President Joe Biden sounded the alarm on Wednesday about the growing threat of political violence and attacks on democracy stemming from ex-President Donald Trump and his Republican allies’ Big Lie as the midterm elections loom closer.
While delivering a speech from Union Station in D.C., Biden zeroed in on how Trump and his loyalists’ false narrative about the 2020 election being “stolen” has “fueled the dangerous rise in political violence and voter intimidation over the past two years.”
The President pointed to the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, the violent assault on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) husband by a man who allegedly believed in MAGA World’s conspiracy theories about the 2020 election, and the surge in threats against elections officials.
“This institution, this intimidation, this violence against Democrats, Republicans and nonpartisan officials just doing their jobs, are the consequence of lies told for power and profit, lies of conspiracy and malice, lies repeated over and over to generate a cycle of anger, hate, vitriol and even violence,” Biden said. “In this moment, we have to confront those lies with the truth. The very future of our nation depends on it.”
“My fellow Americans, we’re facing a defining moment, an inflection point,” he continued. “We must with one overwhelming unified voice speak as a country and say there’s no place, no place for voter intimidation or political violence in America.”
Biden warned Americans that “we can’t take democracy for granted any longer,” not when hundreds of MAGA election deniers are running for powerful offices in the midterms that could position them to interfere with future election results they don’t like.
“This is the struggle we’re now in, a struggle for democracy, a struggle for decency and dignity, a struggle for prosperity and progress, a struggle for the very soul of America itself,” the President said. “Make no mistake; democracy is on the ballot for all of us.”
Biden’s speech came several days after a man named David DePape allegedly broke into Pelosi’s San Francisco residence and confronted her 82-year-old husband, Paul Pelosi, demanding to speak to the Democratic leader (who wasn’t home at the time).
DePape allegedly beat Paul Pelosi with a hammer, fracturing his skull. After first responders arrived at the residence, Pelosi was rushed to the hospital to treat his injuries. He is now recovering from surgery at the hospital.
According to the Justice Department, DePape told the authorities that he planned on kidnapping the House speaker (he allegedly brought duct tape and zip ties with him), interrogating her on the basis of the far-right conspiracy theories he’d allegedly bought into, and breaking her kneecaps if she “lied” to him.
“I’m sick of the insane fucking level of lies coming out of Washington, D.C.,” DePape allegedly said.