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News / Northwest

Washington, D.C., Roll Call report

By Targeted News Service
Published: May 4, 2024, 5:31am

WASHINGTON — Here’s a look at how area members of Congress voted over the week ending May 3.

Along with roll call votes this week, the House also passed these measures: the Investing in All of America Act (H.R. 5333), to exclude from the limit on leverage certain amounts invested in smaller enterprises located in rural or low-income areas and small businesses in critical technology areas; the Plain Language in Contracting Act (H.R. 7987), to require plain language and the inclusion of key words in covered notices that are clear, concise, and accessible to small-business concerns; and the Clean Energy Demonstration Transparency Act (H.R. 1069), to require reporting regarding clean energy demonstration projects.

The Senate also passed the Prohibiting Russian Uranium Imports Act (H.R. 1042), to prohibit the importation of unirradiated low-enriched uranium produced in Russia; and the Strengthening Support for American Manufacturing Act (S. 2116), to require the Commerce Department to produce a report that provides recommendations to improve the effectiveness, efficiency, and impact of Commerce programs related to supply chain resilience and manufacturing and industrial innovation.

House

WILDFIRE MANAGEMENT COLLABORATIONS: The House has passed the Fire Weather Development Act (H.R. 4866), sponsored by Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Calif., to take several measures for improving inter-government collaboration on wildfire management at the federal, state, and local levels. Garcia said the bill “invests in fuel mapping, unmanned vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles, wildfire behavior models and more, and all the steps to make one firefighter fight like 10 and to minimize the need to put them in danger.” The vote, on April 29, was 341 yeas to 48 nays.

YEAS:

Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, D-3rd

TECHNOLOGIES TO INCREASE PRIVACY: The House has passed the Privacy Enhancing Technology Research Act (H.R. 4755), sponsored by Rep. Haley M. Stevens, D-Mich. The bill would require several federal government agencies to fund the development of technologies to decrease exposure of private information from data processing. Stevens said the research could produce “the necessary tools to fully implement privacy legislation without stifling innovation” in areas such as artificial intelligence. The vote, on April 29, was 354 yeas to 36 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

CO2 SEQUESTRATION: The House has passed the Carbon Sequestration Collaboration Act (H.R. 4824), sponsored by Rep. Jim Baird, R-Ind., to require the Energy Department to include geological and terrestrial, plant-based sequestration of carbon dioxide in its carbon storage research and development program. Baird said the expanded research areas would help give Americans “the best information that is available when making informed decisions about their land and their community.” The vote, on April 30, was 364 yeas to 44 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

OLD OIL AND GAS WELLS: The House has passed the Abandoned Well Remediation Research and Development Act (H.R. 4877), sponsored by Rep. Summer Lee, D-Pa., to require the Energy Department to institute a research program for handling abandoned oil and natural gas wells and reducing environmental harms caused by the wells. Lee said the roughly 3 million abandoned oil and gas wells nationwide “expose our families to cancer-causing toxins like benzene, leave our homes vulnerable to explosive gases, and lower property values making it tougher for families to maintain and sell their homes.” The vote, on April 30, was 333 yeas to 75 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

REGULATING USE OF FEDERAL LANDS: The House has passed the Western Economic Security Today Act (H.R. 3397), sponsored by Rep. John R. Curtis, R-Utah, to require the withdrawal of a proposed Bureau of Land Management rule regarding conservation and landscape health that was published in April 2023. Curtis said the rule was preventing responsible use of federal lands by the public, including farmers and ranchers. A bill opponent, Rep. Melanie A. Stansbury, D-N.M., said the rule was needed to “protect our public lands, wildlife, and cultural sites and access to the outdoors.” The vote, on April 30, was 212 yeas to 202 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

USING LEAD AMMUNITION ON FEDERAL LANDS: The House has passed the Protecting Access for Hunters and Anglers Act (H.R. 615), sponsored by Rep. Robert J. Wittman, R-Va., to bar, except for certain exceptions, the Agriculture and Interior departments from restricting the use of lead ammunition or fishing tackle on federal lands under the two agencies’ jurisdiction. Wittman said a broad ban on using lead to fish or hunt on the lands would hurt sportsmen by forcing them to use higher-cost alternative metals. An opponent, Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., said the bill would likely lead to less access to hunting and fishing by prompting litigation under the Endangered Species Act that will result in no use of lead on the federal lands. The vote, on April 30, was 214 yeas to 201 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

GRAY WOLF ENDANGERED SPECIES LISTING: The House has passed the Trust the Science Act (H.R. 764), sponsored by Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., to direct the Interior Department to reissue a November 2020 rule to remove the gray wolf from the list of endangered species. The rule was vacated by a federal court in February 2022. Boebert cited examples, dating to 2009, of federal intent to delist the gray wolf because the species had fully recovered, and said the bill would “focus scarce taxpayer funding on endangered species that actually need help being recovered.” A bill opponent, Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., said: “The gray wolf is one of America’s most iconic species. While it is making a comeback, the science and the facts on the ground tell us that it still needs help.” The vote, on April 30, was 209 yeas to 205 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

MINNESOTA MINING: The House has passed the Superior National Forest Restoration Act (H.R. 3195), sponsored by Rep. Pete Stauber, R-Minn., to direct the U.S. Forest Service to issue leases and permits for mining to take place on agency lands in northern Minnesota. Stauber said allowing the mining “would revitalize an essential pillar of northern Minnesota’s economy, provide for the production of critical minerals, secure our supply chain, strengthen our national security, and bolster the entire domestic mining industry.” An opponent, Rep. Katie Porter, D-Calif., said the bill “seeks to destroy now and deal with the ramifications not later but not at all.” The vote, on April 30, was 212 yeas to 203 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

ANTISEMITISM AND HIGHER EDUCATION: The House has passed the Antisemitism Awareness Act (H.R. 6090), sponsored by Rep. Mike Lawler, R-N.Y., to declare the need to increase awareness of antisemitism, take measures against it and seek to improve security for Jewish communities, and have the Education Department use a specific definition of antisemitism when investigating allegations of discrimination based on Jewish ethnicity. Lawler said the specific definition “will help the Department of Education and school administrators, who have been feckless, clearly identify instances of antisemitism and protect the safety of all students, including Jewish students.” An opponent, Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., criticized the definition because it “may include protected speech in some contexts, particularly with respect to criticism of the state of Israel.” The vote, on May 1, was 320 yeas to 91 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

OIL AND GAS PRODUCTION IN ALASKA: The House has passed the Alaska’s Right to Produce Act (H.R. 6285), sponsored by Rep. Pete Stauber, R-Minn., to require the Interior Department to hold sales of leases for oil and natural gas drilling in sections of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Stauber said preventing fossil fuel production in Alaska was hurting “hardworking Alaskans who stood to benefit from the jobs, opportunities, and revenue that the responsible production of these resources would create.” An opponent, Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., said: “Exploiting these sensitive areas is equivalent to sacrificing those on the front lines of the climate crisis as martyrs in order to temporarily quench the insatiable thirst of Big Oil for money.” The vote, on May 1, was 214 yeas to 199 nays, with 2 voting present.

YEAS:

Perez

REVISING MINING REGULATIONS BILL: The House has agreed to a motion sponsored by Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez, D-N.M., to recommit the Mining Regulatory Clarity Act (H.R. 2925) to the House Natural Resources Committee and have the committee add a provision barring mining operations on federal land by companies that are controlled by a nation, such as China, deemed an adversary to the U.S. Leger Fernandez said the companies “shouldn’t be allowed to exploit American resources and pollute our public lands and to take those resources back to China for free.” An opponent, Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Ark., said the motion was irrelevant because under the Biden administration’s regulatory regime, “nobody is going to be mining in the United States.” The vote to recommit, on May 1, was 210 yeas to 204 nays.

YEAS:

Perez

Senate

ILLINOIS JUDGE: The Senate has confirmed the nomination of Georgia Alexakis to be a judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Over the past two decades Alexakis has variously been a federal prosecutor in the district and a private practice attorney at two different law firms. A supporter, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said her “courtroom experience, management credentials, and knowledge of the Northern District make her well-positioned to serve on the bench with distinction.” The vote, on May 1, was 54 yeas to 44 nays.

YEAS:

Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., Patty Murray, D-Wash.

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