Effort to eliminate Transportation Enhancements defeated in U.S. Senate, 60-38

An effort in the U.S. Senate to eliminate Transportation Enhancements funding was defeated today by a vote of 60-38 in a bipartisan vote of support for bicycle and pedestrian funding.

Transportation Enhancements, the number one source of funding for bicycle and pedestrian projects in the United States, was the target of an attack by Kentucky Senator Rand Paul.  

Transportation Enhancements project
Transportation Enhancements project

Issues and examples attempting to portray the projects as a poor use of federal funding used by Paul and opponents of Transportation Enhancements had been thoroughly debunked by the media and bicycle and pedestrian groups.  The AP even went so far as to say the Senator Paul "continued the misrepresentation" when he spoke on the Senator floor today.

MoBikeFed has described the bicycle and pedestrian projects as "important, popular, and much needed"--and it is gratifying that a majority of the U.S. Senate agrees with our view.

Who supported bike/ped funding - and who did not

As is usual in the current session of Congress, the vote was very much along party lines. All Senate Democrats voted for the bill, along with seven Republicans and an Independent. Thirty-eight Republicans voted against the bill.

The good news: In todays' atmosphere in Washington, DC, the fact that seven Republicans voted alongside Democrats on this issue is actually very significant bi-partisan support--particularly when Senators from states like Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Illinois join Democrats.

Republicans voting in support of Transportation Enhancements included three from states neighboring Missouri--Alexander (R-TN), Inhofe (R-OK), and Kirk (R-IL)--as well as  Brown (R-MA), Cochran (R-MS), Collins (R-ME), and Snowe (R-ME).

Missouri Senator McCaskill surprises; Senator Blunt disappoints

In Missouri, Senator Claire McCaskill (D) voted in support of Transportation Enhancements while Senator Roy Blunt (R) voted to eliminate the program.

Transportation Enhancements project
Transportation Enhancements project
This is very encouraging for Senator McCaskill, who has previously voted against Transportation Enhancements.

But it is very disappointing for Senator Blunt, who has voiced strong support for bicycle and pedestrian funding in letters to constitutents who have contacted him about this issue.

It would be very helpful to follow up by writing to Senator McCaskill and thank her for her support, while contacting Senator Blunt to (politely and persuasively) let him know how disappointed you are in his vote:

Nationwide citizens' campaign was successful--thank you!

National bicycle, pedestrian, and transportation groups organized a grass roots effort across the country to have citizens contact their senators in support of Transportation Enhancements.  Local and state groups like the Missouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Federation have been working hard to support the national campaign.

The results were very positive.  

Many thanks to all of you who contacted your Senators--it paid off this time!

Further information

Full text of the amendment as offered:

 SA 821. Mr. PAUL submitted an amendment intended to be proposed to amendment SA 738 proposed by Mr.Inouye to the bill H.R. 2112, making appropriations for Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2012, and for other purposes; which was ordered to lie on the table; as follows:

Transportation Enhancements project
Transportation Enhancements project

On page 213, line 13, insert:

Provided further, That notwithstanding section 133(d)(2) of title 23, United States Code, none of the funds made available under this heading may be used to implement or execute transportation enhancement activities:

Provided further, That at least 10 percent of the funds made available under this heading shall be made available for the highway bridge program authorized under section 144 of title 23, United States Code'' before the period at the end.

Roll Call Vote

Note that the amendment is to eliminate Transportatin Enhancements funding.  Therefore a "Nay" vote is is support of Transportation Enhancements funding, while a "Yea" vote is to eliminate Enhancements funding.


   Alphabetical by Senator Name 

Akaka (D-HI), Nay 
Alexander (R-TN), Nay 
Ayotte (R-NH), Yea 
Barrasso (R-WY), Yea 
Baucus (D-MT), Nay 
Begich (D-AK), Nay 
Bennet (D-CO), Nay 
Bingaman (D-NM), Nay 
Blumenthal (D-CT), Nay 
Blunt (R-MO), Yea 
Boozman (R-AR), Yea 
Boxer (D-CA), Nay 
Brown (D-OH), Nay 
Brown (R-MA), Nay 
Burr (R-NC), Not Voting 
Cantwell (D-WA), Nay 
Cardin (D-MD), Nay 
Carper (D-DE), Nay 
Casey (D-PA), Nay 
Chambliss (R-GA), Yea 
Coats (R-IN), Yea 
Coburn (R-OK), Yea 
Cochran (R-MS), Nay 
Collins (R-ME), Nay 
Conrad (D-ND), Nay 
Coons (D-DE), Nay 
Corker (R-TN), Yea 
Cornyn (R-TX), Yea 
Crapo (R-ID), Yea 
DeMint (R-SC), Yea 
Durbin (D-IL), Nay 
Enzi (R-WY), Yea 
Feinstein (D-CA), Nay 
Franken (D-MN), Nay
Gillibrand (D-NY), Nay 
Graham (R-SC), Yea 
Grassley (R-IA), Yea 
Hagan (D-NC), Nay 
Harkin (D-IA), Nay 
Hatch (R-UT), Yea 
Heller (R-NV), Yea 
Hoeven (R-ND), Yea 
Hutchison (R-TX), Yea 
Inhofe (R-OK), Nay 
Inouye (D-HI), Nay 
Isakson (R-GA), Yea 
Johanns (R-NE), Yea 
Johnson (D-SD), Nay 
Johnson (R-WI), Yea 
Kerry (D-MA), Nay 
Kirk (R-IL), Nay 
Klobuchar (D-MN), Nay 
Kohl (D-WI), Nay 
Kyl (R-AZ), Yea 
Landrieu (D-LA), Nay 
Lautenberg (D-NJ), Nay 
Leahy (D-VT), Nay 
Lee (R-UT), Yea 
Levin (D-MI), Nay 
Lieberman (ID-CT), Nay 
Lugar (R-IN), Yea 
Manchin (D-WV), Nay 
McCain (R-AZ), Not Voting 
McCaskill (D-MO), Nay 
McConnell (R-KY), Yea 
Menendez (D-NJ), Nay 
Merkley (D-OR), Nay 
Mikulski (D-MD), Nay
Moran (R-KS), Yea 
Murkowski (R-AK), Yea 
Murray (D-WA), Nay 
Nelson (D-FL), Nay 
Nelson (D-NE), Nay 
Paul (R-KY), Yea 
Portman (R-OH), Yea 
Pryor (D-AR), Nay 
Reed (D-RI), Nay 
Reid (D-NV), Nay 
Risch (R-ID), Yea 
Roberts (R-KS), Yea 
Rockefeller (D-WV), Nay 
Rubio (R-FL), Yea 
Sanders (I-VT), Nay 
Schumer (D-NY), Nay 
Sessions (R-AL), Yea 
Shaheen (D-NH), Nay 
Shelby (R-AL), Yea 
Snowe (R-ME), Nay 
Stabenow (D-MI), Nay 
Tester (D-MT), Nay 
Thune (R-SD), Yea 
Toomey (R-PA), Yea 
Udall (D-CO), Nay 
Udall (D-NM), Nay 
Vitter (R-LA), Yea 
Warner (D-VA), Nay 
Webb (D-VA), Nay 
Whitehouse (D-RI), Nay 
Wicker (R-MS), Yea 
Wyden (D-OR), Nay


Grouped By Vote Position

YEAs ---38
Ayotte (R-NH)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coats (R-IN)
Coburn (R-OK)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hatch (R-UT)
Heller (R-NV)
Hoeven (R-ND)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Johnson (R-WI)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Lee (R-UT)
Lugar (R-IN)
McConnell (R-KY)
Moran (R-KS)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Paul (R-KY)
Portman (R-OH)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Rubio (R-FL)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Thune (R-SD)
Toomey (R-PA)
Vitter (R-LA)
Wicker (R-MS)
NAYs ---60
Akaka (D-HI)
Alexander (R-TN)
Baucus (D-MT)
Begich (D-AK)
Bennet (D-CO)
Bingaman (D-NM)
Blumenthal (D-CT)
Boxer (D-CA)
Brown (D-OH)
Brown (R-MA)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Cardin (D-MD)
Carper (D-DE)
Casey (D-PA)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Conrad (D-ND)
Coons (D-DE)
Durbin (D-IL)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Franken (D-MN)
Gillibrand (D-NY)
Hagan (D-NC)
Harkin (D-IA)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Inouye (D-HI)
Johnson (D-SD)
Kerry (D-MA)
Kirk (R-IL)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Kohl (D-WI)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Leahy (D-VT)
Levin (D-MI)
Lieberman (ID-CT)
Manchin (D-WV)
McCaskill (D-MO)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Merkley (D-OR)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Nelson (D-NE)
Pryor (D-AR)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Sanders (I-VT)
Schumer (D-NY)
Shaheen (D-NH)
Snowe (R-ME)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Tester (D-MT)
Udall (D-CO)
Udall (D-NM)
Warner (D-VA)
Webb (D-VA)
Whitehouse (D-RI)
Wyden (D-OR)
Not Voting - 2
Burr (R-NC) McCain (R-AZ)  


Roll Call Vote Source