You Can’t Follow The Action Without A Score Card

Tomorrow (Thursday, June 9) at 8 pm Eastern Time, the January 6 Committee of the House of Representatives will hold its first prime-time hearing. They promise to put a complex story into context and to present new material.

I’ll admit that I have a hard time following it all. The broad outline seems clear: President Donald Trump and some of his supporters wanted to undo Joe Biden’s clear electoral victory by a combination of social unrest and hinky legal justifications. There is a cast, literally, of thousands.

The story has been coming out in unconnected pieces. One day we hear about a bizarre protester’s sentencing and behavior in court. The next, there is a dump of emails from one of the higher-up perpetrators or perhaps from a behind-the-scenes operative who I’ve never heard of. It’s the kind of thing that leads a person to stick different-colored notes on a board and connect them with yarn.

I haven’t had time to do that, so I hope that the committee has a good storyline prepared. JustSecurity has a scorecard. The Committee’s investigative teams are color-coded: Gold (pressure on local officials), Blue (law enforcement and intelligence agency failures), Purple (domestic extremist groups, QAnon, and online misinformation), Red (rally planners and Stop the Steal), and Green (following the money).

I hope that the committee does not present its findings in that format. The scorecard presents one page in each category with “What We Know” and “What To Look For” points. It’s worth a scan to help get your thoughts in order and perhaps as a checklist with which to follow the hearing. The committee has said little about what to expect, so this is as good as we’ve got now.

Dan Froomkin is not optimistic about how the media will cover the committee.

And, just to drop another unconnected piece on you, Rolling Stone has one on intelligence failures. We haven’t heard much about them, and they are central to the unprepared state of the police units that should have done better.

Cross-posted to Lawyers, Guns & Money