VP-elect Harris compares Capitol riots to 2017 ‘Unite the Right’ rally

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Vice President-elect Kamala Harris said Thursday that last week's assault on the U.S. Capitol reminded her of the 2017 "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Va.

In an interview on NPR, the former Democratic California senator said photographs of rioters carrying the Confederate flag and wearing "Camp Auschwitz" hoodies reminded her of images taken during the white nationalist demonstrations that eventually turned deadly.

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"It was the same thing that went through my mind when I saw Charlottesville," said Harris. "I mean, it's the same thing that went through my mind when I saw a picture of Emmett Till."

A supporter of President Trump holds a Confederate flag outside the Senate Chamber during a siege of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

A supporter of President Trump holds a Confederate flag outside the Senate Chamber during a siege of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images) (Getty Images)

"Sadly, it is not the first time I have seen a demonstration like what you are describing in the history of our country," Harris said. "And it is — it is a reminder that we still have a lot of work to do."

The Jan. 6 siege of the Capitol left five dead, including 42-year-old Capitol Police officer Brian D. Sicknick and 35-year-old U.S. Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt, one of the protestors.

Washington, D.C., U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin told reporters on Tuesday that more than 70 people have been charged and at least 170 cases have been opened.

In addition, the FBI — which has issued multiple calls for help with identifying suspects — has received more than 100,000 tips, according to FBI Washington Field Office head Steven D’Antuono.

In a tweet on Thursday, D'Antuono's office announced the arrest of Delaware resident Kevin Seefried — identified as the individual shown carrying the Confederate flag through the Capitol.

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"It was horrific," Harris continued.

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"It was a day that wherein we witnessed an assault on America's democracy, a day when we witnessed the terror that a few can wreak on so many," she noted. "And it was probably, you know, it will be in history recorded as one of the worst days in terms of an attack on the integrity of our democracy."

"I think that we cannot yield to those who would try and make us afraid of who we are," Harris concluded. "We are, for all of our faults and imperfections, we are a nation that was founded on very important principles and guided by extremely important ideals. And we cannot abandon that."

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