the vacuum the First Family created.

“I don’t like to categorize the world, the Trump world in this way,” she said, “But in a lot of scenarios that I have been privy to, once you are looped in, especially financially with them, there sort of is no turning back.”

In a statement to CNN, Passantino said he did not advise Hutchinson to mislead the committee.

It read, in part, “I represented Ms. Hutchinson honorably, ethically, and fully consistent with her sole interests as she communicated them to me. I believed Ms. Hutchinson was being truthful and cooperative with the Committee throughout the several interview sessions in which I represented her.”

She Is Now Represented By Jody Hunt.

Hunt previously worked for the Justice Department and was the chief of staff to former Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Hunt was also a witness during special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the alleged ties between Trump and Russia.

Hutchinson has now testified that Anthony Ornato, a senior Secret Service official, delivered intelligence reports to Meadows. She said she believed those reports “indicated that there could be violence on the 6th.” She added that she was not sure what Meadows did with the information.

Hutchinson also said that she heard from Robert Engel, the head of Secret Service, that Trump had screamed at his security team. She testified that Trump screamed, “‘I’m the fvcking President, take me up to the Capitol now.’

“Mr. Engel grabbed (Trump’s) arm and said, ‘Sir, you need to take your hand off the steering wheel. We are going back to the west wing. We are not going to the Capitol,'” Hutchinson said she now recalls. “Mr. Trump then used his free hand to lunge toward Bobby Engel, he had motioned towards his clavicles.”

How Liz Cheney Describes Hutchinson

Committee vice chair Rep. Liz Cheney explained how Hutchinson could so rapidly rise from intern to a well-placed aid in a matter of months.

Chaney said that Hutchinson had “handled a vast number of sensitive issues.” She added that simply working in the West Wing — which is just steps down the hall from the Oval Office — came with access privileges.

“Ms. Hutchinson spoke daily with members of Congress; with high ranking officials in the administration. (She spoke) with senior White House staff, including Mr. Meadows, with White House counsel lawyers and with Mr. Tony Ornadt, who served as the deputy chief of [operations],” Cheney detailed. “She also worked on a daily basis with members of the Secret Service who were posted in the White House.

“In short, Ms. Hutchinson was in a position to know a great deal about the happenings in the White House.”

Since this committee began Chaney has lost her seat in congress. She then launched a Never Trump PAC with fellow Jan. 6 committee member Adam Kinzinger, the Lincoln Project, and Republican Accountability Project.

What Happens Next?

The House is currently in the middle of a two-week recess before Republicans are set to take over in January. What happens next is still unknown. The Hutchinson hearing was unexpected, and so how it is handled beyond this point has not been decided.

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