Requires A Committee Hearing for All Fast-Tracked Reconciliation Bills, Like President Trump’s Health Care Bill, Before A Final Senate Vote
Washington, D.C. - Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today joined his Democratic colleagues in announcing new legislation - the No Hearing, No Vote Act - that would require any legislation going through the fast-tracked reconciliation process, including President Trump's health care bill that Republicans are currently drafting in private, have at least one committee hearing and be reported out by at least one of the instructed Senate Committees before the full Senate is permitted to consider it.
"We need to have an open and rigorous discussion about a bill that will affect one-sixth of our economy and potentially cost 23 million people their health insurance," Bennet said. "The number one issue Coloradans ask me about is health care. They deserve to know what is in the Senate Republican health care bill because their health and well-being are at stake.
"When we were crafting the Affordable Care Act, Republicans called again and again for the participation of the American people," Bennet continued. "We held dozens of bipartisan hearings and roundtables, and considered hundreds of amendments. It was not negotiated behind closed doors. At the very least, the No Hearing, No Vote Act will hold Senate Republicans to the same standards they called for back in 2010."
Senate Republicans are reportedly drafting a new version of the House Republican health care bill behind closed doors and plan to fast-track the bill through the reconciliation process without holding any committee hearings before a final Senate vote. The No Hearing, No Vote Act would prevent the full Senate from considering any reconciliation bill unless it has been reported out by at least one of the instructed Senate committees. In the case of the health care bill, this includes the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) and the Senate Committee on Finance. Bennet is a member of both committees. The bill also would require at least one hearing on every major reported provision in the bill.
Click HERE to watch today's press conference where Bennet and other Senate Democrats speak about the legislation and answer reporters' questions.
Click HERE for the full text of the legislation.