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Three Years Later, Insurrection Sows Division Amongst Partisan Lines, Fuels Election Denial Laws

RALEIGH, N.C. (01.06.24) — Today marks three years since a violent, extremist mob stormed the nation’s capitol to prevent the peaceful transfer of executive power. It remains a dark day in recent American democracy, plagued by falsehoods of election fraud and denial, entwined in white supremacy, and led by far-right militias. It also sparked a rapid anti-voter movement, leading to hundreds of laws being passed across the country significantly changing access to the ballot and fundamental voter freedoms.

As voters face another historic election this fall, many view the insurrection as a bitter point of contention divided along partisan lines. According to a new Washington Post-University of Maryland poll, twenty-five percent of Americans say it is “probably” or “definitely” true that the FBI instigated the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. This false conception has spread like wildfire amongst certain political circles and media channels that propel election denial, even though federal law enforcement has repeatedly denied the claim.

The federal court in the District of Columbia continues to hold hearings and trials for extremists who participated in the violent attack. The U.S. Department of Justice released a capital breach case report last month stating more than 1,237 people involved in January 6 have been charged, with more than 700 defendants pleading guilty to various charges and 450 people sentenced to prison. It is the most significant criminal investigation in American history.

Cheryl Carter, Co-Executive Director at Democracy North Carolina, hopes voters will see through the divisive tactics fueled by election deniers and steer into protecting democratic institutions, stating, “January 6, 2021, is a day many voters and Americans across the country will never forget. It was a moment in time when violent white supremacy was on public display, uplifted, and shepherded by some of the most extremist groups in history. As we continue to witness federal and state prosecutions pile up for those involved, the devastating crimes that day committed will not go without restitution.

Even as our state legislature rolls back decades of voter freedoms and access to the ballot, most recently with the passage of Senate Bills 747 and 749, our commitment to upholding the rights of millions of North Carolinians remains at the forefront of our mission. This tragic anniversary serves as a reminder and a pathway to build our strongest coalition of people willing to defend democracy with fervent compassion and drive. The people will prevail and our democracy will remain protected in 2024 and beyond.”


Democracy North Carolina is a statewide nonpartisan organization that uses research, organizing, and advocacy to strengthen democratic structures, build power among disenfranchised communities, and inspire confidence in a transformed political process that works for all.