January 6th, 2021. A cold, cloudy Wednesday in Washington DC when a pro-Trump mob gathered in front of the capitol during congress’s session to confirm Joe Biden as President, the mob, who claimed that the election was ‘stolen’ due to voter fraud, declared Donald Trump as the winner of the 2020 election. As the crowd turned violent and began beating on the capital doors, top lawmakers were forced to hide under tables in lockdown mode- involuntary witnessing the country’s violent political polarization.
‘Protesters are in the building,’ were the final words spoken in the live stream of congress’s hearing before it was abruptly shut off. After the mob forced entry into the capital, individuals scattered around the building and into the office of House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, where Richard Barnette- who identifies as a “white nationalist”– took pictures of his feet propped up on Pelosi’s desk and leaving a note that said, “WE WILL NOT BACK DOWN.”
Later on, a rioter, identified as Ashli Babbitt, is seen on video climbing through a shattered capital window when shots were fired, ultimately resulting in a fatality. According to Washington, DC police, three other individuals died due to ‘medical emergencies.’
Hours after the riots started, Trump posted a video on Twitter encouraging the mobs to go home, stating, “you are very special. I love you.” Trumps then tweeted, “These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly. Go for so long, Go home with love & peace. Remember this day forever!”
Shortly after Trump published these tweets, Twitter removed them for violating the Civic Integrity or Violent Threat policy, which resulted in Trump’s 12-hour suspension from the platform, as well as suspension from Instagram and Facebook until after Biden’s inauguration.
“We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great,” Said Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in a Facebook post “We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great. “Over the last several years, we have allowed President Trump to use our platform consistent with our own rules, at times removing content or labeling his posts when they violate our policies; We did this because we believe that the public has a right to the broadest possible access to political speech, even controversial speech. But the current context is now fundamentally different.”
Following the calling of the national guard, demonstrators left the faculty. The FBI removed five weapons from the building, and three were arrested. According to the FBI, two explosive devices were found at the Republican National Committee headquarter, leading to the Democratic National Committee’s headquarters being evacuated. The FBI posted a tweet on Thursday morning stated that the agency is currently seeking to identify individuals initiating violence.
After the mob dispersed, Trump committed to an ‘orderly transition’ on January 20th into the Biden-Harris administration. Currently, lawmakers are calling on Vice President Pence to enact the 25th amendment to impeach Donald Trump.
The riot, which was organized by StopTheSteal.US, a website made post-Donald Trumps claims that the election was ‘stolen’ and has spread various false claims of voter fraud, was promoted by Trump on December 20th, 2020, when the President tweeted, “Statistically impossible to have lost the 2020 Election, Big protest in DC on January 6th. Be there will be wild!”
The gathering named the ‘Save America March’ recruited masses in the thousands. Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani- a speaker at the event, encouraged the concept of ‘trial by combat.’
“If we’re wrong, we will be made fools of,” Giuliani said to the crowd. “But if we’re right, a lot of them will go to jail. So let’s have trial by combat.”
Donald Trump came on stage following Giuliani’s speech and encouraged the group to make way to the capitol building to “peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard” to congress members.
The attack on the capital received international attention from many world leaders. Foreign Minister Heiko Maas of Germany tweeted that it would be “self-righteous” to ‘point the finger’ at America- stating that counties worldwide should be aware of hatred and violence taking place globally. In August of 2020, Germany had attacks from far-right demonstrators that lead to demonstrators forcing their way into parliament.
“It would be self-righteous to point the finger at America alone,” Maas tweeted. “Even here, in Hanau, Halle, on the steps of the Reichstag, we have had to experience how agitation and inflammatory words turn into hateful deeds.”
What’s just happened
So far, both the Senate and House sergeant-at-arms have resigned from their positions in addition to the Capitol Police chief. What the House plans to do next, if Vice President Mike Pence does not invoke the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office, is impeach the President a second time. The drafts, the House says, are already completed. Should the Senate choose to convict the President, he will then be removed from office and barred from ever holding office again.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Klein Cain or Klein ISD.