Victim of US Capitol siege identified; Congress convenes to certify election results

Politics

(NEXSTAR/AP) – Lawmakers plan to reconvene tonight to continue Electoral Collage voting after pro-Trump protesters stormed and occupied the US Capitol building Wednesday afternoon.

In a statement, Pelosi called the storming of the Capitol “a shameful assault” that “was anointed at the highest level of government.”

“It cannot, however, deter us from our responsibility to validate the election of Joe Biden,” she continued.

Scores of Republican representatives and 13 GOP senators had planned to object Wednesday to the electoral votes of perhaps six states that backed Biden. It was unclear whether those objections would continue in light of the day’s violent events.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer spoke third after lawmakers reconvened, saying that Jan. 6 is a day that “will live forever in infamy.”

One woman was shot and was killed, and thirteen people were arrested during the chaos in Washington today.

 The woman who was shot and killed as demonstrators stormed the Capitol in Washington, D.C. is said to have been from San Diego.

Relatives have identified her as Ashli Babbit, a 14-year Air Force veteran.

Babbit reportedly owned a business with her husband who did not accompany her to D.C.

“I really don’t know why she decided to do this,” said her mother-in-law to Fox5 in Washington, D.C.

The shooting took place around 3 p.m. E.S.T. She later died after being taken to an area hospital.

Circumstances behind her shooting have not been made public although it has been reported she was shot while climbing into the Capitol through a broken window.

Police were seen deploying irritants at the U.S. Capitol to disperse protesters as a riot was declared following a chaotic day in Washington D.C.

The DC police chief says protesters deployed ‘chemical irritants on police’ to gain access to the US Capitol.

Police Chief Robert Contee says officials have declared the scene a riot. One civilian was shot inside the Capitol on Wednesday. Thirteen arrests were made of people from out of the area.

Mayor Muriel Bowser says the behavior of the Trump supporters was “shameful, unpatriotic and above all is unlawful.” She says, “There will be law and order and this behavior will not be tolerated.”

Metropolitan police have been sent to the Capitol, and authorities were coming in from Maryland, Virginia and New Jersey to help out. The National Guard was also deployed, as were Homeland Security investigators and Secret Service.

Earlier, President Donald Trump called on protesters at the US Capitol to “go home now. We have to have peace. We have to have law and order.”

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1346928882595885058

“We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election and everyone knows it–especially the other side. But you have to go home now,” he said on Twitter. “There’s never been a time like this where such a thing happened where they could take it away from all of us. From me, from you, from our country. This was a fraudulent election. But we can’t play into the hands of these people.”

Trump continued, “You’ve seen what happens. You’ve seen the way others were treated that were so bad and so evil. I know how you feel, but go home and go home in peace.”

Twitter later blocked the video from being replied to, retweeted or liked “due to a risk of violence.”

The Associated Press is reporting that at least one explosive device was found near the U.S. Capitol during occupation by Trump supporters. Law enforcement officials say it’s no longer a threat.

The Pentagon says about 1,100 D.C. National Guard members are being mobilized to help support law enforcement as violent supporters of President Donald Trump breached the U.S. Capitol.

Pentagon spokesperson Jonathan Hoffman said Wednesday afternoon that defense leaders have been in contact with the city and congressional leadership.

A defense official said all 1,100 of the D.C. Guard were being activated and sent to the city’s armory. The Guard forces will be used at checkpoints and for other similar duties and could also help in the enforcement of the 6 p.m. curfew being implemented tonight in the city.

The officials said the D.C. request for National Guard was not rejected earlier in the day. Instead, according to officials, the Guard members have a very specific mission that does not include putting military in a law enforcement role at the Capitol. As a result, the Guard must be used to backfill law enforcement outside the Capitol complex, freeing up more law enforcement to respond to the Capitol.

Hoffman said the law enforcement response to the violence will be led by the Justice Department.

A woman was killed after being shot at the U.S. Capitol as dozens of supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the building and violently clashed with police.

The exact circumstances surrounding the shooting were unclear. The person said the victim had been taken to a hospital. According to law enforcement, the woman later died.

The DC National Guard has been activated to deal with the unrest, according to Jonathan Hoffman, Chief Pentagon spokesman.

“The D.C. Guard has been mobilized to provide support to federal law enforcement in the District. Acting Secretary Miller has been in contact with Congressional leadership, and Secretary McCarthy has been working with the D.C. government. The law enforcement response will be led by the Department of Justice,” Hoffman said.

Maryland Gov. Joseph Hogan announced that he would be sending Maryland State Police to assist.

“At my direction, the Maryland State Police is sending in troopers to assist the Metropolitan Police Department and the United States Capitol Police. I have instructed the Adjutant General of the Maryland National Guard to call up a rapid response force to support law enforcement and restore order.”

Vice President Mike Pence tweeted out, saying “The violence and destruction taking place at the US Capitol Must Stop and it Must Stop Now. Anyone involved must respect Law Enforcement officers and immediately leave the building.”

President-elect Joe Biden responded by condemning the violence at the Capitol, and urging President Trump to appear on live television and tell his supporters to stand down.

“I call on Pres. Trump to go on national television now to fulfill his oath and defend the Constitution and demand an end to this siege,” Biden said. “At this hour, our democracy is under unprecedented assault.”

Dozens of people have breached security perimeters at the Capitol, forcing the lockdown of the building and halting the vote to certify Joe Biden’s presidential victory.

Protesters backing President Donald Trump have breached the U.S. Capitol, forcing a delay in the constitutional process to affirm Joe Biden’s victory in the November election.

Trump urged his supporters to come to Washington to protest Congress’ formal approval of Biden’s win. Several Republican lawmakers have backed his calls, despite there being no evidence of fraud or wrongdoing in the election.

Protesters are now inside the Senate chamber. One got up on the dais and yelled “Trump won that election.”

Several dozen are roaming through the halls, yelling, “Where are they?”

Some were also in the visitors’ galleries.

Photo: Pool

A law enforcement source reportedly told ABC News that shots were fired inside the building. It is unknown if there are any injuries.

Lawmakers were evacuated from the U.S. Capitol after protesters breached security and entered the building.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other senators were led out, escorted by staff and police on Wednesday afternoon. Members of the House were also being evacuated. Both chambers had been debating the certification of Joe Biden’s victory in the Electoral College.

ABC News reports the Senate chamber has since been secured.

The skirmishes came shortly after President Donald Trump addressed thousands of his supporters, riling up the crowd with his baseless claims of election fraud.

Protesters could be seen marching through the Capitol’s stately Statuary Hall shouting and waving Trump banners and American flags.

Some House lawmakers tweeted they were sheltering in place in their offices.

Thousands of people have descended on the U.S. Capitol as Congress is expected to vote to affirm Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential win. Videos posted online showed protesters fighting with U.S. Capitol Police officers as police fired pepper spray to keep them back.

Reporters stationed outside of the Capitol report a chaotic scene where pro-Trump protesters were attempting to gain access to the proceedings, forcing police to hold them back.

“Protesters are charging toward the Capitol steps,” tweeted The Washington Post’s Rebecca Tan. “Some tried to scale the construction structures and have been tackled by police.”

Social media postings from the scene show crowds moving forward on police and officers attempting to hold the line.

Police told congressional staff members they should evacuate the Cannon House Office Building — adjacent to the Capitol — and the building that houses the Library of Congress, but it was not immediately clear if that action was related to the protests.

The mayor of Washington, D.C., has ordered a curfew in the nation’s capital beginning at 6 p.m. Wednesday after protestors seeking to overturn the election results stormed the U.S. Capitol building.

Mayor Muriel Bowser issued the order as protestors supporting President Donald Trump breached the Capitol, where lawmakers were meeting to formally count the electors that will make Joe Biden president on Jan. 20.

The order extends through 6 a.m. Thursday.

Inside, Republicans from the House and Senate have objected to the counting of Arizona’s electoral vote, forcing votes in both chambers on Biden’s victory in the state.

The objection was made by Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar and was signed by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. Both are Republicans. The two chambers now have two hours to debate the challenge.

Biden won the state by more than 10,000 votes. In all, eight lawsuits challenging Biden’s Arizona win have failed, in part over a lack of evidence.

At a rally earlier Wednesday, Trump himself vowed that “we will never concede” as he spoke to supporters shortly before Congress was to convene for a joint session to confirm the Electoral College vote won by Biden.

Trump took the stage at the Save America rally, which drew thousands of supporters who swamped the nation’s capital as the president’s Republican allies in the House and Senate planned to object to his 2020 election loss to Biden.

Trump says Pence has ‘power to act’ in Congress election count despite VP’s ceremonial role
Trump urged Vice President Mike Pence, who will play a largely ceremonial role in the process, to block certification of Biden’s win. Pence does not have this power.

“Our country has had enough,” Trump said. “We won’t take it anymore.”

In a letter to Congress shortly before he was to begin proceeding over a special joint session to count electoral votes, Vice President Mike Pence said he agrees he does not have power to accept or reject votes and would not interfere in the results of the election.

“It is my considered judgement that my oath to support and defend the constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not,” Pence wrote.

Trump responded on Twitter, writing, “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!”

https://www.twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1346900434540240897?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Etweet

The Associated Press contributed to this report

MORE HEADLINES:

For more local news, download the MyStateline app (iOS) or (Android).

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram!

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest News Video

Trending Stories