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tv   US Senate  CSPAN  February 10, 2016 2:00pm-4:01pm EST

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another useful asymmetric pressure point is the kaesong industrial complex. a legacy of the sunshine policy, this project now provides $90 million in annual wages, around $245.7 million from december, 2004, to july, 2012. of hard currency to north korean authorities with little wages actually going to the factory workers. the south korean government will be opposed to shutting down the kaesong industrial complex, as even conservative governments in south korea have grown attached to the project as symbolic of the future potential of a unified korea. but difficult times call for difficult measures. again, dr. chai's testimony saying this is as asymmetric treasure point where if you were to address something with kaesong, then perhaps that can apply pressure to the north korean regime, but closing that
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wouldn't happen, it is not supported by the government. well, this shows you ho how sers north korea's recent behavior has become. the testing of a fourth nuclear weapon -- they claim that it is a thermo nuclear bomb; we don't have evidence yet whether hydrogen was there yet. but either way, as stated before, it significantly increases their technical capability, nonetheless, whether it is hydro-general-based or not. -- hydrogen-based or not. we saw a satellite launch that they used to disguise a test of an intercontinental ballistic missile. south korea believes this is such a serious situation that south korea has now shut down the joint factory park at kaesong over the nuclear test and the rocket. just a few weeks ago experts said that this wouldn't happen, but the severity of north korea's actions, violations,
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continued infringements on any number of u.s. sanctions and u.n. sing sanctions, has forcedh korea to take the very dramatic step of closing this facility that they hoped could bring and be a symbol of further unification. so kim jong-un and his reckless activities, the forgotten maniac of north korea, is now responsible for the loss of employment by 45,000 people in north korea. and we wonder why there's no economic development taking place in north korea? we wonder why there are limited activities? because this regime is willing to put his own totalitarian regime ahead of the people of north korea. placing them in political prison camps, torturing them, maiming them, hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children. and so south korea has taken a very serious step to express their displeasure with the
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actions of north korea. the united nations, united states -- both continue to discuss and impose sanctions. but the united nations' delay is disturbing. we talk about china. we talk about the impact that china is -- could have on north korea and their willingness to change their behavior and to de-nuclearize north korea. we know that china is responsible for somewhere around 70% of the economic activity -- excuse me, 90% of the economic activity of north korea, right around 90% of the economic activity. we know that trade with precious metals, coal, raw metals has resulted in about 70% of foreign currency in north korea. that's another step that this bill takes is a step to assure that we are addressing any activity, such as exports of
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coal, precious metals. , if thif the money derived frot goes to the illicit activities. that's why this industrial complex in kaesong was closed by south korea, because they traced the money back from this industrial facility -- the 45,000 employees who weren't making all the twhaidges they were paying, a -- all the wages that they were paying, a lot of that money was being siphoned off and given to the government anden this used to fund weapons of mass -- and then used to fund weapons of mass destruction, nuclear proliferation. and so this effort that was used to try to unify the peninsula, to employ people torque find economic partnerships and opportunities was instead used by kim jong-un to further the building of billion-dollar rockets while his people starved, to further the efforts of nuclear tests while his people are tortured. this bill attempts to break through that curtain of silence
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in north korea. providing ways to effectively communicate with the people of north korea, to show them what the outside world has to offer in freedom and opportunity, if they were to escape the regime and the rein of kim jong-un. and so i think that the closure of the industrial complex in kaesong is just one further example of the steps that south korea is being forced to take as a result of these militant activities out of -- and provocative activities out of north korea. and i see senator shaheen of the foreign relations committee is joining news this debate today. -- joining us in this debate today. she was an active member of the sanctions debate on north korea. the and i thank you for being on the floor today, and i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the senator from north -- new hampshire. mrs. shaheen: new hampshire. i'm actually from southern new hampshire.
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but, thank you. i'm happy to join my colleague -- also from the senate foreign relations committee -- cory gardner from colorado in support of the north korea sanctions act. this will legislation that will help hold north korea accountability for its dangerous weapons programs. now, i know that senator gardner talked about the -- today's news on north and south korea, and in the past month we have witnessed a string of actions by the north korean leadership that has demonstrated their determination to advance the country's nuclear weapons and long-range ballistic missile programs. on january 6, north korea conducted its fourth nuclear test. just this weekend the country launched another long-range rocket. north korea's goal could not be
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clearer or more serious. it is to place a nuclear warhead on an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching the united states. since north korea's nuclear program was first uncovered in the mid-1980's, the united states has led the international effort to pressure the regime to abandon its nuclear activity, in large part, this pressure has come from the united states and united nations sanctions. although these sanctions have effectively halted most financial transactions between north korea and the rest of the world, the north korean regime and its benefactors continue to obtain hard currency to advance their illicit weapons programs. one way the north korean government finances its nuclear program is by laundering money and banks outside of north korea, banks that until this legislation have not been
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subject to secondary u.s. sanctions. this bill will change that situation. it gives the obama administration the ability to effectively cut off offending banks from the international financial system. when faced with this prospect, i believe prudent actors in china and other parts of the world will cast aside those in north korea who have supported its nuclear activity. i certainly hope so. let me also mention a provision that i have added during the foreign relations committee's consideration of the bill. it is an amendment that makes clear that the new and powerful sanctions this bill authorizes will not come at the expense of those american families still searching for their loved ones who served in the korean war and who have never come home. i especially want to thank a new hampshire advocacy organization, the coalition of families of korean and cold war pow-mias for
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working with me on this legislation. the coalition led by rick downs expresses concerns that the new sanctions in this legislation could inadvertently hinder efforts to find the more than 7,800 americans still unaccounted for from the korean war. now, obviously, no one here wants to interfere with this mission, and i'm happy that this final spill explicitly - final bill explicitly exempts p.o.w. mys from these considerations. i want to express one concern dhie have as we're heading into a vote. that is, the ability of the treasury department to identify and target those who should be subject to these new sanctions, because that is crucial to the success of this legislation and to our overall north korea strategy. the debate we're having today
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provides yet another illustration of why it's so essential to confirm adam szubin to be under secretary for terrorism and financial crimes at the treasury department. as the under secretary, mr. szubin would lead the department in identifying and disrupting financial support to a range of actors that threaten our national security: north korea as well as isis, al qaeda, hezbollah, and others. now, not only would mr. szubin be responsible for directly implementing a significant portion of the legislation we're expected to pass today, but he would also lead the treasury department's efforts to rally international support for these sanctions. and i think this last point is critical and sometimes doesn't get a lot of attention. enforcing sanctions requires cooperation, it requires often nudging other foreign
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governments and financial institutions to work within the sanctions regime, and the lack of a senate-confirmed appointee in this position undermines the treasury department and our efforts to build international coalitions to target terrorism anand financial crimes. i'm pleased that the senate is about to pass the north korean sanctions enforcement act and increase the pressure on the north korean regime. but i think it would make sense at the same time to confirm the person, adam szubin, who will be responsible for enforcing those very sanctions. wouldn't it make sense for the senate to strengthen treasury's hands to make the stangs as effective as possible. adam szubin was nominated in 2015, 301 days ago, and although the senate banking committee
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held a hearing on his nomination back in september, the committee still has not advanced that nomination to the senate floor. no one doubts mr. szubin's qualifications for the position. at his nomination hearing, chairman shelby called him "eminently qualified." mr. szubin has served in both republican and democratic administrations. he has bipartisan support in this body. and when we're all here, republicans and democrats, talking about the need to increase the pressure on north korea in order to deny pyongyang the resources it's using to develop nuclear weapons and the missiles it needs to target the united states, shouldn't we be supporting a nominee whose job it is to do this exact work? i think the senate needs to vote on mr. szubin's nomination without further delay. i know he has the support of the chairman of the senate foreign relations committee. as i said, he has bipartisan
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support in this body, and it's very disappointing that we can't move him at the same time we're moving this bill. so i hope the committee will change their minds, they'll decide to take up his nomination, and move it so we can ensure that the important tenets that are in this bill to help address what north korea is doing will actually be enforced. thank you, mr. president. i yield the floor. mr. paul: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from kentucky. mr. paul: for sometime now, power has been gravitating from the legislature to the president. many in congress, including myself, have been critical of the president's overreach. however, congress bears some of
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the responsibility and some of the blame. in that this body continues to abdicate and transfer our power to the president. nowhere is this more obvious than in foreign policy. during the debate over the iranian agreement to end sanctions, many congressional voices lamented that these sanctions were enacted by congress and should not be unilaterally ended by the president without congressional approval. as many observers, though, noted, congress has only itself to blame. for decades now, congress has granted the president national security waivers to just about anything. these allow the executive to do what they want, to terminate sanctions, or continue spending without any new vote of congress. a good example was when egypt was overtaken by a military regime. this was not a democratic government. this became a military junta.
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our laws on foreign aid said that egypt should no longer receive foreign aid if they are not a democratically elected government. and yet the president continues to give foreign aid to egypt because he simply uses a waiver that we wrote into the legislation. this is a mistake to continue to grant so much power to the presidency, and as we've done so we've abdicated our own power. for decades now congress has granted the president national security waivers on just about everything. the waivers are so flimsy and so open-ended, as that all he has to do is write a report and claim that it affects national security, and he can do whatever he wants. then congress complains because the president is doing an overreaching, and yet we give him the very power. looking back at the north korea sanctions, we find president clinton removed sanctions by
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using the national security waiver congress provided him. furthermore, about a decade later, president george w. bush did the same thing, relieving sanctions against north korea by taking advantage of national security waivers. jump ahead to the iran agreement, and you find president obama using national security waivers provided by congress to unilaterally repeal iranian sanctions without congressional authority. in fact, president obama has utilized congressionally provided loopholes 40 times to remove iranian sanctions. everybody complains, and now we're going to do the same thing. we're going to write a sanction bill with the exact same boilerplate language that we've had in the previous sanctions bills which will allow the president the leeway to end the sanctions if he desires. when we fast forward to these new north korean sanctions before us, the new sanction bill does exactly what previous sanctions bills have done,
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namely, provide the president with the power to simply claim any nonspecific national security claim to waive sanctions. congressional critics of the president's use of national security waivers to end the iranian sanctions should decide now that they have no leg to stand on should a future president do exactly that with north korean sanctions andremove them without congressional approval. there are two examples. clinton has done this and so has george w. bush. i propose that congress take back their power. i propose that congress not cede more power to the presidency. i therefore ask unanimous consent to call up my amendment 3301 at the desk which would remove national security waivers and take back the power to congress where it belongs. the presiding officer: is there objection? mr. gardner: reserving the right to be 0. the presiding officer: the senator from colorado.
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mr. gardner: thank you, mr. president. i thank the senator from kentucky for his passion on this issue. we took great care in making sure we devised a sanction bill that was strong in terms of its effect on north korea and eliminated many of the shortfall ings, shortcomings of the sanctions we faced when dealing with iran. i agree with the gentleman from kentucky that we faced a president willing to grant broad relief to the sanctions, from the sanctions in terms of national security waivers. and that's why in this act, the north korea act, we were very careful in making sure that we constructed case-by-case waivers. the president must investigate, must explain to congress. but they are not broad grants, not wide swathes of discretionary ability to waive the sanctions. and they are mandatory investigations with mandatory reporting requirements. and so with that, madam president, i object.
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the presiding officer: objection is heard. who yields time? mr. gardner: i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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ms. heitkamp: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from north dakota. ms. heitkamp: i ask that the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without
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objection. ms. heitkamp: madam president, i ask unanimous consent to speak for up to ten minutes as if in morning business. the presiding officer: without objection. ms. heitkamp: madam president, today i rise to honor 37 tribal colleges and universities operating across 16 states on more than 85 campuses. five of which are located in north dakota. thank you to the more than 20 bipartisan senators, including indian affairs committee chairman barrasso and vice chairman tester who join me in introducing a senate resolution designating this week as national tribal college and universities week. this resolution received unanimous support in the senate last week, as it should. it shows that native american issues and support for education are part of this country's treaty and trust responsibilities, and it continues to be a bipartisan issue. while we too often hear about
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the hardships native communities face due to the geographic isolation and insufficient access to resources, we should also highlight those who are doing great work to build future leaders and a future generation of leaders across indian country. we see so much of that happening today at tribal colleges and universities. tribal colleges act as unique community institutions that work to strengthen tribal nations and make lasting differences in the lives of american indians and alaska natives. the tribal community colleges, technical schools and four-year institutions plant resilient seeds of hope by sustaining native languages and building trusting and important tribal economies. supporting tribal colleges and universities both upholds our trust responsibility and provides much-needed resources for students.
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signed into law in 1978, the tribally controlled community college assistance act supported tribally chartered institutions of higher education to help uphold the federal government's unique relationship with federally recognized tribes. today t.c.u.'s, like turtle mountain community college and sitting bull in my state of north dakota, provide educational resources to native students who otherwise surely would go without. but tribal colleges and universities don't simply educate native students. the american indian higher education consortium, a national network of this country's t.c.u.'s, estimates that because of the school's often rural locations, more than 50% of the students attending these tribal colleges and universities are also non-indian. tribal colleges and universities offer students access to a well-rounded education from an accredited institution that provides knowledge and skills
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grounded in cultural traditions and values, including the all-important education in indigenous languages. this enhances native communities and enriches both tribes and the united states by preparing students to succeed in their academic pursuits as well as enter a global competitive work force. and the results have been telling. in the 2012-2013 school year, 75% of the graduates earning degrees with 22% earning certificates. but while this success is admirable, the tribal colleges and universities have been hindered by chronic underfunding. although the federal government provides funding to some minorities serving institutions at levels equal to $30,000 per student, tribal colleges receive literally a third of that. and when we look at average
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numbers around $6,700 per student. tribes and tribally -- tribal colleges and universities have consistently figured out how to do more with less, but congress should not shy away from its federal responsibility. i want to talk about my experience this morning meeting with a number of tribal students. we can give you all of these numbers and the critical importance of making this kind of education accessible, but what you will never see is you will never see the hope and the opportunity in the eyes of these students. i can't do that for you here but i can only tell their stories. i met a young woman who served our country in the military, and after ten years went home and discovered the opportunity to learn more about her culture and the opportunity to get an education at the tribal colleges.
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she said she wished she had known earlier, she probably would have gone to college at the tribal college at sitting bull first before she joined the armed services. i met another young woman who told me of her early life of abuse and neglect, and she said that after having two children and really no hope, she found a tribal college, and in that tribal college she found not only an opportunity for advancement and the dream of a hope of becoming a lawyer someday, she found a family. she described the faculty and the staff and the other students as a family she had never had. i talked to another woman, a young woman 18 years old, literally homeless. she sleeps on a friend's couch. and the only family she has to nurture her is her tribe and the tribal college, and she tells me
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her -- her one word said i will be great. she would not have that hope, she would not have that belief, she would not have that vision if she didn't have access to education. she's going to be a nurse, and i can tell you she's already great, from what i heard. and so the stories go on and on and on. tribal college, because of the involvement in the tribal college at spirit lake reservation, we have a student now for the first time graduated with an engineering degree from one of our four-year institutions, started out at the tribal college. first engineer ever from that tribe. these are messages of hope in a world that all too often is a world of despair, a world of neglect, a world of abuse, a world of challenges for young people, but a tribal college gave them the foundation, the connection to their culture, the connection to a family and a group of people who cared about them and an opportunity for
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something better, an opportunity to be great, as she said. and so i am very, very proud of the work that we have done to support the tribal colleges. we need to do more. if we truly want to change the outcome and the paradigm for indian people and for indian children, we must invest in indian education, and that goes all the way from our head start programs all the way up to our programs for higher education. i want to give one last story. this past summer, i attended the stem education program for native americans at the university of north dakota, and i met with a group of young people there who talked about the difficulty of transitioning from the reservation into a major university, talked not so much about the challenges academically but talked about the challenges of loneliness, the challenges of for the first
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time leaving what they knew, being the first generation in their families to actually attend a four-year college. and one young man said that he was so homesick and so shocked by the change in culture that he wanted to go home. and i said well, did you? he goes no, i called my mom to tell her that i wanted to go home and she told me she would knock me upside the head if i came back. a brave mother. so he said he did what his mother asked him to do, and he was graduating with a degree in i think geology or some applied science. but, you know, that young man had a mother who kept him in that school. many young people in indian country today do not have that kind of inspiration. the great distrust of people -- the great distrust people have for the outside world gets embedded. and so these tribal colleges help prepare these students for
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the next step. they are critical for maintaining the cultural significance, critical for maintaining the pride that people have in who they are as a people and then building on that for self-awareness, building on that for self-economic opportunity. and so i'm proud to represent five great institutions in my state of higher learning that are represented in the tribal colleges and universities. my final comment i want to talk about the wonderful men and women who run those institutions and what they do. these are people with people wig degrees who could go anywhere and they continue to provide leadership to their people, and without their leadership and their support, these children would not have these opportunities. these returning vets would not have these opportunities. and these older than average students with challenges in their life would not have these opportunities. and so please join with me in recognizing tribal colleges and
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universities but also taking a look at the disparities in terms of reimbursements that these tribal colleges and universities incur, and let's make this investment because this is an investment in the life and the changes that we need to see in indian country. thank you, madam president. i yield the floor. ms. murkowski: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from alaska. ms. murkowski: madam president, i just want to comment on the statements that have been made by my colleague and friend from north dakota who has been an amazing leader, a very strong leader here in the united states senate since she came, trying to shine a spotlight on the issues particularly surrounding our native american and alaska
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native children. we are working together on a commission that really does help to drill down to find those best supports that we possibly can for these children that in so many instances have been left behind, and as you speak about our tribal institutions, our tribal colleges and that next -- that next step to launch our young people successfully and recognizing that we have opportunities to grow and do better by our tribal colleges. i had an opportunity just yesterday to be visited by some -- some students as well as those within iljsadgvik college, which is located in barrow, alaska, a small facility. i had a chance to meet with two students. all live in jillian.
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from a very, very small village called akasak. she described what it was like as a young student who wants that education but just the idea that one would go hundreds of miles away to the big city in fairbanks or anchorage to pursue an education was -- was simply not possible, and how these students have been given opportunities in ways that perhaps they and their families never dreamed possible. so i stand with my colleague as we have stood shoulder to shoulder with so many of these issues that impact our native -- our native children, our young people, their futures and their opportunities and recognizing that education can be that key to -- to a better life and a better path forward. ms. heitkamp: madam president, would the senator from alaska yield to a question? ms. murkowski: certainly. ms. heitkamp: thank you. there is no better partner for me in this quest than the great
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senator from the state of alaska. we have spent so much time relaying and recounting our experiences and visiting with native alaskans or in my case american indians talking about the challenges and talking about what needs to happen and how we need to shed a light on not only the despair so that we all are motivated for change, but how we need to shed a light on the grateful and the great spirit that is happening. and i know that my great friend has had the experiences where you just wonder how resilient can a young girl be who has experienced these kinds of challenges and this kind of abuse to come back and say i'm going to be great or this is going to be my future. and so i just wanted to -- i guess i was supposed to ask a question, but i wanted to thank the senator from alaska for her strong and abiding and great
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commitment to the people, all the people of alaska, and i want to thank her for her partnership. ms. murkowski: madam president, i certainly -- certainly appreciate and value the partnership and know that we have a great deal of work in front of us.. the presiding officer: without objection. ms. murkowski: thank you, madam president. madam president, i come to the floor today to express my support for the north korea sanctions enforcement act and the substitute that we will be voting on later this afternoon. i think it's fair to say that the people of alaska take great interest in this legislation, and it's not simply an intellectual interest. it stems from our geography, quite simply. at its closest point, alaska is
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3,100 miles from north korea. now, let me put that into context with where we are here. the distance between washington, d.c., and my hometown of anchorage is 3,370 miles. so we're actually -- alaska is actually closer to north korea than i am to -- to my home when i am working here in washington, d.c. we were talking about the main population center there in anchorage in that area in south central where about 3,600 miles from pyongyang. so perhaps it's a little bit longer than a north korean missile can travel today or even in the near future, but it seems to me that korea is committed to advancing its nuclear capabilities and its covert
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nuclear test with the so-called satellite launch that we saw over the weekend appear to be purposeful steps in that direction. just to give a little vignette about how alaskans pay attention to north korea, we all go around and visit schools around our respective states. i was in a middle school and i had an eighth grader ask me a question when it comes to what's on anybody's mind, what do you want me to know about, how can i be a better representative for you back in washington, d.c.? the first eighth grader that raises his hand says to me, so, senator murkowski, what are you all doing in washington about this kim jong-un guy? this is an eighth grader. now, i'm not going to suggest to you that perhaps alaskan eighth graders are more intuned into the politics around the world. the reason i raise it is because around the dinner tables back
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home, people are talking about north korea because our geography puts us within that range of sight, if you will. and i use that term loosely, but when you look at the maps and you understand where alaska sits and where north korea sits and you read the news about what is happening with north korea's nuclear intentions, it causes alaskans to be worried enough to be discussing it at the dinner table, and aidth graders saying hey, what's going on? it's real for us. north korea's actions demand decisive action, both here in washington, d.c., in beijing and at the united nations. a "washington post" editorial just yesterday noted that the obama doctrine of strategic patience is no longer an option.
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mr. kim seems to view that as a sign of weakness. he seems to fancy playing washington off against beijing. but really, neither capital can either afford him that luxury, lest north korea make fools of both of us. china, in my judgment, has a major role to play in showing mr. kim the light. mr. kim wants the world to believe that he is smarter than all of us, and i would suggest that it is not in beijing's interest to offer him -- >> the united states and our allies have been patient enough with the carrot. we talk a lot about carrot-and-stick when it comes to engagement, but i would suggest that we have been patient enough with the carrot and now it's time to try the stick. the sanctions bill that we are considering today are intended as a serious wake-up call to mr. kim's government. the sanctions are severe, and
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they are targeted at those who enable mr. kim's regime to conduct business abroad. they're also intended as a wake-up call to mr. kim's advisors, who enjoy a pretty comfortable status quo, thanks to their leadership positions. but life is going to be a little bit tougher under our sanctions regime, if we advance this. no more luxury goods, no more creature comforts, and if we are successful, no more access to hard currency. no exceptions. this is an important shift for our government with regards to north korea. now, as i mentioned, out of geographic necessity, i follow developments in north korea very closely, and i have since i came to the senate here. i've had opportunity over these years to spend time with u.s. officials who have assumed this very difficult role of trying to conduct diplomacy with north
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korea. and almost without exception, the words that they have advised me -- w when we were talking abt north korea is to choose respectful language, to avoid threats, to find ways to allow your words and your sincerity to penetrate. and we're now at that point where some are saying, quite strongly, that this respectful approach hasn't really gotten us anywhere with this regime. but i would suggest that we can be and must be very firm while at the same time respectful. let me share just a couple examples of some things that many of my colleagues may not have been aware of. i had an opportunity this past settlemenseptember to travel wia
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couple of my senate colleagues here to norway. it is where one of the world's global seed vaults are located. and the seed vault is intended to preserve a wide variety of plant seeds from various gene banks around the world in the event that there might be some kind of a widespread regional or global crisis that would wipe out local crops and seeds. they've dubbed it -- nicknamed it "the doomsday vault." i had an opportunity to go into this vault and just observe what various nations had sent to the top of the world up. and in that vault, we saw one of the few instances of north korean international cooperation. we saw boxes of seeds from north korea, or at least the box that contained all the seeds.
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over 5,700 crop plant seeds from that hermit kingdom. a treaty was signed which gives north korea access to the islands. we heard that they've made use of the northern sea route to assist with shipments to russia. so i put this out there because for whatever the reason may be that north korea signed on to this treaty and whatever the reason it may be for its newfound interest in the arctic, the point is that when the regime in north korea sees that it is in its international best interests, there is a willingness to engage. but to this point, they have not shown a willingness to engage when it comes to their nuclear and their ballistic missile programs, at least not to any reasonable level of engagement
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where the terms are not dictated by the north korean regime. so here we are today. we have a bill on the floor directed to north korea. it is about economic sanctions. it is not about an invasion or the use of ow offensive weapons against the people of north korea. it's about bringing about peaceful change, firmly -- firmly and respectfully. and in that vein, let me acknowledge that the people of north korea, i believe, are proud. they're nationalistic people. and like all of the world's people, they wish to be respected. but they are governed by an intolerant regime and a very perplexing regime, a regime that tolerates hunger and poverty when it is clear that there are other choices. if the people of north korea were allowed to look at cross
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that -- to look across that border, they would see an example of prosperity. they would see a strong commitment to traditional values. they would see family members with whom someday they would hope to reunify. none of the world's nations are out to deny north korea the opportunities for that prosperity and traditional values and reuniting with families. but we don't demand -- and rightly so. it is legitimate that we demand that north korea choose to be part of the community of nations, and that means -- that means that mr. kim must abandon these nuclear ambitions. madam president, i believe that it is important that our nation be prepared for anything that may come our way. my home state of alaska is host to our nation's ground-based
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missile defense capabilities. i was pleased to read in yesterday's budget announcement plans to make a $1 billion investment in the ground-based missile defense system. significant investments are also made in the long-range discrimination radar -- or lidar, which is slated for completion by the year 2020. that radar is exactly what the words imply, a radar that will enable our missile defenders to take a really good long, long look and better discriminate between threats and junk. i'm also pleased to know that the u.s. is working with -- working through the placement of missile defense batteries in south korea. i think that these investments provide an increment of protection, but the truth is, they are second-best to a change in attitude coming out of
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pyongyang. and that is truly what i hope w achieve through this sanctions vote that we will take later today. with that, madam president, i thank you. i yield the floor, and i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call: hispanic madawho have madam pre? the presiding officer: the
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senator oklahoma. mr. inhofe: i ask that the quorum call be vitiated. officer sphe without objection. mr. inhofe: i ask that sergeant major travis votal be granted floor privileges for the remainder of this calendar year. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. inhofe: and, madam president, we have a very significant vote coming up, and i -- people are not talking about it as much as they should. we had a hearing yesterday, and of course the chair was there at the hearing, where we had james clapper talking about the threat, the level of threat that we're faced with here in the united states. now, james clapper, just to remind people, he has been around as the chief intelligence descrerkdirector or involved wih intelligence here in washington for 43 years. this guy knows what he's talking b and he made the statement that we've never been in this high of a threat position. he testified just yesterday -- in all the 43 years that he has
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been there. in fact, there is an article just yesterday -- he made the statement, "north korea had expanded its production of weapons-grade nuclear fuel, making clear that the obama administration now regarded the reclusive government in pyongyang rather than iran as the world's most worrisome nuclear threat." so that threat is real. and we were all around and recall when the -- when kim jong-un replaced his father. as bad as his father was, he was at least a little more -- a little more dependable in terms of predictability than kim jong-un. just yesterday it was reported that he killed the chief of the general staff, and it was a year ago that he did the same thing. so if someone disagrees with him, they execute them.
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so, anyway, under the leadership of kim jong-un, he has willfully and repeatedly disregarded u.n. resolutions wrarg the weapons of mass destruction and the means to deliver them. since assuming power in 2012, he has -- his regime conducted satellite launches in december of 2012 and february 2016 continued to develop its ballistic missile program. it's conducted missile tests from several launch locations and he's conducted niewcialg tests in -- nuclear tests in february of 2013 and january of 2016. so he has continued all the way through. and all these things are in violation of the u.n. security council resolutions. north korea also continues to be involved in criminal activities around the world to include cyber attacks against organizations and governments. this bill that we're going to be
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considering, the passage of the north korea sanctions and policy enhancement act, that's what we're going to be voting on, toughens the sanctions against north korea by authorizing comprehensive sanctions against companies and individuals who engage in certain trade with north korea. this is something fairly reason to get compliance with the arrangements that are being made by saying to a country if you do business, continue to do business with north korea, then we'll have sanctions against your country. and this is something that has worked, it has worked to a degree in iran. it's a system that should be set up, and we'll have the opportunity to do that this afternoon. so the -- if anyone engages in trade with north korea as well as those determined to be responsible for human rights abuses, money laundering,
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counterfeiting or undermining cybersecurity, this bill demonstrates america's resolve in holding north korea responsible for its actions along with those countries, organizations, individuals who are assisting them. of course it's very significant that we go ahead and move forward with this, get this passed today and send a very clear message not just to north korea but all these countries who might be tempted to be trading with them that they could be subject to sanctions the same. with that, i'll yield the floor. mr. corker: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee. mr. corker: i know we have a little shift taking place, but i want to thank senator inhofe for his staunch national security support and certainly support of this legislation. i appreciate his comments, and i think we're going to have a
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successful day today in doing something that is important. i think you know the administration has tried to work with the u.n. security council to get them to impose sanctions, as you would think they would wish to do. china has been the holdup there. and you would think as a next-door neighbor they would be most apt to want sanctions and other actions to be put in place to push back against north korea. so this is something that is important that we're doing in a pro-active way and hopefully it will spur other actions down the road. mr. inhofe: will the senator yield? mr. corker: yes, sir. mr. inhofe: it was january 7 of 2013, i was there on the d.m.z. that is the largest affective d.m.z. that's out there now, 160 miles long, two miles wide. and even at that time we were talking about the necessity of immediately getting sanctions in there to stop the threats because our intelligence, while it can be good and it cannot be so good, still there's
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speculation that they have that capability and that capability has to be stopped. so i applaud you and your team for moving forward with this issue. mr. corker: thank you. i think most americans, unlike you, don't realize we still have 28,500 troops there. it is an area where easily something can get out of hand. and so, again, i thank you for your support and for being here today. i snow senator fine -- i know senator feinstein now has the floor and i yield to our distinguished colleague, senator feinstein. mrs. feinstein: thank you very much, mr. chairman, and thank you, mr. president. senator corker, i want you to know that i fully support your committee's recommendation and believe the time has come to enforce and place sanctions against north korea. i think we all judge the world's leaders based on their actions and their stated intentions. to me, there is no question that
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mr. kim's intentions are adverse to the well-being of our country. as a citizen of the western united states and a senator representing nearly 40 million people in california, this is all very alarming to me, and it should alarm the world. if you take stock of north korea's recent actions and their capabilities, the cause for concern is apparent. on january 6 of this year, north korea detonated its fourth nuclear device. regardless, if it was a hydrogen bomb or not, mr. kim's intention is clear. he seeks a nuclear arsenal. unfortunately, the measures the international community have adopted to date have been insufficient to stop him. the north koreans first detonated a device on october, in october of 2006, which had an estimated yield of less than one
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kill ton. -- kiloton. in may of 2009 they detonated a second device, roughly two kiloton. in february 2013, they detonated a third device, six to seven kilo tons. the one this year was the fourth. i would not be surprised if their most recent test had a greater yield than the last. not only have north korean weapons become more lethal, but their stockpile has likely increased over time. according to a february 2015 analysis by the institute for science and international security, north korea has between 15 and 22 nuclear weapons, and they had it by the end of 2014. and they could have 20 to 100 nuclear weapons by 2020. mr. president, that's deeply troubling, especially as north
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korea continues to make advances in their missile program. again, experts at the institute for science and international security have warned that north korea likely has the capability to mount a nuclear warhead on its medium-range missiles. most of japan and all of south korea, which east hosts tens of thousands of united states military and civilian personnel, are easily in range. and just this past weekend they again tested an icbm under the guise of placing a satellite in space. according to various reports, north korea tested a three-stage likely taepo dong 2 rocket which in fact did place a satellite into orbit. again, to me, the intention is clear. they want to build a missile
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capable of reaching the united states. p an icbm on a launch pad is vulnerable to attack. so to evade this vulnerability, north korea appears to also be developing a road-mobile icbm, the kn-08 which can reach the united states it is estimated. in april of this past year, admiral bill gortney, the head of the north american aerospace defense command, said that -- and i quote -- "we assess that it, the kn-08, is operational today." and -- quote -- "that the mobile nature of the kn-08 makes it a l difficult target." and gortney also said -- and i quote -- "our assessment is that they, the north koreans, have the ability to put a nuclear weapon on a kn-08 and shoot it at the united states homeland."
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mr. president, it's not just the nuclear weapons and missile program that gives me pause. in the last several years north korea has committed highly provocative acts. north korea chose to sink a south korean naval vessel in 2010, killing 46 sailors. it has shelled south korean islands and planted mines along the d.m.z. that maimed south korean soldiers. it has undertaken sophisticated cyber attacks against united states companies -- sony pictures and south korean banks. previously north korea walked away from the 1994 agreed framework and withdrew from the nuclear nonproliferation treaty. most recently it has repeatedly flouted u.n. security council resolutions and proliferated
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weapons of mass destruction technologies. with respect to its own human rights record, last year united nations human rights reports make clear that north korea's leaders should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. the united nations has found that north korea is committing systematic, widespread and gross human rights violations against its own people. the regime selectively distributes food to privileged individuals and routinely uses starvation to punish dissent. torture, forced dis appearances, inhumane detention conditions are routine. in the past the regime even jailed three generations of dissidents on the concept of guilt by association.
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in its prison camps alone, the united nations estimates that hundreds of thousands of dissidents have died. mr. president, one anecdote from the u.n.'s report i think demonstrates the total and diabolical suffering put upon the north korean people under this regime. ordinary koreans must go to extraordinary lengths to survive, including prostitution, theft and smuggling. a u.n. investigator was told of an instance when a woman was pulled off a train and a dead small child no more than two years was strapped to her back. state security suspected the woman was smuggling copper but could find no evidence. after some sometime interrogating the woman, they asked her to place her child on a desk before them.
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the woman then broke down and began to cry. when she finally placed the quiet, dead child on the desk, the officials noticed its stomach was red. they then opened the child's stomach and found about two kilograms of copper inside. to survive, this woman was forced to smuggle copper in her own dead child's stomach. no mother anywhere on earth should be forced to such extremes. mr. president, when it comes to the international response to north korea and its provocative behavior, i very much regret that china has not seen fit to do more. in my view, china in its size and capability has the ability to rein in north korea and probably the only country in the region that can do so.
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north korea's nuclear test facilities are close to china's border. just like japan and south korea, china's security is threatened by an unstable nuclear power in its neighborhood. yet, china continues to provide the fuel, food, trade and international protection that sustains mr. kim's government. in my meetings with china's ambassador swa here in washington, d.c., i've expressed to him that china can and must do more. i've tried to impress upon him that a nuclear armed north korea with ever increasing weapons is not in china's security interest. mr. president, the united states can't sit in silence in the face of north korea's ever-advancing nuclear and missile programs.
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for some, iran has been a big threat. for me, reading the intelligence and seeing the progress over the years of north korea's nuclear arsenal, i believe north korea is a very serious threat to the well-being of this country, and we must protect and reassure our allies in the region. that may include placing more advanced missile defenses both at south korea and japan as well as closer trilateral military cooperation with these countries. the fact that the north korean government has resisted international overtures and condemnation leaves us little choice. so, mr. president, i come here today to support the north korea sanctions and policy enforcement act of 2016. this bill will impose mandatory
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sanctions against north korean persons and entities involved in weapons of mass destruction development, delivery and proliferation. serious human rights abuses, trade and luxury goods, money laundering, smuggling and narcotics trafficking. this legislation alone, though, will not cease north korea's illegal activities. however, it is a beginning of a more comprehensive response to north korea's increasingly dangerous behavior. so, mr. chairman, i'd like to thank you and your committee for bringing forward this resolution. i certainly intend to support it. i thank you for it, and i yield the floor, mr. president. mr. corker: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee. mr. corker: i just want to take
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one moment to thank senator feinstein who knows so much about the intelligence around this, has spent a great deal of her senate career making sure that she does and understands the times probably as much as any senator here. she has been involved in all kinds of bilateral meetings and discussions and has led the senate in many ways in understanding what's happening within the country. so her comments especially today with this important piece of legislation are certainly well received and appreciated, and again we thank you for what you do to help keep our country safe through your diligent efforts on the intelligence committee. thank you. thank you so much. i know that senator markey is next in line to speak, and before he does, i want to thank him for his contributions in making this bill better. he amended the bill. he has other amendments i think heed like to see happen at some time. i would say that there's probably no one here who focuses more on proliferation and
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ensuring that rogue countries are not -- and actually some that aren't even so rogue but have rogue constituents within their countries continue to proliferate by sharing -- sharing information, sharing technology, sharing assets with other countries. so i want to thank him for his contribution in bringing this bill to the floor today, and i look forward to his comments. i yield the floor. mr. markey: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from massachusetts. mr. markey: thank you, mr. president. let me begin by asking unanimous consent that gene gurzoy, a fellow working in my office, have floor privileges during this session of the 114th congress. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. markey: thank you, mr. president. mr. president, let me begin by thanking the chairman of the foreign relations committee, the gentleman from tennessee, for the focus which he has brought to these issues of nuclear proliferation to the i think
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great service of our country who having all of our people understand the threats that can come from iran, they can come from north korea, they can come from other places across our planet. it is the ultimate issue. if we get it wrong, the consequences are catastrophic. and so i just wanted to thank you, mr. chairman, for continuing to have the hearings, continuing to develop legislation that focuses our people on this issue. we are the global leader. we have to set the example for the rest of the world to follow, so i thank you for your great leadership on these issues. mr. president, the sanctions in this bill represent a firm response to north korea's latest nuclear tests on january 6 and to its launch of a long-range rocket last weekend. these brazen actions remind us
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of the serious threat that pyongyang poses to global and regional security and underscores the urgency of ending north korea's nuclear and missile programs. together with our international partners we must be vigilant against north korea's development of boosted nuclear bombs which would allow kim jong-un's regime to shrink its weapons and load them onto missiles, and we must unequivocally convey to north korea that any proliferation of nuclear technologies to other countries will lead to the gravest of consequences. north korea's nuclear and missile programs violate numerous u.n. security council resolutions. those include resolution 2094 which required north korea to abandon -- quote -- "all
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nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs and impose sanctions to pressure kim to return to disarmament negotiations. these measures have not yet persuaded kim to abandon his nuclear ambitions, in part because major gaps remain in the sanctions regime, particularly its enforcement by china. in 2009, the security council imposed a conventional arms embargo on north korea, but china insisted on a loophole allowing north korea to import small arms and light weapons. north korea has exploited this loophole to continue its lucrative international trade in conventional arms. according to the u.n.'s own council of experts on north korea, this trade remains -- quote -- "one of that country's
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most profitable revenue sources. north korea is especially well known for purchasing light weapons from china, which it then sells to other countries for cash. although north korea's arms exports violate u.n. sanctions, the chinese companies who sell the arms in the first place get off scot-free. the involvement of chinese companies in north korean arms smuggling is part of a larger pattern of china's lax enforcement of nonproliferation sanctions against north korea. as assistant secretary of state tom countryman acknowledged in a foreign relations committee hearing last may and again in december, chinese entities continue to sell technologies to north korea that could assist in its development of nuclear-capable ballistic missiles. china's efforts to clamp down on these activities we main feeble
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at best. if the united states is to continue to provide extensive assistance to china's nuclear power industry, china must in return crack down on those who enable north korea's nuclear provocations and its weapon-smuggling networks. the united states must also take actions on our own. that is why i worked to include an amendment in this bill that will impose sanctions on anyone who facilitates north korea's arms trade, including chinese corporations. my provision will further reduce north korea's access to revenue, undermine its international arms smuggling and put pressure on kim to return to negotiations. we must also put financial pressure on north korea by designating the country as a
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primary money laundering concern. this would allow the treasury department to exclude north korea from using the dollar-based financial system. the use of this designation in 2005 against the banco delta asia in macau disrupted north korea's access to revenue and led one north korean negotiator to admit that -- quote -- you finally found a way to hurt us. north korea is one of the leading counterfeiters of u.s. currency. it uses front companies to hide its illicit earnings from trade in narcotics, weapons and proliferation technologies, but although the treasury has designated 18 financial institutions in four countries, including iran, as primary money laundering concerns, it has never designated north korea.
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for this reason, i filed an amendment in the foreign relations committee which i will work to include in the final version of this bill that could require the treasury secretary to determine on an annual basis whether north korea is a primary money laundering concern and to provide congress with information about that determination, as well as any financial restrictions that result from it. just as we protect the international financial system from north korea's counterfeit currency and money laundering, we must protect american investors who may unknowingly invest their money in companies that do business with north korea. the prospect of american companies investing in north korea is quite real. one american company, firebird management, has publicly declared its intention to invest in north korea's oil industry. that is why i introduced another
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amendment in committee that would require companies who issue securities in the united states to annually disclose any investments in north korea to the securities and exchange commission. this requirement would not impose any regulatory burden on companies that do not invest in north korea, but for those companies that do, they should have that information made public because the american people deserve to know which american companies are investing in north korea. and again, i hope to strengthen this bill down the line by incorporating that requirement. mr. president, we know that sanctions are not an end in and of themselves. rather, they are meant to pressure the kim regime to return to disarmament negotiations. but at the same time, as we pursue that critical goal, we must work to reduce the risk
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that north korea will use its nuclear weapon, whether deliberately or through mystical congratulation. first and foremost, we must make clear to kim that his regime will not survive any use of nuclear weapons. we must also reduce the risk of kim lashing out in desperation if he comes to believe that we intend to destroy his nuclear weapons in a preventative war. he will face pressure to use them or lose them. thus, even as we work to deter kim, we must establish a means of communicating during crises to avoid the risk of accidental nuclear war. ensuring de-escalation at the same time as we pursue deterrence and denuclearization will not be easy. nevertheless, given the devastating consequences of nuclear war, it is critical that we take a comprehensive approach. without additional sanctions, kim will never disarm, but
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without a means of controlling escalation, we could one day wake up to a nuclear disaster that no one wants but everyone would lament. so we should work on a continuous basis to make sure that in the same way that the rush -- that the soviet president and the president of the united states was able to communicate to reduce the likelihood that we would have an accidental nuclear war, we have to make sure that we have done everything in our power to accomplish the same goal with the north korean government, whether we like them or not. so as we impose these new sanctions -- and i want to compliment the chairman, i want to compliment the senator from colorado, the senator from new jersey for their great work on this legislation. it is going to be a long twilight struggle to ultimately deal with that regime, and i think we will have to return to
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it over and over again, but i think as we're going forward it is critical through the creans or through others to make sure that we have maximum communication. we could have an accidental nuclear war, it could happen, and we have to make sure that it is avoided. so i thank you, mr. president, and i yield back the balance of my time. mr. corker: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee.setor fr. mr. corker: i think senator capito is on her way down and probably is the next speaker, but while we have a moment, i do want to again, while we thanked senator gardner in his presence, i want to thank senator menendez for again on an issue that is important to not just our
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security but the world's security, taking leadership in the way that he has. and for working with senator gardner and senator cardin and myself to make sure we ended up with something that i believe is going to receive overwhelming support. but these are issues which you have been concerned about for a long time. you have not only been concerned about it, you've shown leadership in putting together policies to combat it. even though again today senator gardner knows and has said earlier, even though this is a step we all know -- and a big step, i think, really especially with the u.n. security council that's unwilling to take actions in light of the violations that have occurred, there's going to be a lot of diligence that will be necessary to get in what we want in, but this is certainly a significant step, and i want to thank him for those efforts. mr. menendez: mr. president? the presiding officer: the
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senator from new jersey. mr. menendez: i just want to thank the chairman. earlier when the chairman couldn't be on the floor, i thank you for your leadership on the committee for creating an environment that is bipartisan and at a time in which bipartisanship in the senate is a continuing challenge, it is particularly important in foreign relations, something that i try to set out when i was the chairman, and i really appreciate the nature in which your leadership has led the committee so that we could have moments like this. and, of course, senator gardner, who has very graciously worked together with me to bring a moment of a united, and i hopeful will be a overwhelmingly maybe unanimous vote in the senate. because when we do that, we send an incredibly strong message throughout the world. and we generate leadership where we may not see at the united nations the will, particularly
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because of the security council structure and the vetoes that exist there on things like sanctionsanctions. but inevitably, when we have led as a country -- and the chairman has worked with me on some of these issues on iran and others -- when we have led as a country, we often get the world to join us and follow it. but sometimes it needs to you lead, and that's what i believe the senate is doing today with an incredibly strong piece of legislation that, as i said earlier, was the most comprehensive strategy set to try to deal with the challenge that is north korea. and so i appreciate the chairman's words and his leadership, and i yield the floor. mr. rounds: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from south dakota. mr. rounds: i would ask unanimous consent to be allowed to speak as in morning business for up to ten minutes. the presiding officer: without
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objection. mr. rounds: thank you, mr. president. i rise today to voice my opposition to an upcoming cloture vote on the conference report to the trade facilityation and enforcement act known as the customs conference report. this vote is expected tomorrow. while i am supportive of the conference report as it related to the customs legislation, added to the bill at the last minute is a measure known as the internet tax freedom act, or itfa for short. itfa would put in place a moratorium to prevent states and local entities from imposing use taxes. i have expressed my support for itfa as long as it was tied to the m.f.a., which would allow state and local governments to collect taxes from online retailers without a physical presence within their state.
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in south dakota this is a matter of fairness to the families who own small businesses and support our local communities. they collect sales taxes on their products and on their services. internet sales providers are not required to provide a collection service for those states for services or products that are being delivered into those states. it requires congressional action in order to ayoallow them to accomplish this. pairing these plans would have been a net benefit for states, local governments, and small business owners that are already required to collect sales and use taxes on their products and services. together they would represent sound tax policy, but that's not what we're doing here with the customs conference report by including it fa and not including the marketplace fairness act. itfa would put in place a moratorium to permanently prevent state and local entities from imposing taxes on internet
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services at the state and local level. with no consideration or offset for the tax revenue lost by states or local governments who already collect many of these taxes. i'm all for cutting taxes, but i'm also a strong proponent for the tenth amendment and local control and tax fairness for south dakota businesses. in places like south dakota, we're actually pretty good at balancing budgets. in fact, we're required to do it every single year. washington has no business telling states or city commissioners how to run their books. itfa has zero impact on the federal budget but it really impacts states and local communities. itfa, paired with the marketplace fairness act, continues, i believe, to make sense. one without the other does not. my opposition is not based on disagreement over internet access. we need it. we should make it available. my opposition is based on the principle that we are taking
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away important revenue sources for state and local governments without any means for them to re-coop their loss -- recoup their losses so they can continue to provide essential services to our communities. let me explain why tax policy is so important. why it fa and m.f.a. should continue to be a pe package dea. municipalities in my home state, south dakota, will lose teds 4.3 million of revenue annually. that is a revenue they rely on to fund essential services such as training for fir firefighter, police officers, upcoming of community centers and libraries and repairs to roads and bridges. without any way of recouping the loss, local leaders will be forced to cut the important services it the communities or raise other taxes. why is washington making this decision?
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in addition to municipality losing out on funds, the state would also lose out to the tune of $9.3 million annually. it does not seem like -- maybe in washington, d.c., we don't dare aboucare about $9.3 million south dakota they do. we don't balance our budget but just about every state out there does. when we say they are we're going tyke away one source of revenue but we still expect them to provide the services, it seems to me we're moving in the wrong direction. we don't have the luxury of south dakota punting. we are required to balance our books every year. at the state and local level, every single dollar counts. singled out, it's not right for the federal government to dictate state and local budgets. as the itfa, part of the customs conference report, attempts to do. to cut a state and local revenue
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source. it is unfair to states like ours which operate under tight budgets. in south dakota our state burden is the second lowest in the nation. we don't have an income tax. we rely on a very broad sales tax. that's the wait our people have wanted to do it. that's why queeninga conventionm in this body and elsewhere has always been that itfa would be paired with the m.f.a., the marketplace fairness arctic because m.f.a. let state and local governments recover the lots from itfa. m.f.a. would make sure that main street businesses aren't at competitive disadvantage to companies that have no physical presence or investment in states like south dakota because right now they don't have to collect that sales tax or use tax for products that are being delivered into the state. brick-and-mortar businesses have that requirement.
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right now main street businesses are operating under a disadvantage. m.f.a. would level the playing field. these brick-and-mortar stores provide good jobs, sponsor community baseball leagues and send their kids and grand kids to south dakota schools and i vest in the future of our staivment we have an opportunity to level the playing field for them. rather than picking winners and losers so they can continue to be successful and enriven the lives of -- enrich the lives of soij dakotans, let's let the states and local governments decide thousand manage their finances. under m.f.a., south dakota would bring in approximately $25 million in new tax revenue which would more than make up for the losses under itfa. if we pass itfa without m.f.a., it decreases the chances of m.f.a. being passed in the years to come, a huge blow to the mom and pop businesses. m.f.a. passing the senate without itfa is likely dead on arrival in the house.
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itfa would see a similar fate if not passed into the customs conference report. neither measure would pass as stand-alone legislation. you but together sound tax policy would move. that's why it is so important that itfa not be implemented without also implementing the marketplace fairness afnlgt together the two can make a real impact on the lives of cannel dakotans and all americans by providing permanent tax relief to south dakota families leveling the field of play for brick-and-mortar businesses who have a increasingly competitive online marketplace and assure state and local governments can balance their budgets while providing services to their constituents. because the customs conference report includes only itfa and fails to address m.f.a., i will oppose cloture on this legislation and i encourage my colleagues to join me. thank you, mr. president.
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i yield the floor. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from indiana. mr. donnelly: thank you, mr. president. today the senate will vote on legislation to slig expand sanctions -- significantly expand sanctions against north korea in response to the country's dangerous provocations in recent months. this legislation has my strong support. in light of north korea's recent actions, it is time we act decisively and call on the international community, particularly the u.n. security council and china, to do the same. on january 6, north korea conducted a nuclear test involving the underground detonation of a nuclear weapon. one month later, on february 7, they effectively conducted a long-range missile test under the guise of a satellite launch
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p. just yesterday in the senate armed services committee, director of national intelligence james clapper testified that north korea has expanded a uranium enrichment facility and restarted a plutonium capability reactor capable of producing if i sill material for nuclear weapons. together these actions point to a dangerous trend of advancing and expanding north korea tion nuclear weapons program. while the antics of kim john unilateral and his -- jim john unilateral may seem -- the threat should be taken seriously. there are claims that he detonate add high dough general bomb in january. north korea test add nuclear weapon that cause add magnitude 5.1 earthquake. though the satellite north korea sent into space may beunusable,
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the fact remains if the rocket launched by north korea on sunday were successfully reconfigured as a missile, it could fly more than 7,400 miles. that's far enough to reach the shores of the united states. although north korea has never tested a long-range ballistic missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead, there can be no question that kim jong-un is intent on building up a nuclear arsenal capable of striking the united states. in my role as ranking member of the strategic forces subcommittee, i was in south korea last july. i listened to the input of general schaparotti, commander of the u.s. forces, korea and sat with south korea's defense minister to discuss our shared interests and the importance of
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this critical alliance. i then traveled directly to bay sling to meet with rear admiral lij. xi. we had a frank and meaningful conversation with these topics. despite our many differences, it is not in the interest of either the united states or china to have a nuclear-armed north korea destabilizing asia and destabilizing the globe with irresponsible rhetoric and dangerous actions. it is my sincere hope that the u.n. security council and our international partners will follow our lead to expand international sanctions against north korea. applying the lessons we learned in blocking iran's nuclear program. in the meantime, we must continue to enhance our missile defense systems, both at home and abroad. i look forward to working with senator sessions to continue our
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bipartisan work on the armed services committee, to provide necessary resources to the missile defense agency, and to fulfill our commitment to key allies. we must continue to advance m.d.a.'s efforts to deploy additional sensors and to improve the reliability and effectiveness of ground-based interceptors. this has the potential to be a pivotal moment for the international effort to counter north korea's nuclear program. but the united states must lead the way. strategic patience has worn thin, and it is time to act. by exexpanding tough sanctions,y calling on the international community, and especially china, to act re act sponsively re-spoe
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face of the threat that jim congress unilateral pose -- that kim jong-un poses to national security. i yield back. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from kansas. mr. moran: mr. president, thank you for recognizing me. the pending legislation that we are visiting about today provides tough sanctions on north korea, and i considered a significant development and is certainly welcome as congress once again begins to assert its role in defending national security and curtailing the growing number of nuclear weapons around the globe. in the decade since north korea's first successful nuclear test, the threat of nuclear proliferation has not diminished. we concluded, the united states concluded an agreement with iran
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that leaves its nuclear infrastructure in place causing others in the region to declare their own interests in obtaining nuclear weapons. pakistan, nuclear arsenal is the fastest-growing in the world and it continues to destabilize the region through its ties to terror organizations. and north korea continues to build its nuclear stockpile and its ability to deliver future weapons. in all three of these circumstances, congress has been the source of pressure on these nations, enacting tough sanctions on iran, placing a hold on security funding for pakistan and now this legislation today builds on those previous efforts. the results may vary, but as i see it, my colleagues in this chamber and in the house have been much more proactive than the administration in imposing the costs for failing to adhere to international norms. president obama's approach of strategic patience has failed to accomplish the objective in bringing north korea back to the negotiating table, and certainly
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no agreement by them to dismantle their nuclear arsenal and their nuclear program. north korea has tested three nuclear weapons on the president's watch, and some experts believe its stockpile could grow to 100 weapons by 2020. from 10 to 15 weapons today. in addition to nuclear weapons, the regime is believed to possess chemical and biological weapons. north korea is advancing in missile technology and has engaged in cyber attacks against south korea, japan, and american entities. north korea's missiles might not yet be able to reach the continental united states, but american service members stationed in south korea and japan and tens of millions of innocent lives are menaced by the threat of weapon of mass destruction in the possession of an aggressive regime with little regard for what the world thinks of it. the arms control association notes -- and i quote -- "north korea has been a key supplier of missiles and mitchell technology to countries -- and missile
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technology to countries in the developing world particularly in unstable regions such as the middle east and south asia. the recipients of such expertise are said to be pakistan and iran among others. in fact, american intelligence judged the syrian nuclear reactor destroyed by the israeli air force in 2007 could have been constructed with north korean assistance. equally worthy of attention is kim jong-un's regime's brutal treatment of its people. it was concluded the gravity, scale and nature of these voolingses reveal a state that does not have any contemporary parallel in the world. it would disingenuous to place all the blame on the president or the administration. north korea is one of the most difficult nations in the world to understand and regional complexities are, make it difficult to find a solution. north korea has taken advantage of lapses in american resolve
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during both the clinton and bush administrations conducting its first successful nuclear test in 2006. nevertheless, it's obvious to me that a change in approach is necessary. strategic patients has been exhausted -- strategic patience has exhausted. stronger measures are necessary. while the ideal approach is to work in concert with the u.n. security council we cannot afford to wait for censures on punitive measures from the u.n. that may never come. the legislation that the senate will pass today is strong, it's a bipartisan effort to seek and to compel kim jong-un to return to negotiations. my colleagues have written legislation that ensures sanctions are mandatory only to be waived on a case by case basis that requires a written explanation justifying the waiver. the secondary sanctions will pedges -- penalize those outside of north korea who insist on nefarious behavior. the efforts of america and the
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world face an uphill battle. up to this point china believes that an unstable north korea is more dangerous than a north korea with an advanced nuclear program. therefore, the enforcement of secondary sanctions is a necessary step to seek in dismantling their nuclear program. i'm pleased the bill contains language to deter nuclear attacks. on the ongoing cyber activities are damaging to our security and our economy as well as the economy and security of our friends. the bill also attempts to address the deplorable treatment of the north korean people by their own government. this legislation is certainly not without risk. china may retaliate in some manner. north korea may become even more bellicose. and it could be, could very well fail to pressure kim's regime to surrender its nuclear program. yet, it's painfully clear that the status quo is not working
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and that global are security is imper rild at our government stands by. fear of risks and failure will not stop us from exhausting all peaceful options to curb nuclear proliferation. every effort must be made to convince north korea to surrender its nuclear weapons. congress is once again doing its part in the fight against proliferation. chairman corker and senator gardner and the members of the foreign relations committee, senator durbin are to be commended for their leadership in this issue and i look forward to pass legislation today that will put teeth in american diplomacy. mr. president, i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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the presiding officer: the senator from north dakota. a senator: i ask that the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. hoeven: i rise in support of pending legislation to sanction the regime of north korea for its belligerent behavior towards the united states and its neighbors. today the senate takes up a bill to increase sanctions on north korea. most americans would be surprised, i think, to learn that it's still possible to increase and strengthen sanctions on north korea. in fact, while we've had certain sanctions on north korea in place for many years, these sanctions have never been as strong as they could be and should be. that's what we're about here today. we're now dealing with the third generation of dictators in kim
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jong-un, who is proving to be as disastrous as his infamous father and grandfather. kim-il song, the founder of the kim regime. the kim family has done whatever it thought necessary to stay in power, including the use of criminal enterprise to raise revenues and engage in systematic human rights abuses against its own people. the legislation before us today requires the president to sanction anyone contributing to north korea's weapons program, money laundering activities and human rights abuses. it also requires sanctions on anyone helping north korea raise hard concurrence -- currency through the sale of minerals. in addition it requires sanctions on anyone engaging in activities that would threaten cybersecurity. perhaps most importantly, the legislation urges the administration to designate
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north korea as a jurisdiction of primary money laundering concern, a step that would block links between north korea and the u.s. banking system. this is a very powerful sanction. if someone is doing business with the kim regime, they should not be doing business with the united states banking system. we need to pass this bill and push the administration to leverage the power of the treasury department to cut north korea from the international banking system. as i've said, this is a very strong and powerful sanction, and it needs to be put in place and then fully enforced by the administration. the imposition of sanctions, however, cannot be the end of our north korea policy. as we've seen over the past few months, the kim regime is intent upon disrupting the east asian security environment threatening the united states and our allies with ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. sanctions can work, but they must be enforced and they will
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take time. in addition, we need to augment these sanctions with other steps to limit the north korean threat. first, we should accelerate efforts to develop missile defenses both in east asia and in the united states. sanctions can curtail progress in north korea's nuclear and missile programs. however, we must deal with the capabilities north korea already has. we must ensure that we are prepared for any further advancement north korea might make before the sanctions take hold. second, we need to ensure that we have a credible and reliant nuclear force available to deter north korea and reassure our south korean and japanese allies. in 2014 and again earlier this year, a nuclear-capable b-52 flew over the korean peninsula to perform this vital deterrence and assurance mission. but to maintain strategic credibility, we must modernize
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our bomber fleet and our nuclear cruise missiles. to bring the nation's bombers up to date, the air force is embarking on plans to develop a new long-range strike bomber capable of penetrating advanced enemy air defenses. north korea's increasingly provocative behavior underscores our need to, for a bomber that can fly over any north korean target. now is the time to get to work on the long-range strike bomber program. similarly, we need to upgrade the nuclear cruise missile carried on the b-52 bomber. cruise missiles are fired from a distance as long as the option of threatening north korean targets without flying over north korean airspace. this stand-off capability is tremendously important. the existing nuclear cruise missile is based on 1970's technology and is well beyond its intended service life.
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we need to ensure that the air force has the resources necessary to develop a new cruise missile that can defeat modern air defense systems for decades to come. we also need to ensure that the national nuclear security administration has the resources it needs to refurbish the warhead that flies on the cruise missile. letting our bomber and cruise missile capabilities become obsolete would send a disastrous signal to the kim regime that its nuclear program has yielded strategic benefits. on the other hand, modernizing our forces shows mr. kim that he will never get a nuclear upper hand in east asia. the bottom line is that we need a holistic approach to north korea. we need the sanctions that we are considering here today in the senate. we need a strong, strategic deterrent, as i've described, and i urge my colleagues to support the sanction bills in front of us to put pressure o

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