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Jan. 6 panel chair Thompson to miss Thursday's hearing after testing COVID positive

Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., speaks to members of the media after the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol held a hearing on June 28.
J. Scott Applewhite
/
AP
Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., speaks to members of the media after the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol held a hearing on June 28.

The chairman of the January 6 committee, Rep. Bennie Thompson, will miss Thursday's prime-time hearing after he was diagnosed with COVID-19, according to a committee spokesman.

In a tweet Tuesday morning, Thompson, who is fully vaccinated and boosted, said he is experiencing mild symptoms. He has instructed the Jan. 6 committee to proceed with Thursday evening's hearing without him.

The Democrat-led committee is expected to wrap up its summertime series of hearings on its findings so far with Thursday evening's presentation on what former President Donald Trump was doing for 187 minutes on Jan. 6 was he was out of the public eye.

Two former White House officials who served under Trump will testify at that hearing — former National Security Council member Matthew Pottinger and one-time Deputy White House Press Secretary Sarah Matthews, three sources familiar with the committee's work told NPR.

A committee spokesperson declined to comment on witness appearances for Thursday's hearing.

Matthews has been seen in video depositions at previous committee hearings, discussing what she and others saw the night before Jan. 6, including Trump dictating a tweet, and relaying a conversation with Trump on how to get "RINOS" – or Republicans in Name Only – to "do the right thing."

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Washington desk