It is now being reported out of Washington DC that Capitol Police will run out of money in the account used to pay salaries by mid-August. That means U.S. Capitol Police Officers may be furloughed starting in August, though some critics say furloughs could be necessary if lawmakers don’t appropriate more funds by September in a worst-case scenario. Congress is responsible for funding the agency.
Local U.S. Representative Val Demings, who is also a current candidate for the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate, quickly blamed Republicans.
“Today’s news that the U.S. Capitol Police may have to begin furloughing officers is a shameful consequence of Senate Republicans blocking the security funding that we passed in May,” said Rep. Demings. “Every single Republican in Congress voted against this police funding, which was put forward to secure the Capitol after over 150 police officers were beaten and bloodied on January 6th by insurgents seeking to overturn the election. Republicans in Congress turned their backs and shut their doors on the families of Capitol Police Officers who lost their lives in our defense. Congressional Republicans’ support of law enforcement is a sham, and their ‘law and order’ rhetoric is a thin pretense to cover up their belief that they and their friends are above the law.”
Democrats in the House passed a $1.9 billion emergency spending measure to boost security with no Republican support and it has since been stalled in the Senate. While Demings may want to make this a Senate campaign issue against Senator Marco Rubio, who is counting on Trump supporters for his re-election, the Senate is officially controlled by Democrats currently. Regardless, Demings did not hold back on her fellow Congressional Republicans.
“Why won’t all members of Congress support the police officers who put their lives on the line to protect us on January 6th?” Rep. Demings continued. “Why did 21 House Republicans vote against recognizing those officers for their unwavering courage and heroism with the Congressional Gold Medal? Why did Senate Republicans block an independent bipartisan investigation into the funders, inciters, and organizers of the January 6th attack? Why didn’t a single Republican support the $350 billion in funding we passed for local police departments and other first responders? The painful truth is, they use law enforcement as a political prop to disguise their contempt for equal protection under the law for every American. To my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, you may not be there for them, but if you need them today, the United States Capitol Police will be there for you. America deserves better and the Capitol Police deserve better.”
Fellow local U.S. Representative Stephanie Murphy has been appointed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to serve on the select committee investigating Jan. 6.