On Thursday's edition of MSNBC's "Deadline: White House," during a discussion about the final January 6 Committee hearing, former Trump administration Homeland Security official Miles Taylor said he believes the former president wanted members of Congress to be killed on January 6.
Taylor, a Trump-skeptic who wrote the infamous anonymous New York Times op-ed
describing himself as part of a "resistance" within the executive branch, argued the former president would have used such deaths as a pretext to declare martial law and remain in office in perpetuity.
"It made my heart race to watch today's hearing, really, because they brought up Trump's mindset, and the question was, what was his mindset?" Taylor told anchor Nicolle Wallace. "I'm going to demystify that for America right now. I've spent time with the guy in the Oval Office, the White House situation room, and Air Force One. I'll tell you what his mindset was on January 6th."
"I believe Donald Trump wanted people to die," said Taylor. "He wanted people to die who were elected officials, en masse, so he could call out the military, so he could invoke the Insurrection Act, so he could prevent the peaceful transfer of power. That's not a conspiracy theory. In fact, in hindsight, it's pretty damn clear to me this is what he had in mind from day one in office."
This plan from Trump, said Taylor, explains something that had mystified himself and other national security officials about the former president from day one: why he continually refused to condemn right-wing domestic terrorist groups every time there was a violent incident. "Why did he make excuses for domestic terrorist groups? Because he was on their side."
"We saw in testimony the other week in courts that the January 6th plotters knew they were engaging in an insurrection, an armed insurrection. That's what they intended," said Taylor. "And we have people, extremists ... two hops away from the president of the United States who were planning on making that happen. He wanted people to die on January 6th so that he could use those presidential powers to prevent our democracy from transitioning to a new president. And I think the committee presented that in extremely powerful passion."