Obama’s Reaction To The D.C. Riots Is Turning Heads

On Jan. 6, 2021, riots broke out at the U.S. Capitol building as supporters of President Donald Trump gathered around and within the building, creating a scene of chaos that left four people dead, according to CNN. The day was a symbolic one in the changing of hands between Trump and President-elect Joe Biden because Vice President Mike Pence was to count the votes from the electoral college, confirming Biden’s win.

The riots in Washington D.C. caused mayhem and havoc, and Pence was evacuated from the scene, reported USA Today. The crowd broke through police lines and entered the building, leaving behind broken glass and battered doors. By 6 p.m. EST, the National Guard was called in to offer support to the U.S. Capitol police, who “used tear gas and percussion grenades” to stop the riots, per USA Today.

The situation was so intense that several political leaders, including Biden, spoke out against Trump and his followers, but it was former President Barack Obama’s comments that turned heads. Here’s what he said.

Barack Obama condemns the riots at the Capitol

Former President Barack Obama spoke out in condemnation of the riots in Washington D.C., which took place at the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021, and he specifically called out President Donald Trump. 

“History will rightly remember today’s violence at the Capitol, incited by a sitting president who has continued to baselessly lie about the outcome of a lawful election, as a moment of great dishonor and shame for our nation. But we’d be kidding ourselves if we treated it as a total surprise,” Obama began on Twitter. “For two months now, a political party and its accompanying media ecosystem has too often been unwilling to tell their truth — that this was not a particularly close election and that President-Elect Biden will be inaugurated on January 20.” 

Obama also trained the spotlight on Republican leaders, saying they have a choice to either “continue stoking the raging fires” or they can “choose reality” and ultimately “choose America.” He praised those Republicans who did speak out against what was happening. 

Obama concluded by calling all Americans to support President-elect Joe Biden. While many supported Obama’s statement on Twitter, it also stirred up a great deal of contention. 

Twitter has mixed reactions to Obama's statements

Former President Barack Obama released a statement on Twitter on Jan. 6, 2021 to call out both President Donald Trump and his supporters rioting at the U.S. Capitol. Reactions to Obama’s message on the social platform were mixed. 

One person commented on his post: “We need President Barack Obama now more than ever. I hope he will be able to issue a statement on the major networks to help bring about the reconciliation we need right now. It feels like we are on the precipice of a civil war. This is not the country I’ve known all my life.” 

Another person implied that Obama wasn’t doing enough, saying: “Surely you are aware that even though you are out of office, the nation looks up to you for more than just a statement.”

Others weren’t so happy to hear from Obama and reminded him that he wasn’t the sitting president anymore. 

While there are a lot of opinions flying around the Twitterverse, Obama wasn’t the only political leader to make a public statement about what transpired at the U.S. Capitol.

Why Donald Trump was temporarily locked out of Twitter

In response to the shocking actions in the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, President-elect Joe Biden was very active on Twitter. “Let me be very clear: the scenes of chaos at the Capitol do not represent who we are,” he tweeted. “What we are seeing is a small number of extremists dedicated to lawlessness. This is not dissent, it’s disorder. It borders on sedition, and it must end. Now.”

Biden also called on President Donald Trump to get involved: “I call on President Trump to go on national television now to fulfill his oath and defend the Constitution by demanding an end to this siege.”

Meanwhile, Trump’s Twitter page spewed an assortment of varying information and misinformation. After several false tweets about a “rigged election,” Trump then tweeted: “Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!”

However, because several of Trump’s tweets were interpreted to be inciting violence, according to The Guardian, he was temporarily locked out of both his Facebook and Twitter accounts.

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