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Early State of the Union sitters snag aisle seats

By Ben Pershing
More than four hours remain until President Obama is scheduled to commence his State of the Union address, but per tradition, a handful of House members just couldn't wait to take their seats.

As of 4:30 p.m. Eastern, a half dozen lawmakers had snagged key spots along the center aisle in the House chamber and were waiting patiently for their colleagues and the president to arrive. The early sitters include Republican Rep. Jean Schmidt (Ohio) and -- for whatever reason -- a large contingent of California Democrats: Reps. Barbara Lee, Laura Richardson, Joe Baca and Loretta Sanchez.

A few rows ahead of them sits Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-Texas), one of several members who have made a habit of arriving early over the years to ensure an on-camera handshake, regardless of whether she supported the commander in chief (Obama) or not (George W. Bush). Lee has been talking on her mobile phone nonstop. Other lawmakers aren't in the chamber but made a point of leaving sundry briefcases and books on aisle seats to save them. For security reasons, members are unable to hire professionals to hold their seats for them, the way lobbyists sometimes hire people to stand in line for them before key congressional hearings.

Beyond the lawmakers, a handful of workers are busy setting up the extra chairs needed in the chambers to accommodate senators, members of the Cabinet and other VIPs. The television cameras are in place, as is Obama's teleprompter. Presumably because so many hundreds of people will be crowding into the chamber later on, the air-conditioning has been cranked up to make the chamber resemble a large, walk-in freezer. In her seat near the back, Rep. Richardson appears to be wearing a heavy winter coat.

By Ben Pershing  |  January 27, 2010; 4:58 PM ET
Categories:  Capitol Briefing  
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Posted by: eyrtiuyoluerhyitertyutu | January 27, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse


what about coverage of republicans trying to get seated as FAR away as possible from obama????

Posted by: ProCounsel | January 27, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Analyzing Obamaspeak tonight......
a new approach

Obama’s narcissistic profile mandates 3 consistent themes of Obamaspeak at tonight’s State of the Union speech:

1. Repression–simply blankly deny the truth, no matter how obvious or even if caught on video

2. Rationalization-Admit but use the fault as proof of his zeal

3. Projection-Obama will attribute to others the motives and attitudes he refuses to admit in himself

The Obama narcissistic profile has been previously posted and more details will be provided weekly.

So to test the profile:

A. Tivo or record the State of the Union,

B. Do NOT watch the speech until you have READ the speech
Hopefully the Wash Po will have the ttranscript, unless they are embarrassed then check the NYT

C. Analyze 1-3 above

Posted by: ProCounsel | January 27, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

america’s ONLY firewall
against the Depression Obama Virus

The Republican Party

Posted by: ProCounsel | January 27, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

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