Congresswoman Jackie Speier (CA-14) issued the following statement after Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday in an unsuccessful attempt to block the certification of the 2020 presidential election. Speier and Democratic colleague Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Napa, are among members of Congress to call for the invoking of the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office.
“More than 40 years ago, as I lay bleeding from five gunshot wounds on an air strip in the Guyanese jungle not knowing if I would live or die, I swore that if I did survive I would dedicate my life to public service. I thought of that moment today, when the U.S. Capitol was stormed by a mob of Trump rioters emboldened by the President fomenting a coup d’état. My colleagues and I who were in the Capitol as the rotunda was breached and tear gas filled the air were evacuated to a safe location, where we remain.
This is a dark day for American democracy. To see the seat of our government dissolve into anarchy with little to no resistance from the Defense Department or U.S. Capitol Police makes us no better than a banana republic. The responsibility for this act of domestic terrorism lays firmly at the feet of the President and House and Senate Republicans who refused to impeach him, stoked his ego, and entertained his conspiracy theories about nonexistent voter fraud.
None of this will stop the U.S. House and Senate from certifying our free and fair election and ensuring that President-elect Biden will take office on January 20th. Under the Biden-Harris Administration, we will see a return to democratic values and compassion for the American people who have struggled in the wake of the COVID pandemic and valiantly pushed forward despite what often feels like insurmountable odds.
Their dedication, pain, sacrifice, and courage stands in stark contrast to the cowardly and calculated actions I witnessed on the House floor today—a true national embarrassment. My Republican colleagues know how elections work, how ballots are counted, how results are certified, and that the voter fraud conspiracies spewed by Trump are lies. They know what Trump’s words mean, what he was calling for, and the consequences of his actions, yet remained largely silent. Senator McConnell’s redress today was too little, too late. He and his colleagues are complicit with the attempted overthrow of our government. There must be consequences for their complicity. The President must be immediately removed under the 25th Amendment. His words and deeds have encouraged a violent insurrection and he presents a direct and deadly threat to our democracy and the rule of law.”
Photo courtesy of Congressman Jackie Speier’s office