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April 1, 2015

Posts in "Senate Sergeant-at-Arms"

March 26, 2015

Congress Not Pushing Back on July Fourth Security Crackdown

Oh, say will you still be able to see from the Capitol? (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Oh, say will you still be able to see from the Capitol? (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hill staffers would be the people most affected if Capitol law enforcement cracks down on Memorial Day and Fourth of July parties. That might be why members of Congress do not seem to be pushing back on a March 12 letter from the Capitol Police Board.

While lawmakers dismissed past proposals to limit access to the so-called “people’s house,” such as building a fence around the 276-acre complex, as former Senate Sergeant-at-Arms and Capitol Police Chief Terrance W. Gainer recently suggested, this most recent recommendation might prove more popular. Full story

March 17, 2015

Senate Protests More Likely to End in Handcuffs

CodePink protesters more likely to end up in handcuffs on the Hill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Protesters are more likely to end up in handcuffs. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Planning to protest a hearing on Capitol Hill? One warning is all you get under Frank J. Larkin, the Senate’s 40th sergeant-at-arms.

A few weeks after he was sworn in as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s choice for the chamber’s chief law enforcement officer, Larkin got together with the new Republican-controlled committees, his staff and Capitol Police to ensure everybody was “in sync” on how to deal with disruptions.

Full story

March 12, 2015

Capitol Expecting ‘Mass of Humanity’ for Pope Visit

Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Frank J. Larkin (left) said he has experience protecting the pope. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Larkin, left, said he has experience protecting the pope. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The officials in charge of Capitol security are preparing for Pope Francis’ address to Congress in September, and the masses of people that are expected to descend upon the District of Columbia to get a glimpse of the leader of the Catholic Church.

“The papal visit will be significant in planning and scope. Almost similar, literally, to an inauguration. But perhaps even surpassing that,” Capitol Police Chief Kim C. Dine said Thursday at a Senate Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee hearing. “We anticipate very, very large crowds all during that day, much earlier than even before the Pope coming to the Capitol, lining all of the streets. It’s a huge and very significant event.” Full story

March 11, 2015

Capito Steps Into Legislative Branch Chairmanship

Capito is the new chairwoman of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Capito is the new chairwoman of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., stepped into the limelight Tuesday, highlighting her new role as head of the appropriations subcommittee that oversees the Capitol complex and introducing herself on the floor with her maiden speech.

“This is our first run at the show,” Capito said at the start of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee hearing, referring to herself and new ranking member Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii. “And I speak for myself, and I think I speak for the senator, that really we’re excited about having this responsibility. ” Full story

February 23, 2015

Capitol Police Chief’s Leadership Questioned

Under Capitol Police Chief Kim C. Dine, right, the department is pursuing accredidation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The State of the Union car chase has put Dine’s leadership of the Capitol Police under scrutiny. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The State of the Union night car chase that ended without arrest added new strains to already tense relationships inside the law enforcement community on Capitol Hill.

Capitol Police officers who were disturbed and embarrassed by the Jan. 20 incident allege it’s part of a frustrating pattern. They say commanders have instructed the rank and file to refrain from “low-value” stops — including traffic violations involving drunk driving and drug impairment on streets around the Capitol campus, multiple sources confirmed — because those arrests do not contribute to thwarting terrorism and protecting Congress.

Within the Capitol, House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul D. Irving and Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Frank J. Larkin were frustrated when they were unable to get an accurate portrayal of the facts about the high-speed chase that ended on Washington Avenue Southwest, adjacent to the Rayburn House Office Building.

Full story

February 11, 2015

Phone Scammers Target Congressional Offices

Congressional offices have been warned of fraudulent phone calls. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Congressional offices have been warned about fraudulent phone calls. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Security officials are warning Capitol Hill employees to be alert for telephone scams targeting congressional offices, a reminder that Internet-calling technology makes phone calls as big a threat to Congress as cyberattacks.

On Monday, the Office of the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms sent out a notice about illegal phone phishing incidents, involving callers trying to elicit sensitive information about the Senate network, including IP addresses, files present on Senate computers and how to obtain remote access. Full story

February 9, 2015

New House Cybersecurity Policies Show Ongoing Threat

Miller has announced new cybersecurity procedures. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Miller’s panel has announced new cybersecurity policies. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In the wake of recent cyberattacks, the House has instituted new policies to strengthen cybersecurity, but some lawmakers acknowledge more must be done to address the ever-changing threat.

The Committee on House Administration sent an electronic “Dear Colleague” letter to congressional offices recently, detailing the new policies aimed at bolstering staff cybersecurity training and centralizing the security structure. Full story

February 5, 2015

Capitol Police Make Rapid Response to CodePink Protesters After McCain Outrage

Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., confers with an aide during a Senate Armed Services Committee confirmation hearing in Dirksen Building on the nomination of Ashton Carter to be Secretary of Defense, February 4, 2015. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Police quashed two outbursts during McCain’s Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Order was promptly restored when CodePink activists disrupted a Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, one week after Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., was “raising hell” about a delayed response by Capitol Police.

The nine uniformed officers inside the Dirksen committee room swiftly escorted a man in an orange jumpsuit from the front row of a hearing on the Guantánamo Bay, Cuba detention facility after he hopped to his feet and yelled, “What’s wrong with you, America?” in reaction to remarks from Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. Full story

January 22, 2015

McConnell’s Sergeant-at-Arms Team’s Time Together Goes Way Back (Audio)

Deputy Senate Sergeant at Arms James W. Morhard, left, and Sergeant at Arms Frank J. Larkin, are interviewed by Roll Call in the Capitol, January 9, 2015. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Deputy Senate Sergeant-at-Arms James W. Morhard, left, and Sergeant at Arms Frank J. Larkin, are interviewed by Roll Call in the Capitol, January 9, 2015. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The two men at the helm of the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms office first crossed paths nearly two decades ago as staffers on the chamber’s Appropriations Committee.

In 1997, freshly-minted SAA Frank J. Larkin began a congressional fellowship with the subcommittee in charge of Treasury Department funding, bringing his unique perspective as a Secret Service agent and former Navy SEAL to the turbulent and often arcane process of crafting appropriations bills. Full story

December 17, 2014

McConnell Announces New Senate Sergeant-at-Arms

Willison to join the ranks of former SAAs (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Willison will join the ranks of former SAAs (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is sweeping the decks at the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Office, replacing SAA Drew Willison with former Navy SEAL and Defense Department alumnus Frank J. Larkin for the 114th Congress.

James W. Morhard, a former chief of staff on the Senate Appropriations Committee with more than 20 years of experience in the chamber, returns to Capitol Hill after a decade in the private sector to replace Michael Stenger in the No. 2 spot in the office, the Kentucky Republican announced on Wednesday. Full story

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