A Democrat who helped lead the January 6 House Committee investigation into Donald Trump and efforts to overturn the 2020 election was one of the first U.S. officials to respond to a massive protest in Brasilia, where Supporters of the ousted ex-president Jair Bolsonaro tried to reverse the transfer of power.
It was a chaotic scene that bore unavoidable similarities to the attack on the US Congress almost exactly two years earlier, and possibly provoked the reaction of Maryland Congressman Jamie Raskin.
“The world’s democracies must act quickly to make it clear that there will be no support for right-wing insurgents storming the Brazilian Congress. These fascists, following Trump’s January 6 rioters, need to end up in the same place: in jail,” he tweeted.
The Independent has reached out to the White House and the US State Department for further comment on the evolving situation.
Mr. Raskin and members of the Jan. 6 panel raised similar concerns about whether or not Donald Trump and some of his closest advisers would be spared criminal charges over the attack on Congress. In the end, his committee referred Mr. Trump and several others to the Justice Department on multiple criminal charges, although the agency will make its own decision on the issue through the deliberations of a special counsel in the coming weeks and months.
“[W]We are setting a precedent for future attacks on democracy itself. And that really is the onus on our committee to make sure we prevent future coups, riots, electoral sabotage and political violence,” he said in an interview last month.
The chaotic scenes that unfolded in Brazil were met with shock on social media, as initial reports indicated that at least some of the responding police and security forces were refusing to help contain the protesters as they stormed the presidential palace, Esplanada dos Ministerios, and the Supreme Court searched.
Other police officers were brutally attacked by the rioters as they tried to bring the situation under control.
President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva was not due to be in the Presidential Palace today and Congress was not in session due to the weekend. Mr Lula was indeed sworn in a week ago, making it unclear as to the precise aim of the protesters.
Jair Bolsonaro ironically remained in Florida when the uprising took place, a stone’s throw from Mar-a-Lago, where his political ally Donald Trump retreated after the Jan. 6 attack.