Oversight chairman: Capital’s 'aura of invincibility' has disappeared

Rep. Jason ChaffetzJason ChaffetzCongress's latest hacking investigation should model its most recent Fox News Audio expands stable of podcasts by adding five new shows The myth of the conservative bestseller MORE (R-Utah) on Sunday claimed that an incident involving a gyrocopter landing at the Capitol had raised concerns about protecting Washington, D.C.

“The aura of invincibility that law enforcement will prevail if someone jumps a fence or flies a gyrocopter has disappeared,” Chaffetz told host Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday.”


“That shine is gone,” the House Oversight Committee chairman argued. “The question is what they’re going to do from here.”

Chaffetz said incidents like the gyrocopter landing or White House intrusions present too much risk for Americans to treat them lightly. After the 9/11 attacks, he continued, the stakes are too high for second-guessing harsh defense measures.

“These are no-fail missions,” Chaffetz said of foiling potential safety threats. “You have to take them down and take them down hard.”

“You’ve got some real deranged people and some sophisticated terrorists that are going to come after us,” he continued. “This is going to happen again.”

The Utah lawmaker said he often worries about “coordination and cooperation” between Washington’s many law enforcement agencies. Their repeated failures, he continued, exposed major flaws in America’s domestic security.

“How does this happen time and time again in this day and age?” Chaffetz asked of recent safety lapses. “We need visibility.”

Doug Hughes, 61, was arraigned last Thursday and returned to his Florida home. The disgruntled postal worker landed a gyrocopter on the Capitol’s West Lawn Wednesday in a protest against campaign finance laws.

Hughes was charged with violating aircraft registration requirements and penetrating national defense airspace. The two crimes carry a maximum combined penalty of four years in prison.