WASHINGTON, DC -- Tonight, after the House Select Committee investigating the deadly January 6, 2021 siege of the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob held the first in a series of public hearings in advance of releasing a final report later this year, U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) issued the following statement:

“The Select Committee methodically presented detailed and compelling evidence that President Trump and his allies engaged in a planned, coordinated conspiracy to steal the 2020 election. It is chilling to see how close they came to succeeding with their plot to break our democracy and retain power at any cost. There must be an accountability for all who aided and abetted this crime against our democracy. And we must take steps to stop future attempts to undermine our elections and faith in our democratic institutions.

“Republican Vice Chairwoman Liz Cheney made it clear: This isn’t about Democrats vs. Republicans or red states vs. blue states; it’s about whether there’s a democracy where your vote matters and gets counted appropriately.

“Tonight’s hearing was a bipartisan, factual, compelling, and legally-damning presentation that presented evidence of serious crimes and placed Donald Trump and his allies directly at the center of a coordinated attempt to corruptly overturn the election.

“It reinforced the reasons I voted to convict Mr. Trump in his second impeachment trial before the United States Senate.

“Free and fair elections are central to our democracy. And telling the truth and presenting facts are central to combatting lies and phony, distorted conspiracy theories. Unfortunately, too many Republican elected office holders have chosen Trump over the truth about the 2020 election and our democracy.

“The facts presented by this bipartisan panel were overwhelming. In fact, some of the most damning testimony and evidence came directly from those close to Mr. Trump, including his own family members.

“This was the opening hearing in a multi-step process. We’ve got to continue to examine the facts, follow the evidence, and put the good of the country, future elections, and peaceful transfers of power above the partisan, political fray.”

The Select Committee was formed to investigate the January 6, 2021 attack on American democracy, during which far-right extremists organized a violent breach of the U.S. Capitol in order to impede Congress’s constitutional mandate to validate the presidential election, which President Joe Biden legitimately won by over 7 million votes. During the ensuing riot, insurrectionists physically harmed over 140 members of law enforcement who were trying to protect the U.S. Capitol complex and terrorized people working in the building, including Congressional staff and journalists, resulting in serious bodily injury and several deaths.

The Select Committee is made up of nine members of the U.S. House of Representatives and led by Chairman Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS) and Vice Chair Liz Cheney (R-WY). The Select Committee has conducted more than 1,000 interviews since it first convened almost a year ago and reviewed more than 125,000 documents, including testimony from several senior aides to former President Donald Trump, as well as members of his cabinet. However, former President Trump and several members of his inner circle who had a hand in organizing the January 6, 2021 event and encouraged the crowd to advance on the Capitol, have refused to cooperate and attempted to obstruct the panel’s fact-finding mission.