Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representatives held votes on a variety of bills ahead of getting out of town for the weekend. Colorado Public Radio’s Caitlyn Kim followed the action via Twitter yesterday: one fully expected party-line vote, others nearly unanimous, and a few others where Colorado Republican freshman Rep. Lauren Boebert was part of a much smaller minority bloc:
In particular, pretty much everyone in America is scratching their heads over Boebert’s vote against H.R. 941, the TRANSPLANT Act, a routine reauthorization of the nation’s bone marrow registry and umbilical cord blood. The only two members of the House who voted against this legislation were Reps. Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia–the first time these two controversial representatives have ever stood alone in opposition to any piece of legislation since being sworn into Congress.
So…what happened? Newsweek has the only explanation we’ve seen from either representative:
In a statement, Rep. Greene’s spokesman Nick Dyer said: “Nothing in this bill prevents the funding of aborted fetal tissue by taxpayers. It opens the door for the NIH to use this bill to research the remains of babies who were murdered in the womb.”
“This bill added hundreds of millions of dollars to the national debt, while not receiving a CBO score or going through the committee process,” Rep. Boebert added.
Funny how these objections were not a problem for the other anti-abortion fiscal hawk Republicans in the House who voted for the bill! Which would be, you know, all of them.
After that, it would be nice to hear an explanation from Boebert for being on the wrong side of a 413-8 vote to protect seniors from scams, or 406-10 to similarly protect Native Americans? It’s not like Boebert was just mindlessly mashing the “no” button last night, having cast a few “yes” votes for microloans and a couple other uncontroversial bills. Presumably there was some thought put into these votes, and Boebert’s constituents deserve an explanation as to what that thought was.
During his time in Congress, Rep. Tom Tancredo established a reputation for extremely controversial votes against overwhelmingly popular legislation, being for example one of only 11 members of the U.S. House to vote against relief funds following Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The dopamine hit from the attention this kind of controversy brings is a powerful stimulant for those unable to distinguish from good and bad attention–but as Tancredo learned the hard way, all he was doing in the long run was buying himself a ticket to irrelevance. Voters quickly tire of this pointless contrarianism, especially when it’s about issues that matter to real people.
The devastating ads these votes just provided the content for will prove it someday, don’t worry.