“Grandmas and Grandpas Enduring SWAT Treatment” Sen. Ron Johnson Defends Jan. 6 Rioters

 “Grandmas and Grandpas Enduring SWAT Treatment” Sen. Ron Johnson Defends Jan. 6 Rioters

Johnson posts full response to The Washington Post

For Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), the Jan. 6 melee was a blip in American history, and those facing the worst repercussions are mostly innocent elderly folks who were randomly in Washington, D.C. The lawmaker appeared on Fox Business, fuming over federal authorities’ actions against January 6 rioters — claiming “grandmas and grandpas” are enduring SWAT treatment.

“We’ve had this massive dragnet, this massive manhunt for grandmas and grandpas that show up on January 6, never enter the Capitol, just happened to be in Washington, D.C. — they are taking agents, SWAT raids to arrest people that are no threat to them whatsoever.” Johnson then blamed the FBI — particularly Christopher Wray — for allowing these aggressive arrests.

“So no, the FBI has become completely partisan, it is wasting resources,” said Johnson. “It doesn’t need a budget increase; it needs total reform, it needs a complete change at the head. Christopher Wray, his job was integrity and credibility of the FBI – he has done the exact opposite.”

Johnson faced controversy in the wake of the deadly attack on the Capitol, where a mob of Trump supporters erupted during a “Stop the Steal” protest in hopes of thwarting the certification of the 2020 election to then-President-Elect Joe Biden. Through an aide, Johnson attempted to secure a hush-hush handoff of an alternate set of pro-Trump electors to then-Vice President Mike Pence minutes before he would begin to count electoral votes on that fateful day, told Politico.

Johnson’s characterization that the arrests of seniors tied to Jan. 6 doesn’t align with the data. Of the 716 rioters involved that day, Seton Hall University found that mostly men (81.3%) were charged, with 28.2% in their 30s, 23.8% between 18 and 29, and 21.8% in their 40s. Conversely, of the women charged — 12.7% — the majority were in their 50s (31.9%), followed by 27.5% in their 30s, and 18.7% in their 40s.

Johnson’s comments add to the ongoing debate about the nature of the January 6 insurrection and the subsequent arrests. While some, like Johnson, argue that the response has been overly aggressive, others maintain that accountability for the attack on the Capitol is crucial for upholding democratic principles and the rule of law. As the investigations and legal proceedings continue, the division over how to view and address the events of January 6 remains stark.

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