While the House is required to initiate reconciliation bills, Hoyer said that doesnt mean the House has to pass the Senate bill before passing a reconciliation package to amend it.
However, he said the president would have to sign the Senate bill before the reconciliation package.
But, perhaps complicating matters further, another senior Senate Democratic aide said the Senate Parliamentarian has already told leaders that a reconciliation bill must amend a law, not a bill that has not yet been signed by the president.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.