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How your congressional delegates voted

Contact your legislators at the U.S. Capitol

Zip codes: House 20515, Senate 20510

Capitol operator: (202) 224-3121



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Ben Ray Luján (D)

Steve Pearce (R)

Michelle Lujan Grisham (D)

FUNDS TO EASE BORDER CRISIS: Voting 223 for and 189 against, the House on Aug. 1 passed a Republican-drafted bill (HR 5230) to appropriate $694 million to deal with a surge of illegal child immigrants from Central America across the U.S.-Mexico border.

The bill funds food, shelter and other care for the refugees along with measures to speed their deportation and tighten the border.

About $200 million of the outlay would be allocated to care, while most of the remainder would be spent on border-enforcement and deportation steps.

The bill funds National Guard deployments to the border, the hiring of 40 more immigration judges and the building of short-term detention facilities.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate, where it could be merged with other legislation.


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PHASE OUT OF ‘DREAMERS’ PROGRAM: Voting 216 for and 192 against, the House on Aug. 1 passed a Republican-drafted bill (HR 5272) that would phase out the administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Under DACA, more than 500,000 undocumented aliens who were brought illegally to the U.S. as children and see America as their only home – so-called “dreamers” – were granted two-year reprieves from deportation that soon will start to expire.

This bill would prevent them from renewing their DACA status and would bar new enrollees in the program.

In June 2012, President Obama established DACA by executive order to achieve some of the objectives of the DREAM Act, which is stalled in Congress.

The DREAM Act would grant permanent legal status to individuals who have been in the U.S. for at least five years, were under 16 when they arrived, have a clean record and have received a high school (or equivalent) degree or honorable military discharge.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate, where it is likely to die.


REGULATION OF PESTICIDE DISCHARGES: Voting 267 for and 161 against, the House on July 31 passed a bill (HR 935) that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from requiring permits under the Clean Water Act for discharges into navigable waters of pesticides authorized for use under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, Rodenticide Act (FIFRA).

Clean Water Act permits still would be required for discharges regulated by that law as municipal or industrial waste or storm water.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate, where it is expected to die.


GOP LAWSUIT AGAINST PRESIDENT OBAMA: On a nearly party-line vote of 225 for and 201 against, members on July 30 authorized a Republican-drafted, House of Representatives lawsuit against President Obama on grounds that he overstepped his constitutional powers by acting on his own to delay the start of the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate from Jan. 1, 2014, to Jan. 1, 2015, or later.

The measure (H Res 676) did not need Senate concurrence and took effect immediately.

All but five of the 230 Republicans who voted supported the resolution and all 196 Democrats who voted opposed the measure.

A yes vote was to file a civil lawsuit against President Obama in federal court.


ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT HURDLES: Voting 233 for and 190 against, the House on July 29 passed a Republican-drafted bill (HR 4315) requiring the Department of the Interior to publish online the scientific basis of all new “endangered species” and “threatened species” designations under the 1973 Endangered Species Act (ESA).

The bill also requires the department to treat data from state, local and tribal governments as “best available science” in making decisions on species protection.

In addition, the bill puts a $125-per- hour cap on government payments of “prevailing attorney fees” in litigation challenging endangered-species designations.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate, where it is expected to die.


DISPUTE OVER FINDINGS: Voting 204 for and 215 against, the House on July 29 refused to strip HR 4315 (above) of a requirement that Endangered Species Act administrators accept data submitted by state, local and tribal governments as the “best available scientific and commercial data” even if it has not been subjected to peer review.

In the scientific community, peer review is a discipline in which new research is not accepted as valid until it is evaluated by other experts in the same field.

A yes vote was to strip the bill of language requiring disclosure of non-peer-reviewed data.



Martin Heinrich (D)

Tom Udall (D)

NEW MONEY FOR HIGHWAYS: Voting 79 for and 18 against, the Senate on July 29 sent back to the House a bill (HR 5021) to add $8.1 billion to the Highway Trust Fund to finance road, bridge and mass-transit construction through Dec. 19.

That ending date would provide an incentive for Congress to agree on a more permanent means of adequately funding highway and transit infrastructure as part of a multi-year transportation bill that is on the table.

The short- term funding bill would pay for itself with provisions including an improvement in Internal Revenue Service collections of unpaid taxes.

The House version of HR 5021 would finance the Highway Trust Fund through May 2015, enabling the current Congress to avoid action on permanent funding. The highway fund is projected to run dry in August.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the House, where it was promptly rejected.


STATE CONTROL OF TRANSPORTATION: Voting 28 for and 69 against, the Senate on July 29 defeated an amendment to HR 5021 (above) that would devolve all federal highway and mass transit programs except the Interstate Highway System to the states over five years.

Under the amendment, the federal gasoline tax of 18.4 cents per gallon would be reduced to 3.7 cents by 2019.

By then, states and localities would be in charge of managing and funding their transportation networks other than interstate highways.

A yes vote was to shift most federal transportation programs to the states and cut the federal gasoline tax by 80 percent.