The House of Representatives select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol held its first meeting Tuesday, hearing testimony from four police officers who, in their telling, were assaulted and taunted by the mob of Donald Trump supporters and white supremacist militia members who broke into the building that day in a deluded attempt to prevent Joe Biden from becoming president.
Meanwhile, there is a woman named Julie Kelly who has written for Fox News in the past and appeared on the network, according to the Media Matters watchdog site, at least 14 times this year, 10 of those appearances coming on Tucker Carlson’s high-rated prime-time show. Carlson introduces her as a “reporter” who is doing “reporting” on the riot, which she appears to believe was instigated by the FBI. Here’s Julie Kelly’s take on the Tuesday testimony of one particular individual:
A “crisis actor” in real life is someone who participates in first-responder drills; in the far-right imagination, though, crisis actors are secretive figures deployed by liberal donor George Soros and other “Deep State” figures to stage tragedies like the Sandy Hook and Parkland massacres in order to contrive public support for authoritarian left-wing policies.
According to a previously published AP story, Michael Fanone is a D.C. police officer who was “called in to help deal with the increasingly chaotic scene” on Jan. 6, and not an actor. Julie Kelly, for her part, once published a pro-Trump book that was apparently so bad that it was described even by the right-wing National Review as “lazy,” “neither serious nor credible,” and “a dishonest disgrace.” According to an article Kelly wrote in 2015, she is a former political operative and stay-at-home parent who reentered political discourse because she got upset about something celebrity chef Tom Colicchio said on MSNBC. (Incidentally, Kelly—who is, naturally, also a conspiracy-minded COVID vaccine skeptic—appears to be married to a top Illinois lobbyist named John Kelly whose clients include CVS and the government agency that hires state troopers. John Kelly’s lobbying firm did not answer a call for comment.)