House passes sweeping bills on voting rights and police reform – live updates | US news

The National Guard was hamstrung ahead of the attack – DC National Guard commanding general Maj Gen William Walker said there was an “unusual” 5 January memo from then-Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy restricting his ability to deploy a so-called Quick Reaction Force without McCarthy’s approval. Had it not been for that restriction, Walker said, he “would have sent them there immediately as soon as I hung up” from his call with then-Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund asking for help.

Walker told the committees, “It was never really explained to me” why restrictions were placed on him. But he drew a stark contrast between 6 Janusary and the response to racial justice protests over the summer.

Asked by Homeland Security committee Chairman, Michigan Democrat Gary Peters, whether he got immediate approval from McCarthy and Miller to deploy guardsmen in June, Walker replied, “Yes.” Pressed by Peters on whether he got immediate approval to deploy 6 January, Walker replied, “No.”

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Bourbiza Mohamed. Writer and Political Discourse Analysis.

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