21 April, 2018
Democratic Senator from Illinois Tammy Duckworth carries her 10-day old daughter Maile Pearl Bowlsbey onto the Senate floor to cast her vote against James Bridenstine to be the next NASA administrator in the US Capitol in Washington, DC, USA, 19 April 2018. And it's all thanks to IL senator and mom of two Tammy Duckworth, the first us senator to give birth while in office, who pushed for the rule change.
Duckworth wants to be able to continue to vote on issues as she takes care of her infant daughter.
"You know, hopefully we're not setting expectations too high for her", Duckworth said, laughing.
The request to change Senate rules was made by Sen.
So what began as a partisan fight over a Trump nominee ended as a "kissy-kissy" moment over a newborn baby girl and her mother, the first senator to give birth in office. Her colleagues crowded around to see.
A day after the U.S. Senate unanimously agreed to a rule change allowing infants on to the floor of the chamber during votes, new mom Sen.
Then came the concerns about whether there would be diaper changes.
Rachel Pike-Norton, a constituent who voted for Duckworth in Chicago, had a baby just 12 weeks before the senator. So Duckworth raised a rare question that split her colleagues more along generational lines than well-worn partisan ones, according to interviews Wednesday.
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The idea was for Duckworth to vote only if she was needed to break a tie. "So times are finally changing, and we gotta get with it".
So the Illinois Democrat, now on maternity leave, proposed that babies be allowed into the chamber.
Lawmakers in the United States Senate may now bring their young babies with them to work. Women are still vastly underrepresented in the Senate even though there's a record 23 women serving. "Can I not do my job?"
As the first woman with a disability and the first Thailand-born person to be elected to Congress, Duckworth continues to make history as now the first mom to bring her child to the Senate floor.
"Breast-feeding is a normal and natural thing that women have been doing since time immemorial, and in that sense, it's quite odd to me that it caused such a sensation", Waters said.
Sen. Pat Roberts, also a Republican, said that while he would not oppose the change, "I don't think [it's] necessary".
The Senate changed its rules in 1977 to allow service dogs, wheelchairs and interpreters on the floor.
After calling attention to outdated Senate rules that made little to no accommodations for lawmakers who are parents, Sen.