March 31, 2006 -- For all those on the right-wing and the neo-con press like the fatally-flawed neo-con Atlanta Journal-Constitution who are reporting that Georgia Democratic Representative Cynthia McKinney will be arrested next week for an altercation with a Capitol Hill cop, unless the US Constitution has been suspended, McKinney cannot be arrested. The immunity clause -- Article 1, Section 6, of the U.S. Constitution -- protects members of Congress from harassment by law enforcement as they travel to and from Congress in the conduct of the business of either legislative chamber. Although the language is arcane, it appears the Capitol Hill cop was the first to breach the peace as a result of his incompetence in failing to properly identify a member of Congress. Most of these cops just stand around all day, the least they can do is study the provided photographs and learn the names of the members. Every lobbyist and journalist worth a salt in Washington is capable of no less. Hey, main stream media, for once, could you please get it right?
Section 6. Clause 1. The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.
In 1998, 84 Representatives and Senators were released after being stopped by police for driving while intoxicated, clear breaches of peace and felonies. All the members claimed congressional immunity. Congressional immunity is so well protected that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is not even permitted to inspect congressional buildings or offices for workplace hazards.
Note: with the Ford sentencing and the physical abuse of McKinney, is there any doubt that the GOP has been in charge of Washington for so long now, the days of Jim Crow have now re-emerged in the nation's capital? There's a disturbing smell in this town these days -- one of freshly laundered white sheets and pillow cases.
A reader who periodically visits this site as well as Democratic Underground inquired as to why we don't link to them. Based on the anti-McKinney comments on that site today, I will not link to any site that promotes the comments of Chauncey Gardner-like, TV-watching, lily-white sub-development residents, and unemployed and uninformed nitwits who constantly carp about those who are firmly committed to the left -- Cynthia McKinney, Hugo Chavez, Fidel Castro, George Galloway, Thabo Mbeki, and Mayor Ken Livingstone. On the other hand, anyone who criticizes Israeli expansionists and their AIPAC/ADL allies is roundly locked out of the discussions.
As far as Democratic Underground is concerned, it's merely a question of "mind over matter." I don't mind them and they don't matter.