US envoy expresses ‘shock, sadness, dismay’

UNITED States Ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago Joseph Mondello, in a Facebook statement on Thursday, welcomed the approval of Joe Biden as next US President by the US Congress, saying his country was better than the protests which had disrupted the approval process on Wednesday.

Supporters of President Trump invaded the Capitol to try to stop the count of electoral college votes in an election they believed had been rigged, but under Vice President Mike Pence the legislators later resumed and confirmed Biden.

Mondello wrote, “On January 6, we watched with shock, sadness, and dismay the deadly scenes of unrest at the US Capitol Building in Washington DC.”

He said individuals had abused their first amendment right to protest peacefully under the US Constitution, threatening to obstruct the certification of electoral college votes, while putting elected officials, federal employees, Capitol staff, and law enforcement officers in harm’s way.

“Thankfully, despite yesterday’s horrific events, the US Congress and Vice President Pence dutifully fulfilled their constitutional responsibilities and certified the electoral votes to confirm that President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris will be the next President and Vice President of the US.”

Mondello said this latter showed a determination to get democracy right and to achieve a more perfect union.

“It shows our resolve to display the true essence of who we are as Americans.” He said US democracy has been tested in the past, and it will be tested in the future.

“Nevertheless, we should not be defined by these moments. Instead, we should be defined by how we bounce back.

“As so many of our friends, allies, and colleagues around the world have expressed in the wake of this incident, America is better than what we witnessed yesterday.”

Mondello expressed confidence and full support for the embassy’s work in TT.

“The values we espouse in the promotion of democracy, security, human rights, good governance, trade and investment, and health remain as true as ever.

“Thank you to those who have supported us and sent their wishes of encouragement, resolve, and good faith in this difficult time. Brighter days are surely ahead.”

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