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Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton

Representing the District of Columbia

Places in Washington DC

Norton Files Amendment Tying National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Bill to Current Ban on Guns in U.S. Capitol Buildings and Grounds

Dec 4, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) announced that she filed an amendment today at the House Rules Committee to prohibit the provisions of a bill (H.R. 38) that would require every jurisdiction to recognize out-of-state concealed carry handgun permits, even though states have different requirements for such permits, from taking effect until the federal law prohibiting guns in U.S. Capitol buildings and grounds is repealed.  Norton successfully fought a bill, sponsored by Representative Thomas Massie (R-KY), that would have required only the District of Columbia to recognize out-of-state permits, but the Massie bill has not moved and would be moot if H.R. 38 were enacted.  Norton said the new concealed carry bill is expected on the House floor this week because it is the National Rifle Association’s top priority.

“I obviously strongly oppose both H.R. 38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, and allowing guns in U.S. buildings and grounds,” Norton said.  “I filed my amendment simply to point out the hypocrisy of overriding local laws enacted throughout the United States after assessing local views of risk, while Congress insulates itself by banning guns from the entire Capitol complex.  If Congress feels it must impose the danger of allowing people from permissive jurisdictions to bring guns of every kind into the nation’s capital, my amendment would highlight how communities across the country would similarly be endangered with this national concealed carry reciprocity bill.  Republicans will claim that guns are unnecessary for self-protection on U.S. Capitol buildings and grounds because the U.S. Capitol Police check people for weapons.  However, that is a red herring.  The Capitol Police only check for weapons at the entrance of buildings.   People are not searched for weapons as they enter the hundreds of acres of grounds, which Members regularly traverse.”

Norton regularly calls out Republicans for their hypocrisy when they introduce bills to repeal District of Columbia gun safety laws, yet refuse to allow guns in Capitol buildings and grounds.  She continues to fight the two D.C.-specific gun bills that are pending in Congress and has succeeded in keeping these bills from becoming law in past Congresses.  She has blocked advancement of the Second Amendment Enforcement Act, sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Representative Thomas Garrett (R-VA), which would eliminate almost all of D.C.’s gun laws, as well as Massie’s D.C. concealed carry bill.