Senate Votes Unanimously to Award Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman the Congressional Gold Medal

Officer Eugene Goodman played an integral role in protecting lawmakers from the violent Jan. 6 riots in Washington, D.C. that left five people dead

Eugene Goodman

Senators have voted unanimously to award Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman a Congressional Gold Medal.

Goodman played an integral role in protecting lawmakers from the violent riots in Washington, D.C. that left five people dead on Jan. 6. On Friday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer paid tribute to the officer and asked the Senate to pass legislation to award him the Gold Medal — Congress' highest honor.

"In the weeks after the attack on January the sixth, the world learned about the incredible bravery of Officer Goodman on that fateful day," Schumer said, according to CNN, as his fellow lawmakers stood to applaud Goodman, who was in the room.

"I think we can all agree that Eugene Goodman deserves the highest honor Congress can bestow," Schumer added.

"In the face of lawlessness, the officers of the U.S. Capitol lived out the fullest sense of their oaths," Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said, The Washington Post reported. "If not for the quick thinking and bravery of Officer Eugene Goodman in particular, people in this chamber may not have escaped that day unharmed."

In a previous statement, USCP Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman said, "To have our police officers' bravery acknowledged at a time when they're experiencing tremendous emotions and exhaustion is a gift. We have too many heroes to count and we are humbled Congress may recognize them in this way. From the cards and letters of support we've received from around this great country to this incredible award, we are deeply humbled and appreciative."

The award comes days after Democrats released never-before-seen footage of Goodman leading Sen. Mitt Romney away from the pro-Donald Trump rioters who had breached the building.

House impeachment manager Stacey Plaskett introduced the video during Trump's second impeachment trial, which began after the former president was charged by the House with inciting an insurrection.

Plaskett explained: "In this security footage, you can see Officer Goodman running to respond to the initial breach. Officer Goodman passes Sen. Mitt Romney and directs him to turn around in order to get to safety."

Eugene Goodman Saving Mitt Romney
Eugene Goodman.

In the clip, Goodman races down a hallway in the Capitol as Romney is walking in the other direction. In Goodman's direction, Romney turns around and runs off.

Romney told reporters he hadn't seen the security footage before Wednesday, and at the time didn't realize that it was Goodman who led him to safety, according to TIME journalist Lissandra Villa reported.

The Utah senator was one of only six Republicans to vote Tuesday that Trump's impeachment was constitutional even though he is no longer in office. Sens. Susan Collins, Bill Cassidy, Lisa Murkowski, Ben Sasse and Pat Toomey also voted that the trial was constitutional, NPR reported. The Senate vote ended up being 56-44.

On Saturday, McConnell told his GOP colleagues in a letter that he will vote to acquit impeachment trial, sources familiar with the communication told the Associated Press.

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