House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer revealed a memorial placard he placed outside his office honoring late congressman and civil rights leader, John Lewis, was destroyed by the angry pro-Trump rioters who overpowered officers and forced their way into the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.
Touted as the “conscience of Congress” when he was alive, Lewis passed away on July 17 last year at the age of 80. He served as the U.S. Representative for Georgia‘s 5th district for 33 years up until his death.
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“While rioters shamefully destroyed this tribute to my brother John Lewis yesterday, let his words continue to echo in the halls of Congress and in our hearts,” Hoyer wrote. “Let us always stand up, speak up, and speak out against injustice and for our democracy.”
The placard displayed a photo of the late congressman with one of his quotes: “When you see something that is not right, not fair, not just; you have to stand up, speak up, speak out, and find a way to get in the way and get in trouble. Good trouble. Necessary trouble.”
The unprecedented incident unfolded while the Senate and House of Representatives had convened to certify the state results of the presidential election which saw Joe Biden emerge victorious. The rioters had earlier gathered in the nation’s capital to protest the results of the presidential elections citing baseless accusations of fraud which has been propagated by outgoing president, Donald Trump. The rioting was also spurred by a speech Trump gave while addressing them as he reiterated the election was fraudulent and called on the protesters to “walk down to the Capitol.”
Five people – including a Capitol Police officer – died in the aftermath of the rioting.