Washington, D.C. — Today, Rep. Eric Swalwell (CA-15), Rep. Katie Porter (CA-45), and 65 additional signatories wrote to House Committee on Rules Chairman James McGovern to formally request a temporary change to House Rules to allow remote voting by Members of the House of Representatives during national emergencies.
“My constituents need a voice in Congress right now,” Swalwell said. “It is critical that no matter how this crisis develops, I can continue to advocate for working families in my district—no matter where I am physically. And every Member of Congress should be able to do the same.”
“The science is clear: there are major risks associated with Members trekking from every corner of this country to meet together in defiance of CDC guidance and state orders to shelter in place,” Porter said. “We’re asking businesses, schools, and local governments to practice social distancing to keep Americans safe — Congress should be no different. I’m gratified to see bicameral, bipartisan support growing for remote voting during this emergency, and I’ll keep pushing to get this done.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last week called upon Chairman McGovern to issue a report on the House Rules concerning Member voting. At least 31 Members of Congress have announced steps to self-quarantine, or otherwise isolate themselves as a precaution, after either coming into direct contact, or potentially coming into contact, with an infected individual.
Swalwell’s MOBILE resolution, which he has introduced in every Congress since 2013, would strengthen Members’ ability to virtually participate in committee hearings and vote remotely on suspension bills.
The full text of the letter can be found here: https://swalwell.house.gov/sites/swalwell.house.gov/files/Remote-Voting-Rules.pdf
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