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Business Leaders Condemn Violence on Capitol Hill: ‘This is Sedition’

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Corporate groups and corporate leaders condemned the violence on Capitol Hill that disrupted efforts to confirm the election of President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. on Wednesday.

Hours after President Trump’s supporters forced lawmakers off the floors of the Senate and House of Representatives, the Business Roundtable, a group of executives from some of the country’s largest corporations, called on the President and other officials to “end the chaos and chaos.” facilitate the peaceful transfer of power. “

“The chaos in the country’s capital is the result of illegal efforts to overturn the legitimate results of a democratic election,” the organization wrote on Twitter.

The National Association of Manufacturers, one of the country’s largest lobbying groups, suggested that Vice President Mike Pence should consider a provision of the 25th Amendment that would allow members of the President’s Cabinet to temporarily remove him from power.

“Anyone who indulges in conspiracy theories to raise campaign funds is complicit,” said the association. “Vice President Pence, who has been evacuated from the Capitol, should seriously consider working with the Cabinet to take advantage of the 25th Democratic Amendment.”

“This is riot,” the group said of the mob’s actions, saying Mr. Trump instigated the violence.

The US Chamber of Commerce also condemned the violence.

“The attacks on our nation’s Capitol and our democracy must end now,” said Thomas J. Donohue, the Chamber’s general manager, in a statement. “The United States Congress must meet again tonight to complete its constitutional responsibility for adopting the Electoral College report.”

“The unrest today is gross and contrary to the most basic tenets of our constitution,” said Matthew Shay, president and executive director of the National Retail Federation, the world’s largest retail association.

Other business leaders spoke up individually, although many avoided calling the president and other politicians by name. “I strongly condemn the violence in our nation’s capital,” said Jamie Dimon, chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase, in a statement on Wednesday afternoon.

“Our elected leaders have a responsibility to demand an end to the violence, to accept the results and, as our democracy has done for hundreds of years, to support the peaceful transfer of power,” he said. “Now is the time to come together to strengthen our extraordinary union.”

Chaos in Washington DC

Updated

Jan. 6, 2021, 7:30 p.m. ET

Wells Fargo chief executive Charles Scharf urged executives “to come together to address the divisions in our society”.

“We have to begin the peaceful transfer of power to elected President Biden,” he said.

Citigroup executive director Michael Corbat said he was “disgusted by the actions of those who stormed the US Capitol to disrupt the certification of the electoral college”.

Bank of America chief executive Brian Moynihan described the events as “appalling” and said they “underscore the urgent need for all Americans to unite behind one of our most cherished principles: the peaceful transfer of power.”

Sundar Pichai, the executive director of Alphabet, the parent company of Google, said in an email to the New York Times staff that the events were “shocking and frightening to all of us”.

“The lawlessness and violence that reigns on Capitol Hill today is the opposite of democracy and we strongly condemn it,” said Pichai.

Tim Ryan, the executive director of accounting firm PwC, formerly known as PricewaterhouseCoopers, spoke to employees during a previously scheduled webcast during the storming of the Capitol, asking him to let employees know what was happening.

“Our capitol was stormed by protesters who oppose our democratic process and threatened with violence,” said Ryan, according to the company. “I think it’s safe to say that this is a surreal day that will go down in our country’s history and it is devastating to watch these events unfold right before our very eyes.”

Dan Schulman, the president and chief executive of PayPal, described the events as “shocking and worrying” and said they violated “the very foundation of our democracy”.

“IBM condemns the unprecedented lawlessness of today and we demand an immediate end,” wrote Arvind Krishna, chairman and general manager of the company, on Twitter.

Unions also denounced the violence.

Mary Kay Henry, director of Service Employees International Union, said violence is about “using the power of white to threaten what we care about – the chance for families of all races to thrive” .

Richard Trumka, the president of the AFL-CIO, who posted on Twitter, described the actions as an “attempted coup”.

“We are experiencing one of the biggest attacks on our democracy since the civil war,” he said.

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