Democrat Jimmy Farris says he agrees with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor's statements Wednesday about holding key votes during a post-election lame-duck session. Cantor was in Boise helping First District GOP Rep. Raul Labrador raise money.
Labrador disagrees with Cantor, saying defeated members of the House shouldn't cast important votes and that decisions should wait until a new Congress convenes in January.
But Labrador told me he recognizes that Cantor has the power to schedule votes and that he plans to cast "aye" or "nay" votes and not vote "present" when Congress returns after the Nov. 6 election.
A news release from Farris follows:
Farris agrees with Cantor regarding lame-duck session; Labrador still wants to skip
MERIDIAN, Idaho – 1st Congressional District candidate Jimmy Farris responded today to news that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor has decided that Congress will reconvene during the lame-duck session to vote on key issues that affect Idaho’s economy, such as the farm bill and sequestration.
“I wholeheartedly agree with Leader Cantor’s decision,” said Farris. “Representatives need to be there, voting on these time-sensitive issues that affect so many people.”
Congressman Raul Labrador opposes voting in the post-election session, in spite of the potentially disastrous consequences of leaving issues like sequestration unresolved. “Congressman Labrador doesn’t want to vote on these issues,” said Farris. “I can’t understand his willingness to let the economy and Idaho farmers suffer instead of coming back to do his job.”
Labrador disagrees with the ultra-conservative Cantor, who was in town yesterday to stump for him at a high-dollar fundraiser. At Tuesday night’s debate against Farris, Labrador expressed pride in the fact that he is one of the most “independent” members of Congress and often disagrees with other members of his party.
“When Congressman Labrador says he’s ‘independent’, what that really means is ‘extreme’,” said Farris. “Being independent suggests being moderate. Labrador’s views are much further to the right than other Republicans. Bipartisanship is the only way to make progress in Congress, so how can he get anything done when he can’t even compromise enough to work with his own party?”
Labrador refused to sign a letter – which his Republican colleague, Congressman Mike Simpson, and dozens of other House members signed – petitioning to allow lawmakers to vote on the farm bill and provide relief to the dairy industry as soon as possible.
“When they come to me to ask me to consider bills important to Idaho industry and economy, I will not ignore them,” said Farris. “For me, Idaho business and Idaho jobs will always come first.”
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