Former officers who defended the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 visited the Pa. House. Some GOP members cheered

The request from the House Democratic Campaign Committee said: “House Republicans couldn’t leave the floor in protest fast enough” and asked for contributions “to help us defend our democracy” and preserve their majority in the House.

At the Biden campaign event earlier on the Capitol steps, Dunn and Gonell were flanked by more than a dozen Democratic lawmakers. The two warned at the appearance that they see former president and current Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as a danger to democracy.

“Donald Trump is the greatest threat to our democracy and the safety of communities across the country today,” Dunn told reporters. “He has encouraged and continues to encourage political violence. … His deranged, self-centered, obsessive quest for power is the reason violent insurgents have attacked me and my courageous colleagues.”

Hundreds of law enforcement officers were beaten and bloodied during the attack by Trump supporters, who descended on a rally and stormed the Capitol as Trump remained silent for hours.

Gonell said the attackers attacked him repeatedly. He told how he was punched, punched, kicked and hit in the head with his own baton. Someone tried to drag him into the crowd and hit him with an American flag still attached to a flagpole, he said. Gonell said his injuries required two surgeries.

“Donald Trump called the people who injured me and attacked our Capitol as hostages, patriots and political prisoners. If those people are those things, then who are we?” Gonnell said, adding that the officers on Jan. 6 defended elected officials from both parties “regardless of their political ideology.”

Dunn, who is Black, has previously described how the Capitol crowd shouted racial slurs at him, something that never happened during his more than 12 years on the force.

Rep. Mike Schlossberg, D-Lehigh, said he witnessed the reaction from his Republican colleagues on Wednesday and heard one member referencing Trump supporter Ashli ​​Babbitt, who was shot by police during the riot at the U.S. Capitol and killed.

He said he saw two Republican members walk away and other Democrats reported as many as 10 Republican House members did so. It was a striking contrast to the solemn respect normally greeted by soldiers and police officers when they are recognized in the House of Representatives, he said.

The cheering heard on video of House activity was a Democratic attempt to make the cheering louder, Schlossberg said.

“It was despicable and a disgrace,” he said. “This is the party that supposedly cherishes public order.”

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