January 7th, 2022: January 6th, the Attack on the Capitol, One Year Later
This week, Paul Brandus shares the news on the attack on the Capitol, a look back - and ahead. We also hear from special guest Professor and CIA consultant Barbara Walter about the prospect of civil war in the U.S.
I’m Paul Brandus — you’re listening to West Wing Reports— it’s Friday, January 7.
When Donald Trump was president, people say he lied all the time. Not so. On September 24, 2020, he came into the White House briefing room and refused to commit to a peaceful and honorable transfer of power IF he lost. Here’s the full exchange:
So — asked directly if he would commit to a peaceful and honorable transfer of power — he refused. And that voter fraud he kept talking about? There was no fraud, of course — I’ll get to that in a moment.
So Trump — on the losing end of a nasty election — could not bring himself to do the right thing for a country that’s tearing itself apart. The right thing was to respect the results of a free and fair election — arguably the fairest and most transparent election ever. He refused.
This denial — led to January 6th.
One year later — to the day, President Biden stood in the Capitol Rotunda — the very heart of the Capitol — and said that American democracy, and the rule of law will be defended. He called out Trump’s lies — and challenged those who continue to believe them:
Since that’s the key point here — it bears repeating: State officials, many of them Republicans — said there was no fraud. Court ruling after court ruling, including Republican judges, all said there was no voter fraud. Even the Supreme Court — with three new Trump-appointed judges — rejected his claims.
Fair point — as is the final point he made — this one aimed at the people who attacked police officers and ransacked the Capitol. The president says anyone who calls THAT patriotism — is fooling themselves:
Powerful words from President Biden. So: What happens now? Where do we go from here?
One thing is that arrests and prosecutions of the January 6th mob will continue. In the past year, more than 700 people from 45 states have been charged with a variety of crimes — about a tenth have received actual prison sentences. The longest sentence — so far — has gone to Robert Scott Palmer of Florida — 63 months in the slammer.
Meanwhile — Attorney General Merrick Garland says the investigation — is far from over:
And the January 6th commission — meanwhile — continues its work — and that could include criminal charges against officials from the former Trump administration. Possibly including the former president himself. Look for things to speed up in the weeks ahead.
Coming up — you’ll hear from a professor and CIA consultant — who studies civil wars around the world — she’ll tell us whether WE could have one.
First a quick look at some other news.
The latest now on the pandemic. Covid case are exploding nationwide — more than a million on Monday alone — though lower later in the week. NBC reports that at least 33 states have set records this year.
Other covid bullet points:
Businesses are pulling back — again
Airlines canceling and delaying thousands of flights
Some schools are switching back to online learning
There are still big shortages of test kits - and reports of price gouging
And Larry Hogan —the Republican governor of Maryland — blames the UNvaccinated — who are swamping the state’s hospitals — he says 75% of covid patients are UN-vaccinated.
But buckle up for more inflation — the Federal Reserve thinks the global supply chain will continue to have problems well into NEXT year — thanks to global covid cases — the supply chain is blamed — for higher inflation.
Here’s a scary question: Is the United States headed for civil war? Sounds ludicrous, right? But one of the country’s top experts on civil wars — has studied more than 200 of them around the world — says not only could it happen here, but we’re much closer to one than people think. Here now — my interview of the week — with Barbara Walter:
Sobering stuff — my thanks to Barbara Walter — her new book - How Civil Wars Start: And How to Stop Them — is now out.
In a minute we’ll open up the history vault. First — lets hear about ANOTHER Evergreen podcast — that I know you'll enjoy”
Time now to open up the West Wing Reports archives — and see what made history this week in the past:
1789: Thirteen years after the United States was born, it held its first presidential election. As expected, voters—white men who owned property only—selected George Washington, who was sworn in on April 30
1802: Thomas Jefferson’s “Danbury Letter.” In one of the most important letters ever written by a president, Thomas Jefferson said that the First Amendment to the Constitution created a "wall of separation between church and state."
And 1863 — The most important executive order ever issued by a president - Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation.
Want more history? Check out my books on Amazon — I’ll sign ‘em for you too — just shoot me an email: [email protected].
And need a speaker for your event? I do that too — current events, economics, analysis — history — I connect the dots — would love to hear from you.
Speaking of books — I’ll send you one — IF you download my new app — it’s called — West Wing Reports — available in the Apple and Android stores — just download it on your phone or tablet — there’s a button called “What’s on your mind?” All you do is push, talk and send. That’s it. And the question I have for you: “How do you rate President Biden's performance so far?" He’s been in office nearly a year — how’s he doing? Leave a comment — and your name goes into a drawing for any of my books — your choice.
I like to end each week with a quote — something you might find thoughtful: This week: it’s from Lyndon Johnson — our 36th president:
Yesterday is not ours to recover -- he said -- but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.