Committee Presses Private Companies to Help Prevent Future Attacks on Capitol and Preserve Key Evidence Related to Attackers
Washington, D.C. (Jan. 15, 2021)—Last night, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, sent letters to two dozen bus, car rental, and hotel companies requesting their help in identifying and preventing ongoing and extreme threats of further violent attacks in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere over the coming days.
“While the inciters and attackers bear direct responsibility for the siege on the Capitol and will be held fully accountable, they relied on a range of companies and services to get them there and house them once they arrived—companies that law-abiding Americans use every day, but whose services were hijacked to further the January 6 attacks,” Chairwoman Maloney wrote. “Trump supporters chartered scores of buses and vans and drove in caravans to the nation’s capital. They stayed in D.C. hotels, with videos showing attackers relaxing in the lobby of one hotel after the insurrection.”
The FBI has warned of ongoing threats of violence and armed attacks through Inauguration Day, including calls by white supremacist groups for a “Million Militia March” on January 20. Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser has urged Americans to stay away because of threats of violence.
Several companies have already taken action. On January 13, Airbnb announced that it “will cancel reservations in the Washington, D.C. metro area during the Inauguration week” and that it “will prevent any new reservations in the Washington, D.C. area from being booked during that time by blocking such reservations.” In addition, before the January 6 attack, the Hotel Harrington took measures to prevent people with violent intent staying at the hotel. In previous acts of domestic terrorism, such as the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995, private companies took important action to improve their security and deny extremists access to their services.
The Committee asked companies to put in place additional screening measures to ensure that their services are not being used to facilitate violence or domestic terrorism, and that they produce copies of these policies and procedures to the Committee. The Committee also asked them to preserve all records regarding service requests and reservations from January 1—31 for potential use, if necessary, in future law enforcement or Congressional investigations.
Letters were sent to the following companies:
Click here to read the letters.