WASHINGTON—Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.), along with 42 other House members, have introduced a resolution that honors the journalists and news staff who, while covering the Capitol riots on Jan. 6, risked injury and threats of violence to continue covering the events of the attempted insurrection.
On Jan. 6, rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol while a joint session of the House of Representatives and Senate were confirming the electoral college victory of Joe Biden as the 46th president, which had been falsely claimed as fraudulent by President Donald Trump and others. In addition, rioters intimidated and attacked members of the media and their equipment. The words “Murder the Media” were also carved on a door of the Capitol.
“It was our nation’s forefathers who first recognized that the foundation of a successful democracy must include a free press. On January 6th, journalists and members of the media faced imminent danger from rioters as our nation’s Capitol was attacked. Despite threats to their own lives, they continued to document history,” said Congresswoman Bustos. “Their work helped ensure the safety of others and continues to help federal agencies seek justice. Their actions were nothing short of heroic. As a former journalist, I want to thank them. And as a member of a grateful nation, it is my honor to recognize the significance of their contributions on that fateful day.”
In addition to officially sharing the gratitude, the resolution encourages congressional support “for the mental and physical well-being of journalists and news staff affected by the insurrection,” the condemnation of the harassment and violent attacks against the media and to honor the contributions of journalists on Jan. 6 as an act of protecting free speech under the First Amendment.
NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith issued this statement in response to the resolution: “On January 6, America’s journalists—at great personal risk—provided vital reporting from inside and outside the Capitol to deliver a chilling picture of the unprecedented assault on our democratic process. Enduring harassment, intimidation and acts of violence from the crowd, the news media showed remarkable courage in upholding the principles of the First Amendment’s guarantee of a free press. We thank Rep. Bustos for her leadership on this resolution recognizing the bravery and duty they exhibited, and we appreciate the support of members of Congress in imploring every American to respect the right of journalists to safely conduct their important work.”
The co-sponsors of the resolution include Representatives Bonnie Watson Coleman, Earl Blumenauer, Alan Lowenthal, Grace Meng, Jackie Speier, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Sheila Jackson Lee, Donald M. Payne, Jr., Ed Perlmutter, Marcy Kaptur, Lucille Roybal-Allard, Mary Gay Scanlon, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Jan Schakowsky, Bobby Rush, Susan Wild, Marie Newman, Grace F. Napolitano, Peter Welch, Mark Takano, André Carson, Frank Pallone, Jr., James P. McGovern, Bill Foster, Nanette Diaz Barragán, Rosa DeLauro, Bradley S. Schneider, Ted Lieu, Albio Sires, Jerrold Nadler, Stephen F. Lynch, John B. Larson, Alcee L. Hastings, Debbie Dingell, Jerry McNerney, Ritchie Torres, Derek Kilmer, Alma Adams, Mark Pocan, Lauren Underwood, Robin L. Kelly and Julia Brownley.
The full resolution can be viewed online.
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