Babies of senators now welcome in Senate chamber

Babies of senators now welcome in Senate chamber

Not just anybody can come onto the floor of the Senate — not even babies. Prompted by the first sitting senator with a newborn, the Senate has decided to allow the babies of its members into the chamber, but not before some coaxing.

Illinois Democrat Tammy Duckworth gave birth to a daughter on April 9. Minnesota Democrat Amy Klobuchar says private assurances that babies wouldn’t disrupt the Senate were offered to members of both parties.

Still, there were reservations. Kansas Republican Pat Roberts noted that a senator could vote from a nearby lounge and said allowing babies on the floor wasn’t necessary. Utah Republican Orrin Hatch asked, “What if there are 10 babies on the floor of the Senate?”

In the end, no senator objected to the rules change.