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Congresswoman Clarke Opposes Penalties for Communicating with the American People from the House Floor

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on rules adopted by Republicans in the House of Representatives to punish members for recording videos or taking pictures on the floor of the chamber, a tactic used in June 2016 to broadcast speeches calling for common-sense gun safety regulations on social media. Congresswoman Clarke joined the majority of her Democratic colleagues at that event to publicize the need to end gun violence. Congresswoman Clarke voted “no” on the rules.

The rules provide for a penalty of $500 for an initial violation, with fines of as much as $2,500 for subsequent violations, and allow for the referral of violations to the Committee on Ethics, which could impose other sanctions.

“I was proud to join my Democratic colleagues in June to speak our truth about the terror of gun violence, which ends the lives of tens of thousands of Americans every year. Unfortunately, Republicans not only refused to participate in that conversation, but wanted to prevent us from reaching people on television with facts about the consequences of gun violence and our common-sense proposals to save lives. Historically, the House of Representatives has been described as the “People’s House,” an institution where the concerns of real American families are debated and we develop policies to improve lives and protect our health and safety. The rules adopted today will undermine that proud reputation by limiting our ability to have a dialogue with the very people we represent.”

Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, a member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade, the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, the Committee on Ethics and the Committee on Small Business in the House of Representatives, proudly represents Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, Park Slope, Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.