Congress and the Nation, 1997-2000, Vol. X: The 105th and 106th Congresses


Edited by: CQ Press

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    1997 Key Votes

    1. Balanced-Budget Amendment

    Senate Democrats in 1995 again blocked an important proposal on the Republican agenda: a constitutional amendment to require a balanced federal budget (S J Res 1). During the 1995 debate, then-Majority Leader Bob Dole, R-Kan., delayed the vote as he tried to win over a wavering Democrat. In the end he did not and had to accept defeat on a 65-35 vote; 67 votes were required to approve a constitutional amendment.

    Republicans entered the 1997 debate with high hopes. If every veteran of the 1995 vote remained consistent, and if every freshman elected in 1996 kept a campaign promise to support the amendment it would be approved with 68 votes. Fewer votes were considered uncertain than in 1995 when a half-dozen Democrats who had previously backed the amendment switched their votes. The positions of Senate veterans were well established after three years of debating and voting on the issue. Consequently, the outcome depended on the votes of four freshman Democrats: Robert G. Torricelli of New Jersey and Tim Johnson of South Dakota, both of whom had voted for the amendment as members of the House; and Max Cleland of Georgia and Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana, who had supported it in their campaigns.

    Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., and his floor lieutenants had limited influence on the four Democrats, none of whom were prepared to commit early. From the beginning, the four freshmen held private meetings to share thoughts about such a critical issue arising at the outset of Senate careers. Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., held a series of one-on-one meetings with the newcomers, counseled them to avoid making any hasty decisions, and gently cajoled them to change their minds. Robert c. Byrd, D-W.Va., and Daniel Patrick Moynihan, D-N.Y.—veteran opponents of the amendment—also sought out the freshmen to make their case. By all accounts, Daschle was masterly in arguing his case with a light but determined hand. “He wasn't pushy at all,” said Torricelli. “He asked me only to consider the consequences of being the deciding vote to amend the Constitution.”

    Cleland was first to commit when on Feb. 14 he said he would vote for the amendment. But Johnson announced on Feb. 20 he would switch and vote against it. That left the fate of the amendment with Torricelli and Landrieu. If either switched, the amendment would die. Advertising campaigns, both pro and con, went on the air in selected states but, as before, they appeared to have no impact on the outcome.

    After weeks of wavering, Landrieu announced Feb. 25 that she would vote for the amendment. She acknowledged that had it not been for her campaign promise, she would have opposed it. That left it to Torricelli to be the deciding vote. On Feb. 26 he declared: “All doubts concerning amendments to the Constitution must be settled in leaving the genius of the Founding Fathers undisturbed.”

    The vote had been drained of suspense by the time it was taken on March 4. The only ripple of excitement came as the count, with time running down, stalled briefly at 66-33, a potentially winning two-thirds tally. But then Bob Kerrey, D-Neb., came into the chamber, voted “no,” and the amendment died, 66-34: R 55-0; D 11-34 (ND 6-31, SD 5-3). (Vote, p. 876)

    2. Yucca Mountain

    In a victory for the nuclear power industry, the Senate April 15 passed a bill (S 104) to create a temporary nuclear waste storage site in the Nevada desert. The bill received two more votes than had similar legislation passed by the Senate in 1996 but remained two votes short of the two-thirds needed to override a veto, which was promised by President Clinton. The vote was 65-34: R 53-2; D 12-32 (ND 8-28, SD 4-4). (Vote, p. 876)

    President Clinton vowed a veto until a study was completed on the viability of Yucca Mountain to be the home of a permanent repository. The study was slated to be finished in 1998.

    The bill would have required the temporary waste site to open in 2003. Frank H. Murkowski, R-Alaska, chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, tried to attract support by adding a provision giving the president until March 1, 1999, to halt construction of the temporary storage site if he found that permanent storage was not viable at Yucca Mountain. The president and Congress would then have two years to approve an alternate site; if they failed, construction would begin automatically in Nevada.

    Nuclear utilities argued the bill was needed to allow removal of the growing inventory of nuclear waste stored in thirty-five states. A 1982 law required the federal government to dispose of civilian nuclear waste starting Jan. 31, 1998.

    Despite the deadline, the bill was opposed by thirty-two Democrats and two Republicans—Ben Nighthorse Campbell of Colorado and Daniel R. Coats of Indiana. Opponents were led by Nevada's two Democratic senators, Harry Reid and Richard H. Bryan.

    Supporters would have had a veto-proof margin if not for “no” votes cast by first-year Democrats Richard J. Durbin of Illinois and Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana. Their Democratic predecessors, Paul Simon of Illinois and J. Bennett Johnston of Louisiana, backed the temporary storage site in 1996. Durbin cited concerns about nuclear waste transportation and environmental protection; Landrieu expressed sympathy for nuclear utilities but cited concern about unfinished plans for permanent storage. Backers of the bill also picked up two votes they did not have in 1996. Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman John H. Chafee, R-R.I., switched his vote to “yes,” citing improved environmental provisions in the 1997 bill. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., also switched from a “no” vote on the 1996 bill to a “yes” on S 104.

    3. Chemical Weapons Treaty

    The most vigorous attack on President Clinton's national security policy during the year was defeated in April when the Senate approved a treaty banning chemical weapons after rejecting several amendments to weaken the pact. However, Clinton won only after making significant concessions to leading Republicans on other foreign policy matters.

    At issue was the Chemical Weapons Convention, signed shortly before President George Bush left office in January 1993. The treaty banned the development, production, storage, use, sale, or purchase of chemical weapons. Negotiated by the Bush and Reagan administrations with the cooperation of major chemical manufacturing firms, the treaty was supported not only by most Democrats but also by many prominent members of the GOP foreign policy establishment. Nevertheless, conservatives had held up ratification in 1996, saying the treaty would be ineffective in halting the spread of chemical weapons and would lull the country into a false sense of security. Critics also said the treaty's far-reaching system of international inspections was a threat to U.S. sovereignty and to U.S. companies' competitive secrets.

    In January 1997 Clinton and his top aides began vigorous lobbying for Senate approval by April 29, the date on which it was to take effect. Treaty supporters contended that public abhorrence of chemical weapons would provide the leverage needed to secure the necessary two-thirds majority if a Senate vote could be held. Ultimately, Clinton got that vote but he had to trade for it with Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., and Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms, R-N.C., who opposed the treaty and had the power to keep it bottled up in his committee.

    Helms was mollified partly by the administration's acceptance of a raft of proposed amendments to the resolution of approval (S Res 75). One of these required the treaty's international inspection teams to obtain a criminal search warrant from a U.S. judge if they wanted to inspect an American company's facility without its consent. Helms also was persuaded by the administration's agreement to his long-standing goal of streamlining the foreign policy bureaucracy by consolidating the United States Information Agency, the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, and parts of the Agency for International Development into the State Department.

    At Lott's insistence, the administration also agreed that modifications to existing arms control treaties, which were being negotiated with Russia, would be sent to the Senate as formal amendments to those treaties, requiring a two-thirds majority vote. This was advantageous to conservatives who were particularly opposed to proposed changes in the 1972 treaty limiting antiballistic missile (ABM) defenses.

    However, the Senate did reject five other proposed changes, dubbed “killer amendments” by the administration. Although Lott supported all of them, he announced that he would support the treaty, albeit unenthusiastically. The Senate approved the resolution April 24 by a vote of 74-26: R 29-26; D 45-0 (ND 37-0, SD 8-0). (Vote, p. 876)

    4. Compensatory Time Off

    Less than a year after Senate Democrats blocked consideration of a key component in the GOP's labor agenda, Republican leaders made another attempt to pass legislation (S 4, HR 1) to allow employees to take compensatory time off instead of receive overtime pay, as required under existing federal law.

    The House had passed a version of the plan in July 1996 and again on March 19, 1997, and Senate leaders wanted to see if support had increased in their chamber. Fifteen new members—nine Republicans and six Democrats—had joined the Senate. Mike DeWine, R-Ohio, acting on behalf of Republican bill sponsors, agreed to changes that might attract uncertain senators, including a provision to honor collective bargaining contracts.

    The bill proposed to amend the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act to allow private-sector hourly workers to take compensatory time in lieu of overtime pay and to work schedules other than the traditional forty-hour week. DeWine agreed to clarify that seasonal and temporary workers could not be offered the compensatory time option unless they worked at least 1,250 hours for an employer in a year. Republicans said the measure would give workers who earned an hourly wage the same opportunities to take time off that salaried workers had. But Democrats reiterated their charges that the bill would allow employers, not employees, to choose how workers would be compensated for extra work. They also objected to undoing the forty-hour work week, which they considered a sacred element of labor law. The bill allowed for an eighty-hour, two-week work period in which employees could, for example, work fifty hours one week and thirty the next with no extra pay.

    Democrats' arguments were backed by a veto threat from President Clinton and strong labor union opposition to the bill, reflecting the deep political chasm that existed between the two parties on labor issues. With the Democratic Party highly indebted to unions and Republicans indebted to the business community, the comptime bill was a measure on which neither party could afford to compromise.

    Republicans on May 15 tried block a Democratic filibuster but the motion to invoke cloture failed 53-47: R 53-2; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8). A three-fifths majority, or sixty votes, was needed. The Democrats were joined by two Republicans facing 1998 reelection contests in strong union states: Alfonse M. D'Amato of New York and Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania. After a brief cooling-off period, Republicans made another attempt, also unsuccessful, to move the bill. A June 4 cloture vote failed 51-47. Another Republican, Ben Nighthorse Campbell of Colorado, joined D'Amato and Specter. (Vote, p. 876)

    5. Abortion Procedure Ban

    Both parties expected a close margin May 20 when the Senate voted to ban a controversial procedure that opponents termed “partial birth” abortion. The Senate had passed a similar bill in December 1995 by a vote of 54-44, well short of the 67 votes needed to override a presidential veto. The shortfall only increased in September 1997, when the Senate sustained President Clinton's veto, 57-41.

    However, the political environment surrounding the debate differed substantially by 1997. New concerns had arisen about how often the practice, carried out in the second or third trimester of pregnancy, was performed. Some newly elected Republicans brought additional support for banning the practice. And the American Medical Association announced it would support the ban, a move that prompted some senators to switch their votes and support the bill.

    Bill supporters, mostly Republicans, argued that the type of abortion described in the legislation was a violent and unnecessary procedure that should be outlawed. Opponents countered that the measure was too narrowly drawn and that women would be in jeopardy unless an exception were permitted to prevent serious injury to a woman's physical health.

    The House already had passed the ban with a solid veto-proof majority. In the Senate Rick Santorum, R-Pa., the bill's sponsor, made what he termed “technical” changes to broaden support for the measure. Alterations included clarifying the definition of the procedure and reiterating that doctors would be shielded from criminal penalties if a life-threatening medical emergency forced them to use the procedure.

    When the final count was taken May 20, supporters were still 3 votes short of the 67 needed for a veto override. However, their margin of victory had increased since December 1995. The vote was 64-36: R 51-4; D 13-32 (ND 9-28, SD 4-4). Several Democrats, including Minority Leader Tom Daschle of South Dakota, Robert c. Byrd of West Virginia, and Ernest F. Hollings of South Carolina, switched their votes to support the ban. Adding to the drama was a floor speech by Daschle, who had tried unsuccessfully to alter the bill. Daschle, a Roman Catholic, challenged church officials—including those in his home state—for criticizing his attempts to find a middle ground on the issue. “Their harsh rhetoric and vitriolic characterizations … proved to be a consequential impediment to the decision I have made today,” he said. “It was most instructive.” (Vote, p. 876)

    6. Budget Resolution

    After bitter budget conflicts between Congress and President Clinton in 1995 and 1996, the Senate welcomed the opportunity in 1997 to produce a bipartisan budget agreement. Budget Committee Chairman Pete V. Domenici, R-N.M., was the chief player in early-stage talks with White House officials. A veteran of every major budget battle since becoming committee chairman in 1981, Domenici saw at the beginning of the year conditions that could lead to agreement for the first balanced budget in almost thirty years.

    The 1997 agreement was helped by the unpopularity of budget deals earlier in the decade. In addition, the size of the deficit was shrinking in the years leading to 1997 as robust economic conditions brought more tax receipts to the government. Congressional Budget Office estimates of the 2002 deficit had shrunk from $349 billion in 1995 to $188 billion when the 1997 negotiations began in earnest.

    Domenici, Budget Committee Staff Director G. William Hoagland, White House budget chief Franklin D. Raines, and top administration lobbyist John L. Hilley began back-channel talks that produced the outline of a deal and built up the more trusting atmosphere that was required to reach agreement.

    Domenici held off writing the budget resolution until congressional Republicans and the White House had struck a deal, which traded long-term savings from Medicare and other programs for tax cuts and some short-term spending increases. Finally, on May 15, the agreement was ready and Domenici moved swiftly to translate it into a budget resolution (H Con Res 84) and get it through the Senate. The measure came to the floor with a series of proposed amendments that allowed members to point out what they considered to be flaws in the agreement.

    It fell to Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., to sell the agreement to fellow conservatives. Some conservatives such as Phil Gramm, R-Texas, protested that the middle-of-the-road deal represented an abdication of core GOP values but almost everybody else found the opportunity to vote for a balanced budget and the first major tax cut since the beginning of Ronald Reagan's presidency in 1981 too alluring to pass up.

    Despite potentially damaging amendments to shift additional funding to highway projects (killed, 51-49) and raise cigarette taxes to finance a children's health care initiative (killed 55-45), the budget resolution passed unscathed. The Senate adopted the measure May 23 by a vote of 78-22: R 41-14; D 37-8 (ND 31-6, SD 6-2). The bipartisanship witnessed during the debate on the budget resolution carried over into the crafting of the reconciliation bills required to implement the policy changes dictated by H Con Res 84. Despite extensive wrangling between the White House and Republicans, mostly over taxes, the mutual interest in enacting the budget deal kept Domenici and his House counterpart, John R. Kasich, R-Ohio, confident the deal would hold. (Vote, p. 876)

    7. Medicare Means Testing

    In a move to restructure Medicare, the federal health insurance program for the elderly and disabled, the Senate proposed requiring that some wealthier beneficiaries pay higher premiums for visits to their doctors. Under existing law, beneficiaries paid 25 percent of the costs of Medicare Part B, which covered doctors' visits and other outpatient services. But in provisions written by the Finance Committee, the spending-cut portion of the Senate's reconciliation package (S 947) sought to introduce so-called means testing. The Senate bill proposed requiring individuals with at least $50,000 in adjusted gross annual incomes and couples with at least $75,000 to pay a larger share of their premiums. People with adjusted gross incomes of at least $100,000 and couples with incomes of at least $125,000 would pay the whole Part B premium.

    Senate Budget Committee Chairman Pete V. Domenici, R-N.M., said linking premiums to income would raise about $4 billion and affect about 5 percent of Medicare's more than 38 million elderly and disabled beneficiaries. Supporters, who included both Democrats and Republicans, argued the change was fair because all taxpayers should not have to subsidize bills for wealthier seniors. But opponents, such as Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., said that requiring some seniors to pay more of their Part B premiums would be the first step toward making Medicare a welfare program rather than a federal entitlement program.

    Kennedy fought to amend the means-testing provision. He tried to delay its onset by two years, having it begin in 2000 rather than 1998, but that proposal failed, 37-63. Kennedy did win a battle to make sure all senators had to abide by means testing. His amendment to require senators who earned more than $100,000 per year—as all of them did—to pay the full Part B premium, should the means-testing provision become law, passed by voice vote. But Kennedy failed to remove means testing from the bill. His amendment to do so was tabled (killed) on June 24 on a vote of 70-30: R 49-6; D 21-24 (ND 15-22, SD 6-2). (Vote, p. 876)

    The Senate's landmark vote to include means testing had little staying power, however. The idea did not have wide bipartisan support in the House and was not included in the budget deal (H Con Res 84) that Republicans, Democrats, and the White House had agreed to in May. That fact brought opposition from the White House, although President Clinton had included means testing in his failed 1993 health care overhaul plan. Opposition also came from the AARP, a powerful lobbying group for senior citizens. Those concerns, plus a shortage of House members to back the proposal, forced means testing out of the final package adopted by Senate and House conferees. Instead, the spending cut bill (PL 105-33) created a bipartisan commission to review Medicare's long-term solvency.

    8. Arts Funding

    The Senate once again demonstrated its strong support for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), defeating efforts to abolish or revamp federal funding for the arts. The issue developed when the House, in its version of the fiscal 1998 Interior appropriations bill (HR 2107), attempted to eliminate the agency. House conservatives had won a promise from the GOP leadership to try to kill the NEA, and the leadership lobbied hard for the no-funding position.

    For the better part of the summer, senators and aides tried without success to find a compromise. Instead, the Senate version of HR 2107 was met with a host of NEA proposals, ranging from the outright elimination of federal arts funding to privatizing the NEA or restricting its funding options. A moderate attempt to revise the agency was made by Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, who spoke for a small band of senators who supported federal arts funding but backed changes in the agency. An important grievance was that the NEA directed too much money to a handful of states, such as New York, depriving others of needed resources. Another frequent complaint was that too much money went to administrative costs in Washington. These senators sought ways to put more money in the hands of state and local arts organizations, without increasing the overall funding ceiling for the agency.

    Hutchison's amendment proposed to retain the agency while requiring it to send 75 percent of its funding directly to the states in lump sum payments. Of the remainder, 5 percent would be spent for administrative costs, and the rest on national grants to major ballet, opera, and other arts groups. Hutchison also proposed limiting the amount of money that could go to an individual state to 6.6 percent. She hoped her proposal would attract other moderates who supported the agency. Instead, the Senate defeated her proposal on Sept. 18 by a large margin, 39-61: R 39-16; 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8). Other amendments to change NEA practices also were defeated. As a result House conservatives had to retreat from their efforts to end the agency completely. The final bill included $98 million for the NEA, roughly equal to the Senate level. (Vote, p. 876)

    9. Campaign Finance

    Growing controversy over campaign finance practices in the 1996 elections prompted a broad Senate investigation, a spate of other congressional probes, and a steady stream of newspaper stories documenting fund-raising law abuses. But the furor did not lead to legislation revamping the political fund-raising system.

    A pair of senators from opposite parties, Arizona Republican John McCain and Wisconsin Democrat Russell D. Feingold, sponsored a bill (S 25) aimed at closing what they said were two of the biggest fund-raising loopholes. The bill sought to eliminate “soft money”—unregulated donations to parties rather than candidates—and to place limits on independent, issue-oriented television advertisements that implicitly promoted candidates. McCain and Feingold hoped that voter anger over fund-raising scandals would overcome determined opposition led by Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., and Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. Although polls showed that a majority of Americans were dissatisfied with the existing system, polls also showed that voters, cynical about the political system, did not expect Washington to change the rules.

    Lott and McConnell said that the real problem lay with President Clinton and other Democrats who, they contended, were willing to ignore existing laws to finance their 1996 campaign. Not only were new laws not needed, they said, but the McCain-Feingold legislation would trample on constitutionally protected freedom of political speech.

    As a vote approached in early October, it became clear that McCain and Feingold needed 60 votes to break an expected GOP-led filibuster. With commitments of support from all 45 Senate Democrats and 4 Republicans—McCain, Susan Collins of Maine, Fred Thompson of Tennessee, and Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania—they needed 11 more votes, all of which would have to come from Republicans.

    The two senators went on radio talk shows, cable news shows, and network political chat shows to make the case for change in the campaign finance system. In an effort to widen support, McCain and Feingold scaled back their bill by dropping a controversial provision to provide free television time to candidates who voluntarily agreed to spending limits.

    But the effort fell short, as Lott, McConnell, and allies successfully filibustered the bill. On Oct. 7 the Senate rejected a motion to invoke cloture and limit debate on the bill. The vote was 53-47: R 8-47; D 45-0 (ND 37-0, SD 8-0). A vote of three-fifths of the Senate (60 votes) was required to invoke cloture. McCain and Feingold had not picked up support over their earlier effort to pass the legislation. In June 1996 the Senate defeated a cloture motion on a more sweeping version of the McCain-Feingold bill on a 54-46 vote, with one more senator voting to end the filibuster than in 1997. Eight Republicans voted for cloture then, too; the key difference was that there were two more Democrats in the Senate at the time, one of whom voted for cloture and one against. (Vote, p. 876)

    10. Line-Item Veto

    The Senate promptly and pointedly expressed its disapproval of President Clinton's use of a newly acquired line-item veto authority. Three and a half weeks after Clinton first struck projects from an appropriations bill, better than two-thirds of the Senate voted to overturn his decision. Led by Appropriations Chairman Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, senators on Oct. 30 rejected Clinton's decision to veto 38 military construction projects, totaling $287 million. Clinton had signed the military construction bill (HR 2016—PL 105-45) on Sept. 30. The congressional reaction prompted Clinton to reassess his line-item veto strategy. He would not again try to excise as many projects from a single bill. Much of the floor debate on the disapproval bill (S 1292) centered on the question of how Clinton selected the items to veto, with a number of senators taking time to extol the virtues of canceled projects in their home states. With passage clear, the one contentious question was whether supporters of the line-item veto (PL 104-130), which Congress had granted to the president in 1996, were obliged to accept his decisions as falling within the intent of the new law. “What credibility can supporters of the line-item veto authority have if we disapprove vetoes on the first appropriations bill right out of the gate?” Charles S. Robb, D-Va., asked. But supporters of the disapproval bill argued that it was in keeping with the spirit of the line-item veto law. “I think this is exactly how the process is supposed to work,” said Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas. “Congress did not take away its right to disagree with the president.”

    The disapproval bill passed 69-30: R 42-12; D 27-18 (ND 24-13, SD 3-5). That gave sponsors a three-vote cushion over the two-thirds majority they would need to overcome Clinton's veto. (Vote, p. 876)

    Although House appropriators initially signaled their disinterest in challenging the president, hinting they might instead try to restore the military construction funding through a supplemental appropriations bill, the Senate vote emboldened the House to pass a slightly different version of the disapproval bill (HR 2631), which the Senate then accepted. Although Clinton vetoed that bill Nov. 13, the veto-proof margins mustered in both chambers made it clear that he would ultimately be overridden. The HR 2631 veto was overridden in early 1998.

    11. Education Savings Accounts

    Senate Democrats on Oct. 31 blocked a top Republican education priority: a bill to establish tax-free education savings accounts that could be used to defray private or public school costs. A GOP effort to invoke cloture, thereby limiting debate on the bill, failed by four votes. Republicans originally tried to include a similar provision in the tax portion of the balanced-budget reconciliation package (HR 2014—PL 105-34). But they withdrew it at the last moment when President Clinton, fearing that the measure would harm public schools, threatened to veto the whole tax bill if it were included. Republicans criticized Clinton for yielding to opposition from teachers' unions and vowed to pass the measure over Clinton's objections. Under subsequent legislation (HR 2646), sponsored by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, parents would have been able to invest up to $2,500 a year in special accounts and use the principal and interest tax-free for education-related expenses. The accounts were to be structured somewhat like Individual Retirement Accounts. The legislation advanced through Ways and Means and the House in October on closely contested votes. Senate supporters hoped to move it swiftly to Clinton's desk.

    Democrats initially opposed the cloture motion as part of their protest over a stalled bill (S 25) on campaign finance revisions. But even when senators agreed Oct. 30 on how to consider the campaign finance bill, Democrats still objected to the education measure on procedural grounds that no Senate hearings were held on it and Democrats would be barred from offering a full range of amendments.

    Paul Coverdell, R-Ga., chief Senate sponsor of the legislation, had hoped to attract bipartisan support but only two Democrats voted for cloture: Robert G. Torricelli of New Jersey and Joseph I. Lieberman of Connecticut. On the other side, John H. Chafee of Rhode Island broke ranks with Republicans and voted against cloture. The cloture motion fell 4 votes short of the 60 needed to move the bill toward passage: 56-41: R 54-1; D 2-40 (ND 2-32, SD 0-8). Coverdell tried again to invoke cloture Nov. 4 but still fell 4 votes short, 56-44. (Vote, p. 876)

    12. ‘Fast-Track’ Trade Authority

    With time running out on the congressional session, President Clinton made a determined bid to regain “fast-track” authority to negotiate and get expedited review of trade agreements. When it appeared he was badly behind in the House, he turned to the Senate. The Senate historically had favored free trade, and there was no doubt that that chamber could muster the majority required to pass the bill (S 1269). The only question was whether there would be enough votes to beat a promised filibuster by opponents such as Democrats Byron L. Dorgan of North Dakota and Ernest F. Hollings of South Carolina.

    Under the Constitution, trade bills were required to originate in the House because they affected tariff revenues. But Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., began the floor debate at the administration's request. The idea was that a big show of Senate support would give momentum to the troubled House effort. The Finance Committee quickly approved the bill as expected, Oct. 1, and Lott predicted from the outset that the votes were there to reach the 60-vote mark required to beat a filibuster. Dorgan, the most active of the opponents, cast the debate as a referendum on trade pacts such as the 1993 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Dorgan criticized NAFTA for turning a $2 billion trade surplus with Mexico into a $16 billion deficit, and for accompanying job losses in certain manufacturing sectors. Supporters countered that fast track was merely a procedural device and that any trade pact negotiated under fast-track rules could be rejected by Congress.

    As Lott predicted, the Senate on Nov. 4 acted to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to the bill by a unexpectedly big vote of 69-31: R 43-12; D 26-19 (ND 20-17, SD 6-2). After invoking cloture, the Senate the next day approved the motion to proceed by a 68-31 vote. The Senate then turned to other business in the end-of-session crunch and the bill was put aside pending a vote in the House. But most House Democrats were dismissive of Clinton's request and not swayed by the large Senate margin favoring fast track. Republican leaders did not take up the legislation. (Vote, p. 876)

    1. Election of Speaker

    In a remarkable twist of history, Newt Gingrich, the upstart Georgian who led Republicans to a majority in Congress in 1995, found himself on the brink of ruin at the start of the 105th Congress. Two years earlier he had been the undisputed leader of the Republican Party and one of the country's most important politicians. But a series of tactical missteps in his first two years in power, some of them highly embarrassing for his party, coupled with doubts raised about his personal conduct by a House ethics investigation, led to a make-or-break vote for the Speaker on Jan. 7. What should have been a routine exercise—the ratification of the majority party's nominee for Speaker—instead turned into an intrigue-filled squeaker.

    Although Gingrich still commanded the support of a large share of House Republicans, losses in the November 1996 election had so narrowed the GOP advantage that he could withstand few defections. Republicans held only a 227-207 edge over the Democrats. If all the Democrats and the House's one independent voted for Minority Leader Richard A. Gephardt, D-Mo., and twenty Republicans voted “present” or for someone other than Gingrich, Gephardt would have become Speaker.

    Some lawmakers, such as New York GOP Reps. Peter T. King and Michael P. Forbes, aired their doubts publicly, attracting the attention of the national media. But the biggest threat to Gingrich was a silent revolt among a loosely aligned group of disgruntled Republicans who held out as undecided votes, hoping to force him to step down. The rebels had grown disillusioned with Gingrich, convinced that his usefulness as chief party visionary no longer made up for his low public approval ratings, frequent gaffes, and often unpredictable leadership style. The unresolved issues of the ethics case only exacerbated their concerns.

    Gingrich on Dec. 21, 1996, had admitted after two years of denials that he had failed to properly manage the financing of his political activities through charitable foundations. Gingrich also conceded that he gave the committee misleading information during the investigation. But the panel had not issued its final report or recommended a punishment and would not do so until after the Speaker's election, leaving lawmakers partly uninformed as they prepared to vote.

    Gingrich, long a scrappy political fighter, refused to capitulate. He instead brought all the considerable resources of his office to bear. He and his five top allies and their staffs worked telephones and fax machines throughout the Christmas season, waging a one-on-one campaign to put down the rebellion. Gingrich was aided by the heavy hitters of the House GOP: Majority Leader Dick Armey and Whip Tom DeLay, both of Texas; Conference Chairman John A. Boehner of Ohio; National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman John Linder, a home-state ally from Georgia; and Bill Paxon of New York, the chairman of the Speaker's planning group.

    The uncertainty lasted right up to the day of the vote. When the time came, five Republicans voted “present” rather than back Gingrich, and four more voted for other, undeclared candidates of their choosing. Two voted for Jim Leach, R-Iowa; one for former House Minority Leader Robert H. Michel, R-Ill. (1957–1995); and one for former Rep. Robert S. Walker, R-Pa. (1977–1997).

    Gingrich only narrowly prevailed with 216 votes to 205 votes for Gephardt, who, as expected, captured all of the Democratic votes: R 216-0; D 0-204 (ND 0-150, SD 0-54); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 878)

    2. Reprimand of Speaker

    After the controversy over electing a Speaker, House Republicans were further embarrassed Jan. 21 when they cast an historic vote to punish for rules violations the person they had just elected to the post: Newt Gingrich, R-Ga. The overwhelming vote marked the first time a sitting Speaker had been sanctioned formally.

    Gingrich was reprimanded for bringing discredit on the House with his ethical misconduct. He was also fined $300,000 for the costs to the House of sorting out his misleading statements to the ethics committee. With five members voting present, the vote was 395-28: R 196-26; D 198-2 (ND 147-0, SD 51-2); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 878)

    In what some observers saw as a plea bargain with the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, the formal name of the ethics committee, Gingrich escaped the most serious charge: that he knowingly used charitable foundations to finance his political activities in the early 1990s, when he was planning the Republican takeover of Congress. But he admitted that he failed to seek proper legal advice in using the tax-exempt groups for political ends.

    In a more damaging admission, the Speaker also acknowledged misleading the committee during its probe, though he blamed his lawyer for submitting conflicting and false statements to investigators.

    The Speaker's admissions, coming after two years of consistent denials of wrongdoing, created turmoil in Republican ranks. Many were stunned when the ethics committee, including its GOP members, recommended a harsh penalty and an unprecedented $300,000 fine. Some who had been lobbied hard to cast votes for Gingrich for Speaker felt deceived when they saw the report by the panel and its special counsel, James M. Cole.

    Although Republicans did not welcome reprimanding their Speaker, which would reflect poorly on the entire party, most felt they could not contest the findings of the independent counsel and the bipartisan ethics committee. Only 26 Republicans voted against the sanctions. Many of those who did so said they either did not want to set a precedent for fining members such extraordinary amounts or that they believed that the fine was simply too harsh a penalty. Two Southern Democrats also voted against sanctions: Gene Taylor of Mississippi and Earl F. Hilliard of Alabama.

    The ethics issue reverberated through the year and was one of the events that presaged a midsummer attempt by a group of disgruntled Republicans along with some of Gingrich's allies to oust the Speaker.

    Gingrich, once considered one of the country's most influential politicians, was, after the vote, a diminished figure, no longer able to dictate the national agenda. At the same time, President Clinton, fresh from winning reelection, was making a political comeback.

    3. Abortion Procedure Ban

    Opponents of a second- and third-trimester abortion procedure found support from an unlikely source in their battle to enact legislation banning the practice. Ron Fitzsimmons, executive director of the National Coalition of Abortion Providers, admitted in interviews that the procedure opponents called “partial-birth” abortion was performed more frequently than he had acknowledged in 1996, when Congress passed and President Clinton vetoed a similar measure. A significant part of abortion-rights advocates' defense of the procedure had rested on the assumption that it was rarely done. The revelation gave abortion foes renewed zeal in their bid to enact HR 1122, which called for fines and up to two years in jail for physicians who performed such abortions.

    Attempts by abortion-rights supporters to broaden the legislation to allow an exception to protect a woman's health were rejected. Under the bill, the procedure would be allowed only if needed to save the woman's life. The final was unsurprising with the chamber overwhelmingly supporting the ban by more than the two-thirds majority needed to override a presidential veto. The vote on passage was 295-136: R 218-8; D 77-127 (ND 51-99, SD 26-28); I 0-1. Three members switched their votes from “no” in 1996 to “yes” in 1997. They were: Christopher Shays, R-Conn.; Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J.; and Sue W. Kelly, R-N.Y. Peter J. Visclosky, D-Ind., also changed his vote to “yes,” but he had changed his mind earlier, voting Sept. 19, 1996, to override Clinton's veto. Martin Frost, D-Texas, switched his vote to oppose the bill. (Vote, p. 878)

    4. Endangered Species Act

    After a number of defeats on environmental issues in the 104th Congress, western Republicans in the House pledged in the 105th to keep their bills narrowly focused and easy to explain. Gone from their must-do list were comprehensive bills to rewrite the 1973 Endangered Species Act, overhaul federal grazing policy, or push a major rewrite of federal regulations.

    The new incrementalism embraced by the westerners got its first big test in early May on a bill (HR 478) to waive the Endangered Species Act for flood-control projects. Westerners believed that they could win by portraying their bill as a targeted attempt to protect people from rising flood waters. They sought support by casting the bill as a choice between protecting people or safeguarding bugs and rodents under the species law. But the strategy did not work. The House May 7 amended the bill so much that supporters pulled it from the floor. The vote on the amendment, offered by Sherwood Boehlert, R-N.Y., was 227-196: R 54-169; D 172-27 (ND 137-9, SD 35-18); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 878)

    The vote worsened relations between many westerners and Boehlert, a moderate who often allied himself with environmental groups. Westerners charged that Boehlert and many of the moderate eastern House Republicans had failed them on an issue of great importance to their constituents, and vowed retaliation. They also were displeased with the GOP leadership, which did little to bolster the prospects for the flood-control bill.

    Determined to aggressively advance their interests, and to demand leadership support, westerners were ready by the fall to push through the House bills revising federal grazing policy, property rights, and other statutes affecting western lands. This time, they got leadership backing. On a bill (HR 2493) to alter federal grazing policy House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., was actively involved to broker a compromise.

    5. Housing Overhaul

    Unable in 1996 to get a consensus with the Senate to overhaul the public housing system, House Republicans hoped to get an early start on a nearly identical plan in 1997. In late April, they resurrected legislation (HR 2) that proposed sweeping changes in the nation's public and subsidized housing laws. The bill aimed to give local authorities more leeway over eligibility and rents, and to generate a steadier cash flow for housing projects.

    The House floor action on the measure recalled the debate on welfare overhaul legislation (PL 104-193) in the 104th Congress: many members from both parties agreed that the system in question was broken but they differed over how far to go to fix it. The housing measure, similar to the welfare bill, proposed changing decades of social policy, sending block grants and authority for public and subsidized housing to local boards. To GOP leaders, it represented the next step in their plans to remake the nation's social programs. They emphasized the high priority they placed on the legislation by making it the second House bill introduced in the 105th Congress. The bill included repeal of the 1937 law that set up the public housing system, prompting liberal Democrats to fear the legislation and other proposed changes would cut the social safety net for the nation's poorest people.

    Unlike the tightly controlled consideration of the welfare measure, however, leaders allowed nearly unlimited debate on the housing bill under an “open rule” for floor consideration that allowed any member to offer a germane amendment. Debate spanned seven days over three weeks.

    The most vociferous arguments centered on a provision that would open public housing to the working poor. Democrats charged that Republicans were seeking to throw out the poorest tenants to make way for those who could afford to pay more. “It will fix public housing all right,” said Joseph P. Kennedy II, D-Mass., ranking member on the Housing Subcommittee of the Banking and Financial Services Committee. “It fixes this problem by simply eliminating the poor from eligibility for this program.”

    But Republicans said that change, along with others, was needed to diversify public housing's clientele and to ensure that local authorities had the flexibility to make public housing a good place to live. Liberal Democrats also strongly objected to a provision to require able-bodied, unemployed tenants to perform eight hours of community service a month in exchange for their apartments. They said it was unfair because other recipients of federal aid were not required to perform similar service. Republicans said it was a small price to pay for housing.

    Despite the objections from liberals, however, more than a third of the House Democrats joined all but one Republican in voting for the bill May 14. These Democrats were mostly white conservatives and moderates from the South, the West and rural areas, who believed that more local flexibility might improve housing programs. The final tally was 293-132: R 222-1; D 71-130 (ND 43-104, SD 28-26); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 878)

    6. Highway Funding

    One of the closest votes of the year occurred over the on-going battle between competing values that many members of Congress preferred not to confront: spending money on local benefits (in this case highway and related construction) or limiting benefits to a member's constituency in the interests of a larger goal (in this case, balancing the federal budget). It took a strenuous effort by the House leadership and the Clinton administration to block Congress's natural instinct to expand spending that benefits almost every member.

    House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bud Shuster, R-Pa., proposed an amendment to the fiscal 1998 budget resolution (H Con Res 84) to increase transportation spending under the just-completed balanced-budget deal by $12 billion over five years. Shuster proposed to offset fully the increase with a 0.39 percent across-the-board reduction in other discretionary accounts, coupled with a comparable scaling back of proposed tax cuts. In the early morning hours of May 21 Shuster lost by just 2 votes, a margin that demonstrated vividly Congress's ambivalence between national goals, even when backed by party leadership, and local interests that can have a direct impact on a member's ability to get reelected.

    Shuster and his committee colleagues had complained that the balanced-budget deal did not allow adequate funding for the nation's highways, roads, bridges, and transit systems. Although GOP leaders hailed the era of balanced budgets and fiscal restraint, Shuster was firing off a memo declaring, “The numbers … are unacceptable.” Under pressure, congressional budget writers agreed during the week of May 12 to provide an additional $1 billion for transportation, raising highway spending levels under the budget deal to about $22 billion by 2002, compared with the 1997 level of $20 billion. But that still was nowhere near the $32 billion Shuster was demanding.

    Shuster's showdown with the leadership put the GOP rank and file in a difficult position. About 400 members had already come to the powerful chairman to request tens of billions of dollars for district projects. Even if, as Shuster insisted, there were no overt threats that requests would be denied if they failed to support the amendment, members perceived a threat.

    At the same time, GOP leaders said Shuster's amendment would upset the delicate balance reached in the May budget deal, skew funding away from Republican priorities, and possibly bring down what many Republicans had come to Washington to produce: a balanced budget. The amendment would have reduced defense spending over five years by $6 billion, domestic programs by $5 billion, and the proposed tax cut by about $1 billion.

    Belatedly realizing the amendment's appeal, House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., and the Clinton administration launched a frantic counteroffensive May 20, warning that Shuster's plan could open the floodgates for every chairman to request more money. The leadership called a closed-door conference at 10 p.m., at which Gingrich and Budget Committee Chairman John R. Kasich, R-Ohio, urged members to stand by the budget accord. The late-night effort succeeded but barely. During the tense 3 a.m. vote, which seesawed back and forth, Gingrich fanned out to marshal support. The leadership held the vote open as they twisted just enough arms to defeat Shuster. The final vote was 214-216: R 58-168; D 155-48 (ND 118-32, SD 37-16); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 878)

    7. Budget Resolution

    After the standoffs that led to government shutdowns in 1995 and 1996, it was difficult to imagine congressional Republicans and President Clinton agreeing on a new budget. But they did in a deal that proved relatively palatable to the overwhelming majority of the House. A thriving economy that brought unexpected tax revenues made the task much easier and certainly more rewarding. The federal deficit could be eliminated even while taxes were being cut and spending boosted in certain areas. The result was a balanced budget that was seemingly pain-free.

    Also providing motivation to both sides was the 1996 election, which returned the incumbent president to office while retaining congressional control by the opposition party. It was seen as clear voter direction to work together.

    Adoption of the budget resolution (H Con Res 84) was the first of many important junctures as Congress and the White House fleshed out the framework of the May 2 agreement. Later would come passage of the twin tax and spending cut bills (PL 105-34, PL 105-33) that traded long-term cuts in programs such as Medicare for GOP-inspired tax cuts and new spending for several Clinton priorities.

    Despite having to compromise with the opposition most, Republicans embraced the deal, which met at least two of the chief criteria of the vetoed 1995 Republican budget: balance by 2002 and a sizable net tax cut, though only one-third the size of their earlier budget.

    The budget resolution also had sweeping support among Democrats, though liberals and House Democratic Leader Richard A. Gephardt of Missouri attacked the deal as favoring the wealthy with tax cuts while cutting programs aimed at helping low-income families and the working poor.

    For most Democrats the prospect of voting for a balanced budget was too appealing to give up. Indeed, prevailing sentiment among both Republicans and Democrats was to embrace the budget as the best either side could get in a time of divided government. Also contributing to the big vote on final passage was the fact that the resolution served as a blueprint and did not contain the actual policy changes that would come later. The House adopted the resolution May 21 by a vote of 333-99: R 201-26; D 132-72 (ND 90-60, SD 42-12); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 878)

    8. Bosnia Deadline

    The House in June narrowly rejected a proposal to force the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Bosnia by the end of 1997. The vote highlighted both congressional opposition to the deployment and the difficulty critics faced in trying to overcome President Clinton's determination to pursue the Bosnia undertaking.

    The House had opposed sending U.S. forces to Bosnia since late 1995 when Clinton promised up to 20,000 troops to help enforce a peace agreement ending that country's brutal civil war. Even before the start of the November 1995 negotiations in Dayton, Ohio, that ultimately produced the agreement, the House adopted, by a 3-1 margin, a nonbinding resolution repudiating Clinton's troop pledge. Once the Dayton agreement was signed efforts in the Senate to block deployment of U.S. troops collapsed. Clinton had committed the country's credibility to the deal, which was to be guaranteed for one year by a NATO-led force of 60,000 troops, including the Americans. Even then, however, the House came within a few votes of passing a bill that would have denied funds for the mission.

    On Nov. 15, 1996, a week after he was reelected, Clinton announced that a smaller U.S. force would remain in Bosnia through June 1998, eighteen months after the Dec. 31, 1996, deadline he had promised a year earlier. The first congressional challenge to this policy change came in June 1997 when the House took up the annual defense authorization bill. Critics argued that the combat readiness of U.S. forces was being sapped to pay for the Bosnia operation, which was estimated to cost $7.3 billion through the end of fiscal 1997. Some opponents argued that the task of the peacekeeping force was hopeless because there was no chance of recreating the multiethnic Bosnian state envisaged by the Dayton agreement. Others argued for withdrawal of U.S. forces as a way to force European governments to shoulder the burden of keeping the peace with U.S. communications and intelligence support. The Clinton administration, backed by many House Democrats, warned that a U.S. pullout from Bosnia would undermine the tenuous peace that had been established because the other major participants in the peacekeeping force had made it clear their forces would leave if the Americans did.

    In an effort to finesse that argument, Steve Buyer, R-Ind., offered an amendment to the fiscal 1998 defense authorization bill (HR 1119) requiring a pullout by June 30, 1998. Although that was the date Clinton himself had set for the end of the deployment, it was widely believed that the administration would break that deadline, just as it had broken its first one.

    Van Hilleary, R-Tenn., and other Clinton opponents wanted a chance to go further, repudiating Clinton's policy outright. On June 24, Hilleary offered an amendment to force withdrawal of the troops by Dec. 31, 1997. It was rejected June 24 by a vote of 196-231: R 174-49; D 21-182 (ND 15-133, SD 6-49); I 1-0. The House subsequently adopted Buyer's provision, 278-148. A similar provision was included in the companion defense appropriations bill for fiscal 1998 (HR 2266). (Vote, p. 878)

    The administration threatened to veto both the authorization and appropriations bills if they included a June 1998 deadline. Ultimately, both bills were enacted with provisions stipulating that Clinton could keep forces in Bosnia beyond the deadline if he first reported to Congress on the strategic rationale for his decision, along with estimates of the size, duration, cost, mission and exit strategy of the extended deployment.

    9. Arts Funding

    Conservative House Republicans pressed aggressively to eliminate appropriations for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), arguing that the federal government had no role to play in arts funding and charging that the NEA funded lewd, pornographic, and objectionable art. NEA supporters argued that the endowment provided crucial seed money to struggling arts organizations. Although NEA opponents succeeded in the House, the final legislation kept the agency's funding largely intact.

    The Republican House leadership, generally sympathetic to the conservative's view, arranged to have the $13 billion fiscal 1998 Interior appropriations bill (HR 2107) that was sent to the House floor include no funding for the agency. The leadership then set the ground rules for debate in such a way that precluded a clear vote on the merits of funding. As a result, the key House vote on this issue technically was on the procedures under which the bill was to be considered.

    A nearly unified Democratic Party and a group of Republicans, most of them northeastern moderates, wanted an up-or-down vote on the agency. Supporters believed the leadership realized it did not have the votes to sustain the zero funding position and thus had to resort to procedural devices to prevail.

    But the GOP leadership refused. House Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas, even made clear he considered the vote a crucial test of loyalty and lobbied hard to get Republicans to support the procedural rule. In the days leading up to the vote, DeLay stepped up the arm-twisting. The outcome remained in doubt until the very end when John M. McHugh, R-N.Y., in the closing minutes and only after the urgent pleas of the leadership, cast the final vote backing the leadership. Just five Democrats voted for the rule and 15 Republicans broke ranks to oppose it. The July 10 tally was 217-216: R 212-15; D 5-200 (ND 2-148, SD 3-52); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 878)

    A number of NEA supporters came to the leadership's side. Sherwood Boehlert, R-N.Y., supported funding for the agency but said he voted for the rule “for the leadership.” Boehlert and other NEA supporters figured they could show their loyalty to the leadership and still win on NEA because the Senate appeared likely to restore funding. In fact, the final bill included $98 million for the agency, just below the level included in the Senate version of the bill.

    10. International Family Planning

    Seeking a compromise to prevent another protracted dispute over abortion and foreign aid programs, House Democrats and moderate Republicans proposed allowing overseas family planning groups to remain eligible for U.S. funds under some conditions, even if they performed abortions.

    But their bipartisan amendment to the fiscal 1998 foreign operations spending bill (HR 2159) faltered in the face of continued support for a ban on aid to international family planning groups that used even their own money to subsidize abortions. The outcome assured a drawn-out fight with the Senate and the Clinton administration over the appropriations bill.

    In his first week in office in January 1993, President Clinton rescinded the long-standing GOP policy barring funds for international groups that practiced or advocated abortion. It was one of several actions that Clinton, a supporter of abortion rights, took to reverse rules created during the Reagan and Bush eras. Several Republicans in Congress sought to overturn Clinton's move legislatively, by attaching restrictive abortion provisions to essential spending bills. With the GOP takeover of the House in 1994, Christopher H. Smith, R-N.J., succeeded in attaching an amendment reinstituting the prohibition on family planning funds to the House version of the foreign operations spending bill.

    In the final hours of each congressional session after that House, Senate, and State Department negotiators had been forced to come up with a compromise acceptable to the Senate, whose legislation did not include the restrictions, and the White House, which threatened a veto if the language was included.

    The compromise on family planning in the fiscal 1997 version of the foreign operations bill permitted distribution of U.S. aid to international groups on July 1, 1998. Earlier distribution on March 1, 1998, was permitted but only if both chambers passed a resolution by Feb. 28, 1998, agreeing to the early payment. Democratic leaders and the State Department won that battle by portraying the vote as an effort to promote family planning, not abortion, and warning that without the funds, family planning in third world countries would be devastated.

    But Smith was not deterred. During the summer, he vexed negotiators on a separate, fiscal 1998 State Department authorization bill (HR 1757) by attaching a version of the family planning amendment. In September he turned his attention to the fiscal 1998 foreign operations spending bill.

    The first hurdle was securing enough votes to defeat a bipartisan substitute offered by Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.; Benjamin A. Gilman, R-N.Y.; and James C. Greenwood, R-Pa. Their amendment allowed U.S. aid to continue for organizations that did not promote abortion as a method of family planning. If those groups did provide abortions, they would have had to pay for those procedures from their own funds. Smith criticized the substitute as purposely vague and argued that only his proposal addressed the problems with the White House policy. Greenwood countered that adopting the Smith amendment would lead to an intractable controversy and delay adjournment yet again.

    The House rejected the Pelosi-Gilman-Greenwood substitute on Sept. 4 by a narrow margin, 210-218: R 38-185; D 171-33 (ND 125-26, SD 46-7); I 1-0. The House then easily adopted Smith's amendment banning the funds. Months later, in the final days of the session, House and Senate leaders and the administration produced a compromise that pleased neither side. Family planning groups received the same amount for fiscal 1998 as they had in fiscal 1997, $385 million, but with no restrictions. (Vote, p. 878)

    11. Congressional Pay Raise

    More than most bills, a pay raise for members of Congress required creative legislating. GOP House leaders proved their mettle by finessing a 2.3 percent pay increase through to passage, with thankful rank-and-file lawmakers suffering only a brief drubbing by hometown editorial writers.

    Under a 1989 law, members of Congress were entitled to an automatic cost of living adjustment (COLA), which was intended to take the politics out of annual pay raise debates. But each year since fiscal 1993, someone had introduced an amendment blocking the raise. The amendments were usually offered on the annual appropriations bill for the Treasury Department, Postal Service, and other government operations. The amendment always passed, with lawmakers fearful of the political repercussions of voting against it.

    This time, however, House leaders outwitted the perennial pay raise opponents. First, they brought the Treasury funding bill (HR 2378) to the floor Sept. 17 without warning and without sending it through the Rules Committee, where opponents typically introduced their amendment. Blindsided, the opposition had too little time to organize an effort on the floor, and the bill passed 231-192.

    But the key vote came a week later. Now organized and fully aware that the leaders were angling to allow the raise to go through, opponents led by Linda Smith, R-Wash., insisted on an up-or-down vote on the issue. The leadership at first balked but then agreed to hold a roll call vote on a procedural motion on the Treasury funding bill as the House prepared to send it to conference, where differing House and Senate versions of the bill had yet to be resolved. If the technical motion, called “ordering the previous question,” passed, Smith under House rules would be barred from amending the bill with a COLA block. But if it failed, she could offer her amendment.

    The motion prevailed, 229-199: R 114-110; D 115-88 (ND 88-62, SD 27-26); I 0-1. Smith was unable to offer her amendment. The leaders in effect had given lawmakers a way to vote themselves a pay raise without appearing to do so. Those who voted for the motion could claim they were simply voting on a technical motion dealing with instructions to conferees, not a pay raise. The vote offered members crucial cover, a plausible way of obscuring their actual position on the issue. (Vote, p. 878)

    The House vote was an important internal political victory for Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., and his leadership team. Mindful of their obligations to the rank-and-file members who elected them, they had managed to give lawmakers something they wanted with a minimal amount of political pain.

    With the way prepared by the House, the Senate on Oct. 1 followed by approving the conference report on the Treasury bill without a ban on the pay raise. The raise boosted lawmakers' $133,600 annual salary to $136,700. Action on the raise was followed by a spate of negative news stories and condemnations in newspaper editorials. Some of the sharpest criticism was of the purposefully cunning way House leaders handled the matter, and of the absence of a clear up-or-down vote. But the uproar was short-lived.

    12. Private Property Rights

    In 1997, the nation's home builders brought their considerable influence in Congress to bear on legislation providing new rights to property owners. Republicans had long favored such legislation, and the House GOP had included a bill to expand the rights of private property owners in its list of priorities for the 104th Congress. But their earlier effort fell short, attacked by a coalition of Democrats, environmentalists, and some local elected officials, as well as moderate Republicans, as an attempt to gut key environmental laws. The bills that failed in the 104th Congress, including one sponsored by then-Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole, R-Kan., were aimed at compensating owners for government actions that diminished property values. Sponsors argued that federal regulators were imposing money-losing restrictions on property owners but offering no compensation. They said this flouted the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution, which barred the government from “taking” property without just compensation. But environmentalists prevailed with the counterargument that requiring greater compensation would create significant bureaucratic delays. Fiscal conservatives were concerned about the cost of payments under this approach.

    In 1997 the 190,000-member National Association of Home Builders and their congressional allies decided on a different approach. They focused on a plan (HR 1534) to give property owners more power to get their proposals addressed by local zoning boards. Republicans put the bill on the fast track in the fall, and it sailed easily through the House. The Oct. 22 vote was 248-178: R 193-30; D 55-147 (ND 25-124, SD 30-23); I 0-1. The outcome was largely the result of a high-profile lobbying campaign by the home builders, who mobilized support with many allies. They also benefited by selling the bill as a narrow procedural change. Under existing law, developers first had to exhaust appeals to planning agency decisions in state courts and be denied compensation before a federal court would hear a Fifth Amendment takings claim. The process could stretch for years. To address the situation, HR 1534 offered property owners the option of taking their case directly to a federal court after filing at least two appeals to a planning board decision. (Vote, p. 878)

    Still, many in the opposition said the home builders had used their influence to pressure members into supporting a bill that few of them understood. Opponents said the bill would disrupt local zoning matters and give developers broad new powers to get zoning changes. Environmental groups said they would highlight the vote during the 1998 midterm elections.

    13. Private School Vouchers

    The House rejected a key element of the Republican education agenda Nov. 4 by defeating a bill (HR 2746) that would have enabled low-income families to use federal money to send their children to private schools. Republicans pushed the proposal at least partly to distinguish their views on education from Democrats. They framed it as a way to enhance parental choices, especially among low-income families who were unable to flee poor-performing inner-city schools.

    Republicans initially hoped to rally a broad coalition behind the bill, which called for the creation of Helping Empower Low-Income Parents (HELP) scholarships. They touted support from Rep. Floyd H. Flake, D-N.Y., an African American minister, plus the strong backing of Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., and Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas.

    The legislation, sponsored by Frank Riggs, R-Calif., proposed allowing states to use money from Title VI of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to help low-income families send their children to private schools, including religious schools. Under existing law, states and local school districts used Title VI money—$310 million in fiscal 1997—for various public school programs. Under the bill, they could reserve up to 25 percent of their Title VI funds for public and private school choice programs authorized by state law.

    But there were limits to the bill's appeal. In fact, the leadership bypassed committee action on the bill, apparently out of concern that it lacked the votes for approval in the Education and the Workforce Committee. Republicans tried to cast the issue as a matter of choice, saying that students from poor families ought to have access to the same education opportunities as those enjoyed by the well-to-do.

    Democrats derided the legislation as an attempt to drain funds from public schools and said it would help relatively few low-income students. William L. Clay of Missouri, the Education committee's ranking Democrat, said the bill “sends a clear and chilling signal that the Republicans have declared war on public education.” The administration warned that a veto was likely.

    In the end, however, it was the opposition of 35 Republicans, many of them moderates, that caused the bill's defeat. One of them, Marge Roukema, R-N.J., said, “Ultimately, these vouchers will result in gutting the public school system” by shifting money from public schools to private schools. The vote was 191-228: R 187-35; D 4-192 (ND 2-140, SD 2-52); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 878)

    14. Caribbean Trade

    Legislation that sponsors viewed as a noncontroversial offer of equity to 26 small and friendly nations in the Caribbean turned into a showdown over U.S. trade policy. The unexpected result: House defeat of a bill (HR 2644) aimed at expanding trade preferences for key products from those countries. The vote on Nov. 4 was 182-234: R 136-83; D 46-150 (ND 32-111, SD 14-39); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 878)

    Part of the opposition was the result of frustration over the mixed results of the 1993 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Part of it was parochial concern on the part of members with industries in their districts that competed with plants in the Caribbean. But a major part of the opposition was an effort by Democrats to send a signal to President Clinton as he pressed his bid to win “fast-track” trade negotiating authority.

    Supporters of the bill argued that the twenty-six nations—which had been given special status under President Ronald Reagan's 1983 economic-development program known as the Caribbean Basin Initiative (PL 98-67)—had suffered since the passage of NAFTA, because Mexican exports were given even greater benefits. The bill had been around since 1995, and the Ways and Means Committee had voted in June to make it a provision of the tax bill (HR 2014) that was moving as part of the budget reconciliation package. No controversy emerged until conference, when it was dropped at the insistence of the Senate because no committee in that chamber had considered it.

    House Ways and Means Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, introduced the bill again Oct. 9, and it was approved by the committee by voice vote the same day. Supporters did not expect the bill to draw the opposition it did when it reached the floor Nov. 4. Some opponents argued that imports from the Caribbean countries had grown, not shrunk, since the passage of NAFTA and outpaced imports from Mexico in many sectors. Others argued that the expanded Caribbean benefits did not have as many safeguards attached as NAFTA did.

    But the strongest objections came from lawmakers representing states that were home to textile industries. The imports that would have become eligible for duty-free treatment included textiles as well as finished apparel, footwear, handbags, and luggage. “HR 2644 will have a greater impact on the U.S. apparel industry and U.S. apparel workers than NAFTA ever had,” warned John M. Spratt Jr., D-S.C.

    15. IRS Overhaul

    Even the most fervent supporters of overhauling the management of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) were shocked at how swiftly the latest attack in the antitax movement took hold. By the time the vote was called, the outcome was certain. The political controversy around the IRS and its alleged abuse of taxpayers had rolled over any opposition in its path.

    Congressional efforts to revamp the IRS began in June in the driest, most conventional of ways, with a sober, 190-page report issued by a bipartisan commission chaired by Sen. Bob Kerrey, D-Neb., and Rep. Rob Portman, R-Ohio. But by Nov. 5, when the House voted on an IRS restructuring bill (HR 2676), the issue had exploded. Senate Finance Committee hearings into alleged IRS abuses in September had struck a nerve nationwide. Indeed, pollsters were hearing that the IRS was one of the very few issues out of Congress that resonated with voters.

    When it came time to vote on a broad package to restructure IRS management, provide new rights for taxpayers and curb additions to the tax code, almost no one on Capitol Hill wanted to be seen defending the tax collector. The tally was 426-4: R 225-0; D 200-4 (ND 146-4, SD 54-0); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 878)

    The only “no” votes came from Democrat Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, who had numerous federal employees in his suburban Washington district, and three Ways and Means Committee Democrats: Jim McDermott of Washington and Robert T. Matsui and Pete Stark, both of California.

    The administration and key House Democrats had initially opposed legislation unveiled by Kerrey and Portman to implement their commission's recommendations. They said the bills would give the private sector too much influence over the tax code, open the IRS to conflicts of interest and compromise the executive branch's authority on tax policy.

    Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, later added a provision shifting the burden of proof for malfeasance from the taxpayer to the IRS in tax court proceedings, a move decried by some accountants as an invitation for tax cheating and a prescription for a more intrusive IRS.

    But voter sentiment was clearly against the Democrats. By the time the revised IRS bill reached the Ways and Means Committee, ranking Democrat Charles B. Rangel of New York and Minority Leader Richard A. Gephardt, D-Mo., had signed on. In an extraordinary bit of political theater, Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin was dispatched Oct. 21 to Capitol Hill to renounce his once-vociferous opposition, explain that he had won significant changes to the bill, and declare his support.

    1. Balanced-Budget Constitutional Amendment/Passage

    S J Res 1 Passage of the joint resolution to propose a constitutional amendment to balance the budget by the year 2002 or two years after ratification by three-fourths of the states, whichever is later. Rejected 66-34: R 55-0; D 11-34 (ND 6-31, SD 5-3), March 4, 1997. A two-thirds majority vote of those present and voting (67 in this case) is required to pass a joint resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    2. Interim Nuclear Waste Repository/Passage

    S 104 Passage of the bill to establish an interim high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nev. The bill gives the president until March 1, 1999, to halt construction at the temporary waste site if it is deemed unsuitable as a permanent repository. The president would then have eighteen months to choose an alternate site, which Congress would have two years to approve. If an alternate is not agreed upon, construction would automatically begin at the Nevada site. Passed 65-34: R 53-2; D 12-32 (ND 8-28, SD 4-4), April 15, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    3. Chemical Weapons Treaty/Adoption

    S Res 75 Adoption of the resolution of ratification of the treaty to prohibit development, production, acquisition, stockpiling, transfer, or use of chemical weapons. Adopted 74-26: R 29-26; D 45-0 (ND 37-0, SD 8-0), April 24, 1997. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (67 in this case) is required for adoption of resolutions of ratification. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    4. Compensatory Time, Flexible Credit/Cloture

    S 4 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the bill to amend the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act to allow private-sector employees to choose compensatory time off or flexible hour programs instead of overtime pay. Motion rejected 53-47: R 53-2; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8), May 15, 1997. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture.

    5. Abortion Procedure Ban/Passage

    HR 1122 Passage of the bill to impose penalties on doctors who perform certain abortion procedures, in which the person performing the abortion partially delivers the fetus before completing the abortion. An exception would be granted if the procedure was necessary to save the life of the woman. The bill was amended to clarify the definition of the procedure and to allow an accused doctor a hearing before a state medical board before trial. Passed 64-36: R 51-4; D 13-32 (ND 9-28, SD 4-4), May 20, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    6. Fiscal 1998 Budget Resolution/Adoption

    H Con Res 84 Adoption of the concurrent resolution to adopt a five-year budget plan that would balance the budget by 2002 by cutting projected spending by approximately $320 billion and cutting taxes by a net $85 billion. Projected spending cuts would include reductions of $115 billion in Medicare, $13.6 billion in Medicaid, and $138 billion in discretionary spending. The resolution sets binding levels for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 1998: budget authority, $1,702.0 billion; outlays, $1,692.3 billion; revenues, $1,601.8 billion; deficit, $90.5 billion. Adopted 78-22: R 41-14; D 37-8 (ND 31-6, SD 6-2), May 23, 1997. (Before passage the Senate struck all after the enacting clause and inserted the text of S Con Res 27 as amended.) A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    7. Fiscal 1998 Budget Reconciliation—Spending/Medicare Means Testing

    S 947 Roth, R-Del., motion to table (kill) the Kennedy, D-Mass., amendment to strike the section that introduces a means-based formula to determine insurance premiums under Medicare Part B. Motion agreed to 70-30: R 49-6; D 21-24 (ND 15-22, SD 6-2), June 24, 1997.

    8. Fiscal 1998 Interior Appropriations/NEA Funding

    HR 2107 Hutchison, R-Texas, amendment to establish a $100 million state block grant program for the arts. The National Endowment for the Arts would be allowed to earmark 25 percent of the funds for major arts organizations. Rejected 39-61: R 39-16; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8), Sept. 18, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    9. Campaign Finance Overhaul/Cloture

    S 25 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the bill to revise financing of federal political campaigns. Motion rejected 53-47: R 8-47; D 45-0 (ND 37-0, SD 8-0), Oct. 7, 1997. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    10. Line-Item Veto Disapproval/Passage

    S 1292 Passage of the bill to disapprove President Clinton's line-item vetoes of thirty-six projects, totaling $287 million, in the fiscal 1998 military construction appropriations bill (HR 2016—PL 105-45). Passed 69-30: R 42-12; D 27-18 (ND 24-13, SD 3-5), Oct. 30, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    11. Education Savings Accounts/Cloture

    HR 2646 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the bill allowing parents to invest up to $2,500 annually in savings accounts designated for education-related expenses. Withdrawals of both principal and interest from such accounts could be made without incurring tax liability. Motion rejected 56-41: R 54-1; D 2-40 (ND 2-32, SD 0-8), Oct. 31, 1997. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture.

    12. Fast Track/Cloture

    S 1269 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the motion to proceed to the bill allowing the president to submit bills implementing trade pacts to Congress under expedited review procedures requiring up-or-down votes without amendments. Motion agreed to 69-31: R 43-12; D 26-19 (ND 20-17, SD 6-2), Nov. 4, 1997. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture.

    1. Election of the Speaker

    Nomination of Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., and Richard A. Gephardt, D-Mo., for Speaker of the House of Representatives for the 105th Congress. Gingrich elected 216-205, with four Republican votes cast for others: R 216-0; D 0-204 (ND 0-150, SD 0-54); I 0-1, Jan. 7, 1997. A “Y” on the chart represents a vote for Gingrich; an “N” represents a vote for Gephardt, except where footnoted.

    2. Reprimand of Rep. Newt Gingrich/Adoption

    H Res 31 Adoption of the resolution to adopt the Jan. 17, 1997, report of the ethics committee recommending that Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., be reprimanded and that he pay $300,000 to the House. Adopted 395-28: R 196-26; D 198-2 (ND 147-0, SD 51-2); I 1-0, Jan. 21, 1997.

    3. Abortion Procedure Ban/Passage

    HR 1122 Passage of the bill to impose penalties on doctors who perform certain abortion procedures, in which the person performing the abortion partially delivers the fetus before completing the abortion. An exception would be granted if the procedure was necessary to save the life of the woman. Passed 295-136: R 218-8; D 77-127 (ND 51-99, SD 26-28); I 0-1, March 20, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    4. Endangered Species Act Flood Waivers/Project Exemption Limitation

    HR 478 Boehlert, R-N.Y., substitute amendment to provide waivers of the Endangered Species Act consultation regulations for repair or replacement of flood control facilities in counties declared federal disaster areas through 1998 and waive the requirements for any project to repair a flood control facility that presents a substantial threat to human lives and property. Adopted 227-196: R 54-169; D 172-27 (ND 137-9, SD 35-18); I 1-0, May 7, 1997.

    5. Public Housing System Overhaul/Passage

    HR 2 Passage of the bill to replace federal low-income housing programs with block grants to local authorities, eliminate most federal regulations affecting low-income housing assistance, and change tenant income, employment, and eligibility requirements. Passed 293-132: R 222-1; D 71-130 (ND 43-104, SD 28-26); I 0-1, May 14, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    6. Fiscal 1998 Budget Resolution/Shuster Substitute

    H Con Res 84 Shuster, R-Pa., substitute amendment to balance the budget by 2002 by increasing outlays for federal highway and mass transit programs to $137 billion, offset by an across-the-board reduction of 0.39 percent in discretionary spending and tax cuts to be phased in over four years, beginning in fiscal 1999. Rejected 214-216: R 58-168; D 155-48 (ND 118-32, SD 37-16); I 1-0, May 21, 1997 (in the session that began and the Congressional Record dated May 20). A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    7. Fiscal 1998 Budget Resolution/Adoption

    H Con Res 84 Adoption of the concurrent resolution to adopt a five-year budget plan that would balance the budget by 2002 by cutting projected spending by approximately $280 billion and cutting taxes by $85 billion, for a net deficit reduction of $204.3 billion. Projected spending cuts would include reductions of $115 billion in Medicare, $13.6 billion in Medicaid, and approximately $140 billion in discretionary spending. The resolution sets binding levels for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 1998: budget authority, $1,702.2 billion; outlays, $1,692.2 billion; revenues, $1,601.8 billion; deficit, $90.4 billion. Adopted 333-99: R 201-26; D 132-72 (ND 90-60, SD 42-12); I 0-1, May 21, 1997 (in the session that began and the Congressional Record dated May 20). A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    8. Fiscal 1998 Defense Authorization/Bosnia Troop Withdrawal Substitute

    HR 1119 Hilleary, R-Tenn., substitute amendment to the Buyer, R-Ind., amendment to prohibit the obligation of funds for ground deployment of U.S. troops in Bosnia after Dec. 31, 1997, unless the president submits a report to Congress requesting an extension of funding. The Hilleary amendment would require the extension to be approved by a joint resolution of Congress and would permit deployment for an additional 180 days or until June 30, 1998. Rejected 196-231: R 174-49; D 21-182 (ND 15-133, SD 6-49); I 1-0, June 24, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    9. Fiscal 1998 Interior Appropriations/Rule

    HR 2107 Adoption of the rule (H Res 181) to provide for House floor consideration of the bill to provide $13 billion in new budget authority for the Department of the Interior and related agencies for fiscal 1998. The rule did not waive a point of order against the $10 million of funding in the bill for the National Endowment for the Arts because its authorization had expired. Adopted 217-216: R 212-15; D 5-200 (ND 2-148, SD 3-52); I 0-1, July 10, 1997.

    10. Fiscal 1998 Foreign Operations Appropriations/Overseas Abortion Funding

    HR 2159 Gilman, R-N.Y., amendment to the Smith, R-N.J., amendment to allow organizations that do not promote abortion as a method of family planning but use their own funds to perform abortions to remain eligible for international family planning funding. The amendment also would prohibit funding for lobbying for or against abortion, and for the U.N. Population Fund unless the president certifies that the organization has ceased all activity in China. Rejected 210-218: R 38-185; D 171-33 (ND 125-26, SD 46-7); I 1-0, Sept. 4, 1997.

    11. Fiscal 1998 Treasury-Postal Service Appropriations/Previous Question

    HR 2378 Hoyer, D-Md., motion to order the previous question (thus ending debate and the possibility of amendment) on the Hoyer motion to instruct conferees to increase funding for the Exploited Child Unit of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. A “nay” vote would have allowed Smith, R-Wash., to offer an amendment to block a cost of living adjustment for members of Congress. Motion agreed to 229-199: R 114-110; D 115-88 (ND 88-62, SD 27-26); I 0-1, Sept. 24, 1997.

    12. Private Property Rights/Passage

    HR 1534 Passage of the bill to establish guidelines for allowing private property owners to appeal local, state, and federal land use decisions in federal courts. The bill would require federal courts to consider all cases qualifying as “takings” under the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution. Passed 248-178: R 193-30; D 55-147 (ND 25-124, SD 30-23); I 0-1, Oct. 22, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    13. Private School Vouchers/Passage

    HR 2746 Passage of the bill to authorize states to use certain federal elementary and secondary education funds to provide scholarships to low-income families to send their children to public, private, or religious schools. Rejected 191-228: R 187-35; D 4-192 (ND 2-140, SD 2-52); I 0-1, Nov. 4, 1997. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    14. Caribbean and Central American Trade/Passage

    HR 2644 Crane, R-Ill., motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill to provide Caribbean and Central American countries duty-free trade benefits on certain products similar to those accorded to Mexico under the North American Free Trade Agreement. Motion rejected 182-234: R 136-83; D 46-150 (ND 32-111, SD 14-39); I 0-1, Nov. 4, 1997.

    15. Internal Revenue Service Overhaul/Passage

    HR 2676 Passage of the bill to restructure the management of the Internal Revenue Service by establishing an oversight board to oversee the agency's operations. The bill would shift the burden of proof from the taxpayer to the IRS in cases before the U.S. Tax Court. Passed 426-4: R 225-0; D 200-4 (ND 146-4, SD 54-0); I 1-0, Nov. 5, 1997. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.


    1998 Key Votes

    1. Cloning Ban

    After scientists in Scotland announced in 1997 that they had cloned a sheep, which they named Dolly, legislation to ban human cloning became a more urgent political issue in Congress. For much of 1997 and early 1998, a broad anticloning ban won increasing Senate support amid indications it might pass. But a decision Feb. 11 to block debate on the bill (S 1601) reflected the aggressive case made by medical research groups and biotech companies, even while controversy over Dolly continued.

    The decision not to invoke cloture on a filibuster also showed that the cloning issue would not be fought along the same divisions as abortion. Antiabortion forces wanted to have some products of genetic manipulation defined as human life even though scientists disagreed. They lost when not only Democrats but also abortion opponents such as Sens. Connie Mack, R-Fla., and Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., sided with researchers. They cited their experiences with serious diseases in concluding that medical knowledge might be gained in many areas that could not be readily classified in a simple debate over cloning.

    Consideration of the legislation was blocked when the necessary 60 votes could not be obtained to invoke cloture on a motion to proceed to consideration of the bill. The votes was 42-54: R 42-12; D 0-42 (ND 0-34, SD 0-8). (Vote, p. 892)

    Although there was widespread agreement that human cloning would be morally repugnant, medical groups and many senators contended that the measure, sponsored by Republicans Bill Frist of Tennessee and Christopher S. Bond of Missouri, was too broad and could interfere with research. They argued, for example, that reproducing human cells to replace burned skin could be halted as would an experimental process to have animals produce human antibodies.

    The measure would have banned a process known as somatic cell nuclear transfer for the purposes of creating a human embryo. The process involves replacing the nucleus of an egg cell with the nucleus of some other cell—an adult cell that would not multiply if left in its original state. Scientists have found that the remaining portion of the cell can somehow “reprogram” the new nucleus into multiplying.

    Bond and Frist argued that this new cell could be considered an embryo worthy of the same protection as an embryo created through sexual intercourse. They were backed by the National Right to Life Committee and other antiabortion groups. Scientific groups said the language was too broad.

    2. Campaign Finance

    In October 1997 Senate Democrats sought to force Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., to schedule a vote on a campaign finance bill that most Republicans opposed. Democrats threatened to bring the Senate to a halt in the session's closing days unless a vote occurred. Although Lott agreed to permit a debate in early 1998 he knew that supporters did not have enough votes to halt a filibuster against the legislation sponsored by John McCain, R-Ariz., and Russell D. Feingold, D-Wis. Lott led the filibuster, joined by Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., the Senate's arch-foe of campaign reform. Even before the debate, McCain acknowledged that his side did not have the necessary 60 votes needed to break a filibuster. But reform advocates hoped to do better than they had in October 1997, when they got 52 votes. But they fared essentially just the same. On the key vote, which occurred Feb. 26, the Senate voted not to end the filibuster, 51-48: R 7-48; D 44-0 (ND 36-0, SD 8-0). Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, a supporter of McCain-Feingold, was absent. (Vote, p. 892)

    The vote came on an amendment to a GOP bill (S 1663) that would have limited the use of union dues for political activity. The amendment, proposed by McCain and Feingold, was a modified version of their campaign finance bill (S 25).

    The decisive factor was the willingness of GOP senators who faced reelection in 1998—as Alfonse M. D'Amato of New York, Christopher S. Bond of Missouri, and Sam Brownback of Kansas—to back Lott and McConnell. McConnell said that the forty-eight Republicans who opposed the bill the previous autumn remained opposed.

    The McCain-Feingold bill banned “soft money,” unregulated donations to political parties by unions, corporations, and wealthy individuals. It also imposed new restrictions on issue-oriented television ads run by interest groups. The legislation picked up support in 1997 as Congress investigated fundraising excesses in the 1996 presidential campaign. But opponents argued that the measure infringed on constitutionally protected political speech. Politically, many Republicans feared that it would diminish their substantial fundraising advantage over Democrats.

    Although the finance bill was blocked, Lott's bill on union dues also was defeated. The Senate could not end a Democratic filibuster on that proposal, 45-54.

    3. IMF Funding

    The Senate's overwhelming early vote—84-16 on March 26—to appropriate $17.9 billion for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) set the tone for months of maneuvering between protrade business interests and an unusual array of environmentalists, free-trade conservatives, and others opposed to the funding.

    Early in 1998, President Clinton requested the appropriation as part of an emergency supplemental bill (PL 105-174) to help IMF reserves, which had been drawn down by loans to economically troubled Asian nations. Clinton said the money was necessary to stabilize economies across much of the world. Many members of Congress, but not House leaders, agreed. Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, denounced the IMF for interfering with free markets, while liberal critics blamed the organization for contributing to deteriorating labor and environmental conditions overseas.

    The House Appropriations Committee March 24 split IMF funding from the main supplemental bill (HR 3579). The Senate historically gave strong support to trade and international commerce measures. If the IMF appropriation was to be approved, it needed a strong Senate vote. But Senate appropriators did not help as expected. The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the funding but attached such contentious provisions that it was unclear whether the 182-nation organization would be able to comply. For example, the committee insisted that the IMF make loans only to countries that honored certain trade agreements.

    When the supplemental bill (S 1768) went to the floor, Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., proposed an amendment to ease the IMF conditions. It would require that the United States and its major “G-7” industrial partners agree to push for such IMF measures as requiring borrowing countries to abide by international trade agreements.

    McConnell's conditions fell far short of the demands of IMF critics. Conservatives such as Connie Mack, R-Fla., and Spencer Abraham, R-Mich., assailed the IMF for pressuring governments to raise taxes, devalue currencies, and delay regulatory changes, and said the organization would have to be completely revamped before getting their support. Among liberals, Democrats such as Paul Wellstone, D-Minn., criticized the international organization for promoting austerity policies that reduced the standard of living in recipient countries.

    But funding supporters such as Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., and Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., eventually prevailed by contending that the funding was needed to restore confidence in the global economy. The Senate passed the amendment on March 26 by a vote of 84-16: R 41-14; D 43-2 (ND 35-2, SD 8-0). The overwhelming vote gave considerable momentum to the administration's funding request. Still skeptical, House leaders refused to include the funding in the supplemental bill. Instead, the IMF issue lingered all year, as appropriators wrestled with the issue in the fiscal 1999 foreign operations spending bill. But with the resounding Senate vote echoing throughout the negotiations, Congress finally cleared the IMF funding in the final days of the session. (Vote, p. 892)

    4. Nato Expansion

    The Senate endorsed admitting Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic to NATO on April 30 but first, by a large margin, warned that the alliance should not rush to invite additional former Soviet satellites to join. Expansion of the alliance was never in doubt by the time it reached the Senate floor in the spring. It was backed by President Clinton and most Republican and Democratic congressional leaders. The Clinton administration also orchestrated support from labor, veterans, and ethnic groups with ties to the three countries.

    Opponents of expansion were politically diverse. Some conservatives contended that expanding the alliance would overextend U.S. overseas commitments. Some liberals argued that Polish, Hungarian, and Czech efforts to meld their armed forces into NATO would distract them from needed economic reforms. Several foreign policy experts worried that adding the three countries to NATO would exacerbate relations with Russia but their claims were hurt by Moscow's acquiescence in the changes.

    It was clear that the protocol amending the treaty to add the three new countries, which was before the Senate, (Treaty Doc 105-36) would be supported by considerably more than the required two-thirds majority of the chamber when debate began in late April. Critics by then had shifted their focus to delaying invitations to other countries, at least for a few years. The leading candidates for a second round of expansion were Romania and Slovenia. But nine other countries also had applied for NATO membership, including the three Baltic republics: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

    The Baltic states posed a particularly awkward problem for NATO. Each had made progress in establishing democratic institutions and free-market economies, prerequisites of membership. But each would be difficult to defend because they are small and adjacent to Russia. Moreover, the Soviet Union had annexed all three in 1940. Although the United States never recognized the annexation, it was widely believed that Russia would object strenuously to NATO membership for countries it deemed former Soviet republics.

    The test came on an amendment to the treaty protocol offered by John W. Warner of Virginia, the second-ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee. Warner's proposal in effect prevented additional invitations for three years after the first group. The amendment was rejected, 41-59: R 24-31; D 17-28 (ND 15-22, SD 2-6). But 41 votes was 1 more than the one-third that would be needed to block admission of a second group of countries, if they were invited too quickly. The Senate approved the treaty amendment, 80-19. (Vote, p. 892)

    5. Skilled Worker Visas

    In 1996 Congress substantially restricted immigration policy, cutting off welfare benefits to legal immigrants and approving tough new provisions on illegal immigration. The Senate's May 18 vote to expand the so-called H-1B visa program was evidence that important changes had occurred in two years. The vote was 78-20: R 51-2; D 27-18 (ND 20-17, SD 7-1). (Vote, p. 892)

    The H-1B program is for skilled immigrants. Most go to work in the computer business but substantial numbers fill medium-skilled jobs as medical technicians, physical therapists, even fashion models. Unlike lesser-skilled immigrants, H-1B recipients had business lobbies, particularly Silicon Valley, arguing their case. But as immigrants they touch a nerve among groups and individuals that believe the country already has too many persons from other countries. Groups such as the Federation for American Immigration Reform argued that the program is a way for companies to import cheap labor instead of hiring equally skilled American workers. Labor unions said the program is a ruse for depressing wages.

    The vote by such a large margin helped push an H-1B expansion to enactment. A similar bill encountered some trouble in the House but was eventually included in an omnibus spending package passed at year's end.

    The Senate bill, increasing the annual allotment of H-1B visas from 65,000 to 115,000, sailed through both the Judiciary Committee and full Senate. Only two Republicans, and fewer than half the Democrats, voted against it.

    The vote was a significant victory for high-technology companies, which were new to Washington lobbying. Many companies that pushed for the H-1B expansion were small businesses just a few years ago but by 1998 were corporate giants including Sun Microsystems Inc., Intel Corp., and Microsoft Corp. Their lobbying and political contributions grew more slowly than their profits, however. Many of these companies' leaders and employees were wary of Washington and politics; they saw it necessary to open government relations offices only in the late 1990s. The H-1B debate was their first industry-wide cooperative effort. At the beginning of 1998, few members outside of those who represent high-tech states had given much thought to the issue. But by spring the high-tech lobby had put it on senators' agendas. They argued that they could not continue to grow swiftly unless they could hire more skilled workers. They implicitly threatened to take jobs overseas if overseas workers could not be brought here.

    6. Tobacco Legislation

    The Senate in 1998 was not able to bring to a vote far-reaching legislation on tobacco. The bill (S 1415) would have raised fees on cigarettes by $1.10 per pack over five years, given the federal government's broad control over the distribution and marketing of tobacco products, and restricted tobacco advertising. The proposal required the industry to pay $516 billion over 25 years for antismoking, education, and research programs.

    The creation of a federal tobacco policy had seemed almost a foregone conclusion at earlier stages of the legislative process. But as the bill bogged down in the Senate and both its friends and enemies loaded it with costly dollar amendments, the momentum for tobacco controls lost momentum. A motion to invoke cloture on a filibuster undertaken by opponents of the bill fell 3 votes short of the 60 required, 57-42: R 14-40; D 43-2 (ND 37-0, SD 6-2). (Vote, p. 892)

    The tobacco industry had spent more than $40 million on ads that attacked S 1415, and a similar amount on lobbying against S 1415.

    7. Education Savings Accounts

    Trying to assuage public concern about the quality of American education, congressional Republicans pushed legislation (HR 2646) allowing families to contribute up to $2,000 per child per year in special savings accounts for private school tuition, tutoring, computer equipment, and other education expenses. The legislation passed the House in 1997 by a comfortable margin, 230-198.

    Despite veto threats by the Clinton administration and a determined effort by Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., to persuade Democrats not to vote for the legislation, the Senate approved the final version of the legislation in June when it adopted the conference report on the legislation by a key vote of 59-36: R 51-2; D 8-34 (ND 6-28, SD 2-6). (Vote, p. 892)

    The vote indicated a willingness among some Democrats to act independently of the White House and search for new ways to give parents more control over their children's education. But it also showed the two parties were still far from consensus, a fact that the White House exploited later in the year when Clinton got Republicans to add $1.2 billion to an omnibus spending bill as a beginning on his plan to fund hiring of 100,000 new teachers.

    The savings account bill, sponsored by Paul Coverdell, R-Ga., was designed to move Republicans beyond their narrow emphasis on federally funded vouchers for private schools. Republicans hoped the bill would appeal to Democrats because parents, rather than the government, could choose how to manage the accounts. A Democrat, Robert G. Torricelli, N.J., was a chief cosponsor of the bill. The middle ground turned out to be elusive. The Clinton administration charged that the legislation would mainly benefit upper-income taxpayers. Democrats used debate on the Coverdell bill to force votes on Clinton's proposals to hire teachers and allow local governments to issue $22 billion in federally backed bonds for school construction. Both those initiatives were defeated. The Senate then went on to pass the bill and send it to conference to resolve differences with the House version.

    House-Senate conferees dropped a number of controversial amendments added during Senate debate. The final bill retained some bipartisan sweeteners attached in the Senate, including making prepaid college tuition completely tax free. The conference report passed the House easily, 225-197. As promised, Clinton vetoed the legislation. Republicans did not even attempt an override.

    8. Same-Sex Training

    Hoping to capitalize on support from a national commission, social conservatives tried to force the Army, Navy, and Air Force to follow the Marine Corps' example and segregate male and female recruits during training. But the effort, made through amendments to the fiscal 1999 defense authorization bill (HR 3616), was rejected by the Senate.

    The key vote came in June when the Senate rejected an amendment by Robert c. Byrd, D-W. Va., that would have barred the services from putting male and female recruits in the same small unit, or housing them in the same building. The vote was 39-53: R 31-21; D 8-32 (ND 5-27, SD 3-5). (Vote, p. 892)

    The underlying issue, a battle more than two decades old, was the proper role of women in the armed forces. Starting in 1975, when an amendment to the fiscal 1976 defense bill required the admission of women to the national military academies, Congress and successive administrations had eliminated or scaled back rules intended to keep women out of jobs involving any risk of combat. Women's rights groups and female officers vigorously promoted these changes, contending that excluding women from combat jobs—the most prestigious in the services—effectively barred them from rising to the highest ranks. Social conservatives, however, argued that allowing women into more jobs had undermined combat readiness by lowering standards for physical strength and creating sexual tensions in small units.

    The long-running debate gained new prominence in 1996 following allegations of sexual abuse by drill sergeants at some Army training bases. Although the incidents occurred at advanced training facilities, conservatives seized on them to push for legislation that would require the services to organize new recruits in separate units and to house men and women in separate barracks. Efforts to pass such a bill came to nothing in 1997, partly because those who challenged mixed-gender training did not want to appear to be condoning the abusive behavior.

    But in December 1997, a special commission created by Defense Secretary William S. Cohen and chaired by former Kansas Republican Sen. Nancy Kassebaum Baker (1978–1997), recommended separate housing and training units for male and female recruits. The change, Baker said, would reduce distractions for recruits and drill instructors. The Army, Navy, and Air Force vigorously objected, arguing that training men and women together helped acclimate them to working in mixed-gender teams.

    Cohen adopted several other recommendations by the Baker panel aimed at making basic training more rigorous and improving the quality of the sergeants and petty officers who supervise recruits. But he allowed the services to continue mixing men and women in the same small units and allowed them to be housed in the same barracks, with physical barriers and supervision.

    9. Economic Sanctions

    For months, Richard G. Lugar of Indiana, a senior Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, had been waging an often lonely and seemingly hopeless fight to slow down the use of overseas economic sanctions by Congress and the executive branch. Despite the cost of sanctions to U.S. businesses and the restrictions they imposed on the administration's diplomatic flexibility, many lawmakers believed sanctions were an effective and relatively painless way of exerting influence over other nations and the conduct of U.S. foreign policy.

    Lugar and influential Reps. Lee H. Hamilton, D-Ind., and Philip M. Crane, R-Ill., believed otherwise, arguing that although some sanctions might have merit, their cumulative weight had partially crippled American foreign policy, harmed U.S. exporters, and had little substantive effect on the behavior of foreign countries. The three were supported by USAEngage, an influential coalition of businesses that had joined together expressly to overturn sanctions that critics contended cost the U.S. economy as much as $20 billion a year.

    Lugar introduced a bill (S 1413) that would have slowed down the imposition of new sanctions by instituting a formal process under which lawmakers would have to weigh the costs and benefits of new restrictions on aid and trade. The bill also would have put a two-year limit on any sanctions unless Congress renewed them. But their arguments made little headway until India and Pakistan tested nuclear weapons in May. The tests triggered automatic sanctions under the Arms Export Control Act, contained in the 1994 State Department authorization bill. That law, originally sponsored by Sen. John Glenn, D-Ohio, cuts off nonhumanitarian aid, bars the export of defense material and certain other technology, and halts U.S. credit and loan guarantees to nonnuclear nations that detonate nuclear weapons. It does not permit a presidential waiver.

    The sanctions hit Pakistan, a poorer, smaller country, much harder than they hit India. U.S. farmers also were threatened when the Clinton administration decided that the law's credit ban would prevent the United States from guaranteeing bank loans on exports of wheat and other crops to Pakistan. With U.S. wheat farmers about to be squeezed out of a major wheat auction, the Senate unanimously approved legislation (S 2282) allowing India and Pakistan to continue to use guaranteed loans to import American food, fertilizer, and other agricultural commodities. Congress later allowed Clinton to waive sanctions against the two South Asian countries for a year.

    But with farmers up in arms about the sanctions and other restrictions on trade, Lugar saw an opportunity to advance his broader bill. On July 15 he introduced it as an amendment to the agriculture appropriations bill (S 2159). Lugar tried to use the pressure of the farm lobby to make his case, noting that the measure was backed by the American Farm Bureau Federation. Lugar was opposed by Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms, R-N.C., the coauthor of a 1996 law that tightened the decades-old U.S. embargo on trade with Cuba, as well as other sanctions laws.

    Although a majority of GOP senators voted with him, Lugar's amendment was tabled (killed), 53-46: R 27-28; D 26-18 (ND 22-14, SD 4-4). (Vote, p. 892)

    10. “Partial Birth” Abortion

    A Senate vote toward the end of the 105th Congress showed that little had changed in the ongoing struggle over abortion. For months leading up to the vote, abortion opponents had hoped to gain support to override President Clinton's veto of legislation (HR 1122) to ban a procedure they referred to as “partial birth” abortion.

    Despite their efforts the vote to override, taken in September, was the same as in May 1997, when an override action fell 3 votes short of the two-thirds majority—67—needed. The outcome indicated that in a year when both sides had hoped to capitalize on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Supreme Court's affirmation of the right to an abortion, neither side had gained an advantage. The 1998 override vote was 64-36: R 51-4; D 13-32 (ND 9-28, SD 4-4). The House voted, 296-132, on July 23 to override the veto. (Vote, p. 892)

    Clinton vetoed the bill on Oct. 10, 1997, because he said it did not provide exceptions to permit the procedure when necessary to protect a woman's health. Under the legislation, doctors who performed the abortion procedure were subject to two years in prison and fines and lawsuits for civil damages. The measure would have exempted the woman from criminal penalties.

    11. Omnibus Appropriations

    Senate leaders wanted to avoid a recorded vote on the $500 billion-plus omnibus spending bill for fiscal 1999. Most senators had already left for home as congressional leaders and the White House worked out a deal. But the end product—which broke through the 1997 balanced-budget agreement—doled out hundreds of hometown projects and served as the engine to drive unrelated bills into law. In that context, it was considered too important to pass without putting members on record. The vote occurred on adoption of the conference report on the bill Oct. 21 by a vote of 65-29: R 33-20; D 32-9 (ND 26-9, SD 6-0). (Vote, p. 892)

    For fiscal conservatives, the Senate's final vote of the 105th Congress was a dismaying retreat from fiscal discipline, as President Clinton and congressional Democrats obtained billions of dollars in late-stage concessions from Republicans eager to go home and campaign. Democrats enjoyed the opportunity to trumpet their education priorities and cast the Clinton administration in a favorable light.

    The bill (HR 4328—PL 105-277) combined eight of the thirteen annual spending bills. It contained $21 billion in “emergency” spending that was not subject to budget “caps” set in place under the 1997 balanced-budget law. Some of this emergency spending, such as financing for a peacekeeping mission in Bosnia and year 2000 computer fixes, had already been passed by the Senate.

    1. Line-Item Vetoes

    Congress experimented briefly in the late 1990s with the line-item veto, a power long sought by presidents and by conservatives looking for ways to restrain federal government spending. It was a brief experiment because the Supreme Court in 1998 declared the law unconstitutional. But before that happened President Clinton and Congress used the procedures set out in the line-item veto law. Although the dollar amounts at issue were relatively modest in relation to the full federal budget, the specific items that the president sought to kill demonstrated the eternal struggle between the prerogatives of Congress, and the political interests of members seeking federal spending to benefit their districts and states, and the power of the executive charged with overseeing use of scarce tax resources.

    The 1996 line-item veto law (PL 104-130) contained a complicated mechanism for permitting the president to eliminate individual projects from spending bills that he otherwise had little choice but to sign. Under the law the president's line-item vetoes would automatically take effect unless Congress passed a bill to void them. The president could then veto that “disapproval” bill, which would require a two-thirds vote to overturn.

    At issue in 1998 was the military construction spending bill (PL 105-45), the first appropriations bill to be presented to a president with line-item veto authority. Clinton in 1997 had vetoed $287 million in projects contained in the bill, in the process angering both Republicans and Democrats in Congress. Most of the thirty-eight vetoed projects were included in the Pentagon's long-term plans, though none were included in Clinton's fiscal 1998 budget. The White House later admitted that Clinton vetoed some projects based on faulty information about them, which added momentum to the drive to roll back the vetoes.

    Once the veto was made, the House and Senate quickly passed the disapproval bill (HR 2631) in November 1997 and Clinton promptly vetoed it. In February 1998 the House overrode Clinton's veto 347-69: R 197-23; D 149-46 (ND 100-41, SD 49-5); I 1-0. The Senate cleared the bill Feb. 25 in a 78-20 vote. (Vote, p. 894)

    The successful override came as a constitutional challenge to the 1996 law was poised to erase Clinton's 1997 vetoes anyway. The Supreme Court struck down the law in a 6-3 ruling in June.

    2. Transportation Projects

    House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bud Shuster, R-Pa., renowned for his enthusiasm for highway construction funding, had in 1997 suffered an embarrassing, and for him unusual, defeat by the group of members seeking to impose more discipline on congressional spending habits.

    On April 1, 1998, he got his chance to reverse that defeat. He cleared the way for passage of the $219 billion House version of the six-year surface transportation reauthorization bill (HR 2400) by defeating a campaign led by Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., to strip members' designated projects, known as earmarks, from the bill. Graham's amendment would have deleted $9 billion in road projects and erased money for specified transit and bus projects. Shuster not only won, but he won by an overwhelming margin. Graham's amendment was defeated 79-337: R 67-152; D 12-184 (ND 6-137, SD 6-47); I 0-1. Similar to the line-item veto key vote (see above), the action on Graham's amendment reflected the powerful instincts of political reality that control the actions of most members who think they must bring home local benefits to constituents in order to win reelection. (Vote, p. 894)

    In May 1997 the House defeated by a 2-vote margin Shuster's proposal to pare tax cuts and reduce discretionary spending across the board in order to raise transportation spending by $12 billion over five years. In the ensuing stalemate Congress passed a temporary extension of funding. For Graham and many other members of the GOP class of 1994, the vote was a clash between old-fashioned “pork barrel” politics and the budget-balancing spirit of the House GOP's “Contract With America.”

    Shuster prevailed against less senior rivals with the help of economic projections showing a likely budget surplus. His bill called for a 40 percent increase in spending and required unspecified offsets because it exceeded the budget caps set in the balanced-budget deal by about $20 billion. Shuster said the spending would create new jobs and economic growth. And he offered a tempting sweetener: a project selection process that guaranteed each member a shot at earmarking $15 million in highway funds.

    At a GOP Conference meeting before the vote, Shuster was tacitly supported by House leaders, who hoped projects would help win elections. But House Budget Committee Chairman John R. Kasich, R-Ohio, spoke in opposition, arguing that the bill spent too much money. On the floor, Kasich offered an amendment to cut the federal gasoline tax from 18.3 cents to 7.4 cents a gallon over four years; it was defeated. But the most intense battle was fought over the Graham amendment. Shuster said the alternative to projects was to give money to states, and, he argued, “It is not reasonable to believe somehow there is a nonpolitical, pure process back in the statehouses, as compared to the decisions made here.” He suggested that Graham's opposition was “mystifying” because Graham had requested project funding in a letter. Graham replied that he had decided to reject the $15 million for his district. He said the bill made a “sham” of the balanced-budget agreement. Bob Inglis, R-S.C., summed up the feelings of many:

    This is probably the most embarrassing night that I have ever spent in this Congress. We came here to change things, and we are not. We are participating in the big old trough that has characterized this place in the past.

    3. Affirmative Action

    The Republican Party had long been deeply divided about federal requirements over race- or sex-based preferences in education and hiring. In presidential and congressional elections the GOP remained divided over its historic commitment to racial equality, reflected in modern times through support for civil rights laws, and its more recent vehement objection to special treatment to benefit women and minorities, generally reflecting the views of its dominant conservative wing.

    The issue came up again in 1998 when the House GOP leadership decided to support an amendment to the Higher Education Act reauthorization (HR 6) by Frank Riggs of California to eliminate affirmative action at public colleges and universities. The Riggs amendment, modeled after California's 1996 Proposition 209, would have ended admissions preferences based on race, sex, ethnicity, or national origin. Rather than serving to make affirmative action a defining issue between the Republican and Democratic parties, however, the amendment exposed internal fissures within the GOP. It was rejected by a vote of 171-249: R 166-55; D 5-193 (ND 2-143, SD 3-50); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 894)

    House Republican leaders voted for the Riggs proposal but in a move that contributed significantly to its defeat, J. C. Watts of Oklahoma, the House's only African American Republican, joined John Lewis, D-Ga., a noted civil rights leader, in a letter to colleagues urging them to vote against the amendment. The House on April 1 defeated a similar amendment by Marge Roukema, R-N.J., to the surface transportation reauthorization bill (HR 2400) that would have softened requirements that the Transportation Department use female- or minority-owned businesses for 10 percent of construction projects.

    4. Banking

    With the securities and insurance industries lobbying Congress to again consider overhauling Depression-era financial services laws, House Republican leaders launched an intense effort in May to pass a bill allowing cross-ownership of banks, brokerages, and insurance firms. This time, the changes were approved by the House but by a single vote.

    Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., and GOP Conference Chairman John A. Boehner of Ohio, the House leaders most active in crafting the bill (HR 10), knew that without their pressure, the measure would not succeed against strong opposition from all but the largest banks. That opposition had contributed to a hasty decision to pull the bill from floor consideration in late March after it became clear that the legislation, then attached to a credit union expansion measure (HR 1151), would not pass. History was also against them: the House had never passed a bill to tear down the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act and subsequent laws aimed at keeping securities and insurance separate from banking.

    Because the House had not considered a measure similar to HR 10 since 1991 and had never passed one, many members found themselves faced with a complex bill they did not fully understand. In addition, many banks lobbied vigorously against the measure and the Clinton administration expressed concern about core provisions.

    The House vote was a classic example of a cliff-hanger, a rare event in the chamber where most issues are decided by comfortable margins. As the voting began May 13, Republican leaders appeared uncertain of the final outcome. With the regular fifteen-minute voting period coming to a close, a defeat seemed imminent, as “nays” outnumbered “yeas.” But with the deficit reaching more than a dozen votes, Gingrich emerged and began methodically working the GOP side of the chamber, persuading members one by one to support the measure. After talking to Gingrich, several Republicans went to the well to cast a “yea” vote or to change their vote from “nay” to “yea.”

    Among the last to switch were four Florida Republicans—Michael Bilirakis, Dan Miller, Cliff Stearns, and Dave Weldon—leading to speculation that Gingrich had promised benefits for the Sunshine State. But members and lobbyists said the four did not appear to receive any special guarantees. Their conversions brought the “yeas” and “nays” to a tie, until Connecticut Democrat Jim Maloney switched his vote from “yea” to “nay.”

    Then Gingrich called on Education Committee Chairman Bill Goodling, R-Pa., a moderate facing a tight election, to cast the deciding vote. Goodling had stood near the well for several minutes holding both a red “nay” card and a green “yea” card. He cast the deciding “yea” vote. The vote was 214-213: R 153-73; D 61-139 (ND 47-100, SD 14-39); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 894)

    Opponents were not impressed at the 1-vote victory, saying the bill was as good as dead because Senate Banking Committee Chairman Alfonse D'Amato, R-N.Y., had pledged to bring it up only if it received broad bipartisan support in the House. But supporters said the vote was historic. Given the House's history of refusing to even bring such bills to the floor, “a one-vote victory looks like a landslide,” Boehner said.

    Despite skepticism that the vote would spur Senate action on the bill, D'Amato, facing a tough reelection battle he would eventually lose, moved the measure through his committee. It eventually died on the Senate floor, as conservatives Phil Gramm, R-Texas, and Richard C. Shelby, R-Ala., held it up, demanding changes to community investment provisions. Although that killed the legislation for the 105th Congress, the 106th Congress did pass a far-reaching financial services reform bill that President Clinton signed into law.

    5. Food Stamps for Legal Immigrants

    Even before he signed a broad welfare overhaul in August 1996, President Clinton warned that he would seek to reverse provisions of the measure that eliminated federal benefits to legal immigrants. In 1997 Congress restored disability aid to legal immigrants. In 1998 Republicans and the White House sparred over Clinton's request to reinstate food stamps. The White House insisted that legislation (S 1150) to create new mandatory spending programs for agriculture research also include funding to restore nutrition aid to many of the 935,000 legal immigrants dropped from the food stamp rolls under the welfare law.

    The White House and Democrats chose the research bill as their vehicle in part because the agriculture program was to be funded by reducing federal payments to states to administer the food stamp program. The initial Senate version of the bill focused on agriculture research. After Democrats and the White House weighed in, House and Senate negotiators worked out a conference report that included $818 million over five years to restore food stamps to elderly and disabled legal immigrants who were in the country when the welfare law was signed, as well as children under age eighteen.

    Overall, the legislation would restore benefits to an estimated 250,000 legal immigrants as well as substantial spending for agriculture research programs and mandatory crop insurance funding over five years. In the Senate, Phil Gramm, R-Texas, held up the consideration of the measure for weeks. When it finally got to the Senate floor on May 12, the bill passed by a vote of 92-8.

    In the House, a determined group of conservatives, led by Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, opposed restoration of food stamp benefits. Despite a deteriorating farm economy, some lawmakers also opposed the agriculture spending. When the bill came to the House floor on May 22, Republican leaders brought it up under a rule that would have automatically stripped the food stamp provisions. Nearly 100 Republicans voted against the rule, which was defeated in a key vote of 120-289: R 118-98; D 2-190 (ND 1-140, SD 1-50); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 894)

    The defeat of the rule marked a turning point. With the House at an impasse, farm-state lawmakers were forced to go home for the Memorial Day recess without the promised agriculture and food stamp legislation. Under pressure from their rank and file, House GOP leaders were forced to stage a quick political turnabout. The House took up the bill again June 4 under a rule that protected the immigrant provisions. The conference report passed, 364-50, with Armey among those voting yea.

    In the weeks that followed, Republicans also backed off their opposition to expanding aid to farmers affected by drought and falling prices. Congress ultimately approved a fiscal 1998 omnibus spending bill that included nearly $6 billion in emergency agriculture aid.

    6. Contraceptive Coverage

    For years, abortion-rights supporters pushed unsuccessfully to require health plans that cover prescription drugs to also cover contraceptives. Rep. Nita M. Lowey, D-N.Y., won a partial victory on that issue as part of the House debate over legislation (HR 4104) to fund the Treasury Department, Postal Service, and general government spending for fiscal 1999.

    After several attempts, Lowey won House acceptance of an amendment requiring health care plans for federal workers to provide coverage for contraceptives if they also cover other prescription drugs. The vote was strongly backed by Democrats, as expected, but also drew more Republican support than predicted in light of the party's position on the issue. The vote, which provided lawmakers with one of the year's few floor votes on the politically sensitive topic, was 224-198: R 48-177; D 175-21 (ND 130-17, SD 45-4); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 894)

    Before that victory, however, Lowey had to fend off attacks from several abortion-rights opponents. The original Lowey contraceptive language was struck from the bill on a point of order because it was substantive legislation connected to an appropriations bill, which violates House rules. But Democrats, led by Lowey, outmaneuvered opponents when they returned to the floor with a slightly reworded version of the amendment. The new language barred federal funds from being used to renew contracts with health care plans for federal employees that provide coverage for prescription drugs but do not include coverage for contraceptives. That new language made the amendment in line with House rules, which allow for limitations on how money is spent. Lowey also added language to exempt five health care plans with a religious orientation that opposed her amendment.

    7. Public Housing Overhaul

    Twice in two years the House and Senate passed measures to overhaul the nation's public housing system as part of the GOP's effort to remake government social programs. In 1998 Republican leaders allowed House Banking and Financial Services Committee Chairman Jim Leach, R-Iowa, and Rick A. Lazio, R-N.Y., chairman of the committee's housing panel, to attach their bill (HR 2) to the fiscal 1999 spending measure for housing, veterans, and science programs, in order to make their case on the House floor. Leach and Lazio believed that attaching the measure to the spending bill would assist talks with Senate counterparts, who had somewhat different ideas about the legislation, and provide an extra incentive for another principal, Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Andrew M. Cuomo, to negotiate.

    But the amendment was not without detractors. Both the chairman and ranking Democrat on the VA-HUD appropriations subcommittee vociferously opposed joining the bills, saying that attaching the 400-page bill made a mockery of House rules prohibiting authorization provisions on spending legislation. Not all Banking panel members wanted to combine the housing measure and spending bill. The panel's ranking Democrat, John J. LaFalce of New York, and top Housing Subcommittee Democrat Joseph P. Kennedy II of Massachusetts argued that Lazio and Leach should consent to convene a separate conference on HR 2 and the Senate housing overhaul measure (S 462).

    Nonetheless, the House voted to attach HR 2 to the spending measure. The key vote was 230-181: R 215-4; D 15-176 (ND 8-136, SD 7-40); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 894)

    As Leach and Lazio had predicted, pressure to complete work on the spending bill eventually forced a compromise. The final version was more moderate than the House bill, reserving more of public and subsidized housing for those with the lowest incomes, but it contained elements of the House and Senate bills and the administration's proposals.

    8. Managed Care Regulations

    Trying to wrest momentum from Democrats on the politically potent controversy of regulating managed health care was no easy task for the GOP in 1998, especially for House Republicans eager for a way to limit their exposure on the issue before the fall elections.

    The solution came in a package developed by a House Republican task force that produced a bill (HR 4250) allowing GOP members to say they supported a managed care overhaul. But it split the House, mostly along party lines, and provided a glimpse of members' positions on one of the most controversial issues of the year. The White House threatened a veto but the legislation never got through Congress.

    The task force, led by J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., who was later to become House Speaker, included many of the patient protections that both sides of the managed care debate had endorsed, such as giving broader rights to emergency-room care and allowing patients to appeal coverage decisions to an outside panel. The GOP bill did not, however, allow consumers in managed care plans that are exempt from state regulation to sue their health plans under state laws, a key element of a competing Democratic bill.

    GOP leaders, noting that many chairmen of committees with jurisdiction for health care were on the task force, which had met in secret, said public hearings demanded by Democrats were unnecessary. The Clinton administration said the legislation was flawed. The Office of Management and Budget said the bill would cover too few people, provide too few patient protections, and “contains unnecessary and irrelevant provisions that undermine the chances for a bipartisan agreement on a patients' bill of rights.”

    Despite such objections, the bill passed July 24. The key vote was 216-210: R 213-12; D 3-197 (ND 2-147, SD 1-50); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 894)

    Shortly before that vote the House rejected a Democratic alternative by a vote of 212-217. Supporters of the Democratic bill, including the American Medical Association and a host of provider and consumer groups, said it gave patients broader rights than the GOP plan, such as the ability to sue their plans for damages. Republicans criticized the Democratic plan as a costly creation to benefit trial lawyers, who were major contributors of Democratic campaign funds.

    9. Campaign Finance Overhaul

    A House vote on Aug. 6 to overhaul campaign finance laws marked the first time in six years that either chamber had acted to rewrite the laws. Although the effort died in the Senate, the House's action raised the prospect that Congress was inching closer to its first significant revision of campaign finance laws in nearly twenty years.

    The leading proposal to overhaul the campaign finance laws was a bipartisan measure (HR 3526) sponsored by Christopher Shays, R-Conn., and Martin T. Meehan, D-Mass. It was based on a similar Senate plan (S 25) by John McCain, R-Ariz., and Russell D. Feingold, D-Wis. After much debate the Shays-Meehan bill passed on a key vote of 252-179: R 61-164; D 190-15 (ND 142-9, SD 48-6); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 894)

    But passage came only after an arduous process. Its advocates endured numerous attempts by GOP leaders over several months to block or delay approval.

    The legislation banned national parties from receiving or spending “soft money”—unlimited and largely unregulated donations to political parties. It also set new restrictions on campaign-related expenditures by third-party groups.

    GOP leaders initially blocked the Shays-Meehan measure from coming to the House floor in March. That action only encouraged the bill's supporters to embrace a procedural device that would have let them debate a variety of campaign finance bills on their own terms.

    GOP leaders finally relented to an open debate on the issue in May. But they made the bill open to dozens of amendments, then forced it to compete with ten other substitute amendments to the underlying bill. Whichever of the substitute amendments got the most votes, at least a majority, would prevail.

    A significant victory for supporters of Shays-Meehan came in August when the House voted for their substitute amendment, 237-186. Fifty-one Republicans voted for the measure, outweighing the eleven Democrats who voted against it.

    The relatively strong vote prompted the authors of several other substitute amendments to withdraw their measures. The final hurdle was a substitute amendment by Asa Hutchinson, R-Ark., and Tom Allen, D-Maine, based on the so-called freshman bill that took a less aggressive stance against soft money and issue advocacy advertising. GOP leaders considered embracing the freshman proposal to get the 238 votes needed to stop Shays-Meehan. Supporters of Shays-Meehan praised the freshmen for their efforts but urged defeat of that plan. The freshman measure ultimately failed, 147-222, with sixty-one members voting “present.”

    In spite of the advance made by campaign finance reform advocates, the legislation never made it to passage in either of the Congresses during President Clinton's second term.

    10. Release of Starr Report

    Undoubtedly the most controversial and politically divisive event of Bill Clinton's second term was the effort by House Republicans to impeach the president and see him removed from office. A central event in this drama occurred in September 1998 when an independent counsel, Kenneth W. Starr, investigating charges against the president, sent a report to the House suggesting that Clinton be impeached. Two days later, the House voted to release the report to the public. The report, sensational and in many places strikingly descriptive and even lurid about alleged sexual conduct by the president, provoked an enormous controversy.

    The report gave Starr's version of Clinton's affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky and subsequent events. Clinton's representatives cautioned that it should be viewed as a one-sided document but the vote on the resolution to release the report (H Res 525) showed that Republicans, in their effort to remove Clinton, were willing to accept Starr's allegations and move forward on impeachment charges despite a clear absence of public support. The resolution was adopted by a vote of 363-63: R 224-0; D 138-63 (ND 102-46, SD 36-17); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 894)

    However, rather than reading the salacious details of the Starr report as evidence of Clinton's immorality and lack of respect for laws, much of the public was repulsed by the fact that these details were released, polls showed. The vote also represented the last time GOP efforts to investigate Clinton were able to pick up Democratic support.

    No one in Congress had read the report before it was released, and many were appalled when they learned of its explicit descriptions of Clinton's liaisons with Lewinsky. The report was posted on the Internet and became the subject of voluminous media coverage. Although the report was harshly criticized and even lampooned as x-rated, Starr and his prosecutors insisted the details were necessary to document Clinton's lies and efforts to get others to lie.

    Supporting material, including a videotape of Clinton's Aug. 17 testimony before a grand jury, was released in subsequent weeks, after having been screened, and to some extent redacted, by committee members. When the dust cleared, the public clearly remained opposed to impeachment and vehemently objected to being subjected to all of the details of the relationship.

    The fact that most Democrats joined in the vote was lost on the public. The most vocal Democrats were those on the Judiciary Committee who voted against the release, on the grounds it violated due process and basic fairness. Those Democrats who voted for the release generally declined to defend their vote and in some cases expressed remorse.

    The vote to release was a turning point in the Republican impeachment effort, one that Democrats say vividly demonstrated how out of step the GOP was with popular sentiment. And within days bipartisan cooperation on impeachment began eroding. By the time a vote authorizing an impeachment inquiry was taken in October the two parties had separated completely.

    11. Skilled Worker Visas

    The House in 1998 remained a major stumbling block for legislation designed to increase the number of skilled temporary workers allowed to immigrate to the United States. Although a bill (S 1723) increasing the number of so-called H-1B visas went through the Senate without difficulty, an unlikely coalition of labor-backed Democrats and Republican immigration opponents held up the House bill (HR 3736) for most of the year. But behind-the-scenes negotiating helped get the measure enacted. The major turning point was House passage of the legislation in September by a key vote of 288-133: R 189-34; D 99-98 (ND 66-76; SD 33-22); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 894)

    The vote represented a big success for a new lobby: the high-tech industry. It also represented a major departure from the anti-immigration policies pushed by the House in 1996. Since that year, Congress had voted to restore welfare benefits to legal immigrants, loosen requirements on immigrants waiting for permanent visas, and give partial or complete amnesty to a category of Central American refugees who came to America to escape civil wars in the 1980s. The vote to expand the number of skilled immigrant visas was more than merely a retreat from previous policies. It was an affirmative decision to expand immigration, at least for skilled workers. The legislation increased the number of H-1B visas allotted each year from 65,000 to as many as 115,000.

    The vote was not the last chapter in the year's debate. With the House acting so late, a handful of senators was able to block action on a conference report. In the end, the measure was added to an omnibus spending package passed at the end of the year. But the House vote was clearly the highest hurdle in a difficult year.

    12. Omnibus Appropriations

    Republican leaders portrayed the massive, year-end omnibus spending bill as a victory for their party and an inevitable result of divided government but many in the rank and file saw it as an embarrassing retreat from GOP principles. For Democrats, the vote—and behind-the-scenes negotiations that led up to it—provided a rejuvenating breather that allowed them to change the subject from impeachment of President Clinton to their election-year agenda, especially education.

    The vote capped a year of gridlock on the budget after President Clinton and congressional Republicans spent months talking past each other and trying to use the budget to score political points, mostly in vain. Action on most of the thirteen annual appropriations bills for fiscal 1999—the approximately one-third of the budget upon which Congress and the president must agree each year—slid past deadline, and eight of the measures were lumped together into an omnibus creation (HR 4328—PL 105-277) that broke through budget targets set only a year earlier. The eight bills had been slowed by numerous disagreements among Republicans, and between them and the White House.

    Despite the impeachment inquiry hanging over his head, Clinton entered the talks with a strong hand. Ever since Republicans took the political blame for partial government shutdowns in 1995–1996 and for a vetoed 1997 flood aid bill, Clinton had used veto threats to extract concessions from them on spending bills. Negotiations started in early October but moved slowly, allowing Democrats advantage as the elections approached. Democrats took delight in having a forum for their election year agenda.

    In the negotiations Clinton won a $1.2 billion down payment on his initiative to subsidize the hiring of 100,000 new teachers, obtained his full $17.9 billion request for the International Monetary Fund, and received many “emergency” spending items, including financing for the Bosnia peacekeeping mission and $5.9 billion in farm disaster aid.

    Republican conservatives were appalled.

    At a time when we are dealing with a weakened president … you would think that our leadership, who professed to be conservatives leading this revolution, could stand tough within that budget cap and stay true to the commitment that we … came here for in 1994,
    said Jon Christensen, R-Neb.

    Despite grumbling from junior GOP conservatives, the bill passed later in October by a vote of 333-95: R 162-64; D 170-31 (ND 120-26, SD 50-5); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 894)

    13. Impeachment

    By the time the House was ready to vote Dec. 19 to make Bill Clinton only the second president ever to be impeached, the environment had become surreal in Washington. On the eve of the scheduled vote, Clinton had ordered a military strike against Iraq. That postponed debate for a day, enough time for Speaker-designate Robert L. Livingston, R-La., to publicly acknowledge that he, like Clinton, had been unfaithful to his wife. When debate finally began Dec. 18 on the four articles of impeachment, nerves were raw. The articles, approved Dec. 11 and 12 by the House Judiciary Committee along party lines, accused the president of two counts of perjury, one count of obstruction of justice, and one count of abuse of power.

    Through it all, Democrats complained that the votes should be delayed until hostilities with Iraq ended. Their anger was increased by Republicans' move to block consideration of a censure resolution. “To be spending the time of this House to smear our commander in chief when brave men and women are risking their lives for their country shocks the conscience,” John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, the Judiciary Committee's ranking Democrat, said on the floor.

    Then came a dramatic announcement from Livingston that he would not serve as Speaker and would leave Congress-setting an example for Clinton to follow, he said.

    “Infidelity—adultery—is not a public act, it's a private act, and the government, the Congress, has no business intruding into private acts,” Judiciary Chairman Henry J. Hyde, R-Ill., said in closing debate.

    But it is our business, it is our duty to observe, to characterize public acts by public officials…. And when you have a serial violator of the oath who is the chief law enforcement officer of the country—who appoints the judges and the Supreme Court, the attorney general—we have a problem.

    The House adopted the first article, which accused Clinton of lying to a grand jury about his affair with Monica Lewinsky, by a vote of 228-206: R 223-5; D 5-200 (ND 1-149, SD 4-51); I 0-1. A second count, accusing Clinton of obstructing justice, was also adopted, 221-212. The two other recommended articles were rejected. These actions sent the matter to the Senate for trial in 1999, as provided by the Constitution. (Vote, p. 894)

    1. Human Cloning Ban

    S 1601 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the motion to proceed to the bill banning creation of a human embryo through cloning. Motion rejected 42-54: R 42-12; D 0-42 (ND 0-34, SD 0-8), Feb. 11, 1998. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture.

    2. Campaign Finance Overhaul

    S 1663 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the McCain, R-Ariz., substitute amendment that would revise financing of federal political campaigns. Motion rejected 51-48: R 7-48; D 44-0 (ND 36-0, SD 8-0), Feb. 26, 1998. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture.

    3. IMF Funding

    S 1768 McConnell, R-Ky., amendment to provide $17.9 billion for the International Monetary Fund, including $3.4 billion for a new program aimed at preventing global financial crises and $14.5 billion for the U.S. “quota” to the international agency. The amendment would prohibit release of the quota funds unless the IMF agrees to certain conditions, including restricting aid to nations that do not conform to trade agreements. Adopted 84-16: R 41-14; D 43-2 (ND 35-2, SD 8-0), March 26, 1998.

    4. NATO Expansion

    S 1768 Warner, R-Va., amendment to add language to the resolution of ratification that would require the president to certify to Congress that the United States would not support any further NATO expansion for three years from the date Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic join the alliance. Rejected 41-59: R 24-31; D 17-28 (ND 15-22, SD 2-6), April 30, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    5. Skilled Worker Visas

    S 1723 Passage of the bill to increase the number of so-called H-1B visas, which allow highly skilled immigrants to work in the United States for six years, from the current cap of 65,000 per year to 95,000 for the remainder of fiscal 1998. The measure also would increase the cap on the visas to 105,000 for fiscal 1999 and 115,000 for the following three fiscal years, but it would sunset the cap to its original level at the end of fiscal 2002. The bill also would increase the authorization for certain educational grants, authorize funding for an Internet job bank and authorize funding to provide training opportunities in information technology. Passed 78-20: R 51-2; D 27-18 (ND 20-17, SD 7-1), May 18, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    6. Tobacco Restrictions

    S 1415 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the modified Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee substitute amendment to the bill to increase tobacco restrictions. The substitute would require the tobacco industry to pay $516 billion over twenty-five years for antismoking, education, and research programs; raise taxes on cigarettes by $1.10 per pack over five years; and impose penalties on the tobacco industry if youth smoking does not decrease by 60 percent over ten years. Motion rejected 57-42: R 14-40; D 43-2 (ND 37-0, SD 6-2), June 17, 1998. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    7. Education Savings Accounts

    HR 2646 Adoption of the conference report on the bill to allow individuals to contribute up to $2,000 a year of after-tax funds in tax-sheltered savings accounts that may be used to pay for educational expenses. Adopted (thus cleared for the president) 59-36: R 51-2; D 8-34 (ND 6-28, SD 2-6), June 24, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    8. Same-Sex Military Training

    S 2057 Byrd, D-W.Va., amendment to the Gramm, R-Texas, amendment. The Byrd amendment would prohibit the armed forces from housing male and female recruits in the same barracks and would prohibit them from conducting gender-integrated basic training. The Gramm amendment would remove restrictions on recipients of Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps scholarships. Rejected 39-53: R 31-21; D 8-32 (ND 5-27, SD 3-5), June 25, 1998. (Subsequently, the Gramm amendment was adopted by voice vote.) A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    9. Economic Sanctions

    S 2159 Stevens, R-Alaska, motion to table (kill) the Lugar, R-Ind., amendment that would revise the process the president and Congress use to impose unilateral economic sanctions by establishing guidelines for future sanctions and setting up procedures for consideration and implementation of sanctions proposals. The amendment would prohibit the president from implementing any unilateral economic sanction without forty-five days' notice, and it would express the sense of Congress that all future unilateral sanctions end within two years of their enactment unless extended by law. Motion agreed to 53-46: R 27-28; D 26-18 (ND 22-14, SD 4-4), July 15, 1998.

    10. “Partial-Birth” Abortion

    HR 1122 Passage, over President Clinton's veto on Oct. 10, 1997, of the bill to ban a certain late-term abortion procedure, in which the physician partially delivers the fetus before completing the abortion. Anyone convicted of performing such an abortion would be subject to a fine and up to two years in prison. Rejected 64-36: R 51-4; D 13-32 (ND 9-28, SD 4-4), Sept. 18, 1998. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (67 in this case) of both houses is required to override a veto. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    11. Fiscal 1999 Omnibus Appropriations

    HR 4328 Adoption of the conference report on the bill to provide almost $500 billion in new budget authority for those cabinet departments and federal agencies whose fiscal 1999 appropriations bills were never enacted. The measure incorporates eight previously separate appropriations bills: Labor-HHS-Education, Interior, Treasury-Postal, Foreign Operations, Commerce-Justice-State, District of Columbia, Agriculture, and Transportation. In addition, the bill provides $20.8 billion in “emergency” supplemental spending, including $6.8 billion for military spending ($1.9 billion of it for Bosnia operations), $5.9 billion for relief to farmers, $2.4 billion for antiterrorism programs, $3.35 billion to address Year 2000 computer problems, and $1.55 billion for disaster relief from Hurricane Georges. The measure also contains language to extend expiring tax provisions (at a cost of $9.7 billion over nine years). Adopted (thus cleared for the president) 65-29: R 33-20; D 32-9 (ND 26-9, SD 6-0), Oct. 21, 1998. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    1. Line-Item Vetoes

    HR 2631 Passage, over President Clinton's veto on Nov. 13, 1997, of the bill to disapprove Clinton's line-item vetoes of thirty-eight projects, totaling $287 million, in the fiscal 1998 military construction appropriations bill (HR 2016—PL 105-45). Passed 347-69: R 197-23; D 149-46 (ND 100-41, SD 49-5); I 1-0, Feb. 5, 1998. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (277 in this case) of both chambers is required to override a veto. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    2. Special Transportation Projects

    HR 2400 Graham, R-S.C., amendment to strike provisions that provide funds for specified projects, including about $9 billion for highway projects, and other funding for specified transit and bus projects. Rejected 79-337: R 67-152; D 12-184 (ND 6-137, SD 6-47); I 0-1, April 1, 1998.

    3. Affirmative Action

    HR 6 Riggs, R-Calif., amendment to prohibit any public institution of higher education that participates in any Higher Education Act program from discriminating against, or granting preferential treatment to, any person or group in admissions based in whole or in part on race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin. Rejected 171-249: R 166-55; D 5-193 (ND 2-143, SD 3-50); I 0-1, May 6, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    4. Financial Services Overhaul

    HR 10 Passage of the bill to eliminate current Glass-Steagall Act and Bank Holding Company Act barriers against affiliations between banking, securities, insurance, and other firms. Passed 214-213: R 153-73; D 61-139 (ND 47-100, SD 14-39); I 0-1, May 13, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    5. Food Stamps for Legal Immigrants

    S 1150 Adoption of the rule (H Res 446) to dispose of the conference report on the bill to reauthorize agricultural research and education programs through fiscal 2002. The rule would have allowed a point of order to strike $818 million in funding in the conference report to restore food stamps to 250,000 legal immigrants. Rejected 120-289: R 118-98; D 2-190 (ND 1-140, SD 1-50); I 0-1, May 22, 1998.

    6. Contraceptive Coverage

    HR 4104 Lowey, D-N.Y., amendment to prohibit the Office of Personnel Management from accepting a contract that provides coverage for prescription drugs unless the plan also provides equivalent coverage for prescription contraception drugs. Adopted 224-198: R 48-177; D 175-21 (ND 130-17, SD 45-4); I 1-0, July 16, 1998.

    7. Public Housing Overhaul

    HR 4194 Lazio, R-N.Y., amendment to overhaul public housing management and allow increased local control over rents and occupancy standards. Adopted 230-181: R 215-4; D 15-176 (ND 8-136, SD 7-40); I 0-1, July 17, 1998.

    8. Managed Care Regulations

    HR 4250 Passage of the bill to revise managed care and medical insurance regulations. The bill would provide a range of patient protections, create a two-step appeals process for challenging a health plan administrator's decisions, and expand the availability of medical savings accounts. Passed 216-210: R 213-12; D 3-197 (ND 2-147, SD 1-50); I 0-1, July 24, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    9. Campaign Finance Overhaul

    HR 2183 Passage of the bill to ban soft money contributions for federal elections, expand regulations on advertising that advocates a candidate, and tighten the definition of what constitutes coordination with a federal candidate. The text of the bill was the Shays-Meehan substitute adopted by the House on Aug. 3. Passed 252-179: R 61-164; D 190-15 (ND 142-9, SD 48-6); I 1-0, Aug. 6, 1998.

    10. Release of Starr Report

    H Res 525 Adoption of the resolution to provide for the release and distribution of the report from Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr regarding allegations of criminal offenses and other misconduct by President Clinton. Under the resolution, the Judiciary Committee would review the materials to determine whether they contain grounds for impeachment. It also required the committee to immediately release the initial 445-page report, and release other documents to the public on Sept. 28 unless the committee voted not to release certain materials. Adopted 363-63: R 224-0; D 138-63 (ND 102-46, SD 36-17); I 1-0, Sept. 11, 1998.

    11. Skilled Worker Visas

    HR 3736 Passage of the bill to increase the number of six-year H-1B skill- and profession-based visas for foreign workers from 65,000 to 115,000 in fiscal 1999 and 2000 and 107,500 in fiscal 2001. The bill also would require some employers using H-1B workers to prove they have tried to recruit qualified U.S. workers and have not laid off U.S. workers. Passed 288-133: R 189-34; D 99-98 (ND 66-76, SD 33-22); I 0-1, Sept. 24, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    12. Fiscal 1999 Omnibus Appropriations

    HR 4328 Adoption of the conference report on the bill to provide almost $500 billion in new budget authority for those cabinet departments and federal agencies whose fiscal 1999 appropriations bills were never enacted. The measure incorporates eight previously separate appropriations bills: Labor-HHS-Education, Interior, Treasury-Postal, Foreign Operations, Commerce-Justice-State, District of Columbia, Agriculture, and Transportation. In addition, the bill provides $20.8 billion in “emergency” supplemental spending, including $6.8 billion for military spending ($1.9 billion of it for Bosnia operations), $5.9 billion for relief to farmers, $2.4 billion for antiterrorism programs, $3.35 billion to address Year 2000 computer problems, and $1.55 billion for disaster relief from Hurricane Georges. The measure also contains language to extend expiring tax provisions (at a cost of $9.7 billion over nine years), increase the number of H-1B visas for high-tech foreign workers, impose a three-year moratorium on new taxes on Internet access, implement the Chemical Weapons Convention, and extend for six months Chapter 12 of the bankruptcy code, which is designed to help struggling farmers. Adopted 333-95: R 162-64; D 170-31 (ND 120-26, SD 50-5); I 1-0, Oct. 20, 1998. (HR 4328 was originally the fiscal 1999 Transportation appropriations bill.) A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    13. Impeachment of President Clinton/Article I—Grand Jury Perjury

    H Res 611 Adoption of Article I of the resolution, which would impeach President Clinton for “perjurious, false and misleading testimony” during his Aug. 17, 1998, federal grand jury testimony about his relationship with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, his prior testimony in the Paula Jones sexual harassment lawsuit, and his attempts to influence others' testimony in both. Adopted 228-206: R 223-5; D 5-200 (ND 1-149, SD 4-51); I 0-1, Dec. 19, 1998. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.


    1999 Key Votes

    1. Impeachment: Motion to Dismiss

    The Constitution stipulates that a two-thirds Senate majority is required to remove a president from office. Even as President Clinton's trial was convened as the first order of business for the 106th Congress, it was widely assumed that fewer than sixty-seven senators would vote for either of the articles of impeachment the House had adopted a month earlier.

    The first evidence to support that assumption came on Jan. 22, the ninth day of the trial, when Robert c. Byrd, D-W.Va., announced that he would lead the effort to dismiss both charges and adjourn the trial. The president was charged with committing perjury in testimony to a federal grand jury about his relationship with Monica Lewinsky while she was a White House intern, and with leading a campaign to cover up the affair. Even if true, Byrd said, those offenses did not constitute grounds for removal.

    Such a motion had been expected but the fact that Byrd had offered it was a clear indication that the thirteen Republican House “managers” of the impeachment charges were making no headway in their effort to build a bipartisan majority for conviction. As one of the harshest Democratic critics of the president's behavior during the previous year, and as someone legendary for both guarding senatorial prerogative and promoting propriety in public life, Byrd was central to the prosecution strategy. Were he to announce for conviction, the managers believed, other Democrats would be sure to follow.

    Instead, the opposite occurred. In the bellwether vote of the trial, on Jan. 27 Byrd's motion was defeated, 44-56: R 0-55; D 44-1 (ND 36-1, SD 8-0). Although the vote kept the proceedings alive, it also signaled, in the words of Sen. Richard C. Shelby, R-Ala., that “you've read the end of the book, unless something drastic happens, which none of us foresee.” That is because every Democrat except Russell D. Feingold of Wisconsin voted to dismiss the case before any witnesses had been deposed, let alone heard from. At least one-quarter of them, or eleven Democratic senators, would have had to reverse position for there to have been a chance of conviction. (Vote, p. 908)

    The proceedings continued on for two more weeks. But the atmosphere was palpably different, with many who wanted Clinton out of the White House clearly against dragging out the trial any longer. The House prosecutors harbored a faint hope that one dramatic moment—Lewinsky giving sworn testimony against the president from the well of the Senate—could galvanize senatorial sentiment against Clinton. But on Feb. 4 that hope was dashed when twenty-five GOP senators joined all forty-five Democrats to defeat a motion to send her a subpoena. Instead, she was only heard on snippets of deposition videotape played near the trial's end on television monitors.

    2. Impeachment: Acquittal

    Historic by its very occurrence—the first impeachment trial of an elected president and the only such trial since Andrew Johnson's 131 years earlier—the Senate proceedings of 1999 nonetheless ended not with a bang but a whimper. Acquittal was universally expected by the time Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist posed the final question of the trial on Feb. 12: “Senators, how say you? Is the respondent, William Jefferson Clinton, guilty or not guilty?”

    From early on, it was clear that a Senate majority agreed with the president's lawyers, who argued that although Clinton's testimony before a federal grand jury about his relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky was evasive, it did not cross the high legal threshold to constitute perjury, as Article I alleged. All forty-five Democrats and ten Republicans, seven of them former prosecutors, formed the majority that rejected the charge.

    That left the only real suspense for the last vote of the trial, on Article II, which alleged that the president obstructed justice, primarily by encouraging Lewinsky to file a false affidavit in a sexual harassment lawsuit against Clinton filed by an Arkansas woman.

    The thirteen GOP prosecutors, or “managers,” who had drafted the articles and won their endorsement by the House at the end of 1998, were hoping to spare themselves a measure of embarrassment by persuading at least a simple majority of senators to vote to convict the president on this charge. But even that symbolic victory narrowly eluded them. The vote was a 50-50 tie: R 50-5; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8). (Vote, p. 908)

    Because a two-thirds majority was required for conviction, the prosecutors were 17 votes short. Put another way, the prosecutors obtained the support of only three of every four senators they needed.

    The vote also reflected what many predicted would happen once a political entity such as the Senate was converted to a court. Democrats were united and were joined by a small but pivotal group of GOP moderates. In addition, the five Republicans who voted to acquit on Article II all represented states Clinton carried both in 1992 and 1996.

    That there was a vote was something of a victory for Clinton's harshest critics. From the night of the 1998 election, when Democrats unexpectedly gained five House seats, pundits, congressional scholars, and many in Congress assumed that the House's GOP leaders were sufficiently chastened that they would settle on a way to stop the process before impeachment. That did not happen. Although the House prosecutors believed they were not allowed to present on the comprehensive case that the situation demanded, they at least were able to make their arguments to the Senate and the nation. And they were able to hear the verdict rendered in an official—albeit disappointing to them—climax.

    3. Education

    If voters were consistent about any one issue in polls taken during Clinton's years in office, it was education and, more specifically, their desire to see Congress enact policies to improve the quality of instruction in public schools.

    President Clinton and Democrats seized on the issue with a broad-based program that included funding for school construction and renovation, better after-school programs, aid to turn around failing public schools, and a seven-year plan to help local districts hire 100,000 new teachers and reduce class size in the early grades.

    Republicans at first resisted Clinton's calls for more federal activism. After a bitter debate, however, they provided the first $1.2 billion installment of his 100,000-teacher plan in the fiscal 1999 omnibus spending bill.

    The GOP in 1999 took a more activist approach on education with an agenda designed to define the differences between the two parties as an issue of control, not money. Republicans argued that states and local schools, not the federal government, should decide spending priorities.

    Democrats, arguing that states in the past have done a poor job of directing aid to low-income students, wanted the federal government to direct how funds are spent. The split came into focus in March when the Senate took up the “ed-flex” bill (S 280), designed to allow states to waive federal regulations in order to carry out school improvement programs. Although most Democrats supported the ed-flex legislation, they used it as the vehicle for highlighting Clinton's education priorities, especially his class-size reduction plan.

    Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., announced she would offer an amendment to the bill that would authorize $11.4 billion over six years to carry out Clinton's program. Republicans fought back during the debate, with Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., offering an amendment to instead let local schools redirect the $1.2 billion already appropriated for Clinton's plan to other programs, including special education for the disabled. The GOP had provided major funding increases for special education programs during the previous several years.

    Murray's amendment was tabled (killed) by the Senate on a 55-44 party-line vote: R 55-0; D 0-44 (ND 0-36, SD 0-8). But the vote was not the final word. The 100,000-teacher issue resurfaced in November as part of the debate on the fiscal 2000 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education spending bill. After intense negotiations, Congress and the White House worked out a deal to provide an additional $1.3 billion for the second year of the plan, while giving states more flexibility to use the money for teacher training and other purposes. (Vote, p. 908)

    4. Gun Control

    For sheer drama, no vote the Senate took in 1999 could match the May cliffhanger on an amendment to the juvenile justice bill (S 254) by Frank R. Lautenberg, D-N.J. It was adopted by 1 vote—only the fourth ballot cast by Al Gore during his vice presidency—reversing the outcome on a similar amendment eight days before. The tally was 51-50: R 6-49; D 44-1 (ND 36-1, SD 8-0), with Gore voting “yea.” (Vote, p. 908)

    Gun control advocates claimed the amendment's adoption as their most significant achievement since Republicans regained control of the Senate in 1995. It set a requirement that all sales at almost all gun shows be subject to criminal background checks. The current allowed required only those prospective buyers who were doing business with federally licensed dealers to be subject to such a requirement. Momentum allowing such a vote was created by the April 20 shooting at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., which left fifteen people dead and put great pressure on Congress to address the relative ease with which children, convicted felons, and others may obtain firearms.

    The vice president touted the importance of his role following that event while GOP leaders said Gore would regret the vote if he won the Democratic presidential nomination and had to explain it in several key states in the fall campaign. But, either way, Gore would have been unable to make his entry on to the scene had it not been for some intense backroom arm-twisting. In May a virtually identical version of the measure was tabled, or killed, when it obtained only 47 votes, with two sympathetic senators absent.

    Needing 1 vote to set up a tie, Democrats focused on the two in their caucus who had voted to table Lautenberg's first proposal. They found their convert in Max Cleland of Georgia, who was offered some modest changes in the language and some heavy persuasion. His switch was made easier when, on the morning of the second vote, a fifteen-year-old walked into a high school near Atlanta and shot six classmates.

    The vote vindicated the Democratic tactic of limiting their gun control proposals to a few for which there was broad public support. They did not, for instance, put forward a Clinton administration proposal to limit purchasers to one gun a month. Ultimately, all their proposals were adopted, with Lautenberg's the marquee item.

    5. Kosovo

    The quarter-century duel between Congress and the White House over a president's unilateral right to commit U.S. military forces to battle was played out again in the Senate in May. As on several other occasions since Congress enacted the 1973 War Powers Resolution over President Richard Nixon's veto, most members declined to challenge the president's insistence that his constitutional power as commander in chief gives him the right to deploy forces without congressional approval.

    This time, the test came on an amendment to the fiscal 2000 defense authorization bill by Arlen Specter, R-Pa., to bar the deployment of U.S. ground troops in the Serbian province of Kosovo unless Congress authorized it in advance. The amendment would not have affected the U.S.-led NATO air campaign against Yugoslavia, which began in March with the aim of halting the repression of ethnic Albanians. Nor would Specter's amendment have applied to the deployment of U.S. ground troops in Kosovo to enforce any peacekeeping agreement that might be negotiated.

    From the outset of the bombing campaign, Clinton had insisted that he had no intention of committing ground forces to combat in Kosovo and that he would consult with Congress before making such a move. Indeed, he stressed his aversion to sending in ground troops to the point that some members of Congress and foreign policy experts warned that he was squandering the leverage that even an unspoken threat of a NATO ground invasion might have on Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

    But Specter insisted that Congress could ensure its rightful role in such a portentous decision only by writing the requirement into law. His argument rested on the same facts of political life that the 1973 legislation was intended to circumvent: Once U.S. troops are committed members of Congress are loath to force a withdrawal that might expose the troops to enemy attack.

    Specter insisted that Clinton might be able to persuade him to vote to authorize a ground invasion of Kosovo. But opponents contended that the amendment would bolster Milosevic's determination to wait out the NATO air attacks by reassuring him he need not fear ground troops. The amendment was tabled, and thus killed, by a vote of 52-48: R 17-38; D 35-10 (ND 29-8, SD 6-2). (Vote, p. 908)

    6. Managed Care

    It may have been the most convoluted and politically tortuous Senate debate of the legislative year. The delicate politics of managed care were apparent as the Senate took up the issue in July. Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., introduced language from the Democrats' “patients' bill of rights” (S 6) as the underlying bill for debate. It was given a new number (S 1344). The Democratic language was used to prevent Democrats from offering a long series of amendments on the floor that would force Republicans to cast politically unpopular votes against a variety of patient protections, such as expanding the number of patients who would be guaranteed certain coverage and allowing patients to sue if they were harmed by the decisions of their health plans.

    In turn, Democrats introduced the GOP managed care bill as a substitute, so that they could introduce their list of managed care provisions as secondary amendments. Both bills were then debated at the same time, with alternating amendments being offered to each—allowing ample opportunity for political gamesmanship. “The debate that's going on now is one of the most partisan and the most vacuous, the most devoid of effort to try to reach a solution that I've heard in a long time—and that's saying something,” grumbled Max Baucus, D-Mont.

    Throughout the debate, Republicans repeatedly offered amendments similar to ones offered by Democrats and defeated along party lines just hours earlier. Democrats charged—and several Republicans privately agreed—that the maneuver was aimed at allowing the GOP to claim victory for enacting certain patient protections. But Republican amendments generally offered more limited government oversight to a fewer number of patients—in keeping with the GOP philosophy of less government regulation. As their final amendment, Republicans offered a package that combined all the GOP-backed patient protections with a variety of tax incentives aimed at making health insurance more affordable. Democrats charged that the provisions would only help the rich and hurt the poor.

    In an attempt to bridge the partisan divide, a bipartisan group of lawmakers, led by the late John H. Chafee, R-R.I., offered a compromise that would have taken provisions from both sides. But those efforts proved futile.

    After four days of partisan debate and procedural contortion, the Republican package passed, 53-47: R 52-2; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 908)

    7. Tax Cuts

    Senate Republicans had long been more cautious than their House counterparts about passing a huge tax cut. In 1998, for instance, they managed to whittle the House's $80.1 billion proposal down to $9.2 billion. But in 1999, with a projected budget surplus of $1 trillion over ten years, the Senate agreed to consider a major package.

    After the Budget Committee reserved nearly $800 billion for a tax cut, Finance Committee Chairman William V. Roth Jr., R-Del., unveiled a $792 billion measure (S 1429). The bill would have cut the lowest income tax rate bracket from 15 to 14 percent, eased the so-called marriage penalty, and made changes to pension and retirement laws to give more favorable tax rates to those who saved.

    Roth had always worked well with panel Democrats, but he focused this time on ensuring that the bill would appeal to both moderate and conservative Republicans. Meanwhile, President Clinton threatened consistently to veto the bill and its House counterpart (HR 2488), and most Senate Democrats backed the president.

    The polarizing situation led to parliamentary maneuvers when the Senate took up the bill in July. First, Republicans had to contend with the so-called Byrd rule, which requires a supermajority of 60 votes to pass measures that are not offset by spending cuts or revenue increases. The Senate bill was not paid for beyond the first ten years, so when the Senate did not waive the Byrd rule the bill's provisions were set to expire Sept. 30, 2009. The vote was 51-48. Party leaders, particularly Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., worked hard to keep their troops in line. Daschle succeeded, but three Republicans—Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania and Susan Collins and Olympia J. Snowe, both of Maine—voted no with the Democrats.

    Meanwhile, moderates of both parties led by John B. Breaux, D-La., began formulating a $500 billion tax measure that they said was a workable, responsible compromise between the main GOP measure and Democrats' $290 billion proposal. It appeared for a time that the moderate measure might get enough support to challenge the bills but Daschle and Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., began peeling supporters off the effort. By the time the Senate was ready to vote on the Republican bill, moderates withdrew their plan, all the while charging that partisanship should not keep Congress from agreeing to a tax bill.

    The Senate passed S 1429 at the end of July 57-43: R 52-2; D 4-41 (ND 2-35, SD 2-6); I 1-0. Only two Republicans—Specter and George V. Voinovich of Ohio—voted against it, while four Democrats—Breaux, Bob Kerrey of Nebraska, Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana, and Robert G. Torricelli of New Jersey—voted for it. (Vote, p. 908)

    8. Cuba Sanctions

    For years, a powerful lobbying group, the Cuban American National Foundation, played an important key role in maintaining a tough U.S. policy toward Cuba. Not only had the group helped sustain political support for maintaining the nearly forty-year trade embargo on Fidel Castro's Cuba, it directed considerable financial resources toward further hardening that embargo after the end of the cold war, when Cuba lost the support of its Soviet Union patron.

    In 1992 the foundation rallied behind legislation by then-Rep. Robert G. Torricelli, D-N.J., by 1999 a senator, to tighten the Cuba embargo and strengthen opposition to Castro's rule. In 1996 the foundation helped push through a bill by Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms, R-N.C., and Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., to write the embargo into permanent law. That meant it would be up to Congress rather than the White House to decide if and when to lift the restrictions on Cuba.

    Support for the embargo remained strong in 1999 in the Cuban-American communities of Miami and New Jersey. But the end of the cold war and the 1997 death of the foundation's charismatic leader, Jorge Mas Canosa, weakened its influence in Washington, and encouraged business and farm interests eager to ease the embargo.

    In January President Clinton, influenced by Pope John Paul II's 1998 visit to the island, took several small steps to increase contacts with Cuba. Clinton's decision to ease restrictions on travel, mail, and financial transfers won support from key lawmakers in both parties. But the clearest illustration of changing congressional sentiment came in August during debate on the fiscal 2000 agriculture appropriations bill when the Senate refused to table (kill) an amendment by John Ashcroft, R-Mo., to allow the export of food and medicine to Cuba. The vote on Helms's motion to table was 28-70: R 17-36; D 10-34 (ND 8-28, SD 2-6); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 908)

    The Ashcroft amendment was aimed at broadening a law enacted in 1998 banning trade sanctions on food and medicine, except for countries—such as Cuba—on the State Department's list of terrorist states. At the time, an amendment to keep the sanctions in place on such states, including Cuba, was backed by sixty-seven senators including Ashcroft. In 1999 only twenty-eight senators supported a continued embargo on food and medicine to Cuba. The provision was ultimately pulled out of the agriculture spending bill in conference at the insistence of Cuban-American members of the House.

    9. Cafe Standards

    Even the possibility of a study of new fuel-efficiency standards for cars and light trucks was too much for the auto industry to take. Pressure from the industry wilted an effort to lift a ban on the Clinton administration launching the study. Automakers came out in force to lobby the vote, which occurred on a sense of the Senate amendment to the fiscal 2000 transportation spending bill.

    Each year since Republicans took control of Congress in 1995 the House inserted a rider in the transportation bill to block the Transportation Department from developing new fuel standards and the Senate went along. But in 1999 a bipartisan group of senators—concerned about the rising number of fuel-hungry trucks, sport utility vehicles (SUVs), and vans on the road—vowed to reverse the policy on environmental grounds. The debate reprised themes brought up in the 1970s, when the corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards were introduced—environmental and economic costs weighed against safety factors and consumer preferences.

    Slade Gorton, R-Wash., Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Richard H. Bryan, D-Nev., wrote President Clinton in March: “The freeze rider denies the purchasers of SUVs and other light trucks the benefits of existing fuel-saving technologies.” The letter was signed by twenty-seven Democrats and four Republicans.

    Gorton, Feinstein, and Bryan argued on the floor that more efficient cars and trucks would save consumers money while reducing pollution, global warming, and the U.S. trade deficit. They said their language stopped short of advocating new fuel standards, which would come about only after the Transportation Department was allowed to review current data. Groups such as the Union of Concerned Scientists, the Sierra Club, and the League of Conservation Voters published pamphlets and other material outlining technology already employed on popular cars that could help manufacturers meet more stringent standards.

    But opponents, led by Spencer Abraham, R-Mich., and Carl Levin, D-Mich., said the amendment would lead inexorably to a fuel standard increase and that would force manufacturers to market smaller, lighter cars that are not as safe or as popular. Abraham cited National Academy of Sciences findings that current fuel-efficiency standards had contributed to thousands of deaths because the victims were driving in lighter vehicles.

    Gorton's amendment, which would have allowed the Transportation Department to study changing the CAFE standards and would have encouraged the Senate to reject the House rider, failed 40-55: R 6-45; D 34-9 (ND 29-7, SD 5-2); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 908)

    10. Nuclear Test Ban Treaty

    The Senate's rejection in October of a treaty to ban nuclear weapons testing was one of President Clinton's most embarrassing foreign policy defeats, as well as one of the clearest triumphs of conservative Republicans over his administration.

    The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (Treaty Doc 105-28) became entangled in a series of partisan political skirmishes that left it with support from just four GOP senators. Administration officials had lobbied sporadically for the treaty since Clinton submitted it for ratification in September 1997. But Senate Democratic proponents intensified their efforts in the weeks leading up to an Oct. 6 conference in Vienna of treaty signatories. After learning of Democratic tactics to force consideration of the treaty, Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss.—a staunch opponent of the test ban—abruptly agreed to schedule twenty-two hours of debate and a vote. Lott's move startled treaty advocates, who had hoped for more time to build political support for the measure.

    Once debate began, it became clear that supporters would fall far short of the 67 votes needed for ratification. The administration had failed to win over some of the Senate's influential internationalist Republicans, including Armed Services Committee Chairman John W. Warner, R-Va., and Richard G. Lugar, R-Ind. Warner led a group of lawmakers seeking to delay the vote. He and Democrat Daniel Patrick Moynihan of New York circulated a letter urging that the issue be postponed until the 107th Congress. The letter was signed by sixty-two senators—twenty-four Republicans and thirty-eight Democrats. But the rules of the Senate, as well as pressure to support the Republican leadership, helped give the treaty's critics the upper hand. Several Republicans objected to a unanimous consent agreement, proposed by Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., to shelve the vote. A procedural motion by Lott to turn from other legislation back to the treaty passed on a 55-45 party-line vote.

    The treaty was then rejected 48-51: R 4-50; D 44-0 (ND 36-0, SD 8-0); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 908)

    11. Campaign Finance

    If there was one constant in the story of campaign finance legislation it was the role played by Mitch McConnell of Kentucky in leading Senate Republicans against such measures. He mounted his first successful filibuster in the 100th Congress; by his count, his most recent effort, in October, was the twentieth time that he has marshaled most of his GOP colleagues to stop such a bill. In order to prevail this year, McConnell had to triumph over a strategy advanced by John McCain, R-Ariz., and Russell D. Feingold, D-Wis., who led the effort to limit the influence of money in politics.

    Convinced that their comprehensive proposal could not overcome a McConnell filibuster, they wrote a narrower measure (S 1593). Its central element was a ban on “soft money,” the unlimited and unregulated donations from unions, corporations, and wealthy people that were the fastest-growing source of cash to the Republican and Democratic committees that underwrite presidential and congressional campaigns. If they could win 60 votes for this narrow approach, they reasoned, they stood a chance of reassembling their original proposal—or perhaps finding a new bipartisan consensus—through the amendment process. Ultimately, McCain and Feingold sought to win passage of a bill, like the measure (HR 417) the House passed, that would not only ban soft money but would also regulate “issue advocacy” advertising, the campaigns paid for by third parties that promote a candidacy without ever explicitly urging a vote for or against anyone.

    After a round of parliamentary maneuvering, in which proponents and opponents in both parties sought to frame the debate to their liking, the key vote came on in Oct. 19. It was on a motion to invoke cloture on an amendment by the Democratic leadership that essentially restated the text of the underlying bill. The vote was 53-47: R 8-46; D 45-0 (ND 37-0, SD 8-0); I 0-1, seven short of the number needed to bring debate to a close. The ballot showed the quicksand through which McCain and Feingold continue to labor. On the one hand, they won a net of one more ally than their previous best showing. And they did so with the help of three Republicans who had voted with McConnell in the past: Sam Brownback of Kansas, Tim Hutchinson of Arkansas, and William V. Roth Jr. of Delaware. But they also lost the votes of two Republicans who were on record as supporting a sweeping approach: Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania and John H. Chafee of Rhode Island. Their strategy also failed to win over several other Republicans who, the sponsors hoped, would see the narrow bill as a vehicle for testing the Senate's sentiment for other approaches. (Vote, p. 908)

    12. Abortion

    Legislation to ban a procedure that opponents call “partial birth” abortion turned up in Congress every year since Republicans took over in 1995, although the bill never became law because proponents were unable to muster the two-thirds vote necessary to override President Clinton's veto. In that sense, the 1999 debate was no exception, as the Senate vote by less than the two-thirds majority needed for a veto override: 63-34.

    The key vote on the bill (S 1692), however, came on what was essentially an effort by two Democratic senators to make a point. During the debate, Tom Harkin of Iowa and Barbara Boxer of California offered a nonbinding amendment to express the sense of Congress that the Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that found that women have the right to abortion was “an appropriate decision” that “secures an important constitutional right” and “should not be overturned.” Boxer and Harkin said they offered the amendment in hopes of “smoking out” those Republicans who argued that the “partial birth” ban had nothing to do with the broader issue of abortion rights.

    This is the first time that I know of that we have had the opportunity to vote up or down on whether or not we believe that Roe v. Wade should stand and should not be overturned, and that it is, indeed, a good decision,
    Harkin said.

    After a Republican move to table the amendment failed, the amendment was adopted, 51-47: R 8-44; D 43-2 (ND 36-1, SD 7-1); I 0-1. Abortion-rights supporters expressed shock and dismay at their narrow victory, in which only one more senator than an outright majority took their side. They said the tally showed that antiabortion forces wield growing power in Congress and were within striking distance of pushing far more sweeping abortion bills through the Senate. And they said the tally demonstrated that Congress is out of step with the American people, citing polls showing that a solid majority believe abortion should remain legal. (Vote, p. 908)

    Opponents of abortion rights said the vote revealed less than enthusiastic support for abortion on demand.

    13. Financial Services

    Lawmakers agreed for years that the United States needed to repeal decades-old laws restricting cross-ownership among the banking, securities, and insurance industries. Supporters said it would help businesses compete globally and provide consumers with one-stop shopping for financial services. But partisan fights, along with battles among the industries over details, had made consensus in the Senate elusive.

    Early in the year it looked as if 1999 would be no different. The new Banking Committee chairman was Phil Gramm, R-Texas, a key player in preventing a financial services overhaul from getting a floor vote in 1998. He was known for partisanship, and indeed, partisanship prevailed in May when the Senate passed an overhaul bill (S 900), 54-44, with only one Democrat, Ernest F. Hollings of South Carolina, on board.

    Gramm plowed over Democratic opposition in committee and on the floor by insisting on inclusion of controversial changes to the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act (PL 95-128), an antiredlining measure aimed at forcing banks to make loans in low-income neighborhoods. Gramm insisted on including a provision to exempt small, rural banks from the act, drawing sharp objections from Democrats and a veto threat from the White House.

    In the House-Senate conference, Gramm continued to make waves, saying he was willing to pass a partisan bill and dare the White House to veto it. But behind closed doors, Gramm was less unyielding. He fought for days with Democrats and the White House but never walked away from the table. Negotiators say each time a deal was on the verge of collapse, industry representatives stepped up pressure on Gramm, the White House, and others to keep working.

    Gramm eventually agreed to drop the reinvestment law exemption for small rural banks but he won a provision to ease the law's regulatory requirements for most small banks. He also was able to include a “sunshine provision” to require disclosure of deals in which a bank offers grants or loans to a community group in exchange for the group's support of the bank's reinvestment activities.

    After the protracted conference, the Senate voted overwhelmingly in early November to adopt the conference report on S 900. The vote was 90-8: R 52-1; D 38-7 (ND 30-7, SD 8-0). The House cleared the bill the same day, and President Clinton signed it the following week. (Vote, p. 908)

    1. Steel Restrictions

    In the six years since passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement, debate over its impact on the nation's economy continued between free-trade advocates and supporters of protection for U.S. businesses. That debate sharpened in early 1999, when the steel industry found itself in a two-year slump. Prices for most steel products dropped sharply; several steel manufacturers filed for bankruptcy, and at least 10,000 of the nation's 170,000 steelworkers were laid off. Steelmakers and their workers blamed the troubles on a 33 percent increase in the volume of steel imported into the United States, much of it from Japan, Brazil, and Russia.

    Lawmakers cheered President Clinton when he said in his January State of the Union address that if Japan did not reverse the surge of steel imports “America will respond.” Members of the Congressional Steel Caucus went a step further. They introduced a bill (HR 975), sponsored by Peter J. Visclosky, D-Ind., to allow the president to limit steel imports for three years through quotas, tariffs, or other measures. The limits would have kept steel imports at their average monthly level as calculated between August 1994 and July 1997.

    Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin warned that such a bill would run “a very real risk of triggering protectionist interests around the world.” Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan warned that a “drift toward protectionist policies, which are always difficult to reverse, is a much greater threat than is generally understood.” And Rep. Philip M. Crane, R-Ill., chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade, announced a series of hearings to counter what he called “protectionist temptations” in Congress. Free-traders called for the United States to stick to the same laws it expected other countries to live by.

    With such opposition, it was unlikely that the Steel Caucus—supported by organized labor—would see its legislation enacted. But its vocal anti-import stance showed the public's discomfort over free trade and underscored how difficult it would be for the president and GOP leaders to enact major trade legislation.

    In the end, the margin of victory for protectionism was so wide that even bill supporters were surprised. The House passed HR 975 in on March by a vote of 289-141: R 91-128; D 197-13 (ND 146-9, SD 51-4); I 1-0. Republicans split between those defending home-state industries and free-traders who felt they had done enough for steel manufacturers by approving $1 billion in loan guarantees for the industry. The steel import bill died in the Senate in June when a motion to invoke cloture failed, 42-57. (Vote, p. 910)

    2. Missile Defense

    The push for a small-scale national antimissile defense gained momentum in 1998 when North Korea tested a rocket with nearly enough range to strike Alaska or Hawaii, when India and Pakistan tested nuclear weapons, and when a commission chaired by former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld warned that a missile threat to U.S. territory could materialize within five years—much sooner than the Clinton administration had projected.

    In February the administration included deployment funding for a national missile defense in its long-range budget plans for the first time. Defense Secretary William S. Cohen said the threat of a limited missile attack clearly warranted deployment, but he and other officials reiterated the administration's position that a decision also should be based on the technical success of the antimissile system, its projected cost, and its impact on arms reduction efforts. The administration emphasized the last point particularly, because any nationwide defense would require amending the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty, a step Russia opposed.

    To challenge the administration's conditional commitment to deployment, Curt Weldon, R-Pa., introduced a one-sentence bill (HR 4) declaring it to be national policy to deploy a national missile defense. John M. Spratt Jr., D-S.C., cosponsored the bill, arguing that it was vague enough that it did not threaten the ABM Treaty. However, the White House opposed the bill as an attack on the pact.

    The GOP-led campaign for a limited nationwide antimissile defense system received a symbolic lift in March from a House vote that showed growing Democratic support for the idea. The vote, which came on a procedural motion, amounted to a test of President Clinton's policy of delaying a decision on deploying the antimissile system until the summer of 2000 and basing the decision on many factors, including whether a deployment would undercut talks with Russia.

    More than a quarter of the Democrats who voted on the motion joined all but two voting Republicans to reject Clinton's position, thus backing an immediate and unconditional endorsement of an antimissile deployment. The key vote was on a motion by Tom Allen, D-Maine, to recommit the bill to committee with instructions that it be amended to endorse Clinton's policy of basing a deployment decision on several factors, including any possibly adverse impact on arms reduction negotiations. The motion was rejected 152-269: R 2-212; D 150-56 (ND 125-28, SD 25-28); I 0-1. The Weldon bill then was passed, 317-105, with Democrats splitting 103-102 in favor of the measure. (Vote, p. 910)

    3. Kosovo Air Attacks

    In the weeks before and during the NATO bombing campaign against Yugoslavia, intended to end the oppression of ethnic Albanians in the province of Kosovo, the House took a series of votes relating to the issue without defining a clear policy.

    The most conspicuous of the lot occurred in late April when twenty-six Democrats joined all but thirty-one voting Republicans—led by Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas—in a tie vote that defeated a resolution (S Con Res 21) to authorize the air operations that had been under way for five weeks. The vote was symbolic because the House was moving swiftly toward passing a supplemental spending bill to pay for the Kosovo campaign. But it underscored the House GOP's contempt for Clinton, whom they had voted to impeach four months earlier, and their mistrust of his stewardship of U.S. armed forces.

    GOP disdain for Clinton's handling of defense issues, rooted in his avoidance of the draft and his 1993 effort to allow openly gay persons to serve in the armed forces, came to focus on his commitment of troops to peacekeeping and humanitarian missions rather than training for war. In late 1995 Clinton overrode those objections and deployed U.S. troops as the backbone of a NATO-led peacekeeping force in Bosnia. But congressional critics were further outraged when the administration's promise to end that mission in a year was brushed aside only a few days after the 1996 election.

    Against that backdrop, when Yugoslavia's ethnic Serb majority began brutalizing Kosovo's Albanians late in 1998, congressional sentiment about a U.S. response was chaotically divided. Once military operations against the Serbs began on March 24, the prevailing sentiment among GOP leaders seemed to be that Congress should avoid any votes that would require members either to endorse what they saw as Clinton's flawed leadership or to vote against the U.S. involvement and thus strengthen the hand of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

    But Republican Tom Campbell of California invoked provisions of the 1973 War Powers Resolution (PL 93-148) to force the House to vote on a declaration of war against Yugoslavia and a resolution ordering the withdrawal of U.S. forces from the conflict. Though both were defeated, Democrats insisted that the House vote on the Senate-passed resolution authorizing the air war. Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., supported the resolution but declined to lobby Republicans on it, calling it a vote of conscience. But DeLay strenuously opposed the measure, urging members not to “take ownership” of an “incompetent” administration's policy. The resolution was rejected on a tie vote of 213-213: R 31-187; D 181-26 (ND 131-21, SD 50-5); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 910)

    4. Airport Trust Fund Use

    For the second year in a row, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bud Shuster, R-Pa., confronted a coalition of powerful fiscal conservatives intent on stopping his plans for transportation spending. In a June showdown on the House floor, Shuster again won big.

    In the 1998 surface transportation law Shuster won a guarantee that gasoline tax revenues would be reserved for highway and transit spending. He beat Republican deficit hawks who argued that the six-year measure short-circuited the appropriations process and was full of pork-barrel spending.

    In 1999 Shuster targeted the Airport and Airway Trust Fund, financed primarily by airline ticket taxes. The fund was intended for aviation spending but Shuster said that in practice appropriators underfunded aviation and spent part of the money on other purposes. With his five-year, $59.3 billion proposal (HR 1000), Shuster proposed taking the trust fund “off budget,” keeping the money only for aviation projects.

    Shuster built support for his bill by talking about the need to keep up with skyrocketing air passenger traffic. He argued that current spending levels would leave aviation wanting while unspent trust fund balances would grow to tens of billions of dollars. And he produced a chart showing how much every airport in the country would benefit from the tripling of the basic federal construction grant.

    But Appropriations Committee Chairman C. W. Bill Young, R-Fla., and Budget Committee Chairman John R. Kasich, R-Ohio, said Shuster's bill would erode the checks and balances built into the federal budget process. Further, Young said Shuster's bill would authorize $14.3 billion in spending above the level set in the fiscal 2000 budget resolution (H Con Res 68).

    Young and Kasich were backed by two other powerful lawmakers, Ways and Means panel Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, and Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas, on an amendment to remove the off-budget language from the bill. A bloc of fiscal conservatives, led by Tom Coburn, R-Okla., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., also backed the effort, as did Appropriations panel Democrats.

    In the end, Shuster's opponents were overmatched by lawmakers eager to bring home the benefits of the bill. Airport construction projects have an impact on every congressional district, and added capacity can promote airline competition and lower ticket prices. The Young-Kasich amendment was defeated 179-248: R 111-108; D 68-139 (ND 49-106, SD 19-33); I 0-1. But the House decision did little to influence the Senate, whose version of the bill did not include Shuster's plan. A conference on the bill broke down for the year late in 1999. (Vote, p. 910)

    5. Media Sex and Violence

    Days after a shooting rampage left fifteen people dead at a Colorado high school, gun control advocates were on the offensive, hoping that public dismay could be leveraged into tighter restrictions on firearms. Cultural conservatives had a similar strategy—that the carnage would build support for proposals to address the “root causes” of youth violence. They pointed to what they perceive to be declining social values and the pernicious effects of sex and violence in the mass media.

    Their most ambitious aspiration was adoption of an amendment that House Judiciary Committee Chairman Henry J. Hyde, R-Ill., offered to a bill (HR 1501) designed principally to crack down on juvenile criminals. It called for five-year prison terms for selling or lending to minors a wide array of violent or sexually explicit material. In doing so, it attempted to create a new legal definition of violence that could be constitutionally restricted, much the way obscenity has been since a 1973 Supreme Court ruling.

    With intense media attention in the days before the vote in mid-June, Hyde's proposal appeared poised to pass. But furious lobbying by an array of interests across the ideological spectrum caused support to implode. The vote to defeat the amendment was a lopsided 146-282: R 127-92; D 19-189 (ND 10-143, SD 9-46); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 910)

    Hollywood's lobbyists alone probably did not have sufficient clout to stop the proposal. But on this vote they were allied not only with civil libertarians but with many business groups including bookstore owners, movie rental outlets, and video game arcades. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which had increased its lobbying staff to have a bigger impact on legislation, got onto their side as well.

    On a vote that pitted two key GOP constituencies against each other, business won. Social conservatives—who have had far less legislative success than they had expected since the Republicans took over Congress in 1995—were dealt another setback. The outcome also suggested how much more lobbying clout is still wielded by established retailers. Three years earlier the House agreed to enact an overhaul of telecommunications law with similar penalties for disseminating certain sexually explicit material to minors over the Internet. It was struck down the next year by the Supreme Court. Hyde attributed his defeat in part to posturing by colleagues who, he said, wanted to be perceived as equally fervent defenders of the First Amendment and the Second Amendment, the latter of which is raised as the main rationale for opposing gun control.

    6. Gun Control

    Gun control advocates once again experienced bitter defeat in 1999 when the House rejected gun control legislation (HR 2122) in June, only two months after a massacre at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., and a May vote in the Senate to require background checks of would-be buyers at gun shows. But in the end the measure was defeated by an unusual coalition: defenders of the Second Amendment, who rejected any new gun restrictions, and proponents of gun control, who said that a “poison pill” was dropped in to make the measure weaker than current law. The vote halted the momentum toward increased gun restrictions that had been building since the April shootings in Colorado.

    The House bill would have required gun show checks, too, but with a twenty-four-hour time limit—down from three business days under current law, which covered fewer gun show transactions. On one-quarter of checks, a national computer database provided incomplete records, forcing law enforcement officers to telephone courthouses and state records offices. A one-day limit would do little good, Clinton administration officials argued, because most gun shows are on weekends when government offices are closed.

    Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas, arranged a series of votes on different versions of the gun control proposals so that some lawmakers could vote “yes” on some without crossing the National Rifle Association (NRA). Language by Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y., that was similar to the Senate gun show provision was defeated, 193-235. It lost out to the amendment that limited the background check, which was offered—at DeLay's request—by John D. Dingell, D-Mich. That prevented President Clinton or Democratic leaders from getting much partisan mileage out of the issue.

    With the Dingell provision added, 218-211, the bill became so onerous to gun control advocates that they deserted it in droves. Gun control foes, meanwhile, were never comfortable with some of the other provisions in the bill, including a requirement that gun locks be sold with all handguns.

    On the key vote in June the legislation was defeated 147-280: R 137-82; D 10-197 (ND 6-146, SD 4-51); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 910)

    7. Financial Services

    Efforts to rewrite laws governing banks, brokerages, and insurers foundered repeatedly for decades, usually before a bill even reached a floor vote in either chamber. Thus when the House passed a financial services overhaul for the first time ever in 1998, GOP Conference Chairman John A. Boehner of Ohio quipped that the bill's one-vote margin of victory “looks like a landslide.”

    Still, GOP leaders had to twist arms and wring out last-minute vote switches on the floor to overcome Democratic opposition. And the measure died in the 105th Congress, as it had many times before. In 1999 things changed. The financial sectors toned down their long-running squabbles over details of the legislation, which sought to remove barriers between the banking, securities, and insurance industries. As veteran banking lobbyist Kenneth A. Guenther of the Independent Community Bankers of America noted, almost everyone involved was “just sick and tired of this, and they want it off their backs.”

    In July the House passed a financial services overhaul bill (HR 10) by a wide margin, suggesting that the measure's time had come. Bipartisan support for the legislation had been painstakingly nurtured by House Banking and Financial Services Committee Chairman Jim Leach, R-Iowa. Under House rules, Leach has to leave the banking chairmanship at the end of the 106th Congress, and after years of effort he wanted to pass an overhaul before surrendering the gavel. The vote was 343-86: R 205-16; D 138-69 (ND 95-58, SD 43-11); I 0-1. After the vote, House members from both parties smiled broadly and crossed the center aisle of the floor to shake hands. (Vote, p. 910)

    The House vote gave the bill momentum. After traveling a tougher, more partisan road in the Senate it eventually was passed and sent to the president who signed it into law.

    8. Education

    As the House began the difficult task of reauthorizing the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), the main law governing federal aid to public schools, President Clinton's seven-year plan to hire 100,000 teachers became central to the debate.

    The act, rewritten every five years, historically was a lightning rod for controversial issues from private school vouchers to prayer in the classroom. The same was true in 1999 with the two parties sparring over Clinton's efforts to use the ESEA as a vehicle for authorizing his teacher hiring plan, designed to reduce class sizes in grades one through three.

    The House addressed the issue in July when it took up a bill (HR 1995) to create a new education block grant, including the current Eisenhower teacher training program, Clinton's 100,000-teacher plan and the administration's Goals 2000 program of grants to help states improve educational quality. The bill also set standards to ensure that teachers are qualified in the subject area for which they are hired.

    House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman Bill Goodling, R-Pa., decided to rewrite the ESEA as a series of smaller bills, rather than one enormous measure. The teacher training package was the first to reach the floor.

    Some Democrats, such as George Miller of California, supported the block grant plan. Miller believed that Congress should provide local districts with flexibility to use the money for either training or hiring new teachers.

    White House officials, worried that other Democrats would follow Miller's lead, met with committee members before the floor vote and urged them to remain united behind Clinton's class-size reduction proposal. Clinton threatened to veto the Goodling bill on the grounds that it was too open-ended and provided no assurances that schools would use any of the $2 billion authorized under the block grant each year to hire new teachers.

    Eager to get a vote on the teacher-hiring plan, Matthew G. Martinez, D-Calif., offered a substitute to increase funding for professional development while providing a separate authorization for the 100,000-teacher program. The amendment authorized $1.5 billion for class-size reduction in fiscal 2000, increasing to $3 billion in fiscal 2005.

    The Martinez amendment died on a 207-217: R 3-215; D 203-2 (ND 151-0, SD 52-2); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 910)

    The 100,000-teacher proposal resurfaced in November, when Congress provided $1.3 billion for it in the fiscal 2000 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education appropriations measure.

    9. Tax Cuts

    Republican leaders faced a difficult decision early in 1999. They could attempt to unite their often fractious party around the traditional GOP magnet of massive tax cuts. Or they could pursue a deal with President Clinton that would probably get them a tax cut albeit less than they wanted. They took the former route. Budget writers reserved about $800 billion of the projected surplus over the next ten years for tax-cutters.

    The House Ways and Means Committee used that opportunity to forge an $864 billion tax cut package in July. The bill (HR 2488) included something for every Republican. Among its many provisions were several that conservatives had long waited to consider: a 10 percent across-the-board cut in income tax rates, a phase out of the estate tax, and a reduction in the capital gains tax rate.

    The bill achieved one leadership goal—defining differences between the parties. Democrats, even moderates often attracted to tax cuts, vilified the bill as a sop to the rich, and the president repeatedly threatened to veto it.

    But as GOP leaders attempted to move the bill, about twenty moderate Republicans said the measure did not contain what they wanted most—an assurance that tax cuts would not defer paying down the national debt.

    With the bill scheduled to come to the House floor in mid-July, Republican leaders met with the moderates to win support for their plan. And Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., who often refrained from pressuring members on votes, staked his leadership on moving the bill. Hastert met with wavering members and eventually persuaded Ways and Means Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, to accept a provision that conditioned the portion of the 10 percent across-the-board cut scheduled to take place in 2004 on a reduction in the interest accrued on the national debt. That change, and Archer's decision to trim the bill to the Senate's proposed total tax cut of $792 billion, swayed most moderates back in the leaders' direction.

    When the bill came to the floor the vote was 223-208: R 217-4; D 6-203 (ND 2-152, SD 4-51); I 0-1. Only four moderate Republicans—Michael N. Castle of Delaware, Greg Ganske of Iowa, Constance A. Morella of Maryland, and Jack Quinn of New York—voted against it. Democrats also stayed largely united, with only six moderates voting for the measure. On the day of the vote, Hastert said he had asked Republicans to vote for the bill because it was important “for us being able to move forward” as a party. (Vote, p. 910)

    10. Campaign Finance

    It took six years for those who advocate a revamped system of federal campaign finance to push legislation through the House. But having finally accomplished that goal in the 105th Congress, they were able to replicate it with remarkable exactitude fourteen months later.

    The key vote in September was House passage of legislation (HR 417) by Christopher Shays, R-Conn., and Martin T. Meehan, D-Mass. The vote was 252-177: R 54-164; D 197-13 (ND 148-8, SD 49-5); I 1-0. The measure contained two principal provisions. It barred the political party committees that underwrite presidential, House, and Senate campaigns from taking or spending “soft money,” the term for the unlimited and unregulated donations from corporations, unions, and wealthy individuals that are the fastest-growing source of campaign financing. It also tightened federal regulation of “express advocacy” advertising, in which third-party groups try to sway voters without explicitly calling for a vote for or against anyone. (Vote, p. 910)

    Shays and Meehan won an identical number of votes for similar legislation in 1998, showing that another round of congressional campaigns fueled by soft money and supplemented by advocate advertising had not changed the chamber's sentiment in favor of limiting either practice. In 1999, as the year before, 58 percent of the House voted for the bill, and both times the measure obtained a comfortable thirty-four votes beyond a majority. The second time around, 24 percent of Republicans defied their leadership and supported the bill.

    To win, Shays and Meehan again had to navigate their legislation through a parliamentary obstacle course set up by GOP leaders, in 1999 by defeating six amendments they called “poison pills” as well as three alternative campaign finance packages. But there were two small salves for the bill's opponents. The 1999 measure received seven fewer GOP votes than a year earlier and only two of the nineteen first-term GOP members voted for it. Shays said that, unlike freshmen of the 105th Congress who pushed their own campaign finance bill, these newcomers were against changing a system from which many have already reaped big donations. Four lawmakers voted “yes” in 1999 after voting “no” in 1998; three switched to “no” in 1999 from “yes” in 1998.

    Still, the vote gave Shays and Meehan what they had said all year they desired: a solid House endorsement of their proposals early enough in the 106th Congress to raise the profile of the issue in the Senate and thereby make it more difficult for vulnerable GOP incumbents there to support a filibuster against the proposals by Shays and Meehan's allies, John McCain, R-Ariz., and Russell D. Feingold, D-Wis. But a month after House passage senators rejected attempts to limit debate on both a sweeping and a more narrow bill by McCain and Feingold.

    11. Fetal Protection

    House Republicans opened a new venue for the abortion debate in 1999, pushing to passage legislation that, for the first time, recognized the fetus under federal law as an entity distinct from the pregnant woman. Although sponsors of the bill (HR 2436) acknowledged that the National Right to Life Committee had helped draft the language, they said that the measure's purpose was not to restrict abortions. Instead, they said, it was designed to create a new way to punish criminals.

    The measure made it a federal offense to harm an “unborn child” while committing any of sixty-eight existing federal offenses or a crime under military law, regardless of whether the accused intended that harm or even knew the woman was pregnant. Those performing or undergoing an abortion would be explicitly exempt from prosecution.

    Still, opponents argued that a vote for the bill was a vote to create a legal rationale for undermining the right to an abortion found by the Supreme Court in its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which was based in part on the conclusion that “the unborn have never been recognized in the law as persons in the whole sense.” The bill defined “unborn child” as a “member of the species homo sapiens, at any stage of development, who is carried in the womb.” Abortion-rights advocates said that language could be cited in litigation to support the argument that federal law is that life begins at conception.

    In explaining the rationale for the bill, sponsors cited the 1995 bombing of an Oklahoma City federal building. Under the bill, the bombers could have been charged not only with killing the three pregnant women inside but also in the deaths of their fetuses. ‘A pregnant woman is two special persons, said Henry J. Hyde, R-Ill. “She is carrying a tiny member of the human family.”

    Opponents proposed an alternative that would have stiffened federal penalties for attacks on pregnant women that resulted in harm to the fetus but would not have recognized the offense as a separate crime. Sponsors of the bill argued that without creating a separate protection for the fetus, criminals would get away with murder. The amendment was defeated, 201-224.

    On the key vote, the House overwhelmingly passed the bill in September but the majority was sufficient to override a veto promised by President Clinton. The vote was 254-172: R 198-21; D 56-150 (ND 40-113, SD 16-37); I 0-1. In announcing its opposition, the Justice Department said the bill may be unconstitutional and that its identification of a fetus as a separate and distinct victim is both “unprecedented” and

    unwise to the extent that it may be perceived as gratuitously plunging the federal government into one of the most—if not the most—difficult and complex issues of religious and scientific consideration.
    (Vote, p. 910)

    12. Managed Care

    After promising for months to take up legislation to expand protections for 161 million Americans enrolled in private health insurance plans, the House GOP leadership in October finally agreed to bring the issue to a vote. It was a rare instance in which floor consideration of high-profile legislation was unscripted in advance by the leadership.

    House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., had been looking for an alternative to a measure sponsored by Charlie Norwood, R-Ga., and John D. Dingell, D-Mich. Right up until October, the Speaker's scheduled date for consideration, however, none of the alternatives proposed generated enough enthusiasm to overcome the popularity of the Norwood-Dingell bill. The GOP leadership opposed that measure, mostly because it would allow people to sue their health plans for damages in state courts.

    The debate started in early October with consideration of a Republican package of tax provisions (HR 2990) designed to ensure access to health insurance. That bill passed along party lines, 227-205.

    The following day, the House took up a series of patient protection measures under a rule that made the Norwood-Dingell legislation the base bill. If any of the substitutes won a majority, debate would end and the passed bill would be combined with the tax measure and sent to a conference committee as one bill (HR 2990).

    President Clinton and some Democrats had accused the Republican leadership of using the combined-bill rule as a “poison pill” strategy. Democrats, they said, would not want to vote for any managed care bill that would then be combined with a tax package they opposed. It did not turn out that way. When the votes were tallied, three alternatives were defeated, and Norwood-Dingell prevailed. The substitute to receive the most votes, a bill sponsored by Republicans Porter J. Goss of Florida, Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, and John Shadegg of Arizona, was defeated 193-238. Some backers of the alternative blamed Hastert because he did not endorse the bill until the day the House voted on the measure.

    While passage of the Norwood-Dingell bill was predicted, no one could have guessed the margin: sixty-eight Republicans bucked their leadership position to vote for the bill. The passage vote was 275-151: R 68-149; D 206-2 (ND 153-1, SD 53-1); I 1-0. (Vote, p. 910)

    13. Assisted Suicide

    A debate in fall 1999 on outlawing doctor-assisted suicide forced House Republicans to choose between two fundamental tenets of their party: federal intrusion into state matters should be limited, and the sanctity of human life should be preserved.

    In this case, the GOP overwhelmingly sided with groups such as the National Right to Life Committee that supported legislation (HR 2260) to effectively overturn a 1997 Oregon law that resulted from a referendum. The only state statute of its kind, it authorized physicians to prescribe drugs to help terminally ill people end their lives.

    When the House passed the bill in late October only a score of Republicans opposed it, while 90 percent of the House's GOP members supported it. The vote was 271-156: R 200-20; D 71-135 (ND 48-104, SD 23-31); I 0-1. (Vote, p. 910)

    The solid majority also suggested the power of the American Medical Association (AMA), which endorsed the measure. Opposition by the doctors' lobby to a similar bill prompted sponsors to shelve the proposal in the 105th Congress.

    Several Democratic lawmakers who opposed the bill this year said they were doing so in a bid to defend both state and individual rights. “This is a patients' rights measure—it was so voted by the people,” Barney Frank, D-Mass., said of the Oregon law. “Are the patients in control of their own lives or is the federal government going to step in?”

    The bill said the attorney general “shall give no force and effect” to any state law permitting assisted suicide. Supporters said helping the sick is a cause worthy of federal action. “It will help protect vulnerable people,” said Charles T. Canady, R-Fla. “Facilitating the intentional killing of a human life is the opposite of healing,” said Henry J. Hyde, R-Ill. The bill allowed doctors to prescribe controlled substances to alleviate pain, even if that “may increase the risk of death,” and would authorize $5 million annually to promote education and training in pain management for the dying. These “palliative care” provisions helped win over the AMA, and the House defeated amendments that would have essentially limited the legislation to those sections.

    1. Impeachment of President Clinton/Motion to Dismiss

    Byrd, D-W.Va., motion to dismiss impeachment proceedings against President Clinton. Motion rejected 44-56: R 0-55; D 44-1 (ND 36-1, SD 8-0), Jan. 27, 1999.

    2. Impeachment of President Clinton/Article II—Obstruction of Justice

    Conviction on Article II, which would find President Clinton guilty of obstruction of justice, concealing evidence, and delaying proceedings in the Paula Jones federal sexual harassment civil lawsuit. Acquitted 50-50: R 50-5; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8), Feb. 12, 1999. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (67 in this case) is required to convict the president and remove him from office. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    3. Educational Flexibility/New Teachers

    S 280 Jeffords, R-Vt., motion to table (kill) the Murray, D-Wash., amendment. The Murray amendment would authorize $11.4 billion over six years to fund President Clinton's proposal to hire 100,000 new teachers to reduce class size. Motion agreed to 55-44: R 55-0; D 0-44 (ND 0-36, SD 0-8), March 11, 1999. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    4. Juvenile Crime/Gun Show Checks

    S 254 Lautenberg, D-N.J., amendment to require criminal background checks on all gun sales at gun shows, bar nonfederal licensees from transferring a firearm to a buyer at gun shows, and direct the U.S. attorney general to destroy background records within ninety days for purchasers who can legally purchase a firearm. Adopted 51-50: R 6-49; D 44-1 (ND 36-1, SD 8-0), with Vice President Gore casting a “yea” vote, May 20, 1999. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    5. Fiscal 2000 Defense Authorization/Ground Troops in Kosovo

    S 1059 Warner, R-Va., motion to table (kill) the Specter, R-Pa., amendment that would bar the use of Defense Department funds for deployment of U.S. ground troops in Yugoslavia, except for peacekeeping personnel, unless Congress declares war or enacts a joint resolution authorizing the use of military force. Motion agreed to 52-48: R 17-38; D 35-10 (ND 29-8, SD 6-2), May 25, 1999. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    6. Managed Care Revisions/Passage

    S 1344 Passage of the bill to provide federal protections, such as access to emergency care, continuing care and approved clinical cancer trials, primarily for those in self-insured health plans. The bill also would create internal and external appeals processes, bar denials based on predictive genetic data, allow self-employed individuals to deduct the full cost of health insurance premiums, and expand access to medical savings accounts. Passed 53-47: R 52-2; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8); I 1-0, July 15, 1999. (Before passage, the Senate adopted a Lott, R-Miss., substitute amendment by voice vote.) A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    7. Tax Package/Passage

    S 1429 Passage of the bill to reduce federal taxes by $792 billion over ten years. The measure would reduce the lowest income tax bracket from 15 percent to 14 percent beginning in 2001, increase the maximum income levels for the lowest bracket, allow couples to calculate their taxes as individuals on the same form, reduce estate and gift taxes, increase the annual amount transferable to an Individual Retirement Account, and extend the research and development tax credit. Passed 57-43: R 52-2; D 4-41 (ND 2-35, SD 2-6); I 1-0, July 30, 1999. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    8. Fiscal 2000 Agriculture Appropriations/Unilateral Food and Medicine Sanctions

    S 1233 Helms, R-N.C., motion to table (kill) the Ashcroft, R-Mo., amendment to the Daschle, D-S.D., amendment. The Ashcroft amendment would end U.S. unilateral sanctions on agricultural and medicinal goods and bar the president from imposing such sanctions against a country without congressional approval, with certain exceptions. Motion rejected 28-70: R 17-36; D 10-34 (ND 8-28, SD 2-6); I 1-0, Aug. 3, 1999. (Subsequently, the Ashcroft amendment was adopted by voice vote.)

    9. Fiscal 2000 Transportation Appropriations/Fuel Efficiency Standards

    HR 2084 Gorton, R-Wash., amendment to express the sense of the Senate that the Department of Transportation should be allowed to study whether to raise the corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standard for vehicles. It also would urge the Senate not to accept House-passed language that would prohibit an increase in CAFE standards. Rejected 40-55: R 6-45; D 34-9 (ND 29-7, SD 5-2); I 0-1, Sept. 15, 1999.

    10. Nuclear Test Ban Treaty/Adoption

    Adoption of the resolution to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (Treaty Doc 105-28), which would ban nuclear weapons testing six months after the pact is ratified by the forty-four nations that have either nuclear power plants or nuclear research reactors. Rejected 48-51: R 4-50; D 44-0 (ND 36-0, SD 8-0); I 0-1, Oct. 13, 1999. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (66 in this case) is required for adoption of resolutions of ratification. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    11. Campaign Finance Revisions/Soft Money Donations and Union Dues/Cloture

    S 1593 Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the Reid, D-Nev., amendment to the Daschle, D-S.D., substitute amendment. The Reid amendment would prohibit national party committees from collecting “soft money” donations, which currently were unlimited and unregulated, and labor unions would have to notify dues-paying nonmembers of any portion of their dues used for political purposes. It included the previously adopted McCain, R-Ariz., amendment on disclosure requirements. Motion rejected 53-47: R 8-46; D 45-0 (ND 37-0, SD 8-0); I 0-1, Oct. 19, 1999. Three-fifths of the total Senate (60) is required to invoke cloture.

    12. Abortion Procedure Ban/Roe v. Wade

    S 1692 Harkin, D-Iowa, amendment to the Boxer, D-Calif., amendment. The Harkin amendment would express the sense of Congress that the Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision was appropriate, secures an important constitutional right, and should not be overturned. The Boxer amendment would express the sense of Congress that lawmakers must protect a woman's life and health in any reproductive health legislation Congress passes. Adopted 51-47: R 8-44; D 43-2 (ND 36-1, SD 7-1); I 0-1, Oct. 21, 1999. (Subsequently, the Boxer amendment as amended was adopted by voice vote.)

    13. Financial Services Overhaul/Conference Report

    S 900 Adoption of the conference report on the bill to eliminate current barriers erected by the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act and other laws that impede affiliations between banking, securities, insurance and other firms. Adopted (thus sent to the House) 90-8: R 52-1; D 38-7 (ND 30-7, SD 8-0), Nov. 4, 1999.

    1. Steel Imports/Passage

    HR 975 Passage of the bill to direct the president, within sixty days of enactment, to take necessary steps—including imposing quotas, tariff surcharges, or negotiated enforceable voluntary export restraints—to ensure that the volume of steel products imported into the United States (based on tonnage) during any month does not exceed the average of monthly import volumes during the three years preceding July 1997. Passed 289-141: R 91-128; D 197-13 (ND 146-9, SD 51-4); I 1-0, March 17, 1999. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    2. Anti-Missile Defense/Recommit

    HR 4 Allen, D-Maine, motion to recommit the bill to the Armed Services Committee with instructions to report it back with an amendment that it is the policy of the United States to deploy a missile defense system that is demonstrated to be effective, does not diminish overall national security by jeopardizing other efforts to reduce threats to the United States, is affordable, and does not compromise U.S. ability to provide for other military priorities. Motion rejected 152-269: R 2-212; D 150-56 (ND 125-28, SD 25-28); I 0-1, March 18, 1999.

    3. Kosovo Conflict—Air Operation/Adoption

    S Con Res 21 Adoption of the concurrent resolution to authorize military air operations and missile strikes against Yugoslavia. Rejected 213-213: R 31-187; D 181-26 (ND 131-21, SD 50-5); I 1-0, April 28, 1999. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    4. FAA Reauthorization/Off-Budget Funds

    HR 1000 Young, R-Fla., amendment to strike the provisions of the bill that would take the Airport and Airway Trust Fund off budget and thereby permit all aviation tax revenue to be spent on aviation programs, exempt from budgetary restrictions but still subject to annual appropriations. Rejected 179-248: R 111-108; D 68-139 (ND 49-106, SD 19-33); I 0-1, June 15, 1999.

    5. Juvenile Justice/Media Violence

    HR 1501 Hyde, R-Ill., amendment to prohibit the sale, loan, or exhibition to juveniles of any material that contains sexual or violent depictions or detailed verbal descriptions, including any picture, drawing, sculpture, video game, motion picture, book, magazine, or sound recording. Offenders could face fines and up to five years in prison for a first offense and ten years for a second offense. Rejected 146-282: R 127-92; D 19-189 (ND 10-143, SD 9-46); I 0-1, June 16, 1999.

    6. Gun Shows/Passage

    HR 2122 Passage of the bill to require background checks for purchasers at gun shows, defined as any event with ten or more vendors and where fifty or more guns are offered for sale; background checks would have to be completed in twenty-four hours; gun show organizers would be required to destroy background records of those who pass background checks. Rejected 147-280: R 137-82; D 10-197 (ND 6-146, SD 4-51); I 0-1, June 18, 1999.

    7. Financial Services Overhaul/Passage

    HR 10 Passage of the bill to eliminate barriers against cross-ownership among banks, securities firms, insurance companies, and other firms. The bill would prohibit banks from selling private customer financial information to telemarketing firms and allow customers to “opt out” of having information shared with other companies; allow mutual insurance companies to move their businesses to a different state when reorganizing into a stock company; and bar financial companies from conditioning the sale of products on the purchase of other financial products. Passed 343-86: R 205-16; D 138-69 (ND 95-58, SD 43-11); I 0-1, July 1, 1999.

    8. New Teachers and Training Programs/Funding Increases

    HR 1995 Martinez, D-Calif., substitute amendment to increase funding for professional development and class-size reduction activities, with a separate authorization for the class-size reduction program. The amendment would authorize $1.5 billion in fiscal 2000 for the class-size reduction program, increasing to $3 billion by fiscal 2005; it would authorize $1.5 billion for teachers' professional development, increasing to $3 billion by fiscal 2004. Rejected 207-217: R 3-215; D 203-2 (ND 151-0, SD 52-2); I 1-0, July 20, 1999. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    9. Tax Cut Package/Passage

    HR 2488 Passage of the bill to reduce federal taxes by $792 billion over ten years. The bill would reduce individual income tax rates by 10 percent over ten years, contingent on annual progress in reducing interest on the nation's debt. It would increase the standard deduction for married couples to double that for singles; cut the capital gains tax rate to 15 percent for individuals and to 30 percent for corporations; phase out estate and gift taxes by 2009; accelerate the phase-in of a 100 percent deduction for health insurance premiums for the self-employed, and allow taxpayers to deduct health care and long-term care insurance if employers pay 50 percent or less of the premium; increase the annual contribution limit for Education Savings Accounts from $500 to $2,000 and permit tax-free withdrawals to pay for public and private elementary and secondary tuition and expenses. Passed 223-208: R 217-4; D 6-203 (ND 2-152, SD 4-51); I 0-1, July 22, 1999. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    10. Campaign Finance Overhaul/Passage

    HR 417 Passage of the bill to ban all contributions of soft money—money used for party-building activities as opposed to supporting a specific candidate—and impose restrictions on issue advocacy communications. The bill would raise the individual aggregate contribution limit from $25,000 to $30,000 per year and raise the limit on individual contributions to state political parties from $5,000 to $10,000. House candidates who receive coordinated party contributions could not spend more than $50,000 in personal funds. Labor unions would have to notify dues-paying nonmembers of any portion of their dues used for political purposes. Passed 252-177: R 54-164; D 197-13 (ND 148-8, SD 49-5); I 1-0, Sept. 14, 1999. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    11. Criminal Penalties for Harming a Fetus/Passage

    HR 2436 Passage of the bill to make it a criminal offense to injure or kill a fetus during the commission of a violent crime, regardless of the perpetrator's knowledge of the pregnancy or intent to harm the fetus. The bill states that its provisions should not be interpreted to apply to consensual abortion or to a woman's actions with respect to her pregnancy. Passed 254-172: R 198-21; D 56-150 (ND 40-113, SD 16-37); I 0-1, Sept. 30, 1999. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    12. Managed Care Patient Protection/Passage

    HR 2723 Passage of the bill to require health plans to cover emergency care when a “prudent layperson” could reasonably believe such care was required. Health plans would have to allow direct access to gynecological and pediatric care. The bill would establish an internal and external appeals process to review denial of care. Patients or their estates would have the right to sue their health plan in state courts when they believe plan decisions result in injury or death of patients. Passed 275-151: R 68-149; D 206-2 (ND 153-1, SD 53-1); I 1-0, Oct. 7, 1999. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    13. Physician-Assisted Suicide/Passage

    HR 2260 Passage of the bill to allow doctors to use controlled substances aggressively to alleviate pain, while barring them from using such drugs for the purpose of assisted suicide. The measure would supersede state law, effectively overturning an Oregon law that allows lethal prescriptions to be issued to the terminally ill, and preventing such laws from going into effect in other states. Passed 271-156: R 200-20; D 71-135 (ND 48-104, SD 23-31); I 0-1, Oct. 27, 1999.


    2000 Key Votes

    1. Fiscal 2001 Budget Resolution

    A contentious fight among Senate Republicans in the spring over how much to spend in fiscal 2001 offered a preview of the budget-related turmoil within the party that would last through much of the year. Conservatives pressed for tight spending restraints, while centrists with an eye on the upcoming elections argued for spending levels high enough to boost funding for popular social programs.

    The more tightfisted Senate Republicans won initially but their victory turned out to be short-lived. The intraparty squabbling, in the end, did little to restrain fiscal 2001 spending.

    A defining moment came in April when the Senate voted to adopt the conference report on a budget resolution (H Con Res 290) that would limit discretionary budget authority to $600.3 billion—less than an inflationary increase and about $25 billion less than President Clinton requested. The budget resolution also called for $150 billion in tax cuts during the next five years, and perhaps more depending on changes in Congressional Budget Office surplus projections. The vote was 50-48: R 50-4; D 0-44 (ND 0-36, SD 0-8). Three Republican fiscal moderates—Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, and James M. Jeffords of Vermont—voted against the budget deal, as did John McCain of Arizona, who said it called for excessive tax cuts that could jeopardize debt reduction efforts. Chafee also complained about the lack of emphasis on debt reduction. (Vote, p. 926)

    Democrats warned that the GOP was setting itself up for another end-of-session controversy in which Congress would be unable to pass several appropriations bills because of the tight budget constraints.

    GOP moderates also worried that the budget resolution was unrealistic but they had been forced to give ground to fiscal conservatives in the party just to get the budget to the Senate floor for a vote. A band of four Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee, led by Phil Gramm of Texas, had threatened to sink the budget unless GOP leaders agreed to a tight spending limit. Gramm and his allies prevailed and the budget emerged from committee on a party-line vote with a spending limit of $596.5 billion. The total was plumped on the Senate floor with an additional $4.1 billion for defense spending. The budget resolution emerged from conference at $600.3 billion.

    The House adopted the budget resolution on a near party-line vote; the Senate vote cleared it later the same day. It was the second straight year Congress met the April 15 deadline for settling on a budget, and GOP leaders hoped it would give them a running start on the difficult task ahead of clearing spending bills.

    But as appropriators had warned, party leaders would quickly find themselves wedged between fiscal conservatives, who insisted at least initially on living within the budget, and President Clinton, who said he would refuse to sign bills that did not fund his priorities. The result was that by mid-September, GOP leaders had tacitly abandoned the limits of the budget resolution. They capitulated to most of Clinton's spending demands, and in some cases Republicans endorsed even more spending than Clinton requested, as special projects were heaped on to several spending bills.

    2. Nuclear Waste Disposal

    Legislation that would decide where the nation stores its most lethal nuclear waste fell victim to much of the same political squabbling in 2000 that has doomed previous attempts to resolve the issue.

    Yucca Mountain in the remote Nevada desert was under study as the permanent disposal site, but it was not expected to be ready until 2010 at the earliest. That meant spent fuel was piling up at commercial nuclear power plants in thirty-four states. Until 1999 Republicans had concentrated on legislation that would store the fuel temporarily at an above-ground site near Yucca Mountain, but the bills had been blocked or threatened by a presidential veto.

    In an attempt to reach a compromise with nuclear utilities that were running out of storage space, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson in 1999 proposed that the Energy Department assume legal title and management of the waste, instead of sending it to Nevada. The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee backed the idea, incorporating it into a bill (S 1287) it approved in June 1999.

    Governors of several northeastern states, however, complained that such a provision would remove Congress's incentive to develop a permanent site. Frank H. Murkowski, R-Alaska, chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, sought to placate those critics by calling for the Energy Department to offer utilities a combination of money and storage casks.

    However, Murkowski ended up alienating the Clinton administration and key Democrats who backed the original proposal. Murkowski also angered the White House by including language that would have allowed the Environmental Protection Agency to establish radiation standards for the permanent site at Yucca Mountain only after consulting with the National Academy of Sciences and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Democrats complained that the storage deadlines and milestones included throughout the bill were unrealistic.

    The Senate in early February passed the reworked storage bill, 64-34—three votes short of the two-thirds majority required to overturn a veto. Six weeks later the House voted to clear the bill, 253-167—twenty-seven votes short of a two-thirds majority. President Clinton vetoed the bill, calling it “a step backward” in developing a permanent waste storage solution. The veto prompted Murkowski and other supporters to scramble to find senators who would support an override.

    In the end, however, backers of the bill came up short, thanks to a lobbying effort against the measure led by Nevada Democratic Sens. Richard H. Bryan and Harry Reid. The Senate in May failed to override the veto on a vote of 64-35: R 51-3; D 13-32 (ND 5-32, SD 8-0). The margin was actually two votes: Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., switched his vote from “yes” to “no” in a procedural move that allowed him to call for another vote in the future. Lott promised to bring up the bill again if proponents could collect more support. However, another opportunity never arose on the Senate calendar, and supporters turned their sights toward reviving the storage issue under a new presidential administration. (Vote, p. 926)

    3. Kosovo Deployment

    Republican-led opponents of the deployment of U.S. troops on peacekeeping missions in the former Yugoslavia went one more round with President Clinton in May. They ran into the same unmovable obstacles they encountered every time they forced a vote since the troops went to Bosnia in late 1995.

    In 2000 the test came on a provision in the fiscal 2001 military construction appropriations bill (S 2521) to require Clinton to withdraw by July 1, 2001, the 5,900 U.S. troops then serving as part of a NATO-led peacekeeping force in the Serbian province of Kosovo unless Congress authorized their continued deployment.

    The language, cosponsored by Armed Services Committee Chairman John W. Warner, R-Va., and senior Appropriations Committee Democrat Robert c. Byrd of West Virginia, had been approved by the Appropriations panel, 23-3.

    Contending that Clinton had given U.S. forces too little money and too many missions, most congressional Republicans—including even some committed internationalists like Warner—opposed committing U.S. ground forces to Balkan peacekeeping for fear of over-stressing both the troops and their equipment.

    For Byrd and some others, the fight was one more skirmish in the quarter-century conflict over the assertion by presidents of a unilateral right to commit military forces abroad without congressional sanction.

    Clinton's Senate opponents had not won even one of their several legislative challenges to the deployments in Bosnia and Kosovo. Each time, Clinton had been backed by a Democratic-led majority, some of whom supported the Balkan mission on its merits, some of whom were loath to take action that might endanger U.S. forces already deployed, and some of whom simply feared undermining U.S. diplomatic clout by what would be a futile effort to reverse a presidential fait accompli.

    Indeed, the critics had never come close to forcing a U.S. troop withdrawal. They fell short of even a simple majority in the Senate let alone the two-thirds majority they would need to override a Clinton veto of any binding language that would force a pullout.

    When the full Senate took up the Warner-Byrd language, the administration weighed in as usual: a veto threat by Clinton, extensive lobbying by administration officials—and the presence of Vice President Al Gore in the chair in case his tie-breaking vote was needed. Ultimately, all but seven Democrats aligned with the president.

    However, a new element was thrown into the mix by Texas Gov. George W. Bush, who at the time was the all-but-certain Republican presidential nominee. Just as every president of both parties has done since Congress tried to assert a role in deployment decisions by passing the 1973 War Powers Resolution, Bush came down squarely in favor of presidential prerogative, announcing his opposition to the Warner-Byrd language.

    The key vote came on a motion by senior Armed Services Committee Democrat Carl Levin of Michigan to delete the provision from the military construction bill. The motion was agreed to, and the language was dropped, by a vote of 53-47: R 15-40; D 38-7 (ND 32-5, SD 6-2). Warner later claimed that the key to his defeat was Bush's intervention, pointing to the fifteen Republicans who voted to drop the restrictive language. (Vote, p. 926)

    4. Campaign Finance

    For years, Congress tried—and failed—to pass a broad overhaul of the nation's campaign finance system. But in June a leader in those efforts, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., shifted tactics and successfully pushed through a narrowly written bill that opened to public review an area of private political spending.

    It was the first change in federal election law in two decades. The new law required so-called 527 organizations to publicly disclose their fund-raising and spending activities. The groups were named after the section of the tax code that previously exempted them from public disclosure so long as they did not expressly call for the election or defeat of specific candidates.

    For years opponents of curbing campaign spending said the best way to improve the system was to require greater disclosure. McCain, who had been the target of attack ads by a secretly funded 527 group while he sought the GOP presidential nomination, saw an opening to do what the foes of campaign finance overhaul had long advocated. He took his rivals at their word and introduced the legislation along with Sens. Russell D. Feingold, D-Wis., and Joseph I. Lieberman, D-Conn.

    McCain and his colleagues decided to offer the language as an amendment to an unrelated Defense Department authorization bill (S 2549). Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., agreed to allow the amendment, believing he had the votes to defeat it.

    Lott and Armed Services Committee Chairman John W. Warner, R-Va., warned that the McCain amendment would mean the death of the underlying defense bill because it would be rejected by the House for violating the constitutional requirement that changes in tax law must originate in the House.

    Debate on the amendment was replete with contradiction. Lawmakers who a year before attached an $18.4 billion tax cut for small business to the Senate bankruptcy bill as part of a proposal to raise the minimum wage, now fretted about whether McCain's amendment would, as Warner put it, “torpedo” the Pentagon bill and “send it to the bottom of the sea.”

    Lott and others also attacked McCain's proposal as unfairly narrow, arguing that it did not apply to campaign spending by labor unions and other Democratic-leaning political groups. McCain countered that 527s are used by both sides, noting the Sierra Club as a prime example of a left-leaning group that used the law to obscure its activities.

    The decisive vote was not on the amendment itself but on a point of order motion by Warner on the constitutional issue he had raised. Warner's motion was soundly rejected, 42-57: R 41-14; D 1-43 (ND 1-35, SD 0-8). Election-year politics played into the vote. Of the thirteen Republicans who sided with McCain, eight were up for reelection that November. After defeating Warner's motion, the Senate passed McCain's amendment by voice vote. (Vote, p. 926)

    The Senate vote broke the bottleneck of political maneuvering that for so long had blocked congressional efforts to change campaign financing. Within one month of the Senate's action, the House approved similar language (HR 4762). President Clinton signed it into law in July.

    5. Hate Crimes

    Although expanding the federal definition of a hate crime to include offenses against gays and the disabled has been a top goal of civil rights groups and the Clinton administration, the issue had never been debated by the Senate. In 1999 the Senate attached a hate crimes provision to a fiscal 2000 spending bill by voice vote with no debate, but it was quickly dropped during conference on the measure.

    In 2000 the chief sponsor of the provision, Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., changed his target. Instead of going after a spending bill, Kennedy offered his amendment during floor consideration of the fiscal 2001 defense authorization bill (S 2549). As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Kennedy was sure to be on the conference committee where he could fight to preserve the provision.

    Criminal acts motivated by racial, religious, or ethnic bias already were considered hate crimes under federal law. Kennedy's amendment added those in which victims were chosen because of sexual orientation, gender, or disability. In addition to expanding the definition, the measure also made it easier for the federal government to prosecute hate crimes. Under existing law the government could prosecute only if the crime took place on federal property or if it occurred during one of six very specific protected activities, such as voting. The Kennedy amendment allowed the federal government to get involved in most prosecutions of hate crimes.

    Kennedy offered his amendment in June, and, despite the controversial nature of the language, there was little debate. Although many spoke in favor of it, few voiced opposition. GOP Policy Committee Chairman Larry E. Craig, R-Idaho, said after the June vote that members were concerned about how their opposition would be interpreted. “I think all of us are extremely concerned that we don't appear to be racist or prejudiced, because none of us are,” he said.

    Fearing a tie, Democrats called Vice President Al Gore back from the campaign trail to be on hand in case his vote was needed. But Gore was not needed because the first-ever recorded vote by the Senate on the volatile question passed by the surprisingly large margin of 57-42: R 13-41; D 44-1 (ND 36-1, SD 8-0). The thirteen Republicans who voted for the measure ranged from moderates such as Vermont's James M. Jeffords to conservatives such as Alaska's Ted Stevens. The one Democratic opponent, Robert c. Byrd of West Virginia, argued that the provision was unconstitutional. (Vote, p. 926)

    Hate crimes became one of the most difficult issues to be decided by the House-Senate negotiators on the defense authorization bill. During the lengthy conference the strong Senate vote helped House supporters of the amendment pass a nonbinding motion instructing conferees to accept the Kennedy amendment. It passed, 232-192 in mid-September. Despite the strong votes and Kennedy's presence on the conference committee, the Republican leadership worked hard to strip the proposal from the defense bill. In October conferees announced it had been dropped from the final version.

    6. Colombia Drug-Fighting Aid

    With strong support from President Clinton and House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., Congress in 2000 made a major new foreign policy commitment by approving $1.3 billion in emergency spending to fight drug trafficking in South America, mainly in Colombia. Efforts to reduce the funding in the Senate version of the fiscal 2001 foreign operations bill or redirect it to other programs were overwhelmingly defeated, as only a small band of liberals and a few budget conservatives opposed the massive aid program. Some critics said the Colombia military and police were repressive while others worried that the cost to the United States would only escalate.

    On the most explicit vote taken on the issue, an amendment by Slade Gorton, R-Wash., to cut the emergency counternarcotics spending from $934 million to $200 million was rejected, 19-79: R 13-41; D 6-38 (ND 6-30, SD 0-8). (Vote, p. 926)

    The bipartisan push by Hastert and Clinton cemented support among centrists in both parties. The two leaders had expressed deep concern about the fate of Colombian President Andres Pastrana's government, which was under siege from leftist guerrillas and rightwing paramilitaries who profit from and protect drug traffickers. Hastert is the leader of a group of Republicans who had pushed for more aid to Colombia for four years before they were successful.

    Supporters of the aid package also managed to mute some of the opposition from liberals by making the aid contingent on the president's certification that Colombia had met a number of human rights conditions. The president could waive the requirement in the interest of national security.

    Pastrana and some of his top officials also became regular visitors to Capitol Hill, lobbying lawmakers on behalf of the aid package, a cornerstone of what Pastrana called “Plan Colombia,” a multiyear effort to restore security, eliminate drug trafficking, and spur economic development in the Andean nation.

    Opponents of the aid package, such as Sen. Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont, ranking Democrat on the Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee, made clear that the Senate votes were only the first skirmish in an extended battle over the funds. Even the most optimistic forecasts were that Pastrana's government would need the aid for at least five years.

    7. Genetic Information Privacy

    Just three days after two teams of scientists announced that they had decoded most of the human genome—mankind's genetic blueprint—the Senate debated an amendment by James M. Jeffords, R-Vt., to the fiscal 2001 Labor-HHS-Education spending bill (HR 4577) that prohibited health insurers from using genetic information to deny coverage or raise premiums.

    The debate reflected a growing debate about the boundaries of genetic discrimination. Although deciphering the human genome was widely hailed as a landmark development that could lead to cures for many diseases, it also has raised questions about whether patients' health information could be used to single out individuals prone to certain medical conditions. An individual's genetic profile not only yields clues about current afflictions but may reveal whether a person or his or her offspring is more prone to certain cancers or other gene-based diseases.

    The Senate's response reflected a cautious approach to potential problems. Just before the June vote on Jeffords's amendment, senators rejected, 44-54, an amendment by Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., that prohibited employers from using genetic information to discriminate in hiring practices or promotions. The provision, which was defeated largely along party lines, also would have prevented insurers from tying coverage or premiums to genetic tests and from requiring genetic tests as a condition of coverage. Daschle's amendment also would have allowed an individual to take genetic discrimination claims to court.

    Republicans argued that the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act already prevented workplace discrimination based on one's genetic profile and said Daschle's measure would prompt a flood of lawsuits. Democrats responded there was ample evidence that genetic discrimination exists, pointing to the case of a North Carolina woman who claimed she lost her job at an insurance company after officials there learned she had tested positive for a potentially fatal amino acid deficiency.

    The amendment by Jeffords, chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, was similar to language in a Senate-passed bill (S 1344) to regulate the managed care industry that had stalled in conference negotiations. Jeffords said that with the fate of the managed care legislation in doubt, it was important to attach the language to another vehicle. The Jeffords amendment was adopted 58-40: R 55-0; D 3-40 (ND 3-32, SD 0-8). (Vote, p. 926)

    8. Managed Care Regulation

    As House and Senate negotiators stumbled in their efforts to strike a deal on managed care legislation (HR 2990), Democrats and Republicans in both chambers grew weary of the talks. Senate Democrats took their frustration a step further in June, forcing floor showdowns to embarrass Republicans who had blocked action on the politically volatile patients' rights issue. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., tried unsuccessfully to attach the House-passed managed care bill—stripped of several provisions that Democrats disliked—to the fiscal 2001 Defense appropriations bill (S 2549). After that attempt, Majority Whip Don Nickles, R-Okla., said Kennedy's effort “certainly didn't help the cause of getting a good bipartisan bill.”

    Later that month Senate Democrats were at it again, this time trying to amend the fiscal 2001 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education appropriations bill (HR 4577). Byron L. Dorgan, D-N.D., offered an amendment to require any managed care bill passed by Congress to cover all 193 million Americans who have private health insurance. Nickles and other Senate Republicans had said for months that any federal legislation should not interfere with state laws governing health benefits, while Democrats felt that any health care law coming from Washington had to apply to every state. Dorgan's amendment was rejected, 47-51, but it sparked a strategic move from Senate Republicans, who battled back with a proposal of their own.

    Nickles offered an amendment that would permit patients, under limited circumstances, to sue health insurance plans for damages if they denied or delayed needed medical care. The GOP proposal broke new ground by endorsing a limited right to sue managed care plans for damages, something Senate Republicans had resisted fiercely when the Senate passed its first managed care bill in July 1999.

    Lawsuits would be allowed under two conditions: unreasonable delays in medical care and a failure to cover treatment that an independent physician determined the plan should cover. Although patients could not win punitive damages, they could recover unlimited economic damages and up to $350,000 for noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering. Democrats wanted no caps on noneconomic damages and wanted the lawsuits to be handled in state courts, not federal courts. Nickles's amendment passed, 51-47: R 51-4; D 0-43 (ND 0-35, SD 0-8). (Vote, p. 926)

    Although the vote marked a turning point in the debate, it was not enough to revive the stalled managed care talks, which concluded with no consensus package.

    9. Missile Defense

    Though many Democrats remained skeptical of a nationwide missile defense system that the Clinton administration was developing, their opposition was muted until a test failure in July galvanized them to try to slow the program down.

    The administration's program was intended to deploy by 2005 a defense that could shoot down a handful of missiles that might be launched at U.S. territory by regimes in North Korea or the Middle East. Republicans, who favored developing a more robust shield, attacked the Clinton program as inadequate and complained that its military capability was artificially constrained to live within limits set by the 1972 treaty limiting antiballistic missile (ABM) weapons.

    On the other hand, many Democrats worried that even Clinton's limited antimissile program would violate the ABM Treaty and thus spark a nuclear arms race around the globe. However, many of these critics were loath to challenge the program head-on, especially since 1998 when North Korea tested a long-range ballistic missile.

    Early in 2000 the liberal skeptics were heartened when Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Theodore A. Postol and others launched a vigorous attack on the technical effectiveness of the current antimissile program. Even a minor adversary could flummox the system by using decoys and other relatively simple countermeasures, Postol argued.

    Then in July a test was aborted by failure of a normally reliable booster rocket that was unrelated to the sophisticated “kill vehicle,” designed to home in on an attacking warhead, which Postol had criticized. Nevertheless, the incident unleashed pent-up criticism of the antimissile program—particularly of its accelerated timetable.

    The vehicle was an amendment by Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., to the annual defense authorization bill (HR 4205) that would have required more extensive tests of the system against various types of decoys and other possible countermeasures. The amendment was tabled, or killed, by a vote of 52-48: R 52-3; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8). Three Republican centrists crossed party lines: Olympia J. Snowe and Susan Collins from Maine, and Vermont's James M. Jeffords. In September Clinton cited the July test failure in announcing that he was deferring to his successor a decision about whether to deploy the antimissile defense. (Vote, p. 926)

    10. Marriage Penalty

    Usually Congress considers tax provisions en masse. Leaders believe that a big package creates its own momentum and hides in its girth controversial tax fixes for specific individuals or interest groups. That pattern changed with Republicans in charge of Congress and the White House controlled by a Democrat. Republican majorities in both chambers would pass the large bill but President Clinton would always argue that the bills were too large even though he supported some provisions. Clinton said vetoing them was necessary to prevent growth of the national debt.

    As the second session of the 106th Congress began, Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., sought a new strategy. With input from former Minority Leader Robert H. Michel, R-Ill. (1957–1995), Hastert devised a plan to move a host of smaller tax bills. That would accomplish two goals: giving members a chance for favorable publicity when their tax bills came to the floor and creating a campaign issue if Clinton vetoed a bill.

    House Republicans knew that the first test of Hastert's strategy would come not at the White House but in the Senate. For several years, that chamber's Republicans had refused to go along with House tax plans, saying they were either too expensive or not well conceived. Although many Democrats welcomed certain tax proposals, it was unclear how many would go against their party's leaders.

    The first stand-alone measure the House passed—a bill (HR 6) to cut taxes for married couples—was the one on which the Senate's intentions became clear. The House passed it easily in February but Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., could not move his chamber's more generous version (HR 4810) until July, when it had been given protection from endless amendment and debate under the fiscal 2001 budget resolution (H Con Res 290). In the meantime, the House had passed it again.

    After the Senate cleared it, Republicans quickly worked out their differences in an attempt to put the bill on Clinton's desk by the GOP presidential nominating convention, which began in late July. Conferees removed some of the most expensive Senate provisions, settling on a $90 billion tax cut over the next five years. They then pushed it to the Senate floor, setting up a political fight over a bill that had once held the promise of bipartisan compromise.

    Republicans and Democrats had both long agreed that the tax code should be fairer for married couples, who often pay more in income taxes than they would if they had remained single individuals. Democrats generally insisted the fixes should go to the 24.8 million couples who suffered the penalty. Republicans said the 21 million couples who were not penalized, mostly single-income households, also should receive tax relief.

    When Clinton said early in the year that he would not approve tax cuts before Social Security and Medicare were shored up, House Republicans moved their tax bill without Democratic input. Later, Clinton offered to sign a $250 billion-version of the “marriage penalty” bill, if Republicans approved his similarly priced measure to cover prescription drugs for the elderly. Republicans quickly rejected such a trade-off.

    In the days before the vote, Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., and Treasury Secretary Lawrence H. Summers worked mightily to make a case against the bill. Daschle and House Minority Leader Richard A. Gephardt, D-Mo., held news conferences charging that Republicans were up to “the same old tricks” when Summers released data showing that the bill's benefits were heavily weighted toward the richest families.

    Republicans said Democrats were not for tax cuts at all. “The day of reckoning is here,” Lott said July 18. “Do you actually want to eliminate the marriage penalty … or not?”

    In the end, seven Senate Democrats voted for the conference report, as fifty-one of their House counterparts had. That was enough for the measure to pass but 6 votes short of the super-majority needed to override a veto. That tally was 60-34; R 53-1; D 7-33 (ND 5-27, SD 2-6). The outcome indicated that Hastert's individual tax bills might move through Congress but would not become law. Clinton vetoed the bill in August and the House failed in September to override his decision. (Vote, p. 926)

    11. China's Nuclear Threat

    The Senate's resounding rejection of a proposal aimed at stemming China's nuclear proliferation showed the difficulty U.S. officials faced in addressing national security concerns while promoting commerce with the world's most populous nation.

    Senior Republican lawmakers condemned the Clinton administration for conducting U.S.-China relations under a so-called strategic partnership—a policy of openness they say did not regard Beijing with enough wariness as a potential security threat. At the same time, though, GOP leaders heeded warnings from the party's business allies not to stir up anti-China sentiment.

    The conflicts between the two competing interests came to a head in 2000 on a bill (HR 4444) that granted permanent normal trade relations to China. The House passed the trade measure in May after a hard-fought battle but supporters expected it to coast through the Senate. However, Sens. Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., and Robert G. Torricelli, D-N.J., argued that the national security concerns with China deserved to be debated on par with trade. They introduced a bill (S 2645) that would have required the president to punish the Chinese government or individual Chinese companies if they were found to be supplying weapons of mass destruction or components to other nations.

    With the backing of Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., Thompson sought to offer his proposal as an amendment to the fiscal 2001 intelligence authorization bill (S 2507). The Senate, however, ground to a halt in July in an impasse over judicial nominees and several Democratic legislative priorities. The delays and procedural wrangling prompted an exasperated Thompson to seek to attach his proposal to the China trade bill after lawmakers returned from the August recess.

    Supporters of the trade measure—including the Clinton administration and numerous industry groups—were anxious to keep the proliferation proposal at bay because approval of the amendment would have required the return of the trade bill to the House. They successfully lobbied Republicans who endorsed Thompson's measure not to jeopardize relations with China by adopting any amendments to the trade bill.

    In the end, Thompson's amendment was tabled, or killed, 65-32: R 30-23; D 35-9 (ND 27-8, SD 8-1). The thirty Republicans who joined thirty-five Democrats in rejecting the measure included several of the Senate's most influential GOP voices on international matters: Richard G. Lugar of Indiana, John W. Warner of Virginia, and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska. (Vote, p. 926)

    Thompson and Torricelli acknowledged that their proposal faced an uphill struggle in the context of the China trade bill but they vowed to continue to pursue the proliferation issue.

    12. “Mini-Omnibus”

    Republican prospects for finishing the fiscal 2001 appropriations process before the November election were dealt a major setback when the Senate took the unusual step of rejecting the conference report on a combined legislative branch and Treasury-Postal spending bill. The tactic of using the conference report on one spending bill to carry a second, unfinished measure was conceived in late summer. With only two fiscal 2001 appropriations bills cleared and the August recess and the two national political conventions looming, the leadership crafted its own $30.4 billion version of the Treasury-Postal bill—combining elements of the House-passed version with a version approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee—and inserted it into the conference report on the legislative branch spending measure. Also included was a proposal to repeal the 3 percent federal telephone excise tax, at an estimated cost of more than $19.9 billion over five years.

    GOP leaders hoped to avert a lengthy and politically difficult debate over the Treasury bill on the Senate floor, where fights were expected both on House-passed provisions to broaden contacts with Cuba and on likely Democratic gun control amendments. Because it was a conference report, the combined measure was not subject to amendment.

    Initial reaction in the House to the hastily assembled package was not encouraging. Democrats lambasted its secret overnight drafting; conservatives were unhappy with spending levels. Concluding they did not have the votes, GOP leaders pulled the package. When members returned after the recess, House leaders and other key supporters managed to rally enough support to win adoption of the conference report on a 212-209 vote in mid-September.

    But the combination of anger over the way the measure was brought to the Senate floor and complaints from all sides over spending—Democrats said it was too little; conservatives said it was too much—produced a dramatic showdown a few days later. The Senate rejected the conference report by an overwhelming vote of 28-69: R 28-26; D 0-43 (ND 0-34, SD 0-9). (Vote, p. 926)

    Angry that GOP leaders had never brought a stand-alone Treasury-Postal bill to the floor, Democrats united in voting against the measure. There was also bipartisan concern that, in an election year, the leadership had not allowed for a vote to add language to the bill blocking an automatic annual pay increase for members of Congress.

    To quell the opposition, GOP leaders subsequently cut a deal with the White House to provide $348 million in additional funding for the IRS and antiterrorism programs in the Transportation spending bill. The Transportation bill also included language to nullify a provision in the Treasury conference report that would have erased a temporary increase in pension payments by lawmakers under the 1997 balanced-budget law. The Senate cleared the Treasury-Postal conference report, 58-37, in October.

    But Republican prospects for moving the spending bills did not recover. Indeed, the Treasury-Postal-legislative branch package fell victim to the prolonged disarray. President Clinton vetoed it at the end of October, saying he could not sign a bill for the legislative branch when “the business of the American people remains unfinished.”

    The Treasury-Postal bill was resolved as part of the final budget negotiations in the lame-duck session.

    1. Minimum Wage

    From early in the 106th Congress, Republican leaders had tried to block, or at least blunt, calls from Democrats including President Clinton for an increase in the minimum wage. They hoped to avoid the kind of defeat they suffered in 1996, when moderate Republicans joined with Democrats to pass a wage increase over the vociferous opposition of GOP leaders.

    This time, the leadership sought to preempt the Democrats with a proposal to stretch a $1 increase to $6.15 an hour, over three years—Democrats wanted a two-year increase—and pair it with tax cuts to mollify business owners, as they had in 1996.

    Though Democrats acknowledged they would have to allow some form of tax relief as the cost of a minimum wage increase, they held firm on their two-year time frame. In February Senate Democrats tried but failed to remove a three-year minimum wage amendment added in late 1999 to a rewrite of personal bankruptcy law and replace it with a two-year phase-in. That appeared to kill efforts to get a two-year increase included in a bill in 2000.

    But in March, facing a threatened Clinton veto of any minimum-wage increase longer than two years, the House broke with its Republican leadership to adopt an amendment to a business tax-relief package offered by James A. Traficant Jr., D-Ohio, that raised the minimum wage by $1 over two years. The vote was 246-179: R 42-173; D 203-5 (ND 155-0, SD 48-5); I 1-1. The vote demonstrated the strength of support among moderate Republicans and all but the most conservative Democrats for a two-year increase, settling the question for the 106th Congress. Republicans also gained support for combining the increase with business tax relief, a fallback position for business owners opposed to an increase in the minimum wage. While the 106th Congress adjourned without clearing a minimum wage increase, the vote did encourage Congress and the White House to make several attempts over the rest of the year to combine the two-year phase-in that Clinton wanted with the business tax relief sought by Republicans. (Vote, p. 928)

    2. Kosovo Deployment

    Opponents of deploying U.S. ground troops in the former Yugoslavia won an impressive—though largely symbolic—victory in May by tapping into the widespread suspicion that other NATO allies were shirking their fair share of the peacekeeping burden. Critics of the dispatch of U.S. troops to Bosnia in 1995 and to Kosovo in 1999 contend that President Clinton was undermining U.S. military power by giving the forces too few resources and too many jobs peripheral to basic national interests. But for at least two decades before this issue arose, the demand for more equitable “burden sharing” by wealthy European allies—that is, higher European defense budgets to allow a lower Pentagon budget—had rallied some liberal Democrats and GOP conservatives alike.

    Because the most immediate threat posed by the Yugoslavia conflict was that it would exacerbate ethnic tensions in neighboring countries, critics touted it as a prime opportunity for the European NATO members to take a larger role, particularly by relieving U.S. ground troops from the dangerous business of policing.

    In March House Budget Committee Chairman John R. Kasich, R-Ohio, a leading opponent of the Balkan deployments, offered an amendment to the supplemental appropriations bill for fiscal 2000 that would have withheld half the $2.1 billion included in the bill for the Kosovo operation until the Europeans took on a larger role in the mission. The amendment was rejected, 200-219, with many members objecting that it would have tied the president's hands in case of a crisis.

    When the House took up the annual defense authorization bill several weeks later, Kasich refined his proposal to give the president more flexibility. This time, the amendment would require the president to withdraw U.S. ground troops from Kosovo unless he could certify to Congress by April 1, 2001, that European countries had actually delivered certain percentages of the police manpower and financial aid they had already pledged for the province's reconstruction. The president could waive this rule for up to six months in case of a military crisis, or if Congress approved a longer deployment.

    Supporters of the deployment argued that Europeans already had taken on most of the heavy lifting, providing about 80 percent of the peacekeeping troops in Kosovo. But an overwhelming majority of Republicans joined by nearly one-third of the Democrats backed the amendment, 264-153: R 195-18; D 67-135 (ND 49-100, SD 18-35); I 2-0. Kasich's supporters fell 14 votes shy of the two-thirds majority they would have needed to override a certain Clinton veto but they never faced that test. The provision was not included in the final version on the bill that emerged from a Senate-House conference. (Vote, p. 928)

    3. Military Retirees Health Care

    A long-running debate over the adequacy of health care for military retirees was resolved in 2000 when Congress approved a sweeping expansion of medical benefits that was expected to cost $60 billion over ten years.

    The House vote in May was interpreted as an extremely important development: Congress's first open break from its self-imposed budget limits as a result of burgeoning budget surpluses produced by a booming economy.

    The issue was welcomed in both parties. Republicans argued that the complaints of military retirees were proving to be a detriment to the armed services, especially in recruitment and retention. At least some liberal Democrats backed the move in hopes that it would help create momentum for their effort to greatly expand the medical care entitlement currently available to all citizens over the age of sixty-five.

    Specifically at issue was the retirees' contention that they had been promised free, lifetime medical care for themselves and their dependents if they served on active duty for at least twenty years. The government's legal obligation to the retirees was much narrower than that but for decades most retirees could easily obtain free health care either from military hospitals, which they could use on a space-available basis, or from private health-care providers who would accept reimbursement from a Pentagon-run insurance program. However, once they turned sixty-five retirees were to rely on Medicare.

    Retirees had complained for years about being forced to turn to Medicare and about limitations in the Pentagon-run insurance program. But the complaints became more insistent in the mid-1990s. As many military bases were closed, access to military hospitals became more difficult, even as health costs were rising and the number of Medicare-eligible retirees and dependents was growing to a current total of nearly 1.4 million. In response, Congress created in 1997 several pilot programs to test alternative medical benefits for retirees.

    President Clinton's fiscal 2001 defense budget requested $80 million to fix certain problems in the existing program but the administration turned down the Joint Chiefs' proposals to offer retirees cut-price, mail-order pharmacy service and “medi-gap” insurance to cover the difference between their expenses and what Medicare would pay.

    The House Armed Services Committee added to the annual defense authorization bill provisions that would expand the mail-order pharmacy benefit. When the bill came to the House floor, committee member Gene Taylor, D-Miss., offered an amendment that would have transformed one of the pilot programs into a new benefit available to all retirees under which Medicare would reimburse the military for their medical care.

    Warning that this approach was untested and would cost too much, House Armed Services military personnel subcommittee Chairman Steve Buyer, R-Ind., offered an alternative amendment to expand the pilot program and extended it through 2003. But Buyer's proposal was rejected, 95-323, after which the House passed Taylor's amendment by 406-10: R 207-9; D 197-1 (ND 145-1, SD 52-0); I 2-0. The conference report on the defense bill, approved in October, included even more generous health care entitlements for retirees. (Vote, p. 928)

    4. China's Trade Status

    Every year since Chinese leaders sent tanks to quell student rebellions in Tiananmen Square in 1989, China's trade status with the United States had caused vigorous debates in Congress. Each year, the president would certify that China had met the conditions for maintaining a normal trade relationship with the United States. Under a provision of the 1974 Trade Act (known as the Jackson-Vanik amendment after its sponsors) communist nations must allow free immigration in order for their imports to win the same beneficial tariffs that the goods of other nations receive. After the president's annual certification, a member of Congress would challenge his decision and accuse the United States of forsaking human rights to make a buck. Efforts to overturn the certification inevitably failed, as the majority determined that isolation would not change China's policies.

    With such a controversial history, it was unsurprising that the most contentious vote of the 106th Congress would be the Clinton administration's bid to exempt China from the annual review and grant it permanent normal trading status. The House, where trade expansion often divided both parties, became the main battleground. The more reliably protrade Senate was a lesser hurdle.

    The 2000 action began in November 1999 when U.S. and Chinese officials concluded thirteen years of negotiations with a sweeping trade agreement. It provided unprecedented U.S. access to the more than one billion consumers of China, requiring the Asian nation to change hundreds of laws and practices. The United States was required only to make China a permanent normal trading partner. In addition, that move would put the U.S. imprimatur on China's bid to join the World Trade Organization (WTO).

    But it also made life difficult for many members of Congress, particularly House Democrats who looked forward to their best chance in six years to retake the chamber and did not want to risk offending their allies in organized labor that vociferously opposed the bill.

    As a result, President Clinton approached the issue gingerly. He did not release details of the agreement or send draft legislation to the Hill until March, several weeks after many Republicans worried publicly that Clinton would not engage in the debate to the extent necessary to ensure passage. They brought up his failure in 1997 and 1998 to win fast-track trading authority from Congress as proof that he was not sufficiently committed to expanding world trade. But Clinton had his own agenda. He had shepherded the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade through skeptical Congresses in 1993 and 1994. Success on the China bill, which would allow the president to grant permanent trade status when China joined the WTO, would cap his achievements as a president who had greatly expanded international commerce.

    Through weekly meetings with wavering members at the White House, frequent calls to the Capitol, and the appointment of NAFTA veteran William M. Daley to head his lobbying efforts, Clinton showed he would actively pursue approval. Meanwhile, Clinton's usual union and environmental allies were preparing to fight the measure. They were joined by human rights organizations and groups focused on preventing abortions, which generally appealed to more conservative members. The nation's largest businesses, particularly those in the high-technology, agricultural, and manufacturing sectors, lined up on the other side. They provided millions of dollars for lobbying and advertising campaigns in favor of the bill. The target for both groups was a group of wavering members, which dwindled from almost a third of the House when the issue was first discussed to less than a dozen by the time the vote came in late May.

    Opponents of the measure, led by Minority Whip David E. Bonior, D-Mich., held news conferences to hail members they had persuaded to vote against the bill. Minority Leader Richard A. Gephardt, D-Mo., opposed the bill but refrained from lobbying against it in deference to his caucus' mixed feelings. The administration's point man—inveterate protrader Robert T. Matsui, D-Calif.—and Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas, joined forces to round up votes for the bill. Well known for his intense dislike of Clinton, DeLay's involvement in whipping for the president's priority was key to keeping partisan tensions at a minimum during the critical final days of debate. And proponents' ability to win endorsement from some high-ranking Democrats, led by Charles B. Rangel of New York, helped sway some new members as well.

    Despite the pressure, a number of undecided members still worried that they were giving China, a country with a history of human rights violations and saber rattling, a blank check by agreeing to the bill.

    Two members—Sander M. Levin, D-Mich., and Doug Bereuter, R-Neb.—provided cover to some wavering members. They wrote an amendment to create a commission whose members, chosen by Congress and the administration, would monitor China's compliance with the November trade pact and its activity on human and labor rights, and to forward legislation to Congress if the need arose. Although opponents decried it as a “fig leaf,” many wavering members said it gave them some peace of mind, and leaders eventually agreed to attach it to the measure.

    When the vote finally came the House passed it by a margin of more than thirty votes, roughly the number of members who said they were swayed by the Levin-Bereuter amendment. The tally was 237-197: R 164-57; D 73-138 (ND 43-114, SD 30-24); I 0-2. The Senate approved the measure without difficulty four months later. (Vote, p. 928)

    5. Estate Tax

    With many Americans' stock portfolios becoming more and more valuable, the business groups pushing to repeal taxes on estates, gifts, and trust funds found their idea being well received in unexpected quarters. The main proponents of the bill were the small business, manufacturing, and farm groups that had pushed a repeal since Republicans took control of Congress in 1995. They were joined by a host of other groups, including several minority chambers of commerce, who believed that the estate tax was stemming the creation of wealth in black and Hispanic communities. That prompted some of the more liberal House Democrats to sign on to the measure.

    The bill (HR 8), sponsored by Jennifer Dunn, R-Wash., and John Tanner, D-Tenn., had been long praised by Republicans and farm-district Democrats. In 2000 liberal Neil Abercrombie, D-Hawaii, frequently called for its passage at press events, and a number of other liberal members, including Eva Clayton, D-N.C., and Nydia M. Velázquez, D-N.Y., joined the cause.

    As a result, Republican leaders expected a strong Democratic vote when they brought the bill to the floor in June. It was one of a host of stand-alone tax measures Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., presented as an alternative to the usual omnibus tax package that President Clinton had consistently vetoed.

    Some Democratic leaders worked to head off “yes” votes from their party mates by proposing an alternative that would substantially cut tax rates on estates, gifts, and trust funds and would exempt more small farms and businesses from the estate tax altogether. The proposal, sponsored by Charles B. Rangel, D-N.Y., Charles W. Stenholm, D-Texas, and Benjamin L. Cardin, D-Md., won strong support but less than repeal itself.

    The June vote on HR 8 was 279-136: R 213-0; D 65-135 (ND 43-104, SD 22-31); I 1-1. (Vote, p. 928)

    It gave the measure life in the Senate where leaders had suggested they were not interested in taking up a stand-alone repeal bill. The measure cleared Congress in July, the eve of the party conventions, but President Clinton vetoed it in August, saying its $104 billion cost over ten years was too much. The House subsequently failed to override his decision.

    6. Electronic Signatures

    It seemed a simple task at the start of the 106th Congress: establish a federal standard for sealing contracts on the Internet. The legislation would lay groundwork for use of binding electronic signatures, such as a scrawled moniker on a touch-sensitive computer screen, or bits of computer code that identify a buyer and seller.

    Complications set in soon after high-tech companies began their effort to move the legislation, aimed at speeding up the growth of electronic commerce. A potential major obstacle emerged when the financial services industry insisted that the bill be used as a vehicle for new standards that would allow them to meet record retention requirements with computer records instead of paper. The industry also sought language that would allow customers over the Internet to fill out applications and receive disclosures that are required by law before they can open an account, get a loan, and conduct other financial transactions online.

    For some Democrats, the paperwork elimination effort smacked of an attempt to skirt laws meant to ensure that consumers get important information from businesses in writing, including recall notices and foreclosure warnings.

    Jay Inslee, D-Wash., resolved some of the consumer protection concerns with compromise language endorsed by a coalition of New Democrats in the House that required companies to get affirmative consent of consumers to receive records by e-mail instead of printed copies. The amendment was adopted 418-2 in November and the House passed the measure (HR 1714) overwhelmingly, 356-66. The Senate passed its own narrower version of the legislation (S 761) by voice vote soon after. It would have allowed the use of electronic signatures without addressing the issue of expanding use of electronic records.

    In a conference committee of Senate and House negotiators, strong objections by the White House and consumer groups threatened to scuttle broader House language supported by industry. The administration and key lawmakers including Reps. John D. Dingell, D-Mich., and Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., and Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., insisted on language that would ensure consumers were given a chance to demonstrate they could receive important records electronically before they gave consent to receive them in lieu of paper records.

    Commerce Committee Chairman Thomas J. Bliley Jr., R-Va., worked out a compromise requiring companies to confirm that customers could receive copies of disclosures and other information by e-mail before they gave formal consent to receive them in lieu of paper copies. The deal allowed for companies to meet record retention requirements with computer files in lieu of paper copies starting March 1, 2001, and required state and federal agencies to complete any new electronic record-keeping standards by June 1. In a colloquy on the floor with Markey, Bliley said companies could fulfill their consent obligation by sending a sample message to a consumer in an e-mail attachment. The recipient would then send an e-mail to the company stating he had received, opened, and read the attachment. The conversation helped clear the way for the compromise to become law.

    The House voted to approve the conference report, 426-4: R 216-3; D 208-1 (ND 155-0, SD 53-1); I 2-0. The Senate cleared 87-0. (Vote, p. 928)

    7. National Monuments

    The long-running battle between the Clinton administration and Republicans over federal land management policy intensified during the 106th Congress, as western lawmakers attempted to halt President Clinton's actions protecting millions of acres by declaring them national monuments. The failed GOP efforts to block funding for the management of new monuments designated in the last months of Clinton's tenure highlighted the deep divide over the government's role in local land-use decisions that has been part of the issue ever since development began in western areas of the nation.

    As Republicans sat down to craft the fiscal 2001 spending bill to fund the Department of the Interior, Rep. James V. Hansen, R-Utah, pressed appropriators to include language limiting funds to manage monuments designated after 1999. Hansen had objected vigorously in 1996 when Clinton declared nearly 1.7 million acres of southern Utah as the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument—halting virtually all commercial development of that land—and tried unsuccessfully to change the 1906 Antiquities Act, which allows presidents to take such action.

    In the months leading up to consideration of the Interior bill, Clinton created four national monuments totaling more than 1.4 million acres—including an area on the north rim of the Grand Canyon, a site in Arizona containing prehistoric ruins, the 840-mile-long California coast, and sequoia groves in California's Sierra Nevada. He also expanded the Pinnacles National Monument south of San Jose, Calif.

    Heeding the pleas of Hansen and other western Republicans—who characterized the designations as federal land grabs that took decisions out of the hands of local authorities—appropriators ignored a veto threat and included a policy “rider” in the Interior measure to deny funds for the management of these areas.

    As the Interior measure headed to the floor, Clinton created another four national monuments totaling 540,000 acres and Norm Dicks of Washington, the ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations Interior Subcommittee, drafted an amendment to strip the monuments funding rider from the spending legislation. Dicks and other Democrats argued that the GOP provision would interfere with a presidential prerogative and force federal land agencies to abandon management of existing monuments.

    Dicks's amendment was adopted, but only after westerners tried a last-ditch attempt to stop Clinton from following through with his land initiatives, which they said were purely political. Right before the vote on Dicks's provision, Hansen offered an amendment that would have reinstated the restriction on monuments funding. It was rejected 187-234: R 177-38; D 9-195 (ND 4-148, SD 5-47); I 1-1. Following the vote, Clinton continued to exercise his power to declare monuments. He designated eleven monuments covering 4.6 million acres by the end of 2000 and repeatedly boasted—to Republicans' consternation—that he “protected more land as national monuments in the lower forty-eight states than any president in history.” (Vote, p. 928)

    8. Campaign Finance

    House approval in late June of the first change in federal election law in two decades came only after a surprising victory for Senate overhaul advocates less than a month earlier.

    Following the Senate's passage of legislation to stiffen campaign finance disclosure laws, Republican moderates on the House side increased pressure on their leadership to take up similar legislation. Realizing they were outnumbered, GOP leaders—who generally opposed any changes to the nation's campaign finance system—agreed to move forward.

    But the leaders decided to craft their own legislation rather than simply take up what the Senate had passed as an amendment to the defense authorization bill. House leaders appointed moderate GOP Rep. Amo Houghton of New York to lead the effort, but many charged that Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas—a strong opponent of changing finance laws—played a major role in drafting the bill (HR 4717).

    The House legislation was much broader than the Senate language, which simply called for so-called 527 organizations to publicly disclose to the Internal Revenue Service their political fund-raising and spending activities. The groups were named after the section of the tax code that exempted them from public disclosure requirements as long as they did not expressly call for the election or defeat of specific candidates.

    The House bill included disclosure requirements for 527 groups, similar to the Senate language, but it expanded those rules to cover a huge number of other politically potent tax-exempt groups. The bill immediately came under withering attack from nonprofit groups across the political spectrum, including the National Rifle Association and Democratic-friendly unions. The groups argued that the bill would prevent them from participating in even routine grassroots advocacy without having to name their members and subject them to possible harassment from the government or their rivals. Opponents of the House bill also charged that it was drafted so broadly it would be declared unconstitutional for its infringement on the right of free association. Many charged that GOP leaders intentionally made the bill overly broad in hopes that it would crumble under its own weight.

    It quickly became obvious the bill was doomed to failure on the House floor. But House leaders had promised overhaul-minded Republicans a vote on campaign finance, and Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., wanted the issue out of his hair in a tough election year. So GOP leaders turned to what they knew could pass: the straightforward 527 disclosure bill (HR 4762).

    On the key vote, the House overwhelmingly passed the legislation 385-39: R 178-39; D 205-0 (ND 151-0, SD 54-0); I 2-0. Less than thirty-six hours later, the Senate, which had begun the process by approving the 527 language as an amendment offered by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., voted 92-6 to clear the House's free-standing bill. President Clinton signed it into law in July. (Vote, p. 928)

    9. Prescription Drugs

    Developing and passing legislation to give senior citizens drug coverage became, in the words of one GOP pollster, a “political imperative” for Republicans. Removing the issue from the fall election campaigns was a top priority for House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., and he looked to House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee Chairman Bill Thomas, R-Calif., to take the reins.

    Thomas developed a package that looked to the private sector to develop drug-only policies that seniors could purchase. The additional coverage would be optional under Medicare, the federal health insurance program for nearly 40 million elderly and disabled Americans.

    Coverage would begin in fiscal 2003. The government would provide subsidies to help low-income seniors afford monthly premiums and deductibles and pay all medication costs for seniors whose annual drug bills were $6,000 or higher. Seniors would have at least two different options for their coverage. If private insurers did not offer coverage in a particular area, the government would.

    The same week the House GOP unveiled its prescription drug plan, the White House held three events to blast it. President Clinton labeled the proposal a “trickle-down scheme that would provide a subsidy for insurers and not a single dollar of direct premium assistance for middle-class seniors.” House Democrats offered similar assessments. Charles B. Rangel, D-N.Y., the ranking Democrat on Ways and Means, said the proposal was “not a true Medicare prescription drug benefit.” Senate Republicans, preferring to wait until they could tackle a comprehensive Medicare overhaul, did little to support their House counterparts' plan.

    Insurers, usually a strong GOP ally, balked at the proposal, fearing they could not make a profit by selling such policies. They felt that seniors with the highest drug costs would be most likely to purchase coverage. And with drug prices almost certain to rise, insurers feared lawmakers would pressure them not to raise premiums.

    But Thomas said that if the plan became law, plenty of insurers would offer coverage to seniors. “When you tell somebody you don't need them and, in fact, it's going to succeed without them, you'll be amazed at how some people will come around the back door and want to be part of it,” he told reporters.

    Thomas tried to sell the proposal as a bipartisan measure, but it garnered just 5 Democratic votes when it squeaked through the House 217-214: R 211-10; D 5-203 (ND 4-150, SD 1-53); I 1-1. Although the bill went nowhere after the floor vote—Senate Republicans never acted on either the House bill or a package of their own—the measure did give House Republicans cover in the fall elections and put them on record as favoring prescription drugs for Medicare recipients. (Vote, p. 928)

    10. Debt Relief

    A coalition that included religious leaders, President Clinton, lawmakers from both parties, and even rock star Bono of the Irish group U2 set about in 2000 trying to persuade Congress that the United States should contribute to an international debt relief fund for the world's poorest countries. Supporters said these countries, most of them in sub-Saharan Africa, needed help paying off debts to international financial institutions, such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). The burden of debt payments is so great, they said, that the countries have precious little money left over for social programs such as health and education.

    The coalition's backing put the issue on the congressional agenda. But they had not succeeded in getting most of the money they had sought until the fiscal 2001 foreign operations appropriations bill (HR 4811) was taken up by the House. Clinton had asked for $435 million in cash and permission for the IMF to revalue its gold reserves so it could provide as much as $1 billion in additional debt relief.

    In the House, Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Sonny Callahan, R-Ala., and House Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, had blocked most of the funds, saying the promise of aid should be used to force changes in the way the financial institutions do business and as a bargaining chip in end-of-session budget negotiations with the White House. Callahan's Senate counterpart, Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Phil Gramm, R-Texas, had agreed to hold up substantial debt relief in that chamber.

    The showdown between the groups came on an amendment by Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., to the foreign operations bill to increase funds for debt relief by $156 million, with offsetting cuts in other areas, essentially giving Clinton what he had asked for. The amendment was adopted 216-211: R 26-194; D 189-16 (ND 142-9, SD 47-7); I 1-1. (Vote, p. 928)

    Waters triumphed only after an extended tug-of-war between party leaders. With Waters and her supporters—including twenty-six Republicans—leading in the vote tally, GOP leaders held the vote open for an extra quarter-hour, as Majority Whip Tom DeLay of Texas urged wavering members such as Ernie Fletcher of Kentucky and Tom Coburn and Steve Largent of Oklahoma to oppose the amendment as part of his overall budget strategy. Just as DeLay appeared on the verge of victory by 1 vote, Democrats surprised him when they managed to get several of their own members to drop their “no” votes, convincing them that their support would both allow a breakthrough on debt relief and permit those funds that Waters cut (such as military aid to the Middle East) to be restored in a future House-Senate conference.

    Their confidence proved well-founded. The final version of the foreign aid bill restored Waters's cuts and included the debt relief the coalition had favored: $435 million in cash and permission for the IMF to revalue its gold reserves in order to provide another $800 million.

    11. Community Development

    When the House Republican leadership decided to bring the Community Renewal and New Markets Act (HR 4923) straight to the floor, it was acknowledging that the political stakes on the bill were so high that the regular committee process could not be allowed to derail it. The antipoverty bill was the result of months of negotiations between President Clinton and Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill. That history alone gave the bill special status—the backing of a Democratic president and a Republican Speaker is not to be taken lightly.

    It was also one of the rare occasions when top Republicans and Democrats saw eye-to-eye on social policy, an area that traditionally has been a philosophical chasm between the two parties. By limiting the bill to tax incentives, regulatory relief, and economic development, the package struck a nonthreatening balance that avoided both new government programs and all-out deregulation—the approaches that had gotten Democrats and Republicans in trouble in the past.

    Most of the provisions were tax-related, which put them under the jurisdiction of the Ways and Means Committee, but its key members had trouble translating the broad Clinton-Hastert agreement, announced in May, into detailed legislation.

    By the end of July, the committee still had not scheduled a markup, as Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, and ranking Democrat Charles B. Rangel of New York found themselves disagreeing on everything from how quickly to expand the availability of the low-income housing tax credit to which provisions should count as Republican spending and which ones should count as Democratic spending. In addition, Archer wanted a no-amendment pledge from Democrats, which Rangel was unwilling and unable to provide.

    Other issues also surfaced as potential threats to the bill's passage. A key concession to Republicans was the inclusion of a “charitable choice” provision that would allow faith-based substance abuse treatment programs to receive federal funds. Robert C. Scott, D-Va., argued that the provision could lead to federally subsidized “religious bigotry” because the organizations running such programs could refuse to hire people who disagreed with their religious beliefs.

    To steer past that and other obstacles and get the legislation through the House before the August recess, GOP leaders decided to finish writing the bill themselves and bring it straight to the floor under suspension of the rules, which limits debate, prohibits amendments and requires a two-thirds vote to pass. The gambit worked. Despite their concerns, few members were willing to vote against an antipoverty package with as much political momentum as this one. In late July the legislation passed the House 394-27: R 214-1; D 179-25 (ND 130-23, SD 49-2); I 1-1. (Vote, p. 928)

    12. Reserving the Surplus

    Using a proposal touted as a debt-reduction measure, Republican leaders got themselves out of a midyear appropriations jam and signaled their intention to break their own budget caps by about $27 billion. The problem the GOP was trying to solve with the debt-reduction plan began in the spring, when conservatives in both chambers successfully pushed for the adoption of a budget resolution that held discretionary spending to less than an inflationary increase.

    Appropriators from both parties warned that the spending limit was too tight, and they turned out to be right. It became clear relatively early in the appropriations process that Congress would have to ignore the budget resolution's spending limits for there to be any hope of passing bills that President Clinton would sign. But by midyear, fiscally conservative Republicans were already nervous about the budget-breaking spending totals that were working their way through the appropriations process, and they were threatening to vote against appropriations bills that were too heavily funded.

    In response, GOP leaders in September rolled out a so-called “90-10” debt reduction plan, which specified that 90 percent of the cumulative fiscal 2001 surplus would go to paying down the $3.1 trillion publicly held debt. The remaining 10 percent—about $28 billion based on the most recent fiscal 2001 surplus projections available at the time—could be used for a combination of tax cuts and spending increases, and party leaders said they likely would split it evenly between the two priorities.

    Although Republican leaders trumpeted the debt reduction aspect of their plan, it actually amounted to a blueprint for a big increase in fiscal 2001 spending. In drafting their 90-10 plan, the GOP used an inflationary increase in the budget as its baseline. This assumption by itself amounted to an abandonment of the spending limit in the budget resolution. The plan used a Congressional Budget Office projection showing that discretionary spending would have to grow from $608 billion to $638 billion in outlays to keep pace with inflation. With an additional $14 billion on top of that, the 90-10 proposal's called-for spending would total about $652 billion—$27 billion more in outlays than allowed under the budget resolution.

    Democrats said the GOP plan was a meaningless gimmick. Surplus funds are automatically used to pay down the public debt, they argued, so the way to reduce the debt was simply to not spend the money. Still, Democrats endorsed the measure, saying it amounted to a symbolic repudiation of the Republicans' own large tax cuts proposed earlier in the year, since there would be insufficient room for them under the 90-10 plan. Democrats also complained that the plan would be in effect only for fiscal 2001, leaving the door open to big, surplus-gobbling tax cuts in subsequent years if Texas Gov. George W. Bush were elected president.

    The House had already voted three times previously on similar GOP debt “lockbox” measures but the 90-10 plan was unique in terms of its political ramifications. It was aimed in large part at the GOP's rank and file, particularly its most fiscally conservative members, who were beginning to squirm as appropriations bills with budget-breaking totals worked their way toward the House floor.

    As part of their overall strategy, GOP leaders said they also would attach debt-reduction riders to the remaining appropriations bills, thereby setting aside specific amounts of surplus funds for debt relief with each corresponding spending bill approved. The strategy worked. Conservative Republicans liked the 90-10 plan and the debt-reduction riders. The 90-10 plan passed overwhelmingly—twice. The first measure (HR 5173) passed, 381-3: R 191-0; D 188-3 (ND 139-3, SD 49-0); I 2-0. The second measure (HR 5203), which also included a package of expanded tax breaks for retirement savings, passed, 401-20, the next day. (Vote, p. 928)

    Senate Republicans endorsed the 90-10 idea but never moved companion legislation. GOP senators said they viewed the plan as a guide for the coming spate of deal-cutting rather than as a legislative vehicle. Although the proposal never neared the status of law, the House vote was the first clear acknowledgment of Congress's intention to abandon the budget resolution. And it cleared the way for approval of several subsequent spending bills. In the following six weeks the House passed eight of the thirteen appropriations bills.

    Although policy fights and presidential politics would eventually stall the appropriations process again later in the year, the fight over how much to spend was largely over. The vote for the 90-10 plan gave appropriators all the room they needed to meet Clinton's requested fiscal 2001 spending levels, if not his priorities. It also gave GOP leaders support from GOP rank and file, who previously had threatened to walk away from any abandonment of the budget resolution.

    1. Fiscal 2001 Budget Resolution/Conference Report

    H Con Res 290 Adoption of the conference report on the fiscal 2001 concurrent resolution on the budget. The resolution called for cutting taxes by $150 billion over five years and created a “reserve fund” of $25 billion that could also be used for tax cuts. It also would establish a $40 billion reserve fund for Medicare overhaul and to provide prescription drug coverage for seniors. The plan called for $600.3 billion in discretionary spending and allowed for $310.8 billion in defense appropriations. Adopted 50-48: R 50-4; D 0-44 (ND 0-36, SD 0-8), April 13, 2000.

    2. Nuclear Waste Storage/Veto Override

    S 1287 Passage, over President Clinton's April 25, 2000, veto, of the bill that would provide for the completion of siting and licensing activities for a permanent nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nev., and establish a timetable for the development of the proposed site. Rejected 64-35: R 51-3; D 13-32 (ND 5-32, SD 8-0), May 2, 2000. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (66 in this case) of both houses is required to override a veto. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    3. Fiscal 2001 Military Construction Appropriations/U.S. Troops in Kosovo

    S 2521 Levin, D-Mich., amendment that would strike the provision that would terminate funding for continued deployment of U.S. ground troops in Kosovo after July 1, 2001, unless Congress authorizes the deployment. The provision also would state that not more than 75 percent of the fiscal 2000 supplemental spending for Kosovo could be obligated until the president certifies that European allies are paying 33 percent of reconstruction assistance, 75 percent of humanitarian assistance, 75 percent of general administrative costs, and 75 percent of the civilian police force. Adopted 53-47: R 15-40; D 38-7 (ND 32-5, SD 6-2), May 18, 2000. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    4. Fiscal 2001 Defense Authorization/Campaign Finance Disclosures

    S 2549 Warner, R-Va., point of order that the McCain, R-Ariz., amendment to the Smith, R-N.H., amendment was out of order because of the constitutional requirement that revenue provisions originate in the House. The McCain amendment would require section 527 organizations to disclose their existence to the IRS, file publicly available tax returns with the IRS, and make public reports specifying annual expenditures of more than $500 and identify those who contribute more than $200 annually to the organization. The Smith amendment would prohibit granting Defense Department security clearances to certain employees or contractors. Rejected 42-57: R 41-14; D 1-43 (ND 1-35, SD 0-8), June 8, 2000. Subsequently, the McCain amendment was adopted by voice vote.

    5. Fiscal 2001 Defense Authorization/Hate Crimes

    S 2549 Kennedy, D-Mass., amendment that would broaden hate crimes to include crimes related to gender, sexual orientation, and disability and would make it easier for the federal government to get involved in the investigation and prosecution of hate crimes. It would authorize $5 million per year for fiscal 2001–02 to assist states and local authorities in investigating and prosecuting hate crimes. Adopted 57-42: R 13-41; D 44-1 (ND 36-1, SD 8-0), June 20, 2000. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    6. Fiscal 2001 Foreign Operations/Counternarcotics Funding Reduction

    S 2522 Gorton, R-Wash., amendment that would reduce the $934 million for South American and Caribbean counternarcotics activities to approximately $200 million. Rejected 19-79: R 13-41; D 6-38 (ND 6-30, SD 0-8), June 21, 2000. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    7. Fiscal 2001 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations/Genetic Discrimination

    HR 4577 Jeffords, R-Vt., amendment that would prohibit health insurers from using predictive genetic information to discriminate in the health care system. It also would prohibit insurance companies from raising rates or denying patients health coverage based on the results of genetic tests. Adopted 58-40: R 55-0; D 3-40 (ND 3-32, SD 0-8), June 29, 2000.

    8. Fiscal 2001 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations/Managed Care

    HR 4577 Nickles, R-Okla., amendment that would provide federal protections, such as access to emergency care, internal and external appeals, specialists, and out-of-network doctors, primarily for the 56 million Americans in self-insured health plans. It also would prohibit denials based on predictive genetic information for patients in self-insured and employer plans, and allow patients to sue in federal court for harm caused by the failure to comply with the external medical review or harm caused because of delay in providing care. Adopted 51-47: R 51-4; D 0-43 (ND 0-35, SD 0-8), June 29, 2000.

    9. Fiscal 2001 Defense Authorization/Missile Defense System Testing

    S 2549 Cochran, R-Miss., motion to table (kill) the Durbin, D-Ill., amendment that would require the Pentagon to test the national missile defense system against reasonable decoys and countermeasures that the system could encounter in a launch, and establish an independent panel to review the testing. Motion agreed to 52-48: R 52-3; D 0-45 (ND 0-37, SD 0-8), July 13, 2000.

    10. Alleviate “Marriage Penalty” Tax/Conference Report.

    HR 4810 Adoption of the conference report on the bill that would reduce taxes for married couples by approximately $89.8 billion over five years. The measure would increase the standard deduction claimed by married couples to twice the amount claimed by single taxpayers. The upper boundary of the 15 percent tax bracket would gradually increase to twice the limit for singles. The measure also would allow couples to earn an additional $2,000 before being disqualified from receiving the earned income tax credit. The bill would also allow couples to use certain tax credits without paying the alternative minimum tax. Adopted (thus cleared for the president) 60-34: R 53-1; D 7-33 (ND 5-27, SD 2-6), July 21, 2000. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    11. China Trade/Nonproliferation of Weapons

    HR 4444 Roth, R-Del., motion to table (kill) the Thompson, R-Tenn., amendment that would provide for sanctions against China and other countries for selling illicit weapons of mass destruction. The proposal would establish an annual review process and require the president to impose nontrade related sanctions on individuals, companies, and groups found to be spreading weapons of mass destruction. The president also would be authorized to impose additional sanctions on key supplier countries. Motion agreed to 65-32: R 30-23; D 35-9 (ND 27-8, SD 8-1), Sept. 13, 2000.

    12. Fiscal 2001 Legislative Branch, Treasury-Postal Service Appropriations/Conference Report

    HR 4516 Adoption of the conference report on the bill that would appropriate $2.5 billion in fiscal 2001 for the legislative branch; appropriate $30.4 billion for the Treasury Department, Postal Service, executive office of the president, and certain independent agencies; and repeal the 3 percent federal excise tax on telecommunications services by the end of 2002. Rejected 28-69: R 28-26; D 0-43 (ND 0-34, SD 0-9), Sept. 20, 2000.

    1. Minimum Wage/Two-Year Increase

    HR 3846 Traficant, D-Ohio, amendment that would increase the minimum wage by $1 over two years. Adopted 246-179: R 42-173; D 203-5 (ND 155-0, SD 48-5); I 1-1, March 9, 2000. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    2. Fiscal 2001 Defense Authorization/Kosovo Operations

    HR 4205 Kasich, R-Ohio, amendment that would withhold the bill's funding authorization for Kosovo operations, unless extenuating circumstances arise, until the president certifies that European nations are meeting specific burden-sharing targets by April 1, 2001. Kosovo funds could be used only for withdrawing U.S. ground forces from Kosovo if the president failed to provide such certification. Adopted 264-153: R 195-18; D 67-135 (ND 49-100, SD 18-35); I 2-0, May 17, 2000. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    3. Fiscal 2001 Defense Authorization/Retiree Health Care

    HR 4205 Taylor, D-Miss., amendment that would expand and make permanent the Defense Department Medicare subvention demonstration program. The program would be available to all Medicare-eligible military retirees and their dependents by Jan. 1, 2006. Adopted 406-10: R 207-9; D 197-1 (ND 145-1, SD 52-0); I 2-0, May 18, 2000.

    4. China Trade/Passage

    HR 4444 Passage of the bill that would make normal trade relations with the People's Republic of China permanent. The bill includes provisions to protect U.S. businesses and workers from import surges; establish a commission to monitor human rights, labor standards, and religious freedom in China; require the administration to report annually on China's compliance with trade agreements; and express the sense of Congress that Taiwan should be admitted to the World Trade Organization. The measure would also authorize $99 million for Radio Free Asia and the Voice of America to expand broadcasts to China and neighboring countries. Passed 237-197: R 164-57; D 73-138 (ND 43-114, SD 30-24); I 0-2, May 24, 2000. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    5. Estate Tax Repeal/Passage

    HR 8 Passage of the bill that would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to phase out the estate and gift taxes, repealing them entirely by 2010. Passed 279-136: R 213-0; D 65-135 (ND 43-104, SD 22-31); I 1-1, June 9, 2000. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    6. Electronic Signatures/Conference Report

    S 761 Adoption of the conference report on the bill to promote electronic commerce and establish a minimum federal standard for the use and recognition of electronic signatures. The bill would ensure that electronic signatures are given the same legal validity and enforceability as written ones. Consumers would have to consent to the use of electronic records and be provided with information on how to access those records. Adopted (thus sent to the Senate) 426-4: R 216-3; D 208-1 (ND 155-0, SD 53-1); I 2-0, June 14, 2000.

    7. Fiscal 2001 Interior Appropriations/National Monuments

    HR 4578 Hansen, R-Utah, amendment to the Dicks, D-Wash., amendment that would reinstate the bill's provision that would prohibit the Interior Department from using funds to design, plan, or manage federal lands as national monuments that have been designated since 1999 under the Antiquities Act. Rejected 187-234: R 177-38; D 9-195 (ND 4-148, SD 5-47); I 1-1, June 15, 2000. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    8. Campaign Finance Disclosure/Passage

    HR 4762 Houghton, R-N.Y., motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill that would amend the tax code to require groups organized under section 527 of the code to disclose contribution and expenditure information to the Treasury Department. Motion agreed to 385-39: R 178-39; D 205-0 (ND 151-0, SD 54-0); I 2-0, June 28, 2000. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (283 in this case) is required for passage under suspension of the rules.

    9. Prescription Drugs/Passage

    HR 4680 Passage of the bill that would provide prescription drug coverage for Medicare beneficiaries and establish the Medicare Benefits Administration within the Department of Health and Human Services to administer the program. The benefit would be provided by private insurers with a choice between at least two plans. Passed 217-214: R 211-10; D 5-203 (ND 4-150, SD 1-53); I 1-1, June 28, 2000. A “nay” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    10. Fiscal 2001 Foreign Operations Appropriations/Debt Relief

    HR 4811 Waters, D-Calif., amendment that would increase funding for the Highly Indebted Poor Countries Trust Fund by $156 million and offset it with cuts to various other programs. The fund was created to help debtor countries write off most of the money owed to multilateral agencies. Adopted 216-211: R 26-194; D 189-16 (ND 142-9, SD 47-7); I 1-1, July 13, 2000.

    11. Community Renewal Program/Passage

    HR 4923 English, R-Pa., motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill that would provide tax credits and economic incentives to encourage investment and job creation in economically depressed urban and rural communities. It would authorize President Clinton's “New Markets Initiative,” and designate nine new “empowerment zones” and forty new “renewal communities.” Motion agreed to 394-27: R 214-1; D 179-25 (ND 130-23, SD 49-2); I 1-1, July 25, 2000. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (281 in this case) is required for passage under suspension of the rules. A “yea” was a vote in support of the president's position.

    12. Debt Reduction/Passage

    HR 5173 Herger, R-Calif., motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill that would require all Social Security and Medicare surpluses to be used for debt reduction, pending enactment of legislation to overhaul those programs. In fiscal 2001, $42 billion of the non-Social Security and non-Medicare surplus would have to be used for debt reduction. Motion agreed to 381-3: R 191-0; D 188-3 (ND 139-3, SD 49-0); I 2-0, Sept. 18, 2000. A two-thirds majority of those present and voting (256 in this case) is required for passage under suspension of the rules.


    Congress and Its Members

    Senate Membership in the 105th Congress

    Lineup as of Jan. 4, 1997: Republicans 55, Democrats 45

    • Alabama
    • Alaska
    • Arizona
    • Arkansas
    • California
    • Colorado
    • Connecticut
    • Delaware
    • Florida
    • Georgia
    • Hawaii
    • Idaho
    • Illinois
    • Indiana
    • Iowa
    • Kansas
    • Kentucky
    • Louisiana
    • Maine
    • Maryland
    • Massachusetts
    • Michigan
    • Minnesota
    • Mississippi
    • Missouri
    • Montana
    • Nebraska
    • Nevada
    • New Hampshire
    • New Jersey
    • New Mexico
    • New York
    • North Carolina
    • North Dakota
    • Ohio
    • Oklahoma
    • Oregon
    • Pennsylvania
    • Rhode Island
    • South Carolina
    • South Dakota
    • Tennessee
    • Texas
    • Utah
    • Vermont
    • Virginia
    • Washington
    • West Virginia
    • Wisconsin
    • Wyoming
    House Membership in the 105th Congress

    Lineup as of Jan. 4, 1997: Republicans 227, Democrats 207, Independent 1

    • Alabama
    • Alaska
    • AL Don Young (R)
    • Arizona
    • Arkansas
    • California
    • Colorado
    • Connecticut
    • Delaware
    • AL Michael N. Castle (R)
    • Florida
    • Georgia
    • Hawaii
    • Idaho
    • Illinois
    • Indiana
    • Iowa
    • Kansas
    • Kentucky
    • Louisiana
    • Maine
    • Maryland
    • Massachusetts
    • Michigan
    • Minnesota
    • Mississippi
    • Missouri
    • Montana
    • AL Rick Hill (R)
    • Nebraska
    • Nevada
    • New Hampshire
    • New Jersey
    • New Mexico
    • New York
    • North Carolina
    • North Dakota
    • AL Earl Pomeroy (D)
    • Ohio
    • Oklahoma
    • Oregon
    • Pennsylvania
    • Rhode Island
    • South Carolina
    • South Dakota
    • AL John Thune (R)
    • Tennessee
    • Texas
    • Utah
    • Vermont
    • AL Bernard Sanders (I)
    • Virginia
    • Washington
    • West Virginia
    • Wisconsin
    • Wyoming
    • AL Barbara Cubin (R)

    note: Members of the 105th Congress also included delegates Eni F. H. Faleomavaega, D-American Samoa; Donna Christian-Green, D-Virgin Islands; Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-District of Columbia; Robert Underwood, D-Guam; and resident commissioner Carlos Romero-Barcelo, D-Puerto Rico.

    Membership Changes, 105th and 106th Congresses

    Senate Membership in the 106th Congress

    Lineup as of Jan. 4, 1999: Republicans 55, Democrats 45

    • Alabama
    • Alaska
    • Arizona
    • Arkansas
    • California
    • Colorado
    • Connecticut
    • Delaware
    • Florida
    • Georgia
    • (died July 18, 2000)
    • (sworn in July 27, 2000)
    • Hawaii
    • Idaho
    • Illinois
    • Indiana
    • Iowa
    • Kansas
    • Kentucky
    • Louisiana
    • Maine
    • Maryland
    • Massachusetts
    • Michigan
    • Minnesota
    • Mississippi
    • Missouri
    • Montana
    • Nebraska
    • Nevada
    • New Hampshire
    • New Jersey
    • New Mexico
    • New York
    • North Carolina
    • North Dakota
    • Ohio
    • Oklahoma
    • Oregon
    • Pennsylvania
    • Rhode Island
    • (died Oct. 24, 1999)
    • (sworn in Nov. 4, 1999)
    • South Carolina
    • South Dakota
    • Tennessee
    • Texas
    • Utah
    • Vermont
    • Virginia
    • Washington
    • West Virginia
    • Wisconsin
    • Wyoming

    Robert C. Smith switched from Republican to Independent on July 13, 1999. Smith returned to the Republican Party on Nov. 1, 1999.

    House Membership in the 106th Congress

    Lineup as of Jan. 4, 1999: Republicans 223, Democrats 211, Independent 1

    • Alabama
    • Alaska
    • AL Don Young (R)
    • Arizona
    • Arkansas
    • California
    • Colorado
    • Connecticut
    • Delaware
    • Michael N. Castle (R)
    • Florida
    • Georgia
    • Hawaii
    • Idaho
    • Illinois
    • Indiana
    • Iowa
    • Kansas
    • Kentucky
    • Louisiana
    • Maine
    • Maryland
    • Massachusetts
    • Michigan
    • Minnesota
    • Mississippi
    • Missouri
    • Montana
    • AL Rick Hill (R)
    • Nebraska
    • Nevada
    • New Hampshire
    • New Jersey
    • New Mexico
    • New York
    • North Carolina
    • North Dakota
    • AL Earl Pomeroy (D)
    • Ohio
    • Oklahoma
    • Oregon
    • Pennsylvania
    • Rhode Island
    • South Carolina
    • South Dakota
    • AL John Thune (R)
    • Tennessee
    • Texas
    • Utah
    • Vermont
    • AL Bernard Sanders (I)
    • Virginia
    • Washington
    • West Virginia
    • Wisconsin
    • Wyoming
    • AL Barbara Cubin (R)

    note: Members of the 106th Congress also included delegates Eni F. H. Faleomavaega, D-American Samoa; Donna M. C. Christensen, D-Virgin Islands; Eleonor Holmes Norton, D-District of Columbia; Robert A. Underwood, D-Guam; and resident commissioner Carlos A. Romero-Barcelo, D-Puerto Rico.

    Martinez switched from the Democrat to Republican on July 26, 2000. Martinez had lost his bid for renomination in California's March 7 Democratic primary.

    Forbes switched from Republican to Democrat on July 17, 1999.

    Goode, a Democrat, announced Jan. 24, 2000, that he would seek reflection as an independent.

    Members of Congress, 1997–2001

    The names in this list include, alphabetically, all senators, rep resentatives, resident commissioners, and territorial delegates who served in the 105th and 106th Congresses—from Jan. 3, 1997 to Jan. 3, 2001.

    The material is organized as follows: name; relationship to other members and presidents and vice presidents; party, state (of service); date of birth; date of death (if applicable); congressional service; service as president, vice president, member of the cabinet or Supreme Court, governor, Speaker of the House, president pro tempore of the Senate, majority leader, minority leader, and chair of the Democratic or Republican National Committees.

    If the member changed parties during his or her congressional service, the party designation appearing after the member's name is that which applied at the end of such service and further information is included in the entry. Where the service date is left open, the member continued to service in the 107th Congress (as of Jan. 4, 2001).

    Dates of service are inclusive, starting in year of service and ending when service ends. Under the Constitution, terms of service since 1934 have been from Jan. 3 to Jan. 3. In actual practice, members have been sworn in on other dates at the beginning of a Congress. The exact date is shown (where available) if a member began or ended his or her service in midterm.

    The major sources for the following list were Congressional Quarterly's Biographical Directory of the American Congress 1774–1996; America Votes series; CQ Almanac; American Political Leaders 1789–2000; CQ Weekly and CQ's online database.

    In the list, D stands for Democrat; R, Republican; and I, Independent.

    Abercrombie, Neil

    (D-Hawaii) June 26, 1938– ; House Sept. 23, 1986–1987, 1991–.

    Abraham, Spencer

    (R-Mich.) June 12, 1952– ; Senate 1995–2001.

    Ackerman, Gary L.

    (D-N.Y.) Nov. 19, 1942– ; House March 1, 1983–.

    Aderholt, Robert B.

    (R-Ala.) July 22, 1965– ; House 1997–.

    Akaka, Daniel K.

    (D-Hawaii) Sept. 11, 1924– ; House 1977–May 16, 1990; Senate May 16, 1990–.

    Allard, Wayne

    (R-Colo.) Dec. 2, 1943– ; House 1991–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Allen, Thomas H.

    (D-Maine) April 18, 1945– ; House 1997–.

    Andrews, Robert E.

    (D-N.J.) Aug. 4, 1957– ; House 1990–.

    Archer, Bill

    (R-Texas) March 22, 1928– ; House 1971–2001.

    Armey, Dick

    (R-Texas) July 7, 1940– ; House 1985– ; House majority leader 1995–.

    Ashcroft, John

    (R-Mo.) May 9, 1942– ; Senate 1995–2001.

    Baca, Joe

    (D-Calif) Jan. 23, 1947– ; House Nov. 18, 1999–.

    Bachus, Spencer

    (R-Ala.) Dec. 28, 1947– ; House 1993–.

    Baesler, Scotty

    (D-Ky.) July 9, 1941– ; House 1993–1999.

    Baird, Brian

    (D-Wash.) March 7, 1956– ; House 1999–.

    Baker, Richard H.

    (R-La.) May 22, 1948– ; House 1987–.

    Baldacci, John

    (D-Maine) Jan. 30, 1955– ; House 1995–.

    Baldwin, Tammy

    (D-Wis.) Feb. 11, 1962– ; House 1999–.

    Ballenger, Cass

    (great-great grandson of Lewis Cass) (R-N.C.) Dec. 6, 1926– ; House 1987–.

    Barcia, James A.

    (D-Mich.) Feb. 25, 1952– ; House 1993–.

    Barr, Bob

    (R-Ga.) Nov. 5, 1948– ; House 1995–.

    Barrett, Bill

    (R-Neb.) Feb. 9, 1929– ; House 1991–2001.

    Barrett, Thomas M.

    (D-Wis.) Dec. 8, 1953– ; House 1993–.

    Bartlett, Roscoe G.

    (R-Md.) June 3, 1926– ; House 1993–.

    Barton, Joe L.

    (R-Texas) Sept. 15, 1949– ; House 1985–.

    Bass, Charles

    (son of Perkins Bass) (R-N.H.) Jan. 8, 1952– ; House 1995–.

    Bateman, Herbert H.

    (R-Va.) Aug. 7, 1928–Sept. 11, 2000; House 1983–2000.

    Baucus, Max

    (D-Mont.) Dec. 11, 1941– ; House 1975–Dec. 14, 1978; Senate Dec. 15, 1978–.

    Bayh, Evan

    (son of Birch Evan Bayh) (D-Ind.) Dec. 26, 1955– ; Senate 1999– ; Gov. 1989–1997.

    Becerra, Xavier

    (D-Calif.) Jan. 26, 1958– ; House 1993–.

    Bennett, Robert F.

    (R-Utah) Sept. 18, 1933– ; Senate 1993–.

    Bentsen, Ken

    (nephew of Lloyd Bentsen) (D-Texas) June 3, 1959– ; House 1995–.

    Bereuter, Doug

    (R-Neb.) Oct. 6, 1939– ; House 1979–.

    Berkley, Shelley

    (D-Nev.) Jan. 21, 1951– ; House 1999–.

    Berman, Howard L.

    (D-Calif.) April 15, 1941– ; House 1983–.

    Berry, Marion

    (D-Ark.) Aug. 27, 1942– ; House 1997–.

    Biden, Joseph R. Jr.

    (D-Del.) Nov. 20, 1942– ; Senate 1973–.

    Biggert, Judy

    (R-Ill.) Aug. 15, 1937– ; House 1999–.

    Bilbray, Brian P.

    (nephew of James Bilbray) (R-Calif.) Jan. 28, 1951– ; House 1995–2001.

    Bilirakis, Michael

    (R-Fla.) July 16, 1930– ; House 1983–.

    Bingaman, Jeff

    (D-N.M.) Oct. 3, 1943– ; Senate 1983–.

    Bishop, Sanford D. Jr.

    (D-Ga.) Feb. 4, 1947– ; House 1993–.

    Blagojevich, Rod R.

    (D-Ill.) Dec. 10, 1956– ; House 1997–.

    Bliley, Thomas J. Jr.

    (R-Va.) Jan. 28, 1932– ; House 1981–2001.

    Blumenauer, Earl

    (D-Ore.) Aug. 16, 1949– ; House May 30, 1996–.

    Blunt, Roy

    (R-Mo.) Jan. 10, 1950– ; House 1997–.

    Boehlert, Sherwood

    (R-N.Y.) Sept. 28, 1936– ; House 1983–.

    Boehner, John A.

    (R-Ohio) Nov. 17, 1949– ; House 1991–.

    Bond, Christopher S.

    (R-Mo.) March 6, 1939– ; Senate 1987–.

    Bonilla, Henry

    (R-Texas) Jan. 2, 1954– ; House 1993–.

    Bonior, David E.

    (D-Mich.) June 6, 1945– ; House 1977–.

    Bono, Mary

    (wife of Sonny Bono) (R-Calif.) Oct. 24, 1961– ; House April 21, 1998–.

    Bono, Sonny

    (husband of Mary Bono) (R-Calif.) Feb. 16, 1935–Jan. 5, 1998; House 1995–Jan. 5, 1998.

    Borski, Robert A.

    (D-Pa.) Oct. 20, 1948– ; House 1983–.

    Boswell, Leonard L.

    (D-Iowa) Jan. 10, 1934– ; House 1997–.

    Boucher, Rick

    (D-Va.) Aug. 1, 1946– ; House 1983–.

    Boxer, Barbara

    (D-Calif.) Nov. 11, 1940– ; House 1983–1993; Senate 1993–.

    Boyd, Allen

    (D-Fla.) June 6, 1945– ; House 1997–.

    Brady, Kevin

    (R-Texas) April 11, 1955– ; House 1997–.

    Brady, Robert A.

    (D-Pa.) April 7, 1945– ; House May 21, 1998–.

    Breaux, John B.

    (D-La.) March 1, 1944– ; House Sept. 30, 1972–1987; Senate 1987–.

    Brown, Corrine

    (D-Fla.) Nov. 11, 1946– ; House 1993–.

    Brown, George E. Jr.

    (D-Calif.) March 6, 1920– July 15, 1999; House 1963–1971, 1973–July 15, 1999.

    Brownback, Sam

    (R-Kan.) Sept. 12, 1956– ; House 1995–Nov. 6, 1996; Senate Nov. 27, 1996–.

    Bryan, Richard H.

    (D-Nev.) July 16, 1937– ; Senate 1989–2001; Gov. 1983–1989.

    Bryant, Ed

    (R-Tenn.) Sept. 7, 1948– ; House 1995–.

    Bumpers, Dale

    (D-Ark.) Aug. 12, 1925– ; Senate 1975–1999.

    Bunning, Jim

    (R-Ky.) Oct. 23, 1931– ; House 1987–1999; Senate 1999–.

    Burns, Conrad

    (R-Mont.) Jan. 25, 1935– ; Senate 1989–.

    Burr, Richard M.

    (R-N.C.) Nov. 30, 1955– ; House 1995–.

    Burton, Dan

    (R-Ind.) June 21, 1938– ; House 1983–.

    Buyer, Steve

    (R-Ind.) Nov. 26, 1958– ; House 1993– ; Gov. 1971–1975.

    Byrd, Robert C.

    (D-W.Va.) Nov. 20, 1917– ; House 1953–1959; Senate 1959– ; Senate minority leader, 1981–1987; Senate majority leader 1977– 1981, 1987–1989; Pres. pro tempore 1989–1995.

    Callahan, Sonny

    (R-Ala.) Sept. 11, 1932– ; House 1985–.

    Calvert, Ken

    (R-Calif.) June 8, 1953– ; House 1993–.

    Camp, Dave

    (R-Mich.) July 9, 1953– ; House 1991–.

    Campbell, Ben Nighthorse

    (R-Colo.) April 13, 1933– ; House 1987–1993; Senate 1993– (1987–March 3, 1995, Democrat).

    Campbell, Tom

    (R-Calif.) Aug. 14, 1952– ; House 1989–1993; Dec. 15, 1995–2001.

    Canady, Charles T.

    (R-Fla.) June 22, 1954– ; House 1993–2001.

    Cannon, Christopher B.

    (R-Utah) Oct. 20, 1950– ; House 1997–.

    Capps, Lois D.

    (wife of Walter Capps) (D-Calif.) Jan. 10, 1938– ; House March 17, 1998–.

    Capps, Walter

    (husband of Lois D. Capps) (D-Calif.) May 5, 1934–Oct. 28, 1997; House 1997–Oct. 28, 1997.

    Capuano, Michael E.

    (D-Mass.) Jan. 9, 1952– ; House 1999–.

    Cardin, Benjamin L.

    (D-Md.) Oct. 5, 1943– ; House 1987–.

    Carson, Julia M.

    (D-Ind.) July 8, 1938– ; House 1997–.

    Castle, Michael N.

    (R-Del.) July 2, 1939– ; House 1993–.

    Chabot, Steve

    (R-Ohio) Jan. 22, 1953– ; House 1995–.

    Chafee, John H.

    (father of Lincoln Chafee) (R-R.I.) Oct. 22, 1922–Oct. 24, 1999; Senate 1976–Oct. 24, 1999; Gov. 1963–1969.

    Chafee, Lincoln

    (son of John H. Chafee) (R-R.I.) March 26, 1953– ; Senate Nov. 4, 1999–.

    Chambliss, Saxby

    (R-Ga.) Nov. 10, 1943– ; House 1995–.

    Chenoweth, Helen

    (R-Idaho) Jan. 27, 1938– ; House 1995–2001.

    Christensen, Donna M. C.

    (D-Virgin Is.) Sept. 19, 1945– ; House (delegate) 1997–.

    Christensen, Jon

    (R-Neb.) Feb. 20, 1963– ; House 1995–1999.

    Clay, William L.

    (D-Mo.) April 30, 1931– ; House 1969–2001.

    Clayton, Eva

    (D-N.C.) Sept. 16, 1934– ; House Nov. 4, 1992–.

    Cleland, Max

    (D-Ga.) Aug. 24, 1942– ; Senate 1997–.

    Clement, Bob

    (D-Tenn.) Sept. 23, 1943– ; House 1988–.

    Clyburn, James E.

    (D-S.C.) July 21, 1940– ; House 1993–.

    Coats, Daniel R.

    (R-Ind.) May 16, 1943– ; House 1981–Jan. 1, 1989; Senate 1989–1999.

    Coble, Howard

    (R-N.C.) March 18, 1931– ; House 1985–.

    Coburn, Tom

    (R-Okla.) March 14, 1948– ; House 1995–2001.

    Cochran, Thad

    (R-Miss.) Dec. 7, 1937– ; House 1973–Dec. 26, 1978; Senate Dec. 27, 1978–.

    Collins, Mac

    (R-Ga.) Oct. 15, 1944– ; House 1993–.

    Collins, Susan

    (R-Maine) Dec. 7, 1952– ; Senate 1997–.

    Combest, Larry

    (R-Texas) March 20, 1945– ; House 1985–.

    Condit, Gary A.

    (D-Calif.) April 21, 1948– ; House Sept. 20, 1989–.

    Conrad, Kent

    (D-N.D.) March 12, 1948– ; Senate 1987–Dec. 14, 1992, Dec. 14, 1992– (Conrad resigned his Senate seat on Dec. 14, 1992, after having won a special election to North Dakota's other Senate seat).

    Conyers, John Jr.

    (D-Mich.) May 16, 1929– ; House 1965–.

    Cook, Merrill

    (R-Utah) May 6, 1946– ; House 1997–2001.

    Cooksey, John

    (R-La.) Aug. 20, 1941– ; House 1997–.

    Costello, Jerry F.

    (D-Ill.) Sept. 25, 1949– ; House Aug. 11, 1988–.

    Coverdell, Paul

    (R-Ga.) Jan. 20, 1939–July 18, 2000 ; Senate 1993–July 18, 2000.

    Cox, Christopher

    (R-Calif.) Oct. 16, 1952– ; House 1989–.

    Coyne, William J.

    (D-Pa.) Aug. 24, 1936– ; House 1981–.

    Craig, Larry E.

    (R-Idaho) July 20, 1945– ; House 1981–1991; Senate 1991–.

    Cramer, Robert E. “Bud”

    (D-Ala.) Aug. 22, 1947– ; House 1991–.

    Crane, Philip M.

    (brother of Daniel Bever Crane) (R-Ill.) Nov. 3, 1930– ; House 1969–.

    Crapo, Michael D.

    (R-Idaho) May 20, 1951– ; House 1993–1999; Senate 1999–.

    Crowley, Joseph

    (D-N.Y.) March 16, 1962– ; House 1999–.

    Cubin, Barbara

    (R-Wyo.) Nov. 30, 1946– ; House 1995–.

    Cummings, Elijah E.

    (D-Md.) Jan. 18, 1951– ; House April 25, 1996–.

    Cunningham, Randy “Duke”

    (R-Calif.) Dec. 8, 1941 ; House 1991–.

    D'Amato, Alfonse M.

    (R-N.Y.) Aug. 1, 1937– ; Senate 1981–1999.

    Danner, Pat

    (D-Mo.) Jan. 13, 1934– ; House 1993–2001.

    Daschle, Tom

    (D-S.D.) Dec. 9, 1947– ; House 1979–1987; Senate 1987– ; Senate minority leader 1995–.

    Davis, Danny K.

    (D-Ill.) Sept. 6, 1941– ; House 1997–.

    Davis, Jim

    (D-Fla.) Oct. 11, 1957– ; House 1997–.

    Davis, Thomas M. III

    (R-Va.) Jan. 5, 1949– ; House 1995–.

    Deal, Nathan

    (R-Ga.) Aug. 25, 1942– ; House 1993– (1993–April 10, 1995, Democrat).

    DeFazio, Peter A.

    (D-Ore.) May 27, 1947– ; House 1987–.

    DeGette, Diana

    (D-Colo.) July 29, 1957– ; House 1997–.

    Delahunt, William

    (D-Mass.) July 18, 1941– ; House 1997–.

    DeLauro, Rosa

    (D-Conn.) March 2, 1943– ; House 1991–.

    DeLay, Tom

    (R-Texas) April 8, 1947– ; House 1985–.

    Dellums, Ronald V.

    (D-Calif.) Nov. 24, 1935– ; House 1971–Feb. 6, 1998.

    DeMint, Jim

    (R-S.C.) Sept. 2, 1951– ; House 1999–.

    Derrick, Butler

    (D-S.C.) Sept. 30, 1936– ; House 1975–.

    Deutsch, Peter

    (D-Fla.) April 1, 1957– ; House 1993–.

    DeWine, Mike

    (R-Ohio) Jan. 5, 1947– ; House 1983–1991; Senate 1995–.

    Diaz-Balart, Lincoln

    (R-Fla.) Aug. 13, 1954– ; House 1993–.

    Dickey, Jay

    (R-Ark.) Dec. 14, 1939– ; House 1993–2001.

    Dicks, Norm

    (D-Wash.) Dec. 16, 1940– ; House 1977–.

    Dingell, John D.

    (son of John David Dingell) (D-Mich.) July 8, 1926– ; House Dec. 13, 1955–.

    Dixon, Julian C.

    (D-Calif.) Aug. 8, 1934–Dec. 8, 2000 ; House 1979–Dec. 8, 2000.

    Dodd, Christopher J.

    (son of Thomas Joseph Dodd) (D-Conn.) May 27, 1944– ; House 1975–1981; Senate 1981–.

    Doggett, Lloyd

    (D-Texas) Oct. 6, 1946– ; House 1995–.

    Domenici, Pete V.

    (R-N.M.) May 7, 1932– ; Senate 1973–.

    Dooley, Cal

    (D-Calif.) Jan. 11, 1954– ; House 1991–.

    Doolittle, John T.

    (R-Calif.) Oct. 30, 1950– ; House 1991–.

    Dorgan, Byron L.

    (D-N.D.) May 14, 1942– ; House 1981–Dec. 14, 1992; Senate Dec. 15, 1992–.

    Doyle, Mike

    (D-Pa.) Aug. 5, 1953– ; House 1995–.

    Dreier, David

    (R-Calif.) July 5, 1952– ; House 1981–.

    Duncan, John J. “Jimmy” Jr.

    (son of John J. Duncan) (R-Tenn.) July 21, 1947– ; House 1988–.

    Dunn, Jennifer

    (R-Wash.) July 29, 1941– ; House 1993–.

    Durbin, Richard J.

    (D-Ill.) Nov. 21, 1944– ; House 1983–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Edwards, Chet

    (D-Texas) Nov. 24, 1951– ; House 1991–.

    Edwards, John

    (D-N.C.) June 10, 1953– ; Senate 1999–.

    Ehlers, Vernon J.

    (R-Mich.) Feb. 6, 1934– ; House Jan. 25, 1994–.

    Ehrlich, Robert Jr.

    (R-Md.) Nov. 25, 1957– ; House 1995–.

    Emerson, Jo Ann

    (R-Mo.) Sept. 16, 1950– ; House Nov. 5, 1996– (Emerson was elected as an In dependent in a special election following the death of her husband, Bill Emerson, because the filing date had passed; she switched to Republican upon entering Congress).

    Engel, Eliot L.

    (D-N.Y.) Feb. 18, 1947– ; House 1989–.

    English, Phil

    (R-Pa.) June 20, 1956– ; House 1995–.

    Ensign, John

    (R-Nev.) March 25, 1958– ; House 1995–1999.

    Enzi, Michael B.

    (R-Wyo.) Feb. 1, 1944– ; Senate 1997–.

    Eshoo, Anna G.

    (D-Calif.) Dec. 13, 1942– ; House 1993–.

    Etheridge, Bob

    (D-N.C.) Aug. 7, 1941– ; House 1997–.

    Evans, Lane

    (D-Ill.) Aug. 4, 1951– ; House 1983–.

    Everett, Terry

    (R-Ala.) Feb. 15, 1937– ; House 1993–.

    Ewing, Thomas W.

    (R-Ill.) Sept. 19, 1935– ; House July 10, 1991–2001.

    Faircloth, Lauch

    (R-N.C.) Jan. 14, 1928– ; Senate 1993–1999.

    Faleomavaega, Eni F. H.

    (D-Am. Samoa) Aug. 15, 1943– ; House (delegate) 1989–.

    Farr, Sam

    (D-Calif.) July 4, 1941– ; House June 16, 1993–.

    Fattah, Chaka

    (D-Pa.) Nov. 21, 1956– ; House 1995–.

    Fawell, Harris W.

    (R-Ill.) March 25, 1929– ; House 1985–1999.

    Fazio, Vic

    (D-Calif.) Oct. 11, 1942– ; House 1979– 1999.

    Feingold, Russell D.

    (D-Wis.) March 2, 1953– ; Senate 1993–.

    Feinstein, Dianne

    (D-Calif.) June 22, 1933– ; Senate Nov. 10, 1992–.

    Filner, Bob

    (D-Calif.) Sept. 4, 1942– ; House 1993–.

    Fitzgerald, Peter G.

    (R-Ill.) Oct. 20, 1960– ; Senate 1999–.

    Flake, Floyd H.

    (D-N.Y.) Jan. 30, 1945– ; House 1987–Nov. 15, 1997.

    Fletcher, Ernest

    (R-Ky.) Nov. 12, 1952– ; House 1999–.

    Foglietta, Thomas M.

    (D-Pa.) Dec. 3, 1928– ; House 1981–Nov. 12, 1997. (1981–1982, Independent).

    Foley, Mark

    (R-Fla.) Sept. 8, 1954– ; House 1995–.

    Forbes, Michael P.

    (D-N.Y.) July 16, 1952– ; House 1995–2001 (1995–July 2000, Republican).

    Ford, Harold E. Jr.

    (D-Tenn.) May 11, 1970– ; House 1997–.

    Ford, Wendell H.

    (D-Ky.) Sept. 8, 1924– ; Senate Dec. 28, 1974–1999; Gov. 1971–1974.

    Fossella, Vito J.

    (R-N.Y.) March 9, 1965– ; House Nov. 5, 1997–.

    Fowler, Tillie

    (R-Fla.) Dec. 23, 1942– ; House 1993–2001.

    Fox, Jon D.

    (R-Pa.) April 22, 1947– ; House 1995–1999.

    Frank, Barney

    (D-Mass.) March 31, 1940– ; House 1981–.

    Franks, Bob

    (R-N.J.) Sept. 21, 1951– ; House 1993–2001.

    Frelinghuysen, Rodney

    (son of Peter Hood Ballentine Frelinghuysen) (R-N.J.) April 29, 1946– ; House 1995–.

    Frist, Bill

    (R-Tenn.) Feb. 22, 1952– ; Senate 1995–.

    Frost, Martin

    (D-Texas) Jan. 1, 1942– ; House 1979–.

    Furse, Elizabeth

    (D-Ore.) Oct. 13, 1936– ; House 1993–1999.

    Gallegly, Elton

    (R-Calif.) March 7, 1944– ; House 1987–.

    Ganske, Greg

    (R-Iowa) March 31, 1949– ; House 1995–.

    Gejdenson, Sam

    (D-Conn.) May 20, 1948– ; House 1981–2001.

    Gekas, George W.

    (R-Pa.) April 14, 1930– ; House 1983–.

    Gephardt, Richard A.

    (D-Mo.) Jan. 31, 1941– ; House 1977– ; House majority leader June 14, 1989–1995; House minority leader 1995–.

    Gibbons, Jim

    (R-Nev.) Dec. 16, 1944– ; House 1997–.

    Gilchrest, Wayne T.

    (R-Md.) April 15, 1946– ; House 1991–.

    Gillmor, Paul E.

    (R-Ohio) Feb. 1, 1939– ; House 1989–.

    Gilman, Benjamin A.

    (R-N.Y.) Dec. 6, 1922– ; House 1973–.

    Gingrich, Newt

    (R-Ga.) June 17, 1943– ; House 1979–Jan. 3, 1999 ; Speaker 1995–1999.

    Glenn, John

    (D-Ohio) July 18, 1921– ; Senate 1974–1999.

    Gonzalez, Charlie

    (son of Henry B. Gonzalez) (D-Texas) May 5, 1945– ; House 1999–.

    Gonzalez, Henry B.

    (father of Charlie Gonzalez) (D-Texas) May 3, 1916–Nov. 28, 2000; House 1961–1999.

    Goode, Virgil H. Jr.

    (I-Va.) Oct. 17, 1946– ; House 1997– (1997–Jan. 24, 2000, Democrat).

    Goodlatte, Robert W.

    (R-Va.) Sept. 22, 1952– ; House 1993–.

    Goodling, William F.

    (son of George Atlee Goodling) (R-Pa.) Dec. 5, 1927– ; House 1975–2001.

    Gordon, Bart

    (D-Tenn.) Jan. 24, 1949– ; House 1985–.

    Gorton, Slade

    (R-Wash.) Jan. 8, 1928– ; Senate 1989–2001.

    Goss, Porter J.

    (R-Fla.) Nov. 26, 1938– ; House 1989–.

    Graham, Bob

    (D-Fla.) Nov. 9, 1936– ; Senate 1987–.

    Graham, Lindsey

    (R-S.C.) July 9, 1955– ; House 1995–.

    Gramm, Phil

    (R-Texas) July 8, 1942– ; House 1979– Jan. 5, 1983, Feb. 22, 1983–1985 (1979–Jan. 5, 1983, Democrat); Senate 1985–.

    Grams, Rod

    (R-Minn.) Feb. 4, 1948– ; House 1993–1995; Senate 1995–2001.

    Granger, Kay

    (R-Texas) Jan. 18, 1943– ; House 1997–.

    Grassley, Charles E.

    (R-Iowa) Sept. 17, 1933– ; House 1975–1981; Senate 1981–.

    Green, Gene

    (D-Texas) Oct. 17, 1947– ; House 1993–.

    Green, Mark

    (R-Wis.) June 1, 1960– ; House 1999–.

    Greenwood, James C.

    (R-Pa.) May 4, 1951– ; House 1993–.

    Gregg, Judd

    (R-N.H.) Feb. 14, 1947– ; Senate 1993–.

    Gutierrez, Luis V.

    (D-Ill.) Dec. 10, 1954– ; House 1993–.

    Gutknecht, Gil

    (R-Minn.) March 20, 1951– ; House 1995–.

    Hagel, Chuck

    (R-Neb.) Oct. 4, 1946– ; Senate 1997–.

    Hall, Ralph M.

    (D-Texas) May 3, 1923– ; House 1981–.

    Hall, Tony P.

    (D-Ohio) Jan. 16, 1942– ; House 1979–.

    Hamilton, Lee H.

    (D-Ind.) April 20, 1931– ; House 1965–1999.

    Hansen, James V.

    (R-Utah) Aug. 14, 1932– ; House 1981–.

    Harkin, Tom

    (D-Iowa) Nov. 19, 1939– ; House 1975–1985; Senate 1985–.

    Harman, Jane

    (D-Calif.) June 28, 1945– ; House 1993–1999.

    Hastert, J. Dennis

    (R-Ill.) Jan. 2, 1942– ; House 1987– ; Speaker 1999–.

    Hastings, Alcee L.

    (D-Fla.) Sept. 5, 1936– ; House 1993–.

    Hastings, Richard “Doc”

    (R-Wash.) Feb. 7, 1941– ; House 1995–.

    Hatch, Orrin G.

    (R-Utah) March 22, 1934– ; Senate 1977–.

    Hayes, Robin

    (R-N.C.) Aug. 14, 1945– ; House 1999–.

    Hayworth, J. D.

    (R-Ariz.) July 12, 1958– ; House 1995–.

    Hefley, Joel

    (R-Colo.) April 18, 1935– ; House 1987–.

    Hefner, W. G. “Bill”

    (D-N.C.) April 11, 1930– ; House 1975–1999.

    Helms, Jesse

    (R-N.C.) Oct. 18, 1921– ; Senate 1973–.

    Herger, Wally

    (R-Calif.) May 20, 1945– ; House 1987–.

    Hill, Baron P.

    (D-Ind.) June 23, 1953– ; House 1999–.

    Hill, Rick

    (R-Mont.) Dec. 30, 1946– ; House 1997–2001.

    Hilleary, Van

    (R-Tenn.) June 20, 1959– ; House 1995–.

    Hilliard, Earl F.

    (D-Ala.) April 9, 1942– ; House 1993–.

    Hinchey, Maurice D.

    (D-N.Y.) Oct. 27, 1938– ; House 1993–.

    Hinojosa, Rubén

    (D-Texas) Aug. 20, 1940– ; House 1997–.

    Hobson, David L.

    (R-Ohio) Oct. 17, 1936– ; House 1991–.

    Hoeffel, Joseph M.

    (D-Pa.) Sept. 3, 1950– ; House 1999–.

    Hoekstra, Peter

    (R-Mich.) Oct. 30, 1953– ; House 1993–.

    Holden, Tim

    (D-Pa.) March 5, 1957– ; House 1993–.

    Hollings, Ernest F.

    (D-S.C.) Jan. 1, 1922– ; Senate Nov. 9, 1966– ; Gov. 1959–1963.

    Holt, Rush D.

    (D-N.J.) Oct. 15, 1948– ; House 1999–.

    Hooley, Darlene

    (D-Ore.) April 4, 1939– ; House 1997–.

    Horn, Steve

    (R-Calif.) May 31, 1931– ; House 1993–.

    Hostettler, John

    (R-Ind.) July 19, 1961– ; House 1995–.

    Houghton, Amo

    (grandson of Alanson Bigelow Houghton) (R-N.Y.) Aug. 7, 1926– ; House 1987–.

    Hoyer, Steny H.

    (D-Md.) June 14, 1939– ; House June 3, 1981–.

    Hulshof, Kenny

    (R-Mo.) May 22, 1958– ; House 1997–.

    Hunter, Duncan

    (R-Calif.) May 31, 1948– ; House 1981–.

    Hutchinson, Asa

    (R-Ark.) Dec. 3, 1950– ; House 1997–.

    Hutchinson, Tim

    (R-Ark.) Aug. 11, 1949– ; House 1993–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Hutchison, Kay Bailey

    (R-Texas) July 22, 1943– ; Senate June 14, 1993–.

    Hyde, Henry J.

    (R-Ill.) April 18, 192– ; House 1975–.

    Inglis, Robert D.

    (R-S.C.) Oct. 11, 1959– ; House 1993–1999.

    Inhofe, James M.

    (R-Okla.) Nov. 17, 1934– ; House 1987–Nov. 15, 1994; Senate Nov. 17, 1994–.

    Inouye, Daniel K.

    (D-Hawaii) Sept. 7, 1924– ; House Aug. 21, 1959–1963; Senate 1963–.

    Inslee, Jay

    (D-Wash.) Feb. 9, 1951– ; House 1993–1995; 1999–.

    Isakson, Johnny

    (R-Ga.) Dec. 28, 1944– ; House Feb. 25, 1999–.

    Istook, Ernest

    (R-Okla.) Feb. 11, 1950– ; House 1993–.

    Jackson, Jesse L. Jr.

    (D-Ill.) March 11, 1965– ; House Dec. 14, 1995–.

    Jackson-Lee, Sheila

    (D-Texas) Jan. 12, 1950– ; House 1995–.

    Jefferson, William J.

    (D-La.) March 14, 1947– ; House 1991–.

    Jeffords, James M.

    (R-Vt.) May 11, 1934– ; House 1975–1989; Senate 1989–.

    Jenkins, William L.

    (R-Tenn.) Nov. 29, 1936– ; House 1997–.

    John, Chris

    (D-La.) Jan. 5, 1960– ; House 1997–.

    Johnson, Eddie Bernice

    (D-Texas) Dec. 3, 1935– ; House 1993–.

    Johnson, Jay

    (D-Wis.) Sept. 30, 1943– ; House 1997–1999.

    Johnson, Nancy L.

    (R-Conn.) Jan. 5, 1935– ; House 1983–.

    Johnson, Sam

    (R-Texas) Oct. 11, 1930– ; House May 22, 1991–.

    Johnson, Tim

    (D-S.D.) Dec. 28, 1946– ; House 1987–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Jones, Stephanie Tubbs

    (D-Ohio) Sept. 10, 1949– ; House 1999–.

    Jones, Walter B. Jr.

    (son of Walter Beaman Jones) (R-N.C.) Feb. 10, 1943– ; House 1995–.

    Kanjorski, Paul E.

    (D-Pa.) April 2, 1937– ; House 1985–.

    Kaptur, Marcy

    (D-Ohio) June 17, 1946– ; House 1983–.

    Kasich, John R.

    (R-Ohio) May 13, 1952– ; House 1983–2001.

    Kelly, Sue W.

    (R-N.Y.) Sept. 26, 1936– ; House 1995–.

    Kempthorne, Dirk

    (R-Idaho) Oct. 29, 1951– ; Senate 1993–1999; Gov. 1999–.

    Kennedy, Edward M.

    (father of Patrick J. Kennedy, brother of John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Robert Francis Kennedy, grandson of John Francis Fitzgerald, uncle of Joseph P. Kennedy II) (D-Mass.) Feb. 22, 1932– ; Senate Nov. 7, 1962–.

    Kennedy, Joseph P. II

    (son of Robert Francis Kennedy, nephew of Edward M. Kennedy and John Fitzgerald Kennedy, cousin of Patrick J. Kennedy, great grandson of John Francis Fitzgerald) (D-Mass.) Sept. 24, 1952– ; House 1987–1999.

    Kennedy, Patrick J.

    (son of Edward M. Kennedy, nephew of John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Robert Francis Kennedy, cousin of Joseph P. Kennedy II, great grandson of John Francis Fitzgerald) (D-R.I.) July 14, 1967– ; House 1995–.

    Kennelly, Barbara B.

    (D-Conn.) July 10, 1936– ; House Jan. 25, 1982–1999.

    Kerrey, Bob

    (D-Neb.) Aug. 27, 1943– ; Senate 1989–2001; Gov. 1983–1989.

    Kerry, John

    (D-Mass.) Dec. 11, 1943– ; Senate 1985–.

    Kildee, Dale E.

    (D-Mich.) Sept. 16, 1929– ; House 1977–.

    Kilpatrick, Carolyn Cheeks

    (D-Mich.) June 25, 1945– ; House 1997–.

    Kim, Jay C.

    (R-Calif.) March 27, 1939– ; House 1993–1999.

    Kind, Ron

    (D-Wis.) March 16, 1963– ; House 1997–.

    King, Peter T.

    (R-N.Y.) April 5, 1944– ; House 1993–.

    Kingston, Jack

    (R-Ga.) April 24, 1955– ; House 1993–.

    Kleczka, Gerald D.

    (D-Wis.) Nov. 26, 1943– ; House April 10, 1984–.

    Klink, Ron

    (D-Pa.) Sept. 23, 1951– ; House 1993–2001.

    Klug, Scott L.

    (R-Wis.) Jan. 16, 1953– ; House 1991–1999.

    Knollenberg, Joe

    (R-Mich.) Nov. 28, 1933– ; House 1993–.

    Kohl, Herb

    (D-Wis.) Feb. 7, 1935– ; Senate 1989–.

    Kolbe, Jim

    (R-Ariz.) June 28, 1942– ; House 1985–.

    Kucinich, Dennis J.

    (D-Ohio) Oct. 8, 1946– ; House 1997–.

    Kuykendall, Steven T.

    (R-Calif.) Jan. 27, 1947– ; House 1999–2001.

    Kyl, Jon

    (son of John Henry Kyl) (R-Ariz.) April 25, 1942– ; House 1987–1995; Senate 1995–.

    LaFalce, John J.

    (D-N.Y.) Oct. 6, 1939– ; House 1975–.

    LaHood, Ray

    (R-Ill.) Dec. 6, 1945– ; House 1995–.

    Lampson, Nick

    (D-Texas) Feb. 14, 1945– ; House 1997–.

    Landrieu, Mary L.

    (D-La.) Nov. 23, 1955– ; Senate 1997–.

    Lantos, Tom

    (father-in-law of Dick Swett) (D-Calif.) Feb. 1, 1928– ; House 1981–.

    Largent, Steve

    (R-Okla.) Sept. 28, 1955– ; House Nov. 29, 1994–.

    Larson, John B.

    (D-Conn.) July 22, 1948– ; House 1999–.

    Latham, Tom

    (R-Iowa) July 14, 1948– ; House 1995–.

    LaTourette, Steven C.

    (R-Ohio) July 22, 1954– ; House 1995–.

    Lautenberg, Frank R.

    (D-N.J.) Jan. 23, 1924– ; Senate Dec. 27, 1982–2001.

    Lazio, Rick A.

    (R-N.Y.) March 13, 1958– ; House 1993–2001.

    Leach, Jim

    (R-Iowa) Oct. 15, 1942– ; House 1977–.

    Leahy, Patrick J.

    (D-Vt.) March 31, 1940– ; Senate 1975–.

    Lee, Barbara

    (D-Calif.) July 16, 1946– ; House April 21, 1998–.

    Levin, Carl

    (brother of Sander M. Levin) (D-Mich.) June 28, 1934– ; Senate 1979–.

    Levin, Sander M.

    (brother of Carl Levin) (D-Mich.) Sept. 6, 1931– ; House 1983–.

    Lewis, Jerry

    (R-Calif.) Oct. 21, 1934– ; House 1979–.

    Lewis, John

    (D-Ga.) Feb. 21, 1940– ; House 1987–.

    Lewis, Ron

    (R-Ky.) Sept. 14, 1946– ; House May 26, 1994–.

    Lieberman, Joseph I.

    (D-Conn.) Feb. 24, 1942– ; Senate 1989–.

    Lincoln, Blanche Lambert

    (D-Ark.) Sept. 30, 1960– ; House 1993–1997; Senate 1999–.

    Linder, John

    (R-Ga.) Sept. 9, 1942– ; House 1993–.

    Lipinski, William O.

    (D-Ill.) Dec. 22, 1937– ; House 1983–.

    Livingston, Robert L.

    (R-La.) April 30, 1943– ; House Sept. 7, 1977–Feb. 22, 1999.

    LoBiondo, Frank A.

    (R-N.J.) May 12, 1946– ; House 1995–.

    Lofgren, Zoe

    (D-Calif.) Dec. 21, 1947– ; House 1995–.

    Lott, Trent

    (R-Miss.) Oct. 9, 1941– ; House 1973–1989; Senate 1989– ; Senate majority leader June 12, 1996–.

    Lowey, Nita M.

    (D-N.Y.) July 5, 1937– ; House 1989–.

    Lucas, Frank D.

    (R-Okla.) Jan. 6, 1960– ; House May 17, 1994–.

    Lucas, Ken

    (D-Ky.) Aug. 22, 1933– ; House 1999–.

    Lugar, Richard G.

    (R-Ind.) April 4, 1932– ; Senate 1977–.

    Luther, William P. “Bill”

    (D-Minn.) June 27, 1945– ; House 1995–.

    Mack, Connie

    (R-Fla.) Oct. 29, 1940– ; House 1983–1989; Senate 1989–2001.

    Maloney, Carolyn B.

    (D-N.Y.) Feb. 19, 1948– ; House 1993–.

    Maloney, James H.

    (D-Conn.) Sept. 17, 1948– ; House- .

    Manton, Thomas J.

    (D-N.Y.) Nov. 3, 1932– ; House 1985–1999.

    Manzullo, Donald

    (R-Ill.) March 24, 1944– ; House 1993–.

    Markey, Edward J.

    (D-Mass.) July 11, 1946– ; House Nov. 2, 1976–.

    Martinez, Matthew G.

    (R-Calif.) Feb. 14, 1929– ; House July 15, 1982–2001 (1982–March 2000, Democrat).

    Mascara, Frank R.

    (D-Pa.) Jan. 19, 1930– ; House 1995–.

    Matsui, Robert T.

    (D-Calif.) Sept. 17, 1941– ; House 1979–.

    McCain, John

    (R-Ariz.) Aug. 29, 1936– ; House 1983–1987; Senate 1987–.

    McCarthy, Carolyn

    (D-N.Y.) Jan. 5, 1944– ; House 1997–.

    McCarthy, Karen

    (D-Mo.) March 18, 1947– ; House 1995–.

    McCollum, Bill

    (R-Fla.) July 12, 1944– ; House 1981–2001.

    McConnell, Mitch

    (R-Ky.) Feb. 20, 1942– ; Senate 1985–.

    McCrery, Jim

    (R-La.) Sept. 18, 1949– ; House 1988–.

    McDade, Joseph M.

    (R-Pa.) Sept. 29, 1931– ; House 1963–1999.

    McDermott, Jim

    (D-Wash.) Dec. 28, 1936– ; House 1989–.

    McGovern, James

    (D-Mass.) Nov. 20, 1959– ; House 1997–.

    McHale, Paul

    (D-Pa.) July 26, 1950– ; House 1993–1999.

    McHugh, John M.

    (R-N.Y.) Sept. 29, 1948– ; House 1993–.

    McInnis, Scott

    (R-Colo.) May 9, 1953– ; House 1993–.

    McIntosh, David M.

    (R-Ind.) June 8, 1958– ; House 1995–2001.

    McIntyre, Mike

    (D-N.C.) Aug. 6, 1956– ; House 1997–.

    McKeon, Howard P. “Buck”

    (R-Calif.) Sept. 9, 1939– ; House 1993–.

    McKinney, Cynthia A.

    (D-Ga.) March 17, 1955– ; House 1993–.

    McNulty, Michael R.

    (D-N.Y.) Sept. 16, 1947– ; House 1989–.

    Meehan, Martin T.

    (D-Mass.) Dec. 30, 1956– ; House 1993–.

    Meek, Carrie P.

    (D-Fla.) April 29, 1926– ; House 1993–.

    Meeks, Gregory W.

    (D-N.Y.) Sept. 25, 1953– ; House Feb. 5, 1998–.

    Menendez, Robert

    (D-N.J.) Jan. 1, 1954– ; House 1993–.

    Metcalf, Jack

    (R-Wash.) Nov. 30, 1927– ; House 1995–2001.

    Mica, John L.

    (R-Fla.) Jan. 27, 1943– ; House 1993–.

    Mikulski, Barbara A.

    (D-Md.) July 20, 1936– ; House 1977–1987; Senate 1987–.

    Millender-McDonald, Juanita

    (D-Calif.) Sept. 7, 1938– ; House April 16, 1996–.

    Miller, Dan

    (R-Fla.) May 30, 1942– ; House 1993–.

    Miller, Gary

    (R-Calif.) Oct. 16, 1948– ; House 1999–.

    Miller, George

    (D-Calif.) May 17, 1945– ; House 1975–.

    Miller, Zell

    (D-Ga.) Feb. 24, 1932– ; Senate July 27, 2000– ; Gov. 1991–1999.

    Minge, David

    (D-Minn.) March 19, 1942– ; House 1993–2001.

    Mink, Patsy T.

    (D-Hawaii) Dec. 6, 1927– ; House 1965–1977, Sept. 27, 1990–.

    Moakley, Joe

    (D-Mass.) April 27, 1927–May 28, 2001; House 197–May 28, 2001 (elected as an Independent Democrat; changed affiliation to Democrat Jan. 2, 1973).

    Molinari, Susan

    (daughter of Guy V. Molinari, wife of Bill Paxon) (R-N.Y.) March 27, 1958– ; House March 27, 1990–Aug. 1, 1997.

    Mollohan, Alan B.

    (son of Robert Homer Mollohan) (D-W.Va.) May 14, 1943– ; House 1983–.

    Moore, Dennis

    (D-Kan.) Nov. 8, 1945– ; House 1999–.

    Moran, James P.

    (D-Va.) May 16, 1945– ; House 1991–.

    Moran, Jerry

    (R-Kan.) May 29, 1954– ; House 1997–.

    Morella, Constance A.

    (R-Md.) Feb. 12, 1931– ; House 1987–.

    Moseley-Braun, Carol

    (D-Ill.) Aug. 16, 1947– ; Senate 1993–1999.

    Moynihan, Daniel Patrick

    (D-N.Y.) March 16, 1927– ; Senate 1977–2001.

    Murkowski, Frank H.

    (R-Alaska) March 28, 1933– ; Senate 1981–.

    Murray, Patty

    (D-Wash.) Oct. 11, 1950– ; Senate 1993–.

    Murtha, John P.

    (D-Pa.) June 17, 1932– ; House Feb. 5, 1974–.

    Myrick, Sue

    (R-N.C.) Aug. 1, 1941– ; House 1995–.

    Nadler, Jerrold

    (D-N.Y.) June 13, 1947– ; House Nov. 4, 1992–.

    Napolitano, Grace Flores

    (D-Calif.) Dec. 4, 1936– ; House 1999–.

    Neal, Richard E.

    (D-Mass.) Feb. 14, 1949– ; House 1989–.

    Nethercutt, George

    (R-Wash.) Oct. 7, 1944– ; House 1995–.

    Neumann, Mark W.

    (R-Wis.) Feb. 27, 1954– ; House 1995–1999.

    Ney, Bob

    (R-Ohio) July 5, 1954– ; House 1995–.

    Nickles, Don

    (R-Okla.) Dec. 6, 1948– ; Senate 1981–.

    Northup, Anne M.

    (R-Ky.) July 22, 1948– ; House 1997–.

    Norton, Eleanor Holmes

    (D-D.C.) June 13, 1937– ; House (delegate) 1991–.

    Norwood, Charlie

    (R-Ga.) July 27, 1941– ; House 1995–.

    Nussle, Jim

    (R-Iowa) June 27, 1960– ; House 1991–.

    Oberstar, James L.

    (D-Minn.) Sept. 10, 1934– ; House 1975–.

    Obey, David R.

    (D-Wis.) Oct. 3, 1938– ; House April 1, 1969–.

    Olver, John W.

    (D-Mass.) Sept. 3, 1936– ; House June 18, 1991–.

    Ortiz, Solomon P.

    (D-Texas) June 3, 1937– ; House 1983–.

    Ose, Doug

    (R-Calif.) June 27, 1955– ; House 1999–.

    Owens, Major R.

    (D-N.Y.) June 28, 1936– ; House 1983–.

    Oxley, Michael G.

    (R-Ohio) Feb. 11, 1944– ; House June 25, 1981–.

    Packard, Ron

    (R-Calif.) Jan. 19, 1931– ; House 1983–2001.

    Pallone, Frank Jr.

    (D-N.J.) Oct. 30, 1951– ; House Nov. 8, 1988–.

    Pappas, Michael

    (R-N.J.) Dec. 29, 1960– ; House 1997–1999.

    Parker, Mike

    (R-Miss.) Oct. 31, 1949– ; House 1989–1999 (1993–Nov. 10, 1995, Democrat).

    Pascrell, Bill Jr.

    (D-N.J.) Jan. 25, 1937– ; House 19974–.

    Pastor, Ed

    (D-Ariz.) June 28, 1943– ; House Oct. 3, 1991–.

    Paul, Ron

    (R-Texas) Aug. 20, 1935– ; House 1976–1977; 1979–1985; 1997–.

    Paxon, Bill

    (husband of Susan Molinari, son-in-law of Guy Molinari) (R-N.Y.) April 29, 1954– ; House 1989–1999.

    Payne, Donald M.

    (D-N.J.) July 16, 1934– ; House 1989–.

    Pease, Edward A.

    (R-Ind.) May 22, 1951– ; House 1997–2001.

    Pelosi, Nancy

    (daughter of Thomas D'Allesandro Jr.) (D-Calif.) March 26, 1940– ; House June 9, 1987–.

    Peterson, Collin C.

    (D-Minn.) June 29, 1944– ; House 1991–.

    Peterson, John E.

    (R-Pa.) Dec. 25, 1938– ; House 1997–.

    Petri, Thomas E.

    (R-Wis.) May 28, 1940– ; House April 3, 1979–.

    Phelps, David D.

    (D-Ill.) Oct. 26, 1947– ; House 1999–.

    Pickering, Charles W.

    (R-Miss.) Aug. 10, 1963– ; House 1997–.

    Pickett, Owen B.

    (D-Va.) Aug. 31, 1930– ; House 1987–2001.

    Pitts, Joseph R.

    (R-Pa.) Oct. 10, 1939– ; House 1997–.

    Pombo, Richard W.

    (R-Calif.) Jan. 8, 1961– ; House 1993–.

    Pomeroy, Earl

    (D-N.D.) Sept. 2, 1952– ; House 1993–.

    Porter, John Edward

    (R-Ill.) June 1, 1935– ; House Jan. 22, 1980–2001.

    Portman, Rob

    (R-Ohio) Dec. 19, 1955– ; House May 5, 1993–.

    Poshard, Glenn

    (D-Ill.) Oct. 30, 1945– ; House 1989–1999.

    Price, David E.

    (D-N.C.) Aug. 17, 1940– ; House 1987–1995, 1997–.

    Pryce, Deborah

    (R-Ohio) July 29, 1951– ; House 1993–.

    Quinn, Jack

    (R-N.Y.) April 13, 1951– ; House 1993–.

    Radanovich, George P.

    (R-Calif.) June 20, 1955– ; House 1995–.

    Rahall, Nick J. II

    (D-W.Va.) May 20, 1949– ; House 1977–.

    Ramstad, Jim

    (R-Minn.) May 6, 1946– ; House 1991–.

    Rangel, Charles B.

    (D-N.Y.) June 11, 1930– ; House 1971–.

    Redmond, Bill

    (R-N.M.) Jan. 28, 1955– ; House May 20, 1997–1999.

    Reed, Jack

    (D-R.I.) Nov. 12, 1949– ; House 1991–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Regula, Ralph

    (R-Ohio) Dec. 3, 1924– ; House 1973–.

    Reid, Harry

    (D-Nev.) Dec. 2, 1939– ; House 1983–1987; Senate 1987–.

    Reyes, Silvestre

    (D-Texas) Nov. 10, 1944– ; House 1997–.

    Reynolds, Thomas M.

    (R-N.Y.) Sept. 3, 1950– ; House 1999–.

    Richardson, Bill

    (D-N.M.) Nov. 15, 1947– ; House 1983–Feb. 13, 1997; secretary of energy, 1998–2001.

    Riggs, Frank

    (R-Calif.) Sept. 5, 1950– ; House 1995–1999.

    Riley, Bob

    (R-Ala.) Oct. 3, 1944– ; House 1997–.

    Rivers, Lynn

    (D-Mich.) Dec. 19, 1956– ; House 1995–.

    Robb, Charles S.

    (son-in-law of Lyndon Johnson) (D-Va.) June 26, 1939– ; Senate 1989–2001; Gov. 1982–1986.

    Roberts, Pat

    (R-Kan.) April 20, 1936– ; House 1981–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Rockefeller, John D. IV

    (nephew of Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller and great grandson of Nelson Aldrich) (D-W.Va.) June 18, 1937– ; Senate Jan. 15, 1985– ; Gov. 1977–1985.

    Rodriguez, Ciro D.

    (D-Texas) Dec. 9, 1946– ; House April 17, 1997–.

    Roemer, Tim

    (son-in-law of J. Bennett Johnston) (D-Ind.) Oct. 30, 1956– ; House 1991–.

    Rogan, James E.

    (R-Calif.) Aug. 21, 1957– ; House 1997–2001.

    Rogers, Harold

    (R-Ky.) Dec. 31, 1937– ; House 1981–.

    Rohrabacher, Dana

    (R-Calif.) June 21, 1947– ; House 1989–.

    Romero-Barceló, Carlos A.

    (D-P.R.) Sept. 4, 1932– ; House (resident commissioner) 1993–2001.

    Ros-Lehtinen, Ileana

    (R-Fla.) July 15, 1952– ; House 1989–.

    Roth, William V. Jr.

    (R-Del.) July 22, 1921– ; House 1967–Dec. 31, 1970; Senate Jan. 1, 1971–2001.

    Rothman, Steven R.

    (D-N.J.) Oct. 14, 1952– ; House 1997–.

    Roukema, Marge

    (R-N.J.) Sept. 19, 1929– ; House 1981–.

    Roybal-Allard, Lucille

    (D-Calif.) June 12, 1941– ; House 1993–.

    Royce, Ed

    (R-Calif.) Oct. 12, 1951– ; House 1993–.

    Rush, Bobby L.

    (D-Ill.) Nov. 23, 1946– ; House 1993–.

    Ryan, Paul D.

    (R-Wis.) Jan. 29, 1970– ; House 1999–.

    Ryun, Jim

    (R-Kan.) April 29, 1947– ; House Nov. 27, 1996–.

    Sabo, Martin Olav

    (D-Minn.) Feb. 28, 1938– ; House 1979–.

    Salmon, Matt

    (R-Ariz.) Jan. 21, 1958– ; House 1995–2001.

    Sanchez, Loretta

    (D-Calif.) Jan. 7, 1960– ; House 1997–.

    Sanders, Bernard

    (I-Vt.) Sept. 8, 1941– ; House 1991–.

    Sandlin, Max

    (D-Texas) Sept. 29, 1952– ; House 1997–.

    Sanford, Mark

    (R-S.C.) May 28, 1960– ; House 1995–2001.

    Santorum, Rick

    (R-Pa.) May 10, 1958– ; House 1991–1995; Senate 1995–.

    Sarbanes, Paul S.

    (D-Md.) Feb. 3, 1933– ; House 1971–1977; Senate 1977–.

    Sawyer, Thomas C.

    (D-Ohio) Aug. 15, 1945– ; House 1987–.

    Saxton, H. James

    (R-N.J.) Jan. 22, 1943– ; House 1984–.

    Scarborough, Joe

    (R-Fla.) April 9, 1963– ; House 1995–.

    Schaefer, Daniel

    (R-Colo.) Jan. 25, 1936– ; House April 7, 1983–1999.

    Schaffer, Bob

    (R-Colo.) July 24, 1962– ; House 1997–.

    Schakowsky, Janice “Jan”

    (D-Ill.) May 26, 1944– ; House 1999–.

    Schiff, Steven H.

    (R-N.M.) March 18, 1947–March 25, 1998; House 1989–March 25, 1998.

    Schumer, Charles E.

    (D-N.Y.) Nov. 23, 1950– ; House 1981–1999; Senate 1999–.

    Scott, Robert C.

    (D-Va.) April 30, 1947– ; House 1993–.

    Sensenbrenner, F. James Jr.

    (R-Wis.) June 14, 1943– ; House 1979–.

    Serrano, Jose E.

    (D-N.Y.) Oct. 24, 1943– ; House March 28, 1990–.

    Sessions, Jeff

    (R-Ala.) Dec. 24, 1946– ; Senate 1997–.

    Sessions, Pete

    (R-Texas) March 22, 1955– ; House 1997–.

    Shadegg, John

    (R-Ariz.) Oct. 22, 1949– ; House 1995–.

    Shaw, E. Clay Jr.

    (R-Fla.) April 19, 1939– ; House 1981–.

    Shays, Christopher

    (R-Conn.) Oct. 18, 1945– ; House Sept. 9, 1987–.

    Shelby, Richard C.

    (R-Ala.) May 6, 1934– ; House 1979–1987; Senate 1987– (1979–Nov. 19, 1994, Democrat).

    Sherman, Brad

    (D-Calif.) Oct. 24, 1954– ; House 1997–.

    Sherwood, Donald L.

    (R-Pa.) March 5, 1941– ; House 1999–.

    Shimkus, John M.

    (R-Ill.) Feb. 21, 1958– ; House 1997–.

    Shows, Ronnie

    (D-Miss.) Jan. 26, 1947– ; House 1999–.

    Shuster, “Bud”

    (R-Pa.) Jan. 23, 1932– ; House 1973–.

    Simpson, Mike

    (R-Idaho) Sept. 8, 1950– ; House 1999–.

    Sisisky, Norman

    (D-Va.) June 9, 1927– ; House 1983–.

    Skaggs, David E.

    (D-Colo.) Feb. 22, 1943– ; House 1987–1999.

    Skeen, Joseph R.

    (R-N.M.) June 30, 1927– ; House 1981–.

    Skelton, Ike

    (D-Mo.) Dec. 20, 1931– ; House 1977–.

    Slaughter, Louise M.

    (D-N.Y.) Aug. 14, 1929– ; House 1987–.

    Smith, Adam

    (D-Wash.) June 15, 1965– ; House 1997–.

    Smith, Christopher H.

    (R-N.J.) March 4, 1953– ; House 1981–.

    Smith, Gordon H.

    (R-Ore.) May 25, 1952– ; Senate 1997–.

    Smith, Lamar

    (R-Texas) Nov. 19, 1947– ; House 1987–.

    Smith, Nick

    (R-Mich.) Nov. 5, 1934– ; House 1993–.

    Smith, Robert C.

    (R-N.H.) March 30, 1941– ; House 1985–Dec. 7, 1990; Senate Dec. 7, 1990–.

    Smith, Robert F.

    (R-Ore.) June 16, 1931– ; House 1983–1995, 1997–1999.

    Snowbarger, Vince

    (R-Kan.) Sept. 16, 1949– ; House 1997–1999.

    Snowe, Olympia J.

    (wife of John R. McKernan Jr.) (R-Maine) Feb. 21, 1947– ; House 1979–1995; Senate 1995–.

    Snyder, Vic

    (D-Ark.) Sept. 27, 1947– ; House 1997–.

    Solomon, Gerald B.H.

    (R-N.Y.) Aug. 14, 1930– ; House 1979–1999.

    Souder, Mark

    (R-Ind.) July 18, 1950– ; House 1995–.

    Specter, Arlen

    (R-Pa.) Feb. 12, 1930– ; Senate 1981–.

    Spence, Floyd D.

    (R-S.C.) April 9, 1928– ; House 1971–.

    Spratt, John M. Jr.

    (D-S.C.) Nov. 1, 1942– ; House 1983–.

    Stabenow, Debbie

    (D-Mich.) April 29, 1950– ; House 1997–2001.

    Stark, Fortney “Pete”

    (D-Calif.) Nov. 11, 1931– ; House 1973–.

    Stearns, Cliff

    (R-Fla.) April 16, 1941– ; House 1989–.

    Stenholm, Charles W.

    (D-Texas) Oct. 26, 1938– ; House 1979–.

    Stevens, Ted

    (R-Alaska) Nov. 18, 1923– ; Senate Dec. 24, 1968–.

    Stokes, Louis

    (D-Ohio) Feb. 23, 1925– ; House 1969–1999.

    Strickland, Ted

    (D-Ohio) Aug. 4, 1941– ; House 1993–1995, 1997–.

    Stump, Bob

    (R-Ariz.) April 4, 1927– ; House 1977– (1977–June 11, 1982, Democrat).

    Stupak, Bart

    (D-Mich.) Feb. 29, 1952– ; House 1993–.

    Sununu, John E.

    (R-N.H.) Sept. 10, 1964– ; House 1997–.

    Sweeney, John E.

    (R-N.Y.) Aug. 9, 1955– ; House 1999–.

    Talent, James M.

    (R-Mo.) Oct. 18, 1956– ; House 1993–2001.

    Tancredo, Tom

    (R-Colo.) Dec. 20, 1945– ; House 1999–.

    Tanner, John

    (D-Tenn.) Sept. 22, 1944– ; House 1989–.

    Tauscher, Ellen O.

    (D-Calif.) Nov. 15, 1951– ; House 1997–.

    Tauzin, W. J. “Billy”

    (R-La.) June 14, 1943– ; House May 17, 1980– (1980–Aug. 6, 1995, Democrat).

    Taylor, Charles H.

    (R-N.C.) Jan. 23, 1941– ; House 1991–.

    Taylor, Gene

    (D-Miss.) Sept. 17, 1953– ; House Oct. 24, 1989–.

    Tejeda, Frank

    (D-Texas) Oct. 2, 1945–Jan. 30, 1997; House 1993–Jan. 30, 1997.

    Terry, Lee

    (R-Neb.) Jan. 29, 1962– ; House 1999–.

    Thomas, Craig

    (R-Wyo.) Feb. 17, 1933– ; House May 2, 1989–1995; Senate 1995–.

    Thomas, William

    (R-Calif.) Dec. 6, 1941– ; House 1979–.

    Thompson, Bennie

    (D-Miss.) Jan. 28, 1948– ; House April 20, 1993–.

    Thompson, Fred

    (R-Tenn.) Aug. 19, 1942– ; Senate Dec. 9, 1994–.

    Thompson, Mike

    (D-Calif.) Jan. 24, 1951– ; House 1999–.

    Thornberry, William M. “Mac”

    (R-Texas) July 15, 1958– ; House 1995–.

    Thune, John

    (R-S.D.) Jan. 7, 1961– ; House 1997–.

    Thurman, Karen L.

    (D-Fla.) Jan. 12, 1951– ; House 1993–.

    Thurmond, Strom

    (R-S.C.) Dec. 5, 1902– ; Senate Dec. 24, 1954–April 4, 1956, Nov. 1956– (1947– Sept. 16, 1964, Democrat); Gov. 1947–1951; Pres. pro tempore 1981–1987, 1995–2001.

    Tiahrt, Todd

    (R-Kan.) June 15, 1951– ; House 1995–.

    Tierney, John F.

    (D-Mass.) Sept. 18, 1951– ; House 1997–.

    Toomey, Patrick J.

    (R-Pa.) Nov. 17, 1961– ; House 1999–.

    Torres, Esteban E.

    (D-Calif.) Jan. 27, 1930– ; House 1983–1999.

    Torricelli, Robert G.

    (D-N.J.) Aug. 26, 1951– ; House 1983–1997; Senate 1997–.

    Towns, Edolphus

    (D-N.Y.) July 21, 1934– ; House 1983–.

    Traficant, James A. Jr.

    (D-Ohio) May 8, 1941– ; House 1985–.

    Turner, James

    (D-Texas) Feb. 6, 1946– ; House 1997–.

    Udall, Mark

    (son of Morris K. Udall, cousin of Tom Udall) (D-Colo.) July 18, 1950– ; House 1999–.

    Udall, Tom

    (son of Steward Udall, cousin of Mark Udall) (D-N.M.) May 18, 1948– ; House 1999–.

    Underwood, Robert A.

    (D-Guam) July 13, 1948– ; House (delegate) 1993–.

    Upton, Fred

    (R-Mich.) April 23, 1953– ; House 1987–.

    Velázquez, Nydia M.

    (D-N.Y.) March 22, 1953– ; House 1993–.

    Vento, Bruce F.

    (D-Minn.) Oct. 7, 1940–Oct. 10, 2000; House 1977–Oct. 10, 2000.

    Visclosky, Peter J.

    (D-Ind.) Aug. 13, 1949– ; House 1985–.

    Vitter, David

    (R-La.) May 3, 1961– ; House June 8, 1999–.

    Voinovich, George V.

    (R-Ohio) July 15, 1936– ; Senate 1999– ; Gov. 1991–1998.

    Walden, Greg

    (R-Ore.) Jan. 10, 1957– ; House 1999–.

    Walsh, James T.

    (R-N.Y.) June 19, 1947– ; House 1989–.

    Wamp, Zach

    (R-Tenn.) Oct. 28, 1957– ; House 1995–.

    Warner, John W.

    (R-Va.) Feb. 18, 1927– ; Senate Jan. 2, 1979–.

    Waters, Maxine

    (D-Calif.) Aug. 15, 1938– ; House 1991–.

    Watkins, Wes

    (R-Okla.) Dec. 15, 1938– ; House 1997–.

    Watt, Melvin

    (D-N.C.) Aug. 26, 1945– ; House 1993–.

    Watts, J. C. Jr.

    (R-Okla.) Nov. 18, 1957– ; House 1995–.

    Waxman, Henry A.

    (D-Calif.) Sept. 12, 1939– ; House 1975–.

    Weiner, Anthony D.

    (D-N.Y.) Sept. 4, 1964– ; House 1999–.

    Weldon, Curt

    (R-Pa.) July 22, 1947– ; House 1987–.

    Weldon, Dave

    (R-Fla.) Aug. 31, 1953– ; House 1995–.

    Weller, Jerry C.

    (R-Ill.) July 7, 1957– ; House 1995–.

    Wellstone, Paul

    (D-Minn.) July 21, 1944– ; Senate 1991–.

    Wexler, Robert

    (D-Fla.) Jan. 2, 1961– ; House 1997–.

    Weygand, Robert A.

    (D-R.I.) May 19, 1948– ; House 1997–2001.

    White, Rick

    (R-Wash.) Nov. 6, 1953– ; House 1995–1999.

    Whitfield, Edward

    (R-Ky.) May 25, 1943– ; House 1995–.

    Wicker, Roger

    (R-Miss.) July 5, 1951– ; House 1995–.

    Wilson, Heather A.

    (R-N.M.) Dec. 30, 1960– ; House June 25, 1998–.

    Wise, Robert

    (D-W.Va.) Jan. 6, 1948– ; House 1983–2001; Gov. 2001–.

    Wolf, Frank R.

    (R-Va.) Jan. 30, 1939– ; House 1981–.

    Woolsey, Lynn

    (D-Calif.) Nov. 3, 1937– ; House 1993–.

    Wu, David

    (R-Ore.) April 8, 1955– ; House 1999–.

    Wyden, Ron

    (D-Ore.) May 3, 1949– ; House 1981–Feb. 5, 1996; Senate Feb. 6, 1996–.

    Wynn, Albert R.

    (D-Md.) Sept. 10, 1951– ; House 1993–.

    Yates, Sidney R.

    (D-Ill.) Aug. 27, 1909– ; House 1949–1963, 1965–1999.

    Young, C. W. Bill

    (R-Fla.) Dec. 16, 1930– ; House 1971–.

    Young, Don

    (R-Alaska) June 9, 1933– ; House March 6, 1973–.

    Congressional Committees, 105th and 106th Congresses

    Following is a list of congressional committees and subcommittees as of the start of the 105th and 106th Congresses. Committee jurisdictions, party ratios, committee chairmen and the dates of their service in that capacity, ranking minority members (in italics), and subcommittee chairmen are included. Political and joint committees also are listed.

    In both the 105th and 106th Congresses the Senate and House committees and subcommittee chairmen are Republicans and ranking minority members are Democrats.

    Party ratios for House committees do not include delegates or the resident commissioner.

    Senate Committees

    Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry

    Agriculture in general; animal industry and diseases; crop insurance and soil conservation; farm credit and farm security; food from fresh waters; food stamp programs; forestry in general; home economics; human nutrition; inspection of livestock, meat, and agricultural products; pests and pesticides; plant industry, soils, and agricultural engineering; rural development, rural electrification, and watersheds; school nutrition programs.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Richard G. Lugar, Ind.
    • Tom Harkin, Iowa
    Forestry, Conservation and Rural Revitalization

    —Rick Santorum, Pa.

    Marketing, Inspection and Product Promotion

    —Paul Coverdell, Ga.

    Production and Price Competitiveness

    —Thad Cochran, Miss.

    Research, Nutrition and General Legislation

    —Mitch McConnell, Ky.

    • R 10-D 8(106th Congress)
    • Richard G. Lugar, Ind.
    • Tom Harkin, Iowa
    Forestry, Conservation and Rural Revitalization

    —Larry E. Craig, Idaho

    Marketing, Inspection and Product Promotion

    —Paul Coverdell, Ga.

    Production and Price Competitiveness

    —Pat Roberts, Kan.

    Research, Nutrition and General Legislation

    —Peter G. Fitzgerald, Ill.


    Appropriation of revenue; rescission of appropriations; new spending authority under the Congressional Budget Act.

    • R 15-D 13(105th Congress)
    • Ted Stevens, Alaska
    • Robert C. Byrd, W.Va.
    Agriculture, Rural Development and Related Agencies

    —Thad Cochran, Miss.

    Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary

    —Judd Gregg, N.H.


    —Ted Stevens, Alaska

    District of Columbia

    —Lauch Faircloth, N.C.

    Energy and Water Development

    —Pete V. Domenici, N.M.

    Foreign Operations

    —Mitch McConnell, Ky.


    —Slade Gorton, Wash.

    Labor, Health and Human Services and Education

    —Arlen Specter, Pa.

    Legislative Branch

    —Robert F. Bennett, Utah

    Military Construction

    —Conrad Burns, Mont.


    —Richard C. Shelby, Ala.

    Treasury and General Government

    —Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Colo.

    VA, HUD and Independent Agencies

    —Christopher S. Bond, Mo.

    • R 15-D 13(106th Congress)
    • Ted Stevens, Alaska
    • Robert C. Byrd, W.Va.
    Agriculture, Rural Development and Related Agencies

    —Thad Cochran, Miss.

    Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary

    —Judd Gregg, N.H.


    —Ted Stevens, Alaska

    District of Columbia

    —Kay Bailey Hutchison, Texas

    Energy and Water Development

    —Pete V. Domenici, N.M.

    Foreign Operations

    —Mitch McConnell, Ky.


    —Slade Gorton, Wash.

    Labor, Health and Human Services and Education

    —Arlen Specter, Pa.

    Legislative Branch

    —Robert F. Bennett, Utah

    Military Construction

    —Conrad Burns, Mont.


    —Richard C. Shelby, Ala.

    Treasury and General Government

    —Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Colo.

    VA, HUD and Independent Agencies

    —Christopher S. Bond, Mo.

    Armed Services

    Defense and defense policy generally; aeronautical and space activities peculiar to or primarily associated with the development of weapons systems or military operations; maintenance and operation of the Panama Canal, including the Canal Zone; military research and development; national security aspects of nuclear energy; naval petroleum reserves (except Alaska); armed forces generally; Selective Service System; strategic and critical materials.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Strom Thurmond, S.C.
    • Carl Levin, Mich.
    Acquisition and Technology

    —Rick Santorum, Pa.

    Airland Forces

    —Daniel R. Coats, Ind.


    —Dirk Kempthorne, Idaho


    —James M. Inhofe, Okla.


    —John W. Warner, Va.

    Strategic Forces

    —Robert C. Smith, N.H.

    • R 11-D 9(106th Congress)
    • John W. Warner, Va.
    • Carl Levin, Mich.
    Airland Forces

    —Rick Santorum, Pa.

    Emerging Threats and Capabilities

    —Pat Roberts, Kan.


    —Wayne Allard, Colo.

    Readiness and Management Support

    —James M. Inhofe, Okla.


    —Olympia J. Snowe, Maine

    Strategic Forces

    —Robert C. Smith, N.H.

    Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs

    Banks, banking, and financial institutions; price controls; deposit insurance; economic stabilization and growth; defense production; export and foreign trade promotion; export controls; federal monetary policy, including Federal Reserve System; financial aid to commerce and industry; issuance and redemption of notes; money and credit, including currency and coinage; nursing home construction; public and private housing, including veterans' housing; renegotiation of government contracts; urban development and mass transit; international economic policy.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Alfonse M. D'Amato, N.Y.
    • Paul S. Sarbanes, Md.
    Financial Institutions and Regulatory Relief

    —Lauch Faircloth, N.C.

    Financial Services and Technology

    —Robert F. Bennett, Utah

    Housing Opportunity and Community Development

    —Connie Mack, Fla.

    International Finance

    —Rod Grams, Minn.


    —Phil Gramm, Texas

    • R 11-D 9(106th Congress)
    • Phil Gramm, Texas
    • Paul S. Sarbanes, Md.
    Economic Policy

    —Connie Mack, Fla.

    Financial Institutions

    —Robert F. Bennett, Utah

    Housing and Transportation

    —Wayne Allard, Colo.

    International Trade and Finance

    —Michael B. Enzi, Wyo.


    —Rod Grams, Minn.


    Federal budget generally; concurrent budget resolutions; Congressional Budget Office.

    • R 12-D 10(105th Congress)
    • Pete V. Domenici, N.M.
    • Frank R. Lautenberg, N.J.
    • R 12-D 10(106th Congress)
    • Pete V. Domenici, N.M.
    • Frank R. Lautenberg, N.J.

    No standing subcommittees.

    Commerce, Science and Transportation

    Interstate commerce and transportation generally; Coast Guard; coastal zone management; communications; highway safety; inland waterways, except construction; marine fisheries; Merchant Marine and navigation; nonmilitary aeronautical and space sciences; oceans, weather, and atmospheric activities; interoceanic canals generally; regulation of consumer products and services; science, engineering, and technology research, development and policy; sports; standards and measurement; transportation and commerce aspects of outer continental shelf lands.

    • R 11-D 9(105th Congress)
    • John McCain, Ariz.
    • Ernest F. Hollings, S.C.

    —Slade Gorton, Wash.


    —Conrad Burns, Mont.

    Consumer Affairs, Foreign Commerce and Tourism

    —John Ashcroft, Mo.

    Manufacturing and Competitiveness

    —Spencer Abraham, Mich.

    Oceans and Fisheries

    —Olympia J. Snowe, Maine

    Science, Technology and Space

    —Bill Frist, Tenn.

    Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine

    —Kay Bailey Hutchison, Texas

    • R 11-D 9(106th Congress)
    • John McCain, Ariz.
    • Ernest F. Hollings, S.C.

    —Slade Gorton, Wash.


    —Conrad Burns, Mont.

    Consumer Affairs, Foreign Commerce and Tourism

    —John Ashcroft, Mo.

    Manufacturing and Competitiveness

    —Spencer Abraham, Mich.

    Oceans and Fisheries

    —Olympia J. Snowe, Maine

    Science, Technology and Space

    —Bill Frist, Tenn.

    Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine

    —Kay Bailey Hutchison, Texas

    Energy and Natural Resources

    Energy policy, regulation, conservation, research, and development; coal; energy-related aspects of deep-water ports; hydroelectric power, irrigation, and reclamation; mines, mining, and minerals generally; national parks, recreation areas, wilderness areas, wild and scenic rivers, historic sites, military parks, and battlefields; naval petroleum reserves in Alaska; nonmilitary development of nuclear energy; oil and gas production and distribution; public lands and forests; solar energy systems; territorial possessions of the United States.

    • R 11-D 9(105th Congress)
    • Frank H. Murkowski, Alaska
    • Dale Bumpers, Ark.
    Energy Research, Development, Production and Regulation

    —Don Nickles, Okla.

    Forests and Public Land Management

    —Larry E. Craig, Idaho

    National Parks, Historic Preservation and Recreation

    —Craig Thomas, Wyo.

    Water and Power

    —Jon Kyl, Ariz.

    • R 11-D 9(106th Congress)
    • Frank H. Murkowski, Alaska
    • Jeff Bingaman, N.M.
    Energy Research, Development, Production and Regulation

    —Don Nickles, Okla.

    Forests and Public Land Management

    —Larry E. Craig, Idaho

    National Parks, Historic Preservation and Recreation

    —Craig Thomas, Wyo.

    Water and Power

    —Gordon H. Smith, Ore.

    Environment and Public Works

    Environmental policy, research, and development; air, water, and noise pollution; construction and maintenance of highways; environmental aspects of outer continental shelf lands; environmental effects of toxic substances other than pesticides; fisheries and wildlife; flood control and improvements of rivers and harbors; nonmilitary environmental regulation and control of nuclear energy; ocean dumping; public buildings and grounds; public works, bridges, and dams; regional economic development; solid waste disposal and recycling; water resources.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • John H. Chafee, R.I.
    • Max Baucus, Mont.
    Clean Air, Wetlands, Private Property and Nuclear Safety

    —James M. Inhofe, Okla.

    Drinking Water, Fisheries and Wildlife

    —Dirk Kempthorne, Idaho

    Superfund, Waste Control and Risk Assessment

    —Robert C. Smith, N.H.

    Transportation and Infrastructure

    —John W. Warner, Va.

    • R 10-D 8(106th Congress)
    • John H. Chafee, R.I.
    • Max Baucus, Mont.
    Clean Air, Wetlands, Private Property and Nuclear Safety

    —James M. Inhofe, Okla.

    Fisheries, Wildlife and Drinking Water

    —Michael D. Crapo, Idaho

    Superfund, Waste Control and Risk Assessment

    —Robert C. Smith, N.H.

    Transportation and Infrastructure

    —George V. Voinovich, Ohio


    Revenue measures generally; taxes; tariffs and import quotas; reciprocal trade agreements; customs; revenue sharing; federal debt limit; Social Security; health programs financed by taxes or trust funds.

    • R 11-D 9(105th Congress)
    • William V. Roth Jr., Del.
    • Daniel Patrick Moynihan, N.Y.
    Health Care

    —Phil Gramm, Texas

    International Trade

    —Charles E. Grassley, Iowa

    Long-Term Growth, Debt and Deficit Reduction

    —Connie Mack, Fla.

    Social Security and Family Policy

    —John H. Chafee, R.I.

    Taxation and IRS Oversight

    —Don Nickles, Okla.

    • R 11-D 9(106th Congress)
    • William V. Roth Jr., Del.
    • Daniel Patrick Moynihan, N.Y.
    Health Care

    —John H. Chafee, R.I.

    International Trade

    —Charles E. Grassley, Iowa

    Long-Term Growth and Debt Reduction

    —Frank H. Murkowski, Alaska

    Social Security and Family Policy

    —Don Nickles, Okla.

    Taxation and IRS Oversight

    —Orrin G. Hatch, Utah

    Foreign Relations

    Relations of the United States with foreign nations generally; treaties; foreign economic, military, technical, and humanitarian assistance; foreign loans; diplomatic service; International Red Cross; international aspects of nuclear energy; International Monetary Fund; intervention abroad and declarations of war; foreign trade; national security; oceans and international environmental and scientific affairs; protection of U.S. citizens abroad; United Nations; World Bank and other development assistance organizations.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Jesse Helms, N.C.
    • Joseph R. Biden Jr., Del.
    African Affairs

    —John Ashcroft, Mo.

    East Asian and Pacific Affairs

    —Craig Thomas, Wyo.

    European Affairs

    —Gordon H. Smith, Ore.

    International Economic Policy, Export and Trade Promotion

    —Chuck Hagel, Neb.

    International Operations

    —Rod Grams, Minn.

    Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs

    —Sam Brownback, Kan.

    Western Hemisphere, Peace Corps, Narcotics and Terrorism

    —Paul Coverdell, Ga.

    • R 10-D 8(106th Congress)
    • Jesse Helms, N.C.
    • Joseph R. Biden Jr., Del.
    African Affairs

    —Bill Frist, Tenn.

    East Asian and Pacific Affairs

    —Craig Thomas, Wyo.

    European Affairs

    —Gordon H. Smith, Ore.

    International Economic Policy, Export and Trade Promotion

    —Chuck Hagel, Neb.

    International Operations

    —Rod Grams, Minn.

    Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs

    —Sam Brownback, Kan.

    Western Hemisphere, Peace Corps, Narcotics and Terrorism

    —Paul Coverdell, Ga.

    Governmental Affairs

    Archives of the United States; budget and accounting measures; census and statistics; federal civil service; congressional organization; intergovernmental relations; government information; District of Columbia; organization and management of nuclear export policy; executive branch organization and reorganization; Postal Service; efficiency, economy, and effectiveness of government.

    • R 9-D 7(105th Congress)
    • Fred Thompson, Tenn.
    • John Glenn, Ohio
    International Security, Proliferation and Federal Services

    —Thad Cochran, Miss.


    —Susan Collins, Maine

    Oversight of Government Management, Restructuring and the District of Columbia

    —Sam Brownback, Kan.

    • R 9-D 7(106th Congress)
    • Fred Thompson, Tenn.
    • Joseph I. Lieberman, Conn.
    International Security, Proliferation and Federal Services

    —Thad Cochran, Miss.


    —Susan Collins, Maine

    Oversight of Government Management, Restructuring and the District of Columbia

    —George V. Voinovich, Ohio

    Health, Education, Labor and Pensions

    Education, labor, health, and public welfare in general; aging; arts and humanities; biomedical research and development; child labor; convict labor; domestic activities of the Red Cross; equal employment opportunity; disabled people; labor standards and statistics; mediation and arbitration of labor disputes; occupational safety and health; private pensions; public health; railway labor and retirement; regulation of foreign laborers; student loans; wages and hours; agricultural colleges; Gallaudet University; Howard University; St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, D.C.

    • R 10-D 8(106th Congress)
    • James M. Jeffords, Vt.
    • Edward M. Kennedy, Mass.

    —Mike DeWine, Ohio

    Children and Families

    —Judd Gregg, N.H.

    Employment, Safety and Training

    —Michael B. Enzi, Wyo.

    Public Health

    —Bill Frist, Tenn.

    Indian Affairs

    Problems and opportunities of Native Americans, including Native American land management and trust responsibilities, education, health, special services, loan programs, and claims against the United States.

    • R 8-D 6(105th Congress)
    • Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Colo.
    • Daniel K. Inouye, Hawaii
    • R 8-D 6(106th Congress)
    • Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Colo.
    • Daniel K. Inouye, Hawaii

    No standing subcommittees.


    Civil and criminal judicial proceedings in general; penitentiaries; bankruptcy, mutiny, espionage, and counterfeiting; civil liberties; constitutional amendments; apportionment of representatives; government information; immigration and naturalization; interstate compacts in general; claims against the United States; patents, copyrights, and trademarks; monopolies and unlawful restraints of trade; holidays and celebrations.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Orrin G. Hatch, Utah
    • Patrick J. Leahy, Vt.
    Administrative Oversight and the Courts

    —Charles E. Grassley, Iowa

    Antitrust, Business Rights and Competition

    —Mike DeWine, Ohio

    Constitution, Federalism and Property Rights

    —John Ashcroft, Mo.


    —Spencer Abraham, Mich.

    Technology, Terrorism and Government Information

    —Jon Kyl, Ariz.

    Youth Violence

    —Jeff Sessions, Ala.

    • R 10-D 8(106th Congress)
    • Orrin G. Hatch, Utah
    • Patrick J. Leahy, Vt.
    Administrative Oversight and the Courts

    —Charles E. Grassley, Iowa

    Antitrust, Business Rights and Competition

    —Mike DeWine, Ohio

    Constitution, Federalism and Property Rights

    —John Ashcroft, Mo.

    Criminal Justice Oversight

    —Strom Thurmond, S.C.


    —Spencer Abraham, Mich.

    Technology, Terrorism and Government Information

    —Jon Kyl, Ariz.

    Youth Violence

    —Jeff Sessions, Ala.

    Labor and Human Resources

    Education, labor, health, and public welfare in general; aging; arts and humanities; biomedical research and development; child labor; convict labor; domestic activities of the Red Cross; equal employment opportunity; disabled people; labor standards and statistics; mediation and arbitration of labor disputes; occupational safety and health; private pensions; public health; railway labor and retirement; regulation of foreign laborers; student loans; wages and hours; agricultural colleges; Gallaudet University; Howard University; St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, D.C.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • James M. Jeffords, Vt.
    • Edward M. Kennedy, Mass.

    —Judd Gregg, N.H.

    Children and Families

    —Daniel R. Coats, Ind.

    Employment and Training

    —Mike DeWine, Ohio

    Public Health and Safety

    —Bill Frist, Tenn.

    Rules and Administration

    Senate administration in general; corrupt practices; qualifications of senators; contested elections; federal elections in general; Government Printing Office; Congressional Record; meetings of Congress and attendance of members; presidential succession; the Capitol, congressional office buildings, the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian Institution, and the Botanic Garden.

    • R 9-D 7(105th Congress)
    • John W. Warner, Va.
    • Wendell H. Ford, Ky.
    • R 9-D 7(106th Congress)
    • Mitch McConnell, Ky.
    • Christopher J. Dodd, Conn.

    No standing subcommittees.

    Select Ethics

    Studies and investigates standards and conduct of Senate members and employees and may recommend remedial action.

    • R 3-D 3(105th Congress)
    • Robert C. Smith, N.H.
    • Harry Reid, Nev. (vice chairman)
    • R 3-D 3(106th Congress)
    • Robert C. Smith, N.H.
    • Harry Reid, Nev. (vice chairman)

    No standing subcommittees.

    Select Intelligence

    Legislative and budgetary authority over the Central Intelligence Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, and intelligence activities of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other components of the federal intelligence community.

    • R 10-D 9(105th Congress)
    • Richard C. Shelby, Ala.
    • Bob Kerrey, Neb.
    • R 9-D 8(106th Congress)
    • Richard C. Shelby, Ala.
    • Bob Kerrey, Neb.

    No standing subcommittees.

    Small Business

    Problems of small business; Small Business Administration.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Christopher S. Bond, Mo.
    • John Kerry, Mass.
    • R 10-D 8(106th Congress)
    • Christopher S. Bond, Mo.
    • John Kerry, Mass.

    No standing subcommittees.

    Special Aging

    Problems and opportunities of older people including health, income, employment, housing, and care and assistance. Reports findings and makes recommendations to the Senate, but cannot report legislation.

    • R 10-D 8(105th Congress)
    • Charles E. Grassley, Iowa
    • John B. Breaux, La.
    • R 11-D 9(106th Congress)
    • Charles E. Grassley, Iowa
    • John B. Breaux, La.

    No standing subcommittees.

    Veterans' Affairs

    Veterans' measures in general; compensation; life insurance issued by the government on account of service in the armed forces; national cemeteries; pensions; readjustment benefits; veterans' hospitals, medical care and treatment; vocational rehabilitation and education.

    • R 7-D 5(105th Congress)
    • Arlen Specter, Pa.
    • John D. Rockefeller IV, W.Va.
    • R 7-D 5(106th Congress)
    • Arlen Specter, Pa.
    • John D. Rockefeller IV, W.Va.

    No standing subcommittees.

    Special Committee on the Year 2000 Technology Problem

    Study the impact of the year 2000 technology problem on the executive and judicial branches of the federal government, state governments, and private-sector operations in the United States and abroad; make such findings of fact as are warranted and appropriate; and make such recommendations, including recommendations for new legislation and amendments to existing laws and any administrative or other actions, as the special committee may determine to be necessary or desirable. No proposed legislation shall be referred to the special committee, and the committee shall not have power to report by bill, or otherwise have legislative jurisdiction.

    • R 4-D 3(106th Congress)
    • Robert F. Bennett, Utah
    • Christopher J. Dodd, Conn.

    Political Committees

    Democratic Policy Committee

    (an arm of the Democratic Caucus that advises on legislative priorities)—Tom Daschle, S.D., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee

    (campaign support committee for Democratic senatorial candidates)—Bob Kerrey, Neb., chairman (105th Congress); Robert G. Torricelli, N.J., chairman (106th Congress)

    Democratic Steering and Coordination Committee

    (makes Democratic committee assignments)—John Kerry, Mass., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    Democratic Technology and Communications Committee

    (seeks to improve communications with the public about the Democratic Party and its policies)—John D. Rockefeller IV, W.Va., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    National Republican Senatorial Committee

    (campaign support committee for Republican senatorial candidates)—Mitch McConnell, Ky., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    Republican Committee on Committees

    (makes Republican committee assignments)—Slade Gorton, Wash., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    Republican Policy Committee

    (advises on party action and policy)—Larry E. Craig, Idaho, chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    House Committees


    Agriculture generally; forestry in general, and forest reserves other than those created from the public domain; adulteration of seeds, insect pests, and protection of birds and animals in forest reserves; agricultural and industrial chemistry; agricultural colleges and experiment stations; agricultural economics and research; agricultural education extension services; agricultural production and marketing and stabilization of prices of agricultural products, and commodities (not including distribution outside the United States); animal industry and diseases of animals; commodities exchanges; crop insurance and soil conservation; dairy industry; entomology and plant quarantine; extension of farm credit and farm security; inspection of livestock, poultry, meat products, seafood and seafood products; human nutrition and home economics; plant industry, soils, and agricultural engineering; rural electrification; rural development; water conservation related to activities of the Department of Agriculture.

    • R 27-D 23(105th Congress)
    • Bob Smith, Ore.
    • Charles W. Stenholm, Texas
    Department Operations, Nutrition and Foreign Agriculture

    —Robert W. Goodlatte, Va.

    Forestry, Resource Conservation and Research

    —Larry Combest, Texas

    General Farm Commodities

    —Bill Barrett, Neb.

    Livestock, Dairy and Poultry

    —Richard W. Pombo, Calif.

    Risk Management and Specialty Crops

    —Thomas W. Ewing, Ill.

    • R 27-D 24(106th Congress)
    • Larry Combest, Texas
    • Charles W. Stenholm, Texas
    Department Operations, Oversight, Nutrition and Forestry

    —Robert W. Goodlatte, Va.

    General Farm Commodities, Resource Conservation and Credit

    —Bill Barrett, Neb.

    Livestock and Horticulture

    —Richard W. Pombo, Calif.

    Risk Management, Research and Specialty Crops

    —Thomas W. Ewing, Ill.


    Appropriation of the revenue for the support of the government; rescissions of appropriations contained in appropriation acts; transfers of unexpended balances; new spending authority under the Congressional Budget Act.

    • R 34-D 26(105th Congress)
    • Robert L. Livingston, La.
    • David R. Obey, Wis.
    Agriculture, Rural Development, FDA and Related Agencies

    —Joe Skeen, N.M.

    Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary

    —Harold Rogers, Ky.

    District of Columbia

    —Charles H. Taylor, N.C.

    Energy and Water Development

    —Joseph M. McDade, Pa.

    Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs

    —Sonny Callahan, Ala.


    —Ralph Regula, Ohio

    Labor, Health and Human Services and Education

    —John Edward Porter, Ill.


    —James T. Walsh, N.Y.

    Military Construction

    —Ron Packard, Calif.

    National Security

    —C. W. Bill Young, Fla.


    —Frank R. Wolf, Va.

    Treasury, Postal Service and General Government

    —Jim Kolbe, Ariz.

    Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development and Independent Agencies

    —Jerry Lewis, Calif.

    • R 34-D 27106th Congress
    • C. W. Bill Young, Fla.
    • David R. Obey, Wis.
    Agriculture, Rural Development, FDA and Related Agencies

    —Joe Skeen, N.M.

    Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary

    —Harold Rogers, Ky.


    —Jerry Lewis, Calif.

    District of Columbia

    —Ernest Istook, Okla.

    Energy and Water Development

    —Ron Packard, Calif.

    Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs

    —Sonny Callahan, Ala.


    —Ralph Regula, Ohio

    Labor, Health and Human Services and Education

    —John Edward Porter, Ill.

    Legislative Branch

    —Charles H. Taylor, N.C.

    Military Construction

    —David L. Hobson, Ohio


    —Frank R. Wolf, Va.

    Treasury, Postal Service and General Government

    —Jim Kolbe, Ariz.

    Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development and Independent Agencies

    —James T. Walsh, N.Y.

    Armed Services

    Ammunition depots; forts; arsenals; Army, Navy, and Air Force reservations and establishments; common defense generally; conservation, development, and use of naval petroleum and oil shale reserves; Department of Defense generally, including the Departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force generally; interoceanic canals generally; including measures relating to the maintenance, operation, and administration of interoceanic canals; Merchant Marine Academy, and state maritime academies; military applications of nuclear energy; tactical intelligence and intelligence related activities of the Department of Defense; national security aspects of merchant marine, including financial assistance for the construction and operation of vessels, the maintenance of the U.S. shipbuilding and ship repair industrial base, cabotage, cargo preference, and merchant marine officers and seamen as these matters relate to the national security; pay, promotion, retirement, and other benefits and privileges of members of the armed forces; scientific research and development in support of the armed services; selective service; size and composition of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force; soldiers' and sailors' homes; strategic and critical materials necessary for the common defense.

    • R 32-D 28(106th Congress)
    • Floyd D. Spence, S.C.
    • Ike Skelton, Mo.
    Merchant Marine

    —Herbert H. Bateman, Va.

    Military Installations and Facilities

    —Joel Hefley, Colo.

    Military Personnel

    —Steve Buyer, Ind.

    Military Procurement

    —Duncan Hunter, Calif.

    Military Readiness

    —Herbert H. Bateman, Va.

    Military Research and Development

    —Curt Weldon, Pa.

    Morale, Welfare and Recreation

    —John M. McHugh, N.Y.

    Banking and Financial Services

    Banks and banking, including deposit insurance and federal monetary policy; bank capital markets activities generally; depository institution securities activities generally, including the activities of any affiliates, except for functional regulation under applicable securities laws not involving safety and soundness; economic stabilization, defense production, renegotiation, and control of the price of commodities, rents, and services; financial aid to commerce and industry (other than transportation); international finance; international financial and monetary organizations; money and credit, including currency and the issuance of notes and redemption thereof; gold and silver, including the coinage thereof; valuation and revaluation of the dollar; public and private housing; urban development.

    • R 30-D 25-I 1(105th Congress)
    • Jim Leach, Iowa
    • Henry B. Gonzalez, Texas
    Capital Markets, Securities and Government-Sponsored Enterprises

    —Richard H. Baker, La.

    Domestic and International Monetary Policy

    —Michael N. Castle, Del.

    Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit

    —Marge Roukema, N.J.

    General Oversight and Investigations

    —Spencer Bachus, Ala.

    Housing and Community Opportunity

    —Rick A. Lazio, N.Y.

    • R 32-D 27-I 1(106th Congress)
    • Jim Leach, Iowa
    • John J. LaFalce, N.Y.
    Capital Markets, Securities and Government-Sponsored Enterprises

    —Richard H. Baker, La.

    Domestic and International Monetary Policy

    —Spencer Bachus, Ala.

    Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit

    —Marge Roukema, N.J.

    General Oversight and Investigations

    —Peter T. King, N.Y.

    Housing and Community Opportunity

    —Rick A. Lazio, N.Y.


    Congressional budget process generally; concurrent budget resolutions; measures relating to special controls over the federal budget; Congressional Budget Office.

    • R 24-D 19 (105th Congress)
    • John R. Kasich, Ohio
    • John M. Spratt Jr., S.C.
    • R 24-D 19(106th Congress)
    • John R. Kasich, Ohio
    • John M. Spratt Jr., S.C.

    No standing subcommittees.

    China Investigation

    Conduct a full and complete inquiry regarding the following matters and report such findings and recommendations, including those concerning the amendment of existing law or the enactment of new law, to the House as it considers appropriate: (1) The transfer of technology, information, advice, goods, or services that may have contributed to the enhancement of the accuracy, reliability, or capability of nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles or other weapons of the People's Republic of China, or that may have contributed to the enhancement of the intelligence capabilities of the People's Republic of China. (2) The transfer of technology, information, advice, goods, or services that may have contributed to the manufacture of weapons of mass destruction, missiles or other weapons or armaments by the People's Republic of China. (3) The effect of any transfer or enhancement referred to in paragraphs 1 or 2 on regional security and the national security of the United States. (4) The conduct of the executive branch of the United States government with respect to the transfers or enhancements referred to in paragraphs 1 or 2, and the effect of that conduct on regional security and the national security of the United States. (5) The conduct of defense contractors, weapons manufactures, satellite manufacturers, and other private or government-owned commercial firms with respect to the transfers or enhancements referred to in paragraphs 1 or 2. (7) Any effort by the government of the People's Republic of China or any other person or entity to influence any of the foregoing matters through political contributions, commercial arrangements, or bribery, influence-peddling, or other illegal activities. (8) Decision-making within the executive branch of the United States government with respect to any of the foregoing matters. (9) Any effort to conceal or withhold information or documents relevant to any of the foregoing matters or to obstruct justice, or to obstruct the work of the Select Committee or any other committee of the House of Representatives in connection with those matters. (10) All matters relating directly or indirectly to any of the foregoing matters.

    • R 5-D 4(106th Congress)
    • Christopher Cox, Calif.
    • Norm Dicks, Wash.


    Interstate and foreign commerce generally; biomedical research and development; consumer affairs and consumer protection; health and health facilities, except health care supported by payroll deductions; interstate energy compacts; measures relating to the exploration, production, storage, supply, marketing, pricing, and regulation of energy resources, including all fossil fuels, solar energy, and other unconventional or renewable energy resources; measures relating to the conservation of energy resources; measures relating to energy information generally; measures relating to (1) the generation and marketing of power (except by federally chartered or federal regional power marketing authorities), (2) the reliability and interstate transmission of, and ratemaking for, all power, and (3) the siting of generation facilities, except the installation of interconnections between government water power projects; measures relating to general management of the Department of Energy, and the management and all functions of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission; national energy policy generally; public health and quarantine; regulation of the domestic nuclear energy industry, including regulation of research and development reactors and nuclear regulatory research; regulation of interstate and foreign communications; securities and exchanges; travel and tourism; nuclear and other energy, and nonmilitary nuclear energy and research and development including the disposal of nuclear waste.

    • R 28-D 23(105th Congress)
    • Thomas J. Bliley Jr., Va.
    • John D. Dingell, Mich.
    Energy and Power

    —Dan Schaefer, Colo.

    Finance and Hazardous Materials

    —Michael G. Oxley, Ohio

    Health and Environment

    —Michael Bilirakis, Fla.

    Oversight and Investigations

    —Joe L. Barton, Texas

    Telecommunications, Trade and Consumer Protection

    —W. J. “Billy” Tauzin, La.

    • R 29-D 24(106th Congress)
    • Thomas J. Bliley Jr., Va.
    • John D. Dingell, Mich.
    Energy and Power

    —Joe L. Barton, Texas

    Finance and Hazardous Materials

    —Michael G. Oxley, Ohio

    Health and Environment

    —Michael Bilirakis, Fla.

    Oversight and Investigations

    —Fred Upton, Mich.

    Telecommunications, Trade and Consumer Protection

    —W. J. “Billy” Tauzin, La.

    Education and the Workforce

    Measures relating to education or labor generally; child labor; Columbia Institution for the Deaf, Dumb and Blind; Howard University; Freedmen's Hospital; convict labor and the entry of goods made by convicts into interstate commerce; food programs for children in schools; labor standards and statistics; mediation and arbitration of labor disputes; regulation or prevention of importation of foreign laborers under contract; U.S. Employees' Compensation Commission; vocational rehabilitation; wages and hours of labor; welfare of miners; work incentive programs.

    • R 25-D 20(105th Congress)
    • Bill Goodling, Pa.
    • William L. Clay, Mo.
    Early Childhood, Youth and Families

    —Frank Riggs, Calif.

    Employer-Employee Relations

    —Harris W. Fawell, Ill.

    Oversight and Investigations

    —Peter Hoekstra, Mich.

    Postsecondary Education, Training and Life-Long Learning

    —Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, Calif.

    Workforce Protections

    —Cass Ballenger, N.C.

    • R 27-D 22(106th Congress)
    • Bill Goodling, Pa.
    • William L. Clay, Mo.
    Early Childhood, Youth and Families

    —Michael N. Castle, Del.

    Employer-Employee Relations

    —John A. Boehner, Ohio

    Oversight and Investigations

    —Peter Hoekstra, Mich.

    Postsecondary Education, Training and Life-Long Learning

    —Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, Calif.

    Workforce Protections

    —Cass Ballenger, N.C.

    Government Reform and Oversight

    Civil service, including intergovernmental personnel; the status of officers and employees of the United States, including their compensation, classification, and retirement; measures relating to the municipal affairs of the District of Columbia in general, other than appropriations; federal paperwork reduction; budget and accounting measures, generally; holidays and celebrations; overall economy, efficiency, and management of government operations and activities, including federal procurement; National Archives; population and demography generally, including the census; Postal Service generally, including the transportation of mail; public information and records; relationship of the federal government to the states and municipalities generally; reorganizations in the executive branch of the government.

    • R 24-D 19-I 1(105th Congress)
    • Dan Burton, Ind.
    • Henry A. Waxman, Calif.
    Civil Service

    —John L. Mica, Fla.

    District of Columbia

    —Thomas M. Davis III, Va.

    Government Management, Information and Technology

    —Steve Horn, Calif.

    Human Resources

    —Christopher Shays, Conn.

    National Economic Growth, Natural Resources and Regulatory Affairs

    —David M. McIntosh, Ind.

    National Security, International Affairs and Criminal Justice

    —Dennis Hastert, Ill.

    Postal Service

    —John M. McHugh, N.Y.

    • R 24-D 19-I 1(106th Congress)
    • Dan Burton, Ind.
    • Henry A. Waxman, Calif.
    Civil Service

    —Joe Scarborough, Fla.

    Criminal Justice, Drug Policy and Human Resources

    —John L. Mica, Fla.

    District of Columbia

    —Thomas M. Davis III, Va.

    Government Management, Information and Technology

    —Steve Horn, Calif.

    National Economic Growth, Natural Resources and Regulatory Affairs

    —David M. McIntosh, Ind.

    National Security, Veterans Affairs and International Relations

    —Christopher Shays, Conn.

    Postal Service

    —John M. McHugh, N.Y.

    House Oversight

    Accounts of the House generally; assignment of office space for members and committees; disposition of useless executive papers; matters relating to the election of the president, vice president, or members of Congress; corrupt practices; contested elections; credentials and qualifications; federal elections generally; appropriations from accounts for committee salaries and expenses (except for the Committee on Appropriations), House Information Systems, and allowances and expenses of members, House officers, and administrative offices of the House; auditing and settling of all such accounts; expenditure of such accounts; employment of persons by the House, including clerks for members and committees, and reporters of debates; Library of Congress and the House Library; statuary and pictures; acceptance or purchase of works of art for the Capitol; the Botanic Garden; management of the Library of Congress; purchase of books and manuscripts; Smithsonian Institution and the incorporation of similar institutions; Franking Commission; printing and correction of the Congressional Record; services to the House, including the House restaurant, parking facilities, and administration of the House office buildings and of the House wing of the Capitol; travel of members of the House; raising, reporting, and use of campaign contributions for candidates for office of representative in the House of Representatives, of delegate, and of resident commissioner to the United States from Puerto Rico; compensation, retirement and other benefits of the members, officers, and employees of the Congress.

    • R 6-D 3(105th Congress)
    • Bill Thomas, Calif.
    • Sam Gejdenson, Conn.
    • R 6-D 3(106th Congress)
    • Bill Thomas, Calif.
    • Steny H. Hoyer, Md.

    No standing subcommittees.

    International Relations

    Relations of the United States with foreign nations generally; acquisition of land and buildings for embassies and legations in foreign countries; establishment of boundary lines between the United States and foreign nations; export controls, including nonproliferation of nuclear technology and nuclear hardware; foreign loans; international commodity agreements (other than those involving sugar), including all agreements for cooperation in the export of nuclear technology and nuclear hardware; international conferences and congresses; international education; intervention abroad and declarations of war; measures relating to the diplomatic service; measures to foster commercial intercourse with foreign nations and to safeguard American business interests abroad; measures relating to international economic policy; neutrality; protection of American citizens abroad and expatriation; American National Red Cross; trading with the enemy; U.N. organizations.

    • R 26-D 22(105th Congress)
    • Benjamin A. Gilman, N.Y.
    • Lee H. Hamilton, Ind.

    —Ed Royce, Calif.

    Asia and the Pacific

    —Doug Bereuter, Neb.

    International Economic Policy and Trade

    —Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Fla.

    International Operations and Human Rights

    —Christopher H. Smith, N.J.

    Western Hemisphere

    —Elton Gallegly, Calif.

    • R 26-D 23(106th Congress)
    • Benjamin A. Gilman, N.Y.
    • Sam Gejdenson, Conn.

    —Ed Royce, Calif.

    Asia and the Pacific

    —Doug Bereuter, Neb.

    International Economic Policy and Trade

    —Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Fla.

    International Operations and Human Rights

    —Christopher H. Smith, N.J.

    Western Hemisphere

    —Elton Gallegly, Calif.


    The judiciary and judicial proceedings, civil and criminal; administrative practice and procedure; apportionment of representatives; bankruptcy, mutiny, espionage, and counterfeiting; civil liberties; constitutional amendments; federal courts and judges, and local courts in the territories and possessions; immigration and naturalization; interstate compacts, generally; measures relating to claims against the United States; meetings of Congress, attendance of members and their acceptance of incompatible offices; national penitentiaries; patents, the Patent Office, copyrights, and trademarks; presidential succession; protection of trade and commerce against unlawful restraints and monopolies; revision and codification of the Statutes of the United States; state and territorial boundaries; subversive activities affecting the internal security of the United States.

    • R 20-D 15(105th Congress)
    • Henry J. Hyde, Ill.
    • John Conyers Jr., Mich.
    Commercial and Administrative Law

    —George W. Gekas, Pa.


    —Charles T. Canady, Fla.

    Courts and Intellectual Property

    —Howard Coble, N.C.


    —Bill McCollum, Fla.

    Immigration and Claims

    —Lamar Smith, Texas

    • R 21-D 16(106th Congress)
    • Henry J. Hyde, Ill.
    • John Conyers Jr., Mich.
    Commercial and Administrative Law

    —George W. Gekas, Pa.


    —Charles T. Canady, Fla.

    Courts and Intellectual Property

    —Howard Coble, N.C.


    —Bill McCollum, Fla.

    Immigration and Claims

    —Lamar Smith, Texas

    National Security

    Common defense generally; Department of Defense generally, including the Departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force generally; ammunition depots; forts; arsenals; Army, Navy, and Air Force reservations and establishments; conservation, development, and use of naval petroleum and oil shale reserves; interoceanic canals generally, including measures relating to the maintenance, operation, and administration of interoceanic canals; Merchant Marine Academy, and State Maritime Academies; military applications of nuclear energy; tactical intelligence and intelligence related activities of the Department of the Defense; national security aspects of merchant marine, including financial assistance for the construction and operation of vessels, the maintenance of the U.S. shipbuilding and ship repair industrial base, cabotage, cargo preference, and merchant marine officers and seamen as these matters relate to the national security; pay, promotion, retirement, and other benefits and privileges of members of the armed forces; scientific research and development in support of the armed services; selective service; size and composition of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force; soldiers' and sailors' homes; strategic and critical materials necessary for the common defense.

    • R 30-D 25(105th Congress)
    • Floyd D. Spence, S.C.
    • Ike Skelton, Mo.
    Merchant Marine

    —Herbert H. Bateman, Va.

    Military Installations and Facilities

    —Joel Hefley, Colo.

    Military Personnel

    —Steve Buyer, Ind.

    Military Procurement

    —Duncan Hunter, Calif.

    Military Readiness

    —Herbert H. Bateman, Va.

    Military Research and Development

    —Curt Weldon, Pa.

    Morale, Welfare and Recreation

    —John M. McHugh, N.Y.


    Public lands generally, including entry, easements, and grazing; mining interests generally; fisheries and wildlife, including research, restoration, refuges, and conservation; forest reserves and national parks created from the public domain; forfeiture of land grants and alien ownership, including alien ownership of mineral lands; Geological Survey; international fishing agreements; interstate compacts relating to apportionment of waters for irrigation purposes; irrigation and reclamation, including water supply for reclamation projects, and easements of public lands for irrigation projects, and acquisition of private lands when necessary to complete irrigation projects; measures relating to the care and management of Indians, including the care and allotment of Native American lands and general and special measures relating to claims which are paid out of Native American funds; measures relating generally to the insular possessions of the United States, except those affecting the revenue and appropriations; military parks and battlefields, national cemeteries administered by the secretary of the interior, parks within the District of Columbia, and the erection of monuments to the memory of individuals; mineral land laws and claims and entries thereunder; mineral resources of the public lands; mining schools and experimental stations; marine affairs (including coastal zone management), except for measures relating to oil and other pollution of navigable waters; oceanography; petroleum conservation on the public lands and conservation of the radium supply in the United States; preservation of prehistoric ruins and objects of interest on the public domain; relations of the United States with the Native Americans and the Native American tribes; Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline (except ratemaking).

    • R 27-D 23(105th Congress)
    • Don Young, Alaska
    • George Miller, Calif.
    Energy and Mineral Resources

    —Barbara Cubin, Wyo.

    Fisheries, Conservation, Wildlife and Oceans

    —H. James Saxton, N.J.

    Forests and Forest Health

    —Helen Chenoweth, Idaho

    National Parks and Public Lands

    —James V. Hansen, Utah

    Water and Power

    —John T. Doolittle, Calif.

    • R 28-D 24(106th Congress)
    • Don Young, Alaska
    • George Miller, Calif.
    Energy and Mineral Resources

    —Barbara Cubin, Wyo.

    Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife and Oceans

    —H. James Saxton, N.J.

    Forests and Forest Health

    —Helen Chenoweth, Idaho

    National Parks and Public Lands

    —James V. Hansen, Utah

    Water and Power

    —John T. Doolittle, Calif.


    Rules and joint rules (other than rules or joint rules relating to the Code of Official Conduct), and order of business of the House; recesses and final adjournments of Congress.

    • R 9-D 4(105th Congress)
    • Gerald B. H. Solomon, N.Y.
    • Joe Moakley, Mass.
    Legislative and Budget Process

    —Porter J. Goss, Fla.

    Rules and Organization of the House

    —David Dreier, Calif.

    • R 9-D 4(106th Congress)
    • David Dreier, Calif.
    • Joe Moakley, Mass.
    Legislative and Budget Process

    —Porter J. Goss, Fla.

    Rules and Organization of the House

    —John Linder, Ga.


    All energy research, development, and demonstration, and projects thereof, and all federally owned or operated nonmilitary energy laboratories; astronautical research and development, including resources, personnel, equipment, and facilities; civil aviation research and development; environmental research and development; marine research; measures relating to the commercial application of energy technology; National Institute of Standards and Technology, standardization of weights and measures and the metric system; National Aeronautics and Space Administration; National Space Council; National Science Foundation; National Weather Service; outer space, including exploration and control thereof; science scholarships; scientific research, development, and demonstration, and projects thereof.

    • R 25-D 21(105th Congress)
    • F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., Wis.
    • George E. Brown Jr., Calif.
    Basic Research

    —Steven H. Schiff, N.M.

    Energy and Environment

    —Ken Calvert, Calif.

    Space and Aeronautics

    —Dana Rohrabacher, Calif.


    —Constance A. Morella, Md.

    • R 25-D 22(106th Congress)
    • F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., Wis.
    • Ralph M. Hall, Texas
    Basic Research

    —Nick Smith, Mich.

    Energy and Environment

    —Ken Calvert, Calif.

    Space and Aeronautics

    —Dana Rohrabacher, Calif.


    —Constance A. Morella, Md.

    Select Intelligence

    Legislative and budgetary authority over the National Security Agency and the director of central intelligence, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, intelligence activities of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other components of the federal intelligence community.

    • R 9-D 7(105th Congress)
    • Porter J. Goss, Fla.
    • Norm Dicks, Wash.
    Human Intelligence, Analysis and Counterintelligence

    —Bill McCollum, Fla.

    Technical and Tactical Intelligence

    —Jerry Lewis, Calif.

    • R 9-D 7(106th Congress)
    • Porter J. Goss, Fla.
    • Julian C. Dixon, Calif.
    Human Intelligence, Analysis and Counterintelligence

    —Bill McCollum, Fla.

    Technical and Tactical Intelligence

    —Michael N. Castle, Del.

    Small Business

    Assistance to and protection of small business, including financial aid, regulatory flexibility, and paperwork reduction; participation of small business enterprises in federal procurement and government contracts.

    • R 19-D 16(105th Congress)
    • James M. Talent, Mo.
    • John J. LaFalce, N.Y.

    —Mark Souder, Ind.

    Government Programs and Oversight

    —Roscoe G. Bartlett, Md.

    Regulatory Reform and Paperwork Reduction

    —Sue W. Kelly, N.Y.

    Tax, Finance and Exports

    —Donald Manzullo, Ill.

    • R 19-D 17(106th Congress)
    • James M. Talent, Mo.
    • Nydia M. Velazquez, N.Y.

    —Joseph R. Pitts, Pa.

    Government Programs and Oversight

    —Roscoe G. Bartlett, Md.

    Regulatory Reform and Paperwork Reduction

    —Sue W. Kelly, N.Y.

    Rural Enterprises, Business Opportunity and Special Small Business Problems

    —Frank A. LoBiondo, N.J.

    Tax, Finance and Exports

    —Donald Manzullo, Ill.

    Standards of Official Conduct

    Measures relating to the Code of Official Conduct.

    • R 5-D 5(105th Congress)
    • James V. Hansen, Utah
    • Howard L. Berman, Calif.
    Bud Shuster Inquiry

    —Joel Hefley, Colo.

    • R 5-D 5(106th Congress)
    • Lamar Smith, Texas
    • Howard L. Berman, Calif.
    Bud Shuster Inquiry

    —Joel Hefley, Colo.

    Transportation and Infrastructure

    Transportation, including civil aviation, railroads, water transportation, transportation safety (except automobile safety), transportation infrastructure, transportation labor, and railroad retirement and unemployment (except revenue measures); water power; the Coast Guard; federal management of emergencies and natural disasters; flood control and improvement of waterways; inspection of merchant marine vessels; navigation and related laws; rules and international arrangements to prevent collisions at sea; measures, other than appropriations, that relate to construction, maintenance and safety of roads; buildings and grounds of the Botanic Gardens, the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian Institution and other government buildings within the District of Columbia; post offices, customhouses, Federal courthouses, and merchant marine, except for national security aspects; pollution of navigable waters; and bridges and dams and related transportation regulatory agencies.

    • R 40-D 33(105th Congress)
    • Bud Shuster, Pa.
    • James L. Oberstar, Minn.

    —John J. “Jimmy” Duncan Jr., Tenn.

    Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation

    —Wayne T. Gilchrest, Md.

    Public Buildings and Economic Development

    —Jay C. Kim, Calif.


    —Susan Molinari, N.Y.

    Surface Transportation

    —Tom Petri, Wis.

    Water Resources and Environment

    —Sherwood Boehlert, N.Y.

    • R 41-D 34(106th Congress)
    • Bud Shuster, Pa.
    • James L. Oberstar, Minn.

    —John J. “Jimmy” Duncan Jr., Tenn.

    Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation

    —Wayne T. Gilchrest, Md.

    Economic Development, Public Buildings, Hazardous Materials and Pipeline Transportation

    —Bob Franks, N.J.

    Ground Transportation

    —Tom Petri, Wis.

    Oversight, Investigations and Emergency Management

    —Tillie Fowler, Fla.

    Water Resources and Environment

    —Sherwood Boehlert, N.Y.

    Veterans' Affairs

    Veterans' measures generally; cemeteries of the United States in which veterans of any war or conflict are or may be buried, whether in the United States or abroad, except cemeteries administered by the secretary of the Interior; compensation, vocational rehabilitation, and education of veterans; life insurance issued by the government on account of service in the armed forces; pensions of all the wars of the United States, readjustment of service personnel to civil life; soldiers' and sailors, civil relief; veterans' hospitals, medical care, and treatment of veterans.

    • R 16-D 13(105th Congress)
    • Bob Stump, Ariz.
    • Lane Evans, Ill.

    —Jack Quinn, N.Y.


    —Cliff Stearns, Fla.

    Oversight and Investigations

    —Terry Everett, Ala.

    • R 17-D 14(106th Congress)
    • Bob Stump, Ariz.
    • Lane Evans, Ill.

    —Jack Quinn, N.Y.


    —Cliff Stearns, Fla.

    Oversight and Investigations

    —Terry Everett, Ala.

    Ways and Means

    Revenue measures generally; reciprocal trade agreements; customs, collection districts, and ports of entry and delivery; revenue measures relating to the insular possessions; bonded debt of the United States; deposit of public moneys; transportation of dutiable goods; tax-exempt foundations and charitable trusts; national Social Security, except (1) health care and facilities programs that are supported from general revenues as opposed to payroll deductions and (2) work incentive programs.

    • R 23-D 16(105th Congress)
    • Bill Archer, Texas
    • Charles B. Rangel, N.Y.

    —Bill Thomas, Calif.

    Human Resources

    —E. Clay Shaw Jr., Fla.


    —Nancy L. Johnson, Conn.

    Social Security

    —Jim Bunning, Ky.


    —Philip M. Crane, Ill.

    • R 23-D 16(106th Congress)
    • Bill Archer, Texas
    • Charles B. Rangel, N.Y.

    —Bill Thomas, Calif.

    Human Resources

    —Nancy L. Johnson, Conn.


    —Amo Houghton, N.Y.

    Social Security

    —E. Clay Shaw Jr., Fla.


    —Philip M. Crane, Ill.

    Political Committees

    Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee

    (provides campaign support for Democratic House candidates)—Martin Frost, Texas, chairman (105th Congress); Patrick J. Kennedy, R.I., chairman (106th Congress)

    Democratic Policy Committee

    (studies and proposes legislation and makes public Democratic policy positions)—Richard A. Gephardt, Mo., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    Democratic Steering Committee

    (makes Democratic committee assignments)—Richard A. Gephardt, Mo., cochairman; Steny H. Hoyer, Md., cochairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    National Republican Congressional Committee

    (provides campaign support for Republican House candidates)—John Linder, Ga., chairman (105th Congress); Thomas M. Davis III, Va., chairman (106th Congress)

    Republican Policy Committee

    (advises on party action and policy)—Christopher Cox, Calif., chairman (105th and 106th Congresses)

    Republican Steering Committee

    (makes Republican committee assignments)—Newt Gingrich, Ga., chairman (105th Congress); J. Dennis Hastert, Ill., chairman (106th Congress)

    Joint Committees

    Joint committees are set up to examine specific questions and are established by public law. Membership is drawn from both chambers and both parties. When a senator serves as chairman, the vice chairman usually is a representative, and vice versa. The chairmanship traditionally rotates from one chamber to the other at the beginning of each Congress (except for the Committee on Taxation chairmanship, which rotates at the start of each session).


    Studies and investigates all recommendations in the president's annual Economic Report to Congress. Reports findings and recommendations to the House and Senate.

    Sen. Connie Mack, R-Fla., chairman (105th Congress)

    Rep. H. James Saxton, R-N.J., vice chairman (105th Congress)

    Sen. Connie Mack, R-Fla., chairman (106th Congress)

    Rep. H. James Saxton, R-N.J., vice chairman (106th Congress)

    No standing subcommittees.


    Management and expansion of the Library of Congress; receipt of gifts for the benefit of the library; development and maintenance of the Botanic Garden; placement of statues and other works of art in the Capitol.

    Sen. John W. Warner, R-Va., chairman (105th Congress)

    Rep. Bill Thomas, R-Calif., vice chairman (105th Congress)

    Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, chairman (106th Congress)

    Rep. Bill Thomas, R-Calif., vice chairman (106th Congress)

    No standing subcommittees.


    Probes inefficiency and waste in the printing, binding and distribution of federal government publications. Oversees arrangement and style of the Congressional Record.

    John W. Warner, R-Va., chairman (105th Congress)

    Rep. Bill Thomas, R-Calif., vice chairman (105th Congress)

    Rep. Bill Thomas, R-Calif., chairman (106th Congress)

    Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., vice chairman (106th Congress)

    No standing subcommittees.


    Operation, effects, and administration of the federal system of internal revenue taxes; measures and methods for simplification of taxes.

    Sen. William V. Roth Jr., R-Del., chairman (105th Congress)

    Rep. Bill Archer, R-Texas, vice chairman (105th Congress)

    Rep. Bill Archer, R-Texas, chairman (106th Congress)

    Sen. William V. Roth Jr., R-Del, vice chairman (106th Congress)

    No standing subcommittees.

    Reorganized from Labor and Human Resources in the 105th Congress.

    Reorganized as Health, Education, Labor and Pensions in the 106th Congress.

    Did not exist in the 105th Congress.

    Reorganized from National Security in the 105th Congress.

    Did not exist in the 105th Congress.

    Reorganized as Armed Services in the 106th Congress.

    Postelection Sessions

    Congress held ten postelection sessions between 1945 and the end of 2000.


    The 1948 postelection session of the 80th Congress lasted only two hours. Both chambers swore in new members, approved several minor resolutions, and received last-minute reports from committees.

    In addition to final floor action, several committees resumed work. The most active was the House Un-American Activities Committee, which continued its investigation of alleged communist espionage in the federal government.


    After the 1950 elections, President Harry S. Truman sent a “must” agenda to the lame-duck session of the 81st Congress. The president's list included supplemental defense appropriations, an excess profits tax, aid to Yugoslavia, a three-month extension of federal rent controls, and statehood for Hawaii and Alaska. During a marathon session that lasted until only a few hours before its successor took over, the 81st Congress acted on all of the president's legislative items except the statehood bills, which were blocked by a Senate filibuster.


    Only one chamber of the 83rd Congress convened after the 1954 elections. The Senate returned Nov. 8 to hold what has been called a “censure session,” a continuing investigation into the conduct of Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy, R-Wis. (1947–1957). By a 67-22 roll call, the Senate Dec. 2 voted to “condemn” McCarthy for his behavior.

    In other postelection floor action, the Senate passed a series of miscellaneous and administrative resolutions and swore in new members.


    President Richard Nixon criticized the lame-duck Congress as one that had “seemingly lost the capacity to decide and the will to act.” Filibusters and intense controversy contributed to inaction on the president's request for trade legislation and welfare reform.

    Congress nevertheless claimed some substantive results during the session, which ended Jan. 2, 1971. Several major appropriations bills were cleared for presidential signature. Congress also approved foreign aid to Cambodia, provided interim funding for the supersonic transport (SST) plane, and repealed the Tonkin Gulf Resolution that had been used as a basis for American military involvement in Vietnam.


    In a session that ran from Nov. 18 to Dec. 20, 1974, the 93rd Congress cleared several important bills for presidential signature, including a mass transit bill, a Labor-Health, Education and Welfare appropriations bill, and a foreign assistance package. A House-Senate conference committee reached agreement on a major strip-mining bill, but President Gerald R. Ford vetoed it.

    Congress approved the nomination of Nelson A. Rockefeller as vice president. It also overrode presidential vetoes of two bills—one broadening the Freedom of Information Act, a second authorizing educational benefits for Korean War and Vietnam-era veterans.


    The lame-duck session of the 96th Congress was productive, at least until Dec. 5, the original adjournment date set by congressional leaders. By that date a budget had been approved, along with a budget-reconciliation measure. Ten regular appropriations bills had cleared, though one subsequently was vetoed. Congress had approved two major environmental measures—an Alaskan lands bill and toxic waste “superfund” legislation—as well as a three-year extension of general revenue sharing.

    After Dec. 5, however, the legislative pace slowed noticeably. Action on a continuing appropriations resolution for those departments and agencies whose regular funding had not been cleared was delayed, first by a filibuster on a fair housing bill and later by more than 100 “Christmas tree” amendments, including a $10,000-a-year pay raise for members. After the conference report failed in the Senate and twice was rewritten, the bill was shorn of virtually all its “ornaments” and finally cleared by both chambers on Dec. 16.


    Despite the reluctance of congressional leaders, President Ronald Reagan urged the convening of a postelection session at the end of the 97th Congress, principally to pass remaining appropriations bills.

    Rising unemployment—and Democratic election gains in the House—made job creation efforts the focus of the lame-duck Congress, however. Overriding the objections of Republican conservatives, Congress passed Reagan-backed legislation raising the federal gasoline tax from 4 cents to 9 cents a gallon to pay for highway repairs and mass transit. Supporters said the legislation would help alleviate unemployment by creating 300,000 jobs.

    Congress eventually cleared four additional appropriations bills, packaging the remaining six in a continuing appropriations resolution that also included a pay raise for House members. Conferees dropped funding for emergency jobs programs to avert a threatened veto of the resolution.

    The lame-duck session also was highlighted by Congress's refusal to fund production and procurement of the first five MX intercontinental missiles. This was the first time in recent history that either house of Congress had denied a president's request to fund production of a strategic weapon.


    Congress reconvened to reconsider, and ultimately approve, the Uruguay Round pact strengthening the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). The bill had been submitted Sept. 27, 1994, by President Clinton under fast-track rules for trade legislation, which allowed each chamber only an up-or-down vote on the bill without amendments. But the rules also allowed every chairman with jurisdiction to take up to 45 days to review the bill. Sen. Ernest F. Hollings, D-S.C., demanded his forty-five days, forcing the Senate leadership to schedule a two-day lame-duck session.

    Clinton asked the House to approve the bill before the October adjournment, but the Democratic leadership delayed consideration. The House reconvened for a one-day session Nov. 29 and passed the GATT bill by a wide margin.

    Following a twenty-hour debate Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, the Senate gave overwhelming approval to the bill.


    The House reconvened in December for a remarkable, historic event: to vote on the impeachment of a president. After a tumultuous political year, House Republicans pushed through articles of impeachment for what they believe was President Clinton's lying under oath. The event was characterized by a year-long political chasm between House Republicans, who led the effort for impeachment, and Democrats in both chambers. It also was characterized by charges of sexual misconduct involving Clinton and release of a controversial and in places graphic report about sexual conduct of the president that Republicans defended as necessary to prove their case. The report was prepared by Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr. In the short time the House was in session, it voted—largely along party lines—in favor of impeachment charges, which would be tried—and rejected—by the Senate early in the following year. (Story, pp. 797, 813)


    Congress returned after the 2000 elections largely to complete action of appropriations measures that had remained unfinished as President Clinton continued to wrestle with his Republican adversaries in Congress over spending priorities. Partisan fighting over spending and taxes had been one of the principal matters that divided the White House and Capitol Hill during the latter years of Clinton's presidency. The year 2000 was no exception as Congress was unable to avert its annual pileup of appropriations bills at the end of the session. The pileup was exacerbated in 2000 because of the controversial presidential elections that were not decided until a Supreme Court decision in December awarding contested Florida electoral votes to Republican George W. Bush. With the GOP about to reclaim the White House, its party members in Congress suddenly had new leverage in the final bargaining over appropriations. The lame-duck session lumbered into mid-December when an omnibus package was used to close the books on four spending bills and move other unrelated legislation. (Story, p. 81)

    Senate Cloture Votes, 1917–2000

    The filibuster, identified by the public primarily as nonstop speech, has been an enshrined Senate tradition throughout the chamber's history but became a focus of increasing criticism in the twentieth century as a device to thwart majority decisions. It was not until 1917 that the Senate adopted a rule, known as cloture, that allowed a majority—albeit a supermajority—to end a filibuster and bring a measure to a vote. The number of votes required to invoke cloture has varied over the years, standing at 60 in early 2002 if there are no Senate vacancies. (The actual rule requires a three-fifths majority of members to invoke cloture; the Senate has 100 members.)

    Even with the rule in place, however, the number of filibusters and attempts to invoke cloture was limited until the 92nd Congress in 1971–1973. From that time on, and especially during the 1990s, cloture attempts expanded greatly as the character of the Senate changed from what one scholar called “communitarian” and deliberative to individualistic, increasingly partisan, and media-driven. In the ten Congresses during the twenty years from 1971 to 1991, cloture was attempted no less than thirteen times in each two-year period, and on the average twenty-five times each Congress. As dramatic as that growth was, it paled against the expansion in the following five Congresses from 1991 to 2001. In that ten-year period cloture attempts averaged fifty a Congress. (Table, p. 971)

    During President Bill Clinton's second term, a particularly partisan period from 1997 to 2001, a substantial number of cloture votes-more than 35 percent-were decided by a majority of 70 to 100 votes in favor. This higher success rate (than during previous decades) suggested that cloture was used less in connection with debates on far-reaching national issues-as was often the case in the past-and more for political and legislative maneuvering. For example, cloture, if invoked, requires amendments to be germane to the legislation being considered. Under normal procedures, senators may offer nongermane amendments to get a vote on proposals blocked in committee or advocated only by a few senators. In other cases a nongermane amendment may be intended to advance a political party's agenda in the media or to require senators to take a position that will be used against them in the next election. Much of this can be prevented by invoking cloture even if a true filibuster is not expected. Thus, increasingly cloture votes have been used by the majority party-Republican during Clinton's second term-to control the Senate's agenda.

    Changes in the Rule

    The Senate's ultimate check on the filibuster is the provision for cloture, or limitation of debate, contained in Rule 22 of its Standing Rules. The original Rule 22 was adopted in 1917 following a furor over the “talking to death” of a proposal by President Woodrow Wilson for arming American merchant ships before the United States entered World War I. The new cloture rule required the votes of two-thirds of all the senators present and voting to invoke cloture. In 1949, during a parliamentary skirmish preceding scheduled consideration of a Fair Employment Practices Commission bill, the requirement was raised to two-thirds of the entire Senate membership.

    A revision of the rule in 1959 provided for limitation of debate by a vote of two-thirds of the senators present and voting, two days after a cloture petition was submitted by sixteen senators. If cloture was adopted by the Senate, further debate was limited to one hour for each senator on the bill itself and on all amendments affecting it. No new amendments could be offered except by unanimous consent. Amendments that were not germane to the pending business and dilatory motions were out of order. The rule applied both to regular legislation and to motions to change the Standing Rules.

    Rule 22 was revised significantly in 1975 by lowering the vote needed for cloture to three-fifths of the Senate membership (sixty if there were no vacancies). That revision applied to any matter except proposed rules changes, for which the old requirement of a two-thirds majority of senators present and voting still applied.

    In a further revision of the rule, the Senate in 1979 limited postcloture delaying tactics by providing that once cloture was invoked, a final vote had to be taken after no more than 100 hours of debate. All time spent on quorum calls, roll-call votes, and other parliamentary procedures was to be included in the 100-hour limit.

    When the Senate decided to televise its floor proceedings in 1986, it further tightened up the time on postcloture debate. Rule 22 was revised to reduce to thirty hours, from 100, the time allowed for debate, procedural moves, and roll-call votes after the Senate had invoked cloture to end a filibuster.

    Following is a list of the 545 cloture votes taken between 1917, when Senate Rule 22 was adopted, and the end of 2000; 193 of the votes (in bold type) were successful.

    House Discharge Petitions since 1931

    The discharge petition is a little-used but dramatic House device that enables a majority of representatives to bring to the floor legislation blocked in committee. The following table shows the frequency with which the discharge petition has been used since the present discharge procedure was adopted in 1931 through the second session of the 106th Congress. While the procedure obviously is rarely used and even more rarely successful, it may on occasion indirectly succeed by impelling a legislative committee, the Rules Committee, or the leadership to act on a measure and thereby avoid the discharge.

    Congressional Apportionment, 1789–2000


    The Presidency

    Clinton Appointments to Major Posts

    President Clinton's second term began with a flurry of cabinet changes, as he named replacements to lead seven of the fourteen cabinet departments: Commerce, Defense, Energy, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, State, and Transportation. By term's end, there had been four additional turnovers in department heads—at Commerce and Energy again, as well as at Treasury and Veterans Affairs. Only Attorney General Janet Reno, Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley, Secretary of Health and Human Services Donna Shalala, and Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt stayed at their posts for both terms.

    A few of the second-term cabinet nominees received quick Senate confirmation. The new secretaries of state, defense, commerce, and housing and urban development were sworn in to coincide with the resignations of their successors. (Clinton cabinet box, p. 978; Clinton appointments 1993–1996, Congress and the Nation IX, p. 1109)

    Other nominations went less smoothly. Clinton's choice for secretary of labor, Alexis Herman, and secretary of energy, Federico F. Peña, had their confirmations held for several months. Herman was investigated for alleged fund-raising improprieties, and Peña was thought inexperienced for the position. Peña stayed in the Energy job for about fifteen months and then was succeeded by Bill Richardson. Richardson's swearing in was held up for several weeks after his Senate confirmation while an “informal inquiry” was conducted into allegations that he had created a job for former White House intern Monica S. Lewinsky, as part of a cover-up of a White House sex scandal. Treasury secretary nominee Lawrence H. Summers's confirmation was never in jeopardy, but it was delayed by senators trying to use it as leverage on health care issues and in protest against a controversial ambassadorial appointment.

    After the Republican takeover of Congress in 1995, the Senate delayed or killed dozens of the president's appointees to federal judgeships. Sen. John Ashcroft, R-Mo., emerged as a powerful adversary, waging a war on virtually all of Clinton's choices. The most controversial example was in 1999, when the Senate rejected the nomination of Ronnie L. White—the first African American on Missouri's Supreme Court—for a U.S. District Court judgeship. He was the first judicial nominee to be rejected since the defeat of Robert H. Bork was blocked for a seat on the Supreme Court in 1987.

    With the switch of control of the Senate, Republican Sen. Jesse Helms of North Carolina gained the chairmanship of the Foreign Relations Committee and waged battle against many of the Clinton nominees for diplomatic posts. He actively opposed several nominations and held captive the nominations of those whose positions did not agree with his conservative views. He single-handedly scuttled the nomination of former Massachusetts Gov. William F. Weld, a moderate Republican, to an ambassadorship and gave his fellow senators a history lesson on failed nominations in the process.

    Below are profiles of cabinet members and others who were confirmed to serve in key executive branch positions during the second Clinton administration, followed by brief accounts of major controversial nominations.

    Cabinet, 1997–2001


    William M. Daley was confirmed Jan. 30, 1997, to become Clinton's third secretary of commerce. Daley succeeded Mickey Kantor, who was returning to California to practice law. While the Daley nomination met with little dissent, the Senate vote, 95-2, yielded the first “no” votes of any confirmation at the start of the Clinton's second term. The Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee had approved Daley's nomination, 19-1, on Jan. 29.

    Although he had never run for public office, Daley was regarded as a skilled politician. He ran the fund-raising effort for the 1996 Democratic National Convention and helped Clinton win a near landslide in Illinois in the general election. He was a member of a prominent political family: his father, Richard J. Daley, dominated as mayor of Chicago from 1955 to 1976, and his brother, Richard M. Daley, was the current mayor of Chicago.

    Daley, a partner at the Chicago law firm Mayer, Brown & Platt and a former bank president, had been associated with Clinton since the 1992 presidential campaign. Daley had been seen as a front-runner for secretary of transportation in Clinton's first term but was passed over for former Denver mayor Federico F. Peña. Clinton instead appointed Daley to the board of the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), a government-sponsored enterprise. He also gave him a more public role as special counsel on the North American Free Trade Agreement.

    Declaring at his Jan. 22 confirmation hearing that he would eschew partisanship, Daley promised to keep the troubled Commerce Department free of political activity during his tenure. The pledge was a successful preemptive strike that quelled any intention of Republicans on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee to voice their allegations that the Clinton administration had turned the Commerce Department into a Democratic political operation.

    To some conservative Republicans, the issue of partisan politics at Commerce was secondary to a larger theme: whether the department should exist at all. In the previous Congress, the Commerce Department had emerged as one of the top targets of Republicans interested in eliminating departments they saw as wasteful. Although such efforts failed, some members remained determined to dismantle Commerce, scrapping some of its functions and dispersing the rest to other agencies.

    Despite this backdrop, the hearing went relatively easily. Even Republican senators Spencer Abraham of Michigan and Sam Brownback of Kansas—the department's most severe critics on the committee—took a gentle approach in questioning the nominee. While acknowledging that some changes needed to be made, Daley defended the department, saying it remained a vital advocate for U.S. businesses facing global competition.

    Daley had received a lucrative income from his work as a lobbyist and corporate adviser, earning nearly $1 million in 1996. He also served on boards of directors of a handful of companies. Sen. Wendell H. Ford, D-Ky., asked Daley to respond to questions that had been raised about his service as a board member on Fannie Mae that coincided with work that his law firm had done for the federally chartered corporation. Daley denied that there were any ties between his position at Fannie Mae and the work his law firm had done for the corporation. He said if his law firm was not qualified to work for Fannie Mae, “we wouldn't be representing them.” Responding to concerns that Chicago might benefit disproportionately from his position at the helm of Commerce, Daley promised to recuse himself from specific matters in which Chicago was a party.

    Daley specifically vowed to reduce the number of political appointees at Commerce from 256 to 156 and defer all overseas trade missions by department officials pending a thirty-day review into the rules and criteria governing such missions. Some GOP lawmakers had accused the administration of turning department-sponsored missions into junkets to reward businesses that contributed to the Democratic Party.

    Sam Brownback, R-Kan., voted against Daley in committee and on the floor. Brownback, who favored dismantling the Commerce Department, said Daley had not suggested sufficient program cuts. Also voting “no” on the floor was James M. Inhofe, R-Okla. But otherwise, Daley won praise. “He's an experienced, talented individual,” said Commerce Committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., who ran Daley's confirmation hearing.

    On July 20, 2000, the Senate confirmed former representative Norman Y. Mineta, D-Calif., to become Clinton's fourth secretary of commerce. He was approved by voice vote and without debate. Mineta became the first person of Asian-Pacific descent to hold a cabinet post. He succeeded William M. Daley, who resigned July 19 to head Vice President Al Gore's presidential campaign, in the waning months of the Clinton administration.

    Mineta served in the House from 1975 to 1995 and was known for his interest in aviation and consumer issues. He was also a driving force behind the 1988 Civil Liberties Act (PL 100-383), which compensated Japanese Americans interned in relocation camps in the United States during World War II. He and his family were interned in Wyoming.

    When he first won the presidency in 1993, Clinton had tried to interest Mineta in becoming the secretary of transportation, but Mineta wanted to stay in the 103rd Congress and become chairman of the Public Works and Transportation Committee. Ten months after the GOP assumed control of the House, Mineta resigned in October 1995 to be a top executive for a growing transportation technology business at Lockheed Martin IMS, a branch of one of the nation's largest defense contractors.

    “Some might say that the months remaining in this administration [are] not a lot of time to make a difference,” Mineta said when he was nominated. “But I disagree. Six months is a virtual eternity in the new economy.”

    Mineta said in a Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee hearing July 19 that he would focus on free and fair trade, economic growth, and “digital inclusion” for people left out of the nation's technology boom. The committee approved his nomination the following day.

    Mineta was respected by his former colleagues from both parties and his nomination was well received. “His entire track record … has been one of consensus building,” said a former aide.

    “I want to make sure that there's nothing that he's been involved in since he left the Congress that would be a problem,” said Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss. “But I think generally there's going to be a positive reaction. We all know him and knew him to be an effective legislator.” Commerce Committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., called Mineta “highly qualified.”

    At the conclusion of the Clinton administration, Mineta was the only Democrat chosen to be in the in-coming Bush administration cabinet, but he would move to transportation secretary.


    President Clinton reached across party lines to nominate Republican William S. Cohen, a former senator from Maine, to be secretary of defense. Cohen replaced William J. Perry, who resigned to spend more time with his grandchildren.

    Cohen was questioned by his former colleagues on the Senate Armed Services Committee, unanimously approved, and then confirmed by the full Senate without dissent—all in one day. The 99-0 vote Jan. 22, 1997, came after a brief debate in which senators lauded their just-retired colleague as a thoughtful and independent-minded voice for bipartisanship in defense policy. The Armed Services panel had approved Cohen's nomination by a vote of 18-0.

    Cohen won a vacant U.S. House seat in 1972 and served six years (1973–1979) before moving in 1979 to the Senate, where he was a member of the Armed Services and Governmental Affairs committees. On Jan. 16, 1996, Cohen announced his intention to retire after three terms in the U.S. Senate (1979–1997).

    Twice in his career the fiercely independent Cohen resisted strong political pressure from other Republicans and mounted high-profile challenges to presidents of his party over what he saw as intolerable deceptions of Congress. In 1974, while still a House freshman, he was a key member of the centrist coalition that backed impeachment of President Richard Nixon in the wake of the Watergate scandal and cover-up. During 1987 hearings, he blasted high-ranking members of President Ronald Reagan's administration for lawbreaking in connection with the Iran-contra scandal in which Reagan associates secretly sold arms to Iran and used some of the profits to fund “contra” rebels fighting the leftist government of Nicaragua.

    Though one of the Senate's most liberal Republicans on domestic issues, Cohen's record on defense questions was solidly in the GOP mainstream. He had vigorously criticized the Clinton administration for not accelerating the antimissile defense program, deferring increases in the weapons procurement budget, and refusing to obtain congressional approval of overseas troop deployments. He had consistently supported higher military budgets than his Democratic colleagues or the administration and generally favored a more assertive foreign policy.

    But Cohen assured the committee that he could work effectively within the Clinton team. “My record is one of bridging differences—not papering them over, but building consensus behind reasonable and responsible compromises,” he said. “Uniformity of opinion within an administration is not an imperative, or even an ideal to be sought.”

    “My presumption is that [Cohen] has … pledged his loyalty, as is appropriate,” said John McCain, R-Ariz., a fellow Armed Services Committee member and a close friend. “But he has also made it clear to the president that he will act in what he thinks is the best interest of the United States.”


    The Senate voted 99-1 on March 12, 1997, to confirm Federico F. Peña as energy secretary. Peña, who had been transportation secretary in Clinton's first term, replaced Hazel R. O'Leary, who retired Jan. 20.

    Peña's nomination was clouded initially by widespread speculation that Clinton picked him mainly to preserve the cabinet's ethnic diversity. Clinton had been leaning toward Elizabeth Moler, chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, for the energy post, and Peña had planned to leave the government. But with Housing and Urban Development Secretary Henry G. Cisneros retiring, Peña's departure would have left the cabinet with no Hispanic members. Clinton asked Peña to stay as energy secretary.

    The nomination became enmeshed in the controversy over nuclear waste disposal and Peña was not confirmed until three months after his nomination.

    At the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing Jan. 30 on his nomination, Peña faced a barrage of pointed questions. The tough reception signaled strong dissatisfaction not with the nominee, but with the department he was asked to lead. Committee members raised issues—such as nuclear waste disposal, a nuclear weapons test ban, oil drilling in the Arctic, and the future of federally owned power plants—that vexed the energy department in recent years and led critics to argue it should be eliminated. Even the committee's ranking Democrat, Dale Bumpers of Arkansas, challenged Peña on the administration's approach to deregulating the electric power industry.

    Some senators questioned whether his last-minute nomination meant that the administration viewed the job, in the words of Energy Committee Chairman Frank H. Murkowski, R-Alaska, as a “throwaway” position. Yet Peña was regarded as a strong administrator at transportation, and his lack of experience on energy and nuclear weapons issues did not emerge as a major obstacle to his nomination. At the hearing, Peña largely reiterated the administration's standing energy policies, carried out by retiring Secretary O'Leary. But many in Congress criticized O'Leary's stewardship of the department, and Peña was warned that inertia at Energy would not be tolerated.

    The long-stymied effort to establish a central repository for the nation's nuclear waste spurred heated discussion at the hearing. Sens. Murkowski, Larry E. Craig of Idaho, and Rod Grams of Minnesota blasted the administration's opposition to construction of a temporary storage site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, for the waste products piling up at civilian nuclear reactors and government facilities. “This administration struts around the country saying they're the No. 1 environmental administration ever,” Craig said. “Yet they have flatly stuck their heads in the sand” on nuclear waste, which he declared the most critical environmental issue facing the nation.

    Murkowski and a handful of other Republicans on the Energy Committee tried to use Peña's confirmation to pressure the White House to drop a veto threat against proposed nuclear waste legislation. Murkowski twice canceled committee action on the nomination in February.

    “It's patently unfair to hold a perfectly good man hostage to a particular issue,” said Bumpers. On March 6 the committee finally voted, 19-0, to send the nomination to the Senate floor. Committee member Grams voted “present” to protest the White House's nuclear policies and then blocked the full Senate from moving quickly under unanimous consent rules to approve Peña. Grams was the only senator to vote against Peña.

    Bill Richardson was confirmed as energy secretary by a voice vote of the Senate July 31, 1998, succeeding Peña, who resigned to return to private life. Two days earlier the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee voted 18-0 to approve his nomination.

    But committee chairman Frank H. Murkowski, R-Alaska, took the unusual step Aug. 7 of asking President Clinton to delay swearing in Richardson while the Energy Committee conducted “an informal inquiry” to resolve questions about whether Richardson told the truth about his dealings with former White House intern Monica S. Lewinsky.

    Murkowski's request was prompted by a Washington Times article contending that Richardson did not have an opening on his staff when he offered to hire Lewinsky in 1997, contrary to what he told the committee under oath at his confirmation hearing. Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr was investigating whether Clinton had a sexual relationship with Lewinsky and tried to cover it up, in part by finding a job for her. The article quoted unidentified sources who said that Richardson planned to create a position to accommodate Lewinsky's wish to work in New York. The article said that when allegations of a sexual relationship between Lewinsky and Clinton became public, Richardson looked for a job he could say had existed before he interviewed Lewinsky. “This article raises serious questions that are the obligation of this committee to explore,” Murkowski said in a statement.

    After the article appeared, Richardson issued a statement denying the allegation. A bipartisan Energy Committee staff report issued Aug. 17 found “clear and convincing evidence corroborating” his testimony. Richardson was sworn in on Aug. 18.

    In addition to the Lewinsky matter, Richardson had also faced tough questioning from Republicans senators on nuclear waste disposal. At a July 22 confirmation hearing, Larry E. Craig, R-Idaho, repeatedly pressed Richardson to negotiate an agreement to build a temporary storage site for high-level waste generated by nuclear power plants. The House and Senate passed bills in 1997 requiring the department to build such a facility near Yucca Mountain, Nevada, 100 miles northwest of Las Vegas. But Clinton vowed to veto any bill to establish a site.

    Craig threatened to delay a vote on Richardson until he received assurances from the president that Richardson would have the authority to negotiate on nuclear waste storage issues. Committee members from both parties countered that Richardson's nomination should not be held hostage for political purposes. Craig relented after Murkowski received a letter from Clinton in which the president said Richardson must oversee the department's assessment of the Nevada's site long-term storage potential.

    Richardson had served as Clinton's ambassador to the United Nations since 1997. Before that he had been a member of the House of Representatives from New Mexico's Third District, serving from 1983 to 1997 and rising to the leadership post of chief deputy whip. (U.N. Representative, p. 984)

    As ambassador, Richardson extended his role as an international negotiator, working with Congress to hammer out an agreement to pay the U.S. debt to the United Nations. A member of the National Security Council, he also helped construct American policy on Iraq's refusal to comply with U.N. resolutions. But Richardson was eager to move to the Energy Department, in part because the department oversaw nuclear issues and his native New Mexico was home to nuclear research facilities.

    Richardson was born in California to a Mexican mother and American father, and was raised in Mexico City. With the departure of Peña, Richardson became the only Hispanic American in the cabinet.

    Housing and Urban Development

    Andrew M. Cuomo received Senate confirmation, 99-0, on Jan. 29, 1997, to become President Clinton's second secretary of housing and urban development (HUD). Cuomo replaced Henry G. Cisneros, who retired in the face of an investigation by an independent counsel for allegedly concealing information about payments to a former mistress.

    Cuomo's nomination was approved unanimously Jan. 28 by the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. At his Jan. 22 confirmation hearing, Cuomo had drawn bipartisan praise for his experience and commitment to making housing affordable, particularly for the poor and elderly. “I commend my fellow New Yorker for his record of public service,” said Committee Chairman Alfonse M. D'Amato, R-N.Y. “He has shown innovation, insight, and tireless efforts to serve our cities, suburbs, and rural areas.”

    The son of former Democratic New York governor Mario M. Cuomo, the nominee previously served as assistant HUD secretary for community planning and development (1993–1996) and had been involved in housing issues in New York prior to that.

    Paul S. Sarbanes of Maryland, the panel's ranking Democrat, noted that Cuomo in 1986 founded a New York organization that provided transitional housing for the homeless. “It's clear,” Sarbanes said, “that Mr. Cuomo is an excellent choice at this time.”

    Committee members did make clear that their kind words for Cuomo did not extend to the department itself, which many conservative Republicans considered to be a bloated and poorly run bureaucracy. Some had recommended the elimination of the department.

    “HUD has failed,” said Lauch Faircloth, R-N.C. “In many instances, it's lost sight of its mission. Management is the problem. HUD has become a massive Washington bureaucracy.”

    In response to such concerns, Cuomo said he was committed to continuing streamlining efforts initiated by Cisneros, while also finding ways to meet the housing needs of low-income families and senior citizens. “We have to balance the budget and meet our responsibilities,” he said. “We have to do both. I don't think the two are mutually inconsistent.”

    A key architect of federal “empowerment zones” and HUD's restructuring, Cuomo pledged continued reforms, including a public housing overhaul.


    The Senate confirmed Alexis M. Herman as secretary of labor April 30, 1997, on a bipartisan vote of 85-13. She replaced Robert B. Reich, who left Jan. 10 to return to Harvard University and his family in Boston. Herman was the first African American in the post. Her nomination had been approved by voice vote April 10 by the Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee.

    Herman waited several months for her chance to testify before the Labor Committee. The confirmation hearing was delayed because of questions about whether she engaged in improper fund-raising activities while serving as director of the White House Office of Public Liaison during President Clinton's first term.

    Herman was greeted at the March 18 hearing by a supportive, standing-room-only audience that included prominent African Americans, such as Children's Defense Fund president Marian Wright Edelman; NAACP president Kweisi Mfume, a former House member (D-Md., 1987–1996); newly confirmed Transportation Secretary Rodney Slater; and more than a dozen members of the Congressional Black Caucus. Recalling the failed nominations of African American law Professor Lani Guinier in 1993 to head the Justice Department's civil rights division and of black physician Henry W. Foster Jr. in 1995 to be surgeon general, many of those on hand sought to demonstrate their support for Herman.

    In more than four hours of testimony, Herman responded to questions about her management philosophy, her activities in the Clinton White House, her experiences in the Labor Department in the 1970s, and her work as a private consultant on diversity before she returned to government in 1993. Few panel members delved deeply into allegations about Herman's involvement in White House political fund-raising, the topic that initially threatened to derail the nomination.

    Before the hearing, Herman had been asked by the Labor panel to respond to written questions about her tenure as director of the Office of Public Liaison. At the hearing, committee Chairman James M. Jeffords, R-Vt., pointedly criticized the White House for alleged fund-raising improprieties. Herman reluctantly said that administration officials had apparently made some mistakes. Hoping to change the line of questioning, she repeatedly said that her top priority would be to address the needs of working families.

    After her testimony, Jeffords praised Herman for her knowledge of labor issues, which stemmed from stints as a union organizer and as director of the Labor Department's Women's Bureau during the Carter administration. “Too many people lack the skills they need to find jobs,” Jeffords said. “This is not news to anyone, particularly the nominee, who has spent much of her life trying to attack these problems.”

    Herman was also lauded by committee Democrats, who noted that she honed her political skills while growing up under segregation in Mobile, Alabama, in the early 1960s.

    But the wait for Herman was still not over. The GOP leadership delayed floor action, using Herman's confirmation as a bargaining chip in an escalating dispute over administration plans to issue an executive order giving priority to unionized companies in federal contract bids on large, long-term projects. Senate Democrats responded by refusing to allow legislation to reach the floor until Herman's nomination was allowed to proceed. Clinton ultimately agreed to issue a “presidential memorandum” that would have the same effect as an executive order except that it would expire when Clinton left office. Both sides claimed victory and Herman was quickly confirmed.


    Madeleine K. Albright was confirmed Jan. 22, 1997, on a 99-0 vote, to replace Warren M. Christopher and become the nation's first female secretary of state. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved her nomination on Jan. 20, Inauguration Day, on an 18-0 vote.

    Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms, R-N.C., warmly praised Albright, who had served as U.S. representative to the United Nations during President Clinton's first term. “She's a strong lady,” Helms said. “She's a courageous lady.” Helms added that his support for Albright “should in no way be misconstrued as an endorsement of the Clinton foreign policy.”

    During her day-long confirmation hearing Jan. 8 Albright was praised as a trailblazer for women's rights, lauded as a “role model for the country,” credited for ousting an unpopular U.N. secretary-general, and even referred to as “cool.”

    While Helms and his GOP colleagues were taken with Albright as a messenger, they were less impressed with her message. Helms slammed Clinton's policies toward Haiti, Iraq, and Cuba and charged that the administration in general had been “too often vacillating and insecure.”

    Like any cabinet nominee, Albright was mostly interested in surviving the hearing without any major gaffes. She succeeded and was able to turn the hearing's only unscripted moment—a protest against U.S. policy toward Iraq by members of a left-wing religious group—to her advantage by using it to launch an off-the-cuff attack on Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

    Albright's deft handling of that incident confirmed her reputation as an effective, if sometimes unpredictable, advocate for U.S. interests abroad. On that count, she would represent a dramatic contrast to the cautious, lawyerly Christopher. “I have been known for my plain-speaking,” she told the panel. “I'm going to tell it like it is.”

    Albright indicated she would closely follow the course set by Christopher on the major international issues facing the United States—Russia, China, Bosnia, and the Middle East. She began making the case for increased funding for foreign aid and other international programs and for the Senate to approve a treaty banning the development and deployment of chemical weapons.

    “We are the world's richest, strongest, most respected nation,” she said.

    We are also the largest debtor to the United Nations and the international financial institutions. We provide a smaller percentage of our wealth to support democracy and growth in the developing world than any other industrialized nation.

    Helms was unmoved by Albright's plea that paying off U.S. debts to the U.N. was necessary to restore U.S. global credibility. “I'm growing a little tired of the wailing and gnashing of teeth” over the U.S. arrearages, he said.

    The Foreign Relations Committee seemed eager to make history by confirming a woman as the nation's top diplomat. But Albright earned plaudits for her record as well as for her gender. Helms expressed admiration for Albright's lead role in denying a second term for UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali of Egypt. She helped orchestrate Boutros-Ghali's ouster and his replacement by Kofi Annan of Ghana, the Clinton administration's choice for the post.

    Although Albright was cautious in her policy pronouncements, she pledged to work with the committee on a plan to reorganize the foreign affairs bureaucracy, a cherished goal of Helms.

    Albright was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, and emigrated to the United States with her family in 1948, fleeing the communist takeover. She was fluent in French and Czech, with good speaking and reading abilities in Russian and Polish. Albright's appointment led to discoveries about her family's heritage and to revelations about the deaths of more than a dozen Jewish relatives, including three of her grandparents, in the Holocaust.


    The nomination of Rodney E. Slater to become secretary of transportation was confirmed by the Senate Feb. 6, 1997, by a 98-0 vote. He succeeded Federico F. Peña, who was slated to become the next energy secretary. A unanimous Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee approved the nomination on Feb. 5.

    Slater breezed through the confirmation process. He came to the job with nearly ten years of experience in transportation oversight. He previously ran Arkansas's highway program under then-governor Bill Clinton and headed the Federal Highway Administration from 1993 to 1997.

    At a two-hour hearing on Jan. 29, Slater pledged to make transportation safety his top priority. With recent passenger airline disasters causing widespread public concern, Slater said that ensuring safety would be “the true North Star that guides our moral compass.”

    No senator spoke against Slater. However, committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., chided him about his role in a 1996 Clinton campaign strategy group. A planning memo by the African American Working Group—headed by Alexis Herman, the White House director of public liaison at the time—suggested highlighting key black officials in the administration as a means of promoting voter turnout. The memo also took an apparent slap at Republicans by labeling opponents of Democrats as “enemies of civil rights.” Slater, who was a member of the working group, described the civil rights language as “unfortunate.” Apparently mollified, McCain called the response “important.”

    In written testimony submitted to the committee, Slater rejected a proposal by House Budget Committee Chairman John R. Kasich, R-Ohio, and others to turn over responsibility for most transportation projects to the states. “The federal government can play—indeed, must play—an important role in helping each state in a diverse union create the national [transportation] network,” Slater contended.


    Lawrence H. Summers was confirmed July 1, 1999, by a 97-2 vote of the Senate, to become the third Treasury secretary of the Clinton administration. He succeeded Robert E. Rubin, for whom he had been deputy since 1995. The Senate Finance Committee had approved the nomination, 13-0, on June 22, without debate.

    Summers had received a mostly warm welcome at a Finance Committee hearing June 17. Members of both parties praised his intellect and grasp of national and international financial issues. He assured committee members that there would be no significant policy shifts, if he were allowed to succeed Rubin, who was widely credited with helping sustain a thriving economy. “We share a common orientation with respect to economic policy,” Summers said.

    Summers faced some tough questions on trade issues, international monetary policy, taxes, and entitlement programs. In one of the sharpest exchanges, Bob Kerrey, D-Neb., pressed Summers on Social Security's looming budget crisis. Kerrey said that because the administration had ruled out a payroll tax increase, the only way to make up the expected shortfall would be to use general revenues from individual and corporate income taxes to repay the debt owed to the Social Security trust fund. When Summers hesitated to concede that point, Kerrey insisted that the administration's positions left no alternative and at one point threatened to withdraw his support for Summers's nomination. Ultimately Summers agreed that income taxes would be needed to repay the debt.

    Summers reiterated the administration's position that budget surpluses should be used to pay down the national debt, not for tax cuts. “When you reduce public debt, you are reducing future taxes,” Summers said.

    Summers also retracted a comment he previously made in which he described efforts to reduce estate taxes—a Republican priority—as “selfishness.” He said he agreed it could be difficult for heirs, especially small-business owners and farmers, to pay estate taxes when they inherited a business that could not be easily converted to cash.

    Although the Finance Committee had sole jurisdiction over Summers's confirmation, the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee held a hearing on Summers while the Finance Committee was voting June 22. Chairman Phil Gramm, R-Texas, said he had little problem with Clinton's nominee. Treasury secretaries had “really been the highlight of their administration,” he said.

    Summers's confirmation was never in much doubt, but it was delayed by senators trying to use it as leverage on other issues. James M. Inhofe, R-Okla., blocked votes on Summers and all other nominations for a week over the president's recess appointment of gay philanthropist James C. Hormel as ambassador to Luxembourg, but he yielded when Clinton promised to warn Congress of his plans to make future recess appointments.

    The confirmation then became entangled in debate over health care. Democrats said Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., used the nomination as a bargaining chip to get Democrats to agree to drop a health care amendment to an agricultural spending bill (S 1233).

    Summers had established himself as the intellectual powerhouse of the Clinton administration's economic team by the time he came to the position. He spent most of his career in policy making and academia. Summers had been Treasury's deputy secretary since August 1995 and under secretary for international affairs from 1993 to 1995. He was a former chief economist at the World Bank and an economics professor at Harvard.

    Veterans Affairs

    By voice vote, the Senate on April 28, 1998, confirmed the nomination of former Army Secretary Togo D. West Jr. to be secretary of veterans affairs (VA). West had served as acting secretary since Jan. 2. The previous secretary, Jesse Brown, resigned July 1, 1997, to take a private-sector job. Clinton's initial choice to replace him, Deputy Secretary Hershel W. Gober, withdrew his nomination in October in the face of questions about his personal conduct. (Gober nomination, p. 986)

    Confirmation was delayed by questions about infighting among factions within the army and about sexual harassment scandals that rocked the Army during West's tenure as secretary. The Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee delayed consideration of West's nomination after Michael B. Enzi, R-Wyo., wrote to the committee expressing concern about the complaints.

    West addressed these issues during a Feb. 24, 1998, hearing. He was questioned on other topics as well, including a VA proposal to deny compensation for treatment of some veterans for smoking-related illnesses if their tobacco use was not confined to their years of military service.

    West was also questioned about the way exceptions were granted for the interment of people who would not normally be accorded burial at Arlington National Cemetery. Republicans in Congress suggested that burial plots were awarded to Democratic Party donors, but the criticisms receded after West made public a list of the waivers he had granted and explained the basis for each one. The General Accounting Office later found that waivers were not proved to be linked to political considerations.

    Satisfied that West had addressed his concerns, Enzi withdrew his opposition shortly before the committee unanimously approved West's nomination on April 22.

    West was a former member of the U.S. Army Field Artillery Corps, served as general counsel for the Navy, and later held that same position for the Department of Defense. He went on to become senior vice president for defense contractor Northrop Grumman Corp. West had been Army secretary since 1993.

    West resigned as VA secretary July 24, 2000. Gober served as acting secretary until the end of the Clinton administration.

    Other Key Positions

    Central Intelligence Agency

    George J. Tenet was confirmed July 10, 1997, by the Senate as director of central intelligence, four months after he was nominated and nearly eight months after the job fell vacant when John M. Deutch resigned in December 1996. He was confirmed by voice vote, with little debate, just hours after the Senate Intelligence Committee, in a closed session, voted unanimously in favor of his nomination. Tenet became the fifth CIA director in the 1990s.

    Tenet was nominated in March after President Clinton's first choice, former national security adviser Anthony Lake, withdrew when his nomination became entangled in partisan controversy over foreign policy and political fund-raising practices. (Lake nomination, p. 987)

    Tenet had been acting director of central intelligence since Deutch's resignation. He served under Lake at the National Security Council (NSC) before becoming deputy director of central intelligence in 1995. He began his career in government in 1982 when he went to work for Sen. John Heinz, R-Pa., as a legislative assistant focused mainly on energy, defense, and foreign affairs issues. Before joining the White House in 1993, Tenet served as staff director of the Senate Intelligence Committee from 1988 to 1993 and was introduced at his confirmation hearing by his old boss, former senator David L. Boren, D-Okla. (1979–1994), who had been chairman of the committee at the time.

    Tenet received a generally favorable reception from the committee during his May 6 confirmation hearing. He met with the panel behind closed doors May 7 to discuss classified issues.

    Senators delved into Tenet's views on how he would lead the nation's intelligence community, which included the CIA and several other intelligence agencies, most of which are part of the Defense Department. Tenet was asked by several senators about what reforms were still needed in the wake of the devastating Aldrich H. Ames spy scandal, which had become public in 1994. He said he would continue implementing reforms begun under Deutch and noted that several important steps had already been taken to beef up the CIA's counter-intelligence efforts. He also expressed his strong support for using people, not just satellites and electronic eavesdropping, to collect intelligence.

    The committee vote on Tenet's nomination was put on hold while the Justice Department investigated his failure to disclose until 1994 his ownership of real estate in Greece and U.S. telephone companies' stocks he inherited after his father died in 1983. He said he was unaware of the holdings until his family discovered the paperwork in a safe deposit box in 1994. Tenet, who at the time was working for the NSC, informed White House ethics officials. He subsequently was nominated and confirmed to be deputy director of central intelligence.

    The Justice Department cleared him of any wrongdoing and his nomination to head the CIA was approved by the Senate.

    Council of Economic Advisers

    Janet Yellen won confirmation Feb. 13, 1997, to serve as chairman of President Clinton's Council of Economic Advisers (CEA), one day after she received a 17-0 endorsement from the Senate Banking Committee. Senate approval was by voice vote.

    Yellen, a former economics professor at the University of California at Berkeley, replaced Joseph E. Stiglitz. By accepting the nomination Yellen gave up the seat on the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve that she had held since 1994.

    “I am tremendously pleased you will be taking on this assignment,” Banking Committee Chairman Alfonse M. D'Amato, R-N.Y., told Yellen at her Feb. 5 confirmation hearing. GOP committee members pressed for her views on the balanced-budget amendment, taxes, and economic growth.

    In response to a question from Lauch Faircloth, R-N.C., Yellen said she strongly opposed amending the Constitution to require balanced budgets. Echoing the president and other administration officials, Yellen said the amendment could precipitate a recession or depression by eliminating the government's ability to lower taxes or increase spending during economic downturns.

    Responding to another question from Faircloth, Yellen said she would not give “high priority” to a broad-based capital gains tax cut advocated by many Republicans.

    Yellen also told the committee that she considered it a “very important priority” to promote policies that would improve the economy's current 2.5 percent annual growth rate. “I am not satisfied with 2.5 percent growth, and I don't think any of us should be satisfied with 2.5 percent growth,” Yellen said.

    Republicans encouraged her to press that view in the White House. “Many people, including President Clinton, now consider a growth rate of 2.5 percent to be acceptable, even laudable,” said Sen. Connie Mack, R-Fla. “We should not accept such mediocrity.”

    Yellen resigned in August 1999 to return to teaching at Berkeley.

    Martin N. Baily was confirmed by voice vote of the Senate on Aug. 5, 1999, as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, replacing Janet Yellen. The Senate Banking Committee held a hearing and approved Baily's nomination a day earlier.

    Baily had served as one of the three members of the CEA from October 1994 until August 1996. From September 1996 to July 1999 Baily was a principal at McKinsey & Company at the Global Institute in Washington, D.C.

    Previously, Baily had taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Yale, and the University of Maryland. He also had been a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and served as an academic advisor to the Congressional Budget Office and the Federal Reserve Board.

    Federal Reserve Board

    Alan Greenspan was confirmed in 2000 for a fourth term as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, amid a bipartisan chorus that gave him much of the credit for an economic expansion of record duration. His nomination was approved by a voice vote of the Senate Banking Committee on Feb. 1, 2000, and confirmed by an 89-4 vote of the full Senate on Feb. 3.

    Confirmation came one day after the Fed raised the federal funds interest rate—what banks charged one another for overnight loans—for the fourth time since June 1999, in an effort to temper the pace of the economy's growth and thereby keep inflation in check. The action gave fresh ammunition to the small cadre of Greenspan critics in the Senate, who said his moves against inflation had an unwelcome trickle-down effect, by making it more difficult for many people to obtain financing for new home purchases or business expenses.

    “My farmers, who are already hurting enough,” lamented Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, “are going to get hit again.” Byron L. Dorgan, D-N.D., called the rate increases “a tax on every single American.” But fewer sided with their view this time than the detractors had predicted, and fewer than when Greenspan was last confirmed, in 1996.

    Greenspan, a lifelong Republican, was first nominated as chairman in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan. He was nominated to a second term in 1992 by President George Bush and to a third term in 1996 by President Clinton. His new term would begin in June 2000 and run to June 2004. (Congress and the Nation Vol. VII, p. 1049; Congress and the Nation Vol. VIII, p. 1176; Congress and the Nation Vol. IX, p. 1116.)

    Office of Management and Budget

    Jacob J. Lew was confirmed by voice vote by the Senate on July 31, 1998, to become director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Lew, who had been deputy OMB director since August 1995, took over the top position at OMB when Franklin D. Raines left to become chairman of the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae).

    The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee held a hearing on Lew's nomination June 22, 1998, and approved it July 15.

    Lew, an attorney, had been a special assistant to Clinton from February 1993 through October 1994, before moving to OMB. Earlier in his career he had served as principal domestic policy adviser to House Speaker Thomas P. “Tip” O'Neill Jr., D-Mass. He also spent nearly eight years as assistant director and then executive director of the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee.

    “Only a handful of people in Washington have Jack Lew's profound knowledge of the federal budget and the legislative process,” Clinton said. “Almost none of them has his ability to explain it in plain English.”

    Office of U.S. Trade Representative

    The Senate voted 99-1 on March 5, 1997, to confirm Charlene Barshefsky as U.S. trade representative. Barshefsky took over from Mickey Kantor, who became secretary of commerce. Barshefsky had been the acting trade representative since April 1996 and deputy trade representative from 1993 to 1996.

    Barshefsky enjoyed support from lawmakers in both chambers, who praised her steely demeanor at the bargaining table, her hard-nosed negotiating style, and her dedication to enhancing U.S. trade opportunities and protecting American exports from unfair foreign competition. The Senate Finance Committee recommended Barshefsky's confirmation by voice vote on Jan. 30.

    But to assume the job, she also needed both chambers of Congress to approve a waiver of provisions in a 1995 lobbying law (PL 104-65) that prohibited anyone who had represented a foreign government from being appointed U.S. trade representative. When Barshefsky was in private practice as a trade lawyer, she had briefly advised the government of Canada and the province of Quebec on a trade dispute. The White House asked Congress to waive the law in the most limited way possible by making an exception only for Barshefsky. The Finance Committee reported a waiver resolution (S J Res 5—no written report) on Feb. 3.

    The waiver was particularly troubling to Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., who said repeatedly that he did “not like waiving laws. The law is on the books.” Lott and Wayne Allard, R-Colo., were the only two senators to vote against the waiver. Allard was also the lone vote against Barshefsky's nomination.

    The Senate approved the waiver after a proposed amendment was handily defeated. The amendment, offered by Ernest F. Hollings, D-S.C., had posed the most serious threat to Barshefsky's nomination, because it would have required Congress to vote on all international trade agreements that would “in effect” amend or repeal U.S. laws. The Clinton administration was adamantly opposed to the Hollings amendment, saying it would completely hamstring U.S. trade policy.

    Finance Committee Chairman William V. Roth Jr., R-Del., a strong Barshefsky supporter, argued that the Hollings amendment could

    immobilize our ability to negotiate trade agreements, even on relatively minor issues, as Congress would be required to approve tens if not hundreds of such agreements…. All of these agreements would also be fully amendable,
    Roth said.

    In the end, Hollings's proposal won some warm words but few votes. It was tabled (killed) March 5 by an 84-16 vote. Democrats who might have supported his approach in the abstract wanted to avoid hurting a Clinton nominee, and, on the Republican side, free-trade lawmakers objected to the amendment on principle. Nine Democrats and seven Republicans supported Hollings's amendment, including Republican conference chairman Larry E. Craig of Idaho and Democratic Whip Byron L. Dorgan of North Dakota.

    The arguments in the House over the waiver were brief and relatively calm. Ways and Means Chairman Bill Archer, R-Texas, said he supported the waiver because Barshefsky had only “a minimal advisory role to the Canadian government a number of years ago.”

    The Senate approved the waiver by a vote of 98-2 on March 5; the House gave voice vote approval March 11. Clinton signed S J Res 5 (PL 105-5) into law on March 17, the day before Barshefsky was sworn in as trade representative.

    Solicitor General

    Seth P. Waxman, President Clinton's nominee for solicitor general, was confirmed by the Senate by voice vote on Nov. 7, 1997. Waxman thus became the nation's chief litigator, representing the government before the Supreme Court and deciding which cases to appeal.

    Waxman had been the acting solicitor general since Sept. 1 and previously was deputy solicitor general. Before joining the government, he had worked for a Washington law firm.

    Waxman won praise from all sides at his Nov. 5 confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, commended Waxman's “very distinguished career,” and Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, D-Conn., said Waxman was “a merit appointment.”

    In the wake of controversy surrounding Clinton's nomination of Bill Lann Lee to be assistant attorney general for civil rights, Hatch asked Waxman if he would fight to preserve possible future laws banning affirmative action. Waxman said he would support the constitutionality of any law for which “a reasonable argument” could be made. “” don't think anybody can deny that there are reasonable arguments on both sides,” Waxman said, adding that a decision not to defend a law “should be very, very rare.” (Lee nomination, p. 986)

    United Nations Representative

    Bill Richardson won unanimous Senate approval Feb. 11, 1997, to become the new U.S. representative to the United Nations. He replaced Madeleine K. Albright, who resigned to become secretary of state. (Albright nomination, p. 981)

    The vote on Richardson, who had served more than fourteen years (1983–1997) as a Democratic representative from New Mexico, was 100-0. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee had approved his nomination earlier that day on an 18-0 vote.

    During the brief committee debate, Foreign Relations Chairman Jesse Helms, R-N.C., and other Republicans warned that congressional approval of a Clinton administration request for more than $1 billion to clear U.S. debts to the U.N. would hinge on the world body implementing major reforms.

    Richardson garnered attention while in Congress as something of a roving envoy to some of the world's harshest, most anti-American dictatorships. He worked to secure the release of prisoners and hostages in Cuba, Iraq, Bangladesh, North Korea, and Sudan. He also traveled to Haiti for peace negotiations in 1994.

    Richardson resigned in 1998 to become secretary of energy. (Richardson nomination, p. 980)

    Richard C. Holbrooke was confirmed Aug. 5, 1999, by the Senate, on a vote of 81-16, to become permanent representative to the United Nations. He replaced Bill Richardson, who left in 1998 to become energy secretary. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved the nomination by voice vote June 30—more than a year after his nomination and only after extensive committee hearings.

    Holbrooke's nomination was initially held up pending a Justice Department investigation into allegations that he violated federal ethics rules by improperly trading on his government contacts after leaving the State Department for the private sector in 1996. Clinton sent his name to the Senate on Feb. 10 after Holbrooke agreed to pay $5,000 to settle civil charges stemming from the allegations, while still denying their veracity.

    After leaving his job in Clinton's first term as assistant secretary of state for European and Canadian affairs, Holbrooke returned to investment banking as a vice chairman of CS First Boston Group, but he continued to take diplomatic assignments from Clinton. Holbrooke, a renowned diplomatic trouble-shooter, served as the chief negotiator of the 1995 Bosnian peace settlement. He was an assistant secretary of state for Asian affairs in the Carter administration.

    Before the final vote, Holbrooke underwent an eight-month administration investigation, a four-month investigation by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and four hearings before that committee—an extraordinary number for an ambassadorial nominee. Then the vote on his nomination was delayed for more than a month because senators imposed holds in an effort to pressure the Clinton administration on unrelated issues. The vote finally came after Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., and Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, removed the last holds.

    “I don't know if there has been an individual who has been more probed and investigated,” said Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., in urging his colleagues to confirm Holbrooke. “We have allowed bipartisanship in foreign policy and national security to erode.”

    Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, ranking Democra