Senate Democrats Introduce Outrageous New COVID Rules

By Susan Ferrechio October 8th, 2020 | Image Source: The Hill

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Amy Klobuchar said they’ll introduce a resolution requiring mandatory mask wearing in the Senate as well as a “robust testing regime” for everyone who works in the Capitol complex.

Schumer, of New York, and Klobuchar, of Minnesota, said their resolution would establish a testing and contact tracing system and a requirement that anyone exposed to someone with the coronavirus quarantine for 14 days. It would also mandate that lawmakers who contract COVID test negative before being allowed to vote on the Senate floor.

The two Democrats said the new protocols are needed since three senators tested positive for the coronavirus last week.

“The U.S. Senate has become a COVID-19 hotspot and we need to take immediate action, guided by the best science, to put in place additional protections to safeguard the health of the Senate complex workers, Senate staff, and Senators,” Schumer said in a statement. “Senate Republicans must join us here in reality and acknowledge that through their inaction, they are creating a truly dangerous situation.”

Democrats are looking for ways to slow down or halt the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Republicans are aiming for a vote the week before the election, which would cut close to when the three COVID-infected lawmakers would be able to access the floor, under the Democratic proposal.

Judiciary Committee hearings are scheduled to begin Oct. 12, but Democrats say it should be postponed now that Republican Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Thom Tillis of North Carolina, both members of the committee, tested positive for the coronavirus.

Sen. Ron Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican who is not on the panel, also tested positive.

Sen. Ron Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican who is not on the panel, also tested positive.

Lawmakers have stepped up calls for stronger coronavirus safeguards in the Capitol. More than 100 Capitol staffers have contracted the coronavirus since the pandemic began, and more than a dozen House lawmakers and a half dozen Senators have contracted the virus.

Schumer and Klobuchar said their resolution would implement strict rules for anyone who is either exposed to the coronavirus or is infected with it.

Anyone exposed to or infected with the coronavirus would have to produce two separate negative tests taken on separate days, for example, and lawmakers who contract the coronavirus would be banned from going to the Senate floor or committees until receiving a negative test result.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, is unlikely to bring up the resolution.

Neither McConnell nor Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, has moved to implement a formal testing program in the Capitol.

Pelosi implemented a mandatory mask rule for committees and the House floor.

There is no mask mandate in the Senate.

Author: Susan Ferrechio

Source: Washington Examiner: Senate Democrats introduce mask mandate and negative COVID test requirement

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