Mainstream Ohio Republicans promoted a Washington, D.C., protest that turned into a violent takeover of the U.S. Capitol.
A state Board of Education member organized a bus trip to the "Stop the Steal" protests aimed at overturning President Donald Trump's election loss, and some county GOP groups also encouraged participation using "wild" language mirroring the president's rhetoric, reported the Ohio Capital Journal.
Kristen Hill, who was elected to the statewide position in 2018, organized the trip from Elyria to Washington on the TEA Party of Lorain County group she runs and linked to the now-shuttered wildprotest.com website encouraging participation in the pro-Trump event.
"#DoNotCertify #Jan6 #StopTheSteal #WildProtest," said an event graphic. "President Trump wants you in DC January 6."
Trump and his allies have promoted the false assertion that Joe Biden won some states through fraud, which has not been proven in court or alleged by election officials, and hundreds of his supporters stormed the Capitol after hearing a speech from the president, his eldest son Donald Trump Jr. and attorney Rudy Giuliani encouraging action as Congress certified the Electoral College results.
One Capitol police officer was killed by rioters and four Trump supporters died during the ensuing chaos.
"We're not damaging property," Hill told the Lorain Chronicle-Telegram. "That's high on our list. We respect people's property and the public property."
The TEA Party of Lorain County, which is laden with conspiratorial content, is also considering another trip to Washington if Trump is somehow "the one getting inaugurated" on Jan. 20.
"We recognize that our country is LITERALLY AT WAR and the enemy has penetrated behind our lines of defense, through the means of corruption an over an extended period of several decades," the website claims. "This war is first ideological, as much as it is political, economic, technologic, biologic, and cybernetic. It is a silent war with the most devastating effects of take-over and control masked by the misinformation campaign unleashed by the globalist media empire."
The Republican Parties in Ashtabula, Portage and Trumbull counties also helped organize trips to the Jan. 6 protest, and the Republican Parties in Geauga, Hocking, Jefferson and Ven Wert counties also encouraged participation and directed supporters to sign-up pages to travel to the nation's capital.