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National Restaurant Association - Opportunities exist in 116th Congress, Association says

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Opportunities exist in 116th Congress, Association says

The National Restaurant Association said it is prepared to work with members of the U.S. House and Senate on key issues, following the Nov. 6 midterm elections that resulted in Democrats taking control of the House and Republicans retaining their Senate majority.

Although some race results are still outstanding, it is clear there will be a divided Congress, creating challenges and opportunities.

In addition to the fight for control over the Congress, Republicans and Democrats also battled for several governorships and state legislatures. Voters also weighed in on state ballot referendums that could have an impact on the restaurant industry and how it conducts business. Those initiatives included minimum-wage increases and the introduction of gross receipts taxes.

In recent years, Senate Democrats and Republicans have changed the rules easing the pathway to confirm nominees to key positions in the Executive and Judicial branches of government. As a result, the Association said it expects the Senate to focus on confirmations throughout much of the 116th Congress. The Senate also retained the 60-vote threshold requirement to pass most pieces of legislation. Therefore, Senate Republicans will have to continue to work with Senate Democrats to pass legislation through its Chamber. Moreover, the Senate and House will have to seek ways to bridge their divides and pass measures the President would sign if there is any hope for a functioning government. 

Though a divided government can often lead to substantial levels of gridlock, the Association’s policy leaders – who consistently work in a bipartisan and bicameral fashion – said they are optimistic there will be opportunities to advance the industry’s priorities. For example, the Association is hopeful it can work with the Senate and House on key issues, such as infrastructure, immigration, workforce development, and criminal justice reform.

Learn more about industry issues and the Association’s advocacy work

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