Congressman Cohen Votes for Record Level Spending on Health and Education Programs

December 17, 2019
Press Release
Voted against massive defense spending measure containing Trump’s border wall

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today voted for one of two comprehensive spending measures funding federal government programs through the end of fiscal year in September 2020. Both measures passed the House, averting another government shutdown. The measure the Congressman supported provides a record high level of spending on the National Institutes of Health, Child Care and Community Development Block Grants, Head Start, Title 1 Education, and Food for Peace. 

The bill includes $25 million, split between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, for firearms injury and mortality prevention, the first time this vital research has been funded in 20 years. It expands access to affordable housing, lowers prescription drug prices by increasing competition, protects the Affordable Care Act and raises the age for buying tobacco products to 21. The bill also provides an additional $36.2 million to Tennessee for highway and transit spending. 

The spending measure the Congressman did not support contained massive amounts of Department of Defense spending and $1.375 billion for President Trump’s unwanted border wall.  

Congressman Cohen made the following statement: 

“These spending bills are a major investment in the true needs of the American people but the amount of defense spending, and funding for Trump’s border wall, caused me to vote against the second measure. Recent revelations about Pentagon lies about progress in Afghanistan, and the rampant corruption our spending there has caused, was reason enough to vote against the measure. I also declined to acquiesce in an unnecessary and wasteful border wall. 

“Reversing the gun-lobby ban on federal research into gun violence will save lives. And mending our social safety net programs and bolstering medical research programs will strengthen American society. All of these provisions have now passed the House.”