Rush Doctrine Incorporated Into Energy and Commerce Oversight Plan
WASHINGTON — Today, U.S. Representative Bobby L. Rush (D-Ill.) announced the inclusion of “The Rush Doctrine” into the House Committee on Energy and Commerce’s oversight plan. This simple, consistent, and comprehensive policy will provide oversight to all agencies under the Committee’s jurisdiction to promote policies of diversity and inclusion to ensure that these federally-funded agencies are representative of the nation and are working to support the interests of all communities and all segments of the overall population.
In a year where the 116th Congress made history as the most diverse in U.S. history, the Rush Doctrine will continue to ensure that Democrats stand firm in defending fundamental values and speaking out against policies that would harm marginalized communities. The doctrine has been endorsed by Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-N.J.).
In a letter to Democratic Colleagues, Rush said, “By applying the Rush Doctrine to all of the work that each Subcommittee conducts, as well as the work of the full Committee, we Democrats will promote diversity and inclusion policies in each and every opportunity that presents itself. Under the strong leadership of Chairman Pallone, our Committee will actively pursue policies that benefit all communities.”
Rush is the second-highest ranking Democrat on the full Energy and Commerce Committee and expects to be elected Chairman of the Energy Subcommittee, a committee he has been the Ranking Member of for the past eight years
The letter continued, “Through this unified effort, the Energy and Commerce Committee can help push the entire Congress to pursue an agenda that will promote and protect the interests of all Americans regardless of their wealth, status, gender, or ethnic background.”
The full text of the letter is below:
January 11, 2019
I am writing to welcome you to the Energy and Commerce Committee for the 116th Congress. If you are a returning Member, then I would like to welcome you back, and if you are newly-appointed I would like to welcome you to what I consider to be the most influential and consequential Committee in all of Congress.
As you know, the Energy and Commerce Committee holds vast jurisdiction over a wide swath of critical issues that impact the daily lives of every American family. From Energy and Environmental policy to Healthcare, Consumer Protections, Telecommunications, and Oversight issues, our Committee plays a crucial role in enacting policy that touches every aspect of American life, and most of this work is conducted on the critical Subcommittee level.
As most of you know, I will be running to chair the Energy Subcommittee, of which I have served as Ranking Member over the last four Congresses. As Chairman of the Energy Subcommittee, and as the second highest ranking Democrat on the Committee, only behind Chairman Pallone, it is extremely important that the work that we do focuses on promoting and protecting the interests of every citizen. As such, I would like to share with you a set of principles that I call the Rush Doctrine, which encompasses much of the work that I have been engaged in throughout the length of my Congressional career, spanning over two decades.
The Rush Doctrine, which Chairman Pallone has also endorsed, simply states that: The Committee will provide oversight over all agencies under its jurisdiction to promote policies of diversity and inclusion in order to ensure that these federally-funded agencies are representative of the nation as a whole and are working to support the interests of all communities and all segments of the overall population.
As a practical matter, by applying the Rush Doctrine to all of the work that each Subcommittee conducts, as well as the work of the full Committee, we Democrats will promote diversity and inclusion policies in each and every opportunity that presents itself. Under the strong leadership of Chairman Pallone, our Committee will actively pursue policies that benefit all communities and all segments of the population, including specifically, minorities, women, and veterans.
In addition to holding federal agencies accountable, this doctrine should also be applied to each and every corporation, association, or organization that comes before the Committee as a means to pursue diversity and inclusion policies that will permeate through all actions of the Committee. This strategy may take the form of questions for witnesses (agency and industry), amendments, legislation, initiatives, and general consistent talking points. As someone whose office has extensive experience in this area, I will eagerly work with any and all Members who would like to collaborate and coordinate in pursuing this cohesive strategy.
While this principle is simple to understand, it is also consistent with the values that I have demonstrated throughout my lifetime of public service, as well as with the core values of the Democratic Party. It is a comprehensive strategy that will help reach the constituents that I represent on the Southside of Chicago, as well as the very same communities across the nation who are responsible for putting Democrats back in control of Congress. Through this unified effort, the Energy and Commerce Committee can help push the entire Congress to pursue an agenda that will promote and protect the interests of all Americans regardless of their wealth, status, gender, or ethnic background. Thank you for your continued support and I look forward to serving you all.
Bobby L. Rush
Member of Congress