House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) appears to be bending to pressure to release footage of the Jan. 6, 2021, protests to more media outlets. McCarthy recently handed over more than 40,000 hours of footage to Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
McCarthy received criticism from many on the left and within the media for releasing the footage to Carlson, who released important scenes from the footage during his program last week.
The California Republican stated that he would gradually release the footage to a number of news agencies. McCarthy told Fox News this week in an interview that his “goal here is transparency.”
He said that “we will slowly roll out to every individual news agency” over time.
“We will slowly roll out to every individual news agency. They can come see the tapes as well,” McCarthy said in an interview with Fox News’s Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo. “Let everyone see them to bring their own judgment.” https://t.co/ZYq3E2j3Cj
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) March 13, 2023
McCarthy did not specify which news agency would receive the next access to the tape, nor a specific timeframe. However, the release of such footage will likely be of considerable interest.
The release of the Jan. 6 footage was lauded by many conservatives for offering a fuller view of that day. In particular, many conservatives believe that the footage released by the House Jan. 6 committee did not include crucial evidence regarding the role of the protesters.
This included the case of Jacob Chansley, according to many Republicans, including former President Donald Trump. Chansley, also known as the “QAnon Shaman” was one of the most visible parts of that day and is currently serving a 41-month sentence for interrupting an official proceeding.
The released footage appears to show a very different view than portrayed by the Jan. 6 committee. It included Chansley being escorted down the Capitol’s corridors by police officers.
The footage was compelling enough that Chansley’s attorney commented to Carlson that this could change his client’s case.
McCarthy had promised to release the Jan. 6 security footage as part of his negotiations with House Republicans earlier this year. The promise also coincides with further interest in the course of the Jan. 6 protests after Republicans gained control of the House after the 2022 midterm elections.