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Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Karen Gibson at the U.S. Capitol in April. Photo: Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images)

Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Karen Gibson told CNN in an interview broadcast Sunday there's been an increase in threats against lawmakers in the past year, and "political rhetoric is a key driver" of anger toward elected officials.

Driving the news: CNN's Pamela Brown asked Gibson if the threats stem from the Jan. 6 Capitol riot that led to her predecessor Michael Stenger resigning. Gibson replied: "I would not say since the insurrection, but certainly in 2020 it began to go up considerably and it has remained heightened for a number of members."

  • Gibson noted that political rhetoric is leading to "continued threats unfortunately against a number of elected officials," without naming anyone.
  • Expressing frustration toward elected officials is a right "enshrined in our Constitution and part of what I've sworn to uphold and defend, she said, but "a group of Americans ... have fallen for some conspiracy theories and just some whacked-out ideas that are not based in fact."
"I say tongue-in-cheek now that we have a vaccine for COVID I think we need to work on one for disinformation. But I am concerned about people who just cannot separate fact from fiction."

Go deeper... Senate sergeant-at-arms: Cyber attack against Congress "keeps me up at night"

Go deeper

Senate sergeant-at-arms: Cyber attack against Congress "keeps me up at night"

Karen Gibson, Senate sergeant-at-arms, speaking during a Senate subcommittee hearing during April 2021. Photo: Greg Nash/The Hill/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Karen Gibson told CNN she fears a cyber attack against Congress more than violence at the Capitol similar to the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Why it matters: Gibson said Friday that hackers attempt intrusions into Congress' computer networks "every single day" and that a state-backed cyber unit could cripple the government's ability to function by compromising communications networks.

Updated 22 mins ago - World

Biden cleans up comments about Russia invading Ukraine

Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

President Biden sought to clarify his suggestion that a "minor incursion" by Russia into Ukraine may not draw the same response as a large invasion, telling reporters Thursday that "Russia will pay a heavy price" if any troops cross the border.

Why it matters: Some officials in Kyiv saw Biden's comments as inviting Russian aggression.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
35 mins ago - Health

Study finds bias against Black patients written into medical charts

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Black patients were more than two-and-a-half times as likely as white patients to have negative descriptors about them in their electronic health record, according to a study published Wednesday in Health Affairs.

Why it matters: The study is further evidence of bias in the U.S. health care system, which can ultimately result in worse care and disparately poor outcomes.