“Our democracy still stands on a knife’s edge: the forces that brought us to the brink on January 6 work to undermine the fundamental pillars of our republic.” [and] The fundamentalism of the Republican Party has not disappeared,” said Eddie Gloud, a professor at Princeton University who has met with Biden on the subject.
“President Biden has to keep sounding the alarm,” Glaud said. “What we can’t improve with an election or with the fall of Donald Trump.”
There was never any debate within the White House about whether or not to prominently celebrate the anniversary of the rebellion. This year the date comes at a moment of political opportunity for Biden, who will address the nation at the same time as the Republican-led House of Representatives descends into chaos in electing its next speaker and the GOP’s only declared presidential nominee, Donald Trump. has gone. Continues to support the widely rejected election denialism.
A year ago, Biden traveled to the Capitol and delivered a blistering denunciation of Trump and his allies for holding “a dagger in America’s throat” by promoting lies about the election, inciting violence in the same hall where they stood. Gave.
That speech began a years-long thread that Biden has sought to link the events of Jan. 6 to fringe elements of the GOP as well as those who refuse to seek positions in Congress and state houses across the country. used for The House Jan. 6 committee worked throughout the year to shed light on the factors that led to the 2021 insurrection, and ended the midterms with several high-profile electoral denials lost.
But internal polls show the issue is resonating with voters — and the White House and Democrats have no plans to let it go as they approach the 2024 runway.
White House aides have insisted that the main focus of Friday’s speech will primarily be to remember the tragedy and heroism of that day. Officials said Biden would salute members of law enforcement, including Capitol Police officers who held up rioters and election officials in the face of Trump’s onslaught of lies.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said aboard Air Force One this week, “An important focus of her remarks will be to recognize those Americans who have shown courage and patriotism, who have given of themselves on behalf of others and on behalf of our democracy.” Endangered.” , “Jan. 6th was… one of the darkest days and ever [that] Can lead to light and hope.
Domestic threats against the country’s democracy have been a familiar theme for Biden, who launched his presidential campaign because he felt Trump was tearing at the country’s fabric; And who returned to it again and again in the first months of his term.
When Biden met last summer with a group of prominent historians to discuss threats to American democracy, many stressed the importance of publicly calling out anti-democratic behavior, said three people familiar with the discussions. According to who sought anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Historians warned Biden that ignoring it would be dangerous and that violent rhetoric and electoral denial could be seen as normal aspects of the country’s politics. And he urged them to act, warning that how they responded to the challenges would inevitably become part of their legacy.
Biden took the warnings to heart. Last fall when the general election campaign was in full swing, he delivered two speeches, one urging vigilance against anti-democratic forces of violence, one set against the backdrop of Independence Hall and the other, just days before the midterms. House’s brutal assault came after. Husband of Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
It was not a universally admired decision. Some party members expressed concern that the president was stressing unimportant concerns for most voters, who were consumed with inflation and the loss of abortion rights.
But senior Biden advisers looked at private polling after the midterms, which shows that, even if the Jan. 6 committee’s work didn’t move the needle much with voters, warnings about key election deniers — governors and state secretaries of state That did have significant implications, according to two people familiar with the findings but not authorized to discuss the internal documents — including several candidates for the Senate.
Although the midterms have passed and the committee has all but closed up shop, Biden will continue to sound the alarm in the coming months, believing the threat has not gone away.
The president’s speech on Friday comes as the House of Representatives has descended into chaos, with a right-wing faction of the GOP paralyzing the process of selecting the speaker. Many of those same lawmakers — as well as others expected to play prominent roles in the new Congress — voted against Biden’s certification and pushed forward false claims of election fraud.
“This speaker’s fight is about the same thing that Jan. 6 was about,” said Pete Giangreco, a veteran Democratic consultant in Chicago. “It’s not ideological. It’s a group of people who don’t believe in American democracy, the institutions, or the idea of majority rule.”
West Wing allies also point to the shadow of Trump looming over the political scene. Although the former president has become politically vulnerable in recent months, many close to Biden believe Trump will still emerge as the GOP presidential nominee next year. As Biden takes steps to launch his own campaign in the coming months, some in his orbit are preparing to make Jan. 6 a central issue in the campaign.
A new Politico/Morning Consulting poll out Thursday shows 45 percent of voters believe Trump is “very much” responsible for the events of January 6, 2021. More than 75 percent of Democrats say the rebellion could affect their 2024 vote, while 53 percent of independents and 35 percent of Republicans say the same.
“Evidence that [Jan. 6] The committee has revealed that what happened almost two years ago was an attempted coup, said Brendan Nyan, a democracy expert at Dartmouth College. “Threats still remain, however – in particular, from former President Trump, whom our experts identify as a serious or extraordinary threat to democracy if he is re-nominated by the Republican Party.”
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