The Republican Party’s attempts to rewrite the history of the January 6 riot at the US Capitol took another dramatic step forward at a Capitol Hill hearing Wednesday, when Georgia Rep. Andrew Clyde (R) suggested that the insurrection was far less serious than it’s been portrayed.
“Watching the TV footage of those who entered the Capitol and walked through Statuary Hall showed people in an orderly fashion staying between the stanchions and ropes taking videos and pictures,” Clyde said. “You know, if you didn’t know the TV footage was a video from January the 6th, you would actually think it was a normal tourist visit.”
Nope! Not in the least!
Not only did five people die during the riot, but there are scores of videos and pictures showing insurrectionists attacking police officers, smashing windows and committing all sorts of other violence as they overran the Capitol building. (More than 100 officers were injured during the riot.)
If you haven’t seen the body camera footage from the assault of DC Metropolitan Police Officer Michael Fanone, you – and Clyde – should watch it. And then ask yourself if it was “a normal tourist visit.”
Or review the more than 400 people the Justice Department has charged in relation to their actions on January 6.(Federal prosecutors have said that they expect to charge as many as 500 people.)
Given all of that, it’s simply not possible for Clyde – or anyone else – to conclude that what happened on January 6 was anything short of a violent riot driven by people who were convinced by President Donald Trump that the election had been stolen from him, despite all evidence to the contrary.
Which means that Clyde would be apologetic in the wake of such ridiculous comments, right? Wrong!
Check out his reaction Thursday morning when asked by reporters to explain his comments.
And which means that responsible Republican leaders stepped in to condemn Clyde for his ridiculous rewriting of what we all saw with our own eyes, right? Wrong!
Asked Thursday morning by CNN’s Daniella Diaz about Clyde’s comments, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (California) ignored the problem. “What happened on the 6th was atrocious,” he said.
Which, yes, true! But nothing close to saying how dangerous it is that Clyde is purposely trying to change how people remember January 6.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi reacted to Clyde’s comments with outrage on Thursday. “Really? Well, I don’t know a normal day around here where people are threatening to hang the Vice President of the United States or shoot the speaker,” she said. “I don’t consider that normal.”
This shouldn’t be a partisan issue. After all, the insurrectionists who stormed the Capitol endangered Democratic and Republican members of Congress (and their staffs). And let’s not forget the chants of “Hang Mike Pence!” from the rioters.
That Republicans like Clyde are now engaged in rewriting the history of one of the darkest days in modern American history because they want to please Trump speaks to just how low the Party has stooped in its worship of the former President. And it’s pretty darn low.