October 17th, 2013
12:24 AM ET
6 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. LTHAJ

    being the only one in the room working and for sure in the lower pay bracket, sometimes the truth has to escape, it takes a large pile of money to contain truth! or maybe she's just crazy?

    October 17, 2013 09:03 am at 9:03 am |
  2. dan

    Good for her.

    October 17, 2013 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  3. Mack

    sign of the times I guess...smh

    October 17, 2013 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  4. the dude

    There is no god.

    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion-
    Therefore, this is not one nation under god.
    I think it is about time for another amendment to the constitution clarifying that god does not exist and that it is a socially protected form of mental illness. I do not want this lady or others who cannot tell reality from fantasy, who think that Jesus and thor and batman are real anywhere near the purse strings of our country.

    If you want to believe in fantasy, fine... respect the sovereign right of others that wish to be free from your delusional meddling in our legislature.

    October 17, 2013 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  5. Randulpho

    And, of course, she is correct.

    October 17, 2013 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  6. Noel Tetreault

    Praise be to God indeed!

    October 17, 2013 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  7. george busch

    Fox has claimed another brain.

    October 17, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  8. Laila

    I would go crazy too listening to the House bicker with each other! They should just fight it out and get it over with instead of tormenting the country with their stupidity.

    October 17, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  9. The Griot

    Wow! They had a crazy loon taking congressional minutes all these years. There's no telling WHAT'S in those notes. LOL!

    October 17, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  10. Morris

    She just represents the majority of America. A normal, hardworking person that has just lost it because of the scum that call themselves our representatives. We all have snapped, and had enough of the loss of America. Parties and winning comes before the best interest for the citizens of the United States. The founding fathers are rolling over in their graves to see what an embarrassment this country has become. We need a constitutional amendment that makes any shutdown of government illegal and shall never be instituted again by any branch of government
    .,

    October 17, 2013 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  11. digitalclips

    She is right of course, you cannot serve the country if you put religion first. That's why we have separation of State and Church. She can go and have her religious opinions in an appropriate house of worship of any religion she wishes but keep it out of any form of government.

    October 17, 2013 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  12. Bill

    Typical bible basher ... a complete basket case!

    October 17, 2013 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  13. Mike

    Religion destroys the mind.

    October 17, 2013 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  14. MH

    Ok, I don't want to sound like I have tin foil on my head but we seem to be seeing alot of this kind of thing lately. The most obvious thing was the lady on the airplane ranting "God is my savoir" for 30 minutes. I am wondering if we are seeing the side effects from some new prescrition drugs meant to treat sleeping disorders, bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia. The stories of the navy shooter and the lady who was shot in DC after trting to crash the gates of the white house also have alot of similarities.

    October 17, 2013 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  15. Ian

    I'm not saying most religious people are crazy, but most crazy people are religious. I hope she gets the help she needs.

    October 17, 2013 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  16. boger

    That was very cool.

    October 17, 2013 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  17. ImvotingforHillary

    Crack is wack!

    October 17, 2013 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  18. Call me by my first name, Sergeant!

    "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,"

    NOT ANYMORE. LOL

    October 17, 2013 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  19. J.C.

    Great. Congress's insanity is contagious.

    October 17, 2013 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  20. Kr55

    Pretty sure I would go nuts too if I was surrounded by those idiots every day.

    October 17, 2013 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  21. MerryChristmasNotHappyHolidays

    This 2-party system is a joke. Sure, you can vote but only for candidates pre-approved by special interests. Once elected, politicians return favors to the highest bidders who paid for their campaigns and expect a return on their investment. The problem are lobbyists in the government.

    October 17, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  22. bobbyG

    Would they pull Michele Bachmann off the floor if she talked like she does when she's on religious right wing talk shows? There's a fine line between religious fanaticism and poor mental health. I hope she gets the help she needs and it involves more than praying.

    October 17, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  23. Stenographers be Cray-Cray

    You have to be a raving nut-bucket to want to go into stenography in the first place, pretty alone to be such a devoted stenographer to ascend to the heights of being stenographer for the House.

    October 17, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  24. The Cappy

    Writing down the words of politicians all day, every day... I'd probably snap too.

    October 17, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  25. John Harris

    It's fascinating how long moderation of a well reasoned discussion of the bigotry of this woman's act can take. She has attacked one of our country's finest traditions. She has attacked a group that seeks to do good works without individual recognition. She has made a bigoted slur against a group that goes out of its way to reach across racial, political and religious lines to make the world a better place. She has attacked Democracy itself. She was led away quietly by some kind people and taken to a hospital for evaluation.

    October 17, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
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