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Congressional Report: July 16 – July 20, 2018

Representative Turner

Major Votes: 

Voted Yea on H.Res. 1001: “Providing for consideration of the concurrent resolution expressing the sense of Congress that a carbon tax would be detrimental to the United States economy.” Passed 229-183 along strict party line vote.

Voted no on H.Amdt. 892 to H.R. 6147: To increase the budget for the Department of the Interior Inspector General’s Office by $2.5 million. Failed 223-190.

Voted no to approve or reject amendment H.Amdt. 904 to H.R. 6147. Purpose: To reduce funding for the National Endowment on the Arts and the Humanities by 15 percent. Failed by a vote of 297-114.

Voted Aye on an amendment stating: None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to enforce the final rule entitled `Oil and Natural Gas Sector: Emission Standards for New, Reconstructed, and Modified Sources’ published by the Environmental Protection Agency to prohibit the use of funds for enforcing the Obama Administration’s EPA Methane Rule. Passed 215-194.

Voted Aye on On Agreeing to the Amendment: Amendment 40 to H R 6147, to prohibit funds from implementing the Social Cost of Carbon rule. Passed 215-199.  H.R.6147 is for the  Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2018.

Voted Aye on Amendment 911 to H.R. 6147: “None of the funds made available by this Act may be used by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to implement, or to require the State Washington to implement, the final rule entitled “Revision of Certain Federal Water Quality Criteria Applicable to Washington.” Purpose: An amendment to limit funding for the implementation of Washington State’s revised water quality standard. Passed 227-185.

Other Activity

July 20 – Turner’s statement on Helsinki: “I think what we expect as Americans … is that President Trump needed to stand strong, and in this, he did not, and of course that’s incredibly disappointing.”

Senator Portman

Major Votes: None

Other Activity

On Trump’s “clarification” of Helsinki comments: “I’m glad he clarified his comments today. But I wish he had said it in front of President Putin and the world yesterday.”

7/18: Senators Portman, Sherrod Brown, and Lisa Murkowski announced that legislation based on their proposal to give states more flexibility and time to implement electronic verification systems to better serve patients was passed by the House. The EVV system requires healthcare providers to use an electronic system to confirm that personal care services are delivered and billed accurately.

7/19: Portman delivered remarks on the Senate floor highlighting the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act (SESTA) law, which is already making a significant different in combating online sex trafficking of women and children and has resulted in the shut down of several websites that knowingly facilitated sex trafficking.

7/20: Portman praised the Department of Defense’s release of $200 million in security assistance to fund additional training, equipment, and advisory efforts for Ukraine’s forces. He said, This is good news, and it sends a clear message that America stands with the Ukrainian people in their struggle to secure a democratic, prosperous, and independent future in the face of Russian aggression.”

Senator Brown

Major Votes: None

Other Activity

On Helsinki: “The intelligence experts we trust to keep America safe have said that Russia continues to threaten our democracy and our critical infrastructure, and the President missed an opportunity to do something about it.”

7/18: Last week, Brown was appointed to serve as a conferee on the committee that is working to reconcile the differences between the House and Senate versions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Brown said he is working to secure provisions in the defense bill that would strengthen the tools the U.S. uses to block national security threats posed by investments from China and other countries. Priorities for him regarding the NDAA include:

  • Authorization to continue critical research and development missions at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
  • Support for Air Force bases to continue efforts to keep Per-and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances – toxic chemicals known as PFAS – from getting into the local water supply.
  • Brown’s bipartisan legislation – the Better Access to Technical Training, Learning, and Entrepreneurship for Servicemembers Act (BATTLE for Servicemembers Act), would better connect servicemembers with resources to secure quality education and good-paying jobs as they transition from military service to civilian life.
  • Brown sought to keep a House provision that called on the Pentagon to slash  civilian defense jobs at facilities such as the Defense Finance and Accounting Service and the Defense Logistics Agency in Columbus and Cleveland out of the Senate version of the bill.

7/19:  Brown joined a group of Senators in urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to ensure hungry Ohioans do not lose access to the healthy and local fruits, vegetables, and other nutritious foods they can purchase at farmers markets.

7/19: On Trump’s criticism of the Fed for raising interest rates: “Presidents should respect the independence of the Federal Reserve,” said Brown. “I asked Chair Powell under oath at his nomination hearing if he would maintain that independence and he assured the Senate that he would. I take him at his word.”