Yesterday, we witnessed the most harrowing demonstration yet of outgoing President Donald Trump’s attempt to execute a coup d’etat. The coup did not “come out of nowhere” yesterday, and the coup will not end unless and until we demand an end to the violence and the tyranny.
WARNING: Due to yesterday’s tragic events, we’re discussing some troubling subjects, including terrorism and murder. And yes, we’re using some adult language today. Reader discretion is advised.
Finally, the Electoral College results have been accepted. We still have a winner: Joe Biden.
Back on the floor of the People's House to do my Constitutional duty.
The American people have spoken, and Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be the next President and Vice President of the United States.
We will not be intimidated, and we will not back down. pic.twitter.com/QzojpKB0NC
— Rep. Steven Horsford (@RepHorsford) January 7, 2021
Following the extreme-right terrorists’ escalation of outgoing President Donald Trump’s coup to try to stay in power despite losing last year’s election, Congress ultimately returned to its business and completed its acceptance of the Electoral College results.
As we’ve known since at least November 7, 2020, President-elect Joe Biden won with 306 electoral votes while Trump scored 232. As we’ve been anxiously awaiting since last November, a group of House Republicans challenged our Nevada election results, but that challenge failed quickly due to no Senator signing onto that challenge.
Yet as we’ve also been fearing since last November, that same group of House Republicans challenged the election results in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, and U.S. Senators Josh Hawley (R-Missouri) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) seconded their challenges in Arizona and Pennsylvania. That, in turn, forced the House and the Senate to retreat to their respective chambers to hold debate and conduct final votes on whether to accept or reject the challenges.
The House rejected both challenges with big bipartisan votes: 121-303 for Arizona, and 138-282 for Pennsylvania; the Senate also rejected both challenges even more overwhelmingly: 6-93 for Arizona, and 7-92 for Pennsylvania. Even though Rep. Mark Amodei (R-Carson City) had previously declined to state whether he’d vote to respect the election results, he ultimately voted with Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D) and Jacky Rosen (D), and with fellow Reps. Dina Titus (D-Las Vegas), Steven Horsford (D-North Las Vegas), and Susie Lee (D-Las Vegas) to reject the challenges to Arizona’s and Pennsylvania’s respective election results.
Once more, certain media pundits are getting it all wrong. This shit is nothing new.
Right now on the West side of the US Capitol.
(📸 Getty Images) pic.twitter.com/1FxSN5Ugc7
— Austin Kellerman (@AustinKellerman) January 6, 2021
As we discussed yesterday, what had traditionally been seen as a mere concluding formality suddenly turned tragic and frightening following the challenge to Arizona’s election results. And as we pointed out yesterday, no one should have been surprised by the aftermath that neo-Nazi and QAnon-aligned militias had “shitposted” all over the internet for the last two months.
In the neo-Nazi fan-fiction-cum-how-to-guide The Turner Diaries, William Pierce presented a blueprint for assasinations called “The Day of the Rope”. In “The Day of the Rope”, white supremacist militants conduct mass executions of politicians, journalists, women in interracial relationships, and other designated “race traitors”. Ever since The Turner Diaries’ release in 1978, neo-Nazi terrorists such as Timothy McVeigh, the Atomwoffen network, and the online “shitposters” at TheDonald.Win have drawn “inspiration” from this book and its call for mass murders.
As mayhem began to take hold in and around the U.S. Capitol yesterday, some photographers noticed that the terrorists had erected a gallows outside. This was no accident or coincidence. Just looking throughout TheDonald.Win and Parler, two of the newer social media networks designed to cater to the far-right, it’s horrifyingly obvious what that was all about. These people want violence, and Donald Trump incites them with his lies.
This did not “come out of nowhere”. We’ve actually witnessed it right here at home.
We must not forget: This coup did not “come out of nowhere”. America has struggled with fascism since the first arrival of European colonists, and the growth of internet radicalization movements has greatly accelerated and expanded this threat of bigoted authoritarianism.
It’s easy to look at QAnon gatherings, and at online cesspools like Parler and 8kun, and pretend that, “They’re just small cliques of ‘crazies’. They won’t do anything.” They’ve already been doing plenty of damage. It just took the damage bursting all the way into the halls of Congress for more members of Congress and national media pundits to finally recognize what many of us have been tracking for years.
Before Donald Trump advised the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by”, Las Vegas City Council Member Michele Fiore (back when she was a state legislator) proudly palled around with the Bundy clan, and fellow legislators Ira Hansen (R-Sparks) and Jim Wheeler (R-Gardnerville) made racist proclamations with very few ramifications. Fast forward to 2021, and new Assembly Member Annie Black (R-Mesquite) made her pilgrimage to Washington, D.C., to participate in Trump’s pre-siege rally, though she stopped short of entering the Capitol herself.
This did not “come out of nowhere”. From the Bundy Ranch “Range War” to “Gamergate”, and from the Las Vegas Metro Police assassinations to the plot to attack the Las Vegas Black Lives Matter protests, our communities have already been under siege. It’s incredibly depressing that it took yesterday’s attack on the U.S. Capitol for some of the “very serious people” to finally take this threat seriously.
“President Trump used his bully pulpit to encourage insurrection and incite violence. […] President Trump must be impeached and removed from office immediately.”
– Rep. Steven Horsford, in a statement released last night
Following yesterday’s attack and before Congress returned to complete its acceptance of the Electoral College results, Rep. Steven Horsford released a statement, where he declared, “Instead of leading the nation today, President Trump used his bully pulpit to encourage insurrection and incite violence. He endangered the lives of members of Congress, the hard-working staff of the Capitol Hill Complex and Capitol Police. These actions were avoidable. This did not have to happen. Those responsible must be held accountable.” Also, Horsford announced, “After today’s violence, I have no other choice but to fulfill my own Constitutional responsibility and call for President Trump’s removal. President Trump must be impeached and removed from office immediately.”
Even after Congress finished its acceptance of the Electoral College results, Donald Trump, his family, and their enablers have continued to lie about the election and encourage more violence. 15 Capitol Police were injured in yesterday’s attack, and four people have already died for Trump’s “cause”, including one California QAnon adherent who was shot dead by Capitol Police as she sought to take “the storm” into Congress. And last night, Cliven Bundy called for another round of insurrection at the Capitol once that coup attempt failed to stop Congress from accepting the Electoral College results.
Moments ago, Rep. Dina Titus became Nevada’s second member of Congress to endorse a second impeachment of Donald Trump. In her statement, Titus said, “President Trump incited a violent mob of domestic terrorists who attempted to disrupt the peaceful transition of power and destroy our democracy.” Titus continued, “He is a clear and present danger to the republic. If given the opportunity, I would vote to impeach him again.”
We can not afford to let these actions go without any consequences for the perpetrators and their accomplices who have taken the coup this far. Democracy only lasts as long as we respect the will of the people. If we don’t get any accountability after terrorists tried to violently destroy our election results, then what’s left to stop them from finally killing our democracy?