“In a divided America, the events that unfolded on Capitol Hill on Wednesday afternoon should unite us all. In a universal sense of national shame and embarrassment,” according to the editorial board of USA Today.
“Under President Donald Trump, the United States — historically a beacon of freedom and citadel of liberty — has devolved into a shocking exemplar of dysfunction. Democracies around the world, those established and those fledgling, could only look on in horror at the televised images of a pro-Trump mob storming the august American center of government, crowding its balustrades, smashing windows, flooding into its statuary hall.
“Congratulations, Mr. Trump. Our Shining City on the Hill is now a tarnished emblem of national disgrace. The American carnage you promised to eradicate at the beginning of your term has turned to reality at the end of it.”
“The scenes looked like something out of a bad action movie: Rioters descending on the Capitol. Armed but outnumbered security forces barricading themselves with weapons drawn, firing teargas and hustling members of Congress and Vice President Mike Pence to safety. A woman shot at the Capitol, later pronounced dead. And, in an iconic image of pure insurrection, a smug protester sitting in the president’s chair in the evacuated Senate Chamber.
“But there’s little question about what triggered it.
“Just before Congress gathered in a joint session for the ministerial task of counting the electoral votes showing that Joe Biden was elected the next president of the United States, Trump spouted his rancid conspiracy theories about a stolen election at a rally on the White House Ellipse.
“He closed his remarks by egging his followers to march down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol and make their grievances known. “We’re just going to try and give (Republicans in Congress) the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country,” Trump exhorted them.
“And they followed his every word.”
The rest of the editorial is here.