GOP lawmaker barricaded himself in bathroom with sword during Capitol riot

A House Republican says he barricaded himself in a bathroom with a sword during the Jan. 6 Capitol riot as a mob of former President TrumpDonald TrumpUN meeting with US, France canceled over scheduling issue Trump sues NYT, Mary Trump over story on tax history McConnell, Shelby offer government funding bill without debt ceiling MORE's supporters stormed the Capitol complex.

Rep. Bruce WestermanBruce Eugene WestermanGray wolf may be relisted as endangered after Trump removed protections Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by the American Petroleum Institute — Progressives wage 'no gas' campaign Push for Civilian Climate Corps highlights underlying obstacles to restoring public lands MORE (R-Ark.) told The New York Times in an interview published Monday that he was with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyWoodward: Milley was 'setting in motion sensible precautions' with calls to China Thompson says he hopes Jan 6. committee can complete work by 'early spring' Juan Williams: Shame on the anti-mandate Republicans MORE (Calif.) in the GOP leader's office after the riot began.

The lawmakers had reportedly gone to McCarthy's office after the House chamber was evacuated. However, Westerman said he was left in McCarthy's inner work area after the GOP leader's security team took McCarthy to a more secure location.


Westerman said he took a Civil War-era sword that was on display in the office and barricaded himself inside McCarthy's private bathroom, crouching on the toilet and waiting for the riot to be over, the Times reported.

Arkansas ABC affiliate KATV reported that Westerman had tweeted during the riot to declare the mob's actions "absolutely unacceptable" and warn about people getting hurt. It was unclear where he was when he sent the tweet, the outlet reported.

The Hill has reached out to the Arkansas Republican for comment.

Democratic Rep. Ruben GallegoRuben GallegoThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by AT&T - Final countdown: Senate inches toward last infrastructure vote Arizona state senator arrested on charges of sexual conduct with a minor House Democrats introduce bill restoring voting provision after SCOTUS ruling MORE (Ariz.) commented on Westerman's account of barricading himself with a sword.

He had a sword!! Wth I was looking for the sharpest pen to jab an insurgent in the eye,” Gallego tweeted Tuesday.


The Capitol was stormed on Jan. 6 by pro-Trump supporters while Congress was getting ready to certify President BidenJoe BidenUN meeting with US, France canceled over scheduling issue Schumer moves to break GOP blockade on Biden's State picks GOP Rep. Cawthorn likens vaccine mandates to 'modern-day segregation' MORE’s Electoral College victory.

Federal authorities have made hundreds of arrests in connection to the riot and prosecutors have said they expect to bring charges against scores more.