A previous blog talked about the Republican successful strategy in cutting funding for energy research, the America COMPETES Act, by tying the vote to two amendments that members would have a difficult time explaining. One amendment prohibited paying federal employees who had illegally looked at pornography and the other prohibited funding to universities that limited access to campus by military recruiters. After a few false steps, the House Rules Committee was able to set up a structure to allow individual votes on pornography, military campus recruiters, and cutting the funds for research. The anti-pornography amendment passed 409-0. The amendment not allowing funds to universities that limit military on campus passed 348-68. The amendment to cut the funding failed 197-215.
The bill would put basic research programs on a path toward doubling funding over ten years. The bill would authorize programs like Innovative Technology Federal Loan Guarantees, which address the immediate needs of small- and medium-sized manufacturers to access capital to become more efficient and stay competitive. The bill also includes authorization of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Energy and Energy Innovation Hubs to help advance the U.S.’s transition to a clean energy economy and to support the growth of new sectors in the economy, and the jobs that come with them. The final bill passed on a vote of 262-150. The bill now goes to the Senate.