President Donald Trump on Thursday published a video in which he conceded the presidential election and condemned those who participated in rioting at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.
Trump began his remarks by calling out the rioters and expressing his outrage at their actions. “I would like to begin by addressing the heinous attack on the United States capitol, like all Americans, I am outraged by the violence, lawlessness and mayhem,” he said.
He continued: “The demonstrators who infiltrated the capitol have defiled the seat of American democracy to those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction: you do not represent our country.”
The president insisted that those who “broke the law” will “pay” for their actions.
During the short speech, he called for peace, stating that “tempers must be cooled, and calm restored.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 8, 2021
At this point, Trump talked about his effort to “defend American democracy” and ensure the integrity of its elections. He said:
My campaign vigorously pursued every legal avenue to contest the election results. My only goal was to ensure the integrity of the vote. In so doing, I was fighting to defend American democracy. I continue to strongly believe that we must reform our election laws to verify the identity and eligibility of all voters and to ensure faith and confidence in all future elections.
The president then acknowledged that after Congress’ certification of the results of the race, Biden would be inaugurated this month. He called for “healing and reconciliation” and stated that 2020 was “a challenging time for our people.”
Now Congress has certified the results a new administration will be inaugurated on January 20th. My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly, and seamless transition of power. This moment calls for healing and reconciliation. 2020 has been a challenging time for our people. A menacing pandemic has upended the lives of our citizens, isolated millions in their homes, damaged our economy, and claimed countless lives. Defeating this pandemic and rebuilding the greatest economy on earth will require all of us working together.
However, President Trump did end his speech with a ray of hope. He stated that this “incredible journey is only just beginning. “