This morning, Congress attempted to address important health care issues that could help many people, but in doing so unfortunately could not overcome its addiction to spending.
We’ve been working on finalizing spending bills here in DC before the end of July, and last night we debated funding for the Department of the Interior – which manages the offshore drilling process.
Today, the House finished debating the Student Success Act, which changes federal education policy from the current law, known as the No Child Left Behind Act. Though the bill did give more control to the states over current law, it still represents too much control over what should be the domain of the states in terms of education policy.
Today, the House voted on a resolution to withdraw troops from Iraq and Syria that have been deployed there since August 7, 2014. The resolution failed by a vote of 139 to 288, and although it was not the way in which I would have chosen to move to force a vote on war efforts, it was the tool offered and accordingly I voted for it. Allow me to explain my vote.
I opposed passage of the bill, which is an extension of other bills that have already raised serious constitutional questions in just the past few months. Allow me to explain in a bit more detail.
Given the recent back and forth in the trade debates, it is easy to mix up what the various Ts, Ps, and As stand for, particularly now that Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) has been added to the mix.
I hope this weekend is treating you well.
Today, I voted for Trade Promotion Authority, so-called TPA, and given the number of conversations I have had with people at home who felt strongly on the subject, I believe I had to answer several questions. Does my belief in the concept of free trade outweigh my disdain for this President? Is TPA something out of the ordinary? What is at stake here beyond trade itself?
I voted against the bill, though doing so was not my preference given the ways in which I believe national defense is one of the few core constitutional responsibilities of the federal government.
The bill would spend $55.2 billion on infrastructure and housing programs and authorize an additional $53.5 billion in spending out of a variety of trust funds, including the Highway Trust Fund. The bill narrowly passed by a vote of 216 to 210.