WALSH: So we had, unfortunately, the President of the United States, in my opinion, and I think everybody's opinion, incite a riot, and possibly incite insurrection.  So many of the people that were siding with our President have stepped away now and said, 'You know what?  This is just too far.  We've just gone too far at this point.'

TASCA: Joe, we've had the president of the National Manufacturers Association come out and say that Mike Pence should invoke the 25th Amendment and start the proceedings to get the President removed from office.  What're your thoughts on that?

WALSH: I would agree with that.  Obviously, as an American citizen, I'm not a fan of anything on the world stage of our politics and dirty laundry and things like that.  I think most Americans would feel the same way.  

However, I think we really need to think about this very clearly.  The man has been banned from putting tweets out.  He has been banned from Facebook.  But he still has access to nuclear codes.  If that is not concerning to anyone, then I've got to believe they're not thinking clearly.

TASCA: Joe, are you surprised it's come to this?  When you see those scenes in Washington DC, is that something you could've imagined in your wildest dreams?

WALSH: No, I think we could always imagine how those things could happen.  You know, I'd spoken to my wife about this just a few days ago when we anticipated there would be some violence not only at the confirmation of President-elect Biden, but also perhaps on Inauguration Day and things like that by people who are just not willing to accept the facts.

Did I ever think they would smash windows and vandalize offices inside the Capitol?  No, I did not.  Did I ever think that would be basically allowed as a direct comparison to Black Lives Matter or any other protesters who have been out there where people have been hit with firehoses or rubber bullets?  Why people did not put that insurrection down, I don't know.

That's why I think it wouldn't have happened, because it would've been stopped at the door.  But it wasn't.  It was kind of fascinating to me and concerning, obviously.  

TASCA: Joe, where do we go from here?  So many people make this cliched statement that we've never been more divided.  Do you think that yesterday's events were the culmination of that division?

WALSH: I think what you saw was a repeated fanning of the flames by the President of the United States.  The people who stormed the Capitol, and I certainly don't give them any grace on that, but they felt they were doing the work they were supposed to do.  They were told this is what we need you to do and they did it.  

Do I think that is going to expand division in this country?  No, I do not.  Even with my own members.  We certainly have Trump supporters in the union.  There's no doubt about that.  Many of them came back to the side of the working people because of the broken promises of the Trump administration of what he was going to do for labor.  But they have really stepped away now.  There's very few of them now that want any thought with President Trump.

It is very clear that President-elect Biden is a uniter.  He has been that way his whole career.  Whether people care for him or (not) is irrelevant.  But the vast majority of working people who make America move every minute of every day will be helped by the Biden policies that he will put forth.  I think that will end a great deal of the division in this country.

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Joe Tasca can be reached at jtasca@ripr.org