[Deschler-Brown Precedents, Volume 17]
[Ch. 36. Ceremonies and Awards]
[§13. —Moments of Silence]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]


[Page 202-206]
 
                               CHAPTER 36
 
                         Ceremonies and Awards
 
Sec. 13. --Moments of Silence

    The House has observed moments of silence as a way to honor notable 
individuals,(1) fallen heroes and soldiers of 
wars,(2) and victims of national tragedies.(3) In 
one instance, the House stood in silent prayer in observance of the 
Nazi invasion of France.(4)
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 1. See Sec. Sec. 13.1, 13.3, infra.
 2. See Sec. Sec. 13.2, 13.4, infra.
 3. See Sec. Sec. 13.5-13.7, infra.
 4. See Sec. 13.8, infra.                          -------------------
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Coretta Scott King

Sec. 13.1 The Chair asked Members to observe a moment of silence in 
    memory of Coretta Scott King, wife of civil rights leader Martin 
    Luther King, Jr., on occasion of her death.

    On Jan. 31, 2006,(1) the following proceedings took 
place:
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 1. 152 Cong. Rec. 402, 109th Cong. 2d Sess.
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             MOMENT OF SILENCE IN MEMORY OF MRS. CORETTA SCOTT KING

        The SPEAKER.(2) In memoriam to the death this 
    morning of Mrs. Coretta Scott King, I ask all Members to stand and 
    observe a moment of silence.
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 2. J. Dennis Hastert (IL).
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Moment of Silence to Mark Iraq War Losses

Sec. 13.2 Instance of moment of silence to commemorate the

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    loss of 2,500 American soldiers in the Iraq War.

    On June 15, 2006,(1) in the midst of general debate on 
House Resolution 861, the following proceedings took place:
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 1. 152 Cong. Rec. 11412, 109th Cong. 2d. Sess.
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        Mr. [John P.] MURTHA [of Pennsylvania]. Mr. Speaker, I yield to 
    the gentleman from Missouri.
        Mr. [Ike] SKELTON [of Missouri]. I thank the gentleman for 
    yielding.
        Mr. Speaker, the media just reported the sad news that we have 
    just reached a sad milestone: 2,500 Americans have lost their lives 
    in the Iraq war. Mr. Speaker, I respectfully ask at the outset of 
    this very important debate that the House observe a moment of 
    silence for all those who have given the ultimate sacrifice on 
    behalf of our country.
        The SPEAKER pro tempore.(2) Is there objection to 
    the request of the gentleman from Missouri?
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 2. Michael K. Simpson (ID).
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        There was no objection.

Rosa Parks

Sec. 13.3 A Member asked the Chair to lead the House in a moment of 
    silence in memory of the passing of Rosa Parks.

    On Oct. 25, 2005,(1) the Chair asked Members to rise for 
a moment of silence:
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 1. 151 Cong. Rec. 23629, 109th Cong. 2d Sess.
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                  ANNOUNCING THE PASSING OF ROSA LOUISE PARKS

        (Mr. CONYERS asked and was given permission to address the 
    House for 1 minute.)
        Mr. [John] CONYERS [Jr., of Michigan]. Mr. Speaker, I am sorry 
    to announce the passing of Rosa Louise Parks yesterday evening, and 
    I would like to announce that we have already prepared a Special 
    Order immediately following the business tomorrow, and we invite 
    all of the Members on both sides of the aisle to 
    attend.                          -------------------

                MOMENT OF SILENCE IN MEMORY OF ROSA LOUISE PARKS

        Mr. CONYERS. Mr. Speaker, may I ask for the Speaker to call for 
    a moment of silence in memory of Rosa Louise Parks.
        The SPEAKER.(2) Would Members please rise and join 
    me in a moment of silence in memory of Mrs. Rosa Louise Parks.
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 2. J. Dennis Hastert (IL).
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Memorial Day

Sec. 13.4 The Chair asked Members to observe a moment of silence in 
    honor of Memorial Day and fallen heroes.

    On May 20, 2004,(1) the Speaker made the following 
request:
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 1. 150 Cong. Rec. 10639, 108th Cong. 2d. Sess. For additional 
        information on federal holidays, see Sec. 3, supra.
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        The SPEAKER pro tempore.(2) The Chair would ask the 
    House to observe

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    a moment of silence in honor of Memorial Day and our fallen heroes.
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 2. Michael K. Simpson (ID).
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    The House also on that day,(3) by unanimous consent 
permitted all Members to insert remarks and extraneous material in the 
Congressional Record on fallen heroes (the topic of a later special-
order speech).
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 3. 150 Cong. Rec. 10639, 108th Cong. 2d. Sess.
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        Mr. [James T.] WALSH [of New York]. Mr. Speaker, I ask 
    unanimous consent that all Members may have 5 legislative days in 
    which to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous 
    material on a special order speech on the topic of fallen heroes 
    and that all such remarks be printed in the Congressional Record of 
    May 20, 2004.
        The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of 
    the gentleman from New York?
        Mr. [Charles B.] RANGEL [of New York]. Mr. Speaker, reserving 
    the right to object and I will not object, I just want to take this 
    opportunity to thank my friend and colleague from New York for 
    affording this House the opportunity to express ourselves on this 
    Memorial Day in honor of these fallen heroes. I appreciate working 
    with him and I thank him very much for this opportunity.
        Mr. Speaker, I withdraw my reservation of objection.
        The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of 
    the gentleman from New York?
        There was no objection.(4)
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 4. In recent practice, the House has observed monthly moments of 
        silence for fallen heroes.
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Victims of Mining Accident

Sec. 13.5 A Member took the floor for one minute by unanimous consent 
    to initiate a moment of silence for the fates of nine miners 
    trapped in a well for over 48 hours.

    On July 26, 2002,(1) the following proceedings took 
place:
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 1. 148 Cong. Rec. 14945, 107th Cong. 2d Sess.
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         moment of silence for miners trapped in somerset, pennsylvania

        Mr. [Christopher] SHAYS [of Connecticut]. Mr. Chairman, in 
    consultation with the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Murtha) and 
    the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Gekas), I ask for a moment of 
    silence for the 9 miners in Somerset, Pennsylvania, trapped 240 
    feet underground. They have been trapped there for over 48 hours 
    under very extreme conditions.
        Mr. Chairman, this is in the district of the gentleman from 
    Pennsylvania (Mr. Murtha), and he and others in this Chamber 
    request the prayers of the Members of this Chamber for those 
    miners, for their families, and for the heroic work of our rescue 
    workers.
        I ask for a moment of silence.
        The CHAIRMAN pro tempore.(2) Would all Members 
    please stand.
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 2. John Linder (GA).
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Victims of Anthrax Attacks on Postal Service

Sec. 13.6 A Member took the floor for one minute by unanimous

[[Page 205]]

    consent to initiate a moment of silence in memory of the loss of 
    Postal Service employees' lives to anthrax exposure resulting from 
    ``terrorist'' mailings.

    On Oct. 23, 2001,(1) the following proceedings took 
place:
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 1. 147 Cong. Rec. 20398, 107th Cong. 1st Sess.
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              MOMENT OF SILENCE TO HONOR POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEES

        (Mr. WAMP asked and was given permission to address the House 
    for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
        Mr. [Zach] WAMP [of Tennessee]. Mr. Speaker, I think it would 
    be appropriate tonight with this many Members present and with our 
    new Members present and on the job, if we as a body, in a unified 
    way, stood together for a moment of silence in memory of the Postal 
    Service employees that have lost their lives; and in honor of all 
    of the families and all of those U.S. Postal Service employees 
    around the country that work for us day in and day out, that we 
    would bow our heads as the United States Congress in their honor 
    and in their memory and pray for our country at this time in our 
    country's history. Please stand.

Victims of Oklahoma City Bombing

Sec. 13.7 After the prayer and before the approval of the Journal, the 
    Speaker requested the House to join in a silent prayer for 168 
    seconds in honor and memory of the 168 Americans who died when a 
    bomb exploded in a Federal building in Oklahoma City.

    On Apr. 19, 1996,(1) the following proceedings took 
place:
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 1. 104 Cong. Rec. 8224, 104th Cong. 2d Sess.
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         MOMENT OF SILENCE IN TRIBUTE TO OKLAHOMA CITY BOMBING VICTIMS

        The SPEAKER.(2) The Chair asks the House to join in 
    a silent prayer for 168 seconds in honor and memory of the 168 
    Americans who died 1 year ago in Oklahoma City.
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 2. Newt Gingrich (GA).
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Nazi Occupied France

Sec. 13.8 The House stood for one minute in silent prayer in observance 
    of the invasion of Nazi-occupied France by our troops during World 
    War II.

    On June 6, 1944,(1) Mr. John W. McCormack, of 
Massachusetts, asked in a one-minute speech that the Members of the 
House stand in prayer.
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 1. 90 Cong. Rec. 5387, 78th Cong. 2d Sess.
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        Mr. McCORMACK. Mr. Speaker, at this dramatic, historic, and 
    eventful moment, I ask that the Members of the House stand in 
    silent prayer.

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        The Members of the House rose and stood for 1 minute in silent 
    prayer.

                               european invasion

        Mr. [Joseph W.] MARTIN [Jr.], of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, I 
    ask unanimous consent to address the House for 1 minute.
        The SPEAKER.(2) Without objection, it is so ordered.
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 2. Sam Rayburn (TX).
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        There was no objection.
        Mr. MARTIN of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, this is an anxious 
    day for the people of America. It is a day of anxiety for liberty-
    loving people all over the world.
        The fighting men and women of America and the Allied armies 
    have landed on the historic shores of northern France. They have 
    commenced the long trail which we have every reason to believe will 
    not end until they enter victoriously the Hitler capital of Berlin.