A Good Little Soldier in the Radical Army: Amodei’s Unsurprising Votes

If anyone was thinking that the newly elected Congressional Representative from Nevada’s 2nd District might have a mind of his own, Rep. Mark Amodei has  put paid to those musings by marching along lockstep with the House GOP leadership.

## Mr. Amodei became Representative Amodei on September 15, 2011 and prompting lined up with the NLRB bashing H.R. 2587:

“Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act – Amends the National Labor Relations Act to deny the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) any power to: (1) order an employer (or seek an order against an employer) to restore or reinstate any work, product, production line, or equipment; (2) rescind any relocation, transfer, subcontracting, outsourcing, or other change regarding the location, entity, or employer who shall be engaged in production or other business operations; or (3) require any employer to make an initial or additional investment at a particular plant, facility, or location.  Applies the amendment made by this Act to any complaint for which a final adjudication by the NLRB has not been made by the date of enactment.”

Contrary to the bill’s title, this doesn’t have anything to do with protecting American jobs — in fact, the bill was exactly what Boeing Incorporated wanted.  Instead of protecting American jobs, the bill endangers them:

“Employers will be able to eliminate jobs or transfer employees or work for no purpose other than to punish employees for exercising their rights and the Board will be powerless to direct the employer to return the work regardless of the circumstances. And these employees will lose their jobs because they tried to exercise their federally protected rights.”  [AFLCIO]

Rep. Amodei voted “yea” on this union-bashing bill. [roll call 711]

## On the next major vote, September 23, 2011, Representative Amodei joined the Republican/Tea Party attack on the Environmental Protection Agency.  H.R. 2401 was introduced “To require analyses of the cumulative and incremental impacts of certain rules and actions of the Environmental Protection Agency, and for other purposes..” translation — this bill would put into statute the lovingly embraced Republican fiction that following environmental best practices costs more than it is beneficial.  We can say “fiction” because there is scant evidence that environmental regulations actually cost any real jobs, and better research indicating that the benefits outweigh the  costs.  [OMBWatch] [EPI]

Rep. Amodei voted “yea” on this legislation, near and dear to the hearts of those who inhabit corporate boardrooms. [roll call 741]

## The GOP attack on the EPA continued with H.R. 2681To provide additional time for the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to issue achievable standards for cement manufacturing facilities, and for other purposes…”  Interesting that cement manufacturers were adamant that the EPA standards could not be met [pca pdf]  when the Lehigh Hanson cement plant at Union Bridge, Maryland announced plans to meet mercury emission standards a year early (2012).  [Bloomberg]

Living proof at Union Bridge notwithstanding, Rep. Amodei voted “yea” on this EPA attack, [roll call 764] Evidently, Rep. Amodei has bought into the concept that we cannot have both jobs and modernized cleaner production facilities.  Lehigh Hanson’s example makes a mockery of this position.

## Three so-called Free Trade Agreements came to the House floor in October.  Rep. Amodei voted in favor of the Colombian FTA [roll call 781] presumably knowing full well that no one has been indicted in Colombia for the last two years for murdering labor leaders.  He voted in favor of the Panamanian FTA [roll call 782] over the misgivings of some who felt the country had not made sufficient progress dealing with its reputation as a tax haven and money laundering locale.  He voted in favor of the Korean FTA [roll call 783] over the concerns presented by American automobile manufacturers.  No one has yet made the case that Free Trade Agreements result in a net increase in American jobs — indeed NAFTA has a well earned reputation for being an American Job Killer.

## On October 13, 2011 House Republicans, Representative Amodei included, voted to pass one of the most radical assaults on women’s rights imaginable, in H.R 358.  The bill was the infamous Stupak Amendment on steroids.  Under the provisions of this bill a hospital could “choose” to allow a woman to die from pregnancy complications rather than abort the fetus to save the mother’s life.  [TPM] It does require a radical mindset to allow a woman to die, and orphan her surviving children, rather than require an emergency center to perform a medical procedure to save her life — but, Tea Party Toe The Line Representative Amodei was pleased to go along with this medieval thinking. [roll call 789]

## Also on October 13th, the House GOP was back to attacking the EPA with H.R. 2250, “To provide additional time for the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to issue achievable standards for industrial, commercial, and institutional boilers, process heaters, and incinerators, and for other purposes...”  A manufacturers laundry list of industrial standards corporations don’t want to have to follow.  Rep. Amodei was pleased to vote “yea” to all the corporate wishes. [roll call 791]

##  H.R. 2273 concerned the disposal of coal ash and “H.R. 2273 subverts public support of the EPA’s proposed federal coal ash rules by leaving coal ash pollution in the hands of states with weak or non-existent regulations. ” [AppV] There’s a reason individuals in coal mining states are concerning with coal ash disposal, “Coal ash is the nation’s second-largest waste stream after municipal garbage. Coal ash slurry — a by-product of coal-fired power plants — is highly toxic. People living near an unlined coal ash pond are at a 1-in-50 risk of cancer from arsenic, a rate that is 2,000 times greater than the acceptable level of risk.”  [AppV] (emphasis added)  High cancer rates?  No inspections for mercury, arsenic, chromium, and lead?  And no inspections to see if any of this toxic sludge is getting into the local groundwater?  All perfectly acceptable to House Republicans — and to Representative Amodei. [roll call 800]

Thus far, Representative Amodei’s been the perfect little Corporate Warrior for banking, polluting, and radical anti-choice interests.

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