President Biden on Monday fired embattled Architect of the Capitol, Brett Blanton, following reports of ethics and policy violations.
The Architect oversees the U.S. Capitol complex. He or she is responsible for the maintenance, operation, development and preservation of 16.5 million square feet of buildings and more than 450 acres of land throughout Capitol Hill. This includes the Capitol building, the Capitol Visitor Center, the Library of Congress, the U.S. Botanic Garden and other facilities.
Blanton’s termination by Biden came as House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said he’d lost confidence in Blanton’s ability to do the job, and had called for him to either resign or be fired by Biden “immediately.”
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was asked about Blanton at the daily briefing on Friday, to which she replied, “We take any advice that the members of Congress or any action that they want to take very seriously.”
An inspector general report released last year found “administrative, ethical and policy violations” by Blanton, including that he abused his government vehicle and that he had misrepresented himself as a law enforcement official.
While the position of Architect resides at the U.S. Capitol, it is appointed by the President.