Sen. Tim Kaine Describes Capitol Insurrection from Vantage Point in Senate Chamber and Secure Bunker

Sen. Tim Kaine Describes Capitol Insurrection from Vantage Point in Senate Chamber and Secure Bunker

(CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA) – In a candid 50-minute interview this evening with UVA Center for Politics Director Larry J. Sabato, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) delivered a detailed account of the Capitol insurrection from his vantage point on the floor of the U.S. Senate and from a secure bunker where senators were held for nearly five hours until they could return to the Senate chamber. 

Kaine describes the moment he “knew there was a massive disaster that was underway” and gives his thoughts on how the country should proceed over the coming days and weeks. During the interview, Kaine:

  • Details his discussion with a Capitol police officer the day after the riot and the officer’s view that official plans and resources devoted to security leading up to Jan. 6 were “abysmal”;
  • Expresses support for a 9/11 type of commission to look into the Capitol insurrection;
  • Discusses potential sanctions of President Trump in the event that impeachment does not result in conviction in the Senate. Among the possible legislative solutions is an idea that any candidate who receives the official nomination of his/her party may not accept the nomination without releasing 10 years of tax returns;
  • Outlines what he views as the top three priorities for the U.S. Senate right now: 1) Holding accountable those who participated in and/or instigated the insurrection; 2) Achieving a safe and peaceful transfer of power; 3) Starting the incoming Biden/Harris administration as strong as possible by approving nominees to cabinet positions, etc. 
  • Discusses his view of possible sanctions of fellow lawmakers who participated in instigating Capitol insurrection, including possible censure for perpetrating falsehoods about the 2020 election; stripping away seniority; removal from committees that may be required to render judgements about events of Jan. 6, and restricting the release of classified information to lawmakers who helped perpetrate the insurrection.     
  • Suggests the Senate may want to look at and perhaps revise the government-funded perks extended to former presidents (non-security related), but also consider (in light of ongoing threats against Vice President Pence) extending the period where former vice presidents receive security protection. 

The full interview is available at the Center for Politics’ YouTube channel (UVACFP).