Washington, DC—Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made the following remarks this morning on the Senate floor to recognize the recent actions of the Capitol Hill police:
“I came to Washington, D.C., as a young man to get my law degree. But I needed a job to support my young wife and baby. I went to school during the daytime, and by night – every day from 3 in the afternoon to 11 at night – I worked as a police officer here in this Capitol complex.
“I can’t say I ever did anything particularly dangerous, or especially courageous. I mostly manned the doors and helped direct tourists. The closest I ever came to getting injured was during my assignments directing the traffic that bounced around the old streetcar tracks up and down Constitution and Independence Avenues.
“Having had a little experience as a Capitol Police Officer – and having more experience as someone whom they come to work every day to protect – I have a deep and genuine appreciation for the sacrifices these men and women make.
“Yesterday afternoon, our Capitol Police force once again did their jobs with great bravery and skill.
“An armed man fled a traffic stop, driving erratically toward Capitol Hill. He struck a parked car and a Capitol Police car, and nearly ran over two officers.
“When he got out of the car – just one block from where we stand right now – he fired an automatic weapon at the police. Fortunately, the Capitol Police stopped him before he had a chance to do anything more.
“And what did the Capitol Police do as soon as they stopped him? They immediately ran over and administered First Aid. They tried to save the life of the man who just seconds earlier had tried to take theirs. If that is not heroism, I do not know what is.
“An investigation is underway, and we do not yet know all of the details. Nor can we know how many lives these officers saved yesterday – and we cannot sufficiently thank them for doing it.
“But we can say that on behalf of the entire United States Senate, we appreciate you and admire you. We deeply value the honorable work you do every day: Putting your lives on the line to protect people you do not know.”