WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congressman Russ Fulcher has introduced the One Subject at a Time Act, to provide accountability and transparency in Congress. This bill currently has seven cosponsors including, Representatives Andy Biggs (R-AZ), Lauren Boebert (R-CO), Mo Brooks (R-AL), Thomas Massie (R-KY), Ralph Norman (R-SC), Bill Posey (R-FL), and Chip Roy (R-TX).
The One Subject at a Time Act requires that each bill covers a single topic, ensuring singular votes on each subject and ending the practice of large omnibus bills.
Omnibus bills are large funding packages that include hundreds of different government agencies, topics, and interests. Typically, these packages include massive government waste and overspending along with priorities that have broad support by Members of Congress such as, veterans care, funding for homeland security, pay for our military troops, and district-specific programs like Payment In Lieu of Taxes. This creates a disingenuous situation for legislators to manage increases to our national debt as it nears $28 trillion.
“In Idaho, legislative bills are limited to a single subject and voted on separately,” Congressman Fulcher said. “This practice holds every legislator accountable to their constituents because each topic has a separate and transparent vote. As the House of Representatives looks at proposals to modernize Congress, especially during debates over the recent COVID-19 relief legislation, the One Subject at a Time Act deserves to be part of the conversation. Adding minimum wage increases, state bailouts, and other unrelated spending to emergency-aid legislation does not allow for transparency for the Members or their constituencies. This proposal will end ‘back room deals,’ large ‘must-pass’ bills, and restore trust in our representative government.”
“The American people deserve to know where their federal legislators stand on issues and deserve the right to hold them accountable for their vote on every new law,” said Congressman Andy Biggs. “The ‘One Subject at a Time Act’ will raise the level of integrity in Congress and restore some of the faith the American people have lost in their elected leaders.”
“For far too long, Congress has ignored whether an issue is germane and has treated legislation, especially appropriations, like a Shop ‘Till You Drop Sweepstakes,” commented Congresswoman Lauren Boebert. “I am proud to have cosponsored the One Subject at a Time Act which will provide more transparent legislation and better results for the American people.”
“Too often in Washington, politicians pack massive ‘motherhood and apple pie’ bills with terrible, special interest demands, then vote on the bills mere hours after introduction before anyone has had time to read the text,” stated Congressman Mo Brooks. “While this process is great for special interest groups and great for Congressmen and Senators who covet special interest contributions, it is horrible for America. Limiting bills to one subject means no unrelated bad provisions that are so bad they can never pass on their own merit. Alabama’s Constitution has a ‘one subject matter per bill’ requirement that works quite well. Congress should learn from the states and similarly pass ‘one subject matter per bill’ legislation.”
“This legislation is a good step towards greater transparency in government,” commented Congressman Ralph Norman. “Let’s put an end to the practice of using bills for leverage or as hostage to one another. Every bill should be considered on its own merits, simply put: One subject - one vote.”
“If our ideas have merit Congress should openly debate them and let them be considered on the House floor in their own right,” said Congressman Bill Posey. “Furthermore, it’s critical for Congress to get back to the practice of passing individual appropriations bills and stop waiting until the eleventh hour to bring up a massive omnibus spending bills that nobody will be able to read.”
“The House of Representatives no longer functions as a deliberative body. So-called “must pass” bills are drafted behind closed doors by a select few in leadership, span hundreds of pages and dozens of topics, and are then dropped on the floor against a deadline for members to take or leave,” commented Congressman Chip Roy. “This leaves most of us unable to perform our duty to our constituents. The One Subject at a Time Act is one critical step in returning the People’s House to the people by restoring transparency of subject and encouraging true debate.”