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tv   President Biden Marks Jan. 6 Anniversary  CSPAN  January 8, 2023 2:58am-3:49am EST

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second anniversary of the attacks on the us capital. you are watching live coverage on c-span2.
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♪♪ >> ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, the recipient of the 2023 residential citizens medal, the honorable jocelyn vinson. the honorable russell wesley bauer. us capital police private first class harry a done. us capital police sergeant caroline edwards. former metropolitan police department officer michael fenotes. ruby friedman and andrea.
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us capital police sergeant ginelle. us capital police officer eugene goodman. metropolitan police department officer daniel hodges. doctor serena leaving good accepting on behalf of capital police officer howard cleiuwnegood. david and charles sicknick on behalf of brian sicknick. aaron smith on behalf of metropolitan police officer jeffrey smith.
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♪♪ >> ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, the president of the united states. [hail to the chief] ♪♪ >> thank you all. [applause] ♪♪
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>> president biden: thank you all very very much. two years ago, january 6th, our democracy was attacked, no other way of saying it. the us capital was breached, which had never happened before in the history of the united states of america even during the civil war. a violent mob of insurrectionist's assaulted law enforcement, vandalized sacred halls, hunted down elected officials, all for the purpose of an attempt to overthrow the will of the people. and usurp the peaceful transfer of power. all of it, all of it was fueled by lies about the 2,020 election. but on this day two years ago,
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our democracy held, because we the people as the constitution refers to us, we the people did not flinch. we the people endured. we the people prevailed. on this day of remembrance joined by the vice president and the second gentleman and all of you, we honor a remarkable group of americans who embody the best, before, during, and after january 6, 2020, one. for the first time in my presidency, i am bestowing the presidential citizens medal, one of our nation's highest civilian honors, recognizes, quote, citizens of the united states of america who have performed exemplary deeds of service for their country or their fellow citizens, end of quote. in a few moments, in a few moments, the full citation of their exemplary deeds will be
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read by military aid. this is who these people, these extraordinary americans are. heroic law enforcement officers as congressman bennie thompson said, a man of immense character and honor himself, quote, you hold the line that day. what was on the line with our democracy, and history will remember your names. history will remember your names and remember your courage and remember your bravery and remember your extraordinary commitment to your fellow americans. not hyperbole, that is a factor. that is a factor. and your instincts to respond to do something as you did. as we all watched, this is the irony of it all. all america watched it on television and saw it repeated and repeated. in the past months, we heard
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you testify about what happened that day, what you were thinking of at the time it was happening which what you are thinking now, the threats, the violence, the trauma. all real. it's not an exaggeration to say america owes you all. i really means that, a debt of gratitude that we can never fully repay unless we live up to what you did, live up to what you did. and what you did is truly consequential. not a joke. it is that a chef i can hold for a second and say to you the impact of what happened on july 6th had international repercussions beyond what any of you can fully understand. the first meeting i had of what they call the g7, the 7 leading
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economies of the world, democracies, i sat down in february in england and sat next to the president of france, across from the chancellor from germany etc. and i said america is back. you know what the response was? not a joke, for how long? for how long? i just sat there and looked and i believe it was the prime minister of israel, can't remember who said it. what would do you think, mr. president, if tomorrow you woke up and heard a headline in the press saying in the british parliament, a mob had come down the hall, broken down the doors of the house of commons, police officers were killed and died,
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the place was vandalized in order to overthrow the election of a speaker of the house. a prime minister's election. think about it. think about it. what would we think if we heard that news today? the only other leading democracy of the world. so folks, these people and the people representing those who couldn't be here because they gave their lives for this did is incredibly consequential. that's not political talk, that is historical fact. officer daniel hodges come metropolitan police department, virginia national guardsmen, 8 years on the beat, his first time inside the capital was on january 6th, sprayed and
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poisoned, pinned and crushed, his eyes almost gouged out but he didn't break. after it was over he was asked what he had been fighting for. this is a local guy, and ordinary american and he gave a simple, straightforward answer. what we are fighting for is democracy. that is what he knew he was fighting for. he wasn't a scholar, he wasn't a historian. he was a red-blooded american fighting for democracy. former metropolitan police officer michael fenone. we become friends, 20 years on the job, narcotics investigator. in a moment of crisis he was asked to do undercover work elsewhere but he answered the
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crisis call of our nation at the harry jaffa -- at the capital. he was beaten, beaten, not pushed around, beaten and tased, called a traitor as a mob shouted, kill him with his own gun, kill him with his own gun. he defended our democracy. with absolute courage. ever since, he has spoken out forcefully to make sure people are held accountable, because he knows it could happen again. there are no guarantees except us, all of you. private first class harry done from the united states capitol police. 14 years on the force. on that day he was outside speaker pelosi's office. he stood guard protecting
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fellow officers who were already injured. he was fighting back insurrectionist across the capitol while being called the vilest, racist names. his own congressman, a true constitutional scholar, jamie raskin, couldn't be here today as he recovers from cancer treatment. he wanted me to say the following. i wrote it down. officer harry dunne acted with courage to defend our institutions and our people. went on to say generations to come will think of him and these officers and thank them for their service. end of quote. officer carol edwards, 5 years on the force, us capitol police. on the front lines of a mob's first surge as he stood there, i hope i'm correctly quoting,
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you said it looked like a movie. looked like a movie. sometimes in crisis things look surreal. looked like a movie. knocked unconscious with traumatic brain injury, she got back up to hold the line. granddaughter of two proud military veterans, she says it was her job to, quote, protect america's symbol of democracy, that building. excuse me. acadinoglad you know your name. laughter and applause] >> president biden: he can calmly president bidden from now on.
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a proud immigrant from the dominican republic, 16 years on the force. like my son, and iraqi war veteran with the united states military, united states army. he described january 6th as something from a medieval battle. trying to creep -- keep insurrectionist from the tunnel entrance on the lower west terrace as he got punched, blinded with a laser, speared with an american flag pole with american flag on it. the flag he swore to defend. he stood tall in the breach, with a deep and abiding love demonstrated for his country. officer eugene goodman, an army veteran who put himself at risk as a rifle squad leader conducting combat patrols to identify explosives in baghdad.
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he came home to the us capitol for the last 15 years. on january 6th, he risked his own safety to distract a charging group of insurrectionist's. he said his duty is to serve and protect. he said that day, he was protecting. and he did. he protected. all of you, i know, this is bittersweet. on that day more than one hundred 40 law enforcement officials suffered physical injuries. untold numbers are suffering the psychological toll of that day as well. psd doesn't only occur in the military. others are gone forever. as i said earlier if i can hold a minute here. i said earlier, for those who lost someone on that day, they
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are proud is a devil that their kids are being honored, but boy, is it hard. i know how proud i am when my son beau b was honored as a son beau was honored as a consequence of burn pits interact. it could happen in that moment. all the families here, all the families, my heart aches for you. i want to thank you for having the courage to be here today so the rest of america can no what your kin did. including capitol police officer brian sicknick who will receive this metal posthumously. a veteran from new jersey air national guard, 13 years in the capital police force as an officer.
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he lost his life after protecting the citadel of democracy. we are joined by his family today, my wife jill and i met when we paid our respect in the capitol rotunda two years ago. we are proud of the honor of being bestowed on brian but i also know this difficult moment brings back everything that happened this very day. thank you for being here. and thank you for letting us remember brian. thank you. capital police officer howar lieuwenhook was a good friend of mine. i served with his dad, he was sergeant at arms and chief of staff for republican senators. we were genuinely friends.
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he patrol the grounds on january 6th, he worked nearly nonstop in the days that followed. he lost his life after protecting democratic institutions. he learned to revere growing up. his family, his widow, serena, three honored his memory for advocating for positive change on mental health issues for his fellow law enforcement officers. helped him cope with the crisis he encountered. department officer jeffrey smith receiving this metal posthumously as well. he was part of the first line of officers who entered when the capitol was breached.
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the last time with a metal pipe. after his death, his widow, aaron, along with many others, worked tirelessly to pass in congress a public safety officer support act which i signed into law last summer. the law recognizes that death by silent injury, so future families of public safety officers dying in the wake of traumatic circumstances will get the benefits they deserve. it is long overdue. today, a ceremony to honor heroes of january 6th, we also recognize the late us capitol police officer billy evans. his family is with us today.
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three months after january 6th while they were still cordoning off the capital because of threats by sick insurrectionist continued to be propagated on the internet, all america saw what happened. what -- officer evans was killed defending the check point to get up to the capitol because of god-awful sick threats continued to move forward. the whole world saw it. hard to believe. hard to believe it could happen here in america. as a 29-year-old kid elected to senate, sworn in after i was 30, the idea that if you told
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me that i could hear my own voice -- [laughter] -- i would be amazed. all kidding aside, think about it. think about this. jill and i met the family at the rotunda to pay our respects and i was honored to sign a law, a bill awarding the congressional gold medal to those who protect the capitol on january '6 to honor the officers for their sacrifice, these officers are the best among us. we are honored to be joined by many other members of law enforcement agencies here today, and on january 6th, we thank all of them as well.
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i want to thank you all for your service, your strength, your courage. it corny thing to say, but your patriotism. joining these law-enforcement officers are 5 other public servants, ruby freeman, and her daughter, shemar. where are you guys? [applause] >> president biden: election workers from atlanta, georgia, taking time from running their own business to work on election season, to honor voting rights in their beloved city. her daughter, shea, who learned from her grandmother about getting the right to vote. she decided to become a full-time election worker to help the elderly and disabled, students, exercise their fundamental right to vote. both of them were just doing their jobs until they were
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targeted and threatened by the same predators and peddlers of lies that would fuel the insurrection. they were literally forced from their homes, facing despicable racist taunts. despite it all, ruby freeman and shea moss spoke openly and honestly to set the record straight about the lies, and defend the integrity of our elections. you don't deserve what happened to you, but you do deserve the nation's eternal thanks for showing the dignity and grace of we the people. presumptuous of me, but i am so proud of you both, proud of you both. albert smith, former republican city commissioner in philadelphia, who spent a decade overseeing nonpartisan counting of votes, but like so many local election workers in 2020 he was arrest and threatened as he did his job faithfully.
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.. secretary of state, a republican to ensure integrity of the election. [applause] [applause] >> his character and movement speak volumes, we the people. that's what we also benson, twice elected michigan secretary of state and have the vote counted fairly. that's what she did in 2020 when she oversaw a record number of michiganders turn out to vote in
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that election. i want you to find an armed mob outside her home on christmas eve when she and her son were decorating the christmas tree inside but she refused to back down. she'd done her duty, she kept her oath. full of integrity, she's a true leader in our nation and make you, thank you, thank you for what you've done. [applause] finally, rusty dollars, former public of the house in the state of arizona, i met him today. i hope i'm not hurting your reputation. [laughter] he's hiding behind you, he's able to do that. [laughter] rusty, we might not agree on all things but we might agree public service is not without, not
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about what you're going to do to win, it's about what you're willing to lose, what you are willing to lose over. rusty put his obligation in the constitution in this country ahead of everything, refused intense political pressure, certified in the 2020 election. his courage is the reason why he lost his primary last year. you are an example, the demonstration of every young man and woman, about what integrity is all about. thank you, thank you for your integrity. [applause] books, my fellow americans, i want you to give one round of applause again for the recipients of the citizens medical patriots who performed exemplary deeds in the service
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of this great nation. let me close with this. eighty-two years ago on this very day in 1941, president franklin roosevelt who lived in the state of the union address, he became known as the for freedom speech. he defined america's place in the world, reminded the american people of the strength from the things which have been done to make its people conscious of the individual state and the preservation democratic america. things that have toughened the fiber of our people, renewed their faith and strengthened devotions of the institution we make ready to protect,". eighty years ago after that speech on this day two years ago, we were reminded of the most fundamental of things, democracy itself. as i've said before, faced an
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inflection time in our states. generally six is a reminder does nothing guaranteed about our democracy. a number learning in undergraduate school, high school's every generation is required to earn it, defend it, protect it. i was vice president and president, got to tell you i began to think looking back on it was permanent in the united states, nothing would happen. that's why i was pleased to see democrats and republicans work together to pass the electoral count reform act i signed into law protect the will of the people in past peaceful transfer of power in defending and protecting our democracy also means despite our differences of opinion we must say clearly with united voice there's no place,
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none, zero place in america for voter intimidation. zero, never political violence. completely contrary for democracy. america land of laws not chaos, a nation of peace and not violence. the land of kings and dictators, autocrats and extremists, as we see in today's honorees, a nation of we the people that toughen our fiber, renew our faith and strengthen our cause. remember who in god's name we are, we are the united states of america. [applause] united states of america. [applause] there's never been a single thing we've set our mind to with
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failed. there's nothing in our capacity, remember who we are in god's name. may god protect our troops and make god protect those who stand watch over our democracy. i have the opportunity and great honor to award the metals to these incredible individuals and their representatives. commander shields, would you read the citations? presidential citizens medal recipient, jocelyn benson. [cheering and applauding] [applause] jocelyn benson was elected twice by the people of michigan as their secretary of state where
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she continues her steadfast commitment to protect the rights of those and integrity of our elections in the state of michigan. in 2020, she administered an election with record turnout and certified results in the face of unprecedented pressure threats including armed protesters outside her home. we the people honor undaunted unflinching michigan secretary of state, jocelyn benson who continues exemplary public service to advance free and fair elections in our nation. [cheering and applauding] russell bowers. [cheering and applauding]
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artist, rancher and fourth-generation arizonan, rusty hours were present at the people of arizona for almost two decades. rising to become speaker of the house in a dire hour of our democracy, he put country before party by refusing attempts to decertify 2020 election and overturn the will of the people. he endured menacing protests including at his home and eventually lost an election because of his courageous actions. we the people honor rusty hours, public servant stated by deep and unbreakable oath for god, family and country. [applause]
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harry done. [applause] a champion college football lineman, harry done put his protective instincts to a higher purpose as u.s. capitol police officer. january 6, 2021, he rushed to protect injured fellow officers fighting back insurrection us. his powerful testimony describing violence and racism laid bare the backs of history. on behalf of officers battling lasting trauma is house and ease stigma around nation as a whole. for protecting the citizens democracy for taking healing, we honor capitol police private first class harry done. [applause]
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[applause] caroline edwards. [applause] the granddaughter of proud military veteran, caroline left a corporate career to follow in the footsteps serving our nation. january 6, 2021, she helped stop advancing insurrectionist even after being knocked unconscious when the mob came. she was with her colleagues as a police union member and. counselor in her congressional testimony will help ensure their valor is never forgotten. her greatest defense of our democracy and service to fellow officers, we the people honor u.s. capitol police officer caroline edwards. [applause]
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michael for known. [applause] [applause] [applause] the grandson of a police officer, michael was born to protect and serve. the greatest narcotics investigator, he took off duty call to the capitol generally six, 2021 helping drive insurrectionist away from a key tunnel facing vicious attack. he became one of the day's most outspoken truth seekers. for his absolute courage and protect the capitol and our democracy and his tenacious search for accountability, we the people honor former metropolitan police department officer, michael fanone.
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[applause] >> ruby freeman. [applause] inspired by the voting rights legacy of the levitt advanta, ruby freeman viewed her sick duty as a fulton county election worker, a sacred mission to ensure people of georgia could exercise their fundamental right to vote freely and fairly. 2020 election, she upheld that sacred mission despite orchestrated campaign to overturn the election and the targeted print of her and her family. to finish and look witness of the trauma and tragedy of that experience today we the people honor lady ruby freeman as part of our nation's voting rights history.
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[applause] [applause] as a child, she immigrated to america in the dominican republic and became the first in his family to graduate college serving in the u.s. army in the u.s. capitol police. january 6, 2021, he courageously stood firm the doors of the capitol is insurrectionist stormed the interest sustaining serious injuries is to protect members of congress and defended our democracy. he later testified publicly to ensure our nation and history
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never forget. for patriotism that puts love of country before self, we the people honor u.s. capitol police sgt. el camino. [applause] [applause] [applause] eugene goodman. [applause] army combat veteran and u.s. capitol police officer eugene goodman embodies fearless public service. the breach january 6, 2021, he made himself a target to divert insurrectionist away from the senate chamber enabling the former vice president, lawmakers and staff to escape safely.
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in the face of clear present danger, he did his duty and did not flinch. his valor and for ensuring the constitutional order, we could people honor u.s. capitol police officer, eugene goodman. [applause] daniel hodges. [applause] of virginia national guardsmen and metropolitan police department officer, daniel hodges dedicated his life to serving his community and our nation. january 6, 2021, he thought to
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push searching insurrectionist away from the tunnel into the capitol returning to the line even after being brutally crushed and beaten. his greatest testimony will help ensure we never forget for that such an attack happened again. for his heroism and unwavering commitment to the truth, we the people honor metropolitan police department officer, daniel hodges. [applause] [applause] doctor serena accepting on behalf of howard livengood. [applause] [applause] proud son of u.s. senate sgt. at arms, howard livengood left a career as a champion race car driver to follow in his late father's footsteps protecting the democratic institutions they
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both revered. he died after battling insurrectionist at the capitol and staying on to store security in the crucial days after january 6. his painful loss help to change the law to better honor the unimaginable sacrifice too many officers and their families face. for his dedication and selfless service, we the people honor u.s. capitol police officer, howard c livengood. >> andrea moss. [applause] [applause] inspired by the stories her mother told her about the votes
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for a meeting america, a career as an election worker in georgia. because of her dedicated service, she faced death threats, harassment and intimidation by those seeking to overturn the outcome of the 2020 election. she would later testified to the nations about her pain and resolve. today, we the people honor shea moss to ensure the american people have a voice in the destiny of our nation. [cheering and applauding] albert schmidt. [applause] a former federal civil servant
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in the city commissioner of philadelphia, albert schmidt has spent his career on the unsung yet necessary task of making democracy work for the people. in the 2020 election, despite intense political pressure, he did what it always done, ensure integrity of the election oversaw nonpartisan counting of the ballots. we the people honor albert schmidt for clarity of purpose to protect every american right to vote and have the vote counted. [applause] charles and gladys accepting on behalf of of brian picnic. [applause] [applause]
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a new jersey air national guardsmen who served two tours overseas, brian was u.s. capitol police officer devoted to serving our nation for over a decade, he guarded the capitol including january 6, 2021. he lost his life protecting our elected representatives upholding the will of the american people in defending our constitution. his heroism, courage and character set an example for generations of americans to come and will never be forgotten. for his service and his ultimate sacrifice, we the people honor u.s. capitol police officer, brian. [applause] [applause] [applause]
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aaron smith accepting on behalf of jeffrey smith at. >> twelve year veteran of metropolitan police department officer jeffrey smith dedicated his life to public service. january 6, 2021, he popped the violent mob, officer smith sustained devastating head injuries from multiple assaults inside and outside the capitol. he died after protecting congress guarding the capitol and preserving our democracy. his passing sparked changes in the law the owner silent injuries of our fallen officers. for his extraordinary heroism will appear courage and waving devotion to the nation, we the people honor metropolitan police department officer, jeffrey smith.
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[applause] >> as i said at the outset, this is warranted and in some senses overdue but also incredibly difficult for the families and in particular the families of those who lost a hero. but i tell you, people will go through, unfortunately, similar losses, we look at all and say,
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that's the grace and dignity i want to display. really, thank you, thank you. i think you again for your service and sacrifice and may god bless your families and protect our troops. thank you all very much. [applause] >> please remain in your seat as a president, vice president and recipient department. ♪♪
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