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Texas Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw has been fined $5,000 after he reportedly bypassed metal detectors at the U.S. Capitol, which were installed after the incident on January 6.
The Democrat-controlled U.S. House Committee on Ethics claimed that Crenshaw avoid the metal detector when he entered the Republican cloakroom inside the U.S. Capitol last week.
U.S. Capitol Police launched an investigation and reported their findings to the Democrat committee.
Below is the full statement from the House Ethics Committee:
Pursuant to Committee Rule 7, the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Committee on Ethics (Committee) determined to release the following statement:
On September 27, 2021, the Committee received a notification from the Office of the Sergeant at Arms that Representative Dan Crenshaw has been fined pursuant to House Resolution 73. Pursuant to Section 1(a)(3) of House Resolution 73, the Committee hereby publishes the fine notification.
The Committee notes that the mandatory publication of a fine notification does not itself reflect any judgment on behalf of the Committee. Pursuant to Section 1(b)(1) of House Resolution 73, Representative Crenshaw may appeal the fine to the Committee. Upon a determination regarding any appeal or if no appeal is received within 30 days of the Member’s notification of the fine, the Committee will make a further public statement regarding this matter. In order to comply with Committee Rule 7 regarding confidentiality, the Committee will refrain from making further public statements until that time.
Rep. Dan Crenshaw Fined $5,000 by House Ethics Committee https://t.co/UAwxza3IPr
— Mediaite (@Mediaite) September 30, 2021
Rep. Dan Crenshaw was fined $5,000 for not going through security screening on his way to the House cloakroom. pic.twitter.com/x8ZFLABDIn
— Daniel Strauss (@DanielStrauss4) September 29, 2021
Back in June, two GOP lawmakers filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of fines issued against them for failing to complete security screenings to enter the House chamber.
Republican Reps. Louie Gohmert of Texas and Andrew Clyde of Georgia claim in the lawsuit that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi put the new security measures in place – including metal detectors – specifically to target GOP lawmakers.
Gohmert and Clyde argue Sergeant-at-Arms William Walker and Chief Administrative Officer Catherine Szpindor violated the 27th Amendment of the Constitution, which states, “No law varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives shall take effect until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.”
Gohmert and Clyde cite Article I, Sections 5: “Each House … may punish its members for disorderly behavior.” Furthermore, Article I, Section 6 states, “[Representatives] shall in all cases, except treason felony and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at their respective Houses and in going to and returning from the same.”
“It is clear to me that the intent of the speaker is to gain improper influence over the actions of the minority Republican Party and to further Speaker Pelosi’s false political narrative. That, and I quote, the enemy is within the House of Representatives, House Resolution 73 is a failure of logic built upon a foundation of Democrat lies that say Republican members and their voters are dangerous domestic terrorists,” Clyde told reporters.
“In fact, the acting chief of the U.S. Capitol Police, Yogananda Pittman, reported to House Republican Conference members in a security briefing on February the 24th that there existed no known intelligence from any source that any member of Congress was a threat to any other member, thereby revealing that the use of magnetometers as a condition of access to the house floor was purely political grandstanding by the speaker and a clear violation of the constitution.”
Check out the lawsuit below:
Providing examples, the lawsuit claims that in February, Clyde entered the House chamber without going through security screening, and was subsequently informed he was being fined $5,000 even though the following day Pelosi allegedly broke the rules by avoiding metal detectors without facing punishment.
The lawsuit also alleges that Democratic Reps. Maxine Waters, Jamie Raskin, and Nydia Velazquez have all set off metal detectors and continued through without security stopping them for further screening.
Gohmert claims that he too was unfairly targeted as a result of inconsistent enforcement.
According to the complaint, on Feb. 3 he had no problem reentering the House chamber after using the men’s room after he had previously gone through screening earlier in the day.
The following day, Gohmert claims he was stopped for screening after using the men’s room, informed security that he had already gone through screening and continued on his way, and was then fined.
Republicans have fumed over Pelosi’s action, calling it “unconstitutional.”