Pelosi attack latest in violence against members of Congress

Politics

(NewsNation) — Today, U.S. Capitol police are helping the FBI and San Francisco police with a joint investigation into the break-in at the California home of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The attacker, who was reportedly looking for the speaker, is part of a growing list of attacks and threats aimed at sitting members of Congress.

In July, for example, an armed man reportedly threatening to kill Democratic U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal was arrested outside her Seattle home. 

Later, a man was arrested after attempting to stab Republican New York Congressman Lee Zeldin at a campaign rally.  

President Biden took time out in September to call out the increasing violence against political figures.

“There is no place for political violence in America. Period. None. Ever,” Biden said as he addressed the country this past September in Philadelphia with a prime-time speech billed as the “Soul of the Nation.”

That same violence persisted just a few weeks ago, when an unknown person smashed a window at Republican Senator Susan Collins’ home in Maine.

The Maine Republican said in response: “I wouldn’t be surprised if a senator or House member were killed. What started with abusive phone calls is now translating into active threats of violence and real violence.”

In 2021, U.S. Capitol Police recorded 9,625 threats to members of both the House and the Senate — up from 3,939 threats in 2017.

That’s a 144% increase in five years

In response, members of Congress have been ramping up their security details. Some members of the Jan. 6 committee — including U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, who is one of two Republicans on the panel — have even decided to release audio of the threatening calls they’ve received.

Over the summer, congressional law enforcement decided to take action, enacting a security program for members of Congress, paying up to $10,000 to install security systems in their homes.

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