A Republican congressman from Georgia is facing $15,000 in fines after he twice avoided metal detectors that had been set up at the U.S. Capitol in the wake of a deadly riot there on Jan. 6. But rather than pay up, the lawmaker is planning to dispute the fees — and he’s ready for a fight.
According to Newsweek, Rep. Andrew Clyde, a Georgia Republican, admitted over the weekend that being hit with thousands of dollars in fines is exactly what he wanted — because now, he has House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) cornered.
“I did that so we would have legal standing to take the case to federal court, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do,” Clyde said in an interview with Fox News, according to Newsweek.
Taking one for the team
The new rules passed by Pelosi-led Democrats in February impose a $5,000 fine on members of the lower chamber who bypass metal detectors on their way to the House floor. The fine doubles for a second offense.
Many in the GOP have cried foul over the new rules, however, saying it hampers their Second Amendment right to self defense.
Speaking with Fox News on Saturday, Clyde said he aims to take the case all the way to the Supreme Court, where he hopes the U.S. Constitution will be upheld.
“I’m all teed up to do that,” Clyde said, according to Newsweek. “People have to stand for the Constitution. And if I have to get fined in order to give me a legal standing to do that then I’ll be fined.”
The congressman also said he has no qualms about “taking a hit for the team,” asserting: “We’re going to win on this and we’re going to have House Resolution 73 declared unconstitutional because it is unconstitutional.”
“Make no mistake”
Clyde’s comments echo sentiments that he expressed in a February statement, wherein he accused Pelosi and members of her caucus of attempting to demonize their opponents in the House.
“As I have said before, the installation of the magnetometers is part of the Democratic Party’s ongoing attempt to treat Republicans as a threat when no such threat exists,” the Georgia congressman complained. “The ongoing militarization of Capitol Hill, including the placement of metal fencing, razor wire, and the deployment of National Guard troops, are also part of this perverse strategy.”
Clyde went on: “Make no mistake, Democratic Party leaders would rid anyone who does not agree with their fringe ideology from public service and the political sphere if given the opportunity.”
Notably, Fox News reported in February that Speaker Pelosi herself was seen bypassing a set of metal detectors while entering the House chamber. Now, it looks like it’s finally coming time for her to pay up.