Breaking with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's description of Jan. 6, 2021 as a "violent insurrection," Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., said he thinks the demonstration at the U.S. Capitol is more appropriately called a "riot."
"There was no way they were going to overthrow the government of the United States," Rubio reportedly told NewsNation on Wednesday. "It was a riot. It was a dangerous riot. It was a violent one. It should have never happened, and it should never happen again. But I also do not think people should be misled to think this somehow was on the verge of overthrowing the government."
Newsweek reports that Rubio's comments came a day after McConnell, R-Ky., characterized the siege of the Capitol as an insurrection.
McConnell has sharply criticized former President Donald Trump and his supporters for their alleged roles in the events of Jan. 6.
He expressed his disagreement with the Republican National Convention (RNC) Tuesday for its decision to censure Reps. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., and Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., for their work on the select House committee tasked with investigating the Capitol breach.
"It was a violent insurrection with the purpose of trying to prevent a peaceful transfer of power after a legitimately certified election," McConnell said. "That's what it was. This issue is whether or not the RNC should be sort of singling out members of our party who may have different views from the majority. That's not the job of the RNC."
During an appearance on CBS News’ Face the Nation on Sunday, Rubio described the Jan. 6 committee as "nothing but a partisan tool designed to go out and smear and attack and get their hands on as many people as they can."
Another reason why Jan. 6 should not be considered an insurrection, Rubio said, is because Congress eventually certified Joe Biden's win in the 2020 presidential election.
"They were able to delay by a few hours, the vote count, but absolutely no way did we ever come close in any way, shape or form to those people leading to the overthrow of the government of the United States of America," he said.
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