House Speaker Mike Johnson announced Friday that he was making all footage documenting the Capitol incursion available to anyone who wants to watch.
“Today, I am keeping my promise to the American people and making all the January 6th tapes available to ALL Americans,” Johnson posted on X.
In another post, Johnson explained his rationale.
“When I ran for Speaker, I promised to make accessible to the American people the 44,000 hours of video from Capitol Hill security taken on January 6, 2021,” he wrote.
“Truth and transparency are critical. Today, we will begin immediately posting video on a public website and move as quickly as possible to add to the website nearly all of the footage, more than 40,000 hours. In the meantime, a public viewing room will ensure that every citizen can view every minute of the videos uncensored,” he wrote.
Johnson said that doing this “will provide millions of Americans, criminal defendants, public interest organizations, and the media an ability to see for themselves what happened that day, rather than having to rely upon the interpretation of a small group of government officials.”
In praising work by the Committee on House Administration and Committee Chair Rep. Barry Loudermilk of Georgia, Johnson noted that the processing required includes “blurring the faces of private citizens on the yet unreleased tapes to avoid any persons from being targeted for retaliation of any kind and segregating an estimated 5% of the videos that may involve sensitive security information related to the building architecture.”
“To restore America’s trust and faith in their Government we must have transparency,” he wrote in another post that included the link for the tapes.
About 90 hours’ worth of tapes was posted Friday, according to The Hill. All recordings are projected to be released by Monday.
“The goal of our investigation has been to provide the American people with transparency on what happened at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 and this includes all official video from that day,” Loudermilk said, according to the Gazette.
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) November 17, 2023
“We will continue loading video footage as we conduct our investigation and continue to review footage. As I’ve said all along — the American people deserve transparency, accountability, and real answers supported by facts instead [of] a predetermined political narrative,” he said.
Loudermilk said a viewing room will exist at the Capitol for those who want to visit instead of looking at the tapes online.
“Congratulations to Speaker of the House, Mike Johnson for having the Courage and Fortitude to release all of the J6 Tapes, which will explicitly reveal what really happened on January 6th,” former President Donald Trump posted on his Truth Social platform.
As noted by the Associated Press, former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy had given former Fox News host Tucker Carlson access to the tapes, pieces of which Carlson used.