Republican representatives face fines for bypassing Capitol security
Reps. Andrew Clyde of Georgia and Louie Gohmert of Texas are the first to be penalized under new rules to enter the House chamber
In the wake of the Capitol riots a month ago, a new rule was put in place to make sure House members go through a security screening when entering the U.S. Capitol building. Two Republican congressmen have since broken protocol and been issued a fine for their offenses.
As previously reported by TheGrio, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that representatives must pass through a metal detector upon entering the House chamber and those who do not will incur a $5,000 fine for the first offense. This was implemented following the Jan. 6 insurrection on Capitol Hill when thousands of pro-Trump demonstrators, upset about Joe Biden‘s presidential victory, breached federal buildings as elected officials were at work.
The new rule was approved by the House on Feb. 2. Many Republicans rejected the need for the new rule and fines, but Pelosi was insistent that it is a necessary precaution.
“It is tragic that this step is necessary, but the chamber of the People’s House must and will be safe,” Pelosi stated.
The Washington Post reports that two GOP representatives, Andrew Clyde of Georgia and Louie Gohmert of Texas, have each been fined for failure to go through security. They will have $5,000 deducted from their salaries, and each subsequent violation will fine them an additional $10,000.
Both Clyde and Gohmert are reportedly the first to be fined under the new policy.
Gohmert issued a statement on Friday, indicating that he had left to use the restroom and didn’t think he had to go through screening an additional time. He plans to appeal his fine, calling it “unconstitutional.”
’’Unlike in the movie The Godfather, there are no toilets with tanks where one could hide a gun, so my reentry onto the House floor should have been a non-issue,’’ Gohmert’s statement read.
The Hill reported that several GOP representatives have openly confronted Capitol police manning the entry and lodged complaints about the metal detector. Rep. Lauren Boebert, a Republican from Colorado, tweeted that she is “legally permitted” to carry her Glock into the Capitol and that the security rule is “a political stunt by Speaker Pelosi.”
This was after she was seen refusing to have police inspect her bag after setting the detector off.
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