SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — The Bay Area’s U.S. Representative Eric Swalwell has filed a lawsuit against former President Donald Trump.
Trump’s lawyer Rudy Guiliani; as well as Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., were also named in the suit filed Friday.
Swalwell alleges that the men helped incite the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol. An excerpt from the lawsuit says:
“Trump implored the crowd to “fight like hell” and “walk down Pennsylvania
Avenue . . . to the Capitol.” According to an analysis of cell phone location data, approximately
40% of the rally attendees did just that.
As a direct and foreseeable consequence of the Defendants’ false and incendiary allegations of fraud and theft, and in direct response to the Defendants’ express calls for violence at the rally, a violent mob attacked the U.S. Capitol. Many participants in the attack have since revealed that they were acting on what they believed to be former President Trump’s orders in service of their country.”Swalwell v. Trump
The congressman served as a House impeachment manager during Trump’s trial. He was in the Capitol when the rioters broke down glass and doors to disrupt a session on certifying the election results.
The lawmakers were forced to go into hiding as security responded to the hours-long breach. Vice President Mike Pence had been evacuated.
The Associated Press reported that Trump’s spokesman Jason Miller called Swalwell a “low-life” with “no credibility.”
“Now, after failing miserably with two impeachment hoaxes,” Swalwell is attacking “our greatest President with yet another witch hunt,” Miller said. “It’s a disgrace that a compromised Member of Congress like Swalwell still sits on the House Intelligence Committee.”
In a Friday morning statement, Swalwell said the attack “terrorized lawmakers and prevented us from doing our job of certifying the votes of the American people.”
Another legislator has also been named as a defendant. Swalwell claims Alabama’s U.S. representative Mo Brooks, who spoke at Trump’s rally on Jan. 6 ahead of the pro-Trump attack, had his own role in undermining election results.
“Brooks—acting in his personal capacity— conspired with the other Defendants to undermine the election results by alleging, without evidence, that the election had been rigged and by pressuring elected officials, courts, and ultimately Congress to reject the results,” the lawsuit alleges.
The lawsuit cites several Trump tweets as evidence in the former president’s alleged incitement.
In a tweet he posted just one day before the Capitol riot, Trump said “thousands of people pouring into D.C. … won’t stand for a landslide election victory to be stolen.”
Trump was impeached by the House, for a second time, on an “incitement of insurrection” charge. However, the Senate voted to acquit the former president.
After that, lawmakers had hinted that it would not be the end in holding Trump accountable. They said more investigations would come.
Even Republican Senator Lindsay Graham, who voted to acquit Trump, supported further inquiries.
“His behavior after the election was over the top,” Graham had said. “We need a 9/11 commission to find out what happened and make sure it never happens again.”
In mid-February, Mississippi’s Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, filed the first federal lawsuit also accusing Trump of inciting the attack and of conspiring with Giuliani, plus extremist groups, to try to prevent the Senate from certifying Joe Biden’s win.
The pro-Trump-rally-turned-violent attack in early January resulted in the deaths of five people, including a Capitol police officer. Another Capitol officer died shortly after by suicide.
Two months later, the FBI is still trying to find and arrest more suspects who breached the Capitol.