The U.S. House of Representatives returned last week to debate two pieces of legislation, H. Res. 965 and H.R. 6800. H. Res. 965 is what Republicans have termed as the Proxy Voting Scheme 2.0 by House Democrats allowing for remote voting by members as the coronavirus pandemic continues, while H.R. 6800 or the HEROES Act is referred to as Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Socialist Wish List.
Both measures passed the Democrat controlled chamber. Remote voting passed 217-189 with no Republican support while the HEROES Act passed 208-199 with one Republican, Rep. Pete King (NY) voting in the affirmative. The proxy voting measure is now in place while the HEROES Act heads to the U.S. Senate for consideration.
Mississippi’s lone Democrat Congressman Bennie Thompson voted with his leadership to approve of the measures. Thompson focused on the increased SNAP benefits in the HEROES Act in a Friday tweet, adding the hashtag #HandsOffSNAP.
In the Heroes Act, House Democrats provide a 15% increase in SNAP benefits, and $300 million for states to meet the needs of new SNAP enrollments. Meanwhile the ideologues at the Trump USDA are moving ahead with their cuts to SNAP. #HandsOffSNAP
— Bennie G. Thompson (@BennieGThompson) May 15, 2020
Mississippi’s Republican Congressmen issued statements opposing the bills as all three voted against the legislation.
“Speaker Pelosi hijacked this relief bill and trashed it with her liberal wishlist, confirming she is out-of-touch with the American people,” Congressman Steven Palazzo said in a release. “When our own citizens are desperate for relief and a working economy, her legislation only incentivizes individuals to stay on unemployment and provides bail outs to illegal immigrants while raising tax burdens on our small businesses. This bill falls unbelievably short of what is necessary to get America back up and running.”
“I returned to Washington this week to vote against Nancy Pelosi’s liberal wish-list, a $3 trillion spending bill that would fundamentally alter our elections, provide a bailout to unstable pension plans, release criminals from prisons, provide protections and payments to illegal aliens, and encourage individuals not to return to work as we reopen our economy,” Congressman Michael Guest said. “Democrats have referred to this crisis as an opportunity to make liberal policies. They are wrong. This is a time for Americans to come together to fight against this challenge and to work to return our nation to normal. Instead, Democrats view this crisis as a chance to push through their agenda and pass sweeping reforms by introducing proxy voting in the House. Since the founding of our nation, Representatives have come together to debate the merits of proposed legislation and cast their own votes in the Chamber. This has been a foundational part of our successful democracy. My fellow Republicans and I want to work for the American people, not use this time to undermine the integrity of one of our nation’s greatest institutions.”
“As members of Congress, it is our duty to represent your best interests,” Congressman Trent Kelly said in his newsletter. “The HEROES Act is not the answer and will only waste time and taxpayer dollars. My colleagues and I are committed to delivering thoughtful solutions that will truly improve the quality of life for Mississippians and all Americans.”
The HEROES Act does not appear to be receiving a warm welcome as it makes its way to the U.S. Senate. Mississippi Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, a member of the chamber’s Appropriation Committee, said in a tweet, “The misnamed “HEROES” Act isn’t going anywhere in the Senate. It truly is just a liberal wish list, and it will never become law.”
— U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (@SenHydeSmith) May 15, 2020