The Breakdown: President-elect Biden picks Merrick Garland as Attorney General

Plus, how pro-Trump rioters breached security in the Capitol and calls for Trump’s removal coming from both sides.
28:36 | 01/07/21

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Transcript for The Breakdown: President-elect Biden picks Merrick Garland as Attorney General
Yeah. Hi everyone thanks for saving us on a breakdown I'm Diana say don't. And I'm Terry Moran we have been following the fallout from one of the darkest days in American history thousands of Tom supporters stormed. Ransacked polluted the capitol building yesterday at congress met to count the electoral votes of our free and fair presidential election. Some of those riders can scale the walls and flooded the hallways and vandalizing from the capital. Members of congress were forced to barricade themselves in the house chamber as capitol police protected them and guns drawn. Before and after capital for years and go on inauguration day and yesterday after it was released. After hours of delay a defiant congress reconvenes. They continued the vote count and early this morning vice president and confirmed Joseph Biden's. Now growing number of lawmakers are calling himself to be in peak storm for the cabinet to invoke the 25 amendment and democratic senator Chris coach dungy made me today. The way that you are awaiting. I can tell it's globally and gradually build what happened yesterday. Social leadership of the Republican Party leadership or administration he is. Don't see this as an all I'm very clear and present danger Arnold appoint men is four. At least eight trump administration officials have now announced their resignation in in the wake of the assault on the capital. The National Guard has been called and thousands more guard men will be deployed by the weekend and a seven foot fence. Is being set up around the capital to help keep the area secure for at least the next thirty days. And meanwhile president trump is in the White House today but you won't find him on social media FaceBook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said today that his FaceBook and it mr. Graham accounts trumps. Have been suspended indefinitely at least for the next two weeks until quote. The peaceful transition of power is complete the presence Twitter account. Has also been temporarily lock. So this unprecedented assault on the nation's capital is unfolding less than two weeks from January 20 the day the Joseph Biden will be sworn in as the 46 president of the United States. Are favorable day has the latest from Washington. Just before 4 o'clock this morning the chair declares the joint session. Dissolved. President Mike Pence announcing the results of the Electoral College vote count closing out was should've been a ceremonial joint session. Day marred by mob violence at the capitol. It took a riot by thousands of from supporters storming the US capitol for congress to finally come together. And officially certify Joseph Biden as the next president. Hordes of angry terms supporters easily breaching barricades even appearing to get some help from some members of the Capitol Hill police. Writers quickly overwhelming police. And seizing the halls of congress congressional leaders in the vice president and whisked away others left to take shelter in the room. Diving under desks. Always neighbors concerned and were bought out or receive this. In the United States and the senate one writer reaching the podium and on the other side of the capitol. Another posed with his boots on speaker Nancy Pelosi desk. Police also say be recovered two pipe bombs near the scene. A state of emergency to clear. Sources tell ABC news the president initially rebuffed efforts to bring in the National Guard until age finally convinced him. The demonstrations turning deadly at least four people died three for medical emergencies and one woman shot by Capitol Hill police what are walk down. Do they all because you're never. Tree with weakness more than three hours after the violent attack began the president posting a video praising his followers and asking them to go home. But not before repeating the false claim that the election was stolen critics say those claims often repeated by trans Republican allies in congress. Contributed to the violence. I criticize our so our public group leaders. For raising this false expectation. That congress is good or somehow reversed. This election that attack today didn't materialize out of nowhere was inspired. By lies. Now let's take a closer look at how this massive security breach happened in what happens now. To hold those responsible accountable we're joined by ABC news contributor and former FBI special agent. Brad Garrett had. Brad you were an FBI special agent it's it's no secret. That an agitated crowd would be marching to the capital so. How to law enforcement allow this to happen rioters and touring the capitol from multiple entrances. Well what we don't know is if the capitol police actually wanted to do it a different way. For example was at seven foot fence outside the ellipse. Where the barriers should have been yesterday. The problem is is that we don't really know it's it via the capitol police wanted to different approach. And it. The management on the hill the congress told them otherwise that the sheer volume of people that was there. You needed basically. The capitol police the National Guard. Obama and probably other federal agents and uniformed Secret Service except for a after that scene to make sure that nobody got inside the capitol. I am Brad it's it's Terry Moran I'd I'd like to ask give. Based on your experience as a law enforcement veteran look at the charges could these riders face and what's your view of the feeling that is. Very strong in the country right now that if that crowd had been made up of people of color. You would've had a very different law enforcement preparation and response. Still looks to start of the first when Jerry I mean there's and his son Andrea charges from. Ever pipe bounds. Alone there's actually a federal. Statute that covers. Assaulting. The capital and committing violence. And infuriate me other more serious. Charges potentially because. What the motivations of these people when they just trying to make a statement. When he seriously thinking that this could be sort of the first step. Of overthrowing the existing government. And then you get in this edition but I'm not suggesting they're gonna get charged with anything why Kraft. But we'll have to see. And Brett how vulnerable do using Briard to for an attack right now especially given our enemies. Some of them are celebrating this and the resignations that we're seeing in the administration. So I don't know that we're any more vulnerable. Both have yet to keep in mind that no matter who's in charge who might mean president. Who might be in congress. Let the people that do on the ground work. Local law enforcement city county state FBI agents fill in the blank. Are out there doing the same job no matter watt now they may have management to direct them one way or the other. But I don't think dying in this it really makes this more. Won't Wolfenstein important somebody actually turning to come after us anymore so the need to do today. I'm glad to hear that former FBI agent Brad Garrett thank you as always. So thanks Bradley it was president trump was summoned and incited and directed this crowd. This mob towards the capital in 2017. Viewer call after a counter protestor in a far right. Rally in Charlottesville was killed. President trump said there were quote very fine people on both sides and presidential debate this fall president trump. Told the far right extremists who were listening to quote stand back and stand by. Approach up mob siege on the capital yesterday may have been the culminating event in a pattern of emboldening. The far right that trump was followed throughout his presidency is for more on this let's bring with friendly she's a historian. And on through the recently released book strongman from Mussolini to the president. That's never thanks for being with us. So job. But let me ask you why has president trump cultivated these far right extremist over the past five years and when this moment unfolded. Did you feel. A lot of little bit like a profit. I'm pick it I didn't feel like you this was the culmination of Tyler I wasn't surprised. And I was very sad not to be surprised. I started writing about it Donald Trump for CNN and the fall of 2015. When he began to reach three Meehan not seen means. And as a historian of fascism I look at him having rallies and loyalty are since starting his disinformation campaign in insulting others and the exiled king and you know spreading. Information by far ray tests as chapter out of an authoritarian playbook that was very familiar. So what we saw in January 6 is the culmination of years of hardware you know people say tramp is lazy. That he's aware he's extremely high and hope for a hundred tweets a day sometimes two. To hammer home the message that he's going to be a different kind of leader an authoritarian leader really. And he's cultivated very assiduously. These far right groups that. This Second Amendment people. Which is not about having a handgun at home took you know guard your farm but people who have private arsenal's. So this is. He he's he's really tried to normalize extremism which is what strong men do and we sounded results. On January 6. Sure did. And if you you wrote as soon after prison terms inauguration that quote. We cannot exclude his intention to carry out a type of coup so from studying authoritarianism. As you haven't threats to democracy around the world. Do you would you call it a coup what we saw yesterday. Technically he you know he's been way to visit the minute he wouldn't reason except the results and he started. Fishing around looking at military option and let turow manipulation. He was trying to carry out what's called the stealth kill somebody Garrity in Paris try and stay there. That when none of that list looked like it was gonna happen need he resorted to inciting new violence calling these people to the capital. And daring you have an armed insurrection. Which kicked it qualifies. In the history of armed events that are coup because their intent was. To disrupt the process. And you know this the workings of democracy. Whether they were got Sedin overthrowing the government is a different story but they did not want. President tram to be unseated and tests they were trying to overthrow a Democrat. Process. There was that moment where he declined to call up the National Guard perhaps thing the chaos could empowering. Who's been guiana. Thanks very much for your expertise on this. Thank you. Lawmakers and their staff members were locked in the capital for hours yesterday as police worked to secure the building today I spoke with one of those lawmakers congressman. Doctor Raoul Ruiz about his experience listen. Well we started noticing that the capitol police started speaking where there there's that while he talks a little more frequently other members started its sharing their cellphones in and we were seeing images of the protest outside but we didn't know they started breaching. Until bee capitol police started movie and more are hurriedly in and really I started running in bagel lock the doors and at what point based the debate and told us. That we need to start that planning on taking copper. I ended that tear gas was deployed and did they instructed us arm. How to use the gas mask that was under our seats at that point of course you know everybody got really solemn and got tension where I. Are we didn't really know what was happening we we really didn't see real time he images because all the doors were locked. So everybody was carnage ended bit we're able to evacuate the equal the bottom floor. First I was on the top floor in the gallery and do we were the last to be evacuated nets win V. The doer and a glass on the door was broke kid entity I heard a gunshot while I was in there people who took copper and I was speaking in my mind if there was me. Broached on security and somebody came in where it is semi automatic. What do we do and so I got is an emergency physician and the trading that I had a good start telling members out loud. If somebody comes then start shooting ones you ain't. To you run it if you if you feel safe and three if all else fails we have to ambush. The Gunner those those are the training for mass shootings and so people start realizing the seriousness of this whole week we needed to see through. Chewed three steps ahead so that we we made. Wrap it quick decisions. That will save people's lives. And it's amazing that you had the presence of mind in those moments to do that I know you're a lockdown. For seven hours of what was going to your mind that you think. Triggered that response of OK let's figure out what the steps are to do in at any point did you just panic. No C I'm you know I felt the same physiological response that somebody each has win there in emergency situation but I didn't feel fear because fear clouds the mind. It was more like death heightened sense a book awareness. Like I was flying I was out walking on air rates are running at any moment ray agency quickly and in my trading you know you've got to eat through emergency some life and death situations where where that would duke it out. Sudan called. Com and rationale to other members that were in the house. In addition I was speaking it if this if something happened what would I do read here but there's. I don't walk when we were evacuated. It did on her locker get worse and elderly. Who could want did down the stairs as rapidly as others are Helder had. To be secure location total capital position that we were gonna eat bottom of the water. And that we were getting these snacks that there is possibility people are diabetic insulin and skip the bill on could become oh right see me so I was just going around doing well is Jackson making sure everybody moved. Everybody's mood was okay that they stayed on in this situation could tensions were very. A remarkable eyewitness account from congressman doctor Raoul Ruiz there are thanks to him for sharing that with us this morning. Just heroin and really thin as we've said the cause for president shrugs removal arm growing either through impeachment or by the 25 amendment a stunning. Sought just less than two weeks to voice get to deceptive but there is this cry for accountability ABC news political director Rick Klein joins us now from what Rick what do you think. About this 25 amendment idea is there any chance and either of those scenarios happening. Even as a symbolic gesture at this point. The other two lot. Is that as you say he had not would be impeachment and ends in two to use that 25 amendment in twenty to the minute it's always is the easy way but also is extraordinarily hard. The 25 amendment doesn't require initially a vote of congress it would only be the vice president and a majority. Of the cabinet certifying the president's unable to serve the where it gets difficult Terry is you know is that. It's never tried before four in the service of up. Of concerns about mental fitness its beans used only temporarily by presidents. Core undergoing minor medical procedures temporarily giving the powers to a vice president via the certification so it's never been tried before and critically in this it would have to be initiated in signed off on by the vice president so as you share democratic leaders talk about it today. It takes him out of the process on the front end and puts it on Mike Pence as the vice president to begin that process hard to imagine. That happens and Rick president elect Biden today introduced judge Merrick Garland as his nominee for attorney general saying he will restore trust in a rule of law. And equal justice under the lot let's listen. There's grown as a earned the praise and admiration of members of bench and bar. And politicians of both parties. And despite. His busy schedule a prestigious positions. He still makes time to volunteer regular tutoring students in north east DC. This is done for twenty years and it's about character. It's about terror. It was no surprise by President Obama nominated. Judge Garland to the stream court. Rick what is this nomination say about the direction of Biden's Justice Department and how might this affect how they prosecute those responsible for yesterday. Yeah that's going to be a truck critical question for judge Garland as attorney general he's going to inherit. You'd imagine multiple investigations potential prosecutions of people involved in the I in the seas yesterday. I and I think I talking to people in and around the Biden transition the choice of of Merrick Garland as it's being. Two of them received pretty well by Republicans well as Democrats. Choosing a judge for that job someone who has looked at both sides of these issues he was careful. In pointing out just today that he isn't going to be listening all to any political interference he's gonna be respected his judgment I think and carry a little more wait for that reason. There are people on the left debris in particular that would light a more aggressive stance that might be concerned. The date you don't have someone that that doesn't have a a partisan. Partisan tinge to Tim to making decisions like this a but of course for -- Arlen that's a different consideration and probably the appropriate tone when you see it fit into the broader contacts that. Pres elect Biden laid out today he really does want to take as much as possible politics out of these decisions about how adult. Why the law. All right Rick Klein thanks very much for that thank you. And in addition to announcing his pick for attorney general pres elect Biden also blasted the striking contrast between the police response to yesterday's Ryan's. And the response to last year's black lives matter protest in Washington people we come back the message from the president elect. The mental breakdown from our panel and welcome back capitol police say four people are dead as result of yesterday's siege and the US capitol three of those people experienced medical emergencies. On the capitol grounds and one woman was shot in a standoff with police inside the building. Cheers of accurate and by ambulance but died shortly after. White House correspondent Rachel Scott witnessed this scene and joins us now for more Rachel what do we know about this woman and how she lost her life. While her name was actually a Babbitt and she appeared to be a big supporter of president trump according to reports about her social media the air force has confirmed that does she was with the air force 44 some year is recently was dish charged. And she was part of that group that took the capital by storm breaking their way in. And an officer inside. A shot and fired now we were outside of the capital and we watched as she was. Rushed over then a stretcher we saw her. Severely injured and soccer believing she was pushed into that ambulance paramedics there working in trying to save her life. Unfortunately Diane she passed away and we know that three others died as well. In this. Enrique you weren't there when this all happened the event that started the that they started as a rallies so what did you realize they were going to storm the capital. And it took a turn up pretty quickly Diana even within about an hour cell of the of this group marching from the White House for the president was speaking all the way to the foot. The capital and we heard the cheers we heard the chants and pat once I looked up and just saw people started snatching in windows breaking through the doors. Pushing aside those theory here is an officer they are scrambling to try and contain that group they were completely overwhelmed it's of the capital by seized at all sides of it. And the events as quickly turned it it was just it really dramatic split screen from what I was turned from our colleagues who were inside the US capitol reporting on lawmakers huddled under their dads trying to protect themselves outside we're hearing chance of fight for trump and do not retreat. A remarkable split screen playing out just right there at the foot of the US capitol Diane. Her name Rachel Scott thank you and I know you're sticking around us for our next conversation as well. President elect Joseph Biden today was among many politicians and activists and citizens pointing out the striking contrast between the police response to yesterday's riots and the response to last year's black lives matter protests in Washington. No one can tell me. That it had been a group of black lives matter protested yesterday. It wouldn't have been they would have been treated very very different. The mob of thoughts. Stormed the capital. We don't we don't know gesture. And it is gone except to totally unacceptable. Joining us now to discuss his ABC ABC news contributor and LC granderson and will bring back Rachel Scott who was on the ground obviously from both protest. Housing let's start with you. We all remember that image of the National Guard troops armed and in camouflage guarding the Lincoln Memorial is crowds of mostly peaceful demonstrators protested. The death of George Floyd at the hands of police. Yesterday riders made it inside the capitol looted it. Before the National Guard we've been activated. Now be out of the end it's not something that struck me first this disparate. Treatment. It wasn't until friends colleagues and people on social media point out that white guys who wouldn't have necessarily. Let me ask you when you saw the police response yesterday. I do feel. Rules white supremacy is personified. I mean there is no other way I think to intelligently. Talk talk about this. That we all know that affect Kroll was predominately black to borrow the officers would have handled it very very differently. And I don't think that's a stretch to even suggest that because we've witnessed it time and time again. And his party's woman who lost so life. All intents and purposes she's not a damsel in distrust him shook her social media she went there she was essentially a terrorist. Domestic terrorist suspect died and make an attempt to push through and you know facilitate this coup. Not with ill fated it wasn't broke par out. We can you know feel sorry for family but I refuse to talk about the story and the people who may have who also lives. While we had our members of congress sheltered in place. Back to be that is why I called is the epitome of white supremacy. Because not only are we recognizing that there's so different. Approaches to the way we talk about home protesters based upon the skin color book and on the other side the way that the media covers it. You know you can Google this woman's name right now everything the picture arts scene has her smiling and looking like a very wonderful person. What if that person. Was named Mohammed. And Mohammed had stormed the capital and demanded that the election results be overturned. And was surrounded by individuals with a plaque of treason. And had guns. I don't think we'll be seeing pictures over and smiling Mohammed do you. Every so you you were there during both of these protests compared to last summer did you notice the contrast immediately yesterday with the law enforcement presence in response. You know die I will admit it took me probably about an hour into big chaos that was happening outside. When I realize that this situation was not under control they took how worse. For a federal authorities and police ticked clear outside the capital. And so I immediately got back to when I was just outside of the White House when the president decided to walk over to seeing John's church and I watched. Black protesters black and brown people in this country. What their hands up saying do not shoot I watched chemical agents be fired I heard the screams. I heard the chaos and then from peaceful demonstrators who were pushed to were shots and then on the other side of this month later and sitting here and I'm watching this. Largely. You know group a white protesters here demonstrators. Writer is. To storm the US capitol breaking windows. And is seen these images now once police officers taking cell fees would some of them walking them down the stairs. I could not I could not imagine that would have happened. Back in June during these protests of racial unrest and the difference here is one group. Was protesting over racial unrest in this country the other group with what the president and backing him but I will say this could I think that this isn't pouring. President trumpet during this past summer of racial unrest he called those protesters outside. Ducks he's saddened when the looting starts this shooting start to we watch. People inside the capitol yesterday try and take pull Williams away from the floor who were walking around. He was that he couldn great patriots and I talked to some of the people that were inside an as they were left and they felt just that way they told me they felt like they were great patriots who answered. The president's call. He said we love you your very special. And LT I'm talking about accountability today accountability for president trump. You the way you're describing discussing this they're they're needs to be a broader accountability broader responsibility how does that work. Do you think. I think vs stars looked ideological shift. We need to stop calling them protesters. Trumps moll. Home all because flowery words and start using the word on the art looked up the FBI's definition of domestic terrorism. Really don't see much difference between the definition and what we all witnessed of the capital. So if we start approaching there as president domestic terrorist attack I think we just follow that playbook how would our government can go and attack. From a foreign body on our capital. Thank you start using all of our resources to identify as many of those assailants as possible because they need to be brought. To justice this isn't about revenge this is about justice can you want to fuel this country and start treating all of us. Equally under the law if they alarm. This. Group. Also angry that our armed. And determined. White people to go and to go and aunt and they continue on in this way. We'll talk is sort of follow him you know. Criminal charges. What they're afraid of all the minorities. Woodruff straight to Reza were. So we needs are posted its. As it took a terrorist attack and not at some sort of political theater. And it's on us as you say how's he Gradison. Rachel Scott thanks very much for that discussion. And that does it for the breakdown and a hard day today I'm Terry Moran. And I'm Diane was NATO we will continue to keep you updated on this developing story until then stay safe. Yeah.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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