During this week the House passed a bi-partisan bill to form a commission to investigate the 1/6 insurrection. House Minority Leader, Kevin McCarthy, opposed it at the last minute, even though he initially gave support to Rep. John Katco (R) to work on this bill with Katco’s Democratic counterpart, Rep. Bennie Thompson. Mitch McConnell has now also publicly opposed this.
In any event, I wanted to post the articles about this in the thread, Journal During the Trump Regime (10): Interregnum, but that thread is to slow to open and navigate now. Because of that I’m starting this thread to post comments about the insurrection. I’ll start things off in the first comments by posting something from the Interregnum thread.
17 thoughts on “1/6 Insurrection”
Posted originally on January 6, 2021:
Call to immediately impeach, remove and even arrest Trump
I confess this idea didn’t cross my mind—although I did think impeachment and removal would have been warranted at about the end of the summer, before the election. At this point, I thought we could wait until the 20th, but the following commenters give make their case for impeaching, etc. now.
Trump is a danger to his own country. He shouldn’t be president for one more minute. op-ed by Tom Nichols in USA Today
Impeach. Convict. Indict. Robert Transinski from theBulwark
Impeach Trump Again from Yoni Applebaum in theAtlantic
Here are some thoughts on the matter:
and removal will seem justified to the majority of the Americans. In a way, Congress articulating behavior that warrants I/R—which, if reasonable, the public can examine and digest. They would give Trump a chance to avoid this—which is reasonable and fair on their part. If Trump doesn’t comply, then I/R should be more palatable. If Congress impeaches immediately, the public may fully understand the reasons for this—it may not seem as reasonable or necessary.
The following, if true, lends support for Trasinski’s argument that Trump should be indicted (for insurrection).
I agree with his tweet.
One reason to remove Trump
Then again, if Trump were impeached and removed, he might be in a stronger position to push for this. On the other hand, if he did this as a private citizen, he would be subject to prosecution. There is a real possibility that he would be seen as a kind of martyr, which might just increase his political power.
At the same time, if the House impeaches Trump, the Senate need not remove him immediately. They use it as a threat–in the even Trump did something that warranted removal. The threat might keep Trump in check until January 20, which should be a top priority.
Thread from Juliette Kayyem:
Reading this thread makes me think the Senate convicting Trump is unlikely, which is dismaying especially given the account of Trump’s reaction during the mob ransacking of the Capitol. If Senate Republicans can’t convict when the Trump was slow to react, was excited by ransacking–which could have lead to their own physical harm or even death–then I don’t know what will.
One thing that comes to mind: Are the Republican Senators worried about the safety of themselves and their families if they vote to convict Trump? To me, this is a legitimate concern, and the threat could be real long after this vote–extending out for a year or more maybe. Some fanatical Trump supporter may seek revenge. At the same time, I would think this applies to Democratic Senators as well, and I’m assuming they’ll all vote to convict. If physical safety is not really a factor, then I can’t sympathize with them if they don’t vote to convict.
With regard to the fear Republicans may be feeling,
Not a call to remove Trump, but certainly something that can be used in the trial to convict him:
“Other powerful people”=congressional Republicans, GOP party leaders, Fox News and other conservative pundits.
“Republicans, such as myself, also failed to vigorously speak out and condemn President Trump’s lies that undermined the election and his incitement of violence and racial tensions.” Hope he said that, too, but I doubt it.
op-ed by Amanda Carpenter in Bulwark
McConnell waits until December 15 to congratulate Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the winners.
Unreal reporting about some Secret Services members believing the election was stolen.
Sen. McConnell continues to be despicable. Most of the Senate Republicans are not much better.
Putin questions U.S. prosecution of Capitol rioters, saying mob carried only ‘political requests’ from WaPo
With regard to the upcoming meeting between Russia and the U.S., the U.S. wants to raise the issue of Russia poisoning and jailing political opposition leader, Alexey Navalny.“I’m not giving any evaluations to the actual event. I’m talking about what followed after,”
I’m not sure what he’s saying, but some of the “political requests” was to hang the Vice-President and halt the certification of the election.
People who support or make light of the 1/6 riot should know that Putin is their ally. I suspect he’s saying this to further divide the country. Those who are silent or support the event are only assisting in that endeavor.
Chuck Todd gives a decent timeline leading up to the 1/6 insurrection, although I think he leaves out some important details, which I’ll mention below. He rightly describes the situation as a moment when “our democracy was hanging by a thread.”
Inside Ted Cruz’s last-ditch battle to keep Trump in power from WaPo
This long article provides enough information for me to conclude that Cruz should not be a U.S. Senator, let along presidential candidate.
Here’s the plan:
Both John Eastman and Ted Cruz clerked for Federal Judge J. Michael Luttig. Here’s Luttig’s opinion about Cruz’s role in 1/6:
Remarkably, this is not the only example of outrageous and irresponsible behavior by Cruz. The article also includes Cruz’s willingness to take two cases challenging the election results to the SCOTUS. One involved a case put forth by the Texas A.G., requesting the election results of 4 other states (Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin) by thrown out. So much for the principle of states’ rights.
Ted Cruz is totally unfit for office. This is the kind of thing that supports the claim that the Republicans have given up on democracy.
Priming the pump for more violence
OAN Goes Full Fascist, Calls for Mass Executions Over ‘Election Fraud’ from The Daily Beast
I just listened to a podcast with Anne Applebaum who believes this is planting the seeds on the idea; extreme acts first have to be conceived and then suggested to the public. I agree with her. This is dangerous. And this is why Rep. Liz Cheney is right–they have to speak out against lies and crazy ideas like this, in order to prevent violence and the further fracturing of our democracy.
New York Times video summary of the storming of the Capitol:
Trump and the supporters who incited the storming of the Capitol are authoritarians, not patriots or people who believe in a democratic republic and the rule of law. These individuals must be condemned; they have no place in American politics.
What a colossal failure of security. How could this happen? The video just reaffirms the need for a 9-11 style commission to get to the bottom of this, to prevent this from happening again.
A friend sent me this link. It’s an interesting view of current apocalyptic thinking and its role leading up to 1/6, and warns of future violence snd divide.
APOCALYPSE NOW AND THEN: HOW A BIBLICAL GENRE SHAPES AMERICAN POLITICS
Rep. Mo Brooks involvement with the 1/6 riot needs to be investigated.
Although a few years ago, if any Congressperson did what Brooks has done and said and alleged to have done and said, at the very least, his/her political career would be over.
What Velshi describes isn’t only incitement of violence, but sedition–with Trump and other Congresspersons guilty as well. The House Select Committee needs to get to the bottom of this.
Ali Velshi is pretty sharp. I don’t watch his show but I listen to Rachel Maddow via podcast and he’s her usual sub when she has a night off.
The behind-the-scenes actions of Trump and his allies that occurred before, during, and after are critical parts of the 1/6 insurrection. For example, see the following– DOJ officials rejected colleague’s request to intervene in Georgia’s election certification: Emails from ABC News
A few days ago, WaPo and other news outlets had a story about Donoghue’s notes of conversations with Trump that is also germane to the information above:
Trump seems to be wanting the public announcements as a way to create pretense and opportunity to overturn the election, and it’s clear he doesn’t care if his claims are baseless.
Ahead of Jan. 6, Willard hotel in downtown D.C. was a Trump team ‘command center’ for effort to deny Biden the presidency from WaPo
Who was there: Giuliani, Bannon, Bernard Kerik, former New York City police commissioner who was there as an investigator; John Eastman, “the scholar, who outlined scenarios for denying Biden the presidency in an Oval Office meeting on Jan. 4 with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.”
Why were they there:
One thought: These people, along with Trump, didn’t have sufficient justification for urging the VP to not delay or reject the electoral votes or for trying to convince state legislatures to delay or reject the votes. If future politicians can resort to the tactics of this group, particularly on insufficient evidence for their position, our elections and our democracy will be dysfunctional. Kinda like how it is now.
The country needs Republicans and conservative pundits to repudiate these efforts and reaffirm that Biden is the legitimate winner.
EXCLUSIVE: Jan. 6 Protest Organizers Say They Participated in ‘Dozens’ of Planning Meetings With Members of Congress and White House Staff from Rolling Stone magazine
Also according to the two organizers:
Trump continues to incite violence–this time directed at a Capitol police officer.
President Biden’s speech on the one year anniversary of the 1/6 insurrection:
President Biden said,
I want to say something he doesn’t say–something that I’ve felt is important to articulate, if it’s accurate–namely, the vision of those threatening the republic. President Biden mentions autocracy and lies, and I agree these are part of the un-American vision for the country Biden warns us about. However, this leaves out the motivation for those supporting this vision. For Trump, narcissism would be a plausible and sufficient explanation, but what about all of his supporters?
To me, the most plausible explanation involves a desire for majority status groups–such as whites, Christians, males and heterosexuals–to retain this status–and to either prevent minority status groups–i.e., people of color, non-Christians, females, and LGBT individuals–from gaining greater status and prominence in our country–or to cause havoc and destruction as an expression of rage over these changes.
If this is accurate, then two competing visions are battling for the soul of America–one in which America is based on the principle that all people are created equal–that is, no group has greater or lesser value in America because of their ethnic, racial, religious, gender or sexual status, which the vision Biden most other modern POTUSes have espoused–and the other in which an individual’s or group’s status as Americans are based on their ethnic, racial, religious, gender or sexual status. Specifically, whites, Christians, males, and heterosexuals have a higher status–are more American–than those outside of these groups.
Trump and his supporters don’t explicitly articulate this vision, but what is a more plausible motivation for Trump supporters? What would make them believe Trump’s lies–or not care if he lies–tolerate his incompetence and reckless handling of the pandemic, and his authoritarian ways–continuing their support despite these things? The Democrats’ policy positions are not an adequate explanation for this (except for the ones that threaten the status of the majority groups–e.g., increased immigration of non-whites). Additionally, my sense is that opposition to something like critical race theory is more of a symbolic fight. That is, critical race theory is a symbol and proxy for the fight for maintaining the status of majority groups. I suspect the same applies to previous battles over school prayer, flag burning–maybe even abortion, gun rights, and gay marriage served this function as well. This not to say that non of Trump’s supporters have genuine ideological convictions in these matters. I’m sure some do, but I’m skeptical that an ideological conviction is the animating force behind Trumpism. Trump has violated many seemingly critical conservative values–and that did not damage his political power.
What does MAGA mean? MAGA stands for preserving or returning to an America where the status of majority status groups was rock solid. Now, I’m not 100% sure this is correct, but I find this to be the most plausible and compelling explanations. I do think a sizable group of individuals would embrace an authoritarian to
Why do they hate Democrats, and I do believe the antipathy towards Democrats is real? I do think Democrats can belittle Trump supporters, and that’s part of it, but I also think they see Democrats as those embracing if not encouraging the changes that contribute to the weakening status of majority status groups. If this is true, this would definitely explain the Trump supporters’ hostility towards Democrats, and also why they would see Democrats as a threat to their vision of America.
So what if this all correct? What’s my point? My point–or my sense is that articulating all of this, as the competing vision for America, seems really important. It’s something all Americans should know, if this indeed is accurate. Trump and his supporters benefit from keeping this hidden.
But whether this is the case or not, Americans should know the two options between them. I suspect Trump supporters themselves may not fully acknowledge this, and for these individuals, I feel like it’s good for them to be totally aware of this and ask if this is truly the vision of America they want. They may be angry and scared about the social changes occurring, but would do they really want to dismantle democracy for that?Force them to consider this. Additionally, Americans who are not fully engaged in politics should also be clear about these two options. (I’m fairly confident that a large majority of Americans–including many in the majority status groups–would reject the MAGA vision I’ve fleshed out.)
Maybe I’m wrong about this. But if I’m wrong, I think there is some reason that explains Trump supporters that we haven’t identified, and whatever that is, my sense is that getting this out in the open is really important. Maybe I’m wrong about that, too. It’s possible that talking about this could be fraught with pitfalls, making the situation worse. But I just feel uneasy about keeping the main drivers behind Trumpism hidden.
Forgot to comment on some other sections of the speech–and I’m going to do so speaking from the perspective of Trump supporters, based on Trump supporters’ vision that I posited above.
The Trump supporter may not care about the truth–or, there is a larger truth for them that matters more–namely, that their status is waning, while status of other groups are rising. It’s plausible to me thatp people will tolerate lies and give up democracy in order to preserve their majority status.
They’re fighting for Trump, who they believe is fighting against the loss of their majority status. Their America is one where whites, Christians, males and heterosexuals have the highest status–and maybe even represent true Americans. This is the real America to them; and so fighting for this is a patriotic act.
But if the majority status groups lose this status, Trump supporters may believe they’re losing their country. Would they only love America if whites, Christians, et al., are the most prominent and influential groups in the country? I really would like a national discussion on this. (I’m more optimistic that most American would reject this–that they would not define America in this way. If I’m right, the two visions should be out in the open and at the forefront of our political discussions, forcing people to choose.)
Four Oath Keepers convicted of seditious conspiracy in Jan. 6 attack from NBC News
Also, last November, Two Oath Keepers, including founder, convicted of seditious conspiracy in Jan. 6 case from NBC News
From AP News
Reminder (from September 1, 2022 WaPo)
If this video clip is accurate, I believe Trump is bragging about the popularity of song by 1/6 rioters, with his voiceover.
(I checked on apple music and Donald Trump and the J6 Prison Choir, indeed, has a song there, “Justice for All.)