Two U.S. House of Representative members are calling for Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks of Huntsville to be censured for his part in the violent protest at the Capitol on Jan. 6.
The resolution from Reps. Tom Malinowski of New Jersey and Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida says Brooks’ actions “fueled the mob” and “brought shame on the House of Representatives, jeopardizing its reputation and institutional integrity.”
During his speech before the rally last Wednesday, Brooks said that “today is the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass.” Following the storming of the U.S. Capitol Brooks condemned the violence, calling it “despicable” and “un-American.”
If censured, Brooks would have to stand in the well of the House of Representatives while the Speaker or presiding officer reads aloud the resolution as a form of public rebuke.
Censure evolved through House precedent and practice, and is imposed by a simple majority of the full House. A censure does not remove a member from their office; therefore, Brooks would retain his title, stature and power to vote if passed.
Article 1, Section 5, Clause 2 of the Constitution grants the House power to discipline its members for acts that range from criminal misconduct to violations of internal House rules.
There are three levels of discipline: expulsion, censure and reprimand.
The last member censured was Rep. Charles Rangel of New York for the misuse of congressional letterhead for fundraising, impermissible use of rent-controlled facility for campaign headquarters, inaccurate financial reports and federal tax returns.