Guam war claims bill headed to Senate floor

US Senate (file photo)

Congressman Michael San Nicolas today announced that his war claims corrections bill has now advanced to the U.S. Senate for a vote.

In his release San Nicolas stopped short of predicting passage. But he said H.R. 1365 is now headed to the Senate floor with no objections and the “current mood is favorable.”

However the Senate Judiciary’s website does not show any recent action on the H.R. 1365, and the website indicates that the last action on the bill was in July when it was assigned to the senate Judiciary committee.

Loading the player...

In his release the congressman said he is excited to have strong local bipartisan support for his measure. In particular, he cited Guam GOP National Committee member Juan Carlos Benitez for “assisting our efforts for H.R. 1365’s passage.”

The congressman also scolded “local politicians” for continuing “to make war reparations about politics.”

San Nicolas concluded by saying that he has communicated the status of H.R. 1325 to Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero “and hopefully we see good faith at this end-stage for the sake of those who have kept the faith all these years.”

In response, the governor issued a brief one-line statement saying: “We are hoping for its successful passage and remain supportive of the measure.”

Speaker Tina Muna Barnes, who has introduced a rival war claims bill in the Guam Legislature, also responded with the following statement: “It was and always is about our greatest generation. Whatever it takes, let’s get our Manåmko’ paid!!!!”

The Pacific News Center has learned that the war claims correction bill was actually placed on the so called “hotline” for passage by the judiciary committee a month ago, but then it was taken off after one, unnamed senator on the committee, raised objections to Section 2 of the bill which refers to the effects of the financial impact of the measure on the federal budget.

Committee members decided to remove Section 2 last week and the bill was placed back on “hotline” status and advanced to the full Senate for a vote.

PNC has also been advised by a source knowledgeable about the legislative process that when the vote occurs on the Senate floor, H.R 1365 will be bundled together with a number of other bills and is likely to be approved on unanimous consent, just as it was when it passed in the U.S. House in July.

There won’t be any conference committee with the House because the House has already agreed to allow the bill to move on to President Trump’s signature, as amended by the Senate.

No date for Senate action on H.R. 1365 has been set yet.