More than a year after a mob of pro-Trump extremists stormed the United States Capitol, the House Select Committee investigating the deadly failed insurrection's origins has come forward with even more alarming evidence regarding former President Donald Trump's actions that day.
After a protracted legal battle Trump fought to keep them secret, thousands of pages of Trump-era White House records were released to the committee earlier this year. Among these were White House logs that showed a seven hour gap in call records on January 6, the day of the Capitol attack.
The suspicious absence of records now has the committee investigating whether Trump used off-the-record channels, such as burner phones, to communicate unburdened by public accountability, according to recent reports from the Washington Post and CBS News.
Responding to the report, Trump said in a statement:
"I have no idea what a burner phone is, to the best of my knowledge I have never even heard the term."
But according to Trump's former National Security Advisor, John Bolton, the former President—who told more than 30 thousand lies over the course of his four years in the White House—is lying yet again.
Robert Costa, Chief Election & Campaign Correspondent for CBS News, tweeted that Bolton recounted conversations he had with Trump in which the pair discussed burner phones and the usage of such phones to evade oversight.
Bolton served as Trump's National Security Advisor from 2018 to 2019, but was ousted after several disagreements with the former President. Bolton would become the subject of widespread derision over the course of the Ukraine scandal that led to Trump's first impeachment in 2019, refusing to testify voluntarily and threatening to stall the impeachment process by battling a congressional subpoena in the courts. All the while, Bolton was working on a memoir about his time in the Trump White House.
Bolton's dispute of Trump's supposed ignorance on burner phones isn't likely to redeem him to many of Trump's critics, but he certainly generated discussion online.
Some were miffed that Bolton kept the burners on the back burner til now.
This isn't the first time the issue of burner phones has emerged in the wake of the Capitol riot, or even the Trump presidency. The words "burner phone" appear in Trump's lawsuit against his estranged niece, Mary Trump, multiple times. Rolling Stone reported last November that organizers of the pro-Trump rally preceding the Capitol riot were communicating directly with Trump's son, Eric Trump, through prepaid burner phones. A 2018 Politico report on Trump's lax security measures said that his call-capable phones were "essentially used as burner phones."