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tv   U.S. Senate U.S. Senate  CSPAN  January 21, 2018 6:59pm-8:01pm EST

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quorum call:
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quorum call:
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quorum call:
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the presiding officer: the senator from connecticut. mr. murphy: i ask that we dispense with the quorum call. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. murphy: thank you very much, mr. president. there are a lot of americans who don't understand what is happening right now. republicans asked for control of the united states senate. they asked for control of the house of representatives, they asked for control of the white house. they got all three and they promised that by doing so they would be able to more effectively manage the affairs of state, and that is clearly not happening right now. there is a fundamental inability
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to govern as we are if now -- are now shut down for a second day. many of the functionalities that people expect of the government will not be there monday morning despite the fact that we have made some progress. first, on friday night on this floor, and subsequent to that in private discussions today, in order to reach an agreement that republicans and democrats can support. and so i am here with several of my colleagues to make some fairly simple requests of the united states senate. it seems like if we are really dults, if we're -- adults, if we're really going to operate like grownups and as stewards of the government, we can keep the government open as we negotiate our way out of this. as many folks know, we on the democratic side, as well as some
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of our republican colleagues, don't think it's wise to do another month-long continuing resolution, but why don't we just agree to keep the government open tomorrow? why don't we all get together and say that on monday people will be able to access the federal government and we can hopefully get to an agreement on a budget that is permanent, that is long term, that gives senator to -- certainty to everybody that receives or gets something by the federal government tomorrow. i'm going to do that, i'm going to make a few more remarks, but before i do, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of calendar number 36, h.r. 1301, that the amendment at the desk that would provide for a continuing resolution to fund the government through monday, january 22, 2018, be considered and agreed to, the bill, as amended, be considered, read a third time and passed the
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motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: is there objection? mr. tillis: mr. president, reserving the right to object. the presiding officer: the senator from north carolina. mr. tillis: mr. president, like the gentleman from connecticut, i don't understand why we're here this weekend myself. i don't understand why a continuing resolution that has all the provisions in it have the broad support of both sides of the aisle have gotten us to a point where we're putting so many people in jeopardy of getting the critical services that they need. i don't understand that at all. i think a simple request of extending the government for four weeks, allowing the chip program to be authorized for six years makes a lot of sense while we work through the issues that we have on the daca -- on the daca challenge, something that i am personally invested in,
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something i'm working hard to come up with a solution to. but instead of us spending time on providing a solution to that problem, we are playing these sorts of games and now we're talking about funding the government for 24 hours. mr. president, that's not the way to conduct the business of the u.s. senate and for that purpose or that reason i object. the presiding officer: objection is heard. the senator from connecticut. mr. murphy: thank you very much, mr. president. let me make a few remarks. i'm sorry that the gentleman has decided to object to this unanimous consent request which would simply keep the government open and operating for 24 hours so that we can try to come to an agreement. but let me address the central point that the gentleman just made because i heard it repeated by many members of republican leadership and other members of the republican senate conference, this idea that there's no controversy because democrats agree to everything that's in the underlying
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continuing resolution. that's not true. it is not true. we have passed now three different continuing resolutions to just kick the company -- kick the can forward time and time again. the department of defense, as we were considering this continuing resolution on friday night made an us precedented decision to contradict the views of the commander in chief by stating that they didn't want another continuing resolution because without real long-term senator for -- certainty for department of defense funding, we, the united states congress, were putting national security at risk. democrats do not agree with everything in the underlying continuing resolution because -- the presiding officer: the senator from connecticut has the floor. mr. murphy: because we don't believe that it is right for this government to continue to kick the can down the road. now, i will just say personally
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there are other things in that continuing resolution that i object to as well. it is not just just a -- just a straightforward continuing resolution. it includes the repeal of the federal government to pay for the affordable care act. there are other parts of that bill, one of them is fawrtsdz attempt by the republican majority gut the affordable care act and the money that is used to pay for it. there are other provisions in that bill, counterterrorism provisions that my colleagues have objections to as well. it is not true to say that there is unanimous agreement to the continuing resolution. further, this idea that no negotiation happened between republicans and democrats, that democrats are expected to vote
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for a large, expensive piece of legislation with no input makes no sense either. i understand you have to get 60 votes in order to pass something, but how the senate works is that in order to get to 60 votes there has to be a discussion between republicans and democrats. if i walked into a restaurant and the waiter brought me a meal that i didn't order and then told me that i had an obligation to pay for it, i might raise some objections because that's not how restaurants work. that's also not how the senate works. the republicans can't unilaterally write a piece of legislation and tell democrats that they have to support it, especially when there are provisions in it that many of us do not support. i'm sorry that we can't come to a simple agreement to keep this government open on monday so that we have the time and the space to put the pieces of a
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long-term agreement together that i think is easier than many people think while our constituents still have access to the services of this government. so i'm sorry that we can't agree to this unanimous consent agreement and i hope that we can continue to work forward through the night, all through tomorrow to make sure that we have a long-term budget agreement that makes sure that kids get their health care, that community health centers stay open, that the military gets the funding that they need. i think we can get there, mr. president. mr. brown: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. mr. brown: thank you, mr. president. senator murphy's right. it's not just what's in this resolution that concerns a number of us, including funding for the affordable care act. we recommend debates where there are taxpayers who are willing by
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cuts of medicaid are willing to take insurance away from so many of our constituents, constituents that make $8, $10, and $12 an hour are not lucky enough to have the same health insurance we have but we are able to provide it through this bill. i'm a democrat and i stood with my republican governor john kasich in fighting for that. what is not in this bill, there is not what there ought to be for the community health centers. i know in north carolina as in my state, there are rural hospitals -- we had two hospitals announce -- two major hospitals, one in maslin, one in dayton. maslin serves a town of slightly under 40,000 people. the closest hospital is 15 to 25 minutes away. the hospital in the middle of dayton announced its closure partly because of what this body, the unevenness and the tax
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on health insurance and what was in the tax reform law what that will mean for insurance prices. we know it has made our health care system less stable. and we know, mr. president, we know how this bill's been written. down the hall about 100 feet is senator mcconnell, the majority leader's office, the bill was written by wall street lobbyists, the tax bill was written in senator mcconnell's office by a bunch of tax lawyers and now this resolution to keep the government open was, again, written down the hall in senator mcconnell's office. there's no input from democrats. this body -- 49 democrats in this body. we represent more than half the population of this country, yet we were not included in this discussion. so this is the first time ever
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where one party controls the white house, the house, the senate, and the supreme court, yet they have not even included -- one, they are not competent enough to run the government to do -- they just do this limp along one-month at a time resolution. this is the fourth resolution, the fourth temporary budget, fourth continuing resolution since september. mr. tillis: mr. president, i ask you to read rule 19. the presiding officer: for the information of senators, rule 19, paragraph 4 states if any senator in speaking or otherwise in the opinion of the presiding
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officer transgresses the rules of the senate, the presiding officer shall either on his own motion or at the request of any other senator call him to order and when a senator shall be called to order, he shall take his seat and may not proceed without leave of the senate, which if granted shall be upon motion that he be allowed to proceed in order which motion shall be determined without debate. any senator directed by the presiding officer to take his seat and any senator requesting the presiding officer to require a senator to take his seat may appeal from the ruling of the chair which appeal shall be open to debate. mr. brown: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. mr. brown: does that mean what i said, that senator mcconnell didn't have lobbyists in his office writing legislation, is that what the rule 19 means and what the presiding officer is now discussing with the
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parliamentarian or my friend from north carolina is alleging? the presiding officer: the senator -- the chair is merely reminding all senators of the rule. mr. brown: thank you, mr. president. i'm not impugning anybody's motive. i'm just stating what i read in newspapers and what seems to be fact. i'm nottism puhning -- i'm not impugning motives here. i would add one other thing. i appreciate the remierchedzer from the north -- reminder from the senator from north carolina. secretary mattis, the secretary of defense, i don't know if secretary mattis is democrat or republican. i don't really care. obviously he's nominated and -- confirmed by the senate and nominated by this president. he came to our caucus and talked at the democratic meeting and talked about the importance of giving us some permanence and predictability in the budget process. for us to continue to limp along one month at a time is not the way we should be governing this
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country. air force under secretary donovan said what we're really concerned about is the further along you go into the fiscal year with these short-term c.r.'s, the more likely a full year c.r. becomes. that's not a good thing for any of us. it will have damaging impacts on readiness and modernization. the former air force secretary with whom i was having breakfast at the pentagon a couple of years ago explained all the costs, all the expenses, every time the far right wing of the tea party, republican party in the house, threatened the government shutdown, every time we get close to it, they need to -- the air force, the military has to spend money, taxpayer dollars, to prepare for what if in fact they shut the government down. we can't run our government three weeks, four weeks at a time. we don't have to. my republican colleague, my friend from kansas, just joined again the banking committee. he said this week people want to make sure we don't have a shutdown, people want to resolve differences should know there are other options besides doing
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another short-term c.r. mr. president, i was speaking to some people in dayton today. dayton is the home of the largest single site employer, wright patterson air force base. the reason i'm cochair of the air force caucus is because of wright path in springfield and youngstown and their air force employees in my state. i don't want people to go to work tomorrow morning at -- whether they're inside the fence, civilians or military, whether they work outside the fence, outside the gate, i don't want them to go to work and find out the government's closed. that's why, mr. president, we have another option. i'm asking the republican leader to reopen the government right now. i ask unanimous consent the president -- that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of calendar number 36, h.r. 1301, that the amendment that would provide for a continuing resolution to fund the government through wednesday, january 24, three days, and is at the desk be
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considered and agreed to, the bill as amended be considered read a third time and passed, the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: is there objection? mr. tillis: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from north carolina. mr. tillis: researching the right to object. mr. president, i'm glad to hear the gentleman from ohio, the gentleman from connecticut, they all want to get the government funded. i also think wright patterson is a great military installation. i actually come from a state that has the home of the global response force, the 82nd airborne down in fort bragg. when the president calls and they want to send somebody into harm's way, that's where they call first. also home to 45% of all marines that serve in the marine corps. i worry a lot about the message we're sending men and women in uniform. when we can't get our act together, everybody in the senate, everybody here tonight is playing games with funding our government.
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right? you just asked for a one-day c.r. that didn't happen. now you're asking for a three-day c.r. how about this? why don't we stay here til we get this done? why don't we realize, look, the daylight is not going to come til about eight or nine hours. we could get this done before 9:00 tomorrow morning. instead of asking for these half measures, a one-day c.r., a three-day c.r., why don't we get in a room tonight and solve our problems? why are we actually kicking the can down the road a little bit, one day, three days? we were trying to get one month done and for that reason, mr. president, i object. a senator: regular order, please. the presiding officer: the objection is heard. the senator -- the senator from hawaii. a senator: would the senator from north carolina yield for a question? mr. tillis: i yield. mr. schatz: sounds like you want to work all night and get this done. would you work on a unanimous consent request to effect yailt
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that. mr. tillis: i want to work on funding the government for the next four weeks. i want to get to regular order. i want to provide certainty to men and women in uniform who are out there in harm's way and we're sitting here -- mr. schatz: regular order, please. mr. tillis: i want to provide funding for the military to the men and women who are working hard to protect this nation. that doesn't happen through procedure -- the presiding officer: the presiding officer: the senator from hawaii has the floor. mr. schatz: so i thought i heard the senator from north carolina suggest that we stay in and get this done tonight. i think we still have a chance to get this done before 1:00 a.m. mr. tillis: i do. mr. schatz: i still have the floor. and if we don't get this done by 1:00 a.m., i personally don't think we should adjourn. i think it should be personally uncomfortable, physically uncomfortable. i think we should be embarrassed by this and i think you make a very good point. we should stay in until we get it done. it is disappointing to me that i hear all of that and yet when i
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ask you whether you'd be willing to work on a unanimous consent request to effectuate what you just said, the answer was no. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. mr. brown: thank you. i agree with the senator from hawaii, senior senator from hawaii. give us just a day. go back to the murphy continuing resolution. you don't need to do my three days. give us one day so we can reopen the government so if we don't finish by 6:00 or 7:00 or 8:00 tomorrow morning, the government is closed right now. we know that. i'd like to ask senator tillis and the presiding officer and republican leadership if they just give us that day or two and negotiate in ernest and -- earnest and fix this. we'll work as long as we need to work because i don't want those employees tomorrow -- i don't want the public to see closed signs on all these government offices. i don't want to see federal employees show up to work and be turned away. i don't want to see workers inside and outside the gate at wright patterson air force base and find out their lives have
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changed when we can fix that by a simple unanimous consent to open the government up now and give you us a couple of days to do that. mr. tillis: just to cool down the temperature is to say why don't we actually get back to what we tried to accomplish just a couple of days ago, a four-week c.r. that funded our military, that funded our veterans, that funded chip for six years. and then we get on to all the other things that we want to do. i for one have a lot of passion around coming up with a solution for the daca population. it's not going to happen tomorrow. it's not going to happen the day after tomorrow but i believe it's going to happen. what i prefer to do is get on to funding the government and then get on to all these other matters that are critically important to all of us. a senator: a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from new jersey. mr. booker: i think this is the problem. i think we just witnessed here what the problem is. this should not be a situation where americans are being hurt. and right now americans are being hurt. and we've heard it from the
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senator from north carolina. we heard it from my colleagues from connecticut, from ohio, and from hawaii. we all agree. americans right now are getting hurt. and so we don't have to do that but we just heard one senator -- i imagine other republicans agree -- reject to a simple idea. let's not hurt folks. let's stay here for three days, just extend the united states senate. we can stay in our seats and get this work done. work something out. easy way to go forward, nobody gets hurt. that was objected to. we said one day, 24-hour period. hey, let's do one day. that was rejected. the senator from north carolina made a suggestion that made me stand up straight. i love that suggestion. he suggested that we stay through the night instead of having people stressed and worry, instead of people missing work, missing paychecks. let's stay here all night. let's make everybody feel uncomfortable. i would work on that unanimous consent as well. but it seems like the senator from north carolina has refused
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his own idea. and this is what i don't understand because i agree with the senator from north carolina who keeps pounding about the military when the military itself, the secretary of d.o.d. through the spokesperson has said a four-week c.r. -- and if i remember the quote exactly would be wasteful and disastro disastrous. so if military leaders are saying what we are doing is wrong, let us not kick the ball down the road four weeks and instead stop hurting people and get the work of the senate done. i am willing to stay here all night. it sounded like the senator from north carolina is willing to stay here all night. so we stand together today to say let's minimize the damage of this. let's do what we cannot to hurt people. that brings up the unanimous consent that i would like to ask for. if three days is rejected, if one day is rejected, if just staying here through tonight and
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working on this as a senate facing discomfort, facing exhaustion to get this done is rejected as well, then let's at least take some of the most vulnerable people in the united states of america off the table. that's why i have an amendment to permanently extend the children's health insurance program, providing funding for community health centers. and the reason why i say this is because somehow our children, our most vulnerable children in our country have been pushed into a political debate which it is a political debate because nobody denies that they're in favor of providing health care for our children. this program expired 112 days ago. and for those of you who think this is going to cost us money to provide health insurance for children, it doesn't cost any money. the c.b.o. actually says it saves the government money. why? because something that every one of the hundred of us know that when you protect children,
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neonatal children, babies, when you give them adequate health care, our actually save long-term health care costs. so here's something that would provide millions and millions of dollars of savings, take vulnerable children and states who are worried about providing for those children, that anxiety out of this political debate. if we can't do something for our most vulnerable children, i don't know what that says about our body. this is a moral moment. 112 days this bill has expired and somehow suddenly that's been put into a four-week c.r. at the time of a political debate. it seems to me that we're trying to use our children as a political pawn. there are so many kids that are be affected by this. nine million nationwide. 159,000 kids in new jersey, about 47,000 in hawaii. the senator from ohio, about 197,000 in hawaii.
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i believe this is something that's common sense. it should be a matter of just conscience. and so i'd like to make sure that the children in this political fight are not hurt. i'd like to make sure that our community health centers in both rural spaces, urban space, all over our country, our community health centers serve 25 million people nationwide, 300,000 veterans. we're concerned about our military, we should also be concerned about our veterans. and 7.5 million children in our community health centers. let me say again, america's community health centers serve 7.5 million children. let's fund them both, move them off the table, not inject them into a political debate to be used as pawns for leverage to do something that the united states military, department of defense, has criticized what we're doing right now, what the proposal is, four weeks. so, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate
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consideration of calendar number 36, h.r. 1301, that the stabenow-casey-brown amendment at the desk providing for the permanent extension of the children's health insurance program, a five-year extension of the community health centers program and extensions of other expired medicaid, medicare, and health extensions be considered and agreed to, the bill as amended be considered read a third time and passed, and the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. proom is there objection? -- the presiding officer: is there objection? the senator from north carolina. mr. tillis: i agree with the gentleman from new jersey. we wanted to fund the chip program which is why we voted to extend it for six years just a couple of days ago. the gentleman voted against it. i agree with him that the states are beginning to run out of money a


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