Republican congressmen Pete Sessions and Mike Fitzpatrick were somehow not on the House floor yesterday when everybody else was being sworn in as members of Congress, because, really, not that important. Instead, they were "glad-handing ... supporters" in the Capitol Visitor Center, where they watched the swearing-in on TV and repeated the oath of office. However, as the Huffington Post notes, our Founding Fathers did not include a "provision in the Constitution for a remote swearing-in by television" for some reason. That didn't stop Sessions and Fitzpatrick from acting like congressmen today, though. As ABC News reports:
Today Sessions and Fitzpatrick were on the House floor, voting and reading the Constitution just like every other sworn-in member of Congress. And Sessions helped preside over a hearing of the House Rules Committee on the GOP's push to repeal the health care law.
But once GOP leaders learned that two of their members weren't yet legitimate members of Congress, they abruptly stopped the Rules hearing on the health care law....
Shortly after the Rules committee hearing was stopped, Fitzpatrick and Sessions both appeared back on the House floor and were administered the oath of office by Speaker Boehner.
That this took place on the day that the Constitution was celebrated on the House floor makes it especially embarrassing, and incredibly ironic. More ironic than anything in the Alanis Morissette song "Ironic," even, although most of the things in that song aren't actually ironic to begin with.
Update: It gets worse. The two Republicans were actually at a fund-raiser for Fitzpatrick during the swearing-in ceremony.