You can’t alter time and you can’t force Congress to act. In 1905, Albert Einstein shattered Isaac Newton's construction of absolute time, but thus far no physicist or mathematician has been able to solve the equation of congressional inaction.
Case in point: daylight saving time.
In 2018, the Florida Legislature voted to lock in daylight saving time year-round. But the vote was largely symbolic, since Congress, not the Florida Legislature, controls daylight saving time. Since then, bills have been filed, but debates and more importantly votes, have not come to pass.
But, hope springs eternal and Florida Senator Marco Rubio is an eternal optimist.
“We proposed this first two years ago, so I guess we’re ahead of our time, no pun intended, but we’ve picked up co-sponsors,” says Rubio. “But it’s not the most pressing issue facing the country.”
The last part of the senator’s statement reveals more about the state of play in Congress than the first: Members care, just not enough. While Rubio’s bill has bipartisan support, and even the passing approval of the president, it hasn’t moved in two years.
Rubio’s Sunshine Protection Act of 2019 is the sequel to far less successful Sunshine Protection Act of 2018. The bill would make daylight saving time permanent across the entire country. The bill has yet to be heard in a committee.
So, Rubio is getting creative.
“We’re looking to inject that into some other bill to get it passed,” says Rubio as he hints at attaching his bill to another bill headed for passage, a move that could help what is, by all measures an uncontroversial bill across the finish line.
“There is no rationale for flipping times twice a year, I like daylight saving time, so let’s just pick one and stick with it,” says Rubio.
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