What Southwest Florida leaders say about Jan. 6 a year later

Reporter: Sydney Persing
Published: Updated:
FILE – In this Jan. 6, 2021, file photo rioters loyal to President Donald Trump storm the U.S. Capitol in Washington. Arguments begin Tuesday, Feb. 9, in the impeachment trial of Donald Trump on allegations that he incited the violent mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

A year ago, protesters pushed past Capitol police, smashed windows and paraded on the Congress floor.

All to keep Congress from certifying the election results that would make Joe Biden president.

Southwest Florida’s Congressman Byron Donalds, R-Naples, was there.

“I was on the House floor. When the Capitol was breached, it was, it was surreal, really a dark day for the country,” Donalds said.

He said he witnessed Republicans and Democrats helping each other. It inspired him.

But that feeling lasted barely a day.

“If you’re going to use a tragedy to push your political agenda, that’s when I get off the bus. I just think it’s inappropriate. If you want to commemorate what happened on January 6, honor Capitol Police for their bravery. Yes, we should do that. But when you decide to use it, to you know, attack the former president or attack a straw man or to push your agenda that’s just wrong,” Donalds said.

Donalds claims president Joe Biden is politicizing Jan. 6.

During a speech on Thursday, Biden claimed former President Donald Trump is to blame for what happened at the Capitol, for pushing the lie that the election was stolen.

“It’s wrong, it’s undemocratic and frankly it’s unamerican,” Biden said.

Still there is common ground between Democrats and Republicans.

“I think what happened on January 6 was despicable. The people that broke into this Capitol were absolutely wrong, and they need to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla, said.

But the division between the parties has only grown larger the last 365 days.

“You want to know what today is really about for them. It’s about politics. It’s about promoting a political narrative,” said U.S. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.

The FBI is still searching for more than 250 people still accused of assaulting federal officers.

LINK: See who is still wanted by the FBI for Jan. 6 Capitol breach.

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