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Highlights and analysis: Trump commits to 'orderly transition' after mob storms Capitol

Lawmakers were evacuated during the counting of Electoral College votes after supporters descended on the Capitol at Trump's urging.
Image: District of Columbia National Guard stand outside the Capitol, Wednesday night, Jan. 6, 2021, after a day of rioting protesters.
District of Columbia National Guard stand outside the Capitol on Wednesday night.John Minchillo / AP

President Donald Trump early on Thursday committed to "an orderly transition" of power soon after Congress confirmed President-elect Joe Biden's election win, and following the storming of the Capitol by a mob of violent Trump supporters.

In a statement released by the White House, the president again made false claims about the outcome of the election. Twitter suspended Trump's account for 12 hours Wednesday after he continued to push conspiracy theories about the election after the chaos at the Capitol.

Overnight, Congress reconvened and counted the electoral votes Biden's victory. After some objections, the count of Biden's 306 votes to President Donald Trump's 232 was finished in proceedings that lasted until 3:40 a.m.

This live coverage has ended. Continue reading about the aftermath of the rioting at the Capitol.


Read the highlights:

-The woman shot in the Capitol amid violent breach of the complex has died.

-Biden condemns "insurrection."

-Jon Ossoff defeats David Perdue in Georgia, handing control of the Senate to Democrats, NBC News projects.

-Defying Trump, Pence says he won't overturn the 2020 election.


Objection to Arizona certification fails in Senate

An effort to object to Arizona's Electoral College certification overwhelmingly failed in the Senate on Wednesday night after a mob's breach of the Capitol. 

Only six senators supported the objection; 93 were opposed. 

Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Josh Hawley of Missouri both voted to sustain the objection. Sens. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama, Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi, John Kennedy of Louisiana and Roger Marshall of Kansas also voted in favor of the objection.

Members of the Senate and the House were debating the certification after Republican lawmakers opposed the tallying of the votes in several battleground states. Lawmakers reconvened in the Senate at 8 p.m. to finalize the normally pro forma process. 

Sen. Lindsey Graham: 'Count me out. Enough is enough.'

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., a close ally of President Donald Trump's, virulently condemned efforts to object to congressional recognition of the election.

"All I can say is count me out. Enough is enough," Graham said in a fast-talking, sometimes free-wheeling five-minute address to the Senate. He argued that both the courts and others had no proof of voter fraud and that even though he had been a stalwart supporter of Trump in recent years, it was time to move on. 

"Final thing: Joe Biden. I've traveled the world with Joe. I hoped he'd lose. I prayed he would lose. He won. He is the legitimate president of the United States," Graham said. "I cannot convince people, certain groups, by my words, but I will tell you by my actions, that maybe I — among, above all others in this body — need to say this: Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are lawfully elected and will become the president and the vice president of the United States on January the 20th."

30 arrested for curfew violations

Thirty people have been arrested for curfew violations in Washington, double the number arrested after the storming of the Capitol earlier Wednesday. 

Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser imposed a 6 p.m. curfew, and multiple law enforcement agencies, including the FBI and the Maryland National Guard, were called to restore order after rioters breached Congress. 

At least 30 people had been arrested for violating curfew as of 9:30 p.m., Bowser's office said; 15 people were arrested after the mob stormed the Capitol.

Carter, Clinton join chorus of former presidents decrying Capitol violence

Former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton decried the "unprecedented assault" and "national tragedy" brought by Wednesday's Capitol riots.

"Rosalynn and I are troubled by the violence at the U.S. Capitol today," Carter said in a statement. "This is a national tragedy and is not who we are as a nation." 

Carter, the 39th president, didn't call out President Donald Trump for his role in inciting the mobs, but Clinton, the 42nd president, cited four years of a truth-challenged White House

"Today we faced an unprecedented assault on our Capitol, our Constitution, and our country. The assault was fueled by more than four years of poison politics spreading deliberate misinformation, sowing distrust in our system, and pitting Americans against one another," Clinton tweeted. 

"The match was lit by Donald Trump and his most ardent enablers, including many in Congress, to overturn the results of an election he lost."

Former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama had earlier voiced their strong opposition to the violence.

White House officials resigning after riots in the Capitol

A growing number of White House officials have submitted their resignations after President Donald Trump's rhetoric led to the riots in the Capitol on Wednesday, and more are expected to follow. 

Melania Trump's chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham, a former White House press secretary, resigned Wednesday afternoon, and deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews has also resigned. Social secretary Rickie Niceta did so, as well, according to a person familiar with the matter.

"As someone who worked on the halls of Congress, I was deeply disturbed by what I saw today," Matthews said in a statement to NBC News. "I'll be stepping down from my role, effective immediately. Our nation needs a peaceful transfer of power."

More senior members of the Trump administration are also considering putting in their letters of resignation, including national security adviser Robert O'Brien, deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Transportation Department has not responded to a request for comment.

A spokesperson for the National Security Council did not respond to a request for comment. 

Other White House officials have expressed dismay at Trump's rhetoric and blame him for the violence that followed his rally Wednesday. 

"Never did anyone think it would turn out like this," a longtime White House aide said. "The blame for this lies squarely with the president. And whatever support he has among members has vanished. As wild as it sounds, he could be impeached in the final days."

Sen. Booker: 'How will we confront this shame?'

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., equated the mob that stormed the Capitol on Wednesday with the Confederates of the Civil War, noting in his comments to fellow senators when the chamber reconvened that a Confederate flag was brought into the building. 

"Our democracy is wounded, and I saw it when I saw pictures of yet another insurgency of a flag of another group that tried to challenge our nation," Booker said. "I saw the flag of the Confederacy there. What will we do? How will we confront this shame? How will we confront this dark second time in American history?"

 

Booker invoked the memory of the late Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., asking fellow lawmakers to remember "a Georgian" and those who once stood arm in arm on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, and said that together, "we shall overcome." 

Booker's speech was praised by Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the civil rights organization founded in 1940 by Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall. 

"The sight of the Confederate flag carried through the halls of the Capitol was truly among the most truly awful images from today," Ifill said.

New York also sending National Guard to DC after pro-Trump riot

New York will send 1,000 National Guard personnel to Washington, D.C., after a pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, the governor said.

The Guard members are being sent at the request of the U.S. National Guard, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. They will stay "for up to two weeks to aid and facilitate the peaceful transition of presidential power," he said in a statement

The D.C. National Guard had also been fully activated. Virginia's governor said he was sending members of that state's National Guard and 200 state troopers to Washington.

Supermodel Karlie Kloss calls out rioters — and her Trump family

Supermodel Karlie Kloss called out the Capitol rioters and members of her own extended Trump family. 

"Accepting the results of a legitimate democratic election is patriotic,"  tweeted Kloss, who is married to Josh Kushner, the brother of President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner. "Refusing to do so and inciting violence is anti-American."

When a Twitter follower asked Kloss to remind the Trump side of her family, she responded: "I’ve tried." 

Kloss has been open about not sharing the same political beliefs as her extended family.

Pence encouraged rapid deployment of National Guard; Trump had to be convinced

President Donald Trump had to be persuaded to deploy the National Guard on Wednesday afternoon as rioters — a mob of his supporters — breached the U.S. Capitol, a person familiar with the matter said.

Vice President Mike Pence — who was trapped in the Capitol under siege — was in contact with the Defense Department, according to the source, and "encouraged a much more rapid deployment than what was occurring."

The New York Times first reported the news.

Loeffler says she will not object to certification as planned

Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler, who lost her election bid in Georgia on Tuesday to Sen.-elect Raphael Warnock, said she would not object to Congress' counting the presidential electoral votes as she had planned.

"When I arrived in Washington this morning, I fully intended to object to the certification of the electoral votes," Loeffler said Wednesday evening. "However, the events that have transpired today have forced me to reconsider. I cannot now in good conscience object to the certification of these electors. The violence, the lawlessness and siege of the halls of Congress are abhorrent and stand as a direct attack on the very institution my objection was intended to protect: the sanctity of the American democratic process." 

Loeffler nonetheless doubled down on the false claims that there were "last-minute changes" and "serious irregularities" in the election, seemingly justifying her plans to object to the process. Her colleagues applauded her remarks.