Trump said protests would be ‘wild’; political leaders decry rhetoric as chaos…

Congress members urged the president to condemn the violence.

January 6, 2021, 11:39 PM

• 9 min read

Members of Congress and former White House officials are criticizing the president and calling on him to stop the violence after pro-Trump supporters and protesters breached the Capitol building Wednesday in a stunning scene.

“Donald Trump and his enablers are responsible for inciting this violence,” Rep. Marilyn Strickland, D-Wa., told ABC News. The chaos erupted after Trump addressed the crowd and as Congress was in the process of certifying former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential win.

“President Trump incited his followers to violence,” Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., the Senate Democratic whip, said. “They stormed the Capitol and stopped the House and Senate in session. We do not know at this point the extent of the damage or injuries they have caused.”

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., called the scene “armed insurrection” that was “fueled by the President” and his enablers.

Republican members of Congress also spoke out.

“What happened here today was an insurrection, incited by the President of the United States,” Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, said in a statement. “Those who choose to continue to support his dangerous gambit by objecting to the results of a legitimate, democratic election will forever be seen as being complicit in an unprecedented attack against our democracy. They will be remembered for their role in this shameful episode in American history. That will be their legacy.”

“You are not protecting the country. Where is the DC guard? You are done and your legacy will be a disaster,” Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., said, responding to an earlier tweet by President Trump.

“This is a coup attempt,” Kinzinger added.

Last month, Trump teased Wednesday’s protests in Washington D.C., pushing the Senate to not certify the election for Biden. “Be there, will be wild!” Trump tweeted. He has mentioned the rally, which he addressed, on other occasions as well.

During his speech at the rally, Trump said that he hoped Vice President Mike Pence would “do the right thing” and reject the results of the election, something he is not empowered to do and said in a statement that he would not do.

Trump, who repeatedly falsely said the election was rigged and stolen, also said “We will never give up, We will never concede.” Trump lost the popular vote by some 7 million and the electoral vote by essentially the same margin he won the 2016 election, which he termed a “landslide.”

Wednesday afternoon, protesters pushed ahead of barricades and a wall of police officers in riot gear to get into the building. A woman was fatally shot inside of the U.S. Capitol, a law enforcement official told ABC News.

Amid the violent protests, Trump took to Twitter to ask for “everyone at the U.S.

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