Neo-Nazi supporters of President Donald Trump mounted a violent incursion of the US Capitol while the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate met in a joint session to tally the results of the Electoral College ballots for president and vice president in the 2020 election.
Trump terrorists were able to breach what has been called one of the most secure buildings on earth with minimal pushback despite presence of the United States Capitol Police, Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia, federal officers, Secret Service, National Guard, and other security
Niels Lesniewski, the chief correspondent for Congressional Quarterly and Roll Call, said, “The Capitol Building is under siege.”
“They’re shooting into the chamber,” tweeted Matt Fuller, a reporter for HuffPost, after he heard a loud ‘bang’ in the Capitol but he subsequently posted: “Alright, so I can’t *swear* there were gun shots. I saw the glass blow out of the chamber’s front door, and I heard an officer say shots fired. But everything is unconfirmed at this moment.”.
Shortly after 1 p.m. hundreds of angry Trump supporters forced their way through barriers lining the perimeter of the Capitol, where they scuffled with police clad in riot gear, some protesters calling the officers “traitors” for doing their jobs.
About 90 minutes later, police said demonstrators got into the building and the doors to the House and Senate were being locked. Shortly after, the House floor was evacuated by police.
An armed standoff was taking place at the House front door as of 3 p.m. ET, and police officers had their guns drawn at someone who is trying to breach it. A Trump supporter was also pictured standing at the Senate dais.
Vice President Mike Pence was also evacuated from Capitol, where he was to perform his role in the counting of electoral votes.
Trump addressed his supporters at a demonstration in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday marketed as the “Save America March” — slamming “weak Republicans,” accusing Democrats “put America last” and renewing his pressure on Pence to change the results of the presidential election.
Trump — who lost the popular and electoral college vote — continues to dispute the results, without evidence, and has encouraged his supporters to come to Washington, gather at the U.S. Capitol to demand that Congress overturn the election, and this mob violence is the result.
Video from inside the Capitol showed Trump supporters marching through Statuary Hall. The US Capitol Police is asking for additional law enforcement for assistance, including federal authorities, per a source familiar.
The more Republican politics becomes radicalized, it’s becoming difficult to distinguish the differences between hard right-wing Neo-Nazis and the GOP mainstream.
The entire D.C. National Guard will be activated within hours. The rapid expansion of military involvement came after D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser requested that guardsmen already on duty be sent to the Capitol, said a defense official and a District official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.
Bowser imposed a citywide curfew as the situation worsened at the U.S. Capitol building. From 6 p.m. Wednesday to 6 a.m. Thursday, Bowser said no one other than essential personnel would be allowed outdoors in the city.
The president’s legislative allies were making a hopeless last stand as Congress acted to finalize Biden’s victory, when hundreds of Trump supporters breached the Capitol, disrupting the debate over Republican objections to the electoral college results.
The chaotic scene emerged shortly after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) issued an emotional plea for his colleagues to confirm President-elect Joe Biden’s win and abandon efforts to subvert the results.
The U.S. Capitol locked down after protesters breached barricades amid violent clashes with Capitol police, and both chambers of Congress abruptly recessed as the mobs stormed the building.
An announcement inside the building where lawmakers were meeting to vote to affirm Biden’s victory warned that an “external security threat,” required no one could enter or exit the Capitol complex.
“Call me old-fashioned, but when armed insurgents breach the Capitol building at the request of a president, I’d call it an attempted coup,” said former Labor Secretary Robert Reich.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Capitol Building and Congressional Office Buildings remain closed to the public, and authorities knew well in advance that Trump invited his backers to urge lawmakers to defy the voters, but the fascist mobs had no difficulty getting inside while Congress was debating unfounded objections from Republicans.
“Friends of mine & people I’ve hired: I don’t have an explanation of their failure,” the former Sergeant at Arms says as law enforcement attempts to retake the Capitol grounds from protesters. “But there was a freaking failure.”
“Trump started a fascist movement. Many observers mistakenly think that Trumpism is all about Donald Trump,” said Lisa McCormick, a leading progressive Democrat in New Jersey. “It’s not. It’s about a 21st century American version of authoritarian fascism. Ted Cruz, Donald Trump Jr., Sen. Tom Cotton and Josh Hawley are competing to be its next leader.”
“I want to see President Biden make these criminals pay for their actions, from Trump’s unprecedented assault on democracy to the violent mobs that carry weapons from high powered firearms to biological warfare agents, such as the deadly coronavirus,” said McCormick.
Capitol police officer in the House chamber told lawmakers to duck under their chairs as he informed lawmakers protesters were in the building’s Rotunda.
Many House members were seen wearing gas masks as they moved between buildings on the Capitol complex.
While the White House refused to comment on the protests, Trump said on Twitter, “Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!”
One person was shot during the commotion, according to The Associated Press and NBC News. It is not known yet what exactly led to the shooting, but law enforcement officers were seen with guns drawn inside the locked down House Chamber.
“Why aren’t capital police responding like they cleared the streets for Trumps photo op?” asked Rahshaan Engrum. “The responses are not the same in tone, force, or magnitude. This is the capital building.”
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said his state is sending 200 Virginia State Troopers to the District, along with the Virginia National Guard.
Other federal protective services are also on the way. The Associated Press said the Department of Homeland Security is sending additional federal agents to the U.S. Capitol as well.
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