WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (D-MI), Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, released the following statement on the first anniversary of the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol:
“One year ago, a shocking and violent attack on the U.S. Capitol shook the very foundation of our democracy. It’s a day that we as a nation can never forget. Thanks to the heroic efforts of U.S. Capitol Police and Metropolitan Police officers, the National Guard, and other law enforcement officers who defended our democracy that day – the insurrection failed. There is no question that this attack took a serious toll on our brave first responders, the Capitol Hill community, and our entire nation. But tragically – instead of coming together as a nation to completely condemn this violence – we have only seen this threat to our democracy grow as political leaders continue to spread the lies and disinformation that spurred the attack.
“I was proud to lead the first bipartisan investigation and report focused on the immediate security and policy changes needed to protect the Capitol. While many of the recommendations from that report are being successfully implemented – we must do more to tackle the grave national security threat posed by domestic terrorism and violent extremism. The increasing number of people who believe political violence is justifiable, adopt extremist ideologies, and embrace conspiracy theories threaten our very democracy and our future as a free and prosperous nation.
“Every one of us has a responsibility to help defend our democracy. We must unequivocally condemn the lies and provocations that provoked the violent attack – no matter our political persuasion. Congress should also do everything in its power to protect our democracy. We must pass voting rights legislation that will ensure every American’s voice can be heard at the ballot box, help restore faith in our electoral process, and support elections workers’ efforts to impartially and safely manage our elections.
“As we saw one year ago, our democratic principles can endure unimaginable challenges, but we must remain clear-eyed and relentless in our efforts to stop these threats from further eroding our democratic way of life.”
To watch a video summary of Senator Peters’ bipartisan report detailing the security, planning, and response failures related to the violent and unprecedented attack on January 6th, click here.
As Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Peters led the Senate’s first bipartisan investigative hearings and released a joint bipartisan report on the security, planning, and response failures related to January 6th attack. Peters has also led efforts to address the broader national security threat posed by domestic terrorism. Last year, he convened a hearing with experts to examine the amplification of domestic extremist content on social media platforms. He also convened a two-part hearing with experts representing faith-based, civil rights, and academic and policy research organizations on the continued rise of domestic terrorism, including white supremacist and anti-government violence.