Sept. 27, 2011 - The TRAIN Act, a bill (H.R. 2401) to require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to consider the potential negative business impact of certain rules before implementing them, passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 249-169 on Friday, September 23. Republicans were almost unanimously in favor, while most, but not all, Democrats voted against it.
A number of groups representing organizations financially affected by EPA regulations supported the bill, including the American Chemistry Council, Industrial Energy Consumers of America, the National Association of Manufacturers, the National Mining Association, the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association, and the U. S. Chamber of Commerce, as well as ideological groups such as Americans for Tax Reform and FreedomWorks. The measure was opposed by environmental groups including the Citizens Campaign for the Environment, the Clean Air Council, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Sierra Club.
- Industries that supported the measure (Republican/Conservative, Electric Power utilities, Chemicals, Petroleum refining & marketing, etc.) gave on average 3.4 times as much to representatives who voted 'YES', ($48,524) as they gave to representatives who voted 'NO' ($14,176). Environmental groups, who opposed the measure, gave on average 5.5 times as much to representatives who voted 'NO' ($4,609) as they gave to those who voted 'YES' ($832).
- The difference was even more pronounced among certain supporting industries, including Mining (19 times as much to lawmakers voting 'YES' as to lawmakers voting 'NO'), Petroleum refining and marketing (5.4 times as much to lawmakers voting 'YES' as to lawmakers voting 'NO') and Manufacturing (5.2 times as much to lawmakers voting 'YES' as to lawmakers voting 'NO').
- The 19 House Democrats who broke party ranks and voted 'YES' received on average $35,059 from supporting groups, 168% more than the average $13,077 received by the 165 Democrats who opposed the bill.
Methodology: MapLight analysis of campaign contributions to 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.