WASHINGTON - Major US business groups on Wednesday urged President Donald Trump to put a stop to the occupation of the Capitol building by protesters angry at his election loss.
"The chaos unfolding in the nation's capital is the result of unlawful efforts to overturn the legitimate results of a democratic election. The country deserves better," the Business Roundtable said in a statement.
"Business Roundtable calls on the President and all relevant officials to put an end to the chaos and to facilitate the peaceful transition of power."
And US Chamber of Commerce CEO Thomas J. Donohue said, "The attacks against our nation's Capitol Building and our democracy must end now.
"The Congress of the United States must gather again this evening to conclude their Constitutional responsibility to accept the report of the Electoral College," which determines the winner of the presidential vote.
Trump's supporters stormed the Capitol in Washington during a joint session of Congress held to certify President-elect Joe Biden's win, a desperate last-minute bid to overturn the November election that sparked chaos and accusations of a "coup" attempt.
The violence, hours after an extraordinary rally by Trump challenging his defeat, saw flag-waving backers break down barricades outside the Capitol and swarm inside, sending the legislative sessions into an emergency recess.
Extraordinary images showed security personnel barricading the chamber while lawmakers huddled inside wearing gas masks.
National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons in a statement accused Trump of inciting "violence in an attempt to retain power, and any elected leader defending him is violating their oath to the Constitution and rejecting democracy in favor of anarchy."
Timmons called on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th amendment, which would allow him to temporarily become president if Trump is deemed incapacitated.
Labor leader Richard Trumka, president of the powerful AFL-CIO, called the unrest "one of the greatest assaults on our democracy since the Civil War" from 1861 to 1865.
"Today's attempted coup has been years in the making as Donald Trump consistently spews venom, conspiracies, hate and lies to his supporters," he said in a statement.
© Agence France-Presse