In the decade he had a Twitter account, former President Donald Trump tweeted the phrase "Law and Order" nearly 60 times. While two of these times were to call Richard Belzer, an actor on the show Law & Order, "unwatchable" and a "stone cold loser with no talent," the vast majority were to sensationalize isolated riots, with Trump also emphasizing his self-proclaimed support for law enforcement.
As you can likely imagine, Trump's calls for law and order saw a huge uptick during his campaigns for President. More than half of these tweets were posted during the 2020 campaign cycle alone.
Naturally, the Republican Party was sure to follow. The GOP's official Twitter account has posted some variation of the phrase "law and order" at least 38 times since the summer of 2020.
The most recent was just yesterday, with the account proclaiming its party as that of "law and order."
But the records of the GOP's most notable personalities paint a different picture. An overwhelming number of Trump associates, for instance, have been charged with crimes. Trump and his organization are the subjects of multiple criminal and civil investigations.
But if that wasn't enough to illustrate the hypocrisy behind these "law and order" proclamations, January 6 should've been. The former President's smears against the validity of the 2020 election culminated in a mob of pro-Trump extremists storming the United States Capitol, shattering windows, ransacking offices, beating police officers, smearing excrement across the walls, and threatening the lives of any lawmaker they deemed disloyal to Trump.
It would be hours before Trump finally told his supporters to vacate the Capitol, adding that he "loved" them and that they were "very special."
In comments at a recent rally, Trump confirmed he's willing to pardon some of the rioters if reelected again in 2024, though he has yet to announce whether he'll be running:
“If I run and I win, we will treat those people from January 6 fairly. We will treat them fairly, and if it requires pardons, we will give them pardons because they are being treated so unfairly.”
News broke shortly after that Trump had, in fact, considered blanket pardons of January 6 rioters, despite graphic footage of the insurrectionists using chemical irritants against police officers, crushing them in door frames, and calling for the execution of Trump's own Vice President.
Democratic Congressman Eric Swalwell of California was quick to call out this hypocrisy, citing the party's continued defense of Trump and his two impeachment.
Swalwell also claimed that some of the insurrectionists were "cop killers," though this claim is in dispute. Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, one of the officers defending the Capitol that day, was the first officer to die in the aftermath of the riots. The D.C. medical examiner's office ruled his death was due to a "natural" series of artery-clot induced strokes, it conceded "all that transpired played a role in his condition." The assessment that Sicknick's death was natural has sparked debate, given that extreme stress can induce strokes. Forensic pathologist Dr. Cyril Wecht said he was "shocked" and "amazed" at the ruling of a natural death. Sicknick's partner, Sandra Garza (who voted for Trump), personally holds Trump accountable for Sicknick's death.
What's more, two Capitol Police officers committed suicide within a month after the insurrection, and two more did the same within eight months of the attack. The youngest was 26. Multiple Capitol officers have since described the trauma brought about by Trump's insurrection.
And though no one has been charged with murder, especially of police, video and testimony indicates that numerous rioters had every intention of killing police officers, with one such officer testifying they shouted "kill him with his own gun."
Social media users stood by Swalwell's rebuke.
But Swalwell wasn't the only one to point out this hypocrisy.