tv U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN March 2, 2022 11:59am-4:00pm EST
place in march. the c-span tweet with a history of the state of the unions most often taking place in january. some 27 state of the unions taking place in january over the past 40 years or so. this was the first one to take place in march. in terms of timing of the state of the union address a month 62 minutes long. c-span with the teat -- with the tweet about time. nbc news with their topic tracker on the words and phrases that joe biden used last night. it was russia and >> you can watch the rest of this on the c-span now video app or at our website c-span.org. as part of our more than four-decade commitment of live gavel-to-gavel coverage of congress, we take you live now to the house of representatives, which today is considering legislation expanding benefits
the speaker: the house will be in order. the prayer will be offered by our chaplain, chaplain kibben. chaplain kibben: would you pray with me. holy god, we return to you this day with our whole hearts we approach you. on this day some fast that they would satisfy their hunger only with your word. others weep, a shame of the choices they have made which have distanced themselves from you. and still more mourn, grieving the loss of your loving embrace. be merciful to us, o god, be
slow to anger. show us your grace that we would enjoy, again, your steadfast love. then spare your people. let no one say where is our god. have pity on those who cry out to you this day. remove the enemies from those who call on your name and walk in your way. may your children no longer fear. in your redemption may they once again find reason to rejoice. praise be to you, o lord our god. you are in the midst of us. we call upon your most holy name hear our prayer. amen. the speaker: pursuant to section 11-a of house resolution 188, the journal of the last day's proceedings is approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led by the gentlewoman from north carolina, ms. ross. ms. ross: i pledge allegiance to
the flag of the united states of america plowj indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the speaker: the chair will entertain requests for 15 one-minute speeches on each side of the aisle. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend. the speaker: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. six years ago this month i heard the phrase triple negative breast cancer for the first time in my life. i was in the oncologist's office with my newly diagnosed 29-year-old daughter lauren, a day forever etched in my memory. in the weeks that followed, i learned a great deal about this very aggressive, rare form of breast cancer. roughly 12% of breast cancer survivors are designated as triple negative. it is the only form of breast cancer that doesn't respond to
hormone therapy, often requiring chemotherapy instead. and claims the lives of thousands of women and men each year. it stole lauren from our family in august of 2017. -to-tomorrow, march 3, is triple negative breast cancer awareness day. i'm humbled to sponsor a resolution to call attention to this awful disease and let the thousands of victims of triple negative breast cancer know they are not alone. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair will receive a message. the messenger: mr. speaker, a message from the president of the united states. the secretary: mr. speaker. the messenger: mr. secretary. the secretary: i have been indructed by the president of the united states to deliver the house of representatives a message in writing. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the the gentleman from south carolina rise. mr. wilson: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house and revise and extend my remarks for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. wilson: thank you, mr. speaker. the state of the union last night was a disconnect from the reality of biden failures. the "wall street journal" is correct, quote, he missed the moment. the paper went further to describe what biden did not say, quote, more defense spending to meet the threats from auto contracts, no. a new appreciation of the contribution of fossil fuels to american and european union security, not a word. a note that government spending contributed to the highest inflation rate in 40 years, nope. end of quote. i personally was disappointed of no mention of leaving americans behind in afghanistan. 13 patriots murdered in kabul. now afghanistan is a safe haven of terrorist who is can come across the open border to attack american families. an anxious world is looking for american leadership in a dangerous nua. i hope the president will change course for peace through strength. in conclusion, god bless
ukraine, god save ukraine. long live president zelensky. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california seek recognition. >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. the speaker:: thank you, mr. speaker. last night we heard the president of the united states speak with great enthusiasm about our friendship with the people of ukraine, how we had shared values in terms of democracy. in terms of sovereignty and in terms of not having someone come into their country and usurp their freedom. he also spoke about america's freedom in the world in terms of our independence, in terms of our own, own investments in our economic future. america's excellence in science and engineers has long been the envy of the world.
along the way other countries copied our model, investing in education and research, and the rest and took over some of the manufacture of our supply. we have what was referenced by the president last night legislation, we call it the competes act, in the house of representatives. and it is a blueprint, it is a blueprint for our independence and self-suf self-sufficiency-economically in the world. the house passed america competes act we do three things. we invest in chips, $52 billion in chips and semiconductors. do you know how many chips are in a car? 1,000. electric car, 2,000. so in order for our auto manufacturers to continue to create jobs and create product, we need chips. $52 billion. secondly, we reinvigorate our manufacturing base by addressing the supply chain issues.
supply chain increases supply, reducing cost, lowering inflation. this is very important. $48 billion invested there. third, we invest in research and education, stem cell so we can diversify the work force to include many more people. everyone in our country. as we advance science, technology, and good-paying jobs for the future. we are prepared to go into conference with the senate on this legislation. we are always ready to fight for the people. we expect to have this legislation before too long. when we do so, we will be lowering costs, increasing paychecks, and doing so for the people. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia seek recognition. mr. carter: ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from georgia is recognized for one minute. mr. carter: mr. speaker, i rise
today in recognition of the life of dr. ray farley. the former president of young harris college. he was a long-time supporter of young harris college with 35 years of dedicated service to young harris under his belt. beginning as a professor of history in 1955, dr. farley worked with the college until his retirement in 1991. after serving as the college president for 20 years. for some of those years, i was a student at young harris college while dr. farley was the president. i got to know him well. he was a fine gentleman and did an excellent job. during his tenure as president, dr. farley made it his mission to modernize and expand the services and facilities at young harris. he was responsible for taking important steps to strengthen the college endowment, faculty, curriculum, and facilities. he implemented his plan for helping to beautify the campus as well by renovating dining halls, dining facilities, residence halls, and
administrative buildings. the years with doctor farley at the elm were integral to the growth and development of the college itself. in april of 2021, dr. farley was awarded the outstanding friend award by the young harris college alumni association for his incredible dedication and service to the college. his legacy and impact will be felt for many years to come. i send my condolences to his family and friends, as well as the whole young harris community. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from north carolina seek recognition. >> mr. speaker, i request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. russia's assault on ukrainian freedom and democracy is an assault on freedom and democracy everywhere. ms. ross: that's why america and our allies are linking arms and engaging in unprecedented
cooperation. president biden has marshalled the world to impose severe consequences on putin and the russian economy. because of these crippling sanctions, russia now stands at the precipice of a punishing financial crisis. american troops, many from fort bragg and elsewhere in north carolina, are already in nato countries in eastern a europe. and more are on their way. the international community is also sending support to countries neighboring ukraine, including north carolina's close partner, moldavia. as we continue to work on a robust new aid package, the prayers and admiration of the people of my district are with the brave ukrainian freedom fighters, risking their lives to defend their homeland. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. for what purpose does the the gentleman from north carolina
seek recognition. >> mr. speaker, i seek unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, when the united states military shows up, kicks and kingdoms fall to their knees. as the great philosopher once said we put a boot in their ass. that's the american way. our military preeminence is unmatched. grand is dominance. mr. cawthorn: or greatness lies in temperance. america first means power under control. overzealous executives are wrenched away a precious power bestowed on this body. i am here to remind them congress declares war, not joe biden, not some woke general. congress. the people must debate, decide, and then if absolutely necessary declare war. the constitution is our compass. not the feelings of some bought off military industrial complex war hawk who use as motion to justify america's entry into every overseas conflict. congress must reclaim our power to declare war. if we do declare, we must define
what victory looks like. the sons and daughters of america are too precious to waste on the alt' of globalism. america first, always and forever. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from connecticut seek recognition. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i seek to -- unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. and address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. larson: mr. speaker, more than 900,000 people in the united states have lost their lives due to covid. of those more than 900,000, 660,000 people over age 65 have been lost because of covid. it's the same population that is not only worried and concerned about co covid, but they are the ones on fixed income. they are the ones that rely on social security. more than five million of our fellow americans get a below
poverty level check from social security after having paid in all their lives to the number one insurance program in the country, the number one anti-poverty program for the elderly, anti-number one anti-poverty program for children. help is on the way. social security 2100, a sacred trust as the president called it, is a bill that will uplift and raise people out of the depths of poverty and provide them with the sustenance they need this their daily lives, i yield back, mr. chairman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from iowa seek recognition. mrs. miller-meeks: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to speak in strong support of the people of ukraine and against the thuggish criminal and careless actions of the russian military and president putin. last week's invasion by ukraine -- of ukraine by russia
was planned and premeditated. it was and still is a blatant act of war and cannot be tolerated by the international community. putin's actions have been those of a desperate politician creating chaos in neighboring countries due to low popularity at home. as we have seen on the news and social media, the russian military is making no distinction between military and civilian, launching missiles blindly into ukrainian cities and towns. with their backs against the wall, the people of ukraine have shown the world they will fight until the end to defend their friends, family, homes, and country. we must support them and the democratically elected ukrainian government. . we must cut off energy exports and halt the exports of russian oil and unleash american energy, biofuel, and wind. to the people of ukraine, we are
with you today, tomorrow and always. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. cartwright: i seek unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. without objection. mr. cartwright: as we heard has night in the president's state of the union, the infrastructure investment and jobs act is a once in a lifetime investment in our nation's economic foundation and our nation's competitiveness. infrastructure investment and jobs act makes it possible to rebuild our roads, our bridges, our water systems, our sewer systems and reduce pollution. it is the solution to improving our competitiveness on the world stage and recovering from the
devastating covid-19 pandemic after years about talking about passing an infrastructure bill and week after week of infrastructure, we have finally done it. and we will begin seeing the benefits quite soon. thank god for the infrastructure investments and jobs act and 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. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to honor huntington beach police officer who was killed in a helicopter crash while responding to a call on newport beach. officer villa served as a law enforcement officer for 18 years and spent 14 years with the
huntington beach police department. he protected our community. my heart goes out to his wife and daughter, the huntington beach police department. andrew: all who knew officer villa. i'm thankful for our brairve law enforcement officers and put their lives on the line for us and i'm grateful for their service and sacrifice and want to thank their families, too, because their sacrifice does not go unnoticed. i will be praying for officer villa and his family. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from delaware seek recognition? ms. blunt rochester: i would like to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. blunt rochester: i rise today in support of the
bipartisan supply chain subject title found in the house-passed america competes act. we have all heard from our constituents over the last several months about the impact that inflation has had on households and businesses. we also know that a key reason for rising prices on critical goods is our supply chain instability. the supply chain subject title in the america competes act will strengthen our supply chain and tackle the root cause of inflation. it is important to preserve this through the negotiation of the america competes act as we build a better america. this is about creating good-paying union jobs, protecting our national security and protecting the pocketbooks of the american people. let's get it done. thank you, mr. speaker. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for
what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. thompson: i request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i rise today to acknowledge the distinguished career of penn state university president barron. he assumed office in 2014 after leaving his post at florida state university. the service university served as dean of the college of earth and mineral services and founding director of the science center at penn state. in his tenure, president barron elevated penn state as a leader in higher education. he has worked to support state funding, increase access and affordability to students in preparing students graduating from penn state for success after college. he has always made a point to meet the pennsylvania congressional delegation and share penn's state's vision,
work and culture and took the time to build meaningful relationships in the commonwealth and i'm happy to call him friend and i wish him well in his retirement. penn state is one of the top institutions in the country because of the work of president baron and leaves a great legacy behind. thank you for your service and enjoy your retirement. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? >> i request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. ryan: i'm frustrated. we have heard a lot this week about cutting workers in on the deal and meet the challenges that this nation is facing and every piece of the game plan, whether it's helping take on china, how do we bring jobs back to places like ohio, how do we
increase union membership by making it easier to join a union, how do we bring down costs and cut taxes for workers in the midst of all of this inflation. and every one of those bills has gone to the senate and either died or is on life support. and here's one example of just how broken this is, last year we made history when we passed the women's health protection act. not a moment too soon as roe versus wade is hanging in the balance in states of ohio raced to pass new laws to ban abortion. this is a basic right, a matter of settled law, but this week, the senate blocked the vote, blocked it and we didn't even get a vote. it's time to get rid of the filibuster and make sure that the bills we send here from the
house actually get passed in the united states senate. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. are there further requests for one minutes? for what purpose does the gentlewoman from new york seek recognition? mrs.maloney: i ask one minute to address the house. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mrs.maloney: i rise today in strong support of h.r. 3967, the honoring our pact act, which will ensure comprehensive benefits and care for our troops who suffer from toxic exposure especially from burn pits and i thank chairman takano for his leadership on this bill. it is something that we should support. as the daughter of a veteran, sister of a veteran, wife of a veteran, caring for veterans is important to me as it should be for every american.
i couldn't help be struck of the similarities between this bill and the 9/11 health and compensation bill whose heroes were exposed to burning toxins that gave them cancer and severe illness. this bill could help over 3 million veterans who are suffering from exposure to toxic burn pits. whether you served in afghanistan, iraq or elsewhere, whether you were exposed, you are entitled to care. they were there for us, we should be there for them and support this important bill. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the chair lays before the house an enrolled bill. the clerk: h.r. 4445 an act to amend title 9 of the united statescode with respect to arbitration of dispute involving
sexual assault and sexual harassment. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> i seek recognition to remove myself as co-sponsor of h.r. 2748.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. takano: mr. speaker, pursuant to house resolution 950, i call up the bill h.r. 3967 as amended, and ask for its immediate consideration in the house. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 3967, a bill to improve health care and benefits for veterans exposed to toxic substances and for other purposes. pursuant to house resolution 950, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text rules committee print 117-33 modified by the amendment
printed in part a of house report 117-253 is adopted and the bill as amended is considered read. the bill as amended is debatable for one hour equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on veterans affairs. the gentleman from california, mr. many takano, and the gentlewoman from iowa, mrs. miller-meeks, each will control 30 minutes. mr. takano: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous material on h.r. 3967 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: without objection mr. takano: i yield myself such time as i may consume. i rise in support of h.r. 3967 as amended the honoring our pact act of 20216789 when we he send
our servicemembers into harm's way we made a pact with them. but for far too long, congress and the department of veterans affairs have been slow to accept responsibility and costs of that care citing high costs or lack of absolute scientific proof of connection to service. the result is a disability claims process that is cumbersome and places the burden of proof of toxic exposure on veterans themselves. veterans speak out to being exposed to toxic substances. i put out a call encouraging toxic-exposed veterans to share their experiences. we mered from thousands of veterans from 49 states. these reflections are very powerful and i would hike to share some of them with you now.
navy veteran ed described how toxic exposures overwhelmed his senses and he wrote, quote, you could not escape the jet fuel. you could see it, smell it and taste it, end quote. i heard from veteran mike, who said, quote, even when we weren't actually engaged in dumping items into the burn pit, we were still exposed, end quote. air force veteran christopher r. said i continue to be rejected because they say it is impossible to approve that it is service related. i never worked with chemicals before my service or sense. i feel like a nuisance to the v.a. health system, end quote. i heard from the widow of army veteran austin monk who said, no
wife should have to bury her 22-year-old husband because of his exposure to unsafe conditions while in service to his country, end quote. the stories are heart wrenching and frustrating. our veterans are fighting their own government to grant them the care they deserve. we should be outraged listening to these stories and should be clear on passing the honoring the pact act is for our veterans. veterans and veteran service organizations agree. veterans service organizations agree. i ask unanimous consent to enter letters of support from more than 42 veterans service organizations into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. takano: i would like to wiy pelosi, our speaker, for her commitment to bring this bill to the floor. after years of diligent input from my colleagues, our staff,
v.a., v.s.o.'s and toxic exposed veterans themselves, i am confident we are bringing the best possible version of this bill up for a vote. the administration agrees and has stated that, it, quote, strongly supports, end quote, this legislation. mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to enter the statement of administrative policy for h.r. 3967 into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. takano: what is now time for the members of this body to answer a simple question. am i willing to support our troops and honor our nation's promise to them? this bill addresses the true cost of war and opposing it would be a vote against our service members and veterans. such a vote would be inconsistent with the thank yous and productic displays so many -- patriotic displays so many of our colleagues offer on
veterans day. veterans want action and they deserve our action. we made a promise to deliver comprehensive toxic exposure legislation, and i intent tend to keep that promise -- and i intend to keep that promise. the honoring our pact act will give access to v.a. care and benefits while reforming v.a.'s presumptive decisionmaking process. it will expand v.a. health care eligibility for over 3.5 million veterans exposed to burn pits and establish a presumption of service connections for over 23 respiratory illnesses in can cancers. there is no other toxic exposure legislation in congress like this one. in scope or in soundness. before i close, i must emphasize something essential. we cannot renege on our responsibility to toxic expose the veterans because of any perceived sticker shock.
cries for offsets and pay-fors did not stop congress from passing a $1.9 trillion tax cut for corporations and the wealthy in 2017. over the past 20 years congress and our country made the choice to spend trillions on other priorities while sending service members into harm's way at the cost of $6.4 trillion. we know that this congress is willing to find money when it wants to as it recently demonstrated by adding $25 billion to the last national defense authorization act. when our country goes to war, we don't nickel and dime the department of defense. and we shouldn't try to pinch pennies when it comes to covering the care for toxic exposed veterans. we will not stand by and be lectured about fiscal responsibility when we have a moral obligation to america's
veterans. the time to meet that obligation is now. thank you, mr. speaker. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. mr. speaker, i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. mr. speaker, i rise today in opposition to h.r. 3967, the pact act. i wish that this were not the case. i would love to be here today standing proud alongside chairman in support of this bill. i know ranking member b.o.s. would as well. ranking member bost would as well. i'm new to congress but i understand historically the v.a. committee would work on a bipartisan basis to advance legislation of this magnitude much the mission act and forever g.i. bill are wonderful examples of the majority and minority in the house and senate working noght prior congresses on a compromise both sides could support and send to the
president's desk. that's how congress should work. that's why they used to say that those of us on the v.a. committee would leave our party affiliations at the door and that the v.a. committee was the most bipartisan committee in congress. that is no longer the case under this democrat majority. the pact act is a sad example of that. my fellow republicans and i want to work with the majority to create fair and consistent pathway for health care benefits for toxic exposed veterans. this is an issue we care deeply about for which i have a personal association, and have made our top priority in the 11th congress. but the majority has consistently refused to meaningful -- meaningfully communicate with us on this bill. in fact, the majority significantly rewrote major portions and components of this -- the pact act less than two weeks ago and refused to even discuss those changes with those of us in the minority. because we did not work together to resolve our differences, the bill has serious flaws that we
were unable to resolve. already the managers amendment would expand benefits to more veterans without scientific justification, showing just how slippery a slope this bill would set. as an alternative, i support creating a fair and consistent process for the v.a. to decide whether benefits are warranted for a certain military toxic exposure events. v.a. should base this decision on a criteria that weighs the strength of scientific evidence supporting a link between the development of a condition and toxic exposure. in fact, for the past two years during the pandemic, we have heard repeatedly from the opposite side about following the science. if the v.a. determines that there is at least 50% chance that these veterans' disabilities are linked to toxic exposure, v.a. should grant benefits on a presumptive basis. the pact act attempts to create a framework but i believe more discussion is needed to determine if it's the best path forward. that is especially important since the v.a. began piloting
its own program for deciding whether there is a scientific link between disability and toxic exposure last year. under v.a.'s model certain gulf war and post 9/11 he veterans exposed to airborne hazard and developed asthma, ryonitis become eligible -- bb eligible for benefits last september. just this past week v.a. announced it will provide compensation to certain veterans who are diagnosed with nine rare respiratory cancers. v.a.'s decisions were pace basted on science. however -- based on science. however it's unclear whether alt conditions under chairman takano's bill would meet the scientific threshold under his framework or the v.a.'s. furthermore, the pact act could also flood v.a. with so many new mandates that veterans already receiving care and benefits wait longer. veterans wait too long for v.a. services right now. i hear frequently from veterans in iowa who can't get the care
they need or waiting months. in some states even years for the benefits they have earned. i don't know if a member in this body -- i don't know of a member in this body who can't say the same thing. making those veterans wait even longer is unacceptable. it could be unprecedented where claims process is concerned. in 2013 the disability claims backlog peaked at 600,000 pending claims. veterans were waiting years to receive an initial decision of their claim and then if it was denied, they were waiting even longer while the v.a. processed their appeal. v.a. has made some improvements to how disability claims are processed since 2013, but the department is still years away from developing the information technology needed to truly expedite claims processing. if the pact act were enacted, v.a. estimates the disability claims backlog could reach over 1.5 million claims by the end of
fiscal year 2023. that's more than double the height of the backlog in 2013. if veterans were waiting years for their benefits nine years ago, imagine how long they would have to wait today for a backlog that is more than two times the size it was then. that is completely unreasonable. the pact act is also unacceptable for taxpayers. c.b.o. estimates the pact act would require eefer $300 million and new government spending, not a penny of those costs are offset. additionally, some of the amendments we will be voting on would increase the costs by millions of dollars and new mandatory spending on top of that. you will hear some say that this is just the cost of war. anyone who has served or has a loved one who serves like i have and do know what war costs. they also know that veterans pay taxes, too.
they also know that veterans have children and grandchildren whose futures they don't want to be anymore burdened with debt than they already are. the pact act costs more than combined discretionary budgets of nine cabinet level departments. think about that. and then think about inflation and our national debt. which is already skyrocketing and is causing american taxpayers to pinch pennys. we are not doing right by our veterans by being fiscally irresponsible in their name. and i say that as a veteran myself. finally, there is no clear or quick path forward in the senate for the pact act. in comparison, we could send legislation to the president's desk today that would help sick veterans get the care they need. the health care for burn pit veterans act would let toxic exposed post 9/11 combat veterans enroll in the v.a. health care system. it is bipartisan, and it has
already passed the senate last month. i understand the majority would like to go to conference over the health care for burn pit veterans act and the pact act. but i also understand that the majority supports the health care for burn pit veterans act because they included it as a provision in the rules committee print of the pact act. if we all agree that the health care for burn pit veterans act is a good policy, why would we delay its enactment? every day that the house fails to send it to the president is another day that veterans are deprived of lifesaving care. nothing could be more wrong-headed than that. the health care for burn pit veterans act is the correct first step towards this process. if we deliver needed health care to toxic exposed veterans and buy us the time to work on a bipartisan, bicameral basis to deliver other benefits and services to them down the line, they would at least have health care now. we should have done this throughout this congressional
session. but we haven't even started yet. six veterans should not pay the price for our inaction. rather than pass the pact act in the house, with its many flaws and extremely high likelihood of dying in the senate, we must pass the health care for burn pit veterans act today. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. takano: mr. speaker, it is my honor, privilege to yield one minute to a person who has done more for veterans in modern times than any other. leader of this body, i proudly yield one minute to speaker pelosi. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized for one minute. the speaker: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding, for his kind words which i accept on behalf of our working in a bipartisan way for our democrats -- for our veterans oafort years.
democrats and republicans. i thank you, mr. chairman, for your extraordinary leadership of both in this case and earlier for our veterans whether it was completing our agent orange responsibilities to our veterans. i thank congressman ruiz, a doctor and a member of congress who has been a champion on this issue. elaine laurie, a veteran and member of this congress who has been so instrumental in bringing this legislation to the floor. when we -- when the president spoke last night about meeting the needs of our veterans, when it came to the burn pits, he received almost a unanimous standing ovation. it was very encouraging to see the congress of the united states, house and senate, democrats and republicans recognize their obligation to our men and women in uniform.
it's important to note over the past generation over three million of our courageous americans have answered the call to serve and have donned the uniform to protect our freedoms and heroic americans, just as people have done since our founding. from the deserts of iraq to the mountains of afghanistan, i was hearing this morning about can due har, on bases and military leaders throughout the world, these heroes have risked their lives to fight the enemy. and tragically have had to face another deadly threat due to exposure to burn fits and other -- burn pits and other toxic substances. we always say about our military on the battlefield we leave no soldier behind. and when they come home, we leave no veteran behind. we want them instead of receiving comprehensive timely care and benefits, sometimes they are forced to confront a
disability claims process that is nearly impossible to navigate. that is why the honoring our promise to address comprehensive toxic, pact act, finally, fa faithfully fulfills that pledge now and into the future we will leave no veteran behind. the budget cost of it are a cost of war. when we decide we need to engage and initiate in a military action, we should understand that the cost is not just in our defense budget, but also in our veterans' budget when they come home. frankly, the cost of this bill is a fraction if we're talking budget, of the cost of the republican tax bill that they passed in 2017, which added $2 trillion to the national debt. i didn't hear anybody
complaining on the other side of the aisle about the impact that had on veterans and their concerns about the fiscal soundness of the united states. so let's just put to rest, if it is a costa we must have for our veterans, that we must have for our veterans and this has been thoroughly researched then we cannot say we can't afford it. it isn't about the price but the value. the last 20 years, v.a. has seen 60% increase in rates of cancer. 80% of veterans from iraq afghanistan have been exposed to the fumes of toxic burn fits and they said they were experiencing symptoms that could be related to that. potentially up to 3-5 million
veterans post-9/11 may have been exposed to toxic fumes and substances. 75% of disability claims were denied too often saying it is too expensive to care for. the result of this negligence has been tragic. thousands of veterans and families have been forced to suffer including heroes like staff sergeant wesley black. he was a purple heart hero and survived two tours in iraq and afghanistan. he has left behind a wife and baby. after serving his country, sergeant black should have been able to retire happily with pride but spent his final days fighting for reforms contained
in this legislation so no current or future veteran would be forced to endure the same horror. he said before his passing, he said, staff sergeant wesley black said, it's too late for me, it's not too late for the next veteran who goes in and complains about signs and symptoms. we must make sure it's not too late for other veterans i say. and when we serve our servicemen and women into harm's way, we care for them when they come home. this is particularly important to me because a long time ago, long before i was in congress, 1981, i sat with veterans in california, with dick gregory, who was making a big association with the cause for agent orange. 1981, california, veterans
having a hunger strike. dick gregory knew hunger strikes from the civil rights' movement and he was associating them how to survive a hunger strike and i had the privilege of being with them. little did i know it would take decades to address their agent orange concerns and it wasn't complete until mr. chairman did so with the navy legislation that he passed. we cannot let that much time go by. it would be shameful to our country. so, again, let us also thank mrd the camp lejeune justice act, anyone who heard from those families, not just servicemembers but family
members with injuries exposed at camp lejeune. thank you chairman takano and those who worked so hard. and i salute chairman tester in the senate that chairman takano has worked with closely. we share a goal so this package is comprehensive and fulfills our responsibilities. others will go into the particulars of it and i salute the distinguished secretary of v.a., dennis mcdonough to make sure of what we do honors the promise of the pact act, that it is able to deliver in a timely fashion that delivers in a timely fashion to our veterans. i couldn't have been more
excited when the president in the united states included this important initiative in his remarks not only as legislation but in the larger issue of what it means to our country and how we value our veterans and how we want to pass this legislation and get it to his desk soon so it will be a comfort to our veterans and their families. on the battlefield we leave no soldier behind. and when they come home, we leave no veterans behind. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs.miller-: meeks i could not agree more that we could act today and forward legislation to the desk to the president by bypassing this today so there isn't another sergeant wesley black. and we would be more than
delighted to help the president in honoring his initiative as he stated last night in the state of the union by today passing the health care for burn pit veterans act. i reserve. mr. takano: at this time i would like to yield two minutes to my good friend who is the chair member of the house rains subcommittee on economic opportunity, the gentleman from california, mr. levin. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized mr. levin: i rise today in strong support of the honoring our pact act. all too often, many veterans hear thank you for your service but don't see enough action. sadly, that has been true to millions of veterans who are exposed from toxic substance.
while they defended our country, and exposed to burn pits and pfas. in the case of vietnam veterans those exposed to agent orange were forced to wait for more than 40 years. for too long the burdennen of proof has been on the veteran to show the toxic exposure. veterans have been told it is too expensive to cover the range of health issues that they have as a result of their toxic exposure, that is wrong and we must do better. with the honoring our pact act, we can do right. this includes finally presuming if they were exposed to toxic substances due to their services and suffering from cancers, then that illness is a result of their exposure and owed pro benefits and care through the v.a. i want to highlight what will be
a key piece of this bill, an amendment to authorize federal grants for county service officers. and file benefit claims and represent veterans. county veteran service officers are veterans' best allies and securing the benefits that veterans have earned with which will be important for the three million veterans as a result of this legislation the amendment is similar to my commitment to veterans outreach act that i supported last year and i hope to see it moving forward as honoring the pact act. this legislation is the opportunity to put real action behind our words. saying thank you for your service has never been enough. it's time to fulfill the promises we made to our troops and invest in the care they deserve.
i encourage my colleagues to vote yes. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i reserve. >> i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i yield one minute to the esteemed majority leader of this house, steny hoyer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized for one minute. mr. hoyer: i want to thank the chairman for not only yielding time but much more, more importantly but the extraordinary work he does on behalf of the armed forces and for its veterans. he is tireless in his advocacy of veterans' interests. i meet with him every wednesday in the chairman's meeting and all was speaking up about how we need to continue our focus on the needs of our veterans who
served our country heroicically whether they went overseas or not. some of the veterans we are talking about were not overseas but were here in america. there is a poet who says they stand in wait ready to be deployed. mr. speaker, you and i are old enough -- i don't want to be too harsh on the speaker, but to remember the song "when johnny comes marching home again, hooray. the women will all turn out. after that cheering and parade, memories are short. and as time goes by, some of our veterans sadly, tragically and
wrongfully have been forgotten. this bill says we do not forget. this bill says we will be there for you. and yes, we will be there even if there is a substantial cost to it. and this is defense cost. in my view, the veterans' cost ought to be in the defense budget and we ought to be there because that is what we are all enthusiastic about spending money on. and veterans need to be and are our first priority. so i want to thank the chairman for his focus and for his action. he has long been a champion of our veterans and their well-being. and i thank representative ruiz and representative lore yeah, who have worked very hard on
this. representative loria, commander of a navy ship. dr. ruiz, front line of illness as an emergency physician and knows full well the effects of toxic material to the well-being, psychological and physical of individuals. i thank them for their work. our veterans served with honor and went above and beyond the call of duty in defense our nation. many of them risked their lives. some of them were support without whom the point of the spear would not have been successful. we have a responsibility, a moral responsibility to care for
our veterans when they return home and receive the treatment. when we send our members to war, when we recruit them, when we put them in a position by order and they become ill because of where they are, because of either negligence or unknowing actions, unknowing to the extent that we don't know the effects that they cause, whatever the situation, a soldier's exposure is our responsibility to burn pits and other toxic substances during their service has been shown to a great increase of cancers and diseases. the legislation would expand veterans' benefits to expand to those effects of exposure that occurred during their military
service. mr. speaker, we ask our veterans to go to battle for america and to answer the call. when they return home, veterans should not have to go to battle against red tape to get benefits they have earned through their sches and ought to be able to access care for the physical and mental wounds they carry without impediment or delay. all of us have gotten cases where there have been weeks, months, years that veterans have waited for benefits that they deserve under law and as a moral responsibility of our government. we thank orr our veterans for their service. as i said, we shout, cheer, and turn out. but this is our responsibility. this is not about cheering or shouting. this is about doing what we ought to do for those who were
injured in the defense of our nation and our freedom. this is our opportunity to keep our promise to put our veterans first and truly give them our highest respect. again, i thank my friend, chairman takano. i thank all the members of the veterans' committee and all those veterans who don't forget those who come after them. i thank mr. takano for his leadership and urge my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to join in passing this bill with a strong bipartisan support. our president talked about bipartisanship. i talked to mr. scalise about being the loyal opposition. not loyal to democrats or democrat leaders but loyal to our country and being loyal to our country means being loyal to those who served and preserved
the freedoms that we enjoy, this home of the free and land of the brave. i think it's the opposite way around, but we get the point. brave and free go together. let us not forget. let's pass this bill. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you, mr. chair. anyone who has served or has a loved one who serves, like i have and do, knows the cost of war good and well. veterans pay taxes, too. veterans also have children and grandchildren that they don't want to burden with debt. the pact act costs more than the combined discretionary budgets of nine cabinet level departments -- transportation, commerce, homeland security, state, h.u.d., interior,
justice, labor. and we should not dismiss those costs so easily, just as we have a moral responsibility to care for our veterans, we have a moral responsibility to understand the real-world consequences that we can already see in skyrocketing inflation and national debt. congress should have to pay our bills just like our constituents do. and i'm not downplaying the importance of benefits. getting the health care for burn pit veterans act signed into law may be the first step in this fight, but it will be a lifesaving one. it does no good to have benefits if you are not alive to have them. republicans invited jim price, a toxic exposed veteran and widower of one, to testify. and he said, it is better -- he says it better than i could. in jim's word, benefits mean nothing if you are no longer alive. chairman takano acknowledged last week that he's not even started talking to the senate about a compromise on this bill.
that means we are months away from a deal if we can even find one. meanwhile, veterans could receive lifesaving health care now. some veterans don't have that long to wait. they need that health care now. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to my good friend who serves as chair of the subcommittee on oversight and investigations for the veterans' affairs committee, the gentleman from new hampshire, mr. pappas. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new hampshire is recognized for two minutes. mr. pappas: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you, chairman at thtakano yielding and for answering the calls of our nation's veterans, their advocates and our veterans' service organizations. i rise in support of the honoring our pact act, which makes good on our nation's promise to veterans. it's well past time we address the impacts of toxic exposure that have been endured by members of our military and i'm
glad we're taking meaningful, compr comprehensive action today. i'm pleased this legislation includes a bill i introduced, the pfas registry act. pfas chemicals have contaminated the drinking water of military bases across the country, including those in my district. these forever kchemicals persis in the environment and body and are linked to serious health conditions, including cancer. this provision will give military service members and veterans access to health information, research updates, and other resources to help protect public health and provide relief to those who have been exposed to pfas. the honoring our pact act will help veterans already suffering from the impacts of toxic exposure, and we also must do more to reduce the risk that more service members will be exposed. that's why i've also submitted an amendment that will require our government to proactively raise awareness of the dangers of toxic exposure to active duty personnel. these provisions will require d.o.d. and v.a. to create a strategy for awareness and
prevention that will protect active duty service members from harm and save lives. our men and women in uniform already face numerous threats to life and limb for their service. we must minimize risks that environmental and toxic hazards pose and provide the care, benefits, and support these veterans have earned. it's our solemn responsibility. so i urge swift passage of my amendment as well as the underlying legislation, and i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. section 706 comes from h.r. 6482, which was referred to the judiciary committee, not the v.a. committee. h.r. 6482 has not gone through the regular order this congress. this is another blatant example of the democrat majority pushing through legislation without careful consideration of the impact it may have on the federal government. moreover, this proinvestigate is a -- provision is a departure from the past because it would allow veterans to sue the united
states for disability incurred in military service. this type of change would not simply be airdropped into a bill without careful consideration within this committee. the v.a. estimates that the pact act will cost an unprecedent -- will cause an unprecedented backlog of over $1. -- 1.5 million disability claims. this will lead to longer wait times for veterans and put a strain on v.b.a. resources and personnel. an increase in claims decisions is likely to result in an increase in appeals, which will add to the appeals backlog. all veterans, not just toxic exposed veterans, will be forced to wait months or years for a final decision on their disability claim or appeal. this is a big risk to take when there is little to no science backing the benefits expansion under this bill. and our moral responsibility, what will i say to the veterans in my district who could get health care now if we refuse to consider a bill that will pass? i reserve.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. the house will receive a message. the messenger: mr. speaker, messages from the senate. the secretary: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: madam secretary. the secretary: i have been directed by the senate to inform the house that the senate has passed s. 3600, an act to improve the cybersecurity of the federal government and for other purposes in which the concurrence of the house is requested. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to my good friend and co-sponsor of h.r. 3967, she's the chairwoman of the -- chair of the disability, assistance, and memorials services subcommittee and also a veteran herself and former commander of a naval surface ship, mrs. luria from virginia. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from virginia is recognized for two minutes. mrs. luria: thank you, chairman
takano. and mr. speaker, as a 20-year veteran myself, it's an honor to stand before you today. i would say the urgency of what our veterans are facing should not be lost on this body. autoimmune disorders, cancer, chronic disease, respiratory disease and organ failure is just a few in the lengthen list of toxics received during military service. why should they now have to battle for their health care when they return home? there should be no question of our commitment to the veterans who voluntarily served our nation without hesitation. this body should not hesitate to pass this legislation, the honoring our pact act. i'm proud to serve a district that has such a strong military and veterans presence. nearly one out of every six people in virginia's second congressional district is a veteran and even more are their family members.
many of these veterans come from the gulf war era with 42% of them having served in the post-9/11 era. my presence at this podium today recon firms our -- my -- reconfirms my unwavering commitment of those who depend on the passage of this legislation that they get the care they deserve. let me be clear. veterans have the right to earn accessible v.a. health care. as such, the choice is clear we need to pass the honoring our pact act. our work on this vital legislation has been bipartisan and it incorporates two bills that i've introduced -- the covenant act. which recognizes the toxic exposure of so many of our virnls and establish their ability -- veterans and establish their ability tfor -- for health care. and it brings note ifications io the 21st century. to get information
electronically, something that's long overdue and has been requested by the secretary of the v.a. let me say again that as a 20-year veteran myself, i support this legislation, and i want to get this health care to all of those veterans who served and who so desperately need it. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you, mr. chair. how much time remaining do i have? the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman has 18 minutes remaining. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. the benefits provided under this bill have little to no scientific basis. for example, in 2020, the national academies reviewed 11 of the 24 burn pit-related provisions in the bill but could not establish a link between burn pit and those 11 conditions. the other conditions were not looked at. it's not fair to provide benefits to select veterans under this bill while telling other veterans to wait for the science. instead, there needs to be a
fair and consistent process to decide if there is enough evidence supporting the extension of benefits to a condition that may be linked to toxic exposure. this bill sets a dangerous precedent that we cannot afford to maintain for the next group of toxic exposed veterans wanting benefits with no scientific support. it may also add that veterans need not be in a battle for health care if we passed today the health care for burn pit veterans act, which has already passed in the senate. we have received zero assurance from the v.a. that the pact act can be implemented without disrupting services to veterans. i hear every day from veterans who cannot get care in a timely manner through the v.a. right now. the pact act would make millions more veterans eligible for care through the same system, much more than the health care for veterans burn pit act would, and, of course, that will have implications for access. even v.a.'s own providers have expressed concern about the
im impact, an influx of new patients without accommodations and resources will have clogging up an already burdened system. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, may i inquire as to how much time remains? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has 15 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. takano: thank you, mr. spe speaker. at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to my good friend who serves as the co-chair of technology on the veterans' committee, the gentleman, m mr. mrvan. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mrvan: i want to rise in support of this legislation. this bill will have veterans will receive world-class health care. as i meet with veterans and veteran groups from northwest indiana, i continue to be grateful every day for their selfless service and sacrifice by our veterans and their families. just yesterday, less than 24 hours ago, a veteran
representing the d.a.v. came to me who had two forms of cancer who was advocating not only for himself but other veterans to make sure they received the care and the necessity of care that they deserve. as we have a responsibility to ensure that all veterans receive world-class health care when they return home from protecting our freedoms, defending our democracy, i commend chairman takano for his consistent advocacy and leadership to bring this measure to the floor today. i appreciate the announcement yesterday that the v.a. will process claims for toxic exposed veterans with certain rare respiratory cancers. more must be done. i encourage all my colleagues to vote for the honoring our pact act so that a regular and transparent process is established to ensure that all issues facing toxic exposed veterans are comprehensively addressed. and as i opened, the impact of this legislation is that veterans receive the world-class
health care they deserve. thank you, mr. chairman, and i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. i applaud the v.a. for initiating a review of these nine rare cancers to determine if they are linked to airborne hazard exposure while deployed. i'm looking forward to heard about the v.h.a.'s research, which supported the expansion of benefits to these gulf war and post-9/11 veterans. likewise, i am interested in learning more about the number of veterans who would be impacted by this decision and the effect it will have on the v.a. however, these nine cancers are only a subset of the conditions included in chairman takano's bill. i believe more scientific research is needed to determine if additional disabilities are linked to airborne hazard exposure. both the majority and the minority want world-class health care for our veterans, and thus, it underscores our concern with this bill. i reserve. .
mr. takano: i yield two minutes to my good friend and neighbor in california, someone who has authored a great big section of this bill, the house veterans affairs committee where he is on the disability assistance, the gentleman from california, dr. ruiz. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for two minutes. mr. ruiz: as we stand here, we have veterans that have been exposed. my constituents have developed from the burn pit toxic smoke day in and day out while serving. ken and kevin died from
pancreatic cancer. they got sick because they were exposed and toxic smoke. to make matters worse jennifer and alejandro were turned down because they said there wasn't enough evidence. to not give our veterans the proper care and benefits they rightly deserve is a dereliction of our nation's duty. i introduced the presumptive duty and create service related to services near burn pits and has been included. my bill is the very soul. and take the burden off of our veterans to prove they are sick by presuming the reason is because of their service near burn pits. now is the time to fix this and
anything short of including all 23 of these illnesses is not good enough. the health care for burn pits veterans act is not good enough. it will short change and like telling a pneumonia patient, let's give you the tylenol and call it a day. that is a medical negligence and that is not what we are going to do to our veterans. we cannot on have another agent orange in our generation. so i urge my colleagues to support passage of this life-saving bipartisan bill and i urge them to stop the medical negligence and dereliction of duty and come together and do what is right. the science is there. carcinogens cause cancer. our burn pits are delayed
casualties. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: the veterans who are sick may not be able to get veterans immediately under this bill because they will be waiting for the v.a. to process their claims during a backlog and no guarantee that vea will it right. the v.a. doesn't have a a great processing. during the obama administration, v.a. reduced the backlog such as the provisional denial program we should be focused on getting them the care now while continuing to work on the best path forward. additionally, without a clear path forward in the senate, veterans will continue to wait while congress works to get it right. the revisions to the presumptive framework in title 2 were unveiled less than two weeks
ago. we haven't discussed this. it is unclear if the changes would improve or hippedder v.a.'s efforts for deciding when to end benefits based on toxic exposure. and doing so as my colleague suggests, we may, in fact, not go down to a pathway determining why a veteran is ill and would other exposures may have caused their illness. more time is needed to ensure that veterans will receive a fair look at which conditions are linked to toxic exposure. we can pass our bill as the first step to get the help our veterans need as we have a way forward on the presumptive framework. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized.
mr. takano: i yield one minute to my very good friend who is a subcommittee chair on the subcommittee the gentleman from georgia, sanford bishop. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized mr. bishop: i thank the chairman for yielding and i rise to support the honor our pact act to ensure veterans who been exposed to toxic substances, particularly toxic burn pits will receive the care and benefits they deserve. exposure has led to devastating health conditions suffered by veterans including neurological disorders and cancer and other conditions. the government has been too slow to recognize the link between exposure of toxic substances. as a result, veterans and families have been denied benefits and disability
compensation to deal with the effects of this toxic substances. honoring the pact act will renew our commitment to our veterans. i urge our colleagues to support it to fulfill abraham lincoln's promise to care for him and her who have borne the burden. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: the concerns the minority that we have was laid out. we did not see the revised text until it was produced by the rules committee. the minority staff were willing to work through these concerns with your staff line by line but this was rebuffed. the minority staff was told any proposed changes to the scope of the bill would not be accepted. it is clear that the majority was not willing to address our
concerns with this bill. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i yield one minute to my friend who serves on the education and labor committee and subcommittee chair on the foreign affairs committee, the gentleman from texas, mr. castro. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. crow: i represent -- mr. castro: i represent veterans in san antonio ant, whose lives have been ruined and for some, it has cost them their life. and we have to stand up for our veterans the way they stood up for our country. yet, what i keep hearing from republicans is there is not enough information, there is not enough money. mr. speaker, how often do you hear people ask whether it is too expensive to buy a tank or a jet or an aircraft carrier?
yet, when it comes to our men and women in uniform who risk their lives on behalf of our country and alleys, the question from republicans is, it is too expensive. why don't you tell them it is too god damn expensive and tell them you are not worth the money. you want things. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: the question from republicans is why not pass a bill that has already passed the senate that would give access to life-saving health care to our veterans now? i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: at this time, i would like to yield one minute to my very good friend who serves on the education and
labor committee with me and subcommittee chair on the agriculture committee, the gentlewoman from connecticut, ms. haze. the speaker pro tempore: -- hayes. mr. hastings: i urge -- >> i urge to support this bill to care for our servicemembers as they are sick or wounded. this legislation recognizes the full range of toxic exposure. this package includes my bill which would remove barriers to benefits for those veterans who responded to the largest nuclear disaster. a b-52 bomber over the spanish village creating radiation exposure and 1600 airmen who had no protection. decades later, many of these airmen are suffering and dying
that came from radioactive material but the v.a. does not count it as a risk event or provide these veterans with disability. my bill would address this ensuring they get the health care and benefits and ensuring their spouses and children are eligible. the job of congress is to appropriate funds, our republican colleagues always say no. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. i yield become. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserve snl mr. takano: i reserve. mrs. miller-meeks: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlemanfrom california. mr. takano: i yield two minutes to my good friend, a valued member of the veterans affairs committee serving on the subcommittee of health, the gentlewoman from florida,
ms. frankel. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. frankel: mr. speaker, i'm blessed. my son dan, a marine war veteran, he returned safely from tours in iraq and afghanistan and now a small business owner and has given me two beautiful grandsons and not every family is as lucky. our servicemen and women put their lives on the line and yet for too long, countless veterans have been unknowingly exposed to environmental has arizona and toxic waste, like burn pits and they come back home with cancer, infertility and breathing issues. mr. speaker, they deserve better. we owe them better. here's the thing, if we are willing to send our troops to war, we must be willing to care for their health.
and this includes the 80,000 veterans in palm beach county. it is time for congress to honor this commitment and pass the honoring pact act to millions of veterans exposed to toxic substances. the best way to thank our veterans is with action. i urge my colleagues to pass this important bill. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from california -- mr. takano: how much time remains? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has 7 1/2 minutes remaining. mrs. miller-meeks: republicans agree with democrats about how important it is to help veterans suffering from toxic exposure. there is nothing bipartisan about how the majority has gone about this. the majority has refused to communicate with us on this bill
and not working on other fronts as well. this is the third controversial veterans' bill that has gone before the rules this year alone. in 2017 when we had a republican chairman, "the new yorktimes" called the veterans' committee the most bipartisan in congress. this is not anymore since the democrats took charge. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i yield one minute to my good friend who serves on the house precipitations committee, the gentlewoman from new york, ms. meng. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. meng: i rise to honoring our pact act offered by chairman takano. this important bill includes the text of my bill atomic health care veterans act named after
representative mark takai. it would permit veterans who participated in the nuclear cleanup in the western pacific to be treated as radiation-exposed benefits and receive benefits. current law only covers servicemembers who participated in active nuclear tests and not those who participated in the cleanup. congress will right this wrong. i want to thank chairman takano for his tremendous leadership on this legislation. and i urge my colleagues to vote for the passage. mrs. miller-meeks: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield one minute to my good friend who serves on the financial services committee and natural resources
committee, the gentleman from guam, mr. san nicolas. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from guam is recognized for one minute. mr. san nicolas: we say the inefficiencies of the v.a. system is reason for us to not pass this bill. this bill is going to do so much good for veterans who deserve it and it's going to do so much good for particular veterans who served on guam and exposed to agent orange. it's the only bill right now, mr. speaker, that's going to get that done. the late lonnie kilpatrick died from agent orange. and we addresses that exposure. the honoring our pact act will get that done. let's not weaponize the frustrations of the v.a. to prevent those kinds of solutions. let's get it done for our veterans. it's about time. i yield back, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized.
mrs. miller-meeks: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield 2 1/2 minutes to my good friend and colleague from the state of california, the author of the provisions on the 23 presumptions, dr. ruiz. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for 2 1/2 minutes. mr. ruiz: thank you. i've been hearing these arguments or these pleads that the -- our colleagues on the other side agree with the sentiment, that they agree they want to take care of this. well, those are just words. whether they agree will be demonstrated by their vote. those are actions. i'm hearing the same excuses that our vietnam veterans heard when they were dying from agent orange and pleading for help. the excuse of the science is not there. we need more time. oh, it costs too much. well, listen here. the science is there. as a medical professional, i reviewed the science.
the scientific studies were flawed. they did not ask the right questions. there is enough evidence from other extrapolated data that shows that carcinogens can cancers, that heavy toxic metals in your lung can cause pulmonary fibrosis. and we have to make sure if the burn pits are illegal in the united states, they should be illegal everywhere else because of the science. then we hear we need more time. well, look, it's taken us years to get to this point, and i want them to ask the widows of jen and all the veterans, the thousands of widows and sons and daughters who lost their parents if it is -- if they need more time. to them, it's too late and we need to act now. and this is reminiscent to the notion that our vietnam veterans say that what they want to do is delay until dead. delay, delay, delay until they're dead, and we cannot allow that to happen. then is next is it costs too
much. well, that's a values statement. that is a values statement. and to us, valuing the lives of our veterans and their family members is more important than giving billions of dollars to billionaires in a tax law that shortchanged the middle class and their health care for the burn pits act will shortchange their veterans and widows who need the care right now because they're dying from burn pits. that's our value and that's the value i'm pleading to the folks on the other side to join us in a bipartisan way with unity to support our veterans. so veterans are watching. they're listening. they care. some are even listening to this with oxygen in nasal can la taking their -- canula. some can be in their hospital bed taking chemotherapy. some are in tears because their widow or their father's and
mother's experiences are finally being recognized and we are finally able to do something. they're watching and your sympathies will be reflected in your vote. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. the blue water navy and agent orange were different. in 2011, the institute of medicine concluded that given the passage of time and lack of sampling data there was not enough information to conclusively determine whether blue water navy waters were exposed to agent orange. however, we already knew what conditions were linked to agent orange. on the other hand, v.a. already presumes that certain veterans were exposed to burn pits, but it's unclear what conditions are leaked to that exposure. the use of burn pits was more recent and much of the data needed to determine whether benefits are warranted for certain conditions is still available. that is why i support and why i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 6659, which has already
passed the senate, which would advance research into health benefits of toxic exposures and get needed health care for those veterans now. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa reserves. mrs. miller-meeks: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers and i'm prepared to close. no. i have no more speakers. i'm prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa prepared to close? mrs. miller-meeks: i'm prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: mr. speaker, i was pleased that during last night's state of the union that president biden highlighted the need to address the needs of toxic exposed veterans. as i stated earlier in debate, just yesterday, v.a. announced it is initiating the rulemaking process to extend benefits to certain gulf war and post-9/11
veterans who develop nine respiratory cancers. clearly, the secretary has the authority to provide benefits for veterans on a presumptive basis. i applaud the secretary for exercising his authority to provide toxic exposed veterans with the earned benefits based on science and urge him to continue to do so. we should pass the health care for burn pit veterans act now so we can send it straight to the president's desk immediately while we continue to work with our senate colleagues and v.a. on the right solution for additional benefits. however, toxic exposed veterans will not receive health care or benefits simply by virtue of passing the pact act in the house today. thank you, mr. speaker. with that, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, before i close, i'd like to ask unanimous consent to enter in the record a letter of support from the independents fund. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. takano: mr. speaker, as i
close -- give the final words on the underlying bill, the pact act, on my mind is a constituent, a vietnam veteran named zach, a distant relative of the great i wouldate earp. his body trembles today from parkinson's, one of the things that got added during the blue water navy debate. i was happy to lead the final charge on getting the blue water navy act across the finish line. but you know what, passage of that bill and its signature -- and signed into law finally brought justice to our vietnam veterans who served on naval surface ships in the territory
waters of vietnam. it was 40 years late. justice 40 years late. i vowed that this would not happen again. and to pass half measures, 1/10 measures, or .5% measures, which is what the minority proposes to do today, as a substitute for a comprehensive bill, is simply repeating the history of what we did to our vietnam veterans. burn pits are this generation of veterans agent orange. my friends, we cannot repeat that history. we owe our vietnam veterans that implicit promise that we would not repeat the history that was done to them.
as for the cost, i hear the other side competing with the president. let us send more billions of dollars to ukraine. i myself would support a robust response to ukraine in terms of money. but where's that same sense of one-upmanship when it comes to taking care of the veterans here in america, the unfinished business? racing to the finish when we -- there's -- people are falling over each other in this chamber to get more money to ukraine and that's the right thing to do, but it's also the right thing to do to take care of our veterans and to finish the unfinished business. and finally, the science. i'm glad to see science is being taken so seriously by the minority after we've seen skepticism about vaccines,
skepticism about climate change, and suddenly, we're looking for a scientific absolution about our veterans. my friends, the science is there. let's get this done. let's pass the pact act today with a big bipartisan vote. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back. all time for debate has expired. each further amendment printed in part b of house report 117-253, not earlier considered as part of amendments en bloc, pursuant to section 3 of house resolution 950, shall be considered only in the order printed in the report, may be offered only by a member designated in the report, shall be considered as read, shall be debatable for the time specified in the report equally divided and controlled by the proponent and an opponent, may be withdrawn by the proponent at any time before the question is put thereon, shall not be subject to amendment and shall not be subject to a demand for division of the question.
it shall be in order at any time after debate for the chair of the committee on veterans' affairs or his designee to offer amendments en bloc consisting of further amendments printed in part b of house report 117-253 not earlier disposed of. amendments en bloc shall be considered as read, shall be debatable for 20 minutes equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on veterans' affairs or their respective designees, shall not be subject to amendment, and shall not be subject to a demand for division of the question. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. takano: mr. speaker, pursuant to section 7 of house resolution 950, i rise to offer the 23 amendments en bloc to h.r. 3967. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: en bloc consisting of amendments numbered --
1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28 printed in part b of house report 117-253 offered by mr. takano of california. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 950, the gentleman from california, mr. takano, and the gentlewoman from iowa, mrs. miller-meeks, each will control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan en bloc of amendments, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: i rise in support of the en bloc package. many of these amendments strengthen the underlying bill. however, i wish we could have more time in committee to fully
examine the impact these amendments would have on this legislation. and while i will not oppose the en bloc package, some of the included amendments are well outside the veterans' affairs committee's jurisdiction or may require additional work, and i must highlight these concerns. three of the amendments clearly impact the operations of the department of defense and are well outside the department of veterans affairs' expertise or mission. representative bush's amendment 3 is v.a. review own cases of toxic exposure both in the united states and abroad. bush amendment 4 requires a study of health outcomes from the manhattan project. if anyone should conduct such reviews, it should be the department of defense, not department of veterans affairs. they need to be focused on meeting the needs of veterans, not investigating military bases or programs.
and representative pappas' amendment 17 would require a v.a. to conduct a study outside of v.a.'s expertise and purview. it would require v.a. to coordinate with the department of defense to provide training to active duty service members on toxic exposure. it is inappropriate for the v.a. to be involved in training active duty service members. that is entirely the d.o.d.'s purview. finally, representative scanlon's amendment 24 would authorize an this would authorize $150 for v.a.'s management system ahead of increase in disability claims should the pact act be enacted. we need to make additional investments in i.t. but this is not the right way to do it. it includes funding for i.t. improvements and no plan from the v.a. how systems should be modernized and how much it will cost. the worst thing to do is throw
money at individual systems with no coordination. this earmarks $150 million to a dysfunctional and flawed system. it has cost $1 billion and has been struggling since its inception 10 years ago. i don't want to spend another $150 million on it unless we have a plan on how to modernize. we need to allocate funding. i support the intent and look forward to ensuring any i.t. funding supports veterans in the manner intended. while i have concerns about these four amendments, i support the en bloc amendments and i urge my colleagues to do the same. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: i yield one minute to my friend who serves on the
judiciary committee and house oversight committee, the gentlewoman from missouri, ms. bush. -- two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from missouri is recognized for two minutes. ms. bush: thank you for your leadership. st. louis and i rise in support of h.r. 3967 honoring our pact act to expand health care, research and resources for our veterans who are exposed to toxic substances around the world and at home in st. louis and this means a lot to me as a nurse. i am proud to put forward four critical amendments to help expand racial equity and study the environmental impact through rigorous research initiatives. my first two amendments ensures
that research studies include demographic information and disability status in gathering information on the impaths of exposure. our third amendment ensures that v.a. will investigate known exposure. the department of defense needs to provide con recruit data of the waste and pollution we are leaving in military bases in 80 countries around the world. a new study to this bill to measure the man hattian project waste on our veterans and their families in st. louis. if you are from north st. louis, there is a good chance that you have been exposed like i have. toxic nuclear wastes have been dumped leading to rare cancers. our veterans worked with this
waste and still living with it. this study is one step we are taking to care for their health and safety. i look forward to advancing these critical amendments that will help us to save lives. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: i yield two minutes to my colleague from ohio. mr. gibbs. mr. gibbs: i rise in support of amendment number 8. this amendment helps veterans and families navigate a bureaucratic maze when a veteran is admitted, they only have three days to notify v.a. if they fail to notify the v.a., any claim associated with that
visit will be denied. there are circumstances from giving immediate medical care outside the v.a. system as the veteran's only option. they and their families shouldn't have to worry about paperwork and bureaucracy if the veteran isn't able to make its own health care. my amendment lengthens that window and adds another day to report the claim and when you think about this, if you are in on an emergency basis and might take a couple of days, extra day doesn't seem that much because they get time to sort through where they are at and so important that we have helped hundreds and thousands. and this comes up all the time and fight to get their claim. and i think it's time and no brainer issue and i appreciate the chair putting it in the en bloc because it is very
important because veterans are in a non-veteran facility don't worry about that deadline and give them extra time. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time the gentlewoman from iowa reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: i yield two minutes to my good friend who serves as the chair agriculture -- as a chair -- subcommittee chair on the agriculture and members of the veteran affairs committee. span span mr. speaker, my commitment has been iron clad since a father, husband and firefighter and a veteran who died of cancer related to his exposures and continued when i met an atomic veteran who in his
90's is fighting for the recognition of his brother in arms. and today, when i rise in support of my amendment to h.r. 3967 i'm doing so inspired by william collins. my amendment would require the v.a. to investigate the long-term health impacts of jet fuel exposures on our country's veterans. mr. collins is living with parkinson's and as a former fire chief, his constant exposure to jet fuel put him at risk. but the v.a. does not recognize him having a condition as a service connection. the country has his back. this amendment would bring us one step closer to ensure that
veterans like william have the health care benefits they deserve and the acknowledgement of their sacrifice. he said this has impacted my health and potentially my wife and i's dream spending days on our beloved farm. i urge my colleagues to support this amendment as we support all of our nation's veterans. mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa. the gentlewoman from reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: at this time, i would like to recognize a distinguished member of the appropriations committee, a distinguished -- subcommittee chair, mr. cartwright from the state of pennsylvania for two minutes.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for two minutes. right mr. cartwright: i thank the gentleman. here's the deal, when we send our servicemembers into harm's way, the deal is we are going to take care of them when we get back home. it's more than a deal, it's a pact, it's something something sacred. congress and the v.a. have been slow, slow in acting on that pact, citing the high costs or lack of science. the result is a disability claims process that is cumbersome and places the burden on the veteran to prove toxic exposure. i rise in support of my amendment which streamlines this process. it helps ease the burden of the
benefit disability claim process by requiring the secretary of the v.a. to share a list of resources for caregivers of toxic-exposed veterans and survivors with national toxic service organizations and other veteran groups. and number two requires the v.a. secretary to share an outreach program with those v.s.o.'s. we have to take every step possible to ensure that we offer the best care who have served our nation. my amendment is a step forward in reaching the goal servicemembers and their familiar my members should be aware of every resource and that inludes the resources including in the honoring our pact act. i thank the chairman. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: scrabt. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa is
recognizedded. rl mrs. miller-meeks: i reserve. mr. takano: i have no further speakers and prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i ask all of my colleagues to join in supporting these 23 amendments en bloc and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time pursuant to house resolution 950, the previous question is ordered on the amendments en bloc. the question is on the amendments en bloc. those in favor, say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the gentleman from arizona. >> i request the yeas and nays pursuant to section 3-s of house
resolution 8. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question are postponed. now in order tore consider amendment number 5 printed in part b of house report 117-253. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from iowa seek recognition? mrs. miller-meeks: i rise as a designee of the the gentlewoman from from illinois. the speaker pro tempore: clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 5 offered by mrs. miller-meeks of iowa pursuant to house resolution 950, the gentlewoman from iowa, mrs. miller-meeks and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from iowa. mrs. miller-meeks: i rise to discuss ranking member bost's
amendment. this is a bipartisan legislation that has already passed in the senate and would expand toxic i have exposed veterans by expanding the period from five to 10 years and giving veterans to enroll in v.a. care without having a service-connected disability rating. those who are out more than a decade would be able to enroll. the bill would improve training for v.a. staff on how to recognize and treat toxic exposure and research and outreach about the resources to veterans. c.b.o. has estimated it would cost $1 billion in discretionary funding, that in stark contrast to $300 billion. the health care for burn pit veteran act would not expand
benefits. i appreciate the importance of benefits. that's why ranking member bost remain committed to walk across the aisle to improve benefits for toxic-exposed veterans. the honoring the pact act is unworkable and the pact act will stall in the senate. i don't want to let perfect be the enemy of good on a an issue as important as this one and we need to help veterans. as a veteran and a doctor who has cared for doctors and patients that would be unacceptable. passage of this is a critical first step in saving the lives suffering from toxic exposure. the stakes are too high. behind me is a picture of
lauren. she passed away from conditions she and her husband jim related to toxic exposure. ranking member bost invited jim to testify. during his testimony, he stressed the need to provide veterans to provide v.a. health care and benefits don't mean much if a veteran is president alive to get them because they didn't get the health care they needed and earned. some veterans cannot afford to wait for congress on a comprehensive way forward. we haven't started it yet. the house must pass the health care for veterans' act today. thank you and i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. takano: mr. speaker, i rise to claim time in opposition to
the amendment. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i rise in strong opposition to the ranking member's -- to ranking member bost's substitute offered in his absence by representative miller-meeks. i want to be clear about what this substitute is and what it is not. the ranking member has offered this amendment as the solution to addressing toxic exposure. but it is not that. the substitute amendment is the exact text of a senator tester bill which is meant to be the first part of a three-part effort in the senate. what senator tester has proposed is doing in three phases what we have done in the pact act together. yet, my colleague from illinois,
and my colleague from iowa have taken the work of the senate without intending to do any more. this is it. they are representing this as the complete solution, which amounts to really a bait and switch. this substitute amendment would strike the entire pact act and replace it with an expansion of existing health care eligibility for combat veterans from five to 10 years. the congressional budget office estimates that this provision will impact roughly 16,000 veterans over the next 10 years. this is laudible but let's talk about the math. over the past 20 years, 3.5 million service members deployed to areas where they may have been exposed to toxic substances. so the ranking member's amendment would leave behind over 3.4 million veterans. this is not even a half measure,
this substitute, this replacement that they offer. it's not even 1/10. it's .5%. a .5% solution compared to the comprehensive bill that we need. the policy of this amendment is something we agree on. we should enhance eligibility for combat veterans, which is why we included the language in the bill before you today. however, it only covers less than a half percentage point of the number of veterans that would be covered under pact. my colleague is asserting that less than half a percentage point is enough to be done and then walk away. the math is not -- does not add up and veterans know it and that's why over 42 veteran service organizations are supporting the pact act. again, i reference the letters previously inserted in the record. during the president's state of the union address last night, he highlighted the importance of this topic, citing his family's
tragedy and loss to his son to brain cancer after his military service. he called on congress to, quote, pass a law to make sure that veterans exposed to toxic expos exposures in iraq and afghanistan finally get the benefits and comprehensive health care they deserve, end quote. let me repeat that. passing law to make sure veterans devastated by toxic exposures in iraq and afghanistan finally get the benefits and comprehensive health care they deserve. the bost substitute is far from comprehensive. in fact, it is a fraction of what our veterans have earned and deserve. it is time we honored our pact with our veterans, and that's why i implore my colleagues to reject this incremental measure and join me in supporting the only comprehensive toxic exposure legislation that delivers on our sacred promise, the pact act. mr. speaker, how much time do i have remaining?
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has a minute and 15 seconds left. mr. takano: thank you. at this time i'd like to reserve -- reserve -- i'd like to reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleperson reserves. the gentleperson from iowa is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you, mr. chair. with all due deference to my colleague, ranking member bost has made it abundantly clear that this is a first step, not a last step, but an initial step in getting veterans the health care they need and deserve. and with that, i urge my colleagues and implore my colleagues to pass mr. bost's amendment 5. and with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleperson yields back. the gentleperson from california is recognized. mr. takano: i would like to yield to my good friend from the homeland security subcommittee
and subcommittee chair on the judiciary committee, the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleperson is recognized. ms. jackson lee: i rise enthusiastically joining the president and joining our chairman in pushing -- honoring our pact act. and just remind the underlying amendment by mr. bost, .5%, do we in this time do our veterans, do our soldiers deserve half treatment? i don't think so. the jackson lee amendment adds to this legislation. it would add a report on the feasibility of modifying the individual exposure system used to register toxic exposure of military personnel to include members of the national guard who are deployed in the united states in connection with a natural disaster without regard to duty status and may record information regarding a suspected exposure by the national guard to toxic substances while they're in the midst of their rescues.
we know and we thank the house veterans' affairs committee for recognizing and working with my staff that the national guard is involved in toxic matters on home side. they support civilian authorities and traditional first responders. they serve as a help mate. the emergency state or locale may deal with un -- let me just show you, they are involved in the work. this is an important amendment. i ask my colleagues to support it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. ms. jackson lee: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized -- reserves. mrs. miller-meeks: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and reclaim my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has expired. all time has now expired. pursuant to house resolution 950, the previous question is ordered on the amendment offered
by the gentlelady from iowa. the question is on the amendment. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. mrs. miller-meeks: mr. speaker, i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlelady rise? mrs. miller-meeks: excuse me. mr. speaker, i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote -- pursuant to section 3-a of house resolution 8, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings are postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number 6 printed in part b of house report 117-253. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california -- the gentleman from california -- the gentlewoman from iowa seek
recognition? from california -- sorry -- the gentlewoman from california, for what purpose? the gentlewoman from california. now oriented. ms. brownley: mr. speaker, i have an amendment at the desk. the speaker pro tempore: thank you. the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 6 printed in part b of house report 117-253 offered by ms. brownley of california. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 950, the gentlewoman from california, ms. brownley, and a member opposed, each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from california. ms. brownley: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise to offer a straightforward amendment to h.r. 3967, the honoring our pact act, which would simply ensure toxic exposed veterans have access to mammography screenings.
i would like to thank my colleague from iowa, congre congresswoman miller-meeks, for co-authoring this amendment based on our outstanding bill. as chair of the house veterans' subcommittee on health, i very much want to see the gentlelady's good bill advance, which is why i'm offering this amendment today. as you know, the conditions related to toxic exposure manifests themselves in many ways and on many different timelines. the incident rate of breast cancer in women veterans is 20% to 40% higher than the incident rate of breast cancer among nonveteran women. from 2000 to 2015, the v.a. saw the number of women diagnosed with breast cancer increase by five times for women ages 45 to 65. this is partly due to better
screening, but still more can be done. particularly related to those who have been exposed to toxic substances. ensuring that veterans have access to lifesaving screening for breast cancer cannot depend on the time after separation from the military and must simply depend on whether a veteran served in a place where they were exposed to toxics. this amendment, based on the service act, directs the department of veterans affairs to provide mammogram screenings for female veterans who served in areas associated with burn pits and other toxic exposure. it also directs the v.a. to submit a report to both the senate and house veterans' affairs committee two years after enactment that compare the instances of breast cancer among members of the armed forces. women veterans who serve in
areas with high toxic exposure should not have to wait until they start showing symptoms or reach a certain age to access preventive madamo graphy -- mammography screenings. that's why i'm proud to join congresswoman miller-meeks in introducing this amendment. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from iowa seek recognition? mrs. miller-meeks: mr. speaker, i claim time in opposition although i am not opposed. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlelady is recognized. mrs. miller-meeks: thank you. i was pleased to introduce this amendment alongside my colleague, congresswoman julia brownley from california. this amendment is based on our bill, h.r. 4794, the making advances in mammography and medical options for veterans act. it would ensure that toxic exposed veterans can access mammography screenings through the v.a. health care am is it. as a doctor, i know how very
important preventive care is. early detection of cancer or other serious conditions can be lifesaving for patients. virnts deserve the -- veterans deserve the very highest quality of care we can offer them and that certainly includes timely access to mammograms, particularly for the growing number of women who are volunteering to serve in our armed forces. i thank congresswoman brownley for working with me on this amendment. i am glad it was made in order, and i urge all of my colleagues to support that. with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentlewoman from california is recognized. ms. brownley: mr. speaker, how much time is remaining on each side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady has 2 1/2 minutes remaining. ms. brownley: thank you very much. i yield two minutes to the great chair of the veterans' affairs committee, who has worked diligently on this very, very important bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. takano: i thank my
colleague, the chair of the subcommittee on health. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of the bro brownley-miller-meeks amendment. women who have served in the military are 20% to 40% more likely to develop breast cancer than women who have never served. it's believe it's due to exposure to radiation and other carcinogens while serving. it is, therefore, critical v.a. ensure all veterans who served in locations associated to toxic exposure have access to prompt, high-quality breast imaging. this amendment would do just that. those exposed to burn pits would have mammography screenings provided by v.a. it will save lives. it requires v.a. to submit a report to congress on the rates of breast cancer among those veterans deployed to such toxic environments and compare those rates against their veteran peers who were not exposed as well as the civilian population.
mr. speaker, i urge all my colleagues to support this commonsense amendment, and i thank you and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from iowa is recognized. . mrs. miller-meeks: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized. ms. brownley: thank you, mr. speaker. in closing i'd just urge all members to support mammography screenings for toxic exposed veterans and vote why on this a. i would also like to say we must pass this bill today. a bill that will finally, finally bring justice to our veterans and provide our commitment and promise that we made to our veterans who served our country, both men and women.
so this bill is long, long overdue. men and women sign up for the armed forces. they know they may have to put their life on the line. they did not know that they may die of toxic exposures. this bill is long overdue. we need a yes vote on the amendment and yes vote on the underlying bill. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the previous question is ordered on the amendment offered by the the gentlewoman from california. the question is on the amendment. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment -- the gentleman from texas, for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> i request a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to section 3-s of house resolution 8, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20,
of march 20, 2014, and executive order 14065, of february 21, 2022 and under which additional steps were taken in executive order 13685 of december 19, 2014, and executive order 13849 of september 20, 2018, is to continue in effect beyond march 6, 2022. the actions and policies of persons that undermine democratic processes of institutions in ukraine threatens as peace, security, and stability and sovereignty, and territorial integrity and continue misappropriation of its assets, as well as the actions and policies of the government of the russian federation. including its purported annexation of crimea. its use of force in ukraine. and its purported recognition of the so-called donetsk people of the regions of ukraine continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the united states. therefore, i have determined that it is necessary to continue
the national emergency declared in executive order 13660 with respect to ukraine. signed, joseph r. biden jr., the white house. march 2, 2022. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the committee on foreign affairs and ordered printed. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, the chair will postpone further proceedings today on motions to suspend the rules on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the house will resume proceedings on postponed questions at a later time. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? mr. meeks: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to h.res. 956, supporting the people of ukraine. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 956, resolution supporting the people of ukraine. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. meeks, and the gentleman from texas, mr. mccaul, each
will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the the gentleman from new york. mr. meeks: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on h.res. 956. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. meeks: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. meeks: mr. speaker, i rise today in support of my resolution. which i introduced with representative sparks, to demonstrate bipartisan congressional support for the ukrainian people. today we are witnessing the most devastating escalation of violence on the european continent in decades. vladimir putin as launched an unjustifiable, senseless war on a peaceful, sovereign nation. the ukraine. we are already seeing thousands of casualties, both ecranians and -- both ukrainians and
russians. and hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing to the european union. as we speak putin's army is encircling ukrainian cities, including the capital of kyiv. his forces are bombing indiscriminately. ruthlessly killing civilians and destroying critical infrastructure. and is despicable and utterly false claims to de-nazi phi ukraine. he's bombed the memorial where just weeks ago representative sparks and i stood with other members of congress at the site where tens of thousands were killed in massacres during the holocaust. the streets we walked just a few weeks ago are now a battlefield. its citizens now soldiers. let us be clear, this is but one person's war, this is caused by one individual by the name of
vladimir putin. it is his war. ukraine, the united states, and our allies have ---have all diplomatic engaged in a push before russia marched its troops into the sovereign territory of ukraine. nevertheless putin chose a path of an unprovoked war instead. it is a peaceful ukraine that is pleading for a cease-fire so that diplomacy and sanity can triumph over blood shed and madness. just this morning the u.n. general assembly held an emergency session that voted overwhelmingly against russia's aggression. this vote reaffirms that values that we stand for and unequivocally demonstrates that the world stands with ukraine. in this dark time the united
states has helped usher unprecedented amounts of assistance from the united states, europe, our allies, and partners from all around the world. from north africa to north america to the indo pacific, to aid ukraine in defense of its station. and i believe we must sustain that assistance as long as ukrainians fight for a democratic future. free from russia oppression. the defensive security assistance we have provided and continue to provide ukraine to help fend off its auto contractic invader -- autocratic invader is absolutely critical. also it is of utmost importance that we continue to surge humanitarian aid to ukraine and the countries in the region accepting the growing influx of
refugees. as of yesterday nearly 700,000 had left their homes, left their country to seek safety, unsure of whether they will ever again see their homes. estimates project that that number will quickly reach into the millions. as well as those who are displaced but remain in ukraine. our allies in europe have acted admirably so they have accepting those fleeing the destruction and we must do our part to help them as well. amidst all the blood shed we are seeing astounding courage displayed by president zelensky, the ukrainian government, and above all, the ukrainian people. we are also seeing the unity of the trans-atlantic alliance, more unified than ever in the
face of putin's war. the people of ukraine must continue to hear a message of loud and clear support from us, the united states congress. they must see that their suffering that we stand with them, that in their fight against an authoritarian invader, and that we will continue to usher as much support to their cause as the united states can muster. mr. speaker, this resolution outlines the plan and sheds an indisputable light on the atrocities that putin regime anti-russian military are -- and the russian military are committing. it demands an immediate cease-fire and full withdrawal of russian forces from ukraine. it backs additional coordinated economic measures to hold putin accountable.
it reaffirms our nato article 5 commitments, reaffirms ukrainian sovereignty over crimea and done bass. it highlights the unprecedented global multilateral effort that the biden administration has helped usher. it states our commitment in the united states congress to supporting the ukrainian people throughout this terrifying or deal -- ordeal and delivers perhaps the most important message a resolution can deliver right now. that the house of representatives will never, ever recognize any illegitimate government that putin hopes to install in the ukraine. it's up to the ukrainian people and the ukrainian people alone to choose their political leadership and their future. so i support this resolution. i want to offer my sincerest thanks to representative sparks. but also to my ranking member
who we worked diligently in getting this resolution to make sure that it was a bipartisan resolution. i appreciate ranking member mccaul for his friendship and the way we worked together, now, but especially on this resolution. it's democratic and republican leadership worked collectively also. for working with me i want to thank them. they worked with me for what i believe is a very strong message. a unified message to support the people of ukraine. it's also unified message to vladimir putin. would have loved to have divide us from our european allies, loved to divide us from nato, loved to divide us from within, but with this resolution it becomes crystal clear, mr. putin, you can't win this. we are going to stand against
you and we are going to preserve democracy because that's what's at stake here. with that, mr. chairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mccaul: mr. speaker, let me just thank chairman meeks for his leadership. this is really an historic time. not for only this nation but the world, for ukraine. it's a time when we come together not as republicans or democrats, but as americans in strong support for the people of ukraine. i just want to thank congresswoman victoria sparks who is from ukraine and who knows this story firsthand, and very passionately has told her story about what it means. a country that's endured hitler.
a country that's endured stalin. and now a country that's enduring mr. putin. and the russian aggression. as we stand here ukrainians are fighting for their country and for their very lives. . his war machine has unleashed a brutal barrage of missiles and rockets on innocent ukrainian civilians. in fact, there are 40 miles just north of kyiv of tanks and military weaponry that's getting ready to go in and circle the capital city. but the people of ukraine are inspiring the world with their bravery in the face of this, of putin's evil and unprovoked attack. fathers and mothers, teachers
and shop owners, taxi drivers and students are all taking up arms. making molotov cocktails. joining ukrainian soldiers to defend their country. and they are standing in front of the tanks, standing in front of the tanks. we've seen a child standing in front of a tank just like tiananmen square and the images coming out that are sent around the world so we can all witness this and this war against humanity and human rights, war crimes and they're risking their lives to fight for freedom and that's what this nation stands for. freedom and democracy. and in spite of the terror inflicted on them by putin's bombs and rockets, the ukrainian people have courageously refused
to relent. vladimir putin has underestimated them. he's unestimated their strength and their bravery and the resiliency of the ukrainian people has been an inspiration, really, for the world. we were told in our briefings, well, this will last two or three days. but they have stood up. and putin needs to understand that he's miscalculated. this will cost him at a very, very high price. he's underestimated the strength and bravery to his own peril. so i'm pleased that we're able to come together not as republicans or democrats, as i said, but really as americans as we should to express and send a strong message in support of the people of ukraine and against this tyrant and this monster
who's killing savagely civilians as i speak. and we've all seen the images of the women and the children and the refugees as they leave their fathers and husbands behind who are left to fight this, this war. this resolution really does one thing, to tell the world in one united voice that the united states of america stands opposed to oppression, that we stand with the people of ukraine and we stand against mr. putin's aggression. we must ensure that putin fails, and i am -- i believe long term he will. i'm hopeful today's resolution will also lead to additional constructive bipartisan steps to properly arm the ukrainians in any way possible as they have
told us. we don't -- we don't need your troops, but we need your weapons to fight against the russians. you know, there's a tweet that came out from a dead russian soldier who sent a text to his mother saying, i thought they were going to welcome us, that they were -- we were liberating them. and yet, i'm seeing ukrainians and children being run over by our tanks. he says to his mother, this is the worst thing i've ever seen. he lies. he's deceptive. he lied to his own people. that he's liberating these ukrainians who are oppressed by the russians. this is no liberation. this is not a liberation ceremony. in is tyranny at its worst and
oppression. we need to continue to support them as long as even one ukrainian citizen continues to stand up to russia's tyranny. in february, 1941, facing devastating bombing campaign by the nazis -- and we can see the parallels here. this is similar to hitler invading poland. when they talked about the blitz. winston churchill made a direct plea to the united states for assistance. and it's timeless. it actually resonates today. he said, quote, put your confidence in us. we shall not fail or falter. we shall not weaken or tire. neither the sudden shock of battle nor the long-drawn trials of vigilance or exertion will wear us down. give us the tools we need, and
we will finish the job. mr. speaker, this is what the ukrainian people want. it's what they're asking for. it's what they need, and it's what the united states of america and our nato allies will deliver. today, facing the onslaught of putin's missesles and -- missiles and tanks, the ukrainian president zelensky, the most courageous leader as we have seen, who didn't run away from his country, like ghani. he's in the bunker right now knowing that his very life and his survival is on the line. he made the same plea to us, and today we have the opportunity to tell ukraine that we have the confidence in them by supporting this measure, that we will give them the tools they need to finish the job. so let me once again thank the
chairman. this is when the foreign affairs committee is at its best, when we come together as americans, as eliot engel always said, partisanship stops at the water's edge. and i firmly believe that commitment as well. i urge my members to support this. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: yes, mr. speaker, i proudly yield 1 1/2 minutes to the representative from rhode island who just recently was walking the streets of kyiv, talking to the people, listening to them and their determination to preserve their democracy, mr. david cicilline. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from rhode island is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. cicilline: thank you. thank you, chairman meeks, for your extraordinary leadership in this very important moment. i rise in strong support of h.res. 956 and in solidarity
with the people of ukraine. on february 24, vladimir putin thought he was making another step toward realizing his delusional pursuit of reconstituting the ussr when he ordered the brutal invasion of the sovereign and peaceful nation of ukraine. vladimir putin thought the ukrainian people would give in quickly to the violence and abandon their freely. he thought that president zelensky would flee. he thought the world would turn a blind eye toward russian aggression. vladimir putin's thought was wrong. in fact, as chairman meeks said, we saw it firsthand, the determination and the will of the ukrainian people to fight to preserve their own country and their own freedoms, and they are doing that today, fighting day by day, hour by hour to protect their country and to secure a free and democratic future for themselves and their families. the free world has rallied together to impose devastating sanctions against russia, against the russian economy, and to hold the putin regime and his enablers to account for their
crimes. i strongly support this resolution, and i know the united states and its allies are united behind the people of ukraine, behind the values of freedom and democracy and against the tyranny of a thugish dictator, vladimir putin. again, i thank chairman meeks for his extraordinary leadership. i thank ranking member mccaul. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back his time. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield as much time as she may consume to the gentlelady from indiana, who was born and raised in ukraine, her grandmother is still there, and has told the stories of hitler and stalin and how bad this situation is on the ground. she's the lead republican of this resolution, mrs. victoria spartz. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from indiana is recognized for as much time as she may consumes. mrs. spartz: thank you, mr. speaker. i am very humbled to stand on
this floor of this great institution with my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to co-lead this important resolution and to show that this greatest country, the leaders of the free world are going to stand up to atrocities and tyranny happening right now. i am very proud to have a strong freedom-fighting ukrainian heritage. i actually was born in the soviet union, which when ukraine was under that evil country. and i'm so proud that strong, brave ukrainians are willing to fight again and again to be
free. it should inspire all of us and their bravery and actions are unbelievable. if should teach us and maybe remind us what it means to be a free country and it is to get our rights and freedoms back when we lose it. we had so many people die for our freedoms. so let's value and cherish them. i'm very happy to see that this institution, when times are tough, when we have to get together, we can get together. we'll stand together and show our adversaries and enemies we will stand together, and not just stand together, we'll also lead the world. i also want to tell the ukrainian people, the american people are inspired, humbled,
and they see your struggles and are praying with you and standing with you and this resolution from we the people, from this united states congress, is evidence to it. i also want to tell russian people -- i actually have some heritage. i know it's tough for you. i know what president putin has done to you. it's awful. but you need to have the backbone to stand up or he will send you in history worse than you can imagine so you stand up and stop this atrocity before it causes more damage. what happened -- what's happening on the ground, it's not a war, it's slaughtering, killing of the ukrainian people. so you are killing your fellow orthodox christians, and they
went through history oppression, suppression. how can you stand with that? i know your propaganda is strong. i know they told you things that are awful, but open your eyes. don't be part of it. tell your government that they have to stop this elimination and extinction of people. i also want to thank everyone here in this country for loving freedoms, for supporting freedoms, and willing to be part of this challenge on the right side. but our reaction should be decisive and timed -- it requires strong leadership and strong actions. and we, as an independent branch of our government, i say
co-equal. we do have power of the purse and power of war, so we have a lot of power and that's what our -- why our founding fathers gave us this because we should put pressure on our president to be more stronger actions, on sanctions we have to be tougher. we need to go after the energy sector. we need to make sure that other oligarchs not on the list should be on the list, the key oligarchs understand it's not just russian people feeling the pain, but they will be feeling the pain. we also need to make sure that we will have a way to effect the financial system much more decisely. and we also -- decisively, and we need to make sure that these war crimes will go to international courts and those people that make decisions on killing, on genocide, in using
illegal weapons will also bear some responsibility. i also think we have a responsibility to provide safe passage and i hope we'll have other allies working with us and help us with that. but the most important, we need to make sure that we will provide proper defensive legal aid to the u yanians -- ukrainians that they can help themselves from extermination before it's too late. we must act, and i am very honored to be part of this effort to show that we are willing to lead in this institution. thank you and i yield back. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: i'm proud to yield one minute to the gentleman who is walking the streets with us a few weeks ago, to representative
colin allred of texas. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas virginia tech. mr. allred: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to support this bipartisan resolution, supporting the people of ukraine. as the chairman said i was in ukraine just a few weeks ago in the beautiful city of kyiv. i met the very people who today despite waying and enemy y. including a woman who was going to get her white wine and defend her country. she is. this resolution tells the world and most importantly the ukrainian people that the united states congress stands with you. president biden has used every tool at his disposal to unite the world in punishing putin for his unprovoked and unjustified war. congress will act to provide more resources to that effort. because our work continues to help ukraine defend itself and further isolate russia, putin has a choice to pursue his
long-term strategic goals or to continue this unnecessary and illegal war on ukraine. he cannot do both. we are united as a country and as a congress in standing with the people of ukraine in their fight for their democracy. i urge all of my colleagues to vote yes. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: all time has expired. the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. smith, on the foreign affairs committee. one of the longest serving members of congress as well. mr. smith: thank you very much, my friend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: mr. speaker, over the weekend i met with over 100 ukrainian americans in my district office in freehold, new jersey. they told me how their families and friends in ukraine are coping with putin's barbaric invasion, loss of life, loss of many wounded, and escalating concern as the bombs and
missiles rain down on civilian targets. according to unhcr, about 876,000 ukrainian refugees have left. that's as of march 1. and about half have found safety in poland. most are women, children, and the elderly. despite facing an existential threat, the free world continues to be astonished by the ukrainian people's strength, courage, resiliency, and desire to fight. interviews coming out of ukraine, especially in the bunkers underscores the ukrainian people's resolve. let me just say how great it is to see zelensky, who has stood up. a true hero. and a tenacious leader. the president of ukraine. this is putin's war and he is a war criminal, mr. speaker. putin's puppet in belarus, lukashenko, is also a war criminal. and like serbian milosevic and president taylor of liberia,
they need to be prosecuted and held to account for their war crimes. i would remind my colleagues that in 2014 in his speech right here in a joint session to congress, ukrainian president did ask the obama administration for military assistance, which he did not get. to defend against putin's invasion of crimea. he said, one cannot win the war with blankets. he got several standing ovations, all of us were on our feet. he got only more blank its. let's -- blankets. let's learn from that. last june as russia deployed more forces on the border, "politico" and others reported there were delays in providing the kind of military aid that zelensky wanted. i did ask secretary of state, wendy sherman, today for a timeline, how did this come about? did he ask for more and did not get it? we need to know this. again to learn from it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired.
mr. smith: i thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: i'm proud to yield one minute to the chair of the subcommittee on international development, international organization, and global corporate social impact the gentleman from texas, mr. joaquin castro. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized. for one minute mr. castro: thank you, chair. thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in strong sprorgs of house resolution 956 to condemn russia's invasion of ukraine. earlier today the united nations general assembly voted overwhelmingly to condemn russia's invasion of ukraine and demanded immediate withdrawal of their force from ukraine. only four nations out of 193 stood with russia. 140 stood with ukraine. the world is united in conkemming -- condemning this invasion and the house of representatives must speak as one and lead the way. as we debate russian attacks on ukrainian civilians continue. hundreds of thousands huddle in bomb shelters.
over 600,000 ukrainians have already fled the country. putin is on a disastrous quest to rebuild a russian empire at the expense of ukrainian sovereignty. this should be a simple vote. now is our chance to show that congress stands with the people of ukraine. now is our time to do what is right. that's why i urge my colleagues to support this resolution. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: i'm pleased to yield 1 1/2 minutes to the gentleman from ohio, the ranking member on the asia pacific subcommittee, mr. chabot. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio is recognized. for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. chabot: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding. i also want to thank chairman meeks and representative spartz for their leadership on this very important measure. last week the world watched in horror as putin shattered the peace in europe and began an unprovoked assault on ukraine and its innocent people. put simply, this is the largest
land war in europe since world war ii. a war that we hoped would never come again. we cannot condemn this senseless, brutal, and illegal invasion in strong enough terms. in the face of this on slaught, the ukrainian people are demonstrating incredible bravery as russia brings to bear its overwhelming military firepower, at least in terms of soldiers and weaponry and equipment. but in terms of the combatants on the ground, one side is fighting for conquest. the other side is fighting for their homes. and their families. most importantly, their freedom. thus far, at least, freedom is prevailing. the ukrainians and president zelensky especially are rallying the free world and demonstrating once again that free men and women would rather die than submit to the forces of tyranny. as we stand here today to support the people of ukraine, let us remember that their fight
for freedom is far from over. we must ensure that they get the support that they need. that putin is held accountable for his war crimes. they are war crimes. and that he does not snuff out forever the light of democracy in ukraine, because that's what he wants to do. freedom must prevail. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yield back. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: mr. speaker, i'm glad to yield two minutes to the president of the nato parliamentary acementably who has seen with his own eyes the unity we now have with our nato allies, the gentleman from virginia, mr. gerry connolly. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for two minutes. mr. connolly: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you to my friend, the distinguished chairman of the house foreign affairs committee. my friend the distinguished ranking member. today is a test for liberal
democracy all over the world. particularly for us as americans. because today we witness the cost in blood and sweat and tears in the fight for freedom that liberal democracy represents and provides. the simple desire of another people to have what we have and that all too often we take for granted. the desire to be a free people under no one's shadow, under no one's yoke, they are willing to put their bodies on the line to fight for that simple principle. weak punditry all too often has cast the opinion that liberal democracy is on the decline. well, not in ukraine. and not here.
and not with our allies, not at the united nations. because the scales have fallen, the threat is real. and so are the stakes. all of us today must be ukrainian. all of us must join that fight. all of us must understand that freedom, liberal democracy are resilient but also fragile. they must always be perfected, but also defended. this resolution today is not just about an expression of congressional solidarity, it is a recommitment by this body in the principles that founded this nation that another people are fighting for to gain. today. i urge passage and proudly
support this effort. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: i'm pleased to yield one minute to the gentleman from great state of texas, mr. pfluger. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for one minute. mr. pfluger: thank you, mr. speaker. ranking member, chairman. thank you. today is a sad day, tragic day as we witnessed the horrific images that are coming out of ukraine. i was there just 4 1/2 short weeks ago. i met with president zelensky. i listened to the people on the streets of kyiv. president zelensky is a lion of a leader. he has displayed courage to the west. and when he said i don't need a ride, i need ammunition, i think all of us should look at that. we should listen to that. the time to act is now. we don't have time to wait. the time to act, to help our ukrainian partners, he didn't ask for troops inside ukraine.
he's asking for help. and i hope that we'll put midland over moscow at president last night and this chamber said it is time to buy america product, energy security is national security. and that's absolutely what this body should be doing is putting our own energy security into the hands of our partners and allies so they can defend and deter against the maligned influence of putin, our heart and prayers go out to the people of ukraine. and our thanks to president zelensky for his leadership. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: i'm proud to yield one minute to the co-founder and co-chair of ukraine caucus who has worked on this her entire congressional career, the representative from ohio, ms. marcy kaptur. ms. kaptur: chairman meeks, thank you for your unyielding leadership on this important bill.
and to ranking member mccaul for setting a tone for this entire congress that we succeed when we work together, particularly in a cause as great as this. liberty for a country that voted for independence 30 years ago. 90% of the people voted to be independent of tyrannical russia. and today now they are fighting again. the bipartisan nature of this bill today would warm the hearts of great american leaders like president and general dwight d. eisenhower. or general george marshall. or president john kennedy. or president ronald reagan. because across europe they fully understood how many american lives were given to the cause of liberty so that we, their descendents, would pass it on to our desendants. we are here today in that fight
because ukraine is the scrimmage line for liberty in europe today. the valor of the people of ukraine against the russian state. it's extraordinary. and our young people are learning what the price of liberty is. sadly. anti-people of ukraine are inspiring the world -- and the people of ukraine are inspiring the world. we think so much of their valor, their fight. and their desire to joint world a free nation. may god bless them and may god bless america. and thank you for understanding a united america always wins for liberty. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from new york beisrecognized. mr. meeks: i'm proud too yield one minute to the dynamic representative from the great state of texas, the honorable sheila jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from texas is
recognized for one minute. ms. jackson lee: i thank the chairman and i rise in enthusiastically to support h.res. 956, and as well to make mention of h.res. 943 that was introduced by myself and steveon on february 25. . they will he salute this resolutions that bipartisan, which calls on the cease-fire by putin. this is putin's war. h.res. 943 has been affirmed by its call for the shutting down of our airwaves to russian carriers and that has been done. but the real point is that we are now standing firmly for democracy and the fight of individual grandmothers and young people and individual ukrainians with their bare hands and with their weapons that have been given fighting for democracy. but the real question that we are also standing for -- and thank you for the united nations
vote -- is that putin -- vladimir putin is a war criminal that's killing children. a parliamentarian i met at the osce of which we are part of, meeting in lithuania and vienna, talking to the soldiers on the borders of belarus and lithuania, thank you to the soldiers that have placed almost 100,000 sewediers, is -- soldiers, is that putin is killing without cause. can we tolerate this bloodshed? no, we will not. we will stand with this resolution to demand that democracy stands in the region and that we denounce his actions. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: mr. speaker, i continue to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: mr. speaker, i'm glad to yield one minute to the dynamic representative from the great state of texas, mr. al green. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for one minute. mr. green: and still i rise, mr.
speaker. and i rise on this historic occasion to compliment the chairperson and the ranking member of the foreign affairs committee. what they're doing today will be held in the annals of history of that which was necessary to help our friends in a time of need. mr. speaker, those who say that if we leave the world alone the world will leave us alone are wrong. the world will find its way to our door, just as it is now, because dr. king's words are so right. life is an ines capable network of mettuality, what impacts one directly impacts all directly. what's happening to ukraine directly impacts us indirectly. we have a duty, a responsibility, and obligation to help them and to make sure that when the final word is written, it will be said that we did all that we could to protect
democracy. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: i continue to reserve, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: thank you, mr. speaker. it is now my honor to yield one minute to the distinguished majority leader of the united states house of representatives, the honorable steny hoyer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized for one minute. mr. hoyer: thank you, mr. speaker. and i want to thank my friend, the chairman of this committee, who has been a dear friend of mine. we've traveled in various parts of the world together. we've seen pain and we've seen progress. we're seeing pain now, and all i can say in respect to the remarks that were just made by the gentleman from new york, mr. green -- amen.
i want to thank mr. mccaul for his working, not as a republican -- i thank mr. meek, not as a democrat -- but as americans. americans confronted with a crisis, crisis for democracy, a crisis for the global community. i want to thank them both, because they have in the best traditions of this house and in this country worked together to bring to the floor a resolution which indeed speaks to the pain and to the moral responsibility of all those who love freedom and democracy. mr. speaker, on tuesday, as russian missiles rained down on the cities of its country, ukraine's heroic president, president zelensky, virtually addressed the european parliament in brussels. mr. speaker, he spoke of a horrendous missile attack that
had just struck the main square of the biggest city of kharkiv. this, he said, is the largest square in europe. it is called freedom square. he went on to say, believe you me, in every square today, no matter what it is called, it's going to be called freedom square. in every city of our country, nobody is going to break us, he said. we are strong. frankly, mr. speaker, he didn't have to tell us that. we have seen that strength. we've seen that courage. we've seen that determination in the face of overwhelming force confronting them. these past seven days, the people of ukraine have indeed shown the world they are strong, they are courageous, they are
united. they are resolved to defend their freedom and their democracy. mr. speaker, i served as co-chairman of the commission on security and cooperation in europe, otherwise known as the helsinki commission, for 10 years. from 1985 to 1995, it was a historic time where democracy won the cold war. it was in the final years of that cold war that ukraine, in the 1990's, emerged and was guaranteed essentially by the international community but certainly by russia and the united states that they would be a sovereign nation. not just in the east but in the west as well.
i had the opportunity, mr. speaker, to travel to kyiv, to sofia, to other cities behind the iron curtain, on a regular basis in those 10 years, certainly from 1985 to 1991. in each place, i saw a freedom square where either before or shortly after my visit people would gather to demand the right to choose their own future, their own leaders, and their own laws. i saw and many others who traveled to those cities and to those countries a yearning. i saw the commitment to democracy, their courage and determination. president zelensky is correct. wherever democracy thrives, every public square is a freedom
square. it may have another name, but it is a freedom square. americans have sacrificed much over the generations to secure our freedoms and to our great credit, the freedom of others around the world. i tell people, mr. speaker, that america is the nation that had the most hygemony of power and used it so without acquiring the nations that it protected. or imposing its will on the nations that it protected. the least equiz tiff super
power -- uquizative super power in the world. we have sacrificed for the freedoms of others. the land of the free and the home of the brave. now the tyranny and autocracy of vladimir putin tests us again. though american forces will not be engaged directly in this war, that does not mean that america is sitting on the sidelines. far from it. and we must be engaged. this resolution speaks to engagement. president biden has unineed not only -- unified not only nato but the world's democratic nations and those committed to the post-war order of protecting borders and, of course, peace and diplomacy. dozens of partners have promised to stand up to putin and support the freedom fighters in ukraine. together, we've imposed
punishing sanctions that are already hurting putin's regime. we are already seeing thousands of russians taking to the streets in their country to demand that putin end this unjust war, this unprovoked war, this criminal war, and stop the unnecessary death and destruction on both sides for which vladimir putin alone bears responsibility. today, this house, the people's house, representing the greatest democracy in history, the leading democratic nation in the world, is expressing our support for the ukrainian people in their struggle for freedom and self-government. i hope and i urge that this resolution pass with not a single negative vote. let there be no mistake throughout the globe that, yes,
we have differences between republicans and democrats, but we in this house are all americans committed to freedom, committed to democracy, committed to the peaceful relations between nations. it recognizes the egregious and inhumane actions undertaken by the russian military as putin's command -- at putin's command. including the shelling of civilian targets and the killing of innocents in order to instill fear and weaken ukrainian resolve. we know that resolve, however, mr. speaker, will not be broken. we've seen it in the eyes of the president and we've seen it in the eyes of the citizens in those freedom squares. this resolution further recognizes importantly that russian aggression against ukraine did not begin last week. it began as soon as the
ukrainian people rejected a putin-backed autocrat, established a true democracy, and sought the security and protection of stronger bonds with its fellow democracies in europe and nato. which, of course, it had every right as a sovereign nation to do. putin sent his forces to occupy crimea. mr. speaker, in my view, we were not as determined that that should not happen at that time. we must not repeat that mistake. he instigated separatist uprising in the done bass region -- donbas region. his unprovoked and unjustifiable invasion of ukraine became clear that the separatists could not achieve putin's expansionist aims on their own. he tried to do it as you were
tishsly through agents. it did not succeed so he took the next step. a tragic, criminal step. this resolution also makes clear that the united states will continue to support ukraine by providing both military and humanitarian assistance while maintaining painful sanctions. against putin for as long as he pursues this war of choice. in no small part, this resolution puts into action the promise that president kennedy made when he took office at the height of the cold war. this will not be a free war for any of us in the free world. it's going to cost us something. gas prices may go up. but we want to stand on
freedom's side. i i've in -- i'm in politics largely because john kennedy ran for president while i was at the university of maryland and i was inspired by his call to service. i would urge all of you to read one more time john kennedy's inaugural address. it's an extraordinarily inspiring address. address not only to the american people but to the entire world. and in it he said this, let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of liberty. and of those freedom squares to which president zelensky referred.
mr. speaker, americans and our allies are being asked to pay a price. to bear a burden. to meet some hardship in the days and weeks and months ahead. not to sustain fire, not to live in buildings being bombed, not to have to move from their home to a refuge or another country. but some hardship. and i know that our fellow americans are up to the task. they have always been up to the task. because those who say we take freedom for granted, who say the cost is too high, the burden too great, have always underestimated the american people. when we see putin's corrupt,
evil and menacing grab for power and tyrannical control, we are reminded of the tie ran thes and -- tyrants and evil ideologies that americans have fought and vanquished through our collective commitment and shared sacrifices. today, mr. speaker, let us make this house freedom square. let us stand with those who are assaulted by a tyrant. the generation before mine, john kennedy referred to england as why england slept. if we do not meet this tyrant now, we will pay greatly later. so i urge my colleagues, stand with these brave ukrainians who
stand for freedom and liberty and international law. let us all overwhelmingly, unanimously vote for this resolution and send a message. not just to putin, but to all the tyrants of the world who would test us once again, that we will not blink. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas is recognized. >> mr. speaker, i have no more speakers. if the gentleman from new york, the chairman, my friend, mr. meeks, has no further speakers, i'm prepared to close. mr. meeks: i have no further speakers, mr. speaker. i yield to my friend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. mccaul: thank you, meek. i want to thank the leader for his remarks -- mr. speaker. i want to thank the leader for his remarks. i think it's very important this chamber passes this resolution unanimously, to send one voice to putin. that the american people stand
for the ukrainian people and against mr. putin. i think it's no coincidence, to me it's fitting that today's texas independence day. my forefathers fought for freedom and liberty for the same purpose, from tyranny. since 2014 the world has watched the ukrainian people fight to forge their own destiny in the face of violent attacks by russia. they were facing down putin's missiles and tanks, risking life and limb for their freedom today. and as president zelensky warned, the russian troops invading his country just a few days ago, as he sits in the bunker, putting his life on the line, he said, quote, if they try to take our country, our freedom, our lives, the lives of our children, we will be defending ourselves. as you attack, it will be our faces you see, not our backs.
today we have the opportunity to honor his leadership and the bravery of the ukrainian people. to send a strong message to these brave men and women that they are not alone. that the united states stands with them. and will continue to stand with them for as long as it takes. so, again, i urge my colleagues to vote in support and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: mr. speaker, the camera of history is rolling on all of us today. what's happening today, children yet unborn will be studying and looking at what we did, what we stood for, or did not.
they will be studying in the history books whether or not when democracy was at stake, when sovereign nations were in peril, whether or not we stood up and stood out to protect freedom, sovereignty of states, independence, or not. the fact of the matter is if we don't stand up now, those same children that i'm talking about may not be able to live in a democratic society. that's why this is so important. putin may think that he's encircling kyiv now. but this united nations vote,
where 141 nations said they're not going to allow that to happen, is encircling putin and his thugs. and we will stay there for as long as it takes. until freedom reigns. because that's what this is all about. i think of today those that i met when i was in kyiv. those that i had dinner with. those that worked in our u.s. embassy. those that were driving taxis. and as i see the pictures of them walking these streets today, in front of russian tanks, i'm afraid. i saw a picture of a woman standing and pointing at a russian soldier saying, you will
die here before i give up. that's what this is all about. the words that the activists told me while i was in kyiv, that we're ready to fight, just provide us the support we need to protect our country, and freedom. glory to ukraine and its people. thank you, mr. mckawl. thank you, -- mccaul. thank you, congresswoman sparks, for -- spartz, for working with me so we can make a bipartisan message right here on the people's floor. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 956. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, -- the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. meeks: mr. speaker, on that
i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to section 3-s of house resolution 8, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. [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.]
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? mr. jeffries: as the member designated by chairwoman johnson, chairwoman lofgren, representative rush, representative strickland and representative underwood, i inform the house that these members will vote yea on h.res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from rhode island seek recognition? mr. cicilline: mr. speaker, as the member designated about mr. raskin of maryland and ms. wilson of florida, i inform the house that these members will vote yes on h.res. 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? mr. pallone: mr. speaker, as the member designated by m mrs. kirkpatrick patrick and mr. alibi other -- mrs. kirkpatrick and mr. albio sires, i inform the house that these members will vote yes on h.res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois seek recognition? mr. garcia: mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. grijalva of arizona and mr. pocan of wisconsin, i inform the house that these members will vote yes on h.res. 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland seek recognition? mr. mfume: mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. dwight evans of pennsylvania's third district, i inform the house that mr. evans will vote yea on house resolution 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? mr. connolly: mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. kind of wisconsin, mr. brown of maryland, mr. trone of maryland, and mr. doyle of pennsylvania, rm for form -- i inform the house that these members will vote aye on h.res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from north dakota seek recog recognition? mr. armstrong: mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. johnson of south dakota, i inform the house that mr. johnson will vote yes on house res. 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> thank you, mr. speaker. as the member designated by dr. van drew of new jersey, i inform the house that dr. van drew will vote aye on h.res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. correa: mr. speaker, as the member designated by the following members, mr. kahele, ms. barragan, mr. gonzalez, mr. cuellar and mr. aguilar, i inform the house that these members will vote yes on h.res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, as the member designated by ms. granger from the great state of texas, i inform the house that ms. graining already vote yea on resolution 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from wisconsin seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. tiffany of wisconsin's seventh district, pursuant to house resolution 8, i inform the house that mr. tiffany will vote aye on h.r. 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from new hampshire
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from south carolina seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. babin, i inform the house that mr. babin will vote yea on h.res. 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> as the member designated by mr. cardenas, i inform the house that mr. cardenas will vote aye on h.res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. fallon of texas, pursuant to house resolution 8, i inform the house that mr. fallon will vote yes on h.res. 956. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlelady from georgia seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, as the member designated by mr. gosar from arizona, i inform the house that mr. gosar will vote no on house res. 956.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlelady from ohio seek recognition? mrs. beatty: as the member designated by ms. mccoreic, i inform the house that these members will vote yea on house resolution 956. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? >> thank you, mr. speaker. as the member designated by mr. amodei, i inform the house that mr. amodei will vote yes on h.res. 956.