Lawmakers want answers after Stephen Colbert staffers arrested at Capitol for illegal entry


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Lawmakers will demand answers about the arrest of several employees of late-night talk show host Stephen Colbert on Capitol Hill Thursday when Congress resumes next week, a leading Republican told Fox News.

Days after House Democrats on Jan. 6 called Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga, to answer questions about a tour he gave the day before the Capitol riot, several people , including CBS employees who work Colbert’s late-night program were arrested for illegally entering the complex.

As of late Thursday, the individuals, including “Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog” puppeteer Robert Smigel — a frequent guest at Colbert’s — were not allowed to walk around unescorted, a Republican source told Fox News. Others arrested included Colbert writer Josh Comers and associate producer Allison Martinez.

The group was cleared into the complex by staff members of Rep. Jake Auchincloss, D-Mass., and Jan. 6 Committee Member Adam Schiff, D-Calif.

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(A shoot for Stephen Colbert’s late-night show may have gone too far. (Fox))

The group reportedly knocked on the doors of several Republican offices – including that of Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, Jim Jordan of Ohio and Lauren Boebert of Colorado – as they allegedly filmed a skit for the “Late Show” program. ” by Colbert which was to focus on the January 6 hearings.

Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill, the senior member of the House Committee on Administration — which has jurisdiction over Capitol and House police operations — told “Jesse Watters Primetime” on Friday that he will demand answers when Congress resumes session next week.

Davis noted that the Colbert group visited the same buildings as Rep. Loudermilk’s highly-scrutinized January 5, 2021 tour.

Earlier Thursday, the Colbert group moved into an area of ​​the Cannon House office building used for media staging during the January 6 committee hearings, after being helped by members of the Schiff team.

Davis said they were then kicked out by members of the press, who escorted them away.

“From what I understand, a staff member offered to return to the Chamber office buildings to [Auchincloss]’, he added, as they drove to Longworth, where Republican Rep. Lauren Boebert’s office is located.

Representative Jake Auchincloss, D-Mass.

Representative Jake Auchincloss, D-Mass.
(Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Davis noted that the only people ultimately arrested by Capitol police for illegally visiting House buildings were Smigel and those working for Colbert, not those accompanying Loudermilk.

A House aide also pointed out that the arrests came on the 50th anniversary of the infamous burglary of the then-Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate complex on the other side of Washington.

A total of nine people, including Colbert’s senior producer Jake Plunkett, were reportedly arrested and spent a night in jail.

Davis was one of the lawmakers McCarthy tapped to serve as a minority member on the Jan. 6 Committee, until House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., made the unprecedented decision to turn people away. named Jordan and Rep. James Banks, R-Ind., release to sit on the panel.

Rep.  Adam Schiff, D-California.

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-California.
(Getty Images)

In response, McCarthy withdrew his entire list of appointees and called both the process and the committee a prank. Later, Reps. Elizabeth Cheney, R-Wyo., and Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., sat separately without McCarthy’s blessing.

Loudermilk, the Republican lawmaker criticized for organizing the Jan. 5, 2021 tour, recently dismissed claims that he was involved in or sanctioning any nefarious behavior.

House Jan. 6 committee chairman Bennie Thompson of Mississippi countered that people’s behavior on the Loudermilk tour “raises[d] concerns about their activity and intent.”

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But Capitol Police Chief J. Thomas Manger recently wrote in a letter to Davis that his department “doesn’t[es] does not consider any of the activities we observed to be suspicious. »

Loudermilk reacted on social media, writing that “the truth will always prevail” and calling the accusations about him from Thompson and others “baseless”.

“What the Capitol police said doesn’t fit the narrative that the Jan. 6 committee wants to put forward,” he told Fox News.


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