As Donald Trump canceled a press conference addressing his grievances into a congressional committee investigating the riot, US President Joe Biden is set to address a divided nation on the one-year anniversary of the deadly January 6 capitol insurrection.
On Tuesday, Trump abruptly canceled the briefing at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida that had been slated for the evening of January 6.
In a statement, Trump once again reiterated his conspiracy theory that the November 2020 election was “stolen” and repeated his baseless claims that widespread voter fraud had put Biden in office. Trump said he would speak on many of the same issues at a rally scheduled for January 15.
“He’ll speak to the historical significance of January 6, what it means for the country one year later,” Psaki said.
Democrats Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris will speak from inside the Capitol’s Statuary Hall on Thursday morning. Congress will hold a prayer vigil later on Thursday.
Trump and some Republicans and right-wing media personalities have played down the attack on the Capitol — the heart of the US democracy— characterizing the incident as a non-violent protest or blaming left-wing activists.
The Associated Press reported that Trump had faced pressure from allies to cancel the press conference on the day of the riot, as the Republicans are hoping to win back control of the House and Senate in this fall’s midterm elections, and are seeking to deflect attention from what Biden has called “one of the darkest days” in US history.
Psaki said Biden will also have a message to the many Republicans who think Biden stole the election from Trump — despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
“What he’s going to continue to do is speak to everyone in the country. Those who didn’t vote for him, those who may not believe he is the legitimate president.”
On January 6, a mob of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building in an effort to halt the confirmation of Biden’s victory, fueled by Trump’s claims of election fraud. Five people died, and over 130 police officers were injured.
White House spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters on Tuesday that President Biden’s address on Thursday would “speak to the truth of what happened, not the lies that some have spread since, and the peril it has posed to the rule of law and our system of democratic governance