From a statement last week by Rep. Michael D. Barnes (D-Md.):
There are many times when I have been proud to be a member of this body, and (Wednesday) was one of them. When the House voted 411 to 0 to prohibit funding of efforts to overthrow the government of Nicaragua or provoke a military exchange between Nicaragua and Honduras, all Americans had reason to be proud.
The House of Representatives made clear that the United States should not be in the business of overthrowing governments or starting wars. I know that all members recognize that this type of legislative action has been rare. It has been six years since the House has acted to specifically prohibit a covert action. In this instance, I am convinced that we needed to act.
As chairman of the subcomittee on Inter-American Affairs, I have watched the conflict along the Nicaraguan-Honduran border escalate. I have become convinced that the United States is acting in a fashion that damages our long-term national interest and expands the conflict, rather than helps to resolve it.
In adopting this amendment, the House has spoken in a unified voice that cannot be misinterpreted or taken lightly. Whatever the United States has been doing to destabilize the government of Nicaragua, it must stop.
We have taken the first step toward correcting the course of American foreign policy in Central America, and hopefully the Senate will join us.