Thomas Manger has now taken over as chief of the U.S. Capitol Police, and he’s now told CNN that he flatly does not “agree” with describing what happened at the Capitol on January 6 as a “lovefest.” (Former President Trump has used such terminology, attempting to downplay the reality of what happened.) During the Capitol riot, Capitol Police officers — alongside other law enforcement personnel — were on the front lines of the struggle to protect the Capitol and government leaders from the violent mob of Trump supporters. The mob was openly murderous — at one point, a portion of the crowd chanted “Hang Mike Pence!” because of the then-vice president’s perceived disloyalty to Trump.
Manger commented as follows:
‘I cannot waste my time worrying about how somebody interprets a tape. I know what the men and women of this agency went through. I know the challenges that they faced. I also know the courage that they displayed that day. And it was a horrific time. And I believe that in my heart.’
Asked more specifically about describing what happened at the Capitol as a “lovefest,” Manger commented as follows:
‘I don’t agree with it. That’s not how I saw it. But again, everyone is entitled to their opinion. And frankly, as the chief of this police department now, I’m in a position to do things to ensure that wouldn’t happen again.’
Troublingly, Manger also confirmed that he remains “concerned” about the potential of future violence at the Capitol. Trump-supporting extremists have recently promoted the idea that the former president will be reinstated next month because of supposed (but in reality completely non-existent) confirmations of systematic election fraud, and while there’s no real-world basis for this idea, it could inspire another attack. Asked whether he was concerned about the possibility of a “repeat” of January 6, Manger commented to CNN as follows: “I’d be a fool to not be concerned about that. That, obviously — the safety and security of the U.S. Capitol, the Congress, that legislative process — those are top priorities. And I’m absolutely concerned about all of those things.”