In a new statement, former President Donald Trump again took up the cause of Capitol rioter Ashli Babbitt, who was fatally shot as she climbed through a broken window in an attempt to enter an area that could have provided nearly direct access to members of Congress. Members of the riot crowd at the Capitol that day clearly had murderous intentions — at one point, a chant of “Hang Mike Pence!” even broke out, targeting the then-vice president over his perceived disloyalty to Trump. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) — one of the only Republicans who’s proven willing to call out Trump’s dangerous behavior — starkly criticized Trump’s reaction to the Babbitt shooting on Twitter this week.
While Babbitt’s death is, of course, unmistakably tragic, she was committing apparently criminal acts at the time she was shot. The Capitol riot was not some kind of brave stand for democracy — it was an effort against democracy, instead elevating the literal name of Donald Trump. (Plenty of Trump-branded memorabilia was present.) Discussing the officer who shot Babbitt, Trump threateningly claimed in his recent statement that “We know who he is,” and although it’s unclear whether this claim is accurate, Cheney noted in response that Trump is continuing to use language that could incite violence.
In his statement, Trump also insisted, in reference to Babbitt’s death, that “Radical Left haters cannot be allowed to get away with this,” as though trying to pin blame for her demise on his political opponents — which is atrociously ridiculous and could incite deranged violence against these opponents for the supposed sake of obtaining what Trump referred to as “justice” for Babbitt. Alongside an image of Trump’s remarks, Cheney pointedly commented as follows:
‘The brave law enforcement officers who defended the Capitol & Congress on January 6th deserve our deep gratitude and full support. Note for federal investigative agencies: the former president continues to use the same type of language he knows provoked violence in the past.’
The brave law enforcement officers who defended the Capitol & Congress on January 6th deserve our deep gratitude and full support.
Note for federal investigative agencies: the former president continues to use the same type of language he knows provoked violence in the past. pic.twitter.com/9LGbbZWRL2
— Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) August 12, 2021
Cheney is one of two Republicans serving on the House committee investigating the Capitol riot, and the other Republican on that panel — Rep. Adam Kinzinger (Ill.) — also reacted to Trump’s statement. Kinzinger described Trump’s remarks as “Quite a thoroughly disgusting statement.”
Quite a thoroughly disgusting statement. https://t.co/JaxYZsV2GY
— Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) August 11, 2021