WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBSDFW.COM/CNN) – A Republican lawmaker from Texas is among the first two members of Congress to be fined for violating new security measures inside the U.S. Capitol building.
Republican Reps. Louie Gohmert, of Tyler, and Andrew Clyde of Georgia have both been fined $5,000 for not following the new security protocols. The fines, which are meant to punish members who fail to complete security screenings prior to entering the House floor, will be deducted from members’ salaries, according to the new rule passed February 2. A second offense will result in a $10,000 fine.READ MORE: Former Dallas Police Chief Renee Hall Explains Why No Action Was Ever Taken Against Officer Bryan Riser, Now Charged With Capital Murder
Gohmert left the House floor to go to the bathroom and did not stop to be screened a second time, while Clyde refused to go through the metal detectors as he entered the House floor.
Gohmert later said he left the House floor Thursday night to go to the bathroom and did not think he had to be screened in order to return to the floor. “I went through the metal detector perfectly properly. And as I’ve done for weeks ever since the metal detectors have been here, I was about to speak so I came to the restroom, and I’ve never been wanded or anything because they can see you go in and see you come out. And they said, because I didn’t stop and get wanded, I went and spoke. They made it sound like I avoided the metal detectors,” Gohmert said after the incident.
“I’ve been abiding by those completely. And so all of a sudden, somebody made an arbitrary and capricious decision to all of a sudden start wanding when they saw you go to the restroom.”READ MORE: Gov. Greg Abbott Responds To Criticism For Ending Mask Mandate, Fully Reopening Texas: 'There's Never Going To Be Uniform Agreement On This'
Gohmert, who said he did not receive the fine until Friday morning, says he will appeal the fine, but had not yet spoken to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office.
Clyde’s office has not responded after being contacted for comment. While interviewed on Friday the Georgia Republican said he will “fight” the fine against him, claiming the policy violates the Constitution. “I’m going to appeal it, and then, I’m going to take them to court because this is unconstitutional,” he said.
(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The CNN Wire™ & © 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company contributed to this report.)MORE NEWS: Visit Fort Worth Launches Campaign Promoting Businesses That Encourage Mask-Wearing
MORE FROM CBSDFW