Voterama in Congress, week ending May 25, 2012
How Illinois lawmakers voted in Congress Week ending May 25
Updated: June 1, 2012 12:47PM
Prescription Drugs: Senators authorized, 96-1, $6.4 billion in Food and Drug Administration user fees on firms seeking approval of new drugs, medical devices and biotechnology products. A yes vote was to pass a bill (S 3187) requiring firms to assure there are ample supplies of lifesaving drugs.
Dietary Supplements: Senators tabled (killed), 77-20, an amendment to S 3187 (above) requiring firms that market dietary supplements to register their products and ingredients with the Food and Drug Administration. A yes vote opposed the bid to increase what is now minimal federal oversight of these products.
Genetically Altered Salmon: Senators refused, 46-50, to give the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration joint authority with the Food and Drug Administration over a firm’s application to market genetically engineered salmon as a safe food. A yes vote was to expand the review and thus slow the application.
Rx Drugs From Canada: Senators refused, 43-54, to make it legal for American consumers to import federally approved U.S. pharmaceuticals from Canada for their own use. A yes vote backed an amendment to allow personal drug imports by mail order, online purchases or in person. (S 3187)
Democrats’ Interest Plan: Senators failed, 51-43, to reach 60 votes for passing a Democratic bill to prevent interest rates on student loans from doubling to 6.8 percent on July 1 and paying for the bill by ending a tax break for certain owners of Subchapter S corporations. A yes vote was to pass S 2343.
Republican Interest Plan: Senators defeated, 34-62, a Republican version of S 2343 (above) that also sought to avert a doubling of Stafford student-loan interest rates on July 1. A yes vote backed a plan that would pay for itself not by closing a tax loophole but by repealing the preventive-care section of the 2010 health law.
Key votes ahead
In the week of May 28, the Senate will be in recess, while the House will take up a bill on Food and Drug Administration user fees.