Six months after a violent mob stormed the halls of Congress to stop the certification of millions of Americans’ votes, President Joe Biden said the breach “posed an existential crisis and a test of whether our democracy could survive – a sad reminder that there is nothing guaranteed about our democracy.”
“This was not dissent. It was disorder,” he said in a White House statement on Tuesday.
The president said that the US can now “say unequivocally that democracy did prevail – and that we must all continue the work to protect and preserve it.”
He urged Americans to “stand up to the hate, the lies and the extremism that led” to the attack, pointing to the months-long campaign from Donald Trump and his allies to undermine the results of the 2020 presidential election and the conspiracy theories that fuelled rioters to threaten lawmakers and reject Mr Biden’s presidency.
“It also requires all of us to remember who we are as a nation at our best – and that we are so much better than what we saw” on 6 January, he said.
“We are the United States of America, and over the last few months we have shown what we can do when we come together – beat a deadly virus, get our economy going again, and prove that democracy can deliver for the people,” he said.
The president and First Lady Jill Biden also offered their condolences to the families of police officers who died in the days that followed and the dozens of officers who were injured in the attack.
Mr Trump, meanwhile, issued a statement on 6 July demanding Republican state lawmakers pass voting restrictions, amplifying his false narrative that Democrats conspired to “steal” the election from him – the same conspiracy theory that propelled rioters six months ago.
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