WASHINGTON, June 9 (Reuters) – The first of six hearings on January 6, 2021, the assault on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of Donald Trump debuted on television on Thursday as a House committee seeks to demonstrate that the riot was a planned attack on democracy.

The U.S. House of Representatives select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack includes videotaped testimony from senior Trump White House officials and campaign officials during the hearing , said committee aides.

Here is a selection of quotes:

Committee Chair Bennie Thompson quoted from his opening statement:

“We cannot sweep what happened under the rug. The American people deserve answers. So I come before you tonight not as a Democrat, but as an American who is sworn to defend the Constitution The Constitution doesn’t just protect Democrats or just Republicans, it protects all of us.

“So tonight, and over the next few weeks, we are going to remind you of the reality of what happened that day. But our work must do more than look back. Because our democracy remains in jeopardy. The plot to thwart the will of the people is not over.”

“January 6 and the lies that led to the insurrection endangered two and a half centuries of constitutional democracy. The world is watching what we are doing here.”

Former Attorney General William Barr, via video:

“I made it clear that I didn’t agree with the idea of ​​saying the election was stolen and posting what I call bullshit. And, you know, I didn’t mean to do it. party. … We cannot live in a world where the incumbent administration remains in power based on its view, unsupported by specific evidence that the election that there was fraud during the election.

US Representative Liz Cheney:

“President Trump believed his supporters on Capitol Hill, and I quote, were doing what they had to do. That’s what he told his staff as they begged him to call out the crowd.”

“On this point, there is no room for debate. Those who invaded our capital and fought law enforcement for hours were motivated by what President Trump had told them: that the election had been robbed and that he was the rightful president. President Trump summoned the crowd, rallied the crowd and lit the flame for this attack.”

“All Americans should remember this fact, on the morning of January 6, President Donald Trump’s intention was to remain President of the United States.”

Ivanka Trump, daughter of former President Trump, in video testimony:

“I respect Attorney General Barr. So I accepted what he was saying.” (Reporting by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Scott Malone and Leslie Adler)