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The Fence

A tip of the hat to the House Appropriations subcommittee on the legislative branch for — we hope — putting a knife in the heart of any notion of building a security fence around the Capitol complex.

We understand the good intentions behind the concept. The Capitol needs to be protected from those who wish to use violence to disrupt the business of democracy. And we have been supportive of the vast bulk of steps taken to make the Congress safer.

But the message that such a physical barrier would send about the People’s Congress would not be one that does credit to the institution. A wall around the complex would severely damage the inspirational backdrop the Capitol provides. Anyone who believes that another massive construction project on the Hill is warranted should take a stroll down First Street while construction on the Capitol Visitor Center drags on.

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