WASHINGTON D.C., – Shortly after the car chase and police involved shooting in Washington D.C. on Thursday afternoon, FOX 17 reached out to U.S. lawmakers from Michigan who were in D.C. trying to resolve the shutdown.
In a phone conversation with Representative Fred Upton, (R) Michigan, and Rep. Bill Huizenga, (R) Michigan, both said the police response was extremely fast, and professional.
“I was literally walking across the street from the Capitol to my office, and had just made it into the office and sat down and made a comment to a couple of my staff members that this just doesn’t sound right, the number of sirens and what was going on right after that we got a shelter in place notice from Capitol Hill Police and right after that the campus went into lock-down,” said Rep. Huizenga.
The republican representative from Michigan said the House had just wrapped up a vote, trying to resolve the government shutdown when he first got an alert on his phone.
Rep. Fred Upton said he was in his office during the car chase and saw 40 police cars drive by. He said they were coming from the White House heading towards the bottom of Capitol Hill.
“Literally right outside my building are what we call the bomb ramps,” said Rep. Upton. “Big steel plates that emerge from the bottom of the street going through and I watched those elevate right away as security really strengthened and made sure there was a protected corridor around the Capitol. Even though we have the shutdown, there is still a lot of tourists. Maybe not as many as normal but there is lots of people on the streets as this is a busy part of D.C.”
The representatives said the lock-down was over in a matter of hours. Lawmakers then attempted to put the distractions aside and reconvene for another vote in an attempt to end the shutdown.
“We can’t let any of these things be too much of a distraction,” said Rep. Huizenga. “And in this day and age you just have to be vigilant and aware of your surroundings and what is going on and we are just thankful that we have professionals floating around here keeping us safe.”