October 17th, 2013
12:24 AM ET
1 year 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. Erica

    She's absolutely right....speak the truth!

    October 17, 2013 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  2. Itsme

    She is my new hero. She spoke for all American Citizen.

    October 17, 2013 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  3. Moonraker

    Wow, isn't it amazing that we live in the 21st century and there are still people who embrace magic and superstition (i.e. religion)? What did this irrational outburst gain for her, the loss of her job? What a crazy person.

    October 17, 2013 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  4. Gabe

    Whats happening is that Truth is coming out. No one wants to hear Truth anymore! God is soon to come and just because she is religious doesn't mean crazy. Its an eye opener for all of us to really see that this government is be runned by people who really doesnt have the people or nation to heart. How can you cut the workers pay and still keep getting paid yourself! its time to wake up and see Truth. I support her and glad she stood up!

    October 17, 2013 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  5. George Washington

    "One Nation Under God" was never a part of the constitution or the founding of this country. What she is quoting is the Pledge Of Allegiance which itself did not originally contain "Under God" when it was first written in 1892. The "Under God" line was added in 1948 by a chaplain who claims he took it from Lincoln's Gettysburg address, however it is taken out-of-context. This country was founded on Freedom of Religion which is part of the First Amendment and Bill of Rights.

    October 17, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  6. Really?

    lol that african-american lady was on it in a heart beat. "Ain't nobody got time for dat."

    October 17, 2013 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  7. Nick Mordowanec

    Yes, just what this nation needs: more religious preaching, which in turn instills more hate and a persecuted America. Most religious folk don't realize how their "values" - and I use that term lightly - are so diluted and contaminate the rest of the rational people. Keep spewing hate and invoking God in a subject that is not even about religion.

    October 17, 2013 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  8. Lord Toronaga

    Fired. Go home.

    October 17, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  9. Viking

    Is anyone else wondering why the House is still employing a stenographer?

    Are the elevator operators still on the payroll, too?

    October 17, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  10. Ol' Yeller

    They didn't notice for a little bit because they are so used to crazy people making crazy speeches they just thought it was another te abagg er.
    I'm pretty sure if this 'God' they all talk about wanted to intervene, he certainly could.
    Maybe this defeat of the teab agger s IS God's plan... anybody ever think of that? (now we get to see all the nut jobs claim they know what God's plan is... all the while telling everyone else no one does).
    Cracks me up... I thought it'd be Boner who snapped, but he was three sheets to the wind.

    October 17, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  11. Tee

    Can she be a write in candidate for the next election?

    October 17, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  12. Harris Wainwright

    What everyone seems to forget is that there is NO ROOM for religion in Politics!!!

    October 17, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  13. James Collins

    Wow, reading your comments shows how ignorant and stupid we are becoming as a country. Then again you people voted for a man who voted to kill babies who survive botched abortions, send tax money to I'm sure God is smiling down on you guys about how much smarter you are.

    October 17, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  14. SoCal CSR

    Dear Wear a bowie tie – If you'd ever seen a written transcript of an electronically recorded proceeding, you'd understand why the human ear and brain are still essential to get an accurate, certified written record. Electronic recording is fine and dandy as long as everyone speaks one at a time, no one has a difficult accent, no one sneezes, coughs, shuffles papers, mumbles, speaks softly, trails off, etc. I hope that answers your question. P.S. You spelled "Dodo" wrong.

    October 17, 2013 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  15. enough from you people

    Her termination should be immediate.

    October 17, 2013 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  16. Name

    She's not crazy she is speaking out about God our savior. She told the truth and that's something politicians don't like. I pray to God everyday for this country. its getting worse.

    October 17, 2013 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  17. Illinois Person

    Oh religion, you've never cause any trouble before.

    October 17, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  18. Bman

    And so the rapture begins...

    October 17, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  19. lloyd roberts

    Yup, some more of that good old time religion. Takes someone perfectly normal and responsible and turns them psychotic

    October 17, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  20. The Observer

    She's also my new favorate. Nuff said.

    October 17, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  21. kantrudantor

    I am willing to bet it was dehydration and/or stress that led to a temporary lapse in reason and judgement. Might make for a good Dan Brown plot. I don't think she is a radical or anything. Willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.

    October 17, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  22. My10Cents

    I don't blame this poor woman for her outburst but I think she got the count a little wrong. When you look at the outside influences involved in politics there a way more than just two masters. Just look well known external influences the GOP and especially the Tea Party claim to follow everyday. Grover Norquist's tax pledge, The Heritage Foundation, FreedomWorks, NRA, etc. These people and groups literally fund the candidates that will promise to follow their charters regardless of how it might affect the country as a whole. So the next time you are sitting in front of your TV and are trying to figure why so many legislators are saying the same things over and over again regardless of the topic or questions you will now understand that they are being "paid" to do it. Just like the "customers" in the infomercials except they don't make law.

    October 17, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  23. USwatcher

    She just couldn't take it anymore...she had to let off some steam...she IS correct,though.

    October 17, 2013 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  24. Shello

    Meet your next Congresswoman from the great state of Alabama!

    October 17, 2013 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  25. Joe

    They had her evaluated, for having a moment of personal truth. We can serve only one master. Mine is Jesus Christ. But, I succumb to our government like he told us to do. God is in control.

    October 17, 2013 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
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