Three years following the tumultuous events of January 6, 2021, when rioters besieged the U.S. Capitol, President Biden took a moment to commemorate the day, affirming the resilience of American democracy. On X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, Biden reflected on the chaos of that day, emphasizing that despite the severe test it posed, democracy ultimately prevailed.
“Three years ago, a violent mob fueled by lies attacked the U.S. Capitol,” Biden shared. “Our democracy was tested. But it held because We the People prevailed.”
He further stressed the ongoing responsibility to uphold and demonstrate the strength of American democracy to the world.
Vice President Kamala Harris echoed this sentiment in a similar post, strongly condemning the insurrection and the efforts to overturn the 2020 election results that led to their administration.
In a significant speech marking the start of the new year, Biden targeted former President Trump, using the anniversary of the January 6 riots to underline his argument against what he views as extremism among Trump and his followers.
“Democracy is on the ballot. Your freedom is on the ballot,” Biden stated in his impassioned address in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.
As America steps into another election year, deeply divided over the significance of January 6, there is a growing concern among experts about the health of democracy in the country. Surveys indicate a notable portion of Americans believe in conspiracy theories surrounding the Capitol attack, and there’s a noticeable decline in satisfaction with American democracy.
The violent upheaval of January 6 led to several fatalities, extensive damage to the Capitol, the prosecution of Trump, and about 1,000 convictions related to the riots. In what has become the largest criminal investigation in U.S. history, prosecutors are still on the hunt for suspects involved in the insurrection.
With Trump facing a crucial Supreme Court decision regarding his eligibility for the Colorado primary ballot due to his involvement in the riots, several defendants are seeking to delay their cases pending the Supreme Court’s decision on the legitimacy of the obstruction charges applied by the Justice Department.
Biden, in a call to action, urged supporters not to overlook the significance of the attacks and appealed to legislators across the political spectrum to defend democracy.
“For a long time, we’ve told ourselves that American democracy is guaranteed, but it’s not,” he wrote. “Each and every one of us has to defend it, protect it, and stand up for it.”
In a personal post, Biden criticized Trump for compromising democracy for personal gain, stressing the unacceptable nature of political violence in the U.S. He boldly stated, “On the anniversary of January 6, I will say what Donald Trump won’t: Political violence is never EVER acceptable in the United States.”