Mar 28 2016
Secret Service: No Guns Allowed at Republican National Convention
by Anna Merod
The United States Secret Service said Monday that attendees of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland in July will not be allowed to enter the event if they are carrying a firearm, despite the growing number of signatures on an online petition asking the RNC to permit firearms.
The petition on Change.org has accrued more than 46,000 signatures directed toward the Quicken Loans Arena (where the convention will be held), the RNC and the Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Ohio Gov. John Kasich. The petition noted that the Quicken Loans Arena prohibits weapons on its premises, though Ohio is an open-carry state. The arena's ban "is a direct affront to the Second Amendment and puts all attendees at risk," the petition's author wrote.
However, private employers and entities are permitted to ban firearms despite the open-carry law, according to Ohio state law. The Secret Service, in response to interest around the petition, also noted a separate law, Title 18, United States Code Sections 3056 and 1752, that permits the agency to overrule state open-carry laws when it is overseeing a protected site.
"Only authorized law enforcement personnel working in conjunction with the Secret Service for a particular event may carry a firearm inside of the protected site," Secret Service spokesperson Kevin Dye said in an emailed statement. "The Secret Service works closely with our local law enforcement partners in each state to ensure a safe environment for our protectees and the public. Individuals determined to be carrying firearms will not be allowed past a predetermined outer perimeter checkpoint, regardless of whether they possess a ticket to the event."
The GOP convention spokesperson Kirsten Kukowksi said the Republican Party will continue to support the Second Amendment, but will follow the orders of Secret Service first and foremost...
can they have guns if they have a tailgate party outside?
< always the optimist >
The petition on Change.org, which is just over a week old, was actually designed to put Republican politicians on the spot and spark discussion about the issue. The creator of the petition tells Quartz he is a liberal Democrat and gun-safety advocate, and that he wanted politicians agitating for open-carry laws to think about their own personal safety.