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Republicans probing allegations that Dems 'intimidated' staff during guns protest

“There have been a number of reports from members of certain things … about some of the Democrats and the way they treated [staff],” Kevin McCarthy said.

07/05/16 12:54 PM EDT

Updated 07/05/16 01:12 PM EDT

House Republican leadership is probing allegations that certain Democratic lawmakers “intimidated” professional staff and knocked things out of their hands during the daylong “sit-in,” Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Tuesday.

Speaking with reporters, McCarthy said he and Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) would be meeting with the Sargent at Arms to discuss the matter. They’re looking for video evidence, too, McCarthy added, noting that he’s already spoken with several eyewitnesses.

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“There have been a number of reports from members of certain things … about some of the Democrats and the way they treated [staff],” he said. “Some people said intimidation and even knocking things out of the hands of professional staff. [We’re] finding out if that actually took place. Is there video of this? There are some people that were around when this took place that had come and told me about this as well, they had seen it.”

Asked whether GOP leaders were considering punishment for Democratic members, McCarthy responded: “Right now it’s more of an investigation of looking at what transpired and what didn’t. Get all the facts, then decide accordingly what should be done.”

Democrats took over the House floor just before the July 4 recess, blocking all legislation and House activities because Republicans have refused to hold a gun control vote.

Now, GOP leadership is allowing them a parliamentary, more symbolic vote on the issue, what’s known as a “motion to recommit.” But Democrats this week are expected to keep pushing for a full vote on their pitch to bar suspected terrorists from purchasing guns.

McCarthy said Tuesday morning their actions were unacceptable.

“I ask [Minority Leader Nancy] Pelosi and [Majority Leader Steny] Hoyer: Is this the behavior they want to see on the House floor?” he asked. “That is not a behavior becoming of the United States Congress… We expect members of Congress to adhere to the rules and the decorum of what is expected on the floor.”

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