Name: Brian Bilbray


Congress: California, District: 50, Republican


Cumulative Freedom Index Score: 53%


Status: Former Member of the House

Score Breakdown:
50% (112th Congress: 2011-2012); 69% (111th Congress: 2009-2010); 63% (110th Congress: 2007-2008); 50% (109th Congress: 2005-2006); 41% (106th Congress: 1999-2000)

Key Votes:



H.J.Res. 117: Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2013
Vote Date: September 13, 2012Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Continuing Resolution. House Joint Resolution 117 would provide continuing appropriations for the federal government from October 1, 2012 through March 27, 2013. This would amount to an annualized rate of $1.047 trillion in "discretionary" spending for regular appropriations, and would include a 0.6 percent increase in funding for most federal programs and agencies. This continuing resolution would also provide nearly $100 billion in war funding and $6.4 billion in advance disaster relief funds.

To put this appropriations bill into perspective, consider what the Congressional Budget Office reported on August 22, 2012: "For fiscal year 2012 (which ends on September 30), the federal budget deficit will total $1.1 trillion, CBO estimates, marking the fourth year in a row with a deficit of more than $1 trillion." This deficit is based on the CBO's estimates of $2.435 trillion in federal revenue and $3.563 trillion in federal outlays for fiscal 2012. Therefore, 32 percent of every federal dollar spent in 2012 had to be borrowed. For 2011, 2010, and 2009 the shortfall has been 36, 37, and 40 percent respectively.

The House passed H. J. Res. 117 on September 13, 2012 by a vote of 329 to 91 (Roll Call 579). We have assigned pluses to the nays because passage of this mammoth continuing resolution provided a way for Congress to perpetuate its fiscally irresponsible, unconstitutional spending habits with a minimum of accountability to its constituents.



H.R. 5949: FISA Amendments Act Reauthorization Act of 2012
Vote Date: September 12, 2012Vote: AYEBad Vote.
FISA. The proposed FISA Amendments Act Reauthorization Act of 2012 (H.R. 5949) would reauthorize for five years, through 2017, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which governs electronic surveillance of foreign terrorism suspects. The law allows warrantless surveillance of foreign targets who may be communicating with people in the United States, provided that the secret FISA court approves surveillance procedures.

The Senate passed H.R. 5949 on September 12, 2012 by a vote of 301 to 118 (Roll Call 569). We have assigned pluses to the nays because warrantless surveillance is unconstitutional and violates privacy and individual liberty. While ostensibly carried out only on "foreign suspects" communicating with U.S. citizens, it is difficult to imagine this surveillance not extending to U.S. citizens.



H.R. 8: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012
Vote Date: August 1, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Tax Cut Extension. In view of the looming "fiscal cliff" of expiring tax cuts, tax increases, and automatic spending cuts set to take place January 1, 2013, Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.) offered a bill (H.R. 8) to extend all of the expiring Bush-era tax rates for one year. The bill would effectively tie alternative minimum tax exemption amounts to inflation in 2012 and 2013; extend the so-called marriage penalty-tax relief, the $1,000 child tax credit, and the 15-percent top tax rate on dividends and capital gains; and keep the estate tax at its current levels.

The House passed the bill on August 1, 2012, by a vote of 256 to 171 (Roll Call 545). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because extending the tax cuts keeps more money in the hands of citizens, where it can be invested into the economy, thus spurring economic growth. Of course, the deficits need to be eliminated, but the way to accomplish this is to cut spending, not increase taxes.



On Motion to Suspend the Rules and Pass H.R. 459: Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2012
Vote Date: July 25, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Federal Reserve Audit. Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) introduced a bill (H.R. 459) to require a full audit of the board of governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Reserve banks by the comptroller general of the United States.

The House passed the bill on July 25, 2012 by a vote of 327 to 98 (Roll Call 513). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the Federal Reserve System, essentially a cartel of private banks functioning as a central bank, is unconstitutional and is responsible for much of the nation's current financial problems via its control of money and credit. An audit of the Fed would shed light on its otherwise secretive practices and perhaps open the door for its eventual abolishment.



H.Amdt. 1416 to H.R. 5856: An amendment to prohibit the use of funds used in contravention of section 7 of title 1, United States Code.
Vote Date: July 19, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Defense of Marriage Act. Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) introduced an amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act (H.R. 5856) "to prohibit the use of funds used in contravention of section 7 of title 1, United States Code." Section 7 of title 1 of the U.S. Code is better known as the Defense of Marriage Act.

When Rep. King offered his amendment on the floor of the House on July 19, he explained: "What we've seen since the passage of the Defense of Marriage Act is an effort on the part of the executive branch to undermine, I believe, marriage between one man and one woman within our military ranks.... Congress directs and acts within the authority of article I of the Constitution, our legislative authority, and the President of the United States, or his executives who are empowered by him, seek to undermine the law of the United States, instead of coming here to this Congress and asking for the law to be changed, or simply accepting the idea that they've taken an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States and the rule of law, and to take care, under article II, section 3, that the laws be faithfully executed."

The House adopted King's amendment on July 19, 2012 by a vote of 247 to 166 (Roll Call 487). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the Constitution grants "all legislative powers" exclusively to Congress in Article I, Section 1 and requires the president to "take care that the laws be faithfully executed" in Article II, Section 3.



H.Amdt. 1414 to H.R. 5856: An amendment to reduce appropriations made in Title IX of the bill by $20,843,869,000. The reduction shall not apply to the following accounts 1) Defense Health Program; 2) Drug Interdiction and Counter-Drug Activities, Defense; 3) Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Fund; and 4) Office of the Inspector General.
Vote Date: July 18, 2012Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Afghanistan Withdrawal (Defense Appropriations Reduction). During consideration of the Defense appropriations bill for fiscal 2013 (H.R. 5856), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) proposed an amendment to cut overseas military spending by almost $21 billion. The intent behind the amendment was to allow enough funding for an orderly withdrawal from the unpopular war in Afghanistan but not enough to continue the conflict. According to Rep. Lee, the original bill includes over $85 billion for the war in Afghanistan.

The House rejected Lee's amendment on July 18, 2012 by a vote of 107 to 312 (Roll Call 485). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the massive expenditure on undeclared foreign wars and nation building is unconstitutional and unaffordable.



On Motion to Suspend the Rules and Pass H.R. 6018: Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Year 2013
Vote Date: July 17, 2012Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Foreign Relations Authorization. The Foreign Relations Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (H.R. 6018) authorizes $9 billion for the State Department's diplomatic and consular programs, $1.6 billion for dues to international organizations (about $0.6 billion for UN regular budget dues and about $1 billion in contributions to 43 other UN-system, regional, and non-UN organizations), and $1.8 billion for contributions for UN peacekeeping activities. The United States is the largest contributor to UN dues and peacekeeping, paying 22 percent of total UN regular dues and 27 percent of UN peacekeeping operations.

When the U.S. Senate approved U.S. participation in the United Nations by a vote of 65 to 7 on December 4, 1945, it violated the Constitution by ceding our national sovereignty regarding engaging in wars to the United Nations. Whereas the Constitution grants the power "to declare war" exclusively to Congress in Article I, Section 8, the UN Charter grants this power to the UN's Security Council.

The House passed H.R. 6018 on July 17, 2012 by a vote of 333 to 61 (Roll Call 469). We have assigned pluses to the nays because U.S. participation in the United Nations involves an unconstitutional delegation of our national sovereignty to the UN.



H.R. 6079: Repeal of Obamacare Act
Vote Date: July 11, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
ObamaCare Repeal. The Repeal of Obamacare Act (H.R. 6079) would repeal both the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111-148) and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (Public Law 111-152), known collectively as ObamaCare, and the provisions of law amended or repealed by these two acts would be restored or revived as if such acts had not been enacted.

Despite the Supreme Court's June 28 decision upholding the constitutionality of the individual mandate of ObamaCare, a careful reading of the legislative powers granted to Congress in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution does not reveal any legislative power to fund or regulate healthcare.

The House passed H.R. 6079 on July 11, 2012 by a vote of 244 to 185 (Roll Call 460). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because ObamaCare is an unconstitutional government takeover of nearly 20 percent of our nation's economy.



H.Res. 711: Recommending that the House of Representatives find Eric H. Holder, Jr., Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice, in contempt of Congress for refusal to comply with a subpoena duly issued by the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
Vote Date: June 28, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Eric Holder Contempt Resolution. After Attorney General Eric Holder refused to comply with a subpoena issued by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform to provide documents regarding the "Operation Fast and Furious" gun-walking scandal, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) introduced a resolution (H. Res. 711) to hold him in contempt of Congress.

The House passed Rep. Issa's resolution on June 28, 2012 by a vote of 255 to 67 (Roll Call 441). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because Holder's refusal to comply with a subpoena issued by Congress is a clear violation of the constitutional principle of separation of powers, and as a member of the executive branch he essentially "thumbed his nose" at the legislative branch.



H.Amdt. 1266 to H.R. 5855: An amendment to prohibit the use of funds to be used to finalize, implement, administer, or enforce the "Morton Memos". The term "Morton Memos" refers to 1) Policy Number 10072.1, published on March 2, 2011; 2) Policy Number 10075.1, published on June 17, 2011; 3) Policy Number 10076.1, published on June 17, 2011.
Vote Date: June 7, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Immigration Enforcement. During consideration of the fiscal 2013 Homeland Security appropriations bill (H.R. 5855), Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) introduced an amendment "to prohibit the use of funds to be used to finalize, implement, administer, or enforce" Immigration and Customs Enforcement memos (known as the Morton memos) regarding prosecutorial discretion to prioritize the removal of certain illegal immigrants.

A few weeks after the vote on this amendment, Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.) sent U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder a letter demanding answers regarding the administration's use of prosecutorial discretion, often referred to as "administrative amnesty," to certain illegal aliens up to the age of 30. Barletta wrote: "When similar measures that would implement these same policies were presented to Congress, Congress rejected them. The implementation of the new immigration policy that is contrary to the expressed will of the Congress violates the Constitution."

The House adopted King's amendment on June 7, 2012 by a vote of 238 to 175 (Roll Call 363). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the Obama administration's use of prosecutorial discretion to provide amnesty to illegal immigrants violates the constitutional principle of separation of powers. According to Article I, Section 1, "all legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States." In particular, Congress is granted the power "to establish a uniform rule of naturalization" in Article I, Section 8. In contrast, Article II, Section 3 states that the president "shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed."



H.Amdt.1127 to H.R.4310: An amendment numbered 46 printed in House Report 112-485 to strike section 1022 of the FY2012 NDAA and amend Section 1021 of same Act to eliminate indefinite military detention of any person detained under AUMF authority in U.S., territories or possessions by providing immediate transfer to trial and proceedings by a court established under Article III of the Constitution of the United states or by an appropriate State court.
Vote Date: May 18, 2012Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Indefinite Detention. Detainee-related language in the National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4310) is so sweeping that American citizens accused of being terrorists can be detained by the U.S. military and held indefinitely without habeas corpus and without even being tried and found guilty in a court of law.

Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.) offered an amendment to strike this language from the bill, but the House rejected Smith's amendment on May 18, 2012 by a vote of 182 to 238 (Roll Call 270). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the War on Terror must not be allowed to destroy constitutional legal protections, including the issuance of a warrant based on probable cause (Fourth Amendment) and the right to a trial (Sixth Amendment).



H.R. 2072: Export-Import Bank Reauthorization Act of 2012
Vote Date: May 9, 2012Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Export-Import Bank. This legislation (H.R. 2072) reauthorized the U.S. Export-Import Bank for two years and increased the agency's lending cap from $100 billion to $140 billion. The bank issues loans and loan guarantees to foreign governments or companies for the purchase of U.S. products.

The House passed H.R. 2072 on May 9, 2012 by a vote of 330 to 93 (Roll Call 224). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government has no constitutional authority risking taxpayers' money to provide loans and terms that the private sector considers too risky to provide. Indeed, U.S. government-backed export financing is a form of corporate welfare, and if the Ex-Im Bank goes bust (as happened to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae), the taxpayers will get stuck holding the bag.



H.Amdt.1078 to H.R.5326: An amendment to prohibit the use of funds to be used to enforce section 526 of the Energy Independence Security Act.
Vote Date: May 9, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
National Ocean Policy. During consideration of the Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill (H.R. 5326), Rep. Bill Flores (R-Texas) offered an amendment that would bar the use of funds in the bill to implement an executive order signed by President Obama in July 2010 calling for a national ocean policy. According to a press release on May 9 by the House Natural Resources Committee, Rep. Flores stated: "The National Ocean Policy was formed without congressional authority and would be run by unaccountable and unelected Washington bureaucrats. These proposed policy guidelines and processes have the potential to change the permitting criteria and requirements for a large number of economic sectors." Moreover, Obama's National Ocean Policy explicitly calls for "pursuing the United States' accession to the Law of the Sea Convention," also known as the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST).

The House adopted Flores' amendment on May 9, 2012 by a vote of 246 to 174 (Roll Call 234). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the Constitution does not empower the federal government to regulate the permitting criteria and other requirements of our nation's various economic sectors. Furthermore, ratifying the Law of the Sea Treaty would legitimize the UN's power grab over 70 percent of the Earth's surface and constitute a huge loss of our national sovereignty.



H.R. 3523: Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA)
Vote Date: April 26, 2012Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). This bill (H.R. 3523) would foster information sharing about cyber threats between the federal government and private businesses. Businesses that would participate in this sharing would be protected from lawsuits regarding this sharing of their customers' private information with the government. According to Violet Blue in an article posted on ZDNet.com on June 8, "Most people familiar with CISPA believe it will wipe out decades of consumer privacy protections and is primarily to give the US government unprecedented access to individuals' online data and communications."

The House passed H.R. 3523 on April 26, 2012 by a vote of 248 to 168 (Roll Call 192). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the CISPA bill would permit government access to the private information of citizens, in violation of the Fourth Amendment "right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures."



H.R. 5: Protecting Access to Healthcare Act
Vote Date: March 22, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
IPAB (Death Panel) Repeal. This legislation (H.R. 5) would repeal the provisions of the 2010 ObamaCare healthcare overhaul laws that established the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) responsible for curbing Medicare costs. It would restore previous law provisions to maintain the current Medicare spending review process. This bill is important because it would repeal the high-profile IPAB "death panel" provision of the unconstitutional ObamaCare law.

The IPAB Board would be made up of 15 unelected members chosen by the President. According to Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, the IPAB "could deny payment for certain care or medications, change the service options doctors have, and drive expensive, life-saving treatments out. Instead of discussing the options with your doctor, IPAB will be sitting at the controls in Washington making health decisions for you."

The House passed H.R. 5 on March 22, 2012 by a vote of 223 to 181 (Roll Call 126). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the IPAB provision of the ObamaCare law is clearly unconstitutional.



H.R. 3408: Alaskan Energy for American Jobs Act
Vote Date: February 16, 2012Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Oil and Gas Development; Keystone XL Pipeline. This bill (H.R. 3408) would open up part of Alaska's resource-rich Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas development. It would also expand lease sales for drilling to include areas off the Southern California and mid-Atlantic coasts and in the Gulf of Mexico. And it would provide for approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, assigning the permitting authority to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and deeming the project approved if the FERC fails to act.

The House passed H.R. 3408 on February 16, 2012 by a vote of 237 to 187 (Roll Call 71). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the federal government should allow entrepreneurs to develop energy resources, rather than deny access to the resources.



H.R. 3521: Expedited Legislative Line-Item Veto and Rescissions Act of 2012
Vote Date: February 8, 2012Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Line-item Veto. This bill (H.R. 3521) would allow the President to rescind all or part of any dollar amount of funding for discretionary spending items in enacted appropriations bills. Although both houses of Congress would have to approve any such rescissions, they would be forced to do so very quickly by the bill's expedited procedures, including a prohibition on amendments in both Houses and filibusters in the Senate.

This bill dramatically and unilaterally enhances the power of the executive branch. Note that Article I, Section 1 and Article I, Section 7, Clauses 2 and 3, of the U.S. Constitution vest Congress with all legislative powers. Any bill that shifts legislative power away from Congress and to the President is violating the constitutionally defined separation of powers for the legislative and executive branches. A similar line-item veto law was passed when Clinton was President. That one was found to be unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

The House passed H.R. 3521 on February 8, 2012 by a vote of 254 to 173 (Roll Call 46). We have assigned pluses to the nays because providing any form of line-item veto power to the President violates the Constitution's separation of powers.



H.J.Res. 98: Relating to the disapproval of the President
Vote Date: January 18, 2012Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Debt Limit Disapproval. The debt deal passed by Congress in August 2011 immediately raised the national debt limit by $400 billion, while also allowing the President to raise the ceiling by an additional $500 billion unless a resolution of disapproval is enacted. Should these increases in borrowing authority prove insufficient, the debt deal even allowed the President to raise the debt ceiling by another $1.2 to $1.5 trillion subject to a resolution of disapproval.

Last year, President Obama requested the additional $500 billion debt-limit increase, and Congress failed to block the request. Though the resolution of disapproval was passed by the House, it was rejected by the Senate.

This year, Obama requested raising the debt ceiling an additional $1.2 trillion, and the House tried to block the increase via a resolution of disapproval (House Joint Resolution 98). The House passed H. J. Res. 98 on January 18, 2012 by a vote of 239 to 176 (Roll Call 4). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the federal government should live within its means and because most of the spending responsible for the ballooning national debt is unconstitutional.



H.R. 2055: Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2012
Vote Date: December 16, 2011Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Omnibus Appropriations. This catch-all legislative package (H.R. 2055), which would provide $915 billion in discretionary appropriations for fiscal 2012, is comprised of nine appropriations bills for fiscal 2012 that Congress failed to complete separately - Defense ($518.8 billion), Energy-Water ($32.1 billion), Financial Services ($21.5 billion), Homeland Security ($41.3 billion), Interior-Environment ($29.2 billion), Labor-HHS-Education ($156.3 billion), Legislative Branch ($4.3 billion), State-Foreign Operations ($33.5 billion), and Military Construction-VA ($73.7 billion).

The House adopted the final version of this legislation (known as a conference report) on December 16, 2011 by a vote of 296 to 121 (Roll Call 941). We have assigned pluses to the nays because many of the bill's spending programs -- e.g., education, housing, foreign aid, etc. -- are unconstitutional. Moreover, passing this mammoth appropriations bill in light of the ongoing trillion-dollar annual deficits is grossly fiscally irresponsible. Furthermore, packaging the appropriations bills for so many large federal agencies into one mega-bill greatly reduces the accountability of the Congressmen to their constituents.



H.R. 1633: Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act of 2011
Vote Date: December 8, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act. This legislation (H.R. 1633) would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from "revising any national ambient air quality standard applicable to coarse particulate matter" for one year. The intent behind the legislation is to temporarily block the EPA from imposing tougher coarse-particulates regulations that could restrict farm dust from agricultural and livestock operations.

The House passed H.R. 1633 on December 8, 2011 by a vote of 268 to 150 (Roll Call 912). We have assigned pluses to the yeas not only because of the harm regulation of farm dust would do to the agricultural sector, but also because the federal government has no constitutional authority to impose such regulations.



H.R. 10: Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act of 2011
Vote Date: December 7, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Congressional Approval of Major Regulations. This legislation (H.R. 10) is entitled the "Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act" and is also known as the REINS Act. It would prohibit the executive branch from putting into effect major rules -- rules having an economic impact of at least $100 million per year - until those rules are approved by Congress. The intent of the bill is to rein in the executive from usurping legislative powers via executive fiat.

The House passed the REINS Act on December 7, 2011 by a vote of 241 to 184 (Roll Call 901). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because all legislative powers in the Constitution are vested in Congress, not the executive branch. Mandatory rules issued by the executive branch may not be called laws, but they have the same effect as laws, and what they are called does not change the reality.



H.R. 2112: Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2012
Vote Date: November 17, 2011Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Agriculture-Commerce-Justice-Science-Transportation-HUD Appropriations. This so-called "minibus" bill (H.R. 2112) combined into a single package three of the regular appropriations bills -- Agriculture, Commerce-Justice-Science, and Transportation-Housing and Urban Development (HUD) - for fiscal 2012. Just the "discretionary" spending in the minibus for the three-bill package totaled $128.1 billion. In addition, there is the spending that the government deems "mandatory." In the case of the Agriculture bill that was incorporated into the minibus, for instance, the appropriations include $116.8 billion in mandatory spending in addition to $19.8 billion in discretionary spending. The so-called mandatory spending in the Agriculture bill includes nearly $99 billion for food and nutrition programs.

The House passed the final version of this bill (known as a conference report) on November 17, 2011 by a vote of 298 to 121 (Roll Call 857). We have assigned pluses to the nays because Congress has no constitutional authority to fund many of the programs in the bill, including the farm programs, food programs, and housing (under HUD).



H.R. 358: Protect Life Act
Vote Date: October 13, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Abortion Funding. H.R. 358 would prohibit any federal funding to be used to purchase health insurance plans covering abortion. It would also require that any insurance companies offering plans via the ObamaCare-created state exchanges that include abortion coverage offer identical plans minus the abortion coverage.

The House passed H.R. 358 on October 13, 2011 by a vote of 251 to 172 (Roll Call 789). We have assigned pluses to the yeas not only because the government should not be subsidizing the killing of innocent human life, but also because there is no constitutional authority for the government to manage or finance the healthcare sector.



H.R. 3080: United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act
Vote Date: October 12, 2011Vote: AYEBad Vote.
South Korea Trade Agreement. On a single day - October 12, 2011 - both the House and Senate approved three separate trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama. These measures are three more in a series of "free-trade agreements" intended to transfer the power to regulate trade (and eventually other powers too) to super-national arrangements via a step-by-step process. NAFTA is a prime example of such an arrangement. So is the developing continental government now known as the European Union, which is an outgrowth of a free-trade arrangement once called the Common Market. In fact, the Common Market-EU trajectory to regional governance served as a model for the formation of NAFTA.

The South Korea agreement, to quote Congressional Quarterly, is "considered the most economically important trade deal since the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement." For this reason, the "Freedom Index" editors selected this vote over the other two (Colombia and Panama) for inclusion in this index.

The House passed H.R. 3080, the measure to implement the South Korea trade agreement, on October 12, 2011 by a vote of 278 to 151 (Roll Call 783). We have assigned pluses to the nays because agreements such as this one are intended to transfer trade (and other) powers to super-national arrangements binding the United States, despite the fact that under the Constitution only Congress has the power "to regulate commerce with foreign nations."



H.R. 2401: Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act of 2011
Vote Date: September 23, 2011Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Cross-state Air-pollution Rules. During consideration of legislation (H.R. 2401) regarding the regulatory impact of EPA regulations, Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) proposed an amendment that would delay cross-state air-pollution rules until at least 2015. The amendment would delay by at least two years sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions standards for power plants and allow the companies at least five years to comply after the rules are issued.

The House passed Whitfield's amendment on September 23, 2011 by a vote of 234 to 188 (Roll Call 737). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the new EPA cross-state pollution rules will further damage the economy and also because the federal government has no constitutional authority to regulate power plant emissions.



H.R. 2587: Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act
Vote Date: September 15, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
National Labor Relations Board. Earlier this year Boeing, a longtime airplane manufacturer in the state of Washington, opened a production facility in South Carolina for its new 787 Dreamliner airplane. Although this development had been publicly announced in 2009, early this year the machinists union charged that Boeing's decision was unfair and asked the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to take action against Boeing. The NLRB complied by issuing a formal complaint as described in its press release of April 20, 2011: "National Labor Relations Board issues complaint against Boeing Company for unlawfully transferring work to a non-union facility."

Representative Tim Scott (R-S.C.) responded to the NLRB complaint by introducing H.R. 2587, the Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act, "To prohibit the National Labor Relations Board from ordering any employer to close, relocate, or transfer employment under any circumstance."

The House passed H.R. 2587 on September 15, 2011 by a vote of 238 to 186 (Roll Call 711). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the federal government has no constitutional authority to order a company to reinstate production or make certain investments at a given location, or to block a company's decision to relocate production.



H.J.RES 77: Relating to the disapproval of the President
Vote Date: September 14, 2011Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Debt Limit Disapproval. Under the debt deal passed by Congress in August, the debt ceiling was raised by $400 billion, and the President can raise the ceiling by an additional $500 billion unless a resolution of disapproval is enacted. President Obama decided to raise the national debt the full $900 billion, and legislation was introduced (House Joint Resolution 77) to block the $500 billion increase.

The House passed the resolution of disapproval on September 14, 2011 by a vote of 232 to 186 (Roll Call 706). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because piling on more and more debt is devastating to the economy, and the bulk of the federal government's spending spree is for unconstitutional programs.



H.AMDT. 579: An amendment to prohibit the use of funds for military operations in or against Libya except under a declaration of war against Libya pursuant to clause 11 in section 8 of article I of the Constitution.
Vote Date: August 7, 2011Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Libya. During consideration of the Defense appropriations bill, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) introduced an amendment to prohibit the use of funds in the bill to carry out military actions against Libya unless Congress declares war against Libya.

The Founding Fathers assigned this power to Congress because they did not want a single man deciding when to go to war. Yet President Obama usurped this congressional war-making authority by initiating offensive military actions against Libya without even asking advice from Congress, much less requesting the required declaration of war.

The House rejected the Kucinich amendment on July 8, 2011 by a vote of 169 to 251 (Roll Call 530). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because under Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution only Congress has the power "to declare war."



S. 365: Budget Control Act of 2011
Vote Date: August 1, 2011Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Debt Deal. This legislation (S. 365) provided for an immediate $400 billion increase in the national debt limit, while allowing the President to raise the ceiling an additional $500 billion unless Congress passes a resolution of disapproval.

This legislation also established a process for reducing future cumulative deficit projections by up to $2.4 trillion for fiscal years 2012 through 2021, including the establishment of a supercommittee tasked with recommending cuts totaling up to $1.5 trillion for the 10-year period. If the supercommittee were to fail in recommending at least $1.2 trillion in cuts (and, as we know, the supercommittee failed to recommend any cuts), then the legislation would trigger automatic cuts totaling up to $1.2 trillion over 10 years.

The debt-raising/deficit-cutting package created the appearance that Congress was doing something to rein in out-of-control spending. But in reality, the total national debt would still increase even if the entire dollar amount of cuts called for in the legislation were identified and enacted, since the cuts are not cuts in the absolute sense but cuts in future budget projections. The national debt would continue to go up, but not as fast as before, for the simple reason that cutting (say) $1.2 trillion over 10 years will not offset projected annual $1 trillion-plus deficits.

The House passed S. 365 on August 1, 2011 by a vote of 269 to 161 (Roll Call 690). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the debt deal allows both the national debt and spending to continue their upward trajectories. Moreover, the budget process established by the legislation is clearly unconstitutional since no Congress can bind the actions of future Congresses via the so-called automatic cuts.



H.R. 2417: Better Use of Light Bulbs Act
Vote Date: July 12, 2011Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Incandescent Light Bulbs. Incandescent light bulbs ranging from 40 to 100 watts will be phased out during 2012-2014 in accordance with the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (Public Law 110-140). The first size to be phased out in 2012 will be the 100-watt incandescent light bulb. The energy efficiency standards in PL 110-140 that will effectively ban the ubiquitous incandescent light bulb will leave the environmentally questionable (due to mercury content) compact fluorescent light bulbs as the only economical light bulb in the marketplace. However, this ban on incandescent light bulbs led to the introduction of H.R. 2417, a bill that would repeal the relevant sections of PL 110-140 so that the familiar incandescent light bulbs would continue to be available for purchase in the United States.

The House rejected H.R. 2417 on July 12, 2011 by a vote of 233 to 193 (Roll Call 563). The bill was brought to a vote under suspension of the rules, which required a two-thirds majority of those present and voting (284 in this case) for passage. We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the federal government has no constitutional authority to establish energy efficiency standards that would prevent the production, distribution, and consumer purchase of a previously perfectly acceptable and universally used product, such as the incandescent light bulb.



H.Con.Res. 51: Directing the President, pursuant to section 5(c) of the War Powers Resolution, to remove the United States Armed Forces from Libya
Vote Date: June 3, 2011Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Libya Troop Withdrawal. House Concurrent Resolution 51 would have directed President Obama, "pursuant to ... the War Powers Resolution, to remove the United States Armed Forces from Libya." The War Powers Resolution bars the President from militarily engaging the armed forces for more than 60 days without congressional approval. Obama had not sought congressional approval for undertaking military action in Libya. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), who sponsored H. Con. Res. 51, noted: "In the weeks leading up to the war, the administration had time to consult with the Arab League, the United Nations, the African Union, but apparently had no time to come to this Congress for approval."

The House rejected Kucinich's resolution on June 3, 2011 by a vote of 148 to 265 (Roll Call 412). We have assigned pluses to the yeas not merely because Obama's Libya deployment is now in violation of the War Powers Act's 60-day requirement for congressional authorization, but also because it violates the Constitution, which clearly assigns to Congress the power "to declare war."



S. 990: PATRIOT Sunsets Extension Act of 2011
Vote Date: May 26, 2011Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Patriot Act Extension. This legislation (S. 990) extended for four years three provisions of the Patriot Act that were set to expire: the "roving wiretap" provision that allows the federal government to wiretap any number of a suspect's telephone/ Internet connections without specifying what they will find or how many connections will be tapped; the "financial records" provision that allows the feds to seize "any tangible thing" that has "relevance" to an investigation; and the "lone wolf" provision that allows spying on non-U.S. citizens without a warrant. These provisions violate the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which requires that no warrants be issued "but upon probable cause" (a much higher standard than "relevance"), and that warrants must contain language "particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

The Patriot Act even allows the FBI to issue warrants called "National Security Letters" without going to a judge, though this provision was not set to expire and therefore was not part of this legislation.

The House passed the Patriot Act extension on May 26, 2011 by a vote of 250 to 153 (Roll Call 376). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the provisions that were extended, as well as the Patriot Act as a whole, violate the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.



H.R. 1229: Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act
Vote Date: May 11, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Offshore Drilling Leases. This bill (H.R. 1229) would modify the process for leasing permits for exploratory drilling in the Gulf of Mexico so as to remove bureaucratic foot-dragging impeding more offshore drilling. As summarized by Congressional Quarterly, H.R. 1229 "would require the Interior Department to decide on approval of an exploratory drilling permit application within 30 days, with the option of extending the review period up to 60 days. If the department fails to issue a ruling within 60 days, the application would be deemed approved."

The House passed H.R. 1229 on May 11, 2011 by a vote of 263 to 163 (Roll Call 309). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the federal government should not be impeding the exploration for and development of natural resources by entrepreneurs.



H.Con.Res. 35: Directing the Clerk of the House of Representatives to make a correction in the enrollment of H.R. 1473
Vote Date: April 14, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
ObamaCare Defunding. House Concurrent Resolution 35 would direct the House clerk to insert a section in the enrollment of H.R. 1473 (Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011) that would bar the use of funds made available in the bill to implement the provisions of the 2010 healthcare overhaul law. Since full repeal of the ObamaCare law had already been rejected in the Senate, this attempt to defund the implementation of ObamaCare for fiscal year 2011 was made.

The House adopted H. Con. Res. 35 on April 14, 2011 by a vote of 240 to 185 (Roll Call 270). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because there is no constitutional authority for the federal government to require individuals to purchase health insurance or to manage the healthcare industry.



H.Con.Res. 36: Directing the Clerk of the House of Representatives to make a correction in the enrollment of H.R. 1473
Vote Date: April 14, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Planned Parenthood Defunding. House Concurrent Resolution 36 would direct the House clerk to insert a section in the enrollment of H.R. 1473 (Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011) that would prohibit the use of any funding in the bill for Planned Parenthood.

The House adopted H. Con. Res. 36 on April 14, 2011 by a vote of 241 to 185 (Roll Call 271). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because Planned Parenthood is the nation's largest abortion provider, and government should not subsidize the killing of innocent human life. Moreover, under the Constitution, the federal government should not be subsidizing any private entity in the marketplace.



H.R. 910: Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011
Vote Date: April 7, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Greenhouse-gas Regulation. This bill (H.R. 910) would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse-gas emissions from stationary sources for the purpose of addressing climate change. The EPA claims that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are pollutants, and that these gases can therefore be regulated under the Clean Air Act -- even without the enactment of any legislation restricting greenhouse-gas emissions. Global-warming alarmists have tried to push such legislation though Congress, but have thus far been unsuccessful. Carbon dioxide, one of the EPA-defined greenhouse-gas pollutants, not only occurs naturally but is necessary for the existence of plant life.

The House passed H.R. 910 on April 7, 2011 by a vote of 255 to 172 (Roll Call 249). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because restricting greenhouse-gas emissions would be harmful to the economy, carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are not pollutants, and the federal government has no constitutional authority to limit such emissions.



H.R. 1076: To prohibit Federal funding of National Public Radio and the use of Federal funds to acquire radio content
Vote Date: March 17, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
NPR Funding Ban. This bill (H.R. 1076) would prohibit federal funding of National Public Radio (NPR). Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.), the bill's sponsor, said that "NPR can survive on its own" without federal funding. NPR funding has become a contentious issue because of its left-wing bias. However, NPR funding should also be debated because there is no constitutional authorization for the federal government to create or fund "public broadcasting," any more than there is authorization for the feds to bankroll a "public newspaper" in competition with a free press.

The House passed this bill on March 17, 2011 by a vote of 228 to 192 (Roll Call 192). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because federal funding of public broadcasting is unconstitutional.



H.R. 4: Comprehensive 1099 Taxpayer Protection and Repayment of Exchange Subsidy Overpayments Act of 2011
Vote Date: March 3, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
ObamaCare (1099 Reporting Requirement Repeal). This bill (H.R. 4) stripped the very unpopular 1099 reporting requirement out of ObamaCare. This was significant because it was the first component of ObamaCare to be repealed by Congress. This reporting requirement for businesses and real estate owners to file a 1099 form with the IRS for every vendor to whom they paid more than $600 a year had been added to the ObamaCare legislation as a way to raise $19 billion by reducing tax fraud; however, business organizations protested that the 1099 requirement would bury businesses in additional, costly paperwork.

The House passed H.R. 4 on March 3, 2011 by a vote of 314-112 (Roll Call 162). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the burdensome 1099 reporting requirement was added to the ObamaCare legislation as a way to help pay for this unconstitutional program.



H.Amdt. 117: Prohibit funds to pay dues to the United Nations
Vote Date: February 18, 2011Vote: NAYBad Vote.
UN Dues. During consideration of a continuing appropriations bill (H.R. 1) to fund government operations through the rest of the fiscal year ending on September 2011, Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.) offered an amendment to prohibit any funding in the bill from being used to pay for any dues to the United Nations.

The House rejected Broun's amendment on February 18, 2011 by a vote of 177 to 243 (Roll Call 107). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because stopping U.S. dues payments to the United Nations is a step toward getting the United States out of the UN. Our membership in the UN undermines U.S. sovereignty -- e.g., when the Security Council passes various resolutions, including resolutions calling for military intervention, that the United States is expected to enforce, irrespective of the U.S. Constitution or congressional powers.



H.R. 2: Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act
Vote Date: January 19, 2011Vote: AYEGood Vote.
ObamaCare Repeal. Since widespread opposition to ObamaCare propelled the Republicans to a substantial majority in the House in the 2010 elections, it was appropriate that the Republicans arranged for a vote on repealing ObamaCare very early in the first session of the 112th Congress. Dubbed the "Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act," H.R. 2 would repeal both the "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" (PL 111-148) and the "Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010" (PL 111-152), known collectively as ObamaCare. Passage of this repeal bill would be the best solution to the ObamaCare problem because it is worded to be effective as of the original date of enactment of PL 111-148 and 152 and would repeal both laws, as well as restore and revive the provisions of law that had been amended or repealed by ObamaCare, as if ObamaCare had never been enacted.

The House passed H.R. 2 on January 19, 2011 by a vote of 245-189 (Roll Call 14). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the 2010 healthcare overhaul law known as ObamaCare is thoroughly unconstitutional. There is no constitutional authority for the federal government to require individuals to purchase health insurance or to manage the healthcare industry.



Motion: Table the Appeal of the Ruling of the Chair
Vote Date: September 23, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Lame-duck Session. We are used to Congress convening "lame-duck" sessions of Congress in even-numbered years between the general elections in early November and the beginning of the new Congress on January 3 of the next year. We've had an unbroken string of lame-duck sessions every even-numbered year since 1998. Although these post-election sessions include many lawmakers who were either defeated or didn't run for reelection, what we call lame-duck sessions of Congress were actually business as usual for the first 140 years of our nation's history. However, the 20th Amendment to the Constitution in 1933 included two provisions to greatly reduce the time available to convene such sessions by moving the beginning date for new terms of Senators and Representatives from March 4 to January 3 of odd-numbered years and mandating that Congress begin meeting on January 3 each year.

Even though the time during which lame-duck sessions can be convened has been greatly shortened by the 20th Amendment, they are once again business as usual for Congress. Although lame-duck sessions are prohibited in 39 state legislatures, public sentiment so far has not been sufficiently mobilized to prohibit such sessions for Congress. The heart of the problem, of course, is that recently defeated and retired Senators and Representatives are still voting on legislation in these sessions, even though the voters have already elected their replacements. This problem is greatly heightened when a massive swing in voter sentiment leads to a change in which party controls one or both houses of Congress, which appears likely in November 2010.

The House agreed to a motion to table (kill) a draft resolution which would pledge that the House would not convene a lame-duck session between November 2, 2010 and January 3, 2011 on September 23, 2010 by a vote of 236-172 (Roll Call 534). We have assigned pluses to the nays because even though a lame-duck session is not unconstitutional, it undermines the representative government established by the Constitution.



H R 1586: To modernize the air traffic control system, improve the safety, reliability, and availability of transportation by air in the United States, provide for modernization of the air traffic control system, reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration, and for other purposes.
Vote Date: August 10, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Medicaid and Education Assistance. This legislation (H.R. 1586) would provide $26.1 billion in state aid for Medicaid ($16.1 billion of the total) and education ($10 billion). The latter is for the purpose of creating or retaining education-related jobs.

The House agreed to this legislation on August 10, 2010 by a vote of 247-161 (Roll Call 518). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government has no constitutional authority to pay for healthcare for the poor or to fund education. Also, there is no statistical evidence showing that federal involvement in education has increased learning -- though it certainly has increased federal bureaucracy and control.



H.Amdt. 17 to H. R. 5850: On Agreeing to the Amendment 17 to H R 5850
Vote Date: July 29, 2010Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Transportation-HUD Appropriations (Spending Cut). This bill (H.R. 5850) would appropriate $126.3 billion in fiscal 2011 for the Transportation Department, HUD, and related agencies. During consideration of the bill, Rep. Jim Jordan (Ohio) offered an amendment to cut the spending in the bill by $18.6 billion -- about 15 percent of the total.

The House rejected Rep. Jordan's amendment on July 29, 2010 by a vote of 159-265 (Roll Call 493). We have assigned pluses to the yeas not only because federal spending needs to be cut back, but also because of the unconstitutionality of the appropriations.



H R 5850: Making appropriations for the Departments of Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2011, and for other purposes
Vote Date: July 29, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Transportation-HUD Appropriations. This legislation (H.R. 5850) would appropriate a whopping $126.3 billion in fiscal 2011 for the Departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and related agencies. The bill would provide $79.4 billion for the Transportation Department, including $11.3 billion for transit programs; and $46.6 billion for HUD, including $19.4 billion for the Section 8 rental-assistance program.

The House passed the bill on July 29, 2010 by a vote of 251-167 (Roll Call 499). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the bill is unaffordable and most of the spending is unconstitutional.



H R 4899: Making emergency supplemental appropriations for disaster relief and summer jobs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010, and for other purposes
Vote Date: July 27, 2010Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Supplemental Appropriations. The supplemental appropriations bill (H.R. 4899) would provide an additional $58.8 billion in "emergency" funding for the current fiscal year (2010). The supplemental appropriations in the bill include $37.1 billion for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, $5.1 billion for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and $2.9 for earthquake relief in Haiti.

The House passed the bill on July 27, 2010 by a vote of 308-114 (Roll Call 474). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the spending is over and above what the federal government already budgeted, Congress never declared war against Iraq and Afghanistan, and some of the spending (e.g., foreign aid) is unconstitutional.



H R 5618: Restoration of Emergency Unemployment Compensation Act
Vote Date: July 1, 2010Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Unemployment Benefits Extension. This bill (H.R. 5618) would extend unemployment insurance benefits through November 30, 2010 (retroactive to June 2, 2010) and provide 100 percent federal funding for the extended benefits. The unemployment insurance program is run by the states and overseen by the U.S. Department of Labor. The program allows for up to 26 weeks of benefits, but Congress has extended it several times as a response to the recession and high unemployment rates.

The House passed the bill on July 1, 2010 by a vote of 270-153 (Roll Call 423). We have assigned pluses to the nays because extending unemployment benefits provides a disincentive for finding work while adding to the cost of government and doing nothing to create jobs. Indeed, if unemployment benefits were a good solution to the unemployment problem, then why not make unemployment benefits permanent? The solution, instead, is to end government and Fed intervention in the market so the market can create more and better jobs.



H R 4173: Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2009
Vote Date: June 30, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Financial Regulatory Reform. This sweeping legislation (H.R. 4173) would tighten federal control of the financial sector on the false premise that the financial crisis was driven by free-market forces, as opposed to government and Fed policies (e.g., artificially low interest rates) that encouraged excessive borrowing and risk-taking. The legislation would create a new Financial Stability Oversight Council that would monitor the financial sector for system-wide risks, and could (by a two-thirds majority vote) subject non-bank entities to Fed regulatory powers and approve Fed decisions to break up large companies. It would also create a new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection run by the Federal Reserve.

According to the American Bankers Association, the legislation would subject traditional banks to 5,000 pages of new regulations.

The House adopted the final version (conference report) of H.R. 4173 on June 30, 2010 by a vote of 237-192 (Roll Call 413). We have assigned pluses to the nays because ramping up regulatory control of the financial sector by the Fed and the federal government is not only unconstitutional but will make it exceedingly more difficult for the economy to recover.



H R 5175: Democracy is Strengthened by Casting Light on Spending in Elections Act or the DISCLOSE Act
Vote Date: June 24, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Campaign Finance Disclosure. The DISCLOSE Act ("Democracy Is Strengthened by Casting Light on Spending in Elections"), H.R. 5175, was introduced in response to the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (January 21, 2010) that unexpectedly upheld the Constitution and free speech. The court ruled that corporations have the same free-speech rights as individuals in regard to spending their funds to broadcast "electioneering communications"; however, the case did not affect the federal prohibition on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties.

President Obama and certain special interest groups along with liberals in general wanted to curb the effects of that Supreme Court decision, so Rep. Christopher Van Hollen (D-Md.), who called the Supreme Court's ruling "radical," and 114 cosponsors acquiesced by introducing H.R. 5175, the DISCLOSE Act. This act would establish new regulations for corporations, unions, and advocacy and lobbying groups for campaign-related activities. Conservative advocacy groups, as well as the liberal ACLU, are opposed to this bill on the basis that it infringes on their freedom of speech.

The House passed H.R. 5175 on June 24, 2010 by a vote of 219-206 (Roll Call 391). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government should not infringe on the right to free speech of corporations, unions, and other interest groups.



H R 5486: Small Business Jobs Tax Relief Act of 2010
Vote Date: June 15, 2010Vote: AYEGood Vote.
ObamaCare (Repealing the Individual Mandate to Purchase Health Insurance). On June 15 the Republicans lost the first vote in their efforts to repeal either the entire healthcare bill or at least important parts of the overhaul bill commonly known as ObamaCare. They were trying to repeal the ObamaCare individual mandate that will require virtually all Americans to purchase health insurance by 2014 or else pay a penalty. This individual mandate is so widely considered to be unconstitutional that 20 states and the National Federation of Independent Businesses have filed a lawsuit based on the unconstitutionality of this provision and over 30 states have introduced legislation to nullify the individual mandate.

Although the best solution would be for Congress to repeal the entire ObamaCare law (Public Laws 111-148 and 111-152) on the basis of its unconstitutionality, repeal of the individual mandate would be a good first step toward full repeal later. On June 15 Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.) took this first step by making a motion to recommit the Small Business Jobs Tax Relief Act of 2010, H.R. 5486, to the Ways and Means Committee with instructions that it be immediately reported back with language that would repeal the individual mandate to purchase health insurance in the 2010 healthcare overhaul law.

The House rejected the Camp motion on June 15, 2010 by a vote of 187-230 (Roll Call 362). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because of the unconstitutionality and wrongness of requiring anyone to purchase a product or service -- in this case health insurance.



H R 5116: America COMPETES Reauthorization Act
Vote Date: May 28, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Science and Technology Programs. This legislation (H.R. 5116) would authorize $85.6 billion over five years for science and technology research and education programs. The funding includes $44 billion for the National Science Foundation and $30.2 billion for the Energy Department's Office of Science. The bill would also create a new loan-guarantee program to help manufacturers invest in innovative technologies.

The House passed the bill on May 28, 2010 by a vote of 262-150 (Roll Call 332). We have assigned pluses to the nays because entrepreneurs and not government should decide which technologies to invest in and to what extent.



H R 5325: America COMPETES Reauthorization Act
Vote Date: May 19, 2010Vote: NONE No Vote.
Science and Technology Programs. This legislation would authorize $48 billion over three years for science and technology research and education programs. The funding includes $24.4 billion for the National Science Foundation and $16.9 billion for the Energy Department's Office of Science. The bill would also create new programs such as loan guarantees to help small- and medium-sized businesses invest in innovative technologies.

The House failed to pass the bill on May 19, 2010 under a suspension of the rules that requires a two-thirds majority vote for passage (Roll Call 277). The vote tally was 261-148, but 273 were needed to obtain the two-thirds majority. We have assigned pluses to the nays because entrepreneurs and not government should decide which technologies to invest in and to what extent.



H R 4872: Reconciliation Act of 2010
Vote Date: March 25, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
ObamaCare Reconciliation. This bill (H.R. 4872), officially titled the "Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010," was passed to amend the ObamaCare bill at the insistence of disaffected House Democrats. Among other things, it increases subsidies to help uninsured individuals buy health insurance and increases some taxes and fees to help pay for the expanded coverage provided by ObamaCare. This bill also makes the federal government the sole provider of student loans after July 1, which is just one more example of a complete government takeover of a significant sector of our economy.

The House agreed to the motion on March 25, 2010 by a vote of 220-207 (Roll Call 194). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government has no constitutional authority to manage the healthcare industry or the student-loan industry.



H R 4899: Making emergency supplemental appropriations for disaster relief and summer jobs for fiscal year ending September 30, 2010, and for other purposes
Vote Date: March 24, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Supplemental Funding for FEMA and Youth Summer Jobs. This bill (H.R. 4899) would provide an additional $5.7 billion in emergency supplemental funding over and above regular appropriations. Most of the money ($5.1 billion) would be for the Federal Emergency Management Agency Disaster Relief Fund and another $600 million would be used to fund youth summer jobs programs.

The House passed H.R. 4899 on March 24, 2010 by a vote of 239-175 (Roll Call 186). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government cannot afford to add to existing spending and because the federal government has no constitutional authority to provide disaster relief or jobs funding.



H R 3590: Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act
Vote Date: March 21, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
ObamaCare. ObamaCare. This historic bill (H.R. 3590), officially titled the "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act," went on to be signed into law (Public Law 111-148) by President Obama on March 23, 2010. Popularly known as "ObamaCare," this bill essentially completed the government takeover of the American healthcare system that was begun with Medicare and Medicaid in 1965. The ObamaCare law creates 159 new government agencies, which will inevitably drive private healthcare insurers out of the market, just as its pilot program, RomneyCare, is already beginning to do in Massachusetts. Although its official cost estimate was $1 trillion for the first 10 years, ObamaCare will soon join Medicare and Medicaid in the list of unfunded healthcare liabilities of the federal government, which together add up to tens of trillions of dollars.

ObamaCare would create an exchange in each state for the purchase of government-approved health insurance, mandate that most individuals purchase health insurance, fine individuals who don't purchase health insurance, subsidize the purchase of health insurance for individuals earning up to 400 percent of the poverty level, require employers with 50 or more employees to provide healthcare coverage or pay a fine if any employee gets a subsidized healthcare plan from the exchange, and prohibit insurance companies from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions.

The House agreed to a motion to concur with the Senate version of H.R. 3590 on March 21, 2010 by a vote of 219-212 (Roll Call 165). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government has no constitutional authority to require individuals to purchase health insurance or to manage the healthcare industry.



H CON RES 248: Directing the President, pursuant to section 5(c) of the War Powers Resolution, to remove the United States Armed Forces from Afghanistan
Vote Date: March 10, 2010Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Withdrawing U.S. Soldiers From Afghanistan. This legislation (House Concurrent Resolution 248) would direct the President to remove the U.S. Armed Forces from Afghanistan within 30 days of enactment, or by the end of the year if the President determines they cannot be safely removed sooner.

The House rejected H. Con. Res. 248 on March 10, 2010 by a vote of 65 to 356 (Roll Call 98). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan cannot be justified on the basis of defending the United States, there has been no declaration of war, and Congress needs to assert constitutional authority to decide when we do go to war.



H R 3961: Medicare Physician Payment Reform Act
Vote Date: February 25, 2010Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Patriot Act. This bill (H.R. 3961) would extend by one year three Patriot Act provisions that were set to expire on February 28, 2010. The provisions allow the federal government to exercise wide-ranging surveillance and seizure powers with few limitations. For instance, the records provision allows the government to obtain "any tangible thing" that, it says, has "relevance" to a terrorism investigation. "Relevance" is a much lower standard -- if it can even be called a standard at all -- than the "probable cause" and a court warrant standard explicitly required by the Fourth Amendment.

The House agreed to extend the provisions on February 25, 2010 by a vote of 315-97 (Roll Call 67). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the provisions violate the right of the people to (in the words of the Fourth Amendment) "be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures."



H J RES 45: Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act
Vote Date: February 4, 2010Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Debt Limit Increase. This bill (House Joint Resolution 45) would raise the national debt limit from $12.4 trillion to $14.29 trillion -- a $1.9 trillion increase. This increase, reported Congressional Quarterly, "should be large enough to cover borrowing into early next year." Really? To put this astronomical $1.9 trillion increase in perspective, consider that the total national debt did not top $1 trillion until 1981.

The House approved the debt limit increase on February 4, 2010 by a vote of 233-187 (Roll Call 48). We have assigned pluses to the nays because raising the national debt allows the federal government to borrow more money and continue its gross fiscal irresponsibility.



H R 2847: Making Appropriations for the Departments of Commerce and Justice, and Science, and Related Agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010, and for other purposes
Vote Date: December 16, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Jobs Funding. This legislation (H.R. 2847) would appropriate $154.4 billion for infrastructure and jobs programs to aid state and local governments. Nearly half of the money would be redirected from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The money for the jobs programs would have to be siphoned out of the economy in the first place and so would result in a loss of jobs in the economy as a whole in order to create other jobs in government-favored sectors, based on the premise that government can allocate resources better than the private sector. As Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) noted during floor debate on this bill, "You cannot spend your way into more jobs, you cannot borrow your way into more jobs."

The House agreed to the jobs funding on December 16, 2009 by a vote of 217-212 (Roll Call 991). We have assigned pluses to the nays because spending federal dollars to create jobs is unsustainable and unconstitutional.



H R 4173: The Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2009
Vote Date: December 11, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Financial Regulatory Reform. This legislation (H.R. 4173), described by the Washington Times as "the most sweeping regulatory overhaul of the nation's financial sector since the new Deal," would create a Consumer Financial Protection Agency, and in general tighten federal control of the financial sector on the false premise that the financial crisis was driven by free-market forces, as opposed to government and Fed policies (e.g., artificially low interest rates) that encouraged excessive borrowing and risk-taking.

The House passed H.R. 4173 on December 11, 2009 by a vote of 223-202 (Roll Call 968). We have assigned pluses to the nays because more government control of the economy will do more harm than good.



H R 3288: Making appropriations for the Departments of Transportation, HUD, and related agencies for FY 2010
Vote Date: December 10, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Omnibus Appropriations. This catch-all legislative package (H.R. 3288) is comprised of six appropriations bills for fiscal 2010 that Congress failed to complete separately -- Commerce-Justice-Science; Financial Services; Labor-HHS-Education; Military Construction-VA; State-Foreign Operations; and Transportation-HUD. The total price tag in the final version (conference report) of H.R. 3288 is about $1.1 trillion, including $447 billion in discretionary spending.

The House adopted the conference report on H.R. 3288 on December 10, 2009 by a vote of 221-202 (Roll Call 949). We have assigned pluses to the nays because many of the bill's spending programs -- e.g., education, housing, foreign aid, etc. -- are unconstitutional. Moreover, lawmakers should have been able to vote on component parts of the total package.



H R 3962: Affordable Health Care for America Act
Vote Date: November 7, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Healthcare "Reform." The provisions in this bill (H.R. 3962) would cost about a trillion dollars (although such estimates are notoriously unreliable) over the next 10 years and complete the government takeover of our healthcare industry that was started with congressional passage of the original Medicare bill in 1965. This bill would overhaul the nation's health insurance system and require most individuals to buy health insurance by 2013. A Health Choices Administration would be created that would be tasked with establishing a federal health insurance exchange, including a government-run public health insurance option to allow individuals without coverage to obtain insurance. A federal excise tax would be levied on those that do not obtain coverage. Employers would be required to offer health insurance to employees or contribute to a fund for coverage. Failure to provide coverage would subject businesses to penalties of up to eight percent of their payroll. This bill would also bar insurance companies from denying or reducing coverage based on pre-existing medical conditions.

The House passed H.R. 3962 on November 7, 2009 by a vote of 220-215 (Roll Call 887). We have assigned pluses to the nays because a federal government takeover of our healthcare system is not authorized by the Constitution and will cost most Americans more for healthcare.



H R 2996: Department of Interior and Related Agencies Appropriations, 2010
Vote Date: October 29, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Interior-Environment Appropriations. This appropriations bill (H.R. 2996) would authorize $32.3 billion in fiscal 2010 for the Interior Department, the EPA, and related agencies. The bill would provide $11 billion for the Interior Department, $10.3 billion for the EPA, $3.5 billion for the Forest Service, and $4.1 billion for the Indian Health Service. Additionally, H.R. 2996 would authorize $168 million each for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, and provide $761 million to the Smithsonian Institution.

The spending in H.R. 2996 is about $4.7 billion, or roughly 17 percent, more than what was received in fiscal 2009 for the same programs. Representative Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.) argued that the increased spending is "irresponsible, especially in light of the fact Congress must soon consider legislation to increase our national debt limit."

The House adopted the conference report for H.R. 2996 on October 29, 2009 by a vote of 247-178 (Roll Call 826). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the majority of funding in the bill is unconstitutional and wasteful.



H R 2997: Making appropriations for Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010, and for other purposes
Vote Date: October 7, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Agriculture Appropriations. The final version (conference report) of the Agriculture appropriations bill (H.R. 2997) would authorize $121.2 billion in fiscal 2010 for the Agriculture Department and related agencies. This social-welfare bill would include $21 billion for the Agriculture Department, $2.4 billion for the Food and Drug Administration, $58.3 billion to fund the food stamp program, $17 billion for the child nutrition program, $7.3 billion for the Women, Infants, and Children program, and $1.7 billion for the Food for Peace program.

Excluding emergency spending, H.R. 2997 would represent a $2.7 billion increase from the 2009 appropriations level. More than 80 percent of the funds for H.R. 2997 would be reserved for mandatory programs such as food stamps and crop support.

The House passed the final version of H.R. 2997 on October 7, 2009 by a vote of 263-162 (Roll Call 761). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to farmers and federal food aid to individuals are not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 3183: Making appropriations for energy and water development and related agencies, FY 2010
Vote Date: October 1, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Energy-Water Appropriations. The final version (conference report) of H.R. 3183 would appropriate $34 billion in fiscal 2010 for energy and water projects. The funds would provide $27.1 billion for the Energy Department, $5.4 billion for the Army Corps of Engineers, and $1.1 billion for the Interior Department's Bureau of Reclamation.

The House passed the final version of H.R. 3183 on October 1, 2009 by a vote of 308-114 (Roll Call 752). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the Department of Energy is not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 3435: Making supplemental appropriations for fiscal year 2009 for the Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Program
Vote Date: July 31, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Cash for Clunkers Funding. After running out of funds almost immediately, Congress quickly introduced yet another bill (H.R. 3435) that would provide an additional $2 billion for the "Cash for Clunkers" program.

The "Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Act" (H.R. 2751) would authorize $4 billion for an auto trade-in program that's also known as "cash for clunkers." Under the program consumers were offered rebates of up to $4,500 if they traded in their old cars for more fuel-efficient ones. The vehicles traded in were destroyed, meaning cars not ready for the junkyard would be taken off the road, reducing the stock of used vehicles and inflating the prices of used cars.

The House passed H.R. 3435 on July 31, 2009 by a vote of 316-109 (Roll Call 682). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government should not be subsidizing the car industry and because it is unconstitutional and wasteful.



H R 3293: Making appropriations for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010, and for other purposes
Vote Date: July 24, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations. This fiscal 2010 spending bill (H.R. 3293) would appropriate a massive $730.5 billion for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education. This bill, which is the largest of all the annual appropriations bills, includes $67.8 billion for the Department of Education and $603.5 billion for the Department of Health and Human Services, including $518.8 billion in "mandatory" spending for Medicare and Medicaid.

The House passed H.R. 3293 on July 24, 2009 by a vote of 264-153 (Roll Call 646). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the array of social welfare programs funded by this bill is unconstitutional and has failed historically.



H R 3288: Making appropriations for the Departments of Transportation, HUD, and related agencies for FY 2010
Vote Date: July 23, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Transportation-HUD Appropriations. The fiscal 2010 Transportation-HUD appropriations (H.R. 3288) would authorize a whopping $123.1 billion for the Departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development. This includes $68.8 billion for discretionary spending for the two departments and their related agencies, a 25-percent increase from fiscal 2009 levels. The bill would provide $1.5 billion in federal grants for Amtrak and $18.2 billion for the Section 8 Tenant-based Rental Assistance program.

The House passed H.R. 3288 on July 23, 2009 by a vote of 256-168 (Roll Call 637). We have assigned pluses to the nays because virtually every dollar assigned to this bill, whether it is for transportation or housing assistance, is unconstitutional and unaffordable.



H R 3081: Making appropriations for the Department of State, foreign operations, and related programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010, and for other purposes
Vote Date: July 9, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
State-Foreign Aid Appropriations. This fiscal 2010 spending bill (H.R. 3081) would appropriate $49 billion for the State Department and various foreign-assistance and international activities. The foreign assistance in the bill includes $5.8 billion to help combat HIV/AIDS, $2.7 billion for Afghanistan, $2.2 billion for Israel, $1.5 billion for Pakistan, $1.4 billion for the Millennium Challenge Corporation (a United Nations-inspired entity), and $1.3 billion for Egypt.

Though foreign aid is supposed to help the poor and suffering in foreign countries, ultimately it transfers the wealth from American taxpayers to Third World elites who have become deficient in running their socialist regimes.

The House passed H.R. 3081 on July 9, 2009 by a vote of 318-106 (Roll Call 525). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is unconstitutional and unworkable.



H R 2454: American Clean Energy and Security Act
Vote Date: June 26, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Cap and Trade. The American Clean Energy and Security Act (H.R. 2454), also known as the cap-and-trade bill, would not merely "cap" carbon dioxide and other "greenhouse" gas emissions, ostensibly to fight global warming, but would reduce the amount of allowable emissions over time -- to 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020, 42 percent by 2030, and 83 percent by 2050. The government would auction or freely distribute a limited number of emission allowances, which companies would be able to buy or sell. Of course, as the total amount of allowable emissions is reduced, the price of the allowances would skyrocket -- and with them the price of electricity and whatever else is produced from burning fossil fuel. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that the effect of the House committee version of the bill would be to raise federal taxes by $846 billion and direct federal spending by $821 billion over the 2010-2019 period.

The House passed the cap-and-trade bill on June 26, 2009 by a vote of 219-212 (Roll Call 477). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this legislation would be devastating to the economy if enacted and the federal government has no constitutional authority to limit greenhouse-gas emissions.



H R 2346: Supplemental Appropriations, FY 2009
Vote Date: June 16, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Supplemental Appropriations. This final version (conference report) of the fiscal 2009 supplemental appropriations bill (H.R. 2346) would provide an additional $105.9 billion in so-called emergency funds over and above the regular appropriations for 2009. This outrageous supplemental package would include $79.9 billion for defense funding (including for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan), $10.4 billion for foreign aid programs, $7.7 billion to address the national flu scare, and $5 billion for International Monetary Fund activities. This supplemental bill would also include $1 billion for the Cash for Clunkers program.

A day prior to the House vote, Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) urged his fellow lawmakers to reject the bill, stating, "I continue to believe that the best way to support our troops is to bring them home from Iraq and Afghanistan.... Our continued presence in Iraq and Afghanistan does not make us safer at home, but in fact it undermines our national security."

The House adopted H.R. 2346 on June 16, 2009 by a vote of 226-202 (Roll Call 348). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the spending is over and above what the federal government had already budgeted, the United States never declared war against Iraq and Afghanistan, and some of the spending (e.g., Cash for Clunkers and foreign aid) is unconstitutional.



H R 2751: Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Act
Vote Date: June 9, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Cash for Clunkers. The "Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Act" (H.R. 2751) would authorize $4 billion for an auto trade-in program that's also known as "cash for clunkers." Under the program, consumers would be offered rebates of up to $4,500 if they trade in their old cars for more fuel-efficient ones. The vehicles traded-in would have to be destroyed, meaning that cars not yet ready for the junkyard would be taken off the road, reducing the stock of used vehicles and inflating the price of used cars.

The House passed H.R. 2751 on June 9, 2009, by a vote of 298-119 (Roll Call 314). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government should not be subsidizing the automotive companies via vouchers to customers. Besides, it's unconstitutional.



H R 2200: On Agreeing to the Amendment 10 to H R 2200
Vote Date: June 4, 2009Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Body Imaging Screening. During consideration of the Transportation Security Administration Authorization bill (H.R. 2200), Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) offered an amendment that would prohibit the use of Whole-Body Imaging (WBI) as the primary method of screening at airports. The amendment would allow passengers the option of a pat-down search rather than being subjected to a WBI search that shows extremely intimate details of one's body. The Chaffetz amendment would also prohibit TSA from storing, copying, or transferring any images that are produced by WBI machines.

Since its creation, TSA has become infamous for its meddlesome searches and disregard for an individual's right of privacy. Evidence shows that corruption and mismanagement have been commonplace within the relatively new federal department for years. The Chaffetz amendment would do very little to scale back the power held by the TSA, but it does offer some hope that our representatives are not wholly unaware of how the TSA and its policies would threaten the privacy of American citizens through a process that has been called a "virtual strip-search."

The House adopted the Chaffetz amendment by a "Committee of the Whole" on June 4, 2009, by a vote of 310-118 (Roll Call 305). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because such technology is obtrusive for American citizens and violates our right of protection against unwarranted searches and seizures.



H R 2346: Supplemental Appropriations, FY 2009
Vote Date: May 14, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Supplemental Appropriations. The Fiscal 2009 Supplemental Appropriations bill (H.R. 2346) would provide an additional $96.7 billion in "emergency" funding for the current fiscal year over and above the regular appropriations. Included in the funds for H.R. 2346 is $84.5 billion for the ongoing operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, $10 billion for foreign aid programs, and $2 billion for flu pandemic preparation.

The House passed H.R. 2346 on May 14, 2009, by a vote of 368-60 (Roll Call 265). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the spending is over and above what the federal government had already budgeted, the United States never declared war against Iraq and Afghanistan, and some of the spending (e.g., foreign aid) is unconstitutional.



S CON RES 13: Congressional Budget for Fiscal Year 2010
Vote Date: April 29, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Budget Resolution. The final version of the Fiscal 2010 Budget Resolution (Senate Concurrent Resolution 13) calls for $3.56 trillion in federal spending for the fiscal year beginning on September 1, 2009. This level of spending would be significantly less than the $4.0 trillion the Obama administration forecast in May that the federal government would spend in the current fiscal year (which includes the $700 billion TARP program), but significantly more than the $3.0 trillion the federal government spent in fiscal 2008. And the deficit for fiscal 2010 would be more than $1 trillion.

The House passed the final version (conference report) of the budget resolution on April 29, 2009, by a vote of 233-193 (Roll Call 216). We have assigned pluses to the nays because much of the budget is unconstitutional (e.g., foreign aid, education, healthcare, etc.), and the federal government should end deficit spending and live within its means.



H R 1913: Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act
Vote Date: April 29, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Hate Crimes. The passage of the Hate Crimes Prevention Act (H.R. 1913) would expand the federal hate crimes law to include crimes that are based on sexual orientation, gender, or physical or mental disability. (Current law covers crimes based on race, color, religion, or national origin.) This bill would allow for harsher sentencing for individuals who commit violent crimes because of politically incorrect hateful motives. This legislation begs the question, are not all violent crimes committed with some hateful motive? If so, H.R. 1913 would ensure that some victims will receive more "equal protection under the law" than others. In a guest commentary in the Denver Post editorial, criminal defense lawyer Robert J. Corry, Jr. opined: "The 'hate crime' law does not apply equally, instead criminalizing only politically incorrect thoughts directed against politically incorrect victim categories."

The House passed H.R. 1913 on April 29, 2009, by a vote of 249-175 (Roll Call 223). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this legislation would further federalize the criminal code as well as punish not only criminal acts, but the thoughts behind them.



H R 1139: COPS Improvements Act of 2009
Vote Date: April 23, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
COPS Funding. The Community Oriented Policing Services bill (H.R. 1139) would authorize $1.8 billion a year from fiscal 2009 through 2014 for the Justice Department's COPS program. This is up from the $1.05 billion that was authorized for the COPS program for fiscal years 2006 through 2009. The funds authorized for H.R. 1139 would aid in the hiring of law-enforcement officers.

The House passed H.R. 1139 on April 23, 2009, by a vote of 342-78 (Roll Call 206). We have assigned pluses to the nays because providing federal aid to local law-enforcement programs is not only unconstitutional, but also further federalizes the police system.



H R 1388: Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education (GIVE) Act
Vote Date: March 18, 2009Vote: AYEBad Vote.
National Service. The Serve America Act (H.R. 1388) would reauthorize Corporation for National and Community Service programs through 2014, and expand the number of "volunteer" positions (which are actually paid positions) in national-service programs such as AmeriCorps from 75,000 to 250,000. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the House version of this legislation would cost $6 billion and the Senate version would cost $5 billion over five years.

The House passed H.R. 1388 on March 18, 2009, by a vote of 321-105 (Roll Call 140). We have assigned pluses to the nays because national-service programs are not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 1: Making supplemental appropriations for fiscal year ending 2009
Vote Date: February 13, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Economic Stimulus. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (H.R. 1) would provide $787 billion -- $575 billion in new spending and $212 billion in tax cuts -- to stimulate the economy. The "stimulus" spending is supposed to create jobs, yet the money that the government spends for this purpose would have to be drained from the economy in the first place, thereby destroying jobs throughout the economy in order to give the government the means to create jobs in selected sectors. Even the tax cuts, which constitute less than a third of the stimulus package, would not reduce the burden that government spending places on the economy, since there are no corresponding spending cuts. Since the federal government is already operating in the red, the entire $787-billion "stimulus" would translate into another $787 billion in federal debt, as well as inflation when the money to finance the debt is created out of thin air by the Fed and pumped into the economy. In fact, the legislation would increase the national debt ceiling by $789 billion, a little more than the bill's price tag.

The House passed the final version (conference report) for H.R. 1 on February 13, 2009, by a vote of 246-183 (Roll Call 70). We have assigned pluses to the nays because most of the spending would be unconstitutional and government cannot stimulate the economy by draining money from the private sector.



H R 2: Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009
Vote Date: February 4, 2009Vote: NAYGood Vote.
SCHIP. H.R. 2 would reauthorize the State Children's Health Insurance Program, commonly referred to as SCHIP, for over four and a half years and increase the funding for the program by $32.8 billion. SCHIP is designed to provide health insurance to children of families whose incomes are up to four times above the poverty level (and therefore would have too much income to qualify for Medicaid), yet would have little income to buy private insurance. Often SCHIP crowds out private insurance: the Congressional Budget Office found that between 25 and 50 percent of children who enroll in SCHIP dropped their private insurance to get "free care." Because SCHIP, like Medicaid and Medicare, pays doctors and hospitals only a fraction of the actual cost of care, the unfunded costs get passed to holders of private insurance. Additionally, SCHIP would apply to 400,000 to 600,000 children of legal immigrants whose sponsors had agreed to cover the children's healthcare needs for at least five years after arriving to the United States.

The House passed H.R. 2 on February 4, 2009, by a vote of 290-135 (Roll Call 50). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal healthcare programs are unconstitutional and would likely lower the quality of healthcare.



H J RES 3: Relating to the disapproval of obligations under the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008
Vote Date: January 22, 2009Vote: AYEGood Vote.
TARP Funding. House Joint Resolution 3 would have prevented the release of the remaining $350 billion of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) to bail out banks and other institutions. The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 had authorized a total of $700 billion, only half of which was initially released, for TARP. The act was written so that the Treasury Department, which administers the program, could start spending the second $350 billion unless both chambers of Congress disapproved.

This joint resolution to disapprove the release of the second $350 billion was passed on January 22, 2009, by a vote of 270-155 (Roll Call 27). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the Constitution does not authorize Congress to grant financial aid or loans to private companies, e.g., banks and automakers.



H R 1424: Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008
Vote Date: October 3, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Bailout Bill. The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (H.R. 1424) passed 263-171 (Roll Call 681) on October 3, 2008. This bill authorizes the Treasury Department to use $700 billion of taxpayer money to purchase troubled mortgage-related securities from banks and other financial-related institutions, on terms set by the Treasury Secretary, who now has authority to manage and sell those assets. The bailout plan also expands FDIC protection from $100,000 to $250,000 per bank account, extends dozens of expiring tax provisions, expands incentives for renewable energy, provides a one-year adjustment to exempt millions of Americans from the alternative minimum tax, and requires health insurers who provide mental-health coverage to put mental-health benefits on par with other medical benefits.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because the bill establishes an unconstitutional merger of government with banks and businesses -- in other words, corporate fascism -- and greatly increases the national debt and monetary inflation by forcing taxpayers to pay the price for the failures of private financial institutions.



H R 6899: Comprehensive American Energy Security and Consumer Protection Act
Vote Date: September 16, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Bogus Offshore Drilling Compromise. The Comprehensive American Energy Security and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 6899) passed 236-189 (Roll Call 599) on September 16, 2008. The plan would allow limited offshore drilling for oil and gas in some areas previously banned by Congress since 1981. Public pressure for action to reduce energy prices motivated the Democrat majority to push through an energy bill before the election, a plan purported to increase offshore drilling, but with overwhelming disincentives.

The measure would permit drilling no nearer to the coast than 100 miles, unless states choose to reduce that to 50 miles. However, it is the first 50 miles that has been exceedingly productive and where infrastructure is ready to expedite drilling in some areas. All royalties from new oil and gas leases permitted under the bill would go to the federal government. States are thus deprived of a revenue incentive for granting the 50-mile privilege. A better alternative to this phony compromise is to let the moratorium on offshore drilling expire and not renew it. That expiration did occur on October 1.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because the Constitution does not authorize the federal government to assume regulation, much less micromanagement, of the energy industry.



H R 6633: Employee Verification Amendment Act of 2008
Vote Date: July 31, 2008Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Employee Verification Program. H.R. 6633 would reauthorize the E-Verify (Internet-based) pilot employment eligibility verification program allowing employers to verify employment eligibility of new hires. The program is administered by the Department of Homeland Security, which would be required to provide funding to the Social Security Administration for checking Social Security numbers submitted by employers under the program.

The House passed the bill on July 31, 2008 by a vote of 407-2 (Roll Call 557). We have assigned pluses to the nays because Social Security numbers were not intended to be used and should not be used as the basis for a national ID database. An alternative measure (H.R. 5515) would have the screening for employment eligibility verification provided by state-administered private companies that already track employee verification for child-support enforcement.



H R 5501: Tom Lantos and Henry J. Hyde United States Global Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Reauthorization Act
Vote Date: July 24, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Global HIV/AIDS Program. This version of H.R. 5501, as modified by the Senate, was agreed to 303-115 (Roll Call 531) on July 24, 2008. The bill would authorize $48 billion for fiscal 2009 through 2013 to combat AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis overseas. Currently one-third of the funding for HIV prevention is required to go to abstinence education. The bill would change that allocation to balance funding between condom, fidelity, and abstinence programs. It would also authorize $2 billion to fund programs for American Indian health, clean water, and law enforcement.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is unconstitutional.



H R 3221: Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2008
Vote Date: July 23, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Mortgage Relief. This legislation (H.R. 3221) would grant authority to the Treasury Department to extend new credit and buy stock in the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). As described by Congressional Quarterly, "It also would create an independent regulator for the two mortgage giants and the Federal Home Loan Bank System. It would overhaul the Federal Housing Administration and allow it to insure up to $300 billion worth of new, refinanced loans for struggling mortgage borrowers. It also includes a $7,500 tax credit to some first-time homebuyers, higher loan limits for FHA-backed loans, a standard tax deduction for property taxes and revenue-raisers to offset part of the costs. It also would authorize $3.92 billion in grants to states and localities to purchase and rehabilitate foreclosed properties, and increase the federal debt limit to $10.6 trillion."

The House passed H.R. 3221 on July 23, 2008 by a vote of 272-152 (Roll Call 519). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government acting as an insurer, a micromanager of markets, and a wealth redistributor is unconstitutional and will undoubtedly affect market behavior, leading to more and worse market strife.



H R 6346: Federal Price Gouging Prevention Act
Vote Date: June 24, 2008Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Energy Price Gouging. A motion to suspend the rules and pass H.R. 6346, the Federal Price Gouging Prevention Act, was rejected 276-146 (Roll Call 448) on June 24, 2008. Under suspension of the rules, a two-thirds majority would have been required for passage. The bill would have permitted states to sue retailers believed to have been price gouging for fuels sold in areas where there was an energy emergency. The bill also would have set civil and criminal penalties for price gouging.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because no federal or state government investigation (and there have been many over the years) has ever found broad market manipulation in the oil industry. Furthermore, there is no clear definition of "price gouging." Hence, this bill would likely have been counterproductive, as it would have created an incentive for retailers to close, rather than risk penalties for simply following the economic laws of supply and demand. Besides, the federal government has no business trying to dictate prices in the private sector, under any circumstances.



H R 6304: FISA Amendments Act of 2008
Vote Date: June 20, 2008Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Warrantless Searches. H.R. 6304, the bill to revamp the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), would allow warrantless electronic surveillance, including monitoring telephone conversations and e-mails, of foreign targets, including those communicating with American citizens in the United States. The final version of the bill would not explicitly grant immunity to telecommunications companies that have assisted President Bush's warrantless surveillance program. But it would require courts to dismiss lawsuits against such companies if there is "substantial evidence" they were insured in writing the program was legal and authorized by the president. The provision would almost certainly result in the dismissal of the lawsuits.

The House passed H.R. 6304 on June 20, 2008 by a vote of 293-129 (Roll Call 437). We have assigned pluses to the nays because warrantless searches are a violation of the Fourth Amendment, which protects Americans against unreasonable searches and seizures, and requires that any searches be conducted only upon issuance of a warrant under conditions of probable cause. Moreover, Article I, Section 9 of the Constitution forbids "ex post facto laws" -- laws having a retroactive effect.



H R 6124: To provide for the continuation of agricultural and other programs of the Department of Agriculture through the fiscal year 2012, and for other purposes
Vote Date: June 18, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Farm Bill (Veto Override). H.R. 6124 would authorize the nation's farm programs for the next five years, including crop subsidies and nutrition programs. The final version of the legislation provides $289 billion for these programs, including a $10.4 billion boost in spending for nutrition programs such as food stamps.

After this legislation was vetoed by President Bush, the House passed the bill over the president's veto on June 18, 2008 by a vote of 317-109 (Roll Call 417). A two-thirds majority vote is required to override a presidential veto. We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to farmers and federal food aid to individuals are not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 6028: Merida Initiative to Combat Illicit Narcotics and Reduce Organized Crime Authorization Act
Vote Date: June 10, 2008Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Aid to Mexican Military. H.R. 6028 would authorize $1.1 billion in fiscal years 2008-10 to train and equip the Mexican military and law-enforcement agencies for the stated purpose of combating drug trafficking and organized crime. The Mexican government is rife with corruption, and there is no guarantee the expenditure would have the intended effect. "It is inexcusable, it is intolerable to send one dime to the Mexican government when they can afford to pay for this equipment themselves," Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas) said. "But more importantly, our southern border is not secure." H.R. 6028 would also authorize $405 million during the same period for aid to Central American countries.

The House passed H.R. 6028 on June 10, 2008 by a vote of 311-106 (Roll Call 393). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is not authorized by the Constitution.



S CON RES 70: The Congressional Budget Resolution
Vote Date: June 5, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Budget Resolution. The final version of the Fiscal 2009 Budget Resolution (Senate Concurrent Resolution 70) was adopted 214-210 on June 5, 2008 (Roll Call 382). Drafted by the Democrats, this $3.03 trillion budget sets nonbinding limits for the 12 annual appropriations bills. Last year's $2.9 trillion budget allowed $145.2 billion for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The new budget included only $70 billion for the two wars in 2009 and nothing thereafter, an unrealistic notion that understates true spending intent and necessitates more war funding in a supplemental bill. The budget would be significantly higher if war funding were not largely off-budget. The plan predicts a hypothetical budget surplus by 2012, which is meaningless.

All spending bills would be increased over 2008. The budget assumes that revenue will be stable or increase and that some tax cuts will expire. An increase was called for in the statutory debt ceiling by $800 billion to $10.6 trillion. That promptly occurred in the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac bailout. We have assigned pluses to the nays because inflation and the national debt are skyrocketing as Congress persists at disregarding constitutional limits on spending.



H R 2419: Farm, Nutrition, and Bioenergy Act
Vote Date: May 14, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Farm Bill. H.R. 2419 would authorize the nation's farm programs for the next five years, including crop subsidies and nutrition programs. The final version of this legislation worked out by House and Senate conferees (known as a conference report) provides $289 billion for these programs, including a $10.4 billion boost in spending for nutrition programs such as food stamps.

The House passed the conference report on H.R. 2419 by a vote of 318-106 (Roll Call 315) on May 14, 2008. We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to farmers and federal food aid to individuals are not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 3221: Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2008
Vote Date: May 8, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Mortgage Relief. Amendment No. 1 to H.R. 3221 was passed 266-154 on May 8, 2008 (Roll Call 301). It would provide $300 billion in new authority for the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to help borrowers facing foreclosure refinance into FHA-insured, fixed-rate mortgages, provided that mortgage loan holders are willing to take a write-down on the original value of a loan to allow refinancing to be on an amount not to exceed 90 percent of the current appraised value of the property.

Thus lenders who made unwise loans can do partial write-downs in order to offload to the government the risk associated with their loans most likely to be defaulted on. The plan is a bailout of both troubled lenders and borrowers, ultimately sticking taxpayers with the default risk. Moreover, the program would unfairly make a gift of partial home equity to borrowers facing foreclosure, a gift not offered to those who are managing to make their mortgage payments on time, have no mortgage, or who rent.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because the federal government acting as an insurer, micro-manager of markets, and wealth redistributor is unconstitutional. Also, the morphing of H.R. 3221 from an energy bill into a foreclosure prevention bill was a procedural travesty.



H R 5036: Emergency Assistance for Secure Elections Act of 2008
Vote Date: April 15, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
State Voting Assistance. H.R. 5036, The Emergency Assistance for Secure Elections Act, was rejected 239-178 on April 15, 2008 (Roll Call 188). The act purportedly would increase the security of U.S. elections by reimbursing jurisdictions that voluntarily replace Direct Recording Electronic voting systems with voter-verifiable paper ballot systems in time for the 2008 elections. The bill would grant the Election Administration Commission (EAC) new audit regulatory powers and funding to pay for random vote count audits and hand counts of paper ballots cast in the 2008 elections. The cost could be as high as $685 million.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because the act would expand an unconstitutional federal power grab to control elections that was initiated through the disastrous Help America Vote Act of 2002 with its establishing of the EAC. That act fostered and financed a huge increase in the use of electronic voting equipment which can be hacked, lacks credible auditing, and vastly increases the potential for wholesale voter fraud. Politicians who caused that problem now seek its remedy through even more federal control and tax dollars. It is better (and constitutional!) for each state to manage and pay for its own elections.



H R 5501: Tom Lantos and Henry J. Hyde United States Global Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Reauthorization Act
Vote Date: April 2, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Global HIV/AIDS Foreign Aid Program. H.R. 5501 would authorize $50 billion over five years to provide assistance to foreign countries for the stated purpose of combating HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. The program was established five years earlier to fill an "emergency" function, but this legislation shifts the purpose (in the words of Congressional Quarterly) "toward a long-term, sustainable plan" including (for example) training 140,000 new healthcare workers. Prior to voting on the bill itself, the House rejected a motion to recommit the bill to lower the cost to $30 billion -- the funding level President Bush had requested.

The House passed H.R. 5501 on April 2, 2008 by a vote of 308-116 (Roll Call 158). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is unconstitutional.



H CON RES 312: Revising the congressional Budget for the United States Government for fiscal year 2008, establishing the congressional budget for the United States Government for fiscal year 2009, and setting forth appropriate budgetary levels for fiscal years 2010 through 2013.
Vote Date: March 13, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
2009 Federal Budget. House Concurrent Resolution 312, the House plan for the fiscal 2009 budget, was adopted 212-207 on March 13, 2008 (Roll Call 141). This Democrat-drafted, nonbinding budget recommends outlays of about $2.6 trillion for FY2009, with a deficit of $536 billion. The budget would allow some Bush tax cuts to expire or sunset in 2010, thus increasing federal revenues without overtly raising taxes.

The House Republican Conference, in opposition to the plan, points out that taxes would increase $683 billion over the next five years, the child tax credit would be cut, the marriage penalty would come back, small business tax credits would be reduced, and dividends and capital gains taxes would be raised.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because the American welfare state this budget expands is unconstitutional. It should initially be frozen at least and then reduced.



H R 5351: Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act of 2008
Vote Date: February 27, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Targeting American Oil Companies. H.R. 5351, the $18.1 billion Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act, passed 236-182 on February 27, 2008 (Roll Call 84). It would provide tax deductions and incentives for the production of renewable energy (including wind, solar, and ethanol) and for energy conservation. To offset $13.7 billion of the bill's cost, the domestic manufacturing tax deduction would be taken away from the five largest integrated oil companies operating in the United States. Specifically targeted were ExxonMobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, and foreign-headquartered Shell and BP. Citgo Petroleum Corp., a subsidiary of the government-owned oil company of Venezuela, would not lose its six-percent deduction.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because increasing taxes for the largest U.S. oil producers would drive gasoline prices higher and because Congress should not be subsidizing energy development, including renewable energy. The increased tax expense to corporations would simply be passed on to consumers. Targeting the top U.S. oil companies for making record profits is a disincentive to increasing exploration and production; undermines the exceedingly large capital base required to rebuild when Katrina-type hurricanes devastate the oil patch; and is unfair. Other companies and sectors with record profits would be untouched, not to mention foreign oil producers larger than Exxon.



H R 5140: Recovery Rebates and Economic Stimulus for the American People Act of 2008
Vote Date: January 29, 2008Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Economic Stimulus. H.R. 5140, the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008, passed 385-35 on January 29, 2008 (Roll Call 25). It would provide about $150 billion in economic stimulus, including $101.1 billion in direct payments of rebate checks (typically $600) to most taxpayers in 2008 and temporary tax breaks for businesses.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because creating money out of thin air and then spending the newly created money cannot improve the economy, at least not in the long term. (If it could, why not create even more money for rebates and make every American a millionaire?) The stimulus has no offset and thus increases the federal deficit by the amount of the stimulus because the government must borrow the rebate money. A realistic long-term stimulus can only be achieved by lowering taxes through less government and by reducing regulatory burdens.



H R 3963: Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2007
Vote Date: January 23, 2008Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Children's Health Insurance. H.R. 3963, a bill to reauthorize the Children's Health Insurance Program, was rejected 260-152 on January 23, 2008 (Roll Call 22) when the House failed to get the necessary two-thirds majority of those present to override President Bush's veto. The bill would have authorized the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) at nearly $60 billion over five years, expanding the program by $35 billion. It also would have put an additional tax on cigarette manufacturers, would have undermined private insurance plans, and would have pushed us further down the slippery slope to socialized medicine.

We have assigned pluses to the nays, because federal healthcare programs are unconstitutional.





*** Prior to 2008, "The Freedom Index" was known as the "The Conservative Index." ***





H R 3043: Making appropriations for the Department of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies for fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes
Vote Date: November 15, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations. H.R. 3043, a bill to appropriate funding for fiscal 2008 labor, health, human services, and education programs, was rejected 227-141 on November 15, 2007 (Roll Call 1122) in a failed veto override requiring a two-thirds majority. Total appropriations would have been $606 billion. The bill included $150.7 billion -- $6.2 billion more than for fiscal 2007 -- in "discretionary" spending, that is spending the government has not deemed mandatory, such as the big entitlement programs. It also contained more than 2,200 earmarks totaling about $1 billion.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because social-welfare programs are unconstitutional.



H R 1429: Improving Head Start Act
Vote Date: November 14, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Head Start. The final version (conference report) of H.R. 1429, a bill to reauthorize the Head Start program through 2012, was adopted 381-36 on November 14, 2007 (Roll Call 1090). Head Start provides educational activities and social services for children up to age five from low-income families. The program received $6.9 billion in fiscal year 2007. $7 billion was authorized in the fiscal 2008 omnibus bill, but H.R. 1429 increased funding to $7.4 billion for fiscal 2008, $7.7 billion for 2009, and $8 billion for 2010. The income level at which families are eligible to participate was raised from 100 percent of the poverty level to 130 percent ($26,728 for a family of four). Some members opposed the bill because Head Start grants will not be allowed to faith-based organizations that hire employees on the basis of religious preference.

We have assigned pluses to the nays because the bill advances the federalizing of the educational system, and federal involvement in education is unconstitutional.



H R 3688: United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement
Vote Date: November 8, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Peru Free Trade Agreement. The Peru Free Trade Agreement (H.R. 3688) is another in a series of free-trade agreements to transfer the power to regulate trade (and other powers as well) to regional arrangements. Other examples include the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA). However, the Committee on Ways and Means Report accompanying H.R. 3688 noted that "the Peru FTA has become the first U.S. free trade agreement to include, in its core text fully enforceable commitments by the Parties to adopt, maintain, and enforce basic international labor standards, as stated in the 1988 ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work." The ILO, or International Labor Organization, is a UN agency.

The House passed the bill by a vote of 285-132 (Roll Call 1060) on November 8, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because the Peru FTA and other so-called free-trade arrangements threaten our national independence and (as we've seen with NAFTA) harm our economy.



H R 1955: Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007
Vote Date: October 23, 2007Vote: NONE No Vote.
Thought Crimes. This bill (H.R. 1955), known as the "Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007," could more aptly be titled the "Thought Crimes Act." The bill would establish a National Commission on the Prevention of Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism and establish a grant program to prevent radicalization in the United States. However, critics charge that the bill is a thinly disguised attempt to criminalize dissent, based on the bill's vague and open-ended language that could be used to trample basic rights to free speech and assembly, and turn legitimate dissent into thought crimes. For instance, the bill defines "violent radicalization" as "the process of adopting or promoting an extremist belief system for the purpose of facilitating ideologically based violence to advance political, religious, or social change." The bill does not define either "extremist belief system" or "facilitating ideologically based violence." The bill also states that "the Internet has aided in facilitating violent radicalization, ideologically based violence, and the homegrown terrorism process in the United States by providing access to broad and constant streams of terrorist-related propaganda to United States citizens."

The House passed H.R. 1955 by a vote of 404-6 (Roll Call 993) on October 23, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because the bill threatens legitimate dissent.



S 1927: Protect America Act
Vote Date: August 4, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance. This bill (S. 1927) would allow warrantless electronic surveillance (eavesdropping) of targets outside the United States regardless of whether they are communicating with someone within the United States. This surveillance had been conducted illegally by the CIA. Under this legislation, communications companies would be required to comply with surveillance requests and would be provided lawsuit protections.

The House passed S. 1927 by a vote of 227-183 (Roll Call 836) on August 4, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because warrantless surveillance of American citizens is a violation of the Fourth Amendment provision against "unreasonable searches and seizures." Although the bill includes a sunset provision causing it to expire after six months, President Bush has already called for making the bill permanent.



H R 3161: Making appropriations for Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes.
Vote Date: August 2, 2007Vote: NONE No Vote.
Agriculture Appropriations. The 2008 Agriculture appropriations bill would provide $90.7 billion for the Agriculture department, the Food and Drug Administration, and related agencies. It would include funding for the food-stamp ($39.8 billion) and child-nutrition programs ($13.9 billion), farm subsidies and crop insurance, conservation programs, rural development programs, etc.

The House passed the bill by a vote of 237-18 (Roll Call 816) on August 2, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to farmers and federal food aid to individuals are not authorized in the Constitution.



H R 3162: Children's Health and Medicare Protection Act of 2007
Vote Date: August 1, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
SCHIP. This bill (H.R. 3162) would authorize about $86 billion over five years for the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). The federal funds are given to state governments to provide healthcare for low-income, uninsured children. However, this expansion would extend the program to others from higher-income families who are already covered by private insurance plans.

The House passed the bill by a vote of 225-204 (Roll Call 787) on August 1, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal healthcare funding is unconstitutional.



H R 3074: On Agreeing to the Amendment 32 to H R 3074
Vote Date: July 24, 2007Vote: AYEGood Vote.
NAFTA Superhighway. During consideration of the fiscal 2008 Transportation-HUD appropriations bill, Representative Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) offered an amendment to prohibit the use of the funds in the bill for participation in "a working group under the Security and Prosperity Partnership," including the NAFTA Superhighway. A news release issued by Hunter's congressional office explained that "SPP working groups are advancing a plan to build the NAFTA Super Highway -- an international corridor extending between the U.S., Mexico and Canada." The NAFTA Superhighway is part of a broader plan to gradually integrate the three countries in a North American Union.

The House adopted the Hunter amendment by a vote of 362-63 (Roll Call 707) on July 24, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the NAFTA Superhighway threatens our national security and economy.



H R 1851: Section 8 Voucher Reform Act
Vote Date: July 12, 2007Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Proof of Legal Residency for Federal Housing Vouchers. During consideration of the bill to authorize the Section 8 housing voucher program through 2012, Representative Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) offered a motion to recommit the bill back to committee to add language requiring that all occupants of Section 8 low-income housing establish proof of legal residency. The proof could consist of one of the following: a Social Security card along with a state or federal photo ID card; a U.S. passport; a driver's license; or a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services photo ID card. The intent of Capito's motion is to prevent illegal aliens from receiving federally subsidized housing.

The House agreed to Capito's motion by a vote of 233-186 (Roll Call 628) on July 12, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the federal government should not subsidize the housing of illegal aliens. (Of course, it should end housing subsidies to American citizens as well since such aid is unconstitutional.)



H R 2643: On Agreeing to the Amendment 22 to H R 2643
Vote Date: June 26, 2007Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Global Climate Change. During consideration of the fiscal 2008 Interior appropriations bill (H.R. 2643), Representative Joe Barton (R-Texas) introduced an amendment to strike from the bill nonbinding language calling for a mandatory program to combat global warming. Specifically, this provision of H.R. 2643 expresses "the sense of the Congress that there should be enacted a comprehensive and effective national program of mandatory, market-based limits and incentives" to reduce global greenhouse-gas emissions. An example of so-called "market-based limits" would be to allow companies that want to exceed their allowable emissions output to buy permits or allowances from companies that choose not to use their full allotment.

The House rejected the Barton amendment, and thereby kept the global-warming language in the bill, by a vote of 153-274 (Roll Call 555) on June 26, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the yeas because mandatory limits on greenhouse-gas emissions would harm the economy.



H R 2764: Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations for FY 2008
Vote Date: June 22, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Foreign Aid. The fiscal 2008 foreign-aid appropriations bill (H.R. 2764) would authorize $34.4 billion for foreign operations and economic assistance. This amount represents another huge increase over similar House-passed appropriations for previous fiscal years -- $21.3 billion for 2007, $20.3 billion for 2006, and $19.4 billion for 2005.

The House passed the bill by a vote of 241-178 (Roll Call 542) on June 22, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is unconstitutional.



H R 2638: On Agreeing to the Amendment 29 to H R 2638
Vote Date: June 15, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Funding the REAL ID Act (National ID). During consideration of the Homeland Security appropriations bill, Representative Brian Bilbray (R-Calif.) offered an amendment to reallocate $150 million of the bill's funding to provide grant money for assisting states in conforming to the REAL ID Act of 2005. The REAL ID Act requires all states to issue standardized driver's licenses that would serve as national ID cards. It was supposed to go into effect three years after the enactment of the act, but because of resistance from the states, the deadline has been extended to 2010 for states that request an extension. Once enacted, a federal agency would not be allowed to accept for any official purpose a driver's license or ID card issued by a state that fails to meet the act's requirements.

The House rejected the Bilbray amendment by a vote of 155-268 (Roll Call 479) on June 15, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because the act would effectively create a national ID card.



H R 1585: On Agreeing to the Amendment 5 to H R 1585
Vote Date: May 16, 2007Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Iran Military Operations. During consideration for the fiscal 2008 defense authorization bill (H.R. 1585), Representative Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) offered this amendment that would require President Bush to get specific congressional authorization before engaging in military operations in Iran.

The House rejected the DeFazio amendment in a Committee of the Whole on May 16, 2007, by a vote of 136-288. We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the power to declare war belongs solely to Congress, not the president. Under Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution, Congress alone has the power to declare war.



H R 1700: COPS Improvement Act
Vote Date: May 15, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
COPS Funding. This bill (H.R. 1700) would provide the annual funds for the Community-Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program for fiscal 2008 through 2013. The bill would authorize $1.15 billion per fiscal year to aid in the hiring of law enforcement officers. The funding would include up to $600 million each year for "officers hired to perform intelligence, anti-terror or homeland security duties."

The House passed H.R. 1700 on May 15, 2007, by a vote of 381-34 (Roll Call 348). We have assigned pluses to the nays because providing federal aid to local law enforcement programs is not only unconstitutional, but it also further federalizes the police system.



H R 1773: Safe American Roads Act
Vote Date: May 15, 2007Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Mexican Trucks. This bill (H.R. 1773) would subject President Bush's pilot program to allow Mexican trucks to travel freely on U.S. highways to microscopic scrutiny. Current law requires cross-border traffic to unload their cargo onto American trucks within 20-25 miles of the border. This new bill would place certain conditions on Bush's pilot program, including the establishment of an independent review panel to uncover any problems with the program that would require the government to abort the program for good.

The Transportation Department has opposed this legislation, claiming NAFTA established the framework for open roadways for U.S. and Mexican truckers.

The House passed this bill on May 15, 2007, by a vote of 411-3 (Roll Call 349). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because allowing Mexican truckers to travel freely on U.S. roads would not only threaten U.S. security, but would also displace numerous American truckers who would lose their jobs to Mexican drivers who are willing to work for a much lower wage.



H R 2237: To provide for the redeployment of United States Armed Forces and defense contractors from Iraq
Vote Date: May 10, 2007Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Iraq Troop Withdrawal. This bill to withdraw U.S. troops and Defense Department contractors from Iraq (H.R. 2237) was purely a symbolic bill with little chance of passage by the House. The bill would require the withdrawal of troops and contractors to begin within 90 days of the bill's enactment, and to be completed within 180 days from the beginning date of the withdrawal.

The House rejected this bill on May 10, 2007, by a vote of 171-255 (Roll Call 330). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because, according to Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, only Congress can declare war, and consequently our soldiers are not fighting under a constitutional mandate.



H R 1592: Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007
Vote Date: May 3, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Hate Crimes. The Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007 (H.R. 1592) would expand the federal hate-crimes law to make certain crimes stand-alone offenses. The legislation would make it a federal offense to commit a crime against an individual based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. Current hate-crime laws extend to sentencing but do not provide for additional charges to be brought against an individual. Opponents of this legislation argue that H.R. 1592 would punish an individual for not only the crime, but the thoughts behind it. During floor debate on H.R. 1592 Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) said, "This unconstitutional bill would effectively give the federal government authority to punish American citizens for 'thought crimes' -- a concept that has Big Brother written all over it."

The House passed this bill on May 3, 2007, by a vote of 237-180 (Roll Call 299). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this legislation would further federalize the criminal code as well as punish not only the criminal and his actions, but the presumed thoughts behind them.



H R 1429: Improving Head Start Act
Vote Date: May 2, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Head Start Funding. The Head Start reauthorization bill (H.R. 1429) would authorize $7.4 billion for the Head Start program in fiscal 2008. The bill would also disburse "such sums as may be necessary" for fiscal years 2009-2012. The bill would also place more strict requirements on Head Start teachers, such as requiring them to have completed a bachelor's degree by 2013. The funding for the Head Start program is up from the $6.9 billion that it received in fiscal 2007.

The House passed this bill on May 2, 2007, by a vote of 365-48 (Roll Call 285). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the bill perpetuates a federally funded educational program, and federal aid to education is unconstitutional.



H R 1591: Making emergency supplemental appropriations for fiscal year ending September 30, 2007, and for other purposes
Vote Date: April 25, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Supplemental Spending -- Conference Report. The final version (conference report) of this supplemental appropriations bill (H.R. 1591) would provide an additional $124.2 billion for the previous fiscal year (fiscal 2007), over and above previous appropriations.

Although the bill would set a timetable for the withdrawal of American troops in Iraq, it would also authorize an additional $95.5 billion to carry out military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Additionally, this seemingly catchall bill also would raise the federal minimum wage to $7.25 an hour and provide nearly $5 billion in small-business incentives. Even if the spending in this supplemental bill were constitutional, it should have been added to the federal budget in the annual appropriations process.

The House passed H.R. 1591 on April 25, 2007, by a vote of 218-208 (Roll Call 265). We have assigned pluses to the nays for several reasons: it contained an enormous amount of unconstitutional spending, raised the federal minimum wage, and authorized money for the Iraq War, which itself was never authorized by Congress under Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution.



H CON RES 99: Congressional Budget for the U.S. Government for Fiscal Year 2008
Vote Date: March 29, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Budget Resolution. The 2008 budget resolution (House Concurrent Resolution 99) would increase the fiscal 2008 budget to approximately $2.9 trillion, an almost $150 billion increase from fiscal 2007. The bill's spending would include an astronomical $955.8 billion in discretionary spending, including $145.2 billion for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The House passed H. Con. Res. 99 by a vote of 216-210 (Roll Call 212) on March 29, 2007. We have assigned pluses to the nays because Congress must not continue to support massive amounts of irresponsible and unconstitutional spending.



H R 3: Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act
Vote Date: January 11, 2007Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Embryonic Stem-cell Research. The stem-cell research bill (H.R. 3) would allow federal funds to be used for research on embryos donated by in vitro fertility clinics. Embryonic stem-cell research is both immoral and unethical because it cannibalizes and destroys human embryos in the name of science. Supporters of embryonic stem-cell research argue that the cell lines could cure diseases such as cancer and diabetes. But rather than destroying human life, science should focus on cures from stem-cell lines derived from other sources, such as amniotic fluids.

Under threat of a presidential veto, the House passed this stem-cell research bill on January 11, 2007, by a vote of 253-174 (Roll Call 20). We have assigned pluses to the nays because it violates the right to life for millions of unborn babies and unconstitutionally mandates federal funds for scientific research.



H R 2: Fair Minimum Wage Act
Vote Date: January 10, 2007Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Minimum Wage. The minimum-wage increase bill (H.R. 2) would increase the federal minimum wage by $2.10 over two years to $7.25 an hour. Senator Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) had repeatedly attempted to pass a minimum-wage increase in recent years, but the Republican-led Congress had always rejected his minimum-wage amendments. The minimum-wage increase represents one of the first major pushes of the newly elected Democratic Congress and was high up on the 100-hour legislative agenda pushed by House leaders at the beginning of the congressional year.

In 1996, the federal minimum wage was increased by 90 cents to the current $5.15 an hour. Though many people believe that raising the federal minimum wage is a solution to national poverty, allowing the market to dictate wages allows entry-level workers to get the experience and job training they need to get higher paying jobs.

The House passed H.R. 2 on January 10, 2007, by a vote of 315-116 (Roll Call 18). We have assigned pluses to the nays because it is unconstitutional for the government to prohibit citizens from working for less than a government-set wage.



H R 5825: Electronic Surveillance Modernization Act
Vote Date: September 28, 2006Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Electronic Surveillance. The warrantless electronic surveillance bill (H.R. 5825) would allow electronic surveillance of communications with suspected terrorists without first obtaining approval from the secret courts established by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978. Furthermore, the bill would authorize unwarranted surveillance for up to 90 days in some instances if a threat was considered "imminent." Intelligence agencies would be allowed to conduct warrantless surveillance for seven days prior to gaining court approval if the threat was considered an "emergency situation." This controversial bill had full support of the Bush administration as a means to provide greater national security in a post-9/11 world.

The House passed H.R. 5825 on September 28, 2006 by a vote of 232-191 (Roll Call 502). We have assigned pluses to the nays because such a law would violate the Fourth Amendment by subjecting U.S. citizens to unreasonable searches and seizures.



H R 6166: Military Commissions Act
Vote Date: September 27, 2006Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Military Tribunals. This bill (H.R. 6166) would authorize a new system of military tribunals to try persons designated "unlawful enemy combatants" by the president. The bill defines an unlawful enemy combatant to include a person who "has purposely and materially supported hostilities against the United States or its co-belligerents." Once designated an unlawful enemy combatant, a defendant's rights would be curtailed: he would be denied the right of habeas corpus; he could be detained indefinitely; and evidence obtained through coercion could be used against him--so long as the coercion falls outside the administration's definition of torture.

Critics of the tribunals bill are planning to file suit in order to test the constitutionality of the legislation. This legislation was in response to the U.S. Supreme Court's June 29 ruling on the case of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, which declared that the administration's current system for trying military detainees was unconstitutional.

The House passed the military tribunals bill on September 27, 2006 by a vote of 253-168 (Roll Call 491). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the bill would curtail defendant rights.



H R 6061: Secure Fence Act of 2006
Vote Date: September 14, 2006Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Border Fence. The Secure Fence Act of 2006 (H.R. 6061) would authorize the construction of nearly 700 miles of fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border. The border fence is just the first of a series of border security initiatives that House Republicans intend to merge into the Homeland Security spending bill. If implemented, the 700 miles of fencing along the border would be a good first step toward protecting our borders from the massive influx of illegal immigration facing our country today.

The House passed H.R. 6061 on September 14, 2006 by a vote of 283-138 (Roll Call 446). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because such a border fence would help prevent illegal immigration and further protect our borders.



H R 5013: Disaster Recovery Personal Protection Act of 2006
Vote Date: July 25, 2006Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Gun Seizure. The Disaster Recovery Personal Protection Act of 2006 (H.R. 5013) would prohibit the confiscation of firearms in the wake of a natural disaster. This bill is a response to the illegal confiscating of firearms from the victims of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.

H.R. 5013 was passed by the House on July 25, 2006 by a vote of 322-99 (Roll Call 401). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because confiscating firearms from law-abiding citizens is a clear violation of the Constitution -- the Second Amendment guarantees that our "right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."



H R 5684: To implement the United States-Oman Free Trade Agreement
Vote Date: July 20, 2006Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Oman Trade Agreement. The Oman Free Trade Agreement (H.R. 5684) would reduce most tariffs and duties between Oman and the United States. H.R. 5684 was considered under fast-track authority, which requires Congress to expedite consideration of presidentially negotiated trade pacts without offering amendments.

The Oman agreement is just one steppingstone in the White House's effort to form a Middle Eastern Free Trade Area (MEFTA) by 2013. These so-called free- trade agreements have historically failed because they encourage the relocation of U.S. jobs to foreign countries so that the companies can get cheap labor. Meanwhile, they don't provide the United States with trade benefits -- largely because the people in those countries cannot afford to buy our products -- thereby harming the U.S. economy. The agreements also put our economic destiny in the hands of unelected foreign bureaucrats, such as those at the World Trade Organization.

The House passed H.R. 5684 by a vote of 221-205 on July 20, 2006 (Roll Call 392). We have assigned pluses to the nays because such trade agreements damage the U.S. economy and threaten U.S. sovereignty by the imposition of international regulations.



H R 2389: Pledge Protection Act
Vote Date: July 19, 2006Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Pledge Protection Act. The Pledge Protection Act of 2005 (H.R. 2389) would counter judicial activism to prevent the removal of the words "under God" from the pledge by restricting federal courts from hearing cases on this matter, as opposed to protecting the pledge by amending the Constitution.

The House passed H.R. 2389 on July 19, 2006 by a vote of 260-167. (Roll Call 385). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because H.R. 2389 would protect the Pledge of Allegiance from federal court activism.



H R 4761: Deep Ocean Energy Resources Act
Vote Date: June 29, 2006Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Offshore Drilling. This bill (H.R. 4761) would end the federal moratorium on most offshore oil and gas drilling. It would continue the ban within 50 miles of shore, while allowing the states the option of extending that ban out to 100 miles. It would also allow states to share in the drilling proceeds.

The House passed H.R. 4761 on June 29, 2006 by a vote of 232-187 (Roll Call 356). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the United States should reduce its dependency on foreign oil and utilize its own energy resources.



H R 4890: Legislative Line Item Veto Act
Vote Date: June 22, 2006Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Line-item Rescission. The legislative line-item rescission bill (H.R. 4890) would allow the president to propose cuts in spending bills already enacted by Congress. The cuts would then receive an up-or-down vote with no opportunity to filibuster or add amendments.

The House passed H.R. 4890 by a vote of 247-172 on June 22, 2006 (Roll Call 317). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the rescission bill, though not a full-fledged line-item veto, would still shift some legislative power from Congress to the president, disrupting the U.S. system of checks and balances.



H R 5631: On Agreeing to the Amendment 17 to H R 5631
Vote Date: June 20, 2006Vote: NONE No Vote.
Iran Military Operations. Representative Maurice Hinchey (D-N.Y.) offered this amendment to the 2007 Defense appropriations bill (H.R. 5631). The amendment would bar any funds to initiate military operations in Iran unless it is in accordance with Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, which delegates to Congress alone the power to declare war.

The House rejected Hinchey's amendment by a vote of 158-262 on June 20, 2006 (Roll Call 300). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the power to declare war belongs to Congress, not to the president, and that much power should not be in the hands of one man.



H R 4810: Marriage Tax Penalty Relief Reconciliation Act
Vote Date: September 13, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Marriage Penalty Repeal -- Veto Override. This tax-cut measure is identical to that described in House vote (below), except that it is the vote to override President Clinton's veto of the bill.

[ Marriage Penalty Repeal. This measure would phase out over five years the marriage penalty in the income tax code. The marriage penalty taxes dual-income married families at a higher rate than couples who live together but are not married. Representative Jerry Weller (R-IL) explained that this vote was about "a very basic, fundamental question," namely: "Is it right that 25 million married working couples, 50 million taxpayers, pay on average $1,400 more in higher taxes just because they are married?" ]

The House failed to override the president's veto of H.R. 4810 on September 13, 2000 by a vote of 270-158 (Roll Call 466). A two-thirds majority of representatives (286 in this case) and senators present and voting is required to override a presidential veto. We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4865: Social Security Benefits Tax Relief Act
Vote Date: July 27, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Social Security Earnings Tax Hike Repeal. This bill, H.R. 4865, would repeal the 1993 Clinton-Gore tax increase on Social Security benefits. Under the provisions of the 1993 law, seniors still in the work force making more than $34,000 per year had income taxes assessed against 85 percent of their Social Security checks, up from 50 percent in years prior. This bill would bring the proportion of benefits taxed back down to 50 percent.

The House passed H.R. 4865 on July 27, 2000 by a vote of 265-159 (Roll Call 450). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H J RES 99: Disapproving the extension of the waiver authority contained in section 402(c) of the Trade Act of 1974 with respect to Vietnam
Vote Date: July 26, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Disapproval of Normal Trade Relations for Vietnam. This resolution would formally disapprove of the president's decision to grant Communist Vietnam "Normal Trade Relations" (NTR) status and revoke NTR. It is wrong to grant NTR status to Communist Vietnam for the same reasons that it is wrong to grant NTR status to Communist China. "[W]e should put our foot down here today and say dictatorships should not receive this kind of subsidy, especially the dictatorship in Vietnam that has not cooperated in finding our missing in action and POWs," Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) argued from the House floor.

The House rejected the NTR disapproval measure, House Joint Resolution 99, on July 26, 2000 by a vote of 91-332 (Roll Call 441). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4810: Marriage Tax Penalty Relief Reconciliation Act
Vote Date: July 20, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Marriage Penalty Repeal. This measure would phase out over five years the marriage penalty in the income tax code. The marriage penalty taxes dual-income married families at a higher rate than couples who live together but are not married. Representative Jerry Weller (R-IL) explained that this vote was about "a very basic, fundamental question," namely: "Is it right that 25 million married working couples, 50 million taxpayers, pay on average $1,400 more in higher taxes just because they are married?"

The House adopted the final version of this legislation (the conference report on H.R. 4810) on July 20, 2000 by a vote of 271-156 (Roll Call 418). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4871: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 1032 to H R 4871
Vote Date: July 20, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Prohibit BATF from Implementing the Smith & Wesson Gun Sellout. Representative John Hostettler (R-IN) introduced this amendment to "prohibit the Department of Treasury and specifically the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, or BATF, from using tax-payer dollars to enforce the provisions of a settlement agreement between Smith & Wesson, the Treasury Department and the Department of Housing and Urban Development." Hostettler explained that his amendment to the fiscal 2001 Treasury and Postal appropriations bill was needed because "the BATF will no longer just enforce Federal laws; they will now enforce a private civil agreement. This greatly expands the BATF's scope of power without Congress's approval. Failure to pass this amendment will allow the executive branch to continue to coerce legal industries, in this particular case the gun industry, to enter into these agreements whenever they feel they cannot get their agenda through Congress."

The House rejected the Hostettler amendment to H.R. 4871 on July 20, 2000 by a vote of 204-214 (Roll Call 427). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H J RES 103: Disapproving the Extension of the Waiver Authority Contained in Section 402(c) of the Trade Act of 1974 with Respect to the People's Republic of China
Vote Date: July 18, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
China NTR Disapproval. This resolution would formally disapprove of the president's decision to grant Communist China "Normal Trade Relations" (NTR) status and revoke NTR. Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) explained that "the reason why the American corporate community is insisting on normal trade relations status, which is a specific status, is so that those corporations can receive taxpayer subsidies and loan guarantees so they can close up their factories in the United States and open up factories in China to exploit a near slave labor, where people are not permitted to join unions, and do so at the taxpayers' risk, U.S. taxpayers' risk."

The House rejected this measure, House Joint Resolution 103, on July 18, 2000 by a vote of 147-281 (Roll Call 405). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4811: Foreign Operations Appropriations for FY 2001
Vote Date: July 13, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Fiscal 2001 Foreign Aid Giveaways. This bill would waste $13.3 billion for international giveaways and export subsidies. Although the bill represents a $451 million cut from fiscal 2000, one dime in foreign aid is one dime too much.

The House passed the foreign aid appropriations bill, H.R. 4811, on July 13, 2000 by a vote of 239-185 (Roll Call 400). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4461: Agriculture and Rural Development Appropriations for FY 2001
Vote Date: July 11, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Fiscal 2001 Agricultural Appropriations. This massive $75.4 billion bill would fund federal agricultural subsidy programs -- as well as the federal Food Stamp program, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and several other programs -- throughout fiscal 2001. Although this bill represents about a 10 percent cut from fiscal 2000, none of the programs funded by this bill are authorized by the U.S. Constitution.

The House passed this bill, H.R. 4461, on July 11, 2000 by a vote of 339-82 (Roll Call 385). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4461: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 962 to H R 4461
Vote Date: July 10, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Ban on FDA Approval of Abortion Pill. "What this amendment would do," explained Representative Tom Coburn (R-OK), the amendment's author, "is it would limit the expenditure of Federal funds by the Food and Drug Administration in their efforts to approve drugs whose sole purpose is to terminate life, to take the life of an unborn child." More specifically, the amendment would prohibit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration from using funds in the underlying fiscal 2001 agricultural appropriations bill to test or approve for use the abortion pill RU-486, also known as mifepristone.

The House rejected the Coburn amendment to H.R. 4461 on July 10, 2000 by a vote of 182-187 (Roll Call 373). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 1304: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 954 to H R 1304
Vote Date: June 30, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Unionizing Doctors Into a Closed Shop. Representative Christopher Cox (R-CA) introduced this amendment to prohibit doctors from being required to become members of unions as a condition of employment with Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs). Without this amendment, the underlying bill would establish federal "collective bargaining rights" for doctors with HMOs, and allow doctors to organize unions for collective bargaining purposes. Cox explained that his amendment was necessary to "protect doctors from ... compulsory unionism...."

The Cox amendment to H.R. 1304 was rejected by the House on June 30, 2000 by a vote of 201-214 (Roll Call 369). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4690: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 911 to H R 4690
Vote Date: June 26, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Prohibit Chinese Propaganda Ministry Land Purchase Overlooking Pentagon. Representative David Vitter (R-LA) offered this amendment to prohibit State Department funds in the fiscal 2001 Commerce, Justice, and State appropriations bill from being used to approve the purchase of land overlooking the Pentagon by the Chinese government's Xinhua News Agency. Vitter explained that in "a number of publicized spy scandals intelligence officers used Xinhua to provide operations cover...." According to Vitter, allowing the Chinese government through its Xinhua propaganda agency to occupy the "Pentagon Ridge Apartments will allow Chinese intelligence operatives to gather information using a variety of means. These include direct observation via telescope of documents being viewed in outside offices, the collection of electronic impulses emanated by computer screens in the building and the use of laser microphones to eavesdrop on conversations."

The House adopted the Vitter amendment to H.R. 4690 on June 26, 2000 by a vote of 367-34 (Roll Call 325). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4635: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 863 to H R 4635
Vote Date: June 21, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Prohibit HUD from Implementing the Smith & Wesson Gun Sellout. Representative John Hostettler (R-IN) offered this amendment to block the unconstitutional assault by the Clinton administration's Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on the right to keep and bear arms. HUD's March 2000 agreement with firearms manufacturer Smith & Wesson would give federal preferences to firearms manufacturers who back Clinton administration gun control measures, and infringes upon the Second Amendment as well as upon Congress' exclusive authority to pass legislation under the U.S. Constitution. Representative Hostettler argued for the adoption of his amendment because "we should not allow HUD to legislate through litigation."

The Hostettler amendment was rejected by the House on June 21, 2000 by a vote of 206-219 (Roll Call 308). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H J RES 90: Withdrawing the Approval of the United States from the Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization
Vote Date: June 21, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
WTO Withdrawal. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) offered this resolution to withdraw the United States from the World Trade Organization. Paul explained that U.S. membership in the WTO "is an unconstitutional approach to managing trade. We cannot transfer the power to manage trade from the Congress to anyone. The Constitution is explicit. 'Congress shall have the power to regulate foreign commerce.' We cannot transfer that authority. Transferring that authority to the WTO is like the President transferring his authority as Commander in Chief to the Speaker of the House."

The House rejected Paul's House Joint Resolution 90 on June 21, 2000 by a vote of 56-363 (Roll Call 310). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4578: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 814 to H R 4578
Vote Date: June 15, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Ban New National Monuments. This amendment by Representative James Hansen (R-UT) would ban the use of funds for the implementation of "National Monuments" designated by the president since 1999. President Clinton has used a loophole in the 1906 Antiquities Act to lock up millions of acres of land from human usage. Representative Don Young (R-AK) explained that "this President is using this act ... to designate and to dictate the use of lands. Under the Constitution, it says only the Congress shall have that responsibility.... I swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America. Yet, we sit in this body and allow this act to be misused by this administration and say, oh, it is to protect those lands.... This is against the Constitution. He is not protecting what should be protected. He, in fact, is running this as a fiefdom and a kingdom."

The House rejected the Hansen amendment to H.R. 4578 on June 15, 2000 by a vote of 187-234 (Roll Call 280). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4577: Making Appropriations for Labor, Health and Human Services for Fiscal Year 2001
Vote Date: June 14, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Welfare State Mother Lode. This colossal $351.8 billion fiscal 2001 Labor/HHS/Education appropriations bill represents a spending increase of more than seven percent over fiscal 2000. Representative David Obey (D-WI) crowed that Republicans and Democrats were in a bidding war for welfare state spending: "This is ironic given the fact that all day long we were told by the majority that we could not get a vote on the amendments that we were offering on our side of the aisle because they exceeded the numbers in the budget resolution?"

The House passed H.R. 4577 on June 14, 2000 by a vote of 217-214 (Roll Call 273). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4577: On Agreeing to H.Amdt. 79 to H R 4577
Vote Date: June 13, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Decrease Growth in Welfare Spending. This amendment by Representative C.W. Bill Young (R-FL) would cut discretionary spending in the mammoth $351.8 billion fiscal 2001 Labor/HHS/Education appropriations bill by $500 million. With such a cut, total spending in this bill would still rise by over $23 billion as compared to fiscal 2000.

The House rejected the Young amendment on June 13, 2000 by a vote of 186-236 (Roll Call 269). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 8: Death Tax Elimination Act
Vote Date: June 9, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Estate Tax Repeal. The "Death Tax Elimination Act" would phase out over 10 years the Marxist inheritance tax that is decimating family farms across the United States. While the federal inheritance tax does not go as far as the third plank in Marx's Communist Manifesto, which called for "abolition of all rights of inheritance," it does tax up to 60 percent of the value of inheritances.

The House passed the bill on June 9, 2000 by a vote of 279-136 (Roll Call 254). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4577: On Agreeing to H.Amdt. 760 to H R 4577
Vote Date: June 8, 2000Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Federal Regulations on Ergonomics. This amendment by Representative James Traficant (D-OH) would strike language in the labor appropriations measure that would ban funding for the promulgation of federal ergonomic regulations by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA has pushed for intrusive and vague federal regulations on ergonomics in recent years, using as a pretext the charge that many workers suffer injuries as a result of repetitive motion and other uncomfortable work conditions. Representative Henry Bonilla (R-TX) explained that the drive for ergonomics regulations was not driven by workers themselves, but by "OSHA bureaucrats and power-hungry union leaders who are trying desperately to implement an ergonomics rule that would put a noose around the neck of many employers in this country."

The Traficant amendment to H.R. 4577 was rejected by the House on June 8, 2000 by a vote of 203-220 (Roll Call 250). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4444: To Authorize Extension of Nondiscriminatory Treatment (Normal Trade Relations Treatment) to the People's Republic of China
Vote Date: May 24, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Permanent Normal Trade Relations for China. This bill would confer Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) status on China and end the annual review process that kept attention on Red China's espionage and human rights abuses. Although China has yet to comply completely with any trade agreement, granting PNTR would clear the way for China's entry into the WTO. Although this bill contains some provisions to protect U.S. businesses from import surges, establishes a commission to monitor human rights, and requires the administration to report annually on China's compliance with trade agreements, none of these measures has the teeth that annual review of Normal Trade Relations has had.

Representative James Traficant (D-OH) was correct when he said on the House floor during debate, "I say a Congress that today will prop up Communism is a Congress that today endangers every worker, every one of our kids, and every one of our grandkids by giving a country $80 billion a year whose missiles are pointed at every major American city, and Taiwan, who we have turned our backs on."

Permanent Normal Trade Relations for China, H.R. 4444, passed the House on May 24, 2000 by a vote of 237-197 (Roll Call 228). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4392: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 738 to H R 4392
Vote Date: May 23, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Disclose Intelligence Spending to Congress. Representative Tim Roemer (D-IN) offered this amendment to require the CIA director to submit an unclassified report every year to Congress on total spending on intelligence operations. Roemer explained that his amendment was moderate in that it did not require "individual reports, not individual line items, like we do in the Defense Department budget.... We are not calling for any of that in this budget; simply for an aggregate level." In recent years, CIA directors have revealed the figure to be $27 to $28 billion.

The House rejected the Roemer amendment to H.R. 4392 on May 23, 2000 by a vote of 175-225 (Roll Call 214). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4205: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 725 to H R 4205
Vote Date: May 18, 2000Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Vieques Island Transfer. Ike Skelton (D-MO) offered this amendment supporting the agreement negotiated with Puerto Rico by President Clinton regarding ownership of Vieques Island. The Skelton amendment would allow the Navy to transfer land on the western end of the island of Vieques to Puerto Rico and would provide $40 million in assistance to the Puerto Rican government. The residents of Vieques would hold a referendum within the next two years to determine if the Navy may remain on the eastern end of the island, where the Navy conducts live ammunition training. If the people of Vieques vote the Navy out, the Navy would be required to vacate by May 2003. If permitted to stay, the federal government would provide an additional $50 million in assistance.

Originally, the push to get the U.S. Navy off of Vieques came from Puerto Rican FALN terrorists, their Cuban sponsors, and other radicals of the extreme left who seek to subvert America. If the Navy can no longer conduct live fire exercises on Vieques, there are no other alternatives on the East Coast for amphibious live fire exercises. Also troubling would be the dangerous precedent of allowing people near the 33 major U.S. live-fire sites to determine by referendum how the military trains.

The Skelton amendment to H.R. 4205 allowing this transfer and future referendum was passed by the House on May 18, 2000 by a vote of 218-201 (Roll Call 202). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4205: On Agreeing to H. Amdt.722 to H R 4205
Vote Date: May 18, 2000Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Abortions on Military Bases. This amendment to the fiscal 2001 Defense authorization bill offered by Representative Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) would permit abortions on military bases for service members and their dependents stationed abroad. Under the amendment, those seeking abortions on bases would have to use -private funds to pay for the procedure. Yet, as Representative Henry Hyde (R-IL) pointed out in floor debate, "Taxpayers' funds are expended when military facilities are used and there is no constitutional right to that...."

The Sanchez amendment to H.R. 4205 was rejected by the House on May 18, 2000 by a vote of 195-221 (Roll Call 203). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 853: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 709 to H R 853
Vote Date: May 16, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Automatic Funding of the Welfare State. Representative George Gekas (R-PA) offered this dangerous amendment to automatically renew funding for any of the regular 13 appropriations bills at the previous year's spending level if they are not en-acted into law by the new fiscal year. According to Representative Jim Walsh (R-NY), under the amendment, Congress would "yield more power to the President by putting the government out on automatic pilot."

Amendment supporter Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) candidly admitted that the amendment signified that "it is time for us to give up" in the battle with the president over government shutdowns. Rohrabacher said that the president's use of government shutdowns amounted to a budgetary "doom's day strategy." Ignoring the fact that it is the constitutional duty of Congress to control federal purse strings, Rohrabacher urged passage of the measure as a way to fight that strategy. "It is time to repeal for all time the threat of a government shutdown," quipped Rohrabacher.

The Gekas amendment to H.R. 853 was rejected by the House on May 16, 2000 by a vote of 173-236 (Roll Call 187). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 701: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 69 to H R 701
Vote Date: May 11, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Landgrabs Prevention. This amendment by Representative Michael Simpson (R-ID) to the land conservation bill would prevent funds from the bill from being used to acquire more federal land in states where 50 percent or more of the land is already owned by the federal government, unless the state approves of the acquisition. The states that presently would be affected by this amendment are Alaska, Oregon, Idaho, Utah, and Nevada.

The Simpson amendment to H.R. 701 was rejected on May 11, 2000 by a vote of 157-266 (Roll Call 171). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 701: Conservation and Reinvestment Act
Vote Date: May 11, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Money for Landgrabs. This bill, the Conservation and Restoration Act (CARA), is, in the words of one of its chief sponsors, Representative George Miller (D-CA), "the largest environmental bill for the conservation of American resources in the past 36 years." The bill would require the Treasury Department to set aside up to $2.8 billion per year in royalties from oil and gas drilling on federal lands in a conservation fund to be used to purchase lands deemed environmentally sensitive and for other conservation purposes. Additionally, the use of the money in the fund would not be subject to annual appropriation votes by Congress.

The CARA, H.R. 701, passed the House on May 11, 2000 by a vote of 315-102 (Roll Call 179). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 701: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 688 to H R 701
Vote Date: May 10, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Defunding Landgrabs. Representative Helen Chenoweth-Hage (R-ID) offered this amendment to the land conservation bill to prohibit funds in the bill from being used to establish or maintain any of President Clinton's national monument designations made after 1995. Mr. Clinton has established a series of these monuments through executive orders, thereby placing, without congressional -approval, huge tracts of land off-limits to development. Chenoweth-Hage called such federal landgrabs "America's new Trail of Tears," a reference to the federal government driving the Cherokee Indians off their land in the early 1800s.

The Chenoweth-Hage amendment to H.R. 701 was rejected on May 10, 2000 by a vote of 160-265 (Roll Call 164). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 4055: IDEA Full Funding Act
Vote Date: May 3, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Funding for Disabilities Education. Passage of this bill would provide increased funding for education of children with disabilities under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The bill would increase funding to 40 percent of the cost of educating such children and authorize an additional $2 billion a year for 10 years.

The bill, H.R. 4055, passed the House on May 3, 2000 by a vote of 421-3 (Roll Call 140). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 4199: Date Certain Tax Code Replacement Act
Vote Date: April 13, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Tax Code Abolishment. This bill would abolish the tax code, excepting Social Security and Medicare provisions, by December 31, 2004. The bill recommends that Congress provide a replacement tax code by July 4, 2004. Representative John Linder (R-GA), who argued for the abolition of the tax code on the House floor, pointed out: "if we had sat down at the beginning ... and asked ourselves how could we build a tax system that would punish people for earning and working hard, a system that would be obstructive of capital formation, we could not have done a better job."

The bill to abolish the tax code, H.R. 4199, passed on April 13, 2000 by a vote of 229-187 (Roll Call 127). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 3615: Rural Local Broadcast Signal Act
Vote Date: April 13, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Television for "Underserved" Areas. As a way of providing local television to 30 million households in areas of the country that cannot receive over-the-air signals or do not have local television through a satellite provider, this bill would create a new program that would provide $1.25 billion in loan guarantees to telecommunication providers. The loans would offer a competitive edge to satellite providers since cable companies cannot apply for the loans to expand their service. The loans would be administered by the Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service. Representative Christopher Cox (R-CA) in floor debate asserted that the Rural Utilities Service is "writing off billions of dollars in their existing loan portfolio left and right, at taxpayer expense, and … about 30 to 40 percent of the loans that are going to get made under this program are likely to be written off. So one can look at the cost of this program [and see that] right up front [it] is about $400 million."

The bill to fund rural television, H.R. 3615, passed the House on April 13, 2000 by a vote of 375-37 (Roll Call 128). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 1776: American Homeownership and Economic Opportunity Act
Vote Date: April 6, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
HUD Expansion. In an effort to increase the reach of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, this bill would authorize $1.65 billion for the agency's HOME program and $4.9 billion for the Community Development Block Grant program. Both programs make money available to local governments for subsidized housing projects. Additionally, teachers, police officers, fire fighters, and other municipal workers would be given extra help and incentives for home ownership. Disabled recipients of rent-subsidies could receive grants instead of monthly allotments for down-payments. Also included in the bill is an amendment that allows religious organizations to compete for Community Development Block Grants, as long as the religious organizations comply with the mandate that they do not discriminate against participants based on religious affiliation or lack thereof.

The bill, H.R. 1776, passed the House on April 6, 2000 by a vote of 417-8 (Roll Call 110). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 3660: Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2000
Vote Date: April 5, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Partial Birth Abortion Ban. This bill would prohibit the "partial-birth" abortion procedure in which a baby is pulled through the birth canal in the breech position, forceps are inserted in the base of his skull, and the brain is extracted before completion of the delivery. In 1997, Ron Fitzsimmons, then executive director of the National Coalition of Abortion Providers, admitted that the procedure is performed 3,000 to 5,000 times a year, not the 500 to 600 times a year as claimed by some pro-abortion groups. Under this bill, doctors performing such abortions would be subject to a fine and up to two years in prison. The baby's father (if he is married to the mother) or a minor girl's parents also could file a civil lawsuit against the doctor for monetary damages. The procedure would be legal if the abortion were necessary to save the woman's life.

The Abortion Procedure Ban, H.R. 3660, passed the House on April 5, 2000 by a vote of 287-141 (Roll Call 104). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 2418: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 648 to H R 2418
Vote Date: April 4, 2000Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Organ Transplant Federalism. This amendment, according to its sponsor, Representative Bill Luther (D-MN), would prohibit "State and local laws from interfering with the allocation policies of the National Organ Transplant Network." The National Organ Transplant Network was created in 1984 by Congress as a national system for organ allocation. The amendment is an attempt to counteract laws enacted by states that have worked especially hard to encourage organ donation. These states want to make sure that their citizens benefit from that hard work instead of losing organs to states with less successful programs.

Luther's Organ Procurement Amendment to H.R. 2418 was rejected by the House on April 4, 2000 by a vote of 137-284 (Roll Call 100). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 3908: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 642 to H R 3908
Vote Date: March 30, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
DEA Funding Cuts. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) offered this amendment to the fiscal 2000 supplemental appropriations bill. It called for a $293 million cut in Drug Enforcement Administration funding, a $186 million cut in funding for drug-fighting by the Defense Department, and another $1.1 billion cut in economic aid to Colombia. The amendment also would halt funding for military construction outside the U.S. and would end funding for military operations in Kosovo and East Timor, unless the funds were used to bring the troops home. In floor debate, Paul described his amendment as dealing with a "monster" of "careless foreign military interventionism."

The Paul amendment to H.R. 3908 was rejected by the House on March 30, 2000 by a vote of 45-367 (Roll Call 92). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 3908: Making Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for F.Y. 2000
Vote Date: March 30, 2000Vote: NONE No Vote.
Money for Foreign Intervention. The fiscal 2000 supplemental appropriations bill provides $13.2 billion for a number of measures, including funding for operations in Kosovo and East Timor ($5 billion), aid to combat drugs in Colombia ($1.7 billion), and Defense Department funding ($4 billion).

The fiscal 2000 supplemental appropriations measure, H.R. 3908, passed the House on March 30, 2000 by a vote of 263-146 (Roll Call 95). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H CON RES 290: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 610 to H CON RES 290
Vote Date: March 23, 2000Vote: NAYGood Vote.
2001 Budget by Congressional Progressive Caucus. A substitute budget amendment proposed by Representative Peter DeFazio (D-OR) on behalf of the socialist coalition called the Congressional Progressive Caucus (see "Totally Radical!" in our March 29, 1999 issue for a review of this coalition) would have cut defense spending while increasing spending for education, health care, and veterans.

The DeFazio substitute to House Concurrent Resolution 290 was rejected by the House on March 23, 2000 by a vote of 61-351 (Roll Call 71). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H CON RES 290: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 612 to H CON RES 290
Vote Date: March 23, 2000Vote: NAYBad Vote.
2001 Budget by Conservative -Action Team. Representative John Sununu (R-NH) proposed this substitute budget amendment on behalf of the Conservative Action Team. This amendment would freeze non-defense discretionary spending, increase defense spending, and provide for $270 billion in tax cuts.

The Sununu substitute to House Concurrent Resolution 290 was rejected by the House on March 23, 2000 by a vote of 78-339 (Roll Call 73). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 3843: Small Business Authorization Act
Vote Date: March 15, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Small Business Administration Reauthorization. This legislation would reauthorize programs and funding levels for the Small Business Administration through fiscal year 2003. This corporate welfare program would be authorized to guarantee $77.3 billion in business loans (and to make direct loans) over a three-year period. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that enacting this legislation would result in $3.5 billion in new discretionary spending by 2005.

The Small Business Administration reauthorization, H.R. 3843, passed the House on March 15, 2000 by a vote of 410-11 (Roll Call 49). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 3081: Wage and Employment Growth Act
Vote Date: March 9, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Tax Cuts. This tax revision bill provides for nearly $123 billion in tax cuts, including reductions in estate and gift taxes and deductions for health insurance for self-employed individuals. Also included in the bill is authorization for the Housing and Urban Development secretary to designate 15 renewal communities where investors and residents could receive certain tax breaks, including relief from capital gains taxes on property held for at least five years.

The tax revision bill, H.R. 3081, passed the House on March 9, 2000 by a vote of 257-169 (Roll Call 41). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 3846: To Amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to Increase the Minimum Wage, and for other purposes
Vote Date: March 9, 2000Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Minimum Wage Increase. This bill raises the minimum wage by one dollar to $6.15 per hour over a period of two years. Exceptions are made for computer professionals, certain sales people, and funeral directors. Representative Tom Tancredo (R-CO) warned that, through this legislation, "we are trying to be the unseen hand in the market. We have made this assumption about the fact that we know exactly how to adjust the marketplace between the employer and employee."

The minimum wage increase, H.R. 3846, passed the House on March 9, 2000 by a vote of 282-143 (Roll Call 45). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 6: Marriage Tax Penalty Relief Act of 2000
Vote Date: February 10, 2000Vote: AYEGood Vote.
"Marriage Penalty" Tax Reform. This Republican tax cut plan would alleviate the so-called "Marriage Penalty" tax that assesses taxes at a higher rate against married couples who both work than for two single people with comparable incomes. Although opponents of the bill argued that this tax cut, amounting to $182 billion over 10 years, was too big, Representative Roy Blunt (R-MO) countered: "Should we first go to American families and say, we need to continue this unfair system because we do not have as much extra money as we thought we were going to have in - Washington?"
The bill to alleviate the "Marriage Penalty" tax, H.R. 6, passed the House on February 10, 2000 by a vote of 268-158 (Roll Call 15). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 3194: District of Columbia Appropriations Act, 2000
Vote Date: November 18, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Welfare State Expansion. This $385 billion monstrosity constitutes a complete sellout of conservative principles to the demands of the welfare-staters at the White House. This measure would fund five regular annual appropriations bills (District of Columbia, Labor/HHS/Education, Foreign Operations, Commerce/Justice/State/Judiciary, and Interior), often at higher levels than were originally requested by the Clinton administration.

The Health and Human Services Department -- the key welfare agency of the federal government -- received an 11.4 percent increase in funding, more than Mr. Clinton originally requested. The Department of Education received a 6.8 percent increase in funding, also more than Mr. Clinton originally sought. Foreign aid spending was also funded at a higher level than originally sought by the President. President Clinton’s federal teacher hiring initiative was granted $1.325 billion, the COPS program of federally paid law enforcement officers was awarded $595 million, and alleged "arrears" payments to the United Nations were authorized to the tune of $926 million.

Some Republicans falsely sold the bill to conservatives on the grounds that it contained a strong pro-life provision in the foreign aid section. But the bill allows President Clinton to waive the provision, a prohibition against funding international family-planning organizations, if he is willing to subtract a mere $12.5 million penalty from the $385 million population control budget. (Subsequently, this is exactly what Mr. Clinton did.)

The measure, H.R. 3194, was adopted by the House on November 18, 1999 by a vote of 296-135 (Roll Call 610). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 3064: District of Columbia Appropriations Act, 2000
Vote Date: October 28, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Labor/HHS/Education Spending. This $317 billion appropriations bill is the main funding measure for the federal welfare state during fiscal 2000. This bill would amount to an increase over the bloated fiscal 1999 appropriation of nearly nine percent. This increase still wasn't enough for President Clinton; some of his Democratic supporters joined stalwart opponents of the welfare state in voting against the bill.

This legislation, H.R. 3064, passed the House on October 28, 1999 by a vote of 218-211 (Roll Call 549). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 2: On Agreeing to the Amendment 3 to H R 2
Vote Date: October 21, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
New Federal Education Subsidy. Republican Majority Leader Richard Armey, the author of this proposal, had to ignore one of his own "axioms" in order to introduce this measure: "No one spends someone else's money as wisely as he spends his own."

Armey's proposal would establish a new $100 million per year federally funded grant program administered by the states for educational choice scholarships. The program would last five years and give parents of primary grade school children $3,500 toward placing their children in the public or private school of their choice -- but only if the governor of the state declared their public school an "academic emergency" through a series of criteria laid out in Armey's amendment. The states would also have to report to the Secretary of Education on the progress of the federal scholarships that they distribute under their political control.

The measure, an amendment to H.R. 2, was rejected by the House on October 21, 1999 by a vote of 166-257 (Roll Call 521). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 2: Student Results Act
Vote Date: October 21, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Federal Education Grants. This legislation would fund Title I spending -- which dispenses grants to primary and secondary schools -- to the tune of $9.9 billion. This represents a 28 percent increase over fiscal 1999! Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) explained that, "like most federal programs, Title I was launched with the best of intentions, however, good intentions are no excuse for Congress to exceed its constitutional limitations by depriving parents, local communities and states of their rightful authority over education. The Tenth Amendment does not contain an exception for 'good intentions'!"

The bill, H.R. 2, passed the House on October 21, 1999 by a vote of 358-67 (Roll Call 526). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 2723: Bipartisan Consensus Managed Care Improvement Act
Vote Date: October 7, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Managed Health Care Regulations. This legislation would get the federal government even more deeply involved in regulating the medical coverage of individuals and HMOs. The bill would require HMOs to pay for certain emergency care even if it was not part of the original insurance agreement, dictate an internal and external appeal process for health coverage payments, require HMOs and insurance companies to pay for women's visits to gynecological and obstetric specialists without first seeing a primary care physician, and even unconstitutionally give policyholders standing in state courts to sue for damages.

While a few of these ideas are good ones that many HMOs have already implemented through the free market, none of them are federal functions. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) explained: "Because HMOs make mistakes and their budgets are limited, however, doesn't justify introducing the notion that politicians are better able to make these decisions than the HMOs. Forcing HMOs and insurance companies to do as the politicians say regardless of the insurance policy agreed upon will lead to higher costs, less availability of services and calls for another round of government intervention."

The bill, H.R. 2723, was adopted by the House on October 7, 1999 by a vote of 275-151 (Roll Call 490). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 1906: Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations, FY 2000
Vote Date: October 1, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Agricultural Appropriations. This measure would appropriate $69 billion for agricultural programs, food stamps, and foreign aid programs for fiscal year 2000. The legislation represents an irresponsible 11 percent increase in spending over fiscal 1999.

The final version of the agricultural appropriations bill, H.R. 1906, passed the House on October 1, 1999 by a vote of 240-175 (Roll Call 469). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 417: On Agreeing to the Amendment 11 to H R 417
Vote Date: September 14, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Doolittle Campaign Finance. Representative John Doolittle (R-CA) took aim at campaign finance reform with a proposal to repeal all federal campaign contribution limits and require immediate public disclosure of all federal campaign contributions. "I support the Doolittle reforms," explained Representative John Peterson (R-PA), "because they are in the American tradition. They truly 'do little' when it comes to restricting First Amendment rights. They remove restrictions on most campaign giving and spending, and thus remove the restrictions to free speech. At the same time, they require immediate and full reporting of all contributions."

Rep. Doolittle's proposal, a substitute amendment to the Shays-Meehan "reform" bill (see text below), was rejected by the House on September 14, 1999 by a vote of 117-306 (Roll Call 419). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.


[ Shays-Meehan "Reform." This legislation makes war upon the First Amendment's free speech protections by proposing regulation of non-political, issue advocacy speech. In particular, provisions which greatly expand the definitions of "expressed advocacy" and "coordinated activity" would take in just about every citizen group attempting to educate the electorate on the voting record of their government officials. Representative John Peterson (R-PA) explained that Shays-Meehan represents the "liberal's idea of reform [which] rests primarily on restricting the free flow of moneys and ideas to the public through any channels except those they control and they regulate.... It will be an incumbent protection bill." ]



H R 417: Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act
Vote Date: September 14, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Shays-Meehan "Reform." This legislation makes war upon the First Amendment's free speech protections by proposing regulation of non-political, issue advocacy speech. In particular, provisions which greatly expand the definitions of "expressed advocacy" and "coordinated activity" would take in just about every citizen group attempting to educate the electorate on the voting record of their government officials. Representative John Peterson (R-PA) explained that Shays-Meehan represents the "liberal's idea of reform [which] rests primarily on restricting the free flow of moneys and ideas to the public through any channels except those they control and they regulate.... It will be an incumbent protection bill."

The Shays-Meehan campaign reform bill, H.R. 417, was adopted by the House on September 14, 1999 by a vote of 252-177 (Roll Call 422). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H CON RES 180: Expressing the sense of Congress that the President should not have granted clemency to terrorists
Vote Date: September 9, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Clemency for the FALN. Following the President's grant of clemency to convicted terrorists of the Puerto Rican FALN, Congress considered a concurrent resolution which would express its disapproval with the Clinton administration's decision.

The 16 terrorists offered clemency had been convicted of "seditious conspiracy," robbery, and weapons charges related to their masterminding a series of terrorist bombings in the 1970s and 1980s. President Clinton offered clemency to the convicted terrorists at a time when his wife Hillary was actively considering a Senate race in New York State. Many political observers guessed that the move was made in part to sway New York's large Puerto Rican ethnic voting block to support his wife's impending campaign.

The concurrent resolution, H. Con. Res. 180, was adopted by the House on September 9, 1999 by a vote of 311-41 (Roll Call 398). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 2488: Financial Freedom Act of 1999
Vote Date: August 5, 1999Vote: NONE No Vote.
Republican Tax Cut Package. The Republican tax plan would implement several tax cuts over a 10-year period. The legislation would cut the income tax rate by one percent beginning in 2005, but the tax cut would sunset by 2009. The measure would also cut the capital gains rate immediately by two percentage points, eliminate the marriage penalty under income taxes (starting in 2001), and phase out estate taxes until 2009 (after which the tax would be higher than current law).

The Republican Party trumpeted this bill as being a $792 billion tax cut, and the White House lobbied furiously against it claiming that the cuts were irresponsible. But the $792 billion figure is mere political posturing, since it is not only the projected total for a 10-year period but is based on projected costs in future years. Nevertheless, the bill was better than no tax cut at all and was deserving of support.

The Republican Tax Cut, H.R. 2488, passed the House on August 5, 1999 by a vote of 221-206 (Roll Call 379). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 2606: On Agreeing to the Amendment 21 to H R 2606
Vote Date: August 3, 1999Vote: NONE No Vote.
International Population Control. Contained within this year's foreign aid appropriations bill are some $385 million intended to fund international population control programs. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) proposed to eliminate this spending, explaining that "the question really is this: Should the American taxpayer be required to pay for birth control pills, IUDs, Depo-Provera, Norplant, condom distribution, as well as abortion in foreign countries?"

Rep. Paul's proposal, an amendment to H.R. 2606, was rejected by the House on August 3, 1999 by a vote of 145-272 (Roll Call 360). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 2606: On Agreeing to the Amendment 23 to H R 2606
Vote Date: August 3, 1999Vote: NONE No Vote.
Corporate Welfare. A measure proposed by Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) would prohibit federal funding of three corporate export subsidy programs: The Export-Import Bank, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the Trade and Development Agency.

The Export-Import Bank alone has approximately $6 billion in outstanding subsidies sunk into Communist China, and Rep. Paul noted that "67 percent of all the funding of the Export-Import Bank goes to, not a large number of companies, [but] to five companies.... We give them the money. But where do the goods go? Do the goods go to the American taxpayers? No. They get all of the liabilities. The subsidies help the Chinese."

Hypocritically, several representatives who had supported Normal Trade Relations (MFN) for China (Vote #26) on the basis of "free trade" opposed the Paul amendment. To that opposition, Paul exclaimed, "please do not call it free trade anymore. Call it managed trade. Call it subsidized trade. Call it special interest trade."

Rep. Paul's proposal, an amendment to H.R. 2606, was rejected by the House on August 3, 1999 by a vote of 58-360 (Roll Call 361). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 2606: Foreign Operations Appropriations Act, FY 2000
Vote Date: August 3, 1999Vote: NONE No Vote.
Foreign Aid Appropriations. This legislation would appropriate $12.7 billion during fiscal 2000 for wasteful and unconstitutional foreign aid programs abroad.

The foreign aid appropriations bill, H.R. 2606, passed the House on August 3, 1999 by a vote of 385-35 (Roll Call 362). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 2606: On Agreeing to the Amendment 6 to H R 2606
Vote Date: July 29, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Slight Foreign Aid Cut. Proposed by Representative Tom Campbell (R-CA), this measure would cut a paltry $50 million from the foreign aid budget reserved for Israel (a $30 million cut) and Egypt (a $20 million cut). The cut would be a total reduction of about 1 percent in the funds allotted to both nations under the foreign aid bill. Any real end to wasteful foreign aid giveaways must begin with cuts in aid to the largest recipients, and Egypt and Israel's combined $4.7 billion in economic and military assistance account for 37 percent of all U.S. foreign aid spending.

Rep. Campbell's proposal, an amendment to the foreign aid bill (H.R. 2606), was rejected by the House on July 29, 1999 by a vote of 13-414 (Roll Call 351). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H J RES 57: Disapprove Normal Trade Relations with China
Vote Date: July 27, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
MFN/NTR Trade with Red China. Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) proposed that Congress express its disapproval of President Clinton's waiver granting Communist China U.S. taxpayer subsidized trade under "Normal Trade Relations" (formerly "Most Favored Nation") status. Revocation of NTR status would impose tariffs on Chinese imports at a slightly higher duty than are levied upon U.S. exports to China, and prevent the U.S. Export-Import Bank and similar agencies from giving lucrative subsidies to China. China is currently the Ex-Im Bank's largest customer, with $6 billion in outstanding loans and guarantees. Rep. Rohrabacher observed that the reason Capitol Hill had just been besieged by big business lobbyists is because they are squealing to keep their taxpayer subsidies. "This debate is not about free trade," Rohrabacher explained. "Obviously, it is about subsidy, as I just said."

Rep. Rohrabacher's proposal, a resolution (H. J. Res. 57) expressing the disapproval of Congress of the President's waiver granting NTR/MFN to China, was rejected by the House on July 27, 1999 by a vote of 170-260 (Roll Call 338). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 2415: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 306 to H R 2415
Vote Date: July 20, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
De-funding the United Nations. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX), proposed a measure that would eliminate all funding for the United Nations from the State Department Reauthorization bill, H.R. 2415. Rep. Paul explained that "this does not get us out of the United Nations. It is a step in that direction, obviously." A necessary step because this year alone the the United Nations has called for confiscation of nearly all civilian-owned firearms, global taxation without representation, a world central bank, world financial controls with a redistributive mechanism, an unlimited ability to intervene in a nation's internal affairs, and a global criminal court without the habeas corpus guarantee and other rights Americans are accustomed to in our courts.

Rep. Paul's proposal, an amendment to H.R. 2415, was rejected by the House on July 20, 1999 by a vote of 74-342 (Roll Call 314). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 1995: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 321 to H R 1995
Vote Date: July 20, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Federal Funding for Teachers. In deliberations on this year's $2 billion per year federal teacher hiring grants program, Representative Matthew Martinez (D-CA) proposed to increase funding for President Clinton's initiative to hire 100,000 new teachers using federal dollars. The Martinez measure would increase spending under the pending bill in fiscal 2000 to $3 billion, and continue increasing spending until it reaches $6 billion annually in 2005.

Rep. Martinez's proposal, a substitute for H.R. 1995, was rejected by the House on July 20, 1999 by a vote of 207-217 (Roll Call 319). We have assigned pluses to the nays.



H R 2490: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 286 to H R 2490
Vote Date: July 15, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Subsidizing Abortions. Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) proposed a measure that would allow abortions to be included as medical expenses in the health care coverage the federal government subsidizes for its employees. Representative Curt Weldon (R-PA), opposing DeLauro's proposal, explained that "the unborn baby in the womb is not a potential life. It meets all of the criteria of a life, the criteria that I used to use as a practicing physician to determine whether somebody is alive or dead: a beating heart, active brain waves."

Rep. DeLauro's proposal, an amendment to H.R. 2490, was rejected by the House on July 15, 1999 by a vote of 188-230 (Roll Call 301). We have assigned pluses to nays.



H R 2466: On Agreeing to H. Amdt. 273 to H R 2466
Vote Date: July 14, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
National Endowment for the Arts. The National Endowment for the Arts currently consumes some 98 million taxpayer dollars annually. A measure proposed by Representative Cliff Stearns (R-FL) would take a small, 2.5 percent bite totaling $2.1 million out of that budget. Rep. Stearns noted that the Founding Fathers did not give the federal government the power under the U.S. Constitution to fund arts programs. "During the Constitutional Convention, Charles Pinckney of South Carolina offered a motion to authorize and 'establish seminaries for the promotion of literature and the arts and sciences.' The motion was overwhelmingly defeated because the framers of our Constitution did not want the federal government to promote the arts with federal funds."

Rep. Stearns measure, an amendment to H.R. 2466, was rejected by the House on July 14, 1999 by a vote of 124-300 (Roll Call 287). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H R 1658: Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act
Vote Date: June 24, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Civil Forfeiture Reform. Under "civil forfeiture," the government seizes property which officials believe is used in the commission of a crime, oftentimes without the property owner being charged with a crime. Existing federal civil forfeiture law makes clear that property owners must bear the burden of proof that their property was not used in the commission of a crime. A measure, introduced by Representative Henry Hyde (R-IL), would curb excesses in federal civil forfeiture takings of property. The Hyde legislation would reverse the burden of proof and require of the government "clear and convincing evidence" that the property was used in the commission of a crime. It also contains an "innocent owner defense" for property owners who were unaware that their property was being used in the commission of crimes.

Rep. Hyde's measure, H.R. 1658, passed the House on June 24, 1999 by a vote of 375-48 (Roll Call 255). We have assigned pluses to the yeas.



H J RES 33: Constitutional Amendment to Prohibit the Physical Desecration of the United States Flag
Vote Date: June 24, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Flag Burning Amendment, House Joint Resolution 33. This measure proposes an amendment to the Constitution stating that "the Congress shall have power to prohibit the physical desecration of the flag of the United States." Representative Charles Canady (R-FL) argued that such an amendment is needed "because the Supreme Court, in its mistaken interpretation of the First Amendment, stripped our flag of the protection to which it is entitled." He is mistaken, however. If Congress truly wishes to rein in the Supreme Court with regard to flag burning and myriad other issues, it can simply exercise its constitutional power to limit the Court's appellate jurisdiction (Article III, Section 2). The House adopted this measure on June 24, 1999 by a vote of 305 to 124 (Congressional Record, pages H4843-44, roll call 252; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 2122: Mandatory Gun Show Background Check Act
Vote Date: June 18, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Gun Control, H.R. 2122. This legislation would clamp down on gun sales at gun shows, which for the purposes of this bill are defined as any event "at which 50 or more firearms are offered or exhibited for sale, transfer, or exchange" or at which there are ten or more vendors. Under this bill, a person offering a firearm for sale who is not himself licensed is prevented from selling that firearm directly to the buyer. The licensed vendor must complete a background check before the transfer of the weapon. The House rejected the measure on June 18, 1999 by a vote of 147 to 280 (Congressional Record, pages H4656-57, roll call 244; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 1501: On Agreeing to the Amendment 26 to H R 1501
Vote Date: June 17, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Freedom of Religion, Amendment to H.R. 1501. The ACLU and similar groups have long crusaded to force the removal of all aspects of religious expression from public grounds under the pretense that such expression violates the First Amendment. This amendment to H.R. 1501, offered by Representative Robert Aderholt (R-AL), takes issue with that notion. The amendment states that "the power to display the Ten Commandments" on public property is "declared to be among the powers reserved to the states...." It also declares that individual religious expression on public grounds is "among the rights secured against laws respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise of religion" and "among the liberties which no state shall deprive any person without due process of law...." Moreover: "The courts constituted, ordained, and established by the Congress shall exercise the judicial power in a manner consistent with the foregoing declarations." The House adopted the amendment on June 17, 1999 by a vote of 248 to 180 (Congressional Record, pages H4486-87, roll call 221; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



H R 1401: On Agreeing to the Amendment 9 to H R 1401
Vote Date: June 9, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
No Military Exchanges or Joint Training With the Red Chinese Army, Amendment to H.R. 1401. Representative Tom DeLay (R-TX) offered this amendment to the Defense authorization bill to "bar the United States from training the Communist Chinese military." Stressing the need for such a measure, DeLay noted that "President Clinton jump-started American cooperation with the PLA [People's Liberation Army] soon after taking office in 1993. The imbalance in these so-called exchanges is extreme and predictably benefits the PRC [People's Republic of China]." These exchanges have not tapered off since the Chinese nuclear espionage revelations. "Just this year," continued DeLay, "more than 80 cooperative military contacts were planned between the U.S. and Red China." The House adopted the amendment on June 9, 1999 by a vote of 284 to 143 (Congressional Record, page H3995, roll call 182; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



H R 1401: On Agreeing to the Amendment 11 to H R 1401
Vote Date: June 9, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Permitting Abortions in Military Hospitals Overseas, Amendment to H.R. 1401. Representative Carrie Meek (D-FL) offered this amendment to repeal "the statutory prohibition on privately funded abortions in overseas military facilities...." However, those overseas facilities are taxpayer funded. If abortions are allowed there, those facilities would become, noted Representative Henry Hyde (R-IL), "not a place for healing, but an abortion mill, an abortion clinic." The House rejected the amendment on June 9, 1999 by a vote of 203 to 225 (Congressional Record, page H3996, roll call 184; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 1906: Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations, FY 2000
Vote Date: June 8, 1999Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Preventing Funding for Development of Any Abortion Inducing Drug, Amendment to H.R. 1906. Representative Tom Coburn (R-OK) offered this amendment to prohibit any funds in the fiscal 2000 Department of Agriculture appropriations bill from being used "by the Food and Drug Administration for the testing, development, or approval ... of any drug for the chemical inducement of abortion." The House adopted the amendment on June 8, 1999 by a vote of 217 to 214 (Congressional Record, pages H3811-12, roll call 173; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



H R 1906: Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations, FY 2000
Vote Date: June 8, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Agricultural Appropriations, H.R. 1906. This legislation provides $60.7 billion for "Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies" for fiscal year 2000, a $3.4 billion increase over fiscal 1999. The measure includes $21.6 billion for the food stamp program, $20.1 billion for agricultural programs, $4 billion for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), $165.4 million for the "Food for Peace" foreign aid program, and $583.4 million for rental assistance. The House adopted the measure on June 8, 1999 by a vote of 246 to 183 (Congressional Record, page H3823, roll call 177; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 1664: On Agreeing to the Amendment 10 to H R 1664
Vote Date: May 6, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Preventing U.S. Invasion of Yugoslavia, Amendment to H.R. 1664. Representative Ernest Istook (R-OK) offered this amendment to the Defense supplemental appropriations bill to prohibit the use of any funds authorized therein for "any plan to invade the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia with ground forces of the United States, except in time of war." Representative Cliff Stearns (R-FL) objected to the amendment on the grounds that it was similar to H.R. 1569, and therefore unnecessary. "They are very, very similar," said Stearns. "Do members think they have to make another stand...?" Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) argued otherwise: "It was said that this is the same vote that we had last week, but last week's vote is sitting on the table and it is going to sit there. This one may well go someplace and have an effect." The House rejected the amendment on May 6, 1999 by a vote of 117 to 301 (Congressional Record, pages H2891-92, roll call 119; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



H R 1569: Military Operations in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Limitation Act
Vote Date: April 28, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Prohibit Funding of Ground Troops In Kosovo, H.R. 1569. This legislation would prohibit funding of U.S. ground forces in Yugoslavia without prior congressional authorization. At the time of this vote, U.S. forces were already engaged in the air war against Yugoslavia -- without prior congressional authorization. The House adopted the measure on April 28, 1999 by a vote of 249 to 180 (Congressional Record, pages H2413-14, roll call 100; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



H CON RES 82: Directing the President, pursuant to section 5(c) of the War Powers Resolution, to remove U.S. Armed Forces from their positions in connection with the present operations against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Vote Date: April 28, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Removal of U.S. Troops From the Kosovo Conflict, House Concurrent Resolution 82. This measure would direct the removal of the U.S. military from the conflict in Yugoslavia, ending our offensive operations against that nation. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) noted: "The Serbs have done nothing to us, and we should not be over there perpetuating a war." The House rejected the measure (thereby acquiescing to President Clinton's offensive against Yugoslavia while later hypocritically voting against a declaration of war) on April 28, 1999 by a vote of 139 to 290 (Congressional Record, page H2427, roll call 101; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



S CON RES 21: Authorizing the President of the United States to Conduct Military Air Operations and Missile Strikes Against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)
Vote Date: April 28, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Authorizing Air Operations for the Kosovo Conflict, Senate Concurrent Resolution 21. This legislation would authorize continuing offensive air operations and missile attacks against Yugoslavia. Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) said that "it should be obvious that the President does not need this resolution to use air power because he is already using it" -- an observation that speaks volumes about the failure of Congress to assert its authority by insisting on the removal of U.S. forces. The House rejected the resolution on April 28, 1999 by a vote of 213 to 213 (Congressional Record, pages H2451-52, roll call 103; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 1141: Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for FY 1999
Vote Date: March 24, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Increasing Foreign Aid Expenditures, Amendment to H.R. 1141.

Representative David Obey (D-WI) offered this amendment to the fiscal 1999 supplemental appropriations bill to reinstate a smorgasbord of foreign aid appropriations that the bill would rescind in order to offset new spending. The Obey amendment would restore $853 million in spending, including: $648 million for multilateral development banks (like the World Bank); $150 million to purchase fissile materials (plutonium) from Russia to keep the Russians from building nuclear weapons; $30 million for the "Food for Peace" program; and $25 million for the Export-Import Bank. The House rejected the amendment on March 24, 1999 by a vote of 201 to 228 (Congressional Record, pages H1644-45, roll call 68; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 4: National Missile Defense System
Vote Date: March 18, 1999Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Deployment of a National Missile Defense, H.R. 4.

This bill would make it "the policy of the United States to deploy a national missile defense." Representative John Lewis (D-GA) objected to the measure, declaring: "Make no mistake, a dollar more for missile defense is a dollar less for health care, for education, and for food.... I urge my colleagues, do not choose bullets over babies, bombs over books, missiles over medicine." But there was support from the minority party for the measure. Democratic Representative James Traficant (OH) said, "National defense and security is our number-one priority.... I am changing my vote. I am voting for the missile defense system for the United States of America." The House adopted the measure on March 18, 1999 by a vote of 317 to 105 (Congressional Record, pages H1447-48, roll call 59; we have assigned pluses to the yeas).



H CON RES 42: Peacekeeping Operations in Kosovo
Vote Date: March 11, 1999Vote: NONE No Vote.
Authorizing U.S. Peacekeeping in Kosovo, House Concurrent Resolution 42.
This bill would authorize the President to "deploy United States Armed Forces personnel to Kosovo as part of a NATO peacekeeping operation implementing a Kosovo peace agreement." Representative Tom Campbell (R-CA), who opposed the measure, noted: "the United States has not been attacked. Serbia, in whose sovereign territory we recognize Kosovo to be, has not invited us to enter. The United States would thus be exercising force against the sovereign territory of a country that has not attacked us...." The House adopted the measure on March 11, 1999 by a vote of 219 to 191 (Congressional Record, pages H1249-50, roll call 49; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 669: Peace Corps Authorizations FY2000-FY2003
Vote Date: March 3, 1999Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Peace Corps Authorization and Expansion, H.R. 669. This bill would authorize $1.3 billion for the Peace Corps through fiscal 2003 -- including $270 million in fiscal 2000, an increase of $29 million over the current level. The new funding would allow for an expansion in the number of Peace Corps volunteers from the current level of 6,700 to 10,000 by 2003. The House passed the bill on March 3, 1999 by a vote of 326 to 90 (Congressional Record, page H913, roll call 31; we have assigned pluses to the nays).



H R 193: Sudbury, Assabet, and Concord Wild and Scenic River Act
Vote Date: February 23, 1999Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Designating the Sudbury, Assabet, and Concord as Wild and Scenic Rivers, H.R. 193.
This bill would designate a combined total of 29 miles of three rivers in Massachusetts as Wild and Scenic under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act of 1968. Although the bill would prevent the federal government from actually acquiring title or easements for any of the land adjacent to the sections of river in question, through a loophole the government could still acquire such land or easements "under other laws for other purposes." The House passed the bill on February 23, 1999 by a vote of 395 to 22 (Congressional Record, page H679, roll call 23; we have assigned pluses to the nays).