Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 4, 2015

Rand Paul Uses Sign Language in Senate

Sen. Rand Paul

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Rand Paul’s use of an American Sign Language interpreter on the Senate floor Thursday was unusual, but it wasn’t unprecedented.

Paul used a sign language interpreter during a brief floor speech to bring attention to the neurofibromatosis type 2 disorder, which is a neurologic tumor condition experienced by Paul’s nephew, Mark Pyeatt.

According to Senate Historian Donald A. Ritchie, sign language first appeared on Senate floor during a 1989 debate over the Americans With Disabilities Act, and sign language has appeared from time to time since. The Senate’s daily prayer has been delivered with sign language as far back as 1952.

“Its relentless course ultimately destroys the hearing. I have never heard Mark complain,” Paul said. “While my signing is only rudimentary, most of his immediate family are proficient and at Christmas dinner for 40 family members, nearly everyone is trying to learn to sign.”

“I mostly like to learn insults so I can taunt Mark on the golf course. I can’t use most of the signs I’ve learned on television. I don’t know this for certain, but I think the seven words George Carlin used — cannot be said or signed on TV,” Paul said.

Paul was attempting to highlight the shortage of drug approval and research funding for extremely rare “orphan” diseases.

Comments (4)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

author email

  1. Anonymous

    June 27, 2015
    6:33 a.m.

    I enjoy what you guys are up too. This sort of clever work and reporting! Keep up the very good works guys I’ve you guys to my own blogroll.

  2. become a personal trainer uk

    June 27, 2015
    12:15 p.m.

    good morning, hero ic blog on lardy loss. said helped.

  3. Anonymous

    July 2, 2015
    3:51 p.m.

    You actually make it seem so easy together with your presentation but I find this matter to be actually one thing which I feel I’d never understand. It sort of feels too complicated and extremely large for me. I’m looking forward for your next submit, I’ll try to get the hold of it!

  4. Anonymous

    4:07 p.m.

    Generally I do not read article on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up very forced me to try and do so! Your writing style has been surprised me. Thanks, quite nice article.

Sign In

Forgot password?



Receive daily coverage of the people, politics and personality of Capitol Hill.

Subscription | Free Trial

Logging you in. One moment, please...