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Republican Insurrection Whitewash, Brunswick Beacon, February 24, 2022

In his Feb. 17 column, the Brunswick County Republican Party chairman asks “Why do Democrats feel the Jan. 6 event was a major insurrection where no one carried arms?” The Republican National Committee also whitewashed the insurrection, calling it “legitimate political discourse.” Why are Republicans rewriting history?

We saw the violence. We heard testimony from police officers like Sgt. Aquilino Gonell, who fought insurrectionists for hours in hand-to-hand combat: "common things were used as weapons, like a baseball bat, a hockey stick, a rebar, a flagpole (including the American flag) pepper spray, bear spray." Insurrectionists fought with fire extinguishers, wooden clubs, a spear, mace, stolen police shields, a wooden beam, a stun gun and knives.

Insurrectionists were charged with carrying guns onto Capitol grounds. Mark Ibrahim carried a handgun. Guy Reffitt carried a semi-automatic handgun. Christopher Alberts carried a loaded 9mm pistol and 25 rounds of ammunition. Lonnie Coffman, the first person charged, pleaded guilty to bringing five loaded firearms and 11 Molotov cocktails in his truck to Capitol Hill.

Some Republicans, like Sen. McConnell, reject BCRP’s whitewash: “We saw it happen. It was a violent insurrection for the purpose of trying to prevent the peaceful transfer of power after a legitimately certified election.”

Our own Sen. Burr found Trump guilty of “inciting an insurrection” in “an attempt to undermine our democratic institutions and overrule the will of the American people through violence, intimidation, and force.”

The insurrection was incited by Trump’s Big Lie, repeated by 147 Republican lawmakers who voted to overturn the election, including NC Reps. Dan Bishop, Ted Budd, Madison Cawthorn, Virginia Foxx, Greg Murphy, Richard Hudson, and David Rouzer.

BCRP’s column euphemistically calls this violent insurrection “the Jan. 6 event.” BCRP and the RNC are whitewashing violence and rewriting history because they’re afraid voters will rightly hold Republicans accountable.

Kristine Garrity

Second Vice Chair

Brunswick County Democratic Party



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