Secret Insurrection Eve Meeting at White House Confirmed By Insurrectionist Attendee

Insurrectionist Rogan O'Handley went directly from a White House meeting that apparently involved a notorious foreign agent to a Stop the Steal rally—where he advocated revolution with Ali Alexander.

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Introduction

The January 6 insurrection produced so many thousands of hours of audio and video for journalists and federal investigators to sift through that even today, almost 90 days after then-president Donald Trump incited an armed assault on the U.S. Capitol, news breaks about events that occurred on January 4, January 5, and January 6 in the nation’s capital. All it takes to uncover certain of these events is a willingness to watch video and listen to audio of an extremely unpleasant—and sometimes seditionist—character.

Yesterday, Proof published a report on a risible recorded conversation between Roger Stone and Alex Jones that revealed new details about the ongoing federal investigation into these Trump allies’ roles in the planning and execution of the events that unfolded in DC in early January. Today’s revelation is considerably bigger, as it appears to close the loop on two of the most pressing open questions in America right now: What was Donald Trump doing in the hours before he incited an armed rebellion in the nation’s capital? And what did he know about plans to storm the Capitol when he took the stage at the Ellipse?

Proof has already established, across dozens of fully sourced articles such as this one, that on the night of January 5 there was a massive, twenty-person “war council” of Trump family members, campaign staff, legal advisers, administration officials, mega-donors, national security experts, GOP attorneys, Pentagon liaisons, GOP senators, and advocates of violent insurrection and the imposition of martial law inside one of Trump’s two DC residences: his private residence inside Trump International Hotel.

Confirmed attendees at this meeting included Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, Corey Lewandowski, Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), Rudy Giuliani, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Michael Lindell, Charles Herbster, Adam Piper, Daniel Beck, Doyle Beck, and (via telephone) insurrectionist leader Ali Alexander.

Individuals not yet confirmed to have been present—but who the overwhelming weight of the evidence suggests were in Trump’s private residence that night—include Sidney Powell and Layne Bangerter. Two attendees have not yet had their identifies revealed: two more Republican senators confirmed to have attended, but yet to be identified.

Three individuals have claimed, either in statements to media or to the public via their attorneys, that they were not present at the meeting—even though the overwhelming weight of the evidence suggests that they were. This latter list includes Michael Flynn, Peter Navarro, and David Bossie.

A twentieth person, Rudy Giuliani adviser Phil Waldron, was photographed in Trump International Hotel at the same time as many of the confirmed meeting attendees, and so is extremely likely to have been present, though this has as yet not been confirmed.

But Proof has also reported on a second meeting that occurred on January 5, this one at Donald Trump’s other DC residence: the White House. Just as there’s evidence that the Trump International Hotel meeting ran from midday January 5 through that evening, there is a wide time-range during which the White House meeting may have occurred.

Confirmed attendees at this latter meeting—at least prior to the report you’re reading now—included Ivanka Trump, Eduardo Bolsonaro (a corrupt son of corrupt Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro), and Nestor Forster Jr. (Brazil’s outgoing ambassador to the United States).

Individuals whose attendance at this January 5 White House meeting is overwhelmingly suggested by the weight of the evidence include Donald Trump and Jared Kushner.

Today’s breaking news changes fundamentally our understanding of everything I just wrote above—making all of it considerably worse, and arguably more criminal, than we previously believed.

{Note: There is also some reason to suspect that two attendees of the Trump International meeting—Giuliani and Lewandowski—may have been at the White House on January 5.}

December 21, 2020: The Meeting Before the Meeting

Needless to say, Trump convening a strategy session at the White House to discuss how to overturn the November 2020 presidential election is not, in itself, surprising. As Proof has detailed with citations to both live video of the event and reporting in the New York Times, Trump convened just such a meeting at the White House during the day and evening of December 21, 2020—about two weeks before the insurrection—and attendees at this event included some of the most notable insurrectionists in the United States today, among them Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and the now-notorious Ali Alexander co-conspirators: Reps. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Andy Biggs (R-AZ), and Mo Brooks (R-AL).

Also present were Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Rudy Giuliani, and a rag-tag crew of Freedom Caucus radicals that included, per a Politico report, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Jody Hice (R-GA).

Politico notes that the meeting—which included several breakout sessions—lasted at least three hours, over an hour of which time involved lawmakers then seeking to overturn a certified election meeting with the President of the United States himself.

{Note: Rogan O’Handley, the chief subject of this Proof article, tweeted, within 72 hours of the Freedom Caucus’s December 21 meeting with Pence, that if Pence didn’t help Trump overturn the election, he should be regarded as a “traitor.”}

The December 21 White House meeting was cast by its attendees as a dry discussion of Congressional protocols.

The January 5 Trump International Hotel meeting was cast by at least one attendee, Tommy Tuberville, as a fundraiser, while another attendee, Daniel Beck—speaking on social media at a time he couldn’t have known his words would become controversial—deemed it a comprehensive report on what the president and his top advisers thought would unfold on January 6.

The January 5 meeting at the White House was misleadingly cast as little more than an opportunity for a Trump family friend who happened to be the son of the President of Brazil to introduce his newborn daughter to “Aunt Ivanka.” Bolsonaro claimed that his trip to Washington, which lasted from January 4 through January 8 and involved at least two visits to the White House, was nothing more than a “vacation” for his family.

With just six words—“I was just at the White House”—far-right provocateur and now-infamous insurrectionist Rogan O’Handley may have permanently altered our understanding of all of these meetings.

Three Things to Remember Before You Read On

Before I go any further, I’d like to ask everyone to keep three important things in mind:

(1) In early October 2020, just five weeks before the general election, Rogan O’Handley appeared at a Trump rally in Tampa with Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle. Also on stage with O’Handley, Trump Jr., and Guilfoyle that day was Trump attorney Pam Bondi and a local politician personally endorsed by Trump, Anna Paulina Luna.

Orlando Weekly notes that the event—which pictures depict as surprisingly intimate, with only about three hundred fifty attendees—was also attended by a contingent of Proud Boys. According to BuzzFeed News, during his speech Trump’s son explicitly “enlist[ed] Rogan O’Handley, a MAGA social media influencer who goes by @DC_Draino and who also spoke at the rally, to chime in [on Kamala Harris].”

Donald Trump Jr. appears to be Handley’s chief entry-point to Trump’s inner circle. On January 5, 2021, both Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle were at the “war council” at Trump International Hotel. But oddly, O’Handley was at the White House, instead—at least before he headed to Freedom Plaza to give a speech. Keep this in mind as you read on.

(2) On January 5, 2021, O’Handley appeared alongside Ali Alexander at the Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America at Freedom Plaza. O’Handley said he had just been at the White House, but that he couldn’t reveal who else had been at the meeting.

We don’t know if O’Handley’s stage-mate Ali Alexander was at the White House with him. But we do know that he says he spoke to Kimberly Guilfoyle on the evening of January 5, at a time we know that Guilfoyle was at Trump International Hotel with Donald Trump Jr.

(3) As Proof has previously reported in discussing Corey Lewandowski’s caginess about the location of his meeting with Trump on January 5, Charles Herbster’s odd Facebook typo suggesting that he was confused about whether his January 5 meeting was at the White House or Trump International Hotel, and the strange fact of Eduardo Bolsonaro meeting with the Trump family at the White House even as several of his key constituents were at the “war council” at Trump’s private DC residence, there is some reason to believe—see below for more—that the January 5 meetings at Trump’s public (White House) and private (Trump International) residences were just a single meeting conducted by video conference.

The Implications of a “Single Meeting” Hypothesis

Given the above, it remains possible—though additional investigation is needed—that Alexander’s reference to speaking to Kimberly Guilfoyle on January 5 referred to some sort of video or audio link-up between the White House (where Alexander’s compatriot Rogan O’Handley, and possibly Ali himself, were) and Trump International Hotel (where Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle, O’Handley’s contacts in Trump’s inner circle, were).

Significant evidence on this question can be found in a bizarre interview Ali Alexander gave with Breitbart on the morning of the insurrection, in which he at once claimed to be aware of President Trump’s “mood” and the mindset of the Trump “family” and connected this rare knowledge to a communication he had had the night before with Guilfoyle. As he told his interviewer, “The president’s mood is [that] he’s in ‘fighter’ mode….In fact, I got a call last night from Kimberly Guilfoyle, and none of us are stopping [the fight against the election results]….the [Trump] family is not stopping.”

Alexander even averred that he had some knowledge of what Trump would say and do at the Ellipse, insisting that he knew that Trump was displaying a “fighting spirit” on the night before the insurrection and “I think his speech is going to reflect that.”

{Note: The Breibart interview is also notable for (a) the interviewer’s reference to a “robocall” he’d received promoting Alexander’s January 6 events, as Adam Piper, the man behind the robocalls, was at Trump International with Guilfoyle on January 5, and (b) the interviewer’s endorsement of the “[mass] text messages” Stop the Steal had used to swell the pro-Trump crowd on January 6, as Daniel Beck, another Trump International “war council” attendee, is the CEO of Txtwire, a company whose specialization is mass text-messaging for large events.}

About Rogan O’Handley

Rogan O’Handley is a former Hollywood entertainment lawyer who Donald Trump “casually retweets”, according to a profile in The Federalist. Handley, who goes by the handle “DC Draino” on social media—a reference to Trump’s insipid catchphrase, “Drain the Swamp”—has 1.8 million followers on Instagram. Meanwhile, Twitter has permanently banned him for violating its “civic integrity” policy. Politico calls him a “MAGA influencer.”

A friend of far-right provocateur Candace Owens, during Donald Trump’s presidency O’Handley began posting far-right memes on his then-private Instagram account; in May 2020, Trump retweeted him. Somewhere in there, O’Handley suddenly moved to Florida; was invited to the White House (for the first time) for a social media summit; began publishing editorials and appearing as a commentator at Fox Business Channel; and announced that he would shortly (per The Federalist) “launch a full-fledged media company.” Prior to the 2020 election, in addition to appearing alongside Trump’s son and his girlfriend in Tampa, O’Handley also appeared at a 2019 pre-pandemic event with alleged January 5 meeting attendee David Bossie, confirmed December 21 White House meeting attendee Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), and top pre-insurrection Trump adviser and Stop the Steal advocate Steve Bannon.

If you haven’t heard of O’Handley, you’re not alone. Suffice to say that (a) the man is very well-known in far-right circles, (b) Donald Trump loves him, and (c) he has done everything he can—including move to Florida and refer to Stella Immanuel (a Texas doc who believes in “alien DNA, reptile government leaders, and [Trump’s since-discredited solution to COVID-19] hydroxychloroquine”) as nothing short of “the Rosa Parks of medicine”—to put himself in Trump’s orbit. On November 8, 2020, after Trump decisively lost the election, O’Handley even declared on social media that “fake news doesn’t determine the president; the American people do. This ain’t over.”

Apparently O’Handley’s long courtship of Trump worked—as he spent Insurrection Eve at the White House.

O’Handley: A Brief History

But before we get to more information about how well O’Handley’s transition from entertainment lawyer in Los Angeles to insurrectionist inside the Trump White House worked—and why it worked—we have to understand what O’Handley was doing in the lead-up to the insurrection.

On January 2, 2021, just 96 hours before the insurrection, O’Handley posted a picture of Donald Trump, the Statue of Liberty, and the Archangel Michael in a single frame with the following text from the King James Bible (excerpt only, emphasis supplied):

Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Here’s the accompanying meme:

On January 4, 48 hours before the insurrection, O’Handley used his Instagram account to praise Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene—who had met with Trump at the White House two weeks earlier to game out the likely outcome of January 6—for being a “badass patriot that defends the Constitution and isn’t afraid to scrap with Swamp Rats [non-Trumpist members of Congress].”

O’Handley’s reference, here, to getting into aggressive confrontations with members of Congress who don’t support radical Trumpist views would turn out to be merely a foreshadowing of events to come. Later that day, O’Handley took to Instagram to urge Trump to fire the FBI director immediately; fire the CIA director immediately; and declassify decades’ worth of government documents that conspiracy theorists have been fantasizing about since Barry Goldwater ran for president in 1964. Specifically, O’Handley wanted Trump to release information on alien visitations to Earth, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and more.

In exhorting Trump in this way—“Do it! No matter what happens—do it”, O’Handley urged—the former entertainment lawyer seemed to be losing the plot, a supposition only confirmed by his next Instagram post (also on January 4), which screenshotted an unsubstantiated claim by insurrectionist Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) that “violent” criminals from “antifa” were roving around DC looking to harm Trump supporters; O’Handley’s response to Senator Hawley (emphasis in original): “[Your family is being targeted] because [you are] fighting to fix election fraud in the Senate. WE GOT [sic] YOUR BACK. #FightForAmerica.”

On January 5, O’Handley’s Instagram account shows no posts whatsoever. Either they were deleted or O’Handley disappeared from Instagram during this critical period.

On January 6—Insurrection Day—O’Handley used his Instagram account to spread conspiracy theories about the armed attack on the U.S. Capitol, falsely claiming that (a) the Capitol was stormed by “Leftist agitators disguised as Trump supporters”, and (b) the actual Trump supporters at the Capitol were “peaceful”, and were “set up” by police officers who “open[ed] the Capitol gates” for them so that they could later claim that Trump supporters had “breached” the Capitol. O’Handley also lied about the size of the crowd at Trump’s Ellipse speech, saying it was “over one million” strong, when in fact the Associated Press reports that the crowd numbered only in the “tens of thousands.” O’Handley falsely added that “99.99999%” of the Trump supporters in DC on January 6—for those doing the math at home, that would be all but one Trump supporter in Washington on Insurrection Day—were peaceful. In fact, 800 people illegally breached the Capitol on January 6, and the DOJ estimates that, by the end of its investigation, over 400 people will have been indicted on federal criminal charges.

O’Handley went even further than this, however, alleging in a tweet that the entire insurrection was a false flag operation coordinated by the FBI and CIA:

Remember, Antifa openly planned to dress as Trump supporters and cause chaos today. It’s extremely easy for a radical Leftist to throw on a U.S. flag shirt and MAGA hat, engage in violence, then let the media delegitimize an entire movement. In fact, it’s a preferred tactic of dictatorship (and 3-letter [federal] agencies).

{Note: The Hartford Courant reports that on January 6, the same University of Connecticut student was pictured posing, in separate photographs, with Alex Jones and Rogan O’Handley; in a third photograph, a companion of the first student is shown talking to Michael Lindell.}

So who was O’Handley writing for on January 6, as he lied about crowd size, about the presence of antifa in DC, and about the “peacefulness” of Trump’s insurrectionists? Who was he hoping or expecting might read his words and take them as the gospel truth about what was unfolding at the Capitol? As a MAGA “influencer,” who was he trying to influence?

Just so, January 7, when O’Handley took to Instagram to cast doubt on whether Biden would be inaugurated, declare him an illegitimate president, and opine that American democracy was no longer extant, who was he speaking to, hoping to please, trying to impress, or otherwise do the bidding of? What did he believe he was accomplishing? And when O’Handley returned to Instagram on January 8, immediately after Trump had been banned by Twitter—taking the opportunity to insist that the “President of the United States…give an emergency speech….This [Trump being banned from certain social media platforms] is a matter of national security!”—who did he believe would be responsive to his implicit call for the invocation of some form of martial law, emergency authority, or the Insurrection Act of 1807? Who had he been spending time with that these seditious sentiments would’ve seemed appropriate to him? What about when he accused Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi of “insurrection” on January 12, demanding that she be immediately removed from office? Or when he insisted that the second impeachment of Trump was a “coup”? Or when, the next day, he endorsed the Articles of Impeachment against president-elect Joe Biden announced by Marjorie Taylor Greene? Or when, during Trump’s final week in office, he repeatedly pushed the “Big Lie” that Trump had won the 2020 election? America might well wonder who O’Handley got such sentiments from, or alternately shared them with, in the days after (and, as critically, before) the insurrection, besides his large audience on social media.

On January 18, after QAnon’s anticipated “second-wave” insurrection action failed to materialize at statehouses across the country, and Trump confirmed that he would be leaving office, O’Handley’s tone suddenly changed: “I feel your frustrations about election integrity”, he told his 1.8 million Instagram followers. “But we won’t prevail by engaging in political violence. We need to regroup, grow alternative social media platforms and television networks, and spread the truth about globalist tyrants.”

This rhetoric in no way resembled what O’Handley had been saying pre-insurrection.

January 5

On the evening of January 5, Rogan O’Handley spoke at the Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America alongside the three Stop the Steal co-organizers—Ali Alexander, Roger Stone, and Alex Jones—as well as former Trump aide George Papadopoulos and Trump surrogate Mark Burns. Alexander, with O’Handley waiting in the wings, led a “Victory or death!” chant, having tweeted pre-rally that if Congress didn’t block the certification of Biden’s win on the following day, “everyone can guess what me and 500,000 others will do to that building [the U.S. Capitol]. 1776 [a violent revolution] is always an option” (emphasis in original).

O’Handley had every reason to know Alexander’s brand of rhetoric, as not only at the rally, but for weeks in advance of the rally, Alexander had been doing his level best to foment violence. As MMFA has reported,

Before the deadly January 6 attack at the Capitol, Stop the Steal organizer Ali Alexander told right-wing media audiences that they should be afraid because their enemies want to enslave them, put them in “gulags”, or “kill” them. He also offered purported solutions, telling followers that they have “to punch the left in the nose”, “do brave acts”, “fight”, and “have vengeance if we have traitors [within the Republican Party]”….the Daily Beast’s Will Sommer documented numerous instances in which Alexander “repeatedly raised the prospect of using violence in the weeks ahead of January 6”, including on social media and in speeches.

Even as the January 6 insurrection was unfolding, Alexander released a video declaring—ostensibly in regard to attempts to breach the U.S. Capitol, not any accompanying violence—“I don’t disavow this. I do not denounce this.” In February, after going into hiding, Alexander released a video promising that his political “comeback”, which he slated for April 2021 or shortly thereafter, would involve “a lot of people…rioting.”

This is the rhetoric of the man who Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend, top Trump adviser Kimberly Giulfoyle, was in contact with the night before the insurrection. But what about the man who has clearly stated he was at the White House that night? Here’s what O’Handley said to the Rally to Save America crowd just after his secret meeting at the White House (I say “secret” because O’Handley said attendees could not be revealed):

It may be forty degrees out here, but it sure feels like 1776. I was just at the White House. I can't tell you who I was meeting with, but they’re optimistic. They think something good is going to happen tomorrow. All I gotta say is, “It damn well better happen,” because I don’t want to see these patriots more pissed off than they already are—in DC, right next to Congress….If you want to see what patriots do when they get in an uprising, then vote to certify the fraud tomorrow. But you better make the right decision tomorrow, or you're gonna have a whole lot of pissed off patriots in DC.

{Note: emphasis supplied. Note also that by the time O’Handley spoke, “1776” had been used by Alexander as a rhetorical stand-in for “violent revolution.”}

That O’Handley would go directly from the White House (where he had met with individuals whose names he wouldn’t reveal) to a rally featuring “Victory or death!” chants and claim, as would Alexander, that he now knew the thinking of the Trump administration—while also predicting that “pissed off patriots” would surely start an “uprising” in DC, “right next to Congress [at the Capitol],” if Joe Biden’s win wasn’t blocked by a joint session of Congress on January 6—is absolutely chilling.

Conclusion

There remains no explanation for Lewandowski telling media that he met with Trump on January 5, but wouldn’t reveal where it happened or who attended the meeting, but also that he had no problem with reporters reviewing White House visitor logs—a trio of positions suggesting that Lewandowski somehow “met” with Trump without being in the building Trump was in.

There remains no explanation for why Trump administration official Charles Herbster exhibited confusion on Facebook about whether he could rightly say he was “standing in the White House.” He later amended his Facebook post to say that he was at Trump International Hotel, in Trump’s private residence, along with all of Trump’s inner circle.

There remains no explanation for why Eduardo Bolsonaro—whose father, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, is now cleaning house at the top of the Brazilian government in a fashion that raises fears he’ll do in actuality what Trump advisers like Michael Flynn were advising Trump to do (declare martial law) if he loses his next election—was at the White House on January 5, even as some of his most well-connected U.S. allies were convened at Trump International Hotel.

There remains no explanation for why Corey Lewandowski’s business associate and would-be Defense Policy Board co-member David Bossie says he was not at Trump’s hotel on January 5, and calls Charles Herbster—who insists he was in a meeting with Bossie—a “nice old guy” who was just confused about who he was in a meeting with. That “nice old guy” was then a Trump administration official planning to run for Governor of Nebraska; Bossie’s implication that Herbster is senile is as unpersuasive as the denials by Flynn, Tuberville, and Peter Navarro that they were at Trump’s hotel on January 5 when they’re all confirmed (by photographic evidence) to have been there.

There remains no reason for Eduardo Bolsonaro to have pretended that his January 5 meeting at the White House was merely intended to introduce his newborn to a family friend, when we know that he brought Brazil’s ambassador to the United States with him—and that Rogan O’Handley, as well as some other as yet unnamed individuals, were also present in the White House at the time (and had an equal interest in the proposition of a Trump coup as Eduardo Bolsonaro and his father so evidently had).

At present, there’s only one explanation for so many people feeling the need to lie about January 5, and for being so cagey about where and when critical Team Trump meetings happened on that day. The explanation, yet to be confirmed, is nevertheless simple to the point of preposterousness: Team Trump convened a video conference call. Some attendees were at Trump’s private residence in DC; some attendees were at Trump’s public residence in DC; others may have attended from their private offices. {Note: Bossie told the Alabama Political Reporter that there’s where he was on January 5.}

What O’Handley’s stunning admission—and his eerily familiar caginess about who he was with at his January 5 meeting at the White House—seems to now confirm is that Trump was indeed involved in at least some of these January 5 discussions, in exactly the fashion he had been involved in a December 21 pre-insurrection strategy session at the White House just two weeks earlier.

So what makes January 5 so different from December 21? Why was the latter meeting covered widely by major media, with an attendee list that was publicly distributed, while the former meeting remains perhaps the single most lied-about event of the entire insurrection timeline, the actual assault on the Capitol excepted? Presumably, Team Trump’s cause for concern is either something about the attendee list for these meetings or something about the topics that were discussed at the meetings—or both.

Rogan O’Handley’s confession closes the circle between these two possibilities by (a) introducing an unabashed insurrectionist to the White House end of any January 5 meetings, and (b) in so doing, establishing at least one likely topic of discussion at any such meeting: an “uprising.” There is no reason for FBI investigators to suspect, as an initial matter, that Ali Alexander expressed sentiments entirely different to Kimberly Guilfoyle than he did to the crowd at Freedom Plaza; just so, there is no reason for the FBI to believe that Rogan O’Handley went to the White House immediately before the Rally to Save America to articulate plans and viewpoints entirely dissimilar from what he was about to disseminate just a few hundred yards away to a crowd of thousands.

So what does all this add up to? Well, powerful—if not yet ironclad—evidence that the White House knew what was going to happen on January 6, and that this is precisely why Trump lied about going to the Capitol during his Ellipse speech, and why anyone who attended any component of Trump’s pre-insurrection meetings on January 5 subsequently avoided the Capitol as well. Ali Alexander, Rogan O’Handley, and any other insurrectionists who the White House conspired with on January 5 and in the days before appear to have made certain that the White House understood the mood of the January 6 crowd, and its intentions, and the intentions of the mob’s organizers, before Trump took the stage at the Ellipse on January 6.

The result: by the time Trump took that stage, he had all the information he needed—as a matter of federal criminal law—to be aware he was about to incite a revolution.