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I saw what happened on Jan. 6 and will testify to the truth

Republicans are already trying to rewrite history, twisting the truth about a mob of Trump supporters who breached the Capitol and tried to overthrow the government.

Trump supporters fought with police and other security forces, violently storming the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C. on Jan. 6, 2021. Senate Republicans blocked a plan for an official investigation of the Capitol breach.
Trump supporters fought with police and other security forces, violently storming the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C. on Jan. 6, 2021. Senate Republicans blocked a plan for an official investigation of the Capitol breach.
Joseph Prezioso / AFP va Getty Images

I watched as the president of the United States urged a mob to march on the U.S. Capitol and overthrow the American government.

On Jan. 6, 2021, I saw Donald Trump tell thousands of his most enthusiastic followers that the result of the November 2020 presidential election could not be accepted.

“We will never give up,” he told them. “We will never concede. It doesn’t happen. You don’t concede when there’s theft involved. Our country has had enough.”

Watching on television, I turned to my wife and said, “My God, he’s urging them to overthrow the government.”

I didn’t need a congressional investigation. I had spent decades covering news events, political leaders at rallies and protest marches. I had sometimes seen peaceful gatherings transformed into a violent rabble. But nothing came close to this.

“To use a favorite term that all of you people really came up with, we will stop the steal,” the president said.

Just down the road, at the U.S. Capitol Building, congressmen and senators were gathering to ratify the electoral college vote that would eventually install Joe Biden into office, replacing Trump.

“You will have an illegitimate president,” Trump said. “That is what you will have, and we can’t let that happen. These are the facts that you won’t hear from the fake news media. It’s all part of the suppression effort. They don’t want you to talk about it. “

Trump was clearly urging supporters to overthrow the result of a legal election.

“We will fight like hell, and if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore,” Trump said.

Fascism in full bloom

Then Trump implied he was going to step down from the platform where he was giving his speech and march along with the crowd to the Capitol Building.

“We’re going to walk down, and I’ll be there with you. We are going to the Capitol and we are going to try and give (the Republican lawmakers) …the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country.”

And the mob began to march and chant and wave its “Trump” banners and “Don’t Tread on Me” flags crashing through the barricades surrounding the Capitol Building,

Assaulting the Capitol police with pipes, breaking through locked doors, and smashing glass windows.

The insurrectionists were swarming through the corridors hunting for congressmen as if they were animals.

They were chanting “Hang Mike Pence,” “Hang Mike Pence,” because the Republican Vice President of the United States had refused to use his power as Senate President to try and negate the electoral college vote and keep Trump in power. There was a scaffold awaiting him outside.

Members of the mob mockingly chanted the name of Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, daring her to show her face.

Inside the House floor, makeshift barricades were created to hold back the mob and cell phone calls were made to family members who elected officials thought they might never see again.

In other locations, offices were broken into and ransacked.

Fascism was in full bloom as thugs in military gear threatened to brutalize and replace the civilian authority.

Bear witness to truth

Today there are people who say I did not see what I saw. There are Republican congressmen who claim it was just a typical visit by Washington tourists.

Senate Republicans have refused to approve a commission to investigate exactly what happened. They don’t want an official record. They prefer to rewrite history.

I know what I saw. But the fact is that the truth is already being altered; twisted into some sort of patriotic display of free speech. A legitimate protest inspired by election fraud by the Democrats.

We must bear witness to the truth and repeat it as often as the falsehoods are shouted and tweeted on the Internet.

Only a handful of months have passed. But already, you can feel history shifting beneath your feet.

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