trict Court for the District of Columbia and the Supreme Court of
the United States to advance on the docket and to expedite to the
greatest possible extent the disposition of any matter brought
under subsection (a).
The CHAIRMAN. No amendments are in order except the
amendments printed in part 2 of House Report 103-52, which may
be offered only in the order printed and by the named proponent
or a designee, shall be considered as read, shall not be subject to
amendment except as specified in House Report 103-52, which
shall not be subject to a demand for division of the question. De-
bate on each amendment will be equally divided and controlled by
the proponent and an opponent of the amendment.
amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by MR.
Mr. CASTLE. Mr. Chairman, pursuant to the rule, I offer an
amendment printed in part 2 of the report of the Committee on
The CHAIRMAN. The Clerk will designate the amendment in
the nature of a substitute.
The text of the amendment in the nature of a substitute is as fol-
Amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by Mr. Castle,
Strike all £ifter the enacting clause and insert the following:
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Title may be cited as the "The Legislative Line Item Veto
Act of 1993".
SEC. 2. LEGISLATIVE LINE ITEM VETO RESCISSION AUTHORITY.
(a) In General. — Notwithstanding the provisions of part B of
title X of The Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act
of 1974, and subject to the provisions of this section, the President
may rescind all or part of any discretionary budget authority for
fiscal years 1994 and 1995 which is subject to the terms of this Act
if the President —
( 1) determines that —
(A) such rescission would help balance the Federal budg-
et, reduce the Federal budget deficit, or reduce the public
(B) such rescission will not impair any essential Govern-
(C) such rescission will not harm the national interest;
(D) such rescission will directly contribute to the purpose
of this Act of limiting discretionary spending in fiscal year
1994 or 1995; and
(2) notifies the Congress of such rescission by a special mes-
sage not later than 20 calendar days (not including Saturdays,
Sundays, or holidays) after the date of enactment of a regular
or supplemental appropriations act for fiscal year 1994 or 1995
or a joint resolution making continuing appropriations provid-
ing such budget authority for fiscal years 1994 and 1995.
The President shall submit a separate rescission message for each
appropriations bill under this paragraph.
SEC. 3. RESCISSION EFFECTIVE UNLESS DISAPPROVED.
(a) Any amount of budget authority rescinded under this Act as
set forth in a special message by the President shall be deemed
canceled unless during the period described in subsection (b), a re-
scission disapproval bill making available all of the amount re-
scinded is enacted into law.
(b) The period referred to in subsection (a) is —
( 1) a congressional review period of 20 calendar days of ses-
sion during which Congress must complete action on the rescis-
sion disapproval and present such bill to the President for ap-
proval or disapproval;
(2) after the period provided in paragraph (1), an additional
10 days (not including Sundays) during which the President
may exercise his authority to sign or veto the rescission dis-
approval bill; and
(3) if the President vetoes the rescission disapproval bill dur-
ing the period provided in paragraph (2), and additional 5 cal-
endar days of session after the date of the veto.
(c) If a special message is transmitted by the President under
this Act and the last session of the Congress adjourns sine die be-
fore the expiration of the period described in subsection (b), the re-
scission shall not take effect. The message shall be deemed to have
been retransmitted on the first day of the succeeding Congress and
the review period referred to in subsection (b) (with respect to such
message) shall run beginning after such first day.
SEC. 4. DEFINITIONS.
For purposes of this Act —
(a) The term "rescission disapproval bill" means a bill or joint
resolution which only disapproves a rescission of discretionary
budget authority for fiscal year 1994 or 1995, in whole, rescinded
in a special message transmitted by the President under this Act;
(b) The term "calendar days of session" shall mean only those
days on which both houses of Congress ar;e in session.
SEC. 5. CONGRESSIONAL CONSIDERATION OF LEGISLATION LINE
ITEM VETO RESCISSIONS.
(a) Presidential Special Message. — ^Whenever the President
rescinds any budget authority as provided in this Act, the Presi-
dent shall transmit to both Houses of Congress a special message
(1) the amount of budget authority rescinded;
(2) any account, department, or establishment of the Govern-
ment to which such budget authority is available for obligation,
and the specific project or governmental functions involved;
(3) the reasons and justifications for the determination to re-
scind budget authority pursuant to this Act;
(4) to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated fiscal,
economic, and budgetary effect of the rescission; and
(5) all factions, circumstances, and considerations relating to
or bearing upon the rescission and the decision to affect the re-
scission, and to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated
effect of the rescission upon the objects, purposes, and pro-
grams for which the budget authority is provided.
(b) Transmission of Messages to House and Senate. —
(1) Each special message transmitted under this Act shall be
transmitted to the House of Representatives and the Senate on
the same day, and shall be delivered to the Clerk of the House
of Representatives if the house is not in session, and to the
Secretary of the Senate if the Senate is not in session. Each
special message so transmitted shall be referred to the appro-
priate committees of the House of Representatives and the
Senate. Each such message shall be printed as a document of
(2) Any special message transmitted under this Act shall be
printed in the first issue of the Federal Register published
after such transmittal.
(c) Referral of Rescission Disapproval Bills.— Any rescission
disapproval bill introduced with respect to a special message shall
be referred to the appropriate committees of the House of Rep-
resentatives or the Senate, as the case may be.
(d) Consideration in the Senate. —
(1) Any rescission disapproval bill received in the Senate
from the House shall be considered in the Senate pursuant to
the provisions of this Act.
(2) Debate in the Senate on any rescission disapproval bill
and debatable motions and appeals in connection therewith,
shall be limited to not more than 10 hours. The time shall be
equally divided between, and controlled by, the majority leader
and the minority leader or their designees.
(3) Debate in the Senate on any debatable motion or appeal
in connection with such bill shall be limited to 1 hour to be
equally divided between, and controlled by the mover and the
manager of the bill, except that in the event the manager of
the bill is in favor of any such motion or appeal, the time in
opposition thereto shall be controlled by the minority leader or
his designee. Such leaders, or either of them, may, from the
time under their control on the passage of the bill, allot addi-
tional time to any Senator during the consideration of any de-
batable motion or appeal.
(4) A motion to further limit debate is not debatable. A mo-
tion to recommit (except a motion to recommit with instruc-
tions to report back within a specified number of days not to
exceed 1, not counting any day on which the Senate is not in
session) is not in order.
(e) Points of Order. —
(1) It shall not be in order in the Senate or the House of Rep-
resentatives to consider any rescission disapproval bill that re-
lates to any matter other th£in the rescission budget authority
transmitted by the President under this Act.
(2) It shall not be in order in the Senate or the House of Rep-
resentatives to consider £iny amendment to a rescission dis-
(3) Paragraphs (1) and (2) may be waived or suspended in
the Senate only by a vote of three-fifths of the members duly
chosen and sworn.
The CHAIRMAN. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from
Delaware [Mr. Castle] will be recognized for 30 minutes, and a
Member opposed will be recognized for 30 minutes.
The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Delaware [Mr. Cas-
Mr. CASTLE. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 3 minutes.
Mr. Chairman, accountability. This is the purpose of the line-
item veto. Passage of line-item veto authority for the President will
make both the President and the Congress more accountable to the
American people. The substitute proposed by Jerry Solomon,
Peter Blute, Jack Quinn, and myself is the best method to make
our Grovemment more accountable for its spending decisions. The
Castle-Solomon substitute is the line-item veto.
As a former Governor, I can tell you from experience that a line-
item veto by itself will not end the deficit. It will not balance the
budget. It is not a magic solution to our budget problems. However,
it is an effective method to improve how we spend the taxpayers
money. By making both the President and Congress more account-
able for their spending decisions, we will produce better legislation
with less wasteful spending.
Accountability is the key. If the President has the line-item veto,
he cannot shirk his responsibility for funding programs that are
unnecessary, he will not be able to blame so-called pork barrel
spending on Congress. If he does not agree with a specific appro-
priation, he can cross it out and demand that Congress justify the
spending by disapproving his veto.
Accountability. The line-item veto will make Congress more ac-
countable to the American people. With the line-item veto in place.
Congress will take a harder look at the programs it funds. Con-
gress will not be able to send an appropriations bill to the Presi-
dent that includes projects which do not stand up to scrutiny.
To my colleagues who fear that the line-item veto will give the
executive branch of our Grovemment too much power at the ex-
pense of the legislative branch, this will not occur. Rather, experi-
ence shows us that the existence of the veto simply encourages the
executive and the legislature to negotiate reasonable, responsible
legislation which does not fund pork barrel projects.
Today, the true line-item veto is contained in the Castle-Solomon
amendment. This amendment would authorize the President to re-
scind or cut any discretionary appropriation for the next 2 years.
These cuts would go into effect unless both Houses of Congress
voted against the spending cuts. This is the crux of the matter.
Congress should have to vote to disapprove the President's cuts.
The Spratt-Stenholm bill allows either House to derail the cuts
simply by not passing legislation to approve them. To be honest,
this wiggle room will allow Congress to avoid confronting the tough
decisions the American people want them to make on spending.
The Castle/Solomon amendment is a true line-item veto. It would
require both Houses of Congress to disapprove the President's cuts.
The President could then veto the disapproval bill and his veto
would have to be overridden by a two-thirds vote in both Houses.
If this fails, the cuts go into effect.
Mr. Chairman, a true line-item veto will not tilt the balance of
power in the Federal Government to the executive branch. It will
serve as a tool to bring Republicans, Democrats, Congress and the
administration together to produce responsible levels of spending
on Federal programs. I urge my colleagues to enact a true line-item
veto — pass the Castle-Solomon substitute.
The CHAIRMAN. The Chair will inquire, does the gentleman
from South Carolina [Mr. Derrick] oppose the amendment?
Mr. DERRICK. I do, Mr. Chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from
South Carolina [Mr. Derrick].
Mr. DERRICK. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 4^2 minutes, and
I rise in opposition to the amendment.
Mr. Chairman, the Castle-Solomon amendment does not improve
the bill, and Members ought to reject it for one simple reason: The
procedure proposed in this amendment would enable a one-third-
plus-one minority of either House to join with a President to dic-
tate the fiscal priorities of this country.
Under this amendment, a President could propose rescissions
and they would take effect permanently unless Congress voted to
disapprove them by majority vote within a specified time. Since a
President will surely veto any bill to disapprove his rescissions, for
Congress' fiscal priorities to prevail would require a two-thirds vote
in both Houses to override the veto. Conversely, for the President
to prevail, he need convince only one-third plus one of either House
to sustain his veto.
Mr. Chairman, the principle which underlies our democratic sys-
tem of government is majority rule. I do not believe it wise for Con-
gress to create a rescission process in which a President, with the
support of only 34 senators or 146 representatives, could dictate
fiscal policy, on a line-by-line basis, to majorities in both the House
and Senate. We should not tilt the balance of the power of the
purse so dramatically in the President's favor, no matter who he
is and no matter what political party he belongs to.
What reason do we have to believe the President's fiscal prior-
ities are inherently better than those of the Congress? Assuming
deficit reduction is the policy goal we want to advance, what reason
have we to believe the Executive branch institutionally favors less
spending than Congress? In fact, there is considerable evidence to
How many times has the chairman of our Committee on Appro-
priations told us that since 1945 the Committee has appropriated
billions of dollars less than the various Presidents have requested?
Moreover, since 1974 Presidents have proposed only $69.3 billion
in rescissions; Congress has actually rescinded over $71 billion in
Mr. Chairman, the goal of the underlying bill, and indeed this
entire exercise, is to add accountability for spending decisions to
the appropriations process. The goal is not merely to advance and
promote the President's brand of spending over Congress' brand of
spending, which is what the Castle-Solomon amendment would do.
We are dealing with the fundamental relationship between the
two political branches. We must not give any President the ability
to shove his priorities down Congress' throat. We have no idea
what his priorities might be; we Imow only they will be different.
If the President can convince a majority of each House to reject the
items he has identified as wasteful and proposed to repeal, then he
ought to prevail. But he ought not prevail with only minority sup-
port. If he lacks majority support for his position, then he can still
use his regular veto.
Mr. Chairman, the bill is designed to give the President an op-
portunity and in fact impose upon him the responsibility to ferret
out arguably wasteful items in appropriations acts and force Con-
gress to approve them again. I believe the bill will achieve the de-
sired effect without disrupting the balance of power so carefully
created by our Founding Fathers.
The Castle-Solomon amendment, on the other hand, simply goes
too far. It would enable the President and a minority in one House
to dictate his priorities to majorities in both Houses. I urge all
Members to reject the amendment and support the bill.
I reserve the balance of my time.
Mr. CASTLE. Mr. Chairman, I yield 2V2 minutes to the distin-
guished gentleman from Texas [Mr. Armey].
Mr. ARMEY. Mr. Chairman, I thank the gentleman for yielding.
Mr. Chairman, it is important to realize that this whole debate
today is about amending the Budget Reform and Empowerment
Control Act of 1974. It was with that bill that Congress grabbed
enormous power from the executive branch and totally destroyed
the budgetary checks and balances between the legislative and the
executive branches by taking away the rescission authority of the
It is my belief that had that act not passed, we would not today
have a nation that clamors for a line-item veto or a nation that at
least says, "Give us a legitimate enhanced rescission."
Mr. Chairman, I have been working on this question of enhanced
rescission since 1985. I began working on it with a bright young
Senator from Indiana named Dan Quayle. It was our belief at that
time that we had to move in the direction of rescission because
Congress would never cede to the President a legitimate line-item
veto, and that enhanced rescission was some significant extension
of the President's power.
Since that time there have been three groups of people working
on this issue in Congress. There have been those of us who wanted
to have a legitimate extension of authority for the President of the
United States in budgetary matters. That interest is represented
today by the Solomon-Castle effort. That is the legitimate increase
in authority on the part of the executive branch by an amendment
to the Budget Act of 1974.
There has been another group of people that have said under no
terms whatsoever will we increase the President's authority in
these matters. Those are the people who will vote against any
form, any shape, any type of rescission legislation. They wish to
hog all the power for Congress.
Then there has been that really great group in the middle that
"Let's do the political thing: let's give the President something
that looks like rescission and has in fact no power in it, and then
give ourselves credit for giving him line item veto."
That effort today is represented by the Spratt amendment. The
Spratt amendment has a loophole.
Mr. Chairman, if you vote down Solomon-Castle and vote up
Spratt, you will give the nine Democrats on the Committee on
Rules of the House the right to defme the President's rescission au-
thority in fact. What is worse, you will give the Democrats the abil-
ity to pass this off as an extension of authority to the White House.
Save yourself the intellectual embarrassment. Vote yes on Solo-
mon; vote no on Spratt.
Mr. DERRICK. Mr. Chairman, I yield 3 minutes to the distin-
guished gentleman from Colorado [Mr. Skaggs].
Mr. SKAGGS. Mr. Chairman, I wish to express my opposition to
the proposed amendment. While I am sure that my colleagues who
are sponsoring this amendment have done so in good faith, I am
convinced that their proposal would not withstand judicial review.
As the Supreme Court noted in its decision in I.N.S. versus
Chadha, "Explicit and unambiguous provisions of the Constitution
prescribe and define the respective functions of the Congress and
of the Executive in the legislative process." The Court continues,
"These provisions of Article 1 are integral parts of the constitu-
tional design for the separation of powers."
The substitute amendment before the House clearly changes the
balance of powers between the executive and legislative branches
by allowing the President to become more directly involved in the
legislative process. In doing so, it violates the Constitution's sepa-
ration of powers.
The Framers of the Constitution clearly placed great emphasis
on the legislative branch. In their Federalist papers, Hamilton and
Madison both expressed the view that the legislature would be the
most powerful branch of government. Thus, they recognized the
need for some checks on the legislature. First, the Constitution pro-
vides for a bicameral legislature, with each body elected under dif-
ferent terms and districts. Second, it affords the President a veto
That veto power, as a check on Congress, was recognized to be
a blunt instrument. As Hamilton explains in Federalist paper No.
373, in giving the President a veto power, the Framers acknowl-
edged that "the power of preventing bad laws includes that of pre-
venting good ones." It was their sense, however, that "the negative
would be employed with great caution."
Although the Framers' expectations about its frequency have
lately proved incorrect, the veto was certainly not seen by them as
a vehicle to involve the President directly in designing or perfecting
The proposed substitute, by providing the President with the au-
thority to selectively veto parts of legislation without requiring sub-
sequent bicameral legislative action, clearly moves beyond the
framework defined in article 1, section 7. Unlike the substitute, the
underlying proposal, H.R. 1578, preserves the prerogatives of the
Under the substitute amendment, what the President decides to
eliminate is simply eliminated, unless the Congress acts to restore
it. This would allow the President and a minority in Congress to
frustrate the will of the majority — an outcome that flies in the face
of the Framers' strong belief in the central role of a democratically
elected legislature. As we are now witnessing in the other body,
such an outcome is not just a remote possibility — a minority may
well be willing to frustrate the will of the majority, and undermine
the common good, for its own perceived political advantage.
Finally, it is interesting to note that both Hamilton and Madison
often chose to refer to the veto process as one of returning bills to
the Legislature for reconsideration. Unlike the substitute amend-
ment, the underlying bill, H.R. 1578, is clearly consistent with this
view of the process. Its procedures for quick action by Congress on
either the President's rescission proposal or an alternative package
provides the means to ensure fiscal accountability while prompting
the type of legislative reconsideration the framers desired.
What may seem to some to be procedural problems with the pro-
posed substitute amendment should not be viewed so lightly. As
the Court explained in Chadha:
"The choices we discern as having been made in the Constitu-
tional Convention impose burdens on governmental processes that
often seem clumsy, inefficient, even unworkable, but those hard
choices were consciously made by men who had lived under a form
of government that permitted arbitrary governmental acts to go un-
checked. There is no support in the Constitution or decisions of this
Court for the proposition that the cumbersomeness and delays
often encountered in complying with explicit constitutional stand-
ards may be avoided, either by the Congress or by the President.
With all the obvious flaws of delay, untidiness, and potential for
abuse, we have not yet found a better way to preserve freedom
than by making the exercise of power subject to the carefully craft-
ed restraints spelled out in the Constitution."
So, despite the honorable intentions of my colleagues, I believe
that their substitute amendment goes too far in altering the sepa-
ration of powers set forth in the Constitution. H.R. 1578, on the
other hand, meets our desires for more fiscal accountability, while
being consistent with the design of government established in our
Constitution. I urge my colleagues to reject the substitute before it
is rejected by the Courts.
Mr. CASTLE. Mr. Chairman, I yield 3 minutes to the distin-
guished gentleman from Massachusetts [Mr. Blute].
Mr. BLUTE. Mr. Chairman, I thank the gentleman from Dela-
ware [Mr. Castle] for yielding, the former Governor who actually
wielded a line-item veto authority in his State.
Mr. Chairman, this is it. This is our opportunity to make real
change, like we talked about on the campaign trail just a few
months ago, and like the President talked about on the campaign
trail when he asked and campaigned for the line-item veto author-
ity. Not the enhanced rescission or expedited rescission. The Presi-
dent had a dialog with the American people and said that he need-
ed the line-item veto authority in order to get excessive spending
Once again, what happened on the way to governing? What
changed in the interim to reverse the President's request?
I think if anything, the arguments for the line-item veto have in-
creased in the ensuing months, particularly since we are talking in
this House and in the other body about the raising, the largest tax