Washington-They slept on the marble floor, lined up for coffee in the 24-hour snack bar, and found the marble style of the American national founder in the rotunda and statue hall. They took pictures with their phones, ate pizza, and sometimes played cards, with the M4 carbine next to them.
A group of National Guards dressed in camouflage uniforms sounded and lined up around the Capitol on Wednesday. The hall, weapons, helmets and backpacks seemed to be stacked in every corner of the building. Since most lawmakers have moved to impeach the current US president to instigate riots against the US Capitol, the severe militarization has provided a shocking and sober background for the House of Representatives.
“It doesn’t belong here,” said Elaine Luria, a representative of the Virginia Democratic Party and a veteran of 20 years in the Navy, of the military presence of the building. “This is inappropriate.”
She added: “I hate that we are going to make changes in some way to make it harder, harder or more troublesome for people to enjoy this historic monument because this is what happened last week.”
Like members of Congress, aides and journalists, they are still besieging pro-Trump supporters where they were during the siege. Similarly, Capitol Hill appeared to be caught between nursing the open wounds left by the deadly riot and laying the foundation on Wednesday. The predicament. Treat under new management.
The Capitol staff have been working enthusiastically in recent days to complete the preparations for the inauguration on January 20-hanging blue curtains above the entrance to the rotunda and wiping the dust off the statue-to remind people of violence. The panes in parts of the Capitol are still cracked and cracked. After the rioters stole the spokesperson’s embossed wooden plaque, two holes were left at the entrance to the office of California spokesperson Nancy Pelosi.
In their Virgo speeches, the freshman lawmakers talked about the merits of the high and misdemeanor charges against President Trump for sedition. After a majority vote in the House of Representatives to impeach Mr. Trump, Ms. Pelosi said from the same podium that pro-Trump supporters were photographed happily crossing the Capitol.
Florida Republican Representative Brian Mast said: “I don’t have enough adjectives to describe how disgusting I was about what happened, and the point of view we want to express-sad, disgusting, sad. .” An army veteran who lost his legs while serving in Afghanistan visited the rotunda to express his gratitude for their service. (Mr. Master also voted to veto the results of the Arizona and Pennsylvania elections and regretted those votes. He is not among the 10 Republicans who voted to condemn Mr. Trump.)
Some lawmakers regret the threat to the existence of military power, and many Democrats are angry that their Republican colleagues have played a role in inciting the anger of the mob who attacked the Capitol, putting the lives of lawmakers at risk.
Hakeem Jeffries, a representative of the New York Democratic Party, told reporters: “It should not and will not be tolerated.” “That’s why extraordinary security measures are taken.”
In part in response to Republicans’ concerns about bringing guns to the floor of the House of Representatives, a new magnetometer was installed outside the chamber door. This is a new security measure and a challenge for several lawmakers. Several Republicans were usually allowed to bypass the magnetometer at the entrance of the building and complained about the increased security. Some Republicans forcedly rushed past the police despite the alarm.
Representative Rodney Davis of Illinois, the top Republican of the House of Representatives Administration Committee, told representatives of Congress: “You are taking precious resources away from where they are needed without any consultation. You are It was carried out without any consultation.” Majority leader Stany H. Hoyer of Maryland said Tuesday. After hiding in a room with maskless Republicans, many people tested positive for the coronavirus, and Democrats also imposed a fine system for refusing to wear masks on the floor of the conference hall.
In view of the fact that several lawmakers are still shaking and questioning whether they can safely participate in the inauguration ceremony, the magnetometer and higher security are a little consolation in the vote to impeach Mr Trump. Ms. Pelosi said on Wednesday that the House of Representatives will vote on the rule change this month, which will implement a fine system, refuse to comply with the new security agreement, and deduct $5,000 and $5,000 from membership fees for the first and second violations. 10,000 USD.
Colin Allred, a representative of the Texas Democratic Party, said: “We are now fighting the insurgency, so I feel like everything is down.” He recalled taking off his jacket on the House floor and preparing for Ideas defended by the rioters. . “To see the National Guard sleeping in the lobby, and to put the metal detector on the floor of the house for the necessary protection, I know that the word’unprecedented’ has been used a lot, but this is unprecedented. And it is so sad. ,so sad.”
“It is going to be open,” Al Reid added at the Capitol. “This is a museum. Here, ordinary Americans should feel like they can come and watch the work of the government.”
However, although the Capitol houses both the historical relics of the United States and the highest positions of American democracy, it is usually an accessible fortress. But as tourists are banned as a way to stop the spread of the coronavirus, the arrival of hundreds of armed soldiers after months of near empty corridors is even more disturbing.
Several soldiers looked at the paintings and sculptures etched on the ceiling of the rotunda, saying that they had never been to the Capitol like tourists. You can see their colleagues sleeping in another room, next to a team of memorial plaques, these teams are stationed in the Statuary Hall of the Capitol, built in 1861, and a small group of soldiers posing with Rosa A group photo of Parkes’ statue.
John Ismay with Luke Broadwater Contribution report.