Skip to main content

tv   U.S. House of Representatives U.S House of Representatives  CSPAN  April 25, 2018 4:32pm-6:33pm EDT

4:32 pm
4:33 pm
4:34 pm
4:35 pm
4:36 pm
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 225 and the nays are 189.
4:37 pm
the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from virginia, mr. goodlatte, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5447 as amended on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 5447, a bill to modernize copyright law, and for other purposes. 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.]
4:38 pm
4:39 pm
4:40 pm
4:41 pm
4:42 pm
4:43 pm
the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 415 and the nays are zero. 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent that i may hereafter be considered
4:44 pm
to be the first sponsor of h.r. 256 a bill originally introduced by representative farenthold of texas for the purpose of adding co-sponsors and requesting reprintings pursuant to clause 7 of rule 12. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. he house will come to order. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i rise today to honor the memory of two fallen heroes back home in florida. gilchrist sergeant county knoll ramirez and deputy taylor lindsey. these two officers were tragically murdered in the line of duty during an ambush shooting on april 19. mr. speaker, these two young men were selfless heroes, patriots, and everything we aspire to be as people, as a
4:45 pm
nation, and as americans. sergeant ramirez had been in law enforcement for seven years and leaves behind two young children and a wife. he had, as sheriff bobby schultz described it, an infectious smile. deputy lindsey joined the gilchrest county sheriff's office in 2013 and dedicated his time and efforts toward getting illegal drugs off our streets. please join us in honoring gilchrest county knoll ramirez and deputy taylor lindsey and all of our fallen heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure our safety. at this time, mr. speaker, i ask that the household a moment f silence. the speaker pro tempore: the house and the gallery will stand in a moment of silence.
4:46 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the chair will entertain requests for one-minute speeches.
4:47 pm
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from rhode island seek recognition? >> permission to address the house for one minute and revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. langevin: i rise today in recognition of autism awareness month. the c.d.c. estimates one in 68 children has been identified with autism. but a recent survey indicate that 1-45. as a proud uncle of a young man
4:48 pm
with autism, i understand the need for more resources to support in this area. i'm aware of the positive opportunities we can create by working together to build a better future. mr. speaker, i have been i have been involved in the annual rhode island imagine work which highlights screening and education in the entire ocean state community and raise resources. i look forward to continuing my work to support the autism project and other organizations that foster a more tolerant and iran clues i have society. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to continue to talk about how
4:49 pm
dangerous the offshore zrilling business is for the eastern gulf and our environment in florida. mr. rooney: it reached an all-time high. or every 1,000 new wells offshore 20 blowouts occur. taylor industry has had a well off of southern louisiana that has leaked hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil everywhere. leaks from the pipeline leaked 32,000 700 barrels of oil and in 2016, shell oil had a similar leak in one of their cables or pipelines. that is really bad because shell oil is one of the best. shows you that human error cannot be eliminated from offshore drilling. and we should ban it from the gulf of mexico. i yield. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman
4:50 pm
from massachusetts seek recognition? without objection. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. mcgovern: today we celebrate e 29th birthday of general doom the mama of buddhism. he was chosen in 2005. two days when he was six years old, the chinese government detained him and his family. he has not been heard from since. he is the one of the longest held prisoners of conscious. people from all over the world representatives of governments, united nations and repeatedly asked to see him without success. what kind of government steals away a child? his disappearance shows the violence of religious freedom that take place on a daily basis. mr. speaker, in honor of his birthday, join me in calling the
4:51 pm
chinese government to free him. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from florida seek recognition? >> permission to address the house for one minute and revise and extend. ms. ros-lehtinen: i rise today to speak on the deferment for active cancer treatment act. i introduced this bill with my friend congressman ed perlmutter with the support of critical mass, the young adult cancer alliance. this commonsense and bipartisan measure will enable cancer patients to defer payment on public stupid loans while receiving treatment without interest accruing during this deferment period. in 2018 alone, 1.7 million americans will be diagnosed with cancer. beyond the terrible news of this cancer diagnosis, these
4:52 pm
individuals have to endure treatments and staggering medical expenses leading to unemployment. this reality makes it incredibly difficult for many cancer parktse to make payments on their student loans on time. by passing this act, we will help so many cancer patients and stimulate the economy. these patients will be prevented from defaulting on their student loans which they so desperately need. we encourage our colleagues to stand with cancer patients across our nation and support and co-sponsor the deferment of deferment cancer treatment act. the speaker pro tempore: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? without objection. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, my honor on tuesday, may 1, communities of
4:53 pm
outh brooklyn will be co-named the valerie zincin, a dedicated and well respected community leader who passed away last year. jeverjever he was my field representative who served the 8th congressional district. the success and impact on the neighborhoods in southern brooklyn and queens were not limited to his work in the 8th congressional office. for over 20 years, he was involved in several prominent organizations including the september 11 family group, the holocaust memorial community and owe decembera community of new york. larry had a magnetic personality and cared about his community immensely. i had the privilege of knowing and working with him for several years. i look forward to standing on he street with new york city
4:54 pm
council members next tuesday to commemorate and acknowledge this outstanding individual. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from new york seek recognition? ms. tenney: permission to address the house for one minute and resize and extend my remarks. ms. tenney: thank, you mr. speaker. i recognize the 125th anniversary of the incredible masonic care community of new york located in the city of utica. it opened its doors on may 1 of 1893 as the masonic home started by the mace ons of the state of new york. their goal was to provide quality care. within 30 years, the location expanded to include a building for 3 of 0 adults, a hospital and several dormitories for children and a working farm that provided food. the masonic care community offers top of the line health care options to all. it offers high quality senior
4:55 pm
care, rehabilitation services, child care, while also making house calls for those patients who are unable to leave their home. masonic care has supported and educated the community by providing exceptional care and services with compassion and pride, guided by the masonic principles of brotherly love, truth and integrity. more than 500 seniors call the community their home. i want to extend my congratulations to the community for their hard work and continuing to make the community a first-class facility. i wish them 125 more years of exceptional service. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields. for what purpose does the gentleman from nevada seek recognition? >> permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection.
4:56 pm
mr. kihuen: i remember the life of austin meyer. he moved to las vegas to study. he had a passion for cars and sports. he loved to watch basketball, especially the boston celtics. austin was excited to watch his favorite band perform at the route 1 festival on october 1. he went to the festival with his girlfriend to sell bait his birthday and anniversary. he dreamt of opening up his own auto shop and was excited to start a family. he had a smile on his face and made people laugh. they remember him being ambitious, hard working. i would like to extend my condolences, the city of las vegas, the state of nevada and the whole country grieves with you. i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from kentucky seek recognition? >> permission to address the
4:57 pm
house for one minute and resize and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. . the gentleman is recognized. >> mr. speaker, i rise in celebration of a lifelong friend and neighbor, ms. dora duncan barkley of my hometown in the 1st district of kentucky celebrating her 100th birthday today. her dedication rivals her love for her husband and seven children. known throughout monroe county r her compassion and unwavering work ethic, she not only cared for her family but welcomed abused women and children into her home. throughout her life, she has been guided by her steadfast commitment to her faith and has worked tirelessly for the betterment of others and after her retirement through her involvement in distributing commodities and serving fellow
4:58 pm
senior citizens. i'm thankful for her friendship and guidance throughout my life and i join with her friends and family as well those who benefited from her generous spirit. i wish her a happy 100th birthday and many more joyful years filled with blessings. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and resize and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. ms. pelosi: i rise today to remember a great american patriot mr. peterson:er son who passed away at the age of 91 last month. born to greek immigrant parents in america's heartland of nebraska, pete rows from humble beginnings to become a
4:59 pm
statesman, business leader and through his policy work. pete was a collarion voice for fiscal responsibility and a strong moral conshen -- conscious. for pete, building a bright economic future for the next generation was his patriotic duty. he was so unfortunate to have lived the american dream and wanted that same opportunity available for every man, woman and child in our nation. economic policy leadership was a defining thread running through his life including his role as secretary of commerce, the head of a major american corporation and the founder of policy organizations including the peterson institute for international economics and the peterson foundation. his voice on the importance of fiscal sustainability brought together generations of policy
5:00 pm
makers no matter their political background to find common ground and effect solutions. his strong moral leadership to ensure our children and grandchildren inherit a healthy fiscal future. mr. speaker, anyone who knew pete will attest to his witt, generous spirit and personal warmth that made him a pleasure to be around. he committed the bulk of his personal fortune to philanthropic causes. his legacy will endure for many years and his foundation will continue to america's fiscal and economic challenges now under the leadership of his son. the loss of pete will be felt in washington and in the nation and around the world. may it bring some measure of comfort to his wife and his children and all of his loved ones that so many grieve with
5:01 pm
him during this difficult time. i knew and loved mr. peterson:er son and i know above all. son he loved his country as well. i yield back. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas vehicle recognition? mr. poe: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. just a mr. speaker, stone's throw away from the louvre in paris is the former home of the official embassy of the republic of texas. in fact, france was the first nation to recognize texas as an independent nation in 1836 when a treaty was signed between the two countries. and today a marker denotes the building where the texas embassy was in france. in turn, france had an embassy in austin, texas, not far from
5:02 pm
our current texas capitol. notably, texas also once belonged to france before spain reclaimed texas. explore la salle planted the french flag in texas in 1685 and established a settlement. texas later became a sovereign republic, and nine years later joined the united states. so on this day when french president macron addressed congress, texas remembers and appreciate that texas was not only an independent country, france first recognized but was once a part of france and that's just the way it is. i'll yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one inute. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, yesterday i introduced a bill
5:03 pm
with colleagues langevin and david young of iowa to modernize the charter of the modern f.f.a. organization. formerly called the future farmers of america, was founded in 1928. congress recognized the importance of f.f.a. as an integral part of vocational agriculture, and in 1950 granted it a federal charter. the charter provides federal authority to create interagency working agreements that's focused on strengthening f.f.a. and school-based agriculture education. it's important to note that only about 100 organizations have charters with federal agencies. with six organizations require the government agency to select one member for the board of directors. f.f.a. is the only organization that requires a majority of its board of directors to be chosen by the partnered government agency. mr. speaker, h.r. 5595, the national f.f.a. organization charter amendments act, makes updates to allow the national f.f.a. to be a self-governing organization while maintaining
5:04 pm
the long relationship with the u.s. department of education. this amendment brings f.f.a. a great cornerstone of rural america into the 21st century, and i encourage my colleagues to co-sponsor this legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, i rise this evening on behalf of some of my greatest constituents. oak ridge high school in the third district of tennessee. the department of energy created the national science bowl in 1991. mr. fleischmann: this is the prestigious competition in math and science for high school and middle-school students. oak ridge high school is the only high school in the great state of tennessee to participate in the finals this year that will take place this weekend, and i'd like to announce that joseph andrus,
5:05 pm
quo, are , steven outstanding students for oak ridge high school. go, oak ridge. go, national science bowl. go, america. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. are there any further requests for one-minute speeches? under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2017, the gentleman from virginia, mr. garrett, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader. mr. garrett: thank you, mr. speaker. likes of onor the which i can't think of a comparison to stand here in , and eek of april, 2018
5:06 pm
ommemorate a battle undertaken by a student that i would argue was a continuation of the american revolution. the american revolution began when a group of white male landowners cast off the tyrannical thrown which lorded over them across an ocean but it moved forward 80 years later when a million americans, through disease and starvation and battlefield death, gave their lives to rid their death to the horrific institution of slavery. and then 55 years later, i would argue it continued when had the franchise was extended through women's suffrage to women and then 30-plus years after that, a 16-year-old high school student at the r.r. moden high school in farmville, virginia, who had heard about the foundational ideas espoused by a slave owner named
5:07 pm
jefferson that wrote all people are created equal but couldn't reconcile that with her life experience because in the county where she lived, a brand new high school had been built, but only some kids could attend it. and so when extending this american revolution that continues to this day, this 16-year-old young woman, barbara rose johns led a school walkout that was the only student initiated case emall gogh waited into the decision of brown vs. board of education which rid america of the ridiculous lie that was separate but equal. and so her walkout was not to take rights from others but to extend rights to all and the idea of an american nation founded on the idea that all people had fundamental rights and that it was the role of government to protect those. mr. speaker, at this time i would yield time to my colleague from virginia,
5:08 pm
congressman scott. such time as he may need. mr. scott: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to join my colleague from virginia, congressman garrett, and i want to thank him for organizing this evening's special order. but first, i want to commend him for his work as a virginia tate senator, for making april 23, barbara johns day in the commonwealth of virginia. this april 23, monday, marked the first official recognition of this important day in the commonwealth. almost 64 years old, the supreme court struck down lawful school desegregation in the case of brown v. board of education. few people know that barbara was one of the first cases decided that day. there were there other states and washington, d.c., had another case that was decided the same day. virginia's involvement in brown
5:09 pm
v. board of education stood out because that effort was led by a student, namely, barbara johns. she was only 16 years of age and stalwart figure in the struggle for equal education, stood up to challenge the notion that african-americans should receive separate and unequal education under the law. barbara johns grew up in farmville, virginia, and attended robert moden high school, an all-black high school serving more than 450 students despite the fact the facility was designed for only 180. she described the inadequacies of the as having shabby equipment, no science aboratories, no jim. even in jim crow virginia, state offered money to improve the school. yet, the all-white prince edward school board refused to accept the state's funding. barbara took her concerns about the school to a teacher who
5:10 pm
responded by asking her to do something about it. after months of contemplation and imagination, she began to formulate a plan seizing on the moment. on april 23, 1951, barbara johns, a 16-year-old high school student, led her classmates on a strike to protest the substandard conditions at robert moden high school. her leadership and adequacyy ultimately garnered the support of the naacp, lawyers robinson and oliver hill took up her cause and the cause of more equitable conditions at the high school. after meeting with the students in the community, they filed suit in federal court in richmond, virginia. the virginia case was called david vs. prince edward county school board, and in 1954, it became one of the four cases decided in the supreme court in brown v. board of education. there is a saying that courage
5:11 pm
is not the absence of fear but the assessment that something else is more important. and her courage led to the powerful language in the brown decision that still wrings true today. in the case -- rings true today. in the case the court said, today education is perhaps the most important function of state and local governments. compulsary school laws and greakts pend turf school education both recognizes the importance of education to our democratic society. it is required in the performance of our most basic public responsibilities, even service in the armed forces. it is the very foundation of good citizenship. today, it is a principal instrument in awakening a child to cultural values and preparing him for later professional training and helping him to adjust normally to his environment. in these days it's doubtful that any child is expected to succeed in life if he is denied
5:12 pm
an education. such an education where the state is taken to provide it is a right which must be made available to all on equal terms. we come then to the question presented. does segregation of children in public schools solely on the basis of race, even though the physical facilities and other tangible factors may be equal, deprive the child -- deprive the children of the minority group of equal educational opportunities? we believe it does. and the court concluded, we conclude in the field of public education, the doctrine of separate but equal has no place. separate educational facilities are inherently unequal. those powerful words were provoked by the courage of barbara johns and others like her who led the charge to make the -- to bring the cases to the supreme court. the example of barbara johns should serve as an example for all of us. she did not sit on the
5:13 pm
sidelines and neither should we. we should speak out when we see injustice. we should act when we see inequity. the best way to honor the legacy is to act in the same spirit that she did. so i thank my colleague from virginia, mr. garrett, for providing an opportunity to remind us of our obligation to do the right thing. thank you and i yield back. mr. garrett: thank you, congressman scott. i refer myself to neard and that's ok because a nerd wins in the end, who loves history. my akuwaitans with the story of barbara johns did not begin with a school student taking history, not a student at a top tier, it was when i became candidate for state senate. if the district i had honor of represents included farmville.
5:14 pm
i had the opportunity to attend a function at the motten museum which stands where our high school stood and in fact encompasses the bulk of that facility. i thought, who is brar bra johns. the more i learned the more i was amazed i didn't know the answer to that question. when we put in a bill to commemorate april 23 -- i would stress without ceasing 16-year-old student -- when i was 16 years old i was more concerned about a zit on my nose than changing the world. when we put in a bill to commemorate april 23 as a holiday in the common wealth of virginia, it was my hope that someday someone would look at a car da and see barbara johns day and say, who is barbara johns? and someone had the at the matter, tom, this is black history. i reject that on its face.
5:15 pm
this is not black history or brown history or white history. it's american history. it's red, white, and blue. that this country is the worst nation in the world except for all the others, to paraphrase winston churchill, is something i was proud. jefferson was a fallen -- by virtue of his participation in an evil, evil enterprise that was the slave trade does not diminish the brilliance of the idea expanded upon by locke andrewso of natural law that all people have certain fundamental rights that is who we are as a country, and the reason i postulated earlier that the american revolution should never end. it's because in the preamble to the constitution, our founders gave us not a perfect union but sought to establish a more perfect union and the word more's inclusion is important because it implies of the perpetual oneed to act. because in any institution governed by flawed human beings
5:16 pm
there will inherently be imperfection but that does not absolve us of our duty to dot best we can. so you can judge a nation and its character by the people whose virtues it extols, and to suggest that barbara johns is an american hero is to understate it. again, a revolution to cast off a tyrannical crown, followed decades and decades late bird a civil war to abolish a horrific activity. followed by a fight for generations to ensure suffrage to an entire sex, followed 30-some years later by a young girl with the courage to stand up and assert that justice should be equal for all. and that transcends even educational opportunity, inarguably. so i hold in high regard foundational heroes like patrick henry and i have spoken from this spot on this floor before and talked about his speech i
5:17 pm
know not what course others may take, but for me, give me liberty or give me death. my fave visit when speaking on separating from the -- favorite is when speaking from separating from the crown someone shouted, treason. and he said, if this be treason, make the most of it. a willing tons stand and fight and -- willingness to stand and fight and die because something was the right thing to do. now let's skip forward to a 16-year-old girl in the segregated south. she undoubtedly had the fortune of a strong family, i've had the honor of speaking on multiple occasions with her sister. and an amazing uncle in vernon johns, a pastor. but vernon johns studied what? the classics and natural law. the jeffersonan ideas that liberty was inherently a gift to humans not from a government but to be protected thereby and so i like to presume is true, because i asked joan johns, with whom i spoke last, if they ever
5:18 pm
discussed these sorts of things with their uncle vernon and she said, of course. that someone had to stand up and assert these god-given rights in a land where they weren't protected by the government in accordance to its responsibility. who did that? a 16-year-old young woman. and, ok, what was the cost? no different than patrick henry who said, if this be treason, then make the most of it. quite literally barbara johns had to move away for fear for her life. people think about the civil rights movement as many things, many don't realize that well over 1,000 people died, a lot in civil unrest, but also in things like horrific bombings of churches based on the color of the skin of the people who attended them. so the threat to barbara johns was existential and real. but in the face of that threat, she stood. and she led. and it wasn't about self-aggrandizement. there was no future political
5:19 pm
career in. her aspiration in life was to be a librarian, she became one. but when her moment came, she led. and she led not to take from anyone, but to give to everyone. what is inherently their right and should be cherished and protected by government. and so we have, win credible humility, had the opportunity to serve in this hallowed institution and this week have filed for barbara johns to receive the congressional gold medal. it is the highest award that can be bestowed by this chamber. tragically ms. johns passed from this life in 1991. but i would submit that she is well worthy of this honor and that if bestowing this honor upon her posthumously will lead more american young people to read and learn about the leadership and courage demonstrated by this school student from prince edward county, virginia, then it's well worth doing.
5:20 pm
i in no way, shape or form mean to make light, but if bob hope and roberto clemente and john ayne and arnold palmer and dr. mohamed can receive the congressional gold medal, then by gosh barbara rose johns powell deserves it. and this is a story that should be told. and it's not a political story. it's an american story. it's not a black or white story. it's an american story. and it's not a story about a powerful woman. it's a story about a powerful human being. we collectively are great because individuals have been allowed and encouraged and supported and uplifted and extoled for doing great things. and it is ridiculous that i should have studied virginia history, american history and then majored in history in college, grown up less than 100 miles away from where this young woman did this amazing thing, and have never heard her name.
5:21 pm
so today i genuinely and sincerely thank my colleague. and i hope that somebody at home somewhere is google searching barbara rose johns because hers is an amazing story. and we stand on the shoulder of such giants. it's overdue that she be recognized for her contribution to our american family. mr. speaker, i would yield the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2017, the gentlewoman from north carolina, ms. foxx, is recognized for the remainder of the hour. ms. foxx: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the topic of my special
5:22 pm
order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. foxx: thank you, mr. speaker. i now yield such time as he may consume to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. thompson. mr. thompson: well, i thank the gentlelady and my chairwoman from the house education and work force committee for hosting this special order tonight. on an issue that has im-- similar pacting every zip code in -- is impacting every zip code in america. your poster says it all. this is close to home. life beyond opioids and stability, health and healing. and the opioid epidemic is considered by many to be the worst public health crisis of this -- of our generation. and according to the national institute of health, more than 115 people in the united states die every day from an opioid
5:23 pm
overdose. and this epidemic is not an urban problem. it's not a rural problem. it's a national problem. no zip code, as i said, in the country is immune from this crisis. this is an epidemic that transcends all socioeconomic classes, and all of america's people. all of america's diversity of families is at risk. heroin and pain pill addiction doesn't discriminate on age, race, gender or socioeconomic status. your neighbor could be using heroin and so could their high-honors high school student. unfortunately the people of pennsylvania have seen some of the worst. last year the crisis surged when pennsylvania experienced a 44% increase in opioid overdoses. just tragic, what this does to families and how it steals lives and futures.
5:24 pm
addressing this unprecedented rate of opioid-related death means that we must focus on nearly 2.2 million americans who currently struggle with opioid addiction. no one person can beat addiction alone. and overcoming this epidemic will not only take a community-wide effort, but a nation-wide effort. the breadth of this epidemic requires us to respond with a multifaceted approach. congress has engaged many agencies, including the department of justice, drug enforcement administration, national institutes of health, the centers for disease control, and customs and border protections, just to name a few, to help combat opioid abuse. this crisis has torn apart families, weakened our work force, and overextended our health care system. as a nation we must act with a unified urgency to help those who have fallen victim to addiction in every corner of the country. and we must not forget their families who have seen first-hand the crippling effects of this disease day in and day
5:25 pm
out. i know we're not only prepared to do so, but we're prepared to win this fight. i've had the opportunity to convene opioid crisis community round tables throughout my congressional districts to hear firsthand from families, from health care providers, from law enforcement, from emergency medical services, from those who are involved in the treatment community. just so mpact is significant. i have, after coming away from these, i've always -- also come to the conclusion, what's important to focus on really is the substance abuse behaviors. and one community in clarion county, the issue at one time was opioids. and then it went to heroin.
5:26 pm
but when the heroin started -- started to be mixed with really deadly other drugs and components and so many people died within the user community, they moved on to -- they actually went back to -- they went to something that we used to treat opioid and heroin abuse. and when those who were dispensing that as treatment, tightened that, the community found that they now had a crisis that went to meth. and so it's so important as we work on this, we keep a broader perspective of dealing with the substance abuse behaviors. because the drug of choice will change based on economics, based on availability. but our goal should be to increase awareness, our goal should be acknowledged -- acknowledging there is a problem. i think we've done that. in my work in health care and specifically i worked in acute
5:27 pm
psychiatric services for a period of time. i know until you acknowledge you have a problem, you can't really deal with it. i think across the board in our communities, our states, at a local, at a state and national level, we acknowledge we have a problem. and that is an important first step. i know i'm proud what have we've done here in washington, legislatively in providing funding. but this is an all-hands-on-deck problem. it requires prevention, that's where education is so important. prevention, education, treatment. we have to equip our young estrogen ration with decision making skills, with -- youngest generation with decision making skills. so when they're exposed to access, when they're approached by others when they're preyed upon in terms of those two are pushing drugs. we certainly need to -- we need to equip our medical professionals to improve how they prescribe, how they dispense medications, how they
5:28 pm
-- and increase their utilization of alternative pain management. as a form rehabilitation professional, there are great tools out there to help deal with managing pain. one of the things that culturally we've come to the point where we try to eliminate pain, and i think that's what's pushed us with the opioids into the situation that we're in today. and we need to equip our communities with evidence-based treatment. something closer to home. so i do very, very much appreciate chairwoman foxx's leadership on education and work force issues. nd really appreciate her putting this special order together this evening and leading us as we address what truly is -- this is the public health crisis of our generation. and i yield back.
5:29 pm
ms. foxx: thank you very much, congressman thompson. and we all know and appreciate your background and your experience in health care and the wonderful wisdom that you bring to us on the education and work force committee. not only on this issue, but on so many issues facing americans today. as you point out, the health and stability of our communities are in serious trouble. because of opioid abuse across the nation. since 1999, the opioid death toll has quadrupled. there are many estimates of how many americans die in a single day because of opioids. and we are so sorry to hear of any deaths from opioids.
5:30 pm
it's heartbreaking that all of those estimates are in the hundreds. these people were fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, neighbors, co-workers and friends. they were real people in our communities. i've had families from the fifth district come to see me, to share their heartbreaking stories of family members, often adult children, who have died from opioids. my own heart breaks for them and the pain they are feeling for their tragic loss. there are newspapers stories and obituaries in newspapers reporting on opioid abuse and deaths, and its devastating impact every day. as opioids continue to claim the lives of americans in
5:31 pm
cities and towns across the nation, it's our responsibility to work together to find solutions that will bring relief to american communities. the committee on education and the work force has recently held two hearings on opioids, and we've learned from employers, educators, local leaders, and addiction experts about how chronic and rising rates of opioid misuse and abuse are impacting families, schools, workplaces, and communities on the whole. we've heard about how the epidemic's societal burden on households and the private in r exceeded $46 billion 2016. in schools, many principals attribute a recent decline in attendance to parents not
5:32 pm
getting up and having their students attend school because the parents are using drugs and they're not able to either get -- take the children to school or have them ready to ride a bus. i am pleased to share the floor tonight with my colleagues from the education and work force committee who have not only had hard conversations with their constituents about the toll opioid abuse has taken on their communities but they've been having productive and helpful conversations with each other about possible solutions. to is no single answer solving the opioid problem, but if we were to bring this deadly chapter to an early close,
5:33 pm
we'll need collaboration across the aisle, ingenuity, and a united commitment to bringing peace and healing to our communities. i'd like to once again yield to my colleague, mr. thompson, for any closing comments he would like to make. mr. thompson: chairwoman, i just really appreciate your leadership on this. the fact we had two great hearings, which was on top of a lot of the work we've been doing as a congress. this really is an all-hands on deck public health crisis, and we know that because of the work we're doing in the education and work force and interest trns sends education, it im-- transcends education, it impacts the work force. at a time when we estimated -- somewhere between five million and six million jobs available in this country and we have growing increasing job growth and we have an aging work force, which will eventually at some point -- well, is retiring
5:34 pm
each -- a significant number each and every year. you know this is an issue that impacts our national security because it takes individuals out of the work force. you know, not able to pass that drug test. not able to be able to be able o qualify. obviously, it is an all hans on deck because we have -- all hands on deck because we've seen members across both sides of the aisle that have been working on this. the amount of legislation going back -- one of the more memorable ones was the care act. there was 16 individual bills -- 16 or 18. i don't exactly how many. we debated on this floor and passed on this floor and we rolled it into one package. it was actually passed by the senate and the president signed it.
5:35 pm
mobilizing -- dealing with things from little unborn babies who were born addicted. a terrible situation, the suffering of those new babies because they were born to moms who were active addicts. you know, to veterans who, you ow, v.a. physicians -- and there's really great v.a. physicians. i don't want to paint with a broad brush. there were some that were referred to as a candy man because they dispensed the pills like skittles it what it looked like. it was their solution to everything. it was to medicate. and everything in between. providing resources to our local communities. our local communities who engage in this. great programs that have been around for a very long time like the drug-free communities moneys that are used by parents and kids and teachers and community leaders who come
5:36 pm
together to, you know, to deal, ep dimic in their communities. i have a school district, iroquois school district that was devastated with overdoses. most of the children in that school, middle school, and it was heartbreaking had -- either had a family member or knew someone that they knew that had died of an overdose. and so some of the stories you hear about one that really stands out with me because i talked with this mom. it was in my congressional district where her son fortunately had a disease, crone's disease, and had to go through -- crohn's disease, and had to go through some surgeries. it worked out really well. when this young man turned 16, 17, 18 years old, he had to go back and do surgery as a
5:37 pm
result. and this time the painkillers they gave him, he used one -- basically one time and his life spiraled out of control. this was an athlete. this was a kid that exceeded so well in school but his life just went into almost a death spiral. and, you know, wound up being incarcerated. all because he wasn't wired to be able to handle these painkillers. and that's a part of this battle. we need better science. we need better medicine so we can determine who can tolerate certain medications and who cannot. whose life would be transformed in such a negative way by using a painkiller one time. but that certainly all part of this. once again, thank you for your leadership on this. thanks for hosting this special order tonight. ms. foxx: thank you, again, congressman thompson. i know the people of your district are well-served by
5:38 pm
you, and i thank you for your service on our committee, on the ag committee, and all that write again, to help us good legislation and pass good legislation. as congressman thompson said, unfortunately this problem with opioids affects people at all ages and in all walks of life, at every income level, every category of people, male, female, old, young. but we particularly grieve over the young people. we've heard about babies becoming addicted because their mothers were addicted, and of the work that's done to help those babies become unaddicted to the opioids. we've heard about the veterans who become addicted because of
5:39 pm
the treatment that they have received. we know nobody is attempting to get anyone addicted to opioids or anything else, for that matter, but we realize that over the years we have had stronger use of these drugs than we probably should have had used. and there are many ways to approach pain relief and pain management, and unfortunately in the past, too often it's been the path of least resistance. and we do hear over and over the stories about young people who suddenly get addicted because of surgery or an injury, and it happens sometimes very, very quickly. as representative thompson has said, it has a huge impact on jobs. we have right now six million unfilled jobs in this country, and the reasons are very many,
5:40 pm
but many of the -- some of the reason is because we have so many people addicted to opioids and other drugs and they're simply unable to pass a drug test. but we hoped, by this graphic here, to illustrate that the problem with opioids is very close to all of us at home. very close to us. and what we are hoping for is to find ways at the federal level to get beyond opioids, to help people who are addicted have some stability, regain their health, be healed of their addiction. but this cannot all be done at the federal level and we know that. in had fact, too many people look first to the federal government for an answer. the federal government usually is the worst place to come for
5:41 pm
an answer. it usually has to be done first at the local level. then at the state level. last, the federal level. as representative thompson pointed out, many members -- in fact, i believe all members of congress now are concerned about this problem we're facing with opioids and we will answer the call to do something. my only hope is that we put everything into perspective and as we've learned from our hearings and talking to other people, much of this work needs to be done in the family to start with, in the medical communities, and once people become addicted, then in the local communities, as people collaborate, work together to help people become -- not become addicted to opioids and once they do, get off of the addiction and get back to a
5:42 pm
normal life. and i know that all of us pray for those who are addicted and pray that they will find a suitable program to help them come -- become unaddicted and for those who have never become addicted to be in a great environment so they never seek out drugs as an answer because they are not -- they are not an answer. and i thank my colleague for being here tonight. i thank the staff and, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2017, the gentleman from colorado, mr. perlmutter, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader.
5:43 pm
mr. perlmutter: thank you, mr. speaker. and i want to thank my friend, representative foxx, for bringing up a subject on opioids that is obviously plaguing so many places in america. it is a very topical and important discussion to have. i want to change the subject, mr. speaker. talk about a number of things that really concern me and many americans across the country. , why has ncern is the president not released his tax returns? why is he so concerned about e mueller investigation into the interference by the russians in our elections?
5:44 pm
what is it that's being hidden? what are people afraid of, and why continue to threaten to threaten the f.b.i., threaten mr. mueller, threaten mr. rosenstein, threaten the department of justice, and really, the police that are trying to get to the bottom of the interference by russia in our elections? and so i think we got to take a look at exactly what's happened o far in that investigation. and that investigation with pecial counsel mueller has sulted now in the guilty pleas of michael flynn, national security advisor. rick gates, former trump campaign advisor.
5:45 pm
george papadopoulos, former foreign affairs advisor to the trump campaign. richard pa netnetto, a person who committed identity fraud in the probe, an attorney. currently under indictment, aul manafort, 13 russian nationals, three russian entities. . now, why is this important? i mean, congresswoman foxx was talking about opioids, that clearly is important. jobs and economic security of this nation is something that i like to be talking about. or doing away with the opioid epidemic. but what's important about this comes down to the very pillars of -- pillars of america. the pillars of freedom, liberty
5:46 pm
and independence. because if another nation is directing the outcomes of our election, those key pieces of who we are are threatened. we broke away from england to become a sovereign nation. and not to be affected and ruled by some other country. and so at the heart of this it's about who we are as americans, who we are as a country, to get to the bottom of russian interference in our elections. what they did was unprecedented. and is something that's bigger than the election of 2016, maybe the election of 2018. it's about our ability to govern
5:47 pm
ourselves without interference of somebody else, some other nation. in congress we passed an act that provided for additional sanctions against russia because it's becoming more and more apparent of their interference with our elections. but the administration was reluctant to impose those sanctions. he question is, why? so too we saw and the am bass doer -- ambassador to the u.n., nikki haley, just recently with respect to sanctions, said, we're going to increase sanctions because of the russian -- russia may have had some role
5:48 pm
in syria with the different chemical weapons that were used. and she went out so far as to say, we're going to impose some additional sanctions. but then had the rug pulled out from underneath her by the white house saying, wait a second, even though you're somebody i appointed, and you're our u.n. ambassador, we don't think -- we think you're way ahead of yourselves on the sanctions against russia. my question is why? what is it that's holding the white house back? i think it comes back to something i said at the very beginning and something we asked for a year ago, which were the president's tax returns. which we have yet to see. i mean, what is it that's in worrisome? s so every other candidate for president, every other president turned over their tax returns.
5:49 pm
there is so much smoke here with these convictions, with these indictments, with what we know in erms of the interference many states across the nation, that we've got to get to the bottom of this. and the continued threats that have come from the white house to stall or limit the investigation, the ability of the law enforcement officers of this nation, the f.b.i., for goodness sakes, to do their job is something none of us could have ever expected. and so even though most of us would much rather talk about jobs, we would rather talk about the environment, we would rather be dealing with subjects that affect day to day americans, everyday americans, the problem arehe values of this nation
5:50 pm
under attack. the freedom, liberty and independence that we enjoy, that is so key to this -- to everything we believe in, that we are not going to let this go. we are going to stand up for the rule of law and for honesty and for allowing law enforcement to finish its job without being constantly threatened. so i'm joined by a number of my friends who also have similar concerns to the ones i've raised. and i'd like to turn to my friend, mr. boyle from phil kelf can -- from philadelphia, pennsylvania. congressman for that city. and allow him some time to raise his thoughts or bring us his thoughts and raise his concerns. so i'd yield to my friend from pennsylvania. mr. boyle: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to thank my colleague
5:51 pm
from colorado who has done such a wonderful job of organizing us month in, month out, to stand here on the house floor, really more than anything in a sincere and genuine effort to attempt to prevent a constitutional crisis from happening. it is vital not as democrats or as republicans, but as americans it is vital that we allow this special counsel investigation to continue and to reach its natural conclusion, whatever the facts may show. i certainly hope and i believe that all of us should hope that it won't show collusion, that it won't show anything more than what has been reported about interference in our 2016 elections. but it is vital to the integrity of our democracy and our national security that we know
5:52 pm
that for sure. ow, one would think, given the record interference, really attack, from the russian federation upon the united states during the 2016 election, just as they have in other countries' elections, such as germany, france, and, of course, repeatedly on ukraine, one would think that the president of the united states would say, yes, we must get to the bottom of this. instead this president has not once asked his staff, as far as we know, and as has been verified by folks like the director of the d.n.i. and the director of the krajinovic, has not once -- c.i.a., has not once made it the mission of the u.s. to combat this interference. that is worrying. we also know now that on two separate occasions the president has seriously considered firing the special counsel.
5:53 pm
that is exactly what president nixon did in october, 1973, what has been called the saturday night massacre. that prompted a constitutional crisis then, it would prompt a constitutional crisis today. now, the president keeps calling the mueller investigation a quote-unquote witch hunt. which is interesting because that's the exact term that president nixon used. and if you look at headlines from that day, it was exactly the same term nixon used. but the president calls it a witch hunt. and says it hasn't proud anything. so far the investigation of the special counsel has proud 17 entitlements, including -- has produced 17 entitlements, including five guilty please. some witch hunt. i don't think those 17 individuals under entitlement consider that a witch hunt. and certainly the five individuals who have already pled guilty, including one who worked in this white house.
5:54 pm
so i will pause there because i know there are a number of our colleagues who want to speak on this important issue. this is something that you should -- that should unite us all. i'm appreciative to those republican colleagues, especially in the senate, who have spoken out publicly and say that they support the mueller investigation and support the independence and integrity of it. but it's time that we don't just say that we support it. i do think it's time that we have legislation that protects it so that we can ensure that this investigation will reach its natural conclusion. thank you. mr. perlmutter: thanks. i'd say to my friend from pennsylvania, we're talking about the entitlements and the guilty pleas, the last time we really had a special counsel appointed was in 2003. and it took two years for one entitlement. we're a year
5:55 pm
we're a year -- we've got five guilty pleas and 17 additional entitlements. o, we ought to be all taking real stock of what is actually happening here. so i now yield to my friend from issouri, one of my best buddys here in the house, emanuel cleaver, former mayor of kansas city, missouri. for his thoughts on this subject. mr. cleaver: mr. speaker, thank u for allowing this moment that we are using to make some expressions of concern. thank you, mr. perlmutter, for organizing it. let me preface my comments, mr. speaker, by saying that when resident trump was elected against the advice and concern f my family, many campaign workers and supporters, i
5:56 pm
attended the swearing-in because i believed and still believe and will always believe that my responsibility is -- as a member of congress was to be at the inauguration as a member of congress. and then at the first joint session, not the state of the union, but the joint session, many of my friends and family said, you know, do not go. the president is alien to our concept of decency and democracy. i came anyway. i sat not too far from where i'm standing now. i also then went to the state of the union. some of our colleagues chose not to come. when there was a resolution of impeachment placed on the table for a vote, i voted to table it.
5:57 pm
against the person i've known in congress longer than i've known anybody else. because i know he's a decent and thoughtful person, congressman al green. he had brought it to the floor. i voted to table it, along with just about every republican and a sizable number of democrats. and the reason was i believed that it was important for mr. mueller to complete his investigation. i resent any discussion about trying to impeach the president. i'm not in that group. i must say, however, how troubled i am by many of the things that i have seen.
5:58 pm
, en i grew up down in texas 1950's and 1960's, an he will -- in elementary school, at the booker t. washington elementary school, we had these tests. back then there was a great threat from russia. and economically wichita falls, where i attended high school, was completely dependent on shepherd air force base for its survival. my first job was at the strategic air command. i cleaned up. i thought it was the biggest job any human being could get. i was 15 years old and, man, i was big-time. i cleaned up the barracks for the command. and then at school we had to get under our desks for a drill for an attack from russia. and we'd hear the horn all over town, school kids were getting
5:59 pm
under their desk. the truth is we would have been burnt up, i'm not sure that a wooden desk was going to protect us, but i was a kid, didn't know any better. so all of us got under our desk. but it allowed me to understand one thing and i have never forgotten it. at that time russia, the soviet union, was not our friend. and over that period, a lot of things have changed. that has not changed. and so fast forward to our last presidential election. it is indisputable, every single intelligence agency in the united states, as well as intelligence agencies with our allies in europe, say that the russians interfered with our election. not attempted to do so.
6:00 pm
but interfered. that they changed the outcome of the election, there's no evidence to support that. however, there's plenty of evidence to support that russia remains the enemy of the united states of america. and so i necessarily am going to become increasingly concerned when the president of the united ates refuses to say even one bad thing about vladimir putin, who is, and i don't like to call people names, i don't call my colleagues bad names, i don't -- that's not who i am. this man is a bully and a danger to the entire world. and the most troubling moments i have is when i hear people say, as i did on tv the other night, they were interviewing a woman, she said, i don't care anything about russian meddling. you know, all i want them to do is let mr. trump have his agenda
6:01 pm
approved. i'm thinking, what is happening to this republic. i have five grandchildren, the youngest just turned 3 last month. my work in congress, my ministry in the united methodist church for 37 years, my time on the city downcy, my time as mayor, all was dedicated to what i wanted for my grandchildren. i want them to enjoy the same ind of freedoms that we enjoy. mr. speaker, anybody who is watching this and who has even a semblance of objectivity would have to say, something is dramatically wrong when the president will, by twitter, attack anybody and everybody, horses, children, little animals, anybody, and call them ames, except vladimir putin.
6:02 pm
vladimir putin, the only, the only person he will not criticize. and this man orchestrated an attempt to damage our democracy. and what putin did, and it was brilliant, brilliant, i have to say, he's a devilish man but he created a beautiful way of doing it. he knew the weaknesses of the united states. and so he tried to exploit it. and it's still going on. for example, now if you adjust -- now just a few weeks ago, one of those russian bots had a deal on the internet advising white americans not to go and see the movie "the black panther" and inside this message online is african-americans are attacking white movie goers. now of course that didn't happen. you know. it's not even remotely the truth
6:03 pm
but russia understands how to get to us. they look at our weaknesses and they attack. we cannot help in that process. mr. mueller needs to complete an investigation. i will never support doing anything legally in this body until mr. mueller completes his investigation. and so mr. perlmutter, i'd like to say thank you for getting us together, i think that we have got to make the american public cosh of what's going on and maybe more importantly what's not going ton. and if we are able to do that, this republic, the greatest republic that god almighty has ever blessed to exist, the greatest republic in the history of this planet, is going to be in jeopardy. i yield back the balance of my time. mr. perlmutter: i thank my friend from missouri. his words as always are powerful and right on the mark.
6:04 pm
so we've got, this is serious business. and it's nothing that we take lightly. and my friend, mr. huffman from california, is somebody who has given this a will the of thought and he wonders why doesn't the president speak out against vladimir putin. he wonders why the president hasn't turned over his tax returns. he wonders why the president has attacked the f.b.i. he wonders why the president has attacked the department of justice. just as i do. so i would yield to my friend from california. >> i want to thank my friend from colorado, thanks for your leadership in convening these conversations, it helps to hear from our friend from missouri who reminds us this is a big deal. mr. huffman: for reminding us
6:05 pm
that we have to find out why the president is acting so strangely and we have to hold anybody who may have been part of russian interference accountable. i'll tell you, congressman perlmutter, constituents in my district and i think a growing number of people around the country, are extremely concerned and grow manager and more concerned about this dark cloud of corruption over the trump administration. about the possibility of collusion between the trump team and a foreign government to affect the 2016 election. about the obstruction of justice the pattern of lying about even the most basic facts and just based on what has already come out through the special counsel investigation and through the media and to some extent through congressional investigations, their level of concern is really growing. now this week i want to focus on one aspect of these investigations that we have tried to push here in the house
6:06 pm
and in the senate. the issue of privilege. not the kind of privilege where a billionaire's son-in-law gets a job inside the white house even though he has no foreign policy experience and can't get a security clearance. that's a different kind of privilege. i want to talk about the issue of executive privilege. this is an idea that presidential communications need to be kept out of the public eye even when congress or the courts issue subpoenas. and request that information. presidents have always kind of tried to claim that this type of prive sledge implied in the constitution's separation of powers. it's an argument that a president might not get as candid and fulsome advice from his cabinet and others if all of it was going to be publicly disclosed. so i can appreciate that. but the trump administration has taken this notion of executive privilege to extreme and absurd
6:07 pm
lengths. i think we need to talk about that. just a quick historical aside on executive privilege. the concept and the limits of executive privilege has really only been tested at the supreme court in a pair of watergate related lawsuits in the 1970's. this came about when the special prosecutor sought access to president nixon's secret oval office tapes. in that case the court rejected president nixon's attempts to quash a judicial subpoena. the unanimous decision of that court was that the president had to hand over these tape recorded conversations with his closest advisors about the watergate break-in. and of course we know that was the beginning of the end of the nixon presidency. so back to the modern era now. over the past year we have seen numerous trump officials, and even some who never worked in the white house, refuse to answer questions from congress asserting some variation of this
6:08 pm
executive privilege. in the now-defunct house intelligence committee investigation we've seen it. we've seen it in the senate intelligence committee investigation. i think we need to take a look at how this is being used or misused. we have seen witnesses literally on a break from their testimony take phone calls from the white house where they get instructions about what questions they can answer and which ones they can't. essentially president trump has treated the executive privilege as if it's a gag order that he can invoke selectively on those around him. so srt -- sort of like the hush money nondisclosure agreements he's entered into with porn stars and playmates and all sorts of others to keep embarrassing or damaging information out of the public yie. -- public eye. a few specific examples and why it doesn't hold up. june, 2017, jeff sessions was testifying before the senate
6:09 pm
committee about the firing of james comey he refused to answer certain questions but did choose to answer others he thought were helpful he claimed he was protecting the right of president trump to assert the executive privilege. sessions can't selectively choose when to invoke the privilege and when not to. you can't cherry pick for what helps you. the second point is the attorney general admit head doesn't have the power to claim executive privilege. he said i'm protecting the president's constitutional right by not giving it away before he's had a chance to weigh in. the president hadn't done that. in fact the president has yet to assert the executive privilege. but he has had all these other folks on a short leash counting on them to assert the privilege. so then we go to january of 2018. steve bannon was testifying in the house intelligence
6:10 pm
committee. he only agreed to answer 25 specific yes or no questions that had been drafted by the white house. so on a bipartisan basis, the committee issued a subpoena to force bannon to answer these questions but he continued to stonewall. and the committee never followed through. so again why bannon's assertions of the privilege don't cancel out. in the united states vs. nixon, the supreme court made very clear that public extrajudicial disclosure of a privilege,st a waiver. so right off the bat, you have the problem that steve bannon spilled his guts in "fire and fury" for the whole world to see. he's made public extrajudicial disclosures of all man over communications involving the residency on all these communications involving the presidency on all these subjects.
6:11 pm
but he's also played this pick and choose game much like attorney general sessions. so the -- even if he had the privilege to assert for himself, which the he doesn't, it doesn't hold water. now some of the oversight that bannon has been ducking has to do with the transition period before donald trump was even president. obviously there's no executive privilege if you're not yet the executive. so that's another problem. and when he was asked whether he was being instructed by the president to invoke executive privilege, guess what? he refused to answer. and our friends at the house intelligence committee were in such a hurry to shut down their investigation they did not move to hold him in contempt of congress which he clearly was. and they never followed through on their subpoena. another example. 2018. january, 2018. mr. trump's former campaign manager corey luan douseky appeared before the house committee and he refused to answer all sorts of important questions and since mr. luan douseky never served in the -- and since mr. lewandowsky never
6:12 pm
served in the federal government, it would be preposterous to assert executive privilege, but it's up to the majority of congress to force him to answer these questions. again, mr. trump is on to apparently a winning strategy in this congress. he instructs others not to answer questions. suggests they should assert the privilege or some variation of it. then counts on a compliant majority in this house and in the senate to simply not follow through. something similar happened in february, 2018. hope hick the white house communications director, testifying before the house intelligence committee, would not discuss anything from the inauguration forward. and the committee declined to issue a subpoena despite the request to do so from our ranking member, adam schiff. so you may ask in these various situations, why wouldn't president trump himself simply exert the executive privilege? one reason for that is we can safely say that it makes him
6:13 pm
look even more guilty. that's hard to do based on the way he has conducted himself. so defensively and with such a seemingly guilty state of mind in his tweets and other public statements. but the assertion of the privilege would be a very clear signal that he's trying to impede legitimate investigations and so he'd rather have bannon and hicks and lewand sombings ki and sessions stonewall for him and count on a compliant, hyper partisan congress not to follow through. that's why we have so many unanswered questions. congressman perlmutter. that's why it's so important that you continue to bring us together to talk about this, to make sure the american people know that we're going to keep talking about it and we're going to keep asking what they're hiding and what they're afraid of. with that, i yield back to the gentleman. mr. perlmutter: i thank my friend from california. we'll wrap up here. but i think there's one word we ought to change. because it -- the word doesn't
6:14 pm
justify or doesn't really describe what the republican -- pardon me what occurred with the -- with these elections. ok. what occurred with the election by the russians was not meddling. it was sabotage. and that's really what we're talking about. it wasn't just somebody, you know, saying to your mother-in-law, please don'ted me until my business. this is sabotage. this was an attack. this was interference and a violation of our sovereignty. of our independence. of our freedom. 10 we start with that. and then we ask these questions of, you know , my friends on the republican side. had the tables been turned and this was a democratic administration, can you imagine? what kinds of investigations would be under way today? what kinds of subpoenas would be issued? and not to allow the
6:15 pm
intelligence committee to shut down that investigation when none of the questions were answered because of this invocation of executive privilege that they don't hold. that's just crazy. because this is much bigger than all of us. representative cleaver talked bout the fact that russia is interfering. all around the world. you they are not our friends. we would love to see something develop where there is some kind of alliance, but we definitely don't have that now. so there are a lot of questions, you know, where are the tax returns, why haven't they been presented to the congress, why are we not fulfilling the law we passed on sanctions, why are we
6:16 pm
holding back, even though ambassador haley said we are going to look at russia's role in syria. why the continued attacks against the f.b.i. and why to undermine the investigations. these are serious questions and can't be swept under the rug. this is serious business and goes to the heart of the values of this nation of freedom and independence. and we got a lot of work to do. i hope there is a bright light shined on all of this and these investigations run their full course to see what has happened. if my friend from california would like to close, i offer him that opportunity. >> i close but with a bit of a question. mr. huffman: we talked about how big this is, sabotage is not so big a word of what the russians
6:17 pm
did. and anyone who was involved in a criminal conspiracy with them to pull that off, certainly there are criminal penalties, violations up to and including treason that may apply. we have to get to the bottom of this and get to the truth. if congress won't do this job because of partisan reasons and hold folks in contempt when they ignore subpoenas and refuse to answer questions, we can protect the special cournl investigation so that that lifelong republican leading this investigation can get the truth out to the american people. and i guess my question to you is given how big this is, and we have never seen anything like this, all of this evidence that a candidate for president, folks at the top of his campaign were involved in these illicit
6:18 pm
activities with a foreign power and all of the coverup and obstruction and other problems that are coming to light, how is history going to judge those who refuse to let the special counsel get to the bottom of it all so we can know the truth? mr. perlmutter: i hold out hope for all of the members of this body to want to have the truth and allow this investigation to run its course. and i hope and i expect the members, democrats and republicans will support and protect the special counsel and the department of justice and the f.b.i. so that the lawyers and the cops on the beat can finish this investigation. and that's what's key. and so, i hope it turns out there isn't anything else. five guilty pleas. 17 indictments.
6:19 pm
that's it. we're done. but i don't expect that to be the case. i yield back to the speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. members are reminded to refrain from engaging in personalities towards the president. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2017, the chair recognizes the gentlewoman rom missouri, mrs. wagner. mrs. wagner: i ask that all members may have five legislative days to include extraneous materials on the subject of my special order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mrs. wagner: i rise in honor of genocide awareness and prevention month. today, we remember the millions of victims of genocide throughout history and recommit working toward the day when
6:20 pm
genocide are not only inconceivable, mr. speaker, they are nonexist tarnt. april marks the commemorations the worst genocide like the and senseless bloodshed and innocent lives and fractured lives. my hometown st. louis is home to the largest bosnian community outside of bosnia. this community has shaped what the city looks and feels like. it has added great cultural diversity to the city and thriving small business cease and area strong religious presence. two decades ago, members of our bosnian community were refugees.
6:21 pm
in 1995, orthodox served under the command of a general initiated a horrific ethnic cleansing and campaigned against bosnia. bosnian 130,000 refugees to seek new lives in the united states, thousands were murdered. today, i wish to honor these brave men and women, the resilience of our bosnian neighbors have enriched our city and their courage inspires me and it has inspired me to speak change. tomorrow, i'm offering an amendment, the state department authorization act of 2018 asking the administration to study countries that risk genocide and craft training.
6:22 pm
should this bill become law, america's diplomats will have the know-how how to respond to those on the ground and before violence spirals out of control. this amendment establishes that the official policy of the united states of america is to regard the prevention of genocide and atrocity crimes as a core national security interest. however, this is just one step in the right zrecks. the u.s. government must improve how it responds to conflicts sm last april, i introduced the genocide and atrocities prevention act to improve efforts to prevent u.s. atrocities crime named after the schwitz survivor and this is
6:23 pm
ellie witesell. he was just 15 years old when the nazis deported him and his family to auschwitz and only member of his family to survive. having witnessed the total destruction of his people, he spent his life defending the persecuted. we protect the most vulnerable in our society and across the globe. horror eitzel, the true of zpwen side is that it is preventable. and the u.s. government has the tools to affect real change. the act would affirm the mission of the prevention board and its ork to coordinate prevention
6:24 pm
efforts and authorize the crisis fund to support acknowledge i will responses to unforeseen cries sees overseas. this time, when america says ever again, our actions will reinforce our plat tude and our work. i thank you, mr. speaker. and i thank you to all of my colleagues who share in this fight. and i wish now to yield to the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. mcgovern, for as much time as he may consume. mr. mcgovern: i want to thank my colleague, the gentlelady from missouri for her leadership and i'm honored to join her and other colleagues in recognize of genocide. preventing genocide is a moral
6:25 pm
imperative that deserves to be at the very top of our priority list. mass atrocities on a large scale, deliberate attacks against civilian populations and include genocide and crimes against humanity, war crimes and ethnic cleansing. after the holocaust, the state sponsored persecution and murder of groups by the nazi regime between 1941 and 1945, people all around the world vowed to never again stand by in the face of general guide. they have been committed in guatemala, the former yugoslavia slaffa, sudan and among other places. hundreds of people have been tortured, murdered and disappeared. and millions more have been
6:26 pm
forced to flee with profound humanitarian, political and national security consequences. i don't believe the world's failure to prevent atrocities is because no one cares. in this era of instant communication powered by social media, most people have condemned the atrocities in syria and elsewhere. no where is it because no one knows what it is happening. d there is the rohingya in burma. with we have not been good at turning indignation to prevent a bad situation from worsening. we must do better and more. this year, which i co-chair, we are looking at the tools we have as u.s. policy makers to prevent mass atrocities and ask how we
6:27 pm
can strengthen them and what it would mean to institutionalize a lens so we don't wait until it is so late and too big and all we can do isla minute the inhumidity and provide humanitarian aid to the victims and survivors. we know there is a lot of good work under way in both chambers of congress and both sides of the aisle to find new ways forward. led by representative ann wagner and co-upon soared by myself. government officials cannot do this work alone. we need civil society to help us. we need community associations, churches, synagogues, mosques, schools and businesses to take a
6:28 pm
stand against hate speech and teach and live tolerance and to open their hearts to reconciliation based on justice. we need to get the point where we honor every person's human dignity. and i take this opportunity to salute one of the many organizations that are doing this kind of work. standard is a movement to end genocide by organizing and educating their students. i met leaders in 2005 and 2006 when they were part of the national movement that brought the genocide movement to public awareness. they were my teachers. tonight, representatives of stand are listening to this debate and i thank them for their commitment and vision. this is on a grand scale.
6:29 pm
we must find new strategies to prevent them from happening and stop them at the very earlier stages should they begin to unfold. all of us in this chamber and country need to do more because i believe that the united states of america stands for anything, we stand for human rights. we need to be better. we need to be more effective in preventing these mass atrocities and again sides. i stand with my colleagues. i thank the gentlelady from missouri and i'm honored to participate in this special order with her and i yield back. mrs. wagner: i thank mr. mcgovern for his outstanding ords and his support and randy hultgren on sponsoring with me my piece of legislation. this truly is an issue that isn't just about human rights
6:30 pm
and getting voice but speaking for the most vulnerable in our society. it is about human dignity across our globe. it's about the u.s. responding to these conflicts in the way that only we can and should do and provide the kind of moral authority and support to do so through both our congress and through our foreign service officers and others that are working across the globe. so i thank the gentleman for his kind words. and now my pleasure to recognize the gentlelady from new york, ms. claudia tenney as much time as she may consume. ms. tenney: thank you, congresswoman wagner, you're an ince prailings to me as a new
6:31 pm
member. and congressman mcgovern. during the month of april we join together to honor victims and survivors, to educate the public about genocide. it's hard to believe it's happening in our time. and to advocate for the prevention of future atrocities. in the past 150 years, tens of millions of men, women and children have lost their lives in brutal generalsides and mass atrocities. millions have been tortured, raped an forced from their homes. in april, 1933, the nazi party began its boycott of u.s.-owned businesses. this led to the campaign that led to the murder of six million jews my district is home to thousands of refugees from the former yugoslavia. i have a long history with yugoslavia, i can my -- i began my study of the country in 1981 when i participated as a college student from colgate university
6:32 pm
in a semester abroad and we traveled throughout yugoslavia and all the different principalities and republics. it was a spectacular, beautiful country and it sparked a lifelong interest for me in this egion. the people there who survived conquests, whether the ottoman empire to being part of so many parts of human history. we're also victims the nazi invasion as well in world war ii. i had the lucky opportunity graduate from college and work as a foreign correspondent in the office of the consulate in new york. i worked at that time alongside abc sports in the winter olympics in sarajevo in 1984. the war in yugoslavia was a tragic saga, especially for me with my long history and love of the country. i work with people from


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on