Freedom Caucus Moves to Boost Power of Congress Rank and File Members

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New procedural rules proposed by the House Freedom Caucus (HFC) would restore the ability of individual representatives to amend legislation, return committees to the heart of law-making, and relax leadership’s influence on the daily direction of the lower chamber of Congress.

“We want a participatory process. You will hear me say occasionally that we have this illusion of representative government,” HFC Chairman Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.) told The Epoch Times in a Sept. 30 interview.

“The people think they send their member of Congress to Washington … and their member is involved in negotiation and amendments, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. We are voting ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on bills that we’ve never seen before the day they come to the floor. It’s wholly unacceptable.”

The Pennsylvania Republican leads the 42-member HFC, after succeeding Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) in November 2021. The HFC was organized in 2015, with Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) serving as its first chairman. Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows was also an HFC chairman during his House tenure.

The HFC’s purpose is to “give voice to countless Americans who feel that Washington does not represent them. We support open, accountable, and limited government; the Constitution and the rule of law; and policies that promote the liberty, safety, and prosperity of all Americans.”

The HFC proposals could become House rules after the Nov. 8 midterm elections if voters return Republicans to the majority. The newly elected Republican majority would debate and adopt new rules when the 118th Congress convenes in January 2023.

Among the proposed rules included in the HFC proposal is the repeal of the “Same Day” rule that Democrats instituted in May 2020 to get around the requirement that all legislation be publicly available for at least 72 hours before being voted on by the House to ensure that all representatives can read the text before voting.

By Mark Tapscott

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