How they voted: McCain and Obama on 5 issues

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

How Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama voted on five issues during their time in the Senate:

Economic bailout

HR 1424: Second Economic Package

Bill that allows the Secretary of the Treasury to purchase troubled assets from financial institutions, with a total outstanding balance of up to $700 billion, and also provides tax incentives for alternative energies and contains income tax and alternative minimum tax provisions.

Bill passed in the Senate (74 - 25) on Oct. 1, 2008.

McCain: YES

Obama: YES

Iraq war

HR 2206: Emergency Departmental Supplemental Appropriations Bill of 2007

Vote to concur with the House amendments to the Senate amendment and pass the bill, which makes emergency appropriations to certain departments for various purposes, including the war on terror and Hurricane Katrina efforts, and which raises the minimum wage and adjusts certain business taxes.

Bill passed in the Senate (80-14) on May 24, 2007

McCain: YES

Obama: NO

Details: A prior version of the act included a timeline for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. That version was passed by Congress – McCain did not vote, and Obama voted “yes” – but it was vetoed by President Bush. McCain strongly supported the veto of the troop-withdrawal amendment. In appearances following the “no” vote on the emergency funding, Obama said the correct way to support the troops is by starting to bring some of them home, and that maintaining the status quo in Iraq is not acceptable.


S 2611: Immigration Reform Bill

Vote to pass a bill that increases border security and enforcement laws, establishes criteria for U.S. citizenship, and provides financial assistance programs for areas of immigration.

Bill passed in the Senate (62-36) on May 25, 2006.

McCain: YES

Obama: YES

Details: In his presidential campaign, McCain has said he believes in securing the borders before legalizing immigrants. He also backs what he calls a "sensible" guest-worker program for workers who are in the country without legal status and has called for strengthening penalties for those who hire undocumented immigrants. Obama has backed the Secure Fence Act and co-sponsored a bill to allow states to offer illegal immigrants in-state tuition.


HR 6331: Medicare Bill

Vote to invoke cloture on a bill that extends and expands Medicare coverage for various programs and revises regulations regarding Medicare fee-for-service programs. (Invoking cloture is not a vote to pass legislation, but rather limits additional debate to 30 hours. It is typically used to end a filibuster.)

Cloture invoked (69 – 30) on July 7, 2008.


Obama: YES

Details: President Bush later vetoed this legislation. The veto was overridden in the Senate (70 – 26) on July 15, 2008. Neither McCain nor Obama participated in the vote to override.

McCain said the bill meets the obligation to provide proper reimbursements to Medicare physicians, but it also rolls back reforms, increases drug premiums, and places 2.3 million seniors at risk of losing private health care coverage. Obama supported the bill and the override of the veto, saying health care for America's seniors and service members should not be held hostage by Washington special interests.


HR 6: Energy Act of 2007

A vote to move the U.S. toward greater energy independence and security, to increase the production of clean renewable fuels, to protect consumers from price gouging, to increase the energy efficiency of products, buildings, and vehicles, to promote research on and deploy greenhouse gas capture and storage options, and to improve the energy performance of the Federal Government.

Passed by Senate (65-27) on June 21, 2007.


Obama: YES

Details: McCain did not vote on any measures associated with the Energy Act of 2007. McCain has supported greater energy independence. His plan calls for the expanded use of the U.S. domestic oil supply, including lifting restrictions on domestic oil exploration in the U.S. Obama’s energy plan includes measures to reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil. Obama would impose a windfall profits tax on oil companies and use the proceeds to provide rebates for individuals.

GateHouse News Service