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The House

December 05, 1991

Anti-Crime Bill By a vote of 205 to 203, the House approved the conference report on an anti-crime bill (HR 3371) that sets the death penalty for more than 50 federal crimes and puts procedural limits on Death Row inmates who delay execution by repeatedly filing habeas corpus appeals.

The bill requires a seven-day wait ing period for handgun sales during which police would check the purchaser for any criminal record, and promises $1.2 billion for state and local crime-fighting. It permits the introduction of evidence obtained by police in "good faith" searches even if their warrant proves to be invalid.

Democrats said the bill gets tough on criminals without trampling on civil liberties, while GOP foes generally disliked its gun control provisions and said it does not go far enough to limit habeas corpus abuses.

A yes vote was to approve the anti-crime bill. How They Voted Rep. Beilenson (D): Yea Rep. Berman (D): Yea Rep. Dixon (D): Nay Rep. Levine (D): Yea Rep. Waxman (D): No vote

Trade With China By a vote of 409 to 21, the House approved legislation granting most-favored-nation trade status to China, in return for Beijing freeing all political prisoners arrested during or after the 1989 Tian An Men Square massacre, among other conditions.

The bill (HR 2212) sets a June, 1992, deadline for release of the prisoners, numbering in the thousands by some estimates. If Beijing fails to comply, President Bush cannot renew the preferential terms entitling Chinese exports to the lowest U.S. tariffs.

A yes vote was to grant China favorable trading terms in return for a massive prisoner release. How They Voted Rep. Beilenson (D):Yea Rep. Berman (D): Yea Rep. Dixon (D): Yea Rep. Levine (D): Yea Rep. Waxman (D): Yea

California Desert By a vote of 297 to 136, the House passed a bill expanding areas of the vast southeastern California desert that are to be protected against commercial and recreational encroachment. The bill (HR 2929) sets aside nearly a third of the 25-million acre desert as a wilderness, national park or national monument area, while allowing certain grazing, mining and military operations to continue. Most of the land is under federal stewardship.

The bill's sponsor, Rep. Richard H. Lehman (D-Sanger), said "time is running out for one of the world's great ecosystems."

Opponent Rep. Duncan L. Hunter (R-Coronado) called it a "lockout bill" that will keep hundreds of thousands of Californians from enjoying the desert.

A yes vote was to pass the bill. How They Voted Rep. Beilenson (D): Yea Rep. Berman (D): Yea Rep. Dixon (D): Yea Rep. Levine (D): Yea Rep. Waxman (D): Yea Source: Roll Call Report Syndicate

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