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H.R. 195: Extension of Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018

Jan 22, 2018 at 6:09 p.m. ET. Concurring in the Senate Amendment in the House.

This was a vote to pass H.R. 195 (115th) in the House.

This bill became the vehicle for passage of continuing appropriations which re-opened the federal government after a three-day shut-down. The bill:

  • extended funding for government programs at levels similar to existing funding through Feb. 8, 2018
  • extended the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for six years
  • extended the existing suspensions of the Affordable Care Act's medical device excise tax through 2019 and the tax on high cost employer-sponsored health coverage through 2021
  • saved $1M through an unrelated provision that would restrict the distribution of free printed copies of the Federal Register, the government's daily publication of agency notices and new regulations, to Members of Congress and other officials, which was the original subject of the bill before it became the vehicle for passage of other matters

Continuing appropriations are stop-gap measures when full fiscal-year appropriations funding bills are not enacted. If the government is not funded by another appropriations bill by Feb. 9, 2018, the government will shut down again. The previous appropriations bill, H.R. 1370, funded the government through Jan. 19, 2018, and prior to that H.R. 601 funded the government through Dec. 8, 2017.

This bill had an unusually complex legislative history and previously contained provisions on an unrelated matter.

Extension of Continuing Appropriations

The bill became the government funding bill on Jan. 18, 2018, when the House replaced the previous text of the bill (described below) with the short-term continuing appropriations provisions to fund the government through Feb. 16, 2018 (vote). In replacing the text, the House sent the bill back to the Senate.

But the bill failed to be passed by both chambers in this form following a failed Senate cloture vote late in the night on Jan. 19, leading to a government shutdown beginning on Jan. 20, when the most recent appropriations laws expired. Senate Democrats largely opposed the bill because it did not include an extension of the immigration program Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Senate Republicans and President Trump largely opposed including DACA without provisions to strengthen border security, which Senate Democrats opposed.

After three days of negotiations, an agreement was reached on the final measure --- which was identical to the House-passed bill except that funding would be made for a shorter period of time to force another negotiation sooner. No provisions related to DACA or border security were added after all.

On Jan. 22, 2018, the Senate achieved cloture and then passed the bill with the revised end date of the appropriations, the House passed the bill, S. Con. Res. 33 was passed in both chambers to add the original Federal Register positions back into the bill (see below), achieving the bill's final form described at the top of this summary, and the President signed it.

Federal Register Cost Savings Bill

H.R. 195 was originally introduced only as a simple cost savings bill by "restrict[ing] the distribution of free printed copies of the Federal Register to Members of Congress and other officers and employees of the United States," saving $1 million annually. It passed the House in that form on May 17, 2017, but these provisions were removed when the Senate passed the bill (explained next), and then were added back in the final form of the bill (explained above). (Also see the Senate companion bill S. 1195, which is now moot.)

An alert program for missing Alzheimer’s disease patients

On Dec. 21, 2017, the Senate replaced the text of the bill in whole with Kevin and Avonte's Law of 2017, an extension of an alert program for missing Alzheimer’s disease patients, sending the bill back to the House. Further action on this matter may occur on S. 2070 or H.R. 4221. When the House brought the Senate-revised bill back to the floor on Jan. 18, 2018, it replaced the bill's text again, in whole, with the government funding bill, as described above.

Totals

All Votes R D
Yea 64%
 
 
266
221
 
45
 
Nay 36%
 
 
150
6
 
144
 
Not Voting
 
 
14
10
 
4
 

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

Ideology Vote Chart

Key:
Republican - Yea Democrat - Yea Republican - Nay Democrat - Nay
Seat position based on our ideology score.

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

How well do you understand this vote? Use this study guide to find out.

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?
  4. Take a look at where this bill is in the legislative process. What might come next? Keep in mind what this specific vote was on, and the context of the bill. Will there be amendments? Will the other chamber of Congress vote on it, or let it die?

    For this question it may help to briefly examine the bill itself.

What is your analysis of this vote?

  1. What trends do you see in this vote?
  2. Members of Congress side together for many reasons beside being in the same political party, especially so for less prominent legislation or legislation specific to a certain region. What might have determined how the roll call came out in this case? Does it look like Members of Congress voted based on party, geography, or some other reason?

    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?
  4. There is one vote here that should be more important to you than all the others. These are the votes cast by your representative, which is meant to represent you and your community. Do you agree with how your representative voted? Why do you think they voted the way they did?

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