Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Roll Call

"There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him." ~ Robert Heinlein

We will be posting information on Congress members who are up for re-election in November. Even though you may not live in their state, it’s good to get to know the people who legislate in Washington, D.C. Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid have taught all of us that, regardless of the state he/she represents, their decisions and votes impact all of us.

Jeff Sessions (R) Alabama

Senator Jeff Sessions is a former U.S. Attorney and Attorney General for Alabama. He believes in appointing judges who refuse to legislate from the bench and are bound by the Constitution to interpret the rule of law as it is written.

Senator Sessions is a fiscal conservative who believes in low taxes and less spending. However, he has also worked to help Alabama receive over $51 million in federal environmental funding from the Department of Interior through the Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CIAP). That may be a problem for fiscal conservatives who want government funding and spending to be significantly decreased.

On July 24, 2008, Senator Sessions introduced an amendment to legislation pending in the Senate that would increase production of American energy by opening more than 800,000 acres of the Gulf of Mexico to new oil and gas exploration.

The following is from Senator Sessions’ website:
“We have an energy crisis in this country, and we need to pursue every avenue that leads to energy independence and lower prices for consumers,” Sessions said. “That includes more conservation, transitioning to alternative fuels, and producing more American energy here at home.”

The amendment would open a rectangular stretch of land, referred to as the stovepipe, that runs from approximately 25 to 100 miles due south of Alabama’s Gulf coast. The Mineral Management Service estimates the area contains 180 million barrels of oil and 1.42 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

The stovepipe is highly regarded by energy experts because its relatively shallow waters and close proximity to existing pipelines limit the need for new infrastructure, allowing production to come online more quickly than in some deepwater areas.

New drilling technology makes it possible to produce offshore energy safely. In 2005, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita moved through an area of the Gulf of Mexico that was home to more than 4,000 offshore rigs. Following the storms, Department of Interior Secretary Gale Norton reported that “Despite such intense winds and powerful waves offshore, we experienced no . . . significant spills from any offshore well on the outer continental shelf.”

The below link will take you to Senator Sessions voting record.

Mark Pryor (D) Arkansas

Social Security: “ We must preserve and protect Social Security. To that end, I am strongly opposed to taking money out of the Social Security trust fund and investing it in the stock market.”

Taxes: “As Senator, I will work to lower taxes for working families and fight for the needs of everyday Arkansans, because the state's economy revolves around these individuals. I support updating and modernizing our tax laws to shield small business owners and family farmers from the estate tax. I am working toward a bipartisan solution to increase the estate tax exemption to $5 million ($10 million for married couples) and reduce the tax to a 35 percent marginal rate. For estates worth more than $30 million, the benefit of this exemption would be phased out. I do not believe full repeal of the estate tax is a fiscally responsible option at this time. However, my approach eases the estate tax burden for all families and most likely erases it entirely for virtually every small business owner and family farmer in Arkansas.” (Blogger comment: Does the Democrat party know about this guy? If he keeps talking about lowering taxes, he’ll be kicked out of the party.)

Education: “I support traditional ideas, like raising teachers’ salaries to keep our best and brightest educators in the state. I support providing our high school students with the opportunity to further their education at institutions of higher learning, regardless of their economic background. Also, I will work hard to increase Title I funding for disadvantaged children and reduce class size for students in first through third grades.

“But the system also needs an influx of new ideas, such as providing all young children with early developmental skills that are needed for future success. As your senator, I support increased funding to Arkansas schools for modernization and repair as well as investments in professional development for teachers so they can better educate their students.”

Health Care: “ I support tax credits to help employers obtain health insurance for their employees and tax credits for individuals who purchase coverage on their own. I also believe that Congress needs to make health care more accessible to rural families and help rural health care providers cope with rising costs and the difficulties of providing services in sparsely populated areas.” (Blogger comment: Ahhh… that sounds more like the Democrat party. Whew! We were starting to wonder what we were going to do with the extra money we would get from the tax cuts he supports. Evidently it’s going to go towards college tuition and health care.)


If you can cast doubt on the skills and abilities of others, there is no end to the things you can fail at without being noticed.

Harry Reid - Incompetence

Isn't that redundant?

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