Bennet: Secret Holds Have No Legitimate Place in the Senate or Our Democracy

Cosponsors Amendment to Financial Reform Bill That Would End ‘Secret Holds' in Senate

Legislation Mirrors Proposal in Bennet's Plan for Washington Reform

Washington, DC - Michael Bennet, U.S. Senator for Colorado, today joined a bipartisan push to stop playing politics and hold politicians in Washington accountable by eliminating ‘secret holds' in the Senate. ‘Secret holds' allow Senators to unaccountably and anonymously block bills and nominations in the Senate, and ultimately bring the nation's business to a halt.

The amendment, introduced by U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA), would prohibit senators from submitting a hold or an objection on a motion to proceed unless the senator submits the intent to object in writing for the Congressional Record no later than two days after initial submission. The Secretary of the Senate is required to keep a record of notices of intent to object.

"Secret holds have no legitimate place in the Senate or in our democracy," said Bennet. "When someone wants to bring the people's business to a halt, that person owes the American public a full explanation. This common-sense improvement shouldn't be necessary, but unfortunately in today's Senate, it is. Eliminating secret holds will finally get the Senate to move beyond the pointless game of perpetual delay and do what the people of Colorado expect us to do-our job."

The amendment mirrors an initiative that is part of Bennet's Plan for Washington Reform that would put an end to anonymous holds, place time limits on holds, and create a requirement that, after two days, holds must be bipartisan to remain legitimate.