WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate broke out in a standing ovation Friday evening as they voted to award a Congressional Gold Medal to Eugene Goodman, a U.S. Capitol police officer who helped keep a crowd of rioters out of the Senate chamber during the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.
The legislation was introduced back in January by U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), and Ben Cardin (D-Md.).
Goodman, a Maryland native, confronted rioters in the Capitol, delaying their access to the Senate chamber and protecting the lives of those inside the building.
“By redirecting violent rioters away from the Senate chamber on Jan. 6, Officer Goodman defended our democracy and saved the lives of senators and staff," Senator Chris Van Hollen said. "He is wholly deserving of the highest civilian honor bestowed by Congress, and I’m glad the Senate acted quickly on our legislation to recognize the quick thinking and bravery of this great Marylander with a Congressional Gold Medal. I urge my colleagues in the House to quickly follow suit."
Earlier this week during the second impeachment hearing of former President Donald Trump, Goodman was shown on surveillance video warning Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) of the rioters who had entered the Capitol building.
“We all watched footage of Officer Eugene Goodman putting his own life at risk to save ours,” Sen. Brown said. “What was already a tragic day could have been worse if he had not bravely led the violent mob away from the Senate chamber. Bestowing Officer Goodman with a Congressional Gold Medal to honor his commitment and courage on January 6th is one important way we can thank him for his service on that day and every day.”
The House of Representatives still has to vote on the legislation before Officer Goodman is officially awarded the honor.
To read the full text of the bill, click here.