Trump condemns ‘heinous attack’ and releases video calling for ‘healing and reconciliation’
After a tough week, President Trump on Thursday roundly condemned Wednesday’s “heinous attack” on the Capitol by protesters and called for healing. He said this is just the beginning but did note it was time to transition into a Joe Biden presidency.
“I would like to begin by addressing the heinous attack on the U.S. Capitol,” said the president.
“Like all Americans, I am outraged by the violence, lawlessness, and mayhem. I immediately deployed the National Guard and federal law enforcement to secure the building and expel the intruders. America is and must always be a nation of law and order. The demonstrators who infiltrated the Capitol have defiled the seat of American democracy,” Trump said.
“To those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction, you do not represent our country,” he added. “And to those who broke the law, you will pay.”
The president sent out the video immediately after Twitter unlocked his account. Twitter, along with Facebook, suspended the president for his initial response to the riot. Facebook and Instagram have now blacklisted Trump indefinitely.
“Emotions are high now, but tempers must be cooled and calm restored,” the president stated. “We must get on with the business of America. My campaign rigorously pursued every legal avenue to contest the election results. My only goal was to ensure the integrity of the vote.”
“My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transition,” Trump said, acknowledging that “a new administration” would be inaugurated on Jan. 20. “This moment now calls for healing and reconciliation.”
President Trump spoke of the nation going through struggles concerning the pandemic and how the economy is suffering. He called for unity. “It will require all of us working together. It will require a renewed emphasis on the civic values of patriotism, faith, charity, community, and family.”
“To the citizens of our country, serving as your president has been the honor of a lifetime,” he said. “To my incredible supporters I know you are disappointed … our incredible journey is only just beginning.”
Trump had previously vowed to never concede concerning the presidential election. But on Thursday, the president promised an orderly transition, despite his grievances, after Congress certified the Electoral College results in favor of President-elect Joe Biden.
This has transpired since Wednesday when thousands showed up in D.C. at a Stop the Steal rally to protest voter fraud. Trump gave a speech that Democrats are now calling incitement. Chaos broke out in the Capitol as over a hundred protesters broke through windows to storm the political inner sanctum. They vandalized the halls and offices of Congress, stole property, and forced lawmakers to go into hiding.
One unarmed female protester was shot and killed by Capitol Police. A police officer died on Thursday succumbing to his injuries from being beaten with a fire extinguisher while confronting rioters.
Republicans were quick to turn on Trump, blame him, and speak out against the president’s response to the riots and continued election challenges.
On Wednesday evening, Trump tweeted out a statement: “These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long,” Trump tweeted. “Go home with love & peace.”
He added: “Remember this day forever!”
Prior to that, he posted a video message to Twitter, addressing supporters, saying: “I know your pain, I know your hurt.”
“We had an election that was stolen from us,” Trump said from the White House. “It was a landslide election and everyone knows it, especially the other side.
“This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people,” Trump said. “We have to have peace.”
Twitter suspended the president for the pair of tweets and removed them. It is widely expected that Twitter will also ban the president indefinitely.