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Some Republicans Helped Defeat Anti-Spending Amendments

While the House Republicans have shown more austere leadership than the Senate, they are far from infallible.  Ultimately, every Republican will likely support the final version of the CR (Continuing Resolution for FY2011 budget), however, a number of them are silently helping Democrats defeat some additional spending cuts through the amendment process throughout the week.  Unfortunately, it is hard to focus the public’s attention on a rapid fire legislative session with 583 amendments, and is therefore too arduous to bear pressure upon the dissenters.

Let’s remember that Republicans control the House by 242-193.  With the vacancy of one Republican, it takes 24 GOP defections to support the Democrats on a given roll call vote.  Here are some much needed, non-defense, budget cutting amendments that were struck down by virtue of GOP collaboration:

  • Amendment No. 260—Rep. Latta (R-OH): The amendment would reduce the funding for the “Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Construction of Research Facilities,” by $10 million, bringing the appropriation from $58 million to $48 million.  The amendment would transfer the $10 million to the Spending Reduction Account.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account are designated as savings and lower the 302(b) allocation for a given subcommittee.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account cannot be allocated elsewhere in the bill.

The Amendment failed 184-247 with the help of some 82 Republicans.  This was a modest cut from a program that is questionable to begin with.

  • Amendment No. 110—Rep. Duncan (R-SC): The amendment would reduce funding by $324,400,000 for the Legal Services Corporation, Payment to the Legal Services Corporation.

This is a whopping $300 million for government subsidized legal services?  And yet, it failed 171-259 with the help of 68 Republicans.

  • Amendment No. 192—Rep. Biggert (R-IL): The amendment would reduce funding for the Department of Energy, Energy Programs, Advanced Research Projects Agency by $50,000,000.  The funds would be transferred into the spending reduction account.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account are designated as savings and lower the 302(b) allocation for a given subcommittee.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account cannot be allocated elsewhere in the bill.

This much needed cut for DOE “research programs” failed 170-262 with the support of 75 Republicans.  The entire department needs to be defended so they can’t use their “research” to stifle energy productivity.

  • Amendment No. 259—Rep. Latta (R-OH): The amendment would reduce by $70,000,000 the Department of Energy, Energy Programs, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.  The amendment would also increase by $70,000,000 the amount made available to the Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies Spending Reduction Account.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account are designated as savings and lower the 302(b) allocation for a given subcommittee.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account cannot be allocated elsewhere in the bill.

This cut in the DOE is the same deal as the previous amendment.  It failed 137-293 with the help of 103 Republicans.

  • Amendment No. 193—Rep. Lummis (R-WY): The amendment would reduce the funding for the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land management, Land Acquisition by $2,750,000, available unobligated prior year funds reduced by $2,250,000, Department of Interior, United States Fish and Wildlife Services, Land Acquisition by 15,055,000, available unobligated prior year funds by $2,500,000, the Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, land Acquisition by 9,100,000 and available unobligated prior year funds reduced by $3,400,000.  The funds, $35,055,000 would be transferred into the spending reduction account.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account are designated as savings and lower the 302(b) allocation for a given subcommittee.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account cannot be allocated elsewhere in the bill.

The Bureau of Land management is one of the most insidious and devastating actors in the infringement of energy production and private property.  The amendment still failed 213-216 with the help of 32 Republicans.  This is inexcusable.

  • Amendment No. 376—Rep. Flake (R-AZ): The amendment would reduce funding for the EPA for Science and Technology by $64.1 million, from $790.5 million to $726.4 million.  The savings would be transferred to the spending reduction account.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account are designated as savings and lower the 302(b) allocation for a given subcommittee.  Funds transferred into the spending reduction account cannot be allocated elsewhere in the bill.

Not only would this AMDT save $64 million from the federal budget, it would probably salvage billions of dollars from the private sector by restraining the EPA’s war on economic growth.  Amazingly, it failed 199-230 with the complicity of 48 Republicans.

Sadly, there will probably be more of these failed votes during the coming hours.  We need to turn up the pressure on our reps.

Cross-posted to Red Meat Conservative

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