“Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th,” Trump said in the statement released overnight after Congress certified his defeat. “I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it’s only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again.”
“We’re going to walk down to the Capitol. And we’re gonna cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women. And we’re probably not going to be cheering, so much for some of them, because you’ll never take back our country with weakness, you have to show strength and you have to be strong,” Trump said addressing his supporters who gathered maskless on the ellipse near the White House Wednesday morning.
After a speech filled with lies and misrepresentations that incensed the crowd, Trump returned to the White House to watch a violent crescendo to his constant spreading of misinformation about the electoral process. The mob broke into the Capitol, stormed both the House and Senate floor and Trump supporters could be seen lounging in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office.
Republicans and Democrats alike condemned the rioters for entering the country’s legislative chambers and destroying federal property, and several lawmakers blamed Trump for the violence that broke out.
Trump, instead, released a taped video statement on social media, addressing the rioters and urged them to “go home.” But Trump, who campaigned on a message of “law and order” also appeared to sympathize with them, saying, “We love you. You are very special.”
Trump’s video, in which he also repeated his unfounded claims about a stolen election, was removed by Twitter and Facebook for what the companies claimed was an attempt to prevent further violence.
Multiple people told CNN that Trump was borderline enthusiastic over the protests and did not wish to condemn them. He only agreed to record a short video after multiple staffers and Republican lawmakers lobbied him to make a statement.
Trump has yet still to condemn the violence at the US Capitol on Wednesday.
On Wednesday night, undeterred by the violence and the threats, lawmakers returned to the House chamber to continue counting the votes.
Trump did not say in his statement whether he plans to attend the inauguration of Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on January 20.
This story has been updated with additional details.
CNN’s Betsy Klein and Kaitlan Collins contributed to this report.