- The Washington Times - Monday, June 14, 2021

President Biden said Monday that he’s assured NATO allies that the Republican party is “vastly diminished,” and they need not fear a repeat of the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

“The Republican Party is vastly diminished in numbers, the leadership of the Republican Party is fractured, and the Trump wing of the party is the bulk of the party, but it makes up a significant minority of the American people,” he said at a press conference in Brussels.

Speaking after a day of meetings at the NATO summit, Mr. Biden said America’s allies view the U.S. as a “decent, honorable nation.”

“I think that they’ve seen things happen as we have that shocked and surprised them, but I think they believe, like I do, that the American people are not going to sustain that kind of behavior,” he continued.

Mr. Biden called the Jan. 6 assault a “shock and surprise,” adding that the chaos stemmed from President Trump’s “phony populism.” He also took a swipe at Republican senators who resisted a bipartisan, independent commission to investigate the Capitol riot.

“It is disappointing that so many of my former colleagues in the Senate, who I know know better, have been reluctant to take on an investigation because they are worried about being primaried,” he said in a press briefing in Brussels.

Senate Republicans last month successfully blocked bipartisan legislation to establish a commission to probe the Capitol attack.

Mr. Trump had pushed Republicans to oppose the measure, arguing that the probe would engage in a partisan fishing expedition designed to blame the GOP. Some Republicans had also expressed concern that the commission’s report would be released ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.

Thousands of Trump supporters breached the Capitol during the attack in a bid to stop Congress from certifying Mr. Biden‘s election victory. Nearly 500 people have been charged with a federal crime arising from their alleged actions during the riot.

Republican National Committee spokesperson Emma Vaughn, pointed to recent GOP victories at the state level — including flipping the mayoral seat in McAllen, Texas, as evidence the party remains strong in America. 

“Joe Biden’s comments about the GOP are lies and his dismissal of the 74 million Americans who voted Republican in November 2020, which flipped 15 seats in the House, underscores his failure to unite and lead our country,” she said in a statement.

“Despite Biden’s failures, Republicans are delivering much-needed success in the states through commonsense, conservative leadership. Our winning message is continuing to resonate with Americans, and we are united in our efforts to take back the House and Senate in 2022,” Ms. Vaughn wrote. 

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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