Saturday, June 16, 2007

100 amendments to squelch homeland security

That's how McHenry and his Republican cohorts tried to interfere with fellow NC Congressman David Price's homeland security appropriations.

From the News and Observer. You really should follow the link and read the whole article but I've cut and pasted some tidbits here:

Hours of late-night debates. Parliamentary shiftiness. A last-minute rush of votes on the House floor.

. . .

Days of partisan gridlock clogged progress on the bill this week, as Republicans slammed Democrats with words and parliamentary stall tactics over their new treatment of earmark transparency. Twice, the House stayed at work until 2 a.m.

. . .

Democrats had pledged to bring more transparency to earmarks, which are specific spending projects requested by members and tied to congressional districts. But party leaders also said they would not insert earmarks until spending bills were through the House and Senate and headed for closed-door conferences.

So outraged Republicans stymied House proceedings.

Republican members repeatedly extended the debate and called for time-consuming votes.

The arguments continued Wednesday and then overnight Thursday, including several speeches from GOP Reps. Patrick McHenry and Virginia Foxx of North Carolina. Republicans submitted more than 100 amendments.

. . .

In the end, the House passed, by a 258-150 vote Friday morning, the Homeland Security spending bill -- all $36.3 billion of it -- that has been Price's project since January.