- Michael Fanone blasted the low GOP turnout during a Jan. 6 remembrance ceremony at the Capitol.
- “It’s embarrassing for their party, and it’s shameful behavior,” he told CNN’s Jake Tapper.
- Multiple outlets reported that Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick was the only GOP lawmaker at Friday’s event.
Former DC Metropolitan Police officer Michael Fanone slammed Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Friday for their paltry participation in a memorial ceremony honoring law enforcement officials who protected the complex during the Capitol riot, calling the lack of support “shameful.”
Fanone, who served as a metropolitan officer for about 20 years before resigning from the force in December 2021, told CNN that while he didn’t like painting anyone “with a broad brush,” he criticized the GOP reaction to the event as “embarrassment” to the party.
Multiple outlets, including Insider, reported that only GOP congressman — Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania — was apparently present at Friday’s ceremony dominated by Democratic lawmakers.
“In the past two years of being outspoken about Jan. 6, I’ve tried to walk a fine line when it comes to condemning Republicans,” Fanone told CNN’s Jake Tapper during of an interview. “Nobody likes being painted with a wide brush. Law enforcement certainly doesn’t like that, and I don’t believe all Republicans are in favor of the MAGA agenda.”
He continued, “That being said, it is very difficult to defend the Republican Party when only one of its members takes the time to come forward and show their support for law enforcement who were there to defend them that day. It’s shameful. It’s embarrassing for their party, and it’s shameful behavior.”
Fanone, who received the Presidential Citizens Medal — one of the nation’s highest civilian honors — from President Joe Biden at a White House ceremony Friday, slammed the GOP’s low turnout for the Capitol event. .
“As someone who has endorsed Republican candidates in the past, it’s shameful,” the former police officer told Tapper. “But they seem to be partying, at that time, it’s no shame.”
After the Capitol ceremony, Fitzpatrick, a former FBI supervisory special agent, told Insider’s Bryan Metzger of his desire to be at the solemn event.
“I wanted to be here,” he said.
Fitzpatrick told ABC News that Jan. 6 was “a terrible day that we can never let happen again.”
On Friday morning, Republicans were still mired in a leadership crisis amid a revolt among the party’s right flank – as Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California had yet to land the House Speakership – with an early morning conference call of the GOP riding the ceremony. However, the ceremony largely wrapped up within minutes of the scheduled roll call, according to Insider, and the House did not resume its attempts to select a speaker until noon that day.
The Jan. 6 ceremony focused on remembering law enforcement officials — including Brian D. Sicknick — who died after the riot, as well as four police officers who died by suicide after the attack.
Sicknick — who fended off crowds at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 — suffered two strokes and died of natural causes the next day, according to Washington, D.C. medical examiner Francisco J. Diaz, the chief medical officer saying “all what happened played a role in his condition.”