Davidson leads charge to oppose dangerous legislation during inaugural meeting of Pa. House State Government Committee

HARRISBURG, Jan. 13 – The House State Government Committee today reorganized for the 2021-22 legislative session with Chairwoman Margo Davidson, D-Delaware, at the helm on behalf of the Democratic Caucus. 

Chairwoman Davidson is the only Black woman serving as chair of a legislative committee this term. This was Davidson’s first time chairing a House standing committee on behalf of Democrats and today’s committee members were the first in Pennsylvania history to participate in committee debate remotely via video. 

According to Davidson, minutes after the committee reorganized, the Republican majority called up two bills that could negatively change Pennsylvania’s constitution in ways that would endanger the commonwealth by severely restricting the process by which Pennsylvania funds public emergency response across the state. 

One bill would restrict a governor’s ability to handle a declared disaster, such as the COVID-19 pandemic (H.B. 55) or any other future disaster, while also immediately ending the current shutdown and making Pennsylvania ineligible for Federal funds or disaster relief support. The other bill (H.B. 71) would set arbitrary, inflexible spending limits just ahead of the state budget negotiations. 

“I am excited to welcome both new and returning members to the House State Government Committee. This year promises to include a busy agenda for the committee, with two dozen hearings on the election code already planned, and further work to be done on legislative redistricting and voter rights. I look forward to working with our new and returning committee members to protect the rights and lives of Pennsylvania's citizens.

“We must be vigilant in our duties as legislators, and guard against efforts to attack our democracy's integrity or disenfranchise our voters. Further, we must work together to ensure that the governor and our commonwealth have the resources and flexibility to combat the COVID-19 crisis and get Pennsylvanians back to work. Today’s reckless attempts to alter the state constitution are only one example of the challenges and battle ahead. 

With a decade of proven results representing the 164th Legislative District in Delaware County, Chairwoman Davidson said that she will continue to fight to safeguard the rights, health, and safety of Pennsylvania’s residents by opposing dangerous measures like those proposed in committee today.