Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) filed a lawsuit this week against former President Donald Trump and several others for alleged civil rights violations related to the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, where Swalwell was among those attempting to formally certify the presidential election.
The new complaint specifically names Trump, his son Donald Trump Jr., legal adviser Rudy Giuliani and the Republican Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama in their personal capacity. All of the parties participated in Trump’s “Save America” rally the afternoon of the deadly rioting.
Swalwell alleges that each of the defendants “terrorized and injured scores of others,” including the congressman.
In addition to demanding a jury trial and monetary damages, Swalwell asked the court to require Trump and the others to provide written notice no less than a week in advance of any rally expected to attract 50 or more people on an election day, or a day when election certification is happening in the future.
Swalwell also wants the court to declare that Trump and the others broke the law.
“The horrific events of January 6 were a direct and foreseeable consequence of the Defendants’ unlawful actions. As such, the Defendants are responsible for the injury and destruction that followed,” the suit states. It cites a provision of the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871, a law created to prevent extrajudicial violence in the aftermath of the Civil War, in addition to local Washington, D.C., statutes aimed at preventing rioting and violence.
In February, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) became the first lawmaker to sue Trump and Giuliani for the insurrection, similarly invoking the Ku Klux Klan Act.
As a mob of Trump supporters converged on the Capitol, elected officials hid identifiers that they were members of Congress and “texted loved ones in case the worst happened,” according to the new suit. Swalwell personally “took off his jacket and tie and searched for makeshift instruments of self-defense,” it said.
This is just the latest legal challenge Trump is facing as he settles into his post-presidency life at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.
Prosecutors in New York are currently investigating whether Trump and any of his businesses cheated on their taxes, while prosecutors in Georgia are looking into whether Trump’s pressuring of election officials was illegal.
Read the full complaint below:
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