GOP Rep. Mike Gallagher, a former intelligence officer, says he hasn't seen anything like Washington DC riots since he was deployed to Iraq
- As rioters stormed the US capitol on Wednesday, GOP Rep. Mike Gallagher, a former intelligence officer, said on CNN that he hadn't seen anything like it since he was deployed to Iraq.
- "This is insane… the election's over," Gallagher said, demanding that Trump and Republican lawmakers call off attempts to overturn the election results.
- Some protesters who had gathered in Washington, DC, on Wednesday to protest congressional certification of the Electoral College votes turned violent, getting into clashes with police as they stormed the US Capitol building and forced lawmakers to evacuate.
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Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher on Wednesday sharply condemned violent protesters, President Donald Trump, and other GOP lawmakers over continued attempts to overturn the presidential election results, telling CNN that the riots in Washington, DC, were like nothing he had seen since being in an actual warzone.
"This is insane, I have not seen anything like this since I deployed to Iraq in 2007 and 2008," said Gallagher, who served for seven years in the US Marines as an intelligence officer and completed two tours of duty in Iraq, adding: "This is America."
Demonstrators, encouraged by Trump, took to Washington on Wednesday to protest Congress' certification of December's Electoral College vote that cemented President-elect Joe Biden's victory over Trump, which several Republicans planned to challenge.
But some turned violent following Trump's speech, clashing with — and ultimately overwhelming— police as they proceeded to storm the US Capitol building, forcing lawmakers to evacuate.
Some Republican lawmakers, including Gallagher, blamed Trump and far-right Republican loyalists for helping incite the riots, and urged them to denounce the violence and end their attempts to overturn the election.
"The president needs to call it off," Gallagher said. "Call it off, it's over. The election's over, and the objectors need to stop meddling with the primal forces of our democracy here."
"They need to stop it, like, there's a cost," he continued. "They think they're just having a protest debate and they can get away with it because it's not actually going to overturn the election, well now we're seeing the cost of that play out in real-time."
"We don't think other countries around the world are watching this happen right now?" Gallagher asked, adding: "If we don't think the Chinese Communist Party is sitting back and laughing, we're deluding ourselves."
Gallagher said he and his staff were safe in their offices outside the Capitol building.
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