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Politico Report Details DOJ Error On Jan. 6 Mystery: Where Was Kamala Harris?

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OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion


A new report by the U.S. Department of Justice is now putting Kamala Harris in the national spotlight — and it’s for all the wrong reasons.

A report from Politico notes that the DOJ confirmed an error relating to where Harris was when the January 6th incident happened at the U.S. Capitol.

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The report from the DOJ strongly suggests that they have no idea where Harris was when the protest broke out.

“But DOJ is now moving to correct the record, acknowledging in court that Harris was in fact away from the Capitol during the riot and only returned later to cast the key votes that certified her own ascension to the vice presidency,” Politico reported.

“[T]he government incorrectly stated that Vice President-Elect Harris was present in the U.S. Capitol at the time of the attack,” prosecutors wrote in a court filing in one Jan. 6 case. “In fact, Vice President-Elect Harris was not present at that particular time, though she was present earlier in the day and was present later that day.”

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“Another prosecutor disclosed the mistake in court last week at a sentencing hearing for Eric Torrens. After Chief Judge Beryl Howell said Torrens’ actions contributed to the disorder that prompted Pence and Harris to be evacuated from the Senate chamber, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jamie Carter chimed in to say that the government had “recently learned” that Harris was not actually present when the Capitol was breached,” Politico added.

The Politico report added:

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Although the mistake may have limited legal significance, it’s an indication that even some fundamental facts about the insurrection remain murky — such as, where was the vice president-elect and why did she leave the Capitol?

Harris is one of the two Secret Service protectees who was in the building that day. Pence was the other. Many of the 650-plus defendants arrested for breaching the Capitol are facing charges that they illegally entered a “restricted” area where someone under Secret Service protection was visiting. But because Pence remained in the Capitol complex for the duration of the attack, there’s likely to be minimal impact on the criminal cases.

A source familiar with Harris’ movements on Jan. 6 confirmed that she exited the Capitol after a Senate Intelligence Committee briefing that morning, a detail that was reported in some news accounts within days of the attack.The source said she had always been planning to leave the building at that time. And associates of Harris, who has faced many personal threats against her over her career, said she has a history of declining to share her whereabouts when asked, often citing safety concerns.

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Politico notes that Harris gave interviews after being sworn in as the vice president and stated that she was not present in the U.S. Capitol at the time.

It’s unclear why the DOJ even included the inaccurate information in the first place and never corrected the record for many months.

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“Prosecutors may have learned about the error last month when they were issuing a filing in the case of Capitol riot defendant Guy Reffitt. In that filing, prosecutors said they intended to call a Secret Service agent during Reffitt’s trial ‘to testify that at the time of the Capitol breach, Secret Service agents were on duty to protect Vice President Mike Pence and his two immediate family members, all of whom were present at the Capitol,'” Politico reported.

“Prosecutors have several options to address the erroneous filings. They could leave the language about Harris in place, although that could open up some opportunities for defense attorneys to highlight the error to impugn the cases against their clients,” the report added.

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