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Horowitz: Republicans must say no to expanded Capitol Police role
Daniel Slim/AFP/Getty Images

Horowitz: Republicans must say no to expanded Capitol Police role

The Capitol Police couldn’t even defend their own building, nor could they defend Pelosi’s San Francisco home from an illegal alien hammer man, but somehow, they have now established national offices to monitor U.S. citizens outside their jurisdiction? Now they want more money and authority. Are you kidding me?

This week, House Republicans crafted the annual appropriations bill funding the legislative branch of government, typically the smallest and least controversial of the 12 annual spending bills. However, in that bill they plan to provide $780.9 million to the U.S. Capitol police, which is $46.3 million more than enacted fiscal year 2023 levels, which were already a whopping 22% increase over fiscal year 2022.

Furthermore, U.S. Capitol Police Chief J. Thomas Manger has asked Congress to boost the number of field offices his agency has outside the Capitol. Citing increased violence both in Washington and in other parts of the country, Manger wants more personnel to operate outside the agency’s home base in five or six offices in the Northeast, Midwest, and the South. One has to wonder why Democrats suddenly want to massively grow the size and scope of one particular police department as they seek to hamstring every other one around the nation.

In reality, both parties have bought into this culture of leniency on street crime, which is largely what threatens members of Congress in and around the Capitol. But now they have the nerve to complain about the policies they helped create by conflating this ubiquitous and universal violence with particularized threats toward members of Congress that somehow engender a need for a legislative junta that will operate around the country. Except this idea is not coming from a good place and is headed down a slippery slope of creating yet another federal police department with the opportunity to treat political opponents as threats to government officials so they can track, surveil, and even arrest them around the country.

In July 2021, the U.S. Capitol Police opened regional offices in Tampa, Florida, and California to supposedly investigate threats to members of Congress. This was a dangerous power grab given that we have state and local law enforcement, Secret Service, Homeland Security, and of course the FBI. It was born out of misinformation about the nature of what did and did not occur on Jan. 6. Rather than investigating the bad behavior of both federal officials and Capitol Police on that day, officials are continuing to perpetuate this lie that somehow there is a nationwide insurrection plot against members of Congress.

Nearly two years later, there is no transparency as to what sort of intel these field offices are gathering on U.S. citizens. However, given that FBI whistleblower Stephen Friend has divulged that the FBI is randomly investigating conservatives who had nothing to do with criminal activity on Jan. 6, it is a valid assumption that the USCP are likely engaging in the same surveillance and intelligence-gathering on U.S. citizens as the FBI.

This is an extremely dangerous precedent because, unlike the DHS and the FBI, the USCP are not allowed to conduct intelligence activities and operations on anyone, much less U.S. citizens. Nothing allows the USCP to bypass directives concerning information collection against U.S. citizens, nor are they designated as part of the U.S. Intelligence Community.

What’s worse is that they are not part of the executive branch of government, which violates the principle that the police powers be reserved only to the executive. Capitol Police are not subject to normal transparency rules, such as open records requests or disclosure of specific arrests made. It’s one thing to run security at the Capitol; it’s quite another to set up shop around America and serve as a legislative Stasi with carte blanche authority to investigate and possibly surveil American citizens hundreds of miles away from the Capitol. As such, their activities likely violate the Intelligence Oversight Act. Then again, all legal norms have been thrown out the window in response to January 6.

In 2021, Florida Rep. Greg Steube introduced legislation clarifying the statutes governing the operations of the USCP to stipulate that they can only deploy for 30 days and that it must be in response to a direct imminent threat. Thus, they’d be prohibited from establishing a base of operations outside D.C.

This bill is needed more now than ever because the DOJ is in the process of targeting another 1,200 individuals for Jan. 6, even though everyone who did anything remotely dangerous has long been accounted for. Agent Stephen Friend alleged in his whistleblower complaint that the FBI has been conducting surveillance and investigations on people who weren’t even in D.C on January 6 in a clear indication that this was always about intimidating people with a different political view from that of the current administration.

Now that Republicans control the House, they should at least ensure that the Capitol Police are not engaged in the same activity. Speaker McCarthy should demand that the USCP release all documentation and information related to their surveillance and intelligence-gathering outside D.C. House Intel Committee Chairman Mike Turner should conduct a hearing on the increased scope of USCP operations and any abused of intel laws that have occurred.

If members of Congress are concerned about the growing attacks on members and staff, they should realize it’s the result of the increased prevalence of career violent criminals on the streets. This problem is particularly acute in D.C. with the prevalence of street crime around the Capitol and in blue cities like Fairfax, Virginia, where a man with a baseball bat attacked staff members of Rep. Gerald E. Connolly in his district office. But this has nothing to do with Jan. 6 or other political upheaval, but rather with street crime resulting from jailbreak policies these very members supported. We are all suffering from it, and it needs to be dealt with by local police departments that these members are hamstringing.

Guess who is accused of attacking Connolly’s office? A man who attacked police with a stun gun last year, but the Soros prosecutor dropped all charges against him!

Remember, both the assailant who almost murdered a Rand Paul staffer and the one who attacked Wisconsin Rep. Angie Craig were career violent criminals who were not properly punished thanks to the very criminal justice policies liberals support.

This is classic liberal fascism. They allow leniencies for the targeted criminals who create most of the problems, but then seek to rectify their own mistakes by empowering big federal juntas to cast a wide net on the liberties of all Americans and paint right-leaning political opponents as ubiquitous threats to members of Congress.

Isn’t it funny how Congress ceded all its authority to the executive branch, but then wants to secure for itself the one thing that should be exclusively reserved to the executive – the police powers?! Let Capitol Hill police focus on their area of operation and stay out of our communities. After all, it’s not like the FBI lacks resources to do its own work.

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Daniel Horowitz

Daniel Horowitz

Blaze Podcast Host

Daniel Horowitz is the host of “Conservative Review with Daniel Horowitz” and a senior editor for Blaze News. He writes on the most decisive battleground issues of our times, including the theft of American sovereignty through illegal immigration, theft of American liberty through tyranny, and theft of American law and order through criminal justice “reform.”
@RMConservative →