1994 Scorecard Vote
As in the Senate (see Senate votes 6, 7, & 8), House debate on legislation to protect California's fragile desert lands was marked by controversy and frequent attempts at amendment. During the 11-week debate, in fact, lawmakers filed 43 amendments to the California Desert Protection Act (H.R. 518) introduced by Reps. Richard Lehman (D-CA) and George Miller (D-CA). Many amendments were offered by opponents as part of a strategy to prevent passage of the bill through extensive delays.
Recorded votes were taken on most of the proposed amendments, including the following:
Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) offered an amendment to prohibit the Department of Interior from using one of the traditional means of purchasing private lands for inclusion in the new Mojave National Park. Condemnation is the "last resort" power of government to acquire private lands by requiring landowners to accept fair market value for their property; the National Park Service rarely uses its condemnation authority to acquire lands. Had the Delay amendment passed, the Park Service would have lost the ability to acquire Mojave lands where the proposed development severely threatened wilderness, park-quality resources, and important historic sites.
On July 12, 1994, the House rejected the DeLay amendment by a vote of 145 - 274. NO is the pro-environment vote.