After watching Republicans sit on the 9/11 Commission’s recommendations for three years, Nancy “The Riveter” Pelosi has wasted no time in enacting the Democratic “100 Hours” legislative agenda. It started with HR 1.
House Democrats are turning to national security for their first legislation in the new Congress: a bill to screen all cargo containers shipped to the U.S. and enact most remaining recommendations of the 9/11 commission.
The House measure would also require screening of all air cargo, distribute more federal aid to states based on risk instead of population, and provide money to improve emergency agencies’ communications gear. It includes steps aimed at preventing nuclear weapons falling into the hands of terrorists.
“Democrats will be — and hopefully we’ll be doing this in a bipartisan way — putting the protection of the American people very high on our priority list,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, told reporters on Monday.
Of course, not everybody is happy about the idea of actually protecting Americans.
“To make it part of a 100-hour show shamefully trivializes an issue of life or death,” said Rep. Peter King, R-New York, top Republican on the Homeland Security Committee.
What, pray tell, does that say about your party’s inaction and failure to lead on this issue?
Regardless, the bill passed last night 299-128, with 70 Republicans in support (including Chabot, Schmidt, Turner, Hobson, Tiberi, LaTourette, Pryce, and Regula, but not Jordan and Boehner – Gillmor did not vote). Up next: raising the minimum wage to $7.25/hr. After that, House Democrats will tackle lobbying reform, reducing prescription drug costs for seniors, and cutting college loan interest rates.