Name: Chris Bell


Congress: Texas, District: 25, Democrat


Cumulative Freedom Index Score: 30%


Status: Former Member of the House

Score Breakdown:
30% (108th Congress: 2003-2004)

Key Votes:





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





H R 2028: Pledge Protection Act
Vote Date: September 23, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Pledge Protection Act. This bill (H.R. 2028) would counter judicial activism by reining in the federal courts as opposed to amending the Constitution. H.R. 2028 states: "No court created by Act of Congress shall have any jurisdiction, and the Supreme Court shall have no appellate jurisdiction, to hear or decide any question pertaining to the interpretation of, or the validity under the Constitution of, the Pledge of Allegiance ... or its recitation." This legislation would prevent the federal courts from ruling that the phrase "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance is unconstitutional.

The House passed H.R. 2028 on September 23, 2004 by a vote of 247 to 173 (Roll Call 467). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because H.R. 2028 would protect the Pledge of Allegiance from federal court activism.



H R 1308: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to end certain abusive tax practices, to provide tax relief and simplification, and for other purposes.
Vote Date: September 23, 2004Vote: AYEGood Vote.
Extending Tax Cuts. The final version (conference report) of this tax-cut legislation (H.R. 1308) would benefit most Americans by extending the life of several middle-class tax breaks set to expire at the end of this year. It would extend provisions providing relief from the "marriage penalty" through 2008, extend the $1,000 per child income tax credit through 2009, and keep a greater number of taxpayers in the 10 percent income tax bracket through 2010. It would also revive some expired business tax incentives.

The House adopted the conference report on H.R. 1308 on September 23, 2004 by a vote of 339 to 65 (Roll Call 472). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because the bill would extend the life of tax cuts, benefiting a large number of Americans.



H R 5006: Making appropriations for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2005, and for other purposes
Vote Date: September 9, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations. This mammoth appropriations bill (H.R. 5006) would provide $496.6 billion in fiscal 2005, including $374.3 billion for the Department of Health and Human Services, $60.3 billion for the Department of Education, and $14.9 billion for the Department of Labor. Total fiscal 2005 appropriations would be 3.5 percent higher than fiscal 2004 appropriations.

The House passed H.R. 5006 on September 9, 2004 by a vote of 388 to 13 (Roll Call 440). We have assigned pluses to the nays because these departments are not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 3313: Marriage Protection Act of 2004
Vote Date: July 22, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Marriage Protection Act. This bill (H.R. 3313) would protect marriage from judicial activism by restricting the federal courts as opposed to amending the Constitution. Specifically, H.R. 3313 would stipulate that "no court created by Act of Congress shall have any jurisdiction, and the Supreme Court shall have no appellate jurisdiction" to interpret, or rule on the constitutionality of, Title 28, Section 1738C of the U.S. Code. Section 1738C states that no state, territory, or possession of the U.S "shall be required to give effect" to same-sex "marriages" performed under the laws of another state, territory, or possession.

H.R. 3313 would not prohibit the federal courts from hearing all same-sex "marriage" cases, since it is narrowly worded. A more broadly written measure would have been better. Nevertheless, H.R. 3313 would be a step in the right direction.

The House passed H.R. 3313 on July 22, 2004 by a vote of 233 to 194 (Roll Call 410). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because H.R. 3313 would help protect marriage via a long-neglected congressional check on the federal judiciary.



H R 4818: On Agreeing to the Amendment 7 to H R 4818
Vote Date: July 15, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Millennium Challenge Account. During consideration of the foreign aid appropriations bill (H.R. 4818), Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) offered this amendment to eliminate all of the funding for the Millennium Challenge Account. H.R. 4818 would provide $1.25 billion for this account in fiscal 2005, 25 percent more than in fiscal 2004, for the purpose of rewarding nations for progress in human rights, economic policy, and democracy. During floor debate, Paul noted that this year-old program was originally viewed as "a transition from one form of foreign aid to another," but it instead "was just added on."

The House rejected Paul's amendment on July 15, 2004 by a vote of 41 to 379 (Roll Call 383). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because foreign aid is unconstitutional.



H R 4818: On Agreeing to the Amendment 10 to H R 4818
Vote Date: July 15, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
UN Inspections of U.S. Elections. Rep. Steve Buyer (R-Ind.) proposed an amendment to add the following language to the foreign aid appropriations bill: "None of the funds made available in this Act [H.R. 4818] may be used by any official of the United States Government to request the United Nations to assess the validity of elections in the United States." Buyer was responding to the fact that nearly a dozen members of the House had written to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan requesting "to have election observers to monitor the Presidential election in the United States" on November 2.

The House adopted Buyer's amendment on July 15, 2004 by a vote of 243 to 161 (Roll Call 385). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because such UN monitoring could open the door to UN interference in our elections.



H R 4818: Foreign Operations, Export Financing, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2005
Vote Date: July 15, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Foreign Aid. The foreign aid appropriations bill (H.R. 4818) would provide $19.4 billion in fiscal 2005, an 11 percent increase over fiscal 2004 funding.

The House passed H.R. 4818 on July 15, 2004 by a vote of 365 to 41 (Roll Call 390). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is unconstitutional.



H R 4766: Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2005
Vote Date: July 13, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Agriculture Appropriations. This bill (H.R. 4766) would appropriate $83.7 billion for agriculture, rural development, and nutrition programs in fiscal 2005. Over half ($50.2 billion) of the funding in the so-called agriculture appropriations bill would be for domestic food and nutrition programs, including $33.6 billion for the food stamp program and $11.3 billion for child nutrition programs. Another $27 billion would be for agriculture programs, including $16.5 billion for the Commodity Credit Corporation.

The House passed H.R. 4766 on July 13, 2004 by a vote of 389 to 31 (Roll Call 370). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to farmers and federal food aid to individuals are unconstitutional activities of the federal government.



H R 4754: On Agreeing to the Amendment 13 to H R 4754
Vote Date: July 7, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Defunding U.S. Participation in UNESCO. This amendment to the appropriations bill for the Commerce, Justice, and State Departments (H.R. 4754) would effectively end U.S. participation in UNESCO by defunding it. Introduced by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), the amendment stated: "None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to pay expenses for any United States contribution to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)." The U.S. rejoined UNESCO in 2002 after withdrawing from it in 1984.

The House rejected Paul's amendment on July 7, 2004 by a vote of 135 to 283 (Roll Call 333). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because our national independence must be preserved by getting out and staying out of the UN and all of its agencies, including UNESCO.



H R 4754: On Agreeing to the Amendment 17 to H R 4754
Vote Date: July 7, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Defunding U.S. Participation in the United Nations. In addition to sponsoring an amendment to defund U.S. participation in UNESCO, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) also proposed an amendment to defund U.S. participation in the UN as a whole. The latter amendment stated: "None of the funds made available in this Act [H.R. 4754] may be used to pay any United States contribution to the United Nations or any affiliated agency of the United Nations."

The House rejected Paul's broader defunding amendment on July 7, 2004 by a vote of 83 to 335 (Roll Call 335). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because blocking U.S. funding of the UN would be a significant step toward getting out of the world body and fully restoring U.S. independence.



H R 444: Back to Work Investment Act
Vote Date: June 3, 2004Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Job Training and Worker Services. This bill (H.R. 444) would authorize the creation of "personal re-employment accounts" of up to $3,000 for unemployed workers at risk of exhausting their state unemployment benefits. Money in this account could be used for such expenses as education, childcare, healthcare or transportation. Those workers who find a job within 13 weeks would be allowed to take the balance in their account as a "reemployment bonus." This bill would authorize $50 million in fiscal 2005 for these "personal re-employment accounts."

The House passed H.R. 444 on June 3, 2004 by a vote of 213 to 203 (Roll Call 225). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid for job training or unemployment services is unconstitutional.



H J RES 83: Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States regarding the appointment of individuals to fill vacancies in the House of Representatives
Vote Date: June 2, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Continuity of Congress Constitutional Amendment. This joint resolution (House Joint Resolution 83) proposes a constitutional amendment that would allow state governors to appoint new House members in the extraordinary circumstance where many have been killed or incapacitated. This amendment would require each newly elected House member to present a list of two or more nominees to the governor of his state. The governor would be required to appoint a member's replacement from this list.

The House rejected H.J. Res. 83 on June 2, 2004 by a vote of 63 to 353 (Roll Call 219). A two-thirds majority vote of those present and voting (279 in this case) is required to pass a joint resolution proposing a constitutional amendment. We have assigned pluses to the nays because amendments to the Constitution should only be considered as a last resort and because House members should be elected, not appointed.



H R 4200: On Agreeing to the Amendment 2 to H R 4200
Vote Date: May 19, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Abortion at Military Facilities. This amendment to H.R. 4200 (Fiscal 2005 Defense Authorization) would allow women who are in the military or are military dependents to obtain supposedly privately-funded abortions in overseas military facilities.

During the debate on this amendment, Jim Ryun (R-Kansas) correctly stated: Although this amendment is presented by the other side as providing for solely self-funded abortions, the fact is the American taxpayer will be forced to pay for the use of the military facility, the procurement of additional equipment needed to perform abortions, and the use of military personnel to perform abortions.

The House rejected this amendment to H.R. 4200 on May 19, 2004 by a vote of 202 to 221 (Roll Call 197). We have assigned pluses to the nays because all forms of abortion constitute the murder of unborn children.



H R 4181: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to permanently extend the increased standard deduction, and the 15-percent individual income tax rate bracket expansion, for married taxpayers filing joint returns
Vote Date: April 28, 2004Vote: AYEGood Vote.
"Marriage Penalty" Relief. This bill (H.R. 4181) would permanently eliminate the "marriage penalty" by making the standard deduction double that of single taxpayers and by increasing the upper limit of the 15 percent bracket for married couples to twice that of singles.

The House passed H.R. 4181 on April 28, 2004 by a vote of 323 to 95 (Roll Call 138). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because this bill would make permanent the tax savings of the "marriage penalty" relief.



H R 2844: Continuity in Representation Act of 2004
Vote Date: April 22, 2004Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Continuity of Congress. This bill (H.R. 2844) would require special elections to be held within 45 days to fill vacant House seats in the extraordinary circumstance of more than 100 vacancies. This requirement would be waived if the vacancies occur within 75 days of an already-scheduled general election.

This bill is a good example of Congress using its legitimate power under the Constitution to solve a problem rather than proposing a potentially dangerous constitutional amendment. A year ago the Continuity of Government Commission (CGC) recommended that governors appoint House members (perhaps from a list of candidates provided by individual congressmen) in the event a substantial number of congressmen are killed or incapacitated, presumably in a terrorist attack.

However, H.R. 2844 would solve the problem of the loss of a large number of congressmen through the already-existing congressional power to determine "the times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives" (Article I, Section 4). And it would do so through special elections rather than appointment.

The House passed H.R. 2844 on April 22, 2004 by a vote of 306 to 97 (Roll Call 130). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because this bill utilizes an already-existing congressional power to address a bona-fide concern and preempts a dangerous alternative proposal for a large number of vacant House seats being filled by appointment.



H R 3550: Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users
Vote Date: April 2, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Surface Transportation. This bill (H.R. 3550) would authorize $284 billion in federal aid for highway, mass transit, and safety and research programs for fiscal years 2004-2009. This total includes $217 billion for highways, $51.5 billion for mass transit, and $11.1 billion for House members' transportation projects.

The Bush administration had wanted to limit the spending in the bill to $256 billion, which, noted White House spokesman Scott McClellan, would still increase
spending by 21 percent. But the House added an additional $28 billion to the bill (11 percent more than the president had requested).

The House passed H.R. 3550 on April 2, 2004 by a vote of 357 to 65 (Roll Call 114). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this double-digit increase in spending on surface transportation is fiscally irresponsible at a time of record-breaking federal deficits.



H R 254: An Act to authorize the President of the United States to agree to certain amendments to the Agreement between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the United Mexican States concerning the establishment of a Border Environment Cooperation Commission and a North American Development Bank
Vote Date: March 25, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
North American Development Bank. This bill (H.R. 254), as amended by the Senate, would implement a U.S.-Mexico agreement that would allow the North American Development Bank (NADBank) to make below-market-loans. It would also extend the area in Mexico served by the bank to a zone along the border 186 miles wide (compared to the current 62 miles wide). The NADBank was established by the 1993 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to finance development on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. The bank is funded by both the United States and Mexico.

The House agreed to a motion to suspend the rules and passed H.R. 254 on March 25, 2004 by a vote of 377 to 48 (Roll Call 87). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid to Mexico in the form of below-market-loans funded by U.S. taxpayers is unconstitutional. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (284 in this case) is required for passage under a suspension of the rules.



H CON RES 393: Congressional Budget for the U.S. Government for FY 2005
Vote Date: March 25, 2004Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Fiscal 2005 Budget Resolution. This resolution (House Concurrent Resolution 393) would establish broad spending and revenue targets over the next five years. It calls for $871.3 billion in "discretionary" spending (including $50 billion for supplemental funding of operations in Iraq) and another $1.5 trillion in "mandatory" spending for fiscal 2005. Based on these targets, the "mandatory" spending portion of the budget would increase by 5 percent over last year, and the total budget -- a whopping $2.4 trillion -- would increase by 3 percent.

This resolution projects that the budget deficit would be cut significantly by fiscal 2009 (from $376.8 billion in fiscal 2005 to $234 billion in fiscal 2009); however, according to a Congressional Quarterly Fact Sheet, "Budget Resolution for FY 2005," these projected deficits are deceptively low due to an accounting sleight-of-hand whereby "these deficits are calculated by using the surpluses in the Social Security trust funds to offset spending on other programs. If these Social Security surpluses are not counted, the projected deficits in each fiscal year would be $550.7 billion in FY 2005 and $471.8 billion in FY 2009."

The House adopted this resolution on March 25, 2004 by a vote of 215 to 212 (Roll Call 92). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this budget perpetuates the fiscally irresponsible, largely unconstitutional federal spending with its attendant record-breaking deficits of recent years.



H R 3873: Child Nutrition Improvement and Integrity Act
Vote Date: March 24, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Child Nutrition Programs. This bill (H.R. 3873) would reauthorize through fiscal 2008 several child nutrition programs, including the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs, the Child and Adult Care Food Program, and the After-School Snack Program. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that H.R. 3873 would increase direct spending on these programs by about $226 million over the 2004-2008 period.

Since obesity in school-age children has greatly increased since 1980, the school lunch program reauthorization bill has become a popular vehicle for proposals aimed at reducing obesity. This bill would require schools to develop "wellness policies" that establish nutritional guidelines for all food sold in schools; however, it stops short of setting mandatory federal standards.

The House agreed to the motion to suspend the rules and pass H.R. 3873 on March 24, 2004 by a vote of 419 to 5 (Roll Call 82). We have assigned pluses to the nays because providing food for citizens is an unconstitutional activity of the federal government. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (283 in this case) is required for passage under a suspension of the rules.



H R 3030: On Agreeing to the Amendment 4 to H R 3030
Vote Date: February 4, 2004Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Extended Unemployment Benefits. This amendment to H.R. 3030 (Community Service Block Grants) would authorize a six-month federal program to provide an additional 13 weeks of unemployment benefits for people who have exhausted their 26 weeks of state jobless benefits.

According to Congressional Quarterly for February 7, 2004, this federal unemployment benefits amendment is part of "an election year strategy by Democrats and labor advocates to try to attach worker-related legislation to other bills.

The House adopted this amendment to H.R. 3030 on February 4, 2004 by a vote of 227 to 179 (Roll Call 18). We have assigned pluses to the nays because payment of unemployment benefits is an unconstitutional activity of the federal government.



H R 1: Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act
Vote Date: November 22, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Prescription Drug Benefit. The final version (conference report) of H.R. 1 would create a prescription drug benefit for Medicare recipients. Beginning in 2006, prescription coverage would be available to seniors through private insurers for a monthly premium estimated at $35. There would be a $250 annual deductible, then 75 percent of drug costs up to $2,250 would be reimbursed. Drug costs greater than $2,250 would not be covered until out-of-pocket expenses exceeded $3,600, after which 95 percent of drug costs would be reimbursed. Low-income recipients would receive more subsidies than other seniors by paying lower premiums, having smaller deductibles, and making lower co-payments for each prescription. The total cost of the new prescription drug benefit would be limited to the $400 billion that Congress had budgeted earlier this year for the first 10 years of this new entitlement program.

The House adopted the conference report on H.R. 1 on November 22, 2003 by a vote of 220 to 215 (Roll Call 669). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this landmark legislation establishes a major new unconstitutional entitlement program.




H R 3289: Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for Defense and for the Reconstruction of Iraq and Afghanistan for FY 2004
Vote Date: October 31, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Supplemental Spending for Iraq & Afghanistan. The final version (conference report) of H.R. 3289 would appropriate $87.5 billion in supplemental fiscal 2004 spending for military operations and reconstruction in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is the largest supplemental that Congress has ever passed. Of this total, military operations would receive $65.8 billion. Iraq reconstruction would be funded by grants totaling $18.6 billion, while reconstruction in Afghanistan would receive $1.2 billion.

William Norman Grigg predicted in the March 24 issue of this magazine that "the impending war on, or occupation of, Iraq is intended to carry out the UN Security Council mandates, not to protect our nation or to punish those responsible for the September 11th attack. The war would uphold the UN's supposed authority and vindicate its role as a de facto world government." In its November 20 report on President Bush's speech at London's Whitehall Palace the Guardian of London provided a concise confirmation of Mr. Grigg's prediction in its headline "Iraq war saved the UN, says president." Now American taxpayers must pay tens of billions of dollars, hundreds of billions ultimately, for this latest military intervention to empower the UN.

The House adopted the conference report on H.R. 3289 on October 31, 2003 by a vote of 298 to 121 (Roll Call 601). We have assigned pluses to the nays because the U.S. military was sent into Iraq to enforce UN resolutions, when the only proper use of our nation's armed forces is to protect the lives and property of American citizens, and the huge U.S.-funded infrastructure rebuilding program in Iraq and Afghanistan is another example of unconstitutional foreign aid.



S 3: Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act
Vote Date: October 2, 2003Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Partial-birth Abortion Ban. The final version (conference report) of S. 3 would ban partial-birth abortions. Although on March 12 the Senate had amended their version of S. 3 to include a reaffirmation of Roe v. Wade, on September 30 a 10-member House-Senate conference committee agreed to report out a final version of the bill identical to one (H.R. 760) that passed the House earlier this year without any reaffirmation of Roe v. Wade.

Of course, all abortion procedures should be banned. But this bill is still a step in the right direction in that it is better to ban one abortion procedure than to ban none at all

The House adopted the conference report on S. 3 on October 2, 2003 by a vote of 281 to 142 (Roll Call 530). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because all forms of abortion constitute the murder of preborn children, and the Supreme Court, in its Roe v. Wade decision, overstepped its proper authority by "legalizing" abortion in the first place.



H R 2739: United States-Singapore Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act
Vote Date: July 24, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
U.S.-Singapore Trade. This bill (H.R. 2739) would implement a trade agreement to reduce tariffs and trade barriers between the United States and Singapore. A similar bill, the U.S.-Chile Trade Agreement (H.R. 2738), was presented to Congress at the same time as the U.S.-Singapore Trade Agreement. These are the first in a series of bilateral and regional free trade agreements (FTAs) that the Bush administration is negotiating, which will culminate in 2005 in the largest and most significant FTA of them all, the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA).

The model for the FTAA is the European Union (EU), formerly the "Common Market," which has grown by design from a supposed free trade agreement into a supranational government for Europe. The world order architects intend for the FTAA to follow the same trajectory for the Americas.

The House passed H.R. 2739 on July 24, 2003 by a vote of 272 to 155 (Roll Call 432). We have assigned pluses to the nays because these bilateral "free trade" agreements are intended to be stepping stones to the FTAA, which would set trade (and eventually other) policies for the member nations. However, under the U.S. Constitution only Congress has the power "to regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states...."



H R 2738: United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act
Vote Date: July 24, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
U.S.-Chile Trade. This bill (H.R. 2738) would implement a trade agreement to reduce tariffs and trade barriers between the United States and Chile. The significance of this trade agreement, like that of the U.S.-Singapore Trade Agreement (see House bill below).

[ U.S.-Singapore Trade. H.R. 2739 would implement a trade agreement to reduce tariffs and trade barriers between the United States and Singapore. A similar bill, the U.S.-Chile Trade Agreement (H.R. 2738), was presented to Congress at the same time as the U.S.-Singapore Trade Agreement. These are the first in a series of bilateral and regional free trade agreements (FTAs) that the Bush administration is negotiating, which will culminate in 2005 in the largest and most significant FTA of them all, the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA).

The model for the FTAA is the European Union (EU), formerly the "Common Market," which has grown by design from a supposed free trade agreement into a supranational government for Europe. The world order architects intend for the FTAA to follow the same trajectory for the Americas. ]

The House passed H.R. 2738 on July 24, 2003 by a vote of 270 to 156 (Roll Call 436). We have assigned pluses to the nays because these bilateral "free trade" agreements are intended to be stepping stones to the FTAA, which would set trade (and eventually other) policies for the member nations. However, under the U.S. Constitution only Congress has the power "to regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states...."



H R 2799: On Agreeing to the Amendment 2 to H R 2799
Vote Date: July 22, 2003Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Rejoining UNESCO. This amendment to H.R. 2799 (Commerce, Justice and State Appropriations, Fiscal Year 2004) by Ron Paul (R-Texas) stated that "none of the funds made available in this Act may be made available for the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)."

The House rejected this amendment to H.R. 2799 on July 22, 2003 by a vote of 145 to 279 (Roll Call 405). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because our national sovereignty must be preserved by getting out and staying out of the United Nations and all of its agencies, including UNESCO.



H R 1950: On Agreeing to the Amendment 2 to H R 1950
Vote Date: July 16, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Millennium Challenge Account. This amendment to H.R. 1950 (Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 2004 and 2005) by Henry Hyde (R-Ill.) would authorize $9.3 billion over the next three years for a new foreign aid program to promote the key development objectives described in the United Nations Millennium Declaration. According to the amendment, "It is, therefore, the policy of the United States to support a new compact for global development...." Furthermore, the amendment asserts: "Economic development, and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, must be a shared responsibility between donor and recipient countries."

The House adopted this amendment to H.R. 1950 on July 16, 2003 by a vote of 368 to 52 (Roll Call 368). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 1950: On Agreeing to the Amendment 6 to H R 1950
Vote Date: July 15, 2003Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Ban on UN Contributions. This amendment to H.R. 1950 (Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 2004 and 2005) by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) stated that "none of the funds authorized ... by this Act may be obligated or expended to pay any United States contribution to the United Nations or any affiliated agency of the United Nations."

The House rejected this amendment to H.R. 1950 on July 15, 2003 by a vote of 74 to 350 (Roll Call 364). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because blocking the funding for the United Nations in this bill would be a first step toward getting our nation out of the UN and fully restoring our national sovereignty



H R 2673: Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2004
Vote Date: July 14, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Agriculture Appropriations. This bill (H.R. 2673) would appropriate $77.5 billion for agriculture, rural development and nutrition programs in fiscal 2004. Over half of the money appropriated by this agriculture bill is earmarked for so-called mandatory spending on nutrition programs, including $28 billion for food stamps and $16 billion for school lunch and other nutrition programs. Total spending for traditional agricultural programs is $26.8 billion, a 5 percent increase.

The House passed H.R. 2673 on July 14, 2003 by a vote of 347 to 64 (Roll Call 358). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to farmers and federal food aid to individuals are unconstitutional activities of the federal government




H R 2660: Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2004
Vote Date: July 10, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations. This bill (H.R. 2660) would appropriate $470 billion for the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Departments for fiscal 2004, a 10 percent increase over fiscal 2003. This bill, the biggest of the fiscal 2004 domestic spending bills, includes $138 billion for discretionary spending, including $55.4 billion for education and $22.7 billion for the National Institutes of Health. That leaves $332 billion for so-called mandatory spending on entitlement programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and unemployment insurance.

The House passed H.R. 2660 on July 10, 2003 by a vote of 215 to 208 (Roll Call 353). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this bill represents a significant increase in spending, and these departments are not authorized by the Constitution.



H R 760: Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act
Vote Date: June 4, 2003Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Partial-Birth Abortion Ban. This bill (H.R. 760) states: "Any physician who, in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce, knowingly performs a partial-birth abortion and thereby kills a human fetus shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both."

The House passed H.R. 760 on June 4, 2003 by a vote of 282 to 139 (Roll Call 242). We have assigned pluses to the yeas on the basis that all forms of abortion constitute the murder of unborn children -- and that the Supreme Court was overstepping its proper authority by "legalizing" abortion in the first place.



H R 2: Jobs and Growth Reconciliation Tax Act
Vote Date: May 23, 2003Vote: NAYBad Vote.
Tax Reductions. The final version of the $350 billion tax-cut package (the conference report on H.R. 2) would provide tax breaks over 11 years. Dividends, currently taxed the same as other earned income, would instead be taxed at 15 percent for most taxpayers through 2008. Lower-income dividend recipients would be taxed at 5 percent through 2007 and nothing in 2008. The current 20 percent top rate on capital gains on investments held at least one year would drop to 15 percent, with lower-income investors paying 5 percent through 2007 and nothing in 2008. Both dividend and capital gains tax reductions would expire after 2008. Among other tax reductions, income tax cuts enacted in 2001 for individuals and scheduled to be effective in 2006 would be accelerated; parents would receive refunds of up to $400 per child this summer.

The House adopted the conference report on H.R. 2 on May 23, 2003 by a vote of 231 to 200 (Roll Call 225). We have assigned pluses to the yeas because this bill will cut taxes for individuals and businesses.



H R 2185: Unemployment Compensation Amendments of 2003
Vote Date: May 22, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Unemployment Benefits. This bill (H.R. 2185) would extend the Temporary Extended Unemployment Compensation Act of 2002 through December 31, 2003. This would provide an additional 13 weeks of federal aid to workers in all states who have exhausted their 26 weeks of state unemployment benefits. It would also provide another 13 weeks of federal benefits to workers in states with high unemployment. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that H.R. 2185 would increase federal outlays by a total of $7.9 billion over the fiscal years 2003 and 2004.

The House passed H.R. 2185 on May 22, 2003 by a vote of 409 to 19 (Roll Call 223). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to unemployed workers is unconstitutional.



H R 1261: Workforce Reinvestment and Adult Education Act
Vote Date: May 8, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Job Training. This bill (H.R. 1261) would reauthorize the nation's main job-training program. One of its provisions would allow faith-based groups to receive federal funds while maintaining their religious identity, including hiring based on religious preferences. The Congressional Budget Office estimates this bill would increase "mandatory" spending by $17 billion for the years 2006-2011 and "discretionary" spending by $31 billion over the years 2004-2008.

The House passed H.R. 1261 on May 8, 2003 by a vote of 220 to 204 (Roll Call 175). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid for job training and education is unconstitutional.



H R 1298: United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act
Vote Date: May 1, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Global AIDS Initiative. This bill (H.R. 1298) would authorize $15 billion ($3 billion annually) for fiscal years 2004 through 2008 to provide assistance to foreign countries for the stated purpose of combating HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. Much of this funding will be funneled through the Global AIDS Fund and other UN agencies and programs notorious for promoting abortion, as well as encouraging promiscuity through "sex education" courses supposedly aimed at stemming AIDS.

The House passed H.R. 1298 on May 1, 2003 by a vote of 375 to 41 (Roll Call 158). We have assigned pluses to the nays because foreign aid is unconstitutional.



H R 1350: To Reauthorize the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
Vote Date: April 30, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Special Education. This bill (H.R. 1350) would reauthorize the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. One of its provisions would authorize increasing federal grants to defray more of the state cost of educating special education students, from the current 18 percent to 40 percent by 2010. Other provisions would allow school personnel to discipline special education students the same as non-disabled students, reduce paperwork requirements for special education teachers, and limit parents' ability to sue school districts. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that H.R. 1350 would cost $50 billion over the 2004-2009 period.

The House passed H.R. 1350 on April 30, 2003 by a vote of 251 to 171 (Roll Call 154). We have assigned pluses to the nays because federal aid to education is unconstitutional.



H CON RES 95: Congressional Budget for FY 2004
Vote Date: April 11, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Budget Resolution -- Final Version. The final version (conference report) of the budget resolution (House Concurrent Resolution 95) would authorize federal spending for fiscal 2004 of $1,861 billion dollars with a deficit of $558 billion and an increase in the public debt ceiling of $984 billion. This planned deficit of $558 billion dwarfs the previous record federal deficit of $290 billion in 1992. The $984 billion increase in the public debt ceiling authorized in this bill constituted, under Rule XXVII of the House, approval of the debt limit increase bill (House Joint Resolution 51) without having to cast a separate vote just on increasing the debt ceiling. Subsequently the Senate passed H. J. Res. 51 and President Bush signed it into law, increasing the public debt ceiling by $984 billion (for a new total of $7.4 trillion) and giving Congress a green light to continue its fiscally irresponsible ways. This resolution also includes $400 billion for a Medicare prescription drug benefit for 2004-2013.

The House adopted the conference report on H. Con. Res. 95 on April 11, 2003 by a vote of 216 to 211 (Roll Call 141). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this budget resolution was fiscally irresponsible.



H R 6: On Agreeing to the Amendment 1 to H R 6
Vote Date: April 10, 2003Vote: NAYGood Vote.
Oil Consumption. This proposed amendment to the Energy Policy Act of 2003 (H.R. 6) would require the secretary of transportation to increase average fuel economy standards for cars and light trucks (including SUVs and vans) manufactured after model year 2004. These new regulations would need to "ensure that the total amount of oil required for fuel for use by automobiles [both passenger cars and light trucks] in the United States in 2010 and each year thereafter is at least 5 percent less than if the average fuel economy standards remained at the same level as in 2004." This convoluted language is an attempt to close the "light truck loophole" in the current regulatory standards for Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) for motor vehicles. Currently the CAFE standard is 27.5 miles per gallon (mpg) for passenger cars and 20.7 mpg for light trucks. Whereas 20 percent of new automobiles in 1980 were light trucks, 51 percent of new automobiles were light trucks in 2001. Of course, the highly popular SUVs played a major role in this shift. The result has been a larger proportion of lower fuel economy vehicles on the road. This amendment would mandate increased fuel efficiency for cars and light trucks considered together, an obvious attempt to force Americans into smaller vehicles.

The House rejected this amendment to H.R. 6 on April 10, 2003 by a vote of 162 to 268 (Roll Call 132). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this amendment would have authorized unconstitutional regulation of vehicle size.



H CON RES 95: On Agreeing to the Amendment 4 to H CON RES 95
Vote Date: March 20, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Budget Resolution -- Democrat Substitute. The Democrat substitute amendment for the budget resolution (House Concurrent Resolution 95) would authorize federal spending for fiscal 2004 of $1,868 billion dollars with a deficit of $376 billion and an increase in the public debt ceiling of $839 billion. Although the proposed deficit of $376 billion would be smaller than the $558 billion deficit finally authorized in the conference report, it would still be much larger than the previous record deficit of $290 billion in 1992. Similarly, although the proposed $839 billion increase in the public debt ceiling would be smaller than the $984 billion increase finally authorized in the conference report, it would still be a record-breaking debt limit increase approaching $1 trillion in size. This amendment would also include a $528 billion prescription drug benefit for 2004-2013.

The House rejected the Democrat substitute amendment on March 20, 2003 by a vote of 192 to 236 (Roll Call 81). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this substitute amendment was fiscally irresponsible.



H J RES 2: Making Further Continuing Appropriations for the Fiscal Year 2003, and for other purposes
Vote Date: February 13, 2003Vote: AYEBad Vote.
Fiscal 2003 Omnibus Appropriations. The final version (conference report) of House Joint Resolution 2 would provide $397 billion in fiscal 2003 for all Cabinet departments and government agencies covered in 11 unfinished spending bills from the 107th Congress. The bills included are: Agriculture, Commerce-Justice-State, District of Columbia, Energy and Water Development, Foreign Operations, Interior, Labor-HHS-Education, Legislative Branch, Transportation, Treasury-Postal Service, and VA-HUD. The problem with the omnibus approach is that thousands of unconstitutional activities are lumped together with legitimate legislation in one massive bill. Thus, big government is perpetuated with a minimum of accountability.

The House adopted the conference report on H. J. Res. 2 on February 13, 2003 by a vote of 338 to 83 (Roll Call 32). We have assigned pluses to the nays because this bill perpetuates huge amounts of unconstitutional federal spending.