Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said Sunday that President Donald Trump bears responsibility for the group of rioters who stormed the U.S. Capitol building last week, threatened members of Congress and ransacked the seat of the legislative branch.
His words come amid a groundswell of support among Congressional Democrats for a second impeachment.
“There is no question in my mind that [Trump] was responsible for inciting this riotous mob,” Hogan said during an appearance Sunday morning on CNN’s State of the Union with Jake Tapper.
Hogan dodged a question from Tapper, though, about whether Rep. Andy Harris, the only Republican in Maryland’s Congressional delegation, ought to resign. Harris continued to object to the presidential election results in Congress even after the rioters stormed the Capitol, leaving several people dead, including a police officer.
Harris voted in favor of challenges to the election results in Pennsylvania and Arizona, two key states that helped Democrat Joe Biden secure victory. Some Republicans have asserted repeatedly that Biden’s victory in those states and others was somehow fraudulent, but they have failed to provide the requisite evidence in numerous court challenges.
When Tapper asked if Harris should resign, Hogan said: “I’m not sure what Congressman Harris should do, but I was extremely outraged at some of the things he did and said.”
The Maryland Democratic Party has since called for Harris’s resignation.
In a statement released shortly after the chaos inside the Capitol building, Harris reiterated his support for “forensic audits and investigating potential election fraud,” adding that he “wholeheartedly condemn[ed]” the violence from the pro-Trump mob.
“If there truly is not a single fraudulent vote — that’s great. If there’s some fraudulent votes, even if there’s not enough to sway an election — we should still care to catch them and prosecute,” Harris wrote. “If there’s a bigger fraud that’s occurred that did change an election (local, state, or federal) then we must correct the situation and stop it from happening again in the future.”
Harris still enjoys support in his district, which covers sweeping territory from the Eastern Shore to parts of Baltimore and Carroll counties, officials said. He was reelected there in November, backed by Trump.
“The vast majority of people I speak with in the Mid-Shore area passionately believe that the 2020 Presidential general election was ripe with fraud,” wrote Steve Stouffer, chairman of the Caroline County Republican Central Committee, in an email. “These supporters have called for someone to speak up for them and represent their lack of belief in the integrity of the election. As their representative Congressman Harris served as their voice.”
But there have been protests from his constituents, including a demonstration that drew about 30 people concerned with his election fraud claims to his office in Bel Air.
During his appearance on CNN Sunday morning, Hogan reiterated his concerns about a slow response from federal officials to the attack on the Capitol, which lasted for several hours. Hogan said he began to ready the Maryland National Guard shortly after hearing about the breach at the Capitol, but was repeatedly denied permission to send them to the District of Columbia. Hours later, he got the OK.
“We couldn’t actually cross over the border into DC without the OK and that was quite some time,” Hogan said. “We kept running it up the flagpole.”
“We were just waiting for that call.”
Hogan was able to send a Maryland State Police rapid response team into the city, and currently has about 500 members of its National Guard stationed in the District, which is preparing for Biden’s inauguration Jan. 20.