WASHINGTON — A Texas congressman was "rude and irate" after receiving a parking ticket near the Lincoln Memorial earlier this month, according to a police report.
Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, told U.S. Park Police he was on a committee that oversees the agency and would not pay a fine, according to the report, which was obtained by Politico. Gohmert was given a citation after 11 p.m. on March 13 for parking his vehicle in a spot reserved for National Park Service vehicles.
The outspoken conservative lawmaker referred officers to a congressional plate in his car window, according to the police report, and left without the ticket.
Kimberly Willingham, a spokeswoman for Gohmert, said the congressman parked in a one of several empty spots and believed he was allowed to do so. She said a park service officer apologized to Gohmert when he identified himself.
"A park service vehicle pulled up as he was putting a note with the ticket on a vacant park service vehicle, so he showed his official card, explained that his congressional plate was showing and he was authorized to park there," she said. "The park service officer said he had not noticed the ... congressional plate in the front window and would not know what it meant had he seen it. The officer accepted the ticket back and apologized."
The police report contains no mention of an apology, according to Politico.
Willingham said Gohmert's office would study the incident and, if he was not allowed to park in the spot, "will most certainly pay the $25 parking ticket."
On Thursday, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, an outside watchdog group, said it filed a complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics against Gohmert "for conduct that reflects discreditably upon the House."