Majority Leader Schumer Floor Remarks On The Departure Of The National Guard From The Capitol Following The January 6 Insurrection

May 24, 2021

Washington, D.C.   Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor, expressing his gratitude towards the members of the National Guard who have protected the Capitol since the insurrection. Senator Schumer also emphasized the need to balance safety and accessibility in future security measures. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:

Yesterday was the last day that members of the National Guard were stationed at the Capitol. In the wake of January 6th, they have all done us an extraordinary service providing an additional layer of security here. I want to thank everyone on behalf of the Senate and the entire Capitol complex.

It was never our intention to have an element of the U.S. military on guard at the Capitol for an indefinite period. It was always a temporary solution to a temporary security threat caused by the former president—a reality acknowledged by the House and Senate Minority leaders in the immediately aftermath of January 6th, but not much since.

Going forward, we must establish and maintain a critical balance between security and access. The Capitol is a place that belongs to the people. We want visitors and tourists to be able to come and go. We want constituents to be able to meet their representatives and make their voices heard. We also have an obligation to make everyone—members, staff, media, and employees of the Capitol—feel safe when they come to work.

Our Senate Committees and the new team at the Sergeant at Arms are working very hard to strike that perfect balance. We thank, once again, the National Guard for helping us protect this place during a very difficult period for our democracy.