Former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi (R) pushed back in a big way on allegations made by Cassidy Hutchinson regarding then-President Donald Trump’s alleged behavior the day of the Jan. 6 incident at the Capitol.
Hutchison testified this week before the Democrat-run House committee looking into the incident that Trump tried to physically force the Secret Service to take him to the Capitol and that he also made other comments claiming that he knew some demonstrators were coming to his speech armed.
Within a day of her testimony, however, several people flatly refused her claims including Secret Service agents she named in her allegations, saying that Trump never yelled at them or tried to get physical with them.
On Wednesday, Bondi provided more details that cast doubts about the potential motivation behind Hutchison’s testimony.
Bondi told Fox News’ Sean Hannity she had two conversations with Hutchinson, who “loved President Trump” and was “very upset” she was turned down for a job in Florida.
“She reached out to me because she was very excited she was moving to palm beach to work for the president. She loved president trump well after the election. She loved him,” Bondi said.
“She reached out to me, Sean, because she was looking for a place to live in Florida. She was very excited. This is a young 20-something-year-old. Did not have financial resources. Had not been employed. And was excited about moving to Palm Beach,” Bondi continued.
“Then her contemporaries told the president that she could not be trusted. She was a leaker when she was in the White House. And She didn’t get to go to Palm Beach,” the former state AG ADDED.
“She reached out to me again and she was very upset. I didn’t understand why people would say that about her,” she continued.
“The woman I saw yesterday on the stand was not the same woman. Now I understand. She was well-rehearsed. And in a court of law she would be cross-examined — were you promised something for your testimony? A job? Money? Did you receive immunity for getting on the witness stand?” Bondi said.
“So much more — how do you recall every detail, every detail of this testimony over a year later?” said Bondi.
Hutchison claimed that Trump attempted to order the Secret Service to drive him to the U.S. Capitol Building and responded physically and angrily when the agent in charge allegedly refused.
“The president had a very strong, very angry response to” being told the Secret Service couldn’t take him to the Capitol, Hutchinson testified. “I’m the f—king president. Take me up to the Capitol now,” Trump purportedly said, according to Hutchinson.
Hutchison, who formally served under then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, then said that Trump got into the front of the presidential limo and reached towards the steering wheel.
Bobby Engel, the head of Trump’s Secret Service detail, allegedly pulled Trump’s hand off of the steering wheel, Hutchinson claimed. She was not a witness to any of this, but rather was supposedly told about it by Anthony Ornato, Trump’s chief of operations.
“Sir, you need to take your hand off of the steering wheel, we’re going back to the West Wing, we’re not going to the Capitol,” Hutchinson recounted.
“Mr. Trump then used his free hand to lunge toward Engel, and when Mr. Ornato recounted the story to me, he motioned to his clavicles,” she said.
But that account is now being refuted, according to multiple reports.
“New: Source close to the Secret Service tells [ABC Chief Justice Correspondent Pierre Thomas] to expect the Secret Service to push back against any allegation of an assault against an agent or President Trump reaching for the steering wheel,” ABC News Executive Editorial Producer John Santucci reported.
New: Source close to the Secret Service tells to expect the Secret Service to push back against any allegation of an assault against an agent or President Trump reaching for the steering wheel.
— John Santucci
“A source close to the Secret Service tells me both Bobby Engel, the lead agent, and the presidential limousine/SUV driver are prepared to testify under oath that neither man was assaulted and that Mr. Trump never lunged for the steering wheel,” NBC News senior White House correspondent Peter Alexander added.
🚨 A source close to the Secret Service tells me both Bobby Engel, the lead agent, and the presidential limousine/SUV driver are prepared to testify under oath that neither man was assaulted and that Mr. Trump never lunged for the steering wheel.
— Peter Alexander