Politics National Guard prepares for March 4 violence in wake of Jan. 6 failures
Texas Pays the Price of the Culture War
Instead of focusing on governance, Republican politicians in the Lone Star State spent their time inflaming grievances.We were among the millions of Texans who lost power when a massive winter storm brought the temperature down to the single digits. In Houston, a woman and child accidentally suffocated themselves with carbon monoxide trying to stay warm in their car. Two people in Austin died in a fire that likely resulted from an attempt to stay warm. Here in San Antonio, a man in his 70s was found dead, apparently from exposure.
As senior officials contend intelligence data indicates a conspiracy theory-driven militia group is plotting to breach the Capitol on March 4, confidence in the National Guard’s processes to protect the Capitol was thrown into doubt Wednesday.
QAnon has pushed a conspiracy theory that former President Donald Trump will return to office on Thursday, inauguration day for presidents up until the 20th Amendment changed the date in 1933.
“We have obtained intelligence that shows a possible plot to breach the Capitol by an identified militia group on Thursday, March 4,” read a Wednesday released by the Capitol Police. “The United States Capitol Police Department is aware of and prepared for any potential threats towards members of Congress or towards the Capitol complex.”
Acting Capitol Police chief admits 'internal challenges' during Jan. 6 response
Acting Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman defends her department’s actions on Jan. 6 in prepared testimony, but admits the force had "internal challenges." "But, at the end of the day, the USCP succeeded in its mission. It protected Congressional Leadership. It protected Members. And it protected the Democratic Process. At the end of a battle that lasted for hours, democracy prevailed," the acting chief, Yogananda Pittman, is expected to tell the committee.
The Capitol Police statement described security upgrades to the physical structure and increased manpower in place to protect Congress.
In recent days, clusters of National Guard members have been observed in closer proximity along the south perimeter of a vast fenced-in area that surrounds the Capitol and nearby federal buildings.
Razor wire atop 7-foot nonscalable fences and closed perimeter streets are some of the physical impediments to stop would-be protesters from coming within hundreds of yards of some government buildings.
The very impediments designed to protect congressmen from an unclear threat have angered some lawmakers.
Acting Capitol Police chief denies her department failed to heed intel warnings
The acting Capitol Police chief on Thursday denied her department failed to heed intel warnings ahead of the Jan. 6 attack. She said the insurrectionists weren’t just interested in "attacking members of Congress" but "they wanted to send a symbolic message to the nation: ...
“None of us have received a response,” Florida Republican Rep. Greg Steube told the Washington Examiner Tuesday.
“Republican members of Congress are signed onto numerous letters asking Speaker Pelosi, 'What is the justification behind the razor wire and the fencing? And, when is it going to come down?'” he said. “I'd also like to know why all the National Guard soldiers are still here.”
Steube highlighted that the National Guard presence in the Capitol from Jan. 6 to March 12.
“There's plenty of security just to get in. You don't need the razor wire and the fencing and the National Guard troops here,” he said. “We’re members of Congress. We have security clearance. Take us all in, let's do a security briefing and tell us what these specific threats are that you have. And they haven't provided that to us.”
by a senior defense official and D.C. National Guard Chief Maj. Gen. William Walker disclosed numerous points of failure that led to the National Guard’s delayed response to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
Military leaders are prepared to defend Pentagon response to Capitol riot at Senate hearing
The Pentagon is ready to defend itself if necessary at a Senate hearing Wednesday against accusations it delayed or hindered the deployment of the National Guard on January 6, a senior defense official said, as two competing narratives emerge about the response to US Capitol riot. © Samuel Corum/Getty Images WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17: National Guard soldier head to the east front of the U.S. Capitol from the Capitol Visitors Center on January 17, 2021 in Washington, DC. After last week's riots at the U.S. Capitol Building, the FBI has warned of additional threats in the nation's capital and in all 50 states.
Walker described an emotional plea for Guard backup by phone from former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund as the Capitol walls had been breached.
“The approval for the Chief Sund’s request would eventually come from the acting secretary of defense and be relayed to me by army senior leaders at 5:08 p.m., about three hours and 19 minutes later,” Walker told the Senate Homeland Security and the Rules Committees.
Walker said optics was the factor in the delay.
“The Army senior leaders did not think that it looked good, it would be a good optic. They further stated that it could incite the crowd,” said Walker.
The recounting of the urgency of the Guard approval differed from whatand a small group of Pentagon journalists less than 48 hours after events transpired.
"There was tremendous confusion. What is the situation? No one could give you adequate situational awareness," McCarthy said in a Jan. 8 gaggle.
“I was in the heat of taking back the Capitol,” he said. "We were literally running down the hall to SecDef’s office. We’re watching the TV in his office, green light, go. Move all the Guard, other states."
General: ‘Optics’ led Pentagon to wait hours before sending troops to Capitol on Jan. 6
A high-ranking official in the D.C. National Guard detailed the unusually slow response from the Pentagon to approve the deployment of troops during the Jan. 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol, telling senators Wednesday that it was easier to get approval during last summer’s protests against police violence than during the deadly siege. Maj. Gen. William Walker, the guard’s commanding general, testified before a joint Senate committee that he had troops ready and waiting for the green light to respond to the Capitol attack, but it took more than three hours to receive approval from the Defense Department.
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COVID-19 fueled a domestic violence crisis. Now, the stimulus bill could help women and children leave abusers .
Against a backdrop of increasing domestic violence, survivors risk being trapped in a cycle of abuse without federal funding for child care.McAndrew, 35, grabbed birth certificates, Social Security cards and $1,700 cash from her children's piggy banks. She packed the minivan with the three kids and family dog, Charlie. As she pulled out of the driveway in Orlando, Florida, in September, she headed to the only safe haven she knew—her mom's house in New Jersey.