GOP whitewashing of the U.S. Capitol riot was â€œextremely dangerous,â€ said Kinzinger, who last week was censured by his own party for serving on the House committee investigating the Trump-incited U.S. Capitol riot, on CNNâ€™s â€œThe Situation Room.â€
â€œIf there was a word even more intense than dangerous I would use that,â€ he added.
Kinzinger, who is not seeking reelection to Congress this year, suggested it was â€œnot a far thoughtâ€ that â€œsomeday, some militia shows up somewhere to do something and then some counter-militia shows up, and truly at that point that is how you end up in a civil war.â€
â€œI never would say that we would ever have ended in that position, but I now believe it is a real possibility that we have to be wide-eyed as we walk into so we donâ€™t have that happen again,â€ he added.
Watch Kinzingerâ€™s comments here:
Pressed by anchor Wolf Blitzer on whether he truly feared a civil war was brewing, Kinzinger responded:
â€œI do. And a year ago I would have said no, not a chance. But I have come to realize when we donâ€™t see each other as fellow Americans, when we begin to separate into cultural identities, when we begin to basically give up everything we believe so we could be part of a group, and then when you have leaders that come and abuse that faithfulness of that group to violent ends, as we saw on January 6, we would be naÃ¯ve to think itâ€™s not possible here.â€
â€œWe have to look at this wide-eyed and walk in and say, we may have differences as left and right, but we have to bridge those differences, because our basic survival is at stake, the basic survival of this democracy,â€ he added.