6:03 PM EST, January 10, 2011
After the deadly shooting Saturday in Tucson, Arizona, that killed six and wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and others, some are asking what can be done to improve security for members of Congress and other lawmakers; and their constituents.
WSBT asked Indiana 2nd District Congressman Joe Donnelly, who counts Giffords as one of his closest friends. He last saw her when they were both sworn in for their third term last Wednesday.
Donnelly said members of Congress do have security for certain events, but not always. For instance, he normally doesn't have security at his office or when he meets with groups of his constituents.
But that may change. He and other members of Congress will meet with security officials to discuss what changes should be made to ensure everyone's safety.
“I go back to Washington on Wednesday,” Donnelly told WSBT. “We're having a meeting with the security folks to make sure that we have a system in place so that everybody who comes to visit the office, everybody who comes to one of our meetings, feels safe. It's not about me, it's about the people in our district and my staff.”
Michigan Congressman Fred Upton also addressed security and possible restrictions for constituents on CNN.
“If you impose such a new set of restrictions, and for the most part I think most of us would balk at additional security,” Upton said. “Knowing that's not who we are. We come from the communities we represent. We're the same people that we were before. You have got to have an extra eye out for precaution for something that might happen. Our thoughts and prayers are certainly with our colleague and tragically the folks that lost their lives too.”
Donnelly says that may include a police presence at his town hall meetings. He would not confirm any threats against him. In the past, he told WSBT that Capitol Hill police have asked him not to talk about it.
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