January 6 again

I’ve posted most of this information before, but after Thursday’s hearing of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol– demonstrating beyond a doubt Donald Trump’s central role in instigating the brutal attack and his inexcusable delay in putting an end to it– I think it’s worth repeating.

Just after the November 2020 election– a clear and convincing victory for Joe Biden over Donald Trump— our Sixth District Republican Congressman Ben Cline began enabling lies about massive fraud and illegal voting. (The committee presented evidence that Trump was told repeatedly by the attorney general, his staff and campaign officials that he had lost. Trump knew, but Cline either didn’t know or pretended he didn’t know.)

These lies—boosted endlessly by Cline and other Trump supporters in Congress—helped incite the bloody insurrection by a pro-Trump mob at the United State Capitol on January 6, 2021.

  • On November 14, 2020, at a pro-Trump rally in Staunton, Cline suggested with no evidence that there were massive numbers of “illegal votes” in Biden’s favor.
  • On November 20, Cline posted on Facebook a photo of him with the deranged pro-Trump conspiracy-monger Sidney Powell. He wrote: “Proud to support my friend Sidney Powell in her fight to count every legal vote for President Donald Trump!” (The post has since been deleted. Does this mean they are no longer friends?)
  • Cline continued to prove his pathetic loyalty to Trump by joining more than 100 other Congressional Republicans to sign a brief supporting Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s frivolous lawsuit aimed at overturning the results of the election. (The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously rejected the lawsuit.)

As the terrorists were brutally attacking police and minutes before they entered the Capitol, Cline posted on Facebook trying to draw a direct parallel between the objections of a few House Democrats to the result of the 2000 presidential election (for which there were reasons to object) and the objections of Cline and 146 other members of Congress to the clear and convincing election of Joe Biden in 2020.

Where was Cline when he sent his Facebook post? Was he aware of what was happening when he sent it? I’m sorry that no journalist has yet asked him.

Later in the day Cline condemned the actions of the insurrectionists and called on them to be prosecuted. But unlike more responsible Republicans, Cline never acknowledged Trump’s incitement of the mob or that the insurrectionists were acting on Trump’s behalf. He hasn’t done so to this day.

  • After the mob was cleared from the building, Cline voted against certifying the election of Joe Biden as president; that is, he did what the insurrectionists wanted.
  • As recently as July 2021 Cline attended a Conservative Political Action Conference in Dallas where he shamelessly referred to “our great president Donald J. Trump.”
  • In May 2021 Cline voted against a bipartisan commission to investigate January 6. Cline claimed it was “not a non-partisan proposal,” even though it was the product of an agreement between Republican and Democratic congressmen.
  • Cline then opposed creation of a House Select Committee to investigate the events surrounding January 6.

Cline has been utterly silent on the harrowing testimony in July 2021 of the four heroic police officers who appeared before that committee. They were among the scores of officers brutalized by the pro-Trump mob at the Capitol on January 6. And they were willing to call out Trump and the Republicans in Congress they held responsible.

He has since dismissed the committee’s hearings as “an echo chamber designed by Nancy Pelosi.”

And does anyone doubt that he will vote NO on holding Trump in contempt if he refuses to comply with the committee’s subpoena?

We have every reason to ask Cline: Whose side is he on?

Congressman: Please don’t try to tell us you are on the side of the brave officers who testified– who put their lives on the line to protect you– or on the side of truth and accountability for the awful events of Janurary 6, 2021. For you, it’s party (and Trump) over country (and decency) every time.

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