Who is Cassidy Hutchinson, ex-White House aide and key witness in Jan. 6 hearing?
WASHINGTON — Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to ex-President Donald Trump’s White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, was the key focus of Tuesday’s Jan. 6 House committee hearing, where she quickly took on a high-profile role.
Hutchinson, 25, offered detailed accounts of Trump’s knowledge of armed supporters in the crowd during his speech at the Ellipse before the riot, and his desire to go to the Capitol with them.
Hutchinson began working at the White House in 2018, according to The New York Times. Before then she was an intern for Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., according to Forbes.
Trump said he “hardly know(s)” Hutchinson in a post on Truth Social, a platform created by Trump Media & Technology Group. He called her a “total phony and ‘leaker’” and said he denied her request to join his staff post-presidency at Mar-a-Lago.
Through Hutchinson’s recorded and in-person testimony, she detailed being present for meetings and conversations between the 2020 election and Jan. 6, and was in the West Wing during the attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Brendan Buck, an aide to former House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., told The Washington Post that Hutchinson was very involved, and that Meadows would insist she be in the room for even senior-level staff level meetings.
“It’s just unusual to have a relatively junior aide to either be in principal-level or senior staff-level, but it was his call, so we deferred to him,” Buck told The Post. “She was in every single meeting.”
In the previous Jan. 6 hearings, the committee has shown recorded videos of Hutchinson’s testimony. In one of these, she identifies six members of Congress who asked the White House for pardons following Jan. 6.
During Tuesday’s hearing, she added Meadows and Trump campaign lawyer Rudy Giuliani sought pardons.
During an interview with The Post, Norm Eisen, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who served as counsel to House Democrats for Trump’s first impeachment trial, compared Hutchinson to John Dean, the former presidential counsel who implicated President Richard Nixon in the Watergate scandal.
CNN chief White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins tweeted she once witnessed Hutchinson lint roll Meadows’ suit jacket.
“When lawmakers wanted to get in touch w/ Trump, they often phoned her,” Collins tweeted. “If they had a message to relay to Mark, they called her.”
Olivia Troye, a former White House homeland security adviser to Vice President Mike Pence, tweeted she knew Hutchinson as a dedicated staffer while working for Meadows.
“Americans should believe her,” Troye said in a tweet.