BATON ROUGE, La. — Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry has declined to sign his name to a letter by the National Association of Attorneys General that was sent on Monday to Acting U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen on behalf of a bipartisan coalition of 50 attorneys general condemning last week's deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol.
Instead, Landry wrote his own letter saying that he is concerned that the attorneys general may be sending a message that “some violence is acceptable.”
In the NAAG letter, the 50 attorneys general state that they all just witnessed a “very dark day in America” and that the events of Jan. 6 represent “a direct, physical challenge to the rule of law and our democratic republic itself.”
In the letter, the 50 attorneys general state:
We are appalled that on Jan. 6, 2021, rioters invaded the U.S. Capitol, defaced the building, and engaged in a range of criminal conduct—including unlawful entry, theft, destruction of U.S. government property, and assault. Worst of all, the riot resulted in the deaths of individuals, including a U.S. Capitol Police officer, and others were physically injured. Beyond these harms, the rioters’ actions temporarily paused government business of the most sacred sort in our system—certifying the result of a presidential election.
In his own letter on the events at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, Landry writes that he believes in finding common ground on issues and decries “political violence in whatever shape, form or fashion it arises.” He adds that all “violence and destruction is wrong, no matter what the political motive.”
He also says that he and his colleagues should “stand up and fight for the First Amendment, now more than ever, with the message that violence has no part in our Freedom of Speech.”
Landry writes in his letter that many of his colleagues “sat silent or tacitly approved” of the social justice demonstrations and riots that took place last summer “when fires were set on the White House grounds and at a church nearby” and when “courthouses and police stations were attacked.”
Landry states in his letter:
Over the course of last summer, when fires were set on the White House grounds and at a church nearby, when buildings of hard working minority small business owners were burned to the ground, when windows were smashed throughout city streets, and widespread looting took place; many of my colleagues, especially from the other Party, sat silent or tacitly approved of the burning. All of this violence and criminal activity was done in the name of a political motie - ironically, much in the name of social justice. People lost their lives, courthouses and police stations were attacked, small business people and their employees lost their incomes, and some cities were even “occupied” by armed thugs. However, there was silence from many colleagues.
Landry adds that “now is the time for all of us, as one voice to come together and strongly decry all political violence.”
You can read Landry's full letter below:
You can read the NAAG's full letter below:
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