OffbeatHouse Democrats may ditch rule allowing lawmakers to keep, carry firearms on Capitol grounds

18:30  06 december  2018
18:30  06 december  2018 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

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Mr. Scott also vowed to strengthen rules to keep weapons away from people who have mental health problems or injunctions against them for stalking or domestic violence. Student protesters who rallied at the State Capitol on Wednesday had demanded a complete ban on military-style assault rifles.

Some Republican lawmakers are seeking to carry personal firearms into the Capitol , a proposal that is alarming Democrats . The gamut of options includes new rules ramping up the law enforcement presence at big group events with lawmakers , equipping Capitol Police with more advanced

House Democrats may ditch rule allowing lawmakers to keep, carry firearms on Capitol grounds© Provided by MediaDC: Washington Newspaper Publishing Company, Inc.

House Democrats are looking to get rid of a 50-year-old Capitol Hill regulation that allows members of Congress to keep guns in their offices and carry them on Capitol grounds.

“I don’t think we can just keep looking the other way or sweep this issue under the rug,” California Democratic Rep. Jared Huffman, who has been spearheading the effort, told The Washington Post. “Our political climate is too volatile and there are too many warning signs that we need to address things like this.”

Huffman has pushed the issue for months, but recently gained the support of Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who is seeking a return to the House speakership as Democrats take the majority in early January.

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In five campus- carry states, firearms are not allowed in classrooms. The exceptions are Texas, Colorado But if a student requests, he or she can be transferred to graduate housing that allows firearms . Utah has allowed firearms inside college stadiums for a decade, with a few exceptions.

Florida lawmakers shot down an amendment on Monday that would have banned A similar packaged set of reforms is scheduled to be taken up by the House Rules Committee on Tuesday. The fact that teachers could soon be allowed to carry firearms inside schools wasn’t sitting well with

A Pelosi spokesman said that if elected, she would direct authorities to “revisit” the regulation.

But a Republican lawmaker said the move is more about “theatrics” than public safety.

Huffman and Pelosi are looking to “solve a problem that doesn’t exist,” said Kentucky Republican Rep. Thomas Massie.

According to the Post, Huffman has merely heard rumors of colleagues keeping guns in their offices and on their person, but does not have any firsthand knowledge of specific instances.

It’s not immediately clear how common it is for lawmakers to keep guns on hand at the Capitol, and the sergeant at arms informed Huffman during a briefing that Capitol authorities do not keep any sort of record of which offices are in possession of firearms.

In order to bring a gun to Capitol Hill, however, members of Congress would have to comply with strict D.C. gun laws, including registering the firearm with police.

This Capitol Hill regulation is in the hands of the Capitol Police Board, which is a group of four members made up of the sergeants at arms of the House and Senate, the architect of the Capitol, and the chief of U.S. Capitol Police.

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