What: All Issues : Making Government Work for Everyone, Not Just the Rich or Powerful : Protecting Rights of Congressional Minorities : H.R. 2. Tax Reductions/Vote on Rules of Debate on a Bill to Provide $350 Billion in Tax Cuts That Mainly Benefit Wealthy Individuals Which Would Reduce Federal Revenue and Likely Necessitate Cuts in Domestic Spending. (2003 house Roll Call 212)
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H.R. 2. Tax Reductions/Vote on Rules of Debate on a Bill to Provide $350 Billion in Tax Cuts That Mainly Benefit Wealthy Individuals Which Would Reduce Federal Revenue and Likely Necessitate Cuts in Domestic Spending.
house Roll Call 212     May 22, 2003
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Loss

Before legislation can be considered on the House floor, agreement must be reached on a rule that governs the handling of a particular bill on the floor (rules are drafted by the House Rules Committee which operates on behalf of the majority party leadership). However, if the rule is to be adopted by the House on the same day it was reported from the Rules Committee, a two-thirds majority vote on the rule must be obtained (ordinarily, rules can be passed with a simple majority). In a effort to circumvent the two-thirds requirement for same day consideration of a rule, Republicans proposed a resolution to waive the requirement which would allow the rule to be passed by a simple majority, not a two-thirds majority as required under normal House practices. Progressives opposed the resolution because, in their view, the tax reductions heavily favored wealthy individuals (who would disproportionately benefit from cutting the dividends tax and reducing the highest marginal income tax rate) and failed to included enough tax breaks for low and middle income taxpayers. Additionally, Progressives considered the Republican's unorthodox parliamentary maneuvering as a violation of their procedural rights. The motion to adopt the resolution allowing same-day consideration of the tax cut bill was passed 218-202.

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