In final vote before primary election, Amash votes for America over Israel

In final vote before primary election, Amash votes for America over Israel
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In final vote before primary election, Amash votes for America over Israel

Congress increases American taxpayer debt to assist Israel

By Ray Hanania

English: Congressman Justin Amash

Michigan Republican Congressman Justin Amash (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In his last vote Friday before returning to his 3rd Congressional district to face-off against a wild-rhetoric challenger in the Republican Primary this week, U.S. Rep. Justin Amash cast a vote for America, refusing to support legislation that would give Israel $225 million in additional money from taxpayers to replenish ammunition spent on attacking Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip.

Although Amash avoided criticizing Israel’s month-long assault on the Gaza Strip which has taken the lives of more than 1,800 civilians including women, children and infants, the second term Grand Rapids, Michigan Congressman complained that the debt burden on taxpayers continues to be too much and American taxpayers can’t afford to continue to bail out every foreign country that needs money.

Amash was only one of four Republicans and four Democrats who voted against the bill which was introduced by New Jersey Republican Congressman Rodney P. Frelinghuysen (NJ-11th) and backed by lame-duck President Barak Obama.

Israel, tapping pro-Israel sympathy in the Congress, claimed the $225 million in taxpayer funds would be used to replenish weaponry used in the assault and to strengthen the “Iron Dome,” the missile defense system Israel built to deflect missiles fried by Hamas and militants from the Gaza Strip into Israel. The U.S. Congress already has given Israel $235 million this year in funds to support the “Iron Dome” missile system which allows Israel to take down missiles fired by militants but allows it to fire missiles at Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, in the West Bank and in Lebanon and Syria.

Amash boasts on his campaign website www.JustinAmash.com that he is the ONLY Congressman to explain his votes on his Facebook Page. Of course, being only two days ago and it being an election weekend, there was no explanation of his vote on the $225 million in taxpayer funding for Israel. Israel already receives more than $5 billion a year in funds, grants and loans from the American Taxpayers, more than any other foreign country.

Pro-Israel congressman David N. Cicilline, a pro-Israel Democrat from Rhode Island, issued a press release on his support of the grant funding that was typical of other congressmen and women who supported Israel’s demand for more funds:

The Arab Daily News

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English: Official portrait of US Rep. David N....

Official portrait of Israeli apologist US Rep. David N. Cicilline. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Israel has the right to defend itself against any assault on its sovereignty and its people. This emergency funding will help replenish Israel’s Iron Dome to safeguard the Israeli people from Hamas rocket fire. Since the beginning of the escalation of violence the Iron Dome has intercepted hundreds of Hamas rockets and saved the lives of innocent civilians. Tonight’s vote sends a clear message that the U.S. stands with our ally Israel and will continue to meet their military needs. We must also recognize that a permanent ceasefire through diplomacy is in the best interest of the Israeli and Palestinian people. As Secretary Kerry and his international counterparts work on a ceasefire or political solution, we will continue to ensure that Israel has the ability to defend itself.”

Like other congress members, Cicilline’s statement did not mention the mounting civilian fatalities including the killing of more than 250 babies, infants, children and teenagers who have been killed by Israel using American-made weapons.

Joining Amash, who is Arab of Palestinian and Syrian descent, were three other Republicans who have taken hard lines against adding to the taxpayer’s debt, including U.S. Rep. Walter Jones (NC-03), U.S. Rep. Tom Massie (KY-04), and U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford (SC-01). The four Democrats were U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison (MN-05) who is Muslim, U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren (CA-19), U.S. Rep. Jim Moran (VA-08) who has been a strong advocate of supporting equality in the Middle East, and U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (TX-16).

The bill, House Joint Resolution 76 (HJ RES 76) passed the U.S. House 395 voting YES, 8 voting NO, and 29 NOT VOTING. (The alternative to NOT VOTING is to vote PRESENT. Not voting allows congress members to avoid explaining whether or not they supported or opposed a bill. They can say they just were not in the room when the vote was called.

HJ RES 76 was approved by the U.S. Senate by unanimous consent, meaning a roll-call vote was not taken. (The Official vote roll call is listed at the end of this column. Or, click here for the overview.)

Ironically the other American Arab members of the U.S. Congress voted to support the funding grant to Israel including U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen, who is married to a Lebanese Arab American and who has defended Israel’s military actions that have killed some 1,800 civilians. And Congressman Nick Rahall, also American Arab, voted to support the taxpayer “gift” to Israel. To get an overview of Amash’s congressional career, click here.

While Amash chose to vote no, 29 other members of Congress refused to cast a vote. They include:

Blackburn
Blumenauer
Camp
Campbell
Cantor
Davis (CA)
DesJarlais
Doggett
Fattah
Garamendi
Gibbs
Gingrey (GA)
Grayson
Green, Gene
Hanabusa
Kennedy
Marchant
McDermott
Miller, Gary
Murphy (PA)
Nunes
Nunnelee
Ruiz
Rush
Sánchez, Linda T.
Schock
Speier
Tiberi
Whitfield

Here is the Text of HJ RES 76:

H.J.Res.76

 

 

One Hundred Thirteenth Congress
of the
United States of America 
AT THE SECOND SESSION
 

 

Begun and held at the City of Washington on Friday,

the third day of January, two thousand and fourteen

Joint Resolution

Making an emergency supplemental appropriation for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2014, to provide funding to Israel for the Iron Dome defense system to counter short-range rocket threats.

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

     That the following sum is appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2014, and for other purposes, namely:

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

PROCUREMENT

Procurement, Defense-wide

    For an additional amount for `Procurement, Defense-Wide’, $225,000,000, to remain available until September 30, 2015, which shall be for the Secretary of Defense to provide to the Government of Israel for the procurement of the Iron Dome defense system to counter short-range rocket threats:

Provided

    , That such funds shall be transferred immediately only through an exchange of letters to address emergent operations in support of Operation Protective Edge, notwithstanding section 3.1.3.2.1 of the U.S.-Israel Iron Dome Procurement Agreement:

Provided further

    , That nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to apply to previously appropriated funds for the procurement of Iron Dome:

Provided further

    , That such amount is designated by the Congress as an emergency requirement pursuant to section 251(b)(2)(A)(i) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985.
    This joint resolution may be cited as the `Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Resolution, 2014′.

Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Vice President of the United States and

President of the Senate.

The Bill was rushed through the Congress and the Senate and was presented to President Obama on Sunday August 4 and was signed into law the same day, officially known as Public Law No: 113-145.

The following are members of Congress who voted in favor of the appropriation gift to Israel:

Aderholt
Amodei
Bachmann
Bachus
Barber
Barletta
Barr
Barrow (GA)
Barton
Bass
Beatty
Becerra
Benishek
Bentivolio
Bera (CA)
Bilirakis
Bishop (GA)
Bishop (NY)
Bishop (UT)
Black
Bonamici
Boustany
Brady (PA)
Brady (TX)
Braley (IA)
Bridenstine
Brooks (AL)
Brooks (IN)
Broun (GA)
Brown (FL)
Brownley (CA)
Buchanan
Bucshon
Burgess
Bustos
Butterfield
Byrne
Calvert
Capito
Capps
Capuano
Cárdenas
Carney
Carson (IN)
Carter
Cartwright
Cassidy
Castor (FL)
Castro (TX)
Chabot
Chaffetz
Chu
Cicilline
Clark (MA)
Clarke (NY)
Clawson (FL)
Clay
Cleaver
Clyburn
Coble
Coffman
Cohen
Cole
Collins (GA)
Collins (NY)
Conaway
Connolly
Conyers
Cook
Cooper
Costa
Cotton
Courtney
Cramer
Crawford
Crenshaw
Crowley
Cuellar
Culberson
Cummings
Daines
Davis, Danny
Davis, Rodney
DeFazio
DeGette
Delaney
DeLauro
DelBene
Denham
Dent
DeSantis
Deutch
Diaz-Balart
Dingell
Doyle
Duckworth
Duffy
Duncan (SC)
Duncan (TN)
Edwards
Ellmers
Engel
Enyart
Eshoo
Esty
Farenthold
Farr
Fincher
Fitzpatrick
Fleischmann
Fleming
Flores
Forbes
Fortenberry
Foster
Foxx
Frankel (FL)
Franks (AZ)
Frelinghuysen
Fudge
Gabbard
Gallego
Garcia
Gardner
Garrett
Gerlach
Gibson
Gohmert
Goodlatte
Gosar
Gowdy
Granger
Graves (GA)
Graves (MO)
Green, Al
Griffin (AR)
Griffith (VA)
Grijalva
Grimm
Guthrie
Gutiérrez
Hahn
Hall
Hanna
Harper
Harris
Hartzler
Hastings (FL)
Hastings (WA)
Heck (NV)
Heck (WA)
Hensarling
Herrera Beutler
Higgins
Himes
Hinojosa
Holding
Holt
Honda
Horsford
Hoyer
Hudson
Huelskamp
Huffman
Huizenga (MI)
Hultgren
Hunter
Hurt
Israel
Issa
Jackson Lee
Jeffries
Jenkins
Johnson (GA)
Johnson (OH)
Johnson, E. B.
Johnson, Sam
Jolly
Jordan
Joyce
Kaptur
Keating
Kelly (IL)
Kelly (PA)
Kildee
Kilmer
Kind
King (IA)
King (NY)
Kingston
Kinzinger (IL)
Kirkpatrick
Kline
Kuster
Labrador
LaMalfa
Lamborn
Lance
Langevin
Lankford
Larsen (WA)
Larson (CT)
Latham
Latta
Lee (CA)
Levin
Lewis
Lipinski
LoBiondo
Loebsack
Long
Lowenthal
Lowey
Lucas
Luetkemeyer
Lujan Grisham (NM)
Luján, Ben Ray (NM)
Lummis
Lynch
Maffei
Maloney, Carolyn
Maloney, Sean
Marino
Matheson
Matsui
McAllister
McCarthy (CA)
McCarthy (NY)
McCaul
McClintock
McCollum
McGovern
McHenry
McIntyre
McKeon
McKinley
McMorris Rodgers
McNerney
Meadows
Meehan
Meeks
Meng
Messer
Mica
Michaud
Miller (FL)
Miller (MI)
Miller, George
Moore
Mullin
Mulvaney
Murphy (FL)
Nadler
Napolitano
Neal
Negrete McLeod
Neugebauer
Noem
Nolan
Nugent
Olson
Owens
Palazzo
Pallone
Pascrell
Pastor (AZ)
Paulsen
Payne
Pearce
Pelosi
Perlmutter
Perry
Peters (CA)
Peters (MI)
Peterson
Petri
Pingree (ME)
Pittenger
Pitts
Pocan
Poe (TX)
Polis
Pompeo
Posey
Price (GA)
Price (NC)
Quigley
Rahall
Rangel
Reed
Reichert
Renacci
Ribble
Rice (SC)
Richmond
Rigell
Roby
Roe (TN)
Rogers (AL)
Rogers (KY)
Rogers (MI)
Rohrabacher
Rokita
Rooney
Ros-Lehtinen
Roskam
Ross
Rothfus
Roybal-Allard
Royce
Runyan
Ruppersberger
Ryan (OH)
Ryan (WI)
Salmon
Sanchez, Loretta
Sarbanes
Scalise
Schakowsky
Schiff
Schneider
Schrader
Schwartz
Schweikert
Scott (VA)
Scott, Austin
Scott, David
Sensenbrenner
Serrano
Sessions
Sewell (AL)
Shea-Porter
Sherman
Shimkus
Shuster
Simpson
Sinema
Sires
Slaughter
Smith (MO)
Smith (NE)
Smith (NJ)
Smith (TX)
Smith (WA)
Southerland
Stewart
Stivers
Stockman
Stutzman
Swalwell (CA)
Takano
Terry
Thompson (CA)
Thompson (MS)
Thompson (PA)
Thornberry
Tierney
Tipton
Titus
Tonko
Tsongas
Turner
Upton
Valadao
Van Hollen
Vargas
Veasey
Vela
Velázquez
Visclosky
Wagner
Walberg
Walden
Walorski
Walz
Wasserman Schultz
Waters
Waxman
Weber (TX)
Webster (FL)
Welch
Wenstrup
Westmoreland
Williams
Wilson (FL)
Wilson (SC)
Wittman
Wolf
Womack
Woodall
Yarmuth
Yoder
Yoho
Young (AK)
Young (IN)

Voting to support the bill was also U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-3rd) whose congressional district includes one of the largest concentrations of American Arabs in Illinois. Lipinski has also sponsored legislation written by the Israel lobby AIPAC that would punish any American entity that votes to boycott an Israeli educational institution by denying funding to that organization or education institution. Click to read the story.

To make it more difficult for Americans to identify the supporters and opponents of the bill, the U.S. Congress does not publish the full names, district numbers of states of the members of the U.S. Congress or the U.S. Senate in vote total tabulations online.

The Arab Daily News has repeatedly been denied requests to interview Congressman Amash.

(Ray Hanania is an award winning former Chicago City Hall reporter and political columnist. He is the Managing Editor of The Arab Daily News online www.TheArabDailyNews.com.)

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rayhanania

rayhanania

Managing Writer at The Arab Daily News
RAY HANANIA — Columnist

Ray Hanania is an award winning political columnist and author. He covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).

Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, and for TheArabDailyNews.com, and TheDailyHookah.com.

Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.

His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania

Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com

Visit this link to read Ray's column archive at the ArabNews,com www.arabnews.com/taxonomy/term/10906
rayhanania
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