The Senate on Friday night unanimously approved the congressional gold medal for Capitol police officer Eugene Goodman for his bravery in defending senators from rioters at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer said Mr. Goodman deserves the medal, the highest honor Congress can bestow, for his “incredible bravery, calmness under pressure and courage in the line of duty.”
The officer was in the Senate chamber as Mr. Schumer spoke, and was greeted by two standing ovations from senators as the impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump concluded for the night.
Mr. Goodman, 40, is a D.C. native and an Army veteran. When rioters broke into the Capitol on Jan. 6, he held back dozens of them in actions recorded on video, twice retreating up a flight of stairs to lead the mob away from the Senate chamber.
He was also seen on another video directing Republican Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah away from rioters in a Senate hallway.
Mr. Schumer praised Mr. Goodman’s “foresight in the midst of chaos and his willingness to make himself a target of the mob’s rage so that others might reach safety.”
“He was not alone,” Mr. Schumer said, referring to hundreds of other police officers who defended the Capitol that day.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, joined in the move to approve the medal.
“If not for the quick thinking and bravery of Officer Eugene Goodman, people in this chamber may not have escaped,” Mr. McConnell said.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said the House will also approve the medal for Mr. Goodman.