The House of Representatives adopted a rule Tuesday to fine lawmakers who flout safety measures put in place after the deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol last month.
The rule gives the sergeant-at-arms the authority to fine lawmakers $5,000 for a first offense and $10,000 for a second if the legislators do not complete the security screening to enter the house, which includes walking through a metal detector.
The new metal detectors were put at the House Chamber’s entrance in the wake of the mob that stormed the Capitol, allegedly incited by former President Donald Trump. However, some Republican members openly ignored and balked at the screening in the days that followed.
“It is beyond comprehension why any Member would refuse to adhere to these simple, commonsense steps to keep this body safe,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement after the resolution passed Tuesday.
“It is sad that we have been forced to move forward with a rule change imposing fines on those who refuse to abide by these protections, but the People’s House must and will be safe, so that we can honor our responsibility to do the People’s work.”
Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick lies in honor at the Capitol:President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden pay respects
Five people were killed during the Jan. 6 riot, including a Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, who returned to the Capitol to lie in honor Tuesday.
Reps. Lauren Boebert of Colorado and Louie Gohmert of Texas were among the Republican lawmakers who set off or walked around the detectors.
The Huffington Post reported last month that Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md., set off the metal detector, and, when a metal detector wand scanned him, a firearm was found.
Harris tried to hand off the firearm to another member of Congress, Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y., so that he could vote on the House floor, but Katko declined to take it because he did not have a license, HuffPost reported.
Members of Congress can carry unloaded weapons on the Capitol grounds, but cannot bring them onto the floor.
Contributing: Madeleine O’Neill, Maryland Statehouse Reporter
Source: USA Today – Breaking News