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‘Clear the Capitol!’ New Timeline of Jan 6th Insurrection Reveals Pence’s Pleas

‘Clear the Capitol!’ New Timeline of Jan 6th Insurrection Reveals Pence’s Pleas

As the world watched the overwhelming events of January 6th unfold live on television in real time, it was hard to make sense of the barrage of violence and absorb just what the rioters were capturing on their cellphone cameras. In the chaos that ensued once the Capitol was breached, the TV news media did their best to keep the audience apprised of what was happening moment to moment, but with so much going on all over the building all at once, it was impossible to cover everything the rioters were doing.

In three months since the insurrection, several different timelines have emerged regarding when events took place, which members of the government were present, and how they reacted once they realized what was actually occurring just outside the doors to the Senate chamber.

Now new details about the deadly insurrection have been released. In a previously undisclosed document prepared by the Pentagon for internal use that was obtained by The Associated Press and vetted by current and former government officials, the updated timeline adds another layer of understanding about the state of fear and panic while the insurrection played out.

It also lays the blame on Donald Trump and how he deliberately contributed to a slowed response by the military and law enforcement. It shows that the intelligence missteps, tactical errors, and bureaucratic delays were eclipsed by the government’s failure to comprehend the gravity of the situation.

For example, the new timeline shows that 4:08 p.m. on January 6th, as the rioters roamed the Capitol and after they had menacingly called out for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and yelled for then-Vice President Pence to be hanged, Pence was in a secure location, phoning Christopher Miller, the acting defense secretary, and demanding answers.

There had been a highly public rift between Trump and Pence, with Trump furious that Pence refused to halt the Electoral College certification. Interfering with that process was an act that Pence considered unconstitutional. The Constitution makes clear that the vice president’s role in this joint session of Congress is largely ceremonial. Pence’s call to Miller lasted only a minute. Pence said the Capitol was not secure and he asked military leaders for a deadline for securing the building, according to the document.

By that point, it had already been two hours since the mob overwhelmed Capitol Police unprepared for an insurrection. Rioters broke into the building, seized the Senate, and paraded to the House. In their path, they left destruction and debris. Dozens of officers were wounded, with mortally wounded Officer Brian Sicknick succumbing to his injuries before the day ended.

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