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What Trump said in rally speech to spark U.S. Capitol storming

Antonio Fins
Palm Beach Post

President Trump peppered an otherwise incendiary speech at a Wednesday rally with an ask that his supporters "peacefully" march to the U.S. Capitol. But critics said it was the president's combustible and inciteful words that spurred his supporters to march to the U.S Capitol, violently occupy the building, create a security risk and suspend Electoral College deliberations.

The episode ended tragically, with five people including a police officer, losing their lives.

U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, tweeted: "This is a violent insurrection. An attempted coup by Trump supporters at his encouragement. They’re attacking the building that represents our democracy and threatening those who work in it. History will remember this dark day as a seditious attack by Americans against America."

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Before Trump spoke, his attorney, Rudy Giuliani called for "trial by combat." And the president's son, Donald Trump, Jr., warned those who are a "zero not a hero" that "we are coming for you."

And what did Trump say? Here is the passage from his speech that directed his followers to head to Capitol Hill.

"And after this, we're going to walk down there, and I'll be there with you, we're going to walk down ... to the Capitol and we are going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women," Trump told the crowd. "And we're probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them. Because you'll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength and you have to be strong."

The pledge was part of a speech that was bombastic and inflammatory even by Trumpian standards. The president told the crowd that the election had been "rigged" by "radical democrats" and the "fake news media." 

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And then he added a measure of defiance mixed with a call to action.

"We will never give up. We will never concede. It doesn't happen. You don't concede when there's theft involved," Trump said. "Our country has had enough. We're not going to take it anymore."

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Police with guns drawn watch as protesters try to break into the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

He further said: "You're the real people. You're the people that built this nation. You're not the people that tore down this nation."

The president did also say: "I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard."

And he added in a bit of irony: "Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy."

Trump later sent this tweet:

Trump followed that tweet with this one:

But he later seemingly justified the violence, occupation and besieging of the Capitol with this social media missive: "These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long. Go home with love & in peace. Remember this day forever!"

Twitter labeled the tweet as follows: "This claim of election fraud is disputed, and this Tweet can’t be replied to, Retweeted, or liked due to a risk of violence."

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