On Wednesday afternoon, after Trump supporters breached the U.S. Capitol building after a “Stop the Steal” rally, President Donald Trump urged his supporters to “go home now” in the name of peace and law and order. In doing so, he repeated claims that the 2020 election was truly a Trump landslide and was stolen from him.
“I know your pain, I know your hurt. We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election, and everyone knows it, especially the other side. But you have to go home now,” Trump said in a short video statement. “We have to have peace. We have to have law and order. We have to respect our great people in law and order. We don’t want anybody hurt.”
“It’s a very tough period of time. There’s never been a time like this where such a thing happened, where they could take it away from all of us, from me, from you, from our country,” Trump added. “This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people. We have to have peace.”
“So go home, we love you, you’re very special,” Trump concluded.
While the president was right to call for his supporters to return home, he should have denounced them for invading the U.S. Capitol building. This horrific attack should make the president reconsider his insistence that he won the election by a landslide. While some evidence of irregularities exists — and the legacy media is wrong to deny it — Trump does not have anything like conclusive evidence that he won, much less that he won by a landslide. It is irresponsible for him to say so.
Trump’s outright praise for the mob that breached the Capitol is disgusting. When rioters invade the U.S. Capitol and force Congress to evacuate, the president should not say, “We love you, you’re very special.”
Frankly, such a remark is beyond the pale.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 6, 2021
Trump was right, however, to respond to the situation on video and to urge his supporters to go home. This answered incoming President Joe Biden’s request that Trump address Americans on video.
“I call on President Trump to go on national television now to fulfill his oath and defend the Constitution, and demand an end to this siege,” Biden said in his own video message. “At this hour, our democracy is under unprecedented assault, unlike anything we’ve seen in modern times. An assault on the citadel of liberty, the Capitol itself.”
Biden, who has yet to vocally condemn antifa in terms befitting its lawlessness, nevertheless loudly condemned the invasion of the U.S. Capitol in fitting terms.
“This is not dissent, it’s disorder, it’s chaos, it borders on sedition, and it must end. And it must end, now,” Biden said. “I call on this mob to pull back an allow the work of democracy to go forward.”
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.