Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) sparked angry backlash after questioning law enforcement officials about security failures in the Jan. 6 insurrection he helped provoke himself.
The Missouri Republican took part Tuesday in a joint investigative hearing by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and the Senate Rules Committee, where senators questioned former Capitol police chief Steven Sund, former Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Michael Stenger, former House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving and Robert Contee, the acting chief of police for the Metropolitan Police Department.
Hawley -- the first GOP senator to announce that he would challenge the election certification of President Joe Biden, in a move that was widely seen as motivation for the Donald Trump supporters who violently stormed into the building -- seized on remarks by retired Gen. Russell Honoré the day after the riot.
"In that [Sund] did not have sufficient police on hand to protect the Capitol, which has led me to believe that there was some complicity on behalf of the Capitol police and that will come out in the investigation," said Honoré, who has since been tapped by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to investigate the riot. "I hope I'm wrong."
Hawley asked each of the witnesses whether they felt complicit in the attack that left five dead -- and viewers were appalled and infuriated.
Sen. Josh Hawley calls claims that Capitol Police leadership appeared to be “complicit" in January 6 insurrection “disrespectful" and “really quite shocking." pic.twitter.com/aEyRxV6RKb
— The Recount (@therecount) February 23, 2021
I can think of one other person who has zero reason or credibility to be leading any kind of inquiry into Jan 6 https://t.co/c7uHhgM5V0— Asawin Suebsaeng (@Asawin Suebsaeng)1614105687.0
You know who was complicit in the insurrection on 1/6, Senator Hawley? You!
— Lindsey Straus (@Take2Hit2Left) February 23, 2021
Josh Hawley is offended that anyone would accuse anyone of being complicit with the insurrection with which he was complicit.
— emptywheel (@emptywheel) February 23, 2021
Josh Hawley is a monster. That he is participating in a hearing on the police response to the insurrection he helped incite is a disgrace.
— Norman Ornstein (@NormOrnstein) February 23, 2021
I can't even begin to say at what level is my anger at Josh Hawley's disgusting hypocrisy in voicing gratitude and concern for the Capitol police.
Shameless white supremacist hypocrite.
— 🌊Bernice García Baca (@bernice14) February 23, 2021
Josh Hawley: We have to find out who was supporting the insurrection. pic.twitter.com/xhAzbeV0yf
— JRehling (@JRehling) February 23, 2021
Hawley is repulsive! He's being a gregarious weasel!
— Poetess O'Prunty (@OPruntyPoetess) February 23, 2021
It's pretty rich to watch Josh Hawley ask anything about the Jan. 6th attacks.
Feel like he should be answering questions.
— Matt Fuller (@MEPFuller) February 23, 2021
That Hawley is asking any questions at all is insulting #CapitolRiots
— Clint Watts (@selectedwisdom) February 23, 2021
Extraordinary 🤡 moment as @HawleyMO, who pumped his fist in salute to the insurrectionists, feigns outrage at the idea that any of the former Capitol law enforcement leadership was “complicit" in the insurrection. https://t.co/mo37PCrqMV
— Spencer Ackerman (@attackerman) February 23, 2021
honore also said mean things about hawley, which fox news has been whining about, but most of the people covering congress won't note this because they ignore fox's effect on gop politicians https://t.co/3gGiyuLp8w
— Oliver Willis (@owillis) February 23, 2021
How does Josh Hawley get to participate in committee hearings investigating 1/6 insurrection. He clearly helped incite the riot & gave aid & comfort to enemies of our democracy. He should be stripped of all committee memberships. He should be charged with sedition and locked up. pic.twitter.com/zVBlslIf0h
— Marley (@RobertM15294022) February 23, 2021
How DARE @HawleyMO refer to Russel L. Honoré @ltgrusselhonore as "this person" !
— John Lewis Voting Rights Act must be passed (@WeCan2017) February 23, 2021