On voice vote, the House of Representatives this afternoon passed a bill that would put pressure on the big international financial institutions to completely cancel all of Haiti's debt so that the country can use what resources it has for rebuilding from the earthquake they suffered in January, 2009.
The bill is H.R. 4573, sponsored by Rep. Maxine Waters [D, CA-35] and co-sponsored by 69 other lawmakers, mostly Democrats. According to the official title, it would "direct the Secretary of the Treasury to instruct the United States Executive Directors at the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, and other multilateral development institutions to use the voice, vote, and influence of the United States to cancel immediately and completely Haiti's debts to such institutions."Read Full Article
The health care reform process continues in the background, but Congress will also be voting on other consequential legislation this week. The House is scheduled to debate and vote on winding down the war in Afghanistan and impeaching a New Orleans judge on corruption charges. The Senate, meanwhile, will continue working on jobs legislation.Read Full Article
Despite the the constant focus of our national media and political blogs (including this one) on the big trends (namely, health care for the past 6 months), members of the United States Congress still manage to introduce and debate legislation on a myriad range of issues. With the number of constituencies and interests represented by the 541 Representatives, Senators and Delegates who can introduce legislation, it's not hard to find legislation related to the topic of the day. And this week, of course, the topic is Haiti.Read Full Article