January 13, 2021: Statement about the Violence at the Capitol
About this speech
January 13, 2021
SourceThe White House
A week after a mob stormed the US Capitol, President Trump made a statement denouncing the violence and imploring Americans to uphold the rule of law. Although he made no mention of it, the same day the House of Representatives impeached Trump for inciting an insurrection in response to his speech at the rally that proceeded the violence. President Trump became the first president in US history to be impeached twice.
I want to speak to you tonight about the troubling events of the past week. As I have said, the incursion of the US capitol struck at the very heart of our republic. It angered and appalled millions of Americans across the political spectrum.
I want to be very clear. I unequivocally condemn the violence that we saw last week. Violence and vandalism have absolutely no place in our country and no place in our movement. Making America Great Again has always been about defending the rule of law, supporting the men and women of law enforcement, and upholding our nation's most sacred traditions and values.
Mob violence goes against everything I believe in, and everything our movement stands for. No true supporter of mine could ever endorse political violence. No true supporter of mine could ever disrespect law enforcement or our great American flag. No true supporter of mine could ever threaten or harass their fellow Americans. If you do any of these things, you are not supporting our movement. You are attacking it, and you are attacking our country. We cannot tolerate it.
Tragically, over the course of the past year, made so difficult because of covid-19, we have seen political violence spiral out of control. We have seen too many riots, too many mobs, too many acts of intimidation and destruction. It must stop, whether you are on the right or on the left, a democrat or a republican, there is never a justification for violence. No excuses. No exceptions.
America is a nation of laws. Those who engaged in the attacks last week will be brought to justice.
Now I am asking everyone who has ever believed in our agenda, to be thinking of ways to ease tensions, calm tempers, and help to promote peace in our country. There has been reporting that additional demonstrations are being planned in the coming days, both here in Washington and across the country. I have been briefed by the US secret service on the potential threats.
Every American deserves to have their voice heard in a respectful and peaceful way. That is your First Amendment right. But I cannot emphasize that there must be no violence, no lawbreaking, and no vandalism of any kind. Everyone must follow our laws and obey the instructions of law enforcement.
I have directed federal agencies to use all necessary resources to maintain order. In Washington, DC, we are bringing in thousands of national guard members to secure the city and ensure that a transition can occur safely and without incident.
Like all of you, I was shocked and deeply saddened by the calamity at the capitol last week. I want to thank the hundreds of millions of incredible American citizens who have responded to this moment with calm, moderation, and grace. We will get through this challenge, just like we always do.
I also want to say a few words about the unprecedented assault on free speech we have seen in recent days. These are tense and difficult times. The efforts to censor, cancel, and blacklist our fellow citizens are wrong, and they are dangerous. What is needed now is for us to listen to one another, not to silence to one another. All of us can choose by our actions to rise above the rancor and find common ground and shared purpose. We must focus on advancing the interests of the whole nation, delivering the miracle vaccines, defeating the pandemic, rebuilding the economy, protecting our national security, and upholding the rule of law.
Today, I am calling on all Americans to overcome the passions of the moment and join together as one American people. Let us choose to move forward united for the good of our families, our communities, and our country. Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.