‘An angry, lawless mob’ | Utah Sen. Mike Lee speaks on protest at U.S. Capitol

Politics

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) — Protests broke on Capitol Hill and in the Utah State Capitol Wednesday evening

Supporters of President Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to overturn the election results on Wednesday evening.

Utah Senator Mike Lee, who was on the Senate floor when the protestors broke in, spoke with ABC4’s Senior Political Correspondent Glen Mills to describe the events from his perspective.

Sen. Lee said that he was preparing to give a speech on the Senate floor when he “noticed some commotion.”

Sen Lee. said the proceedings continued until Capitol Hill Police came into the chamber and shut down the session, escorting the elected officials out of the Senate chamber into a different room on the capitol complex.

All the senators were told that they were to remain in the secure location for several hours until Capitol Hill Police deemed it safe for them to reconvene.

“It’s unlike anything I’ve seen in 10 years in the Senate,” Lee said, calling the protestors “an angry, lawless mob.”

Lee’s message to the President Trump supporters who broke into the Senate chamber was ” You will be prosecuted. You should rot in prison for the rest of your lives,” adding that the protestors “must stop now.”

President Trump later took to Twitter to try and reign in his supporters after they stormed the U.S. Capitol, but also expressed his gratitude for his supporters, calling them “special”, while continuing to express that he feels that the 2020 election was “stolen” from him.

Lee said he was “not pleased by the President’s words,” claiming that he wasted an opportunity to deescalate the situation and said that continuing his allegations that the 2020 election was stolen from him is “not helpful right now.” The Senator also added that it is time for President Trump to concede the election.

Senator Lee also told ABC4’s Glenn Mills that the certification of the Electoral College vote will go on as planned tonight, as law enforcement as the 1,000 members of the National Guard were called in to remove the protestors from Capitol Hill.

On Thursday evening, Twitter locked President Trump’s Twitter account and Facebook locked his account for 24 hours. Lee who has been critical of large tech companies in the past, calling them “biased”, said in this instance, that Twitter and Facebook locking the President’s accounts, might have been a good move.

Several other Utah elected officials have spoken out and publicly condemn the protest at the U.S. capitol, including newly elected Utah Governor Spencer Cox

“I encourage people to exercise that right to peaceably assemble, peaceably come together, to make your voice heard. But we must condemn in the strongest of terms violence, personal attacks, the non-peaceful use of people’s voice,” Cox said in a video posted to Twitter.

In a tweet addressing the protests at the U.S. Capitol, Utah senator, and former presidential candidate Mitt Romney said, in part, “We must not be intimidated or prevented from fulfilling our constitutional duty. I urge my colleagues to move forward with completing the electoral count, to refrain from further objections, and to unanimously affirm the legitimacy of the presidential election.”

Congress has reconvened and is expected to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory.

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Glen Mills

Chief Political Correspondent

 Glen is honored to be delivering the news of the day every weeknight at 5, 6, and 10 in his home state. He is an award-winning veteran journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team as a weekend anchor in June 2013. Over the years, he held various positions at the station as he worked his way up to the main anchor chair. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent and hosts Inside Utah Politics, which airs every Sunday. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...