Republican Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise got a standing ovation as he cheered the Capitol Police as the real “heroes.”
Scalise called for healing and unity in the aftermath of the riot that rocked Capitol Hill just one week prior, saying that even as justice was being served with regard to those responsible for the chaos and violence, Americans needed to “be focused on toning down the rhetoric and helping heal this nation as we move forward a peaceful transition of power to President-Elect Joe Biden next week.” (RELATED: ‘Did That Decision Save Lives?’: Scalise Grills Dr. Fauci During Capitol Hill Hearing)
Scalise then pivoted to address the Capitol Police officers who had worked to protect Vice President Mike Pence and the members of Congress and staffers who were still in the building when rioters first breached the doors.
“My prayers, Madam Speaker, still are with Capitol Police officers Sicknick and Liebengood, who we lost, as well as all the Capitol Police officers who risked their lives to keep us safe. They are true heroes and they deserve all of our applause today,” Scalise paused then as applause broke out in the chamber.
Led by Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, a number of them stood as they continued to applaud.
“Madam Speaker, I’ve seen the dark evil of political violence firsthand,” Scalise said then, going on to argue that the push to impeach President Donald Trump for a second time was ill-advised.
“It will only serve to further divide a nation that is calling out for healing,” Scalise said, concluding with a reference to former President Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address — which was written just as the nation was beginning to heal from the Civil War.
“‘With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan. To do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace,'” Scalise said, adding, “Madam Speaker, at times like these, let us not reach out to our darkest demons but instead, like Lincoln, seek higher ground.”