Lawrence, KS - Events Local News Groups Contact
Handful of Congressmen Could Rule America in Event of Catastrophe
By Indy Media / filmsforaction.org
Mar 10, 2008
By Greg Szymanski
From AmericanFreePress.net

No longer do Capitol Hill legislators need a quorum to do the people’s business. Now under a piece of hotly contested legislation passed without media attention on Jan. 5, only a few members of Congress are needed to do official business in the event of a catastrophe instead of the usual 218.

Critics claim H. Res. 5 paves the way for tyranny, allowing “only a few to decide for so many.”


The provision states: “If the House should be without a quorum due to catastrophic circumstances, then . . . until there appear in the House a sufficient number of representatives to constitute a quorum among the whole number of the House, a quorum in the House shall be determined based upon the provisional number of the House; and . . . the provisional number of the House, as of the close of the call of the House . . . shall be the number of representatives responding to that call of the House.”


Supporters claim the bill, passed “under the cover of congressional darkness,” is intended to allow the government to “continue operating” in the event of a catastrophic emergency or terrorist attack. However, constitutional experts say the law is blatantly unconstitutional and ripe for challenge.


Normally, 218 lawmakers out of the 435 members are needed to declare war, pass laws and validly conduct the people’s business. But under the new rule a majority is no longer needed when circumstances arise, including natural disaster, attack, contagion or terrorist attacks rendering representatives incapable of attending House proceedings.


“It’s another measure brought up by lawmakers that shows their callous disregard for democracy,” said one California attorney who preferred to remain anonymous.

GOP House leaders pushed the controversial “doomsday legislation” through for passage as a part of a hefty and voluminous rules package. It drew little attention and was probably not even discovered by many who voted on it since the rules package centered on recent ethics violations.


“I think the new rule is disgusting, terrible and unconstitutional,” said Norm Ornstein, of an independent, bipartisan panel called the Continuity of Government Commission which is studying the issue. “The way it was passed was deceitful and the intent behind the legislation was very foolish.”


Rep. Brian Baird, (D-Wash.) agrees, arguing that the rule change violates the Constitution, which specifically states: “a majority of each Chamber shall constitute a quorum to do business.”


“Allowing for as few as 12 lawmakers to make vital decisions and to possibly declare war on another nation is not what this country is all about.”









Not Copyrighted. Readers can reprint and are free to redistribute - as long as full credit is given to American Free Press - 645 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, Suite 100 Washington, D.C. 20003
0.0 ·
0
Trending Today
How Seattle Voted to Tax the Rich
Adam Ziemkowski and Rebekah Liebermann4,072 views today ·
What Makes Call-Out Culture So Toxic
Asam Ahmad2,697 views today ·
87 Deeply Subversive Documentaries That Challenge the Status Quo
Films For Action2,449 views today ·
When We Judge a Person Harshly With a Label or Dismissal, We Kill the Human Being Inside of Them
Tim Hjersted1,301 views today ·
John Lennon's "Imagine," Made Into a Comic Strip
John Lennon. Art by Pablo Stanley1,224 views today ·
On the Wildness of Children: The Revolution Will Not Take Place In The Classroom
Carol Black1,106 views today ·
Joanna Macy on How to Prepare Internally for WHATEVER Comes Next
Joanna Macy1,100 views today ·
Pentagon Study Declares American Empire Is ‘Collapsing’
Nafeez Ahmed1,021 views today ·
Was The Soviet Union Really a Socialist Country? Noam Chomsky Dispels This Propaganda In 1 Minute
1 min987 views today ·
Load More
What's Next
PsyWar: The Real Battlefield Is The Mind (2010)
99 min
anOther Story Of Progress (2012)
99 min
Money As Debt (2006)
47 min
Like us on Facebook?
Handful of Congressmen Could Rule America in Event of Catastrophe