January 6 committee’s Kinzinger: Secret Service agent who may dispute Hutchinson claim ‘likes to lie’

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Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., claimed Thursday that a Secret Service agent who may testify before the Jan. 6 committee about the timeline of events that unfolded around former President Donald Trump during the riot “likes to lie.”

Two Secret Service agents, Tony Ornato and Robert Engel, are prepared to testify before Congress that then-President Donald Trump did not lunge at a steering wheel or assault them in an attempt to go to the Capitol during the Jan. 6 riot, a source close to the Secret Service told Fox News’ David Spunt this week.

The explosive new allegations were made on Tuesday by Cassidy Hutchinson, a former top aide to Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows.

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A series of social media posts accumulated this week in which colleagues and opponents of Ornato have accused him of failing to tell the truth in the past and being a habitual liar.

“Tony Ornato sure seems to deny conversations he’s apparently had,” claimed Olivia Troye, former White House Homeland Security advisor under Mike Pence. “First this one with Keith Kellogg in ‘I Alone Can Fix It’ [and] now he’s denying the story he told Cassidy Hutchinson. Those of us who worked w/ Tony know where his loyalties lie. He should testify under oath.”

“Tony Ornato lied about me too,” said CNN’s Alyssa Farah Griffin. “During the protests at Lafayette Sq. in 2020, I told Mark Meadows [and] Ornato they needed to warn press staged there before clearing the square. Meadows replied: ‘We aren’t doing that.’” 

She added, “Tony later lied [and] said the exchange never happened. He knows it did.”

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The whirlwind of attacks on Ornato’s trustworthiness caught the attention of Kinzinger, who publicly commented that Ornato lies often.

“There seems to be a major thread here… Tony Ornato likes to lie,” Kinzinger wrote.

Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a Republican from Illinois, listens during a business meeting of the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021. 

Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a Republican from Illinois, listens during a business meeting of the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021.  (Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Rep. Liz Cheney declined to comment on the possibility of Secret Service members testifying in front of the Jan. 6 committee after two agents disputed claims about Trump’s behavior during the riots.

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When pressed on whether the Secret Service members would speak on growing narrative discrepancies in witness testimonies, Cheney demurred. 

“The committee has spoken to both Mr. Ornato and Mr. Engel, and we welcome additional testimony, under oath, from both of them, and from anybody else in the Secret Service who has information about any of these issues,” Cheney told ABC News.

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