NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Sunday, January 3rd, 2021

Last Week In Congress: How Cascadia’s U.S. lawmakers voted (Dec. 28th-Jan. 1st, 2021)

Good morn­ing! Here’s how Cascadia’s Mem­bers of Con­gress vot­ed on major issues dur­ing the leg­isla­tive week end­ing Fri­day, Jan­u­ary 1st, 2021.

In the United States House of Representatives

Chamber of the United States House of Representatives

The House cham­ber (U.S. Con­gress photo)

INCREASING RELIEF CHECKS TO $2,000: Vot­ing 275 for and 134 against, the House on Decem­ber 28th passed a bill (H.R. 9051) that would increase the lat­est round of COVID-19 eco­nom­ic relief pay­ments from $600 to $2,000 for indi­vid­u­als and from $1,200 to $4,000 for cou­ples, plus $600 per child.

Under both this bill and a $900 bil­lion coro­n­avirus relief pack­age recent­ly enact­ed into law, indi­vid­u­als with 2019 adjust­ed gross incomes up to $75,000 and cou­ples joint­ly earn­ing up to $150,000 would be eli­gi­ble for full payments.

Indi­vid­u­als earn­ing between $75,000 and $87,000 and cou­ples in the $150,000-to-$174,000 range would receive grad­u­al­ly reduced sums.

Full pay­ments also would go to seniors receiv­ing income only from Social Secu­ri­ty, rail­road retirees and vet­er­ans depen­dent on dis­abil­i­ty pay­ments. The bill would add $464 bil­lion to the cost of the pre­vi­ous­ly enact­ed $900 bil­lion package.

Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi, D‑California, said:

“The Repub­li­cans have a choice — vote for this leg­is­la­tion or vote to deny the Amer­i­can peo­ple the big­ger pay­checks they need. To reject this would be a denial of the eco­nom­ic chal­lenges that peo­ple are facing.”

Glenn Groth­man, R‑Wisconsin, said: “Last time, when we sent out $1,200 checks, I stopped by my local Wal­mart, and the peo­ple in charge of the elec­tron­ics sec­tion said they had nev­er seen such sales in their life. Is that real­ly going to improve the lot of Amer­i­cans, to go over and buy some more elec­tron­ic junk from China?”

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Sen­ate, where it was blocked by Major­i­ty Leader Mitch McConnell, R‑Kentucky.

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, and Peter DeFazio; Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Greg Walden

Vot­ing Nay (1): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kurt Schrader

The State of Washington

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

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

Cas­ca­dia total: 12 aye votes, 5 nay votes

OVERRIDING TRUMP VETO OF MILITARY BUDGET: Vot­ing 322 for and 87 against, the House on Decem­ber 28th sur­passed the two-thirds major­i­ty required to over­ride Pres­i­dent Trump’s veto of a bill (H.R. 6395) autho­riz­ing $740.5 bil­lion for the U.S. mil­i­tary in fis­cal 2021. In his veto mes­sage, Trump dis­put­ed the bil­l’s removal of the names of Con­fed­er­ate gen­er­als from Amer­i­can mil­i­tary bases, call­ing that a move to “wash away his­to­ry.” He also fault­ed the bill for ignor­ing his call for an end to lia­bil­i­ty pro­tec­tions for tech com­pa­nies under Sec­tion 230 of the Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Decen­cy Act, among oth­er objections.

Our own Adam Smith, D‑Washington, said it is “enor­mous­ly impor­tant to give our troops the sup­port that they need to car­ry out the job that we all are ask­ing them to do. That is… one of our min­i­mum oblig­a­tions as mem­bers of Congress.”

No mem­ber spoke in sup­port of the veto.

A yes vote was to over­ride the veto and enact the bill into law.

The State of Idaho

Vot­ing Aye (1): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Mike Simpson

Vot­ing Nay (1): Repub­li­can Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Russ Fulcher

The State of Oregon

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

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

The State of Washington

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

Vot­ing Nay (1): Demo­c­ra­t­ic Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Prami­la Jayapal

Cas­ca­dia total: 13 aye votes, 4 nay votes

In the United States Senate

Chamber of the United States Senate

The Sen­ate cham­ber (U.S. Con­gress photo)

JOINING HOUSE IN VETO OVERRIDE: Vot­ing 81 for and 13 against, the Sen­ate on Jan­u­ary 1st joined the House (above) in over­rid­ing Pres­i­dent Trump’s veto of the $740.5 bil­lion mil­i­tary bud­get for fis­cal 2021 (H.R. 6395). This was the first of Trump’s nine vetoes to meet with con­gres­sion­al disapproval.

Jim Inhofe, R‑Oklahoma, said: “We have kids that are over­seas, and they deserve the pay that… would be increased when this bill is passed. Right now, we have crit­i­cal areas like pilots and engi­neers, doc­tors, that are in short sup­ply” because of the pan­dem­ic caused by the nov­el coronavirus.

Richard Durbin, D‑Illinois, the Sen­ate Demo­c­ra­t­ic Whip, said the bill “does get tough on Chi­na. It cre­ates a new Pacif­ic Deter­rence Ini­tia­tive that puts Amer­i­ca back in the seat of lead­er­ship in that region.… the admin­is­tra­tion could have start­ed this ini­tia­tive on its own, but it did not, so Con­gress stepped up… because the White House was asleep at the wheel.”

No sen­a­tor spoke in sup­port of the veto.

A yes vote was to rebuke Trump and enact the mil­i­tary budget.

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 Aye (2):
Demo­c­ra­t­ic Sen­a­tors Maria Cantwell and Pat­ty Murray

Cas­ca­dia total: 4 aye votes, 2 nay votes

OPENING DEBATE ON VETO OVERRIDE: Vot­ing 80 for and 12 against, the Sen­ate on Decem­ber 30th opened debate on whether to pass the $740.5 bil­lion 2021 mil­i­tary bud­get (H.R. 6395, above) over Don­ald Trump’s veto.

A yes vote was to open the over­ride debate.

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 Aye (2):
Demo­c­ra­t­ic Sen­a­tors Maria Cantwell and Pat­ty Murray

Cas­ca­dia total: 4 aye votes, 2 nay votes

Key votes ahead

The 117th Con­gress con­venes today, Sun­day Jan­u­ary 3rd, 2021, at noon Eastern.

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!

© 2021 Thomas Vot­ing Reports.

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