Today (Jan. 13, 2021), Gun Owners of America criticized certain illegal and unconstitutional measures implemented in the United States Capitol by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Following the breach of the Capitol Complex and the resignation of the Capitol Hill Police Chief, Representative Thomas Massie remarked that, “Several of us were glad to be armed while barricaded for hours in our offices with our staff.”
Under the direction of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the acting sergeant-at-arms informed House members and staff: “Effective immediately, all persons, including Members, are required [to] undergo security screening when entering the House Chamber” (emphasis added).
Aidan Johnston, Director of Federal Affairs commented: “This new ‘security measure’ wouldn’t have prevented a single crime or saved a single life when Capitol security failed on Wednesday January 6th, 2021.
“Instead, Speaker Pelosi’s ‘security theater’ is a direct attack on Members of Congress and staff who recently publicized their desire to carry firearms for self-defense while going to, from, and on Capitol Hill.
“More importantly, metal detectors and searches at the entrance to the House Floor are a violation of our Constitution,” Johnston said.
Not only does the Second Amendment protect the American right to keep and bear arms from being infringed, but Article I, Section 6 of the Constitution exempts Members of Congress “from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same.”
Further, while 40 U.S.C. § 5104(e)(1) grants the Capitol Police Board authority to issue regulations pertaining to the carrying of firearms on Capitol Grounds, 40 U.S.C. § 5104(e)(3) explicitly exempts (A) Members of Congress and (B) employees of Members of Congress.
“This unconstitutional and illegal attempt to enforce a gun-free zone on the House Chamber Floor reveals Speaker Pelosi’s willingness to violate any Article, Section, Clause, or Amendment of our Constitution that stands between her and the implementation of gun control,” Johnston said.
“If Members of Congress fail to recognize and oppose this illegal and unconstitutional infringement on their rights, they can never be counted on to recognize and defend the rights of the people.”
Gun Owners of America has previously supported the right of members and staff to carry firearms on Capitol Hill for self-defense, as GOA supports the rights of all law-abiding citizens to carry firearms in their workplace.