What: All Issues : Making Government Work for Everyone, Not Just the Rich or Powerful : Protecting Rights of Congressional Minorities : H. Res. 287. Appropriations/Procedural Vote on Bill Making Appropriations for the Interior Department, the Environmental Protection Agency and Other Agencies for Fiscal Year 2006. (2005 house Roll Call 190)
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H. Res. 287. Appropriations/Procedural Vote on Bill Making Appropriations for the Interior Department, the Environmental Protection Agency and Other Agencies for Fiscal Year 2006.
house Roll Call 190     May 19, 2005
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Loss

In this vote, the House ordered the previous question for the governing rule for H.R. 2361, a bill to make appropriations (fund) for the Interior Department, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other agencies for fiscal year 2006 (FY06). (Ordering the previous question means to end debate, prevent further amendments and proceed immediately to a vote. A rule sets forth what amendments House members may offer, how much time each side will be permitted to speak, how long the debate can last, etc. A vote on the rule usually reflects existing support and opposition for the underlying legislation and/or loyalty to one's party.) Democrats, including Progressives, objected to the rule, noting that it prohibited Democrats from offering important amendments, including one to "to fully restore EPA's State and Tribal Grant Program, and Clean Water State Revolving Fund to their fiscal 2004 levels." (Alcee Hastings (D-FL).) Democrats expressed other substantive concerns about the bill, including what they characterized as its failure to adequately fund the EPA and its proposed cuts in many programs vital to the health and well-being of the country and its citizens. They also argued that the reason so many of these cuts were being proposed was that the President's tax cuts had left the government without enough money to fund many of these important federal programs, like those run through the EPA. Republicans countered that the rule permitted almost any amendment to be offered. They also addressed the bill on a substantive level, saying that it prioritized the limited resources available in order to preserve the environment, fund Indian health programs, preserve historical landmarks and public resources like national parks and help the Interior Department fight wildfires. The House defeated the Progressive position and ordered the previous question on this rule by a straight party-line vote of 215 to 194. Thus, the House proceeded to pass the rule and begin consideration of a bill that would have a critical impact on U.S. preservation of landmarks, conservation, Indian health and other related programs, but to which Democrats were forbidden to offer amendments.

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