Trespassing. Unlawful entry. Minor assault. These are the types of charges that have been largely brought against those who laid siege to the US Capitol just over a year ago.
This certainly didn’t make the event sound like the sort of treasonous affair that the Democrats have suggested it was. Nancy Pelosi and the rest of the left side of the aisle have been attempting to paint a picture of the near-fall of our democracy, not some angry protesters smashing windows.
And so now, as the Democrats continue to struggle to hyperbolize the incident, the DOJ is handing them a rather large gift.
The Justice Department escalated its January 6 investigation by bringing seditious conspiracy charges against 11 defendants, including the leader of the Oath Keepers, Stewart Rhodes.
The latest accusations — with a charge that had not previously been brought in the department’s US Capitol attack prosecutions — remove any sense that prosecutors believe the riot emerged from just a group of overzealous protestors, with new details about the planning and logistics alleged to have predated the Capitol breach.
The Justice Department until now had been careful not to push the idea of sedition, instead charging defendants affiliated with right-wing groups with conspiracy to obstruct the congressional proceeding on January 6. The seditious conspiracy charge carries the same possible consequence as an obstruction charge, but is rarely used, politically loaded and has been difficult for the Justice Department to use successfully against defendants in the past.
The Democratic Party is expected to lose their already-slim majority in Congress when the coming midterms are over, but this wild change of trajectory in the case of the J6 event is almost certainly something that their campaign advisors will latch onto as they look to vilify the Republican Party en masse.