Doug Hughes flew his gyrocopter through restricted and no-fly air space earlier today and landed on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. He did so in order to raise awareness about campaign finance reform. Hughes spoke to the Tampa Bay Times before his flight and the newspaper published the story online after he had taken flight.
Hughes flew to the Capitol with five hundred-and-thirty-five letters. There was one for each member of Congress and they called on Congress to pass campaign finance reform. Hughes planned on delivering the letters himself. Delivering mail is not out of the ordinary for him, he has been a mailman with the USPS since 2003.
In the Tampa Bay Times story, Hughes admitted the Secret Service had been notified to his plans. A Secret Service agent had visited him several times and Hughes said he was honest in every answer. He admitted to owning a gyrocopter and wanting to make a stand for campaign finance reform.
Hughes’s flight caused a frenzy in Washington, in part due to the surreal nature of the plot. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi was also in the Capitol, meeting with lawmakers. The Capitol was put into lockdown, in part to ensure the Prime Minister’s protection.