Senate advances amendments to water infrastructure bill

Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairwoman Barbara BoxerBarbara BoxerCarter pledges probe of sex assault testimony Senate panel backs B water bill with Flint aid The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (D-Calif.) and ranking member David VitterDavid VitterSenators aim to bolster active shooter training 5 takeaways from Mike Lee’s leadership bid Republicans demand shift in Obama’s ISIS strategy MORE (R-La.) introduced the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA). S. 601 would authorize Army Corp of Engineer projects related to flood and storm risk reduction, coast and inland navigation, and ecosystem restoration.

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The Senate rejected an amendment from Sen. John BarrassoJohn BarrassoObamaCare premiums expected to rise sharply amid insurer losses Palestine is latest GOP offensive in climate change wars Senate GOP sticks with leadership team MORE (R-Wyo.) that would have stopped the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from expanding what can be identified as waters protected under the Clean Water Act. His amendment failed on a 52-44 vote — there was a 60-vote threshold for final passage.

Democratic Sens. Kay HaganKay Hagan10 Senate seats most likely to flip in 2016 Senate Republicans are feeling the 'Trump effect' Washington's lobby firms riding high MORE (N.C.), Mark PryorMark PryorEx-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Top Democrats are no advocates for DC statehood Ex-Sen. Landrieu joins law and lobby firm MORE (Ark.), Joe DonnellyJoe DonnellyDemocrats block energy spending bill over Iran amendment GOP blocks Obama sanctions czar Indiana GOP divided over Senate primary MORE (Ind.), Heidi HeitkampHeidi Heitkamp oil is changing the world and Washington GOP blocks Obama sanctions czar Overnight Finance: Obama huddles with Yellen; Puerto Rico bill markup Wednesday MORE (N.D.), Mark BegichMark BegichEx-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Unable to ban Internet gambling, lawmakers try for moratorium Dem ex-lawmakers defend Schumer on Iran MORE (Alaska), Joe ManchinJoe ManchinDemocrats block energy spending bill over Iran amendment Coal Country’s top lawyer takes on Obama’s EPA Dem senator: There are ‘deniers’ on both sides of climate change debate MORE (W.Va.), Mary LandrieuMary Landrieu oil is changing the world and Washington Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Republican announces bid for Vitter’s seat MORE (La.) and Claire McCaskillClaire McCaskillBill would target retaliation against military sexual assault victims Senate Dem takes on drugmaker: ‘It’s time to slaughter some hogs’ Week ahead: Drug pricing back in focus MORE (Mo.) voted with Republicans for Barrasso's amendment.

Barrasso said his amendment would have protected farmers and ranchers from the EPA, which has said it is considering holding more U.S. water bodies to higher standards under the Clean Water Act. He said the administration’s decision to expand waters to areas of farms would "have a huge impact on farmers and ranchers.”

Boxer urged her colleagues to vote against Barrasso’s amendment, calling it “an anti-environmental rider” to her bill.

“Without protections dangerous pollutants could be put into our water ways,” Boxer said ahead of the vote. “The Barrasso amendment is such an overreach that we will keep the state of U.S. waters in chaos. … Without these protections our drinking water would be at risk.”

An amendment from Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersClinton to take hard line with Sanders, say allies Sanders cutting spending in Indiana Overnight Finance: House rejects financial adviser rule; Obama rebukes Sanders on big banks MORE (I-Vt.) was also held to a 60-vote threshold. His amendment would have allowed FEMA to fund stronger restoration standards for culverts and bridges in Vermont that were damaged by natural disasters. He said the goal was to prevent the structures from being damaged again. His amendment failed on a 56-40 vote.

Republican Sens. Thad CochranThad CochranOvernight Healthcare: Medicare fight looms on Capitol Hill Senate GOP hardening stance against emergency funding for Zika Overnight Healthcare: More trouble for Zika funding MORE (Miss.), Roger WickerRoger WickerOvernight Healthcare: Senate making headway on Zika funding DNC head: Republicans ‘dropping like flies’ from convention Campaign chief to vulnerables: Stay away from GOP convention MORE (Miss.), David Vitter (La.) and Susan CollinsSusan CollinsGOP women push Trump on VP pick Sanders is most popular senator, according to constituent poll Senate Dem takes on drugmaker: ‘It’s time to slaughter some hogs’ MORE (Maine) voted with Democrats for the Sanders amendment.

Sen. Tom CoburnTom CoburnGOP faces existential threat Sanders tops 2016 field in newly deleted tweets The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (R-Okla.) said Sanders' amendment was "essentially an earmark" for his state.

The Senate accepted an amendment from Sen. James InhofeJames InhofeThree more Republican senators to meet with Supreme Court nominee Senate unveils B waterways bill with aid for Flint 0 million Flint aid package included in water bill MORE (R-Okla.) addressing federal land use in Oklahoma. His amendment passed by voice-vote.

Earlier Tuesday, the Senate approved 20 minor amendments en bloc.

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