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Legislative Updates

Alabama special election further narrows Senate majority

Yesterday, Alabama elected Doug Jones (D-AL) to fill the remaining two-year Senate term of former Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) who now serves as U.S. Attorney General. Jones, the first Democrat elected to the Senate from Alabama in 25 years, is expected to take his seat after the New Year.

Once Jones is sworn in, the already closely contested Senate will narrow even further, though Republicans will maintain their majority with 51 members. A single seat may not seem significant, but such tight margins can make or break major legislation, as we’ve seen with both the healthcare and tax reform votes.

The tax overhaul bill (H.R. 1) recently passed in the Senate at 51-49, with Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) joining Dems and Independents in opposition to the bill (read up on it here). Even if Jones were to be included in that vote, it would have passed with Vice President Mike Pence breaking the tie. We are still waiting to see what comes out of the House and Senate conference agreement, however, which could influence certain Senators to reconsider their votes.

NALC opposes H.R. 1 and in November, NALC President Fred Rolando sent this letter to members of Congress outlining NALC’s position.

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