Months after the Jan. 6th insurrection on Capitol Hill, Republican Representative Paul Gosar is attempting to rewrite history with a truly bizarre rant, in which he claims that the rioters were just “peaceful protestors” and accuses Capitol police of “executing” a well-meaning patriot.
During a hearing held by the House Oversight Committee concerning the riots on Capitol Hill, Gosar — who’s been a staunch Trump supporter and a proponent of Trump’s “Stop the Steal” campaign — used his time to pepper former acting Attorney General Jeff Rosen and other officials with fairly useless questions about the Jan. 6th attack. Gosar tried to paint insurrectionists as “law-abiding U.S. citizens” and “veterans” who were being unfairly targeted by the FBI and turned on by their own neighbors following the attacks.
In his lengthy speech, Gosar claimed the DoJ was “harassing peaceful patriots,” and painting pro-Trump supporters as criminals while spreading lies about his fellow Republicans who encouraged and supported the Jan. 6th march on Capitol Hill. At one point during the proceedings, after questioning whether Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick was actually killed by a fire extinguisher — the chief medical examiner of D.C. already ruled Sicknick had died because of two strokes suffered during the chaos of the events that day — Gosar went on to demand answers in the killing of Ashli Babbitt, a rioter he described as a “veteran wrapped in the American flag.”
“Who executed Ashli Babbitt?” Gosar shouted at Rosen before implying that she, along with the rest of the rioters, was of little threat because most of them weren’t carrying lethal weapons at the time of the attack. Of course, Gosar’s grandstanding is pointless since the DoJ has already investigated the shooting and determined the officer had reason to use deadly force after Babbitt and others attempted to breach a set of doors into the Chamber where officials were sheltering in place. Gosar’s outrage at the police treatment of these “protestors” is off, too, considering he waded into controversy last year by supporting Kyle Rittenhouse, a teen who’s been charged with killing people taking part in a Black Lives Matter protest.
In that instance, Gosar tweeted his belief that Rittenhouse had a right to bear arms and labeled him as simply an “armed citizen defending himself.” The Congressman tweeted his outrage at Babbitt’s death while the hearing was still taking place — though presumably after he’d been given ample time to rant in front of the mic.