For two months, Democrats have accused Donald Trump of starting an “insurrection” shortly before leaving office. This neat narrative, relentlessly pushed for weeks, is now coming under scrutiny from none other than Trump himself.
It “wouldn’t look good”
Trump told Steve Hilton of The Next Revolution that he wanted the troops deployed in advance of Jan. 6 protests in Washington because he was concerned by the potential crowd size.
But Trump said that the request was shot down by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) because it “wouldn’t look good.”
“They took that number, from what I understand. They gave it to the people at the Capitol, which is controlled by Pelosi, and I heard they rejected it because it wouldn’t look good,” Trump said. “So, you know, that was a big mistake.”
Pelosi dismissed Trump’s claims as “completely made up,” The Washington Post reported.
Trump decries “double standard”
Pressed on the riot, Trump said that he “hated” what took place, but lamented a “double standard” that he called “very unfair” concerning political violence.
“When you see Washington burning and when you see Seattle burning and Portland burning, and all these other places burning, with antifa and the radical left, nothing seems to happen, nobody seems to be bothered by that,” Trump said. “I hate to see any of that, but it is a double standard.”
Trump was referring to deadly riots by leftist groups like antifa that occurred in Washington and many cities this summer. Democrats made only the most perfunctory effort to denounce the violence; in fact, they condemned Trump’s efforts to quell the chaos.
Since the Capitol riot, many conservatives have pointed to this double standard even as political rhetoric surrounding the Capitol incident has many saying that Democrats are pushing for a national security crackdown on Trump supporters.
Even Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), no fan of Trump, has dismissed Pelosi’s call for a 9/11-style commission as “partisan by design,” saying she must be willing to examine violence across the political spectrum to demonstrate her goodwill.