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Del Rio was comparing the riot on Jan. 6, 2021, at the U.S. Capitol with racial justice protests following the killing of George Floyd by police.
Extensive evidence shows that the crowd of Trump supporters broke down barricades, attacked police, scaled walls, shattered windows and broke into offices.
Washington Commanders defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio joined a chorus of denial and deflection about the U.S. Capitol attack on Jan. 6, 2021, when he dismissed the assault as a "dust-up."
In the 18 months since the attack, some conservatives have downplayed the riot as nothing more than a protest or even a "normal tourist visit." PolitiFact named these claims the 2021 Lie of the Year.
Del Rio’s claim came a day before the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack prepared to hold its first hearing of the summer.
Reporters covering the NFL team asked Del Rio after practice about a recent tweet he made that questioned why racial justice protests over the 2020 death of George Floyd were "never discussed but this is???"
Del Rio doubled down. "Let’s get right down to it. What did I ask, a simple question," Del Rio said in the June 8 interview.
"Why are we not looking into those things? I can realistically look at it. I can see the images on T.V. People’s livelihoods are being destroyed. Businesses are being burned down. No problem. And then we have a dust-up at the Capitol. Nothing burned down, and we’re gonna make that a major deal. I just think, it’s two standards. And if we apply the same standard and we are going to be reasonable with each other, let’s have a discussion."
His claim that the events that unfolded at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, amounted to "a dust-up" is disproven by evidence of violence described in hundreds of court filings against participants that day, hours of video footage, and testimony from police and other witnesses who were overtaken by rioters and sustained injuries.
The summer protests that swept across the country in the wake of Floyd’s death resulted in over 13,500 arrests, according to the Prosecution Project.
Del Rio apologized for the "dust-up" comment later in the day, calling his remark "irresponsible and negligent." A spokesperson for the Commanders told PolitiFact that the team had no further comment.
Here are some of the things that rioters did on Jan. 6, 2021: They scaled walls, forced their way through barricades and past law enforcement to breach the building. They smashed windows and broke doors. They ransacked offices. They chanted "Hang Mike Pence!" They attacked police officers. They caused the House and Senate to shut down for several hours on the day they were certifying the presidential election.
Some of the rioters grabbed a police officer, dragged him and struck him in the head and body with various objects, according to charging documents. Another rioter used a metal flagpole to attack a police officer.
Over 850 people across the U.S. face charges in the riot that include obstruction, assault, violence with a deadly weapon and destruction and theft of government property.
Del Rio dismissed the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 as a "dust-up."
It was much more than that. Extensive evidence shows that the crowd of Trump supporters broke down barricades, attacked police, scaled walls, shattered windows and broke into offices in a violent effort to disrupt the transition of presidential power.
We rate this claim False.
RELATED: PolitiFact’s Jan. 6 coverage
Twitter post, June 8, 2022
Twitter, Jack Del Rio post, June 6, 2022
Twitter, Jack Del Rio post, June 8, 2022
PolitiFact, The ridiculous claim that those at the Capitol Jan. 6 resembled a 'normal tourist visit', May 13, 2021
PolitiFact, The 2021 Lie of the Year: Lies about the Jan. 6 Capitol attack and its significance, Dec. 15, 2021
PolitiFact, Tucker Carlson’s ‘Patriot Purge’ film on Jan. 6 is full of falsehoods, conspiracy theories, Nov. 5, 2021
Washington Post, Commanders coordinator Jack Del Rio calls Jan. 6 insurrection a ‘dust-up’, June 8, 2022
Email interview with Sean Debarbieri, director of football communications for the Washington Commanders, June 9, 2022
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