Who's behind the CRT Senate companion bill?
Stakeholders entered the next stage in the game (netting a senate companion bill) with a huge advantage—a bill in hand to show senators exactly what they were looking for, and proof that dozens of House members were already standing behind it.
They also had a huge disadvantage—there are only 100 senators, compared to 435 House members, and those people are insanely busy.
After months of effort, consumer advocates, providers, manufacturers and industry leaders were able to make their voices heard: on May 16, Sens. Charles Schumer and Thad Cochran introduced S. 948, the separate benefit Senate companion bill.
Who are these men who made time in their extremely busy schedules to stand up for complex rehab?
The first senator who agreed to sponsor the bill is Sen. Charles Schumer, commonly known as “Chuck.” He’s another New Yorker (What are providers doing in that state, and can they do that in all the other states, please?)
According to his website, he’s been in public service for 30 years. He was elected to the Senate in 1998, and kicked off his first term by announcing he would visit each of New York's 62 counties every year, a tradition he continues today. He is chair of the Senate Rules Committee and a member of the Senate Finance Committee, Judiciary Committee, and Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee.
Sen. Thad Cochran has also spent many years in public service. He was elected to the House in 1972,1974 and 1976.
In 1978, he joined the Senate, becoming the first Republican in more than 100 years to win a statewide election in Mississippi.
He's been serving there ever since, and is now a senior Senate Republican. He’s currently a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Rules Committee, and Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee.
Forty representatives have joined Reps. Crowley and Sensenbrenner on H.R. 942. Here’s hoping more lawmakers join them, and Sens. Schumer and Cochran, in the session ahead.