Democrat Rep. Eric Swalwell, who was recently embroiled in a controversy over his relationship to a suspected Chinese spy, has sued former President Donald Trump for emotional distress. Swalwell is seeking damages over the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.
The Democrat from California claimed in a 65-page complaint that he holds Trump responsible for inciting the riot, and that he was negligent in his presidential duties by failing to prevent and stop the violence, which saw the deaths of five people, including a Capitol police officer.
Trump is not alone in being named in Swalwell’s lawsuit. His personal attorney Rudy Guiliani and Rep. Mo Brooks, a Republican from Alabama, are listed as co-defendants. Swalwell’s lawsuit notes that the two spoke alongside Trump on Jan. 6 before extremists broke into the Capitol in an attempt to stop the certification of the 2020 presidential election results.
“In claiming for weeks that President Biden’s victory was in fact the largest act of fraud in American history; in seeing that some of Trump’s supporters were willing to engage in violence in response to such claims; and in using highly inflammatory language in repeating the false claims of fraud at the rally before sending the crowd to the Capitol, the Defendants at a minimum acted negligently,” read the complaint.
Brooks says that the lawsuit is frivolous, and described Swalwell as a communist sympathizer.
“I make no apologies whatsoever for fighting for accurate and honest elections. In sum, I wear Communist-sympathizer Swalwell’s scurrilous and malicious lawsuit like a badge of courage,” Brooks said, according to the Washington Times. “Under no circumstances will Swalwell, or any other Socialist, stop me from fighting for America.”
Swalwell was an impeachment manager during the impeachment trial of former President Trump, charging him with inciting an insurrection. He now seeks monetary damages and a trial by jury, having failed to impeach Trump.
Trump was acquitted of the charge of inciting insurrection by the Senate on Feb. 13, marking the end of the attempt to prevent him from attaining future political office.