No Excuses: For Decades, The Senate Has Worked On A Bipartisan Basis To Pass Wide-Ranging Legislation Through The Budget Reconciliation Process

February 2, 2021

Senate Democrats are eager to get to work on a broad rescue package to provide American families and small businesses with the relief they need as the COVID-19 economic and public health crisis continues to rage. That’s why Senate Democrats have put forward a budget resolution providing $1.9 trillion in COVID relief before the Senate. We hope that Senate Republicans will join us in delivering the relief American families need.

Since 1980, this budget reconciliation process has been used 17 times to enact legislation with bipartisan support, including the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (now known as CHIP), the Child Tax Credit, and expansions of Head Start and the Earned Income Tax Credit.

As Majority Leader Schumer said on the Senate floor today, “there will be a bipartisan, open amendment process on the Budget resolution this week. The Democrats eagerly encourage participation from both sides of the aisle to this proposal.”

The chart below details the 17 bipartisan reconciliation acts enacted over the last four decades.

Date of Senate Passage

Reconciliation Act

Vote Outcome

9/7/07

College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007 (P.L. 110-84)

79-12

D 45-0

R 34-12

5/11/06

Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005 (P.L. 109-222)

54-44

D 3-41

R 51-3

5/23/03

Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 (P.L. 108-27)

51-50

D 2-47

R 48-3

5/26/01

Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-16)

58-33

D 12-31

R 46-2

7/31/97

Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 (P.L. 105-34)

92-8

D 37-8

R 55-0

7/31/97

Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (P.L. 105-33)

85-15

D 42-3

R 43-12

8/1/96

Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-193)

78-21

D 25-21

R 53-0

10/27/90

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-508)

54-45

D 35-20

R 19-25

11/22/89

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1989 (P.L. 101-239)

Voice vote

12/21/87

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987 (P.L. 100-203)

61-28

D 43-4

R 18-24

10/17/86

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1986 (P.L. 99-509)

61-25

D 28-15

R 33-10

3/14/86

Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (P.L. 99-272)

Voice vote

4/5/84

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1983 (P.L. 98-270)

67-26

D 17-24

R 50-2

8/19/82

Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 1982 (P.L. 97-248)

52-47

D 9-36

R 43-11

8/18/82

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1982 (P.L. 97-253)

67-32

D 19-26

R 48-6

7/31/81

Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981 (P.L. 97-35)

80-14

D 31-13

R 49-1

12/3/80

Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1980 (P.L. 96-499)

83-4

D 47-2

R 36-2

Additional sources:  Congressional Research Service; Congressional Record

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