On Wednesday, the nation and world watched as a mob of outgoing President Donald Trump’s supporters violently stormed the U.S. Capitol building, where both houses of Congress were meeting to officially certify President-elect Joe Biden’s electoral college victory. The attack on the Capitol launched by the president’s supporters forced both houses of Congress to abruptly halt their proceedings, with top leaders fleeing for their safety as Trump’s backers rampaged through the building. Bill Barr — who until very recently was U.S. Attorney General — has now joined the chorus of people condemning the president in the wake of the violence.
The AP is reporting a new statement from Bill Barr. He says Trump's conduct as the violent pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol was a "betrayal of his office and supporters" and that "orchestrating a mob to pressure Congress is inexcusable." @MSNBC
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 7, 2021
Barr directly and unequivocally blamed Trump for the violence and characterized his actions as a “betrayal” of the office of the presidency, commenting as follows:
‘Orchestrating a mob to pressure Congress is inexcusable. The President’s conduct yesterday was a betrayal of his office and supporters.’
The mob of Trump’s supporters attacked the Capitol building shortly after the outgoing president himself spoke at a nearby event where top Trump allies gathered to push the lie that the recent presidential election had been “rigged” against him. As Business Insider reports, at that event, Trump “urged his supporters to march to the Capitol, where Congress was convening to count up the electoral votes in the 2020 election and finalize President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the race.” Violence subsequently unfolded.
Day 1 vs. Day 1,448 pic.twitter.com/OohffkCQrc
— 11th Hour (@11thHour) January 6, 2021
On Wednesday, Trump issued a pair of messages in which he appeared to condone and excuse the terroristic actions of his supporters who gathered on Capitol Hill. In a video message addressing the rioters, he said, “I know how you feel,” as if condoning their actions, and in a follow-up post, he said that “[these] are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long,” actively justifying a violent assault on the U.S. Capitol building.
Just seeing this Trump tweet, which Twitter removed. This is the language of an insurgent who leads a terrorist movement. pic.twitter.com/mGPplJmYHn
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 7, 2021
The foundational claim from the president and his supporters that the election was “stolen” is completely and unequivocally false. Barr himself, when he was on the job, confirmed that there is simply no legitimate evidence of fraud on a scale to change the outcome of the election, and other authorities, from a top agency at the Department of Homeland Security to local election officials of both major parties from across the country, have offered similar confirmations of a total lack of meaningful evidence for systematic fraud claims. Judges in courts around the country, including a slew of the president’s own appointees, have rejected the fraud claims, and neither the president nor any of his supporters have won a single court case that has put them anywhere remotely near overturning the presidential election outcome in a single state.
Crazy images pic.twitter.com/lel41PtnHC
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) January 6, 2021