Last Week in Congress
NPI's Cascadia Advocate: Last Week in Congress

Good morn­ing! Here’s how Cas­ca­di­a’s Mem­bers of Con­gress vot­ed on major issues dur­ing the leg­isla­tive week end­ing Fri­day, July 19th, 2019.

In the United States House of Representatives

Chamber of the United States House of Representatives
The House cham­ber (U.S. Con­gress photo)

HOLDING BARR AND ROSS IN CONTEMPT OF CONGRESS: Vot­ing 230 for and 198 against, the House on July 17th held Attor­ney Gen­er­al William Barr and Com­merce Sec­re­tary Wilbur Ross in crim­i­nal con­tempt of Con­gress over their fail­ure to com­ply with con­gres­sion­al sub­poe­nas for doc­u­ments relat­ed to the admin­is­tra­tion’s reluc­tant­ly aban­doned plan to add a cit­i­zen­ship ques­tion to the 2020 cen­sus. The cita­tion is antic­i­pat­ed to be most­ly sym­bol­ic because the Depart­ment of Jus­tice is unlike­ly to enforce it.

Jamie Raskin, D‑Maryland, said: “The Supreme Court and the fed­er­al courts have said repeat­ed­ly that (Con­gress’s) fact-find­ing pow­er is inex­tri­ca­ble, essen­tial and indis­pens­able to our leg­isla­tive pow­er. We can’t leg­is­late if we can’t get the infor­ma­tion that we need.”

Fred Keller, R‑Pennsylvania., said that since the admin­is­tra­tion no longer is pur­su­ing the cit­i­zen­ship ques­tion, the res­o­lu­tion “is sim­ply a Demo­c­ra­t­ic tac­tic to waste this cham­ber’s time and avoid work­ing on the seri­ous issues fac­ing our nation.”

A yes vote was to hold Barr and Ross in crim­i­nal con­tempt of Congress.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Nay (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (4): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, Peter DeFazio, and Kurt Schrader

Vot­ing Nay (1): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (7): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck

Vot­ing Nay (3): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Cas­ca­dia total: 11 aye votes, 6 nay votes

CONDEMNING TRUMP’S COMMENTS: Vot­ing 240 for and 187 against, the House on July 16 adopt­ed a mea­sure (House Res­o­lu­tion 489) that “strong­ly con­demns Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s racist com­ments that have legit­imized and increased fear and hatred of new Amer­i­cans and peo­ple of color….”

Repub­li­cans cast all of the votes against the resolution.

The entire Demo­c­ra­t­ic cau­cus vot­ed for it, as did Repub­li­cans Susan Brooks of Indi­ana, Bri­an Fitz­patrick of Penn­syl­va­nia, Fred Upton of Michi­gan and Will Hurd of Texas and inde­pen­dent Justin Amash of Michi­gan. Six Repub­li­cans did not vote. The 435-seat House has two vacancies.

The mea­sure was offered in response to Twit­ter post­ings by the pres­i­dent on July 14 that crit­i­cized an out­spo­ken quar­tet of pro­gres­sive Democ­rats — Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Alexan­dria Oca­sio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Min­neso­ta, Ayan­na Press­ley of Mass­a­chu­setts and Rashi­da Tlaib of Michi­gan. They are women of col­or, and all but Omar, a native Soma­li, were born in the Unit­ed States.

Trump wrote that they have been “loud­ly and vicious­ly telling the peo­ple of the Unit­ed States, the great­est and most pow­er­ful Nation on earth, how our gov­ern­ment is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the total­ly bro­ken and crime infest­ed places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it is done. These places need your help bad­ly, you can’t leave fast enough.”

Jer­rold Nadler, D‑New York, said: “These were shock­ing com­ments, even from an admin­is­tra­tion that rips chil­dren from the arms of their par­ents and ware­hous­es asy­lum seek­ers in facil­i­ties under inhu­mane con­di­tions. We can­not let this moment pass with­out a force­ful condemnation.”

Tom McClin­tock, R‑California, said the president’s “tone…was unnec­es­sar­i­ly provoca­tive. But his cen­tral point is irrefutable. There is no require­ment for those who hate our coun­try to remain here when there are so many oth­er coun­tries with dif­fer­ent prin­ci­ples and val­ues to choose from….”

A yes vote was to adopt the resolution.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Nay (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (4): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, Peter DeFazio, Kurt Schrader

Vot­ing Nay (1): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (7): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck

Vot­ing Nay (3): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Cas­ca­dia total: 11 aye votes, 6 nay votes

CALLING TRUMP TWEETS RACIST: The House on July 16th vot­ed, 231 for and 190 against, to allow Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi, D‑California, to describe Pres­i­dent Trump’s July 14th Twit­ter post­ings as racist dur­ing debate on House Res­o­lu­tion 489 (above). Speak­er Pelosi said: “Every sin­gle mem­ber of this insti­tu­tion, Demo­c­ra­t­ic and Repub­li­can, should join us in con­demn­ing the pres­i­den­t’s racist tweets. To do any­thing less would be a shock­ing rejec­tion of our val­ues and a shame­ful abdi­ca­tion of our oath of office.”

Repub­li­cans asked for the char­ac­ter­i­za­tion of Don­ald Trump’s com­ments as racist to be strick­en from the Con­gres­sion­al Record under the House­’s rules of deco­rum, and the par­lia­men­tar­i­an upheld their request.

Democ­rats over­turned the rul­ing on this vote. A yes vote was to let Pelosi’s label­ing of Trump’s lan­guage appear in the offi­cial record.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Nay (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (4): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, Peter DeFazio, Kurt Schrader

Vot­ing Nay (1): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (7): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck

Vot­ing Nay (3): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Cas­ca­dia total: 11 aye votes, 6 nay votes

SHELVING TRUMP IMPEACHMENT: Vot­ing 332 for and 95 against, the House on July 17 tabled (killed) a res­o­lu­tion (H Res 498) call­ing for impeach­ment of Pres­i­dent Trump on grounds he has demon­strat­ed he is man­i­fest­ly unfit for the office. Repub­li­cans vot­ed unan­i­mous­ly to kill the res­o­lu­tion, as did one hun­dred and thir­ty-sev­en Democ­rats and the cham­ber’s one inde­pen­dent (Justin Amash). Democ­rats cast all of the 95 votes to pro­ceed with impeachment.

The Con­sti­tu­tion allows Con­gress to remove a pres­i­dent for trea­son, bribery or “oth­er high crimes and mis­de­meanors.” Should the House vote to impeach, or essen­tial­ly bring charges, the Sen­ate would con­duct a tri­al, with a two-thirds vote need­ed for con­vic­tion and removal from office.

The res­o­lu­tion tabled by the House accused Trump of “high mis­de­meanors.” It cit­ed the pres­i­den­t’s demean­ing of immi­grants and asy­lum seek­ers and point­ed to the House­’s con­dem­na­tion (above) of the pres­i­den­t’s July 14th Twit­ter attacks against four first-term House Democ­rats, all women of col­or, who have urged their par­ty to vig­or­ous­ly pur­sue a pro­gres­sive agenda.

In part, the call for impeach­ment said Trump has brought “con­tempt, ridicule, dis­grace, and dis­re­pute” to the presidency.

As a priv­i­leged res­o­lu­tion, the mea­sure was not debatable.

A yes vote was in oppo­si­tion to start­ing impeach­ment proceedings.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden and Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kurt Schrader

Vot­ing Nay (2): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci and Earl Blumenauer

Not Vot­ing (1): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Peter DeFazio

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (8): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Derek Kilmer, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Vot­ing Nay (2): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Rick Larsen and Prami­la Jayapal

Cas­ca­dia total: 12 aye votes, 4 nay votes, 1 not voting

PASSING FISCAL 2020 INTELLIGENCE BUDGET: Vot­ing 397 for and 31 against, the House on July 17th approved a fis­cal 2020 bud­get (HR 3494) esti­mat­ed at $85 bil­lion or more for the 16 U.S. civil­ian and mil­i­tary intel­li­gence agen­cies, with the actu­al fig­ure classified.

In part, the bill would:

  • fund steps to pro­tect U.S. elec­tions from for­eign inter­fer­ence and the domes­tic ener­gy grid from cyberattacks;
  • require mea­sures to counter the spread of domes­tic ter­ror­ism includ­ing actions by white supremacists;
  • step up intel­li­gence col­lec­tions on drug and human traf­fick­ing in Mex­i­co and the North­ern Tri­an­gle coun­tries of El Sal­vador, Guatemala and Honduras;
  • allo­cate resources for reduc­ing a deep back­log of appli­cants for top secu­ri­ty clearances;
  • give pri­or­i­ty to col­lec­tion and ana­lyt­ic capa­bil­i­ties against Chi­na, Rus­sia, Iran and North Korea;
  • require the FBI to noti­fy Con­gress of any coun­ter­in­tel­li­gence probes relat­ed to fed­er­al elections;
  • … and recruit pri­vate-sec­tor exper­tise for devel­op­ing coun­ter­mea­sures to the forged and manip­u­lat­ed dig­i­tal con­tent known as “deep­fakes.”

To attract and retain a skilled intel­li­gence-com­mu­ni­ty work­force, the bill would help employ­ees dis­charge stu­dent loans and estab­lish twelve weeks’ paid fam­i­ly and med­ical leave to accom­mo­date cir­cum­stances includ­ing child­birth, adop­tions and fos­ter place­ments. The bill would assure com­pen­sa­tion for fam­i­ly mem­bers of Cen­tral Intel­li­gence Agency (CIA) employ­ees killed while in service.

Andre Car­son, D‑Indiana, said:

“At a time when this pres­i­dent is ignor­ing the truth about domes­tic ter­ror­ism, and his admin­is­tra­tion is con­ceal­ing and hid­ing the pro­lif­er­a­tion of white suprema­cist-inspired inci­dents, Con­gress and the pub­lic urgent­ly need more infor­ma­tion to bet­ter under­stand and pre­vent domes­tic terrorism.”

Elsie Ste­fanik, R‑New York, said the bill estab­lish­es “mean­ing­ful over­sight over the FBI’s coun­ter­in­tel­li­gence oper­a­tions” while pro­vid­ing “the Amer­i­can peo­ple with the com­fort that the FBI is sub­ject to the same types of scruti­ny as oth­er intel­li­gence agen­cies.” No mem­ber spoke against the bill.

A yes vote was to send the bill to nego­ti­a­tions with the Senate.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (3): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci and Kurt Schrad­er; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

Vot­ing Nay (2): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Earl Blu­me­nauer and Peter DeFazio

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (9): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Vot­ing Nay (1): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Suzan DelBene

Cas­ca­dia total: 14 aye votes, 3 nay votes

REMOVING CLIMATE COUNCIL FROM INTELLIGENCE BUDGET: Vot­ing 178 for and 255 against, the House on July 17th refused to strip HR 3494 (above) of fund­ing to estab­lish a Cli­mate Secu­ri­ty Advi­so­ry Coun­cil, which would coor­di­nate efforts by U.S. intel­li­gence agen­cies to mon­i­tor the glob­al impact of cli­mate break­downs on nation­al secu­ri­ty. The coun­cil would be estab­lished in the Office of the Direc­tor of Nation­al Intelligence.

Spon­sor Jeff Dun­can, R‑South Car­oli­na, said it would be “extreme­ly irre­spon­si­ble” to down­play “known and proven threats to Amer­i­can nation­al secu­ri­ty and divert those funds and atten­tion to cli­mate change. The intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty should not bear the bur­den of sil­ly, polit­i­cal­ly cor­rect, left-wing social policy.”

Den­ny Heck, D‑Washington, said “ris­ing sea lev­els, high­er tem­per­a­tures, more fre­quent extreme weath­er events, new stres­sors on nat­ur­al resources and agri­cul­ture have tan­gi­ble impacts that exac­er­bate eco­nom­ic dis­tress, human inse­cu­ri­ty, polit­i­cal insta­bil­i­ty and oth­er human­i­tar­i­an con­di­tions detri­men­tal to our nation­al secu­ri­ty. The smart thing to do is to be prepared.”

A yes vote was to defund the bil­l’s advi­so­ry coun­cil on cli­mate change.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (1): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

Vot­ing Nay (4): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, Peter DeFazio, and Kurt Schrader

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Dan New­house and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Vot­ing Nay (8): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jaime Herrera-Beutler

Cas­ca­dia total: 5 aye votes, 12 nay votes

RAISING FEDERAL MINIMUM WAGE: Vot­ing 231 for and 199 against, the House on July 18th passed a bill (H.R. 582) that would grad­u­al­ly increase the fed­er­al min­i­mum wage from its present lev­el of $7.25 per hour to $15 per hour start­ing in 2025. The $15 fig­ure would be indexed to keep pace with increas­es in the medi­an hourly wage as mea­sured by the Depart­ment of Labor.

In addi­tion, the bill would phase out sep­a­rate min­i­mum wages for dis­abled and tipped employ­ees and new hires younger than 20 so that these indi­vid­u­als even­tu­al­ly receive the same base wage as the rest of the pri­vate-sec­tor workforce.

Bob­by Scott, D‑Virgina, said: “The ben­e­fits of this leg­is­la­tion are sig­nif­i­cant and wide­spread. Eco­nom­ic analy­sis esti­mates that the (bill) would increase wages for up to 33 mil­lion work­ers and lift 1.3 mil­lion Amer­i­cans out of poverty.”

Vir­ginia Foxx, R‑North Car­oli­na, said: “Increas­ing the fed­er­al min­i­mum wage by 107 per­cent is a harm­ful and unprece­dent­ed man­date that would result in mil­lions of job loss­es for vul­ner­a­ble Amer­i­cans, small busi­ness clo­sures and sig­nif­i­cant dam­age to the U.S. economy.”

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Nay (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (3): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, and Peter DeFazio

Vot­ing Nay (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden; Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kurt Schrader

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (7): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck

Vot­ing Nay (3): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Cas­ca­dia total: 10 aye votes, 7 nay votes

EXEMPTING MOM-AND-POP FIRMS: Vot­ing 210 for and 218 against, the House on July 18th defeat­ed a Repub­li­can motion that sought to exempt estab­lish­ments with few­er than ten employ­ees or annu­al sales under $1 mil­lion from the min­i­mum-wage require­ments of H.R. 582 (above).

Dan Meuser, R‑Pennsylvania, said: “If this amend­ment is adopt­ed, mom-and-pop shops across the coun­try will be pro­tect­ed from this bil­l’s extreme and unnec­es­sary one-size-fits-all Wash­ing­ton mandate.”

Stephanie Mur­phy, D‑Florida., called this “a Repub­li­can attempt to defeat this bill because they oppose any increase to the fed­er­al min­i­mum wage. Some oppose the con­cept of a min­i­mum wage at all.”

A yes vote was to exclude mom-and-pop firms from the bill.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden and Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kurt Schrader

Vot­ing Nay (3): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, and Peter DeFazio

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (3): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Vot­ing Nay (7): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck

Cas­ca­dia total: 7 aye votes, 10 nay votes

REPEAL OF TAX ON GENEROUS HEALTHCARE PLANS: Vot­ing 419 for and six against, the House on July 17th passed a bill (H.R. 748) that would per­ma­nent­ly remove from the Patient Pro­tec­tion Act Act the pejo­ra­tive­ly named “Cadil­lac tax” on employ­er-spon­sored health plans hav­ing high costs and gen­er­ous ben­e­fits. Sched­uled to take effect on 2022, the forty per­cent excise tax, to be paid by employ­ers and insur­ers, would be levied ini­tial­ly on the val­ue of plans above $11,200 for indi­vid­u­als and $30,000 for families.

The tax is intend­ed to con­tain health­care costs while gen­er­at­ing rev­enue to finance oth­er parts of the 2010 health law. But crit­ics say it would harm pol­i­cy­hold­ers as employ­ers reduce ben­e­fits and increase out-of-pock­et costs to skirt trig­ger­ing thresh­olds. Because the bill lacks a “pay for” mech­a­nism, it would add $197 bil­lion to nation­al debt through 2029, accord­ing to the Con­gres­sion­al Bud­get Office.

Richard Neal, D‑Massachusetts, said: “At a time when Amer­i­can fam­i­lies are already wor­ried about the health­care costs that apply to them, the Cadil­lac tax has had the effect of increas­ing deductibles and out-of-pock­et costs as employ­ers make changes in their plans designed to avoid the tax.”

No mem­ber spoke against the bill.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (2): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Aye (5): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzanne Bonam­i­ci, Earl Blu­me­nauer, Peter DeFazio, and Kurt Schrad­er; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Aye (10): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Den­ny Heck; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Jaime Her­rera-Beut­ler, Dan New­house, and Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers

Cas­ca­dia total: 17 aye votes

In the United States Senate

Chamber of the United States Senate
The Sen­ate cham­ber (U.S. Con­gress photo)

LYNDA BLANCHARD, AMBASSADOR TO SLOVENIA: Vot­ing 55 for and 41 against, the Sen­ate on July 18th con­firmed Lyn­da Blan­chard of Mont­gomery, Alaba­ma, as U.S. ambas­sador to the Repub­lic of Slovenia.

Blan­chard is co-founder of a real estate invest­ment firm and a non-prof­it for help­ing impov­er­ished chil­dren in the Unit­ed States and devel­op­ing coun­tries, and she is also known for cir­cu­lat­ing mur­der­ous con­spir­a­cy the­o­ries about Bill and Hillary Clin­ton on Face­book. A Repub­li­can Par­ty donor, she received her ambas­sado­r­i­al nom­i­na­tion in June 2018 after her hus­band, John, donat­ed more than $500,000 to the Trump inau­gur­al fund, accord­ing to NBC News.

No sen­a­tor spoke for Blan­chard dur­ing brief dis­cus­sion of her nom­i­na­tion on the Sen­ate floor. Oppo­nent Robert Menen­dez, D‑New Jer­sey, said Blan­chard “has a his­to­ry of using Face­book as a plat­form to post incen­di­ary, false arti­cles and dis­turb­ing state­ments,” includ­ing “res­ur­rect­ing the vicious lie and pre­pos­ter­ous con­spir­a­cy the­o­ry that Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton and Sec­re­tary of State Hillary Clin­ton have sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly mur­dered polit­i­cal oppo­nents and associates.”

A yes vote was to con­firm the nominee.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (2):
Repub­li­can Sen­a­tors Jim Risch and Mike Crapo

The State of Oregon

Vot­ing Nay (2):
Demo­c­ra­t­ic Sen­a­tors Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley

The State of Washington

Vot­ing Nay (2):
Demo­c­ra­t­ic Sen­a­tors Maria Cantwell and Pat­ty Murray

Cas­ca­dia total: 2 aye votes, 4 nay votes

Key votes ahead

The House will take up bills on bor­der secu­ri­ty and humane treat­ment of migrants in the week of July 22nd, while the Sen­ate will vote on com­pen­sat­ing Sep­tem­ber 11th vic­tims. Con­gress could also debate rais­ing the nation­al debt lim­it and set­ting mil­i­tary vs. domes­tic spend­ing lev­els in future budgets.

Edi­tor’s Note: The infor­ma­tion in NPI’s week­ly How Cas­ca­di­a’s U.S. law­mak­ers vot­ed fea­ture is pro­vid­ed by Votera­ma in Con­gress, a ser­vice of Thomas Vot­ing Reports. All rights are reserved. Repro­duc­tion of this post is not per­mit­ted, not even with attri­bu­tion. Use the per­ma­nent link to this post to share it… thanks!

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