WASHINGTON — House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy told reporters on Tuesday GOP leaders will move to formally punish House Democrats for staging a sit-in over gun control in June.
McCarthy said several rules were broken during the sit-in, including Democrats sitting on the floor and using their phones, and confirmed leadership plans to bring sanctions against participants, which was first reported by Politico.
Although McCarthy did not provide specifics on what punishments he and Speaker Paul Ryan would seek, he insisted a price must be paid. “Are you going to let the House stand with that behavior going forward?" said McCarthy. "I think it would create real damage to the reputation of the House in the long term.”
He also said that he's had friendly conversations with Democrats wherein they've conceded they broke the rules and should be held to account. The Democrats have a slightly different version.
"That is absurd," said Drew Hammill, spokesman for Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.
Back in July, Pelosi all but dared the Republicans to lower sanctions against Democrats. "Make my day," she said during a press conference.
In particular, she ridiculed the idea of Democrats being punished for using their phones on the floor, noting members use them every day on the floor.
McCarthy said a House investigation was conducted into the sit-in over the summer break and the results will be made public soon.
“The investigation is coming to an end and I think the appropriate judgment will come forward," he said.