• Transcript
  • Show Notes

In this special episode of Stay Tuned, “Policing the Capitol,” former New Jersey Attorney General and CAFE Insider co-host Anne Milgram interviews former Camden, NJ Police Chief Scott Thomson and former D.C. Police Chief Charles Ramsey, both of whom have had influential careers in law enforcement and championed blueprints for police reform. They discuss the police response to the attack on the Capitol on January 6th, how to prepare for the worst, and why departments need to address the problem of officers having ties to hate groups.

Sign up to receive the CAFE Brief, a weekly newsletter featuring analysis by Elie Honig, a weekly roundup of politically-charged legal news, and historical lookbacks that help inform our current political challenges.

As always, tweet your questions to @AnneMilgram with the hashtag #AskAnne, @PreetBharara with hashtag #askpreet, email us at [email protected], or call 669-247-7338 to leave a voicemail.

Stay Tuned with Preet is produced by CAFE Studios. 

Executive Producer: Tamara Sepper; Senior Editorial Producer: Adam Waller; Technical Director: David Tatasciore; Audio Producer: Nat Weiner; Editorial Producer: Noa Azulai.

REFERENCES & SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIALS

ATTACK ON THE CAPITOL

  • Jay Reeves, Lisa Mascaro, Calvin Woodward, “Capitol assault a more sinister attack than first appeared,” AP News, 1/11/21
  • House, With Some G.O.P. Support, Votes to Impeach Trump a Historic Second Time,” New York Times, 1/13/21
  • Matt Cohen, “Armed Protesters Stormed the Michigan Statehouse This Afternoon,” Mother Jones, 4/30/20
  • Jack Healy, “These Are the 5 People Who Died in the Capitol Riot,” New York Times, 1/11/21

RESPONSE OF LAW ENFORCEMENT

  • Nicole Chavez, “Rioters breached US Capitol security on Wednesday. This was the police response when it was Black protesters on DC streets last year,” CNN, 1/10/21
  • Devlin Barrett and Matt Zapotosky, “FBI report warned of ‘war’ at Capitol, contradicting claims there was no indication of looming violence,” Washington Post, 1/12/21
  • Samantha Michaels, “The Phrase “Storm the Capitol” Was Used 100,000 Times Online in the Month Leading Up to the Mob,” Mother Jones, 1/10/21
  • FBI Director Wrap’s statement on the violence at the Capitol, 1/7/21
  • Julia Ainsley, Dan De Luce and Mosheh Gains, “Pentagon, D.C. officials point fingers at each other over Capitol riot response,” NBC News, 1/8/21
  • Jon Schuppe, “Failed response to Capitol riot shows deep divide over police use of force,” NBC News, 1/9/21
  • Rebecca Tan, “A Black officer faced down a mostly White mob at the Capitol. Meet Eugene Goodman,” Washington Post, 1/14/21
  • Transcript of Trump’s Jan. 6 speech at rally before US Capitol riot, AP News
  • Kim Bellware, “Police departments across the U.S. open probes into whether their own members took part in the Capitol riot,” Washington Post, 1/9/21
  • “Law enforcement thank and offer water to Kyle Rittenhouse, later charged with protest shooting,” Washington Post, 8/27/20
  • Anna North, “Justice Department: Recent arrests are “only the beginning” of the Capitol riot investigation,” Vox, 1/12/21

How Law Enforcement Failed to Protect the Capitol

Former Police Chiefs Scott Thomson and Charles Ramsey weigh in on what went wrong when rioters breached the US Capitol on January 6th. 

Last week, Americans watched as thousands of Trump supporting rioters breached the United States Capitol building, many of them armed and dangerous. They shattered windows, stole government property, and sat in Nancy Pelosi’s office while the Speaker of the House and the rest of Congress hid in a secure location. 

While Capitol Police were present, they were outnumbered by the amount of rioters who showed up in support of President Trump to contest what they have claimed is a “rigged” presidential election. When calls to action for January 6th circulated online for weeks prior, many are left to wonder: Why was law enforcement so unprepared? 

The following transcript has been edited for clarity.

Anne Milgram:

Hey folks, Anne Milgram here. This week, we’re bringing you a special episode of Stay Tuned. Last Wednesday’s attacks on our nation’s Capitol have brought the debate about the appropriate police response into sharp focus. So I’m joined today by my friends and former colleagues, former police chiefs, Scott Thomson and Chuck Ramsey. Scott Thomson serves the Camden Department in New Jersey for 25 years before retiring in 2019. I appointed Scott as chief when I served as New Jersey attorney general, and together we dismantled the city’s troubled police department and rebuilt it from the ground up.

Anne Milgram:

Scott deserves all the credit for the amazing work he’s done there, and today, crime rates are at an historic low in the city. I spoke to Scott on Stay Tuned over the summer as the conversation around police reform gripped the country. Chuck Ramsey was the commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department, and before that, the DC police chief. He’s now an influential voice on issues of policing and frequently appears as a contributor on CNN. Chuck also was involved with president Obama’s 21st century task force on policing. As the country faces potential for more violence, and the president has now been impeached a second time, I thought it was the perfect time to come together with Scott and Chuck to help us make sense of what’s happening and the pathway forward. Welcome chiefs Thomson and Ramsey.

Anne Milgram:

There is nobody I’d rather talk to you about what’s happening in the United States and what happened last Wednesday at the Capitol, from a law enforcement perspective, than the two of you. You were my two favorite police chiefs in America. So both of you are now retired, which is why we get to have this conversation, but of course, chief Ramsey oversaw of the DC Metropolitan Police Department, the Chicago Police Department and I think when I met you, you were in charge of the Philadelphia Police Department at that time. Of course, you were just across the river from Camden where Scott Thomson was the chief of police for more than a decade and of course, as many of our listeners know, Scott and I worked closely together, and both of you are, I think your leaders also just to frame this for folks, because of your work with communities. Chief Ramsey, obviously you were on the president’s post-Ferguson commission, the 21st century policing commission that looked at policing in America.

Anne Milgram:

Chief Thomson has been a leader with working in the Camden community. So I think a lot of folks … What a lot of us have done is have the first reaction about what did the president do last Wednesday. He was impeached today for inciting essentially an insurrection, for inciting violence on the Capitol. The Capitol walls were breached for the first time since 1812. I think a lot of the attention has rightfully been on the political questions, the legal questions and there’s been some conversations about law enforcement, but this is the conversation in some ways I most want to have, because as I sat there watching, all of us watched in real time. I watched Chief Ramsey on CNN and all of us were watching in real-time for hours as the Capitol lay siege. So I think the things I’d love to cover today are, why do we think that happened?

Anne Milgram:

I know we’re all using the information that we have publicly. What were the errors that took place? What are the questions we should be asking now? And really just getting a sense from both of you in a little bit of depth as to what went wrong last Wednesday. I guess I’ll start with you Chief Ramsey because you know the DC Police Department, you know the Capitol Police. Was it preventable that, essentially it looks like thousands of individuals were able to enter the United States Capitol.

Anne Milgram:

If we were sort of doing a hotwash, which is the law enforcement term, something happens, you come back later and you sit in a room and you say, “What went wrong?” Where are those points? Where would you start on this?

Chuck Ramsey:

The first thing that struck me when I was watching it on television, was that the Capitol Police didn’t seem to be really prepared. Anyone can get overwhelmed at any particular point in time. It depends on numbers, but it happened so easily. That’s the first thing that struck me because I worked in DC for nine years, worked with the US Capitol Police, Park Police and I know how we always coordinated security whenever there was a major event taking place. I mean, think about it. You had a joint session of Congress taking place. That by itself would have kicked the security level up to a higher level because you’ve got all of our leaders, with the exception of the president, in the same place at the same time. The only difference between that and the State of the Union, you don’t have the justices of the Supreme court and the joint chiefs of staff and things like that, but you’ve got, from the House and Senate, you have all of our elected leaders,

Anne Milgram:

Yeah, 435 elected officials.

Chuck Ramsey:

I really … That caught me off guard as to why. Now, there’ll be a lot of deep dives into this. So we’ll learn more and more as time goes on as to why something like that occurred. Where was the intel? Where was the information? There was a lot of information. It was open source. It wasn’t as if you had to somehow tap somebody’s phone or get it off a satellite or whatever. It was right there on the websites and having seen what happened in the spring in Michigan, for an example, when they took over the Capitol there, many of them were armed. It’s not as if these far right-wing groups aren’t capable of doing something like that and the rhetoric had been getting heated for quite some time. You add on top of that, the president, other people that are his supporters just pouring gasoline on a fire. This was something … I didn’t expect a breach of the Capitol, but it’s not surprising that violence actually took place in the city.

Anne Milgram:

So Michael Chertoff who was the Homeland security had said, “You didn’t have to read the websites. You just had to look at the paper to know that this was ramping up.” So I think a lot of folks are asking the question. I was also surprised to see that the Capitol Police were in their regular uniforms. I would have expected them, and I think maybe people don’t sort of understand, but for you or for Chief Thomson, just so people understand, you’ve got a big event, you’re going to mobilize, how do you think about the processes? Or are there processes in place to figure out what’s the level of risk? How should the officers be dressed? How do you think about a problem or a challenge like this? Because I think your point is right, that even … I think it’s actually a great question, which is even not entering the Capitol, just with that volume of people with that existing rhetoric, you would have, without even knowing whether or not they were trying to, I think you would have staffed this probably differently.

Chuck Ramsey:

Well, one of the things you do is establish a hard perimeter around the Capitol, and then you’d have an interior perimeter.

Anne Milgram:

So a hard perimeter means like?

Chuck Ramsey:

Well-staffed barriers but something that would make it very difficult for them to penetrate. Now, you mentioned uniforms. There is a psychology across, and a lot is made of officers to get in full riot gear. Are you really causing the crowd to become more violent and so forth? So I can understand how initially you may have officers that are in, I believe they were more bike uniforms than they were anything else, but we always had platoons that were already in the heavy gear, out of sight, but ready to be mobilized at any given time to come in at a moment’s notice and take the place of those individuals that aren’t properly geared up, I’ll say. They didn’t have that. I don’t understand why, because that would be normally what you would do is have them in reserve that already have the riot gear on. You’d have the Metropolitan Police Department, which is larger. Now, remember the Capitol Police is 2,000 officers. It’s a big police department-

Anne Milgram:

I read 2,300.

Chuck Ramsey:

Second only to MPD, which is right around 4,000. So between those two agencies, and then of course the US Park Police is always there to assist as well, had more than enough people that would have been available without the National Guard. I just don’t understand why that wasn’t activated earlier. Now understanding the politics of the Hill, and it’s not just a police chief that can say, “Here’s my operational plan. Here’s how we’re going to do it.” They report to a police board, which is the Senate Sergeant at arms, House Sergeant at arms, Architect of the Capitol. So there were barriers there.

Anne Milgram:

I saw that, and that’s different. Like in Philly or DC or, Scott, in Camden, you would have been the chief of police, you would have made the call on-

Chuck Ramsey:

Exactly. You tell the mayor, “Hey, mayor, here’s our plan. Here’s what we’re doing,” and that’s pretty much it, but in the Capitol because of politics, and I don’t know if there was something else at play. It’s possible because something does look a little fishy in a couple areas, but not try to say anything beyond what we know now. It still was baffling. I’ll put it that way.

Anne Milgram:

I feel like there are a lot of questions that have to be answered. I think it feels off, and the question is why. Chief Thomson,

Scott Thomson:

Thanks for having me on here with Commissioner Ramsey. This is a unique for me because you made me and Chuck molded me.

Anne Milgram:

We’re like your parents.

Scott Thomson:

So this is kind of like me being with my two mentors here. So I’ll be on my best behavior, but as a law enforcement executive or a former law enforcement executive, I like many people had a lot of questions as I was watching this unfold. Just knowing that in preparation for an event such as this, or on any given day, the nation’s Capitol, the Capitol Building in the nation’s capital is going to have multi-parameter defense and depth contingency plans, no single point of failure and where was that? Why wasn’t that in place? Then particularly when you juxtapose that to the positions or the posture, I should say, that law enforcement had several months before with the Black Lives Matter movement that was taking place.

Scott Thomson:

I think there’s a photograph that’s circulating where I think it was on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. You had a few hundred National Guard officers. People couldn’t even get … They wouldn’t be able to get up two or three steps let alone overthrow the entire facility that, oh, by the way, also had all of our nation’s legislators in it at the same time. So there are a lot of questions that need answers to, and I think that this certainly warrants a 9/11 type commission to look into it. I’m already seeing, I seen statements come out that folks are contradicting each other with regards to the requests for the National Guard. Who said yes, who said no? What were the response times when things were going bad, and the call for assistance came out? Why did that take so long?

Scott Thomson:

This is an event, like Chuck just said earlier, where we should be able to handle this type of insurgent on any given day. Because the bad guys are never going to send us a telegram telling us that they’re coming and these were all lessons we learned after 9/11, so that we would be prepared for such an attack, particularly upon a location that we anticipate that to occur. When you look at this from a perspective of that we knew there were going to be issues and to not be prepared for it when it was telegraphed that this was going to occur, there are a lot of questions that need answers to.

Anne Milgram:

Look, I was reading the piece about the Norfolk FBI providing an intelligence product today with pretty concrete information about people being in convoys, going to Washington. Then you see some of the stuff that was on Parler and it’s the, stop the steel siege the Capitol, a lot of stuff about Pelosi, a lot of stuff about Pence. Again, we all know, the question is what’s actionable. Information isn’t always something you can act on, but it did look like there was a lot there that would have raised you to go to the next level, and what you did, or at least to ask a lot of questions and to be prepared. The other thing I think is interesting is, and we haven’t seen Chris Wray yet, we’ve seen the deputy director of the FBI, but the initial statement was that there was not intelligence.

Anne Milgram:

Then you find out that the FBI knocked on 12 doors, talked to people. There was an effort to arrest the leader of the Proud Boys before this happened. So, people were taking actions, and they were mobilizing in some ways, and that becomes really inconsistent with any argument of being totally surprised by it. So I do think there’s a need to understand deeper. So how much do you think … You just brought up the photograph and I think we’ve all seen it and talked about it. It is really hard to imagine that if this was a Black Lives Matter protest, that it wouldn’t have looked exactly the same as it did last summer. That was, I think … I can’t remember, I’ve read the number. There were thousands of National Guard troops who were mobilized.

Anne Milgram:

They were in riot gear. This time, I think there were 340 National Guards. People mobilized. The sort of discrepancy is huge, and the question I have for you both is that, the mayor of DC was very upset with the Black Lives Matter protest. Because even though I think that there were a number of classic law enforcement techniques that you would take if you knew there was going to be a protest, it really does look like it was just an incredible show of force that was not linked to the amount of threat that we were seeing from protests nationally. So it felt like there was too much force during the summer. Then what we see is this effort from the mayor and others to basically say, “Don’t send me…” And I understand this, but I think it may have been an overcorrection, which is, “Don’t send me all those National Guards people that I haven’t asked you for.”

Anne Milgram:

Like don’t flood the city with all these folks. so I guess the question is like, in some ways it’s … I guess there’s two separate questions. One is how much of this is just an implicit bias going the other way, basically assuming that the Trump supporters who are overwhelmingly white men, were not going to be violent or not going to be dangerous. Then the second flip side is how much did DC and the folks in DC leadership think, we shouldn’t have done what we did in June. We went too hard. So we’re going to pull back now because we don’t want it to … We made a mistake and now we’re sort of working off that mistake?

Chuck Ramsey:

Well, there’s a couple things there, if I can kind of jump in. First of all, I didn’t criticize the level of activation during the summer. Some of the protests that happened in cities around the country in the wake of the George Floyd murder did turn violent. So the level of preparation there, and one could argue if too much or whatever, but I’ve always been of the school, you plan for the worst and hope for the best. The same thing should have applied on the 6th of January. There was enough information out there, the 6th of January was a targeted date. That’s when the certification of the Electoral College was going to take place. The president himself had targeted that date. There was a lot of heated rhetoric around that. How could you not be ready at that level, if not beyond, because again, not only do you have … The people doing the certification, it occurs during a joint session.

Chuck Ramsey:

So you’ve got all your elected leaders in one place. I just don’t understand that. Now, having said that, I’m not trying to get around the fact that there was bias because there was bias. There’s no question about that. The perception of who’s going to be likely to cause violence and who’s going to be more friendly, and if you got a bunch of black folks walking around with signs saying, abolish the police and defund the police, versus a bunch of white guys with blue lives matter signs and all this kind of stuff, is that a reason to think that one’s more dangerous than the other? I think we learned that you can’t just go buy something like that. So there was bias, there’s no question was bias, but they should have been adequately prepared for both.

Anne Milgram:

Well, this is, I guess a question because the June piece, it did feel like they were doing what you just went through the classic things you would do. They had the platoons nearby, they had the hard perimeter.

Chuck Ramsey:

They were ready, they were prepared.

Anne Milgram:

So this becomes a question, and again, I think it is a legitimate question of there’s a process to figure it out, and there’s a certain playbook that you play, to your point, of like the hardened exteriors and the uniforms, or how you think about it. The sort of question I would have here is like, if the process was right in June or at least closer to where you would have expected it to be like, it is even more jarring that it didn’t happen now because police departments … I mean, Scott, you can talk to this probably, but there’s a lot of rules and processes. If people imagine like loosely run organizations, that’s not your police department. They’re hierarchical, they have standard operating procedures.

Chuck Ramsey:

There’s another part of this, too. Scott, can I just … I’m over 70. I won’t remember if I don’t get it in here now, but there’s a political part of this too. The mayor didn’t want it to look a particular way and have the National Guard, but just have them in non-riot gear just directing traffic and so forth, sensitive to what happened in June. Operational planning should not be done by politicians. It should be done by the professionals that know what the hell they’re doing. I’m sorry, but that’s a part of it that just can’t be overlooked. Now, I’m not saying that she was the reason why they weren’t prepared because I don’t believe that’s the case.

Anne Milgram:

No, neither am I.

Chuck Ramsey:

But I do think that that plays into the psyche a little bit.

Anne Milgram:

I don’t want to blame her either because the DOD folks, the department of defense folks, they said, “We don’t like the look of it.”

Chuck Ramsey:

Right, exactly but that’s a political statement in and of itself. We don’t like the look of it.

Scott Thomson:

I think one of the other legitimate questions that I’ve heard asked in this process and I myself have observed is, one, as the commissioner just said, there’s the issue of preparation and the lack thereof, but then the other is the response. When you juxtapose it to the response, once there was the moment of contact between police and protestors/rioters, if you were to put them side by side, the picture of January 6th looked a lot softer than it did in what law enforcement’s response was for the Black Lives Matter movements on three corners across the country, and even when the Capitol Police were … They were on their back foot the entire time and even when they were being attacked, there never seemed to be a response that would be deemed to be excessive in its totality.

Scott Thomson:

I think it was the … Chuck, correct me if I’m wrong here, but I think it was the head of the Noble who said that if … It’s a reasonable question here is that if it was black folks storming in the Capitol Building, I think the statement was, “We would still be putting tow tags on bodies right now.”

Chuck Ramsey:

Well, he’s right. He’s right in my opinion. Again that’s where bias comes in. That’s where all these different things come to play. Why didn’t you even have undercover cops in the crowd? Both at the rally and walking down Pennsylvania Avenue saying, “Hey, these guys are fired up. You better be ready because they’re headed your way.” Just simple stuff like that, and apparently that was not the case. So they were totally unprepared. Some of it had to do, no question in my mind, had to do with the race of the individuals. It had to do with the fact that they were right wing extremists, as opposed to left.

Chuck Ramsey:

I think all these dynamics played in and that’s where it really points to one important thing. Police can’t afford to get caught up in any of that stuff. You’ve got a job to do, to protect the public, to protect that building in this case. Doesn’t matter who it is, your job is to gear up and be ready no matter what. Don’t get caught up in the political rhetoric and all this other stuff. Well, I think all these are good guys. These are the bad guys or what. That’s not your job, and the minute you go down that path, you’re going to have a problem.

Anne Milgram:

One of the things … It’s interesting you say that too. So I think there are a lot of failures. There’s a leadership failure obviously, but then there’s also a question of, when I was watching some of the officers and we should say some of the officers were heroic and did unbelievable things. We talked a little bit before about Officer Goodman, Chief Thomson mentioned him. We should talk a little bit about what he did to basically take the rioters away from the Senate, where there were senators and they had not … They literally were securing the door at the minute that was happening.

Chuck Ramsey:

By himself.

Anne Milgram:

By himself. So I think we should talk a little bit about him and some of the heroic things. We should also talk about, my experience again with the police is command and control in these circumstances and that it looked the exact opposite. There were individual officers, they were outmatched. So there’s a way which I think there’s huge questions of bias and politics. There’s also this question of what happens when you, and I don’t know if this is a fair assessment. It looks like they had zero control and they just lost control. So they lost that leadership and the training of officers to be in a certain place and act a certain way and do a certain thing that is coming from that command structure.

Chuck Ramsey:

Well, this was a failure of leadership. There’s no question about that. The men and women were left short. It’s not their fault they didn’t have enough people there. It wasn’t their fault that things got that chaotic, but the leadership just was lacking. It just wasn’t there.

Scott Thomson:

I also think that look, there are a lot of instances that occurred which are emblematic of the issues in policing nationally. When we talk about the direction in which we want policing to go with how police use force, I can’t think of a better example than the video of watching Officer Eugene Goodman deescalate that situation when confronted with that angry mob. Now, if he had engaged in a warrior mentality and not a guardian, if he had stood his ground, first of all, he probably would have been overpowered and now this mob would have been armed with his weapon and all of his ammunition and no communication to anyone else that this now had taken place, but instead, some people would say, or they would interpret what he did as retreating and he was tactically repositioning the entire time.

Scott Thomson:

It was brilliant what he did and how he did it in a way in which he diverted them away from really what their objective was. He was brilliantly using the Jedi mind trick on these folks to get them into an isolated area where the entire time he was communicating with reinforcements who were then able to come in and they were able to contain that group that had very bad intentions. When you look at that, that is something that if Officer Eugene Goodman can do that in that type of situation, there’s a lot of lessons that can be learned for the rest of policing across this country and that I’m quite certain, he was scared in that moment, but he didn’t automatically resort to deadly force because one, it wasn’t the safest move for him.

Scott Thomson:

And on top of that, had he done that in addition to being able to potentially compromise his own weapon over into their possession by being overran, there would have been a strong likelihood that if he did resort to his firearm and started shooting, other people would have been hit that and could have died in that instance. So I think kudos to that. Then also when you look at just the … Again, I don’t think that in inner cities across the country, I know people that have called me from Camden and saying, “Boy, I don’t know if that would have been handled differently, if those folks look differently,” and every major city, every city that’s going to have a demonstration is going to be confronted with that issue of this under response versus over response.

Anne Milgram:

Yeah, I agree. I think it’s such an important point. I also think … We should talk about for just a minute that there were five deaths and then there was also a suicide of a Capitol officer, but there were five deaths, mostly were due to medical conditions. There was only one police shooting, police involved shooting, but here are people who died. The thing I was very focused on also were the pipe bombs. There was a pipe bomb outside the Democratic National Committee, one outside the Republican National Committee. There were Molotov cocktails. There was the truck that had the assault weapons and the ammunition. So I think my next question for you both is like, you look at this and I don’t think I understood on Wednesday. I didn’t have all those pieces of information together.

Anne Milgram:

I don’t think I understood how close this could have come, like how close it actually came to it being far, far worse than it was. So I’d love to hear, how much of a risk do you think this pose, just looking at now that we know all the weapons, now that we know that we had Proud Boys and Three Percenters and a lot of right-wing extremists, hate-filled groups that have been known to use violence in the past. So how should people think about that?

Chuck Ramsey:

Well, you raised a good point and it’s really scary to think, with five people, we think we got off lucky, but we did. It could have been far worse. People brought that stuff there with something in mind. That was not an accident. Now, they weren’t able to execute it. Question again is why? What happened? Who were they? What were their real intentions? You see the one individual with zip ties, flex cuffs in the House chamber. What are you going to do with those things?

Anne Milgram:

Maybe you can just explain what they’re used for. Chief Thomson had actually-

Chuck Ramsey:

Mass arrest, mass arrest. To restrain people. Now, my understanding is he may have taken them out of one of the storage lockers in the Capitol, but the fact that he had them, what were you going to do with something like that? There were a lot of people there who weren’t thinking about simply protesting the election. They had a different agenda and it wasn’t for fast thinking on the part of some Capitol Police officers were able to get members to a safe location, Officer Goodman, who thinking very quickly, didn’t take them down that one corridor, which would have led them right into the Senate chambers. This would have been a lot worse.

Chuck Ramsey:

It really would have been a lot worse. So there’s again, and Scott is right. There’s got to be a 9/11 type commission. There’s got to be a deep dive in this. Let the cards fall where there may, but there are a lot of people whose fingerprints are on this that we’re going to find over time, that either drop the ball or there was some intentional actions on the part of few that really led to all this.

Anne Milgram:

Just to stay for a second on the … It feels like it was a decision to protect the members. It feels a little like there was this moment of, people are flooding into the Capitol and the one thing that the Capitol Police did, I think really heroically was basically figure out how to get the members to safety. Do either of you know, is that the standard protocol?

Chuck Ramsey:

Yes, it is. If there’s a choice between people and property, you always go with people and there is a protocol, there is a location in the Capitol where members are taken and secured. All that stuff is all preplanned.

Anne Milgram:

It was a pretty … It’s an amazing thing, and I think in some ways that maybe why all of us on Wednesday night didn’t appreciate the full severity of it is because the members were able to all walk out unharmed essentially.

Scott Thomson:

I think that’s the one thing that was successful was the Alamo aspect of it, of the safe room, of getting people back into the … The elected leaders safely sequestered and secured and probably in large part because of the heroic actions of Eugene Goodman and several other individuals. What we do know is that there were systemic failures throughout, which means that the reason why this was resolved in a way, as Chuck said with, with just, and only five deaths that we have thus far was because of the heroic actions of individuals, much of which we probably won’t know for quite some time until they start to sit down and discuss and interview, which really then makes us question what would have happened had those pipe bombs detonated and the diversionary tactics, because they clearly appeared that they would have been successful.

Scott Thomson:

Then we question the militia type of people who did have the flex cuffs and did make it to the Senate floor or the same people that had erected a hangman station outside of the building, a quite sturdy one as well. It wasn’t symbolic. They built steps to that too, with a functioning sturdy noose as well. We had heard the cries on videotapes of, “Traitors get the rope,” is what they were saying and they were looking to hang the vice president.

Speaker 5:

Hang Mike Pence. Hang Mike Pence. Hang Mike Pence.

Anne Milgram:

I was going to say that the chant of the, find Pence in the background is really, it’s absolutely chilling. Why do you think there weren’t more arrests that day?

Chuck Ramsey:

I’ve asked myself that question, because I think you would have had more, but one thing about mass arrests that a lot of people have to really consider, that actually takes away from your resources because when you take a mass arrest, now there’s a processing function, but all that should have been pre-staged and preplanned, in case there was a mass arrest where you would’ve had arrest teams, you would have had processing teams, you would have had all that. It doesn’t appear that they had any of that, and maybe that’s why they weren’t made by the cops who were actually trying to clear the building because they didn’t have that as part of the plan.

Chuck Ramsey:

I don’t know that for sure, but I do know that it does take resources to do that. There was a lot of videotape that they’re going through now, they’re making a lot of arrests now, but certainly it would have been a lot easier if some of them could have been taken into custody at that moment. But again, I mean, when you’re overwhelmed, it’s not always the right time to make an arrest without crowd just taking the arrestee away from you or having some of your officers get injured, just trying to make an arrest. So I wasn’t on the ground there. So it’s hard to say.

Scott Thomson:

I share your concerns and question with that, particularly after the calvary had arrived and the situation did seem to be contained, and there was plenty of media cameras set up around the exit and everybody was … There was calm, calmness. There was order. There was actually, there was an orderly exit of the building, and at that point in time, I really couldn’t understand why. To Chuck’s point, I understand in the throws, in the fog of war, the objective is not taking people into custody that point in time, but once the situation had been contained, then at that point in time, why not lock the doors and say, “Now you can’t leave. Now we’ve got the resources here that we should have had in the first place, well, we finally have them here now, and nobody’s leaving.” Everybody’s being arrested, detained debriefed. To just let people walk out the door, I would like to know the answer to that as well.

Chuck Ramsey:

That takes the organization to be able to do that, and apparently they weren’t very organized. The Capitol Police, and I’m surprised because I’ve always seen them as a very professional agency, but their leadership really, really truly dropped the ball on this. There may be some other factors, but there’s no way that should have gone down the way it did

Anne Milgram:

Well, it’s still leadership, even if it is other factors. So even if there’s politics, once we know that there’s some intel that’s being passed of a problem, and it doesn’t again, feel like it was that much of a surprise that this was out there and that this chatter was very significant at that point in time. Leadership is telling the politicians, “We need the people. We need the teams of folks there.” So it does feel like a failure of leadership. The other thing that was going through my mind as we’re talking about this is just how each error compounds and creates a problem for the next step. So there’s a failure of harnessing and being able to use the proactive intelligence and again, we don’t know why, but it’s pretty clear that there was some information about the threats and the threat level.

Anne Milgram:

Then there’s just what we would expect as the standard staffing for the way that you would approach thousands of people coming to the Capitol when you have a joint session of Congress. So those two failures get you to this position where you’re very under-resourced and you have to make these decisions about do you protect the building, do you protect member. It all sort of … Do you make arrests, do you not make arrests? It does feel to me like, one, it just snowballed into a giant problem. What are the other questions you both are asking yourself? As you watch this and you think about like, what are the things that you think like, I would like to understand more?

Chuck Ramsey:

The intelligence failures. It’s something I still can’t get my head around because it’s not like you had to call the CIA to try to get information. It was out there. This wasn’t a secret. Maybe the only people who didn’t realize potentially it was a problem on January 6th was the Capitol Police. I don’t know, but I still don’t get it and even with the FBI field office sending information up, who did they send it to? Who got it, who’s responsible for getting it to the people who really need to have it? All these things, they tabletop this stuff, at least they should. Now, I don’t know if they have a tabletop getting a breach inside the Capitol Building or not, but they should have. You tabletop these things, the what ifs and the worst case scenarios.

Chuck Ramsey:

There’s security around that building, but remember after 9/11, they did a lot around the security, but it was mostly for vehicles, even though 9/11 was airplanes. I remember kind of wondering about that one, but trying to put a security fence around the Capitol, the Architect of the Capitol [inaudible] against it. There are security steps should’ve been taken years ago that weren’t taken and now maybe it’ll be revisited. I don’t know, but I think the intelligence failure and the lack of preparation are the two key and why? Somebody had to send them down, I do believe. The Senate Sergeant at arms, House Sergeant at arms, where were they? What were they doing and who influenced them?

Anne Milgram:

To stop them, especially after … We’ll see what turns out to be the case, but it was reported that the Capitol chief, the Capitol Police chief had asked for the National Guard and it was denied by the Senate Sergeant of arms and the House, sort of the lead law enforcement person there and that, I agree with you. It does raise the question of, did someone tell you to stand down? I think it’s a very, very important question. Just so everyone knows also on tabletops, because I think a lot of people might not be familiar with them, but literally my first day that the governor of New Jersey was sworn in, we did a tabletop and I believe we did a pandemic tabletop, and this is going back to 2006.

Anne Milgram:

What you do is you have all these high ranking officials in the state, and you say, “What if this catastrophe happened? Who does what and how do you think about it?” And it’s a really important thing that gets people to start thinking about the what ifs in terrible circumstances that on the day-to-day, we don’t always confront and plan for.

Chuck Ramsey:

A lot of people, they look at it and say, “Okay, who’s in charge?” But the real question is who’s in charge of what? It’s just, who’s responsible for doing what and everybody being on the same page and knowing how all these things fit together. I know they tabletop in DC. We always tabletop in DC.

Scott Thomson:

To your point, Anne, there were a series of cascading events of failure that ultimately culminates into the loved ones of Officer Brian Sicknick, who are now going to be handed a folded flag and something has to be done about that because that should have never have occurred. I do think that even with full preparation to this, an X factor, which I don’t think any law enforcement agency could have foreseen was the moment when the commander-in-chief gave the order to take the Hill, because that gave a magnification to the crowd and to their efforts that I don’t think anybody could have forecasted. Now, with proper preparation, absolutely this could have been thwarted, but even then it would have been that much more difficult because of the permission given to that crowd that day to go accomplish a mission.

Chuck Ramsey:

Not only that, he said he was going to lead them down there. He didn’t, but he said, “I’ll be there with you.” How much more of justification or authority do you need when the commander-in-chief tells you that? This whole thing deserves a deep dive, and I don’t mean just into the police. I mean in everyone who played a role in this thing, because there’s something fishy here that we’ve got to get to the bottom of, because this is just the … You just have to know. This can never ever happen again.

Anne Milgram:

I agree, and I also think that there’s been a lot of conversations about arrests and prosecutions. So there are 50 plus people who have been charged in DC Superior Court, 20 or 30 by the federal government. I do believe that the FBI is out across the United States now, and that they will arrest and charge the people who murdered Officer Sicknick, who, by the way, grew up in the town right next to where I grew up. It’s a terrible tragedy that someone who was protecting the Capitol lost his life and was murdered by essentially violent extremists and there’s really no other way, I think to see it.

Anne Milgram:

I’m a career prosecutor, we’ve all done policing and prosecution. It’s not enough to bring individual cases, and I think your point about the 9/11 type commission that looks at everything is a really important one because an individual case holds one individual accountable. It doesn’t look at all the things that went wrong and there are going to be a lot of things that went wrong here that might not be criminal. That just, you wouldn’t capture if you just did cases. So I think, I’ve gotten asked almost every day about the prosecutions and it’s really important. I believe very much that people have to be held accountable who entered the Capitol, who destroyed property, who essentially put lives at risk, but it’s not going to answer the full question.

Chuck Ramsey:

After 9/11, we spent all of our time preparing for a foreign terrorist threat and not a domestic terrorist. I don’t think that even though we knew these far extreme groups were out there and advocating violence and civil wars and all that sort of thing, I don’t think we took them serious. I don’t think we took them as serious. If that had been ISIS, or Al-Qaeda saying that stuff, believe me, it would have been a whole different posture. Again, these are people that were radicalized, no different from the way ISIS has radicalized people and others have been radicalized on the internet and through various other means. They were radicalized. In their mind, they thought they were doing the right thing. Some of them knew they weren’t, but I’m just saying that all those people were in a frenzy. They had been radicalized is what happened. Now, how do you change that? How do you bring it to a different level? Deprogram them or whatever the term is.

Anne Milgram:

No question. I agree. They went there believing that the election was stolen and that the president had won the election and that what the president was telling them, we need to take our country back and others at the rally were talking about, by combat, we’re taking the country back. There’s a level of that, and I agree, it’s a form of radicalization and of course it’s not every Trump supporter, but the individuals that were there that day, there were a lot of extremists.

Anne Milgram:

I think a lot about the domestic terrorism, this question of whether we should have a domestic terrorism specific statute that authorizes law enforcement to do more in terms of intelligence, because this meets, in my view, the definition of domestic terrorism. People who are coming together as extremists and they’re using violence to overthrow the government, and here they were trying to stop the electors from having … Basically, Congress from doing their job of counting the electoral votes, but it is an interesting question. When you work in the national security space, the Patriot Act and the federal legislation gave a lot of power to do that type of intelligence collection that is really very, very broad, and that does not exist in the domestic terrorism space.

Anne Milgram:

Now, that being said, in my view, there’s plenty of intelligence out there that warranted law enforcement investigations and a far greater response and preparedness here. There’s that line between what’s protected speech and what’s hate speech and inciting violence. I believe a lot of these individuals have crossed it and were preparing, but I do think that this part of the conversation is going to be a really important one of like, what do we do about domestic terrorism?

Scott Thomson:

I don’t know how much more we need to see to start classifying some of these folks for their actions. To be quite frank with you, we looked at what took place out in the Seattle backdoor in the summer of individuals that had occupied a city block and took that over and we labeled them anarchists. If I was to do a comparison of that compared to what took place on January 6th, I would say January 6th was far more egregious in those actions. So when are we in the interest of protecting a democracy and protecting the institutions that we hold sacred, going to be willing to make those, what may be unpopular decisions of properly identifying those who are the threats to government and putting a laser-like focus on them and putting the full weight of law enforcement on them.

Scott Thomson:

It shouldn’t just have to be people with names that don’t sound traditional to what we’re used to hearing or having a melanin in their skin at a darker content. Exactly like Chuck said. What took place on January 6th and their intentions was in ideology of the exact same ilk, wrapped in a different package of being white males with beards and goatees and tattoos, and telling the police officers we’re with you as they smash them in the head with fire extinguishers and kill them and rip their masks off so that they can get the bear spray under there to them. So what more do we need to say?

Anne Milgram:

Can I ask a question, and I know it’s a sensitive question, but I think it’s so critical that we have this conversation and think about where do we go from here, which is the number of law enforcement officers, who it seems every day we hear another story that there was a Capitol Police, that they’re investigating 12 officers for basically either participation in the event or sort of sympathy towards the extremist, but there are also a lot of officers that came from around the country. I say a lot, but I don’t know the exact number. It’s been reported that a number of police departments are doing investigations, and it’s even to the point where a number of chiefs, I know went out on Twitter and basically said, “Look, at this point, we don’t have someone,” or “We have one.”

Anne Milgram:

It became this thing where people were immediately disclosing it, but how should we think about this? I think it just drives home for me, what you said, Scott, of like, you have people walking through the Capitol. Some of them have Trump flags. Some of them have Confederate flags. Some of them have the police flag and they’re saying, “We’re with you,” and they’re assaulting police officers. To understand that there were some officers off duty among them, how do we think about this?

Chuck Ramsey:

My opinion is if they were part of the activity, the terrorist activity that took place, one, they should be fired. Two, should be charged. Three, should be convicted and four, should go penitentiary, but why are we so surprised? You had national labor unions actively supporting Donald Trump, knowing the kind of rhetoric that he was spewing all over the place. Look at Kenosha, Wisconsin where those so-called militia showed up. In fact, the kid is charged now with homicide and you had cops giving them water and telling them, “We’re glad you’re here.” Look at all this stuff going on here.

Chuck Ramsey:

There’s a problem that has to be addressed. It’s embarrassing, it’s a shame, but they should be treated absolutely no different at all, but there’s a larger problem when you see how some of these officers have responded to these far right wing organizations, Proud Boys and so forth. Right in Philly, they had a … Proud Boys showed up at the union headquarters. Now they were outside of it.

Anne Milgram:

At the police union?

Chuck Ramsey:

Yeah, but they felt comfortable enough to show up there and have some little mini rally or something. It’s an issue that we’ve got to deal with.

Anne Milgram:

I should just say, I agree completely on holding accountable the individuals who were there with criminal charges and otherwise. I do think the deeper issue is the question of the fact that we have officers who are on the job, who are supposed to protect and serve all Americans and are out there associated with right-wing extremists, who are white supremacist, antisemitic, anti LBGTQ. It’s-

Chuck Ramsey:

Look at some of these officer’s social media sites and so forth. We’ve had to deal with it and it’s scary.

Scott Thomson:

Police officers are a representation of society right now and it is about, this is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and people with self-identification, finding safety in groups and where do they fall in that? Unfortunately, it seems to be a binary option for the rhetoric that’s taken place and the temperature, too is which side do I fall on? Do I fall on the left? And if I do, it’s not level. Their pitched. I if I’m left, I’m far left. If I’m right, I’m far right, and police officers will generally be conservative and remember, one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter.

Scott Thomson:

Even if you listen to the interviews of the people that were walking away from the January 6th attack on Capitol Hill, their perception of it was something completely different than what a lot of logical outside people who were looking in on and seeing that and police officers, we cannot pretend as though they’re not caught up in that same whirlwind.

Speaker 6:

Are you proud of what happened here today?

Speaker 7:

Absolutely. I think we should have gone on in and yanked our senators by the hair of the head, and drag them out and said, “No more.”

Speaker 8:

I’m absolutely, stand behind 100% what happened here today. 1000%. It was terrible how this election was stolen. I had to come here and do my patriotic duty.

Speaker 9:

What happened today?

Speaker 10:

I’m not sure, but it looks like they stormed the Capitol, people broke through and raced through the building, and then the legislators got scared and left. So we didn’t certify for Joe Biden. So that’s good.

Scott Thomson:

It gets down to a lot of the same issues that we’re looking at in trying to debunk in police departments across the country, wherein there is this blue wall silence and that officers will seek safety in being in this group and then what does that mean to be in that group? I don’t think it would be healthy to take the Irish Catholic approach to this, and just pretend like it doesn’t exist and think it’ll go away.

Anne Milgram:

I was raised Irish Catholic. I understand that.

Scott Thomson:

As am I, but there has to be a safe space for people to exist within the middle and that comes from leadership and particularly in police organizations, there has to be … How they go about investigating this, I think would be a mistake if they were just trying to identify anybody that supported Trump and then putting them on some type of internal hit list. But if you are showing support, if you are showing in the form of retweets or likes or rhetoric that is consistent with the anti-Semitic, racist, militia type of language or postings, then there needs to be consequences for that because there is absolutely no room for that in American policing.

Anne Milgram:

Just two more questions for you both and I’ll let you go. I know you both, I’m sure I’ve had long days. One of the things I’ve thought a little bit about is that the structure of the police departments that you both ran, you were the chief and you made the decisions and there were rules that had to be followed, state laws or regulations, but basically you’re in control and command. The DC structure with the Capitol, it is a strange structure. I think if we were building it from scratch, we wouldn’t build it the way it is, where they don’t have access to National Guard. They’ve got to ask political permission. They have this partnership with the Metropolitan PD and the Park Police and others and generally I think it works and it has worked.

Anne Milgram:

So I guess the question is, how much should we be thinking about … They’re obviously going to replace completely the leadership in the Capitol Police, which needs to happen and at the House and Senate, which needs to happen, and those three individuals have already resigned, but how much should we be thinking about does the structure work for understanding that we live in this world where there are international threats, and now there are very clearly domestic threats? So we have to believe that things like this can happen now that we’ve seen it occur.

Chuck Ramsey:

I don’t think the structure is going to necessarily change even as a result of this, but I do think that authority that the Capitol Police chief would have in an emergency, it shouldn’t be a, mother, may I, type situation. Whenever they’re confronted with something, they ought to be able and have the authority to take some actions in order to deal with the situation and not have to run everything up the flag pole when you’re in the middle of it. Right in the middle of the crisis, the chief was trying to get permission to do this, permission to do that.

Anne Milgram:

It’s hard to even imagine in the policing, like you guys would have just done it and as I’ve read the articles, I’ve had that exact reaction of like, you would have done it and if there was something you wish you’d done differently later, you would have apologized or you would have acted. Why do you think there has been no major federal briefing on this? There’s been no real agency briefing.

Chuck Ramsey:

I have no idea, and there’s no excuse for the FBI, the DOJ. All those players have been out long ago. Now, I know they had a deputy director of the FBI. The ADIC, I think from DC, Washington field office came out and made a statement.

Anne Milgram:

On the cases, just yesterday. Yeah, he came out.

Chuck Ramsey:

On the cases, right and a US attorney came out, but there’s no reason for them not to at least make a statement. They don’t even have to take questions.

Anne Milgram:

Yeah, just to tell people.

Chuck Ramsey:

But at least, here’s what happened. Here’s what we’re doing. Here’s where we are. People need to see that, and why. What’s the answer to that. It’s not as if they’re camera shy. They’ve been out in plenty occasions with other types of incidents, including over the summer. They were out.

Anne Milgram:

I have no idea why this has happened, but the sort of training I had was, the worse it is the quicker, you go out to talk to the public about what’s happening and where things are and where they’re going and what you’re going to do to understand what the problems are. Look, I think there will be plenty of blame to go around as we said earlier. There’s going to be a need for a really thorough review, but it just seems so strange to me to not have anybody speaking on it at a time when there’s a national need to know what’s happening.

Scott Thomson:

It was disconcerting on the day of the event, and I remember watching Chuck Ramsey on CNN and one thing that he has said a few different times is, there is nobody that’s showing leadership right now. There’s nobody that’s taking command and control over this situation. That was a situation that ended up playing out in probably as worse of a scenario that one could imagine, and here we are, more than a week after the fact, and we’re still not seeing leadership, which really doesn’t give us a very warm feeling inside as the three of us here who are former law enforcement career people.

Scott Thomson:

So imagine if you were Joe citizen and the faith and the confidence and the legitimacy that you thought you had in your government and your law enforcement professionals, and to not have that. Right now, the only information they’re getting is whatever’s coming out on Twitter and that’s a very sad state of affairs.

Chuck Ramsey:

One week from today, the 46th president of the United States is going to be inaugurated with all the security challenges that come with it. So now’s not the time to show a lack of leadership. It really isn’t.

Anne Milgram:

I agree. How do you feel about next week? How do you both feel about the security preparations?

Chuck Ramsey:

I think there’ll be very tight as far as the capital goals and the key sites. People need to understand that a lot of changes in this is inauguration were made because of COVID and they were made prior to Wednesday. So the president elect was telling people not to come down because he wasn’t looking for the big crowds and all that sort of thing. It doesn’t look like there’s going to be the kind of parade that we’ve seen in the past, the inaugural balls in the evening and all that sort of thing and that’s due to COVID, but now that what we’ve seen after the 6th of January, obviously security is going to be ramped up.

Chuck Ramsey:

It’s already a national special security event with the Secret Service in the lead. They start planning for these things a little more than a year out. I was involved in both the Bush inaugurations at the very beginnings and the Obama before I left, but I’m sure they’re revisiting their operational plan, their security plan, and it will be beefed up including probably background and some of the people that will be a little close to the president, whether they’re law enforcement or not. I think there’s going to be some people that are going to get a real close look at, I’ll put it that way.

Scott Thomson:

I don’t think … I would be shocked if there were any issues on inauguration day. I think you will then now see the multi-perimeter defense in depth, contingency plan to an Nth degree. My concern is really more so across the United States, different state capitals-

Chuck Ramsey:

Yeah, other cities.

Scott Thomson:

This is not over by any stretch of the imagination. There is an anti-Democratic militia that has been mobilized and has been empowered. I do believe that, and I’m not a chicken little, the sky is falling type of person, but I think you’d be foolish to think that this born and ceased on January 6th. Even if you listen to the rhetoric of the people that day, this was not over. They believe, and they’re being told that they’ve suffered an injustice with a stuffed of an election, and they’re not going to stop until they feel so that they’ve gotten their justice.

Anne Milgram:

I think you raise really important issues about the threat that’s out there and remains out there. So my first job in my life was in Congress. I was a Congressional Page in the House Representatives. It is like, I don’t want to say it was my best job, but it was pretty amazing. All those tunnels in the bottom of the House, we learned how to run around and the Capitol to me has always been … In addition to having that sort of personal relevance, it’s always been an amazing place because people could walk in.

Anne Milgram:

It’s unlike a lot of other buildings and we talk about after 9/11, like it still was a place where the public could go and you could go see your elected representative and what I really hope, but I think, maybe it’s more of a prayer than a question is that, obviously the building has to be more secure and there are a lot of changes that are going to have to take place, but I really just … It is the people’s house and the United States Congress and I would hate for us to get to a world where the threat level is such that we can’t just walk in that building and look at that amazing rotunda and walk around.

Anne Milgram:

I know it has to be more secure, but is there a way to do that it still remains a part of the United States? We have over 300 million people and essentially 6,000 or 10,000 people have now done something that imperils the ability of all of us, I think, to be a part of that building in the history of our country.

Chuck Ramsey:

It is a shame, but it’s also the reality of where we’re at right now. It will still be the people’s house. They just may have to enter it through a gate, as opposed to just walking up like they once did.

Anne Milgram:

I’m okay with that, and I’m okay with magnetometers, too.

Chuck Ramsey:

There was a time when the White House did not have a gate surrounding it. You talk to people who grew up in DC that are my age or so, they talk about they used to play on the lawn at the White House, but obviously times change. So you have to deal with the reality. It could still be to people’s house, but you have to have the kind of security that you need to keep everyone safe, including those people that want to come and visit, as well as the people who we’ve elected to represent us in Congress.

Chuck Ramsey:

The thing that really bothered me is, it’s just not a capital, it’s everybody’s capital. It’s the symbol of democracy in this country. You think of that dome before you, you think of the White House. When you think about … And I think about the times when I was working in and be driving down Pennsylvania Avenue late at night, and the sky looked black and that white dome just standing out and it would send chills down your spine, even after you’ve seen it hundreds of thousands of times and to think that someone had the nerve to deface that, to come in and violate it, believe me, I get upset when I think about that.

Scott Thomson:

I think that unfortunately much like 9/11 altered our country in many ways, think of just air travel and what we are subjected to that. Look, there’s no such thing … The greater the security, the greater the discomfort and unfortunately we have to continue as a society to adjust to the threat levels that we become aware off. So long as what took place on January 6th, it would really be ill-conceived and naive to think that it can’t happen again. So I do think that the comfort level is going to change and if that means that we never have to have another funeral service for a Brian Sicknick, then so be it.

Chuck Ramsey:

I remember on 9/11, just real quick, because I know you want to close and I’m in Washington and it was a very, very long day to say the least and the toward the end of the day, we did a quick press conference and a reporter asked me, “Chief, when do you think things will get back to normal,” and I told him, “Normal has been redefined.”

Anne Milgram:

It was on Wednesday.

Chuck Ramsey:

It was redefined, and I think we just … Normal’s been redefined once again, and we just need to adapt and adjust to it because it, that’s just the way it is.

Anne Milgram:

Yeah, I agree with both of you sadly, and it was one of my great sadnesses on Wednesday was thinking that whether we consider it a failure of imagination, that it could have happened or a lack of preparation, there’s so many problems that happened that day. Of course, we haven’t talked and I should say this, we haven’t talked very much about the president inciting the individuals. We’ve talked a little bit about it and it’s not that that’s not critically important. It’s just that today, really, we wanted to have a conversation about law enforcement and there were no two people in America I wanted to have it with more than the two of you.

Anne Milgram:

Like you were saying, a lot of people have questions and there haven’t been a briefing. So I’ve arranged our own briefing from my two favorite experts. So I’m really grateful to you both. Thank you.

Chuck Ramsey:

Thank you.

Scott Thomson:

Thank you. Thank you. I just have one final question. When Chuck was reflecting back on his childhood and playing ball on the White House lawn, did Lincoln come out himself and throw the ball around with you?

Chuck Ramsey:

Actually George Washington, himself.

Preet Bharara:

If you like what we do, rate and review the show on Apple podcasts or wherever you listen. Every positive review helps new listeners find the show. Send me your questions about news, politics and justice. Tweet them to me at Preet Bharara with the #AskPreet, or you can call and leave me a message at (669) 247-7338. That’s (669) 247 Preet, or you can send an email to [email protected] Stay Tuned is presented by CAFE Studios. Your host is Preet Bharara. The executive producer is Tamara Sepper. The senior producer is Adam Waller. The technical director is David Tatasciore and the CAFE team is Matthew Billy, David Kurlander, Sam Ozer-Staton, Noa Azulai, Nat Weiner, Jake Kaplan, Geoff Isenman, Chris Boylan, Sean Walsh, and Margot Maley. Our music is by Andrew Dost. I’m Preet Bharara States.