Rep. Pocan calls for apology from Rep. Van Orden

Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 10:50 PM CDT
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WEAU) - Wisconsin Representative Mark Pocan is calling for an apology from Rep. Derrick Van Orden after reviewing footage from an incident with Senate pages this summer.

Rep. Pocan (D, WI-02) released a statement today after watching security video from the U.S. Capitol rotunda in July where Van Orden (R, WI-03) allegedly yelled at teenage pages after they laid on the rotunda floor to take photos:

“This video was bad and unbecoming of a Member of Congress. There is no way to prove Derrick was drunk, but this is not behavior a sober or sane person would do. He looked unbalanced and had belligerent hand gestures when he was threatening these teenagers. He towered over many of them and then followed them when they got up to leave. This was abusive behavior intended to frighten these pages.

“It’s odd enough to have a raging party in your office until midnight. But even more concerning is taking a large group of people to tour the Capitol at midnight and pushing others around to show off, including a bow to his guests afterward. Representative Van Orden’s behavior does not reflect Wisconsin values and he owes each of the pages and his constituents an apology.”

Pocan says due to privacy and safety concerns for the pages, the video will not be released.

In response, an office spokesperson for Rep. Van Orden offered this statement:

“Derrick Van Orden came to Congress to work for the people of Wisconsin’s Third Congressional District. Right now, he is laser-focused on making sure the government doesn’t shut down.”