Jake Auchincloss Says America Is In ‘The Middle Of A Constitutional Crisis’

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2022/01/06/jake-auchincloss-says-america-is-in-the-middle-of-a-constitutional-crisis/

U.S. Representative Jake Auchincloss (D-Newton) was in a good mood onthe morning on January 6, 2021.

His party picked up a pair of U.S. Senate seats in runoff elections in Georgia the day before. However, it’s memorable for Auchincloss now for a different reason:  the Capitol Hill riot.

During a virtual event hosted by the Charles River Regional Chamber on Wednesday, Auchincloss said that day sank to “the nadir of American democracy in my lifetime” due to the riot.

“As we commemorate it, the most important thing for me is that we not treat it as a historical event,” he said. “This is not a day to be consecrated and inscribed into the history books and reflected upon and speechified about. This is current events. This is happening now. We are in the middle of a constitutional crisis … A majority of GOP voters think the election was stolen in 2020 and the groundwork is being laid for a repeat in 2024.”

The riot took place because supporters of President Donald Trump believed his claims that the 2020 presidential election was rigged against him. They did not want the results of the election certified. 

Auchincloss was sworn into office on January 3, 2021, three days before the riot, and said that he “didn’t even really know how to get from my office to the Capitol floor yet,” he said.

He recalled the moment when he found out that security had been breached and protesters had entered the U.S. Capitol.

“We practiced a lot of crowd control techniques heading into Afghanistan,” he said. “One of the first things you learn is that you can’t stagger when you’re trying to do crowd control because if you create gaps side by side, and people get through you, they get behind you and then the whole line breaks. And I remember watching the line stagger and realizing they’re going to get into the Capitol, this is over. The line is staggered and it’s going to break and they’re going to get in.”

In the aftermath of the riot, Auchincloss said he would never work with any of the 147 House Republicans who voted against certifying the 2020 presidential election. 

He said that it won’t interfere with his ability to work across the aisle on legislation, however.

“This commitment to not work with that 30 percent, not only does that not, to me, undermine bipartisanship, it actually reinforces it,” he said. “Because I’ve got two core jobs in Washington — one is to represent the values of my constituents and the other is to advance their priorities. And those two jobs oftentimes have a slight tension to them. And by being very clear about ‘here’s the red line,’ … I feel like even if it might help advance the priority, it no longer represents the values of the district.”

He added, “As a pragmatic note, the people who voted to decertify are also the ones who are by far the least likely to have ideas that we would be working together on in the first place. They tended to be the most, most, most socially conservative.”


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