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Legislative Action
Click here for updates on current legislation to close the SOA/ WHINSEC, tips on lobbying your Members of Congress and more!

Latin America Military Training Review Act of 2005 PDF Print E-mail
On March 10, 2005, Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) reintroduced legislation in the 109th Congress to suspend operations at the School of the Americas/ WHINSEC. HR 1217, "The Latin America Military Training Review Act of 2005," had 78 bi-partisan introductory co-sponsors thanks to the determined efforts of SOA Watch activists during the 2005 February Lobby Day and National Call-in Day! At the end of the 109th Congress, the bill was not voted on in committee or the full House and closed with 134 bi-partisan co-sponsors plus Rep. McGovern.

For more information on HR 1217, read the text of the bill or check out the list of cosponsors at the bottom of the page.


134 COSPONSORS OF H.R. 1217 (+ Rep. McGovern) (as of 6/20/2006):

  • Rep Abercrombie, Neil [HI-1]
  • Rep Ackerman, Gary L. [NY-5]
  • Rep Allen, Thomas H. [ME-1]
  • Rep Andrews, Robert E. [NJ-1]
  • Rep Baird, Brian [WA-3]
  • Rep Baldwin, Tammy [WI-2]
  • Rep Bean, Melissa L. [IL-8]
  • Rep Biggert, Judy [IL-13]
  • Rep Bishop, Timothy H. [NY-1]
  • Rep Blumenauer, Earl [OR-3]
  • Rep Boehlert, Sherwood [NY-24]
  • Rep Boucher, Rick [VA-9]
  • Rep Brown, Sherrod [OH-13]
  • Rep Capps, Lois [CA-23]
  • Rep Capuano, Michael E. [MA-8]
  • Rep Cardin, Benjamin L. [MD-3]
  • Rep Carson, Julia [IN-7]
  • Rep Clay, Wm. Lacy [MO-1]
  • Rep Cleaver, Emanuel [MO-5]
  • Rep Conyers, John, Jr. [MI-14]
  • Rep Costello, Jerry F. [IL-12]
  • Rep Crowley, Joseph [NY-7]
  • Rep Cummings, Elijah E. [MD-7]
  • Rep Davis, Danny K. [IL-7]
  • Rep DeFazio, Peter A. [OR-4]
  • Rep DeGette, Diana [CO-1]
  • Rep Delahunt, William [MA-10]
  • Rep DeLauro, Rosa L. [CT-3]
  • Rep Dicks, Norman D. [WA-6]
  • Rep Doggett, Lloyd [TX-25]
  • Rep Doyle, Michael F. [PA-14]
  • Rep Emanuel, Rahm [IL-5]
  • Rep Engel, Eliot L. [NY-17]
  • Rep Eshoo, Anna G. [CA-14]
  • Rep Evans, Lane [IL-17]
  • Rep Farr, Sam [CA-17]
  • Rep Fattah, Chaka [PA-2]
  • Rep Filner, Bob [CA-51]
  • Rep Fitzpatrick, Michael G. [PA-8]
  • Rep Frank, Barney [MA-4]
  • Rep Gordon, Bart [TN-6]
  • Rep Green, Al [TX-9]
  • Rep Green, Gene [TX-29]
  • Rep Grijalva, Raul M. [AZ-7]
  • Rep Gutierrez, Luis V. [IL-4]
  • Rep Higgins, Brian [NY-27]
  • Rep Hinchey, Maurice D. [NY-22]
  • Rep Hinojosa, Ruben [TX-15]
  • Rep Holden, Tim [PA-17]
  • Rep Holt, Rush D. [NJ-12]
  • Rep Honda, Michael M. [CA-15]
  • Rep Hooley, Darlene [OR-5]
  • Rep Inslee, Jay [WA-1]
  • Rep Israel, Steve [NY-2]
  • Rep Jackson, Jesse L., Jr. [IL-2]
  • Rep Jefferson, William J. [LA-2]
  • Rep Johnson, Eddie B. [TX-30]
  • Rep Jones, Stephanie Tubbs [OH-11]
  • Rep Kaptur, Marcy [OH-9]
  • Rep Kennedy, Patrick J. [RI-1]
  • Rep Kildee, Dale E. [MI-5]
  • Rep Kilpatrick, Carolyn C [MI-13]
  • Rep Kind, Ron [WI-3]
  • Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. [OH-10]
  • Rep LaHood, Ray [IL-18]
  • Rep Lantos, Tom [CA-12]
  • Rep Larsen, Rick [WA-2]
  • Rep Larson, John B. [CT-1]
  • Rep Leach, James A. [IA-2]
  • Rep Lee, Barbara [CA-9]
  • Rep Levin, Sander M. [MI-12]
  • Rep Lewis, John [GA-5]
  • Rep Lofgren, Zoe [CA-16]
  • Rep Lowey, Nita M. [NY-18]
  • Rep Lynch, Stephen F. [MA-9]
  • Rep Maloney, Carolyn B. [NY-14]
  • Rep Markey, Edward J. [MA-7]
  • Rep Matsui, Doris O. [CA-5]
  • Rep McCarthy, Carolyn [NY-4]
  • Rep McCollum, Betty [MN-4]
  • Rep McDermott, Jim [WA-7]
  • Rep McKinney, Cynthia A. [GA-4]
  • Rep McNulty, Michael R [NY-21]
  • Rep Meehan, Martin T. [MA-5]
  • Rep Meeks, Gregory W. [NY-6]
  • Rep Michaud, Michael H. [ME-2]
  • Rep Miller, George [CA-7]
  • Rep Moore, Dennis [KS-3]
  • Rep Moore, Gwen [WI-4]
  • Rep Nadler, Jerrold [NY-8]
  • Rep Neal, Richard E. [MA-2]
  • Rep Nussle, Jim [IA-1]
  • Rep Oberstar, James L. [MN-8]
  • Rep Olver, John W. [MA-1]
  • Rep Owens, Major R. [NY-11]
  • Rep Pallone, Frank, Jr. [NJ-6]
  • Rep Pascrell, Bill, Jr. [NJ-8]
  • Rep Pastor, Ed [AZ-4]
  • Rep Paul, Ron [TX-14]
  • Rep Payne, Donald M. [NJ-10]
  • Rep Petri, Thomas E. [WI-6]
  • Rep Price, David E. [NC-4]
  • Rep Rahall, Nick J., II [WV-3]
  • Rep Ramstad, Jim [MN-3]
  • Rep Rangel, Charles B. [NY-15]
  • Rep Rothman, Steven R. [NJ-9]
  • Rep Rush, Bobby L. [IL-1]
  • Rep Ryan, Tim [OH-17]
  • Rep Sabo, Martin Olav [MN-5]
  • Rep Sanchez, Linda T. [CA-39]
  • Rep Sanders, Bernard [VT]
  • Rep Schakowsky, Janice [IL-9]
  • Rep Serrano, Jose E. [NY-16]
  • Rep Shays, Christopher [CT-4]
  • Rep Slaughter, Louise [NY-28]
  • Rep Smith, Adam [WA-9]
  • Rep Stark, Fortney Pete [CA-13]
  • Rep Strickland, Ted [OH-6]
  • Rep Stupak, Bart [MI-1]
  • Rep Tierney, John F. [MA-6]
  • Rep Towns, Edolphus [NY-10]
  • Rep Udall, Mark [CO-2]
  • Rep Udall, Tom [NM-3]
  • Rep Van Hollen, Chris [MD-8]
  • Rep Velazquez, Nydia M. [NY-12]
  • Rep Walsh, James T. [NY-25]
  • Rep Waters, Maxine [CA-35]
  • Rep Watson, Diane E. [CA-33]
  • Rep Waxman, Henry A. [CA-30]
  • Rep Weiner, Anthony D. [NY-9]
  • Rep Wexler, Robert [FL-19]
  • Rep Woolsey, Lynn C. [CA-6]
  • Rep Wu, David [OR-1]
  • Rep Wynn, Albert Russell [MD-4]
  •  
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    We won the debate and are close to winning Congress! PDF Print E-mail
     
    We won the debate and are close to winning Congress! PDF Print E-mail

    SOA Watch Legislative Update & Action Alert
    June 9, 2006 at 7:00 pm

    We won the debate and
    are close to winning Congress!

    Your work and the amazing contributions of over 40 national religious, labor and political organizations delivered an incredible vote today in what is possibly the most conservative Congress in U.S. history. Because of you, for the first time in six years, we won the debate, and we had a vote in Congress that garnered the support of 188 Representatives who voted to cut funding the School of the Americas/ WHINSEC, including almost 30 Republicans!

    Today's session was a critical day in our ongoing campaign to close the School of the Americas and to bring accountability to a ?school of shame.? Now we know where Members of the House stand ? and who we need to target. You now have the opportunity to invite at least 55 Members who voted with us but who aren?t yet co-sponsors of HR 1217 to sign on to our bill to suspend and investigate the SOA/ WHISNEC. See the final roll call here: http://www.soaw.org/legislative

    This week you successfully leveraged more pressure on Congress than was leveraged on any other issue, and you had the Republican leadership in the House worried about the vote. At the last minute, the right wing pulled out all the stops to get the bare minimum of votes needed ? 218 ? to defeat the amendment.

    Our bill, HR 1217, is still alive! Today?s amendment vote is a good marker for us, and it will continue to serve as a tool for educating Members of Congress. Today?s vote will keep up our momentum as we continue to build support for HR 1217!

    Our supporters won today?s debate hands-down. Representatives Lowey (NY), the ranking member of the House; Barbara Lee (CA), of the Human Rights Caucus; Schakowsky (IL); Meehan (MA); Kucinich (OH); and McGovern (MA) laid out strong arguments in favor of cutting funding to WHINSEC, citing serious concerns over human rights abuses, over the harm the institution does to relationships with Latin American nations and over known human rights abusers returning to WHINSEC.

    Each Representative in favor of the amendment gave compelling and specific examples that supported their arguments. Those speaking against the amendment were not nearly as eloquent -- and didn't even have enough speakers to fill their time!

    We have had an unprecedented level of success with our bill, HR 1217. We have more Republicans as co-sponsors than we?ve ever had; about 30 Republicans voted with us today; and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), the House Minority Leader, a majority of the Human Rights Caucus and Budget Chairman Jim Nussle (R-IA) are on board with the bill.

    We have made incredible strides forward, and we know that one day this school of torture, this school of coups, this school of repression will be closed down for good. We are continuing to grow our movement here in North America. Three South American countries have already pulled out of the school, and more may be on the way! Across the Americas, major social change is happening, and people?s movements continue to elect leaders that listen to the will of the people. There is much about which we can be hopeful. Now as we continue the momentum you must take action!

    Take action:

    1. Thank your Member of Congress if she or he voted with us

    It?s really important that we thank Representatives who voted with us on this amendment, and that we continue to build relationships with staffers in their offices.

    It?s also important that we hold Representatives accountable. If you Rep did not represent your views in Washington, we urge you to contact her or him by writing a letter and expressing your disappointment that she or he did not vote according to your wishes. Ask your Representative to provide an explanation for why she or he voted the way they did. If you receive a response, please forward a copy to the Legislative Coordinator in the DC office.

    See the final Roll Call showing how each Representatitve voted: June 2006 Vote Results.

    2. Continue to build support for HR 1217

    Our bill is still alive and now has more support!

    Keep working on those Representatives that haven?t yet co-sponsored. Check out the Legislative Action Index at http://www.soaw.org/legislative for how your Rep voted on this amendment. If they are not currently a cosponsor of HR 1217, this is an opportunity for us to add additional cosponsors to the bill to close and investigate the SOA/ WHINSEC. Contact the Foreign Affairs Legislative Aide in your Rep's DC office and urge them to add their boss as a cosponsor to HR 1217.

    3. Make your plans now to attend this year's Vigil to Close the School of the Americas: November 17-19, 2006

    This November 17-19, thousands will gather at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia for the Vigil to Close the School of the Americas! Following on the heels of our powerful 2005 gathering and our first vote in Congress in six years, this year's Vigil is shaping up to be a powerful time for movement building and an effective tool in the campaign to close the SOA/ WHINSEC.

    Read more, find out hotel, travel and accessibility information and more.

    4. Get more involved in the campaign!

    Many of you have gotten very involved in legislative work over the past few months. We?d love to have you stay involved! Consider joining the Legislative Working Group, and help us to continue to shape our Congressional strategy. For more information, contact Pam Bowman at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or at 202-234-3440.

    5. Fund the continuing legislative campaign and the campaign to encourage more Latin American countries to reject the SOA

    For SOA Watch to become a movement that has the power to make real change and to close the School of the Americas once and for all, the organization needs your financial support. Every dollar is needed. Please take a moment now to make a donation. Thank you!

    Make a secure donation through the SOA Watch website.

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