QUESTION: Clinton and McCain voting history on Iraq and Afghanistan war

question / pregunta: 

How have Hillary Clinton, John McCain and Barack Obama voted on key pieces of legislation authorizing spending on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars? The top 10 or 15 spending bills would be sufficient to establish a pattern.

I'm a member of the Int'l Socialist Organization and we would like to use this information on our signs.

This research should go back to the beginning of the Iraq War, since neither Clinton nor Obama were Senators in 2001 when the war in Afghanistan was launched.


Answer posted by:
jim miller

This one does not appear to be a quick job of research, unless you get very lucky with a newspaper database via your local library. Free web news I don't think will go back nearly far enough, maybe not even the current year. Individual papers often have archive searches, but it's rare that they don't charge at least a small fee for articles.

Your best place to try is probably Roll Call Votes in They include Congresses back to the 101st (1989-90), with the House having only the 2nd session (1990) for that Congress. But it appears to me you would need to try many different searches using "find in page" (CTRL-F), to find words such as "war", "Iraq", "terror" etc., in those actual page listings of all roll call votes. The Search function in the upper right of the Roll Call Votes page gets many hearing pages, not just votes. Even if you try: "roll call" war, you get hundreds of announcements of upcoming votes, etc.

Another approach would be the Appropriations bills listings, which are broken down by major categories. For example, the 2002 listing includes 1 "Public Law" under "Defense" and 9 under "Supplemental Appropriations". When you click on the "Public Law" links, then on "Bill summary and status", you can get "major congressional actions", "all congressional actions" and "all actions with amendments". No doubt some of the war funding bills will be well buried inside amendments or other bills, so it might even be worth a search in to see if there is a nice summary of how senators have voted over the course of these wars. Even the Democratic or Republican National Committee sites might possibly have a summary - but you would for sure want to use those mainly as a short cut to double check against your searches in Thomas