News & Politics

Maryland Congressman Andy Harris Tried to Bring a Gun Into the House Chamber

He's one of several Republican members who've flouted safety protocols in the wake of the Capitol insurrection.

Andy Harris in 2013. Photograph by Flickr user Gage Skidmore.

Maryland congressman Andy Harris attempted to bring a firearm into the House chamber on Thursday, reports HuffPost. The gun was discovered after Harris, a Republican whose district encompasses the Eastern Shore and parts of Baltimore, set off metal detectors that are now part of security protocols instituted after the Capitol insurrection on January 6. Capitol Police are investigating the incident.

Although members of Congress are allowed to bring guns into their offices, the weapons are prohibited on the House floor. After a metal detector wand identified the firearm under Harris’s coat, the lawmaker attempted to hand the gun to colleague John Katko, who refused it due to his lack of license, according to HuffPost. Harris left, later returning without setting off the magnetometers.

This isn’t Harris’s first offense. The congressman was among the cohort of GOP members who flouted the detectors on January 12, either refusing to enter the machines or follow additional security checks. Among the others who resisted? Colorado representative Lauren Boebert, who claimed in a video that she would carry her Glock to Congress, and Illinois member Rodney Davis, who was heard referring to the new rules as “horseshit.”

Nancy Pelosi announced on January 13 that any lawmakers refusing to comply with the magnetometers will be fined $5,000 for the first offense, and $10,000 after the second offense. The fines aren’t yet in effect.

Daniella Byck
Assistant Editor

Daniella Byck joined Washingtonian in August 2018. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she studied journalism and digital culture.