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The Scene On The Hill This Afternoon


I was in the Capitol with a House staffer whose blackberry alerted him to “a guy with a gun in the Cannon building.” He was then in touch with his colleagues who locked themselves in their offices. Over an hour later, as our meeting broke up, the “annunciator” in the office announced that the Cannon building was under lockdown. There hadn’t been a peep out of it until then. Each office is equipped with one of these black boxes which are intended to allow for quick communication during emergencies. They are tested every few weeks and are apparently a gizmo of ridicule among congressional aides. Today’s belated notification is unlikely to boost confidence in the new system.


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