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At Least 13 Republicans Who Participated In Jan. 6 Are Running For Office Next Week

Many more people who were a part of the insurrection will be on the ballot in 2022.

Last updated on November 1, 2021, at 2:58 p.m. ET

Posted on October 28, 2021, at 2:46 p.m. ET

Hunterdon County; Mansfield City Council; Getty Images (2); SUV GOP via YouTube; Courtesy Philip Andrew Hamilton For Virginia Delegate; Marie March for Delegate via Facebook; Chris Pedota / NorthJersey.com via Reuters

Top row from left: Susan Soloway, Charles Ausburger, Dave LaRock, Maureen Brody. Bottom row: Philip Hamilton, John McGuire, Marie March, Edward Durfee Jr.

At least thirteen Republicans who came to Washington for Jan. 6 will be on the ballot next week, less than a year after trying to overthrow the last election.

The candidates include state legislators running for reelection, as well as local officials and candidates seeking statehouse seats. The races are concentrated in New Jersey and Virginia, which hold local off-year elections. Election Day is Tuesday.

While ten of these candidates went to the Capitol on Jan. 6, all have either denied entering the building or not spoken about their involvement. None has been charged for their activities on Jan. 6.

The other three candidates have said they solely attended the “Stop the Steal” rally that preceded the insurrection and did not go to the Capitol. But that rally was explicitly premised on attempting to overturn the 2020 election. And whatever law enforcement’s preparation for the day, the potential for violence was clear, with some Trump supporters openly planning for it online. At the rally itself, Trump told his supporters to “fight like hell” and go to the Capitol, and several other speakers encouraged rallygoers not to accept the election results and to fight.

Did we miss a 2021 candidate who was in Washington on Jan. 6? Contact this reporter at sarah.mimms@buzzfeed.com, or see other ways to send tips here.

While these thirteen candidates will be on the ballot on Tuesday, far more will run for office next year, during the regular two-year election cycle taking place across the country. The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee has been tracking every state legislator who played a role in Jan. 6. At least 21 state lawmakers attended the rally or march in DC that day, many of whom will be up for reelection in 2022. The only one who was charged with actually entering the Capitol, then–West Virginia delegate Derrick Evans, has pleaded not guilty and resigned.

The DLCC is also tracking state legislators who signed letters or legal briefs to overturn the election results and those who spread lies about the election, bringing their total to nearly 600 names. For the purposes of this story, BuzzFeed News is including only candidates seeking elected office next Tuesday who were in Washington for the rally or march on Jan. 6.

Bill O’Leary / The Washington Post via Getty Images

Virginia state Del. Dave LaRock on Feb. 20, 2019, in Richmond, Virginia

Virginia Del. Dave LaRock

Running for reelection to the Virginia House of Delegates

LaRock went to Washington on Jan. 6 for the Stop the Steal rally and marched to the Capitol, though it’s unclear how close he got. He told the Loudon Times-Mirror, "I don't know what constitutes the Capitol grounds, but I certainly didn't enter the Capitol.” Facing calls for his resignation days later, he condemned the violence at the Capitol, saying he left when he saw people scaling the building, but he also largely and baselessly blamed the violence on “antifa” and “paid provocateurs.” LaRock responded to the criticism of his participation in the Jan. 6 rally by saying his critics should instead focus on “the needs of the colored community,” leading Virginia’s Democratic House Speaker to take away one of his committee assignments. LaRock has represented District 33 since 2014 and has won handily since then, but his opponent Democrat Paul Siker is well funded; the Virginia Public Access Project rates the seat as “leans Republican.”

Bill Clark / CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Del. John McGuire

Virginia Del. John McGuire

Running for reelection to the Virginia House of Delegates

Unlike many of the candidates on the list, McGuire didn’t seem to post about his activities on Jan. 6 at the time. In fact, he wasn’t known to have been there at all until he told the Washington Post in late July that he had attended the Stop the Steal rally. McGuire, like the others on this list, said he did not go into the Capitol. He said in a statement that he was “shocked and horrified” to find that people had gone into the building when he saw it on the news at home, though a Post reporter pointed out that his selfie from that day shows him on the Capitol end of the National Mall. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported that a photo unearthed by Sedition Hunters shows McGuire in the crowd near a police barricade as Trump supporters wearing goggles and helmets confronted police. Sedition Hunters told BuzzFeed News the image appeared to place McGuire on the lower west terrace of the Capitol. Neither McGuire’s office nor his campaign responded to requests for comment on the photo or how close he got to the Capitol. District 56, which McGuire has represented since 2018, is heavily Republican, and he was endorsed by the Republican State Leadership Committee, a national GOP organization.

Marie March for Delegate via Facebook

Marie March

Marie March

Running for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates

March has denied going to the Capitol on Jan. 6 but defended her attendance at Trump’s rally earlier that day and said she left during his speech. She told the Daily Beast, “I apologize for nothing, I regret nothing.” March has boasted in campaign materials of the “cancel culture mob” attacking her for attending the rally, or as she put it, “supporting President Trump.” In a since-deleted Facebook post obtained by the Blue Virginia blog, she also warned of a “coming Civil War” between millennials and older Americans in which she is willing to “fight and die” for her family and businesses. March is running in a heavily Republican district, making it very likely that she will win the seat.

Chris Pedota / North Jersey via Reuters

Edward Durfee Jr.

Edward Durfee Jr.

Running for a seat in the New Jersey General Assembly

Durfee, a longtime member of the Oath Keepers, worked security for the right-wing extremist group outside the US Capitol on Jan. 6, wearing an earpiece and an Oath Keepers of New Jersey hat, Gothamist reported. Although several members of the group have been charged in an alleged conspiracy to impede or obstruct Congress’s certification of the 2020 election results, Durfee has not been charged with anything related to his activities that day and previously told BuzzFeed News he did not go into the Capitol. He currently heads the Northvale, New Jersey, Republican Party, and he earned an endorsement from the New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police, but the group pulled its support after discovering his presence at the Capitol. The district is pretty heavily Democratic, however, so he is unlikely to win.

Mansfield City Council

Charles Ausburger

Mansfield, Connecticut, Council Member Charles Ausburger

Running for reelection to the town council

Ausburger was on US Capitol grounds on Jan. 6 and witnessed some of the violence including, he told the town council in January, someone getting hit in the head with a can of tear gas and a woman falling down five flights of stairs, according to the Chronicle. He said he left at about 3 p.m. when his group decided it was “getting out of control,” adding, “We didn’t want to be there amidst the nonsense.” He blamed the violence on a “very small group of people” who “had to go and ruin a nice day”; of the 650 people charged for their activities on Jan. 6, approximately 200 are charged with violence against police. During the same council meeting, Ausburger voted against a resolution decrying the “tragic loss of life” on Jan. 6 and supporting democratic values, saying it painted all of those present at the Capitol with “a broad brush.” Ausburger has served on the city council since 2020.

Hunterdon County

Susan Soloway

Hunterdon County, New Jersey, Board of Commissioners Director Susan Soloway

Running for reelection to the board of commissioners

Soloway attended the Jan. 6 rally and then marched to the Capitol where she took a now-deleted selfie in front of the building. But she told the New Jersey Globe that she did not enter the Capitol and left when she feared for her own safety. Soloway blamed “thugs” who used the rally “as a pretense to attack the U.S. Capitol.” She also took some videos of the rioters trying to enter the Capitol, which she said she turned over to the FBI, according to NJ.com. Soloway told BuzzFeed News that her group was back on their bus by about 4 p.m. She dismissed calls for her resignation in January as attacks on the First Amendment and “on all Americans.” When asked if she believed the election was stolen from Trump, Soloway said in an email that during a Jan. 19 board meeting, she acknowledged that President Joe Biden would be inaugurated the next day and “encouraged all to pray for the new President’s success.” Soloway was first elected to the board of commissioners in 2018 and was unanimously elected as its director the day before the insurrection. She said her reelection this year is about her record in Hunterdon County, which is pretty solidly Republican.

Courtesy Philip Hamilton for Virginia Delegate

Philip Hamilton

Philip Hamilton

Running for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates

Hamilton climbed the steps of the US Capitol on Jan. 6 along with the mob of Trump supporters, according to videos still posted to his YouTube page, in which he shows rioters screaming at cops and climbing over barriers. He told BuzzFeed News that he arrived too late for the Stop the Steal rally, but followed a line of protesters and speeding police vehicles to the Capitol. He said he was “shocked” to learn, through a phone call from his brother, that the Capitol had been breached and got closer to take footage. He said he heard the crowd chanting “hang Mike Pence” and “storm the Capitol” as he approached. He said he did not go into the building and shared some of his video with the FBI. Hamilton’s Facebook page still features two photos of him smiling in front of the Capitol with crowds of Trump supporters mobbing the steps clearly visible in the background. Hamilton said via email that he didn’t vote for Trump in 2020 (he supported Libertarian Jo Jorgensen), but he suggested the possibility of widespread voter fraud and said he supports continued audits of the 2020 election. Hamilton is running to represent District 57, which is heavily Democratic and includes Charlottesville; he proudly boasts on his Twitter account that he is the first Republican to run for the seat in 16 years. He was endorsed by the RSLC.

SUV GOP via YouTube

Maureen Brody

Maureen Brody

Running for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates

Brody was on the west side of the Capitol on Jan. 6 in a group that was hit with tear gas, according to her own post on Gab, a social network popular among the far right. The rest of her activities that day are unclear, and she did not respond to a request for comment from BuzzFeed News about what she did on Jan. 6 and whether she went into the Capitol. Brody is running to represent District 39, which is strongly Democratic, and she has raised about a tenth as much money as Democratic incumbent Vivian Watts. She was also endorsed by the RSLC.

Paul Weaver / SOPA Images / LightRocket via Getty Images

Steve Lynch

Steve Lynch

Running for Northampton County, Pennsylvania, executive

Lynch has said that he attended the Stop the Steal rally and then marched to the Capitol both in local media and on his Facebook page and has said he did not participate in any of the violence. It’s unclear how close he got to the Capitol — and he didn’t respond to a request for comment but he’s said in posts that he did not enter the building, while also suggesting that parts of the insurrection were “staged.” He announced his campaign for Northampton County executive about a month later. Lynch later gained national attention for calling on “20 strong men” to join him in removing school board members over mask mandates. Lynch has continued to cast doubt on the 2020 election and declined to say if he’ll support the results of his own election next week. He’s running in a swing county, which went for Trump in 2016 and Biden in 2020.

Natalie Jangula via YouTube / Via youtube.com

Natalie Jangula (left) attends former president Trump’s speech in Washington DC on January 6, 2021.

Natalie Jangula

Running for a Nampa, Idaho, city council

Jangula went to Washington for the Stop the Steal rally and then joined the crowds heading to the Capitol. On her Facebook page, she has multiple photos from the insurrection, including a selfie of her smiling in front of the Capitol with Trump supporters mobbing the balcony behind her. In an interview with the Idaho Press, Jangula called it “the most patriotic experience” and said, “My intentions were 100% not insurrection by all means.” In another Facebook post, Jangula said she did not go into the US Capitol and included a compilation video of some of her photos and videos from Jan. 6, calling it “the other side of the story.” Nampa city council elections are nonpartisan and Jangula faces one opponent in next week’s election.

Kareem Elgazzar / Reuters

T.J. Honerlaw

Mason, Ohio, City Council member T.J. Honerlaw

Running for reelection to the city council

Honerlaw traveled to Washington for Jan. 6, where he attended Trump’s rally. He told WLWT News that he didn’t witness any of the violence or destruction of that day and called it a “wonderful, peaceful event.” But he also told the news station that he stayed all day and left at 5 p.m., hours after the Capitol was breached. He did not respond to a request for comment. In another interview with Fox 19, Honerlaw said he went to the Capitol and got “pretty darn close to where the door is,” but that he didn’t learn that anyone had broken into the building until later that evening. “Very disheartening, because it was such a great event,” he said. Honerlaw has served on the city council for one term and is running in an eight-person field for four council seats.

Monica Manthey via LinkedIn

Monica Manthey

Monica Manthey

Running for Annapolis, Maryland, city council

Manthey told the Capitol Gazette that she went to Washington for the Stop the Steal rally and left after Trump’s speech. She has said she did not go to the Capitol and learned of the insurrection on the news at her hotel. Her Democratic opponent, incumbent Brooks Schandelmeier has highlighted Manthey’s since-deleted Facebook photo of the mob attacking the Capitol. The screenshots show Manthey responding to a comment criticizing her presence in Washington, saying “You were not there and the media coverage has been pretty horrible vs. first hand.” Manthey told the Gazette she did not take the photo and was not at the Capitol, adding, “I am so glad I didn’t go to the Capitol, but I have no regrets going to the rally.” Manthey is running for the Ward 5 seat on the Democratic-majority city council.

Christine Ead & Curt Dahl for Watchung Borough Council via Facebook / Via Facebook: ChristineCurt4Watchung

Christine Ead

Christine Ead

Running for Watchung, New Jersey, Borough Council

Ead posted on Facebook that she was in Washington on Jan. 6 and went to Capitol grounds, but did not enter the building, according to the Echoes-Sentinel, which obtained screenshots of her now-deleted posts from Democrats. The paper transcribed some of her posts, including her contention that there was “boat-loads of evidence” of fraud in the 2020 election and that “ANTIFA and other anarchists groups were there at the rally.” Ead wrote she did not pass any police barriers, according to the paper. She blamed “anarchists” for the violence at the Capitol, but acknowledged that some Trump supporters went into the building. She condemned the violence and said anyone who committed crimes that day should be prosecuted, but said that it was a “99 percent” peaceful protest. A Democratic mailer shared with BuzzFeed News also features posts from Ead’s Facebook page alleging that Biden did not win the election and downplaying Trump’s role in inciting the insurrection. Ead and her runningmate Curt Dahl are seeking three-year terms on the Watchung Borough Council; Trump lost the borough in 2020, but other Republicans performed well.

Zoe Tillman contributed reporting to this story.

UPDATE

This story was updated to include additional candidates for office who were in Washington on Jan. 6.


A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.