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Sasse blames Trump for riot at Capitol: 'Lies have consequences'

Republican Sen. Ben SasseBen SasseGOP senators applaud Biden for global vaccine donation plans Pence: Trump and I may never 'see eye to eye' on events of Jan. 6 White House: Biden will not appoint presidential Jan. 6 commission MORE (Neb.) blamed President TrumpDonald TrumpMaria Bartiromo defends reporting: 'Keep trashing me, I'll keep telling the truth' The Memo: The center strikes back Republicans eye Nashville crack-up to gain House seat MORE for the riots and violence at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, saying the president "cowered behind his keyboard." 

"Today, the United States Capitol — the world’s greatest symbol of self-government — was ransacked while the leader of the free world cowered behind his keyboard — tweeting against his Vice President for fulfilling the duties of his oath to the Constitution," Sasse, who has been a critic of Trump's in the past, said in a statement. 

"Lies have consequences. This violence was the inevitable and ugly outcome of the President’s addiction to constantly stoking division," he continued. 

Violence broke out at the Capitol on Wednesday after thousands of Trump supporters descended upon Capitol Hill opposing the Electoral College results. 

House and Senate lawmakers had met in a joint session of Congress to certify the Electoral College votes showing President-elect Joe Biden’s win, but some Republican senators led by Sens. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzWhite House denies pausing military aid package to Ukraine Ted Cruz says critical race theory is as racist as 'Klansmen in white sheets' Pentagon pulling 'certain forces and capabilities,' including air defenses, from Middle East MORE (Texas) and Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyGOP divided over bills targeting tech giants Pence heckled with calls of 'traitor' at conservative conference Five takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision MORE (Mo.), planned to challenge the results. 

Sasse strongly criticized the efforts to oppose the results, calling it "dangerous." 

"Let’s be clear what is happening here: We have a bunch of ambitious politicians who think there’s a quick way to tap into the president’s populist base without doing any real, long-term damage," Sasse wrote in an open letter to constituents last week. 

"But they’re wrong — and this issue is bigger than anyone’s personal ambitions. Adults don’t point a loaded gun at the heart of legitimate self-government," he added.

Trump released a video message hours after the rioters stormed the Capitol on Wednesday, telling them to go home. However, the president repeated his unfounded clams of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election during that video. 

“You have to go home now. We have to have peace,” Trump said. “We have to have law and order. We have to respect our great people in law and order. We don’t want anybody hurt.”

"This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people," he continued. "We have to have peace. So go home. We love you. You’re very special. You’ve seen what happens. You see the way others are treated that are so bad and so evil. I know how you feel. But go home and go home in peace."