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A Statement on the Events of January 6, 2021

The Montpelier Foundation, the site of the conception of the United States Constitution, condemns what transpired in Washington on January 6. The attack on the nation’s capital – on democracy itself – was an attempt to tear down representative and Constitutional government. The attempt failed. But the damage has been done. Saddened by the loss of life and those injured, we pray for them, and their families.

Article II of the Constitution states: “The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted.” The mob that broke into the Capitol disrupted this process in an effort to block the peoples’ vote and prevent the peaceful transfer of the power the Constitution requires.

Leadership is wholly predicated on the character of the individual(s). In this case, members of the United States Senate and House of Representatives persevered and upheld the Constitution and for this we offer thanks. 

In the War of 1812, James Madison was the only President to see the U.S. Capitol desecrated, until this week. Near the end of his life, Madison wrote a statement that our country needs to hear, now more than ever: “The advice nearest to my heart and deepest in my convictions is that the Union of the States be cherished & perpetuated. Let the open enemy to it be regarded as a Pandora with her box opened, and the disguised one, as the Serpent creeping with his deadly wiles into Paradise.” 

At this difficult time for our nation, we would be wise to consider Madison’s wisdom and vision for our nation and seek to find some comfort and hope in the Constitution he helped to create.