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House Of Representatives

July 08, 1993

Expansion of Border Patrol

The House voted to increase the U.S. Border Patrol budget by $60 million, to about $419 million, for the hiring of 600 additional agents to be deployed along the California-Mexico border. The amendment, proposed by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-El Cajon) overriding the House Appropriations Committee, was attached to a fiscal 1994 appropriations bill (HR 2519) for the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service and other agencies.

Supporter Elton Gallegly (R-Simi Valley) said, "We allow more people to immigrate to this country every year than all the rest of the nations of the world combined. But the issue we're talking about is illegal immigration. Trying to solve this problem with the current Border Patrol is like trying to catch a B-2 bomber with a butterfly net."

Opponent Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Ill.) asked, "Why don't we talk about the richness of the immigrant community that comes to this country in the context of this discussion instead of having this xenophobia? We're starting to sound a lot like Germany."

The roll call was 265 for and 164 against. A yes vote was to expand the U.S. Border Patrol from 4,000 to 4,600 agents.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Becerra (D) x Rep. Moorhead (R) x

Medicaid Spending for Abortions

The House voted to outlaw Medicaid spending for abortions, except when the mother's life is at stake or the pregnancy results from rape or incest. Sustaining a 16-year policy, the vote was a victory for the National Right to Life Committee and a defeat for the National Abortion Rights Action League. It occurred during debate on a bill (HR 2518) approving a fiscal 1994 Medicaid budget of $64.5 billion.

Sponsor Henry J. Hyde (R-Ill.) said, "Providing a constitutional right to abortion does not mean society has to subsidize the exercise of that constitutional right."

Opponent Cynthia McKinney (D-Ga.) called the ban "nothing but a discriminatory policy against poor women who happen to be disproportionately black."

The vote was 255 for and 178 against. A yes vote opposed Medicaid funding of abortions.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Becerra (D) x Rep. Moorhead (R) x

Attempt to Freeze Block Grant Funding

The House rejected an amendment to freeze fiscal 1994 spending for Community Development Block Grants at the 1993 level of $4 billion. This preserved an increase of $224 million, or 6%, in the program that funds cities' public works and economic development projects. The vote occurred during debate on a 1994 Department of Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill (HR 2491).

Sponsor Dan Burton (R-Ind.) said funding should not be increased for a program that includes "a tremendous number of pork barrel projects . . . ."

Opponent Louis Stokes (D-Ohio) said, "It would be difficult for members to explain to their local governments why they voted for a . . . reduction in this program."

The vote was 154 for and 237 against. A yes vote was to hold 1994 Community Development Block Grant spending at the 1993 level.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Becerra (D) x Rep. Moorhead (R) x

Benefits for Domestic Partners

The House removed funding for the District of Columbia's "domestic partners" ordinance from the federal city's fiscal 1994 budget (HR 2492). This blocked the D.C. law enabling unmarried partners of city employees to receive taxpayer-funded health insurance benefits if they pay the additional premium. Thomas J. Bliley Jr. (R-Va.) objected to Congress giving "official recognition and sanction of homosexual and heterosexual relationships which are outside the bonds of marriage."

Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said, "The opposition appears to stem from the fact that some of the beneficiaries would be gay and lesbian couples."

The vote was 266 for and 154 against. A yes vote opposed funding resulting from Washington's domestic partners ordinance.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Becerra (D) x Rep. Moorhead (R) x

Source: Roll Call Report Syndicate

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