The House passed an amendment late Thursday night that would prohibit funds to enforce energy efficiency standards for incandescent light bulbs.

Rep. Michael BurgessMichael Clifton BurgessThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: Moniz says U.S. needs energy jobs coalition and Manchin says Congress is pushing Wall Street solutions that don't work for Main Street; Burr to step aside The Hill's 12:30 Report: House returns to DC for coronavirus relief House leaders enact new safety precautions for votes MORE's (R-Texas) amendment to the fiscal 2016 appropriations bill for the Department of Energy passed by a vote of 232-189.

Burgess argued that people in the U.S. shouldn't be forced to buy energy efficient light bulbs by a federal mandate. A 2007 energy law gradually requires the phase-out of incandescent light bulbs sold in the U.S. in favor of fluorescent, halogen or LED bulbs. However, the more energy efficient bulbs can be more expensive.


"If new energy efficient light bulbs save money and are better for the environment, we should trust the American people to make that choice on their own and move to these bulbs," Burgess said during floor debate.

"We should not be forcing these light bulbs on the American public," Burgess said. "The bottom line is the federal government has no business taking away the freedom of Americans to choose what bulbs to put in their homes."

But Democrats said that energy efficient bulbs cost less in the long run.

"They are the same as the old bulbs, except they last longer, use less electricity and save consumers money," said Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio). 

The House continued debating the Energy appropriations bill, which also includes funding for water infrastructure, well past midnight. Final passage of the legislation is expected late Friday morning before the House adjourns for a weeklong recess.