The dog ate my Jan 6th texts

10 mins read

The dog ate my Jan 6th texts

Texts about Jan 6th insurrection for Trump’s top DHS officials are missing. Scooby denies eating them.

This discovery of missing records for the senior-most homeland security officials acting Secretary Chad Wolf and acting deputy secretary Ken Cuccinelli, increases the volume of potential evidence that has vanished regarding the time around the Capitol attack… The office of Inspector General Joseph V. Cuffari (another Trump appointee) did not press the department leadership at that time to explain why they did not preserve these records, nor seek ways to recover the lost data. Cuffari also failed to alert Congress to the potential destruction of government records. – Esquire

This relationship map created with the free Kumu app maps the connections between the individuals involved with the missing texts scandal.

Trump appointees lose their Jan 6th texts

Share this relationship map freely with this link or as a GIF

Defying Congress

“In defiance of an explicit congressional request and the law, text messages to and from three top Trump-era officials at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from early January 2021 are missing, according to an internal agency record obtained by the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) and congressional sources. Cuffari’s office has kept Congress in the dark about the lost DHS leadership texts for more than five months. 

The new revelations of missing text messages to and from the senior-most DHS leaders point to a systemic failure by the department beyond the Secret Service to adhere to federal records law — a problem that many agencies have. Wolf said he was “unaware” that any of his texts are missing. “I have no clue” about this, he said. “All my phone and text messages should be available.” Cuccinelli did not respond to a request for comment.” – Project on Government Oversight

Mr. Ornato, who was Donald Trump’s deputy chief of staff for operations, has become a key figure in a dispute over testimony from the Jan. 6 committee’s star witness. Anthony M. Ornato had left his role as the Secret Service agent in charge of President Donald J. Trump’s protective detail in late 2019 when the culture of internal strife that Mr. Trump fostered throughout his term left the president’s top advisers frantically searching for a candidate to fill a key role: deputy White House chief of staff for operations.

The title does not fully capture the significance of the job, which entails ensuring the continuity of government and overseeing the logistics of the president’s movements outside the White House, security and the military office. – NY Times

How to search a relationship map

Relationship maps let you get the big picture and also see the connections between people, as well as track actions and payments between them. You can search by clicking on a person, or the relationship link between them. You can also search by a keyword which could be a name or a phrase.

In this example I searched for any relationships which have the word ‘payment’ in them. This reveals that Chad Wolf is employed by PAC funded by Trump in research done by the Project On Government Oversight (POGO).

Who pays whom?

“The House January 6 Committee recently disclosed that Wolf is employed by the America First Policy Institute, which received $1 million from Trump’s Save America political action committee. Most of the money went not to challenging election results in the courts, but rather to the Save America PAC, which Trump launched a week after the 2020 election. The committee found the former president’s political action committee, which is now his main political entity, contributed “millions” to pro-Trump organizations, including:

  • $1 million to the Conservative Partnership Institute, where former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows is senior partner
  • $1 million to the America First Policy Institute, a research organization that employs numerous former Trump administration officials, including
  • Former Small Business Administration Administrator Linda McMahon,
  • Former senior counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway
  • Former acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf

Wolf and Trump’s links haven’t been completely severed. The House January 6 Committee recently disclosed that Wolf is employed by the America First Policy Institute, which received $1 million from Trump’s Save America political action committee. These financial ties and the possible fear of closing off employment opportunities in a future administration make contemporaneous records like texts potentially more reliable than after-the-fact testimony that may be tilted to protect a relationship.” – POGO

How to search for relationships

The relationships between people are often hard to visualize with words, but obvious in a diagram. In this example, I explored Tony Ornato’s connections.

  • Open the side panel by clicking on the three dots on the left hand side
  • Click on the person of interest. I chose Tony Ornato.
  • Click on the FOCUS button on the right hand side
  • This brings up Ornato’s relationships with Trump and Murray
  • Click on the relationship arrow between them for details on how they are connected
  • Click on the CLEAR FOCUS button to go back to the full map
  • Click on the FIT TO SCREEN icon on the right to go back to the full map

It’s easy. Try it for yourself to see how Marc Short, Chief of Staff for Mike Pence is connected to and interactions with Tim Giebels who was head of Pence’s Secret Service Security team.

Project On Government Oversight 

The Project On Government Oversight (POGO) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that investigates and exposes waste, corruption, abuse of power, and when the government fails to serve the public or silences those who report wrongdoing. It champions reforms to achieve a more effective, ethical, and accountable federal government that safeguards constitutional principles.

POGO investigates waste, fraud, corruption, and abuse of power to find deficiencies in federal government policies, programs, and projects. They focus on areas where government and powerful private interests intersect, a nexus where corruption and abuse of power can thrive if oversight isn’t strong: pharmaceuticals, financial services, public procurement—particularly arms sales, the defense industry, and the growing private prison and detention industry—and natural resource extractive industries.

POGO’s investigators are experts in working with whistleblowers and other sources inside the government who come forward with information that we then verify using the Freedom of Information Act, interviews, and other fact-finding strategies. They publish these findings and release them to the media, Members of Congress and their constituents, executive branch agencies and offices, public interest groups, and our supporters.

Donate to POGO

TakeAway: Use relationship maps to expose connections and coverups.



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