Two House members, a Democrat and a Republican, accused Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.) of refusing to shake the hand of D.C. Metropolitan Police officer Michael Fanone on Wednesday after Fanone introduced himself as someone who responded to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
Fanone ran into Clyde, who frequently downplayed the Jan. 6 attack, at the Capitol, introducing himself as “someone who fought to protect the Capitol,” Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) tweeted.
Swalwell said Fanone “put out his hand” but Clyde “refused to shake it,” accusing him of “dishonor[ing] the police” to “honor Trump.”
Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), a vocal critic of Trump and Trump-aligned politicians, tweeted that he called Fanone and confirmed the incident, calling it “really incredible.”
Kinzinger added that Fanone said he had a “really incredibly bad and disrespectful” interaction with the chief of staff to an unnamed House member.
Fanone told the Washington Post the interaction occurred in an elevator, claiming Clyde “completely froze” and “stared” at him and that, when he asked if Clyde would shake his hand, Clyde responded, “I don’t know who you are.”
Fanone added that after he introduced himself, Clyde stayed silent and “turned away” from him, pulling out his cellphone and “thumbing through the apps.”
Forbes has reached out to spokespeople for Clyde, Swalwell and Kinzinger for comment.
Fanone told the Washington Post in January he was dragged down the Capitol steps with his helmet pulled off, and was attacked with a stun gun and flagpole, suffering a mild heart attack. He said in a CNN interview in April he has had persistent “psychological injuries” after responding to the attack, including PTSD.
“Watching the TV footage of those who entered the Capitol and walked through Statuary Hall showed people in an orderly fashion staying between the stanchions and ropes, taking videos and pictures,” Clyde said during a hearing on the attack in May, adding that, sans context, “you would actually think it was a normal tourist visit.”
21. That’s the number of House Republicans, including Clyde, who voted against a bill to award congressional gold medals to D.C. and Capitol Police on Tuesday, up from a dozen in March. Several said they flipped to no after Democratic leaders added a mention of the April Capitol attack to the bill, objecting to comparisons between the two.