Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser issued a citywide curfew amid protests and a reported breach and lockdown of the U.S. Capitol Building from 6 p.m. Wednesday until 6 a.m. on Thursday.
Both the Senate and the House went into recess amid the reported breach. A number of lawmakers said they were essentially told to shelter in place.
Emergency alerts were sent to phones across the District of Columbia with an alert about the emergency curfew.
The order won't apply to essential workers, including media employees.
Lawmakers confirmed they were placed on lockdown. "I’m currently in lockdown in the House chamber," said Rep. Jason Crow (D-Colo.) on Twitter.
And a number of senators and House representatives called on the protesters to pull back.
"Violence and anarchy are unacceptable. We are a nation of laws. This needs to end now," wrote Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) on Twitter.
The events occurred in the midst of the Joint Session of Congress.
Vice President Mike Pence opened the proceedings in his constitutional role as president of the Senate. He said in a statement that while he shared the concerns about the “integrity” of the election, it was not correct that he should be able to accept or reject electoral votes unilaterally.
Dozens of House representatives and one senator objected to the electoral votes for Arizona, leading to a debate and eventual vote by both chambers. About an hour later, the House and the Senate were locked down.