Sunday, April 10, 2011

CPSIA - CPSIA Amendment Process

I have been asked to explain how this week's hearing relates to a "process" leading to a CPSIA amendment someday. Good question.

I am certainly in no position to do anything more than give you my opinion. At the moment, the House Republicans have floated a draft (and still incomplete) amendment of the CPSIA. This is the third such major amendment try, but the first by the Republicans. The prior two amendments proposed by Henry Waxman died in the last Congress. You may recall many bills that have been proposed by various people to address various elements of the law. None of those bills have moved - they're basically DOA but perhaps some current bill, like Ms. Klobuchar's bill in the Senate, would eventually gain some traction.

Next steps include completion of the CPSIA amendment and a vote on it in the House. The amendment must gain a majority vote in the entire House after it passes out of the Committee on Energy and Commerce. As usual, the Committee will seek a bipartisan approach if at all possible. The path forward is not clear in the House at this point.

Assuming that the bill passes out of the House, then the bill proceeds to the Senate. Will they vote on it, propose their own version, or let it die? Your guess is as good as mine. There are definitely Senators left singing the old Waxman tune, we NEED this bill to PROTECT THE CHILDREN. Will they EVER relent? Will they ALL relent (that's important in the Senate)? Stay tuned to find out.

If the Senate approves its own version of the bill, a conference committee will form to negotiate a common bill for both Houses to approve. That's probably where the action will take place, far from your intruding eyes. Presumably, Mr. Obama will be consulted and his agreement secured. Mr. Obama wrote part of the CPSIA. Ugh . . . .

The last step is for Mr. Obama to sign the bill.

We are not exactly dancing in the end zone yet, although we've made progress. There will be more action to come.


Esther said...

Obama will never sign it. Nothing will change until he is out office.

Steve said...

Wow, Esther. How astute, especially considering that it was the PREVIOUS administration that rushed this miserable law into effect.