On January 6th, violent insurrectionists entered the U.S. Capitol building threatening the lives of legislators and attempting to disrupt an election. Over recent years, Black Lives Matter protestors have demonstrated over the deaths of unarmed Black individuals at the hands of police.
These two facts are unrelated.
Black Lives Matter participants have been arrested — according to the AP, between the death of George Floyd on May 25, and their article on June 4, over 10k were arrested. Of these around 2,500 were merely for curfew violation — literally charged for their presence alone.
Despite this, when trying to pass the buck for Donald Trump’s involvement in the January 6th attack on the Capitol building, Senator Josh Hawley pointed a finger at these protestors in an extreme case of whataboutism.
"You're not going to get anything but condemnation from me for what happened with those criminals at the Capitol," Hawley says on @FaulknerFocus. "But that doesn't make this trial any more legitimate than it is, which is totally illegitimate. No basis in the Constitution." pic.twitter.com/uLi1dZAkk3
— Senator Hawley Press Office (@SenHawleyPress) February 11, 2021
Hawley says that the January 6th insurrectionists are criminals who should face consequences, but that he still believes the trial for Trump is invalid, and suggests that the focus should be not on him, but either on Black Lives Matter protestors, or on COVID-19. (President Joe Biden has a team working on COVID-19 response, and there’s no indication that the Senate being involved in Trump’s trial is in any way preventing their work.)
Just left the chamber, where most members were at least partially engaged with @RepJoeNeguse presentation. The biggest exception: @HawleyMO – sitting up in the gallery with his feet up on the seat in front of him, reviewing paperwork, throughout.
— Garrett Haake (@GarrettHaake) February 10, 2021
Hawley was criticized this week for appearing to ignore and show disrespect for the trial proceedings. Given a chance to address this and respond to the evidence connecting Donald Trump to the incitement of the attack, he instead complained that Democrats are not sufficiently, in his opinion, calling for consequences for Black Lives Matter protestors who are not involved in this case.
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Steph Bazzle reports on social issues and religion for Hill Reporter. She focuses on stories that speak to everyone's right to practice what they believe in and receive the support of their communities and government officials. You can reach her at Steph@HillReporter.com