by Dorothy Philbin | CNBNews Contributor
The United States Senate has passed a bill submitted by Sen. Marco Rubio (R, FL) to make Daylight Savings Time permanent. Sen. Rubio made some valid points in his bill. During the standard time when evening comes at 5:00 p.m. crime rate is higher, people become depressed due to Seasonal Affective Disorder and for an unknown reason, people have more heart attacks. There is also the hope, optimistically, that with more daylight kids will spend more time outside getting exercise.
image courtesy of The Farmers Almanac
Does Senate approval mean that Daylight Savings Time is a "done deal?" Sadly, No. In order for a bill to become a law both houses of Congress (Senate and the House of Representatives) have to approve it. It doesn't make any difference which house initiates the bill. In this case, it was begun and approved in the Senate so it has to go to the House of Representatives for their approval. In some cases, each House will submit its own version of a bill, neither willing to give in to the other. That's when it takes months and sometimes years to get a bill passed into law.
Once the bill has passed both houses of Congress it still isn't a law. The President has the last say. The President can sign the bill making it a law immediately. He can choose not to sign it within 10 days (Sundays excluded) and let it become law without his approval. This rarely happens. The third way is for the President to veto (say NO very loudly.) Then the bill goes back to the house which initiated it followed by the other house. They can discard the bill, change it, or if each of the two houses approves it as originally submitted and they have two-thirds of their members approve it, it becomes law without the President's approval.
Daylight Savings Time? I can't see any reason why it wouldn't pass both houses and be approved by the President. Please excuse my skepticism but if it passes, the government can say it did something for us.