The New York Times on Tuesday admitted the Democrats’ upcoming January 6 Committee hearings are an attempt to “recast” the party’s failing midterm election message against Republicans in order to help Democrats “to stay in power.”
While Republicans are likely to win a huge House majority in November – the best position in over 80 years – the Times acknowledged Democrats are looking to use the January 6 committee to distract from President Biden’s 40-year-high inflation, record high gas prices, supply chain woes, and the Southern border crisis.
“It is an uphill battle at a time when polls show that voters’ attention is focused elsewhere, including on inflation, rising coronavirus cases and record-high gas prices,” the Times said. “But Democrats argue the hearings will give them a platform for making a broader case about why they deserve to stay in power.”
The hearings must remind voters of Trump’s alleged effort to “overturn the election” with a “mob” of supporters who “stormed the Capitol with false claims of a stolen election,” the Times wrote.
According to polling, that will be a difficult task. An NBC News poll shows only 45 percent of Americans find Donald Trump responsible for January 6 protest, declining 7 points since January 2021. Additional polling reveals that 58 percent believe the committee is biased toward Democrats.
If I were a member of the 1/6 committee, stories like these, casting the hearings as a political cudgel, would make me very unhappy.
Conversely, Rs, who hope to dismiss damning findings as partisan, will seize on them.
Let facts speak for themselves. https://t.co/akQ827sAPD
— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) June 7, 2022
Democrats must overcome the adverse polling. The article stressed the need for Democrats during the hearing to play on voters’ emotions with a “carefully choreographed rollout of revelations”:
With their control of Congress hanging in the balance, Democrats plan to use made-for-television moments and a carefully choreographed rollout of revelations over the course of six hearings to remind the public of the magnitude of Mr. Trump’s effort to overturn the election, and to persuade voters that the coming midterm elections are a chance to hold Republicans accountable for it.
To ensure the greatest political punch, the committee has hired “an experienced television executive,” former president of ABC News, James Goldston, “to help fit the hearings into six tight episodes, running between 90 minutes and 2.5 hours.” The committee has also recruited filmmaker Nick Quested to testify at the hearing. Quested was reportedly shooting a documentary of the Proud Boys on January 6.
The hearings were touted as primetime television. The first hearing is scheduled for Thursday evening, but the second will be held on the far less popular television time of Monday morning.