President Donald Trump conceded the November election Thursday night, one day after a mob of his supporters ransacked the U.S. Capitol as Congress was meeting to certify the results of the Electoral College. Lawmakers met hours after the complex had been secured to finish their work validating President-elect Joe Biden’s claim to the White House.
“Now Congress has certified the results, and a new administration will be inaugurated on Jan. 20,” Trump said in a White House message posted on Twitter. “My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly, and seamless transition of power.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 8, 2021
The president began his remarks by forcefully condemning the rioters, who overwhelmed the U.S. Capitol building on his own behalf in a stunning display of lawlessness that was reminiscent of the militant social justice demonstrations last year.
“The demonstrators who infiltrated the Capitol have defiled the seat of American democracy,” Trump said. “To those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction: You do not represent our country.”
The White House video published on Twitter comes hours after the company’s 12-hour suspension of the president’s account. The platform cited infractions of its Civic Integrity policy to implement a temporary ban on Trump’s activity and strip down several posts.
This means that the account of @realDonaldTrump will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of these Tweets. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked.
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) January 7, 2021
Moments before the president’s speech, a Capitol police officer reportedly died from Wednesday’s Capitol chaos, marking the fifth person to die as a result of the unrest.
Trump lost in the Electoral College 306 to 232 votes.