House Majority Whip Could Be First Dem Fined Over New Security Protocols House Majority Whip James Clyburn at the White House on April 13, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
By Nick Koutsobinas | Thursday, 22 April 2021 06:05 PM
The House Majority Whip, Democrat James Clyburn of South Carolina, could face a possible $5,000 fine over violating new security protocols following the Jan. 6 insurrection. However, he would be the first Democrat amongst a slew of Republicans to receive the fine. Clyburn was fined for going around metal detectors after using the bathroom during a House vote on Tuesday. Clyburn is stated not to have violated any rules. "Congressman Clyburn respects the rules of the chamber and he disputes the characterization of this incident," a spokesperson for Clyburn said, according to Politico. United States Capitol Police have reported the incident to Seargent at Arms Timothy Blodgett, who will decide if Clyburn will receive the hefty fine.
A similar incident happened to Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas, who went through the metal detector twice. Gohmert wrote in his appeal Blodgett, "The officer said I needed to be wanded but since I had already been through the metal detector thoroughly and having never before been required to be wanded after already having entered the floor properly, I returned to the House floor to engage in my turn to debate the bill under consideration."
And Gohmert did the same as Clyburn. He went through security before exiting to go to the House floor. "I did all of that to enter the House floor. Further, there was no notice of the change in the requirement that once all of the requirements were met and the House floor was entered, that I would have to be wanded when returning from the restroom mere feet from the Speaker's Lobby where there were no metal detectors," Gohmert argued.
On the day of Clyburn's passing of security, Republican Rep. Hal Rogers of Kentucky was fined $5,000 by the House Ethics Committee for skipping a "complete security screening." Rogers was said to have set off metal detectors upon reentering the chamber, but he kept walking. When asked by a Capitol officer to wand Rogers, he replied, "Maybe later, I have to vote." Rogers later returned to complete the screening. The officer replied that he had to complete the screening before the vote, not after.