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John Cannan Research and Instructional Services Librarian Earle Mack School of Law at Drexel University REPORT.

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Presentation on theme: "John Cannan Research and Instructional Services Librarian Earle Mack School of Law at Drexel University REPORT."— Presentation transcript:

1 John Cannan Research and Instructional Services Librarian Earle Mack School of Law at Drexel University REPORT

2 Brief background on passing legislation in U.S. How new congressional procedures affect availability of legislative information Procedures used to pass Obamacare, e.g. Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act & Health Care & Education Reconciliation Act Note: Both parties use procedure in similar ways

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4 4 Bill introduced Referred to Committee Reported to Floor Reported to Other Chamber Presented to President Hearing Mark up Report Debate Amendments Vote Referred to Committee Reported to Floor Conference: Chamber Differences Resolved Conference Report Reported to Floors Hearing Mark up Report Debate Amendments Vote Referred to Conference Committee Debate Vote

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6 House Senate Education & Labor Energy & Commerce Ways & Means Committees Rules Committee Finance Committees Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Budget House Floor Preservation of Access to Care for Medicare Beneficiaries & Pension Relief Act Senate Floor House bill Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act Amendment between houses Service Members Home Ownership Tax Act H.R H.R H. Res H. Res. 903 H.R S. 1679S H.R. 3590

7 Committee Markup House Rules Committee Amendment Between the Houses Reconciliation

8 Purpose: To select, debate, amend and report legislation Good News: More sources of committee work Committee websites C-Span Youtube Bad News: Markups not as substantive More work done behind the scenes No official record of these discussions Have to rely on other sources, e.g. news

9 George Miller (D-Cal.), House Education & Labor Committee Henry Waxman (D-Cal.), House Energy & Commerce Committee Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.), House Ways & Means Committee H.R. 3200, Americas Affordable Health Choices Act Blue Dog Revolt H.R. 3200, as reported from Education & Labor H.R. 3200, as reported from Ways & Means H.R. 3200, as reported from Energy & Commerce Nancy Pelosi, (D-Cal.) Speaker of the House REPORT + + +

10 Chairmans mark S. 1679, Affordable Health Choices Act Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) Max Baucus (D- Mont.) Draft Chairmans mark Amended mark S. 1796, Americas Healthy Future Act Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee (HELP) Senate Finance Committee BaucusBingaman (D-N.M.) Conrad (D-N.D.) Enzi (R- Wyo.) Snowe (R. Me.) Grassley (R.- Iowa) Mark up REPORT + Committee hearings Group of Six

11 Purpose: Brings bills to Whole House and sets rules for floor debate Rules: Amount of time for debate Whether amendments can be offered and which ones Which bill to bring? Bill reported from committee Or completely different bill Procedure: House Resolution (H. Res.) Report

12 H.R. 3962, Affordable Health Care for America Act Louise Slaughter (D.-N.Y.), House Rules Committee REPORT RULES RESOLUTION House passes H.R. 3200, reported from H. Education & Labor H.R. 3200, reported from H. Ways & Means H.R. 3200, reported from H. Energy & Commerce + Preservation of Access to Care for Medicare Beneficiaries & Pension Relief Act H. Res. 903 Three amendments: 1.Managers amendment & perfecting amendment (considered adopted) 2.Stupak Amendment (abortion) 3.Republican proposals Pelosi

13 Purpose: Resolves differences between House and Senate versions of bill Cut text from bill passed by other chamber Paste in new text Send back to other chamber Repeat Now favored means of achieving chamber agreement Result: No conference report Can appear to combine unrelated bills

14 S. 1679, Affordable Health Choices Act Americas Healthy Future Act, S Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Majority Leader S. Amend to H.R. 3590, Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act SENATE AMENDMENT H.R. 3590, Service Members Home Ownership Tax Act Cloture (60 votes needed to open & close debate) Senate floor Dodd Baucus

15 Purpose: Optional budget procedure to control direct (entitlement) spending Expedited Senate procedure Usually unlimited debate & 60 votes to pass Debate limit20 hours Simple majority to pass Intended for deficit reduction, not implementing policy or cutting taxes Mostly used for implementing policy and cutting taxes Must be germane to budget Result: Different procedure than traditional bill

16 S. Con. Res 13 & Report: Budget resolution with reconciliation instructions H. Education & Labor H. Energy & Commerce H. Ways & Means S. HELP S. Finance John Spratt, H. Budget Resolution REPORT April, 2009 October, 2009 H.R. 3200, as reported from H. Education H.R. 3200, as reported from H. Ways & Means REPORT + + H.R. 4872, Reconciliation Act of Student loan reform March 2010 U.S. Code Congressional & Administrative News

17 H. Rules Reid Pelosi Obama House Floor Senate Floor H.R. 4872, Reconciliation Act of 2010 H.R. 3590, Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act, as engrossed by Senate H.R Health Care & Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 RULES RESOLUTION + REPORT Obama H. Res H. Res Technical amendments to text on loans Two amendments to H.R (considered adopted) : 1.Amendment in nature of substitute 2.Amendment to amendment

18 Problems: Confusion Alienation Lack of legitimacy Solutions: Change the process? We are all parliamentarians now Congressional Research Service reports: Not public but often available on web E.g. Law Librarians Society of DC, Selected Congressional Research Service Reports on Congress and Its Procedures House and Senate rules Available on House and Senate precedents Available on


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