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Rubio Joins Senate Colleagues On Resolution To Reopen Capitol Building, Senate Office Buildings

Feb 16, 2022 | Comunicados de Prensa

Washington D.C. —  U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN) and 25 Senate Republican colleagues in introducing a resolution (S.Res.512) to support the reopening of the U.S. Capitol Building and Senate office buildings to public visitation under pre-COVID policies. Yesterday, Senator Hagerty sought consent to pass S. Res. 512, but Senate Democrats objected to the request. The resolution has been referred to the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration.
 
The Capitol and Senate office buildings have remained largely closed to the public for almost two years, despite most of America reopening long ago for gatherings and regular business. This closure has restricted lawmakers’ ability to welcome constituents to their offices and to arrange for tours of the Capitol.
 
The resolution provides that the Senate: (1) recognizes the importance of reopening the U.S. Capitol and Senate office buildings to public participation in the legislative process; and (2) supports returning to the pre-COVID public visitation policies for areas within Senate jurisdiction.
 
Click here to see a full list of cosponsors. 
 
El full text of the resolution .

Whereas the United States Capitol and Senate Office Buildings closed to public visitation on March 12, 2020, at the very outset of the pandemic;
 
Whereas, since March of 2020, the American people have learned how to safely gather and enter public places despite the existence of COVID–19 and, due to Operation Warp Speed, have had the opportunity to be vaccinated against COVID–19 for more than a year;
 
Whereas, despite the existence of COVID–19, tens of thousands of people routinely gather across the country for sporting, entertainment, worship, and other events;
 
Whereas, despite the existence of COVID–19, stores, restaurants, and other public places have been successfully welcoming the public since the pandemic began in 2020;
 
Whereas, despite the existence of COVID–19, the American people, including Members of Congress, routinely use crowded public transportation vehicles, including airplanes and trains; Whereas, despite the existence of COVID–19, most Americans have long since resumed working around co-workers, customers, and others;
 
Whereas it is illogical and unacceptable that, despite the rest of the United States being open, the United States Capitol Building and Senate Office Buildings, buildings that belong to the American people, remain largely closed to public visitation; and
 
Whereas it is time to once again welcome the public participation in the legislative process and the public visitation of our historic buildings that have always been hallmarks of American democracy: Now, therefore, be it
 
Resolved, That the Senate—
 
(1)    recognizes the importance of reopening the United States Capitol Building and Senate Office Buildings to the American people to facilitate public participation in the legislative process and public visitation of these historic buildings; and
(2)    supports returning to the public visitation policies for Senate Office Buildings and the portions of the United States Capitol Building and Capitol complex within Senate jurisdiction that were in place before the COVID–19 pandemic.