The US Capitol Police Board has authorized the agency's proposal to reintroduce a temporary fence around the Capitol building ahead of a scheduled right-wing rally on September 18, according to authorities.
Following the deadly January 6 riot, when a crowd of supporters of former President Donald Trump and other participants broke through the Capitol's doors as Congress was confirming President Joe Biden's 2020 election, fencing was erected around the building for months.
The fence was partially dismantled in March, but the entire roadblock was removed in early July. The fence will be built a day or two before the protest and will be taken down immediately after the event if all goes smoothly, said Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger.
September 18 rally to support J6 rioters
On Monday, Manger briefed four congressional leaders on security preparations for the September 18 rally, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. 'Look Ahead America,' led by former Trump campaign worker Matt Braynard, is organizing the rally on September 18.
The rally will begin in Union Square and support the jailed rioters from January 6, as per the Washington Examiner. According to several sources, the event is expected to draw between 300 and 500 attendees. In July, the organization staged a separate demonstration outside Washington DC Jail, when around 100 people gathered to show solidarity for arrested individuals on January 6.
Per Daily Mail, the Metropolitan Police Department is anticipated to fully mobilize its force, which gave vital backup to Capitol Police on January 6 when they were overrun. During a Capitol press conference on Wednesday, Pelosi would go into depth about the security measures in place, declaring, "We intend to keep the Capitol's integrity intact."
Officials would not necessarily replace a Capitol fence that had been removed, she added. A former Trump campaign adviser is organizing the protest.
Top Democrats expressed worries about the repetition of violence
Matt Braynard released his video of himself being interviewed by CNN, in which he described the gathering as a peaceful rally for people's civil rights who have been denied about the rioters who have been the focus of a countrywide FBI manhunt. More than 600 people have been identified and prosecuted, many of them based on tips, face recognition, and social media posts.
The FBI's Washington Field Office released a new video of the unnamed guy who planted a pipe bomb near the Capitol on January 5. It also released additional photos of a guy with a bleeding head suspected of assaulting federal officials in the US Capitol.
Jacob Chansley, the "Qanon Shaman" who was seen wearing a horned helmet inside the Capitol on January 6, pled guilty last week to disrupting an official procedure - the meeting of Congress to tally electoral votes that elected Biden president.
After denouncing the planned protest as another gathering of violent white nationalists in a floor speech, Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin told Forbes he is "very concerned" about a repetition of the violence that engulfed the Capitol on January 6. Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Madison Cawthorn, two of the House GOP's most fervent advocates of Capitol riot defendants, indicated their bosses would not attend the demonstration, while others did not answer questions.
Despite many right-wing members of his conference strongly supporting accused Capitol rioters in the past, House Minority Leader McCarthy told Politico, "I don't think anyone" in the House GOP would attend the rally. McCarthy's remarks came after the Capitol Police informed him and other congressional leaders on the demonstration. Head Thomas Manger told reporters that they were briefed on the department's "operation plan" for September 18.