Trump Supporters Spread Chaos to State Capitals

“What we are witnessing does not reflect the overwhelming will of our great country.”

Mother Jones illustration; Getty

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In the midst of the unprecedented assault on the United States Capitol by Trump supporters, where at least one person has been shot and reportedly died, protests by pro-Trump sympathizers have also erupted in several other cities across the United States. 

A speech by President Donald Trump to his supporters—after months of trafficking in election conspiracy theories and baseless claims of election fraud—culminated in the storming of the Capitol building Wednesday afternoon. It took place while lawmakers inside had begun the official certification of electoral college votes for President-elect Joe Biden. A large group of protesters had gathered there following Trump’s speech, and eventually broke into the building, prompting the evacuation of members of the House and Senate. 

As news of the takeover in Washington, DC, spread, likeminded pro-Trump demonstrators gathered in multiple cities across the US, including Salem, Austin, Sacramento, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Olympia, Columbus, and Topeka

The Sacramento Police tweeted early in the afternoon: “Heavy police presence remains in the area of the Capitol. Some arrests have been made for individuals carrying pepper spray.” They also tweeted that reports of physical altercations between two groups of demonstrators have been reported, and that officers were attempting to keep the groups separate.

Far-right Trump supporters also gathered at the Oregon Capitol building in Salem to protest the certification. Oregon State Police tweeted early this morning that protesters were expected, and later reported a group of protesters were on the move throughout the city.

An estimated 300 people protested at the Texas Capitol building in Austin, but the building was closed shortly after protesters stormed the Capitol building in Washington, DC, according to the Texas Tribune. In Atlanta, the secretary of state’s office was also evacuated as a precaution, while armed protesters gathered outside the Capitol building.

Trump supporters also took to the streets in Los Angeles in a demonstration that was later declared an unlawful assembly. 

In Olympia, Washington, a protest that started at the statehouse marched to Gov. Jay Inslee’s mansion where protesters broke onto the grounds.

Inslee, who had earlier condemned the break-in at the US Capitol as “an attack on democracy itself,” reportedly left his besieged home after protesters arrived. He later retweeted a tweet from the Washington State Police. 

In Columbus, Ohio, pro-Trump and Black Lives Matter protesters converged at the statehouse in a clash that devolved into violent skirmishes, according to the Columbus Dispatch.

Mayor Andrew Ginther condemned the siege in DC, even a protesters gathered in his own city, tweeting, “What we are witnessing does not reflect the overwhelming will of our great country and cannot be allowed to interfere with peaceful transfer of power.”


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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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