Capitol Police to step up lawmakers’ security at airports after confrontations
Capitol security officials are escalating safety measures for members of Congress at airports after multiple incidents in which lawmakers have been verbally harassed as they travel to and from Washington.
With Washington still on high alert, agents from the Capitol Police will be stationed at three regional airports through Inauguration Day to “assist with security coordination,” according to a safety memo sent to members and staff on Saturday night, obtained by POLITICO.
The push by Capitol Police to step up security comes after the confrontation of many lawmakers in D.C. airports, including Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), whose heckling by a pro-Donald Trump crowd was captured in a now-viral video.
Graham, as a chairman and high-profile senator, has a security detail, but many lawmakers, particularly in the House, do not. Several lawmakers have privately been raising concerns that they could be not just confronted verbally, but threatened in more dramatic fashion in the coming days and weeks.
The boost in security at airports comes days after the Trump-backed siege of the Capitol terrorized lawmakers and staff and exposed deadly flaws in safety measures at the complex.
The effort is the result of a partnership among the Sergeant-at-Arms, Capitol Police, the Washington Metropolitan Airports Authority and the United States Air Marshal, according to the notice.
Members are encouraged to submit their flight itinerary directly to security officials to ensure there is adequate protection.