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Trump's inner circle is already preparing for Mark Meadows to meet his downfall over the January 6 proceedings: report

Business Insider logo Business Insider 7/14/2022 mloh@businessinsider.com (Matthew Loh)
The former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has refused to appear before the January 6 panel probing the Capitol riot. ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images © ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images The former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has refused to appear before the January 6 panel probing the Capitol riot. ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images
  • Trump's lawyers believe Mark Meadows will be a fall guy for January 6, Rolling Stone reported.
  • They're already strategizing how to deal with his downfall, according to the outlet.
  • Meanwhile, Trump has started trying to distance himself from Meadows, said Rolling Stone.

Former President Donald Trump's lawyers and advisors are making plans around the former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows' expected downfall in the wake of the January 6, 2021, investigations, Rolling Stone reported on Wednesday.

"Mark is gonna get pulverized," one of Trump's current legal advisers told the outlet. "And it's really sad." 

The lawyer, who was not named, believed that Meadows didn't buy into Trump's election-fraud lies but was "trying to perform" for the former president and may have "screwed himself completely" in the process, per Rolling Stone.

The outlet also reported that Trump has recently been trying to distance himself from Meadows in anticipation of the latter facing crippling legal troubles or possible criminal charges related to the Capitol attack. 

Rolling Stone's reporting was based on comments from eight anonymous sources working on Trump's political or legal team or in Republican circles that often have contact with the former president.

Two sources told Rolling Stone that Trump has been telling associates that he had no idea what Meadows was doing on his behalf in the months leading up to the riot.

Meadows has been under scrutiny in recent weeks after being mentioned repeatedly in bombshell testimony from a former top White House aide about the violence on January 6.


Video: Trump’s Team Believes Mark Meadows Is Being Set Up To Be Fall Guy for Jan. 6th Insurrection (Veuer)

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Cassidy Hutchinson, a former top aide to Meadows, testified that he knew Trump's "Stop the Steal" rally could result in violence and told her "things might get real, real bad on Jan 6." However, Meadows did nothing to prevent it, she said publicly.

Hutchinson also testified that Meadows tried to obtain a pardon for his role in the riots, along with Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani and multiple members of Congress. 

Several media outlets, including CNN and The Guardian, also reported that an associate of Meadows' was behind a text message sent to Hutchinson warning her not to testify publicly.

"He wants me to let you know that he's thinking about you. He knows you're loyal, and you're going to do the right thing when you go in for your deposition," the message read.

Alyssa Farah Griffin, a former White House communications director under Trump, said in a CNN interview that Meadows told her she wouldn't need to quit when Trump lost the 2020 election because he wouldn't be leaving office.

"I said, 'Sir, I'm planning to move on — I want to put in my notice.' And he said to me, 'What if I could tell you we're actually going to be staying?'" Griffin said.

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The next prime-time hearing organized by the January 6 House Committee is slated for July 21. It's not immediately clear how much the final hearing will focus on Meadows, but it is expected to concentrate on how the riot unfolded from the perspective of Trump's White House.

Meadows has refused to appear before the committee, which voted to hold him in contempt. While the committee investigating the attack cannot make criminal charges itself, it can refer individuals to the Department of Justice for prosecution.

A spokesperson for Meadows did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

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