The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Republican Mike Johnson, announced that 95% of the security camera videos from January 6, the date on which thousands of supporters of former President Donald Trump entered the hallways of the Capitol, will be released.
The other 5%, according to Johnson, will not be revealed to the general public because “that may involve sensitive security information related to the building architecture.”
“This decision will provide millions of Americans, criminal defendants, public interest organizations, and the media an ability to see for themselves what happened that day, rather than having to rely upon the interpretation of a small group of government officials,” Johnson said of the posted videos.
When I ran for Speaker, I promised to make accessible to the American people the 44,000 hours of video from Capitol Hill security taken on January 6, 2021. Truth and transparency are critical. Today, we will begin immediately posting video on a public website and move as quickly…
— Speaker Mike Johnson (@SpeakerJohnson) November 17, 2023
So far, 90 hours of tapes have been posted on a House Administration Committee website, and the rest of the videos are expected to be uploaded in the coming months.
Insurrection or manipulation?
After the release of the tapes, several conservative commentators reacted to the posted security videos, denouncing that the recordings show that there was no “insurrection” that day, a term used to describe the event for the last two years by politicians, prosecutors, media and progressive activists.
“The police facilitated January 6th, this is why they withheld the tapes,” host Tim Pool wrote. “The J6 committee should be censured and expelled for lying to the public.”
The police facilitated January 6th
This is why they withheld the tapes
The J6 committee should be censured and expelled for lying to the public
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) November 17, 2023
Commentator Matt Kim also left his impressions of the tapes, asserting that the revelation demonstrates that there was an agenda to keep citizens uninformed about what really happened on January 6.
“We were told this was a violent insurrection, an overt attempt to overthrow the government. This was a clear agenda to keep people misinformed but eventually truth prevails,” Kim said.
Matt Kim spitting truth about the January 6th tapes:
"We were told this was a violent insurrection, an overt attempt to overthrow the government. This was a clear agenda to keep people misinformed but eventually truth prevails."
— Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) November 17, 2023
An Iraq and Afghanistan veteran, who identifies himself as “Steve” on X, wrote a post requesting the incarceration of the FBI agents and the entire January 6 committee if the tapes indeed show that what happened on January 6 was not an insurrection.
This is gonna piss a lot of folks off.
Now that the J6 tapes have been released, here’s what needs to happen….
If the videos prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that January 6th was a complete setup:
1. The entire J6 committee needs to be arrested for lying to the American…
— Steve 🇺🇸 (@SteveLovesAmmo) November 17, 2023
The hard-right wing of the GOP supports Johnson’s decision
After the publication of the tapes, Republicans representing the most conservative wing of the party came out to support Johnson’s decision, acknowledging that he fulfilled his campaign promise to reveal the January 6 videos.
“Doing what he said he would do. Good,” Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, wrote in X.
“Thank you @SpeakerJohnson,” said Republican Matt Gaetz, who led the impeachment of the previous Republican speaker, Kevin McCarthy.
Former President Trump was not far behind, praising Johnson on Truth Social: “Congratulations to Speaker of the House, Mike Johnson for having the Courage and Fortitude to release all the J6 Tapes, which will explicitly reveal what really happened on January 6th!”