Senate nixes Obama-era drug testing rule
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The Senate voted Tuesday to roll back an Obama-era regulation that limits who can be drug tested while applying for unemployment benefits.

Senators voted along party lines 51-48 under the Congressional Review Act to cut the rule. The legislation already passed the House and now heads to President Trump's desk, where he is expected to sign it.

Under a 2012 law, states can only drug test individuals applying for unemployment benefits if they were previously fired for drug use or work in jobs for which workers are regularly drug tested. The Obama rule specified a list of jobs the could be included under the law.

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Republicans have argued the Obama regulation amounted to a federal overreach that limited a state's ability to determine its own drug testing policy.

"As we saw too often, the Obama administration went beyond its legal authority in creating legislation that limits the role of state governments," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellLawmakers push one-week stopgap funding bill Overnight Finance: Inside Trump's tax plan | White House mulls order pulling out of NAFTA | New fight over Dodd-Frank begins Dem rep: Trump's tax plan as believable as 'magic, unicorns or Batman' MORE (R-Ky.) said from the Senate floor.

He added that the Labor Department "should go back to the drawing board."

The Trump administration has also voiced support for getting rid of the rule, arguing its definition of occupations is too narrow and limits a states ability to drug test.

But Democrats warn that by nixing the rule lawmakers will be allowing states the ability to randomly drug test workers who through no fault of their own are unemployed, poor or in need of public assistance.

"This idea that there is a presumption of irresponsible conduct and guilt is just baseless," Sen. Ron WydenRon WydenTrump goes big on tax reform Trump gets tough with Canada Five things to watch for in Trump’s tax plan MORE (D-Ore.) said from the Senate floor. 

Republicans are using the Congressional Review Act to take a hammer to Obama-era rules. The law allows Congress to overturn some regulations with only a simple majority.