Don Young Said to Have Barged Through Barriers Blocking Asbestos Spill
Asbestos abatement continues following the July 10 outbreak that briefly closed the House side of the Capitol , and one congressman might be in hot water for his conduct that morning.
Republican Rep. Don Young, the self-described “alpha wolf” of Alaska politics, allegedly barged through the police line established to prevent members of Congress and staff from entering the Capitol following the spill.
According to multiple sources, Young told an officer trying to stop him from entering the Capitol: “I don’t care if the building is closed,” cursed at the cop, then barged into the scene of the cleanup. A call went out over the Capitol Police radios about the incident, according to officers who are not authorized to speak for the department.
Capitol Police spokesman Shennell Antrobus told CQ Roll Call he had nothing to share when asked if he could confirm the allegations about Young or confirm if officers had been asked to file reports about the 20-term congressman’s behavior.
On Tuesday, Young told CQ Roll Call he had “no comment” as he exited the floor following a series of votes.
The Architect of the Capitol reported that air samples from the affected area near the East Grand Staircase tested “well below the regulatory limit for general space occupancy,” but sampling will continue. AOC spokeswoman Laura Condeluci did not respond to questions for this story.
Late Monday night, following the final votes in the House chamber, the AOC’s contractor installed scaffolding in the East Grand Staircase to proceed with a full cleaning of the stairwell.
On Tuesday, floor-to-ceiling plastic sheeting covered the landings on the second and third floors and a sign notified the public of the temporary construction closure expected to last through the end of July. The barriers allow the AOC to reactivate air conditioning in affected areas and resume work in the attic space above the staircase, according to the agency.
Tours of the Capitol are not impacted and will continue on normal routes.