21 Republicans vote against awarding medals to police who defended Capitol

The House passed legislation on Tuesday to award Congressional Gold Medals — one of the highest civilian honors — to police officers who defended the Capitol during the violent Jan. 6 insurrection.

Lawmakers handily passed the legislation. Members of both parties supported it, 406-21, with all of the votes in opposition coming from conservative Republicans.

The four medals awarded under the bill would be displayed at the Capitol Police headquarters, at the D.C. Metropolitan Police headquarters, at the Smithsonian Institution and in a "prominent location" in the Capitol.


The medal displayed in the Capitol would be accompanied with a plaque listing all of the law enforcement agencies that helped protect the building on Jan. 6 from the mob of former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump hails Arizona Senate for audit at Phoenix rally, slams governor Arkansas governor says it's 'disappointing' vaccinations have become 'political' Watch live: Trump attends rally in Phoenix MORE’s supporters who were trying to stop Congress from certifying President BidenJoe BidenTrump hails Arizona Senate for audit at Phoenix rally, slams governor Republicans focus tax hike opposition on capital gains change Biden on hecklers: 'This is not a Trump rally. Let 'em holler' MORE’s election victory.

The resolution names three police officers — Brian Sicknick and Howard Liebengood of the Capitol Police and Jeffrey Smith of the Metropolitan Police — who died in the days after they were on duty at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

It also highlights the heroism of Eugene Goodman, who was serving as a Capitol Police officer on Jan. 6 and has since been promoted to acting deputy Senate sergeant-at-arms. Goodman was shown on a video captured by a reporter luring the mob away from the Senate chamber in a move that helped former Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PencePoll: 73 percent of Democratic voters would consider voting for Biden in the 2024 primary Bipartisan congressional commission urges IOC to postpone, relocate Beijing Games Noem to travel to South Carolina for early voting event MORE and senators escape to safety.

The measure states that their actions "exemplify the patriotism and the commitment of Capitol Police officers, and those of other law enforcement agencies, to risk their lives in service of our country."

"Jan. 6 was unquestionably one of the darkest days in the history of our democracy. But because of the courage of the Capitol Police and other law enforcement officers, it will also be etched in history as a day of heroism," Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSunday shows preview: Bipartisan infrastructure talks drag on; Democrats plow ahead with Jan. 6 probe House Democrats grow frustrated as they feel ignored by Senate Yellen to Congress: Raise the debt ceiling or risk 'irreparable harm' MORE (D-Calif.), the lead sponsor of the bill, said on the House floor before its passage.


The House previously passed a version of the bill in March to award Congressional Gold Medals to the law enforcement agencies that helped defend the Capitol. At the time, 12 Republicans voted against the legislation.

Rep. Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieEthics panel upholds 0 mask fines against Greene, other GOP lawmakers House Ethics panel upholds 0 mask fines against GOP lawmakers California Democrats clash over tech antitrust fight MORE (R-Ky.), who voted against both versions of the bill, said Tuesday that he’s concerned its use of the term “insurrectionists” to describe the mob that stormed the Capitol could impact ongoing court cases. He rejected the notion that the Jan. 6 attack amounted to an insurrection — which Merriam-Webster defines as “an act or instance of revolting against civil authority or an established government.”

“I think if we call that an insurrection, it could have a bearing on their case that I don't think would be good,” Massie said.

“If they just wanted to give the police recognition, they could have done it without trying to make it partisan, without sticking that in there,” he added.

The other Republicans who voted against the bill were Reps. Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Lauren BoebertLauren BoebertMcConnell pushes vaccines, but GOP muddles his message GOP's Banks burnishes brand with Pelosi veto Performance or performance art? A question for voters in 2022 (and 2024) MORE (Colo.), Michael Cloud (Texas), Andrew Clyde (Ga.), Warren DavidsonWarren Earl DavidsonGovernors' races see flood of pro-Trump candidates 21 Republicans vote against awarding medals to police who defended Capitol Cheney set to be face of anti-Trump GOP MORE (Ohio), Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzLawmakers introduce bipartisan Free Britney Act Performance or performance art? A question for voters in 2022 (and 2024) Six takeaways: What the FEC reports tell us about the midterm elections MORE (Fla.), Louie GohmertLouis (Louie) Buller GohmertMcCarthy, GOP face a delicate dance on Jan. 6 committee The Hill's Morning Report - Cheney 'honored' to serve on select committee Ethics panel dismisses GOP lawmaker's ,000 metal detector fine MORE (Texas), Bob Good (Va.), Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarOvernight Health Care: CDC director warns of 'pandemic of the unvaccinated' | Biden says social media platforms 'killing people' | Florida accounts for 20 percent of new cases Hillicon Valley: Biden: Social media platforms 'killing people' | Tech executives increased political donations amid lobbying push | Top House antitrust Republican forms 'Freedom from Big Tech Caucus' Top House antitrust Republican forms 'Freedom from Big Tech Caucus' MORE (Ariz.), Marjorie Taylor GreeneMarjorie Taylor GreeneGOP efforts to downplay danger of Capitol riot increase The Memo: What now for anti-Trump Republicans? Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene says she's meeting with Trump 'soon' in Florida MORE (Ga.), Andy HarrisAndrew (Andy) Peter HarrisOvernight Health Care: Biden officials says no change to masking guidance right now | Missouri Supreme Court rules in favor of Medicaid expansion | Mississippi's attorney general asks Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade House GOP leaders say vaccine works but shouldn't be mandated Acquiescing to Berlin, emboldening Moscow and squeezing Kyiv: Biden and Nordstream 2 MORE (Md.), Jody HiceJody Brownlow HiceGeorgia secretary of state calls for Fulton County elections officials to be fired One-third of GOP candidates have embraced Trump election claims: report House Democrat: Republicans 'treating Capitol Police like shit' were 'the most scared' during riot MORE (Ga.), Mary Miller (Ill.), Barry Moore (Ala.), Ralph NormanRalph Warren NormanEthics panel upholds 0 mask fines against Greene, other GOP lawmakers GOP lawmakers press airlines on flight cancellations 'I want to cry': House Republicans take emotional trip to the border MORE (S.C.), Scott PerryScott Gordon Perry21 Republicans vote against awarding medals to police who defended Capitol The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Republicans seek to sink Jan. 6 commission DCCC targets Republicans for touting stimulus bill they voted against MORE (Pa.), John RoseJohn Williams RoseSuspected Capitol rioter at border during Republican lawmakers' visit: report 'I want to cry': House Republicans take emotional trip to the border Republicans eye Nashville crack-up to gain House seat MORE (Tenn.), Matt Rosendale (Mont.), Chip RoyCharles (Chip) Eugene RoyJuan Williams: Republicans prefer Trump's fantasies over truth and facts The Hill's Morning Report - Biden renews families plan pitch; Senate prepares to bring infrastructure package to floor House Republican says colleagues' 'job' is to slow Democratic priorities MORE (Texas) and Greg SteubeWilliam (Greg) Gregory Steube21 Republicans vote against awarding medals to police who defended Capitol Wray grilled on FBI's handling of Jan. 6 Gaetz, House Republicans introduce bill to defund Postal Service covert operations program MORE (Fla.).

The latest version of the legislation differs from the original in that it awards the medal to be displayed inside the Capitol in addition to the other three medals.

Tuesday’s version also highlights the sacrifice of Capitol Police officer William "Billy" Evans, who was killed on April 2 after a man rammed his car into a Senate security barricade, as well as officer Kenneth Shaver, who was injured in that attack.

The Senate, meanwhile, passed a resolution at the end of Trump’s impeachment trial in February to specifically award a medal to Goodman.

The opposition from some Republicans to the bill awarding the Congressional Gold Medals to police officers marks yet another example of the lack of a unified response to the Jan. 6 attack.

All but 35 House Republicans voted against legislation last month to establish an independent bipartisan commission to investigate the events of Jan. 6. Senate Republicans subsequently blocked the bill from advancing in the upper chamber.

Davidson said that Tuesday's vote was "an attempt to rewrite history and further a Democrat narrative."

"House Democrats are using an opportunity to recognize the valor of our Capitol Police officers to launder a politically motivated narrative about the events of 1/6," Davidson wrote in a series of Twitter posts.

Democrats are still mulling possible alternatives to a bipartisan commission, including establishing a select House committee to investigate the attack on the Capitol.

Pelosi met with House committee chairs on Tuesday to discuss possible next steps, but they didn’t make a final decision. Multiple committees, including the House Administration, Oversight and Reform, and Appropriations panels, have already held hearings related to federal agencies’ handling of the insurrection.

“We’ve considered several options as we look forward, but there'll be a cascade of activity from the committees,” Pelosi said after the meeting. “We’re looking at a couple suggestions that were put forth to come to a conclusion, which will be soon.”