Politics Threats against members of Congress have more than doubled this year, Capitol Police says
Transcript: Joe Biden delivers speech to joint session of Congress
The president spoke to a limited crowd due to the pandemic. The setting was very different from a typical address, though. Due to the pandemic, tickets were limited and social distancing rules were in place.
- Threats against federal lawmakers have more than doubled so far this year compared to last year, the United States Capitol Police said Friday.
- The law enforcement agency tasked with defending Congress reported a 107% increase in threats against members of Congress compared to the same point in 2020.
- "Provided the unique threat environment we currently live in, the Department is confident the number of cases will continue to increase," the agency said in a press release posted online.
Threats against federal lawmakers have more than doubled so far this year compared to last year, the United States Capitol Police said Friday.
Biden's declaration: America's democracy 'is rising anew'
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden declared that “America is rising anew” as he called for an expansion of federal programs to drive the economy past the pandemic and broadly extend the social safety net on a scale not seen in decades. Biden's nationally televised address to Congress, his first, raised the stakes for his ability to sell his plans to voters of both parties, even if Republican lawmakers prove resistant. The president is following Wednesday night's speech by pushing his plans in person, beginning in Georgia on Thursday and then on to Pennsylvania and Virginia in the days ahead.
The law enforcement agency tasked with defending Congress reported a 107% increase in threats against members of Congress compared to the same point in 2020.
"Provided the unique threat environment we currently live in, the Department is confident the number of cases will continue to increase," the agency said in aposted online.
The report comes months after a mob of supporters of former President Donald Trump overwhelmed the police department and stormed the Capitol in an effort to prevent Congress from confirming President Joe Biden's victory.
The Justice Department has estimated that about 800 individuals may have been involved in the Jan. 6 attack. More than 400 alleged rioters are now facing criminal charges, and. Steven Sund, who led the police department at the time of the riot, resigned on Jan. 7.
Why President Joe Biden's speech to Congress was unlike any other in modern history
A joint sessions speech, known for its glad-handing cadence, was bound to be subdued with only 200 folks permitted at an event that can hold 1,500.President Joe Biden's address to a joint session of Congress was unlike any in modern history due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With no more than 200 folks permitted for an event that can hold up to 1,500, an event known for its glad-handing cadence and rousing moments was destined to be subdued.
Friday's release is consistent with comments from lawmakers, who have said that their security is more at risk as a result of the political atmosphere.
In January, members of the House of Representatives sent House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and other congressional leadersto use a congressional fund for security measures, citing increased risks.
Several lawmakers who were supportive of impeaching Trump have also boosted their own spending on security since the Jan. 6 attack, financial disclosures.
The police department has previously said that threats were on the rise.
In March, acting USCP chief Yogananda Pittman told Congress that threats against lawmakers were up more than 90% in the first two months of the year. Between 2017 and 2020, she said, there was a 118.66% increase in threats and "directions of interest. "
Susan Wright, congressman's widow, makes US House runoff in Texas
Rep. Ron Wright died just weeks into office after a COVID diagnosis. His widow, endorsed by Donald Trump, is now in a runoff for his seat.But who she will face remained too early to call. With nearly all votes counted, Republican Jake Ellzey led Democrat Jana Lynne Sanchez by 354 votes in the race for the second runoff spot in Texas' 6th Congressional District, which has long been GOP territory.
The Jan. 6 attack prompted the Capitol police to ask Congress for more funding. The police department has asked for a $107 million increase in its 2022 budget compared to its fiscal year 2021 budget.
That ask reflects revisions to the budget request made after the riot. The original request, prior to Jan. 6, called for a $36 million increase in funding over 2021 levels.
In its press release, the police department continued its push for more funding. It said that it agreed with recommendations issued in an April report from the agency's inspector general to increase its staff dedicated to threat assessment and to establish a standalone counter surveillance entity. Both proposals, the police department said, would "require resources and authorization."
"In its report, the [inspector general] suggests the Department's Threat Assessment Section be similar to the United States Secret Service (USSS). In 2020, the USSS, which has more than 100 agents and analysts, had approximately 8,000 cases. During the same time period, the USCP, which has just over 30 agents and analysts, had approximately 9,000 cases," the department said.
The police department added, "The USCP agrees a stand-alone counter-surveillance unit would be valuable. However, in order to fully implement this recommendation, the Department would require additional resources for new employees, training, and vehicles as well as approval from Congressional stakeholders."
for the TV livestream, deep insights and analysis on how to invest during the next presidential term.
What insurrection? Growing number in GOP downplay Jan. 6 .
WASHINGTON (AP) — What insurrection? Flouting all evidence and their own first-hand experience, a small but growing number of Republican lawmakers are propagating a false portrayal of the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, brazenly arguing that the rioters who used flagpoles as weapons, brutally beat police officers and chanted that they wanted to hang Vice President Mike Pence were somehow acting peacefully in their violent bid to overturn Joe Biden's election. © Provided by Associated Press Capitol Breach Denialism One Republican at a hearing Wednesday called the rioters a “mob of misfits." Another compared them to tourists.