The recent US Capital riots have clearly exposed the security loopholes in several government buildings. Considering this situation, additional security measures are taken, and house members have to now pass through metal detectors before entering the lower chamber.
Several house republicans are angry with the measures, and they have declined to follow such protocols in future. Some Republicans had even made headlines about bringing their own firearm into work.
Members of Congress can legally bring guns into the capitol building, but politicians are prohibited from carrying such weapons into the house chamber according to security protocols.
GOP House Members Angry Over Having To Pass Through Metal Detectors
Some republicans even criticized Nancy Pelosi for these measures and said that house members have to go through security measures and be treated like criminals in this situation. They added that they were legally permitted to carry firearms in Washington and the metal detectors would not stop them in future.
The republicans also alleged that it was just another political stunt by the house speaker and using metal detectors outside the house would not have stopped the violence that was seen last week.
Meanwhile, house speaker Pelosi has said that people who avoid metal detectors will be fined for not following the rules. Pelosi said that the new rules would be effective from next week and lawmakers have to pay a $5000 fine for the first offence. The lawmakers will have to pay 10000 dollars for the second offence, and the fines would be deducted from the salaries of the lawmakers.
Members of Congress are usually given a pass when they enter the capitol complex. They are even allowed to carry firearms in the building. However, after the recent violence at the US Capitol, new restrictions are in place, and all the members have to pass through metal detectors before entering the chamber.
During the recent capital riots, more than 50 officers were injured, and several of them had to be hospitalized. A police officer lost his life defending the complex from rioters during the riots.
Pelosi said that several house republicans had disrespected the courage shown by the officer by not following the rules. Some capitol Police officers have been criticized for their irresponsible behaviour during the riots, and two officers have been suspended in connection with the riots. One of the officers was seen taking a selfie with a rioter, and the other was seen wearing a Make America Great Again hat.
In recent weeks, house democrats adopted new rules to impose a mask mandate on the house floor in order to control the covid-19 pandemic. House members were fined $500 for the first offence and $2,500 for a repeat offence of not wearing a mask inside the house floor.
It is interesting to note that several Republican leaders have disagreed to wear masks inside the house even after the rampant spread of coronavirus across the country. Several members of Congress and top political leaders have been infected with covid-19 in the past.
Some leaders and politicians also succumbed to covid-19 last few months. Even after these incidents, some republicans do not want to wear masks inside the House chamber.
It is unfortunate to see that a simple measure of wearing a protective mask has become a political issue, and some people do not want to use masks only because it does not align with their political views.
It has become evident that the democrats have been supporting the mask mandate ever since the pandemic and the republicans have been opposing such moves. President Donald Trump was also not in favour of using masks even after he was infected with covid-19 during the election season. However, Trump managed to recover after a few days at the hospital.
Trump has not yet received the vaccine and not supported the mass vaccination programme in a public way. On the other hand, the Democrats have always supported the measures suggested by the CDC. Joe Biden, along with other top leaders of the democratic party has supported the vaccination program and some of them have even received the vaccines in full public view.
It would be interesting to see the clashes between the republicans and democrats in the next few weeks as the inauguration of Joe Biden is all set to take place on Jan 20. Security officials are of the opinion that there is a possibility of armed violence in Washington during the inauguration week. For this reason, they have taken additional security measures and asked people to avoid visiting the Washington area during the inauguration week.