1984 Scorecard Vote
The vote is on the Bateman amendment to weaken a bill intended to conserve the striped bass. These fish have been suffering a severe population decline along the Atlantic coast. In the last ten years their population has been cut by more than half, due to overfishing and pollution of their spawning areas by toxics such as PCBs. Striped bass have traditionally been a major sport and commercial fish from Maine to North Carolina. Their decline is estimated to have cost the Northeast about 7,000 jobs and $220 million in 1980.
The bill required each state to reduce its catch by 55%. Failure to do so would result in a complete moratorium on striped bass fishing in that state. The Bateman amendment would have given the Secretary of Commerce the power to drop this penalty, thus allowing states to apply political pressure to get off the hook on this important wildlife conservation requirement.
Batement amendment rejected 98-307; October 4, 1984. NO is the pro-environmental vote. (Bateman amendment to the Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation bill, H.R. 5492.) The Reagan Administration took no position on the amendment. The bill was signed into law without the Bateman provision.