Dear Chairman Blunt and Ranking Member Schumer:
As Congress works to find a short-term funding solution for the federal government, we write to request that the Rules Committee mark up S. Res. 101, the Shutdown Accountability Resolution.
The resolution will have the effect of keeping a majority of Senators on or near the Senate floor in the event of a government shutdown. More importantly, it will discourage the Senate from contemplating a shutdown in the first place.
Under the resolution, following a full or partial government shutdown, the Senate must convene at 8:00 AM.
A series of quorum calls will require Senators to stay on or near the Senate floor until an agreement has been reached or until midnight, in the event there is no agreement. If the Senate is unable to obtain a quorum after attempting to compel attendance, arrest warrants will be issued to force the attendance of absent Senators. This quorum call procedure will continue each day until Congress passes and the President signs a bill funding and reopening the government.
This resolution is a common sense approach which uses existing familiar procedures in order for the Senate to do its job by passing a budget and reopening the government.
While we may differ on the reasons that have led Congress to this potential impasse, our constituents in Colorado have made clear to us that any government shutdown is unacceptable.
It’s our hope that our resolution can play a role in preventing Congress from engaging in further brinksmanship at this critical point in time.
With less than two weeks left until the end of the fiscal year, we request that the Rules Committee mark up S. Res. 101 as quickly as possible. We have enclosed a copy of the resolution for your review.
Thank you for considering this matter.
Michael F. Bennet, United States Senator
Cory Gardner, United States Senator