'It was like out of a bad movie': Congresswoman Jackie Speier on the pro-Trump riots
WASHINGTON - Peninsula Congresswoman Jackie Speier, no stranger to trauma and violence, described the moments leading up to and during the pro-Trump riots as she watched her colleagues debate the electoral college votes on the House floor.
Speier, a Democrat representing San Francisco and San Mateo, said she noticed something was off when she saw House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the majority whip being escorted out of the room on Wednesday morning. Moments later, she and other members of Congress were told that the Capitol had been breached.
"They cleared the House floor and asked us to move to the other side," she said. "We were about to leave and then they said, 'No, lie down on the floor,' and we did and they were pounding on the doors of the chamber and all of a sudden they put furniture -- it was like out of a bad movie -- they were putting furniture against the door so they couldn't break in and they had drawn their guns and then there was a shot fired."
Despite the chaos, Speier said she felt pretty safe despite what was happening around her.
And Speier has experienced her share of chaos.
In 1978, Speier was left for dead when she and her late boss, Congressman Leo Ryan, was killed in Guyana on a trip both took to rescue 900 Jonestown cult members from the People's Temple. Speier underwent multiple surgeries after she was shot, which propelled her to run for Congress.
After the Capitol was deemed secure, she and others were eventually escorted out and taken to a secure place inside the Capitol, where they spent several hours.
She said what was most disturbing was watching the images on television of what she called "thugs" storming into the building.
Speier is just one of many lawmakers now calling for an investigation as to why it took so long for the national guard to arrive.
KTVU's Lisa Fernandez and the Associated Press contributed to this report.