Cut, Cap, and Balance Act Illustrates Ideological Divide in Washington

July 20, 2011 - The U.S. House of Representatives voted on Tuesday to pass the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act of 2011 (HR 2560) by a mostly party-line vote of 234-190. The bill is not expected to be voted on in the Democratically-controlled Senate, and President Obama has threatened to veto the measure.

The bill was supported by conservative-leaning groups such as Americans for Prosperity, Americans for Tax Reform, the Christian Coalition of America, the Club for Growth, FreedomWorks, and the Heritage Foundation. The bill was opposed by liberal policy groups, including a broad spectrum of union groups, Food & Water Watch, the NAACP, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund, the National Council of La Raza, and the National Immigration Law Center.

Based on the House Passage Vote of HR 2560 

  • Interest groups that supported this motion (Republican/Conservative, Christian Conservative, Fiscal & tax policy) gave on average 5.8 times as much to House members who voted 'YES' ($23,191) as they gave to House members who voted 'NO' ($3,973).
  • Interest groups that opposed this motion (Teachers unions, Democratic/Liberal, State & local govt employee unions, Minority/Ethnic Groups, Environmental policy, Women's issues, Gay & lesbian rights & issues, etc.) gave on average 5.4 times as much to House members who voted 'NO' ($200,915) as they gave to House members who voted 'YES' ($37,243).
  • Interest groups that opposed this motion gave on average 84% more to House Democrats who voted 'NO' ($209,649) than to House Democrats who voted 'YES' ($113,860).
  • Certain Republican lawmakers, notably Presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann, voted against the measure because it did not call for further cuts -- in particular, defunding President Obama's health care reform law.

Methodology: MapLight analysis of campaign contributions of House members in office on day of vote, from interest groups invested in the vote according to MapLight, January 1, 2009 – December 31, 2010. Campaign contributions data source: OpenSecrets.org.

About MapLight: MapLight is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization that reveals money's influence on politics. If our work has been helpful to you, please consider supporting us.