An anti-LGBTQ lawmaker from Arkansas said he barricaded and armed himself with a Civil War-era sword during the U.S. Capitol siege on January 6.
The New York Times said Republican Representative Bruce Westerman fled to House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's office when the MAGA mob breached the Capitol.
The insurrectionists were encouraged by former President Donald Trump's orders to take back the country after he repeatedly spread false claims of a rigged election.
When the rioters battered their way into the building, McCarthy was led from his office by his security team to a safer location.
But Westerman was somehow left behind to fend for himself.
Armed with a civil war sword, Bruce Westerman (R-AR) crouched on a commode, ready for a last stand because the lost… https://t.co/XQttJnXnu8— Daily Sound and Fury (@Daily Sound and Fury)1619647987.0
An excerpt from the New York Times article read:
"After the House chamber was evacuated on Jan. 6, Mr. McCarthy retreated to his Capitol office with a colleague, Representative Bruce Westerman, Republican of Arkansas."
"When it became evident the rioters were breaking in, Mr. McCarthy's security detail insisted he leave."
"But Mr. Westerman was left behind in Mr. McCarthy's inner work area, he said in a recent interview."
"For protection, Mr. Westerman said he commandeered a Civil War sword from an office display, barricaded himself in Mr. McCarthy's private bathroom and waited out the siege while crouched on the toilet."
"For protection, Mr. Westerman said he commandeered a Civil War sword from an office display, barricaded himself in… https://t.co/3ClPYJ8lYp— Maddow Blog (@Maddow Blog)1619486345.0
While allegedly perched atop the toilet so as not to have his feet visible from under the stall door, Westerman tweeted:
"Americans will always disagree on politics, but violently storming our nation's Capitol is absolutely unacceptable."
"People are getting hurt. Enough."
Americans will always disagree on politics, but violently storming our nation’s Capitol is absolutely unacceptable.… https://t.co/ArD6TTFUKe— Rep. Bruce Westerman (@Rep. Bruce Westerman)1609963895.0
Queerty noted how the Republican politician is notorious for his antigay views—including his belief LGBTQ people should not be entitled to having nondiscrimination protections.
He called the Obama Administration's directive allowing transgender students in schools to use the bathroom of their gender identity "a move that promotes perversion."
Westerman is also opposed to the Equality Act—the legislation that bans discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation and gender identity—and strongly believes a marriage should only be between a cisgender man and a cisgender woman.
He also thinks Arkansas should not allow same-sex couples to form civil unions as an alternative to marriage.
Twitter ruthlessly mocked Westerman for his armed disappearing act inside a toilet stall.
Republican Congressman Bruce Westerman broke an antique Civil War sword out of a display case and clutched it with… https://t.co/lwA6ahyq3o— Andrew Hibbard (@Andrew Hibbard)1619496784.0
@RepWesterman So is this the sword you used on the shitter January 6th? https://t.co/GviMR2FO6w— Jordan Steward (@Jordan Steward)1619550805.0
Bruce Westerman cowers behind a toilet with an ornament. Arkansans see nothing new here. 🤷 #wtpBLUE #DemVoice1… https://t.co/CckPePRdvI— Dee Osborne (@Dee Osborne)1619540965.0
He had a sword!! Wth I was looking for the sharpest pen to jab an insurgent in the eye. https://t.co/eA4Z0lsVCS— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego)1619549988.0
Social media users were also quick to point out his complicity in the Capitol siege.
@RepWesterman You are responsible for this. You spread the lies that Trump won the election. He didn't.— B. Justice (@B. Justice)1609964052.0
@RepWesterman You enabled this. You gave people false hope and you should be deeply ashamed.— Philip Martin (@Philip Martin)1609964951.0
@RepWesterman Blood is on your hands— Right Matters (@Right Matters)1609965116.0
@RepWesterman you supported every bit of it. you are liable. you should resign. you’re a disgrace to the state of Arkansas.— hannah grace kelly (@hannah grace kelly)1609974712.0
@RepWesterman @RepWesterman this insurrection is a direct result of your seditious support of the bogus Texas lawsu… https://t.co/gXE5jWAlZ7— Michael Stedman (@Michael Stedman)1609975302.0
@RepWesterman @KATVChrisMay Traitor— Jim Ross (@Jim Ross)1609964342.0
The storming of the Capitol was an attempt by Trump supporters—including White supremacists, White nationalists and QAnon adherents—to interfere with Congress certifying Joe Biden's Electoral College win.
More than 140 people were injured during the riot and five people lost their lives as a result—including a Capitol Police officer.