The Feds alerted the Capitol Police by perhaps as much as an hour prior to showing up on their doorstep. The cops called House Sergeant-at-Arms Bill Livingood, who called the Speakers' legal counsel, Ted VanDerMeid. The FBI showed up with badges, paperwork and whatever they would have needed to open the locked office door at 2113 Rayburn. (Someone in the House hierarchy had a spare key so there was, unfortunately, no need for a repeat of the Battering-Ram-Against-The-Church-Door scene from the Hunchback of Notre Dame.) VanDerMeid called the Speaker's chief of staff Scott Palmer who, by midnight, was on the phone to the Executive Branch representing the concerns of the Legislative Branch. As of this writing, it is not clear when Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi became aware of all the activity. Fifteen hours after it began, the search was done.
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