Monday, July 13, 2015

Republicans Attach Hyde Amendment to NIH Bill. Most Democrats Vote for It Anyway.

On Friday, the House passed the 21st Century Cures Act by a wide margin of 344 to 77.
70 Republicans and 7 Democrats voted against it.

The bill authorizes $8.75 billion worth of new research dollars for the National Institutes of Health and overhauls the process that the Food and Drug Administration uses to assess and approve new medicines. Strangely, it pays for some of this by selling some of the oil in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

It's obvious why the 70 Republicans voted against it. But why did 7 Democrats vote against it, too?
The Hyde amendment.

The Republican leadership attached the Hyde amendment, which restricts access to abortion, as a rider to the bill.

Here's New York congressman Jerry Nadler commenting on this GOP move:
“Today, I reluctantly voted against H.R. 6, the 21st Century Cures Act. Since coming to Congress, I have been a strong supporter of biomedical research. I represent a district and a city that is home to the best and most innovative hospitals, universities, and labs in the country. I am glad Congress is finally taking action to increase funding for biomedical research and make a real investment in saving lives.

“Yet I cannot support HR 6 and the Republicans’ ongoing efforts to expand the Hyde amendment into authorizing legislation to subvert women’s constitutionally-protected rights. As I said earlier this week when introducing the EACH Woman Act with Congresswomen Lee, Schakowsky, and DeGette, now is the time to be fighting back against the moral arrogance of politicians who say they have a right to dictate to women how they make personal health care decisions, to doctors what procedures they can use, and to scientists how they can conduct research on women’s health. This language is not about health. It is about Republicans belief in moral superiority – that they know best about what a woman should do with her own body.
“We have fought for decades to keep abortion safe and legal. Now Congress must act to make sure it is affordable and accessible. I am voting today to stop this infestation of Hyde and to say “NO MORE” to the Republican contempt for a woman’s, doctor’s, and scientist’s right to make their own personal, professional, or intellectual choices.
“It is my hope that the Senate will remove this language and make other necessary changes to this legislation, so that I can support it when it comes back to the House.”
Barbara Lee (CA-13) offered an amendment to remove this rider, but it failed 176 to 245.

5 Democrats voted against it:

Mat Cartwright (PA-17)
Henry Cuellar (TX-28)
Marcy Kaptur (OH-09)
Dan Lipinski (IL-03)
Collin Peterson (MN-07)

When the final bill came up, seven progressive Democrats refused to go along with a bill that kept these restrictions on abortion access:

Rosa DeLauro (CT-03)
Anna Eshoo (CA-18)
Raul Grijalva (AZ-03)
Sam Farr (CA-20)
Barbara Lee (CA-13)
Jerry Nadler (NY-10)
Jackie Speier (CA-14)

No comments:

Post a Comment