U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville Admits He Lied About Attending January 5 Pre-Insurrection Meeting at Trump International Hotel

The senator's confession contains grievous new lies, however, suggesting that the meeting may be even more significant—and worth hiding—than previously imagined.

On January 26, 2021, less than three weeks after the armed assault on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, Proof broke the news of a stunning pre-insurrection war council held at the private residence of Donald Trump inside Trump International Hotel. The event was attended by at least twenty of the most powerful people in Trump’s inner circle, including three (possibly more) U.S. senators, several Trump administration officials, multiple members of Trump’s family, Trump’s personal attorney, top-level staff from Trump’s 2016 political campaign, and a slew of powerful GOP officials. There was even a call-in from the Proud Boys’ liaison to the GOP, convicted felon Ali Alexander.

The Proof report was so shocking that it prompted the Alabama Political Reporter to ask one of Alabama’s two senators whether he had (as Proof reported) been at any sort of meeting at Trump International Hotel on January 5. Tommy Tuberville, the senator in question, said “no.” Not just “no,” but an emphatic, comprehensive, authoritative “no.” Esquire ran a squib about Tuberville’s denial—and the fact that it was contradicted by a photograph of Tuberville at Trump International Hotel taken on January 5 and posted on Instagram (see above), but thereafter the issue disappeared.

Until now.

The Alabama Political Reporter reports that Tuberville now admits that he was lying about January 5. The reason for this sudden confession—for instance, the possibility that the January 5 war council is now being investigated by the FBI, making continued lies about it untenable for such a high-profile public servant—remains unclear. While Tuberville’s stunning confession came several weeks ago, until now (a) it hasn’t been reported outside Alabama (a circumstance whose explanation remains almost as unclear as Tuberville’s reason for lying in the first instance), and as importantly (b) no comprehensive attempt has been made to deconstruct by far the most troubling aspect of Tuberville’s confession.

Namely, that the confession itself is a lie.

Here, then, is an itemization of the five most significant lies in Tuberville’s confession, whose depth and scope suggest that the senator is exhibiting a continued, inexplicable insistence on hiding whatever happened at Trump International Hotel on January 5:

  1. Tuberville says that the January 5 event was a fundraiser. It was not a fundraiser, according to attendees Charles W. Herbster and Daniel Beck, who insist the meeting was a strategy session squarely focused on January 6 and the possibility of overturning the 2020 presidential election by (as the Omaha World-Herald has reported was the subject of the meeting) “discuss[ing] how to pressure more members of Congress to object to the Electoral College results that made Joe Biden the winner.” Herbster—not just a meeting attendee but a Nebraska gubernatorial candidate and the national chairman of Trump’s Agriculture and Rural Advisory Committee as of January 5—wrote on Facebook, as the meeting was occurring, that its topic was “patriots…joining…in a battle for justice and truth.” No mention was made of fundraising. As for Beck, he says that he “spent the day” at Trump International Hotel on January 5, and in doing so “got to hang out with Rudy Giuliani, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Don Jr., Michael Lindell…and talk about the status of things. Several senators sat with us…it was a really intimate setting and it was really cool because we got to hear first-hand their take on how things are going, what things are looking like, and what to expect for tomorrow [January 6] and through inauguration. And there’s a lot of people showing up today in DC—I can’t wait for tomorrow. It’s gonna be a big day. A lot of big things are going to be happening. So hang in there, keep the faith…” Another of the apparent meeting attendees, Ali Alexander, who spoke to meeting attendee Kimberly Guilfoyle by phone as the meeting was unfolding, has publicly said that he and three Trump Congressional allies (Reps. Paul Gosar, Andy Biggs and Mo Brooks) “schemed up” putting “maximum pressure” on Congress by putting so many people at the Capitol on January 6 that Congress would “hear[ ] our loud roar from outside” and choose to back Trump rather than the results of the 2020 election. Within an hour or so of the phone call, Alexander had led a “Victory or death!” chant at Freedom Plaza. {Note: Media Matters reports that at a December rally Alexander said he was in touch with “people from the White House”; per Media Matters, Alexander “appeared to encourage physical violence against members of Congress and other politicians who he claimed helped ‘steal’ the [2020] election.”}

  2. Tuberville says that he did not “meet” with Donald Trump during the fundraiser. There is growing evidence—which Proof will publish a report on shortly—that Trump attended the January 5 meeting via speakerphone or video conference, making Tuberville’s claim of not “meeting” with Trump at Trump International Hotel misleading at best, and a deliberate prevarication at worst.

  3. Tuberville says he “stayed at the hotel fundraiser only briefly.” This is a lie, and one clearly intended to minimize not just Tuberville’s involvement in the January 5 meeting but the event itself. The photo above was taken at Trump International Hotel on January 5—as Tuberville now concedes—but also appears to have been taken in the daytime. As reported by Proof and thereafter by the Alabama Political Reporter, meeting attendee Charles Herbster posted at 8:33PM that he was in the middle of the meeting, and meeting attendee Daniel Beck posted at 10:27PM that the meeting had just concluded. If only Herbster and Beck’s social media posts are considered, the “brief” meeting was at least two hours long; if the Instagram photo of Tuberville is considered, the senator (as well as at least two other United States senators, per Beck) was at the meeting for far more than two hours. It is notable that Beck says he “spent the day” at Trump International Hotel, despite the volume of events happening outside the hotel on January 5. Beck’s statement implies that key meetings about January 6 were happening at Trump’s D.C. hotel throughout the day, not just during the evening hours, which would explain the photos of Tuberville, Michael Flynn, Rudy Giuliani intelligence adviser Phil Waldron, and Donald Trump Jr. apparently taken during the day on January 5.

  4. Tuberville says he was “asked…[to] speak”, but he will not say by whom. While not a lie in itself, that Tuberville won’t reveal who summoned him to meet with all of Trump’s top advisers is telling. While there were two potential donors at the meeting—Herbster and Beck, the only two men said to have been at the meeting who have publicly acknowledged being there, even as others (notably Flynn and David Bossie) continue to deny being present, which may explain why Tuberville feels comfortable dishonestly calling the event a “fundraiser”—in fact Herbster was a Trump administration official and adviser at the time, and Beck appears to have been present only because his father Doyle Beck, a GOP operative, was apparently present alongside Beck family friend Layne Bangerter, another (indeed an even more powerful) GOP operative. When a powerful politician is “asked…to speak” at a fundraiser, the implication is either that the party that is benefitting from the fundraiser or a donor planning to attend the fundraiser has made the request; but Tuberville claims Trump had nothing to do with the meeting, and there don’t appear to have been any donors at the meeting who were present in that capacity.

  5. Tuberville says he was only present at Trump International Hotel for “five, 10 minutes, then I left.” The public statements by Herbster and Beck alone, made on January 5—therefore, at a time they could not have known the statements would be controversial, providing their words with an indicia of reliability—contradict this claim by Tuberville. {Note: Tuberville’s claim that he spent more time walking to the “fundraiser” than attending it doesn’t pass the smell test, as it’s simply inconsistent with what then-President Trump would’ve expected of a top Congressional allies attending a major event at one of his properties.}

  6. Tuberville is at great pains to say that the “fundraiser” was not about January 6, but “about the future: 2022.” This, as has been noted above, is a lie. Both Charles Herbster and Daniel Beck contemporaneously said the event concerned January 6.

It turns out that Proof was correct, as well, about the size of the January 5 gathering.

Whereas Daniel Beck said that about “fifteen” people were at the event, the tally taken by Proof from attendee social media posts and public reporting put the actual number at twenty. Presumably aware of the reporting at Proof—as the Alabama Political Reporter specifically confronted him with it—Tuberville says that the number of people present at the war council on January 5 was “probably…fifteen, twenty people.”

The question that still remains unanswered—which Proof may be about to answer in the next two days—is this one: “Who was Tommy Tuberville trying to protect, in lying (and continuing to lie) about an event he knew he had been photographed entering? Was he protecting himself, or the former President of the United States?”

Senator Tuberville may have told the Birmingham News that the January 6 insurrection is “all behind us now”, but nothing could be further from the truth—especially for Tuberville, who now finds himself at the very heart of the most significant federal criminal investigation in recent American political history. Stay tuned for much more.