A week after police shot and killed a woman who was racing toward the Capitol after trying to breach a White House barricade, lawmakers have been largely silent on the incident pending the results of an investigation.
“I’m concerned when any person is shot, armed or unarmed, if it could be handled in some other way,” said Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio. “But we need to see the report to determine if that’s the case. I am hopeful that the investigation will show the actions that were taken were necessary, but until such time, as it is, I’m going to err on the side of the Capitol Police having done the appropriate thing.”
Fudge isn’t alone. Connecticut lawmakers have likewise shown deference to the Capitol Police, even as the family members of the slain woman, Miriam Carey of Stamford, have been voicing skepticism that she was responsible for the shooting and asking whether police could have reacted differently.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., praised Capitol Police in a statement while also extending condolences to Carey’s family. “An investigation is certainly appropriate — as is ongoing — and I await its factual findings, along with oversight and scrutiny from other sources,” he said.
Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., whose district includes Stamford, likewise urged caution. “Obviously the death of Ms. Carey was a real tragedy,” he told The Hartford Courant. “I expect that a full investigation will be undertaken to out all the facts. Until that has been completed, people should reserve judgment.”
D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department is leading the investigation into the incident, with support from the U.S. Capitol Police, Secret Service, and FBI, according to police officials. The Capitol Police policy on the use of force is not public information.
The Capitol Police officer who had been hospitalized after the incident has been released, police said, and the officers involved in the event “are not in the field” pending the outcome of the investigation.
“I think that members are reluctant to second-guess people whose job it is to protect them, given the fact that there are a live threats that happen around here all the time,” said Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn.
Rep. G.K. Butterfield, D-N.C., said he heard some informal questions among lawmakers in the days following the incident, “but now all eyes are focused on the shutdown.”
“I know now it’s a pretty dangerous thing for someone to be speeding from the White House to the U.S. Capitol at 80 miles per hour, running stoplights, and you don’t know if it’s a terrorist or a deranged individual or what,” Butterfield said. “The question most people are asking is why they didn’t shoot the tires out or resort to some other means of disabling the vehicle. But we’ve got to get the facts.”
What We're Following See More »
Donald Trump "nearly quintupled the monthly rent his presidential campaign pays for its headquarters at Trump Tower to $169,758 in July, when he was raising funds from donors, compared with March, when he was self-funding his campaign." A campaign spokesman "said the increased office space was needed to accommodate an anticipated increase in employees," but the campaign's paid staff has actually dipped by about 25 since March. The campaign has also paid his golf courses and restaurants about $260,000 since mid-May.
“My view is, first you get them to laugh, then you get them to listen," says Michelle Obama in a new profile in Variety. "So I’m always game for a good joke, and I’m not so formal in this role. There’s very little that we can’t do that people wouldn’t appreciate.” According to writer Ted Johnson, Mrs. Obama has leveraged the power of pop culture far beyond her predecessors. "Where are the people?" she asks. "Well, they’re not reading the op-ed pieces in the major newspapers. They’re not watching Sunday morning news talk shows. They’re doing what most people are doing: They are watching TV.”
The FBI and other US security agencies are currently investigating a series of computer breaches found within The New York Times and other news organizations. It is expected that the hacks were carried out by individuals working for Russian intelligence. It is believed that these cyber attacks are part of a "broader series of hacks that also have focused on Democratic Party organizations, the officials said."
In a 3-1 decision, the National Labor Relations Board ruled in favor of Columbia University graduate students, granting them the legal right to unionize. The petition was brought by a number of teaching assistants enrolled in graduate school. This decision could pave the way for thousands of new union members, depending on if students at other schools nationwide wish to join unions. A number of universities spoke out in opposition to this possibility, saying injecting collective bargaining into graduate school could create a host of difficulties.
Following Texas Senator Ted Cruz's controversial decision not to endorse Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention, instead telling voters to "vote (their) conscience," a new poll out today shows that his approval ratings have sunk. The poll from Public Policy Polling shows that 39 percent of Texans approve of the job Cruz is doing, compared to 48 percent who don't approve. Additionally, despite winning the GOP primary in the state, the poll found that if the primary was held today, Trump would garner 52 percent of support to just 38 percent for Cruz.