Numerous sources, including an anonymous tip to the Associated Press, claims Capitol Hill Police officials are due to discuss the possibility of leaving the barbed wire fencing, that currently surrounds Congress, up for the foreseeable future, with numerous sources stating that the situation will be reviewed again in the fall.
The report comes after numerous threats have been made against government lawmakers in the weeks since the January 6th riots, which led to the deaths of 5 people, including an unarmed woman.
A Caged Congress?
A source, who reportedly was willing to speak to the Associated Press on the basis that the media outlet provided full anonymity as they are not allowed to speak about the issue on the record, claims that Capitol Hill police officials are worried about a potential repeat of the events that took place on Jan. 6th, citing the numerous, violent calls by online groups made against US lawmakers.
These threats of violence online are said to be one of the core reasons why that Capitol officials are considering keeping Congress surrounded by barbed wire fencing until at least the fall of this year.
As well as keeping the fencing up, Capitol Hill police officials are also weighing up the idea of keeping the National Guard in and around the Capitol area until the same time as the fencing, in order to bolster security.
Could be a long-term solution
Yogananda Pittman, the acting Capitol Hill police chief, has previously called for the barricades to remain in place around Congress ‘permanently’, citing that given recent events, the need for vast security improvements around the area is now far greater, in order to back up the on-duty guards that remain at Capitol Hill.
However, the Mayor of Washington DC, Muriel Bowser, has given his strong opposition against the proposals.
The Mayor cited that the need for extra troops and fencing around the Capitol is something that lawmakers are against, and shouldn’t be a ‘long-term fixture’ in the area.
He claimed that 42 lawmakers in Congress have written to the Leader of the House, Nancy Pelosi, asking her to remove the fences of the property, stating that ‘it is time to heal’ and that it is time ‘for the nation to move forward’.
A Caged Congress looks likely to continue throughout the rest of the year, but is this a true hallmark of modern-day US Democracy?