Congresspeople Arm Up in the Wake of Violence at the Capitol

Rep. Nancy Mace said she plans to carry a firearm at the Capitol from now on. (Photo: Rep. Mace Facebook)

As law enforcement and media agencies release more information about the violent invasion of the U.S. Capitol earlier this month, lawmakers are getting a better sense of how close some of the rioters came to finding their quarry – and some congresspeople have decided to take their personal safety into their own hands.

Multiple representatives have expressed gratitude that they were armed when rioters stormed the building or have made plans to arm up in preparation for future attacks.

“The next member who argues Congressmen shouldn’t be allowed to carry firearms at work needs to be laughed out of the Capitol. Several of us were glad to be armed while barricaded for hours in our offices with our staff,” Rep. Thomas Massie said on Twitter.

Freshman South Carolina Rep. Nancy Mace told WCJL that she plans to carry a firearm on Capitol Hill moving forward.

“I felt personally like a sitting duck,” Mace said, referring to the riot. “We didn’t have a way to protect ourselves; we didn’t have security on us; we didn’t have firearms protecting us.”

“I will not be put in that situation again,” she concluded.

Even before the attack at the Capitol, Mace was in the process of obtaining her concealed carry license, according to a December 31 Facebook post.

SEE ALSO: California Reps. Call Gun-Carrying Congresspeople ‘Unhinged,’ Introduce Bill to Ban Guns

In addition to Mace and Massie, freshman Rep. Madison Cawthorn has said he was carrying a firearm at the Capitol, and freshman Rep. Lauren Boebert vowed during her campaign to carry her Glock while on the Hill.

A 1967 law exempted members of Congress from adhering to the same rules that prevent members of the public from carrying firearms on Capitol grounds. Before the attack at the Capitol, two California congresspeople had introduced a bill that would rescind that law and prohibit elected representatives from carrying firearms. Prompted by Rep. Boebert’s public comments about her Glock, other representatives had also expressed discomfort with their colleagues carrying firearms.

Their comments have not aged well:

  • “Today, the Capitol is one of the most fortified and secure places on Earth, including heavily armed, specially trained Capitol Police all over the place,” said Rep. Jared Huffman in a Facebook post. “Even the most paranoid member of Congress could not justify why they need guns at work. Yet some members insist on it.”
  • “Statistics show that accidents happen when there are firearms around. The existing exemption for Representatives increases the risk of gun violence for Members, staff, and the public. It’s long past time we close the Member loophole and protect all who enter the Capitol complex,” Rep. Jackie Speier said in a press release.
  • Rep. Tom Suozzi told Axios the idea of bringing guns into the Capitol is “absurd.”
  • “We’re in a very secure area of this Capitol,” Rep. Ruben Gallego told Axios. “I think it’s more for making a political statement than a personal security, and I think this is not the place for that.”

SEE ALSO: The Atlantic: ‘The gun-rights movement deserves a reckoning’ for Capitol Occupation

GunsAmerica reached out to each representative listed above asking whether recent events have caused them to rethink their position. None have responded.

Under current House leadership, gun-carrying members may find themselves in trouble if they try to take firearms onto the House floor. Carrying firearms on the House and Senate floor was already prohibited, but metal detectors were installed last week to ensure compliance from members.  

Rep. Boebert reportedly clashed with Capitol Police last Tuesday when she set off one of the detectors and refused to let officers look through her purse.

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over six years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Tyler. Got a hot tip? Send him an email at

{ 20 comments… add one }
  • Gary January 24, 2021, 12:15 am

    Bet it doesn’t take them months to get their CWP after they submit their paperwork. Now they know how their constituents. In some states feel when they face a violent situation but are denied the means to protect themselves.

  • DAVID MILLER January 23, 2021, 7:51 am

    Ban Ben and Jerrys ice cream they have killed more people than guns

  • dave brown January 22, 2021, 1:07 pm

    For years I have been saying, Free Your Mind Be Party Blind. Also, anytime I can I will add The Parties are not really in this for US, We The People, so pick and chose the people or issues you vote for, and never just follow a party line. In a case like this I simply say, if it is good enough for them, then is should be good enough for Us We The People. Now Cops have rights that do not extend to us, and I understand that, but I object to it. I have CCD for about 40 years so I am aware of all the Gun Free Zones which includes most Government Offices, and I obey those rules, but I do not think they are correct. I have asked The Right to give US National Consealed Carry, and also the right to transport our firearms wherever and whenever we want, and I am still waiting for them to give it to US.

  • Alan S January 22, 2021, 12:25 pm

    Mace is laying RINO. Elected based on her lies. She needs to go ASAP. Like every other career criminal politician she’s only concerned for her self.

  • survivor50 January 22, 2021, 10:56 am

    “Arms for ME, but not for THEE ! ”

    As long as they think that way, there’s going to be a problem.

    BLM/Antifa aren’t there to protect you… WAKE UP !!!
    Now they see the value of the 2nd Amendment…

  • Curb January 22, 2021, 9:11 am

    So according to Rep. Gallego the capital is not the place for political statements? The mental gymnastics these people do is worthy of a gold medal.

    • Jd January 22, 2021, 7:18 pm

      Yeah, that was a pretty stupid comment he made… that’s basically the only single thing they do there.

  • Howard January 22, 2021, 8:50 am

    “Statistics show that accidents happen when there are firearms around.”, saith Rep. Jackie Speier!! Breaking news!! Statistics show that accidents happen when there are CARS around!! DUH!

    • michael January 22, 2021, 9:18 am

      I have been around firearms for over 40 yrs. Yet not one accidental discharge. I’m sure I’m not alone. Where’s that stastic ? You see we weren’t included in their statistic. Statistics are only as good as the data used.

  • Joe January 22, 2021, 6:45 am

    Did these fools in DC that were promoting violence never believe it would come to visit them?

  • jeff January 21, 2021, 10:23 am

    I believe that they should be able to legally carry guns. While they are at it they might make sure that all citizens are legally able to carry guns. I think that the legislature should live under the same laws that they make for us. This includes retirement, health care, weapons, and any other law they might pass.

  • mike January 21, 2021, 9:05 am

    ok, let me get this straight. gun nuts storm the capitol, threatening congress. some in congress now want guns. you spin it as a victory for gun rights.

    looks to me like a self perpetual endless cycle of violence. no thanks, you are sick people.

    • Clark Kent January 22, 2021, 2:17 am

      ‘Gun nuts’ storm the capitol. WRONG. ‘Self perpetual endless cycle of violence’. WRONG. ‘You’ are sick people. WRONG. You are batting 1000, buddy. Are you the twelve year old twin to Blue Dog?

    • michael January 22, 2021, 9:21 am

      Funny thing gun nuts stormed the Capitol & not one shot fired from them. That really seems like a odd narrative to push. lol

  • Blue Dog (he/him) January 20, 2021, 2:46 pm

    In the wake of the armed Insurrection a couple of weeks ago, it is very tone deaf to talk about carrying firearms into the capitol. Talking about guns in the capitol and taking guns into the capitol dampens the opportunity to rebuild unity in the country and is almost a Dennis Reynolds-level implication of violence and danger.

    • Clark Kent January 21, 2021, 3:22 pm

      ‘Armed insurrection’? NOPE. ‘Rebuild unity’ with the Dumbocrats in charge? NOPE. Firearms imply ‘violence and danger’? NOPE. You are batting 1000, buddy. How old are you, twelve?

  • RGP January 20, 2021, 1:58 pm

    There cannot be two sets of laws, one for the royalty, and one for the peasants. As long as citizens are disarmed in DC, government employees should be disarmed in DC as well.

    • DR January 22, 2021, 8:13 am

      Which includes police and Capitol security…..

      • michael January 22, 2021, 9:23 am

        HERE HERE I second that notion.

        • Matthew Brecska January 22, 2021, 10:28 am

          What’s good for Me is NOT FOR THEE .

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