FIRST ON FOX: A group of Republican senators reintroduced a bill, first brought to the Senate by Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., in 2017, calling for congressional hearings before passing massive partisan spending bills.
Sen. Mike Braun, R-Ind., is leading the "No Hearing, No Vote" bill with a handful of his fellow prominent GOP colleagues, according to a press release exclusively obtained by FOX Business.
The bill was first introduced by Schumer and 39 Democrats, including Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., in 2017 and it would prevent the national legislature from voting on spending bills that would pass along partisan lines before a hearing is held on the legislation.
"Chuck Schumer thought we needed hearings before voting on massive spending bills 4 years ago," Braun said Thursday in a statement to FOX Business. "I agree, that’s why I’m re-introducing Leader Schumer’s bill with 15 Republicans to call for hearings on Democrats’ party-line tax-and-spend spree." The senators say the bill is a "simple legislative reform designed to preserve regular order in the United States Senate when high stakes budget reconciliation bills are considered" that would prevent a vote on reconciliation bills until there has been a full hearing on the issue.
In the release, Braun blasted the Democrats as "trying to fundamentally change this country and inject trillions of dollars of federal government into every aspect" of Americans’ lives, adding the "American people have been kept in the dark."
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, joined Braun on the bill, firing off on the Democrats for "pushing to ram through their reckless tax-and-spending spree" and noting that "taxpayers across Iowa and the nation deserve to know how and where their hard-earned dollars are being doled out." On the Senate floor Wednesday, Ernst called out Democrats for playing with the nation's finances in a reenactment of the popular game UNO.
Tennessee Republican Sen. Marsha Blackburn also torched the Democrats, remarking that "Tennesseans have had enough of Democrat scheming," and Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., said the Senate's "lack of accountability to American taxpayers is staggering." Scott said that it is Congress’ "responsibility to put structural reforms like these in place" to get America "back on an economically stable path for American families now and for future generations."
In 2017, Republicans in Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act through reconciliation after a four-day bill markup and 350 filed amendments. In addition, the Senate Finance Committee held more than 70 hearings focused on reforming the tax code between 2011 and 2017.
Schumer and his 39 Democratic colleagues introduced the original No Hearing, No Vote Act in June of 2017 while the tax cut legislation was being crafted — months before the Republicans introduced the final version of the tax cuts in November of that year.