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Politics live updates: Police officials to testify about Capitol riot at Senate hearing

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D.C. Metropolitan Police Department Acting Chief Robert Contee plans to testify that the National Guard did not want to send troops to the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6 because they “did not like the optics of boots on the ground at the Capitol,” according to his prepared remarks.

Contee said at 2:22 p.m., after rioters had already started storming the building and two pipe bombs were found, he had a call with leadership of the Capitol Police, the D.C. National Guard and the Department of the Army. 

“I was stunned at the response from Department of the Army, which was reluctant to send the D.C. National Guard to the Capitol,” Contee says in his prepared remarks. 

Contee said he asked whether they were refusing to deploy guardsmen and said he was told by Army staff that “they were not refusing to send them, but wanted to know the plan and did not like the optics of boots on the ground at the Capitol.” 

— Christal Hayes

Top law enforcement officials dispute details of National Guard deployment to the Capitol during riot

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