As one of former President Donald Trump's most vocal enablers in Congress, Representative Mo Brooks (R-AL) repeatedly amplified and encouraged Trump's lies that the 2020 election was "stolen" by Democrats engaging in widespread election fraud.
Just before a mob of pro-Trump extremists stormed the United States Capitol on January 6, Brooks spoke at a "Save America" rally—the same rally in which Trump encouraged his supporters to march to the Capitol and "fight" for him.
Brooks told the crowd in his speech at the Ellipse outside the White House:
"Today is the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass."
Brooks was later sued by Democratic Congressman Eric Swalwell of California. The civil suit accuses Brooks—along with Trump, Donald Trump Jr., and Rudy Giuliani—of inciting the insurrection. For weeks, Brooks dodged being served the lawsuit in person, prompting Swalwell to hire a private investigator to track him down.
Now, in a new court filing, Brooks argues that he only gave the speech because the White House asked him to.
SIX MONTHS AGO this morning. Rep Mo Brooks (R-AL) gives "Today is the day American patriots start taking down name… https://t.co/CywtzRhKxH— Scott MacFarlane (@Scott MacFarlane) 1625567988.0
Brooks argues in the filing that he
"only gave an Ellipse Speech because the White House asked him to, in his capacity as a United States Congressman, speak at the Ellipse Rally. But for the White House request, Brooks would not have appeared at the Ellipse Rally."
The filing goes on to parrot Trump's lies that the 2020 election saw massive irregularities indicating that President Joe Biden isn't the legitimate winner of the election—lies that have been constantly refuted by election officials in swing states Trump lost, the highest levels of federal and state courts, and Trump's own Attorney General.
Brooks' latest defense was mocked across the internet.
Mo Brooks says it's not his fault because the WH asked him to give the speech. Sounds like the guy in prison who's… https://t.co/xpWukQrn57— T.T. (@T.T.) 1625669839.0
Lol lol Now he's throwing the traitor in chief under the bus for a change. https://t.co/yUskRq3Rvg— Roger Rabbit (@Roger Rabbit) 1625638481.0
@MacFarlaneNews Really? So his defense is “ Donnie made me do it”?— Meidas Auntie (@Meidas Auntie) 1625576522.0
Funny, when his constituents ask him to do something, he wont!!! https://t.co/8fOBHpxA4T— mj (@mj) 1625656871.0
Mo' evidence for insurrection. https://t.co/y6cV9HIyCj— Kate Robinson (@Kate Robinson) 1625610475.0
They chastised him for acting like he didn't have a choice in the matter.
@MoBrooks Do you always do things people ask you to do, even if the task is against America? You are dangerous & un… https://t.co/xFxuQvqLRl— Lynn Ragland (@Lynn Ragland) 1625610494.0
I don't give a flip what he was asked to do. He had the right to refuse. Charge him. https://t.co/z3X0YKH55z— Sunray(e) Continues to Resist the GQP (@Sunray(e) Continues to Resist the GQP) 1625614442.0
@MacFarlaneNews "Would you walk off a cliff if they told you to do it, Mo?" - Me, a mom— Alison DeLuca (@Alison DeLuca) 1625569764.0
It remains to be seen how Brooks' argument will hold up in court.