WASHINGTON (AP) — Former President Donald Trump on Thursday defended some of his supporters who rioted at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, saying they posed “zero threat” to the lawmakers who had assembled there to certify the Electoral College vote that confirmed Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential race.
Trump complained to Fox News Channel’s Laura Ingraham that law enforcement was “persecuting” the Capitol rioters, while “nothing happens” to left-wing protesters.
Trump did acknowledge that those who stormed the Capitol “went in and they shouldn’t have done it.”
But he added: “Some of them went in and they’re, they’re hugging and kissing the police and the guards. You know, they had great relationships. A lot of the people were waved in and then they walked in and they walked out.”
More than 300 people have been charged in connection to the riot. Authorities have said they believe at least 100 more could face charges.
The Jan. 6 riot followed a fiery Trump rally outside the White House, in which he urged a mob of his supporters to “fight like hell” for him at the Capitol. A week later, the House impeached Trump for the second time, but the Senate eventually acquitted him on the charge of inciting the attack.