The congressional equivalent of hell is the Rules Committee. The majority party controls each debate and what will be a part of it through this committee, and it was there that I spent a couple of hours last night waiting for the chance to testify on an amendment I wanted to offer on the Puerto Rico bill.
With a potential storm swirling offshore, I thought that it might be an appropriate time to mark the unofficial start of hurricane season, and accordingly, to pass along some information. We’ve been incredibly lucky and blessed these past few seasons, but once again, this is a reminder to go down the Scout's checklist and “Be prepared” for all types of emergencies.
Last week, the House voted on H.R. 5243, the Zika Response Appropriations Act, which passed the House 241 to 183. I voted yes.
Earlier tonight, the House voted on HR 4889, the Kelsey Smith Act. The bill would have allowed the government to access cell phone location data, and more precisely, it would give the government the ability to redefine the occasions in which it could access records without the clearance of a judge.
Following up as I said I would on HR 4909, the National Defense Authorization Act for 2017. We voted Wednesday night on the bill, which passed 277 to 147. I voted yes.
It’s been busy in Washington with a host of votes on many different issues revolving around the National Defense Authorization Act. This bill authorizes military spending and programs, and all manner of policy is determined in it. There were almost 400 amendments filed to the bill, but let me highlight just three amendments and votes that came up and warrant further explanation.
This afternoon, the House voted on H.R. 5046, the Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Reduction Act of 2016. This bill would authorize the appropriation of $103 million a year for five years to provide grants to combat drug addiction at the state and local level. While the bill passed 413 to 5, I was one of five to vote against it, and I would offer a few thoughts on that front.
Last week, the House voted on a joint resolution of disapproval against the Department of Labor’s “fiduciary” rule, which passed by a vote of 234 to 183. In essence, the rule would require more regulation for people that give investment advice and outlaw certain types of compensation for investment advisors.
Today, the House passed another reauthorization of the DC Opportunity Scholarship program, which allows DC parents to move their children from a failing school to one that works for their family and student. I have long believed educational choice vital to improving education in this country and, accordingly, voted yes. The bill passed 224 to 181.