© Provided by The Independent
A bipartisan group of lawmakers has introduced legislation to award United States Capitol Police (USCP) officer Eugene Goodman the congressional gold medal after he was seen thwarting a deadly mob from attacking the Senate chambers during the pro-Trump riots in Washington last week.
A video of the incident went viral after it was posted to Twitter by HuffPost journalist Igor Bobic. Footage showed Officer Goodman singlehandedly leading the mob away from the Senate chambers just as it was reportedly being sealed off due to the violent riots.
The mob clashed with police officers on 6 January, injuring 14 and killing at least one, as it stormed the Capitol building during the certification of the 2020 presidential elections.
President Donald Trump had just encouraged his supporters to march to the Capitol in a fiery speech, vowing to "never stop fighting" while continuing to promote baseless and debunked claims of rampant voter fraud leading to his electoral defeat.
Officer Goodman was heralded as a hero in the wake of the riots, as many viewers said the video showed him strategically preventing the mob from breaching the Senate chambers.
In the video, Officer Goodman runs up several flights of stairs as he calls for backup and engages with a male rioter at the front of the mob.
At one point, he can be seen looking towards the entryway of the Senate chambers, which had not yet been sealed off, according to contemporaneous notes made by a Washington Post reporter.
He then pushes the lead rioter before running away from the entry, an apparent move done to distract the mob and lead them away from where lawmakers were hiding behind furniture and locked doors.
The new legislation was introduced by Democratic Representatives Charlie Crist of Florida and Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri, as well as Republican Congresswoman Nancy Mace of South Carolina.
In a profile story by the Washington Post, friends told the newspaper Officer Goodman was overwhelmed by the attention he had received for his actions on the day of the riots.
"My job is to protect and serve," he said in a statement. "And on that day, I was protecting."