Screenshot from a YouTube stream of the Jan. 6, 2021, protest at the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.

Screenshot from a YouTube stream of the Jan. 6, 2021, protest at the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.

District 9 and 41 lawmakers react to storming of Capitol Building in D.C.

Smith, Wellman and Senn speak out.

While speaking with the Rotary Club of Mercer Island last August, Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA 9) said there’s plenty of outrage and deep divisions in American politics. He feels that by seeing through the anger and standing side by side to try and reach a positive conclusion can improve the quality of life in communities.

Smith — whose 9th congressional district includes Mercer Island — did not see that happening on Jan. 6.

A mob of right-wing agitators stormed the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., that day, as Congress was preparing to certify the electoral college presidential election count in which Joe Biden beat incumbent Donald Trump.

Smith, who chairs the House Armed Services Committee, issued the following statement while chaos ensued at the Capitol:

“President Trump and his enablers are directly responsible for the despicable acts at our nation’s Capitol that we all have witnessed today. The President incited and encouraged this riot. He has lied repeatedly, as have his enablers in Congress and elsewhere about this election. They do not believe in democracy. They believe in retaining power by any means necessary. All Americans who believe in the rule of law and our Constitution must clearly and unambiguously hold these people accountable for their actions.”

State Sen. Lisa Wellman (D-WA 41) of Mercer Island said that Jan. 6 should have been the start of a peaceful transition to the new administration, elected in a secure and fair election.

“I condemn the violence and intimidation masquerading as protest,” she said. “After a year in which meaningful public demonstrations against a system of injustice were met with excessive force, it was alarming to see how easily this mob was able to desecrate our U.S. Capitol and target our democratic institutions. And it is tragic that it has taken violence in House and Senate chambers for Republicans to step up and condemn the dangerous misinformation and attacks on our democracy.”

Wellman — whose Legislative District 41 covers King County and includes Mercer Island — said that because of the president’s abuse of power to fuel the fires of extremism and embolden terrorists, she fully supports Washington’s Congressional delegation’s efforts to remove Trump from office through invocation of the 25th Amendment or Articles of Impeachment.

State Rep. Pos. 1 Tana Senn (D-WA 41), also a Mercer Island resident, made it clear that the attack on the nation’s Capitol was domestic terrorism.

“It was the 4 year culmination of Trump buttering up to white supremacists and inciting violence. These actions were not about free speech, but rather an attempt at overturning our democracy. There must be consequences for those who tread on that sacred right and for those whose lies and rhetoric urged them on,” she said.

“Whether in DC or Olympia, this type of mob rule is unacceptable. We must use words and debate, not violence, to make change in our democracy,” Senn added.


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