Stephanie Grisham, a former aide to Donald Trump, said in an interview on Thursday morning that the former president had watched the January 6 Capitol attack with glee.
Grisham, who served as Trump’s press secretary and as chief of staff for former First Lady Melania Trump, abruptly resigned from the White House on the day of the Capitol attack. Since then, she has frequently criticized the former president and his allies.
This week, Grisham met with the House select committee investigating the January 6 attack. After a closed-door session with the commission, she said that she had “cooperated fully” with the inquiry, and that she plans to “continue to do so” if they have more questions.
In an interview about her testimony on CNN’s “New Day” program, Grisham said that Trump didn’t have a concerned demeanor while watching the attack – instead, he seemed to be pleased with his loyalists’ actions.
Trump “was in the dining room, gleefully watching on his TV as he often did, [saying] ‘look at all of the people fighting for me,’ hitting rewind, watching it again,” Grisham said in the interview.
Grisham: All I know about that day is that he was in the dining room gleefully watching on his TV as he often did… “look at all of the people fighting for me”
hitting rewind, watching again pic.twitter.com/URe2vjYBNP
— Acyn (@Acyn) January 6, 2022
Grisham also said that she hopes to combat the extremism promoted by Trump in ways beyond cooperating with the January 6 commission. She and other former Trump administration officials are planning to meet soon to discuss ways that they can counteract Trumpism going forward.
“Next week, a group of former Trump staff are going to come together, administration officials are going to come together, and we’re going to talk about how we can formally do some things to try and stop him and also, the extremism, that that [sic] kind of violence, rhetoric that has been talked about and continues to divide our country,” Grisham said.
There are “about 15” Trump aides planning to take part, she added.
If Grisham and her former White House colleagues are serious about combating Trumpism, it will be a difficult undertaking, as it will require them to convince Republicans to reject Trump and his false claims of election fraud.
Recent polling demonstrates that while most Americans view Trump as bearing “a great deal” or “a good amount” of the responsibility for the attack, a whopping 78 percent of Republicans say Trump had “just some” or no responsibility for what happened. More disturbingly, 52 percent of Republican respondents said that they believe the mob of Trump loyalists acted in defense of democracy, according to the poll conducted by ABC News and Ipsos.