Saturday, June 27, 2009

House Passes American Clean Energy and Security Act

On a near party-line vote, the House passed H.R. 2454, the American Clean Energy and Security Act. The bill passed 219-212, with some interesting crossover votes (See Roll No. 477). Eight Republicans joined the majority, and 44 Democrats voted against the bill, but for different reasons than the Republicans. Dennis Kucinich expressed the opinion of Democrats in opposition to the bill in this statement:
It sets targets that are too weak, especially in the short term, and sets about meeting those targets through Enron-style accounting methods. It gives new life to one of the primary sources of the problem that should be on its way out– coal – by giving it record subsidies. And it is rounded out with massive corporate giveaways at taxpayer expense. There is $60 billion for a single technology which may or may not work, but which enables coal power plants to keep warming the planet at least another 20 years.

Worse, the bill locks us into a framework that will fail. Science tells us that immediately is not soon enough to begin repairing the planet. Waiting another decade or more will virtually guarantee catastrophic levels of warming. But the bill does not require any greenhouse gas reductions beyond current levels until 2030.

Today’s bill is a fragile compromise, which leads some to claim that we cannot do better. I respectfully submit that not only can we do better; we have no choice but to do better...

The entire statement is available at his website: Congressman Dennis Kucinich.

Pete Sessions, of course, voted with the majority of Republicans who opposed the bill, calling it a National Energy Tax. According to Republicans, the cap and trade measures will pass the costs onto consumers. Pete Sessions' comments on cap and trade are available on his YouTube page: The National Energy Tax (Cap and Trade).

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Pete Sessions votes against Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act

In April, the House passed H.R. 1256, and on Thursday, the bill passed the Senate with "yes" votes from both of our Senators, Cornyn and Hutchison.

On Friday, the bill passed the House again, resolving differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill; the bill received overwhelming bipartisan support, passing 307 - 97, with Pete Sessions as one of the 97 voting against. (See Roll No. 335).

Friday, June 12, 2009

Democrat steps forward to challenge Sessions in 2010

From Dallas Morning News
A willingness to take on tough challenges clearly runs through the Raggio family. Many longtime Dallasites know the name Louise Raggio, who as a young lawyer in the 1950s took on the establishment and spent decades winning significant rights for women, who in Texas at the time had virtually no property rights and needed their husband's signature to conduct nearly all manner of business.

(Check out our editorial on Monday commemorating Louise Raggio on her 90th birthday - coming online soon.)

Now her son, Grier Raggio, is scaling a political mountain of his own. He's decided to challenge U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions next year for his congressional seat. It's a tough assignment. Republican Sessions represents a North Dallas-based district that includes the Park cities and hasn't been seriously challenged in recent elections. (He beat Democrat Eric Roberson 57 percent to 41 percent last year.)

But Raggio, a well respected family law lawyer, will work hard. He's a graduate of Harvard College and active in a variety of civic and Democratic party causes. His wife is Judge Lorraine Raggio of the 162nd Civil District Court. Neither Grier nor his mother has ever been known to shrink from a challenge....
There's more at Burnt Orange Report.

No word yet from Alex Bischoff or anybody else from the Libertarian Party, but it's still early.