Rep.-elect Lauren Boebert blasts Democrats for trying to ban her from carrying gun at Capitol
Congresswoman-elect to carry gun at Capitol
Colorado Congresswoman-elect Lauren Boebert (R) discusses crime rates in Washington D.C. and her plans to carry a gun on Capitol Hill when she is in office.
Rep.-elect Lauren Boebert, a gun-rights enthusiast, slammed an effort by House Democrats to ban lawmakers from carrying guns at the Capitol, pledging to fight back against any attempt to restrict her Second Amendment rights.
"The Democrats are always up for stripping away our Constitutional rights and feel threatened when we simply want to exercise those rights," Boebert told Fox News Wednesday. "I carry a firearm to protect myself and want to exercise my right to do so in one of the most dangerous cities in America. They want to take that right away from me. I look forward to helping make sure they can't."
At least 21 Democrats sent a letter Tuesday to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., asking that lawmakers be banned from carrying guns on all Capitol grounds.
California Rep. Jackie Speier, who survived multiple gunshot wounds during the Jonestown massacre, Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., and Rep. Robin Kelly, D-Ill., led the effort. They want the firearms ban included in the House rules package that lawmakers will have to vote on when the new Congress is sworn in on Jan. 3.
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Currently, members of the public are prohibited from carrying guns at the Capitol, but lawmakers are exempt from the firearms ban because of a 1967 regulation. The Democrats say it's time for lawmakers to be held to the same firearm rules as everyone else.
The more than 50-year-old exemption for members of Congress raises "several serious concerns" and "members may unwillingly be putting themselves and others in danger," the Democrats wrote. They said the regulations lack enforceability, uniformity and raise safety concerns on how guns are stored at the Capitol.
FILE: Lauren Boebert, Republican nominee for Colorado’s 3rd congressional district, poses for the portrait at Terrell Park in Collbran, Colorado on Oct. 22, 2020. (Photo by Hyoung Chang/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
"Ultimately, the current regulations create needless risk for Members of Congress, their staff, members of the Capitol Police, and visitors to the Capitol grounds," the lawmakers wrote.
Including the gun ban in the House rules "would ensure clarity surrounding firearms policy and protect all individuals in and around the Capitol," the Democrats said.
Spokespeople for Pelosi and McCarthy did not immediately offer comment on whether they support a firearms ban.
Boebert ripped the lawmakers for trying to prevent her from defending herself. While Capitol Police are trained to protect the Capitol grounds, Boebert – at 5 feet tall and 100 pounds – said she's concerned about the times she'll be walking alone.
RIFLE, CO – MAY 29: Lauren Boebert, owner of the Shooters Grill, has gained national attention for her decision to encourage her staff to carry a firearm during work on May 29, 2018 in Rifle, Colorado. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
"It’s a shame that Rep. Jared Huffman wants to bar young women from protecting themselves in one of the most dangerous cities in our country," Boebert said.
Boebert owns a gun-themed restaurant in Rifle, Colo., where the wait staff open carry.
"Democrats know why voters sent me to Congress, " she said. "They know I’ll do exactly what I promised. I am here to defend the rights of the American people. I will not bow down to their cancel mob."
Boebert made waves when she arrived in Washington last month and said she intends to carry her gun throughout the Capitol complex. She said she already completed a firearms training course to obtain her concealed handgun license in Washington D.C. and is seeking a meeting with the Capitol Police chief to talk about potentially bypassing certain restrictions on firearms on Capitol Hill.
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"I'm not walking around with security. I am the security," Boebert told Fox News last month. "So I'll carry in my office. I know that it's OK for members to carry there and I am going to set up a meeting with the Capitol [Police] chief and talk to him about further options to carry. … If there aren't enough provisions there to make sure that I feel like I'm safe and not disarmed, then I may try to make some amendments to the rules in Congress."
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