“Before the assault, Trump had addressed the crowd and urged his loyalists to march on the Capitol, “to try and give our Republicans, the weak ones … give them the pride and boldness they need to take back our country. They took something alright. Hours later, after the Capitol was cleared of insurrectionists, with windows shattered and the smell of tear gas lingering, the consequences of his dangerous lies became clear….”
Republican Representative Peter Meijer, who won Michigan’s 3rd District and succeeds Justin Amash, talked about cowering in a hearing room with colleagues while the President egged on violence in an imaginary scenario of overturning the election results.
An Iraq war veteran, Meijer described hiding under bulletproof chairs with colleagues, and eventually winding their way through tunnels underneath Capitol Hill, often fearful without police escort.
He spoke of returning to the job at hand and moving to accept Arizona’s electors, and speaking with a fellow freshman colleague.
My colleague told me that efforts to overturn the election were wrong, and that voting to certify was a constitutional duty. But my colleague feared for family members, and the danger the vote would put them in. Profoundly shaken, my colleague voted to overturn.
Meijer says of those who told the truth, they are being called traitors, receiving death threats, and additional armed security detail.
It didn’t have to end like this, with five people dead, including a Capitol Police officer. This should be a moment of reckoning for the country as a whole, and the conservative movement in particular.
If the Republican party ever hopes to regain the public’s trust and lead the country forward after this heinous assault, it must first be honest with itself.
The entire opinion can be read here.