Reconcilliation

A number of points order apply to budget reconciliation legislation. These points of order are intended to ensure that the reconciliation process is used only for certain purposes. If a point or order applies to a reconciliation bill considered in the Senate, the reconciliation bill effectively loses its special filibuster-proof status. This is because points of order that apply to a reconciliation bill in the Senate require a three-fifths vote to waive, while the reconciliation bill requires only a majority vote to pass.

The "Byrd Rule" point of order (313) applies to provisions in a reconciliation bill (or amendments) that do not have as their primary effect reducing or increasing federal revenues or spending. The Byrd Rule point of order also applies to any amendment to reconciliation legislation that would increase the deficit in any one year beyond the years covered by the budget resolution. The point of order does not prevent consideration of the underlying bill, only the offending provision. A separate point of order (202(a)) applies to reconciliation legislation or an amendment that would increase the federal budget deficit or reduce a revenue surplus in the upcoming fiscal year, the next six or the next eleven fiscal years. Another point of order (310(d)(2)) applies to any amendment to reconciliation legislation that would prevent the reconciliation bill from meeting spending or revenue instructions adopted in the budget resolution.