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Capitol Police investigator after congressman discovered carrying a gun while trying to walk on the floor of the house

Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland triggered a metal detector outside the floor of the house Thursday, and an officer soon discovered it was because he was carrying a concealed handgun on his side, a Capitol official told CNN. The officer sent Harris away and made him ask the Republican Republican rep. John Katko of New York on holding his weapon.

According to a press pool report, Katko refused to hold the gun to Harris, saying he did not have a license. Harris then left the area and returned moments later, walking down the floor of the house without interrupting the magnetometer.

The Capitol official confirmed to CNN that Harris did not enter the floor of the house with a weapon. Harris̵

7; office did not immediately return a request for comment.

The Capitol police officer, who saw the gun informing his superiors and the department investigating the case, tells a Capitol Police source familiar with the matter to CNN.

Firearms are banned from Congress with the exception of members who are granted certain exemptions under a 1967 regulation by the Capitol Police Board, a source confirmed to CNN. Members of Congress are able to carry firearms in congressional halls and on Capitol grounds as long as they have Washington licenses and they carry ammunition separately, the source added. Under no circumstances should legislators bring firearms on the floor of the house.

Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York told CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Thursday night that “I think a very significant amount, many members of Parliament” still do not feel safe around other members of Congress, “Harris smashed for the incident.

“The moment you bring a gun to the floor of the house in violation of the rules, you put everyone around you in danger. It’s irresponsible, it’s ruthless, but beyond that it’s a violation of the rules,” she said.

“You openly abide by the rules that we have created as a society, which means you can not trust that you are held accountable for what we have decided as a society. And then I do not care what they say. , their intentions are, I do not care what the effect of their actions is, and the effect is to endanger all 435 members of Congress. ”

Ocasio-Cortez claimed that Harris “tried to hand over his gun to another unlicensed member, and any responsible gun owner knows that you are not just handing over your gun to another person, you have to clear it, et cetera.”

“It just shows, it does not matter what your intention is if you are irresponsible, if you try to break the rules, if you try to sneak a firearm on the floor of the house,” she added. “I do not care that you accidentally set it in motion, I do not care that you deliberately set it off, I do not care if you do not start it at all, you endanger the lives of members of Congress … And it’s absolutely outrageous that we should even have this conversation. “

The metal detectors were installed last week in the wake of the January 6 uprising at the Capitol, leaving five dead, including a Capitol police officer. While lawmakers from both parties are annoyed by the long lines the detectors have created during the polls, Republicans in particular have complained vehemently and in some cases ignored them.

The metal detectors were installed after several House Democrats told CNN they were concerned about some of their Republican counterparts and after several conversations about the need for each member of Congress and their guests to start going through metal detectors, CNN reported earlier.

Since the detectors were installed, there have been very few voices on the floor of the house, so members are still getting used to the new measures.

The Republican rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, who filmed a campaign ad promising to carry his gun around Capitol Hill before arriving in Washington, was also involved in a standoff with the Capitol Police at the newly installed metal detectors as they tried to get on the floor in January 12. .

That evening, the GOP rep shouted. Markwayne Mullin of Oklahoma and Steve Womack of Arkansas against the Capitol Police as they were forced to go through the detectors. Womack shouted, “I was physically restrained,” and Mullin said, “It’s my constitutional right” to go through and “they can’t stop me.”

Freedom Caucus Chair Andy Biggs, an Arizona Republican, told reporters Jan. 12 as he passed through the metal detectors to get to the floor of the house: “This is shit right here. You can put it off. This is the dumbest thing.”

Even some Democrats have been unhappy with the extra security because it has led to longer lines and members have been forced to be within 6 feet of each other.

“I’m more likely to die from Covid because I got it from a colleague than I have to die because a colleague shoots me,” the rep said. Filemon Vela, a Texas Democrat, to CNN last week.

After initial criticism from lawmakers and reports that some refused to stop for the Capitol Police after settling the magnetometers, House President Nancy Pelosi proposed a new rule on Jan. 13, imposing severe fines on members who refused to comply with the new security measures: $ 5,000 for the first offense and $ 10,000 for the second offense. The new rule has not yet been adopted and will be taken into account when the word’s vote ‘resumes in Parliament in February.

CNN’s Caroline Kelly contributed to this report.

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