Freshman representative Lauren Boebert on Thursday hinted that she still brings a firearm “to work” at Congress, even though members are forbidden from carrying guns inside the House floor under new rules following the Capitol insurrection on 6 January.
In an interview with TMZ on Thursday, Ms Boebert, who was on her way to the Congress when she spoke to a reporter, was asked if at some point she feels she’d be able to carry a gun to work.
“Who says I don’t,” responded the Republican politician.
Though the conservative lawmaker from Colorado was granted a concealed weapon permit in Washington DC earlier in February, it does not exempt her from the House rules, reported Newsweek.
In February, the House had voted to approve a rule change in the aftermath of the Capitol insurrection, under which a member who attempted to bring firearms to the House floor could be fined $5,000 for the first offence and $10,000 for each additional offence.
Ms Boebert, elected to represent a conservative Colorado district last November following a campaign that heavily promoted her pro-gun stance, was among the Republicans who attempted to circumvent a metal detector that was installed outside the House chamber following the deadly attack on the Capitol.
“Just days after the assault, many House Republicans began disrespecting our heroes by refusing to adhere to basic precautions keeping members of our Congressional community safe – including by dodging metal detectors, physically pushing past police, and even attempting to bring firearms into the chamber,” House speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement on 2 February following the changes in rules that mandated fines for refusing to follow screening protocols.
“It is beyond comprehension why any member would refuse to adhere to these simple, common sense steps to keep this body safe,” she added. “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 honour our responsibility to do the people’s work.”
More recently, Ms Boebert was criticised for the display of firearms in her Zoom background during a House natural resources committee meeting, during which she appeared to have stacked up rifles on a bookshelf behind her.
“I always thought my dirty dishes piled up and accumulating bacteria were the most dangerous thing in a Zoom background…#SafeStorage,” responded representative Katie Porter.