Home » When ‘hell broke unfastened’: congresswoman describes moments of terror throughout Capitol riot

When ‘hell broke unfastened’: congresswoman describes moments of terror throughout Capitol riot

by newsking24

Susan Wild would not keep in mind how she wound up on the ground within the gallery of the House of Representatives, or what was going by means of her thoughts as she listened to the sounds of rioters making an attempt to interrupt by means of the barricaded doorways.

But the second has been captured in a broadly printed {photograph}. In it, Wild — a second-term member of Congress from Pennsylvania’s seventh district — is on her again, one hand over her coronary heart, the opposite gripped by fellow Democrat Jason Crow, a former U.S. Army Ranger who served in Iraq.

“Jason had been behind me almost from the beginning, when we started the evacuation,” Wild recalled in an interview airing Saturday on CBC’s The House. “I was at the very tail end. And Jason, I later learned, because of his military training, had made a point of being the last member out of the chambers.

“And so he was behind me, encouraging me, as we had been crawling by means of the gallery.”

Wild had been waiting for her turn to speak Wednesday against a challenge initiated by some Republicans of the result of the presidential election in her home state when, as she puts it, “all hell broke unfastened.”

CBC News: The House13:36‘All hell broke loose’: Rep. Susan Wild on witnessing chaos at the Capitol

One photo captured during the attack on the U.S. Capitol this week shows Democratic Congresswoman Susan Wild of Pennsylvania taking cover in the gallery overlooking the House of Representatives chamber. It’s an image you’ve seen everywhere: she’s lying on the floor, one hand over her heart, while the other is tightly gripped by a congressional colleague. Wild would be among the last group of lawmakers escorted from the chamber as rioters thronged on the other side of the door. Chris Hall spoke with Rep. Wild just 24 hours after the attack about living through the terrifying ordeal, returning to congressional business that same day and how “allies and adversaries” have closely watched the U.S. this week. 13:36

‘Panic’ in the Capitol

She said she doesn’t remember feeling panicked as she and the others lined up to leave. She called her children to assure them she was all right. And then she lost a shoe — a small thing, considering what was happening around her, but enough to cause her composure to dissolve.

“I knew I felt upset, but it surely wasn’t till Jason reached out and began holding my hand and chatting with me, and making an attempt to calm me, that I noticed that I used to be manifesting these indicators of panic,” she said.

“I frankly thought I used to be holding it collectively fairly nicely till that occurred. And then I noticed it have to be clear that I used to be actually in unhealthy form emotionally.”

Wild and many other members of Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, accuse Donald Trump of whipping up his supporters before the riot with his baseless claims that the November presidential election had been stolen from him.

It’s a view shared by many foreign leaders — including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who expressed shock Friday at what happened.

“What we witnessed was an assault on democracy by violent rioters, incited by the present president and different politicians,” the prime minister told reporters.

WATCH: Trudeau says Trump incited an ‘assault on democracy’

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau criticized U.S. President Donald Trump during a media briefing on Friday with reporters. 3:15

Trump has always been a difficult partner for allies — even long-standing ones like Canada. That’s prompted Trudeau and others to react cautiously over the years to the president’s most intemperate remarks and to his attacks on their own leadership.

Even U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, whose political leanings are more closely aligned with Trump than Trudeau, abandoned the man he once said was worthy of a Nobel peace prize.

“Insofar as he inspired individuals to storm the Capitol and insofar because the president has constantly solid doubt on the free and truthful election, I believe that what the president has been saying on that’s fully mistaken,” Johnson told reporters Thursday.

An explosion caused by a police munition is seen while a throng of U.S. President Donald Trump’s supporters descend on the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday. (Leah Millis/Reuters)

The mob scene, the destruction and the degradation of an icon of American democracy didn’t stop some House Republicans from continuing with their attempt to set aside the election results in swing states like Pennsylvania.

Wild said she was stunned hours later when her colleagues finally returned to the chamber — and the challenges resumed.

“I used to be frankly appalled,” she said. “We had been having the most important assault on our democracy. It was occurring proper there within the Capitol earlier within the day, you already know … interruption of what’s usually a really clear and accountable course of.”

Those challenges were defeated, and both houses of Congress certified the vote that elected the Democratic ticket of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.

Members of the military stand guard outside Russell Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, Jan. 8, 2021, in response to supporters of President Donald Trump who stormed the U.S. Capitol. (Patrick Semansky/AP)

But Wild said she still worries about the longer-term impact of Wednesday’s events on Americans’ ability to put aside their political differences for the good of the country, and on the willingness of members of the public to attend sessions of Congress to “watch democracy in motion.”

As a member of the powerful House foreign affairs committee, Wild said one of her first priorities will be to craft a message to reassure allies — and warn off adversaries who might try to capitalize on the transition period.

“I believe it’ll be essential that the subsequent administration — which I believe can be rather more forward-thinking when it comes to overseas coverage — makes it clear that the best way that now we have ruled within the final 4 years isn’t going to be the best way the United States is ruled going ahead,” she mentioned.


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