Joplin resident recounts experience in Washington during riot

Southwest Missouri Democrats weigh in on situation as well

JOPLIN, Mo./WASHINGTON, D.C. – A Joplin resident was present at the Capitol when the riot broke out.  Abbie Covington, who led the recall effort against the Joplin City Council, went to Washington, D.C. when she heard of a protest planned at the Capitol. We spoke with Covington and with the Southwest Missouri Democrats.

What you are looking at is video taken by Joplin resident Abbie Covington Wednesday at our nation’s capital. Covington said she heard a protest of the electoral college results was planned and she decided to join a small group going up. “We just said we’ve got to go to our nation’s capital and petition our leaders for a redress of grievances, let them know, nobody went with any intentions to cause any trouble or hurt anybody at all.”

Covington says she uses the term ‘protest’ because she says that’s what it was, when it started. But then, things began to change. Krista Stark with the Southwest Missouri Democrats says she’s been a part of many protests, and what happened Wednesday, was anything but. “They can say a lot of things about how they just intended this to be a protest, but, storming the Capitol, tearing down the flag from Nancy Pelosi’s office, and crumpling it up on her desk, is sedition, it’s not a protest.”

Stark says she doesn’t condone what happened Wednesday nor could she condone even her own party doing something similar. Covington says she doesn’t think it’s fair how members of the crowd are being portrayed, since the majority of them never entered the Capitol building. “You can see it’s just regular people, they’re painting as extremists, they’re painting us as white supremacists, when it was people of every, it was people of every ethnic background there, we had people of every religion, you know, this was just your normal, average, regular American using their, exercising their right, our right, to petition our government.”

Stark says she has no problem with a protest, she says it’s an important First Amendment right, but she has a problem with Wednesday’s Capitol storming. “I can tell you I have never seen a protest, or participated in a protest that looked like that, nor would I participate in promoting something that, many of us feel, was intentioned to turn into that in the first place.”

Covington says she did not enter the Capitol building, she remained outside in the crowd.