tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN December 10, 2009 10:00am-1:00pm EST
democrats. let me tell you something, this president is over the republicans heads. he is so advanced that they cannot even realize how advanced this guy is. they are so disrespectful to this president that it makes me sick. nowhere in the world this much of a population is so disrespectful to the president of this country. i really do not believe that they're any better than al qaeda. because these people are disrespectful to the president also. they are so stupid that i cannot imagine host: we are out of time. that is it for us on this thursday. we will be back tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m. now to the house. the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the prayer will be offered by our chaplain, father coughlin. chaplain coughlin: lord god,
for people who live in the light of faith and who are tuned to your greatest commandant, peace is always more than the absence of war. it remains a matter of the human heart. peace cannot be reduced to human concept as only the balance of power for opposing forces. we know, lord, peace cannot be imposed by human authority or by simple majority. peace, lord, is often illusive for us because it remains beyond our imagining our achievement. peace is a gift. peace, lord, is born out of the right things which you the creator have invested in human society. peace is realized by us when our thirsting for an ever more perfect realm of justice and
union reaches a certain plateau that invites us to go even further. lord, grant us peace of heart so we may bring this gift to our family life. work for justice and so gift our world both now and forever. amen. the speaker pro tempore: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces to the house his approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1 the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led by the gentlewoman from ohio, congresswoman kilroy. ms. kilroy: 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. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will entertain up to 10 requests for one-minute
speeches on each side of the aisle. the chair recognizes the gentleman from ohio. mr. kucinich: i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. kucinich: according to the center for economic and policy research, the sharp increase in war spending is taking up a greater portion of our gross domestic product which will cost the united states about two million jobs because such spending, quote, is a direct drain on the economy, reducing efficiency, slowing growth and costing jobs, unquote. contrary to popular assumptions, massive spending for war does not create jobs, it costs jobs. it is capital intensive, not labor intensive. war creates unemployment. the current plans to make extension of unemployment benefits contingent on congress passing the war spending bill raises serious questions about economic policy. not to mention basic decency and common sense. we're telling people that as long as we're at war they'll
get their unemployment benefits and, of course, as long as we're at war there will be more people unemployed. instead of unemployment benefits people need work. instead of war people needs work. war takes money away from job creation. war results from unemployment. war is a weapons of mass destruction. -- war is a weapon of mass destruction. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? mr. poe: i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. poe: mr. speaker, in the aftermath of the climate gate scandal we now learned that prominent scientists were so determined to advance human-made global warming that they worked to hide contradictory temperature data, black ball scientists and manipulate the peer review process. "the new york times" says that climate gate is not a big deal. "the times" editor responded to criticism that the newspaper had downplayed the story
predictly hoyt, a warmer, disagreed. it is not a three-alarm story. he defending the newspaper's decision evidence that doesn't support global warming. he failed to mention that global warming alarmism is from discredited data. the national media should support the news sparely. rather than downplaying stories that doesn't conform that their media-bias agenda. otherwise, americans will continue to doubt the media's credibility. and that's just the way it is. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> thank you, mr. speaker. scientists at the climate research unit have studied global warming. climate gate is part of rampant speculation as some accused these scientists to say that
global warming is man made. we forget. we forget that polar ice caps are melting. we're forgetting that over 200 peer review scientific studies have determined that global warming is real and that man significantly contributes to global warming. and that zero peer reviews, scientific studies have determined that global warming is not real and that man does not contribute to that. today over 1,700 scientists from the u.k. announced their belief that global warming is real and that man contributes to this. congress must send climate legislation to the president for approval, and the united states must agree to a final and meaningful treaty this week in copenhagen that has countries to help in this. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentlelady from missouri rise? mrs. emerson: to address the house for one minute.
the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mrs. emerson: fannie mae and freddie mac send the chills down our backs. the institutions at the heart of the worse financial crisis in modern american history. the crisis was explosive more than a decade in the making. during the slow leadup to the crash, fannie and freddie guaranteed that a national subprime lending problem would seep into every other financial sector of our economy. the g.s.e.'s ignored their public responsibility to assure a stable u.s. market for lending. so if that's the case then, why is this bill silent on their misdeeds and the perverse incentives that drove our country to the brink of financial disaster? as the government gets bigger this bill requires government to regulate everything but itself. as of october 31, fannie mae held $771 billion in its growth mortgage portfolio and another $2.8 trillion in
mortgage-backed securities and other guarantees. there are omissions from this bill is glaring. it's irresponsible to exempt g.s.e.'s from this legislation. america, you must take notice. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentlelady from pennsylvania rise? ms. schwartz: to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. schwartz: job loss is slowing. in november the number of jobs lost is 100,000. while no one should understatement the challenges ahead or the struggles of -- underestimate the challenges ahead or the struggles, this shows that the policies of the democratic majority are working. the economy is turning around. last friday i joined president obama in allentown, pennsylvania, to talk with and hear from business leaders and veterans about how to create new jobs and to grow the economy. the president laid out a jobs
plan that will spur small business hiring, improve infrastructure and encourage energy efficiency. we need to take action on this plan that builds economic opportunity for the long term. new jobs are sustainable for years ahead. and rebuilding our infrastructure, creating new energy sources and developing new technology and innovative product and services that we and the world want to buy. we are committed to rebuilding america's economy, putting americans back to work and resuring our nation's economic future. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> i ask permission to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. burgess: thank you, mr. speaker. the silence of the administration and indeed the house of representatives on the subject of a senior presidential appointee to the department of education is astonishing. kevin jennings needs to be replaced and needs to be replaced today. this so-called safe school czar
appointed by the obama administration to the department of education is dangerous for our schoolchildren. the editorial in yesterday's "washington times" title "obama's risky sex czar." i don't know if they came with a bolden warning just like a new f.d.a. drug. this editorial discuss discussions that are sexually graphic. under usual circumstances we would not have this subject or the language involved. in this case an unusual exception must be made because this is central to the background of a senior presidential appointee in the united states department of education who is in a position to influence how and what our children are taught in our nation's schools. please do not read any further if you will be offended by the sexually graphic language. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the
gentlewoman from ohio rise? >> unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. kilroy: the bush administration and republican allies looked the other way as wall street and the finance industry engaged in risky practices. risky practices which resulted a little more than a year ago with the whole house of cards -- when the whole house of cards came tumbling down and the american taxpayers had to pick up the pieces. we can't let that happen again and we know wall street won't police itself. we need tough new laws and regulations. h.r. 4173, the wall street reform of consumer protection act, will rein in those abusive practices. a new consumer agency will be established to protect consumers from fine frint demagoguery and create a mechanism for the controlled disillusion of financial failed institutions, a financial death panel, so to speak, paid for, not by american taxpayers but
by the finance industry itself. we are -- this bill will help protect main street and make sure that wall street plays by the rules. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlelady from ohio rise? >> to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. schmidt: we are in jeopardy of losing the a.a.a. credit rating of the united states if we do not impose economic discipline in this congress and impose it now. coupled with poor economic growth and high unemployment are making it difficult for the u.s. to maintain its debt. last year this congress created a deficit of $1.4 trillion. that's an average of $4 billion a day. now we're being asked to raise our debt ceiling an additional $1.84 trillion so we can continue to borrow money. this spending must stop. it must stop now, and we need the discipline and courage in this congress to do it. i yield back my time.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. for what purpose does from the state of washington rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. inslee: mr. speaker, i hear that the former vice president has made an assertion about the governor who quit in alaska, sarah palin. he said she is a deneyer of the clear need to address global warming. but that attitude is worse than being a denier. it's the attitude of a defeatist. because the defeatists believe that we americans can't built electric cars. we can't in america build solar thermal plants. the defeatists believe we can't believe offshore wind turbine plants. the defeatists believe that we can't build thousands of jobs here in america rather than allow those jobs in clean energy go to china. when those people like sarah palin who have the attitude of defeatist join us in a sense of optimism that we can change our economy to a green-collar
economy we will build a clean energy economy that is the envy of the world and we urge them to join us. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia rise? mr. gingrey: to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. gingrey: mr. speaker, i ask you to reflect on the impact that democratic plans for the economy have on working families across the united states. this past november we reached the highest level of unemployment since 1983, $10.2%, and given the democrats' pending misguided ideas for overhauling the health care and the energy sector, there is no end in sight. and now, mr. speaker, we hear plans, yes, you guessed it, more spending. after their failed nonstimulus stimulus bill, the democrats are playing in another reckless round of stimulus spending even if they may call it something else. mr. speaker, america simply can't afford another spending spree by this democratic majority.
there's a way to boost the economy without relying -- unnecessary spending. simply put, republicans have superior plans for energy independence and health care reform that are attainable. they will not drive our country further into debt, and which will not kill jobs and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from michigan rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. . >> six years ago a family owned auto supplier had 60 workers. today, only 12 are left. to diversify their business, rtd teamed with several other firms. just six weeks ago we learned that r.t.d. would be the principal manufacturer for a major army contract. what great news until i was contacted by r.t.d.'s president last week. their long-time bank, citizen's bank, denied r.t.d.'s loan to
buy $85,000 worth of steel from another local company to produce components to protect our troops from improvised explosive devices, i.e.d.'s, instead of hiring six workers to build supplies that our troops in the field need now, r.t.d. is the latest victim of the credit crunch. get this, citizen's bank, the number one small business lender in michigan that's received $300 million in federal bailout funds, denied this loan. i'm working overtime to ensure r.t.d. doesn't lose its chance to create jobs. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. smith: mr. speaker, it has taken months but there's one thing even the national media now acknowledge. joe wilson was right. illegal immigrants are covered by the health care bill.
this week the associated press reported that the house health care bill which was the bill under consideration at the time of president obama's speech to congress and mr. wilson's remark will allow illegal immigrants to participate in the government-run and government-funded insurance plan. to its credit, cbs news said something similar back in september but on a web post. these articles are few, far between, and fairly well hidden from public view. they also fail to address the other illegal immigration related loopholes in both the house and senate bills. it's no wonder that only one in 10 americans now have a great deal of faith in the media to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly according to a recent poll. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from kentucky rise? mr. yarmuth: request permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. yarmuth: thank you. mr. speaker, our colleagues have asked a question and many of the american people are asking a question which
deserves an answer. that is, why should we worry about health care reform? why don't we focus on jobs? the truth of the matter is that no job strategy can avoid a health insurance reform strategy. as was pointed out in the "washington post" earlier this wee, the history of the last two decades have shown when health care premiums go up, wages go down. every dollar that is spent on health care in my district can't be spent to buy a ford. can't be spent to buy a g. erblings refrigerator, can't be spent to buy a package that u.p.s. will ship. the unavoidable truth is if we don't get a handle on health care costs, jobs will never improve the way we need them to. we already know that the automobile industry in this country has lost tens of thousands of jobs because the unaffordable cost of health care for their employees. a successful employment strategy must include a successful health care reform strange. that's why it's so critical that we pass that in this
congress. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico rise? >> ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, when i took office back in january, the economy was on the verge of collapse. we have taken some tough votes this year to promote a strong economic reever covery. we are beginning to see some signs that the economy is turning around. but to avoid this sort of economic crisis from happening again, we need to rein in the wall street banks that brought us to this point and begin to make washington more responsible. the wall street reform and consumer protection act will prevent risky dealings by wall street and begin an end to the days of taxpayer funded bailouts. at the same time, this bill ensures that small banks and credit unions which play a key role in their communities are not subject to undue regulatory
burdens. we must bring an end to the era of irresponsibility and recklessness on wall street. our country's working families, our small businesses, are playing by the rules. it's time that wall street must learn to do the same. i would urge my colleagues to support this legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? >> request permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. hall: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in strong support of h.r. 1473, the wall street reform and consumer protection act. to help main street, we must reform the way wall street has done business. and end the risky practice that is have caused millions of americans to lose their jobs, their homes, and life savings. this legislation would protect american consumers and prevent the irresponsible behaviors and practices that cause the financial crisis last fall. h.r. 1473 restores responsibility and
accountability to wall street through tough rules and regulation of risky practices. it protects consumers on main street by ensure that bank loans, mortgages, and credit cards are fair and transparent. it also ensures that taxpayers will never again need to bail out wall street banks by ensuring the too big to fail firms don't have a stranglehold on the market. these firms' practices led us to the brink of disaster last fall and we cannot allow them to threaten our economy again with dangerous behavior. h.r. 1473 reforms these practices and i urge my colleagues to support it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? >> rise to ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. tonko: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to talk about the 15th united nations climate change conference in copenhagen, denmark, currently underway. first, mr. speaker, i wholly
reject false notions and political attacks attempting to destroy sound science and evidence. this issue from its environmental to its energy and economic impacts is too important for false political attacks and deceitful op-eds and letters to the editor. the copenhagen discussions are about responsible governments coming together to negotiate an international climate treaty, to better our environmental and energy outcomes, not to mention creating a fair marketplace in which the world's economies will indeed compete. there is a global race occurring today. a race for a clean energy economy. the outcomes of which will allow the winner to export clean energy intellect and expertise. other countries are passing us by in this race. like the space race of decades ago, we must come together as a nation bound by the common goals of reducing global emissions, bettering our energy outcome, and enhancing our economy. the future of our nation depends on us.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? mr. mcgovern:00 by direction of the committee on rules, i call up house resolution 961 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 139, house resolution 961, resolved, that upon adoption of this resolution it shall be in order to consider the conference report to accompany the biller h.r. 3288, making appropriations for the
departments of transportation and housing and urban development and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2010, and for other purposes. the conference report shall be considered as read. all points of order against the conference report and against its consideration are waived. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the conference report to its adoption without intervening motion except one, one hour of debate and, two, one motion to recommit. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from arizona rise? mr. flake: i raise a point of order against h.r. 96 because it violates section 426-a of the congressional budget act. the resolution carries a waiver of all points of order against consideration of the conference report which include the waiver of section 425 of the congressional budget act which cause as violation of section 426-a. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arizona makes a point of order that the resolution violates section 426-a of the congressional budget act of 1974.
the gentleman has met the threshold burden under the rule and the gentleman from arizona and a member opposed each will control 10 minutes of debate on the question of consideration. after that debate, the chair will put the question of consideration. the chair recognizes the gentleman from arizona. mr. flake: i thank the chair. i raise this point of order not so much out of concern for unfunded mandates, again about the only opportunity we have to stand up and talk about the process by which this conference report is being brought to the floor. we all remember that earlier this year we had something unprecedented happen. we have never in the history of the republic ever had, every appropriation bill come to the floor under a closed rule. where members from both sides of the aisle were denied the ability to offer amendments. now, until a decade or two ago, appropriation bills typically came to the floor without even going through the rules committee at all.
it was simply covered under an open rule and amendments would be disposed of and on the floor and there would be open debate. a couple decades ago we started to go to the rules committee but only to set overall parameters. it was still an open rule. any member could offer any amendment to strike funding or move the funding around within the bill as long as it was germane. but this year we were told by the majority that we had to rush this legislation through, these appropriation bills. remember, the main reason congress is here is because of the power of the purse. article 1, to dispose of funding legislation. to fund the agencies of the federal government. so that's the important reason we are here. we are told we had to rush that through and had to do it under what amounts to a form of legislative martial law where every appropriation bill this year, every one, came to the floor under a closed rule. members were denied the ability to offer the amendments they wanted to offer. they could only offer the
amendments that the rules committee saw fit for them to offer. and hundreds and hundreds -- over thousands of amendments were offered, 12% of those amendments were actually allowed on to the house floor. now, i was fortunate to have a number of those amendments allowed. some of my colleagues came to the floor or came to the rules committee over and over again with multiple amendment requests on every bill and the entire year were not allowed one. not one amendment. you have several members not allowed one amendment the entire year. because we had to rush these bills through for some unknown reason. we were told that we had to do this because we wanted to avoid an omnibus. here we are with an omnibus. this is a bill that's been -- spends north of $1 trillion, one bill, brought to the floor under one rule. in it, let me tell you what's in it, in it is more than 5,000
earmarks. more than 5,000. mr. dreier: the gentleman yield? i thank my friend for yielding. i congratulate him for his remarks. basically it's what i'm going to say when we begin the process here. one of the arguments that has been propounded and was utilized up in the rules committee last night was that when we completed our work here in the house of representatives, but it was our friends on the other side of the capitol who did not comply with the kind of schedule that we had. the fact is, it's important to remember there are 58 democrats and two independents who organize with the democrats in the united states senate, giving them a total of 60 votes. they have complete control. so the notion of somehow saying, well, we had to get our work done. we intended to avoid an omnibus if we had been able to complete our works. but it's those guys over on the other side of the capitol who
failed to meet their responsibilities is a very, very specious and weak argument to make in light of the fact they have control of everything now. i thank my friend for yielding. mr. flake: i thank the gentleman. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mcgovern: i have great respect for my colleague from arizona, but technically this point of order is about whether or not to consider this rule. . i think that is wrong and i hope my colleagues will vote yes so we can consider this important legislation on its merits and not stop it on a procedural motion. those who oppose the conference report can vote against it on final passage. we must consider this rule, we
must have a debate and we must pass this legislation today. i have a right to close but in the end i will urge my colleagues to vote yes to consider the rule. mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from arizona. mr. flake: i thank the chair. here again, i'm here claiming time on the unfunded mandates point of order because it's about the only opportunity we've had. and all throughout this appropriations season i did something similar because it was the only opportunity i got. i was offered few opportunities to offer amendments to earmarks during this appropriations season. but let me give you some of the examples of earmarks that are in this bill. just a couple of examples of the more than 5,000 earmarks that are stuffed in this legislation. again, earmarks that for the most part we were unable to challenge on the house floor because we weren't afforded the opportunity. we made a lot in the past
couple of years and i'm glad about transparency next to the earmarks' request. accountability must also be present. and without the ability of members to challenge those earmarks, then transparency doesn't mean a whole lot. and we haven't had the ability to have accountability here. in this legislation $125,000 goes for the defense procurement assistance program in southwestern pennsylvania. those who follow the appropriations process around here, particularly with the defense appropriations, realize that southwest pennsylvania needs help with defense procurement like arizona needs more cactus. this is a region that gets billions and billions of dollars in no-bid contracts to private companies and we have an earmark, a specifically designated earmark for defense
procurement assistance. now, how ridiculous is that? yet, it's in this legislation, and it was in the prior legislation that we dealt with under, as i said, the legislative equivalent of marshal law earlier this year. the bow tancal institute of texas will enhance its collections. $290,000 to reduce slum in pennsylvania. $700,000 for an arts pavilion in mississippi. again, these may well be worthy programs. i'm not sure if the federal government ought to be funding them. but in any case should any member have the right to designate that portion of funding for his or her district without the ability of other members to challenge it on the house floor, that's the question we have here, and we went through a process the entire year where we were told we can't have open debate, we can't allow members to
challenge these earmarks on the house floor because we have to rush these bills through to avoid an omnibus. here we are in december with an omnibus. we all knew we'd be here. during the year 2006 to 2008 when the majority party was majority in congress but the republicans had the white house, they said we would have these bills in order if it not for the white house. now as the ranking member of the rules committee stated, the majority party is in control of the white house, has a huge majority here in the house, and a 60-vote majority in the senate and still we're here with an omnibus. we knew we'd be here. so you can only conclude that we rushed through this process during the entire year just to shield members from uncomfortable votes, to be forced to defend $250,000 for the brooklyn children's museum or $600,000 for streetscape
beautification in california. $200,000 for a farmer's market in kentucky. now, if it weren't for that, why in the world did we have to shield members from these uncomfortable votes? so, mr. chairman, i simply -- i wanted something different to come with this new majority in 2006. one is a transparent process with earmarks. one is an accountable process with earmarks. but this year i have to say with the closed rules that have come out of appropriation -- on appropriations bills we have not had an opaque year in a long, long time. and it doesn't speak well for this house. it doesn't speak well for our leadership to allow this kind of thing to happen. and particularly at a time when we have stories after stories after stories in the newspapers about particularly problems with defense procurement when
you have no-bid contracts to private companies that are -- that's in legislation, that we aren't allowed to challenge. i realize the defense bill is not part of this legislation. that will come next week, but it will come, again, with one rule, no ability to amend, no ability to challenge. but when that defense bill came to the floor earlier this year, there were more than 1,000 earmarks, more than 500 of which represented no-bit contracts to private companies. i offered more than 500 amendments to challenge some of those and i was allowed 8% of the amendments that were offered. and so we were only allowed to challenge just a fraction of those no-bid contracts to private companies. and that, mr. chairman, is simply wrong. we cannot continue to do that in this house. we need to be above reproach here, and we can't have a process where you have no-bid
contracts to private companies without the ability of members of congress to come to this floor and challenge those earmarks. when you have a process that shields those projects and those members from many vetting or criticism or debate or anything else we shouldn't be doing that. yet, we're still doing it. with that i urge us to overturn this rule. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, again, i want to urge my colleagues to vote yes on this motion to consider so that we can debate and pass this important piece of legislation today. and with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. all time for debate has expired. the question is shall the house now consider the resolution. all those in favor say aye. all those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the question for consideration is decided in the affirmative. the gentleman from
massachusetts is recognized for one hour. mr. mcgovern: thank you, mr. speaker. and for the purpose of debate only i yield the customary 30 minutes to the gentleman from california, mr. dreier. all time for consideration is for debate only. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mcgovern: i also ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks on house resolution 961. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, house resolution 961 provides for the consideration of the conference report to accompany h.r. 3288, the consolidated appropriations act, 2010. the rule waives all points of order against the conference report and against its consideration. it provides that the conference report shall be considered as read and finally, it provides that the previous question shall be considered as ordered without intervention of any motion except one hour of debate and one motion to recommit. mr. speaker, we're here finishing up the f.y. 2010 appropriations bills.
this consolidated appropriations bill is the product of many, many months of hard work. it contains six of the seven outstanding appropriations bills. mr. speaker, in all candor, i must admit i have a slightly different perspective on the appropriations process than i did three years ago. then in the minority i requested why the majority wasn't able to finish their bills on time. i realize now that in many cases finishing the bills in a timely fashion wasn't always the fault of the majority in the house but rather a result of the dysfunction in the senate. now, three years later the situation is similar. we, this house, this democratic majority, did our job. we passed every single bill in a timely way, and we did so responsibly. in many cases joined by many of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle. for example, the homeland security bill passed with 389
votes, including the support of my good friend from california. now, despite our hard work to move this process forward, i am sure that the gentleman from san dimas is going to protest about the process here, that this bill is made up of six bills and i'm sure he'll come up with some colorful phrases to describe his feelings today and we will look forward to that. we are essentials reaffirming votes that have already been taken, on issues that have all been previously debated and discussed. the chairman and ranking members of the appropriations committees -- subcommittees do serve credit for their bills. this is -- deserve credit for their bills. this is critical for funding for roads, bridges, for rail projects, for greenhouse gas emissions, for public housing and other housing vouchers, for critical international aid programs, like the response for global hiv-aids, poverty, international disaster assistance. for programs that prevent and
prosecute violence against women and other justice programs. critical health programs, including n.i.h. funding. public health programs. programs addressing health professions, work force shortages, liheap, head start and other education perhaps. these bills are about priorities. they are about values. they show who we are as a congress. and i stand by the values i articulated in these bills. while some may complain that we are spending too much money, that these bills are too big, i look at it in a very different way, mr. speaker. i see these bills as an opportunity to reverse years of neglect, neglect to our roads and bridges, neglect to our lower income neighbors and friends, neglect to our education system and neglect to our veterans. you see, mr. speaker, this democratic majority inherited a troubled country. our republican friends squandered budget surpluses. their reverse turned surplus
into deficits. they spent money like they were drunken sailors and yet never felt the responsibility to pay their spending -- to pay for their spending. they turned a blind eye to transgressions of wall street allowing main street to feel the pain of wall street running wild. what did we start out with? we started out with -- we inherited a financial system on the brink of collapse, the worst recession since the great depression. two wars that weren't paid for, a broken health care system and a 1950's energy policy, that was the gift from the bush administration and the republican majority in congress. so there's been a lot to fix this year. just look at some of the numbers, mr. speaker. job growth under the current administration is reversing a long downward spiral that started under the last president. the stimulus plan is working as planned. we are making sound investments in helping americans find good jobs and getting this economy
moving again. the unemployment rate dropped last month, and the efforts of this congress are helping people afford a home, helping to breathe life back into our real estate economy. even the tarp program is working better than expected. confidence has been restored to wall street, and more than $200 billion will be returned to the government. so here we are, mr. speaker, digging out from the bush economy, the bush recession. it's time to get this done, but it's not going to happen overnight. it's time to fund our priorities and meet the needs of the american people. simply, mr. speaker, this is a good bill we will consider today, and it deserves to be supported by every single member of this body. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i thank my friend from worcester for yielding me the customary 30 minutes, and i yield myself such time as i may consume and ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my
remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, i appreciate my friend's comments, and it appears to me that no matter how colorful or creative that i am that i probably won't be as persuasive with him as i hope i am with others in pointing to how absolutely ridiculous it is that we are here doing what we're doing with this -- i'm told this weighs more than a baby, in fact, a child of the woman sitting right behind me says it weighs more than her baby. it's 2,500 pages that we have been given in this omnibus appropriations bill which we were promised would not be utilized as a process if we shut down all of the appropriations bills which, if i could remind everyone, we did last summer. and actually, mr. speaker, i'd like to call my colleague's attention to today's date.
today is december 10. for those keeping track, we are now 71 days past the end of the fiscal year, 71 days overdue in completing work on our constitutionally mandated power of the purse. how far along in the process are we at this date, 71 days into the fiscal year? well, five of the 12 appropriations bills have been enacted into law. . the majority has elected to cram six of the remaining seven bills into this underlying bill. the underlying measure before us today spends $500 billion of the taxpayers' money on agencies from the housing and urban development, to infrastructure, to veterans programs.
my friend is right, of course i supported the homeland security bill. it's one of the top priorities we have. there is nothing more important than the security of the united states of america. so i supported that. but that doesn't mean that i'm supportive of taking it when it should have gone through the regular process, which is what the gentleman with whom you are speaking right now promised we were going to be able to do if we had this closed structured process for considering appropriations bill. yet here we are with this omnibus bill. they were kind enough, kind enough now by virtue of having this as a conference report to grant us an entire hour of debate for this 2,500-page measure that's before us. mr. speaker, that works out to just about $7.5 billion for every minute of debate that we are going to be allowed on the bill. $7.5 billion. i'm sure the american people will feel completely confident
that one hour to debate a $500 billion measure, half of the discretionary spending we have before us, is enough. actually an hour for oversight and accountability of their hard-earned taxpayer dollars, at a time, mr. speaker, when virtually everyone i know is engaged in cutting back. they are engaged in cutting back spending. why? because of the economic downturn through which we are going. what is it that's happened? we have seen an 85% increase in nondefense discretionary spending. an 85% increase at a time when families across this country are working very hard to figure out how they can make ends meet. now, as i have said repeatedly throughout the appropriations process, legislating is not a pretty business. it's not unusual for our work on the federal budget to extend
beyond the close of the fiscal year. it's not unprecedented to consider several appropriations bills in one package. it's happened under both political parties. the debate that takes place here on the house floor is often heated. that's the way it's supposed to be. the task, mr. speaker, of forging consensus and compromise in the face of competing views and priorities is all part of the legislative process. furthermore, spending the taxpayers' money is a very, very enormous responsibility that we have. article 1, section 9 of the constitution places that responsibility in our hands. it demands, it demands, mr. speaker, a great deal of deliberation which is not always compatible. with setting timetables. deliberation, mr. speaker, is not always compatible with setting timetables. ultimately, ultimately, mr. speaker, getting it right is
more important than getting it done by september 30. in light of this, the fact that we have arrived at december 10, december 10, 71 days after the end of the fiscal year having completed only five of the 12 appropriations bills is not only unnecessary or -- it's not only -- it's not surprising based on what we have seen here . it is -- it's not -- or even necessarily problematic. but there is far more to this story, mr. speaker. at the very outset of this process, six months ago, the democratic majority announced that they would be foregoing the messiness of real debate. i'm very pleased my friend from wisconsin, the distinguished chairman of the committee is here on the house floor. in their calculation concluding
by september 30 was more important than getting things done right. rather than a lengthy deliberative accountable process that would pursue -- they chose to pursue a neat and tidy one that shut out real debate, shut out real debate but did conclude on time for our work here in the house. well, democrats and republicans alike were denied the opportunity to participate. true to their word they made the unprecedented move of closing down the entire appropriations process. now, mr. speaker, everybody in this house who's been here first termer or they have been here as long as my friend, mr. obey, has been here, he's been here almost 200 years i think. he's been here a long, long, long period of time. he knows that never before, never before in the history of this republic have we seen the process shut down as it was
shut down last summer. we have had rank-and-file members, again democrats and republicans, mr. speaker this is not simply my attempt to stand up for republicans, we have been standing up for democrats who have been denied the opportunity to offer amendments as well. it's very, very unfortunate. by endeavoring to take the messiness out of the legislative process, they took out the real debate. they took out the accountability. all in the name of a deadline, a deadline that came and went 71 days ago. 71 days ago is when that deadline ended. when that deadline arrived, mr. speaker. here we are scrambling toer consider half of the entire discretionary budget in one single 2,500-page bill with one single hour of debate. as i said, that's $7.5 billion
per minute of debate that's going to be allowed on this. our traditional deliberative process is messy and lengthy and ugly for the sake of good results. the democratic majority set out to sacrifice good results for the sake of expediency. when we have gotten -- what we have gotten is the worst of both worlds. neither timely nor deliberative action. neither timely nor deliberative. as we have seen time and again, bad process begets bad substance. it's no coincidence that the democratic majority has been blocking all accountability of their spending practices. the defendants skyrocketed to nearly $1.5 trillion. that's larger than the entire federal budget was a decade ago. our national debt as we all know exceeded $12 trillion and
the unemployment rate is double-digit at 10%. the fact that this outcome is not surprising does not make it any less grim. we can go on -- we can't go on recklessly spending money we simply do not have, piling mountains of debt upon future generations. unless and until this democratic majority returns to regular order, the taxpayers will continue to see their hard-earned money spent unwisely and our country saddled with an ever-growing level of crippling debt. mr. speaker, i have to say that we constantly hear the finger of blame. i was managing last night the rule for general debate on this massive 1,279-page bill that reregulates virtually everything when it comes to delivery of financial services and i constantly heard the finger of blame being pointed at the republicans. we need to remind ourselves the
republicans have not been in control of the house of representatives since 2006. mr. speaker, what that means is that we have gone through now three full years, 2007, 2008, 2009 under a democratic majority. so as we continue to hear this argument that somehow republicans are to blame for all of these problems, it is a very, very specious one. i'm going to urge my colleagues, mr. speaker, to, in the name of accountability, in the name of deliberation, in the name of good results defeat this rule. we can do better. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: let me just say that this congress has a very tough job. we are digging ourselves out of
the mess that mr. bush and his republican allies created. mr. dreier: would the gentleman yield? mr. mcgovern: i would finish my statement. years and years of negligent. years of ignoring the most important pressing problems facing our country. when president obama got elected, he inherited a crumbling infrastructure in this country because of the years of negligent -- neglect by the republicans and republican president. he inherited a country that had no solid plans for alternative or renewable or clean energy because of the neglect and the obstructionism on the other side. he inherited a country where the health and well-being of our citizens had been neglected for years and years and years. so what we are doing here and what these appropriations bills are responding to are the years of neglect. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, would the gentleman yield? mr. mcgovern: 30 seconds.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california -- the gentleman from california is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. dreier: the gentleman yielded to me. i thank him for yielding. let me say, mr. speaker, the gentleman obviously didn't listen to the remarks that i just provided here. reminding members that while we continue to get the finger of blame pointed at us, for the last three years this institution where the power of the purse exists, the people's house, has been in the control of the democratic party not the republican party. i thank my friend for yielding. mr. mcgovern: for two of those years we had a republican president who obstructed every single progressive positive idea that came out of this chamber. so with this is a responsible to the neglect of the years of republican rule. that's what -- we have to clean up this mess. at this point i yield five minutes to the gentleman from wisconsin, the chairman of the appropriations committee, mr. obey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized for five minutes. mr. obey: i thank the gentleman for the time. mr. speaker, it is hard for me
to respond to the gentleman's comments with a straight face. i really think we have had a big lesson in "alice in wonderland" reasoning here today. let's simply let the facts speak for themselves. we presently have had five appropriations bills already signed by the president of the united states. in addition, the bill which we will consider today and which will be sent to the president will mean that we have sent six additional appropriation bills to the white house. that means that during this session we will have passed every single appropriation -- every single regular appropriation bill except the defense bill, which we expect to deal with next week.
and we did that on top of having to deal with the most calamitous collapse of the economy in 75 years necessitating a whole round of legislative action to try to salvage the economy. the gentleman and several of his friends on that side of the aisle have continued to complain that we haven't gotten all of these bills done by the end of the fiscal year. in gauging how serious we should take that -- how seriously we should take those -- no, i would not. mr. speaker, i do not intend to yield until i'm finished with my entire statement. the gentleman habitually asks people to yield in the middle of their statement. i'm going to complete my thoughts and then i'll be happy to yield. the fact is i think this house ought to compare our record
this year with the record when the gentleman's party was in control. when we took control of of this house three years ago, what did we find? we found that they had only been able to pass two appropriation bills. they had not been able to pass a single appropriation bill that appropriated a dime for the domestic portion of the federal budget. they in fact gave to the next congress the necessity to pass all of those domestic appropriation bills. how with that record they could come forward on this floor and complain because we are 60 days late in their mind is a joke, in my view. and let me cite some of the other records. so far this year without this
bill we have passed more individual appropriation bills than has been done in five of the last seven years. most of those years were either republican -- were under republican control. in fiscal year 2003, republican control, only two bills were enacted as freestanding measures. the rest were part of an omnibus. in fiscal 2004, republican control, six bills were enacted as freestanding measures, the rest were in an omnibus. fiscal 2005, republican control . four bills were enacted and three standing measures. the rest were put in an omnibus. . and the list goes on and on and on. with respect to the appropriations process, our friends on the other side of
the aisle were able to offer 96 amendments in full committee. they offered 155 amendments on the floor. and on the conference, on this bill alone, they offered nine amendments. significantly the republican counterparts in the senate didn't offer any. they thought we'd done a pretty good bipartisan job in producing these bills, and i do too. the fact is we have been subjected to obstruction by delay as the minority has apparently tried to turn the house of representatives into the senate through filibuster by amendment. we don't have a filibuster under the house rules, but they can achieve the same thing by tossing countless amendments, many of which are not serious amendments. now, with respect to the cost of the bill, they make much of
the fact that this bill costs significantly more than its counterparts last year. well, let's walk through these -- can i ask for an additional minute? mr. mcgovern: i yield one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. obey: let's walk through those differences are. subject we take out the increase for veterans so that we can clean up the disability backlog? will they suggest that there's something wrong with the fact that in contrast to what happened when they were running the show we chose to put $14.8 billion for war costs that were previously funded in a supplemental, we chose to put them in the regular bill so you didn't hide the cost in the regular bill. on infrastructure, as the gentleman pointed out, we had collapsing infrastructure in this country.
will they suggest we remove the $10.8 billion in additional infrastructure funding? in health we are about to pass the most moment us health care changes in the -- momentus health care changes in the history of the country. we have $6.3 billion of additional funding over last year. to expand the capacity of the health care system to deal with the fact that 31 million more people are going to be using that health care system. would they suggest that we take that money out? when you total up the cost for those items that i just recited, the list of the increase in the bill is $4.8 billion. that is equal to 1% increase. i make no apology for that because as the gentleman pointed out, we are trying to
deal with years of neglect of our domestic economy. this is the bill -- thank you. this is the bill that does that, and i make no apology for the fact that we bring it to the house today, and i make no apology for our ability -- for comparing our ability to deliver the goods before the end of this congress in contrast to the inability of the other party to do that when they controlled the house. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. obey: i'd be happy to yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: i'd be happy to engage in a colloquy with my friend -- i hopes he gets the glass of water. obviously the appropriations process is a challenging and difficult and messy one, but i think it's important to notice a few things as we look at last summer and the -- my friend
will acknowledge, and i would be happy to yield to him. my friend will acknowledge that nowhere in the history of the republic that we had the kind of structure put into place that prevented members from offering amendments that we did through this appropriations process. i'm happy to yield to my friend. mr. obey: i'd say never before had we had the kind of systemic obstruction from the minority either. mr. dreier: reclaiming my time, mr. speaker. the problem we have is this. the first appropriation bill came forward. it was a total of 20 minutes of debate. 20 minutes of debate took place, mr. speaker. and then all of a sudden the process was shut down. mr. mcgovern and i and our other rules committee colleagues went upstairs to take the first step towards shutting down the process. so let's say this extraordinarily, dilatory process lasted minute before we
took the first step towards shutting this place down. the second thing, mr. speaker, is that as we talk about the sacrosanct september 30, end of fiscal year date, that's only part of it. the only reason that we point that out, recognizing that under both democrats and republicans we have clearly through a difficult appropriations process in the past, we have clearly had to go beyond that september 30 deadline for the end of the fiscal year. and the problem was that when we were told we would not exceed that, because we were shutting down the process so unfortunately we lost both the opportunity for deliberation and this sacrosanct deadline that was constantly held up as the raise on debt here through this kind of action. the third point is, as my friend, the distinguished chair of the committee, went through the 95 amendments that were
offered in committee, the 160 amendments that were made in order on the house floor for consideration, mr. speaker, with all due respect, the selection of those amendments were in the hands of one individual member of this institution. not those of us on the house rules committee. yeah, we ultimately with the majority vote in the house rules committee saw our democratic colleagues put a stamp of approval on it. the distinguished chair of the committee on appropriations, that's where the decisions were. now, mr. speaker, under the historic tradition, the tradition of consideration of appropriations bills, knowing how sacrosanct article 1, section of the 9 -- section 9 of the constitution is, as mr. flake said in his remarks, stand up and offer amendments. one of the things we believe strongly about was the 85% increase we have in nondefense
discretionary spending that -- not those issues that the gentleman pointed to that of course we agree to in a bipartisan way, the national security of the united states of america, but in the multifarious other areas, there is a real desire for members to stand up and have a chance to offer amendments that might be able to bring about with a scal am, some kind of -- scalple, some kind of spending reduction. so, mr. speaker, i have to say that it's very, very troubling to hear these kinds of arguments. mr. kirk, whom i'm going to yield to in just a minute, has the 2,500 pages very, very gingerly propped up on that elect urine here. it will amount to $15 billion since we are spending $7.5 billion per minute. my friend from highland park.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for two minutes. mr. kirk: i thank the gentleman. this bill stolets 2,500 pages. initial estimates show it has 5,000 earmarks, and these earmarks in this legislation stretch over several hundred pages. now, anytime congress moves a 2,500-page appropriation bill on short notice we should urge caution. this kind of spending may be in line with other spending of this congress. this morning, congressman price and i released a list of the 11 woors spending items approved by the 111th congress. items included $1.9 million for a water taxi to nowhere in pleasure beach, connecticut. opposed by a local mayor there that said the reason why we never did this is there's no local support for this project. or $578,000 to fight homelessness in union new york, a town that's reported no homeless citizens. h.u.d. official said we hope to encourage these new grauntees
to develop a quote, creative strategy for this funding. now, remember, the bureau of public debt says we must borrow $160 billion per week for the united states to service our current debt and add new i.o.u.'s. 46 cents of every dollar spent by this congress is borrowed, and most of it from abroad. this bill has 5,000 earmarks, over several00 -- several hundred pages in this 2,500 pages. the press reports indicate that the congressional leaders will soon approve $1.8 trillion to our national debt next year. they need to do this to fund 10,000 earmarks they already approved, 500 just in this legislation -- 5,000 just in this legislation, accelerating spending by $50 billion over last year alone. i think we should turn away from this kind of spending and
enact a more frugal set of spending priorities. and i yield back to my chairman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: thank you, mr. speaker. let me make a couple of observations. first of all, the gentleman talks about earmarks. earmarks have been curtailed significantly from where they were when the republicans were in control of congress. secondly, i guess it's good theatrics to hold up all the pages of the appropriations bills that are gathered there. but i should point out to my colleague, they were longer in length than the one he has there. so what. has this debate has become so shallow that it's all about the number of pages in the bill? mr. dreier: will the gentleman yield? mr. mcgovern: no, i will not. the chairman took a responsibility. the responsibility that the trattic majority has is to clean up the mess that the republicans left us. the responsibility of the democratic majority is to deal with the years and years of
neglect on important programs ranging from transportation to health care to veterans' affairs. that's what we're doing here. this is the debate about issues that matter to everyday people. in these bills are -- in these bills contains moneys for roads and bridges, moneys for our veterans, moneys for our health care facilities. these are important matters, and that is what we should be debating. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, will the gentleman yield? mr. mcgovern: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from m mississippi, the chairman of the homeland security appropriations committee, mr. thompson. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi is recognized for two minutes. mr. thompson: thank you very much, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, today i rise with significant concerns about section 159 of the transportation twigs of this legislation. it will require -- division of this legislation. it will require amtrak have passengers check their guns when they're riding the rails. it's no secret that rail systems are an attractive target for terrorists. in fact, in last year's attack, the mumbai, two terrorists
executed a commando-style raid on a major railway system gunning down 150 innocent commuters. to date, we've been fortunate that no such attacks have occurred on u.s. soil, but with passage of this legislation, securing the nation's railway system becomes far more difficult. section 159 requires amtrak to allow passengers to travel with guns without checking them against the terrorist watch list. we all get checked against the terrorist watch list when we fly, regardless of whether we check firearms or not. how can we justify not using the terrorist watch list on people who travel the rail? amtrak policy of prohibiting passengers from traveling with guns was established in response to 9/11. with this bill, congress in a
heavy-handed way is interfering with amtrak security protocols without a single congressional hearing. this bill would abruptly undermine nearly a decade of conscientious effort for amtrak to enhance rail security and protect its passengers and employees. i'm also concerned that it does not distinguish between checked baggages transported in a separate car and that which is loaded onto the same car as passengers. section 159 also lacks safeguards to ensure that state and local gun laws are respected. specifically, it is silent on the question of preemption, thereby implying that individuals shall carry -- an additional 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: 30 seconds. mr. thompson: thereby implying that passengers can carry firearms into jurisdictions where it is unlawful to do so. i'd like to also add that last year we spent twice as much money for passengers on
aviation security as we did on rail security. section 159 will undermine the security of amtrak's passengers, employees and infrastructure, and i sincerely hope that we do not soon come to regret this hasty and unexamined passage. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. dreier: mears, i'd a lot -- mr. speaker, i'd like to say that my good friend from mississippi is raising good concerns as well. this underscores procedurally the challenge that we're facing when we have one individual making these kinds of decisions that should be made by democrat the house of representatives. . when we listen to this argument put forward about spending and the fact that this 2,500-page bill -- you bet. you bet, mr. speaker, it is
theatrical to hold up 2,500-page bill. but it's a way to graphically underscore what is taking place here. now, my friend said that he's interested and concerned about the fact that everyday people have priorities on transportation, on a wide range of issues, national security again is to me priority number one. mr. speaker, in this 2,500-page bill we have a 63% increase in funding for the international panel on climate change. mr. speaker, i don't believe that everyday people who constantly over the past year or two have been focusing on trying to rein in their spending believe that a 63% increase on the panel on international climate change is an appropriate utilization of this money. that's the reason, mr. speaker, we point to this. now i'm very happy to yield three minutes to my good friend from ames, iowa, the
distinguished ranking member of the subcommittee on transportation and housing, my friend, mr. latham. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from iowa is recognized for three minutes. mr. latham: thank you very much, mr. speaker. thank you -- i thank the gentleman from californiaer for the time. i hear all this talk about the path -- past. if i remember a little bit of the past, recently, that somebody ran on the idea of change you could believe in. is this the kind of of change that people were talking about to continue the same type of efforts in the house here that is so bad as far as what was in the past? i'm very, very disturbed today that we bring a rule to the floor. we are five months after this bill has passed the floor of the house, three months after it had passed the senate, and now finally today, almost three
months into the new fiscal year , we finding -- finally bring the transportation-h.u.d. bill to the floor. why wait? this bill has been done for months and months. and frustration i think a lot of us have on both sides of the aisle is that there is no reason that this bill should not have been completed other than for the fact that they wanted to use it as it's being used today as a vehicle to carry other bills that maybe could not stand on their own. and because the work hasn't been done. anyone who talks about the -- some kind of delay tactics when you have 80-vote margin in the house, a supermajority in the senate it is simply beyond any kind of of rational argument today. mr. speaker, i will tell you a couple days ago i had a motion to instruct conferees. this is why i think everyone should oppose this rule.
i had a motion that said we would have as conferees on this bill 72 hours to look at what's in that 2,500-pages that's being dumped on us today. we were given 30 minutes. when the bill was completed, we were in conference, we had gotten the opportunity for 30 minutes after the house had voted to give us 72 hours to study what's in that bill. also, the house voted and a sizable majority said that we should take this bill by itself rather than to have these other five bills added on to it. again, totally ignored. so here we are today with almost a $500 billion bill that we had 30 minutes to look at. just as one example of why it's important to have a chance to look at something like this, there's a provision airdropped that no one knew about it. i asked about it in conference. no one knew the answer to it.
that is a huge safety issue on transportation. why airdrop into this conference report just before our conference convened was a special exemption for the state of vermont to have 98,000-pound trucks travel on interstate highways. maybe this is ok. maybe it's fine. but i think every state maybe should have an opportunity. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. dreier: i'd like to yield my friend an additional 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for an additional 30 seconds. mr. latham: this is exactly why we should have time to look at it. i know there's a lot of other states who would like to have their weight increased. whether this is a safety issue, certainly it is in many parts of the country, but to have someone airdrop a provision of that importance into a bill like this is is simply outrageous. there was no debate. no one knew a thing about it. even the people who were in charge of the bill could not
explain the provision when i asked what is this under that section, why is this language in there as it is? because it had absolutely no debate, no one knew what it is. please, vote against this rule and let's get -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i yield two minutes to the gentlelady from florida. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady florida is recognized for two minutes. ms. brown: i believe you got to stand for something or fall for everything. and today as subcommittee chair of railroads i am appalled that we are including language in this omnibus bill that allows people to carry guns on amtrak. this is a failure of leadership in every single level. we are passing legislation that endangers the safety of 27 million passengers that ride amtrak each year. this language was opposed by both the transportation
infrastructure committee and the homeland security committee. as well as numerous other members. yet we are forced this unnecessary provision on millions of passengers and jeopardize homeland security for absolutely no reason. i have traveled the rail system throughout the world, and none of them allow guns on their system. we are taking a dangerous step backwards and stripping amtrak of its abilities to set security standards and protect its customers and employees. deadly terrorist attack rushed just two weeks ago, on a train, and the same thing happened with madrid, spain, india, and london, england. each one has emphasized the importance of passenger rail security. these incidents also clearly demonstrate the fact that security in rail environment protect ue phoenix opportunities for -- present ue phoenix opportunities for
terrorists. you don't have the t.s.a. officials there, law enforcement officers, processes passengers through these stations. we haven't provided amtrak the resources to fully fund this operation let alone the additional cost and manpower this legislation would necessary to comply. the traveling public deserves better. i'm asking each member to vote no on this rule so we can come back and get a fair rule pertaining to the traveling public. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, as i prepare to yield to mied good friend from alpine, utah, mr. chaffetz, i would simply say that give him two minutes which would total $15 billion of this measure based on the $7.5 billion per minute that it's costing us to do this. i'm happy to yield two minutes to our hardworking new colleague from utah. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah is recognized for two minutes. mr. chaffetz: thank you, mr.
speaker. thank you for yielding. this rule is really bad government at its worse. i really do believe that in my heart of hearts. it seems to be a vehicle to drop in things that would never pass by themselves. we are hearing that criticism on both sides of the aisle. 2,500 pages and the gentleman from massachusetts, why is that important? it's important because we get just hours to try to review this. there is physically an impossibility, it is physical impossible to actually read and comprehend what is in this bill. i, for one, was leekted as a freshman because i was critical of the republicans and democrats. it's a shame that this bill and rule is being pushed upon us without an opportunity to properly review it. 2,500 pages, $446 billion in expenses. nearly 12% increase in spending year over year on the base spending. over 5,000 earmarks that could never stand, withhold the light of day if we had to vote on
them and look at them one at a time, as my friend, mr. flake, has brought many times before this floor. next week there's going to be legislation moved forward to raise the debt ceiling by $1.8 trillion. let no person in this body try to kid themselves that they are concerned about the debt and deficit when they have to continually raise the debt ceiling to try to clean up things. no, we continue to mortgage our future. every time we are met with a challenge the only thing i hear is we need billions and billions more. it's time for this congress to make tough, difficult decisions and limit the spending. that will help grow the economy. that's the responsible thing to do. that's what the american people asked to us do. that's not what this body is doing. it's time for personal responsibility here in the united states congress. we should defeat this rule. and we should get serious about limiting the amount of expenditures that happen in the united states congress. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: thank you, mr. speaker. i just make a couple of observations. first of all i should remind everybody when bill clinton left office he left george bush with a record surplus. which president bush and his republicans in congress squandered. we ended up going from record surpluses to record deficits and debts. that's just a fact. i understand the frustration of my friends on the other side. their goal is to obstruct and make sure we get nothing done here. that's their -- i will not. that is what they think is a winning strategy. to basically get nothing done. they are failing in that because congress is moving and getting things done. we are beginning to turn this economy around. and we are responding to the needs of the american -- needs and desears of the american people. we are going to continue to do that. this bill with the inclusion of moneys for veterans, for our infrastructure, for health care, for job creation, and worker training during this difficult economy is vital and
important and we are going to help the american people. at this time i yield three minutes to the gentleman from new york, mr. serrano. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for three minutes. mr. serrano: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. serrano: i thank the gentleman for his time. i rise in strong support of this rule and i am pleased to be be able to comment on the the financial services and general government section of this bill which provides for a total of $24.1 billion in discretionary appropriations. the agencies that this bill funds touch all of our lives and the spending has been carefully allocated to those programs where the american people will benefit the most. in an effort to rebuild the regulatory agencies to protect investors, consumers and taxpayers, the securities and exchange commission is given a 16% increase over fiscal year 2009 to $1.1 billion. in addition, because we are committed to implementing important consumer protection
legislation that was enacted in 2008, the consumer product safety commission receives $118 million, the full amount authorized and a 13 million increase over last year. in this conference report, we also want to make sure that capital and other assistance gets to small businesses and disadvantaged communities. not just to large businesses and the wealthy. the small business administration and the community development financial institution fund both received significant increases above fiscal year 2009. the i.r.s. is sufficiently funded to allow for the fair and effective collection of taxes, including resources, to pursue wealthy individuals and businesses who avoid u.s. taxes by parking money in overseas tax havens. there's also more than the budget request for taxpayer services. the federal judiciary receives the funding it needs to keep up with increased cost and
show that bill, but that's composed of -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for an additional 30 seconds. mr. serrano: that passed this house some as far back as six months ago. those bills went through the committee process, subcommittee process, full committee process, amendment process. in amendment the -- in committee the amendment process -- if anyone says they haven't read that bill, it's because they didn't take time to read those five or six or seven bills included there which passed about six months ago. mr. dreier: would the gentleman yield? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. dreier: would the gentleman yield? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yielded back his
time. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, at this time someone unprecedented procedure utilizing the 2,500-page bill as the lecturn, i'm happy to yield to the distinguished chair of the republican conference, my friend from columbus, indiana, self-described favorite hoosier of mine, my friend, mr. pence. 2 1/2 minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana is recognized for 2 1/2 minutes. mr. pence: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. pence: i rise in opposition to the conference report before us today. . it really is astonishing. at a time when american families are hurting, 10% unemployment, now comes before the congress this massive piece of legislation. and the numbers tell the tale.
2,500 pages, nearly half a trillion dollars in spending, 5,000 earmarks on hundreds of pages. now, i know my distinguished colleague on the other side said that the numbers of pages is a -- so what. and i refer to him, i don't think it's about the number of pages. i think it's the size of the bill that will be offensive to millions of americans. when you get down into the details here, military construction and veterans funding gets a 5.2% increase. commerce and science gets 11.6%. foreign operations, a 33% increase this year. transportation, housing and urban development gets a 23.5% increase. feel like i ought to call for a drumroll here, mr. speaker. a 12.2% increase in a single year.
as i told the president of the united states yesterday in the cabinet room, there's not a business in muncie, indiana, that's going to see a 12% increase in its budget this year. but here in washington, d.c., proving just how out of touch this nation's capital is with the struggles that american families and small business and family farmers are facing, here it is, a 12% increase in federal spending. it's not just within this bill. it's what isn't in this bill. gone is the funding of federal abortions in the district of columbia. gone is the ban on federal funding of domestic partnership benefits. and officially gone is the d.c. opportunity scholarship program, doing away with opportunities of a largely minority population to go to the school of their choice. and also, i might add, is gone is any restriction on the use of federal funds to enforce or implement the fairness
doctrine. you know, the president said to us yesterday in the cabinet rom, we need to get back to fiscal -- room, we need to get back to fiscal discipline. i said you can do one thing this week, veto this bill. let's have -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. pence: tell the american people that we get it here in washington, d.c. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. fwovegove mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. i again appreciate the theatrics on the other side. i'd remind them again that these bills have all gone through committee and have all been voted here on the house. i'd like to say to my colleagues, remind them of the old saying, physician heal thyself. i don't have account here but my guess is that a good portion of those oorms are republican earmarks. -- earmarks are republican earmarks. mr. speaker, there is increased spending in this bill for things like veterans. veterans health. in this bill, you know, there's money for military construction and family housing to support
america's military forces and their families at home and overseas. mr. dreier: will the gentleman yield? grovegove there's money for -- mr. mcgovern: there's money for overseas contingency operations. money for veterans' health administration, for rural health. there's money here to deal with mental health challenges that so many of our vicious have to deal with. women veterans program. long-term care. assistance for homeless vets. medical and prosthetic research, v.a. construction. it goes on and on and on. if my colleagues oppose that, fine, then they can vote against the final passage of the bill. but i say that these are priorities for our country and i am glad that this -- mr. dreier: will the gentleman yield? mr. mcgovern: has put this in the bill and i will enthusiastic support this bill. mr. dreier: will the gentleman yield? mr. mcgovern: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: i yield to my good friend from mesa, arizona, mr. flake. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arizona is
recognized. mr. flake: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i have to say the chairman of the appropriations committee said a while ago that they have to what amounts legislative form of marshal law during the consideration of these appropriations bills because many amendments were being brought forward. he said many were not serious amendments. i can only assume that he was referring to some of mine because i had a lot of them. but let me tell you, we had 500 -- more than 500 no-bid contracts going to private companies in the defense bill alone. and i had many amendments to examine those because heaven knows they weren't being examined in the appropriations committees sufficiently. we had story after story and a cloud hanging over this body, investigations going on. the ethics committee have seen fit to investigate the relationship between earmarks and campaign contributions, and yet we say that many of these amendments are not serious amendments.
who has to decide that? why don't we let the body here decide and allow us to come to the floor? and the gentleman from massachusetts mentioned that we have to have this level of funding because of years and years of neglect. i would submit that we would do well to have a little more neglect on the taxpayers' behalf if what we are funding in this bill, and we are, is nearly $200,000 to renovate a building in massachusetts to attract private capital investment. $700,000 for an arts pavilion in mississippi. i think the taxpayers would be happy for a little more neglect by the federal government. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i reserve my time, mr. speaker. mr. dreier: how many speakers does he have remaining? mr. mcgovern: none, just me. mr. dreier: oh, my gosh, i can hardly wait. mr. speaker, at this point i'm very happy to yield to the
lecturn in front of him, the gentleman from dallas, texas, one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is rked for one minute. -- recognized for one minute. mr. hensarling: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i guess at 5'6" i'm doing well to simply overlook the 2,500-page bill that spends yet another half a trillion dollars of money we do not have. since the democrats have come to power, they have increased the deficit 10-fold. we had our first $1 trillion deficit. a budget plan to triple, triple the national debt in the next 10 years. mr. speaker, every page of this behemoth spending bill represents an i.o.u. to the chinese to be paid for by our children and grandchildren. every single page of this 2,500 , half a trillion-dollar bill
crushes yet another job in america. nobody is going to launch blue jobs in america -- new jobs in america when they have to pay for this, mr. speaker. our highest levels of spending, our highest levels of unemployment. mr. speaker, the democrats don't get it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, may i inquire of the chair how much time is remaining on each side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has 30 seconds remaining. and the gentleman from massachusetts has four minutes. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, i yield myself the balance of our time, the 30 seconds, to simply say in the name of fairness, there are both democrats and republicans who are opposing this rule. why? because democrats and republicans have been shut out of this process. on the republican side, mr. speaker, we believe that an 85% increase in nondefense
discretionary spending is outrageous when the american people are struggling to make ends meet. only the federal government, as my friend from indiana said would perceive as a democrat make increase in spending when businesses across this country are working to bring about reductions. there are shared priorities we have on national defense, on transportation. but the notion of a 63% increase for the international panel on climate change or $375 million for the clean technology fund is not the -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. dreier: defeat the previous question. defeat this rule, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, the american people indeed are struggling. and they are struggling because of years of neglect by president bush and the republicans here in this
congress who have neglected, i think, the most important pressing priorities that everyday people face. and what we are trying to do is clean up their mess. and this bill represents an increase in spending on important priorities that have been underfunded in the past. everything from infrastructure because our infrastructure all over our country is crumbling because of neglect to an increase in funding for veterans health and for veterans housing. i am proud of the priorities in this -- in these appropriations bills. we have an appropriations -- we have appropriations bills that have a conscience, that actually respond to the needs of the american people. and i understand, as i said before, the frustration of the other side because what they would like is for us to get nothing done. but the reality, mr. speaker, is that this democratic congress is doing the opposite. "politico" said a democratic congress that is enjoying the greatest political and legislative success since at least the beginning of the clinton administration and arguably since its legislative hay day in the mid 1960's.
we are moving forward on things like the american recovery and reinvestment act to help keep people's jobs and create more jobs. the cash for clunkers bill, which jump-started the u.s. auto industry and provided consumers with up to $4,500 to trade in an old vehicle for one with higher fuel efficiency. we have passed a bill to help families save their homes. we passed the edward m. kennedy serve america act, tripling volunteerism opportunities to a quarter of a million people. we have passed health care for 11 million more children that without this bill would not have access to health care. the f.d.a. regulation of tobacco. the ryan white hiv-aids treatment extension act. the omnibus public lands management act. the fraud enforcement and recovery act. the military procurement reform bill. strengthening oversight of tarp. the lilly ledbetter fair pay act. i'd go on and on and on, but this has been an activist congress responding to the needs of the american people, responding to those who are struggling, who are out of work
because they were neglected for so many years. and we are trying to deal with our debt as well, trying to go back to what president clinton established, a time of record surpluses. but when the republicans came in, the first thing they did was pass tax cuts for wealthy people without paying for it. the rich got richer while the middle class got poorer. mr. speaker, this omnibus bill before us represents, i think, the right priorities, the priorities of the american people. and i'd urge a yes vote on the previous question and on the rule, and i yield back the balance of my time and i move the previous question on the resolution. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is on ordering the previous question on the resolution. those in favor signify by saying aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, on that i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing
until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 8 and clause 9 of rule 20, the 15-minute vote on ordering the previous question will be followed by five-minute votes on the adoption of the house resolution 961, if ordered, and the motion to suspend the rules on house resolution 35. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 227, the nays are 187. the previous question is ordered. the question is on adoption of the resolution. all those in favor signify by saying aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. dreier: mr. speaker. mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, on that i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this will be a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives.
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 221. the nays are 200. the resolution is adopted. without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the unfinished business is the question on suspend the rules and agreeing to h.res. 35 which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: resolution expressing the sense of the house of representatives that congress should provide increased federal funding for continued type 1 diabetes research. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to the resolution. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to, without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? will members please clear the well. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? mr. arcuri: mr. speaker, i send to the desk a privileged report from the committee on rules for filing under the rule. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: report to accompany house resolution 964, resolution providing for further consideration of the bill h.r. 4173, to provide for financial regulatory reform, to
protect consumers and investors, to enhance federal understanding of insurance issues, to regulate over-the-don't youer derivative markets and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the house calendar referred to the house calendar and ordered printed. the gentleman from massachusetts, for what purpose does do you rise? >> mr. speaker, pursuant to house resolution 961, i call up the conference report on the bill h.r. 3288 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: an act making appropriations for the departments of transportation and housing and urban development and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2010, and for other purposes.
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 961, the conference report is considered as read. the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. olver, and the gentleman from iowa, mr. latham, will each control 30 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. olver: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include tabular and extraneous material on the conference report to accompany h.r. 3288. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. olver: mr. speaker, i yield myself three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. olver: it is my privilege and pleasure to present the consolidated appropriations act for fiscal year 2010 to the
house. this conference report is the product of many hours of hearings and briefings across six subcommittees, always with bipartisan input, and excellent member participation. and culminated by extensionive negotiation with our senate colleagues. i especially would like to recognize the important contributions of our ranking member, tom latham of iowa, in putting together the transportation and housing portions of this bill. while we may not always agree, i always appreciate his partnership and input has made the bill better. i am particularly proud of the transportation and housing portion of the report because it demonstrates our mutual commitment to investing in our nation's housing and transportation infrastructure, our mutual commitment -- mr. obey: mr. speaker, the house is not in order.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman will suspend. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. olver: it demonstrates our mutual commitment to maintaining critical services in urban and rural committees -- communities, our mutual commitment to vulnerable populations such as elderly and disabled. our mutual commitment to building sustainable communities for the nation's families, and our mutual commitment to maintaining a safe transportation system that contributes to america's place in a global economy. notably the conference agreement provides funding to improve and repair roughly one million miles of federal-aid highways, to support and expand the public transit system that carried more than 10 billion
riders last year, to meet demand for the 21st century inner city passenger rail system demonstrated by amtrak's 11% growth in annual ridership, and to modernize an air traffic control system that is outdated and manages over 10.5 million flights annually. within the housing and urban development programs, the conference agreement fully funds the section 8 rental housing assistance program thereby ensuring affordable housing for 3.5 million families and individuals. the agreement provides 10,000 new vouchers for -- to homeless veterans. the agreement keeps a roof over the heads of 1.2 million households living in public housing, and the agreement helps communities improve local economies and create jobs through the community
development block grant program. in conclusion, we worked hard to balance many competing demands to produce a bill that reflects the bipartisan needs for transportation and housing and strengthen the foundation upon which our economic turn around is being built. this is a good product and i urge members to support it. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from iowa, for what purpose does do you rise? mr. latham: i thank the speaker. to claim the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. latham: i yield myself five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: mr. speaker, i first want to thank chairman olver for his kind words and his leadership this year. the gentleman from massachusetts truly is a gentleman. and i appreciate very much the work that he's done. he's very artfully negotiated good conference report for the house. those of you who know john
olver know he puts a great deal of effort and thought into this bill and to the issues and transportation and housing worlds. in fact, sometimes you feel like he's gone a little bit too far into the weeds, but his dedication is to be admired. it is all the more fortunate that we are -- unfortunate we are here today under these circumstances. instead of presenting a transportation-h.u.d. conference report, chairman olver is forced to carry five other bills with him. bills that should be considered on their own as conference reports. the transportation-h.u.d. bill like all appropriations bills was considered under a closed rule in the name of expediency. the transportation-h.u.d. bill passed the floor of the house in july. the senate even passed the bill that was on september 17. the senate apparently the body that can't get their work on time managed to do it at that
time under an open amendment process. they even actually got to offer amendments on the bill which is something we didn't get to do here in the house. realistically we could have and should have been able to bring the transportation-h.u.d. conference report to the floor by the end of the fiscal year. instead, here we are today three months into the fiscal year, three months after the senate passed its bill, and an omnibus today. the transportation-h.u.d. is not alone in this situation, the mil-con veterans bill was considered and passed by both bodies. it should be a stand-alone conference report. commerce-justice-state actually had a conference committeing noticed up but that got yanked. the c.j.s. should be a stand-alone bill, instead they also got stuck in this omnibus. three other bills, the foreign operations bill, the financial services bill, and even the
labor-h.h.s. bill, mr. obey's own bill, weren't considered in the senate and are buried in this package. . the house voted to adopt a motion to instruct that said no extraneous matters should be added to the transportation-h.u.d. conference report. and instead, against the wishes of the house, we add five bills to this conference report. i regret very much that i am unable to support this bill. it's my first year on this bill, and i've enjoyed obviously working with the chairman. the issues are interesting, and our subcommittee members are really engaged and bring a variety of experiences to the table. however, the price tag on this bill is simply too high. mr. lewis offered an amendment to have the spending levels
proposed by congress at the 2010 level nondefense, veterans spending at -- everything but defense and veterans at 2% over last year. we spent a lot of money last year. so a 2% increase over last year would really be quite generous. however, when we finished the 2010 bills, the democrats will have increased government spending by 85%. 85% over the last two years. you tell me one american family that has 85% more in 2009. i can tell you none of my constituents have an additional 85% to spend this year. and they sure don't have the funds to pay for the taxes, increases that will be needed to pay for this or the debt that the other party is dumping on our taxpayers.
another issue i think the members need to be aware of in this package despite our earlier efforts, the justice department has issued an opinion that the government will still give funds to acorn. let me state that again. we will still be funding acorn under this bill and their existing contracts. federal funds will still flow. i had an amendment in conference to substitute new language to get at this issue as all of us were under the impression that acorn was cut off for good. that's what we were told. however, the justice department has another view in the agencies, at least in the h.u.d. area, will still cut checks to acorn. again, i told the rules committee yesterday this is a bittersweet time. i yield myself another 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. latham: i told the rules committee yesterday this is a bittersweet time. the fed conference is completed and that in itself is an accomplishment. there is a lot of good policy
in the transportation-h.u.d. conference bill. but this package, with all of the six bills piled together, is about $390 billion and five appropriations bills too large. thank you, mr. speaker. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts, for what purpose do you rise? mr. olver: mr. speaker, i yield three minutes to the gentlewoman from new york, nita lowey. nita lowey is the chairwoman of the state and foreign operations subcommittee of appropriations, one of the bills which is included. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from new york is recognized for three minutes. mrs. lowey: and i thank the chairman for your important work on this bill. i am very pleased to present division f of the f.y. 2010 omnibus which includes $47.764 billion in appropriations to
the department of state, foreign operations and related programs. at $1.235 billion, or 2% below fiscal year 2009 enacted levels, including supplemental appropriations, and $3.28 billion below the president's fiscal year 2010 request, these funds support the u.s. diplomatic and development priorities, a cornerstone of u.s. national security. to address security impair tiffs, it includes $4.5 billion to help stabilize, strengthen and rebuild afghanistan, pakistan and iraq in conjunction with funding in the 2009 supplemental, full funding for our commitments to our allies and partners in the middle east, including a $2.775 billion in f.m.f. for israel. $1.3 billion for egypt. $00 million for jordan. a provision to exclude the
export import bank from entering deals into companies that contribute to iran's refine petroleum industry. gives the secretary of state authority to exempt countries cooperating closely with the united states to stop iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. $8.37 billion for counternarcotics and other similar programs in latin america. this bill continues the congressional commitment to increase diplomatic and development capacity with resources to hire, train, support and protect 700 new department of state personnel and 300 new u.s.a. personnel. the bill increases funding for key long-term development priorities, including $7.7 billion for global health activities, including $5.7 billion for global hiv-aids,
$1.2 billion to improve access to quality, basic and higher education, $1.1 billion for food security and agriculture development. over $1.25 billion in bilateral and multilateral assistance for clean energy, biodiversity and climate change initiatives. and $315 million to expand access to safe water and sanitation. and $2.57 billion for refugee and disaster assistance. finally, to improve accountability and oversight, the bill provides $149 million for the inspector general of the department of state and u.s. aid and the special inspector general for iraq, afghanistan reconstruction. madam -- sir -- mr. speaker -- the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentlelady has
expired. mr. olver: i yield two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for two minutes. mrs. lowey: i'm also pleased this appropriations package invests in worthy initiatives in our communities that will improve health, education, law enforcement, environment and infrastructure in new york and around the nation. so i urge my colleagues to give this bill our bipartisan support. and i yield back the balance of my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. who seeks recognition at this time? the gentleman from iowa. mr. latham: it's my pleasure to yield five minutes to the distinguished ranking member of the full committee, mr. lewis from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes. mr. lewis: mr. speaker, i appreciate very much my colleague yielding as i open remarks, i know i want to join my chairman to express our appreciation for the fine work of our staff.
they work long hours. should be very much appreciated by all of us. and so as we break for the christmas recess, i hope you all will enjoy yourself. you all deserve it. once again, interestingly enough, mr. speaker, we are finding ourselves approaching the holiday season with our appropriations work largely unfinished. here we are two weeks before christmas and 10 weeks after the end of the fiscal year demonstrating to the world that congress remains incapable of getting its work done. it's ironic that some of the house are quick auto to find fault in the lack of efficiency of governments such as iraq and afghanistan. perhaps if we did a better job of meeting our own milestones, like finishing our spending bills by october 1 each year, we would be a better position to guess milestones of others. it's laughable to this member that some in the democratic majority are pointing fingers at the republican minority for this failure of leadership.
after all, it's the democrat majority that controls both the house and the senate and the white house. as much as it may pain my friends on the other side of the aisle, they can no longer blame george bush or the republican party for their own failure to lead. still left unfinished is the defense appropriations bill which many believe will be used by the majority leadership to pass unpopular legislation that has little chance of passing on its own. on this point let me be very clear the house republicans will not support passage of a defense appropriations measure if it is used as a vehicle to raise the debt limit and if it contains other controversial legislative items. the reckless record of spending by the congress has caused our national debt to more than triple over the last year. in this $450 billion package
that's before us today, spending on domestic programs has increased by an astonishing 14% while military construction and veterans funding, for example, is held to only 5%. sadly, the misplaced priorities of this congress have resulted in too much spending, fewer jobs and bigger government that the public doesn't want and certainly cannot afford. some in washington refer to this unrestrained spending is a change we can believe in. most people in our country call it business as usual. there is no question that the era of big government has returned to washington. one need only look at the so-called recovery act, or double-digit unemployment, a job-killing cap and trade bill and a government takeover of health care as evidence. it's no longer that the public
confidence in the congress is at an all-time low. mr. speaker, i cannot and will not support this package of spending bills because it simply spends too much money and makes a mockery of our legislative process. mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. olver: mr. speaker, i yield the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. obey, five minutes. mr. obey is the chairman of the full appropriations committee but also serves as the chairman of the labor, health and education subcommittee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized for five minutes. mr. obey: mr. speaker, i have a question. is the gentleman from california, mr. lewis, the same mr. lewis who chaired the appropriations committee the last year that the republicans were in control?
it's my impression that he is. as i recall in that year, the republicans passed exactly two appropriation bills through the congress and had them signed into law. the other nine appropriation bills were not passed in october. they were not passed in november. they were not passed in december. they were never passed. and so the incoming congress under our control was forced to pass their bills at the beginning of the next session before we could ever get to our own. and yet the gentleman with that record is now complaining because with passage of this bill we will only have sent to the president 11 of the 12 appropriation bills needed for the year.
and i would point out that by next week we intend to send the last bill to him. if that happens, we will -- the only difference between our friends on that side of the aisle and us is that we will have gotten our work done. despite the fact that we had to deal with the greatest economic collapse in 75 years, we will have finished every appropriation bill. in contrast to our friends on the other side of the aisle who in the last year they controlled this place were not able to complete action on a single domestic appropriation bill. under those circumstances, for the gentleman on that side of the aisle to squawk about the fact that we are a few days late is truly a case of the kettle -- or the pot calling the kettle black.
it is very interesting logic. with respect to the spending amount in this bill, i would simply point out that the gentleman from massachusetts did earlier that we are in the process of dealing with years of neglect and we are in the process of trying to deal with an economic energy and catastrophe. the gentleman complains that this bill is 14% above last year for comparable bills. the fact is, let's look at what those differences are. . we added $3 billion more than last year so we could clean up the disability backlog for veterans claims. anybody on that side of the aisle want to take that money out? we have an additional $4.2 billion for the census because we are required by law to conduct that krein suss so we
can re-- census so we can redirect huge amounts of federal money to all the localities in this country in an accurate fashion. anybody think we ought to forego thatter for the next -- forgo that for the next 10 years? we have also put $14.8 billion above the previous year in this bill to cover war costs. we put it in the regular bill so we would show up rather than hiding it in the supplemental as previous congresses did. would you really rather go back to the old practice of hiding that $14.8 billion? infrastructure investments, we have had a 38% decline in construction jobs -- i said that wrong. we have a 38% unemployment rate in construction industry in 14 states in this country. so we are trying to respond to that by putting an extra $11
billion into infrastructure construction programs. anybody think we ought to take that money out? health care, we are about to pass the most momentous health care reform bill in the history of the country. that's going to put 31 million more people under our health care system. this bill provides $6 billion in order to expand the capacity of our health care system to deal with those people. anybody think we shouldn't do that? on education, i plead fully guilty. we have $5.6 billion more than last year. so that people who are losing their jobs and need retraining or need some -- some additional education in community colleges can get it. mr. olver: i yield two additional minutes.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized for two additional minutes. mr. obey: does anybody think we should abandon those students and workers? we don't think we should. i would simply say this country is struggling to overcome the longest and deepest economic downturn since the great depression. this bill before us today is a key measure to help address the problems and provide relief for millions of hardworking americans caught in the struggle for economic survival. and for the majority to complain about the fact that we are 90 days, or 70 days late in getting the job done, when they never got the job done, when they were in control of this place, is to me strange if not laughable. with that i thank the gentleman for the time and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from iowa.
mr. latham: i thank the speaker. i'd like to yield three minutes to the gentleman from virginia, mr. wolf. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for three minutes. mr. wolf: i thank you. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. wolf: i want to thank mr. mollohan and senator mikulskier for their efforts. i would not be supporting their bill for the reasons that are in here. i want to raise another issue that somebody ought to focus on in this congress. this bill will allow them to send people, clueing sikh muhammad, from guantanamo bay to new york city. i believe personally will endanger the citizens of new york city. they are now going to come in and ask for up to $75 million or $100 million to do that. that's money you could put in food pantries or do a lot of things in education. secondly, this bill we have asked it to be nonclassified so people can know where these people from guantanamo bay are going. 26 of them and as classified
and can't to talk more being sent to yemen. yemen. that's where the sikh who had the impact on major asan, who killed 13 people at fort hood, that's where he operates. you're going to send people from guantanamo bay who serve with claheek shake muhammad, who was the author of 9/11 who killed -- khalid shake muhammad, who was the author of the 9/11, who killed 3,000 people. he beheaded daniel pearl. think of his family. they are going to send them to yemen and then they are going to send two others to a place that no one would believe that they are really going to send them. this bill by not adopting the amendments that we offered, one i believe will endanger people in new york city, two, would put pressure on new york city. you will see stories in the
paper as you vote for this bill, you will see stories in the paper of snipers on the rooftops, tanks, khalid shake muhammad will be in new york city for -- khalid sikh muhammad will be in new york city for four years. four years or more. moussaoui was in northern virginia for over four years. he will be -- he will say things and do things that will be unconsiderableable. as you vote for this bill, you are in essence allowing that to take place. it's crazy. it's absolutely crazy to think you can try khalid sikh muhammad. then they are going to bring others in. so muhammad gets civilian trial when a young 19-year-old person in the army, man or woman, who does something wrong, has to go through a military court-martial. for that reason the bill spends too much, but for those
reasons, and i believe that by bringing khalid shake muhammad and the others here, we may very well endanger people and bring about another attack. secondly, to spend all that money to protect khalid sikh muhammad when he could have been tried down at guantanamo bay just doesn't make any sense. no one believes that that makes sense. lastly, to send people to yemen and this other place. i think will endanger the country. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. olver: mr. speaker, i yield at this time three minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. edwards. mr. edwards is the chairman of the--administration and military construction subcommittee of the appropriations committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for three minutes. mr. edwards: this bill supports america's veterans, our troops, and their families in a
meaningful way by improving their health care, their benefits, and quality of life. those who defend our nation have earned and deserve this support. for the first time ever we provide two-year funding for v.a. medical programs. this is a historic achievement and has been one of the highest priorities of our nation's most respected veterans organizations. the advanced funding is a win for veterans and for taxpayers. it will allow the v.a. to plan its spending more efficiently which will improve health care for veterans and save taxpayers' dollars. this bill funds president obama's v.a. request. a $5.4 billion increase, the largest presidential request for increased veterans funding in over 30 years. other major initiatives in this bill include new training barracks for military recruits, homeowners assistance for troops being restationed. additional funding for the modernization of national guard and reserve facilities.
and a robust energy conservation program for department of defense facilities. when the gentlewoman from california, ms. pelosi, became speaker in 2007, she promised that supporting veterans would be one of congress' highest priorities. speaker pelosi, the strong leadership of chairman spratt and obey and filner, has kept that promise. here's some of the significant results in just three years. a 60% increase in v.a. funding. 145 new v.a. community outbasis clinics. 3,384 v.a. doctors. 14,426 new v.a. nurses. 8,300 new v.a. claims processors. an expansion of middle income veterans eligibility for v.a. health care. more than a doubling of mental health care funding for vets.
and a historic new g.i. college education bill. ultimately this is about more than even the importance of better health care and benefits for our troops and vets. it is about respect. respect for the service and sacrifice of those who defend our nation and their families. i especially want to thank our ranking member on our subcommittee, mr. wamp of tennessee, who is a critical partner in our work on our portion of this bill and who once again demonstrated his deep commitment to our troops and veterans. and finally, but certainly not least, i want to thank and salute our subcommittee staff whose professionalism and tireless work is made possible our unprecedented achievements for our vetance and troops. carol murphy, the committee clerk, mary arnold, tim peterson, walter hern, donna chavez, kelly shea, and liz dawson.
in my book they personify the best ideals of public service. with this bill dip dip the gentleman's time has expired. mr. olver: i yield one additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. edwards: mr. speaker, with this bill we keep our promises to those magnificent americans who have kept their promise to serve our nation and the american family. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from iowa, for what purpose does do you rise? mr. latham: mr. speaker, at this point i -- number one, how much time is available? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has 18 minutes remaining. the gentleman from massachusetts has 17 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. latham: at this point i'll be proud to give three minutes to the gentleman from kansas, mr. tiahrt. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from kansas is recognized for three minutes. mr. tiahrt: i thank the gentleman from iowa. i also want to thank chairman obey who is the chairman of my subcommittee on health and
human services. but, mr. speaker, this bill is a classic example of a dysfunctional appropriations process. my principle opposition to this bill is the excessive amount of spending. we are spending more and more money and we don't know where we are going to get it. the american people don't have it. in fact, this fiscal -- past fiscal year, fiscal year 2009, we overspent by $1.4 trillion. that's $5,000 per person, approximately. and for those that pay federal taxes that's about $14,000 per taxpayers overspent last year. this year we have already overspent $259 billion and we are on course to overspend by $1.6 trillion. that will be an increase to about $16,000 per taxpayer. money we don't have that we have to borrow. where is the money going to come from? we are going to borrow it from the chinese. maybe they don't want to loan it to us. maybe we'll have to print it. if we print it that drives inflation.
we are headed for a round of inflation based on the current projections. the excuse we get for borrowing all this money is we have to spend it to get the economy to recover. borrowing money to fund big government doesn't grow our economy. it only grows big government. so we hire all these people in big government they have to do something. so they write regulations. regulations slow down the economy. if you want to speed up the economy frees the regulations butt them on a benefit cost analysis. for every one of these guys working in the government it takes five private sector employees to pay for that one be job. we have to have an idea how we are going to create private sector jobs instead of growing the size of government. this bush administration spends so much money they have trouble finding out where they could spend more money. they decided they were going to fund free needles to dope addicts. i'm just glad we are not buying kegs for alcoholics anonymous meetings. they can't prove it's not federal tax dollars by their federal funds provision because
it gets co-mingled. then we are borrowing about $350 million from the chinese to give to the world bank so we can give it to some world country to fight global warming. we have a questionable source of funds sent to questionable countries to fight a program based on questionable science. mr. speaker, this bill is out of the question. i would ask all my colleagues to vote no. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from massachusetts, for what purpose does do you rise? mr. olver: i yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from michigan, ms. kilpatrick. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from michigan. mr. olver: a member of the transportation, housing and urban development subcommittee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from michigan is recognized for two minutes. ms. kilpatrick: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the chairman for yielding. as a member of the house