Attorney General William Barr said Tuesday he was not sure whether members of Congress would protect the U.S. Capitol Building from rioters and vandals.
Amid a discussion about so-called peaceful protests that have devolved into violence in American cities, Rep. Doug Collins (R., Ga.) asked Barr, "Do you think that this body right here would rise up if they decided to go tonight and paint the Capitol building?"
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"This body? I'm not sure," Barr said, drawing laughter.
Collins said the Republicans would, but he was unsure whether Democrats would join them.
"It may be a peaceful protest to burn down the Capitol," Collins said. "Maybe we're back to 1812 again."
Barr has come under fierce questioning from Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, on subjects including the Trump administration's response to civil unrest in American cities such as Portland and Chicago.