Senate Agrees to Rules Changes, Package Contains Bennet Proposals

Bennet Pushed Early for Reform of Filibuster on Motions to Proceed, and Introduced Proposal to End Secret Holds

Washington, DC – Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet released the following statement applauding a bipartisan breakthrough that updates the Senate’s arcane rules and includes an end to secret holds and limits the use of the filibuster on motions to proceed.  Bennet proposed these changes one year ago as part of his Plan for Washington Reform, and testified before the Senate Rules Committee last year in support of both of his reform items.

“I applaud the leadership for coming together in a bipartisan spirit to deliver these important reforms.  They will help end needless delays in Washington and enable the Senate to get our work done a little more efficiently.  I am pleased that two of my proposals could serve as a model for today’s agreement. 

“Time and time again, I have heard from people all across Colorado who are sick of the political games preventing progress on important issues and leaving vital posts vacant for months and even years at a time.  Since I’ve come to Washington, I have seen Senate rules abused.  So I crafted a plan for Washington reform a year ago to help restore some common sense to Capitol Hill and fix this broken Washington system.

“The Senate will continue to be the deliberative chamber but we can no longer allow it to be the chamber that needlessly stops important legislation in its tracks.  There are still many more needed reforms, but these changes will help Washington function better and allow us to make more progress for Coloradans and Americans.”

Last March, Bennet unveiled a series of reforms including changes to the filibuster and secret holds.  The Senate’s bipartisan agreement ends secret holds, provides relief for executive nominees languishing on the Senate calendar, ends the outdated requirement to read amendments aloud, limits filibusters on motions to proceed, and only permits filling the amendment tree where it is necessary.