Mob of Trump supporters storm U.S. Capitol

People shelter in the House gallery as protesters try to break into the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington.

The United States was taken by storm when a mob of Trump supporters pushed past police to enter into the Capitol building as lawmakers debated the certification of the presidential election.

President Donald Trump gave a speech in front of supporters at a “Save America” rally, which was located at Ellipse park just south of the White House, and called Republicans that would certify the election “weak” and said they were turning a “blind eye.”

He focused on making claims against the news media and continued to make false statements about the election, stating they would “stop the steal.”

Trump also called on Vice President Mike Pence to do “the right thing” and reject the votes of the Electoral College. Pence released a statement via Twitter which states that “Vesting the Vice President with unilateral authority to decide presidential contest would be entirely antithetical...” to the Founders’ design that disputes with the presidential election is the role of people’s representatives to resolve.

Following the peaceful rally, Trump supporters mobbed the Capitol Building, breaking windows, shoving police officers, breaking down barricades, and attacking journalists and destroying camera gear, actions which halted the certification of the electoral vote.

Idaho Senators and representatives shared their thoughts via Twitter as the act of domestic terrorism continued, with Governor Brad Little tweeting, “The violence at the U.S. Capitol is inexcusable and must stop. In Idaho, we uphold the tenets of the First Amendment, but what we are seeing in D.C. is not peaceful expression. Idahoans stand up for law enforcement and respect the rule of law.”

According to the New York Times, after breaking into the Capitol Building, protesters broke into offices, smoked pot, stole items from the building and at least one protestor carried a Confederate flag through the Capitol.

A video posted by The Washington Post also shows a member of the mob who appears to make the Nazi salute several times. Other images by Business Insider show members wearing and touting a variety of clothing and items representing Neo-Nazism, Proud Boys, the National Anarchists Movement and the white nationalist users of 4chan with the Kek flag.

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser instated a city wide curfew beginning at 6 p.m. that would extend to 6 a.m. Jan. 7. Essential workers were to be the only ones allows in public places during the curfew, calling the unlawful behavior inside of the building shameful and unpatriotic.

Bowser also stated that anyone that engaged or continued to engage would be held accountable. Police officers from multiple jurisdictions were deployed and law enforcement made it a goal to clear the Capitol building and establish a perimeter.

Senator James Risch sent an email the evening of Jan. 6 that said, “{span}Today’s events in the United States Capitol, meant to disrupt a process at the heart of our democracy, were unpatriotic and un-American in the extreme. Our republic has long been the envy of people all over the world, and we must stand united against those who wish to tear us apart. We are grateful to the law enforcement officers that placed themselves in harm’s way and kept those working at the Capitol safe today. I was proud to join my colleagues and reconvene at the Capitol tonight to prove that mob rule never prevails. Freedom and law and order will always triumph.”{/span}

Congressman Mike Simpson released a statement Jan. 6 as well, stating, “{span}While I am disappointed in the outcome of the 2020 Presidential election, I must remain cognizant of the extremely narrow role Members of Congress like myself have in the election process. The Constitution expressly grants the people of the United States the power to choose the President through the Electoral College, not Congress. In order to keep power in the hands of the people, Congress’ only Constitutional duty is to count the Electoral College votes sent by the states in accordance with state law... {span}I will not usurp states’ power. Absent the designation of new electors by the states, Congress’ sole role, as set by the Constitution, is to count and certify the electoral slates that have been presented today, and that is what I voted to do.”{/span}{/span}

{span}{span}His full statement can be found at simpson.house.gov/news.{/span}{/span}

Senator Mike Crapo said, “The violence we are seeing at the Capitol is wholly unacceptable. It must be stopped immediately and all perpetrators prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. God bless the Capitol Police, National Guard and other law enforcement on the scene here and at other sites.”

District 35 Representative Karey Hanks said in a release that she was alarmed to learn of the news of the dangerous breach at the Capitol Building and that it was a wonder none of the members of Congress were harmed.

“{span}One of the saddest outcomes of the November election has been the loss of faith and trust in the electoral process. This loss of public trust in our election process is extremely concerning and undermines our nation’s security, as was evident in today’s actions,” Hanks wrote. {/span}

Former State Representative JoAn Wood of Rigby said the people have a Constitutional right to assemble and have their voices heard, and that the Capitol building is the people’s building and that they have a right to be there.

“They’re speaking for a lot of people out here in the country that believe the election has been fraudulent,” Wood said.

While there are currently no proven claims of voter fraud in states where the Trump campaign filed lawsuits, a recently released recording of a phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger details Trump’s efforts to get Raffensperger to say Georgia recounted and that they needed to find 11,780 votes in Trump’s favor.

Representatives participating in the certification of the electoral college votes had to take cover in the Capitol building as the doors to the House Gallery were barricaded and guarded by armed security against mob members trying to break in.

Recertification of the votes resumed after hours of halted proceedings where Joe Biden was confirmed to be the next President of the United States.

During the course of the mob’s attack on the Capitol, 40 arrests took place, multiple officers were injured and five deaths occurred. According to CNN, U.S. Capitol police officer Brian D. Sicknick succumbed to injuries from the mob attack Jan. 7.

Representative Van Burtenshaw commented on the day’s events stating that while elections can be be bitter, hard and difficult process, the election process is one that’s embraced in Idaho and the United States.

“It’s very troubling and unprecedented,” Burtenshaw said. “Democracy thrives on law and order and we as a country have been an example to the world of democracy and yesterday’s events mar that.”

Burtenshaw continued saying that he hopes these sorts of actions don’t spill over into Idaho and that there needs to be a peaceful transition of power.

“Trump had the power to reign this in and he didn’t,” he said. “I’m a Trump supporter but we have got to deal with those that have been elected and move on.”