Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the Jan. 6 House select committee, said the committee is investigating individuals who tried to change the 2020 election outcome and that the panel still needs to talk to "quite a few people."
"I can tell you that we are learning that individual's conspired to change the outcome of the election. And that is very concerning, that they used assets of the federal government to try and promote the big lie. That they intimidated state officials toward the big lie," Thompson said during a CNN special with Anderson Cooper and Jake Tapper.
Thompson made it clear the committee is very interested in the attempts to use the power of the federal government to attempt to prevent the peaceful transfer of power.
“We have to tell that story. We'll be able to document it. And I am concerned that even the replacement of certain people, to accomplish the big lie, was under consideration,” Thompson said. "So, the vice chair and I have joined together to make sure democracy stands in this country."
Thompson and Rep. Liz Cheney, vice chair of the Jan. 6 select committee, said they still believe there is a chance they will be able to conclude that the actions of former President Trump and some of his associates constitute a crime.
“He (Trump) watched the attack happened on television. We know that he did not walk in the very few steps to the White House briefing room, get on camera immediately, and tell the people to stop and go home,” Cheney said. “The President of the United States, is responsible for ensuring the laws are faithfully executed, he’s responsible for the security of the branches. So, for the president to either through his action, or inaction for example, attempt to impede or obstruct the counting of electoral votes, which is an official function of congress, the committee is looking at that, whether what he did constitutes that kind of a crime. But certainly, it’s dereliction of duty.”
When asked directly by Tapper if he believed that officials in the inner circle of the Trump White House conspired to undermine the election results, Thompson replied: “No question.”
When Tapper asked if Trump himself was to blame, Thompson responded, “Look — Donald Trump is an open book. Everyone watching this show, they have an opinion of it. He is not known to tell the truth, he is known to promote lies. But, in this instance he invited people to Washington, on January 6th. And, and at the end of his invitation he said it was ‘going to be wild.’ Little did we know, it would be as wild as it was.”
Thompson said the committee is working on a report to document their findings.
The panel is aiming to release an interim report in the summer and a final report in the fall. The committee is also preparing for a series of public hearings intended to address Trump's continued false claims that the election was somehow fraudulent.
Read more about the Jan. 6 committee's investigation here.