I’m guessing that most of us have seen footage of what was a most dreadful day in the United States of America, January 6th. After being able to finally close the door to the year 2020, we found ourselves watching an unbelievable scene of an unhinged and fired up mob descending upon the U.S. Capitol with the intention of stopping the certification of the presidential electoral count.
Normally, this happens every four years without a hitch. It’s a rather routine event that is not normally televised. But because the outgoing president refused to accept the results, and had convinced his supporters that if he lost, the election was rigged. President Trump planted that seed long before the November election to his very loyal supporters. These supporters believed everything he said. These supporters, unbeknownst to most of them, were taken up into his cultic personality who claimed one day:
“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters.”
On Wednesday, January 6, 2021, President Trump would capitalize on their loyalty.
The scene was unbelievable. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, but I had expected something like this would happen because President Trump had been riling up the discontent of his followers which included white supremacy groups. So on January 6th, upon a direct invitation by the President to come and “Stop the Steal”, thousands of his followers showed up at his rally to do just that, and upon hearing the president’s charge to march down to the capitol to stop the certification of the electoral votes.
The mob marched down Pennsylvania Avenue just as their Commander in Chief had instructed to “fight like hell” for their country. They broke down barricades, beat the police, broke windows and breached the capitol building looking for Vice President Pence, who the president said could overturn the results. They also hunted for Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.
After hours of this display of anger, and the mob finally left, the House of Representatives and the Senate were able to complete their constitutional duty and certified the election results. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were certified as the winners of the offices of the President and Vice-President.
The U.S. House of Representatives made a decision to respond to the President’s incitement of this insurrection and his dereliction of duty with an impeachment. Last month, the House succeeded in impeaching President Trump; however, the decision was made to delay the Senate’s trial of impeachment. This delay would mean President Trump would no longer be in office.
Yesterday, February 9, 2021, the Senate Impeachment trial began. After the House Managers and the President’s defense team both presented their case as to the constitutionality of proceeding, the majority ruled that conducting the trial of the former president was indeed constitutional.
Today, during the impeachment trial the House Managers showed video footage detailing the timelines of the President’s words and the responses of the insurrectionists. Seeing the footage in context of what was going on at the time along with the President’s words and the mob’s responses was disturbing.
However, I learned through some media accounts that many of the GOP Senators were tuned out, and just wanted to get to the vote. They are ready to acquit the former president even though their very lives were in danger, even though people died and many officers were injured.
To me the case presented thus far by the House Managers was compelling. My question to the GOP senators, why would you not want to be honest jurors? Where is the outrage for what happened? Shouldn’t the former president be held accountable? Will a January exception always be acceptable? Is your own re-election that important?