The Atlantic

How Joe Biden Watched the Capitol Assault

It was a day of chaos in Washington, D.C. But in Wilmington, Delaware, President-elect Joe Biden pulsed with quiet anger.
Source: Artur Gabdrahmanov / Sputnik / AP

WILMINGTON, Del.—What, exactly, is Joe Biden supposed to do with this? What is he supposed to say?

Today in Washington, D.C., a mob urged on by President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol. Trump’s decisions led to police tear-gassing protesters in front of the White House in June. His decisions led to the same outcome in the Capitol Rotunda today, and Vice President Mike Pence and Vice President–elect Kamala Harris were rushed away.

But there was neither excitement nor harassment on the streets of Wilmington today. Secret Service agents milled about, but none of them were in riot gear. There were no busloads of white nationalists or conspiracy theorists wandering around outside, no showdowns with police. No buildings needed to be evacuated for safety. No one was accosted. No property was stolen or damaged.

Before he came out to speak, the president-elect watched the TV footage with a

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