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Cincinnati Council Condemns Capitol Insurrection

Supporters of President Donald Trump climb the West wall of the the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington.
Supporters of President Donald Trump climb the West wall of the the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington.

Cincinnati City Council Friday unanimously approved a resolution condemning the actions of pro-Trump supporters this week who stormed the U.S. Capitol, wreaking havoc, causing terror and leading to at least five deaths.

The resolution denounces the "the insurrection and violence that occurred at the Capitol in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021" and calls "for the peaceful transition of power to the duly elected 46th president of the United States of America Joseph R. Biden, Jr. on January 20, 2021," something President Donald Trump has since said he will to do

It was brought forward by council members Jan-Michele Lemon Kearney and Wendell Young. The mayor and all nine council members offered comments decrying the actions before voting. Such resolutions are often ceremonial in nature and beyond the scope of council; in the past members have objected to such documents because they don't pertain to the business of council.

"As an elected body in this city, I believe it is our responsibility to speak for the people that put us here," Young said. "I believe there are many Cincinnatians whose outrage is far beyond any that could be manifested in this room about what has happened. I believe as their representatives it is our responsibility to give voice to those concerns also."

Council Member Kearney added she was "saddened and upset by what happened but very pleased that many of us are coming together to say 'This is not the way we do things in the United States of America.' "

Vice Mayor Christopher Smitherman and Interim Council Member Steve Goodin both addressed the notion of passing the resolution despite it being beyond the council's purview.

"To the folks who have reached out to me and said that we have no business as City Council members weighing in on a national matter like this, there are some instances in which I would agree," Goodin explained. "This is not one of those days. What happens in Washington matters here very much. We are, as public officials, both part of the problem and part of the solution."

Smitherman echoed those sentiments, adding "it's one of those moments in time that I think people and citizens will say 'Where were you when it happened?' "

The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio Dave DeVillers says his office and the FBI are actively looking for and investigating Ohioans who participated in the attack on the Capitol. Council Member Betsy Sunderman encouraged anyone with information to report it. If you feel uncomfortable doing so, she said, you can contact her office for assistance alerting law enforcement.

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Tana Weingartner earned a bachelor's degree in communication from the University of Cincinnati and a master's degree in mass communication from Miami University. Most recently, she served as news and public affairs producer with WMUB-FM. Ms. Weingartner has earned numerous awards for her reporting, including several Best Reporter awards from the Associated Press and the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and a regional Murrow Award. She served on the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters Board of Directors from 2007 - 2009.