WASHINGTON — The House was not in session last week. Along with roll call votes, the Senate passed a bill (S. 2426), requiring the State Department to develop a strategy to obtain observer status for Taiwan in the International Criminal Police Organization; and passed a resolution (S. Res. 385), recognizing the historic achievement of astronaut Scott Joseph Kelly of NASA as the first U.S. citizen to complete a continuous 1-year mission in space.

There were no key votes in the House.


Senate Vote 1

COMBATING HEROIN, PRESCRIPTION DRUG ABUSE: The Senate has passed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (S. 524), sponsored by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I. The bill would direct the Justice Department to issue grants to state and local governments for treatment, training, education and other programs that respond to the growing public health threat caused by use of heroin and opioid prescription drugs. Whitehouse said the proposed grants program was a comprehensive effort to curtail the damage done by heroin and opioids, from putting better controls on the distribution and disposal of opioid prescription drugs to new processes for the justice system to deal with drug addicts without putting them in prison. The vote, on March 10, was 94 yeas to 1 nay.

YEAS: Susan Collins, R-Maine, Angus King, I-Maine

Senate Vote 2

SELLING F-16S TO PAKISTAN: The Senate has tabled a motion to discharge the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from further consideration of a resolution (S.J. Res. 31), sponsored by Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. The resolution would halt the federal government’s pursuit of plans to sell to Pakistan a set of eight F-16 military fighter jets and other military equipment. Paul said the U.S. should not continue selling advanced military technologies to Pakistan because the country prosecutes Christians, supports the Taliban, and does not combat Muslim terror groups. A resolution opponent, Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., called it “a huge public embarrassment” to Pakistan, which was showing signs of improving its stance against the Taliban, and would simply buy fighter jets from other countries if the U.S. declined to sell the F-16s to Pakistan. The vote to table the motion, on March 10, was 71 yeas to 24 nays.

NAYS: Collins

YEAS: King