HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz is calling for vigilance after the violent attack on the US Capitol last week ― and as the FBI warns that more violence is possible.
“I think everybody should be on high alert and it pains me to say that. I don’t want to live like this,” he told Hawaii News Now.
“I think over the next several days it is wise to be extremely careful. It is wise to be aware of the possibility of something terrible happening.”
On Tuesday, President Donald Trump condemned the violence, but did not take responsibility for inciting the insurrection even as he faces impeachment over his actions.
Schatz, D-Hawaii, called the president’s comments “unhelpful.”
“He will likely make things worse on purpose” ahead of Biden’s inauguration Jan. 20, he said.
The House will likely take up an impeachment vote Wednesday.
In the Senate, a vote to convict is unclear. But Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is said to have indicated that impeachment will help rid Trump from the GOP.
“We certainly know that he abused his power in a way that caused the Congress to be physically under siege and if that’s not an impeachable offense then I don’t know what an impeachable offense is,” Schatz said.
Schatz says he was in the Senate chambers with 70 other members during the siege.
“It happened pretty quick that they locked down the chamber itself. They yelled lock down. They indicated on the house side that shots had been fired. Though that was still unclear to us,” said Schatz.
“You realize how close some of these insurrectionists where to actually getting to the door of the United States Senate,” he added.
After a few minutes, Capitol Police whisked them away to a secure location.
“I didn’t text family until I was secure because I didn’t want to be distracted from being a good compliant member of that single file line,” he said.
Schatz says three House members have tested positive for coronavirus after being sequestered together during the deadly riot. Several more members are now getting additional tests.
He says everyone in the Senate was wearing masks during the lockdown.