Friday, January 12, 2007

Senator Nelson(FL) jumps the aisle on pork bill

A vote on the: "Motion to Table (Motion to Table DeMint Amdt. No. 11 )"

Nelson (D-FL), Nay
Nelson's "Nay" vote put him against Harry Reid and siding with the Republicans. I was kind of shocked that Nelson would do that.

The DeMint amendment SA11 TEXT HERE introduces some modest restrictions on earmarks which I'm told mirrors the house bill (although it should be noted it DOES NOT in any meaningful way make an attempt to eliminate them as an institution). One thing that jumped out at me about SA11 is this particular section:

Any earmark that was not committed to conference by either the House of Representatives or the Senate in their disagreeing votes on a measure shall be considered out of scope under rule XXVIII of the Standing Rules of the Senate and section 102 of this Act if contained in a conference report on that measure.

The Reid/Durbin/Feinstein/etc SA3 amendment TEXT HERE of S302 essentially allows for "earmarks" to continue on as they always did with very few restrictions.
...It shall not be in order to consider any Senate bill or Senate amendment or conference report on any bill, including an appropriations bill, a revenue bill, and an authorizing bill, unless a list of--

``(1) all earmarks, targeted tax benefits, and targeted tariff benefits in such measure;

``(2) an identification of the Member or Members who proposed the earmark, targeted tax benefit, or targeted tariff benefit; and

``(3) an explanation of the essential governmental purpose for the earmark, targeted tax benefit, or targeted tariff benefit;

is available along with any joint statement of managers associated with the measure to all Members and made available on the Internet to the general public for at least 48 hours before its consideration.

``3. (a) A Member who proposes an earmark, targeted tax benefit, or targeted trade benefit included on a list prepared pursuant to paragraph 2, shall certify that neither the Member nor his or her spouse has a financial interest in such earmark, targeted tax benefit, or targeted tariff benefit.

``(b) In this paragraph, the term `financial interest' shall be interpreted in a manner consistent with Senate Rule XXXVII.''
Note the list of sponsors to this weaselly reptilian SA3 amendment:
Sen McConnell, Mitch [KY] - 1/9/2007
Sen Feinstein, Dianne [CA] - 1/9/2007
Sen Bennett, Robert F. [UT] - 1/9/2007
Sen Lieberman, Joseph I. [CT] - 1/9/2007
Sen Collins, Susan M. [ME] - 1/9/2007
Sen Obama, Barack [IL] - 1/9/2007
Sen Salazar, Ken [CO] - 1/9/2007
Sen Durbin, Richard [IL] - 1/9/2007

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