According to Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas, his position on the House Natural Resources Committee gives him dominion over all of the government agencies that body manages. Or, at least, their parking spaces.
Earlier this month, Gohmert got into an argument with Park Police near the Lincoln Memorial, who disagreed with the Congressman's assertion of his parking-space authority. Jake Sherman at Politico reports:
Shortly after 11 p.m. on March 13, officers wrote Rep. Louie Gohmert a citation for parking his black Ford SUV in a spot reserved for National Park Service vehicles, according to a Park Police report obtained by POLITICO.
But Gohmert wasn’t having it — he told the Park Police that his congressional parking placard allows him to park in that spot, and he’s on the committee that oversees the agency.
Gohmert took the ticket off his windshield and placed it on a police car along with his business card with a message written: “Oversight of Park Service is my job! Natural Resources Thus the Congressional Plate in window.”
Gohmert was definitely onto something, his reportedly "rude and irate" attitude notwithstanding. Barack Obama, as president, gets to park anywhere he wants. Members of House Natural Resources are allowed to litter in national parks. Members of the House Oversight Committee can embezzle state funds without any punishment. If you sit on the House Science's Space subcommittee, you get to be an astronaut.
Gohmert has previously taken strong positions on other "key" issues: that we need the Second Amendment to prevent Sharia law, that he wished the principal at Sandy Hook Elementary had an assault rifle in her office, and that Congress keep the word "lunatic" in various laws.
We'll note that the Congressman's spokesperson disputes the account provided by the police. According to her version of the story, the police officer issuing the ticket "apologized" for having done so. Which becomes interesting in light of how Gohmert spent the next day. That afternoon, Gohmert spoke at a panel at the Conservative Political Action Conference, in which he argued that Vietnam would have been winnable had we bombed North Vietnam for another week.
If there's one thing we can clearly trust, it's Louie Gohmert's explanations for how contentious disputes are resolved.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.