As it stands, the chief must get the consent of the Capitol Police Board to ask for this type of back up. Both Republicans and Democrats have felt that layer of bureaucracy was at least part of what led to a delayed response from federal forces supporting Capitol Police on January 6.
Sen. Roy Blunt similarly touted the legislation as way to address “unnecessary delays” when “swift, decisive action” is needed. “This bipartisan bill addresses a major security challenge that was evident on January 6th, and is part of our ongoing effort to strengthen Capitol security moving forward,” the Missouri Republican said in a statement.
“The Department still lacks the overall training infrastructure to meet the needs of the Department, the level of Intelligence gathering and expertise needed, and an overall cultural change needed to move the department into a protective agency as opposed to a traditional Police Department,” Bolton told lawmakers in written testimony.
In a statement, the Capitol Police previously said it “agrees with the Inspector General that the Department must continue to improve and expand its intelligence and protective capabilities. This is vital for carrying out our critical mission.”
“Training is a top priority. We are working diligently to address staffing shortages in order to provide officers more time for additional training,” the statement added.
This story has been updated with additional information Tuesday.