As Democrats push to increase funding for the Capitol Police after the January 6th riots, the Capitol Police is planning to open new offices in California and Florida.
Acting Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman announced on Tuesday that the Capitol Police would be opening field offices in San Francisco and Tampa, which will “investigate threats to members of Congress.”
However, the new offices are far outside the Capitol Police’s 2-square-mile jurisdiction in Washington and will be an expensive expansion for an already well-funded police department. USA TODAY reported, “The police department that guards members of Congress while they do their jobs at the U.S. Capitol is one of the best-funded in the country, and one of the most secretive.”
With a half-billion-dollar budget, the Capitol Police is one of the most expensive departments in the country. According to Daniel Schuman, policy director of the progressive advocacy group Demand Progress, “It’s the biggest police force you’ve never heard of.”
Republicans were quick to point out the hypocrisy as the same Democrats calling for increased funding to their security also supported the “Defund the Police” movement.
“House Democrats passed a bill on partisan lines that spends $3.5 million on capitol security per member of Congress,” Republican Rep. Indiana Jim Banks said in a statement to the Washington Examiner. “When it comes to their own safety, House Democrats know that more police funding works. I wish Democrats started acting like regular Americans’ lives matter as much as Members of Congress. For now, it’s ‘Defund the Police for thee but not for me.’“
The Capitol Police currently have almost equivalent funding to the Metropolitan Police Department, which has jurisdiction over an area 34 times that of the Capitol Police and has nearly double the staff.
“It doesn’t seem to be a lack of money that was the problem here,” said Chris Edwards, the director of tax policy studies at the Cato Institute. “It seems to me it was probably a management and training failure.”