House Approves $12.7 Billion in Emergency Spending

House Approves $12.7 Billion in Emergency Spending
Posted by FoM on March 30, 2000 at 23:41:15 PT
By Eric Pianin, Washington Post Staff Writer
Source: Washington Post
The House approved a $12.7 billion emergency spending bill yesterday that includes funds for a Clinton administration initiative to train and equip Colombia's army in the war against Latin American drug traffickers.
The spending package includes funds to cover military involvement in Kosovo, hurricane disaster relief, a big boost in routine military operations and scores of other projects and programs.Despite warnings by critics that the government is being drawn into an open-ended commitment to the Colombian government, House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) and other proponents said the administration's initiative is essential to reducing the flow of illegal drugs into this country.The final vote was 263 to 146, with 143 Republicans, 119 Democrats and one independent supporting the measure.The House averted a showdown with President Clinton by rejecting an amendment that would have required him to withdraw U.S. peacekeepers from Kosovo unless European countries deliver more of the aid they have promised for the Yugoslav province.By 219 to 200, lawmakers rejected a bipartisan proposal to use the threat of withdrawal to pressure the Europeans to deliver millions of dollars more for economic, humanitarian and policing assistance. Clinton would have had to begin withdrawing troops in June under the proposal offered by Budget Committee Chairman John R. Kasich (R-Ohio).But after the vote on the full bill, Clinton said he is still concerned about the overall size of the package and wants funding redirected to other priorities, including embassy security.Under the overall measure, Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru will share in $1.3 billion of anti-drug funding, with Colombia getting the majority of funds--including about $388 million to purchase 28 Blackhawk helicopters for the Colombian Army. The assistance is aimed at helping the Colombian government gain control of drug-producing regions in the south, increase drug interdiction efforts and beef up the Colombian national police.Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) has vowed to block the spending bill, saying it is too big. But he is under pressure from Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) to go along with a scaled-back version of the House plan in the range of $6 billion.The House-passed spending package is more than twice the $5.1 billion package Clinton originally sought. Under pressure from Hastert, the Appropriations Committee expanded aid for anti-drug efforts. The panel also added $1.6 billion to cover the Pentagon's soaring fuel costs and $854 million for the military's financially troubled health care program.During floor debate, the House added $4 billion more for routine military operations and recruitment, in response to pressure from House National Security Committee Chairman Floyd Spence (R-S.C.).The "emergency" bill also includes a host of apparently non-emergency items; the bill, for instance, included $100 million for local firefighting agencies, sought by Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) and others.By Eric PianinWashington Post Staff WriterFriday , March 31, 2000 ; A06  2000 The Washington Post Company Related Articles:House Members Try to Reorient Drug War Backs Administration on Aid for Colombia Conquistador, Feds Unveil New Strategy Drug War's Southern Front's Statement on Colombian Drug War
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Comment #2 posted by Tom Paine on April 02, 2000 at 10:23:08 PT
Shortcut URLs for many articles.
*Colombia SHORTCUT URLs for CannabisNews searches; set to search for Colombia-related newspaper, magazine, activist, press release articles, etc.. and click: War, Death Squad LINKS worldwide. Revised. Huge LINKS list. Please forward. So far, various versions of the webpage are found in a few places. Click: --latest revised webpage. --v7 html. --html. --forum. --v4 text. --v6 text.
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Comment #1 posted by dddd on March 31, 2000 at 02:19:27 PT
Great Scott!
It's not easy to comment on this matter without the use of expletives. All I can think of to ease the rage and chagrin I feel when seeing the blatantly corrupt and absurd way that these pigs have bilked this underhanded sham over on us all,,,,,,is that they've been doing it for years and years. This is nothing new,,these porkers have a long standing tradition of raping the public coffers......I continue to be disgusted,and so would most everyone else if they knew what was going on,but I guess most people aren't that interested because,either they are rich,and they dont want to slow down the gravy train that has served them so well,,,or they are too busy trying to scrape up enough money to live,and pay their taxes,so these swines can goof around with a "surplus" of tax money. In my mind,there is no such thing as a "surplus" of tax money..... gotta go before I get profane.............dddd 
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