Gohmert: Dems Were Basically Pardoned For Gun Sit-In

Juliegrace Brufke | Capitol Hill Reporter

GOP Rep. Louis Gohmert of Texas said Democrats shouldn’t complain about the rules package passed Tuesday aimed at preventing future protests on the House floor.

Democrats broke a number of House rules, including live-streaming video and fundraising from the chamber, during their gun control protest in June. According to Gohmert, their grievances aren’t valid since they aren’t facing any real repercussions.

Under the new rules, those caught streaming live video or taking photos on the floor will face a fine up to $500 for their first offense, which would then climb up to $2,500.

Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley of New York argued the fines were an infringement on the freedom of speech, The Hill first reported. Gohmert suggested Democrats got off easy as the new rules aren’t retroactive.

“Adopting rules now, specific penalties, don’t really punish people who violated those very rules last year,” he said in a floor speech Wednesday. “And so, I’m surprised that there is any complaints at all since basically it means people who violated the rule with such abandon would complain about inserting a specific penalty now, meaning they got a free one. They didn’t even get probation –they got nothing. They got pardoned, basically,”

Gohmert said it isn’t too late for the House Committee on Ethics to take action against Democrats who took part in the protest, noting the Office of Congressional Ethics could still investigate the matter.

“I haven’t heard of OCE, by the way, taking any action on such widespread abuse that didn’t require great investigation,” he continued. “All you needed was footage that was being streamed out from the very violators of the rules. So it should have been an easy thing to pursue if OCE were really that interested in making sure our rules were not violated.”

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