Snopes investigates claim that Trump incited the storming of the Capitol

January 9, 2021 • 10:30 am

Snopes leans largely to the Left, so if it gives a mixed rating to the question below (half true/half false), you can be pretty sure that it would not stand up in a court of law, much less the Senate. I didn’t follow exactly what the Orange Man said before the horrific events of three days ago (five people are now dead, including a Capitol police officer who died after being bashed in the head with a fire extinguisher), but I’m pretty sure that Josh Hawley’s fist-pump to the demonstrators does not constitute incitement to imminent violence. Hawley could have been giving an “I’m with you” sign—odious enough, but not unambiguous enough to prove, much less buttress, the calls of people who want him tried for treason.

Trump may be impeached, and I support the House going forward with that, but what was his role, if any, in inciting people to storm the Capitol? Well, Snopes gives the question a “mixture” response (click on screenshot).

It turns out that Trump may have had this violence in mind, but he was very, very canny about what he said, and since we can’t show that he knowingly incited violence, that can’t be proven. Here’s what Snopes says:

There’s more stuff, but author Jessica Lee concludes this:

In short, the president called on supporters to “peacefully and patriotically” march or walk to the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, to urge members of the senate to defy the Electoral College vote in a constitutionally mandated procedure to affirm Biden’s win, without using the words “storm” or “breach” or “break into” the federal building.

Put another way, the president encouraged supporters to descend on the Capitol grounds and “cheer” on senators who would break laws governing U.S. elections, but he did not explicitly tell people to commit crimes themselves.

Furthermore, it was a subjective call on whether the phrases “you have to show strength” and “demand that Congress do the right thing” were actually messages condoning crimes and violence among extremists, without outright encouraging it. Such a rhetorical strategy is known to scholars of white nationalist and extremist groups, including the Proud Boys.

In sum, while Trump did not say the words “storm” or “break into” the White House, Trump indeed told supporters to gather at the U.S. Capitol and try to convince members of Congress to delay the constitutional process that would affirm Biden’s presidency. For those reasons, and the ones outlined above, we rate this claim a “Mixture.”

In other words, if Trump had that in mind (and who knows?), he was very clever. Demented, maybe, but perhaps clever. He may be impeached, but if this is the main charge, I predict that he won’t be convicted in an impeachment trial. Why, then, do I favor impeachment? Well, there’s the slight possibility that some Republicans may vote with the Democrats, for there were many reasons to remove Trump from office besides the charge of incitement, but mainly I think it will be another black mark on his record: the first President to be impeached twice.

274 thoughts on “Snopes investigates claim that Trump incited the storming of the Capitol

  1. The campaign emails contain numerous calls for “brave” “patriots” to “fight”. I don’t know of a website to find all the emails on but it ought to stand out. I’m sure there’s something out there.

    1. I agree with Snopes and strongly disagree with the vengeful and counterproductive wave that seems to be sweeping up many Democrats. (Notably, Biden seems to understand this and has not called for Trump’s impeachment.)

      Every politician in the world has told his or her followers to “fight for X”. That does not necessarily warrant punishment. If such phrases were regularly punished by those in power, think what that would do to freedom of speech. Republicans, if they ever regain power, would have a free hand to interpret liberal activists’ words as grounds for punishment. People fighting for police reform or anti-war protestors often use stronger words than these. I personally had used words stronger than these when I organized environmental protests in the 1990s. This would be as serious a blow to our democracy as the capital storming.

      As I said repeatedly in yesterday’s comments, we should let him fall under his own weight. We should be investigating his real and unambiguous crimes, and not make a martyr of him for an ambiguous set of phrases of a kind that we ourselves could be prosecuted for later. We could lose the high ground we have now if we look like vengeful opportunists when Trump is down.

      If dark money from Trump or secret communication from him or his team shows that his campaign was involved in, or had knowledge of, the planning for the capitol violence (and it WAS a planned event, with some leaders bringing supplies and arms and “handcuff” plastic ties to kidnap legislators), that would be a completely different story. We should be working to investigate this, not grasping at the superficial stuff.

      1. I tend to agree. The Dems would do better to say that he should be impeached but the state of the nation and the pandemic requires them to attend to the nation’s business. They need to focus on getting more votes in the next election, not playing whack-a-mole with tRump—unless they know there are the Senate votes to convict, which I doubt.

        1. So, the Capitol Building is invaded. Senators and Representatives are put in serious physical danger. Bombs, Molotov cocktails, and guns are in the possession of the attackers but what we really need now is to try to focus on getting votes in the next election?

          I’m having trouble believing you mean what you say.

          1. Actually, I do. Unless the Dems know that the Senate votes are there for conviction, which I strongly doubt, impeachment is again symbolic and tilting at windmills. And, again, down the road when passions have cooled, the Republicans will claim “witch hunt” and so on. Biden has the right idea. Beat them flat in the next election.

            1. I remain baffled. What Republicans claim is irrelevant. They’re in the habit of making absurd claims. This is among the very worst reasons to act, or not act, on anything.

              You offer a false choice. Democrats have just gained control of both houses and the executive. This happened after an impeachment that did not result in conviction. At the level of pure vote-counting-politics, the evidence is against your position.

              1. The Dems gained the GA seats because of tRump’s post-election behavior, not because they impeached. Who knows? Had the Republican Senate convicted, perhaps Pence would be going to his own inauguration rather than Biden’s.

              2. Well, “who knows” is an unconvincing reason not to use any possible avenue to box the Orange Menace in.

              3. GBJames, as you have just mentioned, Trump has lost in every possible way. He is on his way out. Why not be satisfied with that? Why open up a Pandora’s box of free speech issues that could come back to haunt us when Republicans are in power?

                I am sure that Trump did intend for something “big” like this to happen on Jan 6, and he did his best to fan the flames. But Snopes is right, he did not clearly and unambiguously incite violence. If the actions of out-of-control protestors can get someone thrown out of office by the political party in power at the time, no minority leader will be safe. Civil rights protests sometimes got out of control. BLM protests sometimes have gotten out of control. And outside agitators can infiltrate any protest and cause damage. If you create this precendent for impeachment, if and when the tide turns and the other party is in power, someone opposing these movements could easily make a case against one or more politicians who supported these causes. Do you really want that?

              4. Why not be satisfied with that? Because every day he remains a threat. He will remain a threat at the head of a cult well into the future if we just turn our heads and hope for the best. This business about him being made a martyr is silly, IMO. He already is a martyr to the cult.

              5. “He will remain a threat at the head of a cult well into the future if we just turn our heads and hope for the best.”

                The party in power should not outlaw a leader of the opposition. Banana Republic indeed. In a democracy we should not be afraid of the ballot box. And I assure you that if Demsset this precedent, it will bite us in the rear some day when Antifa or civil rights protestors get out of control somewhere.

            2. The Confederate state of mind is an infection in this country fueled by the like of
              Donald Trump. And everyone with an ounce of patriotism should renounce It.
              Trump repeated the word fight many times that day and those who heard it acted
              accordingly. We all know it! There are no excuses. If it were BLM what would you
              be saying? We all know the answer. They let them walk out of the Capital! Unbelievable! Trump’s orders for that day was not to treat the protest as a potential
              for unrest and for the police and National Guard to STAND DOWN. Sitting at home watching TV was horrifying for hours before reinforcement was sent. That was a
              direct attempt by the President of the United States to over through the outcome of
              the certification of a newly President Elect. This was not a Communist country this is
              America! Donald Trump is as un-American as his father and grandfather were in
              their family history. Look it up! Do your own research from reliable source.The
              Devil is a Liar. Weather they convict him or not they have to stand up for the Constitution and the rule of law. Common decency calls for him to be exposed for
              what he is a demagogue, rogue, con, a wolf in sheeps clothing.
              Deuces!

      2. AFAIK, Biden has not backed away from impeachment but simply said that it isn’t his decision but Congress’s. After all, he doesn’t actually hold office.

        While every politician uses warlike rhetoric, Trump is in a unique position as he has supposedly been receiving intelligence all along as to how much of a threat to the country is posed by right-wing extremists. He has even expressed support for them by name.

          1. These are, of course, merely his personal opinions. Even after his inauguration, per the US constitution, he will have no role to play in impeachment proceeding, if any.

      3. I have posted the campaign emails before, but they also tell the recipients that democrats “hate you”. That liberals / democrats – sometimes by name – are the recipients’ “enemy”.

        It isn’t a mistake – the language is used on purpose. Sure, it isn’t a legal document or detailed instructions.

      4. Agree, Lou. I’ve rarely seen Democrats and liberals be this vengeful–on this site and elsewhere. Why, I’ve even had comments that everybody who invaded the Capitol should be shot, and they weren’t kidding. I’ve trashed the comments that call for many things like that, but the lack of empathy (not EVERYBODY who trespassed was bent on killing and destruction) was really striking. It was as if now that Biden’s won, we can take out our rancor on everybody on the other side. And that is exactly what Biden doesn’t want, and which will only perpetuate the divisions in the U.S. Not that the divide can be completely healed, as there are still a lot of miscreant Republicans, but now that the GOP realizes what it’s done, I think we need to capitalize on that and try to be a bit more charitable.

        1. I don’t want them all shot but storming the Capitol building with the purpose of lynching members of Congress, and changing the results of an election, sure sounds like a crime one might be executed for committing. While I’m all for healing the country’s divide, it is clear that many are suffering under a dangerous group illusion and we need to send a message. I’m not sure what the right charges should be but they need to be nearer “treason” than “stealing government property”.

          1. It is going to seem like splitting hairs, but its technical interpretations of the law, and what actually happened, that will decide charges and sentences. Not emotional reactions.
            Guns were in the building, but they were not used by the rioters. Zip ties were brought in, but there are no restrictions that I’m aware of saying you can’t carry these around. Materials for Molotov cocktails were found in a vehicle, but they were not assembled nor brought into the building (it would have been very serious if they were).
            Oh, there are going to be charges, and I think there should be convictions. But getting the most serious possible charges to stick comes down to technicalities.

            1. It’s also true that accomplices to a crime have been charged simply by being present. As recently as last summer in Chicago a getaway car driver was charged with first degree murder, although he simply dropped off the shooter and then picked him up. Now that the policeman has died from being beaten to death in the riot, it’s not impossible that every person on the scene could be charged with felony murder.

              1. “Mere presence” is a defense to a criminal offense. (There is even a specific jury instruction that covers it.) Accomplice liability requires proof that the charged individual either aided or abetted a crime (as, of course, a getaway driver does).

            2. Carrying zipties and firearms into the Capitol building under these circumstances does suggest an intent other than mere protest. It is unmistakable what their intent was. I cannot see how a jury would see it otherwise and I don’t think, in these specific cases, prosecutors will have any trouble convincing them.

              1. Does suggest. But you have to make it stick. There was ample opportunity to use, but they weren’t used. So unless there is online rhetoric about taking hostages or shooting people, a charge that they had intent to take hostages or to shoot people will not stick. There is no proof of that that will hold up in court that I am aware of. I suppose it hinges on precedent.
                Trying to put myself into the heads of these people, it seems those items (guns and zip ties) were more about virtue signaling and intimidation.

            3. Carrying zip ties goes to state of mind and intent. Making and bringing Molotov cocktails goes to state of mind. If someone makes a weapon of mass destruction it doesn’t matter if it can be proven if they were planning to use it at a certain place or time, they are guilty of making a weapon of mass destruction. BTW, it wasn’t just gasoline, it was gasoline with dissolved styrene, home made napalm, this is what he told police.

              Many of the people charged with crimes were carrying unregistered concealed firearms and without permit, which is illegal in Washington DC, if they were on the grounds or in the building or a public road. Some had magazines which carried more rounds than are allowed. I imagine the NRA will want to challenge those laws if they haven’t already, perhaps they will anyways with the current makeup of SCOTUS.

            4. Guns were in the building, but they were not used by the rioters. Zip ties were brought in, but there are no restrictions that I’m aware of saying you can’t carry these around. Materials for Molotov cocktails were found in a vehicle, but they were not assembled nor brought into the building …

              These all provide, nevertheless, circumstantial evidence regarding the state of mind of the individuals involved, particularly as it relates to their potential prosecutions for such so-called “inchoate crimes” as conspiracy or attempt to commit certain federal offenses.

              1. The zip-tie idea struck me as the product of an exceptionally twisted mind – on par with “box cutters”, and possibly worse, undetectable by metal detectors as they are plastic and, if used by a twisted mind, capable of inflicting great injury. I’m sure the label on the package warns about “injury or death”.

                A terrible idea has been advertised to the world now.

        2. I disagree with those against impeachment in this situation. It is obvious that trump will not be removed from office before Joe Biden is inaugurated, but the impeachment trial should continue after January 20th. Accountability is required for the incitement of the mob, but also for the phone call to the Secretary of State in Georgia which was a criminal act to subvert a certified election. The Senate trial must occur for a subsequent vote against trump holding federal office again. He could run for Congress or President in 2022 or 2024 just to stay in the limelight. If citizens and lawmakers truly believe that “no person is above the law”, impeachment must be pursued. This is not hateful vengeance but an effort to draw the line against authoritarianism and corruption. Some in the GOP are behaving more civilly and covering their asses, but many are still beating the “trump drum.” https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/in-capital-a-g-o-p-crisis-at-the-r-n-c-meeting-a-trump-celebration/ar-BB1cB1vU?ocid=msedgntp (recent NYT article)

          1. I think there are many Republican senators (indeed, almost all of them) who, in their heart-of-hearts, would like to see Donald Trump barred from ever holding public office again — both among his potential rivals for the 2024 presidential nomination and among those who merely wish to rehabilitate the Republican Party from within.

            How many of them would be willing to do so publicly by supporting impeach is, of course, a different matter.

        3. Thanks Jerry. This reminds me of the way people reacted to 9/11. These were serious events, for sure. But for that very reason, measured responses are called for, not hysteria.or vengeance or score-settling.

          1. Exactly Lou, on a slight sidenote, it is one of the strong practical arguments against capital punishment. The call for the death penalty is strongest when emotions run high, but when emotions run high we are most prone to make mistakes.

        4. I haven’t seen comments calling for everyone to be shot. Perhaps because they have been deep-sized before they hit the page. I disagree that this is a matter of rancor and I’m a bit puzzled by calls for empathy for those who attempted a coup simply because the coup failed.

          I do not see much evidence for the GOP having realized what it has done. Two thirds of the Republican caucus voted, after this attack, to nullify the votes of everyone in two states. It just doesn’t look to me as if a light bulb suddenly went off in their heads. The fact that Mitch McConnell intends to slow-walk an impeachment trial is not a measure of progress.

          1. I agree. I think Lou and Jerry are too sanguine about this situation. There is much more to this than just Trump’s rally and Hawley’s fist bump. Trump and many members of the RP in both houses have been building their fanatic base up since the election. And what Republicans may think is no reason not to take warranted measures.

            1. I second that. I’m dumbfounded that some people here don’t recognize that our country is in grave danger right now.

            2. “Trump and many members of the RP in both houses have been building their fanatic base up since the election.”

              Darrelle, I absolutely agree with you about that. But impeachment with fewer than ten days to go until the end of his term is counterproductive and will make a martyr of him. And if Congress decides to go into emergency session for this when they have not been willing to do it for a new stimulus bill that many Americans desperately need, it will reinforce the beliefs of these Trump supporters. You say that we shouldn’t care what they think, but that is an error that history warns us to avoid. In a democtracy, we need to look for more fundamental solutions.

        5. Like a lot of people, I’m frightened and angered by the insurrection at the capitol. Our democracy is under attack and I’m just not able to feel empathy for the people perpetuating that attack. If they’re not punished to the full extent of the law, they might very well try it again in the near future—maybe as soon as Biden’s inauguration. (Maybe next time they’ll show up in your city or mine!) Insurrection is a serious crime, and yet I see pictures of the rioters wearing funny costumes and taking selfies in the capitol building, like a pack of amused tourists. Let’s show them that sedition is not a joke and that actions have consequences. A government cannot stay in power unless it’s willing and able to use force and mete out punishment.

          I have family members who support Trump. If I ever caught them planning sedition, I’d be the first person to put them in jail.

        6. A police officer had his head smashed in with a fire extinguisher, and died.

          I need not ask what would happen to an entire group which invaded a building anywhere in the U.S. in order to commit a crime, and one of them ended up murdering a policeman or security officer in there.

          Let’s hope they are able to convict the perpetrator with murder, and probably no one disagrees there.

          But every one of those who were right there ‘hassling’ that officer, and probably much worse, should, for justice, but also for consistency with what happens in a similar situation as above, be convicted as murder accomplices. Could any of you disagree?

          Even further, every person who can be caught for the crime of actually invading the building (maybe not ‘merely’ penetrating the outside defences) should get convicted of accessory to murder. And that’s 5, 10, 15 years in jail. Some here might disagree.

          Maybe make room for them by releasing people jailed long term for smoking pot.

      5. We should investigate why the Capitol police were unprepared and why reinforcements were not brought in earlier. That’s very suspicious. Go after things like this, not his ambiguous words

            1. No, there is much more than that, Mark. To start with, this protest was planned in plain sight for days. Why were there so few police there? Why wasn’t the National Guard called in until very late? There are some reports that help was offered from outside agencies and this was turned down by the Capitol police (I am not sure if this report is true). And almost no one was arrested during the protest. Almost all arrests were for violating curfew after the protest was over. Contrast this with the massive response to BLM protests in the same city. Something is fishy here.

              1. Not a defense, I’d only point out that the Capitol is open to the public (as it should be) and as such extremely difficult to secure. It seems to me a hugely difficult task; how do you provide security to an open-to-the-public government building while ensuring that your security measures don’t infringe on 1st amendment rights?

                I have zero security experience but even I can see there were failures here (and perhaps a conspiracy), but it must be damned hard to provide security to buildings like the Capitol. Heads need to roll (in a job sense) and a 9/11 style inquiry needs to be done, but if there was a conspiracy, I have little expectation that justice will prevail; cops in the US are rarely held accountable for their actions, no matter how egregious. Nevertheless, it is possible that solutions to the security issues that don’t infringe (or do so minimally) on access to the building or on civil rights can come out of it.

              2. Thank you, that helps. I did read an opinion piece somewhere that decided that the tepid response was more along the line of ‘lack of imagination’. Like Pearl Harbor, and the 9/11 attacks, the Tet offensive, and so on — in all such cases there were warnings but no one took them seriously. Conspiracy theories tend to emerge from these kinds of things, btw.
                I would expect at this point that the ‘lack of imagination’ angle for the tepid response from the police and guards will still be a major part of the truth of the matter.

        1. I agree for the most part with your assessment; going after Trump now is fraught with problems, many as you noted. I too am alarmed by the calls for vengeance I hear in media and politics. This is no way to move forward.

          On the other hand – what Trump and his henchmen have wrought is such a serious threat to our nation that I feel we simply can’t go forward sweeping his actions under the rug in hopes that healing will begin. This cannot stand.

          A short, sharp shock – go after him (and Giuliani and his son, as well as others) as quickly as possible. Get what must be done, done quickly. Prosecute all involved with appropriately long sentences and fines. Above all else, justice MUST be done and MUST be seen to be done. After the dust settles, we can re-focus on trying (likely in vain) to undo the damage.

          I feel we are on a knifes edge and the smallest mistake will plunge us into more violence. Which is why I have no hope. We are in for a shit-storm of biblical proportions,

        1. Impeachment could happen in a very short time, but a trial in the Senate likely would not happen. There is a possibility that a trial in the Senate takes place after the 20th, but it seems there are more important issues to address.

      6. *If* the democrats pushed for impeachment and *if* Trump was not found guilty then Trump could campaign in 2024 on ‘Draining The Swamp’ pointing out that ‘they’ had tried to ‘get him’ twice, so ‘they’ must be frightened of his future success. A political consideration, no truth was necessarily involved in this hypothetical argument.

        The more they appear to seek revenge (in the Trump supporters eyes), the more social media silence the present President of the USA (political censorship), the more the Democrats risk making a martyr.

        1. The more they appear to seek revenge (in the Trump supporters eyes), the more social media silence the present President of the USA (political censorship), the more the Democrats risk making a martyr.

          That’s one way to look at it. The counter-argument is that Trump is the kind of guy who always tests limits, and if he senses fear or hesitation, he just pushes harder. If he doesn’t face consequences, his behavior will only get worse. Democrats in general seem very scared of Trump supporters, but the Trump supporters aren’t scared of us. If we can’t find the courage to stand up to them, then American democracy is doomed.

          1. 🙂

            I do worry that the USA is settling into a vendetta (whether starting now, 4 years ago, or even before that) where neither side is prepared to work for the greater good because ‘the other side has to surrender first’.

  2. Prosecutors are well-experienced in the type of doublespeak that Trump engages in with their extensive record in prosecuting mob figures. There is considerable testimony that the same sort of innuendo is typical of Trump’s modus operandi – specifically from his many biographers, former employees, and legal counsel. While it is true that the statement is a mixture of both direct incitement and artful euphemisms, it would not be hard to establish a pattern of behavior that reveals his malignant intentions and extensive record of election tampering.

    1. Michael Cohen, Trump’s former attorney, has stated many times that Trump never explicitly told him to do things that were not exactly on the up-and-up, but he always knew what Trump really wanted. As you quite accurately put it, Trump speaks and acts as a mob boss.

    2. You’ve put your finger on why mob bosses like Santo Trafficante and Meyer Lansky never spent a day in prison.

      Also on why it would be difficult to prosecute Donald Trump for incitement to riot.

  3. I’ll let the criminal lawyers argue this one out. If reports of his pleasure while watching this play out on TV are true, it is my opinion that he intended this result, or something very similar to it.

    1. I’ve got to disagree. Snopes goes out of its way to be even handed and is even a little hard on the left to provide a bit of balance for the tide of rubbish from the right.
      Also, this is the reason twitter banned him. He was giving ‘coded’ messages to his supporters. If you are in the right circles, you know exactly what he means, while useful idiots can claim plausible deniability.

      1. “Also, this is the reason twitter banned him. He was giving ‘coded’ messages to his supporters.”

        The problem with that is that it allows Big Tech to ban you, not for anything you’ve actually and provably said, but for what someone asserts that you meant. Given how much monopoly power Big Tech now has, that is not really defendable.

        [And no, I’m not persuaded by the “private companies” reply, companies with near monopolies in their niche should be regulated for the public good.]

        1. companies with near monopolies in their niche should be regulated for the public good.]

          The distant whirring sound is John D. Rockefeller rotating in his grave. What the hell is a market for, if not for achieving dominance in a sector, then squeezing the pips until they squeak?
          I’m trying to work out how to attach Rockefeller and fellow-travellers to generators as prime-movers in a new generation of renewable power. Geared appropriately, you could generate more power with very little ramp-up time just by talking about how Rockefeller is ushering in an era of abundant energy too cheap to meter. The RRPM would sky-rocket.
          Rockerfeller Rotations Per Mention or RRPM as a unit of power – you read it here first!

        2. The problem with that is that it allows Big Tech to ban you, not for anything you’ve actually and provably said, but for what someone asserts that you meant.

          That’s a legal debate worth having in the near future, but Trump’s Twitter account was a clear and present danger and Twitter was absolutely right to ban him. His Tweets were inciting violence, regardless of whether he called for violence directly. Twitter made their decision based on results, not intentions. Several people died in the Capitol Riot and we have no reason to think that MAGA rioting will magically stop if Trump leaves office on January 20 (I also emphasize the “if” part here).

          Also, I’m surprised that many people in the media don’t seem aware of the security risk posed by Trump’s incessant use of Twitter. A Dutch cyber-security expert recently hacked into Trump’s Twitter account. Suppose a hostile nation or a domestic terrorist had done that? They could have easily started a war (e.g. A message from Trump’s account says, “We’ll be nuking China in twenty minutes” or some crazy thing like that).

          We can sort out the rest of the issues later when and if Biden takes office and the country returns to some semblance of normalcy. Right now the building is on fire and we’re arguing about whether we should save the curtains or the or photo album.

    2. IF they are true. Mainstream media has taken to reporting pretty much anything that they like where Trump is concerned, and don’t seem particularly bothered by sources.

    3. Subsequent statements and actions might be admissible in a criminal trial, but their probative value for establishing a prior state of mind is somewhat attenuated.

      Someone can read an obituary with glee without having plotted the murder.

    1. It was not an attempted coup. That would surely mean using military to seize hold of the classic strongpoints – airports, radio/tv stations, as well as government buildings. He surely knew that unleashing a mob was never going to give him control of anything. Perhaps they were hoping to take hostages?

      I think that there were multiple motives just like every revolt ever. Some were just along for the fun. Trump was just being what he has for the last 4 years, a bullyboy bullshitting disruptor.

      1. A military coup is only one type of coup. Trump was trying to get the Congress to overturn an election. If he had succeeded it would have been a successful coup. The fact that it failed, or that it didn’t involve the military (beyond his civilian Pentagon leaders preventing rapid deployment of National Guard) doesn’t make “coup” an irrelevant term.

        1. What Trump and his congressional accomplices were attempting to get Mike Pence to do on January 6th (and what Trump earlier attempted to get election certifiers, state legislators and secretaries of states to do) would have constituted a bloodless coup.

  4. Long before January 6 Trump encouraged supporters to come to DC and get wild. I think the most charitable description I can give is “willful ignorance”.

  5. It has been reported that Trump and his family partied and were cheering the terrorists on during the events that happened. He/they clearly incited violence.

    1. “…that Trump and his family partied and were cheering the terrorists on…”

      Exactly. Admissible on the issue of intent, as I read it. Perhaps not quite as ghastly as his idiot lawyer’s “trial by combat” rant–I can’t BELIEVE that Giuliani hasn’t yet been arrested–but enough to render the Mango Mussolini’s obvious dog whistles actionable.

    2. I saw videos to that effect (focussed on some other USian politician) yesterday, but wasn’t motivated to note names. One does hope that automatic archiver-bots and motivated individuals have kept copies and they’ll come out of the woodwork in due course.

    3. Even if true (and that is if), all that means is they were reacting to what little they could see of it. Its still lowest of the low, but I see no evidence of specifically pre-orchestrating the invasion of the building.

      1. They were disorganized but there are lots of videos of crowds chanting for Pence to be hanged. What you don’t see is many of them backing off because that’s not what they signed up for. It is absolutely what they signed up for. That said, convictions will probably require that the prosecution show the suspect acknowledged this intent. My guess is that with the social media used to organize and motivate this crowd, that will not be hard to do.

  6. Two points. First, this only considers the remarks made immediately prior to the riot; it does not take into account the weeks of inflammatory tweets and comments that preceded it. Second, we are not talking (yet) about how a criminal case would fare in court.

    Interestingly, attorney and former FBI agent Asha Rangappa (@AshaRangappa) has a very interesting Twitter thread, in which she describes the advice she would give to Trump – cut a deal with Pence and resign. That deal would include his commitment not to run in 2024 and Pence’s agreement to a limited pardon, one that doesn’t cover Wednesday’s events (having been the intended target of a lynching, even Pence won’t go that far). And resignation would be an implicit acceptance of responsibility, one that might mitigate future prosecutorial zeal. Of course, the probability that Trump would act in such a rational way is pretty close to zero.

  7. So not only have Twitter and Facebook banned him (Trump), but also companies handling his email accounts (messages to supporters) are also pulling the plug on him.

    OK, so we all dislike Trump and have no sympathy with him, but are we really happy with Big Tech having this much power? What will they do with it next?

    People banned from Twitter have usually headed for Parler (which, for those who aren’t familiar with it, is like Twitter but which doesn’t ban anyone for anything).

    But now Google and Apple are refusing to handle the Parler App, which (correct me if I’m wrong) could soon mean that no-one can use Parler on any iOS or Android device (and thus not on any phone).

    We really, really need regulation, so that basic services (and nowadays that includes much of the function of the internet) is available to everyone, regardless of their politics.

    1. “regardless of their politics”

      At what point does politics end and criminal insurrection begin? Why do companies that offer email/web/chat services need to allow any and all activity? Is it OK for people to plot crimes without having their accounts closed?

      1. As regards criminal activity, we have a criminal justice system along with courts to which people can appeal for fairness.

        I don’t think that near-monopoly Big Tech should have the right to act as judge and jury. I’d be ok with them being able to ask a judge for a court order, or with an independent and politically neutral adjudicator.

        1. Criminal justice acts after the acts. You’re demanding that media companies be implicit participants in the acts themselves

          1. But these tech companies all operate on the basis that they are not “publishers” and are not responsible for the content posted. That’s why, for example, they are not liable if someone posts libelous content on Twitter.

            A cell-phone company is not responsible for, say, a criminal conspiracy using their phones. I’m only asking for the same principle regarding near-monopoly “public square” services.

            1. You would object to a cell-phone company cutting off access to subscribers engaged in plotting an assassination? Really?

              1. Has that ever happened? At least in the UK, you’d need a court order to listen in to calls and know what they’re saying.

              2. In the case of Twitter you don’t need a court order. You just need to watch your feed.

                I think you’ve just tried to avoid the point of the question.

            2. You’re talking about two different things. They’re not banning Trump because the think they’re responsible for his posts, they’re banning him because his posts lead directly to violence, which violates their policies which Trump has agreed to when he signed up. The time for courts is after it happens when the aggrieved party can then take the company to court if they feel they have been wronged. As Trump has done with Twitter before.

        2. Yes! This is the kind of solution I’ve been arguing for. I feel that we can’t reasonably complain about social media companies actions in this arena unless we have all agreed on a solution we would like them to implement. Seems to me, with perhaps a few exceptions, they are mostly trying to do the right thing but have no idea what would comprise a workable solution and are constrained by competition and allegiance to their shareholders. The solution needs to be imposed on them by government(s), not as punishment but in recognition that it needs to be decided for the people and applied to all players equally.

    2. So you would have companies like Twitter and Facebook, etc., forced to allow posts and accounts that call for violence and insurrection? That’s just politics?

      1. I’d be happy with an independent and non-political regulator.

        And don’t kid yourself that they’re actually against calls for violence, this is politics, the “violence” justification is just an excuse. If they were actually against calls for violence, they’d shut down oodles of BLM and Antifa accounts the operate with impunity.

        And have they taken down this Tweet saying: ” #Israel is a malignant cancerous tumor in the West Asian region that has to be removed and eradicated”?

        1. That’s not fair. They don’t shut down “oodles of BLM and Antifa accounts” because they don’t want to position themselves as censors. Many of them have stated this explicitly. They only censor because there’s no choice. If they allow these accounts to continue, then they are vulnerable to claims that they harbor terrorists on their platform. If they cancel their accounts, there will be a war over exactly whose accounts should be cancelled and why and complaints that they are emulating China’s Great Firewall.

          1. They certainly do want to censor, why else would they ban Megan Murphy for a Tweet saying “yeah, it’s him”? (As opposed to “it’s her”, using the wrong pronouns is a banning offence on Twitter; it’s not just about terrorists and incitement to violence.)

              1. That’s a one-off situation. There’s nothing here that suggests that Twitter generally bans users for misgendering, whatever that means. Within any computer system with so many users, mistakes will be made. As the article suggests, perhaps JY has some relationship with someone inside Twitter. If that’s the case, anything can happen. If anything, it points to the need to have some sort of public appeal system to resolve such issues. It is wrong to be able to be thrown off and not know why. But regardless of what criteria they use, there will be disputes and mistakes.

    3. On one hand it is hard not to derive long-wished-for satisfaction to see Trump, who has slithered like a greased snake through life, FINALLY facing consequences. Consequences that actually hit him where he can’t avoid being hurt, both his social media influence and his merchandising.

      And Trump’s rhetoric truly has been THAT dangerous. I mean, what should places like Twitter do if they discover disinformation being fomented by Russian bots or bad actors? Just let it proliferate?
      What to do about someone who foments so much dangerous misinformation, to such a hugely consequential degree?

      One thing some people are bemoaning now, rightly, is how things turned out with the internet. Instead of all having access to “knowledge” and coming to together, it balkanized “knowledge and facts” to perfectly suit our biases. We miss the times when information was somewhat funneled through a media that shared a greater ethic of fact-checking, so there was greater agreement on what the facts were, even if we disagreed on what we “should do.” I suppose one could greet the stronger hand social media is now taking as a possible move towards raising the bar for claims and information, putting them under more scrutiny as the old-school journalism would. And if so, might that possibly mean more of us will converge on facts again?

      On the other hand, I agree with you: it still feels like capitol “C” Censorship, of the type that always feels good so long as your side is doing it. Exactly what we keep trying to point out to the cancel culture crowd. And we’ve already seen how there are people on the left who already want to recklessly label whatever they want “hate speech” and “violence” which can be used to instigate the same shutting down of alternative views. So…yeah…not without a lot of worry here.

    4. “Parler (which, for those who aren’t familiar with it, is like Twitter but which doesn’t ban anyone for anything).”
      This is incorrect. They do ban people. Just pretend to be left wing and do a bit of trolling and see how long your account lasts.

    5. There are claims circulating on Twitter that, in the wake of the Trump ban, several tens of thousands of other accounts are being purged.

      For example, Andy Ngo (picked as an example of someone who is likely followed by many Trump supporters) seems to be down by about 40,000 followers in a day (out of about 800,000). It’s unlikely that that many have chosen to unfollow all of a sudden, there seems to be a Twitter purge of that sort of magnitude going on.

    6. When it comes to Twitter banning Trump:

      The political observer in me is enjoying the schadenfreude.
      The citizen in me feels of measure of relief for the next 10 days.
      The civil-libertarian in me is troubled.

      Color me compartmentalized. 🙂

  8. I think impeaching Trump is just about the worst thing Congress could do right now. The storming of the Capitol was a watershed moment that caused a lot of people to jump off of the Trump train. Everyone I know who supported Trump is disgusted and has disavowed him. Impeaching him with ten days left in his term will do nothing but anger people who support or previously supported him. He’s been censored on social media and even the “alternative” platforms where he can still post are being banned from app stores. He needs to be contained, but not impeached.

    We need to use this as a moment to unify as many people as possible and build as many bridges across the partisan divide in this country as we can.

    We also need to use this moment to condemn, unequivocally, rioting in support of political ideas. Social and mainstream media slant bias has not gone unnoticed over the last few months and has served to further anger the Right and make them feel aggrieved. A lot of people on the Right have noticed the uneven mainstream and social media treatment of rioting and vandalism over the last few months. To be clear, I’m not in any way making a comparison between what happened at the Capitol and the BLM riots; I’m just talking generally about the media’s noticeable lack of coverage regarding widespread arson, looting, vandalism, assaults, etc., and social media’s allowance of support and violent rhetoric for it over the last few months. I’ve heard some of my friends from the Right say things like, “if a bunch of MAGA people took over six city blocks in Portland, do you really think that the media wouldn’t cover it constantly, and that it wouldn’t be condemned by every Democratic politician across the country, and that it would be allowed to go on for a month?” Or “do you really think social media would allow right-wingers to post support for rioting, looting, and arson on a regular basis, as they riot in over 100 cities across the country?” And I can’t disagree with them. Media shouldn’t be covering criminal behavior and social media shouldn’t be allowing its support based simply on the claimed politics behind it.

    I think Democrats set a dangerous precedent by keeping so quiet about the violence and billions of dollars in damage (not to mention the enormous spike in murders and assaults) resulting from the BLM riots, and the mayors and governors who did little to nothing about it are even more at fault for normalizing this kind of behavior.

    I hope this is a teaching moment for everyone, and especially for Trump supporters. Most of all, I hope it’s a moment that brings us together over the ideas that our democracy should be executed through voting and other legitimate political activity, and that widespread violence is not to be countenanced.

      1. “To be clear, I’m not in any way making a comparison between what happened at the Capitol and the BLM riots…”

        I made it clear multiple times in this post that I wasn’t “blaming this event on Democrats.” What I very clearly said was that I hope this moment leads them to reconsider their noticeable silence on rioting and violence over the last few months. You’re being as uncharitable as possible and intentionally misrepresenting my post.

        I think you know me well enough by now to know that I don’t blame the Democrats for what happened at the Capitol anyway, so if you want to engage the points I actually made, go ahead. But please don’t misrepresent what I said.

        1. Give me a break.

          “I think Democrats set a dangerous precedent…”

          You made your actual intent clear. The only reason to argue that “precedent” is involved is to shift responsibility.

          1. Yes, keep taking snippets. That’s very honest of you. They did set a dangerous precedent: a precedent for more violence in our cities. Not a precedent for an assault on our Capitol.

            Calm down and stop putting words in my mouth.

            1. That’s simply untrue. Democrats did not set such a precedent. And the only words I put in your mouth were those that you wrote yourself.

              1. You can keep this up. You’ve made that quite clear throughout this comments section. But I doubt that there’s a single person who’s been here more than a year who would call me dishonest in my opinions or my motives. In fact, I even make a habit of admitting when I’m wrong, as I did just a few comments below. I have written my comment and, due to your misunderstanding of it, I have further explicated my position. You have chosen to disregard that and stick to your initial claim that I was saying something I have repeatedly told you I wasn’t. You’re clearly not the kind of person who can back down or even admit that, hey, maybe I misunderstood someone’s words. You’d rather continue to believe that I’m being dishonest than entertain the idea of admitting that you misinterpreted my words. You wouldn’t even be admitting that you were wrong; only that you misunderstood. But you can’t even do that. You seem to believe the worst about people who disagree with you even a bit. I hope that changes. Goodbye.

    1. Actually, BJ, you are very likely a liar here.

      No genuine evidence whatsoever is presented. The one reference is an abstract, so you have not read the actual University of Mormon Moron Nitwits law paper, and I seriously doubt it contains reliable statistical evidence.

      Are you able to demonstrate me wrong, or are you just a Republican propaganda outlet?

  9. I think the best grounds for impeachment is his attempt to coerce the governor of Georgia to “find votes”. This is gangster talk for – “make it happen, or else.” In this case too, his threats were veiled enough so that a literal reading exonerates him. But, you don’t need to be a genius to see he was threatening political retaliation. Conviction will never happen, but impeachment is enough to kick his ass as he exits the door.

    1. That’s a better justification for impeachment than his much more ambiguous phrases about “fighting”. And there are many other criminal activities of his that will probably come to light as soon as he leaves office. Illegal enrichment, tax evasion, nepotism, kickbacks from arms sales, etc. We should be going after these much less ambiguous things and not putting another nail in the coffin of free speech.

  10. If the mob at the Capitol was Trump’s fault, then literally all the riots since May have been the fault of the Democrats. No one remembers when rioters tore down barricades in front of the White House, and the President had to be moved to a secure location.

    1. Again, this is false equivalence. What Democrat encouraged BLM protesters? Most of those protests were quiet and peaceful. You are trying to define reality.

    2. Instead of playing these “both sides” games, perhaps you could directly address the question. Was the mob at the Capitol not Trump’s fault? Please make your case.

  11. Also, I’d like to take this moment to apologize unreservedly for disagreeing with anyone about Trump’s authoritarian inclinations. I thought he was merely an incompetent buffoon who was the most dangerous President in history for other reasons. And while the other reasons still stand, it’s clear that I was wrong in saying that he is not an authoritarian.

  12. “Snopes leans largely to the Left”

    What’s your evidence for this? I have often gone to Snopes to see if something is true so, if they are biased, it would be good to know. Perhaps it is just the “truth bias” that almost always puts them on the opposite side of those who lie for a living.

  13. When a four-year-old inclined toward oppositional behavior throws a tantrum (e.g., YOU DIDN’T WIN!
    I WON!), it is sometime helpful to distract the tot’s attention, so that it won’t do something destructive. For this reason, a new impeachment proceeding against little Donnie would be a good idea. It will not be confirmed in the Senate, but may occupy his limited attention span so that he won’t think of such other activities as signing an executive order to expel Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, and Pennsylvania from the Union, or ordering the army and navy to attack Trinidad and Tobago.

    1. Half of the mob seemed more interested in sightseeing and selfies, but had they thought there’d be more resistance, they might have brought more of their arsenals. That was the upside of “white privilege;” they felt entitled to take as long as they liked.

      If we can just get through the next 10 days without Himself creating a new crisis, I’d be happy to think beyond that. But suspending his Twitter account was the first thing that really got his attention, and I’m grateful that they did.

  14. How is the big tech media any different than the print media for the last 200 years? Should we go back and make every newspaper print every letter ever sent to to the editor without any selection?

    1. Newspapers pick out a small selection to print. Social media operate on allowing everything, except for a small number that they don’t like. It’s completely different.

      Also, newspapers are publishers (responsible for libel in a letter they print, etc), social media are not “publishers” (and not liable for libel etc).

  15. People directly connected to Trump used much stronger language:

    Trump’s attorney, Rudy Giuliani: “Let’s have trial by combat.”

    Donald Trump Jr.: “If you just roll over, if you don’t fight in the face of glaring irregularities and statistical impossibilities … if you’re going to be the zero and not the hero, we are coming for you.”

    My guess is that law enforcement is going to find many leads that come back to Trump, or at least those under his direct command. Still, the evidence doesn’t have to stand up to the usual courtroom standards for him to be impeached. For those that want to see Trump in jail, I’m sure there will be plenty of ammunition, much of which will be unveiled shortly after he leaves office.

  16. I’ll start with a general question. Are the courts really so dense that talking in innuendo will foil them? Suppose I said to my henchman “it would be really unfortunate if GBJames (to pick a random poster, sorry) met with an accident, and GBJames was later hit by a piano pushed off a high building by the aforementioned henchman. Would the court really accept my defence that I did not explicitly say to murder GBJames, in fact I expressed concern for his wellbeing? If so, there’s a really huge loophole in the law.

    There’s no doubt in my mind that Trump was expecting to disrupt the proceedings in some way on Wednesday. Perhaps he wasn’t expecting a full blown storming of the Capitol, but he wanted something to happen to stop the vote counting.

    Furthermore, he’s been stoking that fire pretty much since day one of his presidency: the times he’s talked about “second amendment solutions” for example. His henchman and erstwhile Mayor of New York stood on the same platform, behind the same ballistic glass and called for the election to be settled by “trial by combat”. Call it metaphor if you like, but he was talking to a crowd that talked of patriotism whilst replacing the US flag with a Trump flag – they don’t do metaphor.

    Trump caused this. Maybe he didn’t have intent, but his words and actions were reckless. People without intent but whose actions are reckless and lead to deaths still end up going to prison.

    1. Plus, I understand that, as reported by Ben Sasse, Trump was absolutely delighted with the goings on, and had to have it emphatically explained to him why it was not something to be delighted about.

    2. Exactly, Jeremy, although I’m not all that wild about that piano teetering on the edge of that building there!

  17. Correct me if I am wrong, but it is my understanding that an impeachment proceeding initiated soon could carry over into the next Congress. So, while not removing him from office, impeachment and conviction would bar Trump from holding any federal office in the future. It seems to me that some number of Republicans might agree to that, especially those with ambition to put themselves forward in 2024. Sorry to say, Donald Trump could win primary election in multiple states then.

  18. There has been much speculation about Trump pardoning himself or arranging for pardons. I wonder if is logically possible to issue a pardon for someone who has not been formally charged or convicted. In other words a preemptive pardon? It seems to me that any such action on his part would be an admission of guilt and I cannot imaging his ego would allow this.

        1. I don’t know of any, but as Paul’s link (below) tells, the history of preemptive pardons goes back to the beginning. Unlikely to be overturned in court, IMO.

    1. If Trump pardons himself, it needs to be challenged in the courts. It’s bad enough that he can pardon people for crimes as yet unspecified (e.g. he could pardon everybody who took part in Wednesday’s insurrection) but if a president can pardon themselves, they can commit federal crimes with total impunity, until impeached and removed from office. I don’t think you want that.

    1. Arieh Kovler, who was featured in this morning’s Hili Dialogue, also warns that the statehouses will likely be the scenes of the next riots. https://www.gq.com/story/man-predicted-capitol-coup-interview
      Indeed, as you might know, there were threatening though largely peaceful protests at many statehouses on January 6th, but, like you, I believe these portend more desperate assemblies coming soon. https://www.usnews.com/news/us/articles/2021-01-06/protests-spring-up-at-several-statehouses-as-siege-at-us-capitol-unfolds

  19. Speaking from Europe, may I make the observation that the people who charged into the Capitol Building were evidently, not the brightest. For the most part they were working men and women with little higher education, and, most importantly, they had been riled-up by weeks of lies about the election, by Trump. Perhaps they should be seen as victims of Trump, rather like those enthusiastic Germans who were tricked by leading Nazis to go on a suicide mission and attack the Soviet Union. I think it would be fair play to limit punishment of Trump’s soldiers in the light of their gullibility.

    1. Well, George, there were the associate general counsel of a Texas insurance company (now former associate general counsel – the company promptly fired him when they saw his Instagram feed) and a West Virginia state legislator (now arrested) among the rioters. So those were not the brightest. And people like them who posted their selfies on social media as they rioted, or the man who sat in Nancy Pelosi’s office with feet up on her desk, were equally not the brightest when it comes to being able to mount a defense to the various criminal charges some are already now facing.
      But that really isn’t the point.
      When someone shows up, as a man from Alabama (now arrested) did, with 11 Molotov cocktails and two assault rifles in his truck, I think we cease worrying about gullibility and start worrying about culpability. And when someone in that riotous mob killed a Capitol Police officer, the gullibility of those who joined the riot is far down my list of points to consider as part of their defense.
      Finally, I doubt that those who rioted would like the “little people” argument, as it’s sometimes referred to in discussions on religion, applied to them.

      1. I think George has a good point, but so do you.

        There were a lot of what we’d snootily call ‘Chavs’ there- I suppose you’d say rednecks. I am sure many are decent people as well, in their own ways. They just have a different set of values that do not involve obedience to state institutions. The federal government is to them what the British government was to Washington et al, remote & imposing taxes they do not like. This is their inheritance.

        1. I saw an interesting string on twitter from a lady who grew up in a white supremacist abusive family, where women were poorly treated. Most of the crowd were like a British football crowd in the not so distant past -packed with working class men, some of whom thought that a good punch-up was a fitting way to celebrate… I generalise though, but I think you can see these groups in most societies,

    2. I largely agree with your sentiments. The vast majority of people who showed up at the Capitol seem to have been peaceful, if deeply misled by lies from people they trusted, and some getting caught up in mob mentality. It makes me incredibly sad to see so many supposedly “liberal,” “open-minded,” “understanding’ people who seem to want nothing but to exact vengeance on their political opponents. And I’m not just talking about their opponents who took part in that gross display the other day, but vengeance against everyone who supported Trump. I’ve seen people who have lamented the partisan divide in this country and the degradation of our democracy and the nastiness of Trumpism basically call for the heads of everyone who opposes them.

      One of the reasons I love the movie JoJo Rabbit so much is because it preaches understanding for even people who believe in the worst of things. Even Nazis. As I’ve noted before, I have multiple ancestors who died in the Nazi death camps, and know literally countless people who also have such ancestors. And yet, I can understand how a large portion of a population can be misled, and I can forgive them. That’s what empathy is.

      If so many people here can’t even forgive supporting Trump, it severely shakes my faith in the next four years helping to heal my country and its people. All I see from so many is rage and a desire for revenge. That’s not a desire to restore democracy and to bring people together; it’s giving in to our most base instincts and treating those who are not in lock-step with us as not worth having the right to their voices being heard at all.

      Do some of the people in that mob at the Capitol deserve severe punishment? Absolutely. Do most? Absolutely not.

      1. +1 here. Over and over again we demonstrate we are like a band of apes, at war with another band of apes. But even the more “peaceable” rioters who entered the capitol building (!) can expect some punishment.

      2. How about we forgive them after they have served their sentences and have publicly retracted the “thinking” that led them to this action? Prior to that, talk of forgiveness seems self defeating.

      3. After the Beer Hall Putsch in 1923, Hitler was sentenced to five years in prison and only served nine months. Then he was back on the streets again and we all know how that went. How many potential Hitlers were in the MAGA mob at the capitol? (I’ve violated Godwin’s Law here, but the historical parallels are too strong too ignore at this point.) Sometimes forgiveness is not the compassionate choice in the long run.

      4. Let’s all hope sincerely for their rehabilitation.

        In the meantime, I say arrest ’em all and let the warden sort ’em out. 🙂

  20. I don’t agree that Snopes is left leaning. They strike me as being studiously careful to stick to facts and what the law says. In this case they are correct, from a legal standpoint Trump was careful not to explicitly tell the insurrectionists to do anything illegal. But one could still make a legal argument that he incited the crowd, so that’s why he got the half true designation for this.

  21. According to Pelosi, House Democrats plan to move on a second impeachment of Trump as early as Monday — and on Wednesday at the latest, depending on member travel. There’s just one article in the four-page draft: “Incitement of Insurrection.”

    Pelosi told Lesley Stahl for Sunday’s “60 Minutes” that Trump is “deranged”: “…sadly, the person that’s running the Executive Branch is a deranged, unhinged, dangerous president of the United States.”

    “And we’re only a number of days until we can be protected from him. But he has done something so serious that there should be prosecution against him.”

    McConnell has stated the Senate will reconvene on January 19, so any trial will be under the new Senate.

  22. Regardless of whether Trump incited an insurrection he can certainly be faulted for not taking appropriate action immediately after the illegal entry to the Capitol. There ought not to have been any delay or equivocation about calling out the National Guard.

  23. I also think that Trump should be impeached. There is no value any more in trying to appease or mollify his radical supporters. Every time we do that they just see it as an opportunity to become more extreme. They have to start facing the legal consequences of their open rebellion and attempts at insurrection, or they will just get more emboldened. They will try again on Jan. 20.

  24. Trump should be impeached, and an impeachment is not a court of law. He could be impeached for abuse of power, calling Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “recalculate” the votes, and inciting a riot. He pretty yelled “Fire!” in a crowded theatre.

    The larger worries are the Trump minions embedded in the federal government and Congress, and the fact that 74,223,744 Americans voted for a white dictatorship instead of a multiracial democracy.

    1. This is why we can’t have nice things; those were NOT the options at stake in the election. Your characterization in that way boils down, like some hideous consomme, all that’s wrong in our social/political discourse today.

      1. I’m not sure what you’re saying. There are clear reasons to impeach again. Trump’s corruption, racism, and lack of leadership were well-know before the election–that so many Americans buy into it and reject any grounding in truth and reality–shows an inner rot that likely cannot be healed or smoothed over with bipartisanship.

        1. You put voters into one of two pigeon holes – either they are for a “white dictatorship” or a “multiracial democracy”. Twelve percent of African Americans voted for Trump.

          When you tell people, based on their votes, that they are either a racist or they are not, you are telling them; “you are my enemy”. How then do you get any of them to compromise with you on any of your political goals?

          This is the nature of American political discourse today. Do you think this is a healthy way for our country to behave?

          1. If a voter supports Trump because of his economic policies while ignoring Trump’s racist policies, is that voter a racist? Yes, or at the very least that voter is an enabler. Perhaps you missed the Confederate flags and anti-Semitic clothes and badges at the protest. Those people were Trump’s base.

            1. I’ll note that you didn’t answer the question. You needn’t now. I know what it will be; a hideous consomme.

              1. You’re asking the wrong question. The GOP is now the Cult of Trump. They are not interested in healthy discourse or bipartisanship or moving the country forward. They want power for various reasons–tax cuts for the wealthy, to lessen environmental rules for profit, white supremacy, insert assorted reasons here, etc. Trump was a useful tool for all those reasons. The GOP controlled Congress and the White House for two years. What did they accomplish? Tax cuts for the wealthy, packing their judges into the judicial system, killing off environmental regulations.

    2. What strikes me is that those people broadly do not buy into the foundation myth/story of the US that sustains the country & is supposed to provide some unity. I am also pretty sure that they have always been there, (& similar groups in most countries) just never had the opportunity to group that they have in the last 2 decades.

      It is all very well for Bush to criticise Trump, but both him & Reagan laid the foundations that enabled these people to become mainstream. I heard one commentator say the next decade will be possibly full of the same conflicts as the 60s in the US.

      1. >What strikes me is that those people broadly do not buy into the foundation myth/story of the US that sustains the country & is supposed to provide some unit<

        They would say the same about the woke, that they aren't buying into the US' foundation myth and national unity (as they see it). Isn't that what they are complaining about all the time? For example, when statues were toppled this summer, or when the NY Times had the foundation myth rewritten to 'the country was founded to protect slavery', and when the 400 hundred year anniversary of the Mayflower this year went by without much public celebration.

  25. He has spent his life on the fringe of criminality and lies. He knows how to give a command in the form of a hypothetical, so as to avoid breaking the law technically and maintain (at least for a jury) plausible deniability. It’s second nature to him. He won’t be convicted in the senate.

    1. Yes. Tr*mp learned early how to speak with a forked tongue. It’s one of the most-used tools in his Con Man Kit.

  26. The point is that the marauders who stormed the Capitol believed Trump told them to. They did not analyze his words the way a court would. Of course, Trump would say it’s not his fault they misunderstood his locker room talk/rhetorical hyperbole/blah blah.

  27. What I cannot understand – can any American Explain? – is, Trump’s son-in-law is Jewish- how on earth does that chime with the nazis, white-supremacists & fascists that form a big chunk of his active support?

    🤨🧐🤔

    1. Bernie Sanders is Jewish- how on earth does that chime with the Woke, Left-wing anti-semites & BDS supporters that form a big chunk of his active support?

      Both are good questions.

  28. I am long past any calls for “let’s call an end to this, stop the division, heal the country, and just be nice to one another, kumbaya” that we are now hearing from, among others, people like Kevin McCarthy, the House majority leader, who voted twice on Wednesday to throw out the electoral college votes he didn’t like.
    THE DIVISION EXISTS, like it or not, and calls for stopping it now are in many instances from the people who enabled Trump’s behavior over the past four years right up to and including Wednesday, have failed to overturn our democratic form of government, and now want us to let it all be bygones instead of holding anyone to account.
    Do you think that if they had succeeded they would be sweetness and light right now?
    I don’t want vengeance, but I do want justice and not impunity.

    1. It has been noted often that these calls for healing the country we hear from Republicans are always after some terrible event, not before. It is self-serving BS. I agree that it isn’t revenge but getting justice and holding those responsible to account.

    2. I think it is a division that exists in many societies, & has existed in the US since the early years of European settlement.

      The other question I have (after the Kushner one above) is, how do US christians (I refuse to capitalise that) reconcile the famous Jesus commandment Matthew 5:44 – “love your enemies… “ with their behaviour towards other people who disagree???

      Bizarre!

      1. It was apparently their g*d’s will that Jimmy Jesus was nailed to the tree so maybe they cherry pick whose example they follow?

  29. It’s not the asshats in horns that gave me chills – it’s the paramilitary guys with zip ties who came in with the first wave. Some waved on by the guards.

    (https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2021/01/was-there-a-plan-for-hostages-or-killings-at-the-capitol.html)

    My spidey sense is telling me that the majority of the progressives in this country don’t know we are, in fact, witnessing the opening rounds of civil war. Hope very much that I’m wrong.

    Trump telling his supporters that he’s not going to the inauguration : fit of pique or call to arms?

      1. He also should be charged in Georgia for suborning election fraud from the Georgia SoS, on that call released just last weekend. Frankly, with the number of crimes he’s committed, it boggles my mind how anyone can claim the Republican party is on the side of “law and order”.

    1. Trump and all of his allies should be investigated, and prosecuted if warranted. To “just move on” shows his ilk there are no consquences for their actions and just emboldens them. The next Trump to come along could be a lot smarter and more dangerous.

  30. It’s well-known that there’s no direct order from Hitler to start the Holocaust. There’s no written document where Hitler orders to kill all the Jews. Yet we all recognize that Hitler and his henchmen bear the primary responsibility for their monstrous crimes. No casuistry can remove the stain of January 6th from Trump and his henchmen.

    I highly recommend this post on fascism in the historical discussion around the events of Jan 6th: https://old.reddit.com/r/AskHistorians/comments/ks082p/meta_todays_sedition_at_the_united_states_capitol/gid3gd9/

  31. I have noticed that in the various discussions at this site regarding Trump and his supporters there is, in my opinion, too much talking about the trees and not enough about the forest. We can debate all day about what punishment should be meted out to the mob that invaded the Capitol or whether Trump should be impeached once again. But these debates do not get to the heart of the matter: what can be done to wean the many members of the Trump cult back to a world of reality? We need to understand that his supporters harbor a multitude of grievances and look to a false messiah for their remedy. These grievances include resentment towards the “elites,” economic decline, the threat to white dominance, and fears of religious persecution. These grievances have been stoked by Trump and right-wing media, which for decades have spewed out lies. In other words, these people are susceptible to the fascist appeal. They will remain for many years a threat to democracy and social stability. We can call them deluded, uneducated fools. But name calling doesn’t solve the problem. We need to convince them that government is not their enemy and that they have a future in American society – one that is different, but perhaps better, than the society of old that they pine away for. Until that is accomplished, Trumpism will long outlive Trump.

    1. We need to convince them that government is not their enemy

      how are you going to convince them of that when “government is the enemy” is now the foundational principle of the Republican party? Reagan’s “government is the problem” is deeply embedded in the ideology of one of the two parties in the US.

      1. By pointing out the idiocy of that point of view, something the Dems should have been doing all along, IMHO. People who say that the government is the problem are exactly the people that should not be elected to government office.

        1. The Dems have been pointing this out, that’s why they’re usually called the party of “big government”, “tax-and-spend Democrats” and so on. What we’re seeing is that it’s a small step from being for “smaller government” to shouting the government is illegitimate and should be drowned in a bathtub.

          1. That’s not the Dems pointing it out but names the GOP calls them. Dems mistake, IMHO, is talking about benefits to the people as if they only accrued to the few that need them and only talking about the benefit and trying to ignore the cost. Instead, they should be making the case that government benefits accrue to all by providing a peaceful society. Free health care for all, for example, is not a handout to a few but raises up the entire population, making them healthier and more productive, leading to economic prosperity for all. Government services should be seen as tradeoffs between cost and benefit. Instead, Dems talk only about benefits and Reps only talk about costs and only when they aren’t in power.

    2. This will be the greatest challenge in free nations going forward. I don’t know how it’s going to be fixed or if it can, especially since the misinformation has been monetized by so many and they are incentivized to stoke rage.

      One of the many instances on that day was Trump supporters attacking the press and not for the first time. Trump has regularly been calling the press his enemy and the enemy of his followers (and worse).

      What did anyone expect? That reasoned discussion was going to take place? That pointing out Republican judges, politicians and civil service people disagreed with charges of a fixed election?

      They did and were soundly ignored or threatened by people who are not interested in facts that don’t comport with their delusions. Perhaps social media is the answer to the Fermi paradox.

    3. Many of them I think are just plain bat-shit crazy. They have no legitimate beefs. None of them seems to realize that, in a democracy, everyone can’t get their own way. They cannot accept the legitimacy of being out-voted by the majority.

      1. The reason they don’t acquiesce to Dems winning is that the GOP, and the conspiracy theorists they enable, have been telling them that the Dems want America to fail and are the devil, etc. They’ve been demonizing them for years. Fox News has pushed their message relentlessly. No surprise that some actually believe it.

    4. Yes, you have highlighted the true danger here; January 20th will come and go, but Trumpism won’t unless and until we can find a way (within our laws and without giving up our national soul) to defang them.

      1. Yes. We need more fundamental solutions. Impeaching Trump to keep him from running again, a remedy many commenters have suggested above, is an anti-democratic band-aid solution to the problem. We need leaders who are not afraid of the ballot box, leaders who look for real solutions rather than leaders who attempt to use the mechanisms of government to make their popular opponents disappear. The latter is a terrible solution for a democracy.

        1. It is less a fear of the Orange Menace actually being elected again as it is a fear of NOT making it clear that some behavior is disqualifying, pure and simple.

    5. Actually, I think it does get to the heart of the matter. First, I do agree that this is the right heart. This is the real problem. There are many people who believe conspiracy theories and want an authoritarian to be in charge. This needs to be countered.

      I do think throwing the book at these people who stormed the Capitol will send a strong message as to what’s real and what isn’t. A reality check, if you will. Let those people charged mount a defense and see if it holds up in court. Let others read the transcripts and learn the seriousness of the game they are playing. I’m not saying this will solve the problem but it will help at least a little.

  32. It seems to me courts often have to determine the defendants state of mind since no one can ever read peoples mind. So we use their words and actions. For instance, Trump refusing to send in state or national guard even as people were breaking into the building.

    I would also suggest it we don’t have to look at just his words immediately before the event. Trump had, on dozens of occasions stated the election was stolen and his followers need to do something, with something being coached in various ways. Since all legal remedies had been exhausted, exactly what did Trump expect his followers to do?

    Rightwing Watch tweet:

    Trump cultist Brenden Dilley dismisses Trump’s call for peace as MAGA activists storm the Capitol: “With all due respect, what the fuck did you think was going to happen?”

    Finally, as others have pointed out impeachment is not a criminal trial. They don’t need to read his mind. His words and actions are enough.

  33. When Trump declared that there would be an orderly transition to the next Presidency, I got the feeling that he was telling the world that, at his whim, he could declare otherwise.

  34. Here is a transcript of Trump’s speech to the crowd.

    https://www.rev.com/blog/transcripts/donald-trump-speech-save-america-rally-transcript-january-6

    He does not instruct the rioters to be peaceful, rather, he observes at 18:16

    ” I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.”

    But his speech continues for over 50 more minutes repeating, ad naseum, that the election was corrupt using all his disproven claims for support until at 1:11:44

    ” I think one of our great achievements will be election security because nobody until I came along, had any idea how corrupt our elections were. And again, most people would stand there at 9:00 in the evening and say, “I want to thank you very much,” and they go off to some other life, but I said, “Something’s wrong here. Something’s really wrong. Can’t have happened.” And we fight. We fight like Hell and if you don’t fight like Hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore.”

    There’s a bit more, and I’ll leave it to the lawyers to determine if this meets the bar for incitement, but it certainly seems that way to a layman.

  35. I agree that (unless there is some as-yet undisclosed evidence for things going on behind the scenes) Trump’s actions would not pass muster to support a criminal conviction for incitement under the standards of Brandenburg v. Ohio.

    Trump does, however, bear moral responsibility for the riots, and I think there must be some direct legal repercussion for him if the United States is continue to be a nation where the rule of law matters. I would hate to see the US senate get bogged down in a lengthy impeachment trial at the start of the new Biden administration, especially when there is so much other serious legislative work to be done. (I will note, however, that the grounds for conviction of impeachment are NOT the same as those for criminal conviction, but are instead whatever congress decides them to be. I also note that conviction in the senate does not require a 2/3 vote of all sitting 100 senators, but only 2/3 of the senators present in the senate chamber when the vote is taken, meaning that Republican senators could allow conviction of Trump to occur, if a sufficient number sat the vote out, even if they were unwilling to go on record as voting to convict a Republican president.) There is also available the lesser sanction of censure by the senate, although that seems weak tea given the gravity of the situation, and would mean nothing to someone like Trump who gives not shit about his historical reputation (which will likely be so putrid a mere censure would add little.)

    What I’m saying here is I don’t really know what should be done and am still trying to think it through. Maybe impeachment followed by a quick up-or-down vote in the senate. At the least, Trump will then go down as the only US president to have been impeached twice.

    Then let the Justice Department, the Manhattan district attorney’s office, and the NY state attorney general’s office get down to the serious business of going after Trump for the actual prosecutable offenses he has committed.

  36. Trump knows better than most which dog-whistle words to use so he can deny responsibility later but his cult knows exactly what he means. Apparently, Adolf Hitler never personally order the extermination of Jews and Romanis in the death camps, but his close associates knew exactly what he wanted them to do – and did it.

  37. This is a textbook example of a loaded question. Trump didn’t LITERALLY tell his supporters to “storm” the Capitol. Did his speech and lies cause his followers to storm the Capitol? Obviously, yes.

  38. I will add my last comment to this chain.
    Just remember that what has happened was that Trump has, with the help of his enablers in the legal world(1), and in Republican electoral politics(2), and on Wednesday with a riotous mob that he stirred into action, tried to take the votes of 80 million US citizens and turn them into toilet paper because they did not vote for him. He, and they, tried to stage a self-coup. That I will never excuse nor forgive.
    (1) As has been pointed out many times, none of Trump’s legal clown car (Rudy, Sidney Powell, etc.) ever proved, or indeed ever seriously tried to prove – because they couldn’t – that there was anything wrong with those 80 million votes. All we ever had from them was lies and innuendo. 60 or so legal cases, and all lost.
    (2) The 140 Republican House members and seven senators who went along with the farrago on Wednesday evening deserve to be unseated. The waving of little copies of the Constitution, the invocations of g*d, the constant preening and self-justification, the attacks by representatives of one State on the elections carried out by another, and the ultimate hypocrisy particularly in the House of members whose own presence that day depended on those same ballots they would now trash: let’s remember the words of Joseph Welch, speaking to then-Senator McCarthy: “Until this moment, Senator, I think I never really gauged your cruelty or your recklessness. … You have done enough. Have you no sense of decency?”

  39. Any woman of any color anywhere within the World
    caught up within .r e p e a t e d. attempts at her partner’s
    controlling and silencing and his dissing of her
    i) will recognize these ( vastly mostly ) men’s violating crimes,
    ii) knows that a n y of the beaucoup times of her charitably
    taking – him – back cuz she and the kiddos have
    ” nowhere else ” to go and no funds with which to escape
    the ” episodes ” of his moments of ” just losing it some ” and
    iii ) knows that IF his apology does n o t ALSO involve
    a) verbal and public admittance of wrongdoing and
    b) professional therapy followed by years’ worth of visible
    and public behavioral reversals toward both her and
    her community of persons, THEN she should never, ever
    T R U S T that criminal man. Again.

    Ms Atwood:
    ” Men fear women will laugh at them.
    Women fear men will k i l l them. ”

    the late Mr Tsutomu Yamaguchi who survived
    the only two n u c l e a r strikes in history and,
    thus, DESERVES our respectful attention:
    ” The only people who should be allowed
    TO GOVERN countries with nuclear weapons
    are mothers, those who are
    still breast – feeding their babies. ”

    NO charity. Only FULL accountability
    of them all. Same as what any of
    the Rest of Us would have coming to us.

    I have heard NO apology. Of the only ONE type
    of apology that there a c t u a l l y IS:
    ” We are sorry. We are wrong.
    This type of behavior will N E V E R
    happen from us again. ”

    Blue

  40. Those preaching forgiveness might consider who they’re dealing with. From NBC News:

    …Trump supporters with extremist views feel emboldened and are vowing to return to Washington for the upcoming inauguration…

    “Many of Us will return on January 19, 2021, carrying Our weapons, in support of Our nation’s resolve, towhich [sic] the world will never forget!!! We will come in numbers that no standing army or police agency can match,” wrote a popular Parler user who frequently posts about QAnon…

    Parler, Telegram chat rooms and the platform TheDonald.win were all used to plan and coordinate the Jan. 6 rally that turned into a riot. Posters explicitly stated their intentions to “occupy” the Capitol…

    “There is growing concern that violent extremists are emboldened by the breach of the Capitol, which means the clock is ticking on taking down the most influential incites of violence before they act again,” said Frank Figliuzzi, former FBI assistant director and NBC News national security analyst.

    IMO, a virtual inauguration wouldn’t be a bad idea.

    1. I agree. I’m also happy to see that many online platforms are banning Trump. If our government can’t keep people safe, then the private sector has to step in.

  41. I used to help organize and manage protests for environmental causes in Texas in the 1990s. Controlling even a small protest is hard. There is always the chance that some troublemakers would damage something. Should our supporting politicians have been removed from office if someone got out of control at one of our protests? These politicians often used strong language about saving what little was left of nature in Texas.

    I think it is important to require strong and unambiguous evidence of direct incitement before removing a politican over acts of some of his or her supporters. Otherwise this power could be used freely at every level to eliminate opposing politicians.

  42. But it should be added, as said here more than once, extremist groups are now planning more mob attacks, including attacks on the inauguration. I do hope the authorities take this chatter far, far more seriously now.

    1. Of course they do. The barn door is now firmly bolted. Soon we will need to be inspected by Homeland Security just to visit DC. Lax security is soon replaced by over reaction.

  43. Since Trump is on the way out and has only ten days to go, this push by the Democrats to do him whatever last-minute harm they can shows nothing but meanness and spite.

    1. You sayin’ you think Trump should just get a pass on the whole debacle?

      The US Capitol was attacked, and five people died, because you summonsed your diehard supporters for a “wild” time in DC, whipped them into a frenzy at a rally, then sent them up to Capitol Hill … and, oh well, what-ever — been nice knowin’ ya, bonne chance & have fun playing your next 18 holes on the course at Mar-a-Lago?

      That‘s how you think this should be dealt with?

  44. Here’s how Trump ended his speech with my emphasis on words in an ambiguous sentence that in combination with words quoted by Snopes, words from Donald Jr. and Giuliani at the rally, and words from Trump in advance of the event likely set off the people in attendance who were inclined to violent insurrection:

    “I think one of our great achievements will be election security because nobody until I came along had any idea how corrupt our elections were, and again most people would stand there at 9 o’clock in the evening and say I want to thank you very much, and they go off to some other life, but I said something is wrong here, something is really wrong, can’t have happened and WE FIGHT, WE FIGHT LIKE HELL, AND IF YOU DON’T FIGHT LIKE HELL YOU’RE NOT GOING TO HAVE A COUNTRY ANYMORE.

    “Our exciting adventures and boldest endeavors have not yet begun. My fellow Americans, for our movement, for our children, and for our beloved country, and I say this despite all that has happened, the best is yet to come.

    “So we’re going to, we’re going to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, I love Pennsylvania Avenue, and we’re going to the Capitol and we’re going to try and give… The Democrats are hopeless. They’re never voting for anything, not even one vote. But we’re going to try and give our Republicans, the weak ones, because the strong ones don’t need any of our help, we’re going to try and give them the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country.So let’s walk down Pennsylvania Avenue. I want to thank you all. God bless you and God bless America. Thank you all for being here, this is incredible. Thank you very much. Thank you.”

    I don’t know how strong a legal case can be made against Trump. Impeachment is a political exercise.

      1. Had Charlie lived a few years longer and been convicted of federal rather than state crimes, Trump might’ve dealt him a pardon on the way out the door — you know, just to toss some cold water on the notion of accomplice liability.

        It’d be different in degree, but not kind, from his pardon El Blago himself, Rod Blagojevich.

  45. Hell, during the last debate with Biden (9/30/20), he told the Proud Boys to “Stand back and stand by”. The Proud Boys heard the message loud and clear, and took it as a rallying cry. Of course, you can’t prove that Trump wanted them to storm the capitol, but a demagogue’s words have power, and that should be a consideration. The POTUS (especially this one) is not just some pundit or guy off the street.

  46. Yes, it seems like many of his supporters thought they were actively engaged in a revolution. As a lady from Knoxville, TN said: “I got maced,” she says, wiping her eyes with a blue towel. “… I’m from Knoxville, Tennessee… we’re storming the Capitol, it’s a revolution!” Why did she think that? Perhaps because Trump told her that if you don’t fight, you’re not going to have a country anymore.

  47. Both my comments were meant to be replies to other comments. Don’t know why I goofed up the “reply” button. Maybe this “reply” will be in the correct place. Oh well, just wanted to clarify the randomness of my two comments.

    Edit: Nope, doesn’t look like the “reply” button is working for me right now.

  48. Interestingly, it seems that people had already broken through the capital barricades when Trump was still giving the speech across from the White House imploring people to protest peacefully and patriotically.
    It also appears that lots of people seem to have based their whole ethos on either hating or worshiping Trump. His fading back to being an annoying reality TV person would leave those folks with no focus to their lives.
    I suspect the politicians have more cynical goals. I can see how the republicans would want to distance themselves from him. The only reason I can think of that people like Pelosi would want to keep Trump the focus of everyone’s attention would be to serve as a distraction. I can’t believe that they are actually as concerned about the incident at the capital as they claim. They were not bothered at all when the Hart Senate building was occupied a couple of times, or when the Supreme Court was under siege. If I remember correctly, Pelosi’s office was occupied for a while by some of the woke, who mostly received encouragement instead of censure.

    I do find the event unsettling, but after everything else that has gone on this year, it is hard to see it on par with 9/11 or pearl harbor. The 1983 bombing in the capital seems like a more serious event, but two of those involved with that incident were pardoned by Bill Clinton in 2001.

    1. Isn’t it weird, Max, how all of those Trump flags somehow were placed at the scene just so that Trump haters would have something to support their ethos?

      1. That is not the point I am making at all. There were some very dangerous people there, who need to be tracked down and prosecuted. Like any mob, there were a small number of people committed to violence, and a much larger number of rubes, who were not smart enough to know that they were being led down a self destructive path. At least some of the people fomenting violence were the same folks who have done so at the BLM events. John Sullivan as one example. And of course there were legitimately crazy people, particularly Qanon Buffalo head guy. If you watch the full video feeds of the people in the capital, most of the people inside were rubes, gawking yokels wandering around with no particular plan, looking at the architecture and taking selfies.

        1. And why did they happen to be there, Max? Who called them to Washington DC on the 6th? Why were there all those Trump flags there?

          1. Many of the people who stormed the Capitol, when asked why they did it, respond that Trump asked them to go. Trump may not have said it explicitly but the message was clearly received by its intended recipients.

    2. … it seems that people had already broken through the capital [sic] barricades when Trump was still giving the speech across from the White House imploring people to protest peacefully and patriotically.

      What’s the factual basis for this assertion, Max? I watched Trump’s speech from the Ellipse, which began about noon and lasted an hour and some change. The Capitol barricades were breached at 2 pm, a little longer than it would have taken to walk the mile and a half from the Ellipse up to Capitol Hill after Trump’s speech. Your assertion also doesn’t comport with this detailed timeline set out by the Washington, DC, CBS affiliate.

      Also, as a review of the video of Trump’s “Stop the Steal” rally speech reveals, Donald Trump never implored the people to protest peacefully and patriotically. He merely stated that “everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” Trump did implore the crowd that they “have to show strength and you have to be strong. We have come to demand that Congress do the right thing.” He further stated that they would “never take back the country with weakness” and “to fight like hell.” Also, keep in mind that Trump spoke at the rally after the incendiary speeches of congressman Mo Brooks, Donald Trump, Jr.,, and Rudy Giuliani (whose speech referenced “trial by combat”).

      1. CNN puts the outside barricades breached shortly after 1:00. Protesters were at the capitol barricades by 12:40. The Capitol Police chief requested National Guard assistance at 1:09.
        Trump’s speech concluded at 1:11. The building itself was breached at 1:50.

        Those details seem sort of pedantic, but it is a very serious accusation, with large consequences. If he had said to ““go to the Hill today….Please, get up in the face of some congresspeople”, it might have been a more explicit call for violence, but that quote came from Rep. Cory Booker.
        If he had told his supporters that “you can’t be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for”, perhaps. But that was not him, either.

        None of the heated rhetoric, or any of the violence is in the least acceptable to me. Neither is the hypocrisy. Vast numbers of people have been attacking government buildings, as well as local and federal law enforcement officers, for some time now. When 60 federal agents were injured during an attempted siege of the White House, many of those now outraged were not terribly concerned. It might be better if we consistently denounced and prosecuted such acts, instead of finding it acceptable when perpetrated by one side or the other.
        Rep. Nadler, for instance, is particularly outraged at the recent event at the capitol, but was the primary advocate for securing clemency for the 1983 capitol bombers, who had a specific plan for overthrowing the US government, and were caught with a huge stockpile of commercial explosives and illegal weapons.

  49. I had thought it was a long shot for Pence to invoke the 25th amendment, but there is an incentive for Trump to accept this deal. If he does, then he won’t be impeached, and that means he can run again in 2024. I hope he and his crew don’t notice this…..

    1. The 25th really isn’t a matter of negotiation with the president. Resigning from office might be. But the if the relevant parties agree on the 25th, it doesn’t matter what tRump thinks of it.

      1. Yes it is, and yes it does. The House resolution gives Trump and his allies two choices, either exceute the 25th amendment or Trump will be impeached. Trump may choose to have his followers execute that amendment, for the reason I gave above.

      1. It is almost certain he will be impeached for the second time, in a matter of days. The only questions are when it will hit the Senate and whether any other action also occurs (25th, resignation, etc.) Or so it looks to me at least.

    2. … that means he can run again in 2024.

      How crazy would the GOP have to be to nominate for a third time someone who lost the popular vote in his two earlier runs by a combined total of 10 million ballots and, in four years in office, never once achieved an approval rating above 50%?

      Then, again, we are talking about Republicans here.

      Unless Trump wants to start his own white-nationalist, know-nothing party. Good luck with that one, Donnie.

  50. Snopes only appears to lean to the left.
    From my personal connections, a preponderance of the misinformation is from the right. Consequently, Snopes appears by the right, to be biased against them. I monitor email from both the left and the right. Most of the garbage I get is from the right.
    I have used Snopes (and other sources) for years.
    The same goes for other fact-checking sources. They generally appear to lean left because the right seems to make up and pass on more misinformation then the left. The right seems significantly more extreme.

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