Washington state business leaders condemn U.S. Capitol attack but stop short of calling for Trump’s ouster

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Seattle skyline, cloudy sky, water
By Paul Roberts

Several Washington state business leaders and groups condemned Wednesday’s assault on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump — though none appeared to call for his removal or resignation.

“Yesterday’s assault on our democracy, democratic principles, elected leaders and their staff, and the halls of government, was disgusting, shameful and will be a permanent stain on the history of our country,” said Jon Scholes, president and CEO of the Downtown Seattle Association, in a statement Thursday.

“The actions by domestic terrorists yesterday go against everything our country stands for,” added Anthony Anton, president and CEO of the Washington Hospitality Association.

Rachel Smith, the new Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce CEO, said in a statement the “insurrection at the Capitol Building was a heartbreaking, horrifying, and dishonorable attack on our democracy and the most sacred of democratic actions — voting and fair elections.”

“We are appalled by the scenes we are witnessing at the US Capitol today and the unprecedented violence and assault that has been launched against our seat of Government and our democratic representatives,” said Bill Malley, managing partner at the Seattle-based law firm Perkins Coie, in an emailed statement.

Amazon did not respond to questions about Wednesday’s riots or how the company would respond if the president refused to leave office Jan. 20.

However, Amazon-owned streaming service Twitch suspended the Trump campaign’s account, which the campaign has used largely to broadcast videos and livestreams of rallies at which Trump has repeated many of the incendiary falsehoods that sparked Wednesday’s insurrection.

Still, no state business leaders or business organizations appear to have gone as far as Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, who accused Trump of sedition and recommended his ouster.

In a statement Wednesday, Timmons, a Republican, said Trump “incited violence in an attempt to retain power,” and urged Vice President Mike Pence to “seriously consider working with the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment,” which allows for the removal of the president.

Asked for Smith’s response to Timmons’ statement, a Microsoft spokesperson referred a reporter to Smith’s tweet.

Seattle Times business reporter Katherine Khashimova Long contributed to this report.