Hundreds of Trump supporters breached security barricades and stormed up to the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., as both chambers of Congress convened to affirm the Electoral College votes cast in the 2020 election Wednesday afternoon.
Thousands had traveled from out of state to gather in Washington in protest of the election, which President Trump and his allies have maintained was fraudulent.
Things appeared to carry on peacefully earlier in the day, but as the joint session of Congress kicked off in the early afternoon, a large group of individuals appeared to storm through outer barricades surrounding the Capitol building, where lawmakers deliberated inside.
Video posted to Twitter by Washington Post reporter Rebecca Tan showed Trump supporters approaching the rear of the building.
Hundreds of Trump supporters have stormed the barricades at the back of the Capitol and are marching toward the building. pic.twitter.com/68nB7QyiP9
— Rebecca Tan (@rebtanhs) January 6, 2021
Then, BlazeTV reporter Elijah Schaeffer posted video as the group reached the outside of the building and were confronted by police.
“Trump supporters have breached the Capitol building, tearing down 4 layers of security fencing and are attempting to occupy the building — fighting federal police who are overrun,” he tweeted. “This is the craziest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Thousands, police can’t stop them.”
(Content Warning: Video contains vulgar language)
BREAKING: Trump supporters have breached the Capitol building, tearing down 4 layers of security fencing and are attempting to occupy the building — fighting federal police who are overrun
This is the craziest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Thousands, police can’t stop them pic.twitter.com/VVdTUwV5YN
— ELIJAH SCHAFFER (@ElijahSchaffer) January 6, 2021
More video from the scene posted on social media showed a large group of individuals continuing to wrestle with law enforcement outside the U.S. Capitol.
Crowd continues to increase in size with Trump supporters for today’s rally in Washington, DC. pic.twitter.com/poVMoDPBoa
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) January 6, 2021
Politico’s Melanie Zanona reported that the Madison building on Capitol Hill was evacuated as a result of the increasingly hostile protests.
DEVELOPING: The Madison building on Capitol Hill is being evacuated, sources tell me & @sarahnferris
— Melanie Zanona (@MZanona) January 6, 2021
It is unclear at this point whether the storming of the Capitol was a coordinated or impromptu event. Interestingly, a paper notice found in the National Mall indicated that “a national militia” was being organized to “defend the Constitution and the Republic.” However, there is no evidence connecting the movement from the crowd with the notice.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.