Why did Trump cancel his press conference today?
FORMER President Donald Trump announced on Tuesday that he was canceling his press conference set to take place on Thursday.
His press conference would have come during President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris' speech on the anniversary of the January 6 riots.
Why did Trump cancel his press conference today?
Former President Donald Trump canceled his January 6 press conference on Tuesday after Republicans said it would be detrimental to their party.
Senate Republicans said it is time to move on from Trump's claims. Senator John Cronyn (R-Texas) told Politico, “It’s a free country and you’re entitled to say whatever you want to say subject to some limitations, but I think the country has moved on.
"I think that’s where we ought to focus our efforts, is on getting things done for the American people and not re-litigating issues that have already been decided.”
Trump's speech would have come on the one-year anniversary of the January 6 riots to continue to claim the election was stolen.
The claims were unsubstantiated as President Joe Biden received 306 electoral votes and Trump received 232 electoral votes.
He was also expected to speak against the investigations into the January 6 riots.
A person familiar with Trump's decision told CNN, "A lot of the feedback he got was negative.
"I think he realized this is the kind of thing that works better at a rally with his supporters."
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During his announcement, Trump said, “In light of the total bias and dishonesty of the January 6th Unselect Committee of Democrats, two failed Republicans, and the Fake News Media, I am canceling the January 6th Press Conference at Mar-a-Lago on Thursday.”
Republicans agreed with the decision and said the press conference could have further divided the country.
Trump is still expected to speak to his supporters at a rally in Arizona and in a statement released on his website, he said, "Due to inept leadership that gave us open borders, Covid incompetence, loss of energy independence, a military in chaos, rampant inflation, corrupt elections, and lack of world standing, our Nation, perhaps for the first time, has lost its confidence!"
What has Trump said about the Capitol riots?
One year after the January 6 riots, Trump continues to claim the election was stolen from him, despite a careful count of ballots and in one case, a 3-time recount in Georgia, one of which was by hand.
In an interview on Fox News in December 2021, Trump said the January 6 riots was a protest, not an insurrection, and said his speech on that day was "extremely calming."
He added, "The insurrection took place on Nov. 3, which was election day. This was a protest and a lot of innocent people are being hurt. A lot of innocent people are being injured."
However, President Joe Biden spoke alongside Vice President Kamala Harris at 9am on Thursday to address the "singular responsibility" Trump had in stoking the riots.
In his speech, Biden said, "We are a great nation. We must be absolutely clear about what is true and what is a lie. And here is the truth: The former President of the United States of America has created and spread a web of lies about the 2020 election."
"His bruised ego matters more to him than our … Constitution. He refused to accept the results of the election."
"We saw with our own eyes rioters menace these halls, threaten the life of the Speaker of the House. What did we not see? We didn't see a former President … watching it all on television and doing nothing for hours," Biden continued.
"This was an armed insurrection. They were looking to deny the will of the people. This is about making sure the past isn't buried."
Trump released a statement following Biden's speech saying it is a "political theater" and a "distraction" from his belief in Biden's supposed failings.
"…The complicit media calls it the Big Lie, when in actuality the Big Lie was the election itself.
"The Democrats want to own this day of January 6th so they can stoke fears and divide America. I say, let them have it because America sees through their lies and polarizations."
What happened on January 6?
The January 6 riots broke out as protestors claiming the election was stolen from former President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol building.
Protestors pushed back against police who awaited aid from the national guard and broke through the barriers separating them from the building.
They scaled walls and smashed windows to breach the building and gain access to the chambers of Congress and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office as members met to officially elect Joe Biden as the 46th President.
The protests came after Trump spoke to his supporters declaring the election was stolen and telling them they should "peacefully" march on the Capitol.
Trump is accused of stoking his supporters into storming the Capitol when he said, "We fight like hell. And if you don't fight like hell, you're not going to have a country anymore."
However, his defense attorneys say this wasn't the case and say another section of Trump's speech negates the claims that he was the direct cause of the January 6 riots.
"I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard," Trump said.
His defense attorneys claim that this comment was not a call for violence.
Five people were killed as Trump supporters marched on the Capitol including Capitol Police Officer Brian D. Sicknick who was beaten by the rioters and died in the hospital a day later.
Among others who died was Ashli Babbit, a US Navy veteran who was shot by Capitol Police as she attempted to climb through a broken window into the lobby of the building.
Photos and videos were posted to social media of protestors who have now been convicted or await their trial one year after the riots broke out.
Jake Angeli, known as the QAnon Shaman, was sentenced to 41 months in jail and 36 months of supervision after he is released for his role in the January 6 riots.
One year later, more than 725 people who are self-proclaimed Trump supporters have been arrested.
January 6, 2021: A timeline of events
On January 6, 2021, a group of rioters stormed the Capitol building in Washington, DC to protest the 2020 presidential election results. Here’s a timeline of events of what occurred that day:
6:00am: A group of supporters for former President Donald Trump show up in Washington, DC to attend a rally for him. Trump had tweeted about the rally a month prior.
11:00am: Trump's rally, "Save American Rally," kicks off. Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr both speak.
11:50am: Trump begins speaking at the rally. He tells his supporters that "we will never give up. We will never concede." He tells his supporters to go to the Capitol building.
1:00pm: Lawmakers gather at the Capitol to count Electoral College votes while protesters gather outside.
1:10pm: Rioters are on the steps of the Capitol building.
1:26pm: The Capitol police evacuate the Library of Congress, Madison Building and Cannon House Office Building. These buildings are across the street from the Capitol.
1:40pm: Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser orders a curfew in the city.
2:11pm: Rioters breach the perimeter of the Capitol building and scale the walls.
2:20pm: The Senate and House are called into recess and the building goes into lockdown.
2:38pm: Trump tweets, "Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!"
3:00pm: Rioters officially break into the Senate chamber. Other rioters break into the offices of members of Congress and the Senate. Property is destroyed along the way. Rioters take photos of themselves on the Senate floor.
3:13pm: Trump tweets again about the situation. "I am asking for everyone at the U.S. Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence! Remember WE are the Party of Law & Order – respect the Law and our great men and women in Blue. Thank you!"
3:34pm: Rioter Ashli Babbitt is shot by a Capitol police officer as she attempts to climb through the Lobby's doors. She later died from her injuries. Meanwhile, the National Guard is ordered to the Capitol by Trump.
4:00pm: President-elect Joe Biden addresses the nation and calls on Trump to "go on national television now to fulfill his oath and defend the Constitution and demand an end to this siege."
4:17pm: Trump tweets out a video message to his supporters. "I know your pain, I know you're hurt," he said. He said the election "was stolen from us" but asked the rioters to "go home now."
6:00pm: Washington, DC goes under a 12-hour lockdown.
7:00pm: Trump is banned from Facebook and his Twitter account is suspended.
8:00pm: Former Vice President Mike Pence calls the Senate back into session.
9:00pm: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calls the House back into session.
11:00pm: The House and Senate resume their joint session.
January 7, 3:42am: Joe Biden is officially declared as the next president of the United States.
Aftermath: As of January 2022, more than 700 people have been charged with alleged crimes from the riot, according to CBS News.
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