Dana Rohrabacher, a former Republican congressman who represented California's 48th Congressional District for 30 years before losing re-election in 2018, confirmed on Monday that he was at the Capitol during the Jan. 6 riot.
"I marched to protest, and I thought the election was fraudulent and it should be investigated, and I wanted to express that and be supportive of that demand," Rohrabacher told the Portland Press Herald. "But I was not there to make a scene and do things that were unacceptable for anyone to do."
Rohrabacher, 73, now lives in Maine, having bid farewell to Southern California after losing his bid for re-election. He was known for his strong support of former President Donald Trump and the Kremlin, once defending Russian hacking in the 2016 presidential election from the House floor. His backing of Russian President Vladimir Putin was well-known, and in 2016, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) was recorded saying there are "two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump."
Over the weekend, Rohrabacher's presence at the Capitol was reported on by a Twitter account called @capitolhunters, which shared videos and images seemingly showing Rohrabacher in the crowd on Jan. 6, the Los Angeles Times reports. He was spotted at the edge of Lower West Plaza, about 500 feet from the restricted area. Previously, Rohrabacher claimed that "leftist provocateurs" started the Capitol riot, not the pro-Trump mob that stormed the building.