What Led to the Storming of the U.S. Capitol

They tried to destroy our institutions, but our Republic did not allow it to happen, did not fold, and held strong.

Then-president+Trump+delivers+his+%E2%80%9CSave+America%E2%80%9D+speech+to+loyal+supporters+who+showed+up+at+the+%E2%80%9CDC+Capitol+March%E2%80%9D+on+January+6th%2C+2021.+Shortly+after+this+speech%2C+the+violence+erupted.

Courtesy of NBC News

Then-president Trump delivers his “Save America” speech to loyal supporters who showed up at the “DC Capitol March” on January 6th, 2021. Shortly after this speech, the violence erupted.

Wednesday, January 6 was a very important date in American politics in this particular year of 2021. The first Wednesday of 2021’s calendar marked exactly sixty-four days since the November 3rd, 2020 Presidential election- approximately 9 weeks. This date also marked the day which the United States Congress- both the House of Representatives and the Senate- convened to officially certify the electoral votes cast by the electoral college for who becomes the next President of the United States.

 

The electoral college confirmed former Vice President Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 election on December 15, 2020. Biden received 306 electoral votes for president, surpassing the set number of 270 needed in order to win a U.S. presidential election. This meant that Biden defeated the incumbent president, Donald J. Trump- the first time an incumbent has lost his bid for re-election since George H.W. Bush lost in the Election of 1992.

 

As for the meetings on January 6, that is the last final step in making Joe Biden’s election victory officially set in stone. After the president of the Senate, the current Vice President, accepts and certifies the electoral vote count, the election is officially, legally, and constitutionally over.

 

This January 6th though, millions of Americans had already been deeply brainwashed by what CNN described as “The Big Lie.” The Big Lie was exactly what the meaning of those three words indicate: A very big lie, rooted in deception, pure falsehood, and indecency. The Big Lie was created and disseminated to the American people by a certain individual who is supposed to represent the opposite of lies and deceitfulness. That individual was the President of the United States. 

 

For eight long weeks between the day Joe Biden was projected the winner of the 2020 Election all the way until the date that Congress was set to certify the election results, President Donald J. Trump lied unconscionably. The lying was purposeful, calculated, and audacious. President Trump claimed and asserted mercilessly that the 2020 Election was rigged, unfair to him, and fraudulent. 

 

Trump repeated dozens of times the false claim that “tens of thousands of dead people” had voted in crucial swing states which he lost, most notably the states of Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Arizona. Georgia and Pennsylvania were the two states most focused on claiming fraud in by Trump and his allies- especially Georgia. 

Georgia election officials, along with federal cybersecurity agencies and all other state agencies, were quickly and effectively prepared to investigate all claims of voter fraud and voter irregularity, which were all examined deeply. The in-depth investigations into the alleged “widespread” voter fraud by all of the several state and federal agencies all found no substantial evidence of widespread fraud in any of the 50 states. 

 

An interesting thing to note, in regard to Trump’s outlandish claim that “thousands of dead people” had cast ballots in the election for Joe Biden- that claim was debunked. Georgia election officials confirmed after investigation that a grand total of two (2) deceased people had somehow illegally cast a ballot out of nearly 5,000,000 total voters in the state. Unfortunately, this is not the first nor the only election in which ballots have been cast in deceased voters’ names— Despite strict election security measures taken, this has happened in many U.S. elections, although it remains extremely rare, as it was in this election.

Despite these findings, Trump and his legal team, led by Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis, continued pursuing the assertion that the 2020 election results were fraudulent. The legal battles went on for several weeks, all throughout the months of November and December, and each “massive fraud” allegation brought to courts by the Trump election team was shut down, one after another.

As all this went on, numerous government agencies, including the FBI and CISA, officially told the American public that the 2020 Election results were accurate, correct, and fair. However, unfortunately, those facts didn’t matter to all Americans.. even coming from nonpartisan governmental agencies. It seemed it was already a bit too late for millions of voters to get on board with the truth, as sad as that was.

Donald Trump’s lies and baseless conspiracy theories about the election had won over some voters’ thoughts and opinions regarding the legitimacy of the election.

Day, after day, after day, Trump wrote “Rigged Election!” on his Twitter account. He did this for weeks.

A few weeks after the election had been called for Joe Biden by the Associated Press and all major networks, an estimated 70-78% of Trump voters reportedly believed that the results were fraudulent and/or rigged. Their minds were made up, that apparently, the election was “stolen” from their candidate of choice, the incumbent President Trump, and that Trump did not actually lose the election fairly. Millions and millions of American voters believe this falsity.

According to a poll conducted by Reuters between November 13-17, 2020, fifty-two percent of Republicans said they believed that Trump “rightfully won” the election, along with 68% of Republicans who believed the election was rigged.

Trump’s continuous false assertions for the numerous weeks following his election defeat have had genuine and profound consequences on the American people, the country as a whole, the government, and his voters.

As we all unfortunately know, on Wednesday, January 6th, 2021, thousands of President Trump’s most loyal supporters descended on Washington D.C., as Trump suggested they must do in numerous different tweets from his personal Twitter account.

Trump’s tweets toward the end of December and during the very first days of January provocatively fired up his supporters to continue believing that the election was “stolen” from him, and that “something must be done” about it. 

On December 24th, Trump tweeted “Big protest in D.C. on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!” Just a few days before January 6th, he tweeted “JANUARY SIXTH, BE THERE!”

Those tweets were instigation and incitement from President Trump to the loyalist, cultish, far-right fringe members of his voter base to come to Washington DC to cause mass chaos. And, sadly, thousands of far-right extremists did just that— they did show up in Washington on the 6th, and they did so in the name of Donald Trump, angry and with bile.

Then, as was witnessed on that day of January 6th, 2021, Trump’s most extreme supporters who are self-described “great American patriots” violently assaulted law enforcement and attacked the United States Capitol building while members of Congress were inside. 

These were obviously only 0.00001% of Trump’s voters, about one to two thousand people, but these were not your normal, everyday Americans. They were radicalized extremists, many of whom are racist and repugnant individuals, who found an excuse to commit violence, attack our government, break the law, and stir up massive fear. Simply put, they were violent thugs- the furthest thing from patriotic Americans who claim to love their country.

Sadly even now, in the first week of President Joe Biden’s term, after Donald Trump has exited the White House, and after the attack on the Capitol, approximately 75% of Trump voters still do not believe that Joe Biden fairly won the 2020 Election, according to the most recent polls. 

75 percent of Trump voters means tens of millions of American citizens do not believe, (or do not want to believe), that the newly inaugurated president was legitimately elected. That is very sad, very concerning, and truly very troublesome, because it shows us how much of an effect Trump’s lies and conspiracies had, resonating with so many people.

A small handful of commentators in right-wing media still continue to repeat the false already-obsolete and irrelevant talking points of election fraud on their networks, primarily relating to already-debunked conspiracy theories— even now after Biden has taken office.

Nonetheless, the election is and has been over. Whether or not millions of voters want to believe that Joe Biden was not duly elected as President of the United States is their choice. What people want to think is out of government’s control. That is a shame, but as things stand right now, it doesn’t seem that their minds will be changed anytime soon. Yet, ultimately, Biden is now sitting in the Oval Office, and Donald Trump’s term is over.

 

Trump has now left Washington with a stain on his name, a stain on the Republican Party, a stain on the presidency, and with nearly 70% of Americans disapproving of him and his conduct as president. This is how America will remember the 45th president: a two-time popular vote loser whose supporters conducted a vicious attack on the US Capitol when the lame-duck president refused to admit that he lost the election. A loser, in every sense of the word, who left office just after inciting a violent riot, considered by many to have been an insurrection.

 

Truth and facts prevailed over lies and conspiracy theories, and Joe Biden took office as the next president looking to hopefully bring back some decency, integrity, and unity to a currently-wounded and divided United States of America. Will unity happen anytime soon? At the point the nation is at right now, I am truly not so sure. Thus, only time can tell.