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Federal Judges Help Swear In Members of Congress

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In regions around the country, members of Congress turned to federal judges to take public oaths of office in their home districts. The representatives earlier had taken official oaths in Washington when the current session began. Some examples of where the legislative and judicial branches came together to publicly induct House representatives into the 113th Congress:

On Feb. 1, judges of the Southern District of Illinois swore in two House members, Rep. William L. “Bill” Enyart (D-IL.) and Rodney L. Davis (R-IL.). The ceremony, at which Chief Judge David R. Herndon presided, took place at the district courthouse in East St. Louis, IL. Video of the swearing-in is available above.

On Jan. 3 in Washington, D.C., Judge Benita Y. Pearson of the Northern District of Ohio administered a ceremonial oath of office to the 42-member Congressional Black Caucus.

On Jan. 29, Chief Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz of the Southern District of California swore in Reps. Susan Davis, Scott Peters and Juan Vargas, all Democrats from the San Diego area. Judge Moskowitz also acknowledged Reps. Duncan Hunter and Darrell Issa, both Republicans, who were invited to take part but had schedule conflicts. The oaths of office were administered in the district courthouse in San Diego.

On Jan. 24, Chief Judge Catherine D. Perry of the Eastern District of Missouri administered the oath to Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-Mo.) in the Thomas F. Eagleton U.S. Courthouse in St. Louis.

Also on Jan. 24, Chief Judge Kathryn H. Vratil of the Kansas District swore in Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) at the congressman’s local office in Overland Park.

On Jan. 13, Rosemary Barkett, judge in the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, swore in four Florida representatives from areas generally north of Miami. They were Ted Deutch, Lois Frankel, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and Frederica Wilson.

In separate ceremonies, Chief Judge Joseph Laplante of the New Hampshire District swore in Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH) on Feb. 1, and Rep. Ann McLane Kuster (D-NH) on Jan. 10.