Analysis: Jan 6 Capitol Attack: One Year Later

It has been one year since the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. For months leading up to the largest attack on the Capitol since the War of 1812, then-president Donal Trump launched an unprecedented campaign to undermine the outcome of the presidential election in 2020, which he lost to now President Joe Biden.

On January 6, Congress gathered in order to certify Biden’s victory as president. That afternoon, a mob of Trump supporters breached the Capitol, scaling walls, shattering windows, breaking into federal offices, stealing furniture, and taking selfies along the way.

Five died, and dozens were injured. Moments before the pro-Trump protestors stormed the Capitol, they attended a speech by Trump himself. Trump stayed quiet for 187 minutes before calling off the attack, and claims his language that was in the direct run-up to the riot was still “totally appropriate.” 

The aftermath has lingered throughout the year. In the immediate days following the riot, House Democrats swiftly drafted articles of impeachment against Trump for “incitement of insurrection.” House Democrats, joined by 10 Republicans, voted for impeachment. Trump made history that day, as he became the first U.S. president to ever be impeached twice.

The Senate’s final vote was just short of the 67 needed to convict him. 

A year later, the U.S. is clearly still reckoning with Jan. 6 2021. The Department of Justice continues to press on with its biggest investigation in the history of the FBI. Seven hundred people have already been arrested. Hundreds more are still at large, and years of prosecutions are anticipated.

An ongoing House Select Committee investigation has subpoenaed several of Trump’s closest allies and associates to testify. It is reviewing thousands of documents in relation. 

The investigations still have yet to shed light on just how vigorously Trump and his allies could end up being investigated for inciting the deadly riot with months of lies that the election was stolen, and through Trump’s speech right asking them to march to the Capitol, in what ended up being the attack. 

This means that the aftermath of Jan. 6 is far from over, even one year after. 

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