WESTERN TREASURE VALLEY — As the nation deals with the consequences of the mob riot at the U.S Capitol during the joint session of Congress to record the Electoral College’s vote on Jan. 6, local leaders and political organizations are also working to make sense of what happened.
The newspaper reached out to several of these leaders for their input on Thursday, Jan. 7. Following is a sample of responses received.
District 9 Rep. Ryan Kerby, R-New Plymouth, condemned the actions of those rioting at the Capitol.
“I don’t agree with the violence,” wrote Kerby in a Jan. 7 email. “Innocent people being shot and killed is reprehensible.”
However, even with the U.S. House of Representatives moving forward with efforts to impeach President Donald Trump for the second time, Kerby said he felt that was no more than a public stunt.
“The 25th Amendment discussion is moot,” added Kerby. “Won’t come close to happening. Just political maneuvering.”
Nonetheless, Idaho Democratic Party Chairwoman Van Beechler said in a Jan. 7 statement that she sees local leaders as culpable for the rioting at the Capitol.
“Because our Republican leaders in Washington have encouraged and refused to stand up to President Trump’s deliberate attack on the Constitution and the legitimacy of our elections, they are responsible for the unrest that is occurring,” said Beechler. “Congressman Russ Fulcher, Congressman Mike Simpson, Senator Jim Risch and Senator Mike Crapo all share responsibility for today’s events, along with every Republican official who chose to prioritize political power over preserving our democracy.”
Beechler also called for peace and safety for state legislators as the 2021 legislative session commences this week.
Sen. Crapo, R-Idaho Falls, praised the actions of the U.S. Capitol Police and other law enforcement officers in a Jan. 7 news statement.
“I stand by the First Amendment rights of Americans to peaceably assemble and demand redress for their grievances,” wrote Crapo in his statement. “What we witnessed at the U.S. Capitol today was not peaceful; such violence is wholly unacceptable. All perpetrators should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Actions like today thwart the rule of law and could leave lasting, devastating consequences on our nation.”
Trump tweeted ahead of the Jan. 6 protests in mid-December. Trump’s social media accounts have been disabled following the incidents.
House Democrats plan to vote on a second impeachment against Trump this Wednesday, according to CNN.