- Ex-Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale blamed then-President Donald Trump’s rhetoric for the death of a woman involved in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
- The House select committee investigating the riot showed screenshots of text messages between Parscale and Trump surrogate Katrina Pierson on the evening of the riot.
- “A sitting president asking for civil war,” Parscale wrote in the texts. “This week I feel guilty for helping him win.”
Ex-Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale blamed then-President Donald Trump’s rhetoric for the death of a woman involved in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, according to evidence shared Tuesday by the House select committee investigating the insurrection.
In text messages sent on the evening of Jan. 6, longtime Trump supporter Parscale said that the riot was “about trump pushing for uncertainty in our country.”
“A sitting president asking for civil war,” Parscale said in texts to Katrina Pierson, a former Trump campaign official who was reportedly involved in organizing the pre-riot rally.
Screenshots of the texts were displayed during the select committee’s latest public hearing Tuesday, which focused largely on the afternoon of involvement of domestic violent extremist groups in the Jan. 6 insurrection.
“This week I feel guilty for helping him win,” Parscale wrote.
Pierson replied: “You did what you felt was right at the time and therefore it was right.”
Parscale responded, “Yeah. But a woman is dead,” adding with apparent shock, “Yeah. If I was trump and knew my rhetoric killed someone.”
Pierson told him, “It wasn’t the rhetoric.”
But Parscale shot back: “Katrina. Yes it was.”
Neither Parscale nor Pierson immediately responded to CNBC’s requests for comment on the texts.
Parscale appeared to be referring to Ashli Babbitt, the pro-Trump rioter who was shot and killed by a US Capitol police officer on Jan. 6, 2021, as she attempted to crawl through a doorway leading toward the House chamber. Lt. Michael Byrd, the officer who shot Babbitt, was cleared of wrongdoing.
Parscale worked on Trump’s 2016 campaign and his 2020 reelection effort. He was demoted in the summer of 2020 as Trump’s poll numbers lagged behind those of Democrat Joe Biden, and stepped back from the campaign effort in October of that year after he was hospitalized.
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