The cause of his death was not immediately clear, but reporters from Fox News and Politico shared news of his passing. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) also tweeted about it. Stenger held the post from 2018 to 2021 and stepped down the day after the Jan. 6 attack.
“There is an opportunity to learn lessons from the events of January 6th. Investigations should be considered as to funding and travel of what appears to be professional agitators. First Amendment rights should always be considered in conjunction with professional investigations,” he said in an opening statement before a Senate committee last year.
Stenger had joined the team for the Senate sergeant-at-arms in 2011 following a multidecade career with the Secret Service. Then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) nominated him as Senate sergeant-at-arms, and he was confirmed unanimously.
Opening statement from Former Senate Sergeant at Arms Michael Stenger on January 6th U.S. Capitol Attack pic.twitter.com/jnb5pEVj1W
— CSPAN (@cspan) February 23, 2021
McConnell “requested and received” his resignation the day after a mob of violent rioters stormed the Capitol, Axios reported. Stenger received fierce criticism from members of Congress over his handling of security on the day of the riot.
Karen Gibson is serving as the current Senate sergeant-at-arms.
Ultimately, it took over four hours for the National Guard to arrive on the scene that day, and some have questioned whether Stenger and his onetime House counterpart, Paul Irving, could have called for backup sooner, WUSA9 reported.
In response to the security breach on Jan. 6, Congress passed a raft of procedural reforms to quash any confusion in the rules about what authority Congress’s security team had to call for reinforcements. President Joe Biden signed that legislation into law.