Rep. Bobby Rush Reprimanded for Hoodie on House Floor

The lawmaker broke floor rules to protest shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

Posted: 03/28/2012 11:30 AM EDT

Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Illinois) was escorted off of the House floor Wednesday morning for wearing a hooded sweatshirt while speaking out against the death of Trayvon Martin. The former Black Panther began his remarks in a suit jacket that then he removed them to reveal a gray hoodie. He also covered his head with the jacket and donned sunglasses.


“I applaud the young people all across the land who are making a statement about hoodies, about the real hoodlums in this nation, particularly those who wear official clothes,” Rush said. “Racial profiling has to stop. Just because someone wears a hoodie does not make them a hoodlum.”


The Illinois lawmaker began quoting the Bible, ignoring several admonitions made by Rep. Greg Harper (R-Mississippi), who was presiding over the floor, that he was out of order. Harper then asked the sergeant at arms to remove Rush.


“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,” he said. "The chair finds that the dawning of a hood is not consistent with this rule. Members need to remove their hoods or leave the floor.”


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(Photo: C-Span)