day before the fateful Jan. 6 riot rocked the U.S. Capitol, security officials in the House and Senate received a warning of a possible aviation terror threat to the seat of Congress but shrugged off the concerns until congressional leadership found out from news media and began pressing for answers.
“Are you making any notification regarding the intel that I’m told is going public?” then-House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving texted Michael Stenger, his counterpart in the Senate, about the aviation security threat early on the evening of Jan. 5, 2021, according to text messages reviewed by Just the News.
“I am under the impression that it has been deemed aspirational,” Stenger responded.
“Agree, all good,” said Irving.
The two didn’t text again for six days, according to information put out by congressional investigators. But a short while after the exchange, CBS News would report that U.S. intelligence had made the warning to the Capitol, alerting congressional leaders who then peppered the Capitol security apparatus about why they had been kept in the dark and what was being done to address the threat, the messages show.
The powerful anecdote was contained in text messages released as part of a House GOP report on Capitol security last week, adding further evidence of a laissez-faire security apparatus inside Congress that would fail spectacularly on Jan. 6 when a rowdy, pro-Trump mob, some of whom used violence to overrun police lines, invaded the building.
You can read the full report here.
Multiple investigations have determined that Capitol Police and congressional security officials had received extensive intelligence warning of violence on Jan. 6 and failed to create an adequate security plan, allowing worries from above about “optics” to take precedence over deploying National Guard ahead of the riot or better fortifying the building.
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