tv U.S. House of Representatives Debate on Castro Amendment on Child Refugees CSPAN June 13, 2019 5:46pm-5:59pm EDT
"unplanned" showed where a child was decimated right off the screen for all to see. starves the baby to death. and then there is injections of chemical poisoning. that's the choice, the choice to kill an innocent, defenseless unborn child. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman reserves. the gentlewoman from california is recognized. mrs. torres: thank you, mr. speaker., the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. castro: thank you, mr. speaker. i this amendment requires the office of refugee resettlement to report all deaths of children in their custody. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: does anyone -- for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland -- >> i rise in opposition to the amendment and reserve the
balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman eserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. castro: i give two minutes to rosa delauro of connecticut. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. delauro: thank you. i want to thank the gentleman. i want to thank him for his commitment, his concern and his dedication. i rise in support of my colleague's amendment, the death of any child is devastating. the fact that children have died while in the custody of the federal government and we don't know the circumstances of why or sometimes even when they have died is almost beyond comprehension to me.
we have an oversight role. it is our responsibility to make sure that children are safe and protected while they are in the custody of health and human ervices. if you take a look at the mission statement it says place the child in a safe environment and do it as expeditiously as ossible. it is our responsibility to assure h.h.s. is fully transparent and they are, quote, appropriately respond to the death of an unaccompanied alien child in the care and custody of o.r.r. what my colleague, mr. castro, wants to do is make sure that the department of health and human services follows its own written policy.
it is as simple as that. from h.h.s.'s own policy, section 3.3.16, states that, and i quote, o.r.r. and its care providers must immediately report the death to appropriate federal, state, and local authorities. o.r.r. must also notify the child or youth's parents, legal guardian, or next of kin, attorney, and applicable consulate of the death. my god. if we can't do that, who are we? where are our values? and what we ought to be doing -- shame on us if we are not protecting these children and reporting when something is wrong or when they have died. thises a commonsense amendment. i strongly support. i thank the gentleman for offering it. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. castro: i want to repeat
what my amendment is. my amendment is to make sure that if a child dies in government custody that death is reported to the congress. i'm shocked that anybody in this chamber would disagree with that provision. i am saying if somebody dies in o.r.r. custody, they're going to tell us. so to be opposed to this amendment means that you want to be part of a coverup, a coverup and make sure that the government does not say anything about a child's death. the reason that this is so important is because last september, a young 10-year-old girl died. this congress and the american people were not told for seven or eight months about that young girl's death. and today we offer an amendment to make sure that the congress is told, that the american people know what's going on with their government and when i offer that amendment, on the
other side, i'm opposed. people are against it. they want to cover up these deaths? they don't want the american people to know that people are diing? there have been in the last few years, actually, in less than a year, six children who have died in government custody. and more adults over the last few years. this is already the rule with the department of homeland security, with i.c.e. this is extending it to o.r.r. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland. mr. harris: thank you very much. mr. chairman, it is already the rule. we're wasting our time here today. these are reported. the hypocrisy of coming to the floor and claiming to be for the children while opposing the president's supplemental budget that actually will take care of these children.
the members who are going to vote and who support this oppose the president's funding request to actually take care of the thousands of children who are crossing the border every week. without that money, you can't take care of these children. so the proponents of the amendment, again, totally unnecessary amendment because this is already the policy of the administration, this is make believe. this is th administration reports the deaths. it's the hypocritical proponents of the amendment who oppose funding to take care of children on the border for fewerly -- for purely political purposes. if they really want to take tack care of the children on the border, this bill would have included a supplemental appropriation for the children. in fact, that amendment was
considered in committee and along party lines rejected. the majority rejected money to take care of the children and now come to the floor and claim to be for the children. i yield a minute to the gentleman from north carolina. the chair: the gentleman is recognized by the chair. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for his passion, for his advocacy and truly for making sure that we set the record straight. the gentleman from texas has his heart in the right place. actually, the gentlewoman who spoke earlier, she and i actually met the very first time , came together, a liberal from the northeast, a conservative from the south, to actually address human trafficking together. so i think it's high time that in a bipartisan way we get together, work together on this supplemental, let's do it tonight, instead of having show votes, let's make sure we provide the money that the
president has requested to make sure that the humanitarian needs at the boarderer taken care of. the gentleman from maryland is exactly right. now is the time to act. let's show the compassion with our vote and i yield back. mr. harris: i yield one minute to the gentleman from texas. >> we're sitting here, 10:30 at night, and i am mystified that my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are preaching about this issue which is already the policy of the administration. and yet we are not funding the $4.5 billion request from the administration to deal with the problem at hand. mr. roy: our border is being overrun. my friend from texas knows this. we know it. you go spend any time on the border, 144,000 people apprehended on our southern border. 144,000.
h.h.s. has taken charge of nearly 100,000 unaccompanied children this year. i could go down stat after stat after stat, little children, little girls are being abused on the journey. cartels are profiting. while we ignore it. talk to the mayor of uvalde, texas, and throughout the southern area of texas. talk to the people about what's actually happening in the community. i cannot believe for the life of me that we can't come together to pass $4.5 billion to ensure --ky not believe -- i thank the gentleman. that we cannot come together in a bipartisan fashion to fund the necessary beds, to fund what is necessary to house these children. when people talk about kids in cages, are you directly attacking border patrol? have you spent time with border patrol who are trying to figure out whether a kid's dad is actually the dad or whether it's somebody who is using that
child? that's happening today. about is body waxes on whatever amendment we're throwing on the floor right now is already part of administrative policy. we're not actually addressing the problem. and the american people sent us here to do that. oh by the way, oh, no, we're demanding votes. heaven forbid this body votes. hetch forbid we follow the constitution which, you know, says something about a quorum. maybe we should actually be in this body voting on the things the mirn people sent us here to do like secure the border and ensure the safe passage of migrants in the united states of america, under our rule of law. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. castro: thank you, mr. speaker. we have a disagreement. i don't believe that this is the law right now. and if it already is the law then what's the big deal with supporting this amendment? all it does is reaffirm the law,
right? i'm surprised we can't agrow to it. i want to give you an example and a story of why this is so important. last september, when darlene vaya died in custody of the office of resettlement, news of the death wasn't revealed to the public or members of congress until just a few weeks ago because of a cbs investigation. she was 10 years old when she died while in o.r.r. custody. she was in o.r.r. custody in my hometown of san antonio when she became gravely ill and staff sent her to the hospital. however, beyond those few details, we have limited information surrounding her death because the administration has decided to deny it to congress. even after we asked their officials repeatedly about any injuries, abuse, or deaths on their watch. this amendment seeks to thend confusion and enhance transparency in our government. i want to repeat that again. last fall when we were asking
this administration whether any child had died or been seriously injured in government care and custody, their answer was no. i yield back. the chair: the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland. mr. harris: mr. chairman, the bottom line is, let's stop the charades. this is already administration folcy. i understand -- policy. i understand the desire to score political points against this president, a president who has come to congress and said, we need more money because the flood of children across the border, 145,000 people across the border last month, including thousand and thousands of children, needs the money to take care of them and the majority refuses to bring this bill to the floor. in fact, in a motion to recommit, they voted chair reco gentleman from virginia. mr. beyer: thank you. my amendment would require the office of refugee resettnt