WASHINGTON - Here is how Philadelphia-area members of Congress were recorded on major roll-call votes last week:


Bush Iraq veto.

Voting 222-203, the House on Wednesday failed to reach a two-thirds majority for overriding President Bush's veto of a bill (HR 1591) that required the withdrawal of most U.S. troops from Iraq starting by Oct. 1. The bill, which set no mandatory date for completing the pullout, would appropriate about $100 billion for combat operations and other military purposes and nearly $25 billion for nonwar programs.

A yes vote was to override the veto.

Voting yes: Robert E. Andrews (D., N.J.), Robert A. Brady (D., Pa.), Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.), Tim Holden (D., Pa.), Patrick Murphy (D., Pa.), Allyson Schwartz (D., Pa.), and Joe Sestak (D., Pa.)

Voting no: Michael N. Castle (R., Del.), Charles W. Dent (R., Pa.), Jim Gerlach (R., Pa.), Frank A. LoBiondo (R., N.J.), Joseph R. Pitts (R., Pa.), H. James Saxton (R., N.J.), and Christopher H. Smith (R., N.J.).

Hate crimes prosecutions. Members voted Wednesday, 237-180, to expand the federal law against hate crimes to include offenses based on sexual orientation, gender or disability. The bill (HR 1592), which awaits Senate action, authorizes federal grants and law-enforcement resources to help state and local officials combat hate crimes. The law targets crimes of violence, not speech.

A yes vote was to expand the hate-crimes law.

Voting yes: Andrews, Brady, Castle, Dent, Gerlach, Holden, LoBiondo, Murphy, Saxton, Sestak and Schwartz.

Voting no: Pitts and Smith.

Not voting: Fattah

Head Start renewal. The House on Wednesday approved, 365-48, a five-year renewal of the Head Start antipoverty program for children of ages 3 to 5 and the Early Head Start program for infants, toddlers and pregnant women.

A yes vote was to pass the bill.

Voting yes: Andrews, Castle, Dent, Gerlach, Holden, LoBiondo, Murphy, Saxton, Schwartz, Sestak and Smith.

Voting no: Pitts.

Not voting: Brady and Fattah.

Religion-based hiring. Voting 195-222, the House on Wednesday refused to strip HR 1429 (above) of language that prohibits Head Start programs from using religion as a basis for hiring and firing staff members.

A yes vote backed religion-based Head Start hiring.

Voting yes: Castle, Dent, Gerlach, LoBiondo, Pitts, Saxton and Smith.

Voting no: Andrews, Holden, Murphy, Schwartz and Sestak.

Not voting: Brady and Fattah.


Prescription drug imports.

The Senate voted Thursday, 63-28, to advance a measure permitting U.S. citizens to import Food and Drug Administration- approved prescription drugs from countries such as Canada without interference from the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol. This occurred during debate on a pending bill expanding FDA authority (S 1082).

A yes vote backed the amendment.

Voting yes: Thomas Carper (D., Del.), Bob Casey (D., Pa.), Frank Lautenberg (D., N.J.), Robert Menendez (D., N.J.), and Arlen Specter (R., Pa.).

Not voting: Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D., Del.)

This week. The House will take up homeland security and intelligence budgets and a measure to fund local police hiring. The Senate will continue to debate expanded authority for the Food and Drug Administration.

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