In an effort to promote a limited government, U.S. Rep. Tom Marino, R-Cogan Station, has reintroduced three bills in the new legislative session aimed at “refocusing Washington.”

The bills deal with issues of term limits, single-subject legislation and ensuring that committee-passed legislation cannot be kept from a vote on the House floor.

“These bills help return our government to one truly for the people, by the people,” Marino said. “It is well past time we get Washington back to work for the American people.”

Marino said that many Americans are “fed up” with career politicians and the current political scene, adding that the election of President-elect Donald Trump proves voters are more willing to bring in an “outsider” than stick with the standard politician.

All three bills were introduced in the previous session, and the bill on term limits also was introduced in 2013-14, according to Ainsley Holyfield, Marino’s communications director.

The bills were unable to build traction in the past, but Holyfield said they will have newfound momentum after the recent political upset.

Resolution 24 is an amendment to the U.S. Constitution restricting the amount of time a representative or senator can serve in Congress to 12 years.

Resolution 25 is another amendment to the Constitution that would require each law enacted by Congress be limited to only one subject and that the subject be clearly defined in the title of the law.

“Today’s legislation becomes so bogged down with added amendments and agendas that the original intent of the bill is often lost entirely,” Marino said. “If members of Congress can barely keep up with the ever-changing additions, it can only be assumed their constituents are being deprived of the information they need.”

The last bill is an amendment to the rules of the House of Representatives to ensure that a bill or joint resolution is considered by the House within the first 60 calendar days.

According to Marino, legislation often is passed through a committee only to sit in limbo, never coming up for a vote on the House floor.

“We cannot continue to let common-sense legislation fall through the cracks as our economy and the American people suffer,” Marino said.

ANNE REINER
Williamsport Sun Gazette
JAN 12, 2017