By Josh Bootsma
LANSING, Ill. (January 6, 2021) – About 20 minutes before law enforcement authorities on Capitol Hill finished removing rioting protestors from the U.S. Capitol Building after an unprecedented invasion Wednesday, IL Governor JB Pritzker issued a statement calling for Congress to impeach President Trump for “his efforts to encourage a coup.”
The statement was posted on Gov. Pritzker’s Twitter page and came as authorities on Capitol Hill used tear gas and other means to disperse a crowd of President Trump’s supporters both inside and outside the Capitol Building, according to the Associated Press.
Roughly 50 minutes before the Governor tweeted his call for President Trump’s removal, the President released a video on Twitter calling for protesters to “go home.” In the video he called his supporters “very special,” and said, “we love you.” The President’s video can no longer be viewed on Twitter, and has been replaced by the message: “This Tweet is no longer available because it violated the Twitter Rules.”
Gov. Pritzker’s statement, which appeared as a photo file on his Twitter page, was prefaced with, “I don’t make a statement like this lightly: Two weeks is too long for Donald Trump to remain in office, where he can continue to incite more untold violence.”
The Governor’s full statement is included below:
I say this after careful thought and reflection on my responsibilities as an American and as Governor of Illinois. We are in the middle of a deadly pandemic that continues to need the full time and attention of our state resources. We are working to oversee a massive vaccination effort that will require the full focus of our state agencies and first responders.
Because of today’s events incited by the President, I had to ask the Illinois State Police and other law enforcement resources, engaged in important life-saving missions, to redeploy to heighten their presence at government buildings and the Capitol in Springfield.
As the heart of our democracy was under siege and blood was literally being spilled in our most sacred halls, Donald Trump was praising the attackers. There are real questions about what efforts the President made to protect our Congress or what obstructions he committed that has prevented the ending of the siege.
There is no doubt in my mind that his efforts to encourage a coup represent high treason to this democracy, our Constitution, and all Americans. He poses a danger to our nation. He must be impeached and removed from office immediately. And every person in a position of public trust, elected or otherwise, who enabled the systematic dismantling of our democratic norms and failed to speak up or take action bears some responsibility for the culmination of four years of spreading bile.
This violence is the natural conclusion of Donald Trump’s efforts to unleash the forces of hate and divide our nation. It must end.