We’re demanding answers about the Jan. 6 attacks on the Capitol.

Here’s how we’re using the Freedom of Information Act to investigate this assault on democracy:
How the mob was able to so easily breach Capitol security and why did it take so long to secure the building? Just 1,400 Capitol Police officers were on duty at the time, and National Guardsmen didn’t arrive until hours after the invasion began.
As Americans watched the rioters storm through the building, news reports circulated that the Pentagon — which has authority over the D.C. National Guard — and the president had initially denied requests for the deployment of Guardsmen.
News reports indicate that Vice President Mike Pence spoke with military leaders from a secret location in the Capitol, trying to mobilize soldiers.
We filed FOIA requests with multiple agencies for call logs and related communications, as well as any communications top officials at the Defense Department, DHS, the FBI, and the Army had with Trump or with Vice President Mike Pence.
The Washington Post reported that DOD placed limitations on the National Guard ahead of the Trump rally following a request from the mayor of Washington, DC., such as prohibiting officers from receiving riot gear.
We sent FOIAs to several agencies for memos regarding those National Guard limitations.
While some officials have claimed there was no intelligence that the Capitol could be breached, plans for the attack were made openly and with strong indication that it could turn violent.
An FBI office in Virginia warned that extremists were planning to come to the capital to commit violence and war, the @WashingtonPost reported Tuesday. We want to know if other agencies analyzed the threat ahead of the election certification.
We asked several agencies for records reflecting any analyses or reports about the threat of militias or domestic terrorists prepared in advance of the election certification.
We’ll continue to update our investigation as we learn more. Read more about our investigation here:

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More from @weareoversight

14 Jan
Today’s DOJ IG report means very little to the families that were torn apart in 2018, or to the 628 children that still have not been reunited with their parents. They bore the inhumane brunt of the Trump administration’s failures.
The report underscores and confirms the evidence developed by us and others over the last few years. When you combine zealous cruelty and bumbling bureaucratic competence, you get inhumane, tragic results.
Our May 2020 report found the administration failed to take any reasonable steps to prepare to execute its plans. And now, the Department of Justice has reached the same conclusion.
Read 4 tweets
14 Jan
A new DOJ IG report says Trump DOJ officials pushed the “zero tolerance” immigration policy while knowing it would lead to family separations.

We obtained a Jan. 2018 DHS memo listing problems with the “pilot” program.

A “Negative impact” listed: “Permanent family separation.” Image
Read more about the DOJ IG’s report here:

The 2018 memo also listed “New populations of U.S. orphans” under a section titled “problematic outcomes.”
The memo was based on DHS Civil Rights/Civil Liberties office’s investigation of 27 of the 950 “family separation matters” the office had received since 2016.

It cited problems with:
-“inconsistent, inaccurate, or no record-keeping for all arriving family members” in DHS systems Image
Read 5 tweets
14 Jan
The DOJ Inspector General released a new report on the planning and implementation of the Trump admin.’s “zero tolerance” policy.

It concludes top Trump DOJ officials failed to prepare for the policy and knew it would lead to the separation of families.
We’ve been investigating family separation.

Documents we obtained provide evidence of a pattern of miscommunication and disorganization within DHS at the same time officials were issuing misleading public statements about the administration’s policies.
Emails from March 2017 show us that Kirstjen Nielsen, then DHS chief of staff, and her associates were unprepared for the response to the Reuters story that first reported that the administration was considering separating families.
Read 13 tweets
14 Jan
We’ve launched an investigation into the Jan. 6 attacks on the Capitol.

Yesterday, we submitted a suite of public records requests to the D.C. government to investigate how leaders handled this attack on democracy.
The Defense Department has come under criticism for reportedly initially resisting emergency requests for National Guard assistance while militia members roamed congressional halls.
We asked the D.C. mayor’s office for all email communications sent by Mayor Muriel Bowser or acting Police Chief Robert J. Contee III regarding President Trump’s Jan. 6 rally, including requests to other agencies for support or guidance.
Read 9 tweets
12 Jan
NEW: We’re demanding answers about the Jan. 6 attacks on the Capitol.

A mob, animated by the president, attempted to violently stop the peaceful transfer of power.

We filed a suite of FOIAs to investigate how leaders handled this attack on democracy.
Questions remain about how the mob was able to so easily breach Capitol security and why it took so long to secure the building. We launched our own investigation and requested records related to security communications, threat analyses, and National Guard limitations.
Security Communications: We requested communications of senior officials regarding the attack and orders, directives, or guidance prepared, written, or approved by officials at:
-National Guard
-Secret Service
and more.
Read 8 tweets
12 Jan
In September, a whistleblower claimed that Trump political appointees at DHS modified intelligence reports to downplay the threat of white supremacists.

In 2019, we asked DHS what they were doing about white nationalist terror. They sent us a report about environmentalists.
We specifically wanted to know the number of analysts devoted to working on “non-Islamist domestic terrorism threats” and if that number had changed after President Trump took office.
In response, DHS said it could neither confirm nor deny if it had any responsive records and attached an official report about “suspected environmental rights extremists.”
Read 4 tweets

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