epa09664293 (23/24) (FILE) - A screen grab from a live broadcast by the Senate TV showing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, addressing the Senate, following the acquittal of former US president Trump in Trump's second Impeachment Trial, inside the capital building in Washington, DC, USA, 13 February 2021 (reissued 03 January 2021). Following the November 2020 US presidential election, a tone set by supporters of defeated US President Donald Trump escalated further. Trump, who was refusing to concede the victory of Joe Biden, claiming voter fraud and rigged elections, told supporters and white nationalist extreme-right group Proud Boys to respectively 'Stop the Steal' and to 'stand back and stand by'. His social media accounts were suspended and the alt-right platform Parler gained in user numbers.
On 06 January 2021, incumbent US vice president Pence was due to certify the Electoral College votes before Congress, the last step in the process before President-elect Biden was to be sworn in. In the morning, pro-Trump protesters had gathered for the so-called Save America March. Soon after Trump finished his speech at the Ellipse, the crowd marched to the Capitol. The attack had begun.
Rioters broke into the Capitol building where the joint Congress session was being held. Lawmakers barricaded themselves inside the chambers and donned tear gas masks while rioters vandalized the building, some even occupying offices such as House Speaker Pelosi's. Eventually in the evening the building was cleared from insurrectionists, and the Congress chambers reconvened their session, confirming Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 US presidential election.
In the aftermath, more than 600 people were charged with federal crimes in connection to the insurgency, and close Trump aides such as Steve Bannon, Mark Meadows and Roger Stone were subpoenaed by the House select committee investigating the attack. Trump himself was acquitted by the Senate in his second impeachment trial, this time for "inciting an insurrection". EPA-EFE/SENATE TELEVISION HANDOUT HANDOUT ATTENTION: This Image is part of a PHOTO SET HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES