On Monday, the January 6 Committee met for the final time. Composed of seven Democrats and two anti-Trump Republicans, the committee alleged violations of four criminal statutes by Trump, in both the run-up to and during the riot itself, as it recommended the former president for prosecution to the Justice Department. The charges recommended by the committee are conspiracy to defraud the United States, obstruction of an official proceeding of Congress, conspiracy to make a false statement and aiding an insurrection.
The committee spent more than a year trying to make a case that Trump was squarely at the center of efforts to "overturn" the 2020 election and was ultimately responsible for the Capitol Hill disturbances. But Robert Knight, a columnist for The Washington Times, says the bipartisan panel was nothing but a kangaroo court.
"The January 6 Committee didn't permit alterative witnesses, didn't permit questioning of the witnesses they had; it was all one-sided," Knight tells AFN. "It was a Stalinist show trial; it's a disgrace – and thank God it's over.
"But the Democrats aren't done," he warns. "They just will continue on. They'll be issuing indictments probably that are nonsense."
As the committee was getting started, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy of California, a Trump ally, decided not to participate after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected his appointments. Pelosi then appointed the two anti-Trump Republicans: Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois. Cheney lost her bid for another term in the House, and Kinzinger chose not to run again.
Knight suspects a lot of people won't be sorry to see Cheney leave Congress. "… She's gone out of her way to attack her supposed party, the Republican Party," he points out. "And she was fixated on going after Donald Trump. She aided and abetted the Democrats' kangaroo court."
As noted by The Associated Press, Republicans and many conservatives have been highly critical of the panel, saying the partisan nature of the group made it impossible for Trump to get a fair hearing and that the panel's final report was a foregone conclusion.
Associated Press contributed to this story.