New Congress

Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, speaks with others on the opening day of the 117th Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Sunday.

East Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert was told to hide under his chair as a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday as Congress met to certify President-Elect Joe Biden’s win and the results of the Electoral College.

“Most people realize that was probably not the best strategy, there is no way to fit under your chair on the house floor,” Gohmert said Wednesday, where he was in his congressional office waiting for the floor to open back up after attempts to certify the electoral votes were paused because of the breach.

Earlier in the day, Gohmert, R-Tyler, filed an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to keep his lawsuit going against Vice President Mike Pence in an attempt to have Pence declare Biden electors in a handful of states to be invalid and to recognize Trump electors instead.

Late Wednesday night and early Thursday morning, as the joint Congressional session sought to finish that certification, Gohmert joined 121 other House Republicans voting to object to counting Biden’s electors from Arizona and then 138 Republicans voting to object to Biden’s Pennsylvania electors.

Gohmert also objected to the counting of Biden’s Wisconsin votes, but his objection failed because of a procedural rule that required both a representative and a senator to object together.

“Is the objection in writing and signed by a member and a senator?” Vice President Mike Pence, the presiding officer of the joint session of Congress, asked Gohmert.

“It is in writing,” Gohmert responded. “It’s signed by a member, but it is not signed and objected to by a senator.”

Gohmert said residents of East Texas were in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday as part of a rally to support Trump. Gohmert also said he spoke to an East Texas man who was part of the group that breached the Capitol.

“I know someone who got in who was not harmed other than they got to smell some tear gas. I’m sure he doesn’t want that out, but ... he followed some of these guys,” Gohmert said. “I hope they find out, from looking on line. It’s just strange bedfellows. We need to get to the bottom of who started that. Once it starts, people who are good people can be pulled into doing things they wouldn’t ordinarily do.”

“As you knew, there were a lot of people coming here and a lot of people coming from East Texas and there was going to be a big protest, and that’s fine,” Gohmert continued. “The problem is when it gets violent. It was so staggering to me because the people that I knew who came up here (from East Texas) are extremely nonviolent. They wanted to peacefully protest, and that’s what I advocate.”

Gohmert said he’s been criticized for his comments on violence — “Basically, in effect, the ruling would be that you got to go to the streets and be as violent as Antifa and [Black Lives Matter],” he told Newsmax last Friday — but he said it was a warning to let the votes be counted without violence.

“Knowing so much history, I have tried to sound the warning that when our institutions, that were created to resolve disputes civilly, refuse to take up the disputes, it leads to violence. I did not advocate violence,” Gohmert said. “I continue to say Dr. (Martin Luther) King showed the best strategy is a peaceful strategy.”

He said it was too much for the police to handle.

“I said it’s going to be a busy day for you guys. They said everyone was coming in, all the Capitol police. And they do a great job, but it turns out when you get the Capitol surrounded by thousands and thousands of people, there’s not enough Capitol police,” Gohmert said. “You need park police, you need D.C. police and in this case, they brought in the National Guard and it seems to be holding tonight.”

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Meredith Shamburger also contributed to this report.

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