Democrats Call for Strengthening Working Families in the 115th Congress
WASHINGTON – Today, the House Committee on Education and the Workforce held its organizational meeting for the 115th Congress, where members adopted the Committee rules package and the Committee oversight plan. Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) welcomed Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (NC-05) to her first hearing serving as Chairwoman of the Committee, and called for bipartisan action to strengthen America’s working families.
“I am pleased there is agreement that the Committee should move forward with aggressive oversight of programs and policies in our jurisdiction and make this a priority for the 115th Congress,” said Ranking Member Scott. “I hope that we can work in a bipartisan way to conduct oversight that makes our government more efficient and more effective for workers, families, and students.”
Committee Democrats offered three amendments to the Committee rules package.
- Rep. Mark Takano (CA-41) offered an amendment prohibiting the Committee from considering any legislation that provides a direct financial benefit to President Trump or his businesses.
- Rep. Jared Polis (CO-02) offered an amendment ensuring any high-level government official who is invited to testify before the Committee provide the disclosure forms filed with the Office of Government Ethics prior to their appointment.
- Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (DE-AL) offered an amendment making clear that the Committee will not be complicit in eroding the progress of the Affordable Care Act and will not take away important consumer protections from working families.
All three amendments were defeated by the Republicans in a voice vote. Ranking Member Scott also offered a substitute amendment to the Committee oversight plan. The substitute amendment would have better strengthened working families by emphasizing the need for a robust commitment to oversight over the Trump administration, and oversight over implementation and enforcement of current laws.
“Rigorous and effective oversight is essential to hold the federal government accountable, assess how existing policies and programs are functioning, and ensure taxpayer dollars are not wasted,” added Scott. “However, the oversight plan put forward by the Majority places too much emphasis on rolling back the progress made during the Obama Administration and not enough emphasis on actually providing oversight of policies and programs within the Committee’s jurisdiction.”
Ranking Member Scott’s substitute amendment to the oversight plan can be found here.
Today also marked the first Committee meeting for several Members of Congress including Reps. Donald Norcross (NJ-01), Lisa Blunt Rochester (DE-AL) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (IL-08). Two additional Democratic Members will be appointed to the committee in the coming days, and subcommittee assignments are forthcoming.
The Democrats serving on the committee for the 115th Congress are:
- Rep. Bobby Scott (VA-03) – Ranking Member
- Rep. Susan A. Davis (CA-53)
- Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-03)
- Rep. Joe Courtney (CT-02)
- Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11)
- Rep. Jared Polis (CO-02)
- Rep. Gregorio Sablan (NMI)
- Rep. Frederica S. Wilson (FL-24)
- Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01)
- Rep. Mark Takano (CA-41)
- Rep. Alma Adams (NC-12)
- Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11)
- Rep. Donald Norcross (NJ-01)
- Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (DE-AL)
- Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (IL-08)
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