Republicans Treated Jan. 6 Inmates Like ‘Celebrities’ During Jail Visit, Says Congressman

GettyImages-1475997022-1 - Credit: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images
GettyImages-1475997022-1 - Credit: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Congressman Robert Garcia (D-Cal.) criticized his Republican colleagues for treating Jan. 6 inmates held in pre-trial detention like “celebrities” during a congressional visit to the D.C. jail.

“The Republicans rushed to [the inmates] like they were celebrities, talking to them, patting them on the back,” Garcia said on MSNBC Friday afternoon.

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The House Oversight Committee coordinated the visit. Republicans on the committee have long insisted that inmates held at the D.C. jail are detained in inhumane conditions. In October, inmates in the so-called “Patriot Ward” publicly requested a transfer to Guantanamo Bay Prison. The delegation was led by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), who visited the jail in 2021.

That year, amidst complaints of foul conditions from inmates, the U.S. Marshall conducted an inspection of the facilities; while certain parts of the jail did not pass muster, the newer Central Treatment Facility (CTF) wing housing the inmates cleared inspection.

Inmates in the CTF wing, which they have internally dubbed the “Patriot Wing,” reportedly have access to tablets, computers, audio recording equipment, and round-the-clock medical care. “It’s clear these insurrectionists are being held in much better conditions than most black and brown inmates in prisons across the country,” Garcia tweeted.

Oversight Republicans attempted to hold a press conference following the visit, which was interrupted by protesters. Greene and Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.) claimed the inmate’s “constitutional rights are being violated.” Greene reiterated her assertions that Jan. 6 “was not an insurrection,” and declared the Jan, 6 defendants victims of a “two-tiered justice system.”

Rep. Jasmine Crockett (D-Texas), a member of the visiting delegation, rebuffed claims that inmates were being mistreated and told reporters that if the jail was a hotel, the Jan.6 inmate’s accommodations were comparable to “suites,” where the general population inmates were in standard rooms. “As far as I’m concerned, this absolutely passed with flying colors,” Crockett said.

“Essentially what happened today was a field trip. The Republicans got to see their heroes. The January Sixers got to see their heroes,” Crockett told MSNBC in an interview Friday night.

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