SHELLEY — Following protests that became violent at the United States Capitol Wednesday, Idaho’s state and legislative leaders spoke out condemning the violence. The following are social media posts and official statements from Idaho’s leaders.
Governor Brad Little:
Little tweeted, “The violence at the U.S. Capitol is inexcusable and must stop. In Idaho, we uphold the tenets of the First Amendment, but what we are seeing in D.C. is not peaceful expression. Idahoans stand up for law enforcement and respect the rule of law.”
He followed up the tweet with “I am praying for safety of those at the U.S. Capitol and for order to be restored immediately.”
Little later issued an official statement.
“As I reflect on the events in our nation’s capital, multiple sad things come to mind. For all my many years, I’ve had an interest in how our citizens, especially our children, get to participate or observe our governmental, especially legislative, process. For generations, citizens and many students have traveled to Washington D.C., toured the U.S. Capitol, and observed. This is sacred to me and the success of our democratic republic. Confidence in government is best maintained if people can witness the process – whether in Washington D.C. or Boise. Today’s activities will undoubtedly bring a reaction – and for good reason. But as often is the case, the unintended consequences will be less access, fewer students, fewer citizens seeing the sometimes-messy constitutional process of government. I mourn for the lack of access that was there when I spent part of a summer in 1973 as a student with unfettered access to our congressional branch. We can replace unfettered access with technology, but there will be a loss. Unfortunately, there will be fewer students with a passion for the process because of their first hand exposure. Thus is the consequence of those who stormed OUR Capitol. It was a sad day.
We can do better. We must rededicate ourselves to making the process open to all, without intimidation of either the inside participants or the outside observers. “
Senator Jim Risch:
Risch tweeted, “This nonsense and violence needs to stop now.”
Risch also issued an official statement.
“Today’s events in the United States Capitol, meant to disrupt a process at the heart of our democracy, were unpatriotic and un-American in the extreme. Our republic has long been the envy of people all over the world, and we must stand united against those who wish to tear us apart. We are grateful to the law enforcement officers that placed themselves in harm’s way and kept those working at the Capitol safe today. I was proud to join my colleagues and reconvene at the Capitol tonight to prove that mob rule never prevails. Freedom and law and order will always triumph.
The business we conducted today showed there is deep distrust in the integrity and veracity of our elections. We need to restore American’s faith in our voting process. I am committed to pursue that so all of America has the benefit of what we enjoy in Idaho – solid confidence in the outcome of our elections. An open, transparent system with clear guidelines and rigorous safeguards is vital.
Now, we must come together as a country.
I am confident we will emerge from this challenge stronger, just as America has done so many times before,” Risch said.
Senator Mike Crapo:
Crapo tweeted, “The violence we are seeing at the Capitol is wholly unacceptable. It must be stopped immediately, and all perpetrators prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. God bless the Capitol Police, National Guard and other law enforcement on the scene here and at other sites,” Senator Mike Crapo tweeted.“This is not who we are. This is not what we fight for. This is not American. This must stop Now.”
He followed his first tweet up saying, “I took a solemn oath to support & defend the Constitution of the United States, to bear true faith & allegiance to the same, & to faithfully discharge the duties of the office I represent. I will not join efforts to have Congress reject validly certified Electoral College votes.”
“I stand by the First Amendment rights of Americans to peaceably assemble and demand redress for their grievances. What we witnessed at the U.S. Capitol today was not peaceful; such violence is wholly unacceptable. All perpetrators should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Actions like today thwart the rule of law and could leave lasting, devastating consequences on our nation. I am truly thankful for the heroic actions by U.S. Capitol Police, the National Guard and other law enforcement officials on the scene here and at other sites to keep the public safe,” Crapo said in his official statement.
Read the full statement here.
Congressman Mike Simpson:
Simpson tweeted, “We have a constitutional right to peaceful protests but the clashes with police and destruction of property must stop now. We can disagree in a better way.”
Simpson issued an official statement Wednesday regarding the certification of the Electoral College vote. He did not address the protests at the capitol in the statement. Read his statement here.