Skip to main content

tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  May 12, 2011 10:00am-1:00pm EDT

10:00 am
-- the sunlight foundation and an investigative journalist. ng of co-author of "cheatin america," and he worked for eight years for "the philadelphia inquirer," the last two as researcher for pulitzer prize-winning reporters. website -- name one. guest: host: bill allison, thank you for being on "washington journal." the house of representatives is coming into session as we speak. thanks for being with us. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] i hereby appoint the honorable tom graves to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner, speaker of the house of representatives.
10:01 am
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 5, 2011, the chair will now recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour debate. the chair will alternate recognition between the parties with each party limited to one hour and each member other than the majority and minority leaders and the minority whip limited to five minutes each, but in no event shall debate continue beyond 11:50 a.m. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. miller, for five minutes. mr. miller: mr. speaker, members of the house, this congress is entering its fifth month without bringing a single jobs bill to the floor, and there are no job bills in sight but we do hear calls for a series of trade agreements, including ones with colombia
10:02 am
and korea. at a time when americans are still looking for work, congress will protect foreign countries and not jobs here at home. at a time when 2.9 million american workers were fired, they will be hiring workers overseas. the congress will be shoring up corporate seas investments rather than encouraging investments here at home. at a time in the middle east people are rising up for democracy and receiving support from the united states for those efforts, the house is taking up trade agreements with colombia that fail to live up to those values. one of our responsibilities is to protect and promote american jobs. we do this by ensuring american workers do not face unfair competition by repressing essential democratic rights. these are important rights, the rights to speak out, the rights to protest, the rights to organize unions, the rights to
10:03 am
bargain collectively and directly with their employers and to improve their economic conditions without reprisals. but reprisals are what you get in china. thousands of strikes last year were met not by their employers but by the police and the army beating up on the workers who were seeking better wages, better working conditions in plants all across china. which, again, when you protest your rights in colombia you get assassinations, we get death squads against union members, union leaders, members against union families across the country. the american worker can compete but you can't compete against the colombian army, the colombian death squad, the chinese army. that's not fair competition but that's what's protected in these trade agreements. tragically, colomboa stans out as a country where wages are kept low and workers are repressed through human rights violations. colombia has earned the reputation as the most dangerous country on earth for workers trying to build a
10:04 am
better life. during the last colombian's eight years in office, 570 union members were assassinated, 149 in the last three years. and the violence hasn't stopped with the election of a new president. reports of assassinations against union members and leaders keep coming. the two most recent ones were on april 8, assassinations of romero sanchez. he was shot repeatedly as he left a union meeting. mr. sanchez received death threats. on march 30, the assassination of hector, who was an official with the peasants farmers union. he and his colleagues, garcia were found murdered. days earlier he reported that other peasants were threatened by army officers. on top of the violence there's a problem of impunity. they have investigated only a quarter of the killings since 1986. no one has been held accountable of the crimes against unionists. the violence comes together
10:05 am
with another recent case. judge gloria denoia was shot in the head in broad daylight. at the time she was presiding over a sensitive case of a military officer killing three children, one he committed to raping. now, colombia, with a new president, says he wants to turn the page in colombia past but these murders and human rights violations are not the path. they are happening today. before we consider any agreement with colombia free trade, the real changes must come to colombia. that is why i've joined with colleagues to lay out a series of benchmarks that should be set by the obama administration before we enter into any trade agreement with that country. these are designed to reduce the violence, to help human rights and to end the death squads in the army as they take actions against these families. they require on-the-ground results and verification. the administration has adopted an action for colombia that does not demand the results on the ground.
10:06 am
i appreciate that u.s. and colombia are finally bringing labor rights into the equation. but their plan only demands results on paper. under their plan, nothing really needs to actually change in colombia. colombia could have a record year of assassinations and still meet the requirements of the plan. indeed, before the action plan has been fully implemented, the administration is already preparing a way -- the way with congress to implement this trade agreement. if this action plan were fully enforceable under the agreement and into the future we could have something more than just results on paper. unless it is enforceable and -- this is less than the serious commitment. it is not fair to colombia, it's not fair to the american workers and it's not fair to our national values and does not reflect our national values. the american worker can compete with any worker in the world. they're rated time and again the most productive workers in the world but they cannot compete against currency manipulation in china. they cannot compete against the chinese army that breaks up the rights of workers to protest
10:07 am
and they cannot compete against the death squads that have been assigned to assassinate union members, union leaders and union families. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from south carolina, mr. duncan, for five minutes. mr. duncan: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, recognized for five minutes. mr. duncan: the recent unprecedented action by the national labor relation board is another example of this administration putting politics before the needs of the american people. honestly, never thought i'd see the day when our government sued a company over creating jobs in south carolina or anywhere in the united states. the nlrb violates 10th amendment liberties and the nlrb was created to protect workers' rights but now the worker is left out of the equation in favor of big union. i ask, what about the workers in south carolina who lose out
10:08 am
in this action? when have their rights been considered in this nonsense? in fact, nationality labor relation act says in section 1 the purpose of the nlra is to promote the full flow of commerce to prescribe the legitimate rights of employers and employees affecting commerce, to prevent the interference by either with the legitimate rights of the others. to protect the rights of individual employees and their relations with labor organizations whose activities protect commerce to define and prescribe practices on the part of labor and management which affect commerce and are part of the general welfare and protect the rights of labor disputes affecting commerce. it comes on the heels of previous threats by this radically out of touch panel to sue states like south carolina to constitutionally protecting the most universal freedoms, the right to a secret ballot. fear that the federal government might take away that
10:09 am
fundamental principle prompted voters in south carolina, arizona, south dakota and utah to overwhelmingly support adding secret ballot protection to their state constitutions. if the nlrb hadn't already made a big enough mockery of individual freedom they need to come to the negotiation table to talk to states' attorneys' general to prevent them from sharing what was discussed during the meetings. demanding secret meetings, threats, attacking the right to a secret ballot doesn't exactly create a good track record for the national labor relations board. that's what prompted me to introduce house resolution 10 27, to stop the nlrb from suing states whose voters took a stand against secret ballot elections. if the nlrb doesn't change the course quickly i know there will be many in this body, including myself, who will call for the panel's removal altogether.
10:10 am
but, mr. speaker, this latest outrage is a power grab, against constitutional and supreme court precedence, the nlrb's actions is a clear attack on our state. think about the context. this administration has spent our nation into owe bolivian, doubling the national debt in two short years, mounting takeover after takeover and reducing the size and scope in the process. the unemployment rate -- what does this administration do? it sues one of the largest prospective employers in our state just as that company begins to hire workers. potentially costing south carolina thousands of jobs. mr. speaker, i may be new to washington but i promise you, i was not born yesterday. looking at the nlrb's policy and examining recent electoral maps is not difficult to see a policy that clearly rewards blue states while severely punishing red ones. under the nlrb's interpretation of the law, work force anchored in a blue state cannot expand or relocate to a red state.
10:11 am
limiting rare companies can conduct businesses sounds like something that takes place in china, not here in the united states. since when did america stop being the land of the free? let me give this message from anyone looking to start a company in america. choose your location well. if this action by nlrb is upheld, trust me when i say we won't be talking about companies making decisions over a right to work state versus a union state. what this outrageous action by the nlrb tells you is you're stuck with very few options. give into the union's demands, close up your shop or take your production outside the united states. the nlrb action says build your company but not in america. this is unconstitutional and illegal. i call on my colleagues and the educational work force committee to hold hearings on this bureaucratic atrocity. my south carolina colleagues and i have put together
10:12 am
legislation to defund this. i ask you to rescue the american dream and sign on to this legislation. i also ask the american people, pay attention to this problem. our founding fathers will be appalled by this bureaucratic tyranny. it's time to hold our elected officials accountable. do we want to say we are a free nation or do we want to be a free nation? it's time we take a stand. may god continue to bless america. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer, for five minutes. mr. hoyer: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise to honor the legacy of an extraordinary marylander, marylander's governor, william donald schaefer. he died just a few weeks ago after a long time of public service. william donald schaefer was one of the great american mayors. few mayors can never say that
10:13 am
they transformed a city as thoroughly as did william donald schaefer transforming baltimore. but over his 16 years' tenure as mayor of baltimore, he led a dramatic and historic turnaround. in 1971 when his tenure started, baltimore was a struggling city. a city plagued by population plight, crime and decaying urban infrastructure. when so many had given up on baltimore, mayor schaefer made it his mission to stand up to that decay. and we can still see his legacy today. it is the legacy that includes physical landmarks like camden yards, the national asquarian, baltimore's harbor place and an outstanding light rail system. projects that he saw through completion as both mayor and governor of our state. just as importantly, mayor schaefer's legacy came in
10:14 am
thousands of gestures that showed just how deeply he cared about the people he represented. and how seriously he took his work. personally addressing illegal dumping in alease or broken equipment -- alleys or broken equipment in parks, and looking for everything from potholes to crime troubled stops and jumping into the aquarium's seal pool complete with a rubber ducky when the city failed to complete it on time. my colleague from oregon is shaking his head because he -- we all know that famous picture. above all, his colorful, passionate and dedicated leadership added up to the change, not just in baltimore's appearance and infrastructure, but in the mindset of the words of the "baltimore sun" when they said, he changed the way
10:15 am
the city felt about itself. how important leaders are to make that happen in the minds of their people. we have an agenda, by the way, that is make it in america, that is trying to change that psychology that we are going to make it, we are going to succeed, we are going to expand. william brought that same dedication to his terms as maryland governor. his trademark, no nonsense style, do it now, was his word. on display in annapolis where he strengthened maryland's schools, which, by the way, now rank number one in the country, and protecting maryland's natural heritage, including our beloved chesapeake bay. after reaching the highest point in maryland politics, many would have written off into the sunset, but not william donald schaefer. he couldn't get enough of the world he loved, and he ran for
10:16 am
state comptroller and won twice. . he was one of our state's most respected voices for fiscal spot. before he died, governor shafer was asked how he would like to be remembered. and he answered, there are two words, quote he cared." -- quote, he cared, close quote. people mock me and made fun of it, but it's the truth. as someone who worked closely with william donald schaffer throughout his years as mayor, governor, and comptroller, i can say without any hesitation or fear of contradiction william donald schaffer cared. he was a man of the people. he listened, he acted. it is the truth and it mattered because at the time when so many wrote of our cities caring took remarkable courage and strength. a great architect, mr. speaker, was once laid to rest in a building he himself had
10:17 am
designed. his tombstone read, i quote, if you seek his monument, look around you. those words apply just as well to william wonled schaffer. and i hope that the people he served will bear them in mind whenever they enjoy the best of the city of baltimore and the best of the state of maryland. well-done our good and faithful servant. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from oregon, mr. walledin. mr. walden: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. for the past 12 years john snyder, bedford, oregon, has been my district director. he's decided to move on now to pursue other opportunities and other careers. but to me he was more than just district director. he was my mentor, he was my partner, and always my friend. john snyder's a terrific man,
10:18 am
great man of the oregon ducks, and he served three members of congress in this district as district director. including my most recent predecessor, robert f. smith. he was born and raised there and his roots run deep in the valley. he is a guy's guy. he's a terrific man. my current district office actually sits adjacent to the former snyder dairy which his family had which is down part of the downtown. john and his wife currently live in the valley and his daughter lives in grants pass. john graduated from st. mary's high school and was its student body president. he graduated from the university of oregon and is a rabid oregon ducks fan. my wife and i had the opportunity to be with john and his wife at the championship game in arizona earlier this year, and among the 10,000 or 20,000 people at the reception ahead of time, we actually bumped into each other there as
10:19 am
fate would have it and had a wonderful evening. john served our country as a member of the united states coast guard and as president of the rotary club of medford where his attendance always spiked when i was the speaker. he was always so busy, he never got there. so they always fined him extra heavily when i was there and they had their opportunity to get at him. john was my eyes and ears throughout the second district which is 70,000 square miles of eastern central and southern oregon. we, i think, have traveled in about every conveyance possible. from a wagon behind a tractor, to jet engine aircraft, single engine aircraft, twin engine aircraft. we traveled in those airplanes, small chartered, with others on our staff who didn't fair as well as john and i. they turned green and white and had problems at times. john and i always sort of traveled through it. we have driven in snow and rain and ice and sleet and everything we hear about postal officials from one end of the
10:20 am
district to the other. we have flown, we have driven, we have hiked, we have walked, we have been on boats and airplanes and you name it. and always at my side john snyder. when the water was cut off to the clam math basin 10 years ago -- klamath basin 10 years ago, john was there where we took water symbolically out of the lake and passed it through 15,000 people into the canal. symbolizing this horrible thing that the government had done to the farmers. that deeply affected all of us in the second district and especially john and me. and his commitment to those farmers and ranchers continues today. as does mine. when it came to saving the medford tanker base so firefighter aircraft could make their circle around the valley quicker rather than being shoved out to another hour's flight away, john was right there day and night working with the commissioner and others to make sure we could
10:21 am
preserve that firefighting base in medford, and we did and it's made an enormous difference in saving lives and property. when president bush came out to both the applegate and redmond, john was there helping organize the events ahead of time. any of you been involved in a presidential district you know it happens quickly and you basically go 24/7 and things get changed in the middle of the night. we need a van, no, we don't. john was there making sure it all happened. john has served as one of my most important advisors and is passionate about issues related to water and timber, small business development, and the people. he's well liked by everyone who has ever met or worked with john snyder. he was a true leader in our community and remains so today. so today i rise to take the time of the house to honor and recognize my long time only until he decided to move on
10:22 am
district director, john snyder, to wish him and his wife and john's daughter the very best in the years ahead. we look forward to continuing our friendship and to working together for the betterment of our great state of oregon and always to cheer on the oregon ducks. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from connecticut, mr. courtney. mr. courtney: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise to share with the house a headline which was reported in yesterday's connecticut media which i believe is going to reverberate all across the country. it reads that as federal health reforms take effect,et in a proposes rate cuts. -- aetna proposes rate cuts. for employers who have been seeing double-digit increases the last decade, to see a headline that says health insurance premiums will be cut probably seems like it must be
10:23 am
a typo or april fool's headline joke, but the fact of the matter is the story indicates because of the federal health care reform law, the new premiums which are going to go into effect in september that aetna is proposing, have to be reduced anywhere from 5% to 19% . for policyholders the savings with these new premium announcements will be up to $3,500 a year on policies that cost about $14,000 today. why is this happening? it's because the health care reform law contains a provision which says that insurers must demonstrate that up to 80% to 85% of premium dollars have to be spent on health care. it is called the medical loss ratio rule. and under existing premiums that aetna is collecting these days, only 54% of premium dollars are presently being paid on health care. now, again, as someone who was a small employer before i came to congress in 2007, and paid
10:24 am
those double-digit increases year in and year out, what we are seeing now is the fact that there is transparency in terms of how premiums are being handled and that people are now -- are understanding and in fact regulators are enforcing a rule which says that when you pay health insurance premiums, the bulk of it, not all of it, but the bulk actually has to be spent on health care. and because of this rule, the medical loss ratio rule, we saw yesterday that aetna is proposing to cut health insurance premiums for employers. this is going to be replicated across the country over the upcoming year as the department of health and human services are issuing these rules to state insurance departments for implementation. thank goodness for those employers who are now going to be seeing real rate relief that we did not repeal the health care reform law. thank goodness for those employers who are getting small business tax credits back in
10:25 am
the mail today for their i.r.s. filings that they submitted this year that we did not repeal the health care reform law. thank goodness for all the employers across america who are now participating in the early retiree health insurance program which over half the fortune 500 companies in america have signed up for as a way of moderating early retiree health insurance costs so that they can encourage employees 55 and up to take retirement, opening up opportunities for younger workers in this country which we desperately need. looking at graduating lasses that are facing daunting employment prospects. the fact of the matter is the health care reform law in terms of small business tax credits, real rate cut relief, early retiree programs that help employment-based health benefits is now rippling through the system and providing help for thousands and thousands of employers all across this country. we know now that the health care reform law is helping
10:26 am
almost a million young americans between the ages of 21 and 26 stay on their parents' health insurance plan. i was with a student up at the university of connecticut the other day. his sister was months away from graduating at n.y.u. when she was diagnosed with a rare nerve disorder and thank goodness for the health care reform law that she was able to stay on her parents' health care plan and now she's receiving lifesaving treatments that is going to allow her to attend law school starting next year. for seniors we are seeing the new medicare provisions that will close the doughnut hole that will provide preventive services like annual checkups, cancers screenings, now covered 100% by the medicare program as a direct result of the health care reform law. these benefits are now flowing through the system with a bill that was fiscally responsible and that c.b.o. scored as a net safer to america's budget deficit. again i want to make sure people see this headline that employer-based premiums are
10:27 am
going down because of the health care reform law provisions that will protect employers and individuals who buy health insurance so their premium dollar is actually going to be spent on health care and not on excessive administrative costs and boneses for people in the insurance industry -- bonuses for people in the insurance industry. my dad worked as an insurance company lawyer for his whole lifetime. sent me to college because of that. the fact of the matter is she's rules are something that the insurance industry can coexist with, they can make a healthy profit, they can grow their business, but it will stabilize the market so people are not going to be forced to abandon coverage for their workers and for themselves because of this skyrocketing double-digit increases that we have been experiencing as a nation for far too long. we have relief in sight and this headline verifies that. let's preserve these protections and make sure our employers and individuals who have access to affordable
10:28 am
health care. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from texas, mr. floor rest, for five minutes. mr. -- mr. flores for five minutes. mr. flores: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. as many of you know this week is national police week, a time to give special recognition to law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others. i come before you today to honor one of my constituents who did just that. on april 23, 2011, johnson county deputy sheriff, clifton taylor, was first to the scene of a reported domestic disturbance in venus, texas. an anonymous caller had reported a man was threatening people with a weapon. upon arriving at the scene, deputy taylor, two other johnson county deputies, and officer from the venus police department were informed that an armed man had fled to another building on the property. deputy taylor and the three other officers approached the building, but the gunman
10:29 am
immediately opened fire. deputy taylor was shot three times by the gunman and later died. he was 1 years old. his death marks the first time since 1971 that an officer in the johnson county died in the line of duty and he is the 31st law enforcement officer to be killed by gunfire in the line of duty this year. deputy taylor had been with the department a little more than three years. he was deeply committed to serving and protecting his community. as a law enforcement officer and will always be remembered as one who placed honor and duty above his own personal interest and safety. i am deeply humbled by his service and dedication as a texas law enforcement officer. to keeping others safe. that he would lay down his life not only for his fellow officers, but for the community that he took an oath to protect. his sacrifice exemplifies him. greater love at-no man than this than a man who lay down
10:30 am
his life for his friends. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentlelady from florida, ms. wilson, for five minutes. ms. wilson: thank you, mr. speaker. today i rise for one reason, to talk about creating jobs, jobs, jobs. i have been a member of congress for 18 weeks and i still have not seen any plan that would create jobs. my constituents are hurting. they need help and i don't see any coming. they are losing their homes, they need jobs. i did not come to congress to drill, baby, drill. i did not come to congress to hand out corporate tax breaks, and i did not come to congress to end medicare as we know it. . i came here to create jobs. graduations are happening all across the nation and i can't
10:31 am
help but wonder what world will our graduates be entering, what will happen to the class of 2011. graduates are entering a world with job losses and stifled economic growth. under the republican legislative agenda, graduates are entering a world in which you are given a free pass to drill, baby, drill. and a free pass with limited environmental safeguards. under the republican controlled house, now graduates are entering into a world which their elected officials waste time and energy trying to repeal meelingful health care reform. health care reform is creating jobs for the class of 2011. thousands of students will be trained in the health care field. don't repeal their jobs in health care. leave obamacare alone. leave their jobs alone. a new graduate doesn't care
10:32 am
about personal -- they care about jobs. they care about our nation's future. they care about their future. instead of political games, the time has come to focus on jobs. the time has come to focus on our nation's future. as states all across the nation are facing severe fiscal problems, let's stop ways to destroy the social support network that has taken generations to build in this country. our seniors need medicare. it is the safety net and infrastructure all seniors need as they grow older. seniors are living longer. they get their prescription drugs. they can play with their grandchildren, and they are striving under medicare. leave medicare alone. i propose that from now until august each of us here in this chamber come to washington remembering the mandates from
10:33 am
our constituents. focus on jobs, jobs, jobs. i don't care what kind of tea you party with, i don't care who your presidential candidate is, i don't care how much press you garner, join me on focusing on jobs, jobs, jobs. let's rebuild our manufacturing base. let's keep our beaches clean and let's make it in america. make it in america, baby, and create jobs, jobs, jobs. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. murphy, for five minutes. mr. murphy: thank you, mr. speaker. a gallon of gas is over $4 heading to $5. the average spends over $2,200 per year on gas than they did a year ago. america's infrastructure is crumbling. a quarter of our bridges are
10:34 am
structurally deficient. the american society of civil engineers says all of our infrastructure will cost over $2 trillion for roads, bridges, water, sewer systems, airports, locks and dams. where will we find the money? we send $1 billion each day for oil, opec controls oil and wants it to be $200 a barrel. we are 60% can he pendent on foreign oil -- dependent on foreign oil. mr. speaker, we want clean air and water. we want to see our highways and bridges fixed. we don't want to pollute our environment. but where will the money come from? today, my colleagues and i on the energy working group are introducing the infrastructure jobs and the energy independence act, a bipartisan bill that for the first time brings forward a comprehensive plan to rebuild america, take back our energy future and create millions of jobs. we can become energy independent, we can create these jobs and do it without
10:35 am
raising taxes and not add to the national debt. how? well, america has enough offshore reserves to -- for enough 80 years and power the industry for the next 60 years. yet, the drilling moratorium means instead of using our own resources to create jobs, we are depending on people who wants to do us harm. our plan opens energy production off our coast where there's $8 trillion worth of economic output of oil and gas reserves. that translates to 2.5 in new federal revenue without raising taxes. that's $440 billion for infrastructure, our roads and bridges. $330 billion we will invest in renewable energy sources in buildings and transportation. $220 billion for clean coal technology. $88 billion for environmental restoration to clean up our
10:36 am
lakes, bays, rivers and streams. $66 billion in energy conservation. $110 billion for carbon-free technology and nuclear energy development. $66 billion to rebuild our water and sewer systems in small towns and big cities all across america. $ 4 billion for liheap and $60 billion for states that are producing. and also several hundred billion to pay down the national debt. mr. speaker, there is a plan for jobs and energy in america and this is the plan. the estimates will create millions of jobs each year, new jobs in building bridges, new jobs in developing our energy resources and we can do it now. i ask my colleagues to support the infrastructure, jobs and energy independence act. let's rebuild america, let's create jobs without raising taxes. let's stop borrowing from foreign nations. let's pay down our national debt. let's stop buying from opec and
10:37 am
let's use our rules and laws to make sure we do this in a way that is environmentally sound to make sure we can create jobs and have energy independence for this and the next generation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from minnesota, mr. walz. mr. walz: well, thank you, mr. speaker, and i want to thank my friend and colleague, the gentleman from pennsylvania, for his leadership, for his vision and for the understanding that the american people sent us here to do america's work, not one party's work, not ideological rigidness, but the idea to come together that this nation's boupty in terms of energy reserves and mineral resources, if used wisely and safely and reinvested in this nation's future can produce what we know needs to be done, strengthening our national security by making sure we control our energy destiny, making sure we can control our economy and making sure there's stability in where that energy comes from so that
10:38 am
american businesses aren't forced through the ups and downs at the whims of nations that hate us. we spend hundreds of billions of dollars sending it to the nations that hate us. hate us for free. and we can keep the jobs at home, we can invest. it's not an either-or proposition. taking the royalties that belong to this nation's people, allowing them to be gamed, to be expanded and to be done in a responsible manner is something everybody in this house wants. we can take those resources, reinvest them. i'm proud to come from southern minnesota, a place innovation is the air we breathe. the mayo clinic. we are the fourth leading producer of wind power. we are the leading producer of biofuels. we have the largest agricultural production and good, small employers manufacturing at home. that vision can be one that we control our destiny. there's a group of us together, democrats and republicans,
10:39 am
introducing something that can become law, that can do these things, that can reinvest in infrastructure, that can reinvest in conservation, that can make sure we control our destiny and the things that happen with dictators in the middle east, the importance goes down. we control those things. we can do it. it's going to be on the floor today. mr. speaker, i encourage all of my colleagues to join this piece of legislation. it's visionary. it's a compromise to get there. it adds nothing to the national debt but reduces it. it adds nothing in taxes and let's us control it. this bill, and i will add, the gentleman's work and my colleague from california and across this nation, was written by us and the american people. not lobbyists, not special interests, we sat in a room together and agreed to get along, to try to come to things that we can work on to make this country work. we owe it to the american people to get that done. let's roll up our sleeves, tap that innovation, do the right
10:40 am
things, get the work and make sh country energy independent, secure our future both from a security standpoint and an economic standpoint and create jobs right at home. believe it or not, there are solutions coming right out of this chamber. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. thompson, for five minutes. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. each year the white house recognizes outstanding teachers for their contributions to the teaching and learning of mathematics and science through the prestigious presidential award for excellence and mathematics and science. on april 28, president obama named 85 teachers as recipients of the 2010 award. one of which was from the fifth district of pennsylvania, miflin county, resident gail ronick, a teacher at the state college school district. and today i want to thank her dedication to her students and the commitment to the field of
10:41 am
mathematics. we live in a global economy that's ever changing and where america must adapt, innovate and find ways to remain competitive in the global marketplace. our competitiveness relies on the excellence of individuals in technical fields such as math and science. we rely on dedicated individuals like ms. ronick to help generate our next generation of technical minds, from coast to coast, to rural towns, teachers across the country are utilizing their -- helping people. thank you for your willingness to help generations to come. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. costa, for five minutes. mr. costa: thank you very much,
10:42 am
mr. speaker. i rise today to join with my colleagues in the introduction of legislation that we will be discussing later this afternoon, the infrastructure jobs and energy independence act of 2011. first of all, i'd like to thank my colleagues who spoke a moment ago, congressman tim murphy, and congressman tim walz, both who talked so importantly and the need to get our nation's energy house in order. since the long gas lines of 1973, policymakers on both sides of the aisle have attempted various efforts to pursue an energy policy that would reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy. and what has been lacking through all of those efforts since 1973 and that is the long-term plan that has bipartisan buy-in in which we can stick to it both in the near term and longer term to reach those goals. why hasn't it happened? because unfortunately too often
10:43 am
here in these chambers the lost art of the political compromise has gone away. but today with the introdux of the bipartisan infrastructure jobs and energy independence act of 2011, we have an opportunity to come together as a house, to come together as a nation. this is what the bipartisan energy working group has done over the last few months, to really put together a piece of legislation that reflects past efforts, commonsense ideas that when it has our path toward energy independence and national security through the following means. first it would increase the production of domestic oil and gas on the outer continental shelf. it would also increase sources of alternative energy, utilizing clean energy technologies whenever possible. in addition to that, it would dedicate a fixed percentage of the royalties that we receive from those oil and gas that is derived from federal lands,
10:44 am
both onsure and offshore. to the following purposes -- first of all, it would invest in our infrastructure, revitalization and renewals that would produce more jobs. it would invest in conservation programs. it would invest in environmental restoration projects. it would invest so importantly in renewable energy, research and development so that once again we can regain the lead around the world. it would invest in clean energy technology as well as increasing development of existing as well as traditional energy sources. like improving our transmission lines. and it would provide energy assistance for those most in need. sharing a portion of such royalties with producing states also would provide an incentive for those states. increasing the diversification and efficiency of america's transportation system among other things. as a nation, we must work together toward realistic energy policy.
10:45 am
at the end of the day we cannot afford to take any energy sources off the table. as many of you know, i am a firm believer in using all of the energy tools in our nation's energy toolbox. and that's what we need to do. conventional energy, together with renewable resources and a strategy for energy conservation will best serve our long-term energy needs, the best management practices our nation has to offer. as we create new comprehensive energy policy to reduce our dependencies on foreign sources of energy, reducing our dependence on those nations, it will make a big difference in america. i believe it's important for us to understand and agree that realistic transitional timelines as we embark upon this bipartisan energy policy, both in the near term and the long term. finally, i look forward to cooperating and collaborating again with the members of the bipartisan energy working group and members of congress to
10:46 am
address ways in which our energy resources can best be utilized to help us to secure that balanced energy future in the 21st century which all americans want us to do. and i believe this legislation that we will introduce this afternoon will put us along that path for a long-term secure energy future for america in the 21st century. i yield back the balance of my time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from must miss, mr. nunnely. without objection, the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. nunnely: thank you, mr. speaker. this morning in tupelo, mississippi, white sides restaurant is quiet. the lights are turned off. tables around which coffee an conversation had flowed freely, a place where i have enjoyed many great meals, is quiet this morning and on the front door
10:47 am
there is a sign that simply says, due to the economy and uncle sam, white sides is closed. donna whiteside said the driving force in closing her business was higher taxes, increased gas prices, and a sluggish economy. higher gas prices have become a cruel tax on all americans. donna saw it as her customers had shrinking disposable incomes because of higher gas prices. donna saw that the cost of her groceries were going up because of higher gas prices. what's not helping americans get relief at the pump is the stalling energy production by this administration. since taking office president obama has actively delayed, blocked, and stalled american energy production.
10:48 am
and the american people are sick of these tactics. that's why the house of representatives is consequence greating on three key initiatives that will reverse the obama administration's policies that are hurting families and small businesses. that are destroying jobs, and that are increasing our reliance on foreign oil. last week the house passed a restarting america offshore leasing now act that will require the secretary of interior to conduct all the natural gas lease sales off the gulf of mexico and offshore virginia that have been delayed or canceled by this administration. if we don't have an oil lease this year, it will be the first time in my lifetime that the american public has not had that. yesterday the house voted to put the gulf back to work act. since the drilling moratorium was officially lifted in october, the administration has chosen to drag their feet and stall the permitting process in the gulf. 12 rigs have already left the gulf for other regions, taking hundreds and even thousands of jobs with them.
10:49 am
and this steady decline in oil and natural gas production is costing the united states $4.7 million every day in lost revenues. this act speeds up the drilling permitting process and will put thousands of americans back to work. today we'll vote on the reversing president obama's offshore moratorium act. the administration's actions have placed the atlantic coast, pacific coast, andaires of alaska off limits. and this act will implement a smart drilling plan requiring the administration to move forward on american energy production in areas containing the most oil and natural gas resources. in north mississippi, we are working leading the way toward helping our nation become energy secure. all three of these bills ginet can create up to -- combined can cret up to 1.2 million jobs that will generate the revenue
10:50 am
our nation needs and it will put us on the path to achieving energy security of more american oil, more natural gas, clean coal, nuclear energy, and new technology such as wind and solar. donna whiteside and the thousands of american businesses and families around america, you need to know that the house of representatives is listening to you. the house republican american energy initiatives will free the american people from the obama administration's stalling games. if the senate will consider and pass this legislation, it will put an end to higher gas prices that are straining budgets and are compromising our energy security. mr. president, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from tennessee, mr. desjarlais, for five minutes. mr. desjarlais: thank you, mr. speaker.
10:51 am
today i come to the floor of the u.s. house of representatives to remember the four victims who tragically lost their lives as a result of the severe storms and tornadoes that struck middle tennessee on april 28, 2011. loretta winters bell lows was dearly loved by those in her community. she was described by friends as a generous and beloved friend who will be greatly missed. her sister attended brayton baptist church and was previously very involved in the fremont church. those that knew her said her faith and church family were a very important part of her life. her family says they will remember her as the best mother, grandmother, and wife in the world. debbie gibbs foxx was known as an avid animal lover, and her husband, was described by friends as someone with a lightened spirit who was always a joy to be around. to all the families and friends
10:52 am
of each of these victims, i'm sorry for your loss and offer my deepest sympathies. i would also like to take a moment to recognize the many emergency management service workers and volunteers that have worked tirelessly to help the victims overcome this terrible tragedy. while touring the damage left by these storms, i was extremely touched by the kindness and generosity of the many people who were there immediately to lend a hand to their neighbors in this great time of need. i know that the rebuilding process will be difficult and much was lost, but i'm confident that our community will get through this. my wife and i are keeping the families of the affected members in our thoughts and prayers as they begin the process of rebuilding their lives. may god bless you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. bar leta, for five minutes. -- mr. barletta, for five minutes. mr. barletta: thank you.
10:53 am
mr. speaker, once again it is a privilege to rise this morning and share with my colleagues in the house what my neighbors at home shared with me during the last constituent work period. during those two weeks in april, i met with business and community leaders in wilkes bear to -- barre to see how they are working to keep their downtown alive and vibrant. for example, they convert an old storefront right in the heart of the city into a business incubator which encourages local entrepreneurs and start-up firms. the willings barre chamber of and industry is also trying to restore the temple. a local landmark is a truly beautiful building. one of the last buildings of its kind in the united states. i toured an ongoing flood control project in the city of scranton. there the army corps of engineers is working to make sure the flood walls meet new standards to protect thousands of residents and dozens of
10:54 am
businesses. these constituents have been very patient waiting decades for their relief. now the corps of engineers and the federal emergency management agency are finalizing plans that will provide the protection that they deserve. about 200 people came out to my home to house public forums where they learned about the issues we are tarkling here in congress. i -- tackling here in congress. i was eager to talk to them about medicare reform and the steps we are taking to cut the outrageous overspending. most of my constituents understood what we are doing here. especially the senior citizens. they know we are trying to save the future for their children and grandchildren. many of my constituents also told me they don't want us to raise the debt ceiling without securing substantial budget cuts. but everywhere i went my neighbors asked me what we are doing here in congress to lower
10:55 am
the price of gas. over the two-week constituent work period, regular unleaded gas cost between $3.90 and $4 a gallon. people would come up to me at the gas station as i was filling up and tell me we need to work harder here to solve this problem. i am happy to report that this week and last i voted on two bills that will put thousands of americans back to work while increasing american energy production to help address rising gasoline prices. there are two events in the constituent work period that stand out for me. one was speaking to a class of students at st. jude's school in mountaintop. these bright, eager young men and women were curious about what we do here in congress. they asked insightful questions. they wanted to learn about washington. they offered some insights on how to make their futures
10:56 am
brighter. as i continue to examine education and work force programs, as a member of the house education and work force committee, i will remember these students and their advice. the second event was the arrival of the patriot flag in my hometown of hazelton, this giant symbol of the united states is traveling around the country to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the september 11 attacks. it was my privilege to stand on the steps of city hall and help first responders, law enforcement, boy scouts, and members of the military hold the patriot flag. less than 36 hours later, we learn that osama bin laden was dead. the death of the most visible face of terrorism is an historic event and one that unified our country. my neighbors in the 11th district of pennsylvania are proud to congratulate our brave men and women in our armed
10:57 am
forces and intelligence services, and we thank all of them and their families for their continuing sacrifices. we also commend president obama for taking bold action. the spontaneous celebration after bin laden's death in front of the white house at ground zero in new york city, and across the country, once again remind us that there is more that unites us than divides us. we are all at the core, proud americans. if we can learn anything from recent events, it is that america is strong and resilient. if we stay dedicated to our efforts, we can get our country back on track. fueled with the feedback i heard from my neighbors during two weeks at home in northeastern, pennsylvania, i am ready to keep fighting for them. thank you. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
10:58 am
pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair now declares the house in r >> we are expecting amendment votes and vote on final passage sometime this afternoon. later today members are also expected to start working on a bill re-authorizing intelligence programs for fiscal year 2011. live coverage when the house gavels back in here on c-span. president obama this morning made remarks at a prayer breakfast hosted by the hispanic faith-based community. this is just under 15 minutes. >> we don't know -- we all know president obama's story. it is a uniquely american story, both instructive and inspirational for all. i want to say to you this
10:59 am
morning that there is something unique about this president for the hispanic community. when i was a child i was told i could be president of the united states. but my father knew it was a lie. when my children went to elementary school, they were told that they could be president of the united states. and i knew that was a lie. but, my grandson will start elementary school next year and in elementary school he will be told he could be president of the united states. and you want to know something? it's true. ladies and gentlemen, it is my
11:00 am
pleasure to introduce to you our brother in christ, the president of the united states, barack obama. >> thank you. thank you so much. thank you. thank you so much, everyone.
11:01 am
thank you. everyone, please have a seat. thank you so much. well, good morning. >> good morning. this is just an extraordinary gathering. i have to say to research cortez and all the other oregonners of this prayer breakfast, i think it's getting bigger. i think this thing is growing. i just want to thank reverend cortez. i just got an extraordinary gift, a bilingual bible. it is beautiful. i was told this will help improve my spanish. [laughter] and i said, i'll pray on it. amen. to all the clergy, lay leaders, administration officials and distinguished guests who are here today, it is an extraordinary pleasure to join you. we've had a number of prayer breakfasts over the past several months and i say there's no more inspiring way to begin a day than by praying with fellow leaders and so i'm grateful to all of you to give me this opportunity. i also know that these past few
11:02 am
days have not only been a time of prayer and a time of reflection for all of you, they've also been a time to lend your voices to the causes that you're passionate about. and i want you to know that i'm listening. when you lend your voice to the cause of creating jobs and opening opportunity for all communities, i hear you. when you lend your voice to the cause of educating children, not just some, in the 21st century, i'm listening. and when you lend your voice to the cause of immigration reform, i'm listening. as probably of you heard, i flew down to el paso a couple days ago to give a speech on this topic. and what i said in that speech was that we define ourselves as a nation of immigrants, as a nation that's open to anyone who's willing to embrace
11:03 am
america's presets and america's ideas. that's why so many men and women have braved hardship and risk coming here, picking up and leaving behind the world that they knew, carrying nothing but the hope that here in america their children might live a better life. our heritage as a nation of immigrants is part of what has always made america strong. that is our creed. and we are also a nation of laws. a nation of immigrants and a nation of laws. what i lend out in el paso to say is we are enforcing our laws and we're securing our borders. in fact, we have more manpower down in the southwest border than anytime in our history. and so what we need to do going forward is to address some of the broader problems in our
11:04 am
immigration system, and that means changing minds and changes votes. one at a time. i know there are some folks who wish i can bypass congress. [laughter] i can't. what i can do is sign a law. what you can do is champion. what we can do together is make comprehensive immigration reform the law of the land. that's what we can do. [applause] comprehensive reform is not only an economic comparative or a security imperative. it's also a moral imperative. it's a moral imperative when
11:05 am
kids are being denied the chance to go to college or serve their military because of the actions of their parents. it's a moral imparity when people live in the shadows or made vulnerable to unscrupulous businesses with nowhere to turn if they are wrong. it's a moral imperative when simply enforcing the law may mean inflicting pain on families that are trying to do the right thing by their children. so, yes, immigration reform is a moral imperative. so we're speaking greater understanding were our faith. as is written in the book of dude rod my, love thee therefore the stranger for ye were strangers in the land of egypt. to me that verse is a call to show empathy to our brothers and our sisters, to try and recognize ourselves in one another and this is especially
11:06 am
important that we try to do that when it comes to immigration. because this is a subject that can be attempting to think that those coming to america today are somehow different from us. and we need to not have amnesia about how we populated this country. what this verse reminds us to do is look at that farmer and see our own grandfather disembarking at ellis island or angel island in san francisco bay and to look at that young mother newly arrived in this country and seeing our own grandmothers leaving italy or ireland or eastern europe in search of something better. that moral compass, that conviction of what is right is what led the national association of evangelicals to
11:07 am
shoot short films to help people grasp the challenges facing immigrants. it's what led the united states conference of catholic bishops to launch a justice for immigrants campaign. and to advocate across religious lines. and latino pastors at the prayer breakfast to rally around reform. ultimately, that's how change will come. a critical juncture throughout our history, it's often been men and women of faith who've helped to move this country forward. it was it is episcopal churches in boston that led the revolution. it wasth in the baptist church in montgomery and selma that
11:08 am
the civil rights movement was born. and send the catholics and evangelicals of our south, west and across our entire continent the new movement for immigration reform is taking shape today. so i'll keep doing my part. i'll keep pushing and working with congress, but the only way we can get this done is by building a widespread movement for reform. that's why i'm asking you to keep preaching and persuading your congregation and community. that's why i'm asking you to keep on activating, getting involved, mobilizing. that's why we all need to keep praying. i'm asking you to help us recognize ourselves in one another. and if you can do that i'm absolutely confident we will not only make sure america remains true to its heritage as a nation of immigrants and a nation of laws but make sure we
11:09 am
remain true to our founding ideas and that we build a beloved community here on this earth. god bless you and god bless the united states of america. thank you very much. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] ♪
11:10 am
11:11 am
11:12 am
>> the president it he national hispanic breakfast this
11:13 am
morning. the u.s. house is in recess right now. they'll return in about 45 minutes to wrap up work on a bill calling for expanded oil drilling in the outer continental shelf. later today they'll also work on a bill re-authorizing intelligence programs for fiscal year 2011. we'll have live coverage when the house gavels back hear, hear at noon eastern on c-span. going live now to the brookings institution for a discussion on the future of libya. remarks from the interim prime minister of libya this morning. this is live coverage on c-span. [applause] >> thank you very much. delighted to be here and honored. thank you for hosting me this morning. if you'll allow me, i'd like to talk since this is a serious time by giving broader context to what's happening in libya and in the middle east in
11:14 am
general. i will add at the beginning what's taking place is a natural product of the globalization that started in the mid 1980's. we have witnessed some things from the economic and financial scene. we are seeing the new cultural of paradigm, paying some things in the middle east. i will say what's happened in libya cannot be separated from what's happening in egypt, from happening in tunisia, what's taking place in yemen and what's taking place in syria. i'd also argue that this is a reversible trend. a new global cultural of paradigm based on global values, common values shaped by many young people of the world. but the middle east is no exception at all. calling for human dignity, living with dignity, democracy,
11:15 am
more involvement in the political process, more than any can you be in the middle east, libya. therefore, i would say that this trend will continue to make some sound -- just to establish from the very beginning that this is a strategic interest for the united states and the whole countries of the world to pay close attention to this. this is a new trend and this is an irreversible trend which means that collective framework of analyzing and looking at foreign policy should be revisited. that framework of foreign policy which was inherited after world war ii and was revised slightly after the collapse of the soviet union.
11:16 am
now we are facing a new phenomenon where the communication in the name of the game where it is spreading like hell, you know. it is known that it is duplicated now every seven years. by 025 it's going to be duplicated and substantial. this thing will reflect -- involves in our educational systems, criminal systems and mass communication that took place, that evolution is going to affect our lives more and more. in terms of behavior, in terms of organization of things that are needed. having said this, just to help me introduce the libyan picture -- because when the fibru is
11:17 am
the actual start of evolution. when it took place, those young kids took to the streets peacefully looking for democratic structure, democratic government structure, looking for a dignified life, looking for a better future because they've been living for 42 years, them and their parents, under the dictatorship, a tyrant regime, which deprived them of every opportunity to have a dignified life. there is no medical services. failure after failure of all developmental project that have been introduced during those 42 years. it's enough to say that unemployment, for instance, exceeds 50% in a country which the population does not exceed 300,000 people. with a vast amount of wealth because of the oil revenues. so there is a sense of
11:18 am
deprivation, a since of despair. if we couple that with this international compunecation evolution taking place, which is reflected in the network, internet, twitter. so people don't have a need to get into a party or to some sort of association that communications is taking place naturally. they don't need the space and they don't need time. they can't communicate any time and they don't have any space to meet. therefore, there was some sort of bigger picture that those people who took to the streets in tunisia and egypt and libya that all constitutes what one big party, that's the party of the future, you know, they are all looking for the same future . calling for the same type of slogans because they are inspired by the same mind, the new system of values.
11:19 am
unfortunately, the regime on the other side was looking at the picture differently. same other story while using repressive measures, conflict of fear is there. fear would do the trick. to the surprise of the regime and to the ignorance of the regime also this new generation has no fear whatsoever because the socialization process which brought about the new value system is a completely different one from the socialization process being exposed to all generations where fear and value is the center -- we all suffer from. therefore, the regime tried to benefit from the experience of tunisia and egypt, not to give any concessions, not to negotiate, fire live ammunition
11:20 am
from the very beginning. that was the biggest mistake because the moment they started firing, live ammunition, that -- the first group of death that took place was the ref united nations. it ignited more people coming to the streets. and then different society marching through the streets and protest against the manslaughter that started taking place. i would argue and a quick note that the regime realize that from the first week that they do not have enough personnel to put down that uprising and, therefore, it resulted into something which i call -- and it's brilliant, you know, tried to go for more killing because more killing will call for the international community to intervene. and as the international community intervenes, then
11:21 am
gaddafi will turn libyans against gaddafi and it will be libyans against foreign powers. it called for the ground troops on the ground trying to call for liberation. realizing this fact, we tried from the very beginning to create some sort of structure just to assure the outside world that what gaddafi is saying about civil war, about the value, about the legal immigration of congo, africa, about the security of europe, all those fears about al qaeda, all those fears that he's trying to project to the outside world to protect him from this popular evolution
11:22 am
will urge and will compel to intervene immediately and call for the establishment of the d.m.c. the purpose of which is to talk to the outside world with one voice. that libyans want. it was in the past one country. it's now one country and will remain so in the future. one country, one people, one history and one future with one capital which is tripoli. scarring the libyan people on the west side of the country that those people, the libyans coming from the east, are going to occupy you and do this and do that, you know? therefore, to clarify one of the misunderstandings circulating in different sets of the media, the t.n.c. is not a political organ. it's an administrative organ managing this situation for the libyan people until the fall of the regime because the
11:23 am
political cushion of who should rule libya and how he or she should rule it, this is for the libyan people to decide through a political, democratic process based on constitutional ground, based on active civil society, based on equal rights and natural human rights for everybody. some questions started to circulate, are we safe with the t.n.c., are we safe with this group? some disagreements with this body. i'd like to assure everybody that t.n.c. represents the whole libyan territory. just a few days ago a large meeting, which was cob veend with 27 representatives -- convened with 27 representatives just traveled this morning to join the t.n.c. to prove that this is
11:24 am
[unintelligible] the second thing, we started expanding the existing body of the t.n.c. we have the executive body of that t.n.c. trying to deliver every service and every commodity that our people might need during this critical time of our history. unfortunately, we are facing a very acute, acute financial problem because of the frozen assets that we have in different european countries and in the united states. so i would like to see this opportunity and to call on the united states administration to help us as they helped us, president obama, particularly, and in particular is calling for the end of the legitimacy of the regime and should leave. this was very inspiring to many
11:25 am
libyan people that they are not alone in their fight against dictatorship. i want to thank him for that call. and i want to thank all those who stood by us in this fight against tyranny. now, if we move a little bit further to the situation, i'd like to clarify something. this evolution was started as a peaceful revolution. it's not a struggle against a tyranny or against another army. our struggle was forced upon us because of this genocide which was taking place, this killing machine was slaughtering people day and night by the thousands. the expectation and the estimate was that over 11,000 people died during those weeks of manslaughtering. too many people are fleeing the country, you know, going to
11:26 am
tunisia and going to the egyptian borders. the united nations just yesterday dfer before yesterday released its final -- last report saying that over 750,000 libyan people fled that country. that's never happened in our history before. we, despite all the painful human tragedy, was very opportunistic of the future. those machine guns against this mighty to liberate the city, those in the western mountain, all the mountain towns are liberated now. and they are going to march toward tripoli. active uprisings started to appear in the capital city of tripoli itself during the last week and the week before. so we're very much optimistic that people are starting to
11:27 am
gain confidence, taking things in their hand. literally we're improving and getting grounds. this is against all allegations rumors it's a stalemate. that's not the case here. it is much better organized today because it was given us time to mature. get a common vision for the future, common vision for a road map even after the regime of what should be done and concrete steps. this is due to the fact that we have enough time despite this agony to talk to each other, to have better time to organize ourselves to regroup and to carry our responsibilities properly. i think a lot is at stake for the united states and the free world, you know, who came to that savior of libya because
11:28 am
libya -- not only for our revolutions, such as egypt, tunisia, syria, yemen, but it is also for africa. i'm saying africa in particular because africa will be the most expanded continent in the next 35 years. africans will be marching toward europe. more than 359 million africans will be jobless by the year 2050. if we manage to create a real democratic model, real successful development and model to libya, that will be a way to peace and a real development that could be followed and imitated by too many african countries. libya could be the gate of development bridging africa with europe which will be -- europe by 2050 will be less than 72 million people. so i think strategically the
11:29 am
development for peace and stability will be libya serving as a model for other arab countries who are witnessing revolutions now. right now and serve different problems in the african continent. thank you very much for you listening and i'll take your questions. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, mr. prime minister, for that. that was a great way to start us off and i think you laid a very nice foundation. there are a few questions i'd like to ask you that i think
11:30 am
again are foremost in americans' minds before we open it up to the audience. and i think the first one is effectively where you ended your remarks. you talked about the military situation. you talked about the fact that most americans have the perception that the military situation in libya, notwithstanding today is very important and very hopeful events that there is a general sense that the military situation is bogged down into a stalemate. and i think it will be very helpful for americans to understand how you and how the transitional national council are thinking about a strategy for bringing this war to a successful conclusion. >> ok. first of all, i disagree that there is a stalemate on the ground. first of all, if we look at it from -- let me use the terminology -- we have to get out of the box, you know. we've been asked this question several times that you are not
11:31 am
able as a freedom fighter to sit on this conflict literally. and i always reply by saying the regime is not able to sit militaryaryly. not the freedom fighters. because the regime, this mighty thing, tanks, airplanes, again, some civilians have machine guns. not the regime for 12 continuous weeks they could not sit on this literally. my point is this, the freedom fighters are marching toward tripoli. so as i said on different occasions, i think when there is a conflict between the right of power and the power of right, the power of right always prevails, you know, because those people have
11:32 am
little determination and they have nothing to lose, you know, and they elected to exercise their right to die. he had want to die to live. and there is nothing, there is no defense. so optimistic they are -- people are marching, gaining more confidence. they are getting experience. they are gaining more ground, more organization. i think in the few coming weeks we'll witness more grounds, you know, by the freedom fighters. regarding the strategy, i would say that gaddafi has two tools right now. the power to kill and the power to bribe. i think by revising his policy, for any political solution to be reasonably have a chance of
11:33 am
being heard, a base for negotiation, you know, without having that in the near future i would say any political solution on the table will not be looked at by the regime. talking about cease-fire. without being part of a continuous political -- leading to the departure of gaddafi and his regime actually is a partition of the country which we refuse, reject. the main purpose of establishing the t.n.c. was to assist on the libyan unit in terms of people, geography, libya is -- i say there are four times pressure that are better protection of civilians, better application 1973 resolution, the strikes are hitting command and control. this is number one. number two, freedom fighters
11:34 am
are gaining more grounds, better confidence in themselves. three, the i.c.c. advisement and arrest warrant will be out. this is a real political pressure. it indicates the uprising in tripoli, etc. all those four elements i would say is pushing toward more squeezing and straining of the regime. i would say something will take place -- the collapse of the regime will happen in the next few weeks, hopefully. >> pick up on the point you mentioned in those remarks where you said -- when you talk about cease-fire, political solution. is there political solution to the current -- to the fighting itself? could you imagine a cease-fire that you would trust given gaddafi's history and what
11:35 am
would that look like? take us through what a successful resolution of this had conflict, rather than a military resolution, a conquest of tripoli, by the freedom fighters? what would a political solution look like? what would you need to make that work? >> well, there are things on the table right now that is -- the african union, the initiative, which i would say is not a comprehensive political initiative because actually its main emphasis is the immediate cease-fire without talking about what's next in the cease-fire. as i say, you know, for such initiative to be a viable base for negotiation it should include some elements, securing that initiative meets the needs
11:36 am
of the libyan people. the 1973 resolution from the security council. there is also a initiative that was -- i think it's more comprehensive. i would say it could serve as a viable frame for negotiation. too many things can be clarified during the negotiation process. that initiative clearly indicates the departure of gaddafi and his regime. the strategical objective of this revolution that -- having our democratic rule in the country. i would say the third initiative is more comprehensive because it started listing about 10 points and it contains some poibts which are, i think, taking care of both phases. the phase of the cease-fire and
11:37 am
what implications from that an then the phase of establishing political -- leading to the departure of gaddafi and his family. we on the council lately are developing our own political initiative which is capitalizing all -- kept all the negotiations on the table. trying to take 1973 resolution as the overall frame based on which we can develop something compatible with that resolution and at the same time compatible with the aspirations of our people. >> we heard the news just before we came out that you're going to be meeting with president obama, and while i wish that our session was going to follow that meeting so that i could ask you what you did say to him, i'm going to have to content myself by asking you instead, what will you say to the president? in particular, what are you going to tell him the role the
11:38 am
united states can play? what would you like to see the united states doing? >> first of all, i would really thank him for the role the united states has played so far. i would strongly urge him to play a more active role because there is a lot at stake strategically for the united states if that role is not played properly, you know. there is a lot to be lost, you know. >> ok. with that cryptic answer i guess i have to content myself. let me shift more to the political side. i think one of the great questions that a lot of americans have for you is, how do you plan -- let's say we can bring war to a successful close, the regime is gone and now libyan people are fully in control of their country. how are you thinking about -- what's the strategy for building a new libyan political
11:39 am
system, a new libyan economy, a new libya? that is, of course, we've seen with our own painful experiences in iraq and afghanistan the reconstruction is the hardest part of any fight. and if you don't get started with a strategy and a plan for doing that right from the git-go, coming up with one once you've won the victory is often too late. >> i think you are absolutely right. that's why in the council, you know, now for probably a few weeks, have established probably three teams, multidisciplinary teams. one team is dealing with the reconstruction of libya after the fall of the regime, after what happened in kuwait, for instance. and the social reconciliation process. the south african model. and the third team has capacity building because if we want to initiate and establish a government structure after the fall of the regime, then having
11:40 am
the right institution and the right qualified human resources , we need to start delivering the necessary its, services needed by the libyan people. therefore, i would say that we came up with what we call a road map. it's a transitional road map after the fall of the regime immediately the t.n.c. should call for the conving of what we call -- convening of what we call the national congress. national congress is composed of members of all regions of libya, all cities and towns taking into consideration the demographic way -- the function of that national congress is to select the committee which should draft the constitution. that constitution should be laid out with a refer dumb, supervised by representatives
11:41 am
from the united nations. having that constitution approved, then the election for the first libyan parliament after the revolution will be in place. two months after we finish the parliamentary elections, the presidential elections should be held. during this period there should be an interim government. that interim government is to make sure members of t.n.c. some element, the democratic members from the old regime, especially financial, economic, because these are vital functions that we need. we know who's who and where are the background of everything, the history of everything. there will be two elements from security, two or three elements for military officers, one judge were the supreme court
11:42 am
and a group from the civil society and social leaders, you know. the name of the game here is to obtain, you know, one conclusion. we have to include everybody to establish legitimacy from the interim government. two is important. to prevent any chance for chaos and disorder to take place, such as what happened in iraq. hopefully this theoretical map, you know, can be alive after the fall of the regime. >> thank you, mr. prime minister. i have to say listening to you sketch it out you're clearly ahead of where the united states was as we were engaging in our wars in iraq and afghanistan. so by that light alone you've already bested us. why don't we open things up to the audience and take some questions there. why don't we start right here? >> mr. prime minister, on the
11:43 am
11th of march, two met with the treasury department and the department of state to talk about the release of the fund and to talk about recognition. here we are two months later and there has been no release of fund and no recognition. how do you -- how long will the regime last absent these two things? >> thank you for raising this question. this is because what we're facing in the t.n.c. right now. yesterday and today, we'll be meeting with members of the congress trying to urge them to help us in this regard, you know. we're facing the real crisis, you know, running almost out of money. we have different demands and expectations from our people,
11:44 am
either on the eastern part of the country or the cities which are surrounded by combadaffy. those libyan people on the tunisia border, i think that number exceeded 40,000 people, you know. so we have a real human tragedy right now. it's happened because of those military activity. the real tragedy is underneath. there is human tragedy. we tried several proposals here, you know. 1973 resolution inflicted restrictions on those assets being frozen for the libyan government. we are not recognized by the united states. so they cannot release the money because we are not a replacement officially yet for the old regime.
11:45 am
ironically enough, the united states has claimed that the regime has lost its legitimacy. it's not recognized by the old regime because of this official statement. the t.n.c. was trying to say we need political recognition by thus recognizing this council as the sole legitimate representative of the interim government of the libyan people. not talking about a new state, the president and the recognized commission. even this is not successful. this political recognition. [uncombledgible] they worked it out. and there are some other countries which recognize the conflict in the near few days, by the way. so we have a bigger problem here. we tried another proposal, and
11:46 am
i think it's something when senator kerry yesterday declared that he's trying to develop legislation to release some of that money. it's around $180 million or something. though, as you all though, our prosen assets exceeds $54 billion. our estimates of our immediate means during the next six months exceeds $3 billion libyan dinar which equals three there are 3 billion. so while trying to convince them, ok, keep those assets and use that as collateral so we can try to meet the demands of our people. even this so far is not working. but hopefully the appropriations committee is trying to develop another approach to solve this problem. i think that time is the crux
11:47 am
of the matter because having sold this matter in a matter of four, five weeks might be too late, you know. that's why our prime minister said yesterday we need this money yesterday, not today, because there's the sense of urgency, because of the human tragedy right now. >> first of all, welcome, mr. mahmoud, to our capital here and congratulations. my question is that, if we have all the nato countries helping gaddafi almost daily, what is the strategy to get those countries to recognize the national council?
11:48 am
>> my understanding, or this is what i gathered in meeting different political leaders and officials from different countries, there's an understanding, a recognition as a legal -- a requirement. trying to convince them of what i call the political combination it seems it's not convincing. either they recognize you as a state. you know better than me for a state to have requirements of government, people, you know. for the eastern part we have people and -- if we declare a government then we are a state. if we do that then we're out of this movement. gaddafi will say, this is what i've been telling you, people in the east, they want to
11:49 am
separate themselves, they want to partition the country. that's why we call this executive response of government because of the vast political concern. it put us in a squeeze from the outside world that we need the three elements. this is a tricky situation, you know. damn if you do, damn if you don't, you know. if we need recognition we have to go for a government. if we impfor a government then we have -- go for a government then we have separatists. trying to use the t.n.c. as a -- a representative of the voice of the libyan people, you know. if you are cob vinced of the legitimacy of this revolution, of that -- convinced of the legitimacy of this revolution, of the [unintelligible] they recognize the council. some would do in the near
11:50 am
future. others, they still see this is a legal restriction they cannot overcome, you know. >> in the middle there. the lady. >> i think my question is about the road map. >> can you speak a little bit more in the microphone? >> yeah. coyou hear me now -- do you hear me now? i understand the road map. election for the free areas now. i think my question is why, and does cities consider -- >> consider it to be what? >> the road map, according to my understanding, asking for election in the free area now. >> no. no, that's not true. we do not call for elections. we call for elections only after the fall of the regime, after the constitution is
11:51 am
drafted and it's aproved by the libyan people. -- approved by the libyan people, then we call for the first elections. this is after libya is liberated. all cities and towns can take part of that electoral process. >> thank you. >> three rows back there is a gentleman who has been rather eager. >> thank you very much. my question, doctor, i'm happy as far as nato doing its mission, succeeding its mission as far as bringing the gaddafi regime down. how much support do you have from the people of libya today? >> well, a fifth of all regard nato operations of libya, we are talking about the protection of the libyan civilians, you know. and the resolution, even the
11:52 am
states say, whatever measures needed should be taken to accomplish that objective, you know, the protection of the libyan liberty. i think nato is more effective -- they are more responsive, more quick. and i think talking to nato secretary general and the assistant secretary general in the early days when there were some complaints about responsiveness or a quick responsive to the atrocities and the genocide taking place against the libyan people, we discovered that the decisionmaking across has a lot to do with the quickness of the response of nato members, you know. i gather there's about 28 members so it's a committee making a decision and a
11:53 am
committee of 28 members is different than making a decision of coalition which is led by one country, you know. so the time spent is completely different. i would say nato is more effective in carrying out the responsibilities of 1973 resolution. regarding the popularity, i would rather talk about the popularity of t.n.c., not myself. t.n.c. represents for the time being the national consensus of the libyan people. as i said, this is an administrative body which was elected through consultation process. but when the question, the political question of who should rule libya, that's a political question that be through the electoral process. >> keep moving back a little bit. >> yes. you mentioned that your forces
11:54 am
are marching toward tripoli. do you have any timeline do you see you take over that city? and the other question is, are you seeking some armor assistance from the united states of america? approximate you can explain to us what kind of arab countries are providing for you in terms of armor assistance? >> well, when i said the forces are marching to the west, we don't have a timeline or don't have a timetable because actually those freedom fighters are defending themselves, you know. they are not an army to plan to do something. they are trying to protect themselves, you know. when i say they are marching west, trying to join hands with
11:55 am
their brothers, then an alliance to protect themselves against this tyrant regime. so it's a process of self-defense. i always try to remind myself and others that this is a peaceful revolution. it's not an army strategy. i always remind distinguished members of the media, please don't forget that this whole uprising started as a peaceful, legitimate process where the libyan people were trying to look for a better future. they are forced, you know, to resort to whatever they can get to defend themselves, you now. so i'd rather not get into talking about military plans because it's not a military struggle. the nature of this is this is a peaceful revolution, you know.
11:56 am
you just notice when gaddafi stopped bombarding, for instance, last week, the whole thing stopped. this is an army struggle, we wouldn't have a cease-fire. it was a natural instant cease-fire taking place without any initiative, without any negotiation. simply because gaddafi bombarding and people defending themselves. they are returning fire. they are not initiating it, you know. what was the other question, please? >> what kind of help are you receiving from the united states of america? >> we appreciate assistance of our arab brothers, you know, starting with the arab league who called for the protection of the libyan civilians in the first place and who called for that no-fly zone, you know.
11:57 am
we are seeking every type of assistance from our arab brothers, you know. qatar played a very good role in helping us. kuwait pledged some financial assistance and some economic assistance in sharing their experience after the aftermath of the kuwaiti invasion. another is pledging all types of support. morocco the same thing. so i cannot distinguished one arab country and the other. all of them are recognizing the plites and the agony and human tragedy that the libyan people are going through. so i'd like to see this opportunity -- thank them for this brotherly stance. >> one more quick question and we'll take a break. here in the front. i'll ask everyone to please remain seated after the event because the security needs to
11:58 am
help the prime minister out. >> thank you. prime minister, gary mitchell and i write "the mitchell report." i ask you to put a little more flesh on the notion of the vision that you've talked about on -- at several points in your remarks. i'm interested to know whether this group that met in doha and is assembling into these groups that are focusing on specific tactical and executional challenges for the country whether you have over and above that enormously important work that you've started with picture in your head collectively about what libya in the year 2025, what does it look like? what's happening in libya? importantly, because you said at the outset that this was a bunch of -- i think you said
11:59 am
young people who were really leading this revolution, are they part of this process and are they part of this vision? >> ok. this is a strategic question. during 2007 and 2008, a group of libyan professors from universities took part of an exercise to develop what they call vision 2025 for libya. it was based on the following factors. first, leading of the global scene today where things are moving globally, you know, where we see democracy, capital and the resources, those are
12:00 pm
the pactors that would shape the 21st century. the interaction between those three factors, you mow. where libya can be positioned within the context and global context in terms of competitiveness, you though, we have depleted commodity. we depend on it. we have only oil and the oil reserves, as you know, whatever their duration will be in 2025, so it's a commodity that's going to deplete one day or the other. so we have to think of an alternative economy. but it's not haphazard selection. it has to be based on this positioning of libya which is an entity of an economy which will help us compete regionally and sper nationally. so we can -- internationally.
12:01 pm
so we can feed our people, find housing for them, provide them with education, health, blah, blah, blah. and we imagine during that exercise to pin down that libya can go with service economy based on knowledge, you know. where human development would be that crux of the matter. education. new paradigm of education is emerging. we moved to management of knowledge. therefore, the whole curricular, administration should be revised. that exercise came out -- >> we'll leave this discussion at this point as the u.s. house is about to gavel in. this afternoon they're expected to finish work on a bill expanding oil drilling in the ok ok's and setting a national -- outer continental shelf and setting a national goal for oil production. passage will happen later this afternoon.
12:02 pm
and a bill re-authorizing intelligence programs for fiscal year 2011. now live coverage of the u.s. house. -- the chaplain: let us pray. gracious and loving god, we are grateful for the gifts and blessings you have shown our nation. be with those who are suffering the devastation of the great storms that we have experienced. and help us as a nation to respond. bless the women and men gathered here who are called to protect and serve the people of the united states. watch over and bless all those who serve our nation abroad and guide the members of this congress, that their work today will reflect your love and compassion and guide our nation to be a leader in justice and peace. we pray this in the name of the one who created us in love, amen. the speaker: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces to the house his approval
12:03 pm
thereof. the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led today by the gentleman from new jersey, mr. sir he is. mr. sires: 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: the chair will entertain up to 15 one-minute requests on each side. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection -- the speaker: without objection. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i'm honored to welcome the gentleman from california and appreciate that he was able to be here today to open up our floor session. it is great to have a fellow basic bakersfield high driller here on the floor with me.
12:04 pm
since he returned to bakersfield in 1999 to be the pastor of his hometown parish, monday sin yor craig set up a profound impact in the lives of the thousands in our community. the fact that the number of families had in his parish has increased by over 5,000 and the enrollment in the school has doubled is a testament to his leadership in our community. he's more than just a leader, he's an author of the children's book, he's a faith leader to many of us throughout the community and on a personal note he was a faith leader to my father as he battled his fight with cancer. craig is a true friend to the bakersfield community and i appreciate that he was able to share his words of wisdom on the house floor and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will entertain up to 15 further requests for one-minute speeches on each side of the aisle. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? mr. poe: i ask permission to
12:05 pm
address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. poe: mr. speaker, the administration is fighting wildfires. in december the united states sent two firefighting planes to battle fires in israel. in april, two c-130 cargo planes and 30 personnel were sent to battle wildfires in mexico. the fires in mexico burned about 380 square miles near the texas border. the united states came to the rescue. but not everyone gets help from the united states. a wildfire epidemic has also occurred in texas with over 9,000 acres. two million acres have been burned. that's the size of rhode island and delaware combined. and 10 times the size of the fires in mexico. and the state is still on fire. texas governor perry requested federal help, but the administration denied the governor's request. the administration it seems is more concerned about taking care of foreign nations while ignoring americans in texas. why does the administration despies despies texas?
12:06 pm
and that's just the way it is? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. 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: the gentleman is recognized. mr. sires: mr. speaker, i rise today to condemn the brutal beat and death of juan manuel so theo. so theo, while having a peaceful protest against the castro regime, the regime beat him so badly. when he was taken to the hospital he died. he helped support hunger strikes. while so theo's death is the latest brave illustration of the violent methods the cuban regime used to oppress freedom in cuba. oppression has increased. as many praised the false promises of the communist party, few had a crack down on
12:07 pm
the journalists that took place prior to the congress. cuban authorities reportedly arrested and detained opposition members to ensure all voices critical to the regime will be silent and that no process will be -- the united states and the international community must join together in condemning the wrongful debt of juan lopez. we must show cuban leaders that their brutality is not going to go unnoticed. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? the gentlelady from california rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, if the majority's plan for medicare ever becomes law, seniors will lose their guaranteed benefits and get a private insurance voucher. seniors are calling. they are nervous. and justified in asking all sorts of questions about the plan such as -- will the
12:08 pm
voucher cover me if i get sick? will the voucher result in rationed care? and will i need to pay more out of pocket? the congressional budget office said seniors will pay more, much more out-of-pocket costs to seniors will double in the year 2020 and rise to 68% by 2030. mrs. davis: this massive cost shifting saves the federal government a lot of money, and where does all the money taken from seniors and medicare go? well, it doesn't pay off the debt. it doesn't create jobs or help folks pay for gas or groceries. but it does go to finance large, new tax cuts for the most well-off. this is a wrong approach to caring for our seniors. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection.
12:09 pm
mr. baca: mr. speaker, right now californians in my home district face an almost 14% unemployment rate and are dealing with the fourth highest rate of foreclosure in the nation. what my constituents need above else is for both of us, republicans and democrats, to come together on creating new jobs. yet, in the last 18 weeks the republicans have controlled the house. they have yet to bring one single bill forward on creating jobs. instead, they have put forward a partisan agenda that's more about scoring political points than helping the american families. we should be putting the american family back to work. we should not be voting to dismantle safety net for seniors and the vulnerable americans. the republicans attacked medicare and medicaid, go against our core values and threaten the health care of 44 million low-income americans. it's time to stop politick
12:10 pm
games. let's work together. i say, let's work together and focus on strengthening our economy an creating jobs. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois wish to be recognized? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, i rise to congratulate the newark community boy's basketball team on their 2011 illinois class i-a championship title. this is a great accomplishment and their coaches and team and newark community should be congratulated. it is a town of less than 1,000 people. it's a place i'm honored to represent. newark high school, with an enrollment of less than 200, has never won the championship. the head coach has been with the program for five years and in that time has led them to three consecutive sectional championships as well as this year's state title. it's been an exciting time for
12:11 pm
this close nit community. i want to thank those who made it possible, the school's administrations and the entire newark community. i appreciate the hard work and dedication to this program and the students. congratulations on a job well done. i yield back. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from american samoa wish to be recognized. mr. faleomavaega: to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, just last week the u.s. military carried out a covert operation that ended in the killing of the most wanted terrorist on the planet, osama bin laden. the news of osama bin laden's death at the hands of our heroic navy seals set forth a wave of tremendous relief by the american people. however, mr. speaker, we also learned that the u.s. military and the c.i.a. used the code name geronimo for the operation to seize and kill osama bin
12:12 pm
laden. the first reports of the details of the raid stated that osama bin laden has been identified as geronimo, enemy killed in action. mr. speaker, i would strongly suggest to all my colleagues in the house, you should go and see the movie "geronimo" and see for yourself that the apache warrior, geronimo, was a terrorist and murderer of thousands of innocent men, women and children like osama bin laden. on the contrary, geronimo was one of the greatest american indian warriors who fought against some of the most vicious, cruelest and inhumane treatment and policies instituted by our federal government against this poor nation. the president and the c.i.a. director pennetta owes him an an poll gee. i yield back. -- owes him an apology. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman wish to be recognized? >> without objection, the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to inform my
12:13 pm
colleagues of yet another ruthless murder by the castro dictatorship in cuba. last sunday juan alfredo so theo garcia, a dissident leader on the island, was viciously beaten to death by castro's state security thug simply for participating in a peaceful protest. soto belonged to the united anti-totalitarian forum, a peaceful dissident organization. witnesses have attested that two of castro's hinchman cuffed his hands behind his back and then beat him mercifully and then beat him with batons until he was dead. mr. rivera: he served for 12 years in castro's political prison for his pro-democracy advocacy. last year, soto stated, quote, i hold cuban state security, the government and the repressive policing responsible
12:14 pm
for whatever happens to me in the future, end quote. this past weekend, he gave the ultimate sacrifice for cuba's freedom and became yet another victim in the castro brother's -- castro brothers 50-year reign. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from kentucky rise? mr. yarmuth: to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. yarmuth: this past tuesday 41 house republicans sent a letter to president obama pleading with him to stop the criticism of the g.o.p.'s plan to turn medicare into a private voucher system. a system that would cost future seniors thousands of dollars each year. let bygones be bygones, these republicans said. let's wipe the slate clean. i can't help but laugh at the irony. republican candidates in congress claimed the affordable care act cut $500 billion from medicare. wrongly, i might add. fast forward one year later and those same republicans now in congress, just a few weeks ago, voted for a budget that
12:15 pm
actually embraces the very same $500 billion in savings we found in medicare in the affordable care act. there's a difference, though. in the health care law, they took that $500 billion and invest it had in medicare to increase the life of the program for more than a decade. what do the republicans do? they help pay for more tax cuts for the wealthiest americans and giant oil companies. and medicare, they dismantle it, forcing future seniors into a new system that will require them to pay upwards of $180,000 more for their care. the american -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute, revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, one year ago lax regulation and reckless pursuit of higher oil company profits resulted in 11 deaths, 200 million gallons of oil dumped
12:16 pm
into our gulf waters, tens of thousands of marine and aquatic life lost and a damaged fishing and tourism industry. mr. moran: a panel of experts showed us how we can learn from past mistakes and implement regulations to ensure that this disaster doesn't happen again. yet over the last two weeks the republican majority has passed legislation to create an even more lax regulatory environment than existed before the b.p. oil spill disaster. opening our shores to drilling and returning to pre-b.p. oil spill regulations won't reduce our dependence on foreign oil and it won't reduce the price of gas at the pump. the united states holds less than 2% of the world's oil reserves and while we consume more than 22%, even if all restricted areas in the u.s. could somehow be brought into production at this moment, the oil they would yield under the best scenario is about a million barrels of oil a day, 5% of our daily consumption.
12:17 pm
those bills shouldn't get any further than the -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. moran: the american people should bet wither understand what's happening to the american consumer at the pump. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from michigan seek recognition? >> address the house for one minute, revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized. mr. clarke: thank you, thank you, mr. speaker. it's very clear in these economic times that americans need jobs and more accurately we with need the investment that will create jobs. we've got the money to do it. in light of the fact that bin laden's no longer a threat to americans, we don't need to spend over $100 billion a year in afghanistan. so again, let's take a share of the money that's gone to rebuild afghanistan, have it sent back to the u.s. taxpayers right here in the united states to create jobs right here in the u.s. let's help rebuild american cities like the city of detroit. when you do that you rebuild
12:18 pm
u.s.'s manufacturing capacity, that will create jobs for thousands, even millions of americans right here at home. the best way to make it in america, redirect our tax dollars away from afghanistan to create jobs right here for american people. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida rise? the gentleman is recognized. mr. bilirakis: mr. speaker, a few days ago i visited a local gas station and spoke with dozens of customers about the impact of rising gas prices on already financially strapped families. overwhelmingly my constituents told me that we must look at a broad range of energy solutions to reduce our dependency on foreign oil and reduce the price we pay at the pump. we should increase domestic energy production, promote
12:19 pm
energy efficiency and encourage private investment in renewable energy technologies as part of a comprehensive plan to address our energy needs. not only will this all inclusive approach ease the burden of high gas prices, but it will help create jobs that this country needs. thank you, mr. speaker. i appreciate it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? mr. sessions: i call up house resolution 264 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 36, house resolution 264, resolved that at any time after the adoption of this resolution the speaker may, pursuant to clause 2-b of rule 18, declare the house resolved into the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for consideration of the bill, h.r.
12:20 pm
754, to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2011, for intelligence and intelligence-related activities of the united states government, the community management account and the central intelligence agency retirement and disability system and for other purposes. the first reading of the bill shall be dispensed with. all points of order against consideration of the bill are waived. general debate shall be confined to the bill and shall not exceed one hour equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the permanent select committee on intelligence. after general debate, the bill shall be considered for amendment under the five-minute rule. it shall be in order to consider as an original bill for the purpose of amendment under the five-minute rule the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the permanent select committee on intelligence now printed in the bill. the committee amendment in the nature of a substitute shall be considered as read, all points of order against the committee
12:21 pm
amendment in the nature of a substitute are waived. no amendment to the committee amendment in the nature of a substitute shall be in order except those printed in the report of the committee on rules accompanying this resolution. each such amendment may be offered only in the order printed in the report, may be offered only by a member designated in the report, shall be considered as read, shall be debatable for the time specified in the report, equally divided and controlled by the proponent and an opponent, shall not be subject to amendment and shall not be subject to a demand for division of the question in the house or in the committee of the whole. all points of order against such amendments are waived. at the conclusion of consideration of the bill for amendment, the committee shall rise and report the bill to the house with such amendments as may have been adopted. any member may demand a separate vote in the house on any amendment adopted in the committee of the whole to the bill or to the committee amendment in the nature of a
12:22 pm
substitute. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the bill. and amendments thereto to final passage without intervening motion except one motion to recommit with or without instructions. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for one hour. mr. sessions: for the purposes of debate only, i yield the customary 30 minutes to the gentleman, my friend from florida, the distinguished gentleman, mr. hastings, pending which time i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. sessions: all time is yielded for the purpose of debate only. mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks concerning house resolution 264 which provides for a structured rule designated by the rules committee for consideration of h.r. 754. this will allow for nine of the amendments submitted to the rules committee be made in order. the speaker pro tempore: without
12:23 pm
objection. mr. sessions: mr. speaker, i rise today in support of this rule and the underlying bill. fiscal year 2011 budget process began with last congress with about a dozen hearings and member briefings and continued into this congress with more briefings and negotiations. this legislation was introduced by the chairman of the house permanent select committee on intelligence, the gentleman from michigan, mike rogers, and has gone through regular order to achieve its presence on the floor today. h.r. 754 was marked up in the intelligence committee and the chairman of the rules committee, the gentleman david dreier, provided a structured amendment process for nine additional amendments from republicans and democrats to be considered today on the house floor. the bill we're discussing today authorizes the intelligence and intelligence-related activities of the united states government for fiscal year 2011 in order to enhance the national security of
12:24 pm
the united states. to support and assist the armed forces of the united states and to support the president of the united states in the execution of the foreign policy of the united states of america. this bill is a vital tool for congressional oversight of the classified activities of the intelligence community and it is critical to ensuring that our intelligence agencies have the resources and the authorities they need to do to accomplish this important work on behalf of keeping america free. the primary vehicle for exercising credible congressional oversight over our intelligence agency is the intelligence authorization bill. yet we have not passed a bona fide intelligence authorization bill in six years. although the national security act requires intelligence activities to be specifically
12:25 pm
authorized, in recent years certain appropriations have included the language that would deem the intelligence funding to be authorized. this procedure needs -- meets the statutory requirement but has weakened the ability, i believe, of congress in its oversight of intelligence activities in recent years. u.s. intelligence community plays a critical role in the war on terrorism and securing our country from many other threats that we face as a nation. the recent killing of the terrorist osama bin laden is a clear example of the important work our intelligence agencies are doing behind the scenes every single day to protect america and americans. keeping the laws, governing our intelligence operations up do to date and ensuring that there are no unnecessary burdens in the way of future successes is
12:26 pm
exactly why we are here today and we seek the authorization to pass an annual intelligence bill today. this intelligence authorization bill funds all u.s. intelligence activities, spanning 17 separate agencies, last year this funding totaled roughly $80 billion. our nation's current challenging fiscal circumstances demand that congress fulfill its duties and provide the appropriate accountability and financial oversight of our classified intelligence programs through an authorization bill yearly. additionally this bill will ensure that congress funds the requirements of the men and women, the brave and dedicated men and women of the intelligence community, military, civilian and many others who directly support the war zones and who are engaged in other dangerous operations to
12:27 pm
keep america safe. the underlying legislation provides oversight and authorization for critical intelligence activities including global counterterrorism operations such as the one that took out the terrorist osama bin laden. tactical intelligence support to support combat units in iraq and afghanistan and wherever else they're needed around the world, cyberdefense, detecting and countering weapons of mass destruction, global monitoring of foreign militaries, weapons tests and arms control treaties. additionally this bill's classified annex provides detailed guidence on the intelligence spending including adjustment to costly programs. this bill takes an important step forward in the intelligence community to help them meet the same financial accounting standard as other parts of the government. these accounting standards will help uncover savings in the
12:28 pm
current programs that can be reinvested into vital programs and priorities as they are returned to the american taxpayer. i was very pleased this week when the gentleman, mike rogers, and mr. ruppersberger, who represents the minority, came to the rules committee to talk about the needs of the intelligence community and in particular i was very pleased as they worked so closely together to ensure that the issues that were contained within this document, the agreements that would be in law and perhaps more importantly the important relationships that would be shared by them, as we work together to ensure that this country is safe, that we do so in a way where the american people see that keeping america safe, providing the necessary resources to the men and women of the intelligence community
12:29 pm
and expecting the results that would come from them is a very important part of what our job as members of congress is all about. i applaud chairman mike rogers of michigan for providing this congress with much-needed -- with the intelligence authorization bill and i appreciate the exhaustive process on a bipartisan basis, not only that chairman rogers has led but that includes a return to regular order in the authorization of this important legislation. i rise in support of this bill, the rule and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. hastings: thank you very much, mr. speaker. and i thank my friend from texas for yielding the time. mr. speaker, h.r. 754, the intelligence authorization act for fiscal year 2011, authorizes appropriations for fiscal year
12:30 pm
2011 for the u.s. intelligence and intelligence-related activities within the jurisdiction of the house permanent select committee on intelligence. including the national intelligence program and the military intelligence program as well as for the intelligence community management account and for the central intelligence agency retirement and disability systems. we're considering this legislation at an auspicious time. the death of osama bin laden and the disarray in the al qaeda network comes as a result of years of painstaking effort by the hardworking men and women of the intelligence community, the military, president bush and president obama's gutsy, courageous and correct call on may 1 of this year.
12:31 pm
think succeeded admirably in carrying out a difficult and dangerous mission. this legislation codifies many of the lessons learned in recent years that led to osama bin laden's demise. it's important that we continue to provide the necessary resources to sustain the momentum the united states and its allies enjoy in the effort to protect our nation and its citizens. as a former vice chair of the house intelligence committee, i personally know that the intelligence community is the first line of defense against those wishing to do us harm here at home and across the globe. other elements, as we speak,
12:32 pm
are plotting attacks, planning operations, or are actively involved in harming our citizens. the men and women of the intelligence community devoted to acting on the information they gather to thwart those efforts. we owe them a debt of gratitude and our sincere thanks. these courageous men and women often work quietly, unnoticed and too often unrecognized but nevertheless they are critical to ensuring the security of our nation. i've had the honor and privilege of meeting many of our intelligence professionals during my oversight travel as a member of the intelligence committee. i cannot overstate how much i
12:33 pm
appreciate and am humbled by their service. over the past 10 years our country has continued to make daily progress against threats thanks to the service of those dedicated professionals. we must keep in mind, though, that in spite of our best effort we still face many real threats and we still have much work to do to get it right. mr. speaker, h.r. 754 provides detailed guidance and authorizes appropriations for the many agencies of the intelligence community while also improving accountability and transparency. it is essential that we streamline and coordinate nate oversight for counterintelligence. h.r. 754 amends the
12:34 pm
counterintelligence enhancement act of 2002 to require the national counterintelligence strategy to be aligned with the policies and strategy of the director of national intelligence. it is often reported that our government agencies come under cyberattack all day every day 365 days a year. international criminals, malicious individuals and even other nations are actively engaged in a constant effort to break into our cybernetworks to obtain information or to wreak havoc on the systems that govern our nation's infrastructure, financial, military, diplomatic and social networks. we must of all things be
12:35 pm
mindful of our responsibilities in that area. it can have a devastating impact, -- devastating impact if not properly attended. finally, mr. speaker, we must consider diversity to be mission imperative. i've stated time and again that the intelligence community is not diverse enough to successfully meet its requirement and achieve success on its missions. february 26 of 2010, the house of representatives passed my amendment to h.r. 2701, the intelligence authorization act for fiscal year 2010, which requires the office of the director of national intelligence in coordination with the heads of the element of the intelligence community to submit to congress a report on the plans of each element of
12:36 pm
the community to increase diversity. the report is expected to be finalized in october of this year. simply put, we need people who blend in, who speak the language and understand the cultures in the countries that we are targeting. it's time for the intelligence community to get serious about improving diversity for the sake of our national security. if the intelligence community is to succeed in its global mission, it must have a global space. i reserve the balance of my time, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. sessions: thank you, mr. speaker. at this time i'm delighted to have the gentlewoman, mrs. bachmann, i'd like to yield her
12:37 pm
three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for three minutes. mrs. bachmann: thank you, mr. speaker. i also thank the gentleman from texas, who's doing a wonderful job this morning managing this bill, pete sessions. mr. speaker, all of our nation's great liberties depend on our national security. i think that's something we can all agree on. this is a bipartisan issue. we're a nation at war, and we're pitted against terrorists who are bent on destroying our very way of life. as a treasure trove of evidence which we're so grateful was received, got from osama bin laden's compound says that the enemy is always adapting, always evolving, always plotting further attacks. we have to be informed and we have to be one step ahead of the enemy at least. it's our intelligence community, mr. speaker, that gives us heroic service day in and day out. this morning i had the privilege of being at our nation's central intelligence
12:38 pm
agency, and i want to commend them for the work they do, the brilliant work they did most recently to secure this number one target. nearly all of it goes unrecognized, mr. speaker, until a moment like last sunday evening, may 1, when a grateful nation learned that the men and women of our intelligence services, working hand in hand with those in military uniform, had brought about the demise of the world's most prominent and notorious terrorist, osama bin laden. years of relentless and diligent pursuit yielded an overwhelming success, and that's why i'm so honored to be here on the floor today with my distinguished colleague from texas, mr. sessions, to stand here on the house floor as a member of the permanent select committee on intelligence calling on behalf of my colleagues, both republican and democrat, to pass the f.y. 2007 -- 2011 intelligence authorization bill. the american people made it
12:39 pm
clear to us, mr. speaker, not only once but over and over again, they want this congress to exercise the utmost seriousness when dealing with our nation's spending crisis. and so this bill is a step in that direction. it ensures that there is proper congressional financial oversight, and i would like to tip my hat now to the democrat ranking member, dutch ruppersberger, who has done an excellent job, along with our chairman, mike rogers, in making sure that we work together as one seamlessly in a bipartisan fashion. i have been just so delighted. i have never served on a committee where i've seen greater bipartisanship. because we put down our partisan swords when it comes to securing the safety and security of our nation. and this bill is the step in that direction, ensuring there's not only properly congressional oversight, something that was lacking, unfortunately, in the past six years, but we are dedicated to
12:40 pm
making sure that our responsible approach with intelligence does not sacrifice neither the security of our nation and this message -- this measure which funds our security community ensures our intelligence community has the resources they so richly deserve. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from florida. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, i'm very pleased at this time to yield three minutes to my good friend, the distinguished gentleman from maryland, the ranking member of the committee on intelligence, mr. ruppersberger. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized. mr. ruppersberger: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to recognize the distinguished mr. hastings for his hard work on the committee. i had the privilege of working with mr. hastings and know he was committed to supporting our intelligence professionals. he was a leader on the issue of diversity in the intelligence community, and i applaud him for those efforts. having a diverse intelligence community work force is not the
12:41 pm
right thing to do but it's critical to our commission. -- not only the right thing to do but the critical to our commission. i join michele bachmann to support h.r. 754, the intelligence authorization act for fiscal year 2011. i thank her for her comments about partisan politics. the intelligence committee is a bipartisan committee that works together. the stakes are too high for us not to work together and that's what we're attempting to do. now the killing of osama bin laden is clearly the most monumental intelligence achievement in recent history. our intelligence professionals work together as a team, brought osama bin laden to justice, and killed him. it was a risky mission that was executed with intense training and high level of skill. these professionals risk their lives to keep our country safe and no american lives were lost. i'm pleased that congress can provide the intelligence community with the resources,
12:42 pm
capabilities they need to continue this great work. after months of concerns addressed to the administration, i believe this bill moves in a positive direction over intelligence activity. i'm pleased that chairman rogers and i can come to an agreement that counterterrorism issues to the c.i.a. with this change i will support this bill. this bill adds several thousand civilian positions above the level enacted in f.y. 2010. there is also a large increase in personnel at the national counterterrorism center. that's the nctc. among others, the bill adds hundreds of millions of dollars for intelligence above current levels. however, i urge a no vote on this rule because it does not allow all members of congress to offer amendments to this bill. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. sessions: mr. speaker, thank you very much. you know, mr. speaker, with the election of this new large republican class, some 87 new
12:43 pm
members, we picked up a -- particular member, who devoted his life not only to his country through service in the military, but also to law enforcement. he comes to washington from florida where he'd been a distinguished sheriff of a large department. he came to us with not only a thought and belief about securing this nation, making sure that we took care of citizens but perhaps more importantly here's a clearer thinking on seeing not only intelligence issues but also the broader context of protecting this country. he has a son who serves in the military and he has been very thoughtful. he's a member of the rules committee, the gentleman from brookville, florida, if you'll please extend three minutes to the gentleman from the rules committee, mr. nugent. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized for three minutes. mr. nugent: thank you, mr. speaker.
12:44 pm
i'd like to thank my colleague from the rules committee which i have a pleasure of serving with mr. sessions. i rise today in support of the rule, h. resolution 264, the underlying resolution of h.r. 754. about a week and a half ago we all learned that justice had been served. justice for our civil servants working in kenya and tunisia embassies in 1998, justice for troops serving on the u.s.s. cole in 2000 and justice for the innocent victims of september 11, 2001. after many years of hard work, stealthy intelligence work we found osama bin laden's hideout in pakistan. based upon this information, a highly trained team of navy seals came in, performed their mission and rid the world of one of history's most evil and notorious terrorists. mr. speaker, this would not have been possible without the work of our hardworking intelligence community.
12:45 pm
it was president bush who laid the groundwork for this intelligence that ultimately made all of this possible, and it was president obama who put this information together and made the gutsy call that only a commander in chief can make. both of these men deserve our thanks for the work they did to make this possible. it is our duty as members of congress to ensure that our intelligence community has the tools they need to continue to keep our nation safe. that is what h.r. 754 does. as a prior law enforcement officer i can attest to the value of good intel. in apprehending those that would do dastardly things to our country. with that i encourage my colleagues to support the rule, support the underlying bill and support the intelligence community that is keeping this nation safe. with that i yield back the balance of my time.
12:46 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from florida. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, i'm very pleased at this time to yield two minutes to my good friend, the distinguished gentlewoman from texas, a member of the judiciary committee, ms. jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for two minutes. ms. jackson lee: mr. hastings, thank you for your service, years on the intelligence committee and to the ranking member, to the members that are on the floor. i rise to support the underlying bill and the rule, recognizing that human intelligence and the resources that provide a safety net for the american people are crucial. the c.i.a. and the department of defense and other intelligence civilian agencies along with the united states military. i introduced h.res. 240 to chronicle the successful apprehension and demise of osama bin laden, to emphasize how combined together the braun and intellect of the united states military, the human intelligence over the years, the work of
12:47 pm
president clinton, president bush and president obama's strategic decision that had to be made by the civilian minds working with the military minds, emphasized the constitutional values of this country, that civilians working with the military can in fact provide the armor, protection of the united states of america. i am grateful for that genius and i want to thank them and our legislation had over 50 co-sponsors but as well i believe now that we can actually say in good conscience, to bring the troops home from afghanistan. our mission is accomplished, we realize that human intelligence can help us target those who would want to do us harm and we have the constitutional fabric along with the united states military and the likes of jsocr -- jsoc and many others to work with the american people. we can bring the men and women that are based now, over 100,000, in afghanistan home and you know what? mother's day was this past week
12:48 pm
and sadly soldiers nell in battle on mother's day -- fell in battle on mother's day. let us not have another mother's day where a mother loses a child to battle in afghanistan where we can use smart power and use intelligence and use the minimal of force. it is time now for america to welcome home her heroes with honor and as well to thank those who indicated the braun and the intellect that could make good on a promise that, yes, you will come to justice if you do harm to the american people. i yield back and ask support for the underlying legislation and the rule. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. sessions: thank you, mr. speaker. you know, mr. speaker, i do understand that the democratic party is interested in leaving afghanistan now that osama bin laden has been killed but i would suggest to the american people that -- mr. hastings: would the gentleman yield on that point before yielding to mr. reid?
12:49 pm
mr. sessions: i would yield to the gentleman. mr. hastings: i would urge my colleague to not reference to the democratic party. everybody in the department party does not agree that we should leave afghanistan until the administration and the military and the intelligence community have completed their work. mr. sessions: thank you, gaining back my time, i appreciate and respect the words not only from my friend but with i believe he's absolutely correct. i simply hear the drum beat that comes out of this town about leaving now that there's been a big victory in dealing with the number one terrorist in the world and i would suggest to you that there's still much work left to be done and that we must not change the focus of the men and women who today are in harm's way. we should not change the focus of the american people, to get them away from the job that is being done on a day to day basis and that we should not begin the
12:50 pm
drum beat until we have further completed the work that is necessary to ensure that this country is safe. mr. speaker, at this time i would welcome a young member of the rules committee, a gentleman who served as mayor of corning, new york, man who has dedicated himself to public service, i want to yield the gentleman, mr. reid, two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for two minutes. mr. reed: thank you, mr. speaker, and thank you to my colleague from texas for the opportunity to rise today. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of the rule for h.r. 754, the intelligence authorization act for fiscal year 2011. mr. speaker, the intelligence community works long hours in distant parts of the world to keep our country safe. but the things about the united states intelligence community is that when they do their job right, no one knows about it. when they are successful in that
12:51 pm
diligence that they perform every day of the week, 24 hours a day, every day of the year we often do not hear about that success. i stand here today, mr. speaker, to commend the diligence, pain staking work of the united states intelligence officials for all that they do. and then in particular i stand today to recognize the hard work of our intelligence community that resulted in capturing and killing the man who masterminded the multiple attacks, who -- which killed thousands of americans being brought to justice this past week. thanks to the intelligence professionals who work for our country, the world is a safer place without osama bin laden. i have an amendment with my colleague, mr. grimm, that will be discussed on this floor tomorrow and hopefully supported and voted upon in a bipartisan fashion to recognize the effort of those intelligence officials. mr. speaker, i rise also today
12:52 pm
to commend the work that is being done here in this chamber, that is being led by this side of the aisle in having an open dialogue and having an open process. we have eight amendments or nine amendments that are going to be considered under this rule and in this chamber tomorrow. mr. speaker, that is a direct change from the history that has been demonstrated for years prior to us coming here. it is time that we on this side of the aisle recognize that we are going to listen to the american people, we are going to have an honest conversation with the american people about the issues that we face on a day to day basis. and as such i stand today and urge my colleagues to vote yes on this rule and yes on h.r. 754. thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, i would urge my friend from texas that i'm going to be the last speaker, i don't know whether
12:53 pm
you have others. if you do, i would reserve. if not, i'll proceed. mr. sessions: i appreciate the gentleman seeking that information from me. i believe i have two additional speakers before i close. and if you'd like for me at this time, we'll just go ahead and run through that order. mr. hastings: i thank my friend and i would reserve at this time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. sessions: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to another one of our brand new members, the gentleman from corpus christi, texas, who brings to this house and to the floor not only a commonsense element but the assistance that people from corpus christi will be represented on the floor of this house in such a way that will benefit not only our country but the united states military, in particular the united states navy that has a large base in corpus christi. i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentleman from. mr. farenthold: thank you, mr. speaker, thank you, mr. sessions. i rise today in support of the
12:54 pm
rule and the underlying bill. we stand today in america that is very different from america a month ago. it's almost like the fog has been lifted over america. we saw it -- we sought to capture or kill osama bin laden for 10 years and just recently that was accomplished and it's almost as if the sun is a little bit brighter and the can-do american spirit has been revived. that same spirit that took us to the moon, that same spirit that has led us to victory in the past. you know, our intelligence community is key to that success as is our military. it is absolutely imperative that we support and back the intelligence community that provides us the knowledge and information that not only helps us win wars but more importantly keepses i out of wars. knowledge is power -- keeps us out of war. knowledge is power. what we know about beforehand gives us the opportunity to stop conflicts before they happen. we're also in an era of a tight budget now. we're looking at an authorization bill that increases and provides adequate oversight to our intelligence to
12:55 pm
make sure those resources are being spent wisely and are being spent in the defense of this nation, in the furtherance of our interest and in the furtherance of freedom. with that i yield back, sir. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. does the gentleman continue to reserve? mr. hastings: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. sessions: mr. speaker, how much time do i have remaining? the speaker pro tempore: 13 minutes remaining, the gentleman from texas has 13 minutes remaining. mr. sessions: i'd like to at this time yield to the young gentleman, the chairman of the rules committee, mr. dreier, for such time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. dreier: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. dreier: thank you very much, mr. speaker. let me begin by expressing my appreciation to the distinguished vice chairman of the rules committee, my friend from dallas, mr. sessions, for his management of this very important rule. i think it's appropriate that mr. sessions -- sessions is a manager of legislation that enjoys strong bipartisan support because he's always seeking a consensus on issues when we can
12:56 pm
find areas of agreement and the fact is we have been able to see the chairman and the ranking member of the select committee on intelligence to work together in a bipartisan way to deal with the very important security and intelligence needs for the united states of america. as my new colleague from corpus christi has just said, what a great day for america, the day that we were able to see osama bin laden captured and killed, brought to justice. and i congratulate president obama and of course all those who were involved, i congratulate president bush who from september 11 forward was determined to bring osama bin laden to justice and i congratulate all of the men, women in uniform, including those who as of september 11, 2001, became part of the
12:57 pm
frontline, that being firefighters and law enforcement right here on our soil. because that was a day for the first time ever that we faced an attack on our soil. but this legislation, mr. speaker, is specifically designed to extend our appreciation and thanks based on an amendment that we've made in order from our colleague from staten island, mr. grimm, for the -- those in the intelligence community. who have done such a spectacular job in dealing with the challenge of capturing and bringing to justice osama bin laden. we are going to have in this bill a number of amendments made in order and i'm particularly proud that as we worked with the members of the intelligence community -- committee, recognizing that obviously this bill deals with some very, very sensitive items. that frankly can't be discussed here on the house floor. but with that in mind, we were
12:58 pm
able to make in order nine amendments that are going to be offered by members, five amendments will be offered by democrats, four amendments offered by republicans, and as i said, the amendment that will allow for the longest period of debate will provide an opportunity for the members of this house to discuss and i know it will be again bipartisan appreciation to those in the intelligence community who have been able to have the success that we've witnessed most recently. so, mr. speaker, i think it's a great day for the united states of america to once again demonstrate the global leadership role that we provide, not only economically and geopolitically but through our security, intelligence and military strength. so, mr. speaker, i urge my colleagues to support both this rule, which again will allow for a free-flowing debate and an
12:59 pm
opportunity for both parties to participate, and in the underlying legislation. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from florida. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, at this time i would in some respects reiterate much of what our colleagues have said with regard to osama bin laden. for 10 years he held the title scourge of the earth. and i believe all of us are pleased that to the degree that he contributed to injustice, justice as it pertains to him has finally been served. it is my hope that the family -- the families of the terrible the families of the terrible events that transpired


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on