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Past Event

Reconciliation 101: An explainer of the budget process

Past Event

As disputes over the Senate filibuster continue and lawmakers struggle to reach bipartisan agreements on Capitol Hill, Senate Democrats are returning to a process known as budget reconciliation to pass some of their top priorities. The reconciliation process allows for a simple majority of the Senate to adopt particular types of policy, eliminating the possibility of a Senate filibuster.

As hurdles to bipartisan policymaking increase in Washington, majorities of both political parties have deployed filibuster-proof reconciliation bills—leading many to wonder how this relatively obscure process has become a key part of legislating in today’s Congress. What are the origins of the budget reconciliation process? How has it been used in the past by Democrats and Republicans alike? What are its limitations?

On July 6, Governance Studies at Brookings hosted a primer on everything you need to know about reconciliation. In this webinar, Brookings Senior Fellows Sarah Binder and Molly Reynolds discussed the procedure broadly, its history and constraints, and the short and long-term effects of the process on policymaking in Congress.

Viewers submitted questions for speakers by emailing events@brookings.edu or via Twitter at @BrookingsGov by using #Reconciliation101.

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