What: All Issues : Fair Taxation : S. Con. Res. 23. Fiscal 2004 Budget Resolution/Vote to Improve Homeland Security Protections.
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S. Con. Res. 23. Fiscal 2004 Budget Resolution/Vote to Improve Homeland Security Protections.
senate Roll Call 65     Mar 21, 2003
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

The budget resolution-legislation which specifies congressional spending priorities for the upcoming year-is a non-binding resolution and does not require the President's signature for passage. It did, however, offer important procedural protections for the consideration of budget-related legislation. The Administration hoped to use these protections to include $1.34 trillion in tax cuts in the resolution. The rules governing debate during the reconciliation process between the House and Senate versions of the budget resolution specify that Senate filibusters are not allowed. To counter the GOP strategy of using the budget resolution to pass tax cuts, Democrats proposed numerous amendments to the bill targeting federal assistance to neglected constituencies, many of which faced severe cuts in the GOP version of the bill. If funding cuts can be restored, less money will be available for tax cuts. On this vote, Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) offered an amendment to the budget resolution restoring $88 billion in federal assistance over ten years for homeland security protections. Specifically, the amendment targets funding for: port security, bioterrorism preparedness and prevention; border security and transit security; the FBI; and firefighter equipment grants. Many of these programs or areas were severely cut to pay for the Administration-supported tax reductions. Progressives supported Schumer's amendment both as a way to improve domestic security programs and as a way to stifle the GOP strategy of starving domestic spending to pay for tax reductions. All Republicans opposed Schumer's amendment which was defeated on a 45- 54 vote.

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