Capitol Police Lawyer Slams House GOP on Jan. 6 Footage

Attorney says Kevin McCarthy gave Tucker Carlson riot clips without police department approving them
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 18, 2023 11:30 AM CDT
Capitol Police Lawyer Slams House GOP on Jan. 6 Footage
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy speaks at the US Capitol on Friday in Washington.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Tucker Carlson aired video from the Jan. 6 Capitol attack on his Fox News program earlier this month, courtesy of more than 40,000 hours of Capitol Police security footage handed over to him by Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy—what the Washington Post says was a "condition" Carlson had previously suggested in exchange for his support of McCarthy as the latter vied for his current job. Now, an attorney for the Capitol Police says that the department only found out about this handoff from media reports, and that the department's request to the House GOP to be able to review the footage for security purposes was roundly ignored, reports Politico.

In a sworn affidavit filed Friday, counsel Thomas DiBiase says that of the 40 riot clips Carlson aired on his show on March 6 and 7, only one was seen and approved by Capitol Police. The Post notes that at the end of February, McCarthy claimed to reporters to have been in touch with the police department over the release of the footage. Carlson, for his part, said on the air that "before airing any of this video, we checked first with the Capitol Police. We're happy to say their reservations were minor and for the most part, they were reasonable." DiBiase now says that's not true.

The attorney says he did approve the one clip he was able to access, as it was "substantially similar to a clip used in the [Trump] impeachment trial and was publicly available." On Friday, McCarthy, confronted with news of DiBiase's filing, insisted he'd worked with Capitol Police to suss out which clips were too sensitive security-wise to air. "We asked the Capitol Police for any clips that would give them a problem, any area," McCarthy told reporters. "They brought up one ... so we fixed that." Much more here and here on the back-and-forth. (The chief of the Capitol Police has called Carlson's presentation of the footage "misleading.")

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