US President Joe Biden on Thursday called the pro-Trump mob that sieged the US Capitol “domestic terrorists” and said they would have been treated differently had they been Black Lives Matter protesters.
The offenders should not be called protesters, rather “a riotous mob, insurrectionists, domestic terrorists,” Biden said in Wilmington, Delaware.
He said outgoing President Donald Trump was guilty of “trying to use a mob to silence the voices of nearly 160 million Americans” who voted in the November presidential election.
Biden blamed Trump for “one of the darkest days” in US history.
Biden said Trump has “made his contempt for our democracy, our Constitution, the rule of law clear in everything he has done” and that Trump’s “all-out attack” on the country’s democratic institutions ultimately led to the violence on Wednesday.
Biden said that had the attackers belonged to the Black Lives Matter group, they would have suffered far greater consequences and that it was a clear failure of law enforcement to carry out equal justice.
“No one can tell me that if it had been a group of Black Lives Matter protesting yesterday… they would have been treated very, very differently than the mob of thugs that stormed the Capitol,” Biden said. “We all know that’s true, and it is unacceptable.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer have both called on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove Trump from power. The amendment allows the vice president to assume the role of president if the vice president and at least half the Cabinet agree the president is unfit or unable to fulfill the duties of the office.
Schumer and Pelosi said that if Pence failed to remove Trump from office, they would begin a second impeachment process.
At least one House Republican has joined those calls, with Adam Kinzinger, a frequent Trump critic. He said in a video on Twitter that that Trump is “unfit” and “unwell.” Kinzinger said Trump “must now relinquish control of the executive branch voluntarily or involuntarily.”
aw/sms (AFP, AP, Reuters, dpa)
Joe Biden slams pro-Trump mob as ‘domestic terrorists’ The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ Deutsche Welle.