What if the January 6 insurrection had been more successful?

I’ve read and heard a lot of variations on the theme “We came so close to losing our democracy on January 6!” And everybody nods and agrees and talks about how lucky it was that the insurrectionists didn’t get to Pence or Pelosi or other lawmakers, or it would have been the end of America as we know it.

But would it, really?

What if they had actually found and killed the Vice President and/or Speaker of the House? Of course that would have been terrible, but could that actually have prevented certification of the election? Could Trump still be President today?

My gut wants to say no. Obviously things would have been more chaotic and for a longer time. But eventually Congress would re-convene, and the first order of business would still be the certification process. I assume protocols are in place for others to act on behalf of the VP and Speaker in their absence.

Biden would still have been inaugurated. Right? Or am I just being naive here?

I think there would have been a lot more civilian casualties. The police weren’t using anywhere near the full force they had available to them. If they had decided it was open season on any fool in a red hat it would have been a massacre.

I think the closest thing to “success” that could reasonably have come about due to January 6 is that a Democratic Senator from a state with a Republican governor could have been killed, at which point whatever legislative or administrative agenda the Democrats might have had would be at a standstill until a replacement election occurred (might be 2 years?) and probably Biden couldn’t get any normal Senate-confirmed appointments through either.

The “best” coup is one that has semi-legitimacy. So they’d probably try to get Congress to certify, under duress, then coerce the Supreme Court into certifying as well. And they’d persuade Trump to issue a blanket pardon to all rioters. Then from that point on, they’d suddenly play as law-abiding as possible - “the election has been certified by Congress and the Supreme Court, so if you object to Trump being president for a second term, you’re the insurrectionist, not us!”

And as iamthewalrus3 pointed out, the insurrectionists might have found it expedient to deplete the Democratic ranks in Congress a bit, so as to give Trump a big Congressional majority to work with for his second term.

Doing this might throw the election to the House, where each state delegation casts 1 vote, and Republicans held a narrow 26-24 lead in delegations, IIRC.

But - these delegations might be under gunpoint. So who knows how they’d behave. Weird things to ponder.

The only person who had any chance of changing the makeup of Congress was the Bernie Bro who shot up a Republican baseball game. We came within a hairs’ breadth of having a whole bunch of Republican politicians assassinated. They were huddled in a dugout, watching him walk towards them with a loaded rifle when the security detail shot him - a security detail that was only there through luck.

Those yahoos in the Capital had no plan. They weren’t trying to start an insurrection - they were just a bunch of angry people trying to ‘have their voices heard’. Once they broke into the actual Senate chambers they basically just milled around acting like tourists, taking selfies, sitting in the speaker’s chair, etc. None of them were armed with firearms. Enough of them were old and out of shape that several deaths occurred just because of exertion and stress - including the capitol pooice officer who died of natural causes.

The idea that you came close to having government toppled is absolutely ridiculous. Real insurrectionists don’t show up unarmed wearing cosplay gear and taking selfies while committing felonies.

Do you think that’s because they all just considered their options, and decided that the appropriate choice that day was to go unarmed, because really they just wanted to talk? Or do you think there might possibly be some other reason that nobody carrying a firearm was there?

A crazed Republican shot and wounded Gabby Giffords after Republicans published a campaign ad showing her in the sights of a rifle

A crazed Democrat shot and wounded Steve Scaliese with no encouragement or assistance from any other liberal or Democrat

A crazed Trump supporter shot the son and killed of a liberal federal judge, Ester Salas, in cold blood

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese

A crazed Trump supporter mowed down and killed Heather Heyer with his car, wounding several other

but a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese

A right wing extremist killed, 343 people or so in Oklahoma City.

A left wing extremist shot and wounded Steve Scaliese

A whole bunch of Trump supporters attempted to commit an act of vehicular homicide by running a Biden campaign bus and accompanying vehicles off the road.

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese

In an incident that escaped the attention it deserved, a couple of crazed Trump supporters ran an AC contractor van off the road and attacked the driver - because he had been working at a facility used for voting.

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese

A bunch of crazy Republicans plotted to kidnap and murder Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer

But a crazy Democrat shot Steve Scaliese.

Two right wing crazies shot a Vegas cop, wrapped his warm body in a Gadsden flag then proceeded to murder a couple more civilians.

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese.

A right wing crazy shot up a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood Center, killing two civilians and a cop and wounding many others.

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese

A young white supremacist shot and killed 9 African Americans in a Charleston church

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese.

Another young white supremacist, inspired by the Charleston shooter, shot and killed one and injured seven in a Tennessee church

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese

Enough with your dishonest characterizations. Left wing violence is an anomaly, right wing violence is the norm. If you want facts and not anecdotes……between 2008 and 2016 there were 115 acts of right wing terrorism in the US, and 19 acts of left wing terrorism.

Republicans are more violent and dangerous by orders of magnitude.

This guy just wants to play baseball in the rotunda, right?

Doesn’t matter. No self-respecting insurrection can be carried out with Viking helmets and selfie sticks.

How about a Kevlar helmet and a flak jacket?

Larry Rendall Brock Jr. The Air Force veteran was photographed in a military-style helmet and tactical vest carrying flex cuffs inside the Capitol. He posted on Facebook that he was preparing for a “Second Civil War,” according to documents filed in federal court. In the weeks after Biden’s victory, Brock posted that “we are now under occupation by a hostile governing force.”

Bravo, @Ann_Hedonia!

And if I may riff on that…

Conservative denial of the nature of reality and viruses helped kill up to 500,000 fellow citizens.

But a crazed Democrat shot Steve Scaliese.

Actually, no. The guy who shot Gabby Giffords was a paranoid schizophrenic who had been stalking her since 2007. He was a political independent who carried both left wing and right wing crazy views with the common component being conspiracy theories.

The shooting had absolutely zero to do with the stupid claim that the shooting was instigated by a political mailer he never saw which simply said ‘we need to target these areas…’ along with using a registration mark to indicate a ‘target’. It was a cheap ploy to smear Sarah Palin who was perceived as a political threat at the time. Palin recently cleared a very high bar in an appeals court for defamation suits against public people, and her lawsuit against the NY Times over that claim is going to trial.

You mean other than years of demonization of Republicans? And lets be clear - while he only (severely) wounded Steve Scalise, he came within a whisker of carrying out the largest group political assassination in American history. That’s a damned big deal. And we know he was specifically targeting Republicans because he asked people before the shooting whether there was anyone other than Republicans on the field.

The guy was a crazy misogynist who had faced Salas in court and lost. I can find no evidence that guy was a ‘Trump supporter’. I mean, he probably voted for him but I can find no evidence that the shooting was motivated by anything other than this guy’s misogyny and his personal hatred of Salas.

But I see what you are doing here. You are making a big list of ‘right wing’ shooters, no matter how tenuous the connection, but implying that the only left-wing shooter was Hodgkins by simply repeating him over and over. It’s very easy to play that game. For example, John F. Kennedy’s assassin was a socialist. Robert F Kennedy’s assassin was a left-wing Palestinian activist. Gerald Ford’s attempted assassin was a crazy leftist.

But the truth is that there are crazy people on both sides of the political fence and both sides just love to use their violence to smear the entire ‘others’ in the political divide.

Please help me understand why Cesar Sayoc did not make your list.

Or are you just making this about body count without due consideration for initiative and commitment?

You can’t find something if you don’t look for it.
The Atlantic

In a trove of documents published online, Roy Den Hollander directed misogynistic and racist insults at U.S. District Court Judge Esther Salas, and expressed support for the president.

Your side has a shit-load more.

If a baseball bat is a firearm, I didn’t get the memo.

According to Joe Biden, the U.S. came within an hour of falling to these yahoos, but also that it would take F-15’s and nuclear missiles to overthrow the government.

“Give him the keys to the government! He’s armed with a flak jacket!”

I’m sorry about that. That was my fault. Here’s your copy:

Welcome to Charlottesville…