According to the rules of decorum and civility in the House of Representatives, members are required to dress appropriately when they are in the chamber, meaning a coat and tie for the men, no hats or overcoats, and appropriate business attire for the women.
Hoodies and sunglasses are a no-no, as Rep. Bobby Rush (D. –Ill.) found out this morning when he was ordered to leave the floor after donning both as a protest for the killing of Trayvon Martin.
Calling the Florida situation “an American tragedy,” Rush went on to “applaud the young people all across the land for making a statement about hoodies.”
“Racial profiling has to stop. Just because someone wears a hoodie does not make them a hoodlum,” Rush said.
Rush was wearing a gray hoodie jacket underneath his suit coat and over his tie, but after he removed his jacket and placed the hood over his head the gavel from the chair slammed over and over as presiding officer Rep. Gregg Harper (R. –Miss.) told him to “suspend” his speech.
Rush continued to quote from the Bible, louder and louder, but the banging of the gavel soon drowned him out, along with Harper’s thundering voice informing the chamber “the member is no longer recognized.”
“The chair will ask the Sargent of Arms to enforce the prohibition on decorum,” Harper said. “The chair must remind members that clause 5 of rule 17 prohibits the wearing of hats in the chamber when the House is in session. The chair finds that the donning of a hood is not consistent with this rule. Members need to remove their hoods or leave the floor.”
Rush chose to leave the floor.
“Walk humbly with your God,” Rush said before departing.