What: All Issues : Making Government Work for Everyone, Not Just the Rich or Powerful : Consumer Protection : S Con Res 13. (Fiscal 2010 budget resolution) DeMint of South Carolina amendment that would allow for future legislation to reduce the impact of consumer product safety laws on businesses/On agreeing to the amendment (2009 senate Roll Call 151)
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S Con Res 13. (Fiscal 2010 budget resolution) DeMint of South Carolina amendment that would allow for future legislation to reduce the impact of consumer product safety laws on businesses/On agreeing to the amendment
senate Roll Call 151     Apr 02, 2009
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Win

This vote was on an amendment by Jim DeMint, R-S.C., that would allow for any future legislation that would reduce the impact on businesses of the recently-passed consumer product safety law tightening the ban on lead and plastic softeners in children’s toys.   In essence DeMint’s amendment would shield any such future legislation with a new parliamentary obstacle senators would have to cross if they wanted to try to defeat that legislation.

The amendment was offered to the budget resolution that serves as the blueprint for Congress’ budget priorities in fiscal 2010.  The budget resolution sets overall spending targets for the Appropriations committees and outlines other budget rules. 

Some Republicans have taken issue with the new law, saying it imposes unfair and unnecessary burdens on some businesses that cost millions of dollars and mean thousands of job losses.

DeMint said his amendment would allow for improvements in the recently-passed consumer product safety law, “such as allowing current inventory to sell through, exempting thrift stores and secondhand sellers, exempting book sales and children’s motorcycles, allowing manufacturers to prove there is no lead content by proving that their components have no lead contents. This means they don’t have to destroy existing inventory if they can prove it is safe. This amendment does nothing to diminish safety, but it is common sense.”

Mark Pryor, D-Ark., said the recently passed bill DeMint’s amendment targets is a good one that protects American citizens from unsafe toys, including those imported from China.  He said that the Consumer Product Safety Commission has the authority and power to address each of the problems DeMint raised, rendering his amendment unnecessary.

By a vote of 39-58, the amendment was rejected.  Of Republicans present, 35 voted for the amendment and 6 voted against it.  All but four Democrats present voted against the amendment.  The end result is that the bill went forward without language that would have allowed for future legislation to address certain business concerns with a recently-enacted consumer product safety law.

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