House Oversight Committee tours Jan. 6 jail, decries mistreatment

House Oversight Committee tours Jan. 6 jail, decries mistreatment

Members of the House Oversight Committee toured a Washington, D.C. jail where some Jan. 6 defendants were held and offered contrasting descriptions of conditions inside the facility.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who spearheaded the visit, painted a picture of constitutional violations and mistreatment, while her Democratic counterparts said the defendants were treated fairly with nothing out of the ordinary.

Their due process rights are being violated. They have been mistreated and treated as political prisoners, Greene, R-Ga., told reporters after the tour, flanked by other Republicans on the committee, including Reps. Byron Donalds of Florida, Anna Paulina Luna of Florida and Mike Collins of Georgia.

Greene, who had previously visited the jail in November 2021, had worked with House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer, R-Ky. to organize the trip for members of Congress. Comer's office didn't respond immediately to a request for comment about Friday's tour.

The GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, who was also on hand for the tour, was seen exchanging a hug with Micki Witthoeft, the mother of Ashli Babbitt, a Jan. 6 rioter who was shot by police as she jumped through a broken window while members of Congress fled.

The two Democrats on Friday's tour disputed Republican characterizations of the jail and the Jan. 6 defendants.

Jasmine Crockett, a former public defender, described the visit as political theater, saying she didn't see anything alarming. California Rep. Robert Garcia told reporters that the defendants were treated very fairly and that Republicans were treating these insurrectionists like they are pseudo celebrities. The Washington Corrections Department is holding 20 people in connection with the Jan. 6 riot, according to an analysis by Just Security this month. More than 1,000 people have been arrested in connection with the Jan. 6 riot. Nine of the 20 have been convicted or have pleaded guilty, and just three defendants in the D.C. jail haven't been charged with physically assaulting law enforcement officers during the attack on the Capitol.