WASHINGTON – A federal judge appointed by Republicans has criticized prominent politicians who served on the bench for 37 years for their “preposterous” claims. on how the courts handle the January 6 cases and their attempts to “rewrite history” regarding the attack on the US Capitol, said such rhetoric could be a harbinger of future far-right violence.
Top U.S. Judge Royce Lambert, appointed to the bench by former President Ronald Reagan in 1987, said in a vociferous hearing Thursday that he was “shocked” that prominent politicians talked about the convicted felons who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6. , 2021, calling the politicians’ statements “foolish” and warning that such rhetoric “could create more danger for our country.”
While Lambert did not name politicians, he did use quotes from Rep. Andrew Clyde, R-Ga. (who said rioters behaved”regularly“like tourists,” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga. (calling inmates Jan. 6)political prisoners“) and Elise Stefanik, RN.Y. (echoing former President Donald Trump, calling Jan. 6 a criminal “pledges“). In 2022, the Republican National Committee made a decision refers to to the events of January 6″legitimate political discourse.”
“The court is used to defendants refusing to admit they did anything wrong. But in my thirty-seven years on the bench, I can’t recall a time when this kind of unjustified acquittal of criminal activity became mainstream,” Lambert said. his prepared comments.
“I am horrified to see distortions and outright lies seep into the public mind,” Lambert continued, before issuing a stark warning: “The court fears that this kind of destructive, misguided rhetoric could pose a greater threat to our country.”
Lamberth, a former Judge Advocate General’s Corps captain who served in Vietnam, said he could not condone “brazen attempts” to distort the events of Jan. 6. On January 6th, they are political prisoners or hostages who have been duly convicted and have all the guarantees of the US Constitution, including the right to a jury trial for serious crimes.
Lambert later sought to “set the record straight based on what I learned while presiding over multiple charges on January 6, hearing from dozens of witnesses, watching hundreds of hours of video footage and reading thousands of pages of evidence.”
“On January 6, 2021, a mob attacked and occupied the United States Capitol, using force to stop the peaceful transfer of power mandated by the Constitution and our republican heritage,” he said. “The rioters interfered with the due process of the constitution, disrupted the legitimate transfer of power, and thereby endangered the American constitutional order… This was not patriotism, it was the opposite of patriotism.”
Lambert then said it was “a matter of right and wrong” and that it was up to the judges to say that the actions of those who broke the law on January 6 were wrong.
“The court doesn’t expect its records to completely stem the tide of lies. But I hope a little truth goes a long way,” he said.
More than 1,250 people have been charged in connection with the January 6 attack on the US Capitol. according to Department of Justice. According to the Justice Department, more than 700 defendants voluntarily pleaded guilty, meaning they appeared before judges and admitted to actually engaging in criminal activity on Jan. 6 under penalty of perjury.
Just this week, Edward Richmond Jr. A man previously convicted of voluntary manslaughter for killing an Iraqi national while serving overseas has been arrested in Louisiana and charged with assaulting law enforcement officers. Capitol on Jan. 6. Richmond used a baton to attack law enforcement officers fighting rioters in the lower west tunnel, which federal authorities said was the most extreme violence of the day. Richmond will plead not guilty, his attorney, John McLindon, said.
Federal authorities made the arrest Tuesday, a day after Richmond’s arrest Andy Steven Oliva-LopezAccording to the FBI, online detectives have identified the man who was photographed and filmed using chemical spray to attack law enforcement officers in the westbound tunnel on Jan. 6. It is unclear whether Oliva-Lopez has entered a plea.