the blog of DC Drinking Liberally

June 11, 2005

Check out Rep. Sensenbrenner’s Meltdown


Watch Rep. Sensenbrenner’s (R-WI) tantrum during hearings about renewal of the PATRIOT Act:

This morning Rep. Sensenbrenner, the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee was leading a committee hearing looking into the renewal of Patriot Act.

Mr. Sensenbrenner decided that he didn’t like the tone of the meeting and simply got up and left but not before he criticized the witnesses who came and gave their testimony to the committee.

After he left the microphones were switched on and off while the Democratic members of the committee continued to discuss the renewal of the Patriot Act.


  1. Welcome aboard, Godfather!

    It’s embarrassing to have someone like that in power in the House (though there are so many of them it’s tough to decide who’s most outrageous). A few weeks back, Sensenbrenner was smearing his Democratic colleagues in the legislative record by rewriting their amendment summaries in ways that would make any junior high student proud, making them appear to be proposing protections for “sexual predators”. But what do you expect from a party that thinks changing “french fries” to “freedom fries” in the House cafeteria is the height of wit? Amazingly, the changes were eventually reversed, but the damage had already been done (the amendments failed) and Sensenbrenner never apologized.

    Keith4:30 pm

  2. This may be a technical question, but it still bothered me when I heard about this story.

    In the House can heads of committees gavel a session to a close on their own volition?

    Here’s why I ask: Robert’s Rules of Orders specifically prohibit that kind of move.
    Someone on the floor needs to move for adjournment, that needs to be seconded, and the
    motion usually gets an “aye” or “nay” voice vote. (If you prefer, an “up or down vote.”)

    That’s not a mere formality. The idea is to make sure the leader of a meeting doesn’t
    abuse his position. Since it sounds like that’s just what happened here, I’m curious
    to know just what the House rules are.

    alt hippo10:14 pm

  3. Just saw Jon Stewart’s take on Sensenbrenner’s display tonight: “He literally took his gavel and went home! We are officially being governed by children.”

    Keith11:15 pm, June 16

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