What: All Issues : Labor Rights : Outsourcing of American Jobs Overseas : HR 3043. (Fiscal 2008 Labor, Health, Education spending) Sessions of Texas amendment that would allow more federal jobs to be considered for outsourcing/On agreeing to the amendment (2007 house Roll Call 646)
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HR 3043. (Fiscal 2008 Labor, Health, Education spending) Sessions of Texas amendment that would allow more federal jobs to be considered for outsourcing/On agreeing to the amendment
house Roll Call 646     Jul 17, 2007
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Win

This vote was on an amendment by Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., that would have allowed the federal government to consider outsourcing more federal workers in the departments of Labor, Health and Education.  The amendment was offered to the bill that funds the departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education in fiscal 2008.  The underlying bill contains a provision that prohibits such outsourcing pending a review by the Government Accountability Office; Sessions’ amendment would have lifted that prohibition.

“While this policy may be good for increasing dues payments to private sector union bosses, it is unquestionably bad for taxpayers and for Federal agencies because agencies are left with less money to spend on their core missions when Congress takes the opportunity to use competition away from them,” Sessions said.  “In this time of stretched budgets and bloated spending, Congress should be looking to use all of the tools it can to find taxpayer savings and reduce the cost of services that are already being provided by thousands of hardworking companies nationwide.”

David Obey, D-Wis., said there are indications that other efforts at allowing government jobs to be outsourced has not been as effective as predicted, and as a result expanding the pool of outsourced jobs has been suspended pending a review.

“Now, aside from questions about the lack of compelling evidence of cost savings or increased efficiency, there is concern about the fact that the Department is not taking proper care to assure that functions that ought to be considered inherently governmental or are otherwise unsuitable for contracting performance are excluded from these competitions,” Obey said.  “The gentleman says that it is labor bosses who are concerned about this. The last time I looked, this was having a disproportionate impact on women and on minority workers, and we are asking the GAO to assess the impact on them.”

The amendment was rejected by a vote of 173-251.  Every Democrat present voted against the amendment.  Of Republicans present, 173 voted for the amendment and 23 voted against it.  The end result is that the bill went forward with its prohibition against expanding the outsourcing of federal jobs intact.

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