Spencer Abraham on Jobs

Former Secretary of Energy & Former Republican Senator (MI)


Bipartisanship needed to assist farm exports & migrants

    While certainly a number of differences remain on several issues, I think there is general agreement on a large number of facts:
  1. We as Americans would like to see our farmers competitive in global markets and believe it is important to have agricultural products produced in this country.
  2. Migrant farm workers have hard lives and we can all admire them for the difficult but important jobs they perform on a daily basis.
  3. It is far safer for farm workers born in other countries to enter America legally, rather than be faced with unscrupulous smugglers who show little concern for their safety.
  4. Finally, a farm worker who enters the United States to work legally will have greater legal recourse than an individual who is an illegal immigrant.
I make these points in the spirit of hoping that we can forge more common ground here today. My view at last year’s hearing and today: For legislation to move forward on this issue it will need to be on a bipartisan basis.
Source: Senate Immigration Subcommittee hearing , May 12, 1999

Voted YES on killing an increase in the minimum wage.

The Kennedy (D-MA) Amdt would have increased the minimum wage by $1 an hour over two years, to $5.65 an hour beginning Jan. 1, 2001. The Kennedy Amdt would have also provided $9.5 billion in tax cuts over five years.
Status: Motion to Table Agreed to Y)50; N)48; NV)2
Reference: Motion to table Kennedy Amdt #2751; Bill S. 625 ; vote number 1999-356 on Nov 9, 1999

Voted YES on allowing workers to choose between overtime & comp-time.

This bill would have allowed workers to choose between overtime and compensatory time.
Status: Cloture Motion Rejected Y)53; N)47
Reference: Motion to invoke cloture on a Committee amdt to S. 4; Bill S. 4 ; vote number 1997-68 on May 15, 1997

Voted YES on replacing farm price supports.

Replaces farm price supports with seven years of annual fixed payments.
Status: Bill Passed Y)64; N)32; NV)4
Reference: Agriculture Market Transition Act of 1996; Bill S. 1541 ; vote number 1996-19 on Feb 7, 1996

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