WASHINGTON (WPIX)—House Republicans' reading of the Constitution was interrupted Thursday by a woman who shouted "except Obama, except Obama" to the venerable document's words on a U.S. citizen's eligibility to be president.
Just as Rep. Frank Pallone, D-N.J., was reading "no person, except a natural-born citizen, or a citizen of the United States" is eligible for the presidency, a woman in the visitor's gallery yelled out that it did not apply to President Barack Obama.
Rep. Mike Simpson, R- Idaho, who was presiding over the House, banged the gavel and halted the proceedings, warning that such action from members of the public was a violation of House rules. The woman was quickly removed by Capitol police.
Lawmakers took turns reciting each verse and article of the document. Republicans in charge of the chamber rattled it off with missionary zeal, as if in a school civics class. Democrats pitched in, but with seemingly less ardor.
Historians said it was the first time the 222-year-old governing document had been read in its entirety on the House floor.
So-called "birthers" claim Obama is ineligible to be president because they say there's no proof he was born in the United States, with many of the skeptics questioning whether he was actually born in Kenya - his father's home country.
The Obama campaign issued a certificate of live birth in 2008, an official document from Hawaii showing the president's birth date, city and name, along with his parents' names and races. The certificate doesn't list the name of the hospital where he was born or the physician who delivered him, information collected by the state as part of its vital records. Hawaii's health director said last year and in 2008 that she had seen and verified Obama's original vital records.