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iPad arrives in the House of Representatives

Rep. Henry Cuellar recently took his iPad into the House of Representatives, which has long been a technology-free zone. Now, a new proposal would allow the device to return.

Jim Dalrymple Special to CNET News
Jim Dalrymple has followed Apple and the Mac industry for the last 15 years, first as part of MacCentral and then in various positions at Macworld. Jim also writes about the professional audio market, examining the best ways to record music using a Macintosh. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. He currently runs The Loop.
Jim Dalrymple

Apple's iPad may soon have a new home: the U.S. House of Representatives.

The floor of the House of Representatives is a technology-free zone. Traditionalists have argued that having tech devices of any kind in the chamber could be highly disruptive, especially with so many members in the House at the same time.

However, recently Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) took his iPad to the Speaker's podium and, in doing so, may have changed the course of history in the House.

In an interview with iPadDailyNews on Thursday, Cuellar explained his thoughts on using the iPad.

"If you look at available technology, properly leveraged it can make us a more efficient Congress," said Cuellar. "There is so much immediate information we can gather with an iPad."

He said the device could be used for doing research on the floor in real time or downloading a bill. "Just from the standpoint of making more effective and efficient decisions the technology is worth having," said Cuellar.

As you may expect, Cuellar was criticized for bringing the iPad into the House, but it appears the device will be allowed to stay. Not only did the House Parliamentarian rule that the iPad didn't break the rules, a new proposal could ensure it will be around for a long time.

According to iPadDailyNews, incoming Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) has proposed allowing "certain electronic devices, including the iPad on the House floor, as long as it doesn't 'impair decorum.'"