A West Virginia lawmaker took video of himself and other supporters of President Trump rushing into the U.S. Capitol Wednesday.
In the video by Republican Del. Derrick Evans, later deleted from his social media page, he is shown wearing a helmet and clamoring at the door to breach the building in Washington, D.C.
“We’re in! Keep it moving, baby!” he said in a packed doorway amid Trump followers holding flags and complaining of being pepper sprayed. Once inside, Evans could be seen on video milling around the Capitol Rotunda, where historical paintings depict the republic’s founding, and yelled “no vandalizing.” He could be heard chanting Trump’s name.
The speaker of the state House of Delegates, Roger Hanshaw, said Evans will need to “answer to his constituents and colleagues regarding his involvement in what has occurred today.”
He said he has not spoken to Evans yet about his involvement. “I have only seen what has been posted on social media so far, and I’m sure more details may come out soon,” he said in a statement.
“He must be held accountable for participating in an act of insurrection against the United States government and risking the lives of lawmakers and Capitol police,” the West Virginia Democratic Party said in a statement. “The West Virginia Democratic Party calls for his immediate resignation from the House of Delegates and that he be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
Photos: Pro-Trump Supporters Breach the Capitol Building
The delegate from Wayne County said in a statement later on Facebook that he was heading back to West Virginia and “was simply there as an independent member of the media to film history.”
Evans was among Trump supporters who traveled to the nation’s capital to protest the results of the Electoral College on Tuesday and Wednesday. Their anger over baseless claims of fraud in the presidential race led to a mob storming and occupying the Capitol building, interrupting the expected vote count declaring Democrat Joe Biden’s victory.
“The violence that we are witnessing right now in Washington, D.C., is absolutely unacceptable and I condemn it in the strongest possible terms,” Republican Gov. Jim Justice said in a tweet. “People have every right to have their voices heard peacefully. But there is no place in our country for this type of activity.”
The state’s U.S. senators said they were safe in Washington. Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin called it an insurrection. “These thugs cannot and will not run us off,” he said in a statement. “We will continue to govern.”
Republican Sen. Shelley Moore Capito also lamented the protest.
“This is the United States of America,” she said in a statement. “We don’t do this. It’s not who we are.”
Republican U.S. Rep. Alex Mooney tweeted a picture of himself holding an escape hood, adding that he was safe after the Capitol was breached.
In the lead up to Congress counting the Electoral College vote, the West Virginia GOP on Twitter amplified falsehoods that Biden didn’t win the election. After the attack on the Capitol, the party’s account retweeted a video from Trump where he told his “very special” supporters to go home.
Trump said “we have to have peace,” but not without repeating baseless claims the election was stolen.