YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Local lawmakers are responding to the chaos that has erupted on Capitol Hill as the Electoral Vote count was about to take place.
The Capitol was on lockdown and staff were told to shelter in place as protesters stormed the building and made their way to the Senate floor.
At one point, lawmakers were told to don gas masks.
Congressman Tim Ryan said he is safe in lockdown.
“Thanks to everyone for reaching out. I am safe. In lockdown. This is not ok. We are a nation of laws. Please pray for all of our law enforcement, elected officials and staff on Capitol Hill. Please pray for our country,” Ryan said.
Senator Sherrod Brown said he and his staff are safe and that the “violence on Capitol Hill needs to end now.”
Pennsylvania Congressman Mike Kelly acknowledged the anger many feel over the election but called for peace.
“This not who we are. We resolve our disputes peacefully under the rule of law. This must stop now,” he said.
Congressman Bill Johnson (R-Marietta) released the following statement Wednesday evening:
“I swore an oath to protect the Constitution and the rule of law. I take that oath seriously. Whether it was the violent thugs who fought with police and stormed the U. S. Capitol building today or the violent thugs of Antifa and BLM who’ve been assaulting police and attacking government buildings for the last six months, this lawlessness is wrong and should be universally condemned. We’re all Americans, and we’re better than this. I thank all the men and women of the U.S. Capitol Police and other law enforcement agencies who brought help for their service.”
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine released the following statement about the situation at the Capitol:
“This is an embarrassment to our country. This must stop immediately. The President should call for the demonstrators to leave our Capitol Building. The final step in the constitutional process of electing our president has been disrupted. The stopping of the count of the Electoral College votes has occurred because the security of the U.S. Capitol has been breached by a violent mob. As a nation of laws, this is simply not acceptable. Lawlessness is not acceptable. This is an affront to our Constitution and everything we hold dear. Those who breached the Capitol breached the Constitution. Peaceful demonstrations outside the Capitol are an exercise of the demonstrators’ First Amendment rights. Stopping the constitutional process by which we elect the president is not.”
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf also responded to the situation:
“Today, President Trump’s supporters attempted a coup. This was the direct result of a deliberate disinformation campaign by Republicans from the President down to legislators in Pennsylvania. They lied about the results of the election. They lied about voter fraud. They lied about my administration and other governors. They lied about the administration of the election here in Pennsylvania and across the country. On November 3, we had a remarkably well-run election despite historic challenges.
Eight of the nine Republican members of Congress from Pennsylvania lied about our election in an attempt to pledge fealty to President Trump.
Republican legislators enabled this every step of the way. They’ve held show trials to gin up President Trump’s supporters. They’ve intentionally spread disinformation.
The actions of Republicans in Pennsylvania and across the country have led to violence. It is their fault. There should be no equivocation.
It is past time for Republicans to stop lying and tell their supporters the truth. President Trump lost. The election was fair. President Trump received fewer votes. That’s it.
We have had a peaceful transfer of power every election cycle in our nation’s history but because of the actions of Republicans, we can no longer say that. I am disgusted but I will keep fighting to make our democracy stronger.”
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