Romney: Capitol riot was 'an insurrection against the Constitution'

Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyGOP anger with Fauci rises No deal in sight as Congress nears debt limit deadline GOP holds on Biden nominees set back gains for women in top positions MORE (R-Utah) called the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol an “insurrection against the Constitution” as some GOP lawmakers sought to minimize the violence this week.

The comment came as several Republicans, including Reps. Andrew Clyde (Ga.), Jody HiceJody Brownlow HiceA woke military is no defense at all — why Defense bill in current form must not pass Gosar faces increasing odds of censure on House floor Cheney, Kinzinger signal they'd back Gosar censure MORE (Ga.) and Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarMcCarthy laments distractions from far-right members War of words escalates in House McCarthy faces headaches from far-right House GOP MORE (Ariz.), downplayed or made false claims about the attack.

Clyde asserted during a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing on Wednesday that calling the events of Jan. 6 an "insurrection" was a “boldfaced lie.”

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Speaking to HuffPost on Thursday, Romney noted that the mob attack resulted in severe property damage and death.

“I was there,” Romney said. “What happened was a violent effort to interfere with and prevent the constitutional order of installing a new president.”

“As such, it was an insurrection against the Constitution that resulted in severe property damage, severe injuries and death,” he continued.

Romney was one of seven GOP senators to vote to convict former President TrumpDonald TrumpHillicon Valley — State Dept. employees targets of spyware Ohio Republican Party meeting ends abruptly over anti-DeWine protesters Jan. 6 panel faces new test as first witness pleads the Fifth MORE for inciting the insurrection. He was joined by GOP Sens. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrTexas Democrat Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson announces retirement at end of term On The Money — IRS chief calls for reinforcements Burr brother-in-law ordered to testify in insider trading probe MORE (N.C.), Bill CassidyBill CassidySunday shows preview: New COVID-19 variant emerges; supply chain issues and inflation persist Legislators look to expand health care access through telehealth, biosimilars Infrastructure deal is proof that Congress can still do good, bipartisan work MORE (La.), Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsPhotos of the Week: Schumer, ASU protest and sea turtles Real relief from high gas prices The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden to announce increased measures for omicron MORE (Maine), Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiCongress should reject H.R. 1619's dangerous anywhere, any place casino precedent Democratic frustration growing over stagnating voting rights bills Graham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks MORE (Alaska), Ben SasseBen SasseThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - House to vote on Biden social spending bill after McCarthy delay CBO releases cost estimate of Biden plan Real conservatives must make a choice MORE (Neb.) and Pat ToomeyPatrick (Pat) Joseph ToomeyBlack women look to build upon gains in coming elections Watch live: GOP senators present new infrastructure proposal Sasse rebuked by Nebraska Republican Party over impeachment vote MORE (Pa.).

Several of the senators have been censured by Republican groups in their states, with Romney most recently being censured by the GOP in Weber County, Utah’s fourth-most populous county.

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During Wednesday’s hearing, Clyde asserted that a photo of individuals walking in Statuary Hall after breaching the Capitol looked like a “normal tourist visit,” despite evidence showing rioters engaging in vandalism and violence elsewhere in the building.

Gosar declared that Ashli Babbitt, a Trump supporter who was shot by a Capitol Police after trying to breach the House chamber, was "executed" while also stressing that Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick died of “natural causes.” Sicknick suffered two strokes while responding to the mob attack.

Hice said that Babbitt and four others who died that day were Trump supporters, not “supporters who were taking the lives of others.”

Rep. David CicillineDavid CicillineDemocratic caucus chairs call for Boebert committee assignment removal House votes to censure Gosar and boot him from committees House to vote Wednesday to censure Gosar, remove him from committees MORE (D-R.I.) began asking his Democratic colleagues on Friday to sign a resolution censuring the three lawmakers for their comments.