GOP hopes Constitution reading serves as reminder of limited government powers

"Our constitutional principles remain timeless and it is fitting that we start the 113th Congress by reading the Constitution aloud on the floor of the House of Representatives," Goodlatte said.

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"The Constitution is the written consent the American people gave to their government to protect individual liberty and maintain limited government. This reading of the Constitution demonstrates that House Republicans are committed to our Constitution and the enduring principles for which it stands."

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said Congress must "never lose sight" of the Constitution, which was meant to protect the rights of the individual.

"Congress must live within its means, limit the growth of government and maximize individual liberty," he said. "Guided by these principles, I am confident the House will chart a course for the future that ensures liberty and prosperity for all Americans."

Led by Goodlatte, members of the House will start reading the Constitution at 10 a.m. Tuesday, and finish before noon. According to Goodlatte's office, any member can participate by reading a section of the Constitution — requests will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Constitution was only read on the House floor one other time — at the start of the last Congress in 2011.