Trump supporters invaded the U.S. Capitol building in an attempt to halt the Congressional certification of the electoral votes on Wednesday, a riot which left 4 people dead. Congress reconvened and, in a late-night announcement, declared Biden the official winner of the November election.
Read Donald Trump's full speech below: I would like to begin by addressing the heinous attack on the United States Capitol. I immediately deployed the National Guard and federal law enforcement to secure the building and expel the intruders.
President Donald Trump acknowledged on Thursday that a “new administration” was set to enter the White House as President-elect Joe Biden is expected to be inaugurated on January 20. Tasos Katopodis/Getty have just been through an intense election and emotions are high. My campaign vigorously pursued every legal avenue to contest the election results.
My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth orderly and seamless transition of power. It will require a renewed emphasis on the civic values of patriotism, faith, charity, community and family.
“My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power,” the president added. Biden's victory was projected by all major news outlets in mid-November and confirmed by Electoral College votes in mid-December.
The Republican president has falsely insisted he won in a “landslide,” asserting his reelection was stolen through massive electoral fraud. The rioters descended on Capitol directly after Trump told them at a rally outside the White House to march on the home of Congress to protest the election results.
As protesters besieged the Capitol, Trump, who had returned to the White House after his speech told supporters in a tweeted video you have to go home now.” Trump in Thursday's video said he “immediately” deployed members of the National Guard to the Capitol to contain the unrest.
But The New York Times reported that the president had initially rejected requests to mobilize those troops. Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy said Thursday that prior to the riot, law enforcement and Defense officials had received contradictory information.
“It was very hard to make that determination of what you're dealing with,” he told reporters, adding that the Defense Department relied on law enforcement threat assessments. “My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power,” Trump said in his first address to the nation since the Capitol riot by a Trumpist mob.
The 46-minute taped speech on Facebook saw the outgoing president repeat a string of debunked and false claims about the election results and voter fraud. Mr Trump had called the event “maybe the most important speech I’ve ever made” even as he predicted it would be “disparaged” by his critics.
“Pres Trump in this 46-minute video he just released says this might be the most important speech he has ever given,” tweeted AMICE Alcindor, White House correspondent for PBS Newshound. CNN’s Jake Tapper said the video left Mr Trump looking like the “sorest loser” in presidential history.
Commissioner Al Schmidt, the Philadelphia Republican who helps oversees elections in the city, also slammed Mr Trump. “In the ‘most important speech he’s ever made,’ the President of the United States announced that he would rather oppose democracy than accept defeat,” tweeted Mr Schmidt.
Trump spoke from a stage framed by signs for the “Save America March,” at a podium flanked by American flags fluttering in a chilly DC breeze. As with his signature “Make America Great Again” rallies that became the hallmark of two presidential campaigns, Trump is being met by a sea of supporters decked out in red baseball caps and star-spangled shirts.
His remarks were preceded by a recorded highlight reel of campaigns and speeches through the years, and a playlist heavy on classic rock, including Phil Collins’ ominous “In the Air Tonight” juxtaposed with Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing’.” He gestured early in the speech to the Washington Monument, saying his crowd of supporters stretched across the mall and vowing that the icon would not become another victim of cancel culture.
Chapman University law professor John Eastman, next to U.S. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, gestures as he speaks while Trump supporters gather ahead of his speech to contest the certification by the U.S. Congress of the results of the 2020 U.S. presidential election 7 BackContinue Thousands of supporters traveled from across the nation for the event, with local law enforcement and congressional security bracing for possible unrest.
Newsrooms try to straddle the line between reporting the news and not pumping oxygen into Trump ’s baseless allegations. A photo from October shows White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany with her husband Sean Gil martin and daughter Blake.
Apparently, Wednesday was Bring Your Spouse to Work Day at the White House. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany’s husband Sean Gil martin, a free agent baseball pitcher who was most recently in the Tampa Bay Rays organization, attended McEnany’s press conference and was involved in a controversy.
At that point, New York Times photographer Doug Mills saw Gil martin and reminded him of the rules about wearing a mask in press areas. MSNBC’s Brian Williams closed his show Tuesday night by airing a “Fox & Friends” clip in which co-host Steve Dewey quoted statistics that showed that counties in Kansas that enforced mask-wearing requirements did a better job at controlling the spread of COVID-19 than counties that didn’t enforce mask rules.
In Wednesday’s newsletter, I mentioned The Washington Post ran an ad from a private citizen who claimed, without actual proof, that the presidential election was rigged. A Pointer Report reader then passed along to me the story about another Washington paper that ran an ad questioning the result of the election.
Diane Smith of the Record-Courier in Ohio wrote this week that The Washington Times ran an ad from a group called “We the People” that called for martial law and a new federal vote run by the military. Smith reports the “We the People” group is led by Tom Zawistowski, the head of the Portage County (Ohio) Tea Party.
In a press release, Zawistowski said, “It is our exclusive right to elect our president and that sacred right has been infringed by the massive, planned, illegal election fraud conducted by corrupt Democrat/Socialist Party operatives across our nation to steal our vote.” Trump campaign lawyer Joseph Geneva has resigned under pressure from the Gridiron Club, an organization primarily for Washington journalists that was also known for an annual dinner featuring songs and skits.
The Washington Post’s Elate Iraqi wrote, “Geneva, who served as U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia in the 1980s, had been a ‘limited’ member for more than 25 years, one of a handful of ‘ringers’ recruited for their impressive singing voices.” But Geneva recently ran into controversy when he made a comment on a conservative talk show about Christopher Krebs, the federal cybersecurity official who was fired by Trump after saying the election was secure.
On the “Howie Carr Show,” Geneva said, “Anybody who thinks the election went well, like that idiot Krebs … he should be drawn and quartered. Gridiron Club president Craig Gilbert, the Washington bureau chief of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, told Iraqi, “We were dismayed by his comments, and we felt that they were, on top of everything else, just antithetical to what the club is about.
The Associated Press’ Janie Heir wrote that Crews was known for relentlessly filing public records requests and once spent five days in jail for refusing to reveal an anonymous source. NBC News’ Lester Holt will anchor a special “Dateline NBC” tonight at 10 p.m. Eastern called “Race for a Vaccine.” Holt talks to Dr. Albert Burma, chairman and CEO of Pfizer; Dr. Stephen Home, president of Modern; and Alex Gorky, CEO of Johnson & Johnson.
NBC News said it will be “their first joint interview about the plans for vaccine distribution and efforts to overcome public mistrust.” No surprise, but November turned out to be a huge month for the cable news networks, especially in prime time. In prime time, Fox News had 3.93 million viewers, a 41% increase from a year ago.
Email Pointer senior media writer Tom Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org. Ask the average person on the street whether they could fairly and without bias decide their own guilt or innocence, and the honest among them should say no.
It's hard to know exactly what federal crimes Trump might be worried about (pardons don't apply to state prosecutions). For instance, if Trump knowingly and willfully attempted tried “deprive or defraud the residents of a State of a fair and impartially conducted election process,” by obtaining or counting ballots that he knew are “materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent,” then he could be guilty of a federal crime.
This means the text of the Constitution doesn't specifically reject the idea. And if the founders decided not to create an exception for self-pardons, some have argued, it is improper and incorrect to read one into the text.
The lawyers argued that, on a basic level, “no one may be a judge in his own case.” Then there's the question of equality, and the American justice system decrees that no one is above the law.
Instead, during the Biden administration, a federal prosecutor would have to charge Trump with crimes falling within the scope of the pardon. This is the chain of events that would tee up the legal question about a president's power to self-pardon.
The Justice Department under President Joe Biden may not have an appetite for this politically charged experiment. The answer is to elect presidents who don't push us, over and over again, to the brink of constitutional crises.
And presidents shouldn't engage in behavior that pushes the Constitution to its breaking point. Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School, is the host of the Passing Judgment podcast.
She is also the director of the Public Service Institute at Loyola Law School, co-director of Loyola's Journalist Law School and former president of the Los Angeles Ethics Commission.