August 03, 2021
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.), the top Republican on the U.S. Senate Committee on Rules and Administration, spoke on the Senate floor in support of a bill awarding Congressional Gold Medals to the law enforcement officers who responded to the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol. The legislation, which was introduced by Blunt and Rules Committee Chairwoman Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), passed the Senate by unanimous consent and is headed to the president’s desk.
Following Are Blunt’s Remarks:
“Mr. President, I'm proud to join my friend and my colleague Senator Klobuchar as we have introduced and support this [bill]. You know, every day when I come to work at the Capitol, the first person I see is almost always a U.S. Capitol Police officer, and no matter how late I leave at night, the last person I see is almost always a U.S. Capitol Police officer. I was working in this building on 9/11, and one of the last people to leave that morning as the Capitol Police were encouraging us to get out of the building. But the last person I saw as I left the building—who was still in the building—was a Capitol Police officer.
“The Capitol Police have a hard job to do. They not only defend us, but they defend democracy in a way that other police officers are not asked to do. And they always do it at the highest level of professionalism and dedication—never more evident than it was on January the 6th. It was a difficult and sad day for Americans but especially for law enforcement officers who serve and protect the Capitol and for their families, Mr. President.
“I've often said that maybe, very possibly the hardest job to do in America today is to be the family member of someone who works in law enforcement. Maybe the second hardest job is to be the person working in law enforcement. But those families, on that day, were watching television, listening to the news, seeing their very worst fears play out for all the world to see on a day that was horrific for them, horrific for the person they love, horrific for those who love this building and what it stands for.
“And I'm incredibly grateful for the heroic actions we saw that day from the Capitol Police, from the Metropolitan Police who—along with Chief Contee, who was the Acting Chief at the time—were here within 10 or 12 minutes of being called and here in force in that period of time. Others came from around the region and all those law enforcement people that were here to help that day, we are deeply appreciative of.
“The legislation we have here calls on us to recognize the selflessness, the dedication, the willingness to stand in the way of danger as others are able to try to get away from danger. It honors the sacrifices they make and their families make every day.
“I hope by passing this Congressional Gold Medal bill by unanimous consent, we send a clear message to law enforcement officers that we're united in our appreciation of all they do to keep us safe. I urge my colleagues to join not only in supporting the unanimous passage of this bill, but also to be quick in talking about our deep appreciation for those who serve in such a special way as we try to do our work here every day.”