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Ky. Political Leaders Condemn Storming Of Capitol, Disruption Of Power Transfer

Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol in Washington. As Congress prepares to affirm President-elect Joe Biden's victory, thousands of people have gathered to show their support for President Donald Trump and his claims of election fraud. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
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Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol in Washington. As Congress prepares to affirm President-elect Joe Biden's victory, thousands of people have gathered to show their support for President Donald Trump and his claims of election fraud. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Kentucky's political leaders from both sides of the aisle are condemning the actions of extremist Trump supporters who stormed into the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, occupying House and Senate chambers and disrupting the count of electoral votes.

Rep. John Yarmuth, a Democrat, tweeted that he had been safely evacuated as "large groups of Trump supporters" stormed the Capitol.

"This is not who we are as Americans," he wrote.

Reached by phone from an undisclosed location, Yarmuth told WFPL News he was not in the House Chamber when it was breached. He said he was in his office building around 1 p.m. when Capitol Police began running up and down the hall “banging on the doors,” saying members and staff needed to evacuate to another building because of a bomb threat at the Republican Club across the street.

Yarmuth said those in the House Chamber during the breach by Pro-Trump extremists were mostly Republicans and Democrats from the Arizona delegation.

“I thought it was absolutely outrageous that the president basically stoked all this by speaking to [his supporters] earlier today,” he said. “He was down speaking to them today, not urging them to violence, but urging them to ‘keep fighting’...so what do you expect those people to do?”

Asked whether he thought the security response and preparation was adequate, given what happened, Yarmuth said “clearly it wasn’t.”

“This is an insurrection we’re watching...And I don’t think it was ever anticipated that Capitol Police would face an insurrection from a mob like this.”

“You had an assault on the United States Capitol. I’m not sure how to process that.”

Yarmuth is hoping that to diffuse the tension, the president and Republican leaders will accept the results of the presidential election.

He commended Republican Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for his speech on the Senate floor before the storming, urging his party to accept the election results. But he said he thinks Trump’s supporters will only respond to him.

“The only way to diffuse these people in the streets I think right now is for President Trump to say 'The election is over, I lost. This is not the United States of America. Go home.'”

Trump has sent out a tweet and a video statement telling his supporters to "remain peaceful" and "go home in peace." But in the same statement Trump maintained the election was "stolen," with no evidence.

But Yarmuth said the tweets are not enough.

“Once the people are in the streets, the tweets really don’t help,” he said. 

Ky. Republicans Condemn Storming of Capitol

Republicans also condemned the insurrection. U.S. Sen. Rand Paul called the storming of the Capitol "violence and mob rule."

https://twitter.com/RandPaul/status/1346919767328882689

 

Congressman Thomas Massie, another Republican release a statement saying he's safe but not otherwise commenting.

https://twitter.com/RepThomasMassie/status/1346912989278990336

The Kentucky GOP also spoke out against the actions of Trump supporters.

https://twitter.com/KYGOP/status/1346918323095797763

"The individuals engaged in this criminal behavior are dangerous and destructive and should be held fully accountable," Kentucky Republican Party Chairman Mac Brown wrote in a statement on Twitter.

Congressman Andy Barr called the day's events " tragic, outrageous and devastating" and called for an end to the violence.

Other Kentucky politicians released statements condemning the actions, including Kentucky Sec. of State Mike Adams.

https://twitter.com/KYSecState/status/1346916682753826818

Along with Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron:

https://twitter.com/kyoag/status/1346915760657084416

Gov. Andy Beshear called the mob "domestic terrorists" in a video he shared on Twitter.

https://twitter.com/GovAndyBeshear/status/1346924456459923456

This story will be updated.

Jess Clark is LPMs Education and Learning Reporter. Email Jess at jclark@lpm.org.