Kamala Harris, then the vice president-elect, was evacuated from the Democratic National Committee headquarters when a pipe bomb was found Jan. 6, 2021, a White House official said Thursday.
The confirmation a year-to-the-day after the bomb was discovered adds another detail to Harris’ timeline from the day of the Capitol insurrection and further evidence that its dangers reached to the highest levels of the government.
The bomb was one of two placed near the Democratic and Republican headquarters on Capitol Hill on Jan. 5 in a crime that has not yet been solved by the FBI. Politico first reported Harris’ proximity to the bomb and evacuation at 1:14 p.m. that day.
Harris, then a California senator, previously told The Times she had been at the Capitol earlier that day for a Senate Intelligence Committee meeting but was working elsewhere during the breach of the Capitol.
“I had left, but my thoughts immediately turned not only to my colleagues, but to my staff, who had been forced to seek refuge in our office, converting filing cabinets into barricades,” Harris said during her address from the Capitol on Thursday, marking the anniversary of the insurrection.
She watched many of the day’s events from a secure location, on television, texting with colleagues who promised to return to certify the election results in defiance of those trying to upend the election. Harris, in her role as senator, returned with them.
“It was horrific, horrific,” Harris said in an interview with The Times last year. “And each day after, we are learning more and more about the deep and very dark layers of what went into that day.”
In a recorded interview with “PBS NewsHour” on Thursday, Harris condemned Republican lawmakers for downplaying the threat. She hailed Rep. Liz Cheney, a Republican from Wyoming who serves on the Jan. 6 committee, for not being afraid to take on powerful elements in her own party.
Cheney has been pilloried by former President Trump for voting for his impeachment, pushing back on his repeated lies about the election results and helping lead the congressional investigation into the insurrection.
“These are moments where we must speak truth, and I applaud her courage,” Harris said. “In the midst of, you know, a number of her colleagues who have failed to show such courage or those who have shown courage and sadly are not seeking reelection or have not sought reelection.”