1984 Scorecard Vote
The export of nuclear power plants to foreign countries can create even more serious environmental threats than nuclear power development in the United States. Most other countries have much weaker safety standards than the U.S. and some reactors in the third world are being built in volcanic areas. The most serious problem of all is the increased risk of nuclear weapons proliferation.
As a signer of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, it is U.S. policy to prevent foreign countries from using our nuclear exports to build bombs. Under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Act, any nation receiving nuclear fuel or nuclear technology from the U.S. must agree not to use them to build nuclear weapons, and must accept international safeguards and inspections of their nuclear facilities. But the Reagan Administration has taken advantage of loopholes in the law to approve exports of nuclear components, spare parts, and technology to nations which refuse to follow these restrictions. These countries include South Africa (which may already have nuclear weapons), Argentina, and India (which has already used U.S. materials to construct a bomb).
The Humphrey-Roth amendment would have closed the loopholes which made these actions possible. This vote was on the McClure substitute to that amendment, which would have allowed the President discretion to continue such exports.
McClure substitute rejected 38-55; February 28, 1984. NO is the pro-environmental vote. (McClure substitute to Humphrey-Roth amendment to the Export Administration Amendments, S. 979). The Reagan Administration supported the McClure substitute. Although both Houses of Congress voted to close these loopholes, the bill died in a House-Senate Conference, thus allowing the loopholes to continue.