On Tuesday, NPR reported that the chief of the U.S. Capitol Police, set to receive the Congressional Gold Medal, is planning remarks on the state of D.C. security, nearly two years after the January 6 attack on the Capitol that threatened the safety of lawmakers, left the complex damaged, and led to deaths, suicides, and injuries among officers. The overall assessment: Security has improved — but domestic extremist groups have gotten smarter as well.
"U.S. Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger will speak on behalf of his department at a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda on Tuesday," reported Deirdre Walsh. "He told NPR in an interview a day before the ceremony that while there is still more work to do, the force is 'much better prepared' to respond to future threats to the Capitol. Manger said 'the big things, the big failures that occurred on January 6th have largely been fixed.'"
But that doesn't mean everything is settled now, said the report: "Manger said he doesn't lose sleep over whether his department is prepared to respond to another major event or protest. But he said, 'I do lose some sleep over the fact that some of these extremist groups are still active.' He said law enforcement agencies have learned a lot since the attack, but so have extremist groups."
Manger first took over the Capitol Police in summer of 2021, Per the report, among the changes Manger has made in the wake of the attack are hiring 280 new officers, 195 of which he says have already been hired and are going through training.
Over 950 people have been charged for their involvement in the January 6 attack as of press time. That group includes everything from misdemeanor charges for trespassing and unlawful picketing, to a handful of people held for more serious offenses like assaulting law enforcement. Leaders of the extremist groups the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers have been charged with seditious conspiracy, for which two Oath Keepers leaders have already been convicted and three acquitted. A special counsel, former war crimes prosecutor Jack Smith, has been appointed to wrap up investigations into former President Donald Trump's involvement in the attack, for which he was already impeached and avoided Senate conviction.
Republicans are considering a re-investigation of the January 6 attack once seated as the House majority, with a focus on "security failures" and an attempt to assign responsibility to outgoing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) refusing to request military assistance — an accusation that has been repeatedly debunked.