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H.R. 3979 (113th): Carl Levin and Howard P. “Buck” McKeon National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015

Dec 4, 2014 at 2:37 p.m. ET. Concurring in the Senate Amendment in the House.

This was a vote to pass H.R. 3979 (113th) in the House. The federal budget process occurs in two stages: appropriations and authorizations. This is an authorization bill, which directs how federal funds should or should not be used. (It does not set overall spending limits, however, which are the subject of appropriations bills.) Authorizations are typically made for single fiscal years (October 1 through September 30 of the next year) but are often renewed in subsequent law.

This bill became, most recently, the vehicle for the passage of the defense authorization (spending) bill for fiscal year 2015.

The bill was originally introduced by Rep. Lou Barletta as the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act. It was passed by the House in this form on March 11, 2014.

The Senate subsequently used the bill as the (ultimately failed) vehicle for passage of another bill. On April 7, 2014, the Senate replaced the text the bill completely with new text, making it the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2014. Although the Senate passed it in that form, the bill in that form was not enacted.

On December 4, 2014, the House used the bill again as the vehicle for passage of a third bill, by replacing its text completely and turning it into the bill it is now, the Carl Levin and Howard P. "Buck" McKeon National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015. The Senate agreed to the change on December 12, 2014 and the bill was signed into law shortly thereafter.

Totals

All Votes R D
Yea 72%
 
 
300
194
 
106
 
Nay 28%
 
 
119
32
 
87
 
Not Voting
 
 
15
7
 
8
 

Passed. Simple Majority Required. Source: house.gov.

Ideology Vote Chart

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Republican - Yea Democrat - Yea Republican - Nay Democrat - Nay
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Cartogram Map

Each hexagon represents one congressional district. Solid hexes are Yea votes.

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Vote Details

Notes: The Speaker’s Vote? “Aye” or “Yea”?
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Study Guide

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You can find answers to most of the questions below here on the vote page. For a guide to understanding the bill this vote was about, see here.

What was the procedure for this vote?

  1. What was this vote on?
  2. Not all votes are meant to pass legislation. In the Senate some votes are not about legislation at all, since the Senate must vote to confirm presidential nominations to certain federal positions.

    This vote is related to a bill. However, that doesn’t necessarily tell you what it is about. Congress makes many decisions in the process of passing legislation, such as on the procedures for debating the bill, whether to change the bill before voting on passage, and even whether to vote on passage at all.

    You can learn more about the various motions used in Congress at EveryCRSReport.com. If you aren’t sure what the House was voting on, try seeing if it’s on this list.

  3. What is the next step after this vote?
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    For this question it may help to briefly examine the bill itself.

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    One tool that will be helpful in answering this question is the cartogram at the top of the page. A cartogram is a stylized map of the United States that shows each district as an identical hexagon. This view allows you to see the how the representatives from each district voted arranged by their geography and colored by their political party. What trends can you see in the cartogram for this vote?

  3. How did your representative vote?
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