Each day since Jan. 6, we learn more about just how close we were to a nearly irrecoverable shattering of our democracy.

A riotous mob, swelled in size and rage by the lies fed them by our president, was just a few moments from the kind of violence and insurrection that would have undoubtedly thrown us into a crisis seemingly inconceivable only a few years ago.

At the urging of our president and his accomplices, a violent mob stormed the Capitol. They intended to overturn our democratic election, by any means necessary.

Reports detail they were moments away from violence directed at the speaker of the House and the vice president — quite likely any representative they came across in their feverish blood lust.

The grounds and halls of the Capitol rang with cries for hangings and our elected representatives to pay the “ultimate price.” All for the offense of certifying the results of our democracy.

Our very own Couy Griffin (Otero County commissioner and Cowboys for Trump founder) is calling for blood to flow from the Capitol on inauguration day.

In response to the suggestion of accountability for their part in bringing us to this moment, the NM GOP, including Steve Pearce and Yvette Herrell, urges us to “move forward” while characterizing accountability as vengeance.

Let’s be clear; a violent mob was looking for vengeance for losing an election. Calls for expulsion, impeachment and removal are accountability for those acts.

One first step towards healing must be accountability. Those that participated in building and encouraging this anti-democratic fervor have no place in leading our cities, counties, state, or democracy.

Here in New Mexico, Steve Pearce, Yvette Herrell, Cathrynn Brown (New Mexico state representative from Eddy County) and Couy Griffin must resign or be expelled and removed. They do not represent us or the ideal enshrined in our constitution.

As for our president, there is no other option to secure and strengthen our democracy. The mob failed in its anti-democratic unconstitutional efforts; impunity only assures us this is not the end.

Congress must impeach the president, the Senate trial must spare no detail of the violence and insurrection of Jan. 6, and the president must be convicted and removed from office.

Ashley Balogh

Rio Rancho