Bennie Thompson speaking with reporters.

Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), chair of the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the United States Capitol, speaks with reporters after the committee's final meeting on Capitol Hill on Dec. 19, 2022. | Francis Chung/POLITICO

The basis of American democracy is faith. The chair of the select panel said that democracy is broken if the faith is broken. Donald Trump did not follow through on his promises. He tried to stay in office despite losing the 2020 election.

Thompson said that this can't happen again.

The Senate voted to convict Trump on "incitement" in the impeachment trial.

Panel members have become more concerned about the impact their transmission to the department could have on public opinion as part of building a historical record around the attack. Special Counsel Jack Smith is conducting a wide-ranging investigation of Trump's scheme to cling to power, and the select panel has moved in parallel with DOJ's effort to prosecute hundreds of Trump supporters who attacked the Capitol.

The huge cache of evidence the panel is readying for release this week is more significant than the referrals to the department. More than 1,000 witness interviews and documents can be used to help prosecutors determine which witnesses committed crimes.

The final meeting of the select committee took place on the two-year anniversary of Trump urging allies to descend on Washington for a protest. Congressional and DOJ investigators believe that a crucial turning point was when Trump posted that, emboldening extremists who were trying to help him and sparking an intense focus on a day that is typically a ceremonial aspect of the transfer of power.

Dozens of cases were seen as a call to action and a validation of their desire to stop the steal, according to court records.

Trump spent the weekend railing against the select committee, which he described as a group of'misfits' and 'thugs.'

Members of the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the United States Capitol meet to discuss the committee's final report.

Members of the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the United States Capitol meet to discuss the committee's final report on Capitol Hill on Dec. 19, 2022. | Francis Chung/POLITICO

In the final days of the committee's investigation, Tony Ornato, a former Trump aide, and Robin Vos, the speaker of the Wisconsin House, testified. Almost every member of Trump's inner circle was questioned by the committee. The committee was unable to pierce the witnesses' Fifth Amendment rights. Pat Cipollone, a former White House counsel, gave extraordinary evidence of Trump's plan to stay in power.

Evidence shows that Trump planned to overturn the election months before voters went to the polls. Despite signs that Biden was leading in several key swing states, Trump would follow the advice of his allies and declare victory.

It was all but certain that Biden would win. He started to pressure Republicans in state and local governments to refuse to certify Biden's win. After the threat of a mass resignation forced him to back off, he leaned on the Justice Department to support his fraudulent claims. He gathered allies in Congress to challenge the election results.

When the Electoral College votes were counted on Jan. 6th, Trump was under intense pressure to subvert the election. The final dagger in Trump's plan was his resistance to that push.

Many in the crowd were whipped into a frenzy by Trump after he called his supporters to Washington to protest the congressional session. According to the evidence, many members of the crowd were armed before Trump ordered them to do so.

The report is the culmination of a process that was never meant to happen. The panel was formed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi as a last resort after Republicans in the House and Senate rejected a bipartisan plan for an independent commission to investigate the causes of the Capitol attack.

Pelosi invited Republicans to recommend up to five picks for the select committee, and GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy chose Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana. The selection of Banks and Jordan was objected to by Pelosi. McCarthy withdrew his other choices in protest of the decision. The panel was able to operate with near-total unity and secret. The most important role of the committee was played by one of its two Republicans, Liz Cheney.

The committee became a force that Trump world had to reckon with. The most significant was the Justice Department's decision to indict Bannon for contempt of Congress after he blew off a subpoena from the select committee. The man is appealing his conviction. The committee members said the charge led other reluctant witnesses to testify.

The committee gained access to previously sequestered Trump White House records and put them at the center of the hearings in June and July. A federal judge concluded that Trump and John Eastman likely colluded to overturn the election after the committee fought against the lawyer.