It may have taken the resignation of Speaker John Boehner to do it, but the chances of a government shutdown have been averted until December 11th. H.,R., 719 passed in the Senate this morning by a vote of 78-20. Both Georgia senators voted yes. For those watching the presidential race, Sens. Ted Cruz and Rand Paul voted No, while Sens. Lindsey Graham and Marco Rubio did not vote.
This afternoon in the House, the measure passed 277-151, but look at the party vote split: Only 91 Republicans voted in favor, with 151 opposing. All 186 Democrats present voted yes. Four Republicans and two Democrats did not vote.
Georgia Representatives voting yes included 2nd District Democrat Sanford Bishop, 4th District Democrat Hank Johnson, 5th District Democrat John Lewis, 8th District Republican Austin Scott, 13th District Democrat David Scott, and 7th District Republican Rob Woodall.
The No list, all Republicans: Rick Allen, 12th District; Buddy Carter, 1st District; Doug Collins, 9th District; Tom Graves, 14th District; Jody Hice, 10th District; Barry Loudermilk, 11th District; Tom Price, 6th District, and Lynn Westmoreland, 3rd District.
The unusual case of more House Democrats supporting the measure then Republicans did was partially due to the fact that the continuing resolution contained funding for Planned Parenthood.
Comments from Georgia Reps. are below the fold.
Senator David Perdue, who voted yes on the measure:
Today, I supported the Senate’s short-term measure to responsibly keep the federal government functioning so we can continue working to solve Washington’s spending crisis, despite political brinkmanship from Senate Democrats. In my first days in the Senate, I worked to achieve a balanced budget that set clear priorities and outlined conservative principles. The Senate then produced 12 appropriations bills to put those conservative principles into action. However, Senate Democrats have blocked debate of these budget bills every step of the way, preventing the funding process from even going forward.
Washington is always reacting to deadlines or crises as if Congress has been kept in the dark. We have known all along the end of the fiscal year was coming and we have known that Planned Parenthood was using taxpayer dollars to brutally take the lives of unborn children. These two issues should have been dealt with individually months ago. I will continue to protect all life as I have in the past, but I am also focused on bringing sanity to the budget and appropriations process.
This is certainly not the end of the appropriations process, but it should not have been the beginning either. This interim step of passing a continuing resolution gives Congress additional time to act responsibly. My role as a member of the Senate Budget Committee is to continue to fight for a long-term plan that responsibly solves our debt crisis. Individuals cannot spend more than they take in and neither can the federal government. Since President Obama took office, Washington has spent $21.5 trillion dollars funding the federal government, and borrowed $8 trillion of that money. We simply cannot continue to do that.
1st District Rep. Buddy Carter, who voted no:
I cannot, in good conscience, support a single cent of taxpayer dollars going to a criminal enterprise like Planned Parenthood,” said Carter. “We’ve known for some time that the group is the largest provider of abortions but the vile and disgusting acts uncovered in these videos are beyond belief. This tugs at the very moral fabric of our country. We must focus on making sure we are utilizing every tool to combat Planned Parenthood and bring those who committed these crimes to justice. Using the power of the purse is an important step in our continued fight to protect the unborn and ensure tax dollars are not going to organizations that support the practice of abortion and trafficking of aborted fetal tissue.
2nd District Rep. Sanford Bishop, who voted yes:
It is vitally important that Congress averts a government shutdown so crucial services provided by the government continue to be available to seniors, families, small business, veterans, and our communities in Georgia. I am pleased that this government funding bill will ensure continued operations, but this is no victory to celebrate. Our government cannot afford to continue investing in its priorities through short term, haphazard funding measures, and so, I look forward to passing all twelve appropriations bills for complete government funding before the end of the year.
7th District Rep. Rob Woodall, who voted yes:
In the House, we began passing Appropriations bills in April of this year, operating the federal government the way our Founding Fathers had intended,” said Rep. Woodall. “In fact, the House finished more of its work earlier in the year than at any time since 1974. Sadly, Democrats in the Senate have blocked all efforts to pass any funding bill in the Senate. The American people are frustrated by this pattern, and I share the frustration. That said, I’m encouraged by this small progress today, and I truly believe that if we keep our nose to the grindstone and continue leading by example, we will get the governing process back where it needs to be.
9th District Rep. Doug Collins, who voted no:
I will not go against my belief in the sanctity of life and support a funding measure that does not contain a specific prohibition against federal funding of Planned Parenthood. I do not trust HHS or any government agency to respect Congressional intent when it comes to an issue as foundational to our moral fabric as life. Our very humanity and sense of dignity as individuals and as a nation has been called into question by the recent revelations about Planned Parenthood. To not specifically cut off all avenues of funding for an organization that reduces the bodies of unborn babies to marketable “tissue samples” should cause every person, young and old, to pause and grieve. The responsibility of government should be to protect life. Today, I’m afraid we lost sight of that goal in an effort to avoid a temporary shutdown.
The very fact that we are forced to turn to a short term continuing resolution is a failure. To then ask Members of Congress to choose between taking a moral stand or an economic stand is an even greater failure. Shutting down the government has a temporary, devastating impact on American families, but Planned Parenthood has ripped apart and sold our next generation.
11th District Rep. Barry Loudermilk, who voted no:
With an $18 trillion dollar debt and regulations squeezing the life out of American businesses and families, we must stop governing from crisis to crisis. The Constitution gives Congress the authority and the responsibility to fund the government through an appropriations process; but that procedure has been abandoned, and now we just approve short-term funding extensions that do nothing to address our nation’s insurmountable debt.
Every time we pass a continuing resolution, we are giving the Obama Administration a blank check to continue its damaging policies. Since the current CR does not specifically address all of the hard-earned tax dollars being spent on the President’s illegal executive amnesty program, the lifting of sanctions on Iran, Planned Parenthood, the EPA and a host of other regulatory agencies, I simply cannot vote to extend funding to these out-of-control programs and agencies.
Moving ahead, I look forward to working with the new leadership team to get America’s economy on track, balance the budget, and bring order back to the appropriations process.