By Manu Raju and Annie Grayer, CNN
Updated: Thu, 22 Sep 2022 22:42:35 GMT
Rep. Jamie Raskin, a member of the House select committee investigating January 6, 2021, on Thursday revealed the identity of a former Twitter employee whose anonymous testimony raising concerns about former President Donald Trump's comments on the social media platform was featured at a hearing this summer.
The Maryland Democrat told CNN that he revealed Anika Navaroli's identity on Twitter because she wanted to come forward ahead of next week's hearing, though he said it hasn't yet been decided if her testimony will be part of that hearing.
"It's very scary for whistle blowers going up against big government or corporate bureaucracies," Raskin said. "But as more people have come forward, people have grown more comfortable that they can tell the truth and also be public about it."
"I think the American public has been very supportive of people who come forward and tell the truth, and she has an extraordinary story to tell about repeated warnings that were lodged with Twitter about very pro-violent messages that were being posted in advance of January 6, and the company not taking any action on it."
Navaroli, who was on the company's content moderation team, had testified to the committee that she was alarmed by content posted on Twitter by the Proud Boys and other extremist groups that echoed statements by Trump.
According to testimony featured at a hearing in July, where the committee did not name her, Navaroli said when asked for her gut feeling the night before January 6: "I believe I sent a Slack message to someone that said something along the lines of, 'When people are shooting each other tomorrow, I will try and rest in the knowledge that we tried.'"
"For months I had been begging and anticipating and attempting to raise the reality that if we made no intervention into what I saw occurring, people were going to die. On January 5 I realized no intervention was coming, and even as hard as I had tried to create one or implement one there was nothing. We were at the whims and mercy of a violent crowd that was locked and loaded."
Raskin identified Navaroli in a tweet Thursday afternoon, saying, "In July I shared shocking testimony from an anonymous Twitter employee about warning signs she saw of what was coming on Jan. 6. Today I'm honored to share her identity with you. Thank you, Anika Navaroli, for answering the call of the Committee and your country."
He told CNN it was her decision to come forward. "She wanted to go public, and I think she is being you know, she's been widely celebrated for her courage and her patriotism and doing this."
As for news that may be generated at the next hearing, Raskin said that is in the "eye of the beholder."
"I believe that the American public understands all the basic elements of what happened in the same way that we do. People understand that the former President wouldn't take no for an answer," Raskin said.
"So I think the American public gets that now. The public really understands it. But undoubtedly, there are significant details that are still outstanding, and I hope we can make them public. But, you know, but it will be in the eye of the beholder."