Constitution is this year’s big best-seller

Demand for copies of the U.S. Constitution is skyrocketing.

The pocket edition of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence ranked 10th on the Government Printing Office’s (GPO) best-seller list in March.

The increased interest comes amid the rise of the Tea Party movement and as both parties cite the Constitution to advance their agendas.

Since September 2009, the GPO has sold more than 8,700 copies of the pocket Constitution to the public, according to GPO spokesman Gary Somerset. That is a higher sell rate than in recent years.

Those sales are in addition to the thousands of copies given to members of Congress each year. Congress authorized a resolution in 2009 to print 441,000 copies for the use of the House (1,000 for each member) and 100,000 copies for the Senate (1,000 for each senator).

The Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute, which keep statistics on the Constitution, also say that requests for the historical document are on the rise.

GPO sells copies for $2.75, but constituents can request a free one from their lawmaker.

Congressional offices are burning through theirs stacks of pocket Constitutions.

In a recent “Dear Colleague” letter titled “Order More Pocket Constitutions!” House Administration Committee Chairman Robert Brady (D-Pa.) advised members to take advantage of a special rate.

The letter stated, “Many Members have lately experienced a large increase in constituent requests for the Pocket Constitution. Members who may need more are invited to take advantage of a special, pre-publication ‘rider-rate’ of $390 per 1,000 copies. This rider rate of 39¢ each represents a substantial savings over the post-publication price of $2.75 each ($2,750 per 1,000) available later through the GPO Sales Program.”

Lawmakers can use their office accounts to make the purchases.

Brady told The Hill that he has been getting requests to print the Constitution in Spanish and that they were making those available to members as well.