WASHINGTON – The US Congress on Thursday night certified Joe Biden’s victory as the next President of the United States after supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol.
Legislators condemned their actions as an attempted rebellion.
Vice President Mike Pence has put an end to Trump’s attempts to change the election results.
At the end of the joint session of the Chambers of Congress, Pence said that the results of the tally were “considered a valid declaration” of Biden’s victory, but did not congratulate the future administration.
The announcement ended an extraordinary day of chaos, violence and division after a crowd of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol, prompting lawmakers to suspend the meeting and take cover.
Earlier, the Senate and House of Representatives overwhelmingly rejected objections to the recognition of the victory of President-elect Joe Biden in Arizona and Pennsylvania, which means that the election results in these states are recognized.
In the case of Arizona, the objection was rejected in the House of Representatives by 303 votes in favor, 122 against, and in the Senate (93 votes in favor, 6 against).
In the case of Pennsylvania, a similar decision was made with the following results: House of Representatives – 282 in favor, 138 against, Senate – 92 in favor, 7 against.
Attempts by Republican congressmen to challenge the electoral college vote in Georgia, Michigan and Nevada did not receive the support of a single senator, and therefore were not considered.
After aggressive protesters stormed the Capitol earlier Wednesday, several Republican senators, who also planned to support the objection, changed their stance.
The Republican objection was based on allegations of electoral fraud promoted by President Donald Trump and his allies, which were repeatedly denied in Arizona courts and state electoral officials.
On Wednesday afternoon, congressmen were forced to suspend the session after hundreds of supporters of President Donald Trump broke through to the Capitol, demanding the cancellation of the election results, which resulted in the incumbent being defeated by his Democratic rival.
Police evacuated lawmakers and for more than three hours expelled Trump supporters, who broke into congressional halls and rioted the Capitol walls.
In a rare speech from the presidency, Pence, who earlier that day rejected President Trump’s demands to intervene in the vote count, said: “Violence never wins. Freedom wins. And it is still the House of the People. “
One woman, an alleged march in support of Trump, died as a result of the shooting and injury, according to the Washington police.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation said its agents also defused two suspected explosive devices.
Police were able to restore order to the Capitol Building at about 5:30 pm US East Coast time. Legislators met again to resume the session at approximately 8:00 pm.
“Those who wreaked havoc in the Capitol today have lost,” said Pence, opening an earlier interrupted meeting. “Let’s get back to work.”
The vice president’s speech drew thunderous applause from legislators.
“We will determine the winner of the 2020 election,” added Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader in the Senate, calling the riot by Trump supporters “a failed insurgency.”
Law enforcement agencies used tear gas on demonstrators who stormed the Capitol, the world-famous symbol of American democracy. They called in reinforcements to deal with the protesters who entered the building and to keep the thousands of people on the street out.
Gas masks were handed out to legislators in the House of Representatives to protect against irritating tear gas. Plainclothes police pointed their guns at one locked glass door to the ward’s meeting room to keep the demonstrators out.
The clashes came about two hours after Pence sent a letter to lawmakers in which he noted that he would not try to block the certification of Biden’s victory in Congress, although Trump, Pence’s boss, repeatedly asked him to stop Biden on his way to the White House.
Shocking TV coverage showed crowds of protesters huddled in front of a building with white columns. Hundreds of others overcame the resistance of the Capitol police and entered the building. Some reportedly tried to break down the doors of the House of Representatives, where lawmakers debated the election results of the Electoral College.
Fox News showed photographs of plainclothes security personnel holding pistols at demonstrators inside the building.
Speaking from the center of his transition team in Delaware, Biden said, “At this hour, our democracy is under an unprecedented attack.”
The president-elect has called on Trump to appear on national television and fulfill his duty as commander-in-chief to force the crowd to disperse.
As chaos intensified within and around the Capitol, Trump posted a video urging protesters not to go beyond a peaceful rally and respect the police.
“No violence! – Trump said. “Remember, we are a party of law and order. Respect the law and our wonderful men and women in blue. ” Thank you!”.