On Oct. 5, 2017, by a vote of 219 to 206, the House approved a 10-year, nonbinding budget plan (H. Con Res 71), which is intended to lay the groundwork for legislation to 1) reduce corporate and individual taxes by $5.4 trillion; 2) cut nondefense spending by $5.8 trillion; 3) convert Medicare to a voucher program; 4) convert Medicaid, CHIP, and food stamps to state-run block-grant programs; 5) repeal much of the Dodd-Frank financial regulation law; and 6) change many K-12 education programs to state and local governments. Representative Bob Brady voted against this social-program-gutting resolution.
On Sept. 7, 2017, by a vote of 80 to 17, the Senate approved a bill (1) to appropriate $15.3 billion in disaster aid for recovery from Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, and (2) to raise the national debt limit through Dec. 8. Senator Bob Casey voted in favor of the bill, sending it back to the House. Senator Pat Toomey voted against appropriating the money to disaster relief.
On May 8, 2017, by a vote of 233 to 186 the House passed a bill (HR 10) that, if enacted, will 1) repeal key parts of the Dodd-Frank financial regulation law; 2) put a weakened Consumer Financial protection Bureau under congressional control; and 3) enact 9 market deregulation bills currently awaiting action. Rep. Bob Brady voted against the bill, which will now go to the Senate.
On May 7, 2017, by a vote of 228 to 186 the House defeated an effort by the Democrats to force a vote on a resolution that would have directed the Ways and Means Committee to review President Trump’s tax returns from 2006 through 2015 and report to the full House. Rep. Bob Brady voted against the motion to refuse to bring the resolution to a vote (in other words, he voted in favor of the Ways and Means Committee reviewing the President’s tax returns).
On May 4, 2017, by a vote of 217 to 213 the House passed HR 1628, which, if passed by the Senate and signed by the president, will overturn the Affordable Care Act (ACA) by (1) permitting states to waive most coverage requirements, including coverage of people with pre-existing conditions; (2) cutting taxes for the rich and for health insurance companies; (3) reducing Medicaid payments by 25%; (4) ending Medicaid’s status as an open-ended entitlement program; and (5) ending all contributions to Planned Parenthood by the federal government. Rep. Bob Brady voted against the bill, which now goes to the Senate.
On May 3, 2017, by a vote of 50 to 49 the Senate passed HJ Res 66, a resolution previously passed by the House, which nullifies a Department of Labor rule that helped state governments to set up payroll-deduction plans for private-sector employees whose employers do not give them access to retirement plans. Sen. Pat Toomey voted in favor of the resolution; Sen. Bob Casey voted against it. The resolution goes to President Trump to be signed.
On May 2, 2017, by a vote of 229 to 197 the House passed HR 1180, which allows private-sector employers to offer employees compensatory time (at time and a half) instead of overtime pay for working over 40 hours a week. Employees would in theory get to choose between those options; however, the employer would have final say over when the time was taken. Rep. Bob Brady voted against the bill, which now goes to the Senate.
Also on May 2, 2017, by a vote of 192 to 234 the House defeated a motion by the Democrats that under HR 1180 (the above bill) any employees who chose comp time would automatically qualify for at least 7 days of annual sick leave with pay. Rep. Bob Brady voted in favor of the motion, which was defeated.
Thurs., April 27, by a vote of 230-193, the House stopped an attempt by the Democrats to have a floor debate on a measure, now in committee, to start congressional oversight of ethics and conflict-of-interest issues involving President Trump. Rep. Bob Brady voted in favor of the motion for debate on the measure.
Wed., April 26, by a vote of 234-191, the House defeated an effort by the Democrats to have a floor debate on a bill, now in committee, to require sitting presidents and major party presidential candidates to release their personal tax returns for the three preceding years. President Trump is the first president in nearly 50 years to fail to release his returns. Rep. Bob Brady voted against quashing the motion for debate on the bill.
On Tues., April 25, 2017, the Pa. House voted 102-87 to prevent any county, city, or town in Pennsylvania from banning or taxing lightweight plastic bags used in stores. Rep. Margo Davidson voted against the bill, which now goes to the state Senate for consideration. Currently 165 municipalities in the U.S. have legislation discouraging the use of such single-use plastic bags.