‘They didn’t care if they hurt people’ -- Michigan lawmakers react to deadly DC riots

Many elected officials calling for invocation of 25th Amendment

Michigan members of Congress react to riot at US Capitol
Michigan members of Congress react to riot at US Capitol

DETROIT – Michigan members of Congress shared details of the violent and deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol Building Wednesday.

Four people died during the riot.

After all that transpired, Congress went back to work Wednesday night and got the job done.

READ: Michigan lawmakers respond to deadly siege on US Capitol Building

Members of Congress continue to reel from the insurrection on Capitol Hill as stories of fear, chaos and bravery have come out.

“Most of my colleagues are veterans. Bill Huizenga was one of them trying to take benches to try and secure the chamber,” said Rep. Debbie Dingell. “We heard pounding, gunshots, smelled tear gas and were ultimately evacuated.”

Dingell said she was in her office and hadn’t slept yet when she saw the scale of the riots Thursday morning.

“I started seeing clips and began to realize that there were mobs that didn’t care if they hurt people or damaged people,” Dingell recalled.

“It was everybody in the Senate as well as staff. I was worried there was a lot of young staff that was very upset,” Sen. Debbie Stabenow said. “So I just focused on what we were supposed to be doing, following law enforcement and helping them.”

In a statement released Thursday, Rep. Tim Walberg -- one of the three Michigan officials to objected to the election results -- said he was sickened by the violence and went on to continue to give credence to the baseless claims of election fraud. When asked if he felt any sense of responsibility for the riots by giving validity to the false narrative, he did not respond.

At least six members of the Senate and House from Michigan are calling for the removal of the president in one form or another. They also said the furthering of false election fraud claims is dangerous and needs to be called out.

“He continues to put out conspiracy theories, and as a result of that he’s stoking people to engage in violent activities,” said Sen. Gary Peters. “That’s simply unacceptable behavior for a president of the United States, and it has to lead to the question that he’s simply unfit for this office.”

READ: What is the 25th Amendment and how does it work?

“From my perspective, whatever we could get bi-partisan support to do to hold the president and his language accountable I’d be willing to do,” Stabenow said.

In a letter to the Speaker of the House, Rep. Rashida Tlaib and other elected officials called for impeachment, writing in part, “Congress must reconvene immediately in order to begin proceedings to impeach and remove Donald J. Trump from office.”

The letter can be read in full here.

There are also talks about what should happen to the elected officials who objected to the election results, corroborating the false narrative that sparked the deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol Building.

“Yesterday’s assault on the Capitol didn’t have to happen. Politicians who spread the lies that incited this violence bear responsibility,” tweeted Rep. Peter Meijer. “Politicians who continue to lie in order to shift blame and falsely claim this was Antifa or BLM, are contemptible.”

“Now, if you are an elected member of Congress, and encouraging inciting an insurrection on the Capitol, then you are a traitor to this nation, the oath that you took and likely if you were trying to overturn the election, you are as well. You just weren’t successful,” Rep. Haley Stevens said.

On a local level, Milford Rep. Matt Maddock and his wife, Meshawn Maddock, both gave speeches at a prayer rally in D.C. Tuesday and marched with the rioters toward the Capitol. It’s unclear if they participated in the violence. Michigan officials are calling for the removal of Maddock and any representative who participated in the violence.

Maddock is poised to be the second in command for the Michigan GOP. Local 4 reached out to Maddock but have not heard back.


6 Michigan members of Congress join calls for President Trump's removal or impeachment
6 Michigan members of Congress join calls for President Trump's removal or impeachment

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About the Authors:

Grant comes to Local 4 from Oklahoma City. He joins the news team as co-anchor of Local 4 News Today weekend mornings and is a general assignment reporter.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.