Rep Brian Fitzpatrick only Republican to attend Democrat event marking Capitol riot anniversary

US Democratic Representative of New York, Hakeem Jeffries (R), and a bipartisan group of lawmakers observe a moment of silence on the east front steps of the US Capitol to honor the officers who lost their lives in the attack on the Capitol, on the second anniversary of the January 6, 2021 attack in Washington, DC, on January 6, 2023. (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP via Getty Images) (AFP via Getty Images)
US Democratic Representative of New York, Hakeem Jeffries (R), and a bipartisan group of lawmakers observe a moment of silence on the east front steps of the US Capitol to honor the officers who lost their lives in the attack on the Capitol, on the second anniversary of the January 6, 2021 attack in Washington, DC, on January 6, 2023. (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP via Getty Images) (AFP via Getty Images)

Democrats met on the steps of the Capitol to mark the second anniversary of the deadly Capitol riot in 2021. The families of police officers killed and injured in the event were also on hand, as was only a single Republican lawmaker.

Republican Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania was reportedly the only Republican who attended the Capitol riot remembrance gathering on Friday.

Will Steakin, an ABC News correspondent, spoke with Mr Fitzpatrick about the riot.

"There’s a lot of terrible emotions," he said. "A terrible day that we can never let happen again."

Mr Fitzpatrick told Steakin that he also lost his brother and predecessor, Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick, two years ago to the day.

“I lost my brother on this day, the year before," he told the reporter. "Had the insurrection happen on the one year anniversary. So a lot of emotions.”

According to the Associated Press, this year’s memorial was largely focused on the law enforcement officers who protected the Capitol and the lawmakers the day of the attack and on the families of police officers who died in the wake of the riot.

House Reps Hakeem Jeffries and Nancy Pelosi both spoke during the ceremony.

Mr Jeffries said 140 police officers were injured the day of the riot, and that “many more will forever be scarred by the bloodthirsty violence of the insurrectionist mob. We stand here today with our democracy intact because of those officers.”

At the same time that Democrats were marking the anniversary of an insurrection, Republicans were busy trying to figure out who would lead them in the House. It has been four days since Republicans began casting votes to select the next Speaker of the House, and since then no candidate — including nominees like Congressman Jim Jordan and former President Donald Trump — has managed to secure the needed votes to ascend to the Speaker’s seat.

Congressman Kevin McCarthy is the first speaker to lose his party’s vote in 100 years.

Elsewhere in Washington DC, about twenty MAGA protesters demonstrated outside the US Supreme Court to mark the second anniversary of the Capitol riot.

According to The Daily Beast’s Will Sommer, that protest was apparently quickly derailed by a pair of counter-protesters with Antifa signs and a megaphone.