‘He can’t accept that he lost’

President Joe Biden Thursday marked the first anniversary of the January 6 uprising, in which former President Donald Trump was forced to attempt to undo American democracy, saying such an uprising should never happen again.

Biden vowed to defend the nation’s founding ideals from the threats posed by the violent mob that stormed the Capitol a year ago and The prevailing lie that Trump and his allies Keep repeating about the 2020 election. An animated Biden made one of the most emotional addresses of his still-young presidency as he harkened back to key moments from the nation’s past, casting the attack as a living symbol of the inflection point in American history, whose He often talks about

“For the first time in our history, a president didn’t just lose an election. He tried to prevent a peaceful transfer of power as violent mobs gathered at the Capitol,” Biden said in a speech to the US Capitol, which took just 30 minutes. lasted less than that.” But they failed. they failed. And on this day of remembrance, we must ensure that such attacks never happen again.”

In a direct shot at Trump, Biden said, “His crushed ego means more to him than our democracy or our Constitution, he can’t admit he lost.”

Biden has generally avoided speaking directly about his predecessor since taking office, and did not explicitly name his name on Thursday – instead making more than a dozen references to “the former president.”

But the president’s blistering speech nonetheless confronted Trump’s election lies and post-presidential behavior, accusing him of spreading lies about the 2020 election, refusing to admit defeat and hold him accountable To incite a violent mob of his supporters to storm the US Capitol.

“A former President of the United States has created and spread a web of lies about the 2020 election. He has done so because he values ​​power over principle, because he puts his own interest in the interest of his country and that of America. considers more important than the interests of the people,” Biden said.

Biden again emphasized the core message of his 2020 presidential campaign and the reason he ran against Trump: “We are in a fight for the soul of America.”

The president warned democracy and “the promise of America” ​​was in danger and called on the American public to “stand up for the rule of law, preserve the flame of democracy.”

He called for protecting voting rights across the country and rebuked Trump and his supporters for attempting to “suppress your vote and destroy our elections.”

“It’s wrong. It’s undemocratic. And clearly it’s un-American,” Biden said.

On Capitol Hill, Congressional Democrats attended a series of events following Biden’s speech to celebrate the January 6 anniversary, including a moment of silence on the House floor and speeches from lawmakers describing their personal experiences of harsh assault. Did.

Biden’s comments come as Democrats make a renewed push to get two voting rights bills — the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act — passed in the Senate. The two pieces of legislation were introduced in response to Republicans enacting legislation across the country to make it harder for people to vote after record turnout in the 2020 election. Nearly every Republican in Congress opposes the law and it is unclear whether Democrats will be able to pass the bills.

“Let us step up, write the next chapter in American history, because January 6th is not the end of democracy, but the beginning of a renaissance of freedom and fair play,” Biden said.

After his speech, Biden defended calling Trump outright as such when asked by a reporter whether he believed going after the former president “would be more divided than it would be okay.”

The president replied: “The way you have to heal, you have to recognize the extent of the wound. You can’t pretend. It’s a serious thing.”

“You have to face it. That’s what great nations do. They face the truth, deal with it and move on,” Biden said.

rememberance Day

Due to the events of January 6, 2021 Trump’s second impeachment by the House of Representatives. Rebellion launched The largest investigation in FBI history, 700 people were arrested and hundreds more criminals still at large. And a House Select Committee continues to investigate events leading up to the riots. Two Trump aides – Mark Meadows and Steve Bannon – have been held in criminal contempt for refusing to cooperate with committee investigators after being summoned.

Incidents of rebellion occurred just two weeks before Biden’s inauguration, which cast a shadow over the new president’s administration. And despite multiple court cases, failed state election audits and countless conspiracy claims, many Trump supporters continue to doubt the legitimacy of Biden’s presidency.

In his remarks, Biden said he did not ask to be president at a time when America’s founding principles were under attack, but that he was prepared to fight.

“I will stand in this violation. I will defend this country. And I will not allow anyone to put a dagger in the neck of democracy,” Biden said.

The President also praised the police officers who stood up against the attack to maintain the lifestyle of the country.

“Democracy in this holy place was attacked – just attacked – a year ago today. The will of the people was being attacked, the Constitution – our Constitution – faced the gravest threats. A brutal attack In the face of war, the Capitol Police, the DC Metropolitan Police Department, the National Guard and other brave law enforcement officers defended the rule of law. Our democracy prevailed. We endured. We won.

Vice President Kamala Harris spoke before Biden, saying: “On January 6, we all saw what our country would look like if the forces trying to destroy our democracy succeed: anarchy, violence, anarchy.”

“When I meet youth, they often ask about the state of our democracy. What I tell them about January 6 is this: January 6 reflects the dual nature of democracy. Its fragility and its strength,” Harris said. “You see, the strength of democracy is the rule of law.”

While Trump was expected to catch a news conference Scheduled for the anniversary of the rebellion, it was abruptly cancelled. Allies warned that this would create unnecessary problems for Republicans and themselves.

Instead of his news conference on Thursday, Trump is expected to air his grievances at a campaign-style rally in Arizona next week.

Democrats pay tribute to Capitol Police and condemn Trump

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer both spoke on Capitol Hill to commemorate the January 6 anniversary.

Pelosi paid tribute to the police officers and staff who helped protect the Capitol before taking a moment of silence on the floor of the House.

The speaker said she wanted to acknowledge “the heroism of so many, especially the US Capitol Police” and “the fallen heroes of that day”.

“In the face of extreme danger, they all risked our security for our democracy by protecting the Capitol Complex.”

“Because of them and our members, the rebellion failed,” she said.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney was on the floor of the House with his daughter, GOP Representative Liz Cheney from Wyoming. Pelosi spoke with Cheney after his remarks and a moment of silence.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, in his speech a year after the attack, warned of ever-present threats to democracy and denounced former President Donald Trump for inciting rebellion.

“History’s warning is clear: When democracy is in danger, it often starts with a mob. That’s what happened a year ago, this building here was attacked by a mob.”

“Donald Trump is still spreading his venomous evil about the big lie today,” he said. “It was Donald Trump’s big lie that soaked our political landscape in kerosene. It was Donald Trump’s rally … that affected the match, and then there was a fire. ,

Democrats share personal experiences of attack

Several MPs reminisced about the attack in speeches throughout the day.

Schumer spoke of his experience that day, saying, “I was within 30 feet of these wicked, racist, fanatical rebels,” he continued, “I was later told that one of them allegedly , ‘There’s a big Jew, let’s get him.'”

Senate Democrats delivered a series of speeches on the Senate floor, while a group of House Democrats is set to deliver testimonials about the attack later in the afternoon. Colorado Democratic Rep. Jason Crowe will preside over those testimonials. crow was one of the parliamentarians trapped inside the house chamber during the attack and The pictured bent down was famously painted To help a co-worker who appears to be in distress.

There will also be a moderated talk featuring historians Doris Kearns Goodwin and John Meacham. Pelosi has said the discussions will serve to “establish and preserve the January 6 narrative”.

Later, a prayer meeting will be held on the steps between the Capitol where House and Senate lawmakers can attend.

Republicans Are Hesitant to Talk About Trump

While congressional Democrats have put together events throughout the day to call attention to what happened during the rebellion, congressional Republicans, in contrast, are reluctant to talk much about it and Trump’s in particular. Reluctant to address the role.

In a letter to House Republicans at the start of the new year, House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy briefly mentioned January 6th anniversary, but did not include any mention of the former president.

“The actions of that day were lawless and as wrong as can be. Our Capitol should never be compromised and law breakers will face legal repercussions and full accountability,” he wrote.

McCarthy then moved on to criticize the Democrats.

“Unfortunately, a year later, the majority party doesn’t seem close to answering the central question of how the Capitol was left so prepared and what needs to be done to ensure it never happens again. Instead, they Using it as a partisan political weapon to further divide our country,” he said.

GOP Leader Will not be at the Capitol on Thursday The House is in session and several Republican senators are headed to Georgia to attend a memorial service for the late Sen. Johnny Isaacson.

This story has been updated with additional development on Thursday.

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