Representative Republican Ken Buck of Colorado grabbed a semi-automatic machine gun (AR-15) off the wall of his office and threatened Democratic politicians Joe Biden and Beto O’ Rourke with violence. This comes one day after Buck had denounced Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) for delivering a warning outside the Supreme Court that justices who restrict abortion access would “pay the price.” Schumer later apologized, saying he meant to say there would be a political price.
“Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s threatening words targeted at two Supreme Court Justices are not only inappropriate but dangerous,” Buck posted on Twitter. “This is a new low for the Democratic Party.”
Biden is the current front-runner for the presidential nomination, has spoken in favor of gun control, while former presidential candidate O’Rourke issued a full-throated call to confiscate assault rifles last year after a mass shooter killed 22 people at a Walmart in his hometown of El Paso.
In a video posted to his Twitter account, Buck implied he’d literally shoot the two men if they tried to restrict access to semiautomatic weapons.
It would seem his colleagues in Congress were not happy with Rep. Hayley Stevens (D-Mich.) tweeted, “I feel unsafe with this in my place of work,” and said she had been in contact with the Sergeant at Arms and finally stated that Buck’s threat as “not only inappropriate but dangerous.”
In Parliament’s the Sergeant at Arms is a position responsible for ensuring the security of legislatures. Usually, there is a great latitude and freedom for Parliamentarians to use their workspace, but Congress could take measures against Buck to ensure the safety of all Congressional employees.
In the past ten years, two congress representatives have had attempted assassinations. In 2011 Gabrielle Giffords was almost killed and in 2017 U.S. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise was also shot a wounded.