Biden: Trump unleashed assault on democratic institutions

President-elect says violence at US Capitol was a "culmination" of Trump's attacks on democratic institutions.

Ben Ariel ,

Joe Biden
Joe Biden

US President-elect Joe Biden on Thursday said that the violence and rioting at the US Capitol on Wednesday were a "culmination" of President Donald Trump's attacks on democratic institutions.

"I wish we could say we couldn't see it coming, but that isn't true. The past four years we've had a president who's made his contempt for our democracy, the rule of law, clear in everything he has done," Biden said in comments from Delaware quoted by The Hill.

"He unleashed an all-out assault on [the] institutions of our democracy from the outset and yesterday was the culmination of that unrelenting attack," he added.

Biden went on to address what he called a “double standard” between the rioters at the Capitol and other, separate protests.

"They weren't protesters. Don’t dare call them protesters. They were a riotous mob. Insurrectionists. Domestic terrorists. It's that basic. It's that simple," the president-elect said.

He compared the treatment of Wednesday's rioters to protesters involved in the Black Lives Matter demonstrations that erupted nationwide earlier this year and claimed, "No one can tell me that if it had been a group of Black Lives Matter protesting yesterday, they would have been treated very, very differently than the mob of thugs that stormed the Capitol. We all know that's true. And it's unacceptable. Totally unacceptable."

Four people were killed and 69 people were arrested during Wednesday's events, which interrupted the session of Congress which certified Biden’s victory.

US lawmakers reconvened on Wednesday evening to certify Biden's victory, and did so shortly before 4:00 a.m. local time.

Trump subsequently released a statement which said, "Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election there will be an orderly transition on January 20th."