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Social media grab shows Sen. Lindsey Graham being escorted by security personnel Friday as Trump supporters berate him at Washington Reagan National Airport. Photo: Oreo Express via Reuters

After several lawmakers were hassled in airports, federal authorities on Saturday increased security for members of Congress when they travel to and from Washington through the inauguration, according to an internal memo obtained by Axios.

Why it matters: The unusual new safety measures reflect the increased incidents of angry Americans confronting lawmakers, and the hostile aftermath of Wednesday's siege of the U.S. Capitol.

A "House Alert" sent to members on Saturday said that the House Sergeant at Arms "and the U.S. Capitol Police have partnered with the Washington Metropolitan Airports Authority and the United States Air Marshals to increase security for Members of Congress while traveling to and from Washington D.C."

  • The "Travel Security Notification for Members of Congress" encouraged lawmakers to submit their flight itineraries to House security officials, who "will make notifications to the appropriate law enforcement agencies to ensure an increased security posture."
  • "Agents from the U.S. Capitol Police will also be stationed at BWI, IAD and DCA airports through the Inauguration to assist in security coordination."

Members and staff were encouraged to "remain vigilant of their surroundings and immediately report anything unusual or suspicious."

Video was posted Tuesday showing Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) being heckled in the Salt Lake City airport. On Friday, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C) was called a "traitor" and "verbally harassed" by at least a couple dozen Trump supporters at Washington Reagan National Airport, Politico reported from video.

  • Over the New Year's holiday weekend, vandals defaced the homes of both House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Zoom out: The Federal Aviation Administration also said Saturday that the agency will "pursue strong enforcement action against anyone who endangers the safety of a flight," after unruly behavior took place on several flights to and from the Washington, D.C. area this week.

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Go deeper

The Mischief Makers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Several Republican and Democratic lawmakers are emerging as troublemakers within their parties and political thorns for their leadership.

Why it matters: We're calling this group "The Mischief Makers" — members who threaten to upend party unity — the theme eclipsing Washington at the moment — and potentially jeopardize the Democrats' or Republicans' position heading into the 2022 midterms.

Biden calls on Congress to extend eviction moratorium as deadline looms

Photo: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

President Biden called on Congress on Thursday to extend the CDC's national eviction moratorium due to the threat of the Delta variant, after the Supreme Court ruled that the administration couldn't extend it past July 31 without specific legislation.

Why it matters: Millions of tenants across the country face the threat of eviction in the coming days. The moratorium was first implemented in September 2020 and extended several times to prevent a wave of evictions caused by pandemic-related economic decline.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The mental health deal boom

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The positive social media response to Simone Biles withdrawing from Olympic competition highlights how the artificial line between health care and mental health care is finally beginning to dissolve. And startup investors have taken notice.

By the numbers: Venture capital investments in mental health startups rose 72.6% between Q1 2020 and Q1 2021, per CB Insights.