Biden signs law awarding Congressional Gold Medal to officers who responded to assault on Capitol Hill

Biden signs law awarding Congressional Gold Medal to officers who responded to assault on Capitol Hill

President Biden signed the law awarding the Congressional Gold Medal.

Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

President Joe Biden signed into law at the White House Thursday to award Congressional gold medals to police forces that responded to the attack on the United States Capitol on January 6.

The Congressional Gold Medal is the “highest expression of the national recognition of the United States Congress for the distinguished contributions and achievements of individuals or institutions,” according to the United States Senate.

Biden thanked officers at a ceremony held at the Rose Garden “for protecting our Capitol, and perhaps most importantly, for protecting our Constitution and saving the lives of duly elected members of the Senate, House, and our staff,” he reported. CNN.

Twenty-one House Republicans voted against awarding the medals.

Not all dissident lawmakers explained why they voted against the bill, but some appeared to disagree with the use of the word “insurrection” to refer to the January 6 attack on the United States Capitol building by supporters of the former president. Donald Trump who sought to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, according to CNN.

But in the Rose Garden, the president issued a harsh criticism of the revisionists who have wanted to change the narrative on the events of January 6.

“A mob of extremist terrorists launched a violent and deadly assault on the people’s house and the sacred ritual to certify free and fair elections. It was not dissent. It was not a debate. It was not democracy. It was an insurrection. It was an uproar and chaos. It was radical and chaotic. And it was unconstitutional. Perhaps most importantly, it was fundamentally anti-American, ”the president said.

He also stressed that “the tragedy of that day deserves the truth above all else. We cannot allow history to be rewritten. We cannot allow the heroism of these officers to be forgotten. We have to understand what happened. The honest, no-frills truth: we have to face it. That’s what great nations do, and we are a great nation, ”Biden continued.

The Congressional Gold Medal will be awarded to the United States Capitol Police Headquarters and the Washington, DC Metropolitan Police Department. Two additional medals will be awarded to the Smithsonian Institution and the Architect of the Capitol for display and research purposes.

The signing of the bill comes days after it was revealed that two more Metropolitan Police officers who responded to the January 6 attack recently died by suicide.

In all, there have been four known suicides of officers who responded to the Capitol during the attack.

The event also comes less than two weeks after officers who experienced the January 6 uprising testified before the House Select Committee investigating the attack. Those agents -Aquilino Gonell, Michael Fanone, Harry Dunn and Daniel Hodges- described the physical and psychological consequences that the assault left for them and many of their companions, in which they suffered racist beatings and insults.

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