tv Washington Journal CSPAN December 16, 2009 7:00am-10:00am EST
we want to get your reaction this wednesday morning to the process of thus far and where they are in their debate. here is the front page of "role call." senate closes in now on healthcare deal. the right they are moving to close ranks and put nearly a week of infighting behind them and the headline to the jump part of the piece says lieberman and liberals are you 19 now behind a health-care bill. the co-writer, mr. drucker,
joins us now. speak more about senator lieberman. is he saying he is definitely on board? guest: he is not using the word definite. but for months he said he would filibuster a bill that included a public option of any kind and more recently he would filibuster any bill with the medicare expansion, by and for those ages 55 through 64. those are being removed from the bill and he is back on board and leaning toward supporting it. what he said is he wants to take a look at the legislative language and the cost estimate before he is a definite yes. it makes sense with everything he said is that he loved a lot of the reforms, just not those two items and those items are gone. host: for the liberals in the senate, lots of different headlines. gritting their teeth at this point. swallowing hard, holding their nose.
a lot of dispensed from the meeting they had with the president yesterday. what was your take on the meeting? guest: i think the president recognizes public polling on health care reform was going the wrong way for him. his own approval ratings. if democrats do not take advantage of the position they are in, which is really on the edge of having a floor vote on health care reform or the house already passed its bill -- but if they don't take advantage of the moment they are in and going into the holiday season, christmas and new year's, without having passed something there is a chance it could all fall apart particularly because they have been fighting with each other over the last week to 10 days. the president, what he told them was, look, there are a lot of great reforms in this bill that can survive. reforms we wanted a long time to make health care better. let's vote for those and not focus on what we are not getting. host: your calls for a moment or
two. we will keep david drucker around for a little bit. first, a little bit from the president yesterday following his meeting. >> we just had a very productive session about the final stages of health care reform in the senate. from discussions we had it is clear that we are on the press of this of an achievement that eluded congresses and presidents for generations, an achievement that will touch the lives of nearly every american. there are still some differences that have to be worked on. this is not a roll call. this was a broad base discussion on how we move forward. but whatever differences remain, there is broad consensus around reforms that will finally, number one, protect every american from the worst practices in the health- insurance industry. no longer will the is companies be able to deny coverage if you have a pre-existing illness or
condition. no longer will they be able to drop you from coverage if you get sick. no longer paying a limited amount of own park -- own pocket. we are all in agreement on these reforms. host: "the pittsburgh post- gazette." this makes the point they are on their way. and makes a specific point that senator kasich, a democrat from pennsylvania had a 25-minute all of this meeting monday -- senator casey. david drucker, speak about the bob casey part. we read we"cq"that he was given a special task regarding abortion. guest: bob casey is a pro-life democrat from pennsylvania and he would also prefer to vote for a health-care bill that had stronger abortion language and make sure those procedures could not be paid for as a part of health care reform legislation.
he has not gone as far as ben nelson of nebraska was said he would filibuster. ben nelson's and then to do so last week failed. his was mirrored after the amendment put into the house built by part -- bart stupak, pro-life from michigan what they're doing is having to bob casey, who probably has the some credibility with the pro-choice liberals and the caucus because bob casey himself as a liberal, trying to put a compromise language that harry reid would wrap into the amendment at the very end that would make ben helson -- ben nelson happy, and make bob casey happy but still not anger the pro-choice democrats and calls any of them to drop off the bill. then nelson told me yesterday that at least harry reid believed there was progress made, according to a conversation those two had appeared bob casey told me there is still work to do but he seemed optimistic.
if i'm sort of going to judge his mood. host: first call on health care as the president says they are on the presses -- cressidas. victor. caller: i want you to know i'm behind president obama 100 percent. i need health care myself. i have a regular element that needs to be checked every year and right now i'm caught in the middle between a medical provider and an insurance company. i really need this past. i hope the one thing that stays in and house bill was the part about antitrust laws. i think insurance company should not be exempt from antitrust laws. it should stay in. and i want to say one more thing. i believe that the republicans are being paid by the insurance companies to fight this and that is why they are staring people out and meeting everywhere that you showed an hour ago and i am getting sick and tired because
we need the health care. host: republican caller, duane from mechanicsville, md.. caller: my thought is what we really need is cost reform, we don't really need health care reform. the health care in this country is second to none. what i don't hear is a lot of discussion about reforming the cost of else -- health care largely driven by litigation and high tech used for people getting old. we could expect the cost of health care increased as the population ages. what i would like to see is more discussion on tort reform and actually controlling the cost of health care and not a large new program that will only cost the taxpayers and anyone needs health care more and more money as any large government program does. host: meridian, mississippi. rose. caller: i kind of thing senator
live -- lieberman is a big disappointment and sold us out on medicare. host: what do you mean? caller: one individual who appears to have so much power to make a decisive decision whether we have medicare section of this health care bill or whether we have the public option which i think is so desperately needed in this country and i don't think one individual should be able to have this kind of control and also the lead on a personal basis that one gentleman who called an earlier stated that the insurance companies have got all the power and that question sometimes, to money a lot of these people are getting to stop this from going through. so many people in need in this country. the personal situation, insurance company who told my son who is a journalist and was in bed with a spine that
shrinks -- and they did not want to pay for expensive surgery on the spine and after two years of fighting and he almost died and he lost 80 pounds and the doctor said he would probably not make it through. working there in south carolina. during an absolutely terrific job for these people. so i have been through denials and things like that, insurance companies. so i support president obama wholeheartedly and i don't think we should just take what we can get. i'm an independent who tries to look at both sides. host: david drucker, a lot of angst directed toward senator lieberman, of course, in the last couple of days. give us some more perspective on his mind set and approach to things. guest: i think joe lieberman
demonstrated over the last couple of years he is willing to go his own way. he caucuses with the democratic party. in fact, former democratic vice- presidential candidate from the 2000 race and yet he endorsed john mccain, republican for president, last year. for joe lieberman to stand out on his own on a major issue doesn't surprise me. i was a little surprised that health care, sort of a social economic issue is one where he goes his own way. usually it is national defense and foreign-policy issues. a but he is, in fact, not the only moderate or centrist democrat who has had issues with the health care bill. he just became the most prominent and the most outspoken. senator ben nelson, a democrat from nebraska, also indicated he had several problems with the bill early on. he just wasn't as stark as joe lieberman announcing any plans to the luster.
mary landrieu, blanche lincoln, these democrats had issues early on. max baucus tried to design a bill that didn't have a public insurance option because he foresaw it would have trouble getting 60 votes and i am not sure he really liked the idea of the public option to begin with -- kent conrad. i could go on and on. joe lieberman is just a nationally known figure that was outspoken and honest about it, so he is taking a lot of flak. but he is far from the only member of this conference that had a lot of issues with the bill currently on the floor. host: new accounts -- newcastle accountspennsylvania, donna. caller: i have been watching this thing throughout and i think at this point we do have to get something done. there are a lot of good things in this. i feel really bad that so much stuff has been taken out.
but we have to start somewhere. the senators, they say that they care about the americans and people don't have health insurance, but it doesn't appear they truly do. especially on the republican side they say they care about medicare. well, this is the first i have heard about it that they care about medicare. and lieberman has got to go. i hope they get rid of him. it is just amazing that one man has that kind of power. there is something wrong when you have one man that has that kind of power that could screw the whole thing up for the country. and the public option, maybe get rid of medicaid and have a public option. host: david drucker, last two callers saying different things. one, should give in, we bought what we want and others saying we would take what we get. can you take us over to the
mindset beginning with president obama, the white house, and the democratic leadership on the senate side? >> i think the president recognizes after a yearlong effort really on health-care reform, and it appears that might have been politically costly, the president, who firmly believes in reforming the health-care system in the direction the democratic bill appears to go, once something to show for it. and he believes the country will be better off so he is pushing for it. democratic leadership, many in the democratic conference believes the bill will do the right thing for the country. they are so far and that they just want to get something passed and they don't want to let go of all of reforms in the bill over a couple of policies. politically they are so deep that for this thing to collapse on everybody would not do them any good. for all of the people angry about the health care reform effort they would not all of a sudden decide they are happy
with the democrats because they let the thing die. it would incense emasculate the democrats' political power. republicans would smell blood even more than the already do and it would be a difficult road. they at least one to show the american people they are able to govern. people will generally look at democrats in washington as sort of ineffective and unable to do anything which may be worse than disagreeing with what you are doing in the first place. both democratic leaders on the hill and president barack obama are trying to make sure at this stage of the game the whole thing does not fall apart. host: that did bring me to a piece in "the new york times." what does it mean to you?
guest: there will be negotiations and a conference committee over these measures and neither side will immediately back down to pass something. i think the goal is for the senate to pass a bill before christmas day. people go home for christmas and new year's, they come back in early january and you have house and senate negotiators working out a bill roundtable and trying to come up with something that both sides can pass. i think before house democrats accept no public option, nomadic hereby end, they are going to push and see what they can get. i think there are some liberals and the senate will understand the need to get something passed but are hoping some of the measures they are giving up now will come back in the conference committee. and i think a lot of how that goes will depend on where the public is in january. host: eden, north carolina. barry, the president says there on the prejudice of achieving how -- health care.
what is your reaction? go ahead. caller: it is clear health care is a little messed up but the government never got enough and right, they screw stuff up every time listed the fingers and it because it is not about us it is about them fussing and fighting, that is all it will be about this. they will be screwing us again, taxing the crap out of us. host: got the point, barry, appreciate it. ronnie, independent caller from orlando. caller: i have to point out there is enormous difference between actual health care and health insurance. what i would like to say that in the beginning i was looking forward to supporting something that would extend health care to many more americans. now it seems what we have on the
table is primarily in mandate to force people, many of whom can't even pay their mortgage payments, to go out and buy private insurance and people are not paying attention to that. here is president obama with max baucus, one of the insurance industry senators, standing there grinning behind him. i completely agree with howard dean. let it drop. it is all about winning and losing a little game between democrats and watch -- democrats and republicans in washington today we should simply start over again. host: illinois, joe, on the line for democrats. caller: i know this will sound strange but i'm a strong democrat and i am told -- totally against this bill. i believe us democrats went about it the wrong way. we should have contained costs
of insurance, allow interstate purchase of insurance policies, which should have went after toward reform. the reason why i am totally against this is, people have no idea -- and i and said the news media has not done an investigation -- it is going to cost a fortune. it is not fair to the younger generation behind the main, of everybody under 40, what they are going to have to pay in taxes. also, just like the last lady reiterated, and people are having a hard time. you got unemployment and you are going to demand they buy insurance when they are barely scraping by? ridiculous. host: appreciate your thoughts. david drucker of "roll call." tell us about the opposition. there was a big rally on the hill yesterday. what did they have to say and what bill is the leadership,
what is the strategy? guest: republican strategy all along has been to cultivate public opinion. they know they don't have the numbers to stop anything. in the senate, 40 senators and filibuster all you want but you need 41 to sustain. if all the democrats agree there is no filibuster. what the republicans recognize is there were a lot of policy polls to pick apart with this health care reform effort and quite frankly, the republicans never agreed much with what the democrats are doing. so it is easy for them to go after it because they don't think it is a very good thing for the country. what we have seen on the house and senate side is an intense have the media campaign to inform, in their view, voters and the american people about what is wrong with the bill, to make sure the american people voice their opinion back to congress and may be forced --
maybe forced the democrats to scale back what they want. by virtue of the fact the public option and medicare by and appeared to be out as far as the senate bill, i know senate republicans appear to be successful. what we have seen with protests. interesting, we are familiar with left wing anti-war protest and we have seen a lot of that during the bush administration but people in the middle and on the right, badly in right, they are very angry right now and stirred up and they don't much appreciate this president's policies. i don't know if it is a mass movement but whenever people come to capitol hill and voice their opinion, trust me, senators listened and the house members listen to because they want to give their job. host: oklahoma city. scott, republican caller. caller: i enjoy your show very much. i wanted to express my utter disgust for the fact that once again we see proof that our congress has absolutely zero
regard for the constitution in even thinking about such a draconian bill. article one, section 8, read it, folks, see where congress has any power to get involved in the health-care industry. they have none. the closest i would say they have to getting involved is granting patents for innovative drugs and procedures, one of the powers. but they have no power to interfere like they are trying to do now. that is why oklahoma is putting itself on the map in getting the 10th amendment reasserted in legislation and we have many good plans to give oklahoma to push against the horrible use of -- of the federal government. i am proud of oklahoma and i hope other states can assert state's rights because congress is no part of the solution at this point and as health care bill helps prove that. host: the senate is in at 10:00.
watch it live on c-span2. david drucker, bring us up to speed on what they did or didn't do yesterday. there were amendments on the floor and where they had in this day? guest: 1 by senator kay bailey hutchison of texas, republican, the other is bernie sanders, independent from vermont. sanders would call for single payer. that will fail. hutcheson amendment i believe this tax related. i am sure they will fail. most have a 60 vote threshold. yesterday democrats put their rift over the real importation of prescription drugs to rest. it was interesting, normally you have a democratic amendment or a republican alternative, but here you have democratic and -- amendment by byron dorgan for rea importation of prescription drugs, it did not get 60 votes. then an alternative by a democrat, frank lautenberg of new jersey, also did not get 60
votes. democrats will work. the passage of byron dorgan and then it could blow up some of the financing and health care bill because the deal the pharmaceutical industry made what max baucus and president obama to fund the reform and bring down costs. the democrats were kind of fighting among themselves. looks like it was put to rest. another and a long line of republican attempts to have the build yanked back -- yanked back to the floor and sent back to committee, defeated, mike ribeau amendment that would assure individuals making $200,000 a year or less or families making $250,000 a year or less could not be taxed or have taxes raised as part of health care reform to help fund health care reform. the idaho republican's amendment was defeated, as expected. there was a max baucus alternative, a sort of sense of the senate that does not really affect things either way. i think what we are looking for for harry reid is can he get to
the endgame, begin the closure process by the end of the week. it will take the democrats about six days or so from the beginning of cloture to the final formal vote on the bill and if they want to get out of here by wednesday, december 23, the cloture process needs to begin on friday. it is still a little unclear but that is what it looks like. >> a twitter message. who is actually an independent. sandwich, mass., independent caller. caller: one thing everybody needs to know and i don't hear talk about, real clear politics, health care, average of six major polls, four, 39.7%, against, 54.2%. that rally yesterday was for
real. people don't like this. that is just an average. the cnn opinion research poll, 61% against, 36% for. you can put all of your seminar callers on c-span calling and saying they support this, they don't reflect the american people. that is all i have to say. host: "the washington post" headline, as talks draw out, public frets about health care costs. abc news-washington post poll. david drucker, let us say the senate passes this and the week, the have to go to conference the members will be home at least a couple of weeks. what will we hear from folks of home and will it affect the conference days? guest: i think they will hear from people at home as did my best to much. one benefit is over the holidays people traveling and not focused on politics of much
because they did not want to walk around being angry. the vitriol may not mirror what we saw last august. however, the caller is right, right now people don't like this bill, and people who want the bill 10 not to believe that it will do what democrats say it will do. there is not a faith in the process, not a lot of faith in this legislation. right now democrats are fighting an uphill battle in terms of public opinion. what is hurting democrats the most is the unemployment rate, it is at 10% it is hard to sell a massive new government program when unemployment is so high and it causes people to wonder why they are focusing on health care and not jobs and even though democrats have worked very hard to try to explain how health care reform will help the jobs issue and help unemployment and the economy, people just are not buying. they keep talking and people really aren't listening. host: mississippi up first.
robert, a democrat. good morning. one more time, robert, are you there? let's try charlotte, north car olina. caller: you all hear me? host: r-utah? caller: i'm robert from canton. i have been a democrat all my life but obama is throwing the senior citizens under the bus. $500 billion from the medicare -- no cost of living. medicare premiums going up of the first of the year. against the senior citizens.
i imagine he is doing it because the young people, college students put him in office but he is certainly not doing things to help the senior citizens and i just hope all the senior citizens vote against him -- i hope they throw all of the democrats out of office. host: we will get one more call. hagerstown, maryland, another robert. caller: my observations, after having listened to the senate debates all summer and the build up, it is ironic we are getting to the point. also to be clear -- and i voted for mccain so i was not an obama supporter, election time, but i am one of the independents more on the conservative side, so i would be classified as a moderate democrat. looking at where we stand right now i think it is disappointing
to understand -- although there are good provisions in the bill, right now i don't know how we are going to contain cost to the extent we will probably need to over the long term without some form of -- what you call it a public option or government option. i don't see how what will take place. looking at lieberman and having him from an insurance state, it was never any hope he was going to vote for this plan realizing that a lot of his political clout comes from the insurance industry. i just don't see how anybody thought he would vote for this plan with a public option. i think it is disappointing. i think it is more a victory for the insurance industry as a whole and the last four of the american -- less for the american wood doesn't have insurance or the long term health of the nation as we look to go to the forefront with other developed nations that a
bachelor solve this problem to a degree and we are still going to be taking a back seat of the long term. host: appreciate your thoughts. one more question for david rauch -- david drucker. it has to do with the cbo scoring. we are waiting for information. what are they waiting for and how might it changed the debate? guest: if you are not going to have a public option, you need something that sort of a nabal's consumers across the nation to access low-cost plans, with the mandate, elisse the thinking of congressional democrats. harry reid had five liberals and five moderates, all democrats, get in a room and negotiate a compromise. right now the congressional budget office is looking at a sort of a basket of potential proposals. the medicare by in it is out. expansion of medicaid is another, we think that is out.
there is also a proposal that will have the federal office of employee in management, kind of like federal employee human- resources office, proposal calls for opm to manage a marketplace of private and nonprofit insurance plans that would have a lower cost, that would be available nationwide to various consumers. particularly targeting people who don't work for large corporations and purchase insurance plans on their own and not through their employer. trying to put together a plan that would create this marketplace, managed by opm, would cost something, and before they could move to a final vote and let all of their members look a final plan, they need a congressional budget office for for this potential compromise of a know what it will cost, how the costs will affect the overall cost of the bill, which last count, $850 billion over the last 10 years, once they
have the numbers and have the proposal to the evidence of the members hopefully they can move to a final vote. that is what we are waiting for. they gave it to the cbo last week and there were hoping monday they would have something. there was nothing monday, nothing is the day after an imperative maybe something morning or late -- it was nothing yesterday afternoon. maybe some this morning or later today. host: we will take a short time out and turn to the attempt to move detainee's to a prison now in illinois. the news broke yesterday and we will talk to congressman manzullo. it is in his district. >> i am absolutely confident of the american people know what it is -- what is in this bill, and the senate knows what is in this bill, that this is going to pass. >> work on the senate health
care bill continues. follow every minute of the debate from the senate floor with late nights and possibly another weekend session, live on our companion -- companion network, c-span2, the only to cover gavel-to-gavel with no common to repair it and get updates from reporters and editors from congressional quarterly roll call group and hear the debate with the new c- span radio iphone app, for more 02 c-span's healthcare hub. >> "washington journal" continues. host: deadline in "the washington times," @ gtmo debate goes to a hard-line. illinois prison to house as many as 100 terrorism detainee's. this facility in illinois sits in thompson, one of the city's represented by next guest, representative donald manzullo,
16th district, republican. when you first heard this news, what was your reaction? guest: i got 12 hours notice. i have been a member of congress now for 18 years and the administration gave me exactly 12 hours notice this was going to have been in a congressional district i represent. i really wasn't too pleased with the fact that a lot of other people in new, and in fact, the department of defense, when i talked to a high official there, was absolutely shocked no one had informed me prior to that. i was not pleased with the fact the administration did not take the courtesy to advise the member of congress that something like this was coming. but nevertheless, that prison has been andy, virtually for years. it was a state prison, it cost about $140 million to build. built because the state of illinois is at 150% capacity. i have always been in favor of
opening of the prison. obviously first as a state prison. all of us has been in contact with the state of illinois prison authorities fear saying, goodness gracious, if we don't open up the state facility at least sell it or lease it to the federal government to bring economic growth that will come with the positioning of a prison in that area. so, that is what we have and ironically the economic impact studding the white house put out, if you just accept half of that there is enough revenues in theirthere going to the states in terms of income tax and sales tax to open up facility as a stand-alone illinois facility. so we are really perplexed as to why the governor of the state of illinois, the one who replaced the in pizza governor, simply refuses to open up the state of illinois facility if there is enough revenue to open up for
illinois criminals. because a few years down the line the people of eleanor will have to build another facility, which will cost 200 million up to $300 million to house the criminals. host: the number is -- the numbers of on-screen for congressman manzullo. talking about obama's decision to move guantanamo detainees to the prison in his district. do you share the safety concerns that have been pouring out at least from the republican side? guest: the safety concern that coming from everywhere. you would be surprised the democrats i've talked to who are breathing a sigh of relief that this facility is not located in the district. let me give you the name of free democrats that don't like the fact that gtmo -- it is not being closed, the moves. even the aclu is being upset with that because the personnel
man, operations, everything going on in gtmo will occur in thomson, illinois. governors sibelius, when she was governor of kansas, fought and won a battle with the president of the united states and subsequently appointed head of age h s over the fact that she did not want these terrorist located in leavenworth. she never feared they would escape from leavenworth, as i don't fear they would escape from thomson, but she said recently they would become a magnet to attract tourists from around the world and the area around the prison, for a huge area, it simply would not be saved. it would become an environment that would attract these international terrorists. senator lieberman. jim webb says the same thing in fact -- says the same thing.
i had an extraordinary talk to my office with bill carter, in charge of detainees, and my understanding was whether left at guantanamo bay when it closes, when it moves to thomspn will go to illinois, he said it could be as many as 215 at this point. now, even if it is 100, this would be the largest concentrated -- concentration of incarcerated international terrorist and the united states, and he said, yes. and i said the reason gtmo is being closed, and he said, well, it is hated so much by the international terrorists that the stigma is there that it serves as a recruiting card for al qaeda. so i said, they really hate gtmo. he said, absolutely. they boil over. what is to keep that hatred from
transferring from gtmo to thomson because you are not closing gtmo, u.s. simply moving it. he said, obviously, there would be some increased threat to thomson, but said i had no way of measuring the extent to it but he said i am sure of the department of defense of reading with local law enforcement and "manage the risk." i was shocked. i said if you have no way of estimating the increase of threat, how could you possibly even consider moving a facility in -- from an island some of our waters and sharks, to a facility in the midwest son of baden melon fields, hay, soybeans, and corn? what we also found out was the fact that this concentration of terrorists is unlike the terrorists presently being housed in the american prisons.
an example. there are about 340 so-called domestic or international terrorists according to the head of the group -- bureau of prisons. the department of justice put to that 217. let's take the higher figure, 340. approximately 220 are already mainstream in with the general population of the federal prison system, which is about 208,000 people. and they really don't present a threat and a greater than the normal federal prisoner, whatever that person may be. the remaining 120 are spread among three institutions -- indiana, marion, ill., and leavenworth, kan., and florence, colorado super max. among the 120, you may have only 10, 15 that have
international ties. and they are spread throughout if those particular prisons. when people say, we already have these terrorists in prison here and there has never been a problem, that is not the correct response. that is comparing apples to oranges. besides that, it is up to the government to prove that having a huge concentration of taliban and al qaeda terrorists holes in rural illinois, and as for these people the government plans absolutely no trial -- either trial in federal courts or military tribunal -- it is up to the government to prove that the transfer threat will not occur. they are not prepared to do that because they can't. host: let me jump in. we have folks who want to get it in with the calls. with all that said there is a quote from the governor pat quinn. "this will be the most secure
facility of all time." hguest: no question is secure. we are not worried about people breaking out. that is what security means, it means the prisoners breaking out. we're not board about that. host: spokane, washington. caller: i keep hearing how secure that prison is. back in the 1980's, my home state of virginia, a half a dozen inmates just walked off death row in one of the most secure prisons at this time. so saying it can't be done is sticking your head in the sand. that includes the notorious brothers back in the day. they have all since been recaptured and executed. but it can be done. that was supposed to be the most secure prison in the united states and they walked out of there. think about that before you bring the people there -- here. thank you and mary christmas. guest: well, it is a good point,
almost anything can happen. in terms of recent prison breaks, my concern is not that these people will break out. i share the same concern as former gov. democrat sebelius of kansas, she was not concerned that they would break out of leavenworth but she was concerned it would be a lightning rod or magnet to attract al qaeda types and terrorists from around the world. and it could help grow domestic cells. host: " the chicago tribune" -- military tribunals and illinois? faces legal and political roadblocks. here is the front line it -- from page of the chicago sun- times. terror trials and illinois. a picture from inside the correctional center. chicago is our next call. clayton on independent line.
are you there? caller: i really can't understand you know how people -- i'm a world war ii veteran, 81 years old, and i ain't never seen so many cowered people in my life the way they call and they talk about this is going to break out that is born to break out. i just don't understand it. i and -- people in the united states were strong and resilience and all of that but it just seems to me that the specially -- especially this element of the judicial system and the republicans and some of the democrats, too, it just seems the and nothing but a bunch of wimps. guest: well, clinton, first of all, god bless you and thank you for your great service to the country as a world war ii veteran and that alone brings --
you are one of the people who fought for this year of this country. but i am not a wimp. i don't think governor sebelius is a wind. these are different from what war ii soldiers that were brought to this country, the german soldiers, many of them actually stayed here and became citizens. the issue here is -- we should not be inviting threats to the homeland. that is what i don't understand people say, we can show in our courts, we can show people we can incarcerate them. look at the shop -- case in chicago right in your backyard, between my farm in the county and chicago. where hedley and the other actually organized in the united states with connections to al qaeda the mumbai bombings in india 13 months ago to 150 people. and janet napolitano herself,
pick of the head of homeland security, says al qaeda cells are everywhere in this country. then an interesting article that appeared november 29 in "the washington post" about two yemeni brothers. one has been incarcerated in gtmo for eight years, and the other one still lives in yemen. the one in yemen was says his brother, who has been here for eight years -- look, when president obama says he is going to close gtmo, we thought they were going to release the prisoners and just close down the operation. but it gtmo prisoners are simply transferred to the united states, that will increase by hatred toward the united states and actually serve as an additional recruiting tool for people involved in terrorism. this is coming out of the mouths of people who have loved ones
who are terrorists themselves. that is my big concern. host: oregon online. sam. guest: good morning, sam. caller: the morning. i'm a first-time caller -- i have been watching this program cents above lewinsky scandal. the best show on tv. guest: it is. it is great. caller: i don't have much to say. i am in -- and direct era veteran and i do believe it is the biggest non issue of the year -- iraq era veteran but i don't care if they are tried the military code of justice or the long way -- they need to be tried and hanged. they will have it easier in guantanamo than any knacks
facility and i just don't think -- we are not giving them anything. guest: first of all -- again, thank you for your service, sam. let's start with this group of about 100 because in the and it will shake down to about 100 even though it may start at 200. this group that will come from guantanamo bay to the united states will find a huge increase and constitutional rights. if you don't think that is the case, just look at the talk going on when it was determined by attorney general eric holder to have khalid sheikh mohammed tried in new york city. we are talking about miranda warnings, talking about suppression hearings because of violation of fourth amendment and fifth amendment, etcetera. we also know that once you set
-- i need some coffee -- once you set your feet on u.s. soil, you pick up all of the rights to which u.s. citizens and residents are entitled. what it means, and as a bit as value has been filing lawsuits and other organizations -- and as the aclu has been filing lawsuits and other organizations, their goal is to make sure there are no military tribunals held but that everyone held at thomson would have trial in federal court in the country. is -- it is especially important there is a brand new court in construction in rockford, it will be open in 67 months, and i can guarantee you there will be a flood of litigation going on at the local courthouse here for various things. let me if run through them.
one is of the so-called g-8 rights under the civil rights act. lawsuits challenging the right to detain a person in this country without a trial. that is extremely significant. we don't want that to happen in this republic. it is blatantly unconstitutional and that is exactly what the government plans on doing what these 100 and so at thomson. number three, mixing regular federal prisoners along with terrorists. there are laws that may prevent that. number four, telling the terrorist having the same visitation. look, there is no record here of any type of physical violence within the confines of this present and there is no reason why they can't have the most basic rights of associations as others. the floodgates of litigation
will be opened up and everybody at get know now who has very limited u.s. constitutional rights would have a full amount of constitutional rights once their feet said on american soil. host: our guest serving his ninth term in the house. now, catherine, independent -- one of your constituents. callerguest: how were you this morning? how is everything in the county? caller: i didn't want the gtmo detainees in the united states and now they are 5 miles from my house. i guess you were addressing some of the issues about their rights being increased to those of residents or citizens of the united states want to bring them into the country. but i guess i would like you to address maybe some of the politics within the state of illinois to why this prison was
even built and vacant. and also why this is not really chicago -- out here on the other side of the state we get a lot of chicago problems -- chicagos problem to. they have dumped their problems year before. guest: and keep the money for themselves. caller: when they got the money for the projects in the city, they moved a lot of their housing project residents to our -- they are not -- we are dealing with problems created in chicago and moved out here so there is a lot of state politics involved in this. but, i don't know if it is necessarily more dangerous because they are here but i am very concerned about the rights that the people have now they are in this country. guest: the more rights they
have, the more activity is involved and the more family members and friends will be able to visit these people. we are dealing with 100 of the most incorrigible of the incorrigible. people who are so violent, according to department of justice standards and dod standards, that they cannot give these people either a military tribunal or trial in federal court system. so you would have an increase in traffic of people going right by our house is on highway 72, into thompson. that would be one type of threat that what happened. but the politics of it is the fact that thomson prison was built several years ago to close down pontiac prison, it 100 year old facility in illinois. what happened was the prison got built, almost paid for, but
somehow democratic governor blagojevich and now pat quinn says it is not enough money to operate the prison. if they didn't send all the money to chicago for projects there there would be enough money to open the prison. catherine, with the economic analysis i have seen, even if half of it is true, there would be enough sales tax and enough income tax revenue coming in to pay for the opening of that prison. so that should be used to house the illinois prisoner is because i tell you, in a couple of years, the people of illinois will be asked again, we need another prison, and by the way the have quarter of a billion dollars to build? host: a photo of todd baker of todd's tackle in thomson open for business. they are talking about 3000 jobs. a little more on the economic argument. how are you balancing the constituents viewpoints between
the safety, security, drawing attention, with the economic benefits potentially. guest: first of all, the problem is my constituents have never been given a security briefing. they don't know. in fact, no less than four full committees of the house of representatives, ranking republican member of each of them, filed the equivalent of petition of inquiry addressed to appropriate governmental bodies asking for information. for example, lamar smith, ranking republican member on the judiciary committee. he filed a resolution asking the department of justice to give to the american people the increase and constitutional, legal, and treaty rights that the detainees would receive once they get to the united states. democrats voted that down on
party lines, and on three other committees. and buried deep within the abyss of this 13-hundred page omnibus appropriations bill -- that is what happens when congress does not do its job, they slap all the stuff together and they slept language in their and the language says, the language actually authorizes the president of the united states to move these terrorists from gtmo to anywhere in the united states, but the president has to show the reason for closing gtmo, why it has been closed, the rationale, cost to the american people, security threats of the individual and security threats to the homeland. but all of that is to be filed in a confidential classified report given to members of congress, which we can't share with anybody. so the people i represent have
no idea of the extent and they will not board -- will never know the extent of the threat that is surrounding them. at least give them the same opportunity that others do, and you don't have to breach confidences in order to do that. let them say, gosh, i didn't realize how dangerous it could be. secondly, the economic activity that will take place as a result of the president opening can also take place without the threat of terrorist being there. if the state of illinois got off its butt and did what it was supposed to do years ago and opened of the prison. but because of the politics of chicago, siphoning off of the money from people downstate they are not open in the prison -- and not opening the prison. host: peter, republican caller. caller: the president from the beginning needed a pr campaign
for gtmo to keep open. gtmo was the perfect place. just like what he is doing in new york. i'm a native of new york and i have friends live near ground zero now. that will tie up traffic in new york and all of the mess with the security and everything. milliards city -- supposed to be going broke anyway. basically you already addressed my comments before. host: peter, thanks. i want to get one last call from steve from ezmond, illinois. guest: it is in our district. caller: we are looking south of rockford, 10 or 15 minutes, just off of 64 and 72 area. guest: hi, steve, how were you? caller: i am doing fine. i am sorry but i just have to
disagree with bringing -- we need to bring the detainees here. it is not that, i guess -- i am a little nervous, but i had several neighbors here, they have sons and daughters that we sent over to iraq and afghanistan. and while they were there they sent some people that were pretty bad and they needed to give -- get off theatre and we sent them to gtmo. there is a time where you just need to finish this, and if my neighbors need to get some bad guys off the fear, then we can send them in harm's way to do that i guess we can hold them for them. .
they are active and numerous. in the united states just looking for the opportunity to kill more americans. why increase the threat? leave gtmo open. finish up the task and/or as a maximum, take the terrorists that are there, dispurse them throughout the united states so we don't have the attraction. host: thanks a lot for your time. guest: thank you. thank you for 2k3we9ing two of our constituents on. host: and congress has to vote on this move regarding the movement to this prison. so we'll follow this story as it happens. we will talk more about health care in a couple of moments. our guests will be dale robinson, founder and president of tea party.org. we'll learn more about it. in the meantime here's some news from c-span radio. >> it's 8:02 a.m. eastern time.
president obama meets with the safety commission chair later president talks with nasa administrator charles bolden as he considers recommendations on the future of the space exploration program. word this morning from the state department that president obama has written a personal letter to kim jong-il, the letter was delivered by special envoy steven bons worth to restart the nuclear talks. meanwhile iran says it successfully tested its longest missile which says is faster and harder to shoot down. he says the missile will serve as a strong deterrent against any possible attacks. talks expected to focus on possible russian aid for the war effort in afghanistan, moscow has signaled its willingness to help on the
concern that a taliban return to power will endanger russia's own safety. and word four afghan officers very killed until a an attack. in afghanistan. people "final" magazine has just named their person of the year for 2009. ben bernanke. last year's winner was then president-elect barack obama. those are some of the latest headlines on c-span radio. >> "washington journal" continues. host: on this screen now dale robinson, founder and president of tea party.org. and the rally that was held at the capitol yesterday which we covered live on the c-span networks, what do you think was accomplished with that rally yesterday? >> well, we're really upset with the fact that congress continues to pass bills creating a tax burden on the taxpayers. our biggest focus should be jobs.
coming into office i wish the obama administration had focused on the jobs. the idea is that you need to increase your tax base and we're focusing more on these entitlement programs. so we're concerned about that. >> mr. robert says the prospect for a health bill improving. we may see a vote and possible passage within a week. if that happens what will your strategy be that the point? >> well, right now the tea party's depathered and we c5u8d for a national day of prayer. today is also our birthday, the boston tea party was this date in history. so our strategy is basically we're going to take back congress and we're looking for democrats and republicans who really care about the constitution and get back to what signing fathers have taken from the beginning. the so called tea party
movementer, my guest is the head of tea party.org. when and where and how did this start? >> i've been protesting for two years and basically i was unhappy with how the elections were going. i didn't care for either program and thought they were bad choices. i think the party can do bet tore provide people with depth of character. but after the bailout, it's the last straw. the they pushed the bailout on us rapidly without any thought process and i'm, like, i'm going to start the tea party, because 50eu6 been debating this for semple months. >> i said the tea party is the only way that has us connect around they'll be calling to restore them. >> and a marine. host: and also educated with an associate's degree in engineering and a degree in political science, university
of washington. going back, particularly to that rally. yesterday. what kind of mood, what kind of force is coming out at an event like that? >> well, again, guest: there's a resounding voice that we're unhappy with the congress about the way things guy. i believe congressmen will push the stimulus no matter the fact that bere out there protesting. and i really don't think they care what the american interest because they feel they are comfortable in their seat ,technicaly -- guest: i think there's great people in congress and some people that don't do their job. so i regret the fact that the they would vote on a bill and the american people are not interested. they are interest indeed jobs. if you put your priority anywhere other than squobs, you
end up taking advantage of the congress. >> restore our country economically the way it needs to be. you look at the principals of the founding fathers. i think that we need to create jobs and frove is a vie want economy. i think the government has to be out of business. align themselves with special interests. we have the monopolies set up. the government was right. seemed to be -- host: how many people do you claim to have following you at tea party.org? guest: we have a coalition of groups. the coalition is in excess of 2 million members. so we're developing new coalitions all the time. from the beginning, i kind of wanted to develop into a coalition. because i think everybody has to be held accountible. and one single entity, if that's it, maybe you're being
controlled. so you need to have checks and balances in your structure. dagen: larry, republican from idb. go ahead, please. caller: ok, yes, can you hear me? yes. guest: i am so glad that people in the united states are becoming aware an more interested in what's going on in washington. caller: and i think that there's one thing that i have heard people bring up, and i cannot even understand is the democrats were quote c.e.o. for one thing and saying it's going to save money on this health care bill then the republicans say a totally different thing, saying that this is going to cost money, $1.5 trillion for the first year and $2.5 trillion for the second year. and the democrats say it's going to savior $130 billion
the next decade. then $458 billion over the next. if this is going to be a savings bill that's going to reduce the deficit. and it's going to provide all this health care. it's going to cut medicare. it's going to raise taxes. now what is the difference in the c.b.o., i mean, are they quoting two different c.b.o.'s? or the same? host: thanks. guest: liars figure and figures lie so each party is going to take the information they were given and present it in a way that's more favorable to them. so you can't ensure 30 million people and expect it not to cost you anything. there's got to be taxes in there. we're enormitying taxes in there and provide saverings which is just pie in the sky. to me, it's like prove it to me
first and then maybe you have some credibility to go for that, too. host: middle town, new jersey. bonnie on the line for democrats. good morning. caller: yes. good morning. mr. robert son. i, progressives and your tea party there have a few things in common. we'd like to see jobs brought back, and if you were truly concerned about that, you'd be talking about tariffs and having things manufactured here once again and producing everything that we are capable of produceing in our nation rather than sending our jobs overseas. but as far as well, your tea party name kind of tickles me a bit. there's a bit irony. that had a lot less to do with taxes than monopoly and the dutch trading company and tea. that seems to be the issue with
the health care. our health care problems now. we have a health shurns cartel. it's very much like any other organized crime group that takes protection money. and in return gives us pretty much nothing. it has nothing to do with delivering health care. it's a middle man just like the mafia. and murderer incorporated in the days of old. and we have organized crime that's still doing the same presently. so if you're truly concerned about the american people and their interests, you would be concerned about us having affordable and accessible health care without taking back the job by a corporations that really supply us nothing. they get incredibilityal wealthy off the pain and suffering and misery of overs and the bottom line is profits.
host: thank you, caller. guest: i think you bring up a good point. if you go back 100 years ago, many corporations provided health care and a pension plan to their employees. when congress got in bed with these monopolies with businesses and health care and other things, he developed these hedge mights. and these monopolies that they've roadies in order to compete with those people who actually have an advantage because congress has gotten in bed with these special interests, is they've got to cut their own bad habits. i have a same understanding that you have. i'm concerned over the fact that corporations don't sthride to you. but the unions right now, they've got that cadillac plan. that's what it was all modeled after. prior to these countries a
couple years ago. why is that good? because these monopoliesal promise less and are a twitter? are you an economist. caller: i've been affected by the economy. i lost my job so i put a lot of money on the line. and i've been attacked both sides from the right and left. taken a lot of donations. they usurped the moment for a certain degree but those entered the tea party the reason i did, they want their country back. i could address 100 million issues. but the the important thin is if you can cut off the blood money, the constitution is about the rest ration of man. let's restore the leters then but if they go to $3 billion or $4 billion, all they are doing is filling up their hopper.
the reason they are failing is because failed ideology permits wide varieties. host: hi. you're on the line. caller: yeah, mr. robert son. the reason i called will call is to ask about -- caller: the reason i'm calling is i wanted to know about the complaints that have been coming from the other tea party organizations, namely the houston tea party society, alicia craven's complaining about some deaveuated files under ericsson county. for those of you who don't know that that's members. it's the basically your legal right to do business. and it appears mr. robertson has been buying up names to
names sump as tea party, tea party of houston and 1776 tea party and so often. i guess he didn't think of the name tea party society because now for some reason this -- assume this -- yes. felicia creighton and her associates are basically saying that he is buying uprights to the name of different tea parties that people can think of and then selling them back to the people who want to do business with him. so why aren't you in stores as people who actually each because the tea party is supposed to be against taxes. host: let's hear from mr. robert sovereign. 2k3w0eu7 i'm glad you fwrauth that up. the cravens is a republicans preaching chair in harris county and she actually took donations even though i put a lot of money into the tea party
movement. i bauth those url's after i started the tea party movement and when she legally started to collect donations and by the way, i'm not suing her. i'm a christian i don't believe you should be going is out suge people. i've asked to talk to her privately and all she did was come out and slander me. i contacted the harris county's republican party and they all turned a blind eye and are allowing her to continue to collect donations on what behalf of the tea party. legally i've not profitted from this. i lost my house out of it. i'm not proud to say that on national tv but our founding fathers were willing to risk everything to save the nation and she can do what she wants to do and i can't stop people from starting their own tea
party and i'm not going to israeli sue somebody just because of it. i believe in coalitions and checks and balances. if she wants to be a part of what she's doing she's more than willing to do this by i think if you have do that you have an all terror motive. mr. robertson does the tea party support union worksers and the right to organize? guest: yes. a lot 06 union workers are great workers and they can bring value to the table. i do think they are being controlled by special interests so they are not being unleashed from their potential. think there's potential as far as unions, they have a value to bring to the table as far as corporations and business. but it is good in some situations and not in others. i think that when your goal as a unit to extract all the profits.
shock on the republican line. good morning. chuck? you there? caller: hello? host: go ahead, sir. caller: yes. i'd like to call in on the show. host: go right ahead with your comment. caller: yes. oh, i'm on. yes. what i'm thinking, you know, you say that you're about the constitution and all this good stuff. well, the constitution is kind of over. it needs to be updated, you know? this is not your forfathers with the wigs on. look, when i say about the health care is the people that don't want it don't have it, ok? and the people that really needed him want it and we should have it. this country was build on blood, like you know. you know who built they've country, we don't need to go there.
there needs to be rep rations. you should be fighting for that also. there are certain people in this country that went through barbaric acts, and the key points should be about the ultimate moments also. you're always quoteing the constitution. the constitution had slavery, ok? and that's not right. so it's a lot of things that need to be changed. >> yes. host: to tell you we were the only white family there. guest: being a veteran child and my dad died a double amputee, i hear a lot of people give lip as far as, so nobody helped my family out. i know there are organizations today but i had to strug to get where i'm at and right now i'm out of a job. so if anyone wants to hire me that's fine, but i agree with you, the health care issue should have been addressed by business.
when you get congress involved anytime, it never comes out well. medicare, medicaid. they are wasting tax dollars. i've said as far as studies with congressional groups before says we warrant to scan votes. i said if you got a good business they should provide health care for you. host: jenny beth martin, co-founder of tea party patriots, her opinion on things from the rally yesterday. >> senators and their staff are playing games with you guys, with the patriots around this country. they don't want to listen. they want to ignore us. and they think we're going to go away. we're not going away. they are counting on us, us, they count on us to go away, think after christmas, they
won't pay attention, they'll be too wrapped up in their families. i don't know about you, but this health care bill, it will increase the taxes, the expansion of government. that is about my family. my congress! host: caller now from milford, connecticut, linda on the line for democrats. you're on with dale robertson of tea party.org. go ahead. caller: the anniversary of george washington. so it's a very historical day in our nation. i'm not so sure -- [no audio] quite a bit of money off of these efforts. it's a conglomerate. if you look on the websites.
u.s. impact group.org it's a proxy domain that's housed and there's there's a lot of splange to do. they should come forth and admit that there's a lot of special interests and maybe there's one of them and maybe they are being manipulated. but have a good one, sir. guest: i agree there's a lot of people making money from the tea party movement. if we work together i believe most of it should be going back to the local states or chapters. i think there's a lot of people collecting money around making a lot 06 profits and rnt even connected with the stea parties whatsoever. i think we could do that.
as we develop these coalitions of group. my intention is to put most back in the state and little into the infrastructure. because we need to have things there locally, do town halls. and let's put, let's turn the battle around and put them on the run. i agree. i have not profitted from this. i've lost about $100,000-$200,000 because i've had to buy all these url's and these political parties were trying to yoo serp the movement. so i do understand people are profitting from it and i recently put t shirts on my site to try to generate some revenue to support what we're doing, but it's atroshese that they are doing that, but that's what they are doing and i can't stop it. everything i stride from the beginning i provide all the material because i'm a christian.
i believe you should be altruistic in what you're doing but the same time you can't feed an army on an empty stomach. and people are so desperate that they want to go to these events but don't have any money. the most i've gotten in donations is probably $2,000-$3,000. most to is out of my pocket. my retirement is the only thing i'm living off of now. so i lost my home and downsized as much as i possibly can a. so -- host: i hear you bemoaning the problems with our system but haven't heard many viable solutions. what do you say about that? guest: james town, the conscience ept of utopia basically that we all work together and easily divide and it didn't work. so the free market structure
was a an experiment that exploded. so i think government should be out of business. and so, i have actually worked in business. i'val worked in supplying and budgetting finance and worked as a financial advisor with a large sforn 100 companies, so i i have a lot of knowledge and experience to bring to the plate and i'll challenge testimony administration i can create more jobs than you can. give me 10% of what you have and i'll pillow your doors off because you surround yourself with people that just want to skim money off the surface. let's give it all back to who it's intended for and quit trying to profit off of it. caller: i like this tea party organization that's getting started. i think we need a lot more of this going on. my statement was people have to understand the reason you can't balance this budget is there is
no money coming from government employees. i mean, this is 23409 a shot against government employees, it's just that we have too many of them. none of the money, no taxes they take. no government sblee pays taxes and gets retirement, holidays. all 06 these things come from only the private sector. a simple math will tell you if everyone worked for the government, where would the money come from to make the pay checks? this is why we can't balance the budget. unfortunately there's just too many of these employees. i mean, you have to get out of there and go back to private secters. unfortunately they sent all of these jobs to -- must be -- until we get like the -- no government employee pays more under taxes or benefits. public servants.
the private sector or the bosses and they should have at least equal benefits or more than what this government officials and stuff get. host: dale robertson? guest: i'll say they do pay tacks but let's just say how much do they pay in taxes, 15% of the income so 85% they're drawing is tax dollars. the big question is the government shouldn't be expanding. i believe the government should be collapsing and getting smaller and smaller. i think incentivize federal workers. stop work for the federal government and give the guys 10% of the savings. that's the way you should do government, down sides but they don't want to because they know they are funding the next campaign. tax dollars ensure should ensure they are being managed frugely.
cash for clunkers, for example,. they didn't put a bill through congress. they just magically appeared and all of a sudden they have cash for clunkers. so you can come up with any idea that your cash is about but it's not what -- that's why we have the tea party. no tax sation without representation. caller: my husband was hospitalized recently for fife days, and his bill came to $63,500 and what medicare in there good hearts paid the hospital $7,31. now i'd like to know how the shopt going to stay in business? how are they going to pay their employees? how are they going to pay their fees for their land and their taxes?
it's just -- this is insane. and the government wants to take control of more of our health care. this is -- these politicians are just evil. host: that's. that's the last caller from the tea party questions. guest: i think the tea party should not be a political party. i've heard that they say the tea party is better than the republican party. i think like the inspector general. we've fallen complacent as far as our duties as patriots to keep these political represent ivers in check. believing they were going to do the right thing and the proof is in the pudding. they have not done the right thing. maybe we can do concerts or do a "saturday night live" skit or something and have fun at it. no reason you should make it difficult. our founding fathers gave their lives for our nation.
the price has already been paid. we need restore the constitution. host: dale robertson founder and president of tea party.org. one more look at the website. thank you for your time this morning. >> thank you. host: a little later in the program. democrat from north carolina to talk to us about health care. we'll do some open phones and go through the news in a couple of minutes. right after this break. >> i'm absolutely confident that if the american people know what's in this bill, and if the senate knows s what's in this bill, then this is going
to pass. >> work on the senate health care bill continues. follow every minute of the district attorney bait debate from the senate floor with late nights and possibly another weekend session live on our companion in the case, c-span 2, the only channel to cover it gavel-to-gavel. plus the congressional quarterly roll call group and for iphone users, the new a for more including archived video and to read the bill, go to c-span hub. >> "washington journal" continues. host: en spend some time going through the news and taking your calls. the phone numbers back on the bottom of your screen. you can talk about anything you'd like. in the next 15 minutes.
we'll the show at 9:00 to go to the floor of the house. the health care debate resumes in the senate 10:00 live on c-span 2. before we get to calls in case you missed it. "time" magazine has named fed chair ben bernanke person of the year for 2009. here's a spot of the cover of "time" magazine with the fed on it. last year's winner was then president-elect obama. the 2007 winner was vladimir putin. ben bernanke "time" magazine's person of the year. cambridgal, illinois, democrat, good morning. caller: good morning. i just wanted to talk a little bit about this the relocation of the guantanamo bay prisoners. host: go ahead. caller: the new prison facility will be located just maybe 40 miles north of where i live. and i just wanted to support
my voice my support to it. host: why do you support it? caller: well, i thought the whole guantanamo bay thing was an international embarrassment for the united states. and i thought not only does this give us economic tints, but i think we can do it much better here. i'm much more supportive of doing it right and doing it within the law. and i think a lot of the whole nature of the political opposition to relocating it in the united states was really born out of the legal problems that were generated from getting around the law from the preevels administration. host: caller, what do you make of all the safety arguments that have been put forth not so much of the detainees escaping but that area becoming a target
for folks? caller: i think it's just kind of ridiculous. in marion illinois we've had mob figures. and you'd think in theory that the peff the same sort of -- now if the thought was somehow mob associates might cause trouble or what have you, i think a lot of the hatred for the united states because of the guantanamo bay problem was because they see the united states trying to get around the law. host: independent line, steever? caller: hi. yes, i just wanted to comment with the senate and everything going through the health care debate and all that stuff. i really think a lot of people worry about what it's going on with our tacks and the senator is good to be worried about what's going on in iraq and
afflingaffling and i think those are two of the greatest drains on our economy and drains in the future we have ahead of us. i was wondering where the tea party was when the bush administration was running rush shot on the floor. on the republican line from west palm florida, hello. caller: yes. i wanted to make a comment about the tea party, too. why, if you get a black organization out there to tone tea party, they would say we're overruning the government. but now they got all whites out there doing that, and they are saying it's a good thing. and they are preaching about their christianty, and what not. and eat thing i want to say. them bringing prisoners over to the united states. i think that's a good thing for them to bring them over here, to get them out of the country and bring them over here and try them over here, but why do
they have to chemodoing these tea parties when they didn't have none of this here when the bush administration was going on? host: appreciate your thoughts. this is the front page of "the washington post" their lead story says tax yield sincere worth billions to citigroup and wrote the government quietly agreed to forgo thousands from citigroup in a deal tweed government also wanted to point your attention to the district of the colombia city county critical has approved same-sex marriage on the verge of becomeing the sixth place in the country to legalize same-sex marriage after the county critical gave a final approval the front page of "the washington post" this morning. lots of other photo indeed. you can see a woman running
with two men helping her, suicide car bombers struck near a hotel until kabul killing 12 and wounding 40. this was tuesday on at any front page of "the new york times." if you look at "the wall street journal" today, there's a story featuring these u.s. lieutenant general rodriguez. and kabul. the headline sayser is s are focusing on roads and police offering first detail general says the u.s. will create a safe corridor and revamp the you can go to the wall street journal. back to the "post" walter pinkett story. the surge of 30,000 troops could be accompanied by 60,000 contractors. back to calls. bob? caller: hi. host: good morning.
caller: hello. tea party or no tea party. there's over 40 million americans that have no health insurance and these characterize are clamoring about their money. everybody, every single american, regardless of his income is paying into directly or in directly. all duties are to have health insurance. even with what's being introduced now, there will be still over a million americans left without insurance. what kind of people are we for pete's sake? claiming all this money for our own personal use? i mean, ridiculous. thank you. host: one more call. maryland, nicolas on the independent line. hi there. caller: i just wanted to say that i think the american people are getting really sick and tired of these politicians
both for politicizing these issues as far as the detainees from guantanamo bay, the issues that the international community has with us as the united states is that they don't want us being hypocrites and holding detainees in secret prisons. i think that it's a good thing that we apply the law, that so that we cannot actually set the standards up. also sfaffers the tea party, most of these people claim to be christians and i wonder why they abandon the principals of do unto others as they as you would have them do unto you. if they were in a position where they couldn't care for a loved one because of the insurance company's refusal to pay money -- they pay their premeditate yums every month.
it confuses me how people can claim to be christian and be so selfish at the same time. host: thank you for your thoughts the financial times writes the u.s. is signaling a return of longtime climate aid. a deal in copenhagen might not include promising financial help. it may scupper a broad-based agreement. joining us from the capital is senator kay hagin, democrat from north carolina, freshman and first off, senator, you were part of that meeting with the president yesterday on health care. what did you take away from it? >> well, i think the president was just stating as he believes as i do that now is the time for health care reform and i think we need to move forward and get bill done before the end of the year. host: what kind of bill do you
see shaping up now? >> i think we have a pro consumer bill that's going to help uninsured americans get covered and i think people will realize there's some great packages and if you lose your jobs you will lose your availability to have health insurance and if you have preexisting conditions there will be no discrimination whether you're a man or woman and if we look at the administrate if6 costs of back rooms and doctor's offices and there's a greater loss of abias and -- host: what is missing for you in the bill? guest: well, obviously i think the public option for people without coverage would have been good, but i i tell you the fact that we can still cover 31 million uninsured americans will go a long way to really help health care reform in our
country and i'm excited about that. host: one of your colleagues from pennsylvania has been tasked with some abortion-related language that could be part of a product and is trying to appeal to senator ben nelson. what are you anticipating? >> i think there's provision that is prevent any fram funding going to abortion and i think the house around they went too far and changed the provisions but i certainly support the amendment and i think we can move forward and with some of the provision that is bob casey is working on to help pregnant teens and young women in college who become pregnant that once again we'll be able to move together and merge that language into this bill so we can get to the 60 votes and have health care reform. host: before we get to a call how did you vote yesterday?
guest: i think all of us want cheaper drugs but we need to be concerned about counterfeit. in the european union there's many problems with counterfeit drugs and if the f.d.a. could produce facilities overseas to ensure their efficacy and safety all of us would be in favor of that. host: so you voted no? guest: right. we all wanted cheaper drugs but we want it subject not to killing people. and a lot of that is going on right now around the world. host: caller a democrat? good morning. caller: good morning. gang senator hagin. god bless you and i'm vaccine i hope you get some type of a bill passed. i have been with -- since 1992, i will be turning 656 in february. i did receive my medicare card in. i'm just blessing myself that i
live long enough to receive that, and i don't want other people to have to suffer like i have. but it's the thing that i believe -- it's not -- it's a moral thing more than it is anything else. people should not have to lose their homes and everything else for the price of health care. and i back the democrats completely, and you can always amend anything, and i know that you will later on and the bill will be what went it to. guest: i think people that currently have medicare will see more benefits, the fact that you'll be able to have an annual physical and no co-pays on any sort of preventative screening. i think those are good additions to this bill and i look forward covering more people under this bill. host: oregon, next couple -- next call from heron, ohio. let's try rich in heron, ohio.
caller: yes, thank you for taking my call. host: we'll point out you're on the republican line. caller: first of all, i believe something has to be done with the health care. with that being said, the problem that i have -- there's two areas. first of all, that the majority of the funding coming from medicaid, now i think we need to be taking care of their -- bills to the porblete that there's too much fraud. things i'm adjusted with the fact that you're taking that money and putting it into something elsewhere it should go back into medicaid to make it a more -- medicare i mean to make it a more viable program to make it last longer the first week of these and now we've changed it to -- anyhow,
to keep it extended longer -- guest: let me say, we are not cutting medicare. what we're doing is cutting out the fraud, a abuse and waste. if you look at iter we're spending over $770 billion on medicare, medicaid and the chip program for children. and jst 3%-10% of those expenses we know could be saved through other programs to cut out the fraud and abuse and waste. which would amount to about $70 billion. right now we're only collecting $130 million. we need to institute programs that have computer modeling that we know could save this money. it's sort of like when you go and you buy something with a credit card. many people who -- whose credit are not good are turned away at the point of sale. we need to stop the fraud at the beginning and the
sophisticated computer software, we could do that. that's what we need institute in the payment mechanisms of medicare and medicaid and i've got an amendment put forward that can do just that. host: your reaction? caller: yes. she didn't answer what i asked. there's fraud and waste i understand that and those things need to be addressed and right away. the bottom line is those fading we get from that need to go back into medicare not back out into something else. they take it out of my check and say medicare. i send a check in, you're stealing money from me is what you're doing. host: senator hagin? guest: i think anybody that reach it is age of 65 will have that available to them so i think that's a good program seniors across the country are thankful for so i certainly don't look at it at all the way the caller did but we have to be serious there are situations
we know where medicare over time is going to run out of money. and that's certainly an issue that bewill be addressing in the near future. host: betty. independent caller. go ahead. caller: yes. my issue is about the health care -- there's so many people that do not have health care in the low income back et. and when i was -- i lived in texas, arizona, and california. and the lower parts of those states are frauth with illegal immigrants walking into hospitals. in fact one hospital administrator was screaming on the border that they are absolutely breaking them, because congress pass ad law that you cannot ask for their i.d. or a green card. you have to serve them. and he said they are breaking the hospitals because they bring them across the border and drop them off by the
truckloads with tb, colera and every other kind of disease and the taxpayers have to pay for it. and yet when it comes to our children or us going in, i can't go into any american hospital as a citizen and get free care. so i'm really concerned that there's children here that are american citizens that can't get help, and i'm not cruel about not helping people. i'd like to help everybody, but there's a limit. this is drawing money from the purse of the taxpayers to go into the coffers of someone else. host: thank you. senator hague snn guest: well, you've got two issues here. one is on immigration and the other is on our emergency rooms. and first of all, we do have an immigration problem and that's something that needs to be solved. i think certainly -- we certainly don't have truckloads of people coming in across the border. we need to realize we need more
security guards and immigration is something we should be picking up but this bill specifically states in law in write that illegal immigrants will not be covered under this bill. there's a separate provision that if somebody shows up in an emergency room in our country that they are seen however there's not treatment or follow up treatment. this is not preventative care or any sort of long-term care. and you know, i think that the schip program for children will definitely cover children in our country, low-income poverty children so that they will be covered. and i think that's a great program that we have going forward right now. host: senator, question via twitter. regarding debt. how are we going to pay that back? guest: well, i am a physical conservative. when i was in north carolina we chaired the budget and we have
a balanced budget in our state. i'm very concerned about the long-term debt. i know that we will be moving forward in next year addressing this issue, and i'm very supportive of really looking very -- working closely with people on both sides of the aisle, because this is an american problem, and in order to be competitive on a global nation going forward, we really need to get our hands tied around and work closely on getting our debts under control. host: john on the democrats line, hi. caller: good morning. host: go ahead, sir. caller: good morning senator. glad you took my call. i've been listening to a lot of information coming from democrats on various shows. and i was actually wondering what is so great about this bill? when i keep hearing this that the consumer situation where i have to buy insurance and if i
feel i'm going to be -- by the income tax system, i don't get that. where is that a good thing for me at the sage of 51? i don't need -- guest: well, i certainly don't know what your income level is. we're looking at the fact that i think people need insurance in this country. the fact that so many people go to our emergency rooms panned want treatment but if they don't have insurance? or the money to 235eu for it they are in effect denied long-term treatment. so what the spenlt for an individual is to encourage you to pie insurance and if you don't have the funds there's something to help you natural i think the amount for the first couple of years is anywhere from i believe $95 to $750. but the idea is is that you will be getting something once you purchase that insurance and
that will be covered for you. host: one last call here from right here in the district of columbia. independent caller, lebon? caller: yes. senator, my question is they have said the people are not interested in this health care bill, and you guys are just simply forcing us to accept this health care bill. i don't understand. i thought we were living in a democratic society where people have the right to say we do not accept this bill anymore. why don't you just simply focus on creating jobs for the 18% unemployed in this country right now? guest: well, i am very concerned. i wake up every morning worried about people who don't have jobs and are underemployed but i also realize we're paying for people without health insurance. everybody with health insurance is paying $1,100 a year in added premium costs for the uninsured and we have huge
costs that our hospitals are caring right now in treating people that don't have health insurance. so i think when we look at this bill. there are so many pro patient pro consumer items in this. and the way this bill is being paid for is the insurance company will have 31 million new commerce. so it's almost like they are paying $6 .67 billion a year towards the cost of this bill. medical the the device companies are paying $2 billion. farm suital -- pharmaceutical companies are paying $2 billion. the doughnut holes will be covered by pharmaceuticals. there are so many areas where i think people will see great benefits in this. and once you have insurance, you'll have annual check-ups, preventtive scrgs, there's a lot of wellness and prevention. we've got to turn this around so people have the incentive to
4rif6 healthy lives. and i think once again, it will help our small businesses. our small businesses are really hurting now from the stand point of the high cost of insurance. i think large companies are looking at not being as competitive on a global market because of the high costs. we have got to bring those costs down, which also will help our long-term deficit, because so much of it is tied up in what we spend right now on the delivery of health care. host: senator, we know you have to get going. senator kay hagin freshman senator from north carolina. the debate continues on c-span 2 about an hour from now. 10:00 a.m. eastern time. we're looking at the session for the rest of the week, into the weekend and programs next week if they are trying to get a final vote by christmas. couple more minutes before the house comes in at 9:00, and we have time for a couple more
calls. first from los angeles, maria on the republican line? caller: yes. hi. i'm calling in because i wanted to speak to the senator. but what you call it? what i wanted to say was that it's funny how they say that they are not going to be covering the illegal immigrants because -- coming on next week on the senate floor to talk about that they are going to get them amnesty. well, if they are going to get them amnesty, they are not no longer illegals so they will get the health -- um, the health care. so in that case, the -- um -- they will be covered. but they don't want to say this to the american people because they know. they know that we -- if they are going to spend all this money on that, why don't they
just put it back on a med account and then they could go ahead and clear out that bill. instead of keep putting in other bills for what? you know? when i was growing up in the 1940's and 21950's, the doctors used to come to your house. that used to be cheaper. host: thank you for calling. culpepper waiting on the line for democrats. caller: yes. good morning. i wanted to say to the senator that i was from north carolina and i wanted to congratulate her on her new senate bid and we need someone in there to help pass the health care for all the people in wayne county and throughout the state of north carolina. host: grand junction in colorado, lauren independent caller. caller: good morning. i'm actually watching this morning and noticed what the
senator was talking about. i think the biggest problem is if you look at globally how different countries, different governments handle their health care. for example, this swine flu vaccine when it came out, the first thing to develop in the united states the sold out to other countries, basically denied the sale of that vaccine is to american people, the reason being our health care cost so much because i have a friend who is a nurse practitioner, he paid $15,000 a month for mall practice insurance, the cost of health care is so much because he has to pay that and cover that somehow. so he has to increase every business he has from his patients to cover that cost. it's really a multitude of reasons why our health care is so expensive, but the fact that people openly sue for
something, you know, like a pill they have taken or treatment they've received, it's one of the biggest reasons why our health care is so expensive. in canada, for example, they have a socialist health care system where everybody pays in taxes and they pay more for taxes than we do. but the health care is less and they can afford to pay it through the taxes because they have money there. if you -- you can not sue your doctor. . .
host: and they will do with the spending initiatives that democrats argue will help preserve and create jobs, according to "congressional quarterly." enjoy the rest of your wednesday. here is the house of representatives. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's room, washington, d.c., december 16, 2009. i hereby appoint the honorable tammy baldwin to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, nancy pelosi, speaker of the house of
representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the prayer will be offered by our chaplain, father coughlin. chaplain coughlin: during this season of holidays and holy days, lord, we pray for families all across this nation. the times, economics and unemployment are causing great stress within some families. military service, sickness, recent deaths, and alienation bring other families to the point of heartbreak and tears. yet, we believe, lord, that the family is not only the basic social unit upon which our communities and our nation are built, family life is the domestic church where prayer is practiced and faith is first witnessed. for you, lord god, the family itself is a great mystery, our
first school of formation which shapes human values, affirms self-image and provides a world view. here, one accepts personal independence within the sense of belonging and authority with a sense of humor, bold enough to gig the at life's inskinses and laughs at one -- inconsistencies and laughs at one's self. they learn self-giving, gratitude, patience, forgiveness and simple expressions of love and being loved. lord, may congress respect and protect family life in this country. with your blessing, may every family this season nurture the experience of love, paternal and fraternal love. the love persons and of
generations. may they acknowledge your presence in everyone around the table 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 her approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1 the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led by the gentleman from kentucky, congressman yarmuth. mr. yarmuth: please join me in the pledge. 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 15 requests for one-minute speeches on each side of the
aisle. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio rise? mr. kucinich: good morning, madam speaker. i request permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered, the gentleman from ohio is recognized for one minute. mr. kucinich: the greatest generation sacrificed during their lifetime so future generations could have it better. here, the bailout generation demands the future will be sacrificed for the present with unlimited money for wall street and war. while the government expands the debt for wall street and war, people are led to believe that we are doing it for jobs in main street. even today as congress expands the debt limit, citigroup will get billions in new tax breaks. last week, congress let wall street keep their over-the-counter black box derivatives game going which will leave the taxpayers exposed to huge losses in the future. today, congress will give the pentagon another $550 billion and the wars in iraq and
afghanistan another $130 billion. we will expand the national debt, sacrificing the future for the present. in the past two years, congress chose war and wall street over jobs and main street, expanding the debt, sacrificing the future for the present. today's jobs bill is necessary but will address only a fraction of the unemployed. rather than put all of america back to work, we have to sacrifice the future, for war and for wall street. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado rise? >> i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered, the gentleman from colorado is recognized for one minute. mr. lamborn: madam speaker, this picture shows what the failed policies of this congress and administration are doing to america. this sign was put up near a
homeless camp in my district. it says, welcome to obamaville, colorado's fastest growing community. it's obvious that the liberal prescription for creating jobs only creates more government by taking hard-earned dollars from families and small businesses for taxes that could have gone into creating real jobs. when the president said he wanted more jobs through the so-called stimulus, it's mostly meant more bureaucrats and that's not what the jobs americans want. when americans end up living in a tent, something is wrong. the policies of this administration and congress by raising taxes and putting more regulations in the way of business will not create the jobs americans need for the future but their policies will create tent cities. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from kentucky rise?
mr. yarmuth: i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from kentucky is recognized for one minute. mr. yarmuth: madam speaker, i rise today to pay tribute to jackie haste, a broadcasting legend in louisville, kentucky, who has served our community for nearly 22 years. jackie will retire this friday and will be greatly missed. over the -- her career, she has done it all, covering more than 25 kentucky --ies and joining louisvillians for our greatest and darkest tragedies. we always knew how much she cared about us. that's why she was selected 16 times as louisville's favorite female anchor. she proved her love for our communities community, not by her onair professionalism but her charitable and civic activities. she said, god is not going to ask me one day how many newscasts i did or how many stories i broke but what kind of person i am. as her career at wave 3 will come to an end, i can say she
is a person anyone will hold up as a role model and we are grateful she has called louisville home for so long. i join everyone in louisville in wishing her a long and fulfilling retirement. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from ohio rise? ms. schmidt: to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentlewoman from ohio is recognized for one minute. ms. schmidt: you know, moody's investor services told us that our country's a.a.a. bond rating will be downgraded if we don't get the budget deficit under control. this is because the president and this congress ran up record-breaking deficits last year to the tune of $1.4 trillion, tripling our prior record. the response from the president and the majority is more spending and absolutely no commitment to do anything to reduce the deficit. in fact, today, we're going to be asked to raise our debt ceiling so we can borrow more. an article in one magazine on monday said this, moody's
expressed optimism and the u.s. budget deficit would be reined in held by quicker than expected repayment from the tarp fund. president obama tuesday announced that a new jobs program funded in part by the greater than anticipated return of tarp funds. repaid tarp funds are supposed to be used for deficit reduction. besides this, i thought the $1 trillion stimulus bill was supposed to create jobs. you know, when you get yourselves -- the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentlewoman has expired. ms. schmidt: it's time to stop digging. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey rise? mr. sires: i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for one minute. mr. sires: madam speaker, while this house has made great strides to improve our economy, our journey to economic recovery will not be complete until a robust jobs package is
passed. the nearly half a million new jerseyians can't wait. they need jobs now and they are relying on us to deliver. in order to put america back to work and lay the groundwork for future growth, we must build on the investments and jobs creation we have already made. specifically, investment in infrastructure and clean energy. jobs to repave our roads and bridges. jobs to improve our infrastructure and water infrastructure. and jobs in alternative energy, including solar and wind. in addition to jobs creation, we must also ensure that the unemployed can make ends meet while searching for jobs by continuing the extension of unemployment benefits and helping them maintain health care coverage by extending cobra subsidies that will set to expire. madam speaker, our work is not done. we need to pass a bill that will generate jobs, jobs and even more jobs. not in a month, not soon but now. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has
expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida rise? >> madam speaker, i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from florida is recognized for one minute. >> madam speaker, the congressional leaders this week wants to raise the debt ceiling $1.8 trillion. the current debt in the country is over $12 trillion. when i first came here three years ago, i introduced the constitutional balanced budget amendment. i hear that the democrats are the problem, the republicans are the problem. they're both the problem. in the last 50 years, they've only balanced the budget five or six times. but, yes, 49 out of 50 governors have to balance the budget. our state of florida has had a tough cycle in terms of revenues. they cut expenses. families are cutting expenses. small businesses in our communities are cutting 20%, 30% expenses, but yet we're raising expenses 12%.
the time is now. we almost had a constitutional balanced budget amendment in 1994. that's the only thing that's going to solve the problem. we need to act today and democrats and republicans and do what's right for america and americans. thank you, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida rise? >> to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from florida is recognized for one minute. mr. klein: thank you, madam speaker. this week i had the chance to meet with some of the survivors of the s.s. st. louis in florida. this is a memorable and moving experience that provides each of us with a powerful lesson about our past. as you know, the s.s. st. louis carried nearly 1,000 jewish refugees from nazi germany in 1939 and shamefully, the united states and other countries turned the ship away. its passengers were sent back to europe were hundreds of them perished. we cannot forget this dark
moment in our nation's history. we must remember the story and share it with the next generation in order to keep our promise of never again. i'd like to associate myself with resolution 111 passed by the u.s. senate which recognizes the tragedy of the s.s. st. louis and honors the memory of the passengers who lost their lives. i join my colleagues and continue to pay tribute to those who do not survive and express my gratitude for the opportunity to join them in person this week. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. 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, so ordered. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. poe: madam speaker, i had the opportunity to be with our resilient troops last week in afghanistan near violent southern border with pakistan. their job is to prevent taliban criminals from crossing back and forth through the vast border regions. it's in america's interest to have our military in afghanistan and protect the sovereignty of that country. it is ironic, however, we see
the need to protect the borders of other nations, but because of political reasons we don't have the moral will to protect our own borders. this is not the first administration that's given a week and nod to our porous borders but it should be the last. our southern border region is a haven for drug cartels, gun smugglers and human smugglers. we should be as concerned about protecting our own border as we are about protecting the borders of third world countries like afghanistan. we should put our military on the border, if necessary. after all, the first duty of government is protection of our own homeland. and that's just the way it is. i yield back. . the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california rise? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman from california -- >> madam speaker, i rise today for american working men and women who want to work but can't find a job. the nation's unemployment rate stands at 10% with my home
state of california ranking third worst in the country. while i support a stronger safety net to help families survive, in the end americans don't want unemployment checks, they want to work. that's why i'm proud to support the jobs from main street act which will put americans back to work in the most direct way possible, by hiring them. this bill makes overdue investments in america's rails, roads, and schools and in well paying davis-bacon paying jobs for our workers. the benefits for our economy and encouraging unionized jobs cannot be overstated. as the great dr. martin luther king jr. said, everyone knows that the labor movement did not diminish the strength of the nation, but enlarged it. by raising the lift standards of millions, labor miraculously create add market for industry and lifted the whole nation to undreamed of levels of production. may this bill continue in that tradition. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore:p the time of the gentlewoman has expired.
for what purpose does the gentleman from north carolina rise? ms. foxx: permission to address the house for one minute, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from north carolina is recognized for one minute. ms. foxx: thank you, madam speaker. as we approach the christmastime, too many americans are asking where are the jobs? in january the unemployment rate was 7.6%. only 10 months later the national unemployment reached a whopping 10.2%, the highest level since april, 1983. that means today there are 15.7 million unemployed americans looking for work. house republicans have an economic recovery plan that will help get americans back to work. our economic recovery plan will create twice the jobs at half the cost of the democrats' failed stimulus plan. how ironic that our colleagues are coming to the floor today to talk about the need for jobs
when it is their votes and the policies of this president that have killed so many jobs. it's time we start working on behalf of the american people, focus on real commonsense solutions that will help put people back to work and let them celebrate christmas in a wonderful way. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. who seeks -- for what purpose does the gentlewoman from new york rise? >> i rise to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the the gentlewoman from new york is recognized for one minute. mrs. maloney: thank you, madam speaker. i'd like to respond to my good friend on the other side of the aisle from the great state of north carolina who pointed out there are many jobless americans, that's true. but let's put this in perspective. the last month, the former president bush was in office, this country lost over 750,000 jobs. under president barack obama's
leadership we are trending in the right direction. this last month we lost 11,000 jobs. the last five months of the bush administration they lost well over 600,000 jobs. as the nobel laureate stillets pointed out at a joint economic hearing last week, that job creation during the bush administration was fueled by an artificial bubble, inlated housing prices and ballooning real estate market spurred consumption in hiring and put us in a very dangerous position where we find ourselves today. we owe it to the 15 million jobless americans to invest in aggressive job creation policies which we will be on the floorer today in the democratic jobs program. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. -- the gentlewoman. for what purpose does the gentleman from arizona rise? >> to address the house.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arizona is recognized for one minute. >> madam speaker, my colleague, dr. ron paul, and i have once again introduced legislation to stop members interest congress from receiving the next scheduled automatic pay raise. earlier this year we had this legislation to block the fiscal year 2010 pay raise. we are joined by a bipartisan coalition of more than 100 of our colleagues in the process. thanks to their help as well as that of our leadership, the fiscal year 2010 pay raise was blocked. with unemployed so high and so many families struggling to make ends meet, we believe it would be wrong for congress to now raise its own pay raise in fiscal year 2011. right now we need our focus to get people back to work, and keep our communities safe not on giving ourselves a pay raise. the american people are not getting a raise, neither should congress. i encourage my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to do the same and join me and dr.
ron paul in stopping the next automatic pay raise from taking effect by supporting h.r. 4255, the stop automatic pay raise for members of congress. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from maine rise? ms. pingree: madam 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 title. the clerk: report to accompany house resolution 976, resolution providing for consideration of the senate amendment to the bill h.r. 3326, making appropriations for the department of defense for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2010, and for other purposes. for consideration of the joint resolution, house joint resolution 64, making further continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2010 and for other purposes. for consideration of the bill h.r. 4314, to permit continued
financing of government operations for consideration of the senate amendment to the bill h.r. 2847, making appropriations for the departments of commerce and justice and science and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2010, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the house calendar and ordered printed. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from maine rise? ms. pingree: madam speaker, i by direction of the committee on rules i call up house resolution 973 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 145, house resolution 973. resolved, that the requirement of clause 6-a of rule 13 for a 2/3 vote to consider a report from the committee on rules on the same day it is presented to the house is waived with respect to any resolution reported on the legislative day of december 16, 2009.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maine is recognized for one hour. ms. pingree: thank you, madam speaker. madam speaker, for the purposes of debate only, i yield the customary 30 minutes to the gentlewoman from north carolina, dr. foxx. all time yielded during consideration of the rule is for debate only. i yield myself such time as i may consume. i also ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks on house resolution 973. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentlewoman from maine is recognized. ms. pingree: thank you, madam speaker. madam speaker, house resolution 973 waives clause 6-a of rule 13 which requires a 2/3 vote to consider a rule on the same day as reported from the rules committee. this waiver applies to any resolutions reported on the legislative day of december 16, 2009. this will allow the house to consider today important legislation, including legislation to ensure the funding of our military, in addition to measures to put
people back to work. madam speaker, we must act quickly to deliver the bills before us today that will fund our military and get people back to work. today the house will take up several measures that will fund our military, make critical investments in the nation's infrastructure in order to put people back to work. we have the opportunity today to take the bailout money that was used as a lifeline to wall street and give that money back to the american people and those who have been hit hardest by these tough economic times. the legislation that we will take up later today will divert the tarp money to programs that will create and safe jobs -- save jobs across the country. we do this by investing $75 billion of tarp money into highways to transit, to school renovation, to hiring teachers, police, and firefighters, to supporting small businesses, job training and affordable housing. for those hit hardest by the recession, this bill also
provides emergency relief by extending deployments like our unemployment benefits, cobra, and fmap which is health care funding for our states and the childcare tax credit. these are measures we must pass to build a foundation for long-term economic recovery. this is not an ordinary day and given the importance of this legislation, i hope members on both sides of the aisle will support this rule so that we can move quickly to enact these critically important measures. i wish like so many of my colleagues wish that we weren't faced with such difficult problems. i wish that when the democrats took over the majority we weren't saddled with two wars, a recession, and a $1.3 trillion deficit. but wishing won't make these problems go away. there is real urgency in the actions before us today and i truly hope that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will join me in supporting this rule to allow us to move forward. later in the day we will debate the merits of all of this
legislation and the grave implications of not passing these bills. but right now i urge my colleagues to support this rule and allow us to move forward on the debate to complete the work we were sent here to do. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maine requires -- riffs. the gentlewoman from north carolina is recognized. ms. foxx: thank you, madam speaker. i appreciate my colleague yielding the time this morning. i want to say that it seems every time we come here we have to do a little bit of correcting people's memory and their recollection of history. my colleague just said when they took over the majority we had a $1.3 trillion deficit. i think if she'll check her facts she'll see the $1.3 trillion deficit came about as a result of the democrats taking over the majority. she may not have been here, but
in 2007 when they took over the majority i believe the deficit was $259 billion and they made it $1.3 trillion. this year with their democratic president. we are here considering a same-day martial law rule. now, i understand that there are times when we need to move quickly when we are faced with an immediate crisis. however i think the word crisis has been overused, particularly this year. we haven't had much by way of crisis this year and yet they are trying to make it a crisis by bringing in this, again, same day martial law rule. we met last night at 8:45, the rules committee did, we didn't get the text of the bills that were going to be debating in a rule we are going to approve again in a few minutes, or little while, so we have had
very little time to be able to deal with these things. but we have known about this for a long, long time. we have known the funding for the government would run out friday night for over a month. so what have we been doing during that period of time when we should have been preparing for this day? let me make -- let me give some ideas on what we have been doing by reading out some of the bills that we have been voting on on the floor. expressing support for designation of november 29, 2009, as drive safer sunday. surely something that the country could not live without. expressing support for designation of the week beginning on november 9, 2009, as national school psychology week. another ex-- extraordinarily
important issue for us to be dealing with. recognizing the 60th anniversary of the berlin airlift success. certainly i am extremely proud of the fact that ronald reagan helped end the cold war by opening up berlin, but i don't think that really needed to be done by a vote on this floor. and then the one that i really think tops the cake and will get the attention of the american people, honoring the 2,560th anniversary of the birth of confucius and recognizing his invaluable contributions to philosophy and social and political thought. the fact that 2,560 years had passed since the birth of confucius and we hadn't acknowledged it, i really think that could have waited a little
bit longer in terms of the importance of the work that we are doing. so here we are again doing what our colleagues across the aisle have been so good at this session. short-circuiting the legislative process so we can jam through another major spending bill without the benefit of members or more importantly the citizens of this country having the opportunity to read it. this rule enables us to take up the next rule and that rule allows us to consider more than $1 trillion in spending, all done almost in the blink of an eye if you put it in the context of the birth of confucius. but let us not be fooled by this attempt to say that something is a crisis. .
the reason we are doing this on the spur of the moment is becauseure speaker because our speakers and other members will leave today to go to copenhagen to talk to people about climate control, and they're going to emit much, much carbon on their way to do that which really is sort of hypocritical in terms of what the conference is all about. so we have folks talking out of both sides of their mouths here over and over and over again. and with that, madam speaker, i will reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from north carolina reserves. the gentlewoman from maine is recognized. ms. pingree: thank you, madam speaker. my good friend from north carolina has suggested that this isn't an emergency and i say i hear every day from
constituents in my district who feel this is a time emergency. in maine we have 20,000 unemployed workers who are facing the end of their unemployment benefits, a very critical thing we are about to talk about today is the extension of unemployment benefits. now, we are anxious for the economy to improve, but the fact is in my state unemployment benefits are the fourth largest payroll. that is a tragedy that we have to deal with and we have to make sure that those people in the middle of a cold winter don't go without their vital support and that our state doesn't go without a critical part of our economy. many of those people can't even stand a delay because the fact is if they go for even a few days or weeks without their benefits they've already hit the end of their credit card limits. they've already gone as far as they possibly can go. many workers talked to me that they are talking about their cobra subsidies and they are laid off.
there are many critical things in this bill. this is time to get it passed. people ask all the time, when are you going to get something done in washington? as far as i'm concerned, this is something we have to get done and we need to get back to work today. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maine reserves the balance of her time. the gentlewoman from north carolina is recognized. ms. foxx: thank you, madam speaker. i now yield such time as he may consume to the distinguished gentleman from california and ranking member of the rules committee, mr. dreier. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. dreier: thank you very much, madam speaker. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman is recognized. mr. dreier: madam speaker, my friend from maine is absolutely right. this is a very, very challenging time with people who are -- for people who are dealing with the economic downturn through which we have suffered. and it's essential that we do a number of the things that are before us today.
the national security of the united states of america is priority number one. i always argue that the five most important words in the middle of the preamble of the u.s. constitution are, provide for the common defense. i say that, madam speaker, because if you think about the issues with which we regularly contend here, nearly all of them can be done either by an individual, within a family, within a church, a community, a city, a county or a state level of governing. but only our national defense, our national defense can only be handled by the federal government. so ilacknowledge it is very, very -- so i will acknowledge that it is very, very essential that our men and women in uniform have what they need. as we deal with the economic downturn, ensuring people have job opportunities is a very, very, very important priority for us. and i happen to think that we've gone in the exact opposite direction when it comes to the notion of
encouraging long-term private sector job creation and economic growth. i believe that we should deal with that issue in a bipartisan way. when i say bipartisan i'm referring to two presidents in the last half century. one is john f. kennedy. the other ronald reagan. john f. kennedy when we were dealing with economic challenges in the early 1960's decided very clearly that the best way to get the economy back on track, the best way to encourage private sector job creation and economic growth was to do what, bring about broad marginal tax rate reduction, reducing the tax rate on capital gains, and taking the top rate on job creators. men and women who were out there working to create more and more opportunity for their fellow americans. well, madam speaker, that kind of plan was put into place in the early 1960's with a
democratic congress, a democratic president of the united states. and guess what happened? during the decade of the 1960's, we saw a doubling, a doubling of the flow of revenues in the federal treasury because of the heralded john f. kennedy tax cuts. again, a democratic president and a democratic congress. rush forward from the early 1960's to the early 1980's, two decades. i was privileged to be a member of the congress, the 97th congress which convened in january of 1981. we were dealing with very, very serious economic problems. some of which, some of which were even more challenging than exist today. in the early 1980's, people will recall that interest rates were well into double digits. we had an unemployment rate that dramatically exceeded where we are today. and if you look at the overall
challenge it was similar. and how did we deal with that, madam speaker? we dealt with that by doing under ronald reagan exactly what president john f. kennedy, a great democratic president did. under ronald reagan we saw broad reductions across the board of marginal tax rates. we saw reduction of the capital gains rate. and what happened as we encouraged those job creators out there in our economy? what happened, madam speaker, was we saw, again, a doubling of the flow of revenues to the federal treasury and we saw good, long-term private sector jobs created. now, the thing that's most troubling what it is we are doing is i'm very happy to see this reduction from 10 tp 2% to -- 10.2% to 10%, it's a positive sign. but the problem is that it's not private sector job
creation. what we're seeing is public sector job creation. i will acknowledge the infrastructure spending is important. i represent the los angeles basin and we have very serious infrastructure problems. and so i recognize the government does have an appropriate role in dealing with infrastructure and jobs that are created when we put resources into infrastructure. i will acknowledge that. but if you look at the other areas. when the president had his jobs summit the other day, we had a meeting of republicans and one of the economists who participated was kevin hasett of the american enterprise institute and he provided us with an amazing number. he said he had his staff at a.i. to look at the challenge -- a.e.i. at the challenge of the nearly $1 trillion in stimulus spending. he said, tell me what would happen if we would have taken
that entire stimulus bill and hired people? well, his staff came up with the following conclusion, madam speaker. he found -- he reported to us that if you look at the average wage rate in the united states is $37,000 a year. that's the average wage rate across the country. if we were to take the entire stimulus bill and simply hire people, guess how many jobs would be created? i was stunned when he reported to us that that number is 21 million. and when you look at how the stimulus dollars have been expended, we obviously haven't created that many jobs, madam speaker. but the fact is if we were to take all those resources and just hire people at the average wage rate across the united states of america, it would be 21 million jobs that would have been created. that's not the way to deal with the challenge of the economic downturn. the way to deal with it is to encourage long-term private sector job creation and
economic growth. and that's why when we look at these priorities and the urgency of dealing with the challenges that exist today, that's what we should be doing. now, as ms. foxx has appropriately said, madam speaker, we are here with a virtually unprecedented scenario before us. first, this rule gives something that according to our staff has not happened before and that is it gives the chair the authority to just without any action by the members of the house adjourn the house. and that's a troubling sign. and it's troubling but not terribly surprising based on what we have seen over the past three years since we had first unveiled us a document known as a new direction for america. this was the proposal that was put forward by the now speaker of the house who was then minority leader. and as minority leader she was very concerned.
and i will acknowledge having done a less than perfect job in my position as chairman of the house rules committee. i'm proud of what our work product was but i could have done better and i will acknowledge that freely here. but it's interesting to note what a direction for a new america -- a new direction for america actually had. and i'd like to share a couple of brief lines from that, madam speaker. bills should be developed during full committee and subcommittee hearings and markups. members should have at least 24 hours to examine a bill prior to consideration at the subcommittee level. bills should generally come to the floor under a procedure that allows open, full and fair debate. i am going to repeat that, madam speaker. said bills should come to the floor under a procedure that allows open, full and fair debate consisting with a full
amendment process that grants the minority the rights to offer its alternatives, including a substitute. members should have at least 24 hours to examine a bill and conference report text prior to floor consideration. rules governing floor debate must be reported before 10:00 p.m. before a bill to be considered the following day. now, madam speaker, as we know, virtually all of that has been thrown out the window. the other thing that is unprecedented, and i mentioned this up in the rules committee when i confirmed it with our staff, to my knowledge this is the first session -- the first session ever to go through the entire session of congress without any bill being considered under an open rule. and i know that my friend from maine was there. i hope very much upstairs when i raised this issue, i hope very much that she does have an opportunity soon. because as we talked about and this bill that is coming before us is an appropriations bill, again, for the first time ever we have the appropriations
process shut down, shut down, denying members opportunity to offer amendments. never been in the history of the republic has that taken place. and we now have unfortunately seen that. but as we prepare to extend christmas and hanukkah greetings to our colleagues and our friends across the country, it's very unfortunate that we have now, if we do in fact see today as the last day of the first session of this congress, an entire session without any open rules. i will tell you that there are many people on the rules committee who work long and hard to deal with challenges. we, as ms. foxx said, met into the evening last night and then we were here at 7:30 this morning. one of our rules committee staff members, shane chambers, who has worked long and hard, and i'd like to say, madam
speaker, how much we appreciate him. he and his wife and new baby will be moving to dallas, texas. as -- i would like to express appreciation to those staff members on both sides of the aisle who do work long and hard to address these challenges. i am going to urge my colleagues to join in voting no on this rule because i believe that we can do better, and this is not the appropriate way and it's not what was promised the american people. and with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from north carolina reserves. the gentlewoman from maine is recognized. ms. pingree: thank you, madam speaker. and i do want to thank my colleague, ranking member on the committee, both for his history lesson and also for extending holiday greetings to those across the country. i do appreciate as a new member. i often learn from things he
discusses with us. i want to join him in thanking our hardworking staff. he's absolutely right. we were here late into the evening, early in the morning. i know that my colleagues put in many hours and our staff worked very hard and i want to let them know how much we appreciate them in the challenges before us which often make our procedural challenges even more difficult as we try to determine how to get so much work done that is before us with so much more to do. that is why we are here today to talk about the same-day rule, to talk about the work that is before us. i'd like to yield as much that he is interested in consuming, two minutes, perhaps, to my good friend from colorado, mr. perlmutter. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized for two minutes. mr. perlmutter: thank you. and i appreciate my friend from maine giving me some time to respond to my friend from california. .
i think we were getting a history about kennedy, reagan, about the recovery act passed earlier this session, i'm glad my friend is returning, because what he forgot to mention was that when john kennedy, when those tax cuts were made, the highest marginal rates were 70%. today's highest marginal rates are half that. so we need to understand that when those cuts were made there was substantial amount higher than what we experience today. i would also remind my friend that in the recovery act passed earlier this year, $300 billion, about 40% of that bill was in the form of tax cuts. so those kinds of efforts are being made. i would also remind my friend that when president reagan came in and in 1981 did take some
tough steps in trying to rebuild the economy, which was suffering from high interest rates and a number of other things, that it wasn't just nirvana the next day. that at least in colorado we had years of recession. that lasted almost until 1990. so what we see before us really as a, i think, result of stabilizing the banking system last fall, rejuvenating the economy in the spring with the recovery act, we do see downward pressure on unemployment. we are not out of the woods, but it's getting better, but we can do bert than we are. and people who are out of jobs across this country, whether it's in california or texas or ohio, if i could have another 30 seconds. ms. pingree: glad to yield another minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized for one additional
minute. mr. perlmutter: i yield to my friend for about 10 seconds. >> i would be happy to ask my friend from grandfather community if she might yield a minute to the gentleman. ms. foxx: i'm happy to yield a minute. mr. dreier: if the gentleman would yield. mr. perlmutter: i yield. mr. dreier: let me say quickly that under john f. kennedy it's true we saw 70% marginal rate dramatically reduced. we are not asking for a halving of marginal rates. the $300 billion in tax cuts have not been focused on job creators, which is exactly what president kennedy did then. i also want to say, madam speaker, i recognize very well, i recognize very well that if you look at the provisions that have been put into place within the past year, we have not been focused on that private sector job creation, that president kennedy and president reagan said. i thank my friend for yielding. mr. perlmutter: i would
disagree with my friend by saying first of all we provided tax credits for first time home buyers to stimulate home construction and home sales. we provided tax credits, net operating loss, carrybacks, and carry fords for businesses. we provide -- carry forwards for businesses. there were many tax credits that go to stimulate the economy and create jobs. mr. dreier: if the gentleman woo further yield. let me say the examples i used, the bipartisan example of the kennedy, reagan tax cuts were marge until rate -- marginal rate reductions for individuals. mr. perlmutter: taking my time. mr. dreier: we chose to increase taxes. mr. perlmutter: i take back my time. the business types of tax cuts as well as individual tax cuts are part of the package that is helping this country recover. but we aren't there yet. we haven't finished yet.
we helped wall street with tarp money. that same money should be able to be available to main street. that's the purpose of today's bill. that's why this rule is important. i would urge an aye vote on this rule as well as an aye vote on the underlying bill. with that i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maine reserves her time. the gentlewoman from north carolina is recognized. ms. foxx: madam speaker, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. dreier: i would be happy to engage in a colloquy further with my friend from colorado to simply say that i believe very, very strongly, madam speaker, that it's important for us to recognize what needs to be done to encourage job creation and economic growth. what we have seen in the past year has unfortunately been a dramatic expansion of the size and scope and reach of government. which, frankly, i think would concern both john f. kennedy and ronald reagan. the fact is the notion of this
regulatory burden and tax cuts that are not modeled after the pro-growth model of presidents kennedy and president reagan are not going to create the kind of opportunity that we need. why? because we constantly hear this class warfare argument of tax the rich. this week's economist has a very interesting piece, madam speaker, in which it focuses on the bonus tax that prime minister gordon brown in great britain is putting into place. the piece in the economist is entitled class warrior. it focuses on the fact again the prime minister brown is trying to, with his policy, get the economy going when the british economy is in fact among those in europe doing the worst of the economies in europe and we are in a position right now where he is engaging in class warfare and the
economist has this great line, it says, market reforms are not what class warriors do. that's what we need to do as we continue with tax job creators, attack those at the upper end of the spectrum who are in fact struggling right now to get our economy back on track to create good private sector jobs. we've got policies here that are undermining that. i'm happy to yield. ms. pingree: i'm happy to yield back again to my wonderful colleague. mr. dreier: i've got time. ms. pingree: we'll yield to everybody. the two of you have been entering into a colloquy. very interesting one going back to kennedy -- the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. the time of the gentleman from california has expired. ms. pingree: you can reserve and i'll take my time. the speaker pro tempore: the the gentlewoman from maine is recognized. ms. pingree: i'm happy to engage in a colloquy with both my colleagues. let me make a point to my much
more senior and well informed members. mr. dreier: that means older. ms. pingree: i don't think they are older. i want to say while this has been an interesting history lesson and i greatly appreciate my colleague from colorado and his understanding of the financial services industry and this world that we have been working so hard on to both regulate and deal with, much of my colleague from california's remarks have been referring to president kennedy, president reagan, and very different era. i want to remind my colleagues on the floor we are here at the end of the bush administration. and when president obama came to office, and yes the democrats have been here for two years before, and there were things we were unable to fix when we were simply in the majority, but the fact is that president obama and this particular congress, when i came here as a freshman, we inherited the worst recession since the great depression. two wars that weren't paid for. a broken health care system, a 1950's energy policy.
that was what we have had to deal with. this has not been an easy year as my colleagues know. we are here over and over again. mr. dreier: would the gentlewoman yield? ms. pingree: i yield to my friend from colorado. mr. perlmutter: i appreciate my frind yielding. ms. pingree: i yield one minute. mr. perlmutter: i would say to my colleague from maine as well as my colleague from california , i think that ms. pingree has a very substantial point. you complained -- pardon me for saying you. my friend from california complained about the regulatory burden. one of the reasons that this country is facing the recession that we are facing is a result of the wild west approach on wall street. where there was no regulatory burden or if there was, it was ignored by the regulators under the bush administration. and as a consequence, the private sector was brought to its knees last fall and is just
now getting on its feet. as a result of the rejuvenation, the recovery act, that was passed by its congress and by president obama. and it is those kinds of things that have required intervention by the federal government to get this country back on its feet. we are not there yet, but we are heading in the right direction. and with that i yield back. mr. dreier: would the gentlewoman yield? the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maine reserves? ms. pingree: i reserve. mr. dreier: i thought the gentlewoman wanted to engage in a colloquy. ms. pingree: my colleague -- mr. dreier: i would engage in a colloquy with my friend from maine. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maine reserves. the gentlewoman from north carolina is recognized. ms. foxx: thank you, madam speaker. i find it very interesting that my colleague from maine says, we find ourselves here at the end of the bush administration. we have been in the obama administration for a year.
and yet our colleagues across the aisle cannot stop harkening back to president bush and blaming him for everything that has happened in this country in the last year when president bush hasn't been in office and the republicans have not been in control, the democrats are in control. they have been in control of congress for three years. they actually inherited from president bush and the republican-controlled congress a very excellent economy. 55 straight months of job growth. the first month that the democrats took over the congress, the economy started going downhill and we can document that very, very easily. it isn't the bush administration that deserves the blame for the ills of the economy, it's the democrat-controlled congress which began in january of 2007
and which is when the economy started going sour. i want to go back to the issue at hand which is why do we have closed rules? why do we have same-day martial law rule? why isn't there time for us to debate the important issues that the american people want us to be debating? why is it, as my colleague from california has pointed out, that our most important function, the defense of this nation, which can be done by no other group of people in this country, the states can't do it, the locals can't do it, the budget -- the appropriations for that part of our country is left to be done on a day when everybody is trying to get out for christmas and we are doing it in a rush. the members aren't allowed to read the bill.
the 27-hour rule has gone out the window. nobody's allowed to read the bill because there's not enough time to do it. we have been operating, as my colleague said, under closed rules, bills with no amendments, while we are doing things like recognizing the grand concourse on its 100th anniversary as the pre-eminent thorough fair in the burrough of the bronx and important nexus of commerce and culture for the city of new york. that's how our colleagues want to spend their time and that is dealing with with -- with issues that are not a part of our critical job here in the house of representatives. but dealing with things that could have been done on a voice vote but we have to have no amendments allowed and no debate time because there isn't time, according to the chairman of the appropriations committee, to do these things. and this is what we are doing.
madam speaker, i had an opportunity this week to once more visit arlington national cemetery. it is always a sobering thing to do. i went particularly into the active duty section this time where men and women who are currently serving our country have lost their lives. it gets one's attention. there were parents and relatives there grieving, recently lost loved ones. i visited the eternal flame of john kennedy. i don't have to be reminded of his comments in his inaugural speech, ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country. we are in a totally different time as my colleague has said,