(CBS4)– Colorado Congresswoman-elect Lauren Boebert, R-Rifle, hasn’t even been sworn in but her fierce stance on gun rights continues to grab headlines and attention from House Democrats. On New Year’s Day, the incoming freshman fired back at Democrats who recently made an effort to ban lawmakers from carrying firearms.
“Democrats like Representative Huffman (D-California), put forward a letter with 21 signers, and I am proud to say we are countering that letter with 82 of colleagues who have joined me to stop this radical gun grab Democrats are trying,” said Boebert.
Just over two weeks ago, 21 democrats signed a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy, asking for an update the House Rules package- a ban on carrying firearms for all lawmakers.
The letter stated in part, These regulations, which date back to 1967, raise several serious concerns. For example, the regulations do not direct Members of Congress to secure firearms that are stored within their offices; as you know, Member offices are open to staff, visitors, and the general public, and a firearm that is not secured could easily end up in the wrong hands.
Boebert’s official response on Friday urged Pelosi and McCarthy to support the existing regulations, citing safety concerns and stated in part, If Members can’t carry on Capitol grounds, they can’t protect themselves in D.C. while making their way to and from their offices to perform their official duties.
“I want to carry my firearm to defend myself in one of the top 10 most dangerous cities in America, Washington D.C.” Boebert told CBS4 Friday. “A typical day in the life of a United States Representative does not include armored vehicles or personal Capitol Hill police escorts. I will be alone a lot walking to and from the capitol to my home, each and every day that I’m working here, and I will be my own security.”
Boebert said her advocacy for the right to carry stems from working at her restaurant, Shooters, in Rifle where staff open carry in accordance with Colorado law.
“I began to open carry because I saw a need to. There was an altercation where a man was brutally beaten, and he lost his life. That immediately prompted the question in me, how will I protect everyone, how will I protect the people that are around me,” said Boebert.
When she arrived in D.C. for Freshman orientation, she said she immediately inquired about carrying her gun.
“I asked the Sergeant in Arms and the Capitol Hill Chief of Police exactly what the rules were. There was a lot of DC double talk that took place there and it left me kind of unsure of the exact rules of carrying in congress.”
When she found out she could, she took her conceal and carry class in D.C. and is currently awaiting a permit.
“…and now I am here to secure the rights, the liberties, for all Americans and that includes myself,” she said.
Of the 21 Democrats who signed the letter asking for a firearm ban, none were from Colorado but at least one says who says Boebert’s efforts are nothing more than a stunt.
.@laurenboebert is disrespecting the Capitol Police. Her desire to carry a gun at the Capitol is a political stunt. The USCP are professionals & I have rarely felt safer.
I should know. I’ve carried a gun for work. If Boebert wants to talk safety, I have legislation to discuss. https://t.co/BZK3IrX9QN
— Rep. Jason Crow (@RepJasonCrow) January 1, 2021
On Friday, U.S. Rep. Jason Crow (D-Aurora), said in a Tweet, “@laurenboebert is disrespecting the Capitol Police. Her desire to carry a gun at the Capitol is a political stunt. The USCP are professionals and I have rarely felt safer. I should know. I’ve carried a gun for work. If Boebert wants to talk safety, I have legislation to discuss.”
Boebert said she will continue to advocate for Second Amendment rights where she can and believes that the latest response from Democrats means they’re finally taking her seriously.
“On the campaign trail I think one of my biggest criticisms was, you aren’t going to be able to accomplish anything. You are one of 435 members, you will be a freshman, you don’t have the qualifications, the education, you don’t have the experience that other members of congress have, everyone will ignore you and you will not be able to be effective,” she continued, “I’m already proving them wrong and really that is a credit to the people who sent me here. They believed in me and I believe in them.”
The Democrats who signed the letter asking for a firearm ban, want it included in the House rules package lawmakers will vote on when the new Congress is sworn in, Sunday.