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tv   US Senate  CSPAN  January 28, 2016 6:00pm-7:09pm EST

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of regulations from the federal government right here in washington, d.c. let me just give you a few examples, mr. president. on the north slope of alaska, they can't get small portable incinerators that comply with upcoming e.p.a. regulations. so the trash in these amazing communities in my state piles up until it's actually taken out by airplane. now this is polar bear country. this is dangerous. trash everywhere, it's certainly harmful to the environment because regulars don't allow inis en ray tors -- incinerators. because of the rule in southeast alaska we can't build alternative energy plants for the citizens of my state who desperately need energy because we pay some of the highest costs of any state in the country with regard to energy. and nationally, bridges are
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crumbling, and we can't get them built in large part because of the overburdensome federal regulations. mr. president, on average it takes over five years to permit a bridge in the united states. not build a bridge. just to get the federal government's permission to build a bridge. right now there are 61,000 bridges in our country in need of repair, but burdensome regulations delay commonsense repairs. these bridges are being crossed by our trucks carrying the nation's commerce, our children and school buses, parents trying to get home for dinner, thousands of communities across the country are simply keeping their fingers crossed hoping the current bridges last another year. let me provide one more example,
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mr. president, in terms of what's happening with regard to the overregulation of our economy. this involves one of the most important sectors of the u.s. economy: small community banks. over 1,300 small community banks have disappeared since 2010, and only two new banks in the united states have been chartered in the last five years. you ask any small community banker what's driving this, and they will point to this chart. they will point to this chart. regulations from washington, d.c., are driving our small community banks out of existence. even during the great depression we had on average 19 new banks a year. in the last five years, the united states has seen two new banks chartered in our country.
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so what do we do? well, mr. president, the good news is many colleagues in the senate on both sides of the aisle have offered suggestions and introduced bills to stop the red tape, to stop this trajectory of federal regulations from strangling our economy and our future. but we need something that's simple, that is simple and something that hardworking americans understand and something that is bold to take on this challenge. i believe that the amendment that i'm offering to the energy bill, the red tape act, is both. simple and bold enough to take on this challenge. it's only five pages long, mr. president. using a simple one in, one out
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method, it caps federal regulations. new regulations that cause a financial or administrative burden on the economy, on hardworking americans, on middle-class families, on union workers would need to be offset by repealing an existing regulation. simple. you issue a new reg, you repeal an old reg. people understand that, and it makes sense. mr. president, this is not a radical idea. this is not some kind of poison pill that we want to attach to the energy bill, because i think that's a good bill. it's an idea that's gaining consensus not only throughout the country, but throughout the world. other countries have actually taken up this idea to fix their regulatory problems as well.
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in canada, they recently put an administrative fix to their regulations. it was one in, one out. and in great britain, they've done this to the point where it's viewed as so successful that they're not talking about one in, one out anymore. they're talking about maybe one in, two out. so i think this is an idea that both parties of the senate, members prosecute -- members from both sides of the aisle can get behind. even national public radio, mr. president, did a recent story about how well this one in, one out rule is working in canada. it's freed up hundreds of thousands of hours of paperwork for small businesses in particular. even the canadian socialists have backed this idea.
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so i certainly hope senator sanders is listening, and i hope i can get his and other members of this body support for this amendment. to be clear, i'm certainly not against all regulations or permitting requirements. when i served as the commissioner of the department of national resources in alaska, we worked with our legislature bipartisan to overhaul our permitting and regulatory system and to bring what we've seen on the federal government side a huge backlog of permits to get projects moving. we brought that backlog down by over 50% through regulatory and permitting reform. and we did so with the absolute understanding of protecting our environment and keeping our citizens safe was a fundamental precondition to any of our
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actions. but we can do both. we can bring down this huge but- huge burden and still make sure we have a clean environment and a strong, healthy economy. mr. president, there are simply too many federal regulations out there, and the american people know it. it's time this body stops increasing this number of regs and puts a cap on it. and finally, mr. president, if we do this, if we do this, we will make sure that all of the compared advantages we have in this country, so many that we have over so many other countries, will enable us to unleash the might of the u.s. economy, create better jobs and
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create a brighter future for our children and their children. mr. president, i yield the floor. mr. president, i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk should call the roll. quorum call:
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a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from nebraska. a senator: i ask unanimous consent to suspend the quorum call. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. sasse: one of the fundamental purposes of this body is to debate, debate the biggest issues facing our nation and to do so in an honorable way. the senate is for debate, but not as an abstraction. it is to be addressing and ultimately solving the meatiest challenges that the constitution demands that we tackle. unfortunately, a great deal of our debate is weak and embarrassing. much of it falls off the trivial side of the cliff or the shrill side of the cliff. during my time serving nebraskans in this place i hope to be aligned with those who want fighting and debating in this place, but it needs to be meaningful fighting. it needs to be honorable, honest debating. to that end, there is a terrific
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column this week by pete with wr in commentary magazine. partly because it is about daniel patrick moynihan, partly because it is about c.s. lewis, and partly because it is just darned good exhortation to us. waner begins while reading greg weiner's fascinating book i came across this comment, -- quote -- "daniel patrick moynihan's intellectual curiosity was such that he graph tated toward thinkers -- gravitated towards whom he disagreed so he could learn something from them. this reminded me of an incident in 1948 involving c.s. lewis and a catholic convert.
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lewis was a president of the socraticic club who met every monday evening and whose purpose was to discuss the intellectual difficulties connected with religion and with christianity in particular. lewis begins -- quote -- "in any fairly large and talkative community such as a university, and i would add such as the senate, there is always a danger that those who think alike should gravitate together into coteries where they will encounter opposition only in the emmask lated form of rumor. the absent are so easily refuted, complacent, dogmatism thrives and differences of opinion are 'em bit -- many embittered by group hostility. in ans come had a complicated
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critique having to do with irrational and nonrational factors and belief formation. the results of the debate which lewis thought that he lost was revisions to his own book. anscomb while not convinced by the changes lewis made did say -- quote -- "the fact that lewis rewrote his chapter and rewrote it now that it has these new qualities addressed shows his honesty and his seriousness." when lewis was asked to nominate speakers for the 1951 socraticic season, anscomb was his first choice -- quote -- "the lady is quite right to refute what she thinks are bad arguments but does this not oblige her as a christian to find good ones in her place. having obliterated me as an apologist ought she not now try
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to succeed me? there is something of quality demonstrated by moynihan and lewis, a willingness to learn from others including those with whom we disagree. there is in this an admirable blend of intellectual humility and self-confidence. the humility to know that at best we possess only a partial understanding of the truth which could be enlarged. and the self-confidence that allows for refinement and amendment of our own views in light of new arguments, new circumstances and new insights. beyond that, it is a useful reminder that the quality we ought to strive for isn't certitude but to be a seeker of truth. that is, i think, what separates ideologues from true intellectuals. the former is determined to defend a preexisting position come whatever may, interpreting facts to fit a world view that is already well beyond challenge. the latter seeks genuine enlightenment and is eager to discard the false notions that
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they may hold and values rather than resents those who would help them on a journey. the purpose of debating then isn't so much just to win an argument as it is to deepen our understanding of how things really and truly are. it isn't to outshout our opponents but at least now and hen to listen to them, to learn from them to weigh their arguments with some care, to learn from them. it's worth noting that lewis warned about simply surrounding ourselves with like-minded people who reinforce our own buy ass. it matters how debates are conducted properly so we might help civilize one another. what a quaint notion. in saying all this, i'm not insisting that everyone you disagree with is someone you can learn from. nor that everyone's views contain equal measures of wisdom. some people really don't know what they're talking about. some people really do hold pernicious and false views. and some people really do deserve harsh criticism. my point is simply that because
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the pull is so strong in the other direction, most of us use debates just as a way to amplify preexisting views rather than to refine them to try to crush our opponents rather than to engage them and to focus on the weakest rather than the strongest arguments found in the opposing views. the moynihan-lewis mod s&l a a good one to strive for. "i understand that talking about such things can sound hopelessly high-minded and for some it might signal a mushy lack of conviction. when you're in a political death match with the other side, after all, the idea that you might learn from your opponent seems either ridiculously naive and slightly treasonous but of course this reaction highlights just how far things have gone off-course. to be sure, american politics have always been a raucous affair. as madison put it in federalist 55, "had every he finnian been a
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sock infrastructure physical, evers citizen woob would have been a mob." the question of whether one strokes the passions of the mob or appeals to reason. as someone who doesn't do nearly well enough in this remarks i rather admire the lewis model. he was a better man and miracles became a better book for having recognized that he lost a debate. for lewis to then promote the woman who defeated him in the debate, despite having been bested by her, is doubly impress sivment yet in many respects, it is not that surprising. after all, lewis was a man who cared more about striving after truth than attending to his own pride. he cared more about learning from arguments than just winning them. and so should we. close quote. again, mr. president, this is pete waner with instructive words for all of us laboring here in this body. thank you. i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll.
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quorum call:
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ms. murkowski: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from the great state of alaska. ms. murkowski: request that proceedings under the quorum
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call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. ms. murkowski: thank you, mr. president. mr. president, we are winding down the day here. we've had a good opportunity for good discussion and debate about the energy policy modernization act. we took votes on three amendments, and we just concluded voice votes on six additional ones on top of the two voice votes that we had had. so we're moving through some of the amendments, and i think that bodes well for us. as i mentioned he recaller he el have an opportunity to hopefully line up a series so that when members come back next week, we all know where we're going to be going and the direction. i wanted to take just a few minutes tonight before we wrap things up to talk about a section in the bill that i believe is very important, not only important to the energy policy modernization act but
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really very important to our nation as a whole. you and i, mr. president, hail from a state that has been an oil producer for decades now. it is oil that sustains us, fills our coffers, allows for us to be -- have an economy that is thriving and strong. it's struggling right now, as we look at low production combined with low cost. but we also are a state that enjoys great resources when it comes to our minerals and our mineral opportunity. we have talked long in this body over the course of years about the vulnerability that we have as a nation when we have to rely on others for our energy resources. we talk about energy independence, we talk about energy security, and i think we recognize that when we can produce more on our own, without
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others, it makes us less vulnerable. energy security translates to national security. and i think that we've pretty much got that message around here, and we're doing more within this energy policy modernization act to make sure that we are less reliant on others for our energy sources, whether it is what we are doing to produce more within our fossil fuels or being able to turn to those technologies that will allow us to access our renewable resources in a way that is stronger and more robust. but again, making sure that we have that energy security. when we think about energy security, we should not forget mineral security, the minerals
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that also help to make us a great nation. and a nation that is less vulnerable when we are able to produce more of our own. so for several congresses -- this is actually the third consecutive congress -- i have introduced legislation on this subject. it's a bill that i have titled "the american minerals security act," and what we have done within the epma bill, the energy policy modernization act, is to take much of that legislation and include it as part of a subtitle on critical minerals. and, you know, maybe it's because i authored it, but i feel pretty strongly this is a pretty good version, this is a pretty good title contained in epma, and i think that passage
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of not only the critical minerals piece as part of epma is key for our economic and our energy security and our national security, it's just the right thing for us to be doing. we take for granted so much that our minerals and the metals that we have available to us, that they're going to continue to be there for us. and, unfortunately, most of us don't really pay attention to the fact that so much of what we need in our everyday world, so many of the things that we rely on come from minerals. we don't think about it. we just kind of assume that stuff just gets here. we don't think about where it comes from. and so we shouldn't ever take for granted our mineral security. we should never take for granted
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what it is that we need. people talk about rare-earth elements, rare earth minerals. you think rare, what exactly does that mean? why do i need them? what do we use them in? rare earth elements make all of these things possible. you talk a lot about how we're going to move to more renewable energy sources. well, for your wind turbines, you're going to need rare earth elements for those turbines. you're going to need if for your solar panels. you're going to need it for your rechargeable batteries. you're going to need it for your hard drives and import phones and screens on your computers. you will need it for your digital vawms, defense applications, audio applications. that's just what we put on this particular chart. it's important to recognize that so much of what allows us to do the good things that we do to
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communicate, to help defend, to help power our country come to us because we have access to certain minerals. according to the national research council, more than 25,000 pounds of new minerals are needed per person per year in the united states to make the items that we use for basic human needs, infrastructure, energy, transportation, communication and defense. now, you might say whoa, 25,000 pounds per person per year, i can't possibly need all that stuff. but, mr. president, you and i fly back and forth to alaska, those airplanes that we fly on need that stuff. every one of these young people as well as us sitting in here all have a smart phone or some way that we're communicating. we all need this stuff.
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all of this staff who are working on their computers all need that screen to be looking at. we all need this stuff. and so when you think about it, it's like okay, maybe -- maybe that number's right. bill gates put it memberrably last year. he wrote a blog post entitled "have you hugged a concrete pillar today?" it's really a very interesting read, and it reminds us that, again, you're going to take for granted things that we need, the things that we use on a daily basis, the things that are under our feet as we are walking here to work. minerals and metals are really the foundation of our modern society, of our access to them, enables a range of products and technologies that greatly add to our quality of life. yet, many of the trends are going in the wrong direction, which create vulnerabilities for our country. we have a real problem on our hands right now. as a result of this reliance on
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minerals and the fact that so many of our minerals that we need today we must import. so if you're thinking okay, 25,000 pounds per person per year, that's a lot. where are we getting it from? how much of it are we relying on other countries, asking their permission to bring it in? and it's not just rare earth elements. the reality is the united states now depends on many, many other nations for a vast array of minerals and metals. and we've got the numbers to back that up. in 1978, the usgs, the u.s. geological survey, reported that the united states was importing at least 50% of our supply of 25 minerals and 100% of seven of them. so we've got the latest figures from the usgs.
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in fact, coincidentally, they just came out today just a few hours ago, and our foreign mineral dependence is now far deeper. in 2015, so last year, we imported at least 50% of 47 different minerals, including 100% of 19 of them. so on this list, what you have here are these -- these minerals that we are 100% reliant on foreign nations for, whether it's boxite, cesiam, which we happen to have in the state of alaska, i might add, graphite which we have in alaska, i might add, rabidian -- i will stop now because they get more difficult to pronounce. but these are the -- the
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minerals that we are 100% reliant on other nations for. and what do we use them in? we use them in transistors, electrical components, miersors, rubber, vacuum tubes, photocells, bicycles, fishing rods, golf iron shafts, baseball bats, defense applications, medical equipment, atomic clocks, aluminum, glass, enamel, batteries, gaskets, brake linings, fire retardants, magnets. again, that's what we could put on the chart. we're 100% reliant on other countries for some of the things that are just basic everyday stuff that we don't think about. the -- again, i think we take for granted that it's just going to be there. it's going to be there for us. let's take our cell phone, our cell phone. i'm not allowed to have it on the floor, so i can't reach for
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it right now, but the smart phone that so many of us have, let's look at the elements of a smartphone. and when you -- when you look at what goes into the smartphone that most people are carrying in their pocket, for your screen, indium is part of the screen. alumina, silica is part of the screen, a variety of rare erts. indium, all these rare earths here that we're looking at, all of them, 100% reliant on other nations for what goes into the screen. for the battery for your smartphone, we have lithium, graphite and manganese. manganese and graphite, again we're 100% reliant on foreign sources. lithium, we're 50% reliant. that's in your battery.
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the electronics, the electronics of your phone. you've got tentalium, we're 100% reliant on that. tin, lead, copper, silver, we're 70% reliant on tin. it goes to show, mr. president, that the things that we take for granted, the things that we are all using all the time to communicate, to send messages home, do our business, we can't do it unless we get this done from somebody else, from some other country. but there are options for us. just as there are options with us as we're talking about our energy sources and finding ways to produce more. we can find ways to help us produce more when it comes to minerals and mineral capacity so that we are less reliant. we had a hearing before our energy committee and we had a witness by the name of dan
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mcgrority, and he leads the american resources policy network, and he provided some pretty good examples of our nation's foreign mineral dependence. he pointed out that the minerals needed for clean energy technologies often come from abroad, threatening our ability to manufacture those technologies here at home. and this is what he wrote in his prepared testimony. graphite is key to electric vehicle batteries and energy storage. the u.s. produces zero natural graphite. we're 100% import dependent. he said indium is needed for flat-screen tv's and solar voltaic panels. most -- the u.s. is 81% for the zinc we use and we produce zero indiam. he goes on to say thin film solar panels are made of cigs
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materials. those letters stand for copper, indium, galium and silinium. we have a copper gap at present, demand exceeding supply. silinium is recovered from copper processes. he goes on further to say galium comes from aluminum processing where we are 99% import dependent and we are closing american smelters at a record pace. he also highlighted the national security implications of our foreign mineral dependence, explaining that, he says, we need rinium for the high-strength allies in the f-35's and other fighter aircraft. rinium is dependent on copper processing and we are 84% import dependent. congress has -- used in key super alloys for the defense
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stockpile. the u.s. produces gear manganese. we need rare earths in too many applications to list. wind turbines, lasers for medical security applications, smartphones and smart bombs. we produce zero rare earths, and we are once again 100% dependent on china. you may recall not too many years ago now where there was a little bit of an issue going on between japan and china, and china withheld delivery of certain rare earth elements thar its manufacture. china was holding the keys. china is holding the keys with many of these -- of these minerals. our foreign dependence is dangerous enough, and you know that full well, mr. president,
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but the concentration of our foreign supply presents additional challenges. our minerals often come from a handful of countries that are less than stable or who might be willing to cut off the supply to us to serve their own purposes or to meet their own needs. they're going to take care of themselves first. so if they don't have much supply, they're going to help themselves first. so when i look at our foreign mineral dependence and where those minerals are come from, i see reason after reason to be concerned. and it's not hard to see the prospect of a day of reckoning when this will become real to all of us, when we simply cannot acquire a mineral or when the market for a mineral changes so dramatically that entire industries are affected. to put it even more bluntly, our foreign mineral dependence is a
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mounting threat to our economy, to our national security and to our international competitiveness, and we cannot lose sight of that international competitiveness. the absence of just one critical mineral or metal could disrupt entire technologies, entire industries and create this ripple effect throughout our entire economy. i think it's well past time for us to be taking this seriously. we have seen some good signs from the administration, but the reality is, is that our executive agencies are not as coordinated about this as they really should be. they don't have all of the statutory authorities needed to make the -- the necessary progress on this issue. there's just no substitute for legislation, and that's why i'm very pleased that the members of the energy committee accepted my language in our bill to rebuild this mineral supply chain.
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and we did this in committee with almost no substantive changes. when it comes to permitting delays for new minds, you've heard me say this before, our nation is among the worst in the world. we're almost dead last. we're stumbling right out of the gate, right out of the very start of the supply chain. and then we just don't ever seem to be able to catch up. and where do you place the blame or the fault? it begins with us here. when we decide that a mineral is critical, we need to understand what we have. we need to survey our lands. we need to determine the extent of our resource base so we know what we can produce right here at home. but if we don't know, it makes it pretty difficult to get anybody interested in production. we should keep working on alternatives, on efficiency and recycling options. that's not what this is about. we need to keep doing that,
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especially for those minerals where our nation does not and will not ever have significant abundance there. we should build out a forecasting capability so that we can gain a better understanding of mineral-related trends and also an early warning when we see that there might be issues arising. we also need to have a qualified work force. we need to make sure that we have those that can access this mineral resource, this mineral wealth. the united states right now is down to just a handful of mining schools. a large share of their faculty will be eligible to retire in the near future. we need some smart young people who are interested and want to go into these fields. provisions to tackle all of these challenges are contained within the bill. they've got good support. the director of the united states geological survey, the c.e.o.'s of the alliance of
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automobile manufacturers and the national electric manufacturers association are just among some. state witnesses, former military officials and many others have endorsed this approach. we've got -- we've got a good opportunity to bring our mineral policies into the 21st century and the mineral subtitle in this bipartisan energy bill offers us that chance. i want to note the other members of the energy committee that have been very helpful in helping to advance this. senator risch on the committee was very helpful. senator crapo also of idaho, senator heller were all cosponsors of the original bill with me as well as many other cosponsors from both sides of the aisle in recent congresses, and we thank you for your support as well. i also want to acknowledge secretary moniz, the secretary of energy, and his team over there at d.o.e., and director
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kikimball. she is the director at the u.s. geological survey. they helped us a lot with the technical assistance when it came to drafting this bill, and i appreciate that. mr. president, i've consumed probably more time than i want, but i hope you hear the enthusiasm that i have in ensuring that, as we are modernizing our energy policies, we don't make steps forward to help address what we need to do on the energy front and we fail to bring along the concerns, the growing concerns that we have in needing to modernize and to understand our mineral resources and how we can ensure that there is that level of true energy security that helps us with our economic security and certainly
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our national security. with that, mr. president, i see that my colleague from alabama is here, and i will yield the floor. mr. sessions: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from alabama. mr. sessions: i thank the senior senator from alaska for her leadership and comments on this bill, and i'll have some thoughts as we go forward. but we've had some good things happening in energy, and we need to keep that happening. energy serves the american people. lower-cost energy is a blessing. high-cost energy is a detriment to working families. and i believe -- i just truly believe we need to make clear to the american people that those of us, like the senator from alaska, who fought to increase production of energy have done so not to profit private companies but to create a
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situation in which the price of energy would decline. and we've had this large surge in energy, and, sure enough, prices have declined, and i think that's a good thing. mr. president, i wanted to share some thoughts tonight before we go out about the trade issue that this nation is facing, and it is a highly significant issue. the president is expected to sign the trans-pacific partnership next monday -- i believe it is february 4 -- tuesday. it's an historic event. it cannot become law of the united states of america. it is detrimental to this economy. it is detrimental particularly to people who go to work every day and would like more jobs, higher-paying jobs, and better benefits. it's detrimental to them. it just is and we're going to establish that. and we've got a presidential
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campaign going on today, and people need to talk about it. the american people need to know where their candidates stand on it. let me just share a few thoughts tonight and begin this discussion. so the president is expected to signing it february 4. this is the agreement that he's negotiated with 11 different countries in the pacific region, and it will then -- he will then submit at some point implementing legislation, and then at some point congress will vote whether or not to go forward. because of -- it's part of the fast-track process. it wilthere will not be a filib. the bill will come up on a simple majority vote. no amendments will be allowed. it will be a simply up-or-down vote. what is happening in the world
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trade market today? on monday, january 25, this week, ford announced that they were leaving the japanese and indonesian markets. now, indonesia and japan are good friends of ours, but they're tough trading partners. why did ford leave japan? they sell automobiles all over the wompletd they sell them in europe. they sell them in mexico and south america. why are they not able to compete in japan? what did ford say? they said that nontariff barriers have prevented them from selling cars in the market. in 2015, ford sold less than 5,000 cars in japan, representing .6% of the japanese automobile market. in fact, only 6% of the automobiles sold in japan are manufactured outside japan. it's not a question of tariffs.
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that's not the problem in dealing with japan and importing cars into japan. they're nontariff barriers. in fact, hyundai, a very fine south korean automobile company attempted to sell in japan for sometime, and recently they gave up. so how is it -- what is the policy of japan? the truth is, japan talks free trade, but like most of our asian allies and trading competitors, they're mercantilists. and they believe the essence of a successful economy is to export more and import less. this is the reality we're dealing with. and the people that are negotiating our trade agreements, have been negotiating our trade agreements, don't seem to understand this or don't care. in fact, they basically say,
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well, if someone sells a product cheaper here, we don't care, we'll buy. but they don't worry that we can't sell products in their country. but a trading agreement is a contract between two nations, and a contract, we've all been taught in law school and previous to that, should serve the interests of both parties. and when a contract ceases to advantage both parties, you abandon the contract. it shouldn't be signed, it should be ended. now what else about this agreement? it creates an international commission, a commission of the 11 countries, 12 countries including the united states. it is a -- by definition, the language of our own administration, the agreement is a living agreement. the presiding officer is a fine, fine lawyer, worked at the court
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of appeals. a living agreement, i know, makes the hair on the back of his neck stand up, knack makes u nervous. what a living agreement is is no agreement at all. it can just be changed. they acknowledge and say repeatedly in the fast-track documents that the nations can meet and change the agreement anytime they want to, to update it, to change circumstances, which is what activist judges say when they re-define the meaning of the united states constitution. they're updating it for changed circumstances. well, congress is supposed to do that. it seems to me -- but, anyway, this agreement is a living agreement. it contains5,554 pages, twice the size -- length of the holy scripture. it includes section 27, which
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sets up an international commission with nearly unregulated power. in fact, our own u.s. trade representatives -- our own web site states that the commission is formed -- quote -- "to enable the updating of the agreement as appropriate to address trade issues that emerge in the future, as well as new issues that arise, with the expansion of the agreement to include new countries." close quote. congress has -- would be launching such an event into the future. well, what is our problem? what is one of the major problems we have today? it's our substantial trade deficit. one report -- probably conservative, i think -- said that .5% of g.d.p. has been lost in the united states as a result of our trade deficit. that's probably an acceptable economic estimate.
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and that's significant, when you have a 2% g.d.p. you're losing 25% based on the trade deficit. we got to have growth in this country, more g.d.p., more americans working, more people with better jobs and better pay, and part of that is manufacturing. so the final figures for 2015 are expected to show that the bilateral trade deficit with china increased to about 8% to a record of around $365 billion. now, china is not a part of these 12 nations, but it's openly been said they could be made a part of it in the future, if people vote them in. according to the economic policy institute, growing u.s. trade deficits with china through 2013 eliminated 3.2 million jobs. is that an accurate figure?
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i don't know. i don't know for sure, but no one disputes that trade deficits with china have cost more than a million jobs. a million jobs -- people go on welfare, unemployment compensation, retire early. all of these are damaging events to the american economy. now, the white house claims that this trans-pacific partnership agreement, this trade agreement, is critical to limit china's economic influence. now, we hear that -- we're going to hear that a lot. we're going to hear the national security argument. however, a new study just released by the world bank this month shows that china will actually see an increase in export potential if this t.p.p. passes. it's not going to constrict
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china. the world bank says it's going to increase china's ability to export. the report of the world bank stated that the overall impact on china would really be negligible, but i just say that to say that this is not a good argument that it's somehow going to boost other economies and the united states as it relates to china. china is not going to be hurt by this agreement. the world bank study further reports that japan would see extra economic growth of 2.7%. -- by 2030. while the united states would expect only nominal growth of perhaps .4%. robert scott of the economic policy institute states that the t.p.p. could slow the re-shoring
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of american jobs, especially in the automobile sector. we've had a nice development in recent years. my state has benefited so tremendously from foreign automobile investment. so instead of making automobiles in korea, germany, japan, they've built plants around the country, and some of my home state of alabama, and made the automobiles here. i don't think there's any doubt that this agreement could reduce that, because there is a small tariff on imported automobiles, and that would be eliminated, so that little advantage in moving a plant here would be lost. "the washington post" -- get this -- the fact checker at the "washington post" gave the president's claim that the trans-pacific partnership would
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create 650,000 jobs -- four pinocchios. that's a pretty bad falsehood, four pinocchios. do they give five? i think so. they ought to give it five. let's talk about reality. i have supported trade agreements. you know, republicans -- you know, we like to -- we favor that. we do -- and i do. i favor trade agreements, but they got to be good agreements, got to be careful. what about this korean trade agreement with our good friends and allies in south korea? well, they're smart negotiators, it appears. so our trade deficit with south korea last year from just january through november -- we don't have the december numbers yet -- was $26 billion this year. the rest of the year would be about $28 billion, $29 billion.
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that would be about 15% higher than last year's trade deficit with south korea. so in 2010, president obama signed the agreement, took effect -- signed it in 2011. when he signed it, president obama promised that the south korean trade deal would increase american exports to south korea by $11 billion a year. all right. so i want to be cooperative. we like our allies in south korea, and i vote for the agreement, but what happened? in the 11 months of last year, the united states exported $1.2 billion more than we did when the deal was signed in 2010. not $10 billion, $11 billion
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more, $1.2 billion. the year before that, it was $.8 billion. we haven't seen a surge of exports to south korea. didn't the negotiators know that? they told us differently. what about south korea's imports to the united states, their exports to the united states, what about them? they have risen not $1 billion a year but $20 billion a year. since 2010, our trade deficit was south korea has risen nearly 260% from $10 billion in 2010 to about $28 billion this year, last year. that's a stunning development. so colleagues, friends, we're going to have to vote on this. and we have been told and we have beliefs that things are going to be better than this. it's not happening in that way. and i would urge us to study the
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facts and figures, to be realistic. you know, trade is a good thing. i have been a supporter, but it's not a religion with me. it's a contract, it's a deal, and deals ought to serve the interests of the american people, and it has not been doing so. even the peterson institute which supports these trade agreements said there would be 120,000 fewer manufacturing jobs over the next nine years if this agreement takes place in the united states. mr. president, i see our leader. he's had a busy week. i appreciate the opportunity to share these remarks and would yield the floor. the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: before the senator from alabama leaves the floor, we had an opportunity this afternoon to say goodbye to a good man, mike brumas, who
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worked with both of us here in the senate. it was a really good chance to thank an old friend of both of us, didn't you think? mr. sessions: i think so, senator mcconnell. people wonder about who we get to work for us up here and who is helping to run this government. but mike brumas, 14 years at the birmingham news. i think he was the most popular guy in the state of alabama and among the people. he was a great asset to me and a great asset to you. mr. mcconnell: i say to my friend from alabama, i particularly enjoyed your observation that you had taken a chance on bringing over somebody from the dark side and had some doubts about whether he could make the transition, but he obviously did it very well. mr. sessions: he really did and was loyal to me and i know loyal to you and shared the visions that we have tried to execute, just the size of the crowd and
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the enthusiastic well wishes that he got is a testament i think to the quality of his contribution. thank you for hosting that. mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to executive session for the consideration of calendar number 449-457 and all nominations on the secretary's desk in the air force, army, marine corps and navy, that the nominations be confirmed en bloc, the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate, that no further motions be in order, that any statements be related to the nominations be printed in the record, the president be immediately notified of the senate's action and the senate then resume legislative session. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to the consideration of s. res. 350 submitted earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 350 congratulating the university of
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alabama crimson tide for winning the 2016 college football play-off national championship. the presiding officer: is there objection to proceeding to the measure? without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to and the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to the consideration of s. res. 351 submitted earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 351, designating the week of january 24-january 30, 2016, as national school choice week. the presiding officer: is there objection to proceeding? without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to and the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i now ask
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unanimous consent the senate proceed to the consideration of s. res. 352 submitted earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 352, commemorating the 30th anniversary of the loss of the shuttle challenger, and so forth. the presiding officer: is there objection to proceeding to the measure? without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to and the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today, it adjourn until 3:00 p.m. monday, february 1. following the prayer and pledge, the morning business be deemed expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date, the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day. finally, that following leader remarks, the senate then resume consideration of s. 2012. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: so if there is no further business to come before the senate, i ask that it stand adjourned under the previous order.
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the presiding officer: the senate stands adjourned until 3:00 p.m. on monday.
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[applause] >> i like what it says, that we have got your back. you always have had mine, and i hope you know that i have yours.


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