Leading global Jewish human rights organization, which supports advocates for democratic rights worldwide, demands that all elected officials who supported the violent insurrection of January 6 be removed from office and that all participants be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
“As an organization dedicated to supporting activists fighting for democratic rights in 18 countries worldwide and whose mission is rooted in the lessons of the darkest chapters of Jewish history, we call on President Donald J. Trump to resign or be removed from office immediately, in the wake of his despicable and dangerous role in fomenting violence against Congress on January 6, 2021. In an attempt to disrupt the counting of electoral college votes by members of the U.S. Congress and stop the peaceful transition of power, resulting from a free and fair presidential election, President Trump incited his supporters to attack the U.S. Capitol. This attack came after months of President Trump lying about the election, attempting to coerce state officials to overrule the will of the people and encouraging his supporters to reject the truth about our electoral process and democracy. We must be crystal clear as a nation that there is no place in our government for President Trump or any official, elected or appointed, who assaults our democratic institutions and our right to determine the leadership of our nation through democratic elections.
“Fueled by racism, white nationalism, anti-Semitism and other forms of intolerance, these groups carried symbols of hate, including a noose, Confederate flags and garments mocking the Holocaust, as they attacked the U.S. Capitol building, desecrating our democracy. As Jews whose ancestors came to these shores from less tolerant countries in search of freedom, we cherish democracy and the rule of law. We are all too familiar with authoritarianism, fascism and white nationalism — all of which were on full display at the Capitol last week. We stand in complete opposition to white supremacy and in solidarity with Black and Brown Americans who are targets of white nationalism, whose votes are the targets of suppression and whose bodies and lives are treated as expendable.
“Without a doubt, the events of January 6 are the direct result of years of damaging rhetoric and authoritarian actions from President Trump and other elected officials, who either echoed his rhetoric or remained silent when they should have spoken out. The president’s rhetoric as well as the complicity of others have undermined our cherished democratic processes and the rule of law. We believe firmly that those elected to serve are obligated to bring out the best in us, not to incite violence, sow division and undermine our democracy.
“As we have just witnessed in our own country and around the world through our work supporting democratic movements, democracies are fragile. While we are fortunate that the will of Americans was upheld in the early hours of January 7 by Congress, we are sobered by how quickly democratic norms can be undermined here and abroad. At the same time, we are heartened by the efforts of grassroots activists of every point of view, who made sure that more Americans voted in this election than in any previous U.S. election. And it is precisely this type of grassroots effort to strengthen democratic participation that we support around the world, because we know that democracy is for and by the people.
“There can be no healing without full accountability under the law. Based on our 35 years of experience supporting activists for democratic rights in dozens of countries, we know authoritarian actions when we see them. Most importantly, when those who commit crimes against democratic rights go unpunished, we know that democracies die. Just as we call for justice in the countries in which we support democratic movements, we call for justice here in our own country, which requires the clear and consistent application of the law. To ensure justice and the safety of our sacred democratic institutions, we insist on the removal of all public officials who incited this violent insurrection or any other attempts to directly undermine our democracy and free elections.
“Finally, we must act to ensure safety both here at home and around the world. Congress and our justice system must not allow this assault on American democracy to stand with impunity, or we will see future assaults on our democracy and on fledgling or struggling democracies around the world. Now is the time for justice and accountability in the United States and around the world, so we can return to the indispensable and urgent work of creating a more just world.”
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