Ranking Member Waxman Releases Analysis of Committee’s Legislative Record in the 112th Congress
Today Energy and Commerce Committee Ranking Member Henry A. Waxman sent a letter to Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton regarding the legislative record of the Committee in the 112th Congress. According to an analysis prepared by the Democratic staff of the Committee, of the 30 bills negotiated by the Democrats and Republicans together, 18 became law. By contrast, only two of the 30 bills Republicans reported from the Committee without Democratic support became law in some form.
Rep. Waxman wrote, “Our Committee is most effective when Republicans and Democrats work together. As we start this new Congress, I look forward to finding areas of agreement and working together on a bipartisan basis on legislation to improve the lives of Americans.”
The full text of the letter is below and is also available online here.
January 22, 2013
The Honorable Fred Upton
Committee on Energy and Commerce
2125 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515
Dear Chairman Upton:
As we begin the 113th Congress, I wanted to share a memorandum prepared by my staff analyzing legislative success in the last Congress and the central role bipartisanship plays in determining whether a bill became a law or was simply a political statement that went nowhere. Our analysis shows that virtually all the Energy and Commerce bills that became law were those that had the support of the majority of the Democrats on the Committee.
Last Congress, there were over 30 bills that the Republicans reported from the Committee without the support of the majority of Democratic caucus or brought directly to the floor without Democratic support. Of these, just two became law in some form. Ironically, one of these two successes blocked enforcement of energy-efficiency standards for light bulbs that you wrote. That’s a batting average of under 100.
Coincidentally, there were also over 30 bills that the Democrats negotiated with the Republicans. Eighteen of these bills became law. That’s a batting average of over 500. These included our Committee’s biggest legislative accomplishments like the spectrum bill and the FDA bill.
Our Committee is most effective when Republicans and Democrats work together. As we start this new Congress, I look forward to finding areas of agreement and working together on a bipartisan basis on legislation to improve the lives of Americans.
Henry A. Waxman