How your U.S. lawmaker voted

WASHINGTON — Here’s how area members of Congress voted on major issues during the week ending Sept. 7.


Small-scale natural gas exports: By a vote of 260 for and 146 against, the House on Sept. 6 passed a bill (HR 4606) that would speed Department of Energy approval of applications to export relatively small quantities of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries with which the United States does not have free trade agreements. This would codify a departmental regulation under which such applications are automatically approved if they are deemed compliant with environmental laws and certain other requirements. The bill is designed to boost LNG exports on smaller vessels mainly to countries in South America, Central America and the Caribbean whose ports cannot accommodate large tankers. It would apply to applications for shipping up to 51.75 billion cubic feet per year of liquefied fuel that would be converted back to a gaseous state after importation.

Voting yes: Rick Larsen, D-Lake Stevens, Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, Dan Newhouse, R-Sunnyside, Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Spokane, Dave Reichert, R-Auburn

Voting no: Suzan DelBene, D-Medina, Derek Kilmer, D-Gig Harbor, Pramila Jayapal, D-Seattle, Adam Smith, D-Bellevue, Denny Heck, D-Olympia

Curbs on methane emissions: By a vote of 195 for and 210 against, the House on Sept. 6 defeated an amendment to HR 4606 (above) that sought to require export applications to show that the natural gas was produced using technology to minimize methane emissions from leaks, venting and flaring. A greenhouse gas, methane is a cause of climate change when it escapes into the atmosphere.

Voting yes: DelBene, Larsen, Kilmer, Jayapal, Reichert, Smith, Heck

Voting no: Herrera Beutler, Newhouse, McMorris Rodgers

Mandatory student-loan counseling: By a vote of 406 for and four against, the House on Sept. 5 passed a bill (HR 1635) that would require parents and students participating in federal student-loan programs to receive online counseling before signing up. In addition, students receiving loans and Pell grants would have to undergo annual online counseling on their loan obligations as a condition of continuing to receive aid.

Voting yes: DelBene, Larsen, Herrera Beutler, Newhouse, McMorris Rodgers, Kilmer, Jayapal, Reichert, Smith, Heck

Voting no: None

By:  Thomas Voting Reports
Source: The Seattle Times