Support Just the News

Help Fund Honest Journalism


Pentagon documents help complete Jan. 6 riot timeline, detail Pence's plea for help, report

Vice President Mike Pence demanded then-acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller to "clear the capitol," according to the AP report.

Updated: April 10, 2021 - 3:21pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

A previously undisclosed document prepared by the Pentagon shows a more complete timeline of events during the Jan. 6 riot in Washington and what top U.S. leaders including then-Vice President Mike Pence were doing from inside the Capitol Building to stop the breach, according to a news report Saturday. 

Pence demanded then-acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller "clear the capitol," according to the internal-use document, obtained by the Associated Press and vetted by current and former government officials.

As Pence was attempting to assert control, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi were elsewhere in the building making a similar pleas to military leaders, including asking the Army to deploy the National Guard.

Meanwhile, rioters, including many coming from a pro-Trump rally on the Ellipse, began arriving at the Capitol at about 1:30 p.m. – breaking through police lines and into the Senate side of the Capitol, according to the review of the document.

At the Pentagon, officials were discussing reports that the chaos was also occurring in state capitals across the country. 

“We must establish order,” Gen. Mark Milley, then-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a call with Pentagon leaders, the wire service also reports.

President Trump at 4:19 p.m. tweeted for those inside the Capitol to "go home and go in peace."

However, order was not restored until hours late.

Almost exactly an hour after Trump’s tweet, the first group of 155 Guard members, dressed in tactical gear, began arriving.

The Capitol was declared secure by 8 p.m., and the Senate resumed its certification of state Electoral College votes declaring Democrat Joe Biden the winner of the 2020 presidential election.

Just the News Spotlight