What? Brennan takes oath on Constitution…that didn’t have the Bill of Rights
What amazing symbolism. Just two days after Rand Paul’s historic filibuster demanding that the federal government define drone strikes against American citizens on American soil to be unconstitutional, the man Rand Paul was filibustering gets sworn in on a copy of the Constitution that doesn’t contain the very section that makes drone strikes against American citizens illegal. You can’t make this stuff up.
From Yahoo News:
Oh, dear. This is probably not the symbolism the White House wanted.
Hours after CIA Director John Brennan took the oath of office—behind closed doors, far away from the press, perhaps befitting his status as America’s top spy—the White House took pains to emphasize the symbolism of the ceremony.
“There’s one piece of this that I wanted to note for you,” spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters at their daily briefing. “Director Brennan was sworn in with his hand on an original draft of the Constitution that had George Washington’s personal handwriting and annotations on it, dating from 1787.”
…The Constitution itself went into effect in 1789. But troublemaking blogger Marcy Wheeler points out that what was missing from the Constitution in 1787 is also quite symbolic: The Bill of Rights, which did not officially go into effect until December 1791 after ratification by states. (Caution: Marcy’s post has some strong language.)
That means: No freedom of speech and of the press, no right to bear arms, no Fourth Amendment ban on “unreasonable searches and seizures,” and no right to a jury trial.
How … symbolic?
How is this even possible? Seriously, does it happen all the time (that’s not rhetorical. I really don’t know)? I fully understand that the text of the document on which his hand was placed is symbolic and therefore gaffes like this are largely irrelevant and can certainly be overblown. But I have a hard time believing that there is no federal code for this sort of thing. There is a federal law preventing someone from publishing fake weather reports but not for swearing in public officials on a copy of the Constitution that contains bill of rights? I would understand if the CIA director had been sworn in on a copy written prior to, say, the 16th amendment (income tax) or the 18th amendment (prohibition), but the bill of rights? That seems strange.
I can’t prove it, but I’m starting to think the administration does things like this on purpose. This kind of thing is fodder for conspiracy theorists who inevitably become targets by the media as crazy and then are maligned with nicknames (see: wing-nuts, preppers, tea-baggers, deniers, birthers, etc).
One thing is for sure though, whether it was on purpose or just a simple oversight it’s unbelievably ironic.