In the wake of the FBI announcing that right-wing militias are planning activities in Washington, D.C., and state capitals across the country ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, the National Council on Election Integrity — a bipartisan group of more than 40 former elected officials, former Cabinet secretaries, retired military officials, and civic leaders — issued the following statement:
“While peacefully protesting is a sacred right protected by the First Amendment, violence and mob activity are not. Any and all attempts to impede the peaceful transfer of power in our great nation must be condemned.
“People involved in acts of insurrection cannot be allowed to get away with breaking the law. Continued attempts to undermine our democracy are wrong. Those who engage in riots and acts of violence ahead of President-elect Biden’s inauguration should know that they will be prosecuted and held accountable by law enforcement and the criminal justice system.
“The National Council on Election Integrity urges all Americans to respect the fact that voters decided the outcome of this election and to refrain from violence.”