tv U.S. Senate U.S. Senate CSPAN June 22, 2020 2:59pm-6:47pm EDT
election and that is what he will do. he's trying to divide the country and stuff like that. he don't have enough, he ain't got nooe experience. that's why at the campaign he turns around to his administration and that's what keeps him going. it shows you what type of [inaudible] he is on. come on, man. this is like third, fourth grade level. >> host: that is jimmy in kentucky. kimberly wehle, the caller bring up the president and we saw his tweet already saying i wonder if you might be able to -- >> we leave this washington journal segment at this point to fill our long-term commitment to live in senate. we will finish watching this at c-span .org. u.s. senate about 2 gallons start the week for more debate this afternoon on the judicial nomination of cory wilson, the vote to advance the nomination
at 5:30 p.m. eastern. later in the week debate on the police reform bill introduced by south carolina republic and senator tim scott. now live to the senate floor on c-span2. senate will come to order. the chaplain, dr. black, will open the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. eternal spirit, the source of our joy, we're grateful that you still speak to us. continue to communicate with our lawmakers through the voice of conscience. enable them to maintain a clear conscience
before you and humanity. continue to speak to them through the precepts in your sacred word, providing them with a lamp for their feet and a light for their path, as they navigate through this challenging season. continue to speak to them through the unfolding of your powerful providence, opening doors you desire them to walk through and closing doors that lead them away from glorifying you. and lord, when you speak to our lawmakers, give them the wisdom to listen and obey. we pray in your gracious name.
amen. the president pro tempore: please join me in the pledge of allegiance to the flag. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. mr. grassley: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from iowa. mr. grassley: i would like to have one minute for morning business. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. grassley: president trump recently signed an executive order requiring commonsense
administrative steps to promote police accountability. democrats immediately criticized it as weak and insufficient to combat racial injustice citing the need for changing laws. of course, this is an executive order. in itself does not and cannot solve the whole problem. this reminds me of when the president was criticized for not ordering a nationwide lockdown despite having no such power and then accused of being a dictator for suggesting that he had a role in reopening the economy. the president deserves credit for taking steps within his authority to improve police accountability, but he cannot change the law. congress must now work and do it in a bipartisan way to do what
we can within the scope of our constitutional authority to make things better. you cannot legislate away racial injustice overnight, but federal, state, and local laws must reflect our national creed that all people are created equal. i yield the floor. mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: while the house of representatives continues to be absent, the senate continues to be open for business. while taking smart precautions, senators have stood with all the other essential workers who are continuing to man essential posts. so as our nation continues to work through medical, economic, and social challenges of historic proportions, the senate has been able to lead on serious action to help our nation heal. the killings of black americans
such as breonna taylor and george floyd have rightly accelerated the national conversation on policing and racial justice. large majorities of americans support new steps that would help the vast majority of good, decent, and brave law enforcement officers reearn the trust of black americans for their vital institutions. we need to be a country where communities of color feel confident that the police are there to save their rights, equal justice and equal protection under the law and not to infringe on those rights. to that end, while the constitution means many of specifics of police reform are primarily state and local issues, there's an enormous appetite in the senate to increents advise change and move -- increents advise change and move toward greater progress using policy. the junior senator from south carolina has led the development
of a strong new proposal. the justice act is informed by data, by the facts, by stories from across america, and sadly by his own lived experience. it enjoys the support of 46 cosponsors already. the legislation senator scott has put forward identifies productive ways that congress can encourage and increent vize smart reforms in communities all across our country. recognizing the urgent need for greater accountability, it supports expanded use of body cameras and expanded view of disciplinary measures to back them up. recognizing the need for more transparency, it steps up efforts to establish through records of police activities and requires full federal reporting of all incidents involving the discharge of a service weapon. the bill takes immediate action to help end department's
reliance on choke holds and facilitate and enhance training for de-escalation. it includes further steps to protect the physical safety of people in custody and to finally, finally make lynching a federal crime. and it lays out new requirements for departments to explain their policies on how, when, -- on how, when, and why no-knock warrants are used. on behalf of the many people looking for answers in my hometown of louisville, i am unfortunately especially interested in that provision. now, in recent weeks the democratic leader and many of our colleagues on the other side of the aisle have insisted, insisted over and over and over again that they wanted to consider legislation on the subject prior to the 4th of july. my friend, the democratic leader repeatedly expressed how eager,
eager he was to consider these issues here on the senate floor. but now -- but now, mr. president, we read this. senate democrats are agonizing over what to do about senate republicans' police reform proposal. what is there to agonize over? and this. senate democratic leader faces a tough call on whether to let a republican-backed police reform bill advance on the senate floor. agonizing? tough call? it seems to me that proceeding to consider senator scott's legislation, proceeding to take up the subject on the senate floor would only be an agonizing prospect if members were more interested in making a point than in actually making a law.
for anyone who actually wants to legislate shouldn't be a difficult call to vote to begin considering senator scott's legislation. it will be exactly the vote which this moment demands. last week i understand the speaker of the house herself said we'd like to end up in conference on police reform legislation. only way to do that would be for the senate to pass a bill. even the speaker does not seem to understand why senate democrats would block this chamber from even considering the justice act. so, mr. president, senator scott and senate republicans are interested in making a law. the president and the administration want to make a law. and even the democratic house leadership apparently would be happy to see a conference
committee. so maybe the only group left in washington that are reportedly agonizing over whether to block a discussion of police reform or let it proceed seem to be our senate democratic colleagues. look, i hope that whatever strange political calculations are making this difficult for our friends across the aisle will yield to common sense and to the american people's hunger for progress. we're going to find out when we vote later this week. mr. president, i move to proceed to calendar number 480, s. 3985. the presiding officer: the clerk will report the motion. the clerk: motion to proceed to calendar number 480, s. 3985 a bill to improve and reform policing practices, accountability and transparency.
the clerk: cloture motion, we, the undersigned senators in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate do hereby move to bring to a close debate on the motion to proceed to calendar number 480, s. 3985, a bill to improve and reform policing practices, accountability, and transparency signed by 17 senators as follows. mr. mcconnell: i ask consent the reading of the names be waived. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask consent the mandatory quorum call be waived. the presiding officer: without objection. the presiding officer: under the previous order, the leadership time is reserved. morning business is closed. under the previous order, the senate will proceed to executive session to resume consideration of the following nomination which the clerk will report. the clerk: nomination, the judiciary, cory t. wilson of mississippi to be united states circuit judge for the fifth circuit. mr. mcconnell: i suggest the
absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call: mr. schumer: mr. president? the presiding officer: the democratic leader. mr. schumer: are we in a quorum? the presiding officer: we are. mr. schumer: i ask unanimous consent the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. schumer: the american people are crying out for significant policing changes in this country. being killed by the police is now the sixth leading cause of
death for young men in america and young black men are 2.5 times more likely than white men to be killed by police while black women are 1.4 more likely than white women to be killed by police. as hundreds of thousands of americans of all ages and colors take to the streets to demand change, we need legislation that rises to the moment. so democrats introduced a bill three weeks ago that would bring strong comprehensive and lasting change to police departments across america. the justice in policing act. our colleagues in the house are expected to pass this -- that bill this week. however, here in the senate our republican colleagues have responded to our comprehensive proposal with an approach that is piecemeal and halfhearted. and the longer you look at the republican policing reform effort, the more obvious the shortcomings and deficiencies.
the republican bill does nothing, nothing to reform the legal standards that shield police from accountability for violating americans' constitutional rights. the republican bill does nothing, nothing to encourage independent investigations of police departments with patterns and practices that violate the constitution. the republican bill does nothing, nothing to reform the use of force standard, nothing, nothing on qualified immunity, nothing on racial profiling, and nothing on limiting the transfer of military equipment to police departments. the republican bill doesn't even truly ban choke holds or no-knock warrants. it leaves major loopholes when it comes to choke holds, and only requires more data on no-knock warrants. more data would not have saved breonna taylor's life. allowing police to use choke holds whenever they say that deadly force is necessary is not
going to save lives. we need a bill that achieves genuine police reform. the republican proposal comes across like a list of suggestions. i would repeat this important warning. if we pass a bill that's ineffective and the killings continue and police departments resist change and there is no accountability, the wound in our society will not close, it will fester. this is not about making an effort or dipping our toes in the water. it must be about solving a problem that is taking the lives of too many black americans. this is not a time for studies or commissions or tinkering around the edges. this is not a debate about tax policy for transportation policy. it is a matter of the constitutional rights of the american people, and it is truly a matter of life and death. and unfortunately, senator scott's bill is deeply and
fundamentally flawed. it would not have prevented the death of george floyd or breonna taylor or ahawed arbery or michael brown or eric garner. and if it won't stop future deaths of plaque americans in police custody, then it does not represent the change that is demanded right now. on covid, over the past several weeks, there has been an alarming increase in the number of covid-19 cases in a number of american states -- florida, texas, arizona, north carolina continue to report thousands of new cases each day. state officials in texas and arizona are warning about the dire number of hospitalizations. anyone looking at the facts would conclude that we need to figure out what's causing these increases and put measures in place to limit this new spread of the disease. but president trump does not look at the facts or try to
understand them. instead, the president is so consumed with his own ego, his own political interests and perception of how he's handled this crisis that he's actually downplaying the numbers and inventing ridiculous excuses for why covid-19 cases continue to increase. that is inadvisable -- at his inadvisable and very poorly attended rally in tulsa, oklahoma, on saturday, president trump said he told his administration to, quote, slow the testing down, please, unquote, so the number of covid cases won't look so bad for him. amazing. he said that. don't learn the truth about a serious and deadly disease so he might look better? he went on to say that testing was a double-edged sword. let me break the president's statement down for a moment. by calling testing a double-edged sword, the president means that on one hand, testing could be good
because, you know, it tells you who has covid-19. but on the other hand testing might not be so good because the more cases makes the president look bad. who thinks like that? in the time of a raging pandemic? white house officials tried to claim the president was joking, but today the vice president denied that they were just in jest, calling them, quote, a passing observation, whatever that means. regardless of whether he was serious or not, the president's comments are factually inaccurate. the increase in testing is not responsible for the increase in the number of cases. in fact, the rate of positive cases is going up in many states, which means community spread. there is a lie sitting at the heart of all of this. president trump wants americans to believe that the number of cases is going up because his administration has done such a great job on testing. the truth is the administration
can't even get around to spending the money congress has provided for improving testing and tracing. senator murray and i sent a letter to h.h.s. secretary azar last week asking him why the administration hasn't disbursed the $14 billion we gave it to ramp up testing and tracing capability. $14 billion is just sitting there, waiting for the trump administration to use to help our country. senator murray and i are looking for answers. why isn't the money distributed when it's desperately needed? what the check is going on? -- what the heck is going on? it's hard to imagine a more haphazard, less focused, less consistent response from an administration during a national crisis. whether it's calling covid a hoax or prescribing bleach or his ego-driven rally over the weekend, the president keeps reminding us he doesn't take the covid pandemic seriously enough.
ironically, the best thing about the president's rally was that so few people attended. otherwise, the risks of spreading covid would have been significantly higher. on another matter, there are so many matters, there is so much trouble this administration is in, it's hard to count, and you probably need several hours to document and talk about them all. well, last night, -- last friday night, attorney general bar claimed that geoffrey berman, the u.s. attorney for the southern district of new york was, quote, stepping down. a short time later, mr. berman revealed that the attorney general was lying and that he was not, in fact, stepping down. over the past two days, this sordid, ham-handed plot by trump and attorney general barr to oust a well-respected u.s. attorney played out in public view. but for mr. berman's principled stand, the white house and the d.o.j. would have subverted the
chain of succession at the southern district of new york to install a minority u.s. attorney from new jersey in mr. berman's place. thankfully, due to mr. berman's courage, that plan was thwarted, and mr. berman's deputy will take over the leadership of the southern district and continue its important work. she has a fine reputation as a prosecutor and someone of integrity. people of integrity don't seem to be welcome in this administration. then the d.o.j. announced that the president intended to nominate the sitting s.e.c. chairman jay clayton to replace mr. berman. as the senator from new york, i will not return a blue slip on mr. clayton's nomination, but regardless, jay clayton should withdraw his name from consideration and refuse to be an accomplice to this scheme. there appears to be no legitimate motive to fire mr. berman, which leaves the obvious question -- were trump
and attorney general barr trying to remove him for a corrupt motive? was it because mr. berman and the southern district of new york were pursuing criminal investigations into president trump and his associates? the president certainly has a pattern of firing government watchdogs who are investigating his misconduct with that of his associates. we need an immediate top to bottom investigation of what transpired with the plot to dismiss mr. berman. so i have demanded that the office of professional responsibility at the department of justice work with the justice department's inspector general to determine whether there were corrupt imposes for mr. -- motorrives for mr. berman's dismissal and discipline the officials involved, no matter who they are or how high up they go. these two offices jointly investigated the firing of u.s. attorneys in 2006 during the bush administration and should do so again. the judiciary committee here in the senate, led by chairman
graham, must also investigate what happened here, using its subpoena power, if necessary. senator graham seems to be investigating president obama, vice president biden, 53 subpoenas. he certainly must have time to investigate a serious problem that has come before us right now. after all, the abject refusal of senate republicans to hold president trump accountable for his assault on the rule of law in the country is what got us here in the first place. senate republicans refused to stand up to the president when he fired the f.b.i. director for investigating his campaign. they refused to stand up to the president when he made a national emergency in order to steal funds for the border wall. they refused to stand up to the president when he dismissed not one or two or three but four inspectors general, and they refused to stand up to the president when he tried to bully a foreign power into helping him in his reelection.
every time the president breaks a window, the senate republican majority dutifully sweeps up the glass. every blue moon or so, a republican senator will issue a mild rebuke of the president's behavior or pen a strongly worded letter, but the response is never commensurate with the offense, and as a result, president trump knows there is no line he can't cross. he and his attorney general can fire a sitting u.s. attorney without cause, perhaps for investigating criminal wrongdoing by the president or his associates, and senate republicans will hardly bat an eye. will senate republican senators ever say enough? finally today, leader mcconnell will move forward with the nomination of mr. cory wilson to serve as a lifetime appointment on the fifth circuit court of appeals. mr. wilson is an avowed opponent of the nation's health care law, calling it illegitimate and perverse. even worse, wilson has a record,
a lengthy record of support for policies that suppress voting rights. in the state legislature and the mississippi secretary of state's office, he pushed for restrictive voter i.d. laws, criticized the voting rights act, pedaled on proven claims about voting fraud. in 2011, he said that the naacp's concerns about voter suppression in mississippi were, quote, poppycock. we are in the middle of a national conversation about police reform and systematic racial justice leader mcconnell talks about it on the floor, and at the same time he has the temerity to push a judge with demonstrated hostility to voting rights. a man who criticized the greatest advance in civil rights legislation in the past century for a seat on the circuit court in which people of color make up 55% of the population. the nomination is so appalling
in general and at this particular moment that several democrats, myself included, have taken the unusual step of writing leader mcconnell today to request that he withdraw mr. wilson's nomination. i believe if there is sincerity about the remarks here about healing the racial wounds, then the withdrawal of mr. wilson would occur. plain and simple. it would be disgraceful for the senate to approve a nominee who has long trivialized voter disenfranchisement and racial discrimination at the ballot box. leader mcconnell should halt any further work on mr. wilson and should instead work with the administration and civil rights groups to find a nominee who will actually protect voting rights in the fifth circuit. i yield the floor and note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll.
mr. cotton: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from arkansas. mr. cotton: i ask unanimous consent to end the quorum call. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. cotton: i hope i am over wary, but if i am not, there is even now something of ill omen amongst us. i mean the increasing disregard for law which pervades the country, the growing disposition to substitute the wild and furious passions in lieu of the sober judgment of courts and the savage mobs for the executive masters of justice. this disposition is awfully fearful in any community and that it cannabises now in ours
-- that it exists now in ours, it would be a violation of truth and an insult to our intelligence to deny. accounts of outrage committed by mobs form the everyday news of times. those are not my words. those are the words of a young abraham lincoln. but, sadly, they ring with truth today. in recent weeks violent mobs have roamed our streets defacing and tearing down statues and monuments, in most cases with neither resistance from the police nor legal consequences. on friday, a mob tore down another stature just a few blocks from here. the police stood idly by and watched as rioters tapled it and -- toppled it and set is it on fry. one can only assume that they were ordered no the to intervene by washington's left-wing mayor.
but steps were already under way to move that statue lawfully. washington's delegate in congress had legislation to that effect. but mobs don't care to negotiate, only to destroy. the delegate said, i have no doubt i could have got than bill through, but the people got here before due process. it's hard to imagine a more chilling summation of mob rule. as lincoln knew, the mob threatens not just old statues but the lives and livelihoods of us all. indeed, the mob threatens civilization itself in many ways. most simply, lincoln knew that mobs inevitably make mistakes and commit injustices. some may celebrate the destruction of disfavored statues and monuments, but what of the vandals in boston who defaced a monument to the 54th massachusetts infantry regiment,
the first african american regiment to fight for the union, whose bravery and skill was immortalized in the movie "glory?" what of the outlaws in philadelphia who defaced the statue of a devout abolitionist? mobs do don't discriminate between objects of their destruction. that's because their mobs. lincoln also warned that the lawless in spirit will become lawless in practice because of mob violence seeing no consequences for crimes. the mob doesn't stop at statues. rioters have already torched police pre-distincts and low-income hughesing in minneapolis. churches and synagogues have been vandalized. next perhaps the mob will target the homes of police officers. and soon enough the mob may come for you and your home and your family.
as the mob expands its power, lincoln cautioned that good citizens, seeing their property destroyed, their families insulted, their lives endangered, their persons injured and seeing nothing in prospect that forebodies a change for the better, they become tired of and disgusted with a government that offers them no protection. mob rule can only serve to demoralize our people and shake their faith in our government and our way of life. as the mob rises, civilization recedes. finally, lincoln observed that by operation of this monoocratic spirit which all must admit is now abroad in the land, the strongest bulwark of any government and particularly of those constituted like ours may effectually be broken down and destroyed. the detachment of the people. the final victim of mob cruel is patriotism necessary to preserve
our republic. for all these reasons, ripping consaid,ness no grievance that is a fit object of redress by a mob law. we cannot tolerate mob rule, and we cannot allow it to go unpunished. while local authorities would usually take the lead in prosecuting these crimes, unfortunately many of them seem unwilling to stand up to the mob and uphold the rule of law. therefore, i call upon the department of justice to bring charges against these mob vigilantes, prosecuting them to the fullest extent of the law. the antiriot act and the veterans memorial preservation recognition act can provide legal grounds in some cases. still other federal statute may govern in other cases. but there must be consequences for mob violence because if you give the mob an inch, it'll take a mile. witness the events of just this past weekend where mobs tore down statues of george
washington and ulysses s. grant. when you tear down statues of washington and grant, it is not about the civil war; it's because you hate america. and indeed these rioters hate america. in portland, where they tore down the statue of washington, they also spray painted on him the date 1619, a reference to "the new york times"'s revisionist anti-american history project. perhaps we should call them the 1619 riots. after all, the architect of that project said it would be an honor. this hatred for america was nowhere on greater display than in san francisco where the mob tore down the statue of grant. that would be u.s. grant, commander of the union army whose very initials embody his ten nation, unrelenting approach -- tenacious
unrelenting approach to war. unconditional surrender. that would also be president grant, the political heir of abraham lincoln, who smashed the ku klux klan and presided over the passage of the 15th amendment. in one famous instance, president grant sent in the troops to disburse a white mob in new orleans that was terrorizing the city's black and republican residents and had deposed the state's lawful governor. grant had zero tolerance for mob rule. he said neither ku klux klan, white leagues nor any other association using arms into violence to execute their unlawful purposes can be permitted in that way to govern any part of this country. this was a man whom the great frederick douglass eulogized as too broad for prejudice, too humane to despise the humblest, too great to be small at any
point. yet the mob still came for grant. some people have been asking where is the line. i say this is the line, the line between mob rule and the rule of law. and since i began by quoting lincoln, let me conclude by borrowing from grant, who wrote during the battle of spotsylvania, i propose to fight it out on this line if it takes all summer. and i'll fight it out on this line if it takes a lot longer than that. mr. president, i yield the floor. and i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
a senator: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from mississippi. mr. wicker: thank you, madam president. in a few moments -- the presiding officer: senator, we're in a quorum call. mr. wicker: madam president, i ask unanimous consent that the quorum call be lifted. the presiding officer: without objection. the senator from mississippi. mr. wicker: thank you. madam president, in a few moments later on this afternoon, the senate will vote on cloture on the nomination of judge cory wilson to fill a vacancy on the united states court of appeals for the fifth circuit. and i rise at this point in strong enthusiastic support of confirmation for my friend judge cory wilson. this will be a historic moment for this body and for the administration, a vote to confirm judge wilson would make him the 200th judge to be
confirmed under president trump. this is the highest number of judges confirmed at this point in a presidency since the presidency of jimmy carter. and judge wilson is an outstanding nominee to have this distinction. the seat we're voting on to fill is actually the last remaining circuit court vacancy at this time. reflecting the remarkable progress we have made in rebuilding the federal judiciary. judge wilson is an outstanding nominee to mark this milestone. his credentials, intellect, and respect for the rule of law are well established. the american bar association is considered by many to be the gold standard for assessing judicial nominees. and the american bar association has awarded judge wilson its highest rating of well qualified
to serve on the fifth circuit. i certainly agree with this assessment by the a.b.a. in recent weeks senators on both sides of the aisle have been able to question judge wilson about his judicial philosophy, and i believe he's shown a steadfast commitment to honoring the constitution and enforcing the laws passed by the congress as we've written them. judge wilson is a native of south mississippi. he currently serves on the mississippi court of appeals where he decides appellate matter, including civil, commercial, domestic, and criminal appeals. he graduated from my alma mater, the university of mississippi with highest honors and then he went on to yale law school where he distinguished himself in many respects. he served on the yale law
journal, was a member of the yale chapter of the federalist society, and was on the bare i.r.s.er's union -- barrister's union which is given lent of the yale moot court. he served as law clerk for the court of appeals for the 11th circuit having been appointed and having served as clerk for judge cox on the 11th circuit. he was a white house fellow for the department of defense and then he came back to mississippi. before becoming a judge, cory wilson was an accomplished lawyer in his own right. in private practice and served in senior roles and state government. the mississippi secretary of state's office and the office of the state treasurer. he also represented mississippi 73rd district in the state house of representatives for three years where he was vice chairman of the judiciary committee. judge wilson is active in civic
affairs and in his church highlands presbyterian church. he and his wife stephanie have one son. he has -- he has garnered respect and admiration and endorsements from many, many of my constituents through the years of service. in the last few weeks and days, i have been presented with letters of endorsement from people who know him, lawyers he practiced with, and people that he's been associated with. but in particular i want to draw the attention of members of the senate to a letter
from retired judge robert l. gibbs of jackson, mississippi. now who is judge gibbs to write a letter on behalf of cory
wilson? for one thing we should know that judge gibbs is a democrat and he practiced law in mississippi for a time for mississippi legal services. he spent ten years with -- in the office of the mississippi attorney general, a statewide elected democratic official. and then robert gibbs served as a circuit judge, an elected position for some seven years there as a circuit judge in mississippi. that's who judge robert gibbs is. here is what
judge gibbs says about our nominee, the very cory wilson that we will be voting cloture on around 5:30 this
afternoon. this is a letter dated june 10. and it's to the chair and ranking member of the senate judiciary committees, senator graham and senator feinstein. dear chairman graham and ranking member feinstein, i submit this letter in support of the nomination of judge cory t. wilson for a seat on the fifth circuit court of appeals. i'm a former circuit judge for the 11th circuit court district in mississippi, and have known cory as an attorney who practiced before me and as a colleague as we worked on cases together. from these experiences i can attest that no one works harder in this profession than judge wilson. when we were representing clients, cory would normally prepare the first draft of pleadings and send it to me to review. seldom were there any reasons to make changes because he utilized his legal abilities to navigate through the complexities of the
legal issues which resulted in a well thought out plausible argument. during judge wilson's invest tur -- invest tiewr as a judge on the mississippi court of appeals, i had the pleasure of being one of the speakers. this is judge gibbs, retired judge gibbs saying that he had the pleasure of being one of the speakers. i spoke about three traits of judge wilson, respect, character, and legal intelligence. to keep this letter to a respectful length, i will not repeat everything i said but the essence is cory respects everyone he comes into contact with. he does not change who he is because of race or political affiliations. and his ability to allow him to break through legal jargon and get to the point. judge gibbs goes on to say this. judge wilson and i are quite different. i am black. he is white.
i am older and he is younger. i am a democrat and he was a republican before he became a judge. i live in the majority african american city of jackson and he lives in a suburb of jackson. yet these differences have become our strengths. we often have lunch and discuss the pressing issues of the day as friends. he has sought my advice based on my judicial experience on how to be a better judge and while we may disagree on some matters, in the end we realize we are just two lawyers who want our communities to be better and we know that having a fair judiciary is one of the ways to make that happen. these, the words of an older retired circuit judge who happens to be an african
american, democrat, an endorsement of a younger white republican nominee that we'll have a chance to vote on in a few moments. madam president, we need more members of the younger generation of whatever race who are best friends with an older generation of professionals of another race. we need more people like judge robert gibbs and judge cory wilson who are friends, who sit down, who have lunch together and discuss the law and the ways we can make this country better. i think this is a profound
endorsement by someone of a different race, of a different political party, and of a different political philosophy saying that judge cory wilson is someone that we will be proud of to vote for. and i ask unanimous consent, madam president, to insert this letter into the record at this point. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. wicker: thank you. and so, again, let me just stress to my colleagues that cory wilson has gained a reputation as a fair and impartial judge and a good and decent man, and i am confident that this reputation will follow him as he serves on the fifth circuit. he will serve the circuit and our nation well as a united states circuit judge. and i yield the floor at this
the presiding officer: the senator from texas. mr. cornyn: i would ask unanimous consent the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. cornyn: thank you very much. madam president, as we have been working over these last several weeks to develop police reform legislation, i figured the better use -- or the best use of my time would be to spend that time listening as much as anything else, listening, for example, to black americans about their experiences with law enforcement and the changes they would like to see in our country, listening to my colleagues here in the senate
about the most effective ways to make these changes, especially under the leadership of senator tim scott, who has personally experienced the injustices that we are trying to address and particularly this deficit of trust between law enforcement and the communities that they serve. and i have listened to leaders in texas who are working hard in the midst of this pandemic and widespread protesting to keep every single texan safe. but you would think before we decide on what reforms to take, it's important to hear from those who know best what is working, what isn't, and what we need to do more of. so a few weeks ago, i called two of my friends who happened to be the mayor of dallas and the mayor of houston, eric johnson in dallas and sylvester turner in houston, and asked them to help me pull together a group of people in both of those major american cities for an open
conversation about these issues. less than a week later, i was in dallas for an open and honest conversation with a group of law enforcement, faith and community leaders. they provided very useful feedback and ideas that i brought back with me while the justice act was in draft form. and after the bill was introduced last week, i was eager to hear from more folks in texas, so last friday, i traveled to houston for another similar type of discussion at city hall. like in dallas, we were able to hear from a variety of points of view familiar with these challenges. i was glad to also be joined by senator cruz and congresswoman sheila jackson lee. in a way, i thought it was a coincidence but maybe not that this conversation happened on juneteenth, a day that allows us to reflect on the progress we've made in the fight for equality, and this year, i would say more than normal, it was a reminder
of how far we have to go. at this point, i would like to say the good news is there is a lot of common ground and goodwill, and i think we have a unique opportunity to do what i told the floyd family that i would do when they told me they wanted texas-sized justice. i think some good can actually come out of this tragedy, their loss of their loved one. i heard and inspiring message from bishop james dixon, pastor and first vice president of the naacp. he talked about the need for unity and action and encouraged everyone to, as he put it, dignify the outcry. we need to affirm that, yes, there is a problem; yes, it has gone unaddressed for too long; and, yes, we're going to do our best to do something about it. and while there may be differences of opinion on the
best route to take, the good news is we're all pulling in the same direction. during our conversation, i was able to talk briefly about the justice act, which was introduced, as i said, last week. among other things, they seemed to be pleased that the bill would strengthen de-escalation training as well as training on the duty to intervene, in case there is something inappropriate occurring, the use of body cameras, incentivizing the states to restrict the use of choke holds and make lynching a federal crime. i received some great feedback in how it will ensure that police departments nationwide are using proven best practices to keep our communities safe. as we prepare to debate this legislation this week, that conversation could not have been more timely. but another common theme -- and i've heard this before -- is the growing strain on our law enforcement officers. i remember several years ago
chief david brown saying, we ask our police to do too much. basically, they're the ones that we know will go quickly to a crisis and intervene, no matter what it is, whether it is a domestic crisis, a mental health crisis, or somebody breaking the law. but mayor turner in particular talked about the list of responsibilities we're giving our law enforcement officers keeps growing longer and longer and longer. they're not just fighting crime, they're responding to calls about drug abuse, mental health, domestic violence, homelessness, and a range of other crises. and between covid-19 and the ongoing protests, their jobs are not getting any easier. police chief zavedo pointed out that police are performing these jobs not by design but because there's basically nobody else to do them. by default. there's no question we need more
support services that can help alleviate some of this strain on our law enforcement officers. over the years we've tried to bolster services available through things like the first step act, which took prison reform from the state level to the national level. we put money into project safe neighborhood grants. in particular, i remember when we debated the mental health and safe communities act grants to help train law enforcement to de-escalate conflicts between people undergoing a mental health crisis during which really an escalating level of crisis would be a threat not only to the individual who's undergoing that crisis but to the officer, him or herself. and we actually found it to be very effective, this train. but as this list of responsibilities has grown, so has the need for additional training and additional funding for support services, ancillary
services that can work in conjunction with our law enforcement officials so we can get the most efficient, most effective response to the person who needs it. that's precisely why defunding the police is not the answer to the challenges we're facing. it's really an insult, if you think about it. and it's living in fantasy land. chief scevedo shared an insight about the effort to shift responsibility from police to other providers. he said, if you're building a new stadium, you wouldn't tear down or stop using the old one until the new one was complete. so if cities strip funding for their police departments without having other support services in place, our communities wouldn't be more safe; they'd be significantly less safe. so rather than cutting funding for those services -- while
those services are being established or strengthened in cities across the company, let's talk about the reforms that make sense. the most impactful reforms are going to be made at the state and local level. we simply don't -- we can't be city council for 330 million people. those responsibilities ultimately are borne at the local and state level. they are the ones accountable to the voters for the actions they take or don't take at the local level. but we know that there is a role for us to play, and much of it has to do with identifying things like best practices as well as providing money for training and resources. but the hiring is done at the local level. officer training is conducting there and decisions about day-to-day police activities are made there. during our discussion, mayor turner stressed the need for folks in congress to listen to mayors, and i'm all for that
because for any law we pass or reforms we make, they will be the ones responsible for implementing the changes that we make. so i've been in close contact with my mayors and other officials across the state, and i don't intend for that to stop once we, lord willing, pass a police reform bill. this has got to be an ongoing conversation between local officials, state officials, and those of us who happen to work here in washington in the congress. and this conversation is not going to be a brief one. it's not going to be a one-time conversation. this is going to stretch on for weeks and months. really, what we're talking about is a cultural change as much as anything else. so i once again want to thank the men and women in texas who wear the uniform of our police departments and those who shared with me their ideas and feedback over the last few weeks. it's been incredibly valuable
and will become even more helpful as we begin debating the justice act this week. senator scott, who's leading us on this legislative effort, has done a great job of compiling a broad set of reforms that will improve transparency and accountability and many of these provisions, as i said a few minutes ago, already enjoy broad bipartisan support. this legislation, i believe, will go a long way to improve accountability and transparency and deliver real change to communities across the country. so i'm glad that at senator schumer's request, senator mcconnell has put a bill on the floor before the 4th of july. that is specifically what senator schumer called for and exactly what senator mcconnell said he intends to do. but now that we have the opportunity to turn talk into action, it does sound like our friends across the aisle are getting cold feet. i've been interested to read in
the press where some of them have said they haven't really made up their mind whether they will even allow us to get on the bill. you know, we can't pass a bill that we can't start, and once we start it, they will be given every opportunity to offer amendments to help improve the bill. but shutting it down just out of a fit of pique or overt politicalization just does not do a service to the people we're trying to help here, to help our law enforcement officials and to help the general public and people who have -- who sense a gap of trust between those officers and the law enforcement community they serve. so our democratic colleagues are weighings whether or not to block us from even considering this bill, one that will be put on the floor, debated and voted on just as senator schumer, the democratic leader, requested. unfortunately, our friends
across the aisle seem focused more on the few differences between senator scott's bill and the house bill, rather than the similarities. but this is where i think the 80/20 rule ought to apply. if we can agree to 80% or 70% or 60%, why don't we do that? why don't we put that in the bank and work on the rest? but the truth is, there are many places where these bills overlap, listened as a a lot -- and there's a lot of room for us to find common ground. in order to do that, our colleagues immediate to cooperate. -- need to cooperate. that's the only way we get things done here and prove to the american people that they are sincere in their desire to see us debate and pass effective reforms. there's a difference between doing that and just grandstand something and posturing. but this is not a time to grandstand. this is not a time to posture. this is a time to roll up our sleeves and work together to get things done. we need realistic, resolute and
immediate action in order to repair that broken relationship between law enforcement and some of the communities they serve. so i hope our democratic colleagues will join us in that effort this week. i appreciate, for one, the hard work and leadership of senator scott in drafting this legislation, and i appreciate the majority leader's senator mcconnell, for prioritizing his consideration on the floor. i am a proud cosponsor of the justice act, and i look forward to voting for this bill when the opportunity comes. with that, madam president, i would yield the floor. mrs. blackburn: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee. mrs. blackburn: thank you, madam president. i so enjoyed listening to the comments of my colleague from texas, and it causes me to think
that, yes, we are moving forward with another week and what we have to realize is that, indeed, our nation was built on free speech and the president obama toys have -- and the premise in to have dissent or robust, respectful political debate. and that is something that keeps our nation strong. and you go back and you look at the work of our founders, there was barely a day that went by that they weren't having that robust debate, that they were not having those arguments that were really constructive conversations that would say, we are here, how do we go here? and that is how you solve problems. and indeed that is what tennesseans are telling me every day they want us to do -- solve these problems.
let's get ourselves on the right track. and when you look at it and go back and look at the founders, you see these debates that they had were not superficial. they were not necessarily the bright, shiny object story of the day. they were deep philosophical debates, things that were about the future of the nation that they were trying to build. everything was on the line, and no one kept quiet. they felt as if their opinions were there -- and indeed today there is a lot on the line when we talk about civility, when we talk about the strength and the core and the preservation of our rights and our freedoms. nobody spared anyone's feelings
at this point because the stakes were too high, and they were focused on freedom. how did they create a free nation? how do they create it so that it passes to their children and their grandchildren? and indeed you can go forward in history. you can look at the words of ronald reagan reminding us freedom is not something that is permanent. every single generation -- every single generation has to fight for it. and, madam president, of course we say an extra thank you to you and others in this chamber that have worn the uniform and have served, and we are grateful for that. and i will say in spite of all the strife that our founders went through, they never wavered from their commitment to building a society that was, in
their hearts and minds, a society of the people, for the people, by the people -- of the people. it was freer and more democratic than the land they had left in order to get here. the first amendment to our constitution then is more than just a prohibition against government repression. it is a warning against the private attacks on free speech. the success of online discussion platforms is a testament to how much the american people still value the free exchange of ideas. don't you love it? good conversation with good friends, where somebody makes their point, you make a counterpoint, and then you discuss this, and you have a
respectful conversation. everyone, from political candidates to corporations to the free press, has taken advantage of the opportunity to reach those millions of eyeballs that are scrolling through social media time lines and news aggregation services. for a while, it looked like the system would revolutionize the way we read and the way that we share information, the way we have that debate, and it did. just not necessarily for the better. now i believe that we should always encourage more speech. and when you look at the early days of twitter and facebook, it seems that they were on the right track. and we kind of call that the good old days of social media. now, over the past few weeks we've seen these platforms
devolve into a state of all-out war that makes our previous concerns about censorship and speech policing look petty. liberal activists have deployed against anyone and anything that strays from their preferred narrative. it is the cancel culture in full force. but even more concerning that be digital mob rule is the behavior of corporations and platforms caving to these intimidation tactics and selectively policing dissent. just imagine what would have happened all those years ago in our founding if one group decided they were going to shut up and quiet another group.
what if they had decided respect doesn't matter? what if they had decided debate doesn't matter? it's our way or the highway. what do you think would have happened, and where would we be today? google and its parent company alphabet have distinguished themselves as the worst offenders. google is already under investigation for potential antitrust violations, but that hasn't stopped them from surrendering to this latest political moment. last week google threatened to kick conservative-leaning media outlets off of the google ads platform after determining content found in the respective sites comments sections violated platform policies.
a representative from google complicated matters by running to the media and insisting that the ban was imposed because "the federalist" and zero hedge had both published derogatory comment promoting racial violence. in d.c., other news organizations ran with that false narrative, and before you knew it thousands of voices condemned in unison the speech and opinions of dozens of writers who had done nothing wrong. they were, as the left likes to say, deplatformed which of course that was the goal. the ease with which google fell in step with this coordinated exaib to chill -- campaign to chill speech becomes all the more concerning when you consider that they didn't just threaten the livelihoods of the writers, editors and graphic
designers employed by those outlets. google employees let their bias -- hear that? google employees let their bias, not the facts, nos, not the facts, the bias, their bias, the bias that they bring to work with them, the bias of their world view which they think is right. they let their bias, their prejudice lead the way and decided that the american people didn't need to see what those writers had to say. now who told them that they are the speech police? who told them, google you're in charge, you decide what's going to be prioritized on your platform.
google, you go in here and you decide if this is worthy or unworthy content. all up to you. google, you can subjectively manipulate these algorithms based on what you think. so what you have is google employees that let their bias lead the way, and they decided that the american people didn't need to see what writers had written because they, the employee superior, decided you didn't need to know that. they determined that the speech was dangerous, harmful, and illegitimate, and so what did they do? they shut it down before you could browse it. now just imagine, just mablg if
the founders had been so brazen in their actions. let's not have a discussion on that point. let's just throw it to the side. let's not hear somebody out. let's just push them aside. but, no, they didn't form a click that said we're better than you, we're smarter than you. what did those founders do? they looked at one another, we're all in this together. we are here because freedom is paramount. establishing a nation that is a nation of, by, for the people, all of us. that is the goal. you know, i think what google
has done, it's a bold move. coming from the same parent can be that has allowed youtube's reprehensible comments section to spiral into notoriety. but if you comment on the federalist, beware, you see, it's not about protecting customers. all they're doing is defending a dangerous and undemocratic double standard. these incidents are not isolated, and there is no meaningful choice publishers can make to take their business elsewhere because google effectively controls online advertising. last year they brought in $100 billion in ad revenue. you know what, madam president? even nblg -- in this town, $100 billion, that's not chump change.
that's a lot of money. and this year they're flexing their muscles against competitive conservative outlets just as more mainstream outlets are facing cutbacks and layoffs. i know this body is well aware that big tech needs some guide rails to control their approach to consumer privacy, data security and these increasingly repressive content moderation policies. google is the main player. the majority of search is done through google. is it monopoly? pretty close to it. should it be viewed under antitrust? worthy of discussion. and right now we are currently working out the proper strategy to reform the section 230 protections. this is written into the communications decency act that the googles of the world hide behind when they want to silence
you, when they want to shut you down because they do not agree with you. their bias is against you. their prejudice, it's against you. they don't like what you have to say. but you know, madam president, in this body, we may not agree, but we will fight to defend the right for individuals to stand up and have their say. the first amendment says political speeches, guess what? free speech. the first amendment says that you, the citizen, remember that line of the people. the people have the right to petition their government, to seek a change.
but oh no, google or facebook, which i have to say, you know, i remember that comment from mark zuckerberg saying that facebook was more like a government than a business. so we have this communications decency act, and there's a section in it called section 230, and that is the section that big tech goes and cowers behind when they want to shut you up. so, madam president, section 230 needs to be reformed. d.o.j. has said that this is something that is ready for reform. we need to protect free speech. we need to make certain that illicit content is moved off. we need to look at competition.
we need to look at a threshold for users. maybe not revenue but look at a threshold for users, and put some guidelines in place. we're dealing with an industry that has moved on to using social pressure to provide cover as they act as judge, jury, and executioner over what americans should be allowed to know. if you're researching something online, what do you do? you google it. you get in that search engine. you go looking for it. and then you look at the things as they come up. maybe what you're looking for doesn't show up on the first page, even though it's something that has been in the news. oh, why would that be? oh, prioritization, because
google prioritizes how this information gets delivered to you. if they like it, top of the list. if they don't, bottom envelope. so today i send a letter to the attorney general outlining the threat this poses to a free and fair press and calling for a full investigation that examines the company's control over the internet economy. i also encouraged a.g. barr to meet with the news publishers who have been harmed by this anticompetitive behavior and learn firsthand about the fear and intimidation tactic activists have weaponized against legitimate journalism. madam president, this can no longer be chalked up to just simply bias. the people making these decisions are the most powerful voices in the world, and they
have decided that they don't want you to think. they don't want you to challenge the narrative. and they sure don't want you to rock the boat and draw the ire of activists who still don't believe these efforts that censorship have gone far enough to silence conservative voices. i yield the floor and note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
quorum call: mr. grassley: i ask that the calling of the quorum be suspended. the presiding officer: without objection. the senator from iowa. mr. grassley: first of all, unrelated to the remarks i'm going to make, i ask unanimous consent to insert this letter into the congressional record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. grassley-- mr. grassley: as americans, our understanding of history has a tremendous impact on our sense of who we are and where we are headed. that is why it's so important
for americans to have a good understanding of our history, all of our history. slavery is a great stain on our country's history and its legacy impacts us yet today. we must not flinch from recognizing the suffering inflicted on so many americans contrary to our highest ideals as a nation. still our nation is unique in human history in that it was founded not on the basis of some sort of common ethnic identity but on certain enduring principles that are the equal heritage of all americans. those principles are best articulated in the simple but eloquent words of the
declaration of independence. i don't have to put quotes around these because everybody knows these. we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all people are created equal, that they're endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. our patriot forefathers concluded that these principles were worth fighting for and indeed they took up arms. the odds were stacked against them and they happened to know that. but they nevertheless risked everything because they believed so deeply in those fundamental truths that were stated in the declaration of independence.
among those who risked life and limb for our nation's founding principles were between 5,000 and 10,000 americans of african descent who volunteered to serve as soldiers and sailors during the american revolution. their patriotic sacrifices at the very beginning of our nation contributed immeasurably towards laying the foundation of the freedoms we enjoy today. the civil rights movement was later able to build on that solid foundation by calling on america to as dr. king said, quote, live out the true meaning of its creed. end of quote. dr. king was absolutely right in pointing out that black americans have every right to fully claim our shared heritage
as americans, having helped build and shape american institutions and society from the beginning. as shown by the very sacrifice they made in the revolutionary war. this proud history is part of who we are as americans, but it is too little understood and hence fully not appreciated. that is why i was proud to colead legislation that authorized the establishment of a national liberty memorial on the national mall to honor the underappreciated contributions of black revolutionary war veterans and patriots as they are. and i'm proud to say that iowa can claim at least one of those
patriots. kato meed who was born in connecticut and is listed in a revolutionary war pension court records as a, quote, unquote, free person of color, lived out his twilight years in southeastern iowa. he is buried in the montrose cemetery, montrose, iowa. the national mall liberty fund is now in the process of raising money for an environmental assessment to complete final site selection for this very important memorial. now more than ever americans need this monument as a tangible reminder that despite the lingering legacy of slavery, the promise of liberty and equality is the shared heritage of all americans from the founding
the presiding officer: the senator is recognized. a senator: mr. president, i ask that the quorum call be lifted. the presiding officer: without objection. mrs. shaheen: thank you. states across this country, including new hampshire, are beginning to reopen after this pandemic, although pandemic isn't really over. and the ongoing economic and public health fallout from covid-19 continues to affect families and businesses in my state of new hampshire and across this country. every day community leaders, public health professionals, and frontline workers tell me about what they're facing. they've raised concerns about the massive reduction in local tax revenue and the very difficult decisions that will soon need to be made if federal assistance doesn't arrive soon. i've heard from teachers, school administrators about the challenges they've encountered
trying to educate their students during the pandemic. and the difficulties they're anticipating as they begin to plan for the school year coming in september. the shift to remote learning has exposed the disparities in broadband access across new hampshire and across this country that leave behind many students and make it extremely difficult for teachers to deliver a quality education, especially for students with disabilities. and so many small businesses while they are very grateful for the paycheck protection program and the loans and grants that have been made available through the economic injury disaster loan program, they're telling me that it's not enough, that revenues for many of these small businesses are still as unsustainable lows, particularly for those in tourism, entertainment, and hospital quality and in new hampshire tourism is our second largest industry and they need help if
they're going to weather this storm. so i can't understand why this body and why majority leader mcconnell doesn't feel a sense of urgency to pass legislation that would continue to help americans during this time of crisis. it's been more than a month since the house of representatives sent to us the heroes act to continue to provide assistance to americans who are in need. and in the time since, we have not taken up any proposal that would provide comprehensive relief for the sectors of our economy that are still hurting. we just can't wait until the end of july when we know there will be so many families and workers and businesses across the country who will be in an even more dire position than they are now. americans are urging congress to act, and we should work together in a bipartisan way just as we did with the first three, really
four if you count the second round of the small business assistance, those four bills all passed with strong bipartisan votes. now it's time for us to do that again, to provide americans the relief they so desperately need. mr. president, congress has taken some very important bipartisan steps to provide assistance to the nation. but the conversations that i've had with granite staters on the front lines are a very powerful reminder of how much work still lies ahead. we should provide assistance for our hospitals and health care providers, especially for nursing homes and long-term care facilities because in new hampshire, they've accounted for more than 70% of covid-19 deaths and across the country for a very high percentage. we need to provide support to all of our essential workers who are still on the front lines getting out there every day despite the health risk. that includes grocery store
workers, health care workers, first responders who are sacrificing so much for our health and safety. we should provide investments in our nation's infrastructure like broadband to make sure we have better access to telehealth and educational opportunities. and we should provide support for sectors of our economy that have taken major losses, like the clean energy sector which has lost more than 600,000 jobs over the past few months. and we should provide help for food and rental assistance for those who have lost incomes and are struggling to make ends meet. and we should support the postal service so that it can continue to serve our communities and small businesses. in new hampshire we have so many small towns who depend on the postal service for prescription drugs. families in those towns depend on the postal service for prescription drugs, to communicate with the outside world and especially now when so
many people are still feeling so isolated. they need to know that they can count on the postal service and that it is not going to get into financial crisis this summer. and finally, we need to support our states and our local communities. they have been on the front lines fighting this pandemic, and as the cost of covid-19 response efforts continue to rise, mayors and county administrators, county officials, they are all grappling with whether they are going to have to lay off first responders, firefighters, police, teachers, municipal workers, all of those people who continue to provide services in our communities and without whom people are going to face even more dire consequences. states and communities need help now. they should not have to cut essential services and frontline workers. in congress, we must also provide additional support to
small businesses. p.p.p., the paycheck protection program, by any measure, despite some of the challenges, it has been the most significant small business assistance program in our nation's history. it's delivered over $500 billion in aid in a very short time, and i'm proud to have worked with a bipartisan group of colleagues to author that provision. but when we first sat down to design it just over three months ago, none of us had any concept of the magnitude of this crisis or what would be its duration. since then, we have learned just how devastating this disease is and how terribly difficult it is to defeat. i've heard from so many business people in new hampshire who took a p.p.p. loan, and they used the proceeds just as we had intended. they kept their employees on the payroll or they hired them back if they had already laid them
off. they have kept their lights on. now it's time when they are beginning to be able to open their businesses and they are still running short because those loans are about to run out, and they need more help. if we don't provide it, they're going to lay off all those workers again, and for many small businesses, they are going to be forced to close their doors. last week, i was pleased to work with senators cardin and coons to introduce the prioritized paycheck protection program, the p-4 act. that's legislation that will provide a second round of p.p.p. funding for smaller businesses and particularly for those in the restaurant and hospitality industries which have been hit especially hard in recent months. they were the first to be closed down by government order, and they are the last to be able to open back up. i am hopeful that once again we can work with -- in a bipartisan way to make a proposal that will have support on both sides of the aisle and that will ensure that more businesses can stay
afloat as we reopen our economy. our country is still hurting, and the coronavirus isn't going to go away without a vaccine. it's going to take a while for us to get back on our feet as a nation, and the devastating health and economic effects from covid-19 will not be alleviated just because we pretend the coronavirus is going away. it won't be alleviated unless congress acts. it was the decisive action that we took back in march, the end of february and march that has allowed so many businesses to stay afloat, so many families to be able to continue to feed their kids and to pay their rent. it's going to be critical for us to continue to take action to provide that assistance. we can't -- we can't wait. we can't take a wait-and-see approach. we know that people are hurting right now, so i urge the senate
to take up and pass legislation. let's negotiate what we don't like about the heroes act. let's make changes. but let's take up that relief bill and continue to provide the help that americans are calling for. we have no more time to waste. thank you, mr. president. i yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from colorado. mr. gardner: i ask that the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. the clerk will report the motion to invoke cloture. the clerk: cloture motion: we, the undersigned senators, in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate, do hereby move to bring to a close debate on the nomination of cory t. wilson of mississippi to be united states circuit judge for the fifth circuit, signed by 17 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent, the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate on the nomination of cory t. wilson of mississippi to be the united states circuit judge for the fifth circuit shall be brought to a close. the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll.
the motion is agreed to. mr. sasse: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from nebraska. mr. sasse: i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to legislative session for a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak therein for up to ten minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. sasse: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of calendar number 342, s. 327. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: calendar number 342, s. 327, a bill to amend the federal lands recreation enhancement act and so forth. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate will proceed to the measure.
mr. sasse: i further ask that the committee ordered reported substitute be agreed to, the bill as amended be 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. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. sasse: i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today it adjourn until 10:00 a.m. tuesday, june 23. further that following the prayer and pledge, the morning hour deemed expired, the time for the two leaders be reserved for use later in the day and morning business be closed. further following leader remarks the senate proceed to executive session to resume consideration of the wilson nomination. further ask unanimous consent that the senate recess from 12:30 p.m. until 2:15 p.m. for the weekly conference meetings. finally all time during adjournment, recess, morning business and leader remarks count postcloture on the wilson nomination. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. sasse: if there is no further business to come before the senate i ask that it stand adjourned under the previous order. the presiding officer: the the presiding officer: the
this is now out of session. earlier today members nomination of mississippi's cory wilson to be u.s. judge for the fifth circuit. this week the final vote on that nomination, as well as debate and votes on police reform legislation introduced by south carolina republican senator tim scott. the live senate coverage are in cspan2. tonight, on the communicators, and cta president and ceo michael powell. >> we shouldn't make the mistake of something being important. were assuming those of the same things. i don't think - i think it's is an essential service for most americans. >> watch the communicators on
"c-span2". see spans washington journal every day we are taking your calls live on the air, on the news of the day and discussing policy issues that impact you. coming up tuesday morning, former homeland security secretary tom ridge, on voting security issues in the upcoming november election. and we will talk about the current supreme court term with the constitutional accountability centers elisabeth. logic see spans washington journal, live at seven eastern on tuesday morning. and be sure to join this discussion with your phone calls, facebook comments text messages and tweets. on tuesday the house energy committee will hear from white house coronavirus task force members doctor anthony algie on the federal response to the pandemic. watch light, tuesday morning at
11 eastern on c-span. on line cspan.org or distant life on the free c-span app. >> this week watch policing reforms and dc statehood legislation, thursday live on c-span, the house will debate and vote on the democrats policing reform bill. the george floyd policing act. on friday c-span, the house will vote on legislation to designate the district of columbia estate. online at cspan.org or listen live on the free c-span radio app. earlier today, several senators came to the floor to discuss police reform and violence in the u.s. over race relations issues and it began with majority leader mitch mcconnell. will the house of
representatives continues to be asked, senate continues to be open for business. smart precautions, senators have stood with all of the other essential workers will continue to man their essential posts . and so is our nation continues to work through medical, economic, and social challenges, on the historic proportions. this is been able deleted on serious action to help our nation hill. the killings of black americanla such as breonna taylor and george floyd, rightly accelerated the national conversation on policing and racial justice. policing and large majorities of americans support new steps that would help the vast majority of good and decent and brave law enforcement officers ran the trust of black americans for the vital institutions. we need to be a country were feel
confident that the police are there to safeguard their rights, to equal justice, and equal protection under law and not to infringe on those rights. to that end, while the mconstitution means many of the specifics of police reform are primarily state and local issues, there's an enormousen appetite in the senate to incentivized change and move towards greater progress using federal policies. the junior senator from south carolina have led the development for a strong new proposal. the justice act is informed by data, by the facts, by stories from across america, and sadly by his own lived experience. it enjoys the support of 46 cosponsors already. the legislation senator scott is put forward and identify productive ways that congress can encourage and incentivize smart police informed efforts in
communities all across our country. recognizing the urgent need for greater accountability and support an expanded use of body cameras and expanded review and disciplinary measures. to back him up. recognizing the need for more transparency, sense of efforts to establish records and police activities and requires full federal reporting of all incidents of the discharge of a service weapon. it takes immediate action to help and apartments show calls and facilitated have training for de-escalation. it includes further steps to protect the physical safety of people in custody and to finally make lynching a federal crime. elites out new requirements for departments to explain the policies on how, when, and why
the lawrence the can no knock warrants are used for and on behalf of many people looking for answers in my hometown of louisville come, kentucky, i am and forcefully especially insurance instant in that provision. in recent weeks, the democratic leader in many of our colleagues on the other side of the aisle have insisted over and over and over again that they want to consider legislation on that subject. prior to the fourth of july. my friend the democratic leader repeatedly stressed how eager he was to consider these issues in the senate floor. but now, mr. president, we resist print democrats are agonizing over what to do about senate republicans police reform proposals. what is there to agonize over. senate democratic leader faces a tough call on whether the letter
republican back police reform bill advance on the senate floor. agonizing. tough call. seems to me the proceeding to consider the legislation proceeding to take up the senate floor would only and agonizing prospect if members were more interested in making a point that actually making a walk. for anyone who actually wants to legislate shouldn't be a difficult call. tott begin considering senate tm scots legislation. hithis moment, this moment demas it. last week, the speaker of the house herself said we would like to end up in a conference on police reform legislation.
only way to do that would be to the senate passed the bill. even the speaker does not seem to understand why that senate democrats would want this from even considering the justice. so much that senator scott and the republics are interested in making a law. and the t administration. and in democratic house leadership would apparently be happy to see a conference committee. so maybe, milligrams left in washington the reportedly agonizing over whether to block the discussion of police reform in order to proceed, seem to be our senate democratic colleagues. i hope that whatever strange political calculations there making this difficult, her friends across the aisle will
yield to common sense and in the market peoples hunger for progress. we'll find out when we vote later this week. >> now mr. president, the american people are crying out for major significant changes in policing in this country. and killed by the police, is now the sixth leading cause of death for young men in america. young black men and 25 times more likely than women to beac killed by police. while black women, are 1.4 more likely than white women to. be killed by police. as hundreds of thousands of americans of all ages and colors, take to the streets to demand change, we need legislation this rises to the moment. the democrats introduce a bill three weeks ago. it would bring strong comprehensive and lasting change
to police department across america.ho the fourth the justice in policing act. our colleagues in the house are expected to pass this bill this week. however, in the senate, republican politics have responded to her comprehensive approach to muzzle, within approach is piecemeal and halfhearted. and the longer you look at the republican policing reform efforts, more obvious shortcomings and d deficiencies. republicans built is nothing to reform the legal standards the shield police from accountability. violating americans constitutional rights. the republican built is nothing to encourage independent investigations of police departments with patterns and practices. the violate the constitution. republican built is nothing to reform the use of force, nothing on qualified immunity. anding on racial profiling
nothing limiting the transferit military equipment to police department's right to public bill design natural chili band that no knock warrants or chuckles. it means late major loopholes when it comes to chuckles and only requires more data on no knock warrants. more data would not have saved breonna taylor's light. allow employees to use charcoals, s whenever they say that deadly force is necessary, will not save lives. we need a bill that chooses genuine police reform predict republicans proposal comes across like a list of suggestions. i would repeat this important warning. if you pass a bill this affected in the killings continue to department resist change and there is no accountability, the wound in our society will not close, it will fester. this is not about making an effort to beth your toes in the water.
it must i be about solving a problem that is taking the lives of too many black americans. this is not a time for studies or commissions are taking around the edges. this is not debate about tax policy or transportation policies, it is a matter of the constitutional right to be american people. and it is truly matter of life and death. unfortunately, senator scott smell is deeply and fundamentally flawed. it would not have prevented the death of breonna taylor. our george floyd or others. and if it won't stop future death of black americans in police custody, and it does not represent the change that is demanded right now. over the past several weeks, there's been an alarming increase in the number of covid-19 cases. a number of american states. florida, texas arizona north
carolina. continue to report thousands of new cases each day. state officials in texas and arizona are morning about the dire number of hospitalizations. anyone looking at the facts we conclude the need to figure out what is causing these in christensen but measures in placepr to limit this new spread of the disease. president trump does not look at the facts or try to understand them. instead the president is so consumed with his own ego, his own political interest in perception of how he has handled this crisis. it is actually downplayinge the numbers and inventing ridiculous excuses for why covid-19 cases continue to increase. inadvisable and very poorly attended rally in tulsa on saturday, president trump said that he told his administration to slow the testing down please.
so the number of covid-19 cases boat look so bad for him. amazing. he said that. don't learn the truth about a serious and deadly disease. so he might look better. he went on to say the testing was a double edged sword. let me break the president's statement down for a moment. double-edged sword, the president means that on one hand testing can be good because it tells you who has covid-19. but on the otherane hand testini not be so good because more cases, makes the president look bad. who thinks like that. in a time of arranging pandemic. the white house officials tried to claim that the president was joking. but today the vice president denied it calling them a passing observation. whatever that means. regardless whether he was serious or not, the president's comments are actually inaccurate. increasing testing is not
responsible for the increase of number of cases in fact o the re of positive cases is going up in many states. which means community spread. there is a lie sitting in the heart of all of this. president trump wants americans to believe that the number of cases is going up because his administration has done such a great job inth testing. the truth is that the administration is getting around to spend the t money the congres provided for testing tracing. send a letter to the secretary a czar last week. asking him why the administration is not dispersed in 14 billion we gave him. we gave it to ramp up testing and tracing capabilities. 14 billion is just sitting there waiting for the trump administration to use to help our country. senator murray and i are looking for answers but why isn't the mo