Key Vote Archives - Shopfloor

Manufacturers ‘Key Vote’ Letter Backs Domestic Energy, Safety

By | Energy | No Comments

The National Association of Manufacturers sent a “Key Vote” Letter today to the U.S. Senate expressing support for S. 953, the Offshore Production and Safety Act of 2011. A vote is expected today at 2:30 pm.

From the letter:

S. 953 provides for key safety provision aimed at further ensuring environmental protection and worker safety.  The bill also provides for an efficient and responsible response to applications by requiring the Department of Interior to respond to an application within 30 days of receipt.  In addition, the legislation will open more areas in the OCS for drilling which will expand the ability to explore and develop our domestic sources of energy more effectively.  

Increasing access to domestic sources of reliable energy, both onshore and offshore, is essential to the long-term health of American manufacturing. While investments in new energy sources and efforts to boost efficiency gains play critical roles in meeting our nation’s future energy demands we cannot ignore the critical need to develop and utilize our domestic sources of energy. 

NAM Key Votes are determined by an advisory committee of NAM member companies, both large and small. The votes are used to rate a member of Congress’ record on manufacturing-related issues.

UPDATE (3:45 p.m., CW): The Senate defeated the cloture motion, 42-57.

House Overwhelmingly Backs Offshore Oil, Gas Development

By | Energy | No Comments

The House of Representatives this afternoon voted 266-149 to pass H.R. 1230, the Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act. That’s a huge bipartisan level of support for the bill, which directs the Secretary of Interior to move ahead with previously scheduled offshore oil and gas leases.

The overwhelming support came despite the White House issuing a formal Statement of Administration policy opposing H.R. 1230 and H.R. 1229, the Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act.

Gas Prices: Markets Will Respond to Increased U.S. Oil Production

By | Energy, Regulations | 4 Comments

One argument Americans do NOT need to hear in today’s House debate on H.R. 1230, the Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act, is encouraging domestic energy production will do nothing to lower high gas prices today because, after all, it will take years for any new drilling to produce oil and gas. That old argument is just an excuse for inaction.

And it is an old argument. As Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA) observed on a conference call with bloggers Wednesday, opponents are always saying it will take 10 years or seven years to have impact, but they were saying 10 or seven years ago. With action then, we might not have this problem.

Hastings, chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, then dared to cite market forces in his further rebuttal:

But to me, there’s a bigger portion to this, and that is, crude oil is a global commodity and that we know. Yet we are sitting on potential reserves here that are absolutely huge, and the world knows that. And if we send a signal to the markets that we’re going to go after the resources that we have in this country … — and keep in mind, OPEC controls about 45 percent of the market — I think that will send a signal to the market that we are very, very serious about utilizing our resources, and I think that will have a positive impact on driving the price of gasoline down.

As a matter of fact, that happened in 2008, if you recall. Because there was a congressional and a presidential moratoria [on outer continental shelf drilling] in 2008 going into the gas crisis, $4 a gallon in August of that year. Both of those moratoria went away, and you know, the gas prices dropped, and I think there’s no question about that, it was because there was a signal to the market….

A lot of people say there are other factors controlling prices, and my short answer to that is, sure there are other factors. It’s called OPEC. They’re a cartel….In any sort of cartel, if you want to beat a cartel, you increase the supply of whatever that cartel is controlling. So if we send a signal that we’re going to increase the potential supply of crude oil in the world, I think the market will respond accordingly.

The National Association of Manufacturers sent the House a “Key Vote” letter Wednesday endorsing H.R. 1230, as well as H.R. 1229, the Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act.

News coverage …

Manufacturers Support House Bills to Increase Domestic Energy

By | Energy, Regulations | One Comment

The House of Representatives today debates H.R. 1230, Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act, one of three bills House Republicans have proposed in their American Energy Initiative to increase the reliable production of domestic oil and natural gas. (House floor schedule)

The National Association of Manufacturers on Wednesday sent the House a “Key Vote” letter urging support for the bill, as well as H.R. 1229, the Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act. Excerpt:

Manufacturers support energy policies that: 1) expand domestic supplies in an environmentally safe manner; and 2) lower costs for manufacturers, which use nearly one-third of our nation’s energy. Access to competitively priced energy helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and preserves high-paying jobs here at home.

Every day of unnecessary delay in permitting costs jobs and hurts America’s manufacturers and their employees. Thousands of jobs were lost during the 2010 offshore moratorium. Companies that make and supply equipment, services, engines, boats and materials such as steel and concrete suffered under the moratorium and continue to suffer.
Read More

Manufacturing Prominent in House Debate on EPA Overreach

By | Energy, General, Global Warming, Regulations | No Comments

The National Association of Manufacturers was cited several times in the House floor debate Thursday on H.R. 910, to prevent the EPA’s regulation of greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act.

Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), Congressional Record, Page H2370:

Mr. SCALISE. Madam Chair, we are here today because the EPA has continued to push this effort to pass a national energy tax. It was tried through cap-and-trade over the last year and a half. That bill went through the legislative process and was defeated in a bipartisan way. This is not a Republican or a Democrat issue when we’re talking about preventing the EPA from running millions of jobs out of our country, and that is literally what’s at stake here.

Believe me, as people look through the letters of support and as we comb through the days of testimony that we’ve had on this over the last 2 years with regard to this concept of the EPA’s regulating greenhouse gases, Madam Chair, we are talking about a proposal by the EPA that, according to the National Association of Manufacturers, would run 3 million jobs out of our country.

Now, we should all be here working feverishly to create jobs. In fact, our legislation, the National Energy Tax Prevention Act, will create jobs because it will remove the uncertainty that exists today where so many employers, so many of our job creators, are scared to death of the threat now of regulation coming over; because, again, Congress rejected their proposal for the national energy tax through cap-and-trade in a bipartisan way.

The analysis Rep. Scalise is referring to is, we presume, the earlier NAM-ACCF analysis of the Waxman-Markey bill. EPA regulation of greenhouse gases could have even greater economic consequences than that cap-and-trade legislation, which as negotiated legislation included many exemptions, subsidies, delays and deals intended to minimize the harm and job loss. EPA regulation can evade the same policy and political compromises, exacerbating the uncertainty that Rep. Scalise is right to emphasize.

Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), chief sponsor of H.R. 910, also inserted an NAM-cosigned letter into the record (page H2372): Read More

From Ohio, a Manufacturer Objects to EPA’s Overreach

By | Energy, General, Global Warming, Regulations | One Comment

The Akron Beacon-Journal this week published an op-ed by Ward J. Timken Jr., chairman of the board of directors of The Timken Co., “EPA regulations weigh down the economy“.

The Timken Co. is a leading global manufacturer of highly engineered bearings, alloy steels, and related components and assemblies. Ward Timken Jr. is a member of the National Association of Manufacturers’ executive committee. He wrote:

Timken has a U.S.-favorable trade balance, with jobs in Ohio and throughout the U.S. supporting growing demand around the world. It requires us to keep costs down and drive efficiency to optimal levels.

In our Canton, Ohio, steel plants, we are continuously reducing our energy consumption and carbon intensity using highly efficient electric-arc-furnace technology and the most advanced manufacturing methods. We often collaborate with government to develop energy-saving technologies and balanced policies across party lines.

Understanding that the aims of economic and environmental progress are not mutually exclusive, I encourage you to join me to make our voices heard. Please contact our representatives in Congress and ask them to preserve jobs and the democratic process by putting a stop to the EPA’s regulatory overreach.

This week’s legislative activities in Congress to achieve that goal — stopping the EPA’s regulatory overreach — produced a mixed result. The House on Thursday voted 255-172 to pass H.R. 910, to block the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.

The same legislation in the form of the McConnell Amendment failed Wednesday in the Senate on a 50-50 vote. However, in votes on four amendments, a majority of Senators expressed opposition in one form or another to the EPA’s current plans. As Politico summarized: “All of them failed, but 17 Democrats broke with their party and president to support measures that rein in the greenhouse gas regulations on varying levels….In all, 64 senators voted to block or delay the climate regulations, which Senate Republicans were more than happy to note.”

The NAM is certainly going to continue the fight against the EPA’s attempt to take over the making of environmental, energy and economic policy. See our website: www.NoNewRegs.org.

House Votes to Prevent EPA Power Grab on Greenhouse Gases

By | Energy, Global Warming, Regulations | One Comment

The House just voted 255-172 to pass H.R. 910, to block the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act. The vote reflect bipartisan support for Congress exercising its responsibilities in setting energy, environmental and economic policy.

We’ll post the roll call vote when it becomes available.

UPDATE (3:18 p.m.): That was quick. The roll call vote is here. It shows 19 Democrats joining 236 Republicans in voting for passage.

UPDATE (3:30 p.m.): Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) of the House Energy and Commerce Committee issues a statement, “U.S. House Puts Families First, Approves Bipartisan Bill to Stop EPA From Driving up Gasoline and Energy Prices, Harming Job Creation.” Included are comments from Energy and Power Subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-KY).

The release also notes the NAM’s support for the bill. Thank you for the mention.

A Senate Vote on Manufacturing, Jobs, Energy, Competitiveness

By | Economy, Energy, Global Warming, Regulations | No Comments

From The Hill’s E2 Wire energy blog, “OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Senate, House climate votes on tap“:

LATE BREAKING: The Senate will vote on a GOP-backed plan to kill Environmental Protection Agency climate change rules Wednesday afternoon, according to Democrats and a spokesman for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

Lawmakers will vote on McConnell’s amendment to small-business legislation, as well as several Democratic alternatives. The amendments need 60 votes to pass.

Votes on the amendments to S. 493, the small business reauthorization bill, begin at 4 p.m.

Chris Horner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute explains what the vote signifies in a post at BigGovernment.com, “Senate to Vote on EPA’s Power Grab: Does the Rule of Law Still Matter?

The Senate will, one presumes, finally vote either this week or next to block EPA from imposing President Obama’s ‘other way to skin the cat’ of Kyoto-style energy rationing, by using the Clean Air Act – a law that EPA’s own public filings inescapably acknowledge was never intended for such purpose. What will be at stake is little less than the rule of law itself.

Policy sanity also stands to take a beating, or else gain a new lease on life. The United States derives over 80% of its total energy from the three fossil fuels now being regulated by the Clean Air Act on the basis of EPA’s Endangerment Finding, which by design strangles our ability to use them. Further, the Obama Administration has in effect decided that the EPA knows how to run the U. S. economy.

With über-green Germany, even nuke-happy France, appearing set to ramp up their coal use in the wake of Japan’s nuclear incident, the first rational response would be to call off EPA’s war on coal. Not to fight like mad to preserve and advance it.

Manufacturers ‘Key Vote’ the Energy Tax Prevention Act

By | Energy, Global Warming, Regulations | One Comment

The National Association of Manufacturers today sent a “Key Vote” letter to House members calling for their support for H.R. 910, the Energy Tax Prevention Act, which would block the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act. A House floor vote is scheduled for Wednesday.

Excerpt from the letter.

At a time when our economy is attempting to recover from the most severe recession since the 1930s, the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, with no guidance from Congress, will cost jobs and slow economic growth.

The Energy Tax Prevention Act seeks to ensure a healthy and productive discussion in Congress on harmonizing our nation’s energy, environmental and economic needs before the EPA regulates GHG emissions from stationary sources, including manufacturing facilities. Congressional debate and consensus on this issue is especially critical, as the Clean Air Act was never intended to regulate carbon.

As consumers of roughly one-third of our nation’s energy, manufacturers in the United States support a comprehensive, federal climate policy within a framework that will cause no economic harm while granting sufficient time to deploy low-carbon technologies.

The White House has issued a veto threat, making its argument on the deceptive conflation of greenhouse gas emissions with pollutants: We need EPA regulation of carbon dioxide in order to prevent asthma and bronchitis. It’s as if supporters of EPA regulation, including the Administration, lack both the intellectual and political confidence to argue the true substance of the legislation. They instead fall back on the specious “carbon pollution” claims.

You can understand a power-seeking Executive Branch arrogating legislative authority to itself, but why would Congress permit it? Yet Senate leadership still will not allow a floor vote on the McConnell-Inhofe amendment — the companion to the House bill — asserting the legislative branch’s policymaking prerogatives. The Hill’s E2 Wire reports the twists and turns and abdications in a round-up of Capitol Hill energy news, “OVERNIGHT ENERGY: House mulls rules of engagement on climate battle.”

Repeal It Already: The Onerous 1099 Filing Requirement

By | Health Care, Small Business, Taxation | No Comments

The U.S. Senate is expected this afternoon to take up H.R. 4, the Comprehensive 1099 Taxpayer Protection and Repayment of Exchange Subsidy Overpayments Act, which is a very long title for the bill to repeal the ridiculous filing requirement included in last year’s health care bill.

The National Association of Manufacturers last week sent Senators a “Key Vote” letter urging their support for an amendment by Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE) that mirrors H.R. 4. From the NAM letter:

The Johanns amendment would repeal expanded reporting requirements under Section 9006 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148). Section 9006 requires businesses to file an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) form 1099 for all purchases of property and services in excess of $600. Previously, businesses were required to report only purchases of service and only from non-corporate entities. The new language essentially requires 1099 reporting for all transactions in excess of $600.

This reporting requirement is extremely onerous — especially for small manufacturers. The NAM supports efforts to ensure tax compliance, but not at the expense of manufacturers that are following the law.

The House passed H.R. 4 on March 3 by a vote of 314-112. The Senate has already cast this vote, more or less, when Senators voted 81-17 in early February to pass an amendment sponsored by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) to S. 223, the FAA reauthorization bill.

So the clear majority is there for fixing this ill-conceived, anti-small-business provision in the health care law. Let’s pass this bill and send it to the President.

UPDATE (1:14 p.m.): The bill has passed, 87-12. We’ll post the roll call vote once it’s available. (UPDATE II: And here it is.)

The bill now goes to the White House for President Obama’s signature.