WASHINGTON — The 117th Congress was officially sworn into office on Sunday, and one of its freshman members wasted no time making headlines. Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) posted a video to Twitter Sunday night proclaiming that she will carry a gun in D.C. and will bring it to work.
The video, which has been viewed more than 2 million times, appears to show Boebert strapping a gun to her hip before heading out the door for a walk around D.C.
"Even though I now work in one of the most liberal cities in America, I refuse to give up my rights, especially my Second Amendment rights," Boebert said in the video.
The video, titled "I will carry my Glock to Congress," is a nearly 3-minute montage of Boebert walking around the District in a blazer, jeans and heels, with numerous shots of the Capitol and federal buildings, explaining her position on gun rights. She cites D.C.'s homicide rate and violent crime stats as one of the reasons she feels the need to carry a gun.
Beobert's communications director, Ben Goldey, confirmed that the congresswoman was not carrying a gun during the video and that it was shot in multiple locations.
"Being a member of Congress is pretty basic," Boebert said. "I don't go to work in a motorcade or armored car. I don't get police escorts everywhere I go. I walk to my office every morning by myself. So as a 5-foot-tall, 100-pound woman, I choose to protect myself legally, because I am my best security."
Boebert is a restaurant owner from Rifle, Colorado who defeated incumbent Congressman Scott Tipton in the primary election, before going on to defeat former state Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush in the general election.
While members of Congress are exempt from federal legislation banning guns on the Capitol grounds, open carry is illegal in D.C. and conceal carry licenses from other states are not recognized in the District.
District of Columbia Concealed Carry Pistol Licenses are required and are only issued after a firearms training course, approved by DC Police, has been completed.
Acting DC Police Chief Robert Contee addressed Boebert's video in a press conference on Monday.
"There are no exceptions in the District of Columbia," the chief of police said. "We plan to reach out to the congresswoman's office to make sure that she is aware of what the laws of the District of Columbia are, what the restrictions are."
Contee added that Boebert or any member of Congress would be subject to the same penalties as anyone else caught in D.C. carrying a firearm unlawfully.
“Congresswoman Boebert is a fierce advocate for the Second Amendment, as such she will comply with all applicable firearm laws and regulations," Goldey said.
In December, more than 20 members of Congress wrote a letter to Reps. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to amend the House Rules package for the 117th Congress, banning members from carrying firearms on Capitol grounds.
"The current regulations create needless risk for Members of Congress, their staff, members of the Capitol Police, and visitors to the Capitol grounds," the letter dated Dec. 15 said. "A provision in the Rules package directing the Capitol Police Board to ensure that Member of Congress may not possess firearms on Capitol grounds would ensure clarity surrounding firearms policy and protect all individuals in and around the Capitol."
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