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GOP lawmaker Mo Brooks says he wore body armor at the January 6 Trump rally and was tipped off to 'risks'

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Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., conducts a news conference in the Capitol Visitor Center on Tuesday, June 15, 2021.
Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama at a news conference in the Capitol Visitor Center on June 15. Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
  • Mo Brooks told a reporter he wore body armor to the pro-Trump rally that preceded the Capitol riot.

  • He said he also slept in his office instead of his condo after being tipped off about "risks."

  • It's unclear where he got the warning and whether he told other lawmakers about it.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Republican Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama said he wore body armor to Donald Trump's January 6 rally in Washington, DC, after being tipped off about "risks" in the days leading up to the event, Slate reported.

"I was warned on Monday" - January 4 - "that there might be risks associated with the next few days," Brooks told the Slate politics writer Jim Newell.

"And as a consequence of those warnings, I did not go to my condo," he added. "Instead, I slept on the floor of my office. And when I gave my speech at the Ellipse, I was wearing body armor.

"That's why I was wearing that nice little windbreaker. To cover up the body armor."

It is unclear whether Brooks warned other lawmakers of "risks." Brooks also declined to name who had warned him.

Many attendees of the rally at the Ellipse went on to storm the Capitol soon afterward.

Commenting on the House select committee investigating the Capitol riot, he said the committee's intent was not to find the truth but "to create political propaganda that may be used in the elections in 2022 and perhaps 2024."

Brooks also said the committee should investigate "intelligence failures" that led to the Capitol riot, Newell told CNN's Anderson Cooper in an interview.

Brooks is being sued by a colleague, Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, who has accused him of inciting violence at the Capitol by stoking protesters at the rally to "start taking down names and kicking ass."

The Department of Justice has refused to defend him, saying the rally did not constitute official work duties.

Brooks and Swalwell did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Insider.

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