With former President Donald Trump's historic second impeachment trial set to begin next week, Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-Mich. 14th. District) said she wants Americans to understand just how real the threat against the government and its elected officials was on the day of the Capitol insurrection.
"I'm from Detroit. I'm a strong Black woman. I understand survival. But to have the police come in, lock the doors, and tell us to seek shelter, then to tell us to put on gas masks, and then to hear this mob just banging on the door and yelling, and I'm sitting there going 'Oh my god, am I going to die today?'" she told Cheddar.
The congresswoman recalled the day of the attack as the building was overrun right before she was set to defend Michigan's electoral votes for President Joe Biden. For Lawrence, not only was living through the experience life-changing but seeing the aftermath on television reinforced her stance on holding Trump accountable.
"If we had not been exited out of that room and they were able to bust through those doors, what was the plan? And people died that day, and so to say, 'Just look over this. Let it go. [Trump's] gone.' No," Lawrence said.
"We have on record a President of the United States assembling and directing an army of people against our government. That is unacceptable and accountability must be had."
It's a similar sentiment among Democrats on the Hill: deal with the insurrectionists and get COVID relief to Americans. However, for Lawrence, she's taking initiatives a bit further in asking to address "disparities in health care," particularly when it comes to Black and brown people.
Now that Biden has assumed his role in the White House, Lawrence said she is confident that the issues around inequality in health outcomes will get handled. While Democrats have said they would like a bipartisan agreement on relief efforts, Lawrence noted that the party will not wait for Republicans to get on board.
"I know they talk about the collaboration and working together, but we're in a crisis," she said. "We will get relief to the people, and we are not going to be held hostage and not respond to the cry from the communities to get this country back on track."