A top Mark Meadows aide shared with the committee on Jan. 6 a photo of her then-boss escorting Rudy Giuliani out of the White House after a controversial meeting with Donald Trump and West Wing officials.
The photo was part of reports by Ms. Hutchinson and others of an explosive rally in the Oval Office and around the White House on Dec. 18, 2021, in which Mr. Giuliani and Sidney Powell, along with General Mike Flynn, tried to convince Mr Trump to leave the voting machines and is executing his plans to further overthrow the election.
But the group clashed with White House counsel and other White House attorneys, who dismissed their ideas as idiotic and not grounded in reality, while repeatedly pressing them for evidence of fraud they did not have.
And according to Ms. Hutchinson’s text message that day, it all ended when the former mayor was escorted from the presidential residence under the watchful eye of Mr. Meadows to make sure he didn’t “wander” back to the Oval Office.
The meeting was riddled with insults and allegations of disloyalty, according to multiple attendees and witnesses who testified on Tuesday. Ms. Powell and her colleagues have apparently urged the president to name her a special counsel with the power to investigate electoral fraud and take other drastic measures, including the confiscation of voting machines from states across the country.
Those ideas were rejected by Mr. Cipollone and Eric Herschmann, a fellow White House attorney, who said they had repeatedly pushed Ms. Powell and Mr. Giuliani for proof of their claims.
The group responded with “general disregard” for the importance of substantiating its claims with facts, Mr Cipollone and Mr Herschmann testified.
Rumors that Mr Trump had considered assigning Ms. Powell to the role of special counsel had previously been reported; what was not publicly known was the extent to which White House legal experts fought back against the fringe members of Donald Trump’s inner circle who pushed a wide and almost unimaginably broad spectrum of electoral fraud conspiracies.
And it paints a picture of a White House in utter disarray in recent weeks when Mr. Giuliani, Mr. Flynn and Ms. Powell had apparently come all the way to a meeting with Donald Trump in the Oval Office without a single senior executive finding out before it happened.