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Tags: Coronavirus | Democrats | House of Representatives | voting | pandemic

House Dems Push Proxy Voting During Pandemic Despite Opposition

jim mcgovern wearing a green tie with hands together listening during a hearing
Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 22 April 2020 11:11 AM

House Democrats are proposing a rule change that would allow members to vote by proxy during a pandemic.

The proposal would permit representatives who are present to cast a vote on behalf of members who are absent.

The proposal was put forward Wednesday by Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern.

According to the proposed change, members who are choosing to stay in their districts must submit letters to the clerk of the House designating a colleague as their proxy. 

Members must provide exact instructions for how their proxies should vote on their behalf, and the proxies must carry out those orders. 

The rule would only allow proxy voting to take place during a “designated pandemic emergency.”

The House is expected to vote on the rule change on Thursday. 

Some Republicans have opposed the measure. 

Republican Congressman Jim Jordan told reporters on Tuesday that he believed proxy voting is a "terrible idea" and "flat out wrong,” CBS News reports.

"It's supposed to be in-person, in a debate, because we're a representative democracy, meaning someone [is] representing the constituents back home and fighting for the positions and issues that you told them you're going to fight for," Jordan said. 

But some representatives say if they are able to stay home it shows they are doing their part to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer wrote a letter to McGovern and Administration Committee Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren on Tuesday supporting remote voting. 

"Enabling the House to work remotely, when necessitated by an emergency situation as determined by the Speaker in consultation with the Minority Leader, will make it clear to those we serve that their representatives are doing their part in this crisis," Hoyer said in his letter.

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Politics
House Democrats are proposing a rule change that would allow members to vote by proxy during a pandemic. The proposal would permit representatives who are present to cast a vote on behalf of members who are absent. The proposal was put forward Wednesday by...
Democrats, House of Representatives, voting, pandemic
288
2020-11-22
Wednesday, 22 April 2020 11:11 AM
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