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Capitol riot footage means we must ask what’s REALLY going on with Jan. 6 trials

New York Post logo: MainLogo New York Post 3/12/2023 Post Editorial Board

The recent revelations drawn by Tucker Carlson from the 41,000-plus hours of unedited Capitol Riot video provided by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy should prompt some hard questions. 

Like: Did the Jan. 6 defendants actually get fair trials? And: Are we a nation of laws, or not? 

Yes, what happened that day was inexcusable. Yes, then-prez Donald Trump’s summoning and provoking of the rioters is utterly beyond the pale. 

But defendants must get all the due process rights guaranteed them under the Constitution, no matter their alleged crimes or their politics. And there are now real questions about whether the Jan. 6ers did.

Consider “QAnon shaman” Jacob Chansley, sentenced to four years for obstructing an official proceeding. Turns out he was escorted to the Senate floor by Capitol police. 

That fact surely should have played a role in his trial, but his defense apparently didn’t know. And it wasn’t public record in part because then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s stacked Jan. 6 Committee focused exclusively on promoting its favored narrative. 

And what of the other scorched-earth prosecutorial efforts of the Biden Justice Department? 

© Provided by New York Post Jacob Chansley was sentenced to four years for obstructing an official proceeding. AP

Eric Munchel — who prosecutors falsely said brought plastic zip-tie restraints to the riot; turns out he found them in the Capitol — faces a possible 20-year sentence. Kevin Seefried got three years over his march that day with a Confederate flag; prosecutors asked for almost seven. 

Did they, as with the “shaman,” face selective prosecution because of the political environment? What of the hundreds of other defendants facing serious jail time? 

Don’t expect the Squad or other progressive pols to question these potential criminal-justice excesses. No: Normally pro-crime Democrats seal-clapped the endless pre-trial detention and big-gun penalties for defendants with the “wrong” politics, even as they cheer legal changes that see murderers, rapists and thieves walking free.

Much of Main Justice, the central office in DC, has been badly politicized at least since the Obama era. On top of all their other investigations, House Republicans need to dig deep into these prosecutions — without falling into the error of painting the Capitol Riot as a “mostly peaceful protest.” 

America needs a Justice Department it can trust to steer clear of partisan politics.

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