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Analysis: Reminder: Donald Trump knew how bad it was on January 6

But thanks to more than 2,000 texts to and from White House chief of staff Mark Meadows obtained by CNN, we already have a very clear picture of what Donald Trump knew that day.

“He’s got to condem (sic) this shit. Asap,” Donald Trump Jr. texted Meadows on the afternoon of January 6, 2021.

“POTUS needs to calm this shit down,” wrote Republican Rep. Jeff Duncan of South Carolina.

“Fix this now,” messaged Rep. Chip Roy, a Texas Republican.

Meadows responded almost immediately to Trump Jr.: “I am pushing it hard. I agree.” Meadows replied to Duncan almost an hour later: “He is doing everything.” And within minutes, Meadows said to Roy: “We are.”

This barrage of texts from Republican allies were sent roughly an hour before Trump, at 4:17 p.m. ET, released a video message via Twitter in which he told the rioters: “I know your pain. I know your hurt. We had an election that was stolen from us,” before urging the crowd to “go home.”

And what the texts reveal is that the President of the United States was aware not just of what was happening as a mob overran the US Capitol, but also of the calls from prominent people in his family and his party for him to step in and stop it.

(Sidebar: I suppose you could make the argument that just because the people were texting Meadows does not necessarily mean that Trump saw them or was aware of them. But man, that is a s t r e t c h.)

The simple fact is that Trump knew what was happening. And at some level, approved of it. Remember that in a “expletive-laced” phone call with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on January 6, Trump said: “Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are.”

The Point: The coming public hearings will shine an even brighter light on exactly what Trump knew and when he knew it. But we already know that Trump knew what was happening on January 6 — and, for hours, chose to do nothing about it.

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