Riots break out on Capitol Hill shortly following Georgia runoff results

This article will be continuously updated as we receive more information.

On Wednesday, Georgia elected Democrats Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock to the Senate after defeating Republican incumbents Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue in a run-off election. 

The win for Democrats gives them a 50-50 majority in the Senate, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as the tie-breaking vote. This is the first time Democrats have complete control over Congress in over a decade. 

This win will make it easy for President-elect Joe Biden to implement initiatives and quickly confirm cabinet nominees within his first 100 days in office.

Progressives are already looking at how Democrats should use their newfound power in order to pass a more ambitious agenda.

We don’t yet know of any plans of how Democrats will move forward as the new Senate majority. With many House Republicans and Trump-supporters still questioning the legitimacy of the election, with close results in both November and January.

After neither party received over 50% of the votes in November’s election all candidates entered a runoff election on Jan. 5.

Each side received many endorsements from high profile supporters like Organizer Stacey Abrams, super PACs and their parties making this one of the most expensive Senate races in the nation’s history. 

The four candidates generated $486 million in campaign ads in the two months leading up to Tuesday’s vote.

Having a very tight and narrow race caused both sides to campaign fiercely up until the day of the election. 

Democrat supporters including mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, former President Barack Obama, and voting rights activist Stacey Abrams made Georgia a frequent campaign stop to rally voters for the race. Many give them credit for their efforts in helping flip the state blue for the first time in 28 years and get the senators elected. 

Despite President Donald Trump traveling to Georgia to hold rallies, trying to overturn Georgia’s Election Day results, and threatening to fire election officials, neither candidate from his party was re-elected into the Senate.

This news came and caused a disruptive and violent day in Washington as pro-Trump supporters invaded the U.S. Capitol, forcing Congress to recess while they were set to certify the Electoral College votes.

On Wednesday, the same day Georgia declared Ossoff and Warnock’s win, the “Save America Rally” saw thousands of demonstrators by 6 a.m. to protest the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s November 2020 victory. The rally followed a speech given by President Trump at the White House. 

“We are going to walk down to the Capitol, and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators, congressmen and women, and we are probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them,” President Trump told supporters. “Because you will never take back our country with weakness.”

Shortly after 2 p.m., protestors started to scale the Capitol building walls and clashed with police. One group of protestors even destroyed the Associated Press’ media equipment on site.

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According to Capitol Police chief Steven Sund in an article for The New York Post, protestors attacked officers “with metal pipes, discharged chemical irritants and took up other weapons against our officers.”

The Capitol went on lockdown, and Vice President Mike Pence was evacuated, and Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser ordered a 6 p.m. city curfew as protestors started to bypass Capitol security.   

The rioters broke windows and doors and made their way into Statuary Hall, toting American flags and some Confederate flags and chanting claims that the presidential election was fraudulent. Some made their way to the dais and took pictures in front of it. As the mob became more violent, they smashed windows and vandalized the offices of the representatives with Nancy Pelosi’s office being one of them.

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In a now-deleted video posted on Twitter several hours into the riots, President Trump told protestors to “go home now” while repeating false claims of election fraud. Twitter and Facebook locked the president’s accounts and removed the video, citing policy violations. 

Gov. Brian Kemp denounced the mob’s actions, calling it a “disgrace” and “un-American.” 

Ashli Babbit of San Diego, California was shot and killed by police while making her way to the house chamber. Three others died from “medical emergencies,” including 34-year-old Rosanne Boyland from Kennesaw, Georgia. Approximately 50 Capitol and D.C. police officers sustained injuries. 

As of Thursday morning, police arrested approximately 52 people, four on weapons charges. Officers also recovered six firearms, two pipe bombs and a cooler of molotov cocktails. 

Because of the influx of photos taken during the riots with few masks to hide identities, the FBI asked for information to lead to the identification of rioters on Twitter

“The FBI is seeking to identify individuals instigating violence in Washington, D.C. We are accepting tips and digital media depicting rioting or violence in and around the U.S. Capitol on January 6. If you have information, visit,” the tweet states.

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