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Senate Passes Cruz-Sponsored Resolution to Disapprove Obama Administration Drug-Testing Rule for Unemployment Insurance

States will once again have the ability to determine how to best implement these programs for their citizens

March 14, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution sponsored by U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) that disapproves and nullifies a drug testing rule issued by the U.S. Department of Labor during the final months of the Obama administration. That rule limited states’ congressionally intended discretion in implementing their unemployment compensation and unemployment insurance programs. The Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution was originally introduced and passed in the U.S. House of Representatives by U.S. Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. The resolution will now head to President Trump to be signed into law. 

“I commend the Senate for taking up and passing this legislation that I was proud to introduce with my colleague in the House, Chairman Kevin Brady,  to reverse yet another instance of executive overreach by the Obama administration,” said Sen. Cruz. “I look forward to President Trump signing this legislation, and I thank Chairman Brady and my colleagues here in the Senate for their support of this measure and for returning discretion to the governments that are closest to the people.”

“The American people are sick and tired of Washington bureaucrats abusing their authority to undercut the will of Congress and the American people,” said Chairman Brady. “I thank Texas Senator Ted Cruz for his leadership in the Senate in passing this legislation. The President’s signature is all that remains to fully repeal this harmful Obama-era regulation and empower our states to help fully qualified workers get back to work.”

In the bipartisan Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, Congress permitted, but did not require, states to assess state unemployment  compensation or insurance program applicants for drug usage under two circumstances: (1) workers who had been discharged from their last job because of unlawful drug use and (2) workers looking for jobs in occupations where applicants and employees are subject to drug testing. If passed, the resolution of disapproval will once again provide states the ability to determine how to best implement these programs for their citizens.

For the full text of the resolution, click here.

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