Over the course of a chaotic and at times surreal afternoon, protesters made their way through barricades, scaled walls, broke windows and entered legislators’ empty personal offices, many of them yelling about the false conspiracy theory that Trump rightfully won the 2020 election. The president had held a rally on the National Mall earlier that day, where he repeated to a crowd of supporters the lie that President-elect Joe Biden stole his victory in November.
Many politicians, members of the press and international leaders reacted with horror and incredulity to images from the Capitol. Trump eventually ordered the National Guard to the scene, and Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser announced a curfew to start at 6 p.m. and end at 6 a.m. Thursday.
Acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, who took over the Justice Department after former Attorney General William Barr’s resignation, said DOJ sent “hundreds of federal law enforcement officers and agents from the FBI, ATF, and the U.S. Marshals Service” to assist the Capitol police. He said the “laws of our land” would be enforced.
The crowd, sporting a mix of Make America Great Again gear and Confederate flags, charged up the Capitol steps and rushed at police, as multiple videos from the scene show. They ripped down fencing and swore at members of law enforcement whom they mocked as “traitors.” Police fired pepper spray at the crowd, and later deployed flash-bang devices to get them to disperse.
“This is a coup attempt,” tweeted Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.).Pro-Trump Rioters Storm U.S. Capitol In Deadly Attack On Democracy | HuffPost