Louisiana lawmakers speak on fiscal cliff bill voting

Louisiana lawmakers speak on fiscal cliff bill voting
Louisiana Politics

POSTED: Wednesday, January 2, 2013 - 6:00pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, January 2, 2013 - 7:13pm

Louisiana lawmakers spent part of today explaining their votes for or against the fiscal cliff bill last night.

Most everyone NBC33 talked with today said the bill was far from perfect; they stated that their vote came down to how the bill would help in the short term versus what it could do down the road.

Here's a look at who voted for the bill: Representatives Rodney Alexander (R) from Quitman and Cedric Richmond (D) from New Orleans. Both of Louisiana's senators also voted for the bill - Mary Landrieu (D) and David Vitter (R).

That's about as bipartisan as it got when it came to Louisiana.

Here's a look at who voted against it:
Baton Rouge representative William Cassidy, Charles Boustany from Lafayette, Steve Scalise of Jefferson, Jeff Landry of New Iberia and John Fleming of Minden; all of them are Republicans.

Those who voted on the bill last night said that something needed to be done to prevent us from going over the cliff and that's really all this bill did.

“There are a bunch of things in the bill that i don't like,” stated Richmond. “However, I think the good outweighs the bad - the fact that we've made tax cuts permanent and the fact that we've extended the Earned Income Tax Credit. I mean, there are a number of things in here that were very important. There are number of things that Congress has been trying to fix for years and year and years.”

Cassidy agreed, “If you're on Medicare you may not agree with that. If you're looking forward to retirement and social security is going to be a significant part of your income, you may not agree with that. Nobody wanted to go over the cliff, but everybody understands we've got to at some point restore a fiscal house and preserve these important programs like Medicare and Social Security.

The bill passed the house last night 257-167 after an hour of debate.

Senators Landrieu and Vitter voted yes around 3:00 a.m. on New Years' Day. House members voted late last night.

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