HouseNot much to say here except to point out that Joe Pitts continues to demonstrate his utter incompetence; is there a congressional district in this entire state with worse federal representation? In the country, even?
Homeland Security budget. The House approved, 268-150, a $36.3 billion Department of Homeland Security budget for fiscal 2008, up 17 percent from 2007 levels. In part, the bill restores civil-service job protections and tightens security at U.S. chemical plants.
A yes vote was to pass HR 2638.
Voting yes: Robert A. Brady (D., Pa.), Michael N. Castle (R., Del.), Charles W. Dent (R., Pa.), Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.), Jim Gerlach (R., Pa.), Tim Holden (D., Pa.), Frank A. LoBiondo (R., N.J.), Patrick Murphy (D., Pa.), H. James Saxton (R., N.J.), Allyson Schwartz (D., Pa.), Joe Sestak (D., Pa.), and Christopher H. Smith (R., N.J.).
Voting no: Joseph R. Pitts (R., Pa.).
Not voting: Robert E. Andrews (D., N.J.).
Immigration enforcement. The House voted, 286-127, to increase by $9.1 million fiscal 2008 spending for a voluntary program in which local police departments enforce federal immigration laws. The vote amended HR 2638 (above).I have to admit that I’m stumped on this one. I checked to determine Fatttah and Admiral Joe’s stands on immigration, and I really haven’t been able to find anything, and there’s nothing available from their web sites. This isn’t totally surprising because, though this is first and foremost a homeland security issue, it has been thoroughly abused by the Repugs with their nativist, jingoistic rhetoric.
A yes vote backed the amendment.
Voting yes: Andrews, Brady, Castle, Dent, Gerlach, Holden, LoBiondo, Murphy, Pitts, Saxton, Schwartz and Smith.
Voting no: Fattah and Sestak.
The further south you go, the more the language of “round ’em up, ship ‘em out” gets spoken louder and louder. Up here in the northeast, though, the immigration issue just doesn’t have the same impact. Maybe that explains it.
Still, though, it’s curious to see the Dems legitimately split on this (and a bit disturbing, actually).
SenateAn interesting vote for Biden to miss, and the WaPo article from this link tells us that the loathsome, odious, and completely repugnant Joe Lieberman voted no, and Ted Stevens voted “present” (guess he was confused by the choices – maybe he was disoriented because his tubes were clogged and he couldn’t access his Internet again).
Attorney general. The Senate failed, 53-38, to get the 60 votes needed to end a GOP filibuster and advance a "no-confidence" resolution against Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, faulting him for his role in the U.S. attorney firing scandal.
A yes vote was to advance SJ Res 14.
Voting yes: Thomas Carper (D., Del.), Bob Casey (D., Pa.), Frank Lautenberg (D., N.J.), Robert Menendez (D., N.J.), and Arlen Specter (R., Pa.).
Not voting: Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D., Del.).
This isn’t over, by the way.
Coastal drilling. The Senate rejected, 44-43, an amendment to a pending energy bill (HR 6) that would have authorized exploration for natural gas off the Virginia coast if the state gave its approval. The proposal sought to breach the federal moratorium on drilling off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.Wow, good vote here by “Democrat” Tom Carper (though I expect something like this from Our Man Arlen). Carper almost crippled Virginia tourism on this one, to say nothing of helping to create a potential ecological nightmare. Guess it was too far south of Delaware for him to care about it.
A yes vote backed the amendment to allow drilling.
Voting yes: Carper and Specter.
Voting no: Biden, Casey, Lautenberg and Menendez.
Nuclear power. The Senate voted, 56-39, to kill an amendment that sought to allow utilities to count nuclear-generated electricity in meeting proposed federal mandates that they produce at least 15 percent of their electricity from renewable sources.Just three letters matter on this one – TMI, baby.
All Philadelphia-area senators voted against the amendment.
This week, the House considered the 2008 energy and water budget and other appropriations bills, while the Senate continued to debate an energy bill and may return to immigration reform.