Continuity of Congress in the Wake of a Catastrophic Attack, Hearing Before the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Eleventh Congress, First Session, July 23, 2009   [open pdf - 642KB]

From the opening statement of Jerrold Nadler: "Today's hearing deals with a very important problem: the continuity of the Congress in the event of a catastrophic attack. In the years since 9/11, this issue has virtually dropped off the radar. While the Congress has taken some actions to prepare for such an eventuality it is far from clear that our work is finished. In fact, I would say it is clear that our work is not finished. I hope to hear from today's witnesses about some of these important issues. Most importantly, we need to know whether our current system is sufficient to ensure that necessary governing functions continue in a manner that is both constitutional and effective. We cannot wait until a crisis to find out whether we are adequately prepared for a catastrophe. I am very concerned that however we choose to respond, that the American people will have confidence in the new Congress and view its actions as legitimate. [...] It is not entirely clear that the current House rules deal with this issue in a manner consistent with the Constitution. It is my fervent hope that the circumstances necessitating these extraordinary actions will never come to pass. No one wants to have to contemplate such an eventuality but we cannot fail to deal with the responsibility. The Nation would be ill-served and the future of our successful system of democracy in peril." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Jerrold Nadler, F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr., Brian Baird, Dana Rohrabacher, John C. Fortier, R. Eric Petersen, and Harold C. Relyea.

Report Number:
Serial No. 111-17
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Government Printing Office, Congressional Hearings: http://www.gpoaccess.gov/chearings/index.html
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