Capitol Police officers reportedly battered multiple journalists on Thursday to protect senators from being asked questions about President Donald Trump’s plan to declare a state of emergency for his border wall.
BuzzFeed News congressional reporter Paul McLeod was documenting answers from Republican senators when the incident occurred.
“It would be a pretty dramatic expansion of how this was used in the past,” says GOP senator Ron Johnson of Trump declaring a state of emergency.
Marco Rubio: “It’s a bad idea.”
Republicans seem very caught off guard by this.1,0379:42 PM – Feb 14, 2019Twitter Ads info and privacy529 people are talking about this
The reaction from Capitol Police was described as “not normal.”
There are police here on the hill circling politicians when they come in for the vote, keeping reporters away from them. This is not normal.1,2639:46 PM – Feb 14, 2019Twitter Ads info and privacy893 people are talking about this
Six minutes later, things escalated with violence against NBC News congressional reporter Leigh Ann Caldwell and an unidentified pregnant journalist.
An officer smashed right into NBC’s Lee-Anne Caldwell who was walking with a senator. Another reporter, who is pregnant, says she was also shoved. Lots of yelling between reporters and cops here, who are clearly blocking reporters from getting near senators.
This is fucked. The police say they’re just “escorting” the senators to the vote. In effect, they’re shielding them from taking questions. Never seen this before.1,9559:54 PM – Feb 14, 2019Twitter Ads info and privacy1,143 people are talking about this
Paul Kane, a congressional reporter for The Washington Post, also reported on the “very odd security setup.”View image on Twitter
Very odd security setup on Senate side of Capitol. Police setting up security line and guarding every senator within a half foot, trying to block press on an orltherwise normal size press crowd.2810:05 PM – Feb 14, 2019 · Washington, DC32 people are talking about thisTwitter Ads info and privacy
MSNBC anchor Kasie Hunt slammed Capitol Police, saying their actions were “not acceptable.”
This is simply not acceptable, and it is a violation of the norms that govern how reporters do their jobs at the Capitol.
The area where this happened is open to the press, who are doing a constitutional duty in holding elected representatives accountable.Paul McLeod✔@pdmcleodReplying to @pdmcleodAn officer smashed right into NBC’s Lee-Anne Caldwell who was walking with a senator. Another reporter, who is pregnant, says she was also shoved. Lots of yelling between reporters and cops here, who are clearly blocking reporters from getting near senators.1,48110:08 PM – Feb 14, 2019Twitter Ads info and privacy789 people are talking about this
Caldwell seemingly confirmed the incident by retweeting McLeod’s account.