What: All Issues : Making Government Work for Everyone, Not Just the Rich or Powerful : Adequate Funding for Homeland Security : Authorizing $40 billion for the Homeland Security Department for fiscal 2008 (H.R. 1684)/Manager's amendment (2007 house Roll Call 314)
 Who: All Members : New York : Gillibrand, Kirsten
Authorizing $40 billion for the Homeland Security Department for fiscal 2008 (H.R. 1684)/Manager's amendment
house Roll Call 314     May 09, 2007
Member's Vote
or not)
Progressive Position
Progressive Result
(win or loss)

This vote was on a series of technical and substantial changes to legislation authorizing $40 billion for the Homeland Security Department (DHS) for fiscal 2008.

The amendment struck $1.6 billion that the original version of the bill would have authorized for the Secret Service, established new criminal penalties for maritime smuggling of illegal immigrants and required contractors to certify to DHS whether they are delinquent on their federal taxes. The amendment package also added language requiring the integration of two registered traveler programs and mandated a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on law-enforcement retirement systems. GAO is the investigative arm of Congress.

Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) offered the amendment package, known as a "manager's amendment." A manager's amendment is usually offered by the committee chairman and represents a series of changes to the bill after it has been passed out of committee and before it comes before the full House. It is often referred to as the chairman's "mark."

Republicans opposed the manager's amendment because they said it would undo the bipartisan effort that created the legislation in committee.

Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) said that he supported the bill when it was in committee, but opposed the new version of the bill because of the manager's amendment. "Unfortunately, the bill that comes to the floor today has been either stripped or dramatically modified up to 50 percent of the original provisions," King said.

"And some of these are very significant provisions, probably none more significant than just the sense of Congress, which was so strongly recommended by the 9/11 Commission, saying that the Committee on Homeland Security should be the focal point of legislative activity regarding the Department of Homeland Security, rather than having offices and officials of the Department having to testify before 84 or 86 or 88 various committees and subcommittees of the House," King continued.

Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said the manager's amendment was simply a way to work out necessary changes to the bill.

On an almost total party-line vote, the House adopted the rules package. All but four Republicans voted against it, and all but 17 Democrats voted for it. Thus, by a vote of 216 to 209, the House approved the manager's amendment for legislation authorizing $39.8 billion in funding the Homeland Security Department for fiscal 2008, making way for the bill to be brought up for consideration in an amended form.

Issue Areas:
Key: Y=Yea, N=Nay, W=Win, L=Loss