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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Wednesday blasted a Republican senator who is still espousing conspiracy theories about the nature and origins of the attack on the US Capitol last month by a pro-Trump mob.
The Senate Rules and Homeland Security Committees held a joint hearing on Tuesday with four law enforcement leaders who were in charge of securing the Capitol on the day of the riot.
While the hearing was a mostly bipartisan effort to ascertain facts about how and why authorities failed to stop the pro-Trump mob from overrunning the legislature that day, GOP Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin used his five minutes to suggest “fake Trump supporters” and other possibly left-wing “provocateurs” turned an otherwise “festive” and “positive” protest into a full-blown, bloody insurrection.
Speaking on the Senate floor on Wednesday, the day after that hearing, Mr Schumer lit into Mr Johnson.
“The hearing revealed several security and communication failures that must be addressed going forward and followed up on in future investigations. Regrettably, the hearing also revealed that there are still members of the Senate Republican minority who are willing to continue the campaign of misinformation, deception, and conspiracy that helped fuel the attack on January 6 in the first place,” Mr Schumer said.
He continued: “So let me be very clear: Blaming the January 6 attack on provocateurs and fake Trump protesters is mindless garbage. It has no basis in fact. Perpetuating and giving a platform to those lies is a preposterous contribution to a Senate hearing devoted to Capitol security. Everyone, everyone, needs to move forward by sticking to the facts and engaging in a very serious discussion about the security of the Capitol Complex.”