Two years after the Jan. 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol, President Biden marked the day with a solemn tribute to fallen law enforcement officers, and the members of the House held a service on Capitol steps.
President Biden awarded Friday the Presidential Citizens Medal to 12 individuals, who were integral in holding the line in the face of an angry mob.
“You held the line that day and what was on the line was our democracy, and history will remember your names,” Biden said.
Locally, nine people from North Florida were arrested for taking part in the insurrection, and nationally, 934 defendants are facing criminal charges. As former President Donald Trump sticks to his election lies that there was widespread cheating in the 2020 election, political experts hope a series of actions by Congress will keep something like this from ever happening again.
“I think what you’ve seen Congress do over the past few years is take action on the Electoral Count Act, through the focus of the investigation to make sure Jan. 6 won’t ever happen again,” said political expert and government Law Attorney Chris Hand.
Hand said reforms to the Electoral Count Act should lead to a much more orderly transfer of power following the 2024 presidential election. Hand also said Jan. 6 was a searing day in the U.S., anticipating that every year, America will remember those who lost their lives in the fight for fair and free elections.
“Those law enforcement officers who died on Jan. 6 were protecting democracy, protecting the people’s rights to choose, so it’s entirely appropriate for them to be honored and continue to be honored for the heroic work on that day, which resulted in the loss of life and injury,” Hand said.
Five people died and more than 140 police officers were injured during the Capitol siege. The Jan. 6 committee has recommended the Justice Department pursue criminal charges against Trump.