Feb 23, 2021

Axios PM

Good afternoon: Today's PM — edited by Justin Green — is 436 words, a 1.5-minute read.

⚡️Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told Politico "I do" when asked if he plans to back the confirmation of Attorney General nominee Merrick Garland.

1 big thing: Capitol security claims they weren't warned

Steven Sund, former Capitol chief of police, hugs Carneysha Mendoza, captain of the Capitol Police, while arriving to a congressional hearing today. Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP

All three of the former top officials responsible for security on Capitol Hill testified today that they didn't get the FBI memo warning of violence and "war" on Jan. 6.

Why it matters: The testimony came during the first in a series of congressional oversight hearings on security and law enforcement failures before and during the insurrection, reports Axios' Ursula Perano.

  • Former U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund said a member of the intelligence division at USCP did review the memo — but that "it didn't go any further than that."

What they're saying: Sund and former House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving clashed over the timing of asking for National Guard assistance.

  • Sund says he asked for National Guard assistance at 1:09 pm, but that Irving did not approve the assistance until 2:10pm.
  • Irving says he has no recollection of receiving the request for approval until after 2 pm.
  • Sund, Irving and former Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Michael Stenger all resigned after the insurrection.

Between the lines: The chief of D.C.'s police department blamed the Pentagon for the slow response, the N.Y. Times notes.

  • “I was stunned at the response from Department of the Army,” Chief Robert Contee said.

What's next: Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) said officials serving in the Pentagon at the time of the insurrection will testify next week about their response to the breach.

2. Tiger Woods in serious condition
Photo: KABC-TV via AP

Tiger Woods, 45, suffered "multiple leg injuries" when his SUV had a rollover accident in suburban L.A., officials said. The golf legend was in surgery and listed in critical condition.

  • No other cars were involved. An ambulance took Woods to a hospital.

A KABC-TV chopper over the wreck showed the car on its side, front end heavily damaged, just off the side of a road near a hillside. The airbags appeared to be deployed, AP reported.

Latest update.

3. Catch up quick
  1. The mother of Ahmaud Arbery, the 25-year-old Black man shot and killed one year ago in Georgia, filed a civil lawsuit accusing the men indicted in her son's death — and the involved police officers — of conspiring to kill Arbery and violating his civil rights. Go deeper.
  2. California residents in affluent communities are taking up COVID-19 vaccination appointments meant for underserved communities of color, according to a report by the Los Angeles Times.
  3. Moderna and Pfizer plan to significantly boost vaccine shipments to the U.S. government by this spring. Go deeper.
  4. Former WeWork CEO Adam Neumann and SoftBank are nearing a detente in their long-running legal battle. Go deeper.
4. 1 smile to go: Music for your 🎧
"That's Life" by Willie Nelson. Image: Legacy Recordings via AP

Tired of watching and listening to the same things for the past year? Here are a few music happenings to look forward to this week, per the AP:

  • Willie Nelson pays tribute to Frank Sinatra with “That’s Life” out Friday.
  • Harry Belafonte will celebrate his 94th birthday on Sunday with a virtual party benefiting The Gathering for Justice, the social justice organization Belafonte founded in 2005.
  • Country duo Florida Georgia Line is livestreaming a concert Thursday to celebrate their recent album and to support downtown merchants affected by the Christmas Day bombing in Nashville.