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Central Texas Representatives Condemn Pro-Trump Extremists' Violence At Nation's Capitol

Gabriel C. Pérez

Congress members representing Central Texas condemned pro-Trump extremists who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday as Congress convened to certify the Electoral College votes and confirm Joe Biden’s presidential victory.

Republican Congressman Michael McCaul said on Twitter anyone who participated in violence should be arrested and prosecuted.

“We’ve heard gunshots. The Capitol police have been personally attacked," he said ina video from his office in Washington, D.C. "This is a day by the Constitution that we are to certify the Electoral College. This violence cannot stand. It has to stop and we need to do our jobs here in the Congress and not incite this violence outside.”

Democratic Congressman Lloyd Doggett blamed President Donald Trump for inciting the rioters.

“To see violent protesters going through the sacred halls of the Capitol, tear gas being fired in the Capitol, guns raised," he told KUT, "this is not the America that people of both parties want.”

On Twitter, Republican Congressman Chip Roy called on the president to “establish calm and order."

Trump later called for peace in a video on Twitter in which he asked people to go home. He also reiterated false claims about the election being stolen. Twitter flagged the video for its disputed content and stopped it from being shared.

“This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people,” he said in the video. “We have to have peace. So, go home. We love you. You’re very special.”

Republican Congressman John Carter also condemned the mob's actions, saying violence wouldn't be tolerated and those responsible “should be held accountable immediately.”

Other prominent Texas Republicans, including Sen. Ted Cruz and Attorney General Ken Paxton, have criticized the pro-Trump extremists’ actions. Cruz, who objected to the counting of Arizona’s electoral votes earlier Wednesday, said on Twitter that violence is “ALWAYS wrong” and those acting violently are hurting their own cause.

But others blamed the chaos on members of the Republican Party refusing to accept the presidential election results.

Former U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who ran for the Democratic presidential nomination last year, responded to Cruz’s tweet saying, “It is your self serving attempt at sedition that has helped to inspire these terrorists and their attempted coup.”

Congressman McCaul told KUT he believes President Trump shares some of the blame for what happened today.

"I think some of the leaders in the House and Senate who continued with this charade got expectations up," he said. "It was really political theater. We all knew ... what the outcome was going to be at the end of the day, and I think it contributed to inciting violence.”

In response to the riots in D.C., the Texas Department of Public Safety closed the state Capitol. Trump supporters had gathered outside, holding signs and cheering at cars passing by.

Marisa Charpentier is KUT's assistant digital editor. Got a tip? Email her at Follow her on Twitter @marisacharp.
Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. He covers the big projects that are reshaping how we get around Austin, like the I-35 overhaul, the airport's rapid growth and the multibillion-dollar transit expansion Project Connect. He also focuses on the daily changes that affect how we walk, bike and drive around the city. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on X @KUTnathan.
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