Freshman GOP congresswoman quotes Martin Luther King Jr. before equating the violent insurrection and Black Lives Matter protests
Mace was recently sworn in for her first term after winning a congressional race in South Carolina with Trump’s endorsement. But she has sharply criticized the president in recent days over his role in inciting the deadly insurrection.
Mace said Wednesday that while the House has “every right” to impeach the president, she believed the way this impeachment was proceeding raised “questions about the constitutionality of this process.”
She continued: “I believe we need to hold the president accountable. I also believe that we need to hold accountable every single person, even members of Congress, if they contributed to the violence that transpired here.”
Mace then quoted Martin Luther King Jr. before attempting to draw an equivalence between the violent attempted coup at the Capitol last week and the antiracism demonstrations that swept the country last year after the police killing of George Floyd.
“If we’re serious about healing the divisions in this country, Republicans and Democrats need to acknowledge that this is not the first day of violence,” she said. “Our words have consequences … there is violence on both sides of the aisle.”
Fact check: The overwhelming majority — 93%, according to one report — of Black Lives Matter protests in 2020 were peaceful. And while a small minority of protesters engaged in rioting and looting, both rioters and thousands of peaceful protesters were met in many cases with a hyper-aggressive police response.
In perhaps the most notorious example, Secret Service and law enforcement authorities were seen using tear gas and pepper spray on peaceful protestors in Washington, DC, to clear the way for a presidential photo op.
But last week, the pro-Trump mob laid siege to the Capitol building as Congress attempted to ratify the presidential election in a direct attack on democracy. Republican lawmakers attempted to conflate looting and skirmishes with police at social justice protests and a coordinated, violent attack instigated by the president.
At the siege, one Capitol Police officer was seen taking selfies with violent pro-Trump insurrectionists, while another was seen directing them around the Capitol as they swarmed the building. Additional reporting since the riot revealed that many members of the mob itself were active law enforcement officers and ex-military personnel.