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WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, Rep. Dean Phillips (MN-03) joined Reps. Derek Kilmer (WA-06), William Timmons (SC-04), and Joe Morelle (NY-25) in introducing the Congressional Evidence-Based Policymaking Resolution, a bipartisan resolution to establish a bipartisan Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking to facilitate the integration of robust data in the legislative process.

“Good policy is backed by good data. It’s past time we created better mechanisms to help policymakers make decisions using a common set of facts and data,” said Rep. Phillips. “Doing so will not only lead to better policy outcomes but will help restore trust in the policymaking process among an American public that has lost faith in its government.”

“We’ve got to get government working better for the folks I represent,” said Rep. Kilmer. “Sound evidence and data are needed to better design policies, measure their impacts, and ultimately improve outcomes for the American people. I am excited to see the impact that the Congressional Evidence-Based Policymaking Resolution can have to make government work better and to restore public trust.”

“To tackle some of our nation’s largest problems, we must engage in evidence-based policymaking in a collaborative manner from a position of mutual respect,” said Rep. Timmons. “To achieve this, we need the best available data for evidence-based policymaking. I am proud to join my colleagues to reintroduce the Congressional Evidence-Based Policymaking Resolution to help us craft legislation using data and facts and ultimately solve some of the biggest challenges facing the American people.”

The proposed Commission will consider suggestions pertaining to evidence-based policymaking, including:

  • Incorporating outcomes measurement, rigorous impact analysis, and implementation-aligned language into the lawmaking process;
  • Enhancing Congress's ability to access and use real-time, structured, and machine-readable data;
  • Evaluating the need for a congressional Chief Data Officer, including their potential duties and placement;
  • Boosting data expertise in Congress through the inclusion of technologists, data scientists, and engineers; and
  • Encouraging Federal agencies to generate evidence on the effectiveness of major new programs.

The Congressional Evidence-Based Policymaking Resolution, which draws on the landmark 2016 Evidence-Based Policy Commission and the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act of 2018, is endorsed by the Bipartisan Policy Center, Data Foundation/Coalition, Demand Progress, Foundation for American Innovation, Mathematica, Results for America, Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP), and USAFacts.

“For Congress to design effective policy that solves problems and meets the needs of the American people, it will need to incorporate more and better data and evidence into lawmaking,” said Michael Thorning, Director of Structural Democracy, Bipartisan Policy Center. “Congress needs to catch up to the executive branch and the private sector when it comes to evidence use. A Commission on Evidence-based Policymaking—as this resolution calls for—is a crucial first step toward that goal, which is why this proposal has garnered and deserves notable bipartisan support.”

“Congress has the difficult task of gathering information about every government program, assessing its performance, weighing its priorities, allocating resources effectively, and constantly looking for ways to improve its work,” said Nick Hart, President and CEO, Data Foundation. “This Commission will help Congress bring evidence and data into the legislative process, like the 2016 [Ryan-Murray] Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking did for federal agencies, and improve the public's trust in Congress.”

“This resolution to establish a bipartisan, bicameral Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking would lay the groundwork for future reforms to improve government efficiency and effectiveness for American taxpayers,” said Dan Lips, Head of Policy, Foundation for American Innovation. “Establishing this commission should be a priority for Congress to identify potential cost savings and efficiencies to address the nation’s growing fiscal challenges.”

“When the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act was signed into law nearly five years ago, it paved the way for a broader federal data strategy,” said Paul Decker, President and CEO, Mathematica. “Thanks to the leadership of Representatives Kilmer and Timmons, this new bipartisan resolution will help ensure that evidence-based policymaking is part of our government’s promise to be a good steward of our collective resources—to invest in what works and fix what doesn’t.”

“We enthusiastically endorse the Establishing the Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking resolution,” said Michele Jolin, CEO and Co-Founder, Results for America. “Federal policy that builds and uses evidence has the power to dramatically improve the impact of federal dollars and make fast progress on our toughest challenges.  Results for America was an early and strong supporter of the U.S. Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking and the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act of 2018 and supports this exciting new effort to build on that progress.”

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