News and Commentary

Congressman Suggests Pro-Trump Rioters Who Mobbed Capitol May Have Had Inside Intel

Also says staffers "saw people being allowed into the building through side doors."
Representative James Clyburn, a Democrat from South Carolina, wears a protective mask while arriving to a joint session of Congress to count the Electoral College votes of the 2020 presidential election in the House Chamber in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021. Congress is meeting to certify Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election, with scores of Republican lawmakers preparing to challenge the tally in a number of states during what is normally a largely ceremonial event. Photographer:
Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) on Sunday said pro-Trump rioters who ran wild inside the Capitol may be have had inside information.

Clyburn, the House majority whip and prominent member of the Congressional Black Caucus, said the rioters found his second office, even though there is no sign on the door.

“I have an unmarked office that you got to know exactly where it is,” Clyburn told CNN anchor Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.” He said he spends “most of” his “time” in that office instead of his more official office, which has his nameplate above the door.

“They didn’t go to where my name was. They went where I usually hang out. And so that, to me, indicates that something untoward may have been going on,” Clyburn said.

Clyburn has previously claimed that there may have been people inside the Capitol building who were “complicit” in helping the rioters gain access to the building.

“They knew where to go. And I’ve been told … [by] some other Congress people that their staffs are saying that they saw people being allowed into the building through side doors,” Clyburn told CBS News anchor Lana Zakon Friday.

“Who opened those side doors for these protesters, or I call them these mobsters, to come into the building, not through the main entrance where magnetometers are, but through side doors? Yes, somebody on the inside of those buildings were complicit in this.”

He also said that when he arrived at the Capitol on Wednesday — when thousands of Trump supporters planned a massive rally — he was surprised by what he saw. “There were no security people on the steps. They were all out in a place where I thought gave [little] security,” Clyburn said.

The Hill reported last week that some protesters planned the riot in advance on the internet. “Posts on websites including Parler, a Twitter-like platform with minimal content moderation, and, a message forum that sprung up after Reddit banned a ‘subreddit’ of the same name in June, were rife with posts about storming the Capitol in the days leading up to the deadly riot that prompted a lockdown and forced lawmakers to evacuate,” the Hill reported.

“But posts on mainstream platforms, including Twitter, also mused about a potential attack coinciding with the day Congress was set to affirm President-elect Joe Biden’s win, according to a report from Advance Democracy, a non-partisan, non-profit organization that conducts public-interest research & investigations. For five days leading up to the riot, when a mob forced its way into the Capitol, there were 1,480 posts on Twitter from QAnon-related accounts about the Jan. 6 date that contained ‘terms of violence,’ according to the Advance Democracy report.”

“One account related to the QAnon conspiracy theory late Tuesday night tweeted, ‘WE are all done being the bigger person, no more MR. NICE PATRIOT! it’s Time for Patriots to Rise up, Kick The Tires and Light the Fires, and Kick Ass and Take Names!!,’ according to the report. Advance Democracy also identified four TikTok videos with between 1,900 views and 279,000 views that called for violence or rebellion during pro-Trump demonstrations scheduled for Jan. 6,” the Hill reported.

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