AJWS praises House impeachment managers for making a clear case and lauds 57 U.S. Senators of both parties who voted to hold Trump accountable.
In response to the U.S. Senate’s vote on the article of impeachment against former president Donald Trump, Robert Bank, President and CEO of American Jewish World Service, released the following statement.
“As an organization dedicated to supporting activists fighting for democratic rights in 18 countries worldwide and whose mission is rooted in the rule of law and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, we condemn the refusal of 43 U.S. senators to hold former president Trump accountable for his assault on U.S. democracy. As the House impeachment managers made clear, Trump incited a violent and murderous mob to attack the U.S. Capitol, members of Congress, law enforcement officers and the then- vice president of the United States in an attempt to overturn a free and fair presidential election, which Trump lost. This assault, incited by Trump, was nothing less than an attempt to disrupt the counting of electoral college votes by members of the U.S. Congress and stop the peaceful transition of power. As the House impeachment managers documented with videotaped evidence, 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 any official, elected or appointed, who assaults our democratic institutions and our right to determine the leadership of our nation through democratic elections. Tragically, in this instance, members of the U.S. Senate chose to ignore the evidence and continue their unquestioning obeisance to former President Trump and his authoritarian leadership.
“The House impeachment managers made clear that former President Trump had long encouraged hate-filled vigilantes, fueled by racism, white nationalism, anti-Semitism and other forms of intolerance, to attack our democracy. 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 democratic and less tolerant countries in search of freedom, we cherish democracy and the rule of law.
“Through our work with activists in countries controlled by authoritarian leaders, we have seen these actions before. At the same time that we condemn authoritarian attacks on democracy in the U.S., we stand with the brave activists we support in 18 countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America, who are on the frontlines of the fight for democratic rights today.
“While we stand in solidarity with pro-democracy activists worldwide, we are humbled as we come to understand how quickly and easily democratic norms were undermined in our country.
“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. Today, we are disheartened by the unwillingness of U.S. senators to hold up the rule of law, and we stand ready to fight for democracy at home and abroad, as democracy is what makes possible our enduring mission to create a more just and equitable world.”
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