Recent Submission to “The Hill” Congress Blog

On the floor of the House of Representatives Thursday, Jan. 6, 2011, I was able to witness, firsthand, perhaps one of the more significant historical events in American history. For the first time in our nation’s history the Constitution of the United States of America was read in its entirety on the floor of the House.

The gentleman from Virginia, Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), stood on the shoulders of the Virginians that established this Republic and orchestrated the reading of the “sacred” document. I was filled with pride to be a citizen of the Commonwealth of Virginia. One thing that made this so special to me was that Rep. Goodlatte and I had a brief discussion about the reading of the Constitution on the floor of the house. In October, when we chatted briefly, at the Virginia Tea Party Convention, I thought it was a great idea. I am pleased that Congressman Goodlatte took the lead on behalf of “We The People,” and followed through with the historic reading.

My personal good fortune seemed to be without limits that day. I was able to get a pass to be seated in the gallery for the beginning of the historic reading, and actually was seated directly above the aisle, on the front row behind the clock, and able to see everything. As all entrants to the gallery I had to leave my cell phone, camera, and recording devices at the desk before entering the gallery. The real reason for that became apparent within minutes.

From my perch above the assembled body of representatives I was able to make several observations. The first thing I observed was the large absence of the Democrat minority. The second was that the GOP members in attendance all seemed to have their pocket Constitution opened, in their laps, and reading along. Thirdly was that none of the relatively few attending Democrats were in possession of a pocket constitution. Some were reading the newspapers and others were texting. But, this being mentioned, the most interesting and noteworthy aspect of this exercise was the performance of the gentleman from Washington, Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), who stood to make parliamentary inquiries and discredit the reading. Then Rep. Inslee was followed by Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-Ill.), who attempted to illustrate racism, sexism, and whatever other hyphenated “isms” that he and other like-minded totalitarian statists of his ilk share with their common delusions about our Constitution.

After the reading of the Constitution, Jesse Jackson, Jr. said, “The 112th Congress’ Republican majority is building its agenda around the 10th Amendment. It is determined to limit the scope of Congress’ activity to legislation ‘reserved’ to the United States. Then, all other rights are in the purview of the states. Under this historic logic, slavery was a state right protected by the Constitution and the 10th Amendment. But slavery by definition is not a human right, and therefore states rights cannot be human rights. That is why for the last five Congresses, I’ve introduced a series of Constitutional amendments that would improve the document for all Americans by guaranteeing essential rights.

“Currently, the right to vote is a state right – subject to local interpretations of who should vote and how. That results in thousands of different systems, all with different rules and different regulations. It means education is a state right, which means a child’s likelihood of success is based on where he or she is born and the quality of schools that happen to be there. It means health care is a right, and God help you if your state, county or city cannot provide access to high quality care.”

Yes, Rep. Jackson. These things were left completely in the hands of the various states. They were deliberately not given to the federal government. The federal government is “limited” by this “sacred” document.

Now I understand why there are no cameras or recording devices allowed into the chamber making in necessary to be present to see the enmity of the left toward the very documents that guarantee our freedom.

Mark Kevin Lloyd is the chairman of the Virginia Tea Party Patriot Federation.