October 17th, 2013
12:24 AM ET
10 months ago

Stenographer snaps, rants on House floor

Updated: 2:06 p.m. ET, 10/17/2013

Washington (CNN) – Amid all the chaos of the last-minute deal in Washington, there was an unusual moment on the House floor moments after the bill passed.

A House stenographer and well-known employee calmly took to a microphone and began screaming.


"Do not be deceived. God shall not be mocked. A House divided cannot stand," she said, according to a House GOP aide. After a few seconds, she was escorted out by the Sergeant-at-Arms, but an audio recording by Todd Zwillich of Public Radio International captured the rest of her rant.

"He will not be mocked, He will not be mocked, (don't touch me) He will not be mocked. The greatest deception here, is that this is not one nation under God. It never was. Had it been... it would not have been... No. it would not have been... the Constitution would not have been written by Free Masons... and go against God. You cannot serve two masters. You cannot serve two masters. Praise be to God, Lord Jesus Christ."

House members and aides were surprised and unsettled by the scene.

"I don't know, she just snapped," said a GOP aide.

CNN's Dana Bash spoke with several staffers who knew the woman well.

"She’s a well-known person, she’s a perfectly nice person, a good colleague, somebody who’s respectable and dependable, and this is very surprising to everybody who works with her," Bash reported on air.

"The Sergeant in Arms didn’t try to stop her because she works there and that’s where she’s situated," Rep. Peter King, R-New York, told Jake Tapper. "And she actually went up behind the podium where the president speaks from. They thought she was going to hand something to the speaker, and then they realized."

Officer Shennell S. Antrobus of Capitol Police told CNN she wasn’t arrested or charged and was transported to a local area hospital by DC Fire for further evaluation.

In terms of an ongoing investigation or further action about the stenographer, Antrobus said no such action will be taken.

"There is nothing more, from our end, that we are going to do," Antrobus said.

–CNN’s Deirdre Walsh, Steve Brusk, Dan Merica and Conor Finnegan contributed to this report.


Filed under: Government Shutdown • House
soundoff (1,094 Responses)
  1. Guest

    Like there aren't enough religious whack-jobs in the House already!

    October 17, 2013 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  2. Dan

    Why is it that so many religious people are so so crazy????

    October 17, 2013 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  3. K

    This never has been a nation under God and it never will be. The Free Masons had nothing to do with that, the non existence of a God is the reason for that.

    October 17, 2013 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  4. Jonathan Smith

    The didn't allow you to hear what she was saying about Freemason and the Founding Fathers, interesting,

    October 17, 2013 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  5. Greggo

    Faith = believing with no evidence. Strong Faith = believing far more preposterous things, in the face of obvious contrary evidence. It's a mental state, generally considered to be positive by the community, but when strong enough it's not that far from mental illness. See Bachmann's recent comments about the 'end times' for another good example. This is why it's so dangerous to have people running the government who place religious ideas above rational thought. They are literally following the voices in their heads.

    October 17, 2013 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  6. cinghoa

    Who the hell do those people think they are? They may have this country by the short hairs, but they have no right to lay a hand on anyone. I would own those people by the time I was through. Lucky she wasn't mad enough to start swinging, jackwagons.

    October 17, 2013 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    They took her for medical treatment? Was she covered?

    October 17, 2013 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  8. The American People

    Oh and Barbara Bachman's rant about End of times is sane. I don't know who's more nuts, Bachman or anybody who voted for her.

    October 17, 2013 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  9. Don

    The could have filled a bus with people on the floor of the house that should be taken for "further evaluation" at the hospital.

    October 17, 2013 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  10. margarita mixxe

    She sounds like a few of the Tea Party people. Well she will have the best medical care and will have her job after she is medicated. But I would not want to work with her.

    October 17, 2013 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  11. Deni

    What is telling is the reaction of the congressmen. Their dysfunctionality, intolerance, deceit, and hate was more than that woman could take yet they carried on like it was just another day. She really was the only patriot in the room. The whole God thing was strange though...

    October 17, 2013 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  12. Bobby Wells

    PTL! Someone believes in GOD! In this kind of a grapple, the Dems go for it, whatever they want! You would say a people government.The Repubs go for themselves, not knowing what is above them. How can they govern without a higher up? They don't know where they are going too. You know where it's all going to end up. Right back in their face. They ought to bring the stenographer back up there to say some more. Somebodies gotta wake-up sometime. Otherwise, You really don't want to wake-up, later...,

    October 17, 2013 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  13. Jez

    Aaaaaahhhh! Religion. It just makes so much sense. I'm sure the big guy in the sky with the white beard inspired her wise words.
    I can't believe anyone believes in any religion. Its just nutty.

    October 17, 2013 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  14. Gerald

    This goes to show that there not a single sane person in the House.

    October 17, 2013 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  15. Kris in AL

    If you notice, she is yelling at the Democrat side of the House.....and pointing her finger their way as well.

    I'm guessing typing the words of the Democrats finally drove her crazy.

    October 17, 2013 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  16. 54StarryNights

    I do not agree with her, but I don't see why she was taken to the hospital for evaluation just for speaking her mind unless something more happened after she was removed from the chamber (which was appropriate).

    October 17, 2013 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  17. kitkat

    Finally! Someone we should elect to Congress!

    October 17, 2013 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  18. Steve S

    Oh?
    RANTS on the House floor!?
    I thought the article said.....RATS on the House floor.........................................

    YES, there are.

    October 17, 2013 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  19. Tony

    What's one more insane person in the room, really.

    October 17, 2013 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44