Skip to main content

tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  May 15, 2012 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT

5:00 pm
support this legislation and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from puerto rico is recognized. mr. pierluisi: madam speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 3534, the security in bonding act. h.r. 3534 will strengthen the protection that surety bonds are intended to provide by requiring individual surities to use low-risk cash assets, such as united states bonds, as collateral. h.r. 3534 will require the government accountability office to assess the impact of these enhanced collateral requirements on the availability of surety bonds for emerging businesses and particularly business enterprises, seeking the prime contractors on federal projects. when the government enters into a contract, the american
5:01 pm
taxpayer, along with those in the contract, should be protected. that is why any contract valued at $150,000 or more requires a sewerity bond as a condition of the contract being awarded. the bond will pay the government and downstream contractors in the event that the contractor fails to perform the contract. bonds issued by so-called corporate sewerities which have been vetted and pre-approved by the treasury department provide for assurance to taxpayers and subcontractors in the event that a contractor failed to -- fails to perform. on the other hand, bonds issued by individual sureties have not been so vetted and are not subject to strong collateral requirements. accordingly, i support h.r. 3534 for several reasons. to begin with, any entity that plovidse a sewerity -- that provides a surety bond should be strong on the standards. we know what happens when
5:02 pm
industry, particularly those involving financing, are not closely regulated. consider mortgage lenders, for example. in a vacuum of regulation, uncroup louse and predatory lenders engaged in practices that hurt not just the borrowers but jeopardized the nation's economy and the financial well being of all americans. measures such as h.r. 3534 are intended to regulate more reliable standards, which is a commendable goal. that should help ensure that american taxpayers are not made to pay for the consequences of undercollateralized bonds. in addition, this bill will protect so-called downstream subcontractors and suppliers who very much depend on the nick vitality and performance of the general contractor and surety. many such downstream subcontractors and suppliers are small businesses owned by
5:03 pm
members of historically disadvantaged groups including racial minorities, women, and the disabled. ensuring that unnecessarily heightened risk is avoided for minority owned businesses is key to their economic survival as well as to our nation's fiscal health. according to the commerce department, these businesses are an integral part of local, national, and global business communities. measures such as h.r. 3534 that strengthen collateral requirements lessen the incidents of poor underwriting practices and undersecured surety bonds. finally, h.r. 3534 as amended in committee will help to ensure that it does not result in too much of a good thing, particularly during this difficult -- during these difficult times, congress should not construct unnecessary or overly
5:04 pm
burdensome hurdles. to the extent that heightened collateral requirements might dissuade individual sureties from providing bonds and federal projects, there's a risk that new businesses may have a more difficult timed bying on federal bonlts. we need to ensure that these businesses continue to be vital contributors to our nation's economy. not only as subcontractors but also as prime contractors. this is why there was a bipartisan agreement in committee to add language requiring the g.a.o. to, among other things, assess the impact that the enactment of h.r. 3534 may have on disadvantaged business enterprises' ability to successfully bid on federal contractors. -- on frl contracts. this will help us monitor whether h.r. 3534 has any unintended consequences in this
5:05 pm
regard. i think -- i thank representative smith for his work with us. i also thank representative hanna and the democratic lead sponsor for their work on this manner. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? mr. smith: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from south carolina, mr. mulvaney, an original co-sponsor of this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. mulvaney: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you to the gentleman from texas. this is not the most glamorous thing we'll do in this 112th congress. there's probably not that many people who are aware of or care about what kind of security is offered on surety bonds. i can assure you it is important to some people. it really. is if you're the person entering into that contract, counting on somebody doing that work, the quality of that security in that surety bond soft the utmost importance to you. as you heard the gentleman from new york mention, mr. hanna, in certain instances it can be a
5:06 pm
life or death matter for your business. i'm proud to be a co-sponsor of this bill but i rise to bring to light the fact that we're doing something on a bipartisan basis to help the country. we get a lot of complaints that we're not able to come together to fix things. we are unlikely to solve the issue of taxes versus spending here today but it's nice to know we can get together on the small things. it used to be, before this bill, you could take marketable coal as collateral on a surety bond. that's outrageous. this bill will fix those things and make it safer to do business with government contracts. again, it doesn't fix everything but it does make business bert. i thank mr. smith, mr. conyers, the gentleman from missouri, mr. graves, and the gentlelady from new york, ms. velazquez, from the small business
5:07 pm
committee who took a look at this bill and passed it on a bipartisan basis. i thank the gentleman and i thank my colleagues across the way to come together today and try and do something to help the nation advance and with that, i encourage everyone to support this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas reserves the plans of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from puerto rico rise? mr. pierluisi: i have no further speakers. i reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. mr. smith -- mr. pierluisi: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. smith: i yield back the balance of my time as well. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3534 as amended? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table.
5:08 pm
5:09 pm
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 2621, as ameppeded. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 331, h r. 2621, a bill to establish the chimney rock national monument in the state of colorado and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop, and the gentleman from new mexico, mr. heinrich, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah.
5:10 pm
mr. bishop: thank you and i ask unanimous consent that members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. bishop: with that, i yield such time as he may consume to the sponsor of this bill, the gentleman from colorado who has done such great work to move this potential issue forward, mr. tipton. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. tipton: i thank the gentleman for yielding. this past weekend, i had the opportunity to be a in a truly remarkable part of the united states in southwest colorado, an area called chim knee rock. an area renowned for its cultural heritage and important a lo clock -- archaeological straits. it's considered by the scientific communities to be one of the most significant archaeological sites in the united states. centuries ago, native americans
5:11 pm
called it home. scientists have un-- uncovered ancient farming areas, homes, and other indicators that this was a major cultural center in this home. the an tesssors -- ancestors of the pueblo indians traveled to witness a rare lunar occurrence they considered sacred. chim knee rock is one of only three such areas in the country. the area is currently under the mofingt the u.s. forest service, covered under the usfs organic act which cannot i address the management of such a culturally and historically significant area as chimney rock. this act requires no additional federal funds and therefore no
5:12 pm
increase in spending. it ensure continued access to the area so local ranchers will be able to utilize the lands they depend on for grazing, for outdoorsmen to continue to take advantage of the game opportunities in the area, and for members of the indian tribes to continue the use of chimney rock for traditional ceremonies. it also allows for continued archaeological research and exploration in the area. in addition to preserving and protecting the site's historical treasure the national monument designation will give chim knee rock the prestige and protection it deserves and elevate toyota a status to increase exposure to the region and generate tourism, creating a potential economic boost for surrounding communities and generating jobs. without any new spending, making chimney rock a national monument would create a win-win situation for this place if the -- for the local communities,
5:13 pm
the state of colorado, native indian tribes and future generations of americans. mr. chairman, it is my pleasure to sponsor h.r. 2621 and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from utah reserves the plans of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico rise? >> i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. heinrich: i yield myself such time as i may consume. i applaud the majority for bringing this bill to the floor to ezz dig -- to designate a national monument in congressman tipton's district. there are hundreds of bills waiting to declare new national areas. congratulations to congressman tipton for his success in advancing local conservation efforts. i hope that this is the
5:14 pm
beginning of consideration of similar bills pending before the committee so that we can advance our conservation goals across the nation. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new mexico reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? mr. bishop: i would like to ask the gentleman from new mexico if he has other speakers? mr. heinrich: i do not. mr. wish: i'm prepared to close if you are. mr. heinrich: i yield back. mr. bishop: i commend the gentleman from colorado, mr. tipton, to put together a well thought out, locally supported legislation. this is an example of the way this tiche designation should be done as opposed to administrative fiat under things like the antiquities act. i urge adoption of this measure and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is, will the house
5:15 pm
suspend the rules and pass h.r. 2621 as amended? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended -- mr. bishop: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. from new mexico, i'm sorry. mr. heinrich: i object to the vote on the grounds that a quorum is not present and make a point of order that a quorum is not present. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20 and the chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on the motion will be postponed. . the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules h.r. 2745 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report. the clerk: a bill to amend the mesquite land act of 1986 to facilitate implementation of multi species habitat conserves
5:16 pm
plan for the virgin river in clark county, nevada. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. bishop: with that, mr. speaker, since this is a significant bill that makes changes, i would like to yield as much time as he might consume to the gentleman from nevada. >> the original mesquite lands act provided the right to purchase at fair market value certain federal land under the control of the bureau of land management. as the city is land locked by public lands and fastest growing city in the country for much of the 1990's, this legislation was
5:17 pm
amended to allow the city to purchase additional federal lands to ensure the city of mesquite could continue to grow and prosper. in 1999, congress passed the latest amendment with the specific purpose of providing land to construct a commercial airport and to provide more room for commercial and industrial development to again meet future demands for a rapidly growing tourism industry. in 2002, the u.s. fish and wildlife service issued an opinion which promulgated certain terms and conditions associated with the land sale. a key term contained in the opinion is the mandate that the city participate in the development and implementation of a habitat conservation and recovery plan and a monitoring and mitigation plan along the virgin river. in response to this opinion, congress made a technical amendment to the act within the clark county conservation of public land and natural resources of 2002 that set aside the portions of the proceeds for
5:18 pm
the development of the recovery plan and the monitoring and mitigation plan. it is apparent that during the process, language allowing for the implementation of these plans was inadvertently omitted. other lands act clearly state that funds shall be expended on development and implementation of multispecies habitat conservation plans. the same process should be applied to the mesquite lands act. h.r. 2745 is a legislative clarification regarding the special funds allowing for both the development and implementation of the conservation and recovery plan and monitoring and mitigation plan. this is consistent with other plans in nevada and the same process should be applied to the city of mesquite. in addition to the clarification for the conservation and recovery plan, there is an issue regarding the timing of the land sales identified in the 1999
5:19 pm
amendment and this is addressed in h.r. 2745. it originally gave the city of mesquite eight years -- 12 years to purchase the land, however due to severe economic conditions that continue to plague southern nevada along with the delay of the impact statement, the city is not in a position to purchase the final sections of property at this time and therefore was not able to make the deadline. h.r. 2745 provides for an additional eight years to allow economic conditions to improve. i would like to thank chairman bishop and the natural resources committee staff on on moving this legislation forward. h.r. 2745 would allow the city of mesquite to control the path of its future expansion and economic development and correct an oversight in prior legislation. with that, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from utah reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico rise? mr. heinrich: i ask unanimous
5:20 pm
consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. heinrich: i yield myself such time as i may consume. this legislation allows the city of mesquite, nevada to acquire certain lands from the federal government for its commercial airport. under the original 1986 legislation, some receipts from the federal lands would be funding habitat within clark county. as amended, h.r. 2745 directs the proceeds of the land sale to the treasury and leaving the habitat work unfunded. while the conservation work is important, we do not object toe this legislation and i would reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? mr. bishop: to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. mr. heinrich: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah is recognized. mr. bishop: offered by congressman heck, h.r. 2745 as amended by the natural resources committee and further amended to
5:21 pm
date to ensure there is no cost to the taxpayer and this will treat all proceeds to the land fills at no cost to the taxpayer. i urge the adoption of this measure. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 2745 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 -- mr. heinrich: i make a point of order that a quorum is not present. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8, rule 20 and the chair's further announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. it is -- for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3874 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report. clrk clerk h.r. 3874, a bill to provide for the conveyance of
5:22 pm
eight cemeteries that are located on national forest system land in black hills national forest, south dakota. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop and the gentleman from new mexico, mr. heinrich, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. bishop: thank you, mr. speaker, and to explain this bill as well, i would like the sponsor who has worked so hard, the gentlewoman from south dakota, as much time as she would like to consume. mrs. noem: i rise in support of my bill. this bill is of great importance to many communities in the black hills of south dakota. it is home to a number of
5:23 pm
historic communities and cemeteries. many of these originated in old mining towns in the 1800's and have unique significance to the surrounding communities, the engel wood cemetery, haywood cemetery mountain hills cemetery, nemo, rockerville cemetery and the cold springs cemetery. these cemeteries are being managed by local associations or community groups in the surrounding areas, but have been technically owned by the u.s. forest service since the 1900's, this causes unnecessary liability for the u.s. forest service because of their responsibility of upkeep and dealing with vandalism or damage to the property. the black hills cemetery act would transfer ownership of these cemeteries and up to two acres of adjacent land to the caretaking communities that have managed them for generations under special use permits issued
5:24 pm
by the forest service at almost no cost to taxpayers. it also makes clear these cemeteries will be than continued to be used for the same purpose. i sponsored this bill to request of these communities and the current caretakers of the cemeteries and in consultation with the u.s. forest service. an article talked about the chief of the local fire volunteer department that takes care of the haywood cemetery and said this bill would make it less complicated for the caretakers and u.s. forest service. and he mentioned that this bill is important because it allows for expansion for those families still interested in burial plots. a lot of local residents are buried in these cemeteries. many communities will hold special services on the cemetery grounds in the coming weeks. after the house passes this
5:25 pm
bill, these families are having these cemeteries officially in their care and will continue to do an excellent job managing them. i thank the communities and local residents in working with my office. i would like to thank chairman hastings and bishop and their staff. it is important for those reasons that we pass this bill and that the senate does the same. these communities have been asking for a solution to this situation for a number of years and as their representative i'm glad we have the opportunity to pass this bill off the house floor. i urge my colleagues to support this bill for the communities in south dakota. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from south dakota yields back. the gentleman from utah reserves. the gentleman from new mexico. mr. heinrich: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. heinrich: i yield myself such time as i may consume.
5:26 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. heinrich: h.r. 3874, conveys cemeteries on u.s. forest land to communities in south dakota. these local communities already manage and maintain these cemeteries and the legislation requires that these lands continue to be used for cemetery purposes. we have no objections to this legislation and with that, i would reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new mexico reserves. mr. bishop: reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah reserves. mr. bishop: i yield back. hirne mr. heinrich: i yield back. mr. bishop: this commonsense piece of legislation, nine parcels of land to the respective communities that currently manage and maintain these cemeteries and frees the forest service from administering these cemeteries and focus on other measures. it's a great bill and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah yields back.
5:27 pm
will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3874 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed -- mr. bishop: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 205 as amended. the clerk: union calendar number 294, h.r. 205, a bill to amend the act titles and act to release restricted indian lands for public, religious,
5:28 pm
recreational, residential and for other purposes, requiring the grant of long-term leases approved august 9, 1955 to provide for indian tribes to enter into certain leases without prior expressed approval from the secretary of the interior the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop and the gentleman from new mexico, mr. heinrich, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. bishop: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. bishop: under current law each and ever nonmineral lease that a tribe executes is subject to approval by the department of interior before it can take effect. doesn't matter whether the tribe and the third party negotiated the terms of the lease to their satisfaction, washington, d.c., decides.
5:29 pm
unfortunately, as a result of this, it is predictable that the leases do not get approved on a timely basis, if at all. the government has erected regulatory hurdles for tribes leasing their land and time is money and when the government delays the cost, money, investors take their business elsewhere. congress agreed with the request to let a tribe lease its land without federal approval as long as it occurs under tribal regulations and approved by the secretary. the amendment and solves taxpayers from liability from leasing decisions the navajo nation makes. they have pleaded with congress to let them manage their lands with less supervision. h.r. 205 allows any tribe the same option that the navajo nation already enjoys. while this bill does not remove the government from tribal lands, which would be our goal, it takes a step in the right direction. a previous version of this bill
5:30 pm
was introduced and ordered reported in the very last congress and languished and saw no further action. i'm pleased today that this bill sponsored by a democrat member that this bill is poised to pass with a very strong bipartisan support. i urge adoption of this measure and i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah reserves. the gentleman from new mexico. mr. heinrich: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. . . mr. heinrich: i yield myself such time as i may consume. shortly after being elected to congress, i met with tribal leaders who talked about the onerous process of getting a lease on tribal trust land, something that afingts home ownership on tribal land. -- lands. the last thing the federal government should do is stand in the way of families ready
5:31 pm
and willing to own a home. that's why i introduced this bill, the hearth act. native families buying a house go through the same process -- process as everyone else. they find a house they like, work with the bank to gain approval for a morbling and make an offer to the seller. but before these families can close on the sale they must also get approval from the bureau of indian affairs to lease the land that the house is built on. that approval can take between six months and two years, an intolerable delay for most buyers. we all know a seller is rarely able to wait two years to sell their house an banks are often unable to hold a mortgage approval for anywhere near that long. i know there are many native families who would prefer to stay and raise their children in the communities where their families have lived for generations but instead have had to move from indian country to nearby cities because they want to own a home.
5:32 pm
families shouldn't be forced to make such an important decision based on how many months or years it will take a federal bureaucracy to ail prove a mortgage on tribal land. similarly, many tribal communities lose out on commercial investment because the process for securing a lease through the department takes so long. in these tough economic times, we should not be making it harder for tribal businesses to develop on tribal lands. the hearth act would allow tribes to develop their own leasing regulations and make leasing decisions on the tribal level rather than waiting for approval. under the bill, they would submit their regulations to the secretary of the interior for approval once the regulations are approved, tribes would be authorized to make their own decisions about how to lease their land in accordance with approved leases. this process would be pleatly voluntary for tribes. a tribe that chooses not to submit leasing regulations for approval would continue under
5:33 pm
the current system -- current system of approval. many tribes have a system of approval before they even send leasing requests to the b.i.a. our nation is home to a vast diversity of tribes and federal policy should reflect that diverse thism hearth act will allow tribes to exercise greater control over their own land, support self-determination and eliminate bureaucratic delays that stand in the way of home ownership and economic development in tribal communities. mr. speaker, before i close, i want to make sure to thank representatives markey, hastings, young, killeding, cole and lujan for their meaningful work on this legislation and i ask my colleagues to vote yes on this important bipartisan bill to support native families and communities and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the
5:34 pm
gentleman from new mexico reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? mr. bishop: i am pleased to yield as much time as he may consume to the gentleman from oklahoma who has proven an expert as well as totally versed on the issues of native americans in the united states, the gentleman from oklahoma, mr. cole. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. cole: i thank the gentleman for yielding and for those exceptionally generous comments. i rise today in support of h r. 205, the hearth act and commend the gentleman for working so hard for passage of this important piece of legislation. increased economic opportunity is the best way to raise the standards of living for tribal members. this legislation will help break down barriers to economic development by making need red forms to tribal leasing regulations. h.r. 205 will streamline the existing bureaucratic process
5:35 pm
for leasing tribal trust lands by providing indian tribes with the option to develop and manage their own surface leasing regimes. existing law requires that each lease of tribal surface lands be approved by the sec are e-- secretary of the interior. the secretarial approval process is costly, time consuming, often results in lost business and economic opportunities for tribal communities and far too cumbersome to be helpful to those it's designed to protect. these lease reforls come from a pilot program which implemented this same regime on the navajo reservation over a decade ago. based on the success of that pilot, it's only natural that these reforms be available to all tribes. under h.r. 205, once a tribe's own surface regime is approved by the department of interior, the tribe can approve leases on
5:36 pm
land unders its control. passage of h.r. 205 will allow tribals -- tribes to assume responsibility for their land and encourage more housing and economic development on indian lands resulting ultimately in job creation. this bill has strong bipartisan support is a priority for indian country and is strongly supported by the administration. it empowers tribes, encourages tribal self-government, decreases -- decreases the dependency of tribes on self-government and speeds up economic development in indian country. i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of h.r. 205, the hearth act. again, i want to commend the gentleman from new mexico for his hard worked on this -- hard work on this important legislation and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time the gentleman from utah reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico rise? mr. of heinrich: i yield such
5:37 pm
time as he may consume to the gentleman from american samoa. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: i could not help but listen with tremendous interest and also to commend my good friend from oklahoma who also is the co-chair of our native american caucus and i fully associate myself with the eloquent remark he is has made in addressing the needs of this legislation that needs to be passed. i want to commend my good friend from utah and the gentleman from new mexico for mare hgget -- for their management of this legislation that is so important to our native american community and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman yields -- the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new mexico. mr. heinrich: i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker: the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i urge adoption of the bill and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 205 as amended. those opposed, no. -- those in favor say aye.
5:38 pm
those opposed, no. mr. bishop: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from florida seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 4240, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 4240, a bill to re-authorize the north korean human rights act of 2004 and
5:39 pm
for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from florida, ms. ros-lehtinen, and the gentleman from california, mr. berman, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from florida ms. ros-lehtinen: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend and submit extraneous materials on for the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. ms. ros-lehtinen: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. ros-lehtinen: i rise in support of h r. 4240, the ambassador jamente r. lilley and congressman stephen j. solarz north korea human rights he re-authorization act of 202. i would like to thank mr. berman and the dozens of bipartisan co-sponsors as we work to continue the human rights work we began a decade ago. north korea is one of the worst
5:40 pm
human rights violators and that has been passed on to the newest generation. they release read port that the new leader maintains the same hellish gulag as his father and grandfather did before him. hundreds of thousands of children are forced into slave labor and starved. even outside the work camps, the north korean people enjoy in freedom of speech, press or assembly. they have authorized the on the spot execution of those attempting to flee the country. a regime that maims its own people with impunity can't be trusted to keep its agreements with foreigners. thus, solving the north korean human rights issue is an integral part of addressing the north korean security threat. north korean women and girls are brutalized and trafficed in china where they are sold into forced marriage and slavery. china, which sets on the u.n.'s
5:41 pm
body, continues to forcibly repatriate north koreans into danger. h.r. 4240 will continue the important bipartisan work of the north korean human rights act by extending until 2017, its authorities to pr mote human rights protections and free do information for the people of north korea. with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? mr. berman: i rise in strong support of h.r. 4240. i ask unanimous consent that my statement be included in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. berman: and i yield for a statement on this bill to my friend and colleague from american samoa, the ranking member of the asia and pacific subcommittee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: i ask unanimous consent to extend and
5:42 pm
revise my rorks. -- my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. faleomavaega: i ask that my fall statement be made part of the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. faleomavaega: i commend the gentlewoman on the -- the chair of the foreign affairs committee and mr. berman for bringing this legislation. i am in full support and i do associate myself with the comments and statements made earlier by our great chairman as well as our ranking member, mr. berman. i urge my colleagues to support this piece of legislation and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves the balance of his time. ms. ros-lehtinen: i'm prepared to yield back if the gentleman will yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? mr. berman: mr. speaker, in further speakers, i yield back the balance of my time. ms. ros-lehtinen: i have no further requests for time and i also yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h r. 4240 as amended? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
5:43 pm
in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the speaker pro tempore: thank you, mr. speaker. ms. ros-lehtinen: i ask unanimous condition sent that the house suspend the rules and pass house resolution 56 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentlewoman move that the house suspend the rules? ms. ros-lehtinen: i do. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: resolution expressing the sense of the house of representatives regarding the importance of preventing the government of iran from acquire agnew clear weapons capability. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from florida, ms. ros-lehtinen and the gentleman from california, mr. berman each will control 20 minutes. ms. ros-lehtinen: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative
5:44 pm
day it is revise and extend and insert extraneous material for the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. ros-lehtinen: i rise in support of h.r. 568 which i introduced with the gentleman from california, mr. berman. the iranian regime continues to pose an immediate and growing threat to the united states, to our allies, and to the iranian people. just over the weekends of it was reported the i.a.e.a. has a drawing showing an explosive containment chamber of the type needed for nuclear armed relate tissue arm related tests, this was from inside an iranian military base. iran is the world's leading sponsor of terrorism, aiding multiple gruels -- grouping including hezbollah and hamas which continue to destabilize the mideast and terrorize americans. it was only a few months ago that we failed on attack on
5:45 pm
american soil organized by the iranian regime. i have much more to say, mr. speaker, but at this time, i will reserve the balance of our time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from florida reserves the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? mr. berman: mr. speaker, i rise in strong support of h.r. -- h.res. 568, expressing the sense of the house of representatives regarding the importance of preventing the government of iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability, and yield myself three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. berman: this resolution is extremely timely. as next week, the five permanent members of the u.n. security council and germany will once again sit down with iran to negotiate su session of -- cessation of iran's nuclear weapons program. what better time for this body to send an unambiguous message
5:46 pm
that iran must never be allowed to achieve nuclear weapons capability and that its nuclear program must end once and for all? that's what this resolution does. . the united states must present iran. if iran were toe achieve that capability, saudi arabia and egypt would want that capability as well. others in the region would begin to defer to iran as if it were already a nuclear power and once iran acquires the capability, it will be able to build a nuclear weapon so quickly that we may not be able to stop it. stopping iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability is not simply an american priority but a global responsibility. i want to be straightforward about my review. a regime that brutalizes its own people, trains, arms proxies and
5:47 pm
props up the assad dictatorship and incites violence against and kills americans should never be allowed to reach the nuclear threshold. the threat demands that the united states work with our allies to do everything possible to prevent iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability. no option, as the president has said, can be taken off the table. mr. speaker, the policy of preventing iran from obtaining a nuclear weapons capability is not unfamiliar to the house of representatives. since 2009, we have passed five bills expressing congressional support for this policy. these bills have been supported by nearly every member of the house. the resolution before us today reminds us, as well as the world, how iran has flaunted its
5:48 pm
flagrant disregard for u.n. council security resolutions, an active sponsor of terrorism and engaged in human rights abuses against its own citizens and plotted a heinous attack on american soil. this resolution also reminds us of the urgency and the seriousness of the nuclear issue. as the woipped is closing, we send a clear message that the house is aligned with the administration, a policy that would have us sit back watch them get the bomb and then try to contain them. in fact, we have no choice. i yield myself an additional 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. berman: we have no choice but to stop its program but it ever reaches that poirnt. mr. speaker, i urge all of my colleagues to support this resolution and i reserve.
5:49 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlewoman from florida. ms. ros-lehtinen: i yield myself such time as i may consume. as we know iran continues to sponsor vial enlt extremeist views in iraq and afghanistan that have killed our men and women in uniform. with a nuclear weapons capability, the regime would dramatically increase its ability to strengthen the united states and our allies. we are running out of time to stop. estimates from the u.s. and israelly officials indicate that iran could develop nuclear weapons in less than one year and even before the regime actually develops nuclear weapons, they could enter into a zone of immunity and after that point, we have few options left to stop nuke iran going nuclear. and they are trying to run down the clock.
5:50 pm
the more recent set of negotiations are another way for iran to hold off western sanctions and buy more time. we need to stop the regime before it poses the capability to develop nuclear weapons, not before it makes the decision to develop nuclear weapons, because we may not know that they have actually made that decision until it is too late. and once that regime enters the zone of immunity, it can decide to develop nuclear weapons and we would probably not be able to stop them. with that, i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from florida reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. berman: i yield two minutes to the minority whip, mr. hoyer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, the gentleman from california has been a leader on this issue as has the chair of the committee, representative
5:51 pm
ros-lehtinen. representative berman has been a leader and reminds us of how important it is to prevent the rise in nuclear war and nuke lar-armed iran and we are fortunate as a country to have a partnership between the chair and the ranking member focused like a laser on this issue. i thank my friend, mr. berman, and my friend, ms. ros-lehtinen. mr. berman has been instrumental in securing funding for the employment of the iron dome and short range rockets in the hands of terror groups like ham asand hezbollah. i rise in strong support of the chair and ranking member's resolution. and i'm proud to be a co-sponsor with them of the resolution. american interests in the middle east is iran's nuclear program.
5:52 pm
this resolution makes clear that it is in america's security interests not to contain a nuclear iran, but to prevent one. a nuclear iran would destabilize a volatile region where so many american troops are stationed and one so vital to the energy supplies. it is committed to destruction of our ally israel and threaten americans throughout the world. iran is believed to be pursuing not only a nuclear capability but delivering technologies that could threaten our allies in europe and the middle east and american assets in the region. thankfully, the obama administration has taken a strong lead in confronting iran. president obama has a wide coalition of support and imposed the strongest sanctions that iran has ever faced. 30 additional seconds?
5:53 pm
mr. berman: i yield to the gentleman. mr. hoyer: we are hitting them at its oil exports and banking sector. the policy has not been containment but prevention. this resolution reaffirms the administration's prevention policy and i urge my colleagues to support it as a strong sign that iran must not be allowed to obtain a nuclear weapon. and i congratulate the chair, representative ros-lehtinen, and the ranking member berman on their strong and unwavering leadership that is important to the national security of the united states of america and international global security as well. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will receive a message. >> mr. speaker, i have been directed by the senate to inform the house that the senate has passed without amendment h.r. 2072 an act to reauthorize the
5:54 pm
bank of the united states and for the following purposes. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from florida rise? ms. ros-lehtinen: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. ros-lehtinen: possession of the capability to produce a nuclear weapon would be almost as useful vs having one. tehran would be able to intimidate its neighbors by reminding us that they could develop nuclear weapons any time the regime wanted. tie ran my decide not to reveal whether or not it had developed nuclear weapons and keeping the world guessing and off balance indefinitely all while claiming innocence. tehran would be in the driving seat and the security of united states, israel and many other allies would be in their hands. we need to make clear that containing a nuclear iran is not an option that nothing short of
5:55 pm
stopping iran from developing nuclear weapons capability is good enough. so that is why ranking member berman and i have introduced the bill before us house resolution 568 which supports preventing the iranian regime from acquiring nuclear weapons capability and rejects any policy on any efforts to contain a nuclear iran. it supports the right and democratic aspirations of the iranian people and lastly, urges the president to reaffirm the unseptember built of an iran with a nuclear weapons capability and oppose any policy that would rely on containment as an option. with that, i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from florida reserves the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? mr. berman: i'm very pleased to yield three minutes to the gentleman from ohio, mr. kucinich. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for
5:56 pm
three minutes. mr. kucinich: thank my friend from california but i must disagree with him. this resolution contains broad and dangerous language that would undermine any delementic solution regarding iran's nuclear program. without explicit language stating there is no authorization for military action, this could be interpreted as a blank check for war. former secretary of state powell's chief of staff has stated, quote, this resolution reads like the same piece of music that got us into the iraq war, unquote. did not congress learn anything from being husbandled into a war based on misrepresentations? at a time when the u.s. is engaging in its first successful direct talks with iran, it is more critical for congress to support these negotiations. if language was added to h.res. 568 to make it absolutely clear that this bill does not constitute an authorization for war and only congress can make
5:57 pm
such an authorization, it still puts members of congress on record as opposing a delementic solution paving the way to war with iran. congress has rejected its power to declare war and now we want to tell the president he can't declare diplomacy. we must reject this that might lead the u.s. into war and ties the president's hands. have we not lost enough of our brave men and women to causes that are not in the interest of the u.s.? h.res. 568 lowers the bar for war by changing long-standing u.s. policy that iran must not acquire nuclear weapons but instead drawing the red line for military action that iran achieving a nuclear weapons capability. the term capability is undefined in the underlying resolution and it could be applied to any country with a civilian nuclear program including japan and
5:58 pm
brazil. this sets a precedent that could cause us to stumble from one war into another. and what? we haven't had enough wars? not all this is devoted to building bombs. this is a significant shift in u.s. policy that could threaten critical upcoming negotiations with iran on may 23. a negotiated deal would provide for iranian enrichment for peaceful purposes under the nuclear weapons treaty for strict safeguards and inspections. i want to point out, the former chief has stated that attacking iran will encourage them to make a bomb. there is a sentment saying, attacking iran is the stupidest thing i ever heard of and will be followed by war and we know how it starts but not know how
5:59 pm
it will end. quote, i think our plomeds is having an effect said current chairman of the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from florida rise? ms. ros-lehtinen: this resolution reaffirms the position of the house with respect to u.s. policy of an iran nuclear program. efforts to misrepresent this resolution distracts from the real problem, which is the increasing threat posed by iran's nuclear program and the need to prevent iran from obtaining nuclear weapons capability. tehran has lied to the world about its secret nuclear activities and has violated international nonproliferation obligations and has repeatedly threatened to destroy our ally israel. just earlier this year, it was said that this cancer, israel,
6:00 pm
must be destroyed in the region and this will without doubt come to fruition. it is clear that iran cannot be trusted with uranium enrichment or any component of the nuclear program, even the u.n. security council resolutions have demanded that iran stop all uranium enrichment. unless compelled to change course, iran will soon have all of the basic components or capabilities to produce a nuclear weapon. the only thing that will be left for them to do will be to put the pieces together. according to the international atomic energy agency, iran is expanding its stockpiles of uranium, advancing its missile capabilities and burying and hiding its nuclear infrastructure. if that were not enough, the smoking gun in the november, 2011 report was that iran carried out, quote, work on the development of a design of a nuclear weapon including the
6:01 pm
testing of components, end quote. in addition, the iaea uncovered evidence that iran was attempting to miniaturize a warhead to fit on top of a ballistic missile. fast forward to this week, drawings revealed showing a secret chamber at a secret facility for a type needed for nuclear weapons testing. the regime is building up its capacities on all fronts and when it has mastered all of these, tehran will intimidate its neighbors and engage in threatening actions and flip the switch and produce nuclear weapons at any up time. the u.s. and other responsible nations would have no other option but to sit in fear of this state-sponsor of terrorism. we must reaffirm our commitment through adoption of this resolution and stronger sanctions legislation to prevent this doomsday scenario from
6:02 pm
becoming a reality. with that, i reserve. . . the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman rise? mr. berman: i'm pleased to yield one minute to the delegate from samoa, ranking member of the subcommittee on asian american committee, mr. faleomavaega. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman veck niced. mr. faleomavaega: i ask unanimous consent that the full text of my statement be made part of the record on this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. faleomavaega: it's important to understand that a nuclear capable iran is a threat to the world and to the state of israel where they continue to threaten israel's existence by pledging that israel must be wiped off the map. this is a direct threat to our closest ally in the mideast. iran's reckless attitude continues to stimulate unrest
6:03 pm
in the mideast and i fear that their program will cause other countries to develop their own nuclear programs. i thank ms. ros-lehtinen and mr. berman and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. for what purpose does the -- the gentlewoman from florida reserves the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? mr. berman: i'm pleased to yield one minute to the gentlelady from maryland, ms. wedrds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for what period of time? mr. berman: one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman veck niced for one minute. mr. ed -- ms. edwards: thank you, mr. berman, for yielding the time. i'd like to engage in a colloquy. after reading the resolution and studying it, i have a couple of questions and i would ask that you clarify your understanding about the amendment and the resolution.
6:04 pm
that is, the resolve clauses, especially clauses four through seven, are of some concern to me but i'm interested in hearing from you. in your view, does this resolution authorize an -- constitute an authorization for the use of military force? mr. berman: if the gentlelady will yield, absolutely not. this resolution is in no way intended and in no way can it be interpreted as an authorization for the use of military force. it is a nonbinding resolution that endorses a diplomatic resolution to the iranian nuclear program. it includes no operative authorizations regarding the use of force. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. ms. edwards: thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves the balance of his time.
6:05 pm
for what purpose does the gentlelady rise? ms. ros-lehtinen: i yield myself such time as i may consume. some may put forth the argument that this resolution undermines and threatens the ongoing p-5 plus one negotiations. well, the truth is, mr. speaker, that the iranian regime is using these negotiations as a way to buy time and continue enrichment without any additional sanctions. time and again, the united states has come to the table with iran, made concessions -- made concession after concession and left with nothing in return. in one example last month, the los angeles times reported that u.s. officials are now willing to let iran continue enriching iranian even though multiple u.n. security council resolutions demand that iran immediately halt uranium enrichment. today's "new york times" reports, iran sees success in staaling nuclear issues. it states, iranees -- iran's
6:06 pm
norkses team may be less intred in reaching a settlement than in buying time and establishing the legitimatecy of its enrichment program. end quote. it's time to stop glorifying negotiations for the sake of negotiations. this resolution strengthens the u.s. position and our leverage. with that, i reserve the balance of our time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from florida reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? mr. berman: i'm pleased to yield one minute to a member of the foreign affairs committee, my friend from florida, mr. deutch. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. deutch: mr. speaker, i thank the gentleman from california and i rise today in strong support of house resolution 568, a resolution making clear that the united states policy toward iran is not one of containment but one
6:07 pm
of prevention. i'm pleased to have co-swro have deuced this -- co-introduced this resolution with my colleagues. we must understand that failing to prevent a nuclear armed iran would ignite a destabilizing arms race in the mideast, would threaten the existence of our ally israel and would threaten the security of the american people. now is not the time to roll back crippling economic sanctions nor should we fall victim to this regime's penchant for hiding behind the pretense of gos simply to buy more time. with this resolution, we'll seend a message to iran's regime and the world that the u.s. will accept nothing less than a strict policy of prevention when it comes to this regem's ill list quest for nuclear weapons. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. for what purpose does the gentlelady --
6:08 pm
ms. ros-lehtinen: i reserve the balance of our time to close. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman rise? mr. berman: i do have a few more speakers. i am pleased to yield to the ranking member of the europe subcommittee on the house foreign affairs committee, the gentleman from new york, mr. meeks, one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. meeks: madam speaker, i rise -- mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.res. 568, this resolution supports president obama's policy toward iran. as the president stated in the annual convention at march, the iran leaders should understand that i do not have a policy of containment. his commit. to security is ironclad. america has dealt with israel under this administration, increasing every single year
6:09 pm
even in tough domestic budget environments but above all, president obama has directed his administration to prevent, not merely con tape, iran achieving nuclear weapons capability. i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of this resolution supporting the president's position and affirming that the u.s.-israel relationship is too important to be distorted by politics and i thank chairman ros-lehtinen and ranking member howard berman for bringing us together in a bipartisan way and support this resolution. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. berman: i'm pleased to yield one minute to the gentleman from new jersey, an individual who knows a lot about this subject, mr. holt. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey -- both gentlemen from new jersey know a lot about this. this gentleman is recognized for one minute.
6:10 pm
mr. holt: the threat of nuclear proliferation is the greatest threat to world peace. a nuclear iran would threat then united states and our allies and destabilize the re. this is not an authorization for mill tear force, it's not a call for war. i would not support this resolution if it were. our shared goal must be to persuade iran to end its nuclear weapons program, that's president obama's purpose in agreeing to gos. that's our purpose here. the world does not have many tools available, but -- that we should use and the world is united in using commike and diplomatic pressure. this does not preclude diplomatic resolution. in fact, it makes diplomatic resolution more possible. ultimately, iran should decide that it's not in her people's interest for iran to pursue nuclear weapons and we and all nuclear powers should stop behaving as if we think nuclear weapons are beneficial for a country.
6:11 pm
this resolution will help move us in that direction. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. berman: could we get indication of the time remaining on both sides. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman controls six minutes and the gentlewoman from florida controls 10 minutes. mr. berman: and the chair wishes to close, as i understand it. so, i'm going to yield a minute and a half now to the other expert from new jersey, mr. andrews. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for a minute and a half. mr. andrews: i ask unanimous consent to reth rhett -- to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. andrews: i'd like to thank chairwoman rostrost, ranking member behr -- chairwoman ros-lehtinen and ranking member berman for bringing this legislation forward.
6:12 pm
i regret but do not doubt its necessity. the issue raised is not whether we are authorizing war because we clearly are not. the issue is not whether the president would have to come to this chamber, any president, should he conclude that war is necessary. because he clearly would. the issue in this resolution is not whether we should conduct negotiation bus how we should conduct negotiations. and this resolution gives us an emphatic opportunity to say that when we are negotiating with a country that has conceived its nuclear weapons program in credit, that is ha brandished its nuclear weapons program with the rhetoric of hostility and for whom the attainment of a nuclear weapon would be frouth with peril for free people everywhere, then in the context of that negotiation, our position must be that we will not support or
6:13 pm
stand for an iran with nuclear weapons. this is the issue. i would urge a yes vote. again, i thank the chair and ranking member for their patriotic and unified leadership on this question. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yield back. the gentleman from california. mr. berman: thank you, mr. speaker. i'm pleased to yield three minutes to my friend from oregon, mr. blumenauer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman veck niced for three minutes. mr. blumenauer: thank you. i appreciate the gentleman's courtesy in permitting me to speak on this. there is no dispute in this chamber that a nuclear armed iran is completely unacceptable. that's why it was so encouraging to hear the democratic whip say with assurance, and i think we all agree, that we are hitting iran where it hurts the most. the news this weekend was filled with accounts of dark
6:14 pm
ships of oil tankers of iran that are unable to deliver oil. they are having their oil trade significantly constricted. their economy is being battered. their currency in free fall. the president has assembled the broadst coalition we have seen uniting behind this diplomatic effort. we have a range of people in the past who have been, i think, too sympathetic to iran or at least have not stood up to them. but they are falling in place with us. now we are on the verge of what hopefully will be encouraging diplomatic efforts scheduled to start next week. the resolution claims to support and endorse diplomacy put in fact, the timing and the
6:15 pm
wording undercuts that. now is the time that we ought to be united and we ought to be focused, we ought to make sure we have a positive environment to seize on the pain that is being inflicted on the regime, to be able to capitalize on the coalition and be able to make progress. instead, we have a resolution, and the concepts have been bandied about now for several months, but we have a resolution that's rushed to the house floor, timed on settling before the negotiations, it never had a hearing, never had a markup, there was no opportunity to find out what actually the implications are of changing a standard from preventing iran from acquiring nuclear weapons to preventing iran from obtaining nuclear weapons capabilities. these are not small matters and
6:16 pm
they bear on the ultimate success of our coalition, the diplomacy, because every expert has concluded that an armed intervention, military attack against iran, would be disastrous for all, all, involved. my colleague from ohio quoted people from the israeli government who are convinced that military action would be folly. . we shouldn't be at this point or casting a cloud over the negotiations. it's not necessary and nonproductive and urge a no vote. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. berman: i'm going to yield once again to the gentlelady from maryland 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for 30 seconds. >> if i could just ask you
6:17 pm
whether under this resolution the president would be required to come to the congress for a specific authorization for the use of military force? mr. berman: i yield myself the remainder of our time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. the president is the commander in chief. there is no authorization for the use of force. contrary to what we have said earlier, but my friend from ohio, whatever one thought about the decision to go to war in iraq, five months before that, congress very explicitly provided an authorization for the use of force. there is nothing in this resolution and no intention in this resolution to provide that authorization. nuclear weapons capability, three elements defined by the director of national intelligence, fissile material production, one.
6:18 pm
designed weaponization and testing of a warhead, and a delivery vehicle. to be nuclear-capable you have to master all three elements. while iran has the delivery system, they have not mastered, but they are making progress on steps one and two. and if one day when they have mastered all the other elements and they kick out the inspectors and they shut off their cameras, i consider them nuclear capable. this is about achieving a goal through economic sanctions, rigorously to achieve a diplomatic resolution. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman's time has expired. the gentlewoman from florida is recognized. ms. ros-lehtinen: i would like to yield myself such time as i may consume.
6:19 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. ros-lehtinen: two months ago, president obama extended the national emergency as we heard with respect to iran declaring that the regime's activities pose and i quote, an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy and economy of the united states, end quote. well, this resolution is an important statement clarifying congressional commitment to countering the iranian threat, however, our focus must be rapidly and dramatically ratcheting sanctions without the glaring exceptions we now have. we must compel the iranian regime to permanently and verifybly dismantle its nuclear weapon, abandon its unconventional ballistic missile program and end its support for violent extremists. we do not want to look back and wish we had heeded the warning
6:20 pm
signs. we await the other body's strengthening and passage of companion legislation that to measures of the house passed months ago. we must meet our responsibility to the american people and protect the security of our nation, our allies and the world from this threat of a nuclear-capable iran. with that, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from florida yields back. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 568. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended -- ms. ros-lehtinen: i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. pursuant to clause 8, rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. pursuant to clause 12-a
6:21 pm
6:22 pm
6:23 pm
6:24 pm
6:25 pm
6:26 pm
this includes revenue increases and public investment. the republicans seem disinterested in that and compromise seems to have become a sign of weakness. that's a very nice platform you laid out but is there any chance of getting that through our political system? >> i think the re-- i think reality forces it. we have come to the judgment as has all the other bipartisan efforts to look at this, from bowles-simpson to drisdz lin- domenici and the senate six or senate eight, whatever they call thems now, to do this in a way that meets these other challenges you face, you can't do it i think all measures show
6:27 pm
that that's shared by everyone, republicans and independents and democrats. we're not talking about asking americans to embrace increased revenue without a comprehensive set of restraints on spending so we're reducing deficits as we do this. what we're saying is, here's a balanced package where you can say to people who are going to ask to pay modestly higher shares of revenue well, can assure them that that contribution is going to go to, come alongside of reforms that lock in sustainable deficits for the long run but at the same time we're asking the vast bulk of americans who recognize we're going to have to slow the rate of growth in health care costs that that sacrifice is not going to go to support tax cuts we can't afford. tax rates that are unaffordable
6:28 pm
in that context. that's the basic balance and frame work. i think reality will drive the american political system toward that result. >> i'm glad you're endorsing reality. the peterson people -- >> there's a famous muhammad ali line, he says, you know, i'm not going to get this perfect, he used to come in the ring and my opponent's had a strategy, and then i hit them. we're confronting the basic fiscal mass, and this fiscal mass is not republican or democratic, it's just reality. >> the peterson foundation had some kind of contest on facebook to come up with questions to ask you, one came from a guy named rick pollack from vermont, he asked, how bad does the debt have to get before there's serious bipartisan effort to make difficult choices and how close to the edge do you think we are
6:29 pm
right now? >> i think anybody whose -- who has had the responsibility of governing has to recognize that these debts are unsustainable over the long run. weave 10-year problem, we have an immediate problem of restoring the deficits to a level where the debt starting fall bug we also have a 50-year problem, a 100-year problem. beyond that period we have challenges. we have to bring it back to earth. but we are in a much stronger position to manage those challenges than is true for any other major economy in the world because we're a younger country, because our growth rates are stronger, because we started with relatively low debt burdens for the crisis and because the level of taxes in our economy is so remarkably low and because the commitments we make in our safety net are still very modest compared to the needs of most americans. we're in a much stronger position to deal with these things, so we should put this
6:30 pm
in perspective. we have the unique ability for the country not to put ourselves in the position where we commit to an irrespopsable path to austerity because of fear of what's a long-term but manageable problem and sacrifice the needs and challenges of the country. we can't put it off forever. we're close enough now for this to matter a lot. we can't run the country on the assumption that the world is always going to have confidence in the ability of the american political system to act. >> we will break away here, you can see that in our video library at c-span.org. the house is coming back in for three votes on bills debated this afternoon. 8 of rule 20, proceedings will resume on motions to suspend the rules previously postponed. votes will be taken in the following order. h.r. 365, by the yeas and nays. h.r. 3874 by the yeas and nays.
6:31 pm
h.r. 205 by the yeas and nays. the first electronic vote will be conducted as a 15-minute vote. remaining electronic votes will be conducted as five-minute votes. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the the gentleman from texas, mr. smith, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 365 as amended, on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 365, a bill to encourage, enhance and integrate blue alert plans throughout the united states in order to disseminate information when a law enforcement officer is seriously injured or killed in the line of duty. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device.
6:32 pm
this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
6:33 pm
6:34 pm
6:35 pm
6:36 pm
6:37 pm
6:38 pm
6:39 pm
6:40 pm
6:41 pm
6:42 pm
6:43 pm
6:44 pm
6:45 pm
6:46 pm
6:47 pm
6:48 pm
6:49 pm
6:50 pm
6:51 pm
6:52 pm
6:53 pm
6:54 pm
6:55 pm
6:56 pm
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 394, the nays are 1. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3874 as amended. the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 333, h.r. 3874, a bill to provide for the conveyance of eight cemeteries that are located on national forest system land in black hills national forest, south dakota.
6:57 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
6:58 pm
6:59 pm
7:00 pm
7:01 pm
7:02 pm
7:03 pm
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 400. the nays are one. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. without objection, the title is amended. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 205 as amended on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 294. h.r. 205. a bill to amend the act titled,
7:04 pm
an act to authorize policing of restrictioned indians lands for public, religious, recreational, business, and for other purposes requiring the grant of long-term leases through august 19, 1955 to provide for indian tribes to enter into certain leases without prior express approval from the secretary of the interior. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
7:05 pm
7:06 pm
7:07 pm
7:08 pm
7:09 pm
7:10 pm
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 400. the nays are zero. 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table.
7:11 pm
without objection, the title is amended.
7:12 pm
the speaker pro tempore: will the members please clear the well. for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota seek recognition? >> madam speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 4045, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 4045, a bill to modify the department of defense program guidance relating to the award of mobilization respite absent administrative absent days to members of the reserve
7:13 pm
component to exempt any member who is qualified levelization commenced before october 1, 2011, and continued on or after that date from the changes to the program guidance that took effect on that date. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from minnesota, mr. kline, and the gentlewoman from guam, ms. bordallo, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from minnesota. mr. kline: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. kline: i ask that all members have five ledges days to revise and extend their remarks on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. kline: madam speaker, i rise today in support of my bill -- the speaker pro tempore: will the gentleman suspend. will the members please take their conversations off the floor. the gentleman is recognized.
7:14 pm
mr. kline: thank you, madam speaker. i rise in support of the bill h.r. 4045, legislation that would ensure members of the national guard and reserve, including members of minnesota's famed red bulls, will receive the benefits they have earned. simply put this legislation ensures that promises made are promises kept. the bill will grandfather members of the minnesota national guard and more than 49,000 other service members around the country who mobilize and deployed under the pentagon's original post deployment mobilization respite absence program policy providing them the benefits they were promised prior to deployment. since september 11, 2001, members of the reserve component had been uniquely affected by long deployments, leaving their families and careers to answer the nation's call. in january, 2007, the department of defense instituted the pdmra
7:15 pm
program to allow service members the opportunity to spend more time with their families and readjust after multiple deployments in excess of 12 to 24 months. i would ask my colleagues to reflect on that number. 12 to 24 months. that is one to two years away from their families and their homes, putting their own lives on hold to protect and defend our families and our nation. . last year, after more than 2,000 minnesota soldiers were deployed, the pentagon changed the pdmra program significantly reducing the leave available to the red bulls and many others acost the nation. with little notice, many soldiers and their families were forced to cope with unexpected financial challenges, less time alone at home with loved ones and an increased urgency to find employment.
7:16 pm
h.r. 4045, as amended, provides the pentagon the authority to grandfather members of the national guard and reserve whose mobilization and deployment commenced before the pentagon's pdmra reduction policy took effect on october of last year. the legislation does three things. first, for service members still on active duty, the bill prvidse d.o.d. the authority to immediately restore their pdmra leave days lost and gives them the option of selling their leave in lue of taking the pdmra day if they determine that's in their best interest. second for service members still in the service, but off active duty, the bill provides d.o.d. the authority to provide a leave payment in lue of the days they would have received for their service during the change, and finally, the former service members who have left the military altogether but were affected during the pdmra
7:17 pm
policy change, the bill provides the d.o.d. authority to issue a payment in lue of the days they would have missed. in short, we're making these soldiers whole again and keeping our promises. this legislation is critical to ensure our sons and daughters in uniform receive the benefits they were promised and have rightfully earned. sergeant matthew hiti returned home to minnesota after his third deployment with the minnesota national guard. while he's been away the last 11 months, his 7-year-old son charles learned to play t-ball. sernlt hite was there to -- sergeant hite wasn't there to see him play his first game. it's frustrating, said the sergeant, that we don't have the time we thought we'd have. every day, soldiers are
7:18 pm
stepping back into civilian lives. every day they are getting end dates. i am hoping this common sense effort to do right by our men and women in uniform will become law. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 4045 and i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentlelady from guam is recognized. ms. bordallo: i yield myself such time as i i might consume. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. ms. bordallo: i rise in strong support of this bill and i thank the gentleman from minnesota, mr. kline, for bringing this measure to the floor. i appreciate his continued leadership on pre- and post-deployment issues for the national guard. bethill -- the bill will correct an injustice for our national guardsmen and reservists who have been putting their lives on the line to defend our nation. the fiscal year 2013 defense authorization bill includes a provision that also address
7:19 pm
this is problem, but regardless, this sends a clear message to the department of defense that we want to fix this problem and quickly. the bill gives d.o.d. the clear authority they need to make the necessary changes and to do so before the defense authorization bill is likely to be pleated. the bill is widely supported by outside groups, including the military officers association of america, the national guard association of the united states, and the enlisted association of the national guard of the united states to name just a few. however, while i support the bill, i must raise a concern that this bill bypassed the normal committee process and the minority was not included in the decision to bring this measure to the floor. which violates our tradition of bipartisanship. still, in the interest of protecting our men and women in uniform, i stand in support of the bill and i urge all of my
7:20 pm
colleagues to support it as well. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota is recognized. mr. kline: thank you, madam speaker. at this time, i'm happy to yield three minutes to my friend and colleague, a naval officer, a helicopter pilot and a member of the minnesota delegation, mr. cravaack. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. cravaack: thank you, madam speaker. thank you, chairman kline. madam speaker, i rise today in support of a critically important bill which i am an original co-sponsor of, offered by my fell he member of the minnesota delegation, john kline. this program is an important program that allows service member the opportunity to readjust after deployments and spend more time with their families this earned leave further provides returning service members with more time in a less stressful environment -- and a less stressful
7:21 pm
environment to seek employment at a time when a job search is becoming increasingly more difficult. these earned benefits will help combat the high stress experienced from those who return from prolonged deployments. the minnesota national guard and others impacted by the pdmra change who have been deployed to the mideast were charged with the promise to defend our country. they have more than lived up to their end of the bargain to to keep their promise. now it is time for the defense of defense to live up to their end of the deal and provide the individuals with the full benefits they were promised at the time of their mobilization and deployment. as chairman kline addresses in his support for this bill, some of the service members affected by this policy change have performed multiple deployments in excess of 12 to 24 months since the beginning of the iraq war. that is one to four years they have been away from their families and away from the
7:22 pm
world in a combat environment. some of the same service members, peskly 2005 and 2007 iraq deployed service members could lose up to 24 days under the changes in the pdmra policy. i do not think it is too much to ask for those promised 24 days of leave for up to two years of deployed service, they should receive that leave. therefore it is important that we honor and respect the promises made that these families who sacrificed so much in the defense of their families. i had the privilege of welcoming the red bulls home if their deployment in iraq and kuwait. when i attended the deployment ceremony last year, one of the commanding officers of the brigade said to the families, i will bring them all home. true to his word, the first thing lieutenant colonel frizell said in a hand salute to the adjew tant general of
7:23 pm
the minnesota guard when his feet touched the ground was, i brought them all home, sir. madam speaker, it's now time to bring them all the way home. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 4045 which will protect the promises made to our reserve and national guard by ensuring the members receive the benefits they were promised and highly deserve. thank you and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the house will be in order. will members please take their conversations off the floor. the gentlelady from guam is recognized. ms. bordallo: thank you, madam speaker. i yield as much time as she may consume to the gentlelady from minnesota, ms. mccullough. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccullough: i rise today in strong support of h.r. 4045, this will will ensure that all
7:24 pm
members returning from overseas including the minnesota national guard's red bulls will receive the benefits they were promised. last year, after 2,000 minnesota's brave soldiers deployed, the department of defense reduced the amount of leave they would receive. for the pentagon to apply this change to soldiers already deployed is simply unacceptable. our men and women in uniform must be able to count on the benefits our nation promised then when -- promised them when they left home. h.r. 4045 will correct this by exempting service members like the red bull who had already deployed before the pentagon's policy shift. the passage of this bill is a victory for the entire minnesota delegation which worked so hard on it. i especially want to thank mr. kline for his perseverance on this issue and for getting it to the floor today. thank you very much, mr. cline. but as i -- mr. kline. but as i said, i applaud my colleagues for coming together
7:25 pm
on behalf of the minnesota red bulls and all the service members and their families. america's men and women in uniform dedicate their lives to defending our nation and its values and we are grateful for their outstanding service. as a daughter of a world war ii disabled veteran of the army air corps and as a member of the subcommittee on military appropriations, it is a privilege to work on behalf of those who served our country and make sure they receive every benefit they have earned. as the red bulls return home to minnesota from another deployment, they know they can count on their entire minnesota congressional delegation to have their back. i urge my colleagues to support this critical legislation and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentlewoman reserves. ms. bordallo: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. kline: i'm pleased to yield to soot member of the minnesota
7:26 pm
of the minnesota delegation, three minutes to mr. paulsen. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. paulsen: i also rise in support of h.r. 4045. the promises we make to our young men and women and those who serve and volunteer to put our nation's uniform on needs to be kept. this legislation does exactly that by ensuring that tens of thousands of service members will receive the benefits they were promised. in october of last year, the department of defense significantly changed the amount of earned time and leave time for our troops, but they failed to take into account reservists already deployed, including the 2,000 members of the minnesota national guard. madam speaker if we don't pass this legislation, members of the national guard and the reserve, including members of minnesota's famed red bulls,
7:27 pm
will stand to lose approximately 27 days of leave they were promised. they've already earned that leave. let's do the right thing. this is simple, this is straightforward, we need to keep the promises out there for our service men and women. i want to applaud chairman cline and all the members of the minnesota delegation for working together on something critical and important in sending a bipartisan message that we will stand behind our promises for our troops and our men and women in uniform. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman reserves. the gentlelady from guam is recognized. ms. bordallo: i yield such time as he may consume to the gentleman from minnesota, mr. walz. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. walz: i thank the gentlelady for yielding. also a thank you to my colleague from minnesota and a special thank you to colonel kline, unwavering support of our veterans for bringing this
7:28 pm
forward and trying to correct this injustice. you've heard it today, madam speaker, about a change in policy and while a stroke of the pen at the pentagon may not seem like that much, it impacts our veterans and their families. these are folks who have deployed, in many case, three times. once for nine months, once for 22 months, once for a year. we came up as a nation to make the determination that these people should have a little time of leave to -- when they come back, have time with their families, see children they may not have sell rated -- celebrated a birthday with, then maybe look for a job. by the pentagon changing this in mid stream, it's not so much the financial or monetary insult it's the insult to what these folks went through. when they went, they were promised a benefit. when they came back, we had cut it in half. we hear about a 99% and a 1%. there is a 99% and a 1% in this
7:29 pm
country. 1% serbing in uniform and serving overseas. 99% of us benefited from that sacrifice. i commend the delegation, i commend this house. if there's an issue that binds this nation together, it's the absolute unwavering support of those who are willing to lay down their lives an sacrifice time with their families to -- family to serve each and every one of us. the least we can do is make sure that the benefits that were promised, that were guaranteed, are delivers upon. it's the right thing to do, it's the right thing for the country, it bind us together and i want to thank all the folks who made this policy, urging my colleagues to support this piece of legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentlelady from guam. ms. bordallo: i thank the gentleman from minnesota, mr. walz, especially with his assistance with the reserve component caucus. i have no further speakers so i yield back, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from minnesota.
7:30 pm
mr. kline: i have no -- mr. kline i have no further speak -- mr. kline: i have no further speakers, you have seen from members of the minnesota delegation here tonight, mr. wauls, ms. mccollum, mr. paulsen, this affects members of the guard all over the country. aisle pleased that my friend and fellow committee member and fellow traveler, ms. bordallo is managing the debate on the other side of the aisle. we have traveled to some fairly remote corners of iraq and afghanistan and places like that other the years and i must say i've never been anywhere, anywhere where our nation was at conflict and where we had men and women serving in uniform that we didn't come across somebody from the guam national guard. so i really want to certainly thank her for her support of this legislation but her support of men and women in uniform everywhere, and i know from the reaction i see with
7:31 pm
those soldiers when they see ms. bordallo, that there is great affection there and respect both ways. again, i want to thank all who weighed in on this. it was clearly an injustice, it needed to be fixed and this is one of those times when we've come together as democrats and republicans, working together, we have senators, republicans and democrats in the senate, working the other body to move this through. speed counts here. every day this is delayed, another soldier loses the opportunity to take advantage of this paid leave. . with that, madam speaker, i urge my colleagues to support this legislation and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 4045, as amended. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the
7:32 pm
table. the chair announces the speaker's appointment pursuant to 201-b of the international religious freedom act of 1998, 22 u.s.c. 6431 note as amended, and the order of the house of january 5, 2011, of the following member on the part of the house to the commission on international religious freedom for a term ending may 14, 2014. the clerk: will elliott abrams of virginia. -- mr. elliott abrams of virginia. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will entertain one-minute requests.
7:33 pm
for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> madam speaker, request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. so ordered. mr. thompson: madam speaker, today i rise to recognize military mental health awareness day, which is tomorrow, may 16, 2012. our service members have made tremendous sacrifices for our country, many face serious conditions including potential anxiety, depression, anger, and a growing experience posttraumatic injury. all too many of these cases tragically result in suicide. according to the army during 2011, there were a total of 164 confirmed active duty suesides. for 2012 there have been 61 active duty suesides, 35 confirmed and 26 upped investigation. madam speaker, these statistics are daunting. one service member taking his or her own life is too many.
7:34 pm
in congress we have worked to increase access and availability and also remove the stigma associated with these conditions in hopes that more soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines will be more easily diagnosed and seek available resources and treatments. i want to thank everyone involved in military mental health awareness day as we continue the important work of delivering care to these brave men and women that serve this country with honor and distinction. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlelady from texas rise? without objection. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, thank you very much. there is nothing more precious than the nation's children. of course we love and respect our seniors, respect our families, respect our men and women in the united states
7:35 pm
military. in fact, america has a great future, but all of us realize that that future is grounded not only on our democratic principals but on what we do for our children. bullying in the nation's schools is at epidemic proportions. two weeks ago in my community one young person took a sock with a key or lock in it and caused another young person to leave that school in the hospital in an ambulance with some 15 or 20 stitches. the results of bullying that resulted in the suicide of one college student, the suicide of a 13-year-old. we have certainly seen the bullying movie. i want to thank lee hirsch for joining me last week in listening to the stories of those who will tell real stories. today i introduce h.r. 5770, which is the anti-bullying
7:36 pm
prevention law, including the re-authorization of juvenile block grant. it is imperative this congress make a national statement that bullying is unacceptable but more importantly we give the tools to the school district around the nation and communities to intervene and prevent bullying. our children are precious. i ask my colleague to join in a bipartisan manner on this legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 5, 2011, the gentlelady from alabama, mrs. roby, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader. mrs. roby: thank you, madam speaker. it is truly an honor tonight to stand with other freshmen colleagues to discuss the ever important number one constitutional responsibility of this congress, in my opinion, very clearly spelled out and i quote, to provide for the common defense. of course this week the house
7:37 pm
will debate on h.r. 4310, the fiscal year 2013 national defense authorization act. as you know, mr. speaker, we marked this up in committee last week into the wee hours of the morning and we passed the armed services committee -- it passed the house armed services committee on may 10 with a bipartisan vote of 56-5. and this legislation specifically provides for pay funding and authorities for america's men and women in uniform. and it's the key mechanism by which we fulfill our constitutional duty to provide for the common defense. this bill does many things, but i thought what i would do in this -- beginning of this hour is i wait, we see some of my freshmen colleagues walking in the room to join us tonight, i would start by just telling you what happened to me just this
7:38 pm
morning as is often does, i of correspond have two very large military installations in the alabama second districts. so i oftentimes have military men and women in uniform on my plane as i fly back and forth here and from washington. this morning my husband had come in with me because i had some extra bags and he was helping me and i could tell that there was this family sitting there and i suspected that the young man was about to be deployed, and the father came over to me and spoke. now, i'm away from my children as are all members of congress, but they are usually for very short periods of time and where that sacrifice is, it's difficult in a lot of ways, it pails in comparison to the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform who put themselves in harm's way not to mention their family members who are also sacrificing their children and their spouses and their loved
7:39 pm
ones. this morning on this plane ride not unlike many others it was a stark reminder to me and to my family as my husband stood by and watched this family as they greeted us and clearly the mom had a little tear in her eye and it was just such a huge reminder to us of what individuals who have chosen to enter into our military service, what they do for us to fight for the very freedoms that allow for me, mr. speaker, to stand in front of you tonight to discuss this ever important act. so to the young man i met this morning in montgomery, alabama's regional airport, to all of our men and women serving all over this great nation and this world, thank you from the bottom of my heart for the privilege to serve them as a member of the house armed services committee and as a member of this
7:40 pm
congress. it is a tremendous honor and a privilege and one that i certainly do not take lightly. overall this bill that we passed out of committee that we will take up this week restores fiscal sanity to our defense budget. and keeps faith with america's men and women that i already mentioned and aligns our military posture in this very, very dangerous world and rebuilds a force after a decade of war. now, do not be mistaken. you know that, mr. speaker, that we are currently working under the law, $487 billion in cuts to the department of defense. we have sat as members of the house armed services committee in committee hearing after committee hearing, where our joint chiefs and our commanders have sat in front of us and told us that, yes, in fact, we will
7:41 pm
have a smaller force as a result of these current cuts, and i think we could all agree that in these fiscal times that there's not an area that is funded by hardworking taxpayer dollars of this federal government that doesn't deserve harsh scrutiny when it comes to fiscal cuts. and our military is certainly going to sustain those with this $485 billion in cuts. but under the budget control act and the joint committee's failure to provide the necessary cut under that law, the automatic trigger that we here in congress call sequestration is set to take place at the beginning of january, next year. now, what we have heard in our committee hearings over and over and over again from secretary panetta, from general dempsey, and others is that our military
7:42 pm
cannot sustain another half trillion or more in cuts. not only would we have a smaller force, that there is a danger for a less capable force, particularly in this time in our nation's history as we continue to fight the war on terror both here at home and abroad. i bring all of this up to say that, again, the light in our military is our military families and the men and women who serve this country so honorably, and we as members of the house armed services committee and we as members of this united states congress have a duty to ensure that we are not only acting fiscally responsibly, but we are doing it in a way that ensures that those men and women have everything that they need to accomplish the task and the commission that we send them -- mission that we send them into.
7:43 pm
there are several suggestions that have been made as a result to the $487 billion in cuts as we downsize our force and one of them that came out and is of -- has been scrutinized, particularly is the c-130 decision. and i just want to spend a little time since i as a member of the committee had an amendment before the armed services committee last week to deal with the way that our military looked at these potential cuts and actually providing us with the information that we need to provide, that in turn provide oversight as members of this committee as to whether or not these are actual decisions that are going to provide us with the fiscal restraint that we need. the committee passed this amendment during markup, representative conyahweh --
7:44 pm
conaway from texas and representative palazzo from mississippi also were on this amendment regarding the air force and c-130's. i look forward with the members of the -- other members of the alabama delegation tomorrow to have a conversation specifically with secretary donnelly and general schwartz as it relates to these decisions regarding the c-130's. mind you, i want to be very clear when i say this, this could be c-130. this could be the abram tank, this could be any other aspect of our military where we need to be asking these same questions. certainly this is important to us, the representative that signed on to this amendment because the c-130 is located in our district but i want to be clear because this is not about just protecting the mission at home, this is about making sure that across the board we are
7:45 pm
asking the right question to protect the missions as i have already stated, as well as making decisions that are going to find the savings that we need. so our amendment very clearly just says, how did you determine which c-130 aircraft would be retired and relocated? and the methodologies underlying such determination, including what assumptions were made to define and shape these specific determinations, and the rationale for selecting various c-130 aircraft from regular and reserve components. and the details of the cost incurred, avoided, or saved with respect to these c-130's. here's the most important part, and again this is why i believe this amendment could be applied throughout our military, is that the g.a.o. has to audit the secretary's report to make sure that the true cost and benefit of the planned retirement and relocations are realized.
7:46 pm
. this amendment like so many others in the defense authorization act are straightforward, this is a straightforward provision -- provision to ensure that congress receives the necessary information to make our authorizing decisions in an objective manner that will benefit our men and women in uniform and the american taxpayer. i know -- i've got my friend here from new york and hopefully others that will be joining us, i know that we have many difficult decisions but i just urge all of my colleagues this week as we move through the national defense authorization act and all the amendments that will be debated and voted upon that we will do so with this young man who i spoke to this morning who is now deployed to kuwait for a year, that we will do so with him and so many thousands of others in mind as we move through making sure that we
7:47 pm
always to our best because we are supposed to keep faith with our military families and provide all that our men and women in our uniform need to accomplish the mission. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy, the gentleman from new york, mr. reed, will be recognized for the remainder of the hour. mr. reed: i rise to join with my colleague, mrs. roby, and applaud her leadership in taking the leadership this evening this discuss a critical issue we are dealing with here in washington as we go forward with the debate on the national defense authorization act. mr. speaker, as you know, this is the authorization bill that takes care of our men and women in our military ranks. and mr. speaker, i tender my comment this is evening based on the fact that i am the son of a career military officer, spent 20 years in the army, saw active duty in world war ii and
7:48 pm
korea, received the silver star, multiple purple hearts, multiple bronze stars for his efforts and sacrifices that he made in those forums defending america and standing up for all the freedoms and the beliefs that we all hold dear in america coast to coast. so i'm hon tored to be a son of such a distinguished individual in our armed services and though i never did wear the uniform, i carry with me the commitment that he passed on to my 11 older brothers and sisters that you always stand with our military. you always stand with our veterans, madam speaker. and that's why i join you today and tonight and come down here on the floor to discuss this important issue because as we face the national debt crisis that we all know on both sides of the aisle is real, $15.7 trillion of national debt is
7:49 pm
clearly unsustainable. and we have to have a conversation, an open and honest conversation with all the hardworking taxpayers of america and say here in washington, d.c., we are going to try to get our act together. and to make the common sense decisions when it comes to our fiscal house. and in that conversation, and as we go forward, as we did last week with sequestration and reconciliation that mr. ryan from wisconsin led, as we go forward with the debate on the national defense authorization act this week, we need to go forward recognizing the cuts that have already occurred on the defense side of the ledger. it's my understanding, looking at some of the numbers, that essentially 50% of the deficit reduction efforts to date has come at the expense of defense expenditures. that is approximately 20% of all -- of our federal budget is dedicate t.d. defense spending. that 20% of defense spending is
7:50 pm
already absorbing 50% of the deficit reduction efforts that we have led here in washington, d.c., primarily with the leadership of people like the lady from alabama and other leaders in the freshman class. so we have to make sure when we go forward, and we go forward in this debate, we recognize the sacrifice and the hard decision, and rightfully so, that defense has been part of this conversation of getting our fiscal house in order and every dollar needs to be scrutinized and that does include the defense budget. but i think we're at the part, madam speaker, where we have to be very sensitive to any additional cuts, those cuts that are going to be necessary because of the fiscal condition we find ourselves miss in america, that we do not cross that line in the sand that we must never break. and that line in the sand is making sure that our men and women in harm's way are given
7:51 pm
the resources, the equipment, the tools to not only protect them when they're afield fighting for us and defending freedom of america, but when they come home as veterans and earn, enjoy the benefits that they earn by engaging in that sacrifice by being in harm's way for all of us. we must make sure that we never cross that line with our cuts to our military that put those men and women in harm's way or those families that sacrificed so much with them to have to endure the situation where those benefits that they earned are taken away. so we will stand, i think, united in a strong voice to make sure that doesn't happen. i know i am committed to it, madam speaker and i will always stand, as my father taught me and taught my older brothers and sisters and my mother, you stand with the vets, stand with the military and though they have to be part of this
7:52 pm
conversation because of the harsh reality we find ourselves in with the $15. trillion worth of national debt, we cannot go that far that we jeopardize their very well-being and their sacrifices this they have recognized on our behalf. so i was pleased to see in the proposal out of the f.y. 2013 national defense authorization act that we were -- the fact that we were able to beat back the administration's proposal to make significant fee increases in the tri care program, that being the health benefit our veterans earn and enjoy and which serve over 9.3 million ben firary, including 5.5 million military retirees. i'm glad to see that we stopped that approach to dealing with the cuts on the tricare or fee increases on the tricare side. i will always want to stand for
7:53 pm
those common sense principles that say cuts, yes, we have to do them, but we cannot do them across that line. there's one area i would like to address before i yield to some of my colleague that was joined us here on the floor also, and that's the define -- detainee provisions of the national defense authorization act which are the issues, the language in the bill that deals with making sure the rights we enjoy as american citizens are protected when it comes to the detainment of individuals in america. and i am pleased to see that lang -- to see the language that i co-sponsored with the gentleman such as mr.ry jedge -- mr.ry jell who joined us from virginia and mr. landry from louisiana, when this came up last year in the debate, there was a spirited debate, if you recall, madam speaker new york which the issue of do american citizens still retain the rights guaranteed urn the
7:54 pm
constitution when it comes to the writ of habeas corpus. there was a spirited debate and i came down on the side that we need to make sure we protect that right for american citizens and any issues of detainment are done in respect to the constitution and all the rights we enjoy as free citizens in america. and i believe the bill did address that last year but there was a legitimate question raised about it. i'm pleased to see in this bill language, is my understanding, that will be very sure and make very clear that any american citizens detained in america has the rights guaranteed under the constitution and i hope my colleague from virginia will maybe touch on those issues and i'm proud to stand with them to make sure we send a clear message that american citizens continue to enjoy and will always continue to enjoy the rights and freedoms and protections as afforded to us under the constitution. and the writ of habeas corpus is secure and will continue to
7:55 pm
be secure as we move forward. we can go on and on but i know i have some colleagues, i got a nonfreshman member to join us to address this critical issue, we are pleased to have our senior members down here with us, with that, i yield to the gentleman from kentucky. >> i thank the gentleman for the opportunity to share withs you tonight, i remember those days, being both a freshman doing special orders and serving on the armed services committee before moving over to the ways and means committee. i appreciate the chance to share. one thing that i would emphasize, over the last 18 months, we heard a lot of arguments about the 99% and the 1%. mr. davis: it fueled a lot of arguments. the argument got clarified best by a group of army men and women who put together a video called the real 1%. it was focused on service members and their families.
quote
7:56 pm
most recently a company called ranger up t-shirts with a tie to my alumni in the rangers, more accurately stated it was the .45%. talk about the descending level of public involvement in the military oto almost a minimal level. people don't understand right now in this time that we're in the midst of two wars, we have threats of a wide sprecktrum we have never had before and when i enlisted in the military 36 years ago next month, our military, our army was twice as big as it is today. we're carrying an operations tempo that's significant. i'm concerned about the cuts and have made those clear. i'm grateful for the leadership on the armed services committee to chairman mckeon to try to move the numbers in the right direction. my west point classmates are commanding divisions today, who are out there facesing the
7:57 pm
challenges of increased operations tempo, what an operations tempo, that's how often the units have to rotate or deploy into a theater of operations, whether it's peaceful or hostile. with the draw downs in personnel of operations in afghanistan continuing into -- through 2014 and beyond, potentially that means the deployment rate of marines and soldiers could actually be greater than it was in recent years and actually exceed the time in the surge in iraq in 2007. that's unconscionable to me. the key to successful doctrine and to successful defense policy ultimately begins with investing in people. the second thing we do is address the threat. then after we address the threat eric we look at doctrines to deal with that and other systems. are there tuns to make cuts in defense to save money? absolutely. one of the challenges that gets missed in debates in washington, whether it's add money or cut money, is dealing with the root causes that
7:58 pm
demand that spending. for example, if we look at acquisition spending rather than cutting people. there's tremendous opportunities for cutting of spending. the federal acquisition regulations, defense acquisition regulations prescribe a level of overhead that would be considered unacceptable in the private sector. the gentleman from virginia, who is about to speak, who is a successful executive in the automotive industry, watched great changes take place over time in terms of what it took to bring a car to the marketplace. i'm going to mention this in perspective through a defense example that i personally have been touched by. toyota, who is headquartered in my district, redesigned every part on every vehicle and retrains every employee, the entire customer service network and distribution supply chains are dere-done every three years. the average time to bring an end item, a vehicle, online in the united states military right now is 15 years. now i keep in my office a memento as a former army
7:59 pm
aviator who flew here and in the mideast, i had two delightful tours in alabama where the current speaker pro tem represents, i was exite about the osprey coming online. i went to the factly in fort worth, i was out on the floor, managed to pick up a piece of scrap from -- it was cut off flight test article number one, the wing spar for flight test article 1, that was 22 june, 1987. here we are, almost 25 years later that aircraft has just come into service. there were starts, there were stops, there were huge additional costs that were put in by rimets that in many cases are entirely unnecessary to get a safe and flight worthy vehicle. what this comes down to is, if we can collapse the time frames from 15 years to five, we'll save all of that cost. we can afford to make the investments that are necessary in our active duty soldiers and in our active duty soldiers and in our

115 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on