The House : Airline Ads


By a 246-171 vote, the House opted for Transportation Department rather than Federal Trade Commission regulation of airline advertising.

The vote left DOT as the sole regulator of such ads. It came during debate on an FTC reauthorization bill (HR 2897) that later was sent to conference with the Senate.

Under the amendment, the FTC was to have required publication of on-time performance records and more candor about discount tickets and frequent flyer programs.


Norman Y. Mineta (D-San Jose), who voted for the amendment, said consumers “are concerned about airlines. They are not complaining about advertising.”

Opponent Frederick C. Boucher (D-Va.) said the FTC must step in because “unfair and deceptive airline advertising . . . have helped to earn this industry the American people’s disdain and distrust.”

Members voting yes wanted DOT rather than tougher FTC regulation of airline ads.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Bates (D) x Rep. Hunter (R) x Rep. Lowery (R) x Rep. Packard (R) x

Farm Credit Bailout

By a 365-49 vote, the House sent to the Senate a bill (HR 3030) to keep the Farm Credit System, the nation’s largest farm lender, from going insolvent.

Open-ended in its cost to taxpayers, the bailout is expected to cover FSC losses of $4 billion to $6 billion in fiscal 1988-92. It would rescue the FSC, a quasi-federal collection of 37 banks and 400 credit associations, from the consequences of bad loans to agricultural borrowers.

Key elements of the salvage effort are creation of a “Farmer Mac” secondary market for farm mortgage loans and a Temporary Assistance Corp., through which shaky FSC units will get appropriated funds.


Supporter Ed Jones (D-Tenn.) said that without the bill, “many farm system institutions face the stark reality of collapse.”

Opponent Barney Frank (D-Mass.) chided colleagues who want government subsidies for farm borrowers alongside a free market for farm exporters.

Members voting yes wanted to bail out the Farm Credit System.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Bates (D) x Rep. Hunter (R) x Rep. Lowery (R) x Rep. Packard (R) x

Sentencing Reform

The House rejected, 183-231, a bill (HR 3307) to postpone the effective date of new sentencing guidelines for federal judges from Nov. 1 to Aug. 1, 1988.

Developed by a special commission under a 1984 law, the guidelines will add uniformity to federal sentencing.

Supporter John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) said more time is needed to instruct judges and court personnel in this “revolutionary change in the federal criminal justice system.”


Opponent Daniel E. Lungren (R-Long Beach) said the measure would provide “a window of opportunity for those who are convicted criminals.”

Members voting yes wanted to delay the sentencing guidelines for nine months.

How They Voted Yea Nay No vote Rep. Bates (D) x Rep. Hunter (R) x Rep. Lowery (R) x Rep. Packard (R) x