Joe Biden Should Sue Donald Trump And Force Him To Pay For Cleaning Up Capitol After Riot, Law Professor Says
Joe Biden’s administration should take Donald Trump to court, suing him to force him to cover the costs of cleaning up the U.S. Capitol after his supporters attacked it earlier in the month, a law professor says.
Alan B. Morrison, the associate dean at George Washington University Law School, wrote in a column for USA Today that the new administration should hold the former president personally responsible for the attack that led to the deaths of five people and caused extensive damage in and around the historic building. He noted that while investigations into the rioters are still ongoing, Biden’s administration should move quickly to recover the millions of dollars that will be needed in cleanup and restoration costs.
Morrison noted that Trump spoke to a large crowd at a rally just before the attack, telling them that he would march with them to the Capitol and imploring them to show strength. Instead, Trump returned to the White House where he reportedly watched the events unfold on television in excitement.
Though Trump himself did not actually take part, Morrison wrote that he still should be held legally accountable for inciting the violence.
“If there has ever been better direct evidence of a leader commanding his troops to enter battle, it is hard to think of it,” he wrote, adding that video of Trump’s remarks to supporters will be a centerpiece of his upcoming impeachment trial, and should also be “exhibit number one” in a multi-million dollar civil suit.
“No doubt, Trump will point to his subsequent statements in which he claimed to oppose violence, and the government — represented by a Biden attorney general — will counter with his many other public statements making it clear that he was urging his supporters to do whatever was necessary to stop the election certification that was violently interrupted by the invaders on Jan. 6.”
Whether he faces civil charges or not, Trump still faces some potentially significant consequences for the attack. His impeachment trial is set to start later in February, and he could ultimately be barred from holding public office again in his life should he be convicted.
As Newsweek reported, that idea appears to be favored among many Americans. A poll from Monmouth University found that 57 percent of participants were in favor of barring him from holding office, with 90 percent of Democrats backing the idea and close to one out of every five Republicans supporting it as well.