January 6 Attack: A crowd of 2,000–2,500 supporters of US President Donald Trump invaded the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021.
They tried to sabotage President-elect Joe Biden‘s victory in the 2020 presidential election by disrupting the joint session of Congress that was convened to count electoral votes. As protesters assaulted law enforcement officials, destroyed property, and stormed the Capitol Complex for many hours, the building was sealed down and politicians and employees were evacuated.
One person was shot by Capitol Police, another died of a heroin overdose, and three died of natural causes immediately before, during, or after the event. A large number of individuals were hurt, including 138 police officers.
Within seven months, four officers who reacted to the attack committed suicide.
Thousands of Trump supporters rallied in Washington, D.C. on January 5 and 6 in response to Trump’s bogus claim that the 2020 election had been “stolen by empowered radical-left Democrats.” as well as calling on Vice President Mike Pence and Congress to reject Biden’s triumph.
At a “Save America” event on the Ellipse beginning at noon on January 6, Trump rehashed unsubstantiated claims of election irregularities. “If you don’t fight like hell, you won’t have a country anymore,” he remarked.
Thousands of people walked to the Capitol during and after his speech, and hundreds broke through police lines. As the electoral vote count began in Congress. More than 2,000 individuals broke into the Capitol, occupying, vandalizing, and looting it, attacking Capitol Police officers and media, and attempting to apprehend and hurt lawmakers.
A gallows was erected west of the Capitol, and rioters screamed “Hang Mike Pence” when the vice president rejected bogus claims by Trump and others that he could alter the election results. The offices of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress were destroyed and looted.
As a result of the breach in building security, Capitol Police evacuated and closed down both chambers of Congress, as well as several other buildings within the Capitol Complex. While federal law enforcement officials defended the vacated House floor, rioters occupied the vacant Senate chamber.
Pipe bombs were recovered at both the Democratic and Republican National Committee headquarters, as well as Molotov cocktails in a car near the Capitol.
Trump refused to dispatch the National Guard to disperse the crowd. Later that afternoon, he reiterated that the election was “fraudulent” in a Twitter video, but advised his followers to “go home in peace.”
By mid-evening, the Capitol had been cleared of rioters, and the electoral vote counting was resumed and concluded in the early morning hours of January 7.
President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris were declared winners by Pence.
Trump later pledged to an orderly transition of power in a televised declaration, under pressure from his administration, the possibility of removal, and numerous resignations.
The House of Representatives impeached Trump for incitement to insurgency a week after the incident, making him the only US president to be impeached twice. After Trump left office, the Senate voted 57–43 in favor of conviction; however, because this fell short of the required two-thirds majority of 67 votes, he was acquitted a second time.
The House passed a bill to create a bipartisan independent commission to examine the incident, based on the 9/11 Commission, but Republicans in the Senate opposed it, thus the House approved a select committee to investigate instead, comprising seven Democrats and two Republicans.
By March 2022, the Justice Department’s investigation into the attack’s participation had grown to include the acts of others in the run-up to it.
Over 30 members of anti-government groups, including the Oath Keepers, Proud Boys, and Three Percenters, were charged with conspiracy, and ten Oath Keepers were charged with seditious conspiracy for allegedly organizing their attacks on the Capitol.
The vast majority of those accused of offenses related to the attack, on the other hand, had no known ties to far-right or extremist groups. At least 57 people who were involved in the events of the day were seeking public office as of January 2022.
Oathkeeper Joshua James pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy on March 2, 2022, admitting that “from November 2020 to January 2021, he conspired with other Oath Keeper members and affiliates to use force to prevent, hinder, and delay the execution of the laws of the United States governing the transfer of presidential power,” according to his plea.
United States House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack
The United States House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol is a special committee of the United States House of Representatives tasked with investigating the January 6, 2021 attack on the United States Capitol.
The attack was the finale of efforts to overturn the 2020 United States presidential election, which incumbent Republican Donald Trump lost to Democrat Joe Biden. It was prompted by Trump’s bogus assertion of a stolen election.
On July 1, 2021, the committee was constituted by a mainly party-line vote. Its membership was a source of heated political debate. The committee’s only two Republicans, Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger were later censured by the Republican National Committee for their involvement.
On July 27, four police officers testified in public hearings as part of the investigation. The committee has interviewed roughly 700 people by March 2022. For refusing to testify, Steve Bannon, Mark Meadows, Peter Navarro, and Dan Scavino were held in criminal contempt of Congress; Bannon was indicted by a federal grand jury.
Other members of Trump’s close circle are working with the committee to some extent.
The committee believes Trump knew he didn’t win the election and was thus committing fraud, and it may propose that the US Department of Justice start a criminal inquiry into Trump’s role in the Capitol attack.
However, because the Justice Department is already conducting its own investigations and probes, the committee may instead concentrate on completing its final report.