Hudson Condemns Violence, Calls to Heal Our Nation
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-08) released the following statement:
I am sickened and heartbroken by what unfolded today at the U.S. Capitol. The violence, vandalism and loss of an American life are shocking and go against everything we stand for as a people and a nation. I condemn this violence and anyone on the right or the left who resorts to violence to achieve a political end. This nation was founded on the principle that all men and women are created equal and endowed with certain rights by our Creator. We are a land of freedom and opportunity. I have often said, I am a Republican and I may have sharp disagreements with a Democrat on any given issue. But, at the end of the day, we are both Americans. And the values and heritage that we share is greater than the political differences of the day. As we come to grips with what transpired today, as a nation, we must find a way to move forward.
I was on the House floor today when this incident started. There was a great deal of emotion and fear. I never dreamed I would be locked-down in the House chamber and eventually evacuated for my safety as a mob roamed the halls of the Capitol. However, I returned to that House chamber tonight to do the people’s business. Democrats and Republicans stood together tonight to demonstrate that America is not governed by the mob. America is governed by the law.
Each Member of Congress will have to process what happened today in their own way. But I pray we resolve as Americans that we will work together to make sure the thugs who stormed the Capitol are prosecuted to the full extent of the law and that this never happens again. We must decide as a Congress and as a nation how we respond to the events of today. We cannot move forward if we choose to assign blame to score political points or accept the violence we witnessed this summer in cities across the nation and today in the Capitol as the new normal for resolving our differences. We must not allow this to be the tipping point from which there is no return. We must resolve to find a way to come together, condemn violence of any kind, and heal this nation.
I received many messages from constituents, friends and family today. I cannot tell you how much the prayers and concerns of so many meant to me. One message I received was from a constituent in Fayetteville. After checking on my safety, she told me she was in tears- totally devastated by the violence in the Capitol today. She said her husband gave his life fighting for this country to protect our citizens from this kind of violence and lawlessness.
We owe it to her husband and all those incredible patriots who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation to do better. To be better. To avoid the easy path of seeking political gain from the events of today and to really examine ourselves. To examine our actions and words. And to seek to work across the aisle in a way that honors their sacrifice and brings this nation together. We cannot allow violence of any kind to divide us or deter us from our purpose- to serve our constituents, defend our Constitution and to leave this country to the next generation better than we found it.
This does not mean I will shrink from the hard work, from vigorously defending the interests of my constituents, or from passionately defending our shared values. However, I will recommit myself to something that has always been a priority for me and a hallmark of my time in Congress. Namely, to work across the aisle; to view my political opponent as someone who equally loves our country. I pledge to continue to put the long-term interests of our nation ahead of any short-term political interest.
We will get through this. Today was a dark day in our history, but it is a long and storied history. And many more chapters are yet to be written, because America is and will always be that shining city on a hill. We are that beacon of freedom for the world and the last great hope for mankind.
My final thought is for the brave men and women of the U.S. Capitol Police. They put their lives on the line to keep the public, the employees and the Members of Congress safe every day. I saw great heroism and great courage in abundance today. An assault on any of our law enforcement is an assault on every one of us. God bless the men and women of law enforcement and their families. And God Bless the United States of America.