BOCC

Hillsborough's elected leaders are (from left) commissioners Robb English and Kathleen Ferguson; Mayor Jenn Weaver; Commissioner Evelyn Lloyd; Mayor Pro Tempore Mark Bell; and Commissioner Matt Hughes.

The following is a statement from the Hillsborough Board of Commissioners regarding the events of Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C.

The Hillsborough Board of Commissioners condemns in the strongest possible terms the assault on the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6, 2021, and the attempt to delay, discredit or prevent the certification of a free and fair election.

White supremacists, anti-Semites, and conspiracy theory devotees were part of the seditious mob that went to the Capitol at the incitement of President Trump. This mob overran the Capitol and caused chaos and destruction that left five people dead, including Capitol police officer Brian Sicknick. Over 50 additional law enforcement officers were injured in the attack, including an officer dragged down a set of stairs and beaten unconscious. Journalists reporting on the scene were also assaulted. This was a coordinated attack on democracy and constitutional order, and we are thankful no lawmakers were injured or killed.

We specifically condemn in the strongest possible terms the president of the United States for his words and actions that encouraged the violent riot by this mob of his supporters. We also condemn those members of the House and Senate who amplified the same falsehoods promoted by the president, which provided motivation, aid, and comfort to this assault on our democratic process.

We are grateful for the actions of law enforcement to protect members of Congress and their staff at risk to their own lives. There are firsthand accounts of Black officers suffering racial epithets from members of the mob as they protected Congress under harrowing circumstances. Yet the ease with which these angry and often armed insurrectionists overtook the Capitol stands in stark contrast to the way peaceful protesters objecting to racism and injustice were treated by federal law enforcement in the capital’s Lafayette Square this past summer. The American people deserve an explanation for this disparate treatment.

We join the growing chorus of local, state, and federal lawmakers demanding a full accounting of what transpired on Jan. 6 and the days leading up to it. Any suggestion of moving forward and putting this behind us without a complete explanation of what happened or without holding those responsible accountable is unacceptable and puts our country at greater risk.

We are in a struggle between those who believe in democracy and those who do not, and we must uphold the rule of law, block efforts at voter suppression, and respect the freedom of the press. We demand the president be held accountable and immediately resign. If not, we demand that Congress impeach and remove the president and prohibit him from ever holding public office again.

Mayor Jenn Weaver

Mayor Pro Tempore Mark Bell

Commissioner Robb English

Commissioner Kathleen Ferguson

Commissioner Matt Hughes

Commissioner Evelyn Lloyd