On Wednesday, the Vanity Fair contributor offered her two cents in response to a video of Mr Johnson that went viral on Tuesday. In the video, Mr Johnson is seen responding to some incendiary claims made about his office during Tuesday’s January 6 committee hearing and their handling of an envelope containing information about a fake electors scheme.
Mr Johnson tells reporters in the video that the envelope in question was likely passed along to then-vice president Mike Pence by “somebody from the House, some staff intern, you know, said we got to, the vice president needs this or whatever.”
“I wasn’t involved. I don’t know what they said. But, but, but somebody from the House delivered to a staff member in my office, my chief of staff called the vice president, ‘hey, we got this.’ And the vice president said ‘don’t deliver it,’ and we didn’t,” he says.
Notable former intern herself, Ms Lewinsky quote-tweeted the video with an expert quip: “dude. don’t blame the intern.”
Here’s some of his back-and-forth with CNN’s Manu Raju and other reporters on Tuesday following the hearing:Johnson: “These things were delivered to our office — I didn’t know they were coming. I had no hand in it. My staff — my chief of staff did the right thing, he called up the vice president. He didn’t want it, we didn’t send it to him. End of story.”Raju: “Why did you just deliver that to the vice president without vetting it or asking more questions about it?”Johnson: “I didn’t deliver it. We called them up. We called them up. He didn’t want it. We didn’t deliver it. End of story.”Raju: “But why did you even offer it without vetting it?”Johnson: “We got handed an envelope that was supposed to go to the vice president, I didn’t know. So we called, we called up the vice president, he didn’t want it. We didn’t deliver it. It’s a non-story — guys this is such a non-story.”Reporter: “Was that the first you had heard of it when you received the envelope?”Johnson: “Yeah.”Reporter: “And who, do you remember who gave it to you?”Johnson: “No, it was a staff-to-staff deal. I mean, it apparently had Michigan and Wisconsin. I had no hand in any of it. Again, this, this, this lasted a couple minutes in our office. Then the episode was over. And this — guys it’s a total non-story.”Raju: “Are you gonna ask your aides about who this person was? Have you asked–“Johnson: “We didn’t know — literally don’t — it was a staff to staff — somebody from the House, some staff intern, you know, said we got to, the vice president needs this or whatever. I wasn’t involved. I don’t know what they said. But, but, but somebody from the House delivered to a staff member in my office, my chief of staff called the vice president, ‘hey, we got this.’ And the vice president said ‘don’t deliver it,’ and we didn’t.”Raju: “Are you curious about the identity of this person? Do you want to ask about it?”Johnson: “No. No, because there’s no conspiracy here. This is a complete non-story, guys. Complete non-story.”
A top aide to Sen. Ron Johnson attempted to arrange a handoff of false, pro-Trump electors from the senator to Mike Pence just minutes before the then-vice president began to count electoral votes on Jan. 6, 2021.
The aide, Sean Riley, told Pence’s legislative director Chris Hodgson that Johnson wanted to hand Pence lists of the fake electors from Michigan and Wisconsin for Pence to introduce during the counting of electoral votes that certified Joe Biden’s win. The attempt was revealed in text messages obtained by the Jan. 6 select committee during its fourth public hearing on Tuesday.
“Do not give that to him,” Hodgson replied.
The attempted handoff shows just how much former President Donald Trump and his allies tried to lean on Pence to introduce false slates of electors that could have thrown the 2020 election from Biden to Donald Trump. The committee laid out an intense pressure campaign, led primarily by Trump and his attorney Rudy Giuliani, to push state legislatures to appoint pro-Trump electors and override the will of voters in their states.
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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.