Home Economy U.S. Economy Donald Trump Signed Bill to Increase Drug Testing of Unemployed Seeking Benefits

Donald Trump Signed Bill to Increase Drug Testing of Unemployed Seeking Benefits

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President Donald Trump signed a bill into law that will subject more unemployed Americans to drug tests before they can claim jobless benefits.

The resolution—approved by the Senate on Tuesday, March 14th after passing in the House in February—nixes a Labor Department regulation that limited how many unemployment-benefit applicants states could test for drugs. The old rule, implemented under former President Barack Obama, mandated that states could only test applicants if they were looking for work in jobs that require regular drug screenings.

The repeal measure narrowly passed the Senate, 51–48, under the Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress to undo some recently implemented federal regulations with a simple majority. The House used the same maneuver to get it through their chamber last month with a 236–189 majority.

The bill was sent to the White House and signed by President Trump on March 31st.

DallasNews reported:

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Friday signed legislation backed by two Texas Republicans that will allow states to expand the pool of applicants for unemployment benefits who can be drug tested.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Rep. Kevin Brady of The Woodlands, nullifies a Labor Department rule that went into effect in September limiting drug tests to applicants who had a job that does regular drug screenings.

“Under the previous administration, the Department of Labor undermined the ability of states to conduct drug testing in their programs as permitted by Congress,” Cruz said in a written statement. “This rule was yet another example of executive overreach by the Obama administration, and I commend President Trump for signing this resolution into law.”

The measure traveled down a partisan path in Congress, passing through the Senate earlier this month with a party-line vote. Four Democrats in the House voted in favor of the bill in February, but no Texans.

“After 5 years of battling with the Obama Department of Labor, states like Texas will now be allowed to drug test folks on unemployment to ensure they are job ready from day one,” Brady said in a written statement. “This is a win for families, workers, job creators, and local economies.”

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