Republican Representative Joe Barton of Texas
|Rep. Barton's Liberal Action Score: 6|
The Liberal Action Score is calculated by compiling a series of measured liberal actions (both roll call voting and bill cosponsorship) in the 113th Congress and comparing Joe Barton's behavior against a liberal standard:
A score of 6 means that Representative Barton has participated in 6% of our slate of liberal actions in the 113th Congress.
- Respect for constitutional protections of American civil liberty
- Transparency and public access in government
- Equal treatment of people under law
- The respect and pursuit of empirical knowledge through support for science and education
- Protection of the Earth's environmental richness
- Strengthening of economic opportunity for all
- Pursuit of peaceful solutions and opposition to militarism in policy
Liberal Actions Taken by Congressman Barton during the 113th Congress of 2013-2014:
Amendment 100 to H.R. 2397
The National Security Agency, a U.S. military spying organization, has been caught seizing massive numbers of private telephone records, grabbing information about who Americans are talking to the telephone and when these calls occur. This surveillance includes practically every telephone communication in within U.S. borders, and has been conducted without any evidence, as required by the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, that the people whose private information is seized and searched are connected with criminal activity. The Amash amendment to the Defense Appropriations Act would have required the NSA to specify particular individuals as targets in its investigations, rather than conducting a massive dragnet of all telephone communications.
Rep. Barton has taken a liberal course of action by voting for this bill.
Liberal Bills Congressman Barton has failed to support through cosponsorship:
H.R. 526, the ACHE Act, would create a moratorium on the practice of mountaintop removal coal mining - at least until scientific studies of the health impact of the mining procedure could be completed. The Appalachian Communities Health Emergency Act notes that Peer-reviewed scientific research and reports have raised serious concerns about mountaintop removal mining with respect to elevated risks in categories of birth defects studied: circulatory/respiratory, central nervous system, musculoskeletal, and gastrointestinal. Mountaintop removal coal mining also destroys local ecosystems, filling in clean mountain streams with debris laced with heavy metals.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 526. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
Typically, many of the smaller bombs contained in cluster bombs don't explode. They lie there, waiting for some extra stimulus before they'll erupt in violence - stimulus like the attention of a curious child. H. R. 881, the Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act, prevents the expenditure of money in the federal budget for the use of cluster bombs unless it is certified that fewer than one percent of the small bombs distributed by U.S. cluster bombs fail to explode, and unless the policy dictating the use of cluster bombs specifies that the cluster bombs will only be used against military targets, not in areas where civilians are likely to go.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 881. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
H.R. 808, if passed into law, would create a cabinet-level Department of Peacebuilding. The Secretary of Peacebuilding would coordinate federal policies designed to promote nonviolence.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 808. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 (H.R. 1010 in the House and S. 460 in the Senate) is a bill that would increase the minimum wage from its current $7.25/hour to $10.10/hour over the next two years. After that point, the minimum wage would automatically increase to keep pace with inflation. Because the minimum wage is not currently indexed to inflation, the real value of the minimum wage continues to fall every month that the Congress fails to act, depriving hard-working Americans of another meal, taking another shirt off their backs.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 1010. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
H.R. 519, the Uniting American Families Act, would act as a relief valve from illegal immigration by creating greater avenues for legal immigration. The idea is to broaden the list of family members of U.S. citizens and permanent residents who are allowed to enter the country and obtain their own lawful permanent resident status, including permanent same-sex partners under family-based immgration provisions.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 519. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
Hardly before the 113th Congress had even begun, severe cuts began to education, housing, science, transportation, medicine, and other essential domestic programs. Even meat inspectors and nutrition for pregnant women and babies are being cut. In these circumstances, it is outrageous that funding for unnecessary military weapons programs surges ahead. U.S. Representative Ed Markey has responded to this problem with H.R. 1506, which will if passed block funding for new long-ranger bomber aircraft, reduce the number of American nuclear-powered submarines cruising the world's oceans, and cut the number of intercontinental ballistic missiles armed with nuclear weapons. H.R. 1506 simultaneously serves the cause of peace and makes more money available for government programs that directly help people in the USA.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 1506. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
H.R. 1554, the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act, will, if passed into law, close the loopholes that corporations and wealthy individuals use to avoid paying their fair share of the dues that keep American society going, tightening prohibitions on foreign tax shelters and punishing those who conspire to devise systems through which their wealthy clients can engage in tax evasion.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 1554. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
H.R. 1652, the Student Non-Discrimination Act, would prohibit discrimination by public schools against students on the basis of their sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation. The bill is a straightforward application of the Constitution's guarantee of equal protection under the law - a guarantee that in many school districts is not being applied.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 1652. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
H.R. 1755, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, should not be controversial. The 14th amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America, after all, forbids the denial of equality under the law to any group of citizens. Gays and lesbians, however, are currently denied the protection from employment discrimination that is provided to others under federal law. Lesbian and gay Americans can be fired from their jobs for no other reason than their sexual orientation. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would change that, and bring our nation back into accord with its Constitution.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 1755. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
As an article in the New York Times reports, a system of secret laws and secret courts has been created by the White House without the knowledge or consent of the American people. A FISA court of eleven justices, all appointed by the authoritarian-leaning Chief Justice John Roberts, have been authorizing massive warrantless surveillance programs that collect information on Americans' phone calls, e-mails, text messages and similar communications. The FISA judges did not turn down a single one of the many government surveillance requests in the year 2012.
The same judges have created new law, ruling that if the government has "special needs," the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution can be overruled. This law is secret -- it is literally forbidden for anyone to tell you about the law's existence (the New York Times only obtained the information through unauthorized leaks).
An opportunity exists for the Senate to change this arrangement through the Ending Secret Law Act. Introduced as H.R. 2475 in the House and S. 1130 in the Senate, the Ending Secret Law Act would, if passed, require the disclosure of the secret legal opinions of the FISA court to the public, with classified secrets blacked out. That way, the American people would at least be able to know what new powers the government has assumed for itself.
Rep. Barton has failed to cosponsor H.R. 2475. After you read the bill, call Rep. Barton's office at 936-544-8488 and ask him to support it by adding his cosponsorship.
Rep. Barton's Conservative Action Score: 56
The Conservative Action Score is calculated by compiling a series of observably conservative roll call votes and bill cosponsorships in the 113th Congress and comparing Joe Barton's behavior against that conservative standard:
A score of 56 means that Representative Barton has taken 56% of the possible conservative actions identified on the That's My Congress scorecard.
- Disregard for constitutional protections of American civil liberty
- Secrecy and exclusion of citizens from government
- Support for discriminatory policy
- The symbolic denigration and practical undermining of science and education in America
- Active harm to the environment or passive allowance for environmental destruction
- Pursuit of further advantage for those in America who are already its richest
- Dismissal of peaceful possibilities and obeiscance to the military-industrial complex
H.AMDT.8 to H.R.152
It's bad enough that Republican members of Congress like Paul Broun still refuse to accept the scientific reality of anthropogenic climate change. What's worse is when they refuse to support programs that help to protect the United States against the extreme weather events that have been made more common by climate change. Representative Paul Broun's Amendment 8 to H.R. 152 attempted to strike funding for enhanced satellite capabilities for the National Weather Service that would provide advanced warning of extreme weather events - saving money and saving lives. Representative Chaka Fattah criticized Broun's amendment, saying, We've had the greatest series of severe weather events - over $1 billion each - that we've ever had in our history. It is not time for the greatest country and the wealthiest country in the world to retreat or to equivocate in making sure that we have the very best weather service information, and this satellite system is critically important thereto. Still, hundreds of members of the U.S. House of Representatives voted for this economically and scientifically unwise amendment.
Rep. Barton has followed a conservative course by voting for this bill.
H. Con. Res. 23
The consequences of failure to ratify the international Arms Trade Treaty are clear. Deadly weapons will continue to be easily available to members of Al Quaeda and other terrorist organizations, if the House Republicans have their way. These weapons will be used against American soldiers, and will help terrorists, dictators, and international criminal organizations to increase their power. H. Con. Res. 23 seeks to cripple the international Arms Trade Treaty by preventing the United States from completing ratification.
Rep. Barton has followed a conservative course by cosponsoring this bill.
H. Con. Res. 25 Amendment 3
If the Back To Work Budget from the Congressional Progressive Caucus had passed, it would have increased income taxes for millionaires and billionaires, eliminated tax loopholes for households with an annual income of over $250,000, brought education budgets back up to responsible levels, restored funding for jobs programs in impoverished communities, put income from investments at the same level of taxation as income from work, and ended tax breaks that reward outsourcing of jobs to overseas sweatshops. The Back to Work Budget would have shut down the pipeline of subsidies to polluting fossil fuels companies, reduced military spending to 2006 levels, and set a price for the emission of carbon pollution that causes disastrous climate change.
The Back To Work Budget would have cleaned up both the environment and the economy. However, a majority of Democrats in the House of Representatives joined Republicans to vote against the legislation.
Rep. Barton has followed a conservative course by voting against this bill.
The title of H.R. 1406 -- the "Working Families Flexibility Act" -- is fitting in a perverse way, because it insists that Working Families become Flexible to meet the whims and reduced-pay preferences of corporate America. If passed, H.R. 1406 would end overtime pay in America. Under the new system, employers could push workers to take on long work hours but pay them as if they weren't working overtime. Instead of being paid extra, employers could assign workers "comp time" off, which might be reasonable if workers could take that time off when they needed to (driven by a sick kid, a wedding, or the demands of that second job they need to make ends meet). But no, under H.R. 1406 workers can only take off that "comp time" when employers don't need them on the job anyway. Any abuses of employees by employers is supposed to be covered by the Wage and Hour division of the U.S. Department of Labor, but that's a joke of a provision considering that the division has suffered a giant backlog under budget cuts with less than 1 investigator per million workers. H.R. 1406 would be better entitled the "Work Workers Harder, Cut Overtime Pay and Gut their Families Act."
Rep. Barton has followed a conservative course by voting for this bill.
Amendment 2 to H.R. 2218
Coal wastes contain toxic levels of heavy metals, and when they are not dealt with responsibly, they are present a significant hazard to human communities and natural ecosystems. The amendment to H.R. 2218 from Henry Waxman would have required that, when coal companies deal with the coal wastes, they take action to protect human health and prevent pollution of the natural environment.
Rep. Barton has followed a conservative course by voting against this bill.