“In my experience in 50 years in law enforcement, this is unprecedented,” said John Magaw, a former Secret Service director. “The coordination of security has virtually fallen apart. We are watching the deterioration of law and order in the U.S. It just becomes chaos. I don’t see any sign that the current president is going to stand up and lead like presidents have led in the past.” Magaw said. “Our democracy is on the edge of a cliff.”

The unprecedented security breach disrupted what, during normal times, should have been an uneventful democratic process of counting electoral votes. It has also raised questions about how demonstrators managed to force their way inside the Capitol building and whether there had been ample law enforcement presence, especially when threats of violence should have raised red flags.

“There should’ve been better preparation for this,” said Ed Davis, former police commissioner for the Boston Police Department. “There has to be political will to put resources in place to stop what clearly should’ve been seen … This is the result of a lack of political will to control an attempted insurrection.”