Here’s how area senators voted on major issues in the week ending August 24. The House was in recess.
WASHINGTON — Here’s how area senators voted on major issues in the week ending Aug. 24. The House was in recess.
$854 billion appropriations bill: By a vote of 85 for and seven against, the Senate on Aug. 23 approved an $854 billion catchall appropriations bill (HR 6157) that would provide $675 billion for the Department of Defense, $90.1 billion for the Department of Health and Human Services, $71.4 billion for the Department of Education, $12.1 billion for the Department of Labor and nearly $6 billion for other agencies and programs in fiscal 2019. The military outlay, accounting for nearly 70 percent of the government’s discretionary spending, would fund a 2.6 percent pay raise for those in uniform while providing $68.1 billion for combat operations abroad and $57 billion-plus for active-duty, family and retiree health care. The bill also would appropriate $3.7 billion for the prevention and treatment of opioid addiction; $445 million for charter schools; another $445 million for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and $95 million in grants to help K-12 schools prevent and recover from classroom shootings.
Voting yes: Maria Cantwell, D
Not voting: Patty Murray, D
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Suicide-prevention hotline: By a unanimous vote of 95-0, the Senate on Aug. 21 adopted an amendment to HR 6157 (above) that would increase the 2019 budget for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline by $2.8 million or about 4 percent. Funded by all levels of government and other sources, the hotline is a nationwide network of crisis centers that provides 24/7 confidential support to persons in emotional distress. A yes vote backed the funding increase.
Voting yes: Cantwell
Not voting: Murray
Defunding Planned Parenthood: By a vote of 45 for and 48 against, the Senate on Aug. 23 failed to advance an amendment that would delete $400 million in Planned Parenthood funding from a bill (HR 6157, above) providing fiscal 2019 appropriations for the departments of Defense, Education, Labor and Health and Human Services. Abortions account for about 3 percent of the reproductive-care services delivered by Planned Parenthood at its 600 nationwide clinics. They are not federally funded in keeping with a 1976 law — the Hyde Amendment — that prohibits the use of taxpayer money to pay for abortions except in cases of rape or incest or to save the life of the mother.
Voting no: Cantwell
Not voting: Murray
KEY VOTES AHEAD: The Senate will vote on executive-branch nominations in the week of Aug. 27, while the House will continue in recess.