In these turbulent times, it’s strangely comforting to find evidence that political histrionics are nothing new; in fact, they are part of a long and venerable tradition. From the Chatham Record of 1 April 1880, it appears that the more things change, the more they stay the same:
The public generally will heartily approve of the action of the House of Representatives in expelling Joe Turner, and the only wonder is that he was not expelled long ago. His oft repeated violation of all decorum, his reiterated insults offered to the House, and his disorderly conduct have long since deserved the punishment of expulsion. He was finally expelled last Friday under the following circumstances.
He began to make a speech, but was using such improper language and behaving so disgracefully that the Speaker called him to order, whereupon he defied the Speaker and refused to stop. A resolution was at once introduced to expel him which elicited much discussion, and finally this was withdrawn and another resolution passed ordering him to be arraigned at the bar of the House and be publically reprimanded by the Speaker.
As soon as this resolution was passed Turner spoke at length, abusing the Speaker and the House, and unceremoniously took his departure, whereupon a resolution of expulsion was immediately introduced and adopted.
It is said that Turner has been eagerly desiring to be expelled, so that he might appear as a martyr, and as one who had been persecuted by the “ring”, and we are truly rejoiced that he is at last gratified, for he is quite welcome to all the “capital” that he can make out of his expulsion.