Sunday, September 19, 2004

Yes to raise?

Today's roll call report out of Washington carried in our local paper reported some interesting votes this past week. Denny Rehberg of Montana and Barbara Cubin of Wyoming both voted to advance a pay raise for Congress, which they both would get if re-elected. Guess Denny needs the money for an apartment. It didn't pass, however, so he's probably going to have to keep living in his office. Both of them also voted for giving federal contracts to U.S. companies that move out of the country to save on taxes. It would have started in the Fiscal 2005 Budget that begins Oct. 1. To be fair they also supported a bill to cut off "frivolous" law suits. I'm not sure whether this is good or bad, although I think it is only fair to those of us who aren't big companies to let us sue them.

On the senate side, Wyoming's two senators and Montana cowboy Conrad Burns voted against putting more money from the Homeland Security Budget into safety efforts at chemical plants. A problem at 123 sites would put millions of people at risk. Max Baucus voted for the safety measures. And the same combination of votes helped defeat an effort to deny the Department of Homeland Security the ability to arbitrarily end health benefits for those who guard federal buildings, apparently like the two in Billings.

Veddy interesting!


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