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Did the Sunlight Protection Act pass? Congress reintroduces daylight saving time bill

Lawmakers are once again pushing to remove the biannual changing of the clocks in a bid to reduce confusion and delays.

Senate calls to make daylight saving time permanent

Last year the Senate passed a bill that would end the practice of changing clocks twice a year, moving instead to a single daylight saving time. But despite receiving unanimous support in a Senate voice vote the proposal made little headway in the House of Representatives when it was proposed last last.

But less than four months after it was timed out in the 117th Congress the Sunshine Protection Act has emerged again having been reintroduced by GOP Sen. Marco Rubio, who called for an end to the “antiquated practice” of biannual clock-adjustment.

The matter has not yet been debated in the chamber but the Republicans proponents of the bill may be hoping that the change of control in the House could help their cause this time around.

This ritual of changing time twice a year is stupid. Locking the clock has overwhelming bipartisan and popular support. This Congress, I hope that we can finally get this done,” Rubio said on Thursday.

Who is in favour of the Sunlight Protection Act?

The matter of daylight savings is one of a small number of issues that has no real partisan leaning in Congress, with senators from both parties co-sponsoring the Senate bill.

Sen. Ed Marky, a Democrat from Massachusetts, said: “It’s past time for Congress to broaden its horizons and finally make daylight saving time permanent.”

If the bill were to be adapted in its current form daylight saving time, which is set to go into effect in March, would be become the permanent year-round time in the United States. Different regions would still maintain their distinct geographical time zones.

Rep. Frank Pallone, formerly the chair of the House Energy and Commerce explained that the issue is not one that divides along partisan lines in Congress: “These opinions don’t break down by party, but instead by region.”

We don’t want to make a hasty change and then have it reversed several years later after public opinion turns against it - which is exactly what happened in the early 1970s.”

Will the Sunlight Protection Act pass the House this time?

Last time the Senate offered unanimous support for the proposal so it is unlikely that there will be any resistance in the Upper House again this time.

In the 435-member House of Representatives there are 75 freshman lawmakers for the 118th Congress and a change of leadership with a new majority party. This could increase the likelihood of the proposal passing.

To encourage support in the House, Rep. Vern Buchanan has introduced companion legislation entitled ‘To make daylight savings time permanent’ to bring the matter to a debate.

“There are enormous health and economic benefits to making daylight saving time permanent,” Buchanan, a Florida Republican wrote in a statement.

“Florida lawmakers have already voted to make daylight saving time permanent in my home state and Congress should pass the Sunshine Protection Act to move Florida and the rest of the country to year-round daylight saving time.”


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