Monday, February 2, 2015

Two Homeland Security Bills Pass in House

As expected the House passed two homeland security related bills that I discussed yesterday; HR 361, the Medical Preparedness Allowable Use Act, and HR 623, the Social Media Working Group Act of 2015. Both bills passed with substantially bipartisan votes; HR 361 – 377 to 2, and HR 623 – 328 to 51. The no votes were predominantly (all but one) Republican.

As I mentioned in the earlier posts these two bills should also pass in the Senate if they get to the floor. During the last session Sen Reid (D,NV) made little effort to bring bipartisan bills like this to floor of the Senate. In many ways this contributed to the ‘do nothing’ label that was laid upon the 113th Congress. The bulk of the number of bills that any Congress passes is made up of this type of bill.

While major legislation also languished because the two houses were controlled by different parties with different agendas, the numerical analysis of the number of bills passed was seriously affected by the leadership’s failure to bring bipartisan bills to a vote. It will be interesting to see if the leadership of the 114th Congress takes the same tack.

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