For once, politicians are finally thinking about pets and easily confused adults (me) across the United States. On Tuesday, the Senate passed a bill to make Daylight Saving Time permanent — and they did so by unanimous consent. That means we’re one step closer to never again having to remember what the hell it means when we “fall back” or “spring ahead.”
Known as the Sunshine Protection Act, the bill is co-sponsored by Republican Sen. Marco Rubio (Fla.). The law means you don’t have to worry about Daylight Saving Time taking away an hour of daylight in your afternoons and evenings during the winter. However, you will lose an hour in the mornings.
Per The Hill, Rubio claims the bill provides a lot of benefits, like a decrease in seasonal depression. He also claims it will led to a reduction in crime because “there is light later in the day.” That weird point aside, the bill is backed by a Democratic co-sponsor, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.), who thinks it would be wildly popular in his home state.
“Many people spend months looking forward to this weekend, when clocks will jump ahead an hour and winter starts to fade,” Whitehouse said, per The Providence Journal. “It’s time for Congress to take up our bipartisan legislation to make Daylight Saving Time permanent and brighten the coldest months with an extra hour of afternoon sun.”
This isn’t the first time the United States has considered making Daylight Saving Time permanent. During World War II, switching to permanent Daylight Saving Time was done to save fuel. The government tried doing it again in the 1970s, but people ended up hating it. Interestingly, according to The New York Times’s archive, 79% of Americans approved of the change to start. But three months later, approval dropped to 42%. The Washingtonian reported that during a congressional speech in January 1974, Democratic Sen. Dick Clark of Iowa said, “It’s time to recognize that we may well have made a mistake.”
So, maybe we’re on our way to making the same mistake again. But the bill still needs to pass the House before President Biden could sign it into law. In the meantime, I can’t help but think my cats will be thrilled to not have to wait an extra hour for their breakfast all winter.