On Tuesday, January 15, 2013 the U.S. Constitution will be read aloud from the floor of the House of Representatives. The House Rules Package (H. Res. 5) sponsored by Congressman Eric Cantor (VA-07) was adopted by the House on January 3, 2013, and included the reading at the urging of Congressman Bob Goodlatte (VA-06).
Congressman Goodlatte will lead the reading of the Constitution beginning at 10:00 a.m. The reading is open to all Members who are interested in participating and expected to take between one and two hours. Members will read the Constitution and amendments on a first come, first served basis. Congressmen Cantor and Goodlatte released the following statements about tomorrow's reading:
Congressman Cantor: "Our Founding Fathers understood a legitimate government must be based on the consent of the people. As James Madison, the Father of the Constitution wrote, "It is essential to liberty that the government in general should have a common interest with the people.' This is the people's House and as Members of Congress we must never lose sight that we are committed to protecting the fundamental rights of the people we represent. Congress must live within its means, limit the growth of government and maximize individual liberty. Guided by these principles, I am confident the House will chart a course for the future that ensures liberty and prosperity for all Americans."
Congressman Goodlatte: "One of the resounding themes I have heard from my constituents is that Congress should adhere to the Constitution and the finite list of powers it grants to the federal government. Our constitutional principles remain timeless and it is fitting that we start the 113th Congress by reading the Constitution aloud on the floor of the House of Representatives. The Constitution is the written consent the American people gave to their government to protect individual liberty and maintain limited government. This reading of the Constitution demonstrates that House Republicans are committed to our Constitution and the enduring principles for which it stands."
Tomorrow's reading is only the second time the U.S. Constitution has been read aloud in the House of Representatives. It was first read at the beginning of the 112th Congress when Republicans regained the majority.
To view this event, tune into C-SPAN at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, January 15 or watch online at http://www.c-span.org/Live-Video/C-SPAN/.