Dems Walk Out as North Carolina GOP Picks Jan. 6 Participant to Fill Vacant Seat

Dozens of Democratic lawmakers in North Carolina’s state House of Representatives walked off the chamber floor in protest Monday night after Republicans seated Donnie Loftis, who has admitted to participating in the January 6 attack on the United States Capitol building.

Loftis, a Trump loyalist who is also a 30-year combat veteran and now represents Gaston as a state House member was nominated by county representatives to fill a vacancyIt was the result of the death in that area of the previous lawmaker. This happened earlier in the year. Loftis resigned from chairing a board of directors for a local health care system after his social media posts describing business closures due to COVID-19 as “tyranny” became public knowledge.

Loftis has admitted that he was at the Capitol on the day of the attackThe following was written by. Perpetrated by a mob loyalists to former President Donald Trump — even stating in social media posts he has since deleted that it was his duty to be there that day. Trump and his followers continue to make unsubstantiated claims about voter fraud in 2020.

Loftis has since claimed that he didn’t take part in any violent actions that day, saying he was merely “at the entrance” of the building “when they breached the door.” The Republican lawmaker also said he was gassed three times during the January 6 attack.

In October, Republicans in the legislature said they would approve Loftis’s appointment to the vacancy, with House Speaker Tim Moore (R) justifying this decision by claiming that the FBI never pursued Loftis for his involvement in the attack. The appointment of Loftis to the vacancy does not require a new election under state law.

Instead of voting, the Republicans could vote on their own. due to having a majority in the chamberMore than 40 Democrats walked off the House floor in protestSo only six of their members are left in the room for the vote.

Bobbie Richardson, Democratic Party Chairwoman, condemned Republicans’ appointment of Loftis to the post.

“Today marks a new low for General Assembly Republicans because, instead of condemning those actions and rejecting the rhetoric that incites violence, they are welcoming a Capitol insurrection participant with open arms,” Richardson said in a statement. “The Republican Party hand-picked Loftis to join their ranks, further demonstrating how trending towards extremism is the future of the North Carolina Republican Party.”