What: All Issues : War & Peace : H.R. 3289. Fiscal 2004 Supplemental Appropriations for Iraq and Afghanistan/Vote to Recommit to Committee the Supplemental Spending Bill for Iraq and Afghanistan with Instructions to Transform Half of Iraq's Reconstruction Budget from a Grant to a Loan.
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H.R. 3289. Fiscal 2004 Supplemental Appropriations for Iraq and Afghanistan/Vote to Recommit to Committee the Supplemental Spending Bill for Iraq and Afghanistan with Instructions to Transform Half of Iraq's Reconstruction Budget from a Grant to a Loan.
house Roll Call 561     Oct 17, 2003
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

One of the few procedural rights afforded to the minority party in the House is the motion to recommit. If successful, a motion to recommit sends legislation back to committee for further work and is usually accompanied by instructions to alter the legislation in a particular direction. On this vote, Congressman Kilpatrick (D-MI) offered the motion to recommit on behalf of the Democrats which included instructions to transform half of the $20 billion reconstruction budget for Iraq from a grant to a loan (unlike loans, the recipient of a grant does not need to repay the money). Progressives favored a loan for Iraq's reconstruction costs because, in their view, U.S. taxpayers should not be burdened with the entire cost of Iraq's reconstruction given that Iraq's oil reserves are estimated at over $1 trillion and that, in their view, President Bush's "go-it-alone" strategy had needlessly alienated potential allies who would have been inclined to help the U.S.-either financially or militarily or both-during both the Iraqi conflict and the post-war reconstruction. Congressman Obey (D-WI) had previously proposed an amendment to convert $10 billion of the $20 billion Iraqi reconstruction budget from a grant to a loan, but Obey's amendment was defeated (see House vote 546). Conservatives opposed changing Iraq's reconstruction budget from a grant to a loan and argued that with no Iraqi government in place, a loan would be meaningless because no institution could be held responsible for its repayment. On a party-line vote of 191-235, the motion to recommit was defeated and the supplemental spending bill was allowed to proceed to a final vote. (Note: The Senate's version of the supplemental spending bill did include a loan provision (see Senate Vote 389). Thus, negotiators in conference committee needed to make the final determination on how the Iraq reconstruction budget will be structured.)

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