Skip to main content

tv   Armed Services Committee Marks Up Defense Authorization Bill  CSPAN  June 28, 2017 5:06pm-7:07pm EDT

5:06 pm
industrial production costs, then having more of a stable basis for costs, you can ultimately save the taxpayers more money. i think the bottom line is we have cut too much, and this, you know, while the lcs doesn't do everything, it is also a third of the cost of a destroyer. it can do some stuff, some stuff that we need doing, and so i am opposed to the amendment. questions on the amendment. those in favor? >> i request a recorded vote. >> wait. i haven't got there yet. >> those in favor of the amendment offered by the gentleman from mass shoou chew sets will say i. those opposed will say no. the noes have it and the gentleman from massachusetts is recognized. >> i request a recorded vote. >> is there support for a recorded vote? there is. this vote will be postponed as i previously announced to the end
5:07 pm
of this section the mark. >> i have an amendment at the desk, mr. chairman. >> the clerk will distribute the amendmentme amendment. it is considered read. >> this is an issue that many of you have heard me speak about many times before. this is the issue of sexual assault in the military where some 15,000 men and women each year are sexually assaulted. only about 5,000 of them actually report it. of those only 500 go to court-martial and of those only 250 are actually sentenced. most recently, i was at our air force academy and spent a lot of time with our cadets because the newest report that's come out suggests that it is prevalent in our academies as well. and at the air force academy, for instance, 47% of the cadets experienced sexual harassment. it's a pretty stunning
5:08 pm
statistic. and those are the individuals who will then go on to be our leaders. and if, in fact, we allow for sexual assault, sexual harassment to be acceptable in our academies, you can imagine what's going to happen in our forces and we know the numbers of women joining the military is increasing. it is now about 20%. and again the number of those who are sexually assaulted are for the most part men, i might add. women just represent a higher percentage because of their numbers. so this amendment keeps the decision-making in the military. it doesn't take it out of the military. it makes the determination as to whether an investigation should move forward or a court-martial should move forward in the hands of the chief prosecutor in each of the services. under the current system,
5:09 pm
commanding officers in the defendant's chain of command decide whether to prosecute criminal offenses. these commanders are not attorneys. receive only a few hours of legal training. the staff judge advocates are also typically not expert in military justice system. most focus on administrative law and any direct court-martial experience is years behind them. i have often heard that commanders must lead the efforts to combat sexual assaults, and i couldn't agree more. what i hear less about is how this system prevents commanders from actually cracking down on sexual assault. i want to share with you the case that came down a few months ago in the kus court of appeals for the armed forces. they threw out a rape and assault conviction. it was thrown without because of the involvement of lieutenant general grcraig franklin. this all came about because in
5:10 pm
2013, general franklin was admonished f eed for torz tossi the conviction. but because he was correctly admonished, the u.s. court of appeals found his subsequent decision to move forward with the entirely separate case constituted unlawful command influence. this is made more ridiculous by two facts. first, the military judge during the actual trial found in evidence of unlawful command influence. second, the appeals court that threw out the case also didn't find evidence of unlawful command influence. just the appearance of it. the franklin case shows we have placed commanding officers in an impossible position. if they design to press chargers, they are seen as favoring the department. if they press charges on a subsequent case, that decision may be seen as unlawful command influence. this is a no-win scenario.
5:11 pm
it erodes trust in commanders and it erodes good order and discipline at a time when our nation faces significant threats abroad. this is not just a matter of fairness. it is a matter of national security. it is far past time for us to fix this system. fixing the system keeps the decision-making in the military. the decisions to investment or pursue a court-martial would just be determined by the person who is most equipped to do that, and that would be the prosecutor in each of -- the chief prosecutor in each of the services. so with that, mr. chairman, i ask my colleagues to support the amendment and i yield back. >> mr. turner? >> thank you, mr. chairman. mrs. spears is right. this is an issue we've dealt with many times before and we have dealt with it correctly. correctly by enacting a number of reforms that have made a
5:12 pm
difference in the way sexual assault prevention is undertaken through training, sexual assault protection of victims through victim's counsel and additional training and prosecution. we changed the chain of command process. so the manner that the issue that mrs. spears is speaking about is actually not what we have today. in addition to our having removed article 60 where a commander could have actually overturned a decision from a -- for a conviction, we have also changed the process by which these cases are reviewed and a recommendation for prosecution goes forward. now to give you some statistics that relate to the defense department's annual report on sexual assault in fiscal year '16, commanders had sufficient evidence to take action against 64% of alleged offenders in sexual assault. military commanders used the court-martial process to adjudicate 59% of allegations
5:13 pm
involving service members within their jurisdiction. these statistics clearly indicate that prosecutions are moving forward and furthermore it has been our understanding and others who have reviewed this that it is actually probably higher than what is actually occurring in this civilian courts. we have adopted a number of provisions with respect to this, including on a bipartisan basis having established the response system's panel that reviewed this issue for us for nearly a year, and they found no evidence for removing the commander or that it would -- removing the commander would increase prosecutions. they did, however, recommend changes that we have undertaken, which again this congress did and that totally rervamp the process that a sexual assault claim goes forward. the law currently requires the case be investigated by professional investigators who actually do have the experience. throughout the investigation,
5:14 pm
prosecutors are consulted on the type of evidence needed. any additional evidence required. after their investigation is completed it goes to the prosecutor who is experienced and trained in sexual assault cases and the lowest level is the o-6 command level. if the case is recommended for a court-martial, it then goes to the next higher command for referral and before a decision is made about referral, the commander and the commander's lawyer must agree. if there is a disagreement and if the case -- if the lawyers are recommending the case go forward, but the commander is recommending it does not, it goes all the way to the service secretary for review. so far there are no cases that have had to go up that chain to the service secretary for disposition. now, there is a number of reasons to leave it within the chain of command obviously, which include the commander's responsibility. they do have prevention responsibility. they have koe hegs. also in issues where we have the combat environment. but the main issue i think that we must review this on is that
5:15 pm
there is no need for it. the other aspect is that this would consolidate basically in the pentagon a huge funnel of all of these cases and would result in time delays that we don't have time for, both these victims and the need for a commander to have moral in their unit require quick action, the action we currently have in place. not all of the provisions we have adopted over the last five years have been -- have yet come to fruition for us to show their impact and some of them are still in the process of being implemented from the 2017 mda. but this is not needed. it would be disruptive and it certainly does not help the victims of sexual assault. i yield back. >> mrs. sangus? >> i want to thank congresswoman spear for continuing to raise this very important issue that obviously merits the attention she has brought to it.
5:16 pm
congressman turner is so right, this committee has worked on a bipartisan basis and i commend him for that leadership. to make a number of changes over the years to how the military addresses sexual assault in its ranks, making sure that every victim of military sexual assault receives an attorney, making sure jer verdicts can't be overturned and ensuring those convicted will absolutely be processed for discharge. there is no place for those who are convicted of sexual assault in the military. these changes give the military and its leaders additional tools and resources to demonstrate when these crimes occur, justice is served. however, there are still many worthy questions that deserve our attention, such as should a commander have the authority to make the final decision on whether a criminal case should proceed to trial? will that change have a significant impact on the military's ability to confront and eliminate this all too
5:17 pm
pervasive crime. ultimately we have to get this right. this requires efforts on all fronts, and i think we all agree that by itself simply changing a commander's authority will not get rid of the scourge of military sexual assault. and yet in an institution defined by the chain of command and the dictates of deference inherit in that command structure, commanders have played a crucial role. we need a change from a culture that too often or often enough allows a general to be promoted after he perpetuates a toxic military culture. i should say he or she. a change from a culture where service members can be more afraid of their fellow soldiers than they are of the enemy, and we have all heard such stories. we need a change when last year dod estimated nearly 15,000
5:18 pm
active duty service members experienced a sexual assault in the prior year. military commanders must understand how key they are to changing this culture and held accountable when they do not serve the interest of professionism and justice. i do have concerns over how this particular amendment would be implemented and what consequences there might be where many changes have recently been absorbed. however, i feel this amendment is timely and sends an important message that we need to continue the conversation about commander authority and i will support its passage. i look forward to continuing to work with congresswoman spear and the many others that have taken an active role in this very serious issue and looking forward to examine the full scope of the impact of this proposed amendment. but i do thank congresswoman spear for raising this important issue, and i yield back.
5:19 pm
>> mr. russell. >> thank you, mr. chairman. we hear stories. we hear phrases like "the norm." we all agree that in sexual harassment cases or sexual crimes one incident is too many. we would all agree with those statements. but here is the truth. the trend in the last seven years is down, not up. but that is not the case in the general public at large. the programs are also sound and implemented by current leaders that often face the greatest criticism. tools not only have statistically proven effective, they bear great scrutiny for the same. when we see university statistics by comparison to our military academies who, mr. chairman, one statement was that these are our future leaders as
5:20 pm
if somehow they were flawed and broken in the production of those leaders, the ncaa and university statistics by comparison are 36% worse. worse. what does that mean? that means that the general public at large ought to be knocking on the doors of our service academies and asking them how they are doing such a fantastically better job. still, one incident is too many. but it is not because it is broken or the military somehow doesn't have a handle on it or that commanders and the uniform code of military justice is somehow in need of being fixed. the importance of commanders queries, 15-6 investigations, ig investigations, criminal investigative division investigations and the like are paramount to all commanders and the tools that they possess. i have used those tools as a commander at various levels and the various organizations that i
5:21 pm
commanded to include sending people to prison for sexual crimes. to suggest that because commanders have these tools that they will somehow not be capable of using the uniform code of military justice to bring justice and good order and discipline in the military is absolutely absurd. once again, what we see, mr. chairman, is an attempt to move the military away from its own separate justice system. one more chip, one more knock, one more crack so that commanders no longer have the ability to establish good order and discipline in their organizations. if staff judge advocates, mr. chairman, as one statement was made are not experts in the ucmj, then, my goodness, who is? after all they go to school specifically and are legally trained specifically to understand the uniform code of military justice. one anecdote with service
5:22 pm
academies meaning maybe they couldn't handle it and they should refer it to outside prosecutors, impartial prosecutors and the like, three dozen referrals were made to magistrates and only one was accepted. and all of the others were sent back to that service academy. so obviously they were doing such an unjust and terrible job that they couldn't be trusted. taking away commanders' authority, that is exactly what we do not need. why would we take away authority that is 36% better at our service academies than our colleges and universities? and why would we take away authority where we see the military as an institution who usually discovers its own problems, investigates them, exposes them to the media, demonstrates what their corrective programs are. you would never see these actions and in so quick a fashion as you see in the military out in the civilian community. what we don't need is
5:23 pm
unnecessary congressional interference in the uniform code of military justice. oversight, yes. hearings yes. what we don't need, though, is to break what is a better performing uniform code and a better set of standards. and i urge my colleagues not only to oppose this amendment but to stand with commanders and the military. and mr. chairman, i yield back. >> mrs. davis? >> thank you, mr. chairman. and to everyone who has spoken on this issue because it has been a long time that we have been working with it. and frustrating and just about every other thing i could say because we all want to get to the same place. i remember one day going up to camp pendleton to speak to the commander there and we were focussed specifically on this issue and what was happening, and in the course of my sitting there, he got a phone call. it was another case that had just been referred to him.
5:24 pm
and he had already had one that day. so i was certainly convinced of the problem. there was no question about that. but i also know that in working hard, we began to develop better partnerships. and i think mr. turner spoke to this. so that there is much more discussion. there is certainly a consciousness. but beyond that, some way so that all the stakeholders are part of the solution. i also saw the changes that came about as i spoke to particularly women on bases that a special council has had on their ability to understand the system. there still are problems with this. but for many at least they know what their rights are and that somebody can be there and stand in for them as well. that's made a big difference. what did concern me in all of these discussions that we had was a sense from many of our judge advocates that they
5:25 pm
actually pushed not to go to trial more than a commander because the commanders had more passion, more concern. they knew the people that were involved. and they wanted to make that happen. and unfortunately, folks who, you know, really, good at what they did didn't have that same -- that same interest, really, because it could be that they would have a number of cases of he said/she said. in many cases he said/he said, she said/she said and that in those cases it would be too difficult to get any agreement to get, you know, a conviction. and so, therefore, they tended to stay away from them. but commanders, we had bad apples in this. we all acknowledge there. and there still are, i'm sure. but at least those commanders really wanted to see that case resolved. so i am glad we took the actions we did.
5:26 pm
i have also held out i am willing to go forward. i think that this is a different way of looking at it and i greatly appreciate my colleague, mrs. spear and all the people, all the women on both sides of the aisle, particularly got involved in this issue because we heard from too many cases. when i go to stand down in san diego and i ask for all the women to come join me in a tent and talk about their issues, you know, last time we met i probably had 25 women. they all came to the tent to talk about this. it is still a problem. i haven't -- i do believe that we really have the solution at hand in the ability to interface on this and we need to continue to work very hard on this. at this point i am going to design to support it, but i am certainly there and looking at those issues and i will continue to do that and continue to talk
5:27 pm
to people in the field. >> mr. rogers? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to associate myself with the remarks from the gentleman from oklahoma and my position that this amendment and yield my time to the gentleman from ohio, mr. turner. >> thank you, mr. rogers. thank you, mr. chairman. i want to thank susan davis for her comments. we have spent a significant amount of time on this, and it is one because we're very concerned about this issue as a whole. this proposal does not fix the problem of sexual assault. it actually makes the issue of prosecution more difficult. now, since the 107th congress, this is a list of everything that we have passed as the house armed services committee that has become law, single spaced, page after page of reforms of the process to make sexual assault prosecution and prevention easier and more effective. now, we did have concerns when we looked at the issue of chain
5:28 pm
of command on bias, coercion, unprofessionalism and rights of the victim. we for rights of the victim gave special legal counsel as mrs. davis said to the victims and then we gave the special legal counsel representing the victims standing in court. and contrary to how it's been described, the commander does not have a decision. we -- that is by themselves. again, to go over what we've done, if a commander and their lawyer agree, it goes forward. if the commander and the lawyer do not agree, then it goes to the next level for review. but there is never an instance where a commander on his own just makes a decision that this is not going to be reviewed or not referring to prosecution if there is disagreement. and if there is, it goes all the way to the secretary of the service branch. what this provision would require is that it be sent to the chief prosecutors for each service, which are basically
5:29 pm
three lawyers. there are 6,000 cases per year. so we would have a determination on these 6,000 cases by these three service branch lawyers rather than how we're doing it now, which includes the commander. it includes lawyers. it includes a review of actually the case and whether it needs to go forward. but we have been absolutely dedicated to protecting the victims and to trying to address the issue of sexual assault. we can't use the excuse that sexual assaults are still continuing for every amendment that comes forward. we actually referred this whole issue to a bipartisan panel, and they came back and told us do not do this. so at a minimum, if we're ever to the point where we question what we have done and so far everything it appears in all the data as to what we've done is working, the answer would be for us to give it to those who know more, not who merely have a 30 minute debate here and change the entire prosecution system
5:30 pm
within the department of defense. but again at this point, as mrs. davis had said, what we've done is working. what is in place is what has been recommended to us, and this amendment is not only i think detrimental to the overall process, but it certainly doesn't go to the heart of everything that we're trying to do and try to help victims make the process work, bring prosecutions forward and have people actually be brought to justice. i yield back. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i just want to associate myself with the comments of mrs. davis and i appreciate the work of mrs. spear. we partner with many things together, but as the only female veteran here that has dealt with issues, i would urge our colleagues to not support this. as was said by many of our colleagues, there have been a lot of improvements over the
5:31 pm
years and we need the chain of command more responsible, not less responsible. more engaged, not less engaged. we may need less knee ander that wills, but this structural change is not what is needed. it needs to stay as it is. so i appreciate that and yield back my time and urge people to vote no. >> i served nearly 40 years in the air force. we want to respect that chain of command. we want to respect the commander. no one cares more about these units, their units, the moral and displain of those units. my experience has been in one of the units i took over had a high rate of assault, we worked hard to use the court-martial. we drove down those rates. there are cases where it was like 50/50, hard to know what the verdict was as the commander, but we went to court-martial anyway. and more often than not got a
5:32 pm
conviction or the person pled guilty. we want commanders to be the central part of this, making these decisions with lawyers advi advising. we don't want lawyers making these decisions with commanders advis advising. i oppose the amendment and encourage this committee to do so. >> mr. kelly? >> mr. chairman, i also will be brief. i just -- you know, i'm one of the few people who has been a district attorney and a city prosecutor, professional prosecutor and commanded at the batalion and brigade level. seeing what is referred and what is not referred or what gets an indictment and what is true billed or not, no true billed, i can tell you that military commanders for the most part are uniquely qualified to be able to do that and decide what is best for the military order and discipline of their unit. the second part of that is i've seen the evolution of the judge advocate general and their
5:33 pm
ability and their access with and to commanders and their ability to inform them and to be a part of everything that they do so that when these commanders make -- make decisions, they're basing it on sound legal guidance, the same kind that i would get from an assistant district attorney. i think it is important to note that professional investigators do this every step of the way. i don't think the system is broke. i think we can always get better at everything we do, mr. chairman. but i think it is critical that we not take commanders out of the this process. it is detrimental to the good order of military order and discipline to take access from the commander away because this only happens at the 0-6 level and above with legal counsel every step of the way. with that i yield back, mr. chairman. >> back live now to the house armed services committee. they're expected to resume their review shortly of the 2018 defense programs bill and the
5:34 pm
proposed amendments to the legislation. they were out with some votes on the house floor, but we expect them to start up again very soon. the mark up began this morning at 10:00 eastern and is expected to go into the night. go into th.
5:35 pm
5:36 pm
5:37 pm
5:38 pm
5:39 pm
all right. mrs. spear is here. the committee will come to order. further amendments on this section of the bill, mrs. spear, on 93, do you want to offer that amendment? the clerk will distribute spear
5:40 pm
number 93. without objection, the amendment is considered as read, and the general lady is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you. this is a simple amendment. it is asking for a study and evaluation. once this happened and we had a hearing and heard from some of those who had been victims of the marines united pages, one of the things we heard was the problem, particularly in the marines, dealt with the fact that the men and women were separated during basic training. the men didn't see women as equals, but as accessories and in some cases toys. one of the witnesses said to us that the drill sergeant said, you are either a slut, a lesbian or -- what is the third one? i forget what the third one was. it will come to me. the -- so one of the things we
5:41 pm
need to look at within the marine corps and at paris island in particular is whether or not it's feasible to bring and integrate basic training for men and women. so this amendment simply requests a report on what changes and resources the marine corps would need to integrate basic training, including construction or renovation of barracks. the women are trained some distance away. so this is not requiring any action. it is to inform congress on what would be needed if we attempt to do an integration in the marines. all of the other services do train together. an i think that has been a good result in terms of finding a way to live together, work together and be respectful of each other. with that i yield back. >> other members wish to debate the amendment?
5:42 pm
the gentleman from colorado. >> thank you, mr. chairman. having been in the united states marine corps, you know, i think -- i just think that there is a value, certainly in integrating training at some point, but not on an every day basis. and so i would oppose the amendment. >> further discussion. question occurs on the amendment -- oh, i'm sorry. >> thank you, mr. chairman. again, i know we have got different views on the committee on this issue. to the maximum extent possible, if we are going to fight together, i do believe we have to train together. i am well documented on this well before i got to congress. i know the marines have some unique challenges and rational, but i think this is a reasonable request. so i do support the amendment. >> further discussion? questions on the amendment offered by mrs. spear.
5:43 pm
those in favor say i. those opposed say no. opinion of the chair, the i's have it. the i's have it and the amendment is agreed to. next we have mrs. mcsally. >> the clerk will distribute the amendment. without objection, the amendment is considered as read. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate my colleagues, the time and the discussion on a lot of these issues. i served 26 years in the military, and i have long advocated that we should pick the best man for the job, even if she's a woman. i'm glad to see we're moving in that direction. also as we're tackling issues of sexual assault, marines united, these types of issues, we have
5:44 pm
long discussed about how we need to address that at a cultural level to make sure that we have a culture where women are fully respected, are treated as equal warriors. again, i have walked through this. i have lived through this. i have led in this environment and researched and published on this issue. and i fully believe that if we're going to take this approach, that we need to make sure that we are not inadvertently invoking in our troops any resentment towards women because of maybe well intended policies or well intended practices but they actually then send a subtle message that women are not equal warriors, that women are not treated equally, that they're treated differently, that they're given a break in certain areas. i don't think it is on purpose. some of it maybe just cultural. but i just would ask that if we're really going to treat everybody the same that we ask the services to simply ask for a
5:45 pm
report for them to come back to us, to take a fresh look at any double standards that they may have, which again could inadvertently inculcate some resentment towards women or a not equal approach or sentiment towards women that then feeds and festers these potential root issues of women not being fully respected and treated as equal warriors that can eventually lead to things like sexual harassment and others. so again i have lived this for a long time. i have thought about it for many decades, and i just think it is appropriate if we are going to ask for men and women to be treated as individuals and to be equally in the force that we're taking a fresh look as to whether there is any double standards that would inadvertently create any resentment. so i know i am uniquely qualified to speak on this issue and i would ask my colleagues to
5:46 pm
just support this report, taking a fresh look. i know people make fun of me all the time, but i do talk about when you enter basic training the men are getting their heads shaved off and now in most bases women don't even have to cut their hair at all. so they're standing there watching their male counter parts be sort of, you know, we're going to turn you into a team. we're going to break you down and build you back up as a team and then the women are over there putting their hair into buns. it's just -- i don't get it. and we're not going to shave the women's head. but we had to cut our hair short and lose identities as well. i think those are the appropriate things that need to be looked at freshly to make sure that the men are not starting basic training looking over saying why are they getting a break on day one and then that inculcates resentment and you're not really equal warriors. so that's all i'm asking for. maybe things have changed since i was in and i am asking for a fresh report on any of these issues that may increase
5:47 pm
resentment. and i yield back. >> further discussion on the amendment? if not, the question is on the amendment offered by the lady from arizona. in the opinion of the chair, the i's visit and the amendment is adopted. further amendments to this section of the bill, the lady from new york. >> i have an amendment at the desk. >> the clerk will distribute the amendment. without objection it is considered as read. and you are recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. my amendment would amend section 702, reform of administration of the defense health agency and military medical treatment facilities. this provision was included in the fy 17 and yield control away from the services and places control within the largers bureaucratic defense health agency. i believe that the defense health agency should only be responsible for the care of our
5:48 pm
service members and families through the commands of the military departments. i am the proud representative of the north country in new york where the regional health planning organization works with local hospitals to provide health care to our service members and their families. it is one of the only military installations without a hospital on post. instead, we have an incredible health care ecosystem where the case partners with civilian hospitals. this model is mutually beneficial to the soldiers and their families and the surrounding community. this model gives soldiers, family members, veterans and civilians better flexibility in choice of provider and greater access to a wide range of high quality medical resources. our services have a deeper understanding of the needs of their medical facilities and base communities because they are more closely connected with the members and the needs of the installation and can offer more adjustable responses they can
5:49 pm
best manage readiness requirements and best ensure access to quality and timely health care. i am concerned that section 702 of the mark could limit the unique health care model at fort drum and has the potential to limit its successful application to other military communities across the nation. i want to caution us from applying an administrative one size fits all to the dynamic communities that provides medical care. in my district, i personally have watched the defense health agency struggle to resolve an ongoing issue with try care reimbursement at the area hospital for upwards of $10 million. for a rural hospital, that is significant. for over a year, we have worked with the defense health agency, and we are still waiting for answers on their errors and calculations of reimbursements and there has been little to no transparency in this process. i am gravely concerned about yielding more control to dha
5:50 pm
with a plan that intends to reduce staff across the services and without a plan on how to transfer of control would affect our service members and their loved ones. our service members risk their lives and we should not risk the quality of care that their families are receiving. we must ensure that the medical facilities in my district and other districts across this country are able to operate despi despite a centralized administrative model. i'm concerned that this model does not properly account for unique models like we have at ft. drum. i look forward to the report expected on june 30th and the final report on march 31st, 2018. in closing, i share the concern expressed in a 16-star memo signed by the vice chief of staffs by our services which state the collective transition from the current structure to a
5:51 pm
single agency responsible for mtf administration requires a well-vetted i encourage the department of defense and, specifically, the defense health agency to continue researching how they can improper care and reduce costs but i believe we can do this while still allowing services to control all aspects of their facilities. i believe we can develop a model that allows the ft. drum regional health planning organization to succeed and the opportunity to spread to other communities across the nation. i will be withdrawing this amendment due to conversations with the committee and their commitment to work with my office to protect the unique health care model in the ft. drum community and the committee's commitment to work with the defense health agency to demand answers on the ongoing tri-care reimbursement issue at
5:52 pm
the hospital. with that, i withdraw my amendment. i look forward to working with the committee on this issue. thank you. i yield back. >> does the gentleman from oklahoma receive recognition very briefly before the gentle lady withdraws her amendment? >> he does. he could use the remaining 25 seconds. i applaud miss stefani for doing this and agree with the extension. i think it's very important to look at the issues raised by our vice chiefs of staff and also the surgeons general being able to provide their own urgent care. also providing a very unique capability in sport and combat medicine advancements and it does leave an extension and i yield back. >> gentle lady from new york. next the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado.
5:53 pm
>> thank you, mr. chairman. unanimous consent to call package four worked out and approved with minority. >> without objection. it is so ordered. the clerk will distribute without objection. and mr. visi which directs the secretary of defense and report the findings. amendment 154 by mr. visi, support of the information for suicide risk factors and ways to support their service member. with special emphasis on service members diagnosed ptsd.
5:54 pm
amendment 206 which expresses a sense that the civilians covered under section 717 of the fy '18. amendment 234 by mr. russell which directs reimbursement for state licensure and certification costs to members of the armed services rising from separation of the armed forces. amendment 283 by miss courtney which directs the director of the health agency to brief the committee on its ability to direct the defense medical system. amendment 288 by mr. brown which will require the dod and include a specific block for 214 form. amendment 300 r 1 which is a
5:55 pm
sense of congress supporting goals and ideals and amendment 330 by mr. hunter which requires submit a report and prevention and response policies of the coast guard and goals related to sexual assault victim recovery. amendment 353 of mr. jones which requires advance of certain retired members of the armed forces. i yield back. >> any discussion about on block package 4? question is on the amendments offered by the gentleman from colorado, mr. cochran. those in favor, say aye. the ayes have it and the amendments are adopted. well, we're supposed to have mr.
5:56 pm
veseey but i don't see mr. veseey. let's jump to the gentleman from california. do you have an amendment? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the table. >> the clerk will distribute mr. carbohall 186r2. thank you for being flexible. without objection, the amendment is considered as read and the gentleman from california's recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i would like to first thank all my colleagues who co-sponsored this amendment. currently, veterans and active service member who is have permanent residence status are eligible for expedited naturalization through the immigration and nationality act. unfortunately, aspirations in iraq and afghanistan intensified, the military needed to deploy individuals quickly
5:57 pm
without adequately informing individuals of how to navigate the process. current law insures that during the time of national need will be provided with an opportunity for expedited naturalization. this amendment basically directs the secretary of defense to ensure that service members of the military lawfully admitted to the united states for permanent residents to be informed of the availability of naturalization through their service to the united states military. this amendment is about providing information in a more effective manner to service members who have committed their lives to serving this and i urge all of my colleagues. mr. chair, i yield back. >> mr. chairman?
5:58 pm
>> gentleman from alabama. >> thank you, mr. chairman. while i recognize that people who are lawfully in the united states from nations that have joined our armed services have the ability as indicated to be naturalized. at the same time, i question whether we want to as a body to force even more regulations on the army, the navy, the air force and the marine corps more mandates that require them to make sure that they notify every single person who is lawfully in the united states but is not a sense of the united states of what they would need to do to become naturalized. additionally, this amendment, as proposed, requires the army, the navy, air force and marine corps to divert funding to help pay for whatever assistance is required for these individuals to navigate the application
5:59 pm
process. personally, i would prefer if people want to become american citizens, that they take the initiatives themselves to do what is necessary to become american citizens without it requiring a further expenditure of taxpayers dollars to do so and without mandating that army, navy, air force, marine corps teach them to do so without resulting penalties if they fail to follow this mandate that is in this amendment. that having been said, i ask that we vote no on this amendment. >> to me it makes sense to give people information about what the law is. i take the gentleman's point. if the requirements in the amendment are onerous as far as what the services must do, maybe we need to look at it. but if it's telling them amount what the law is now, to me it
6:00 pm
makes sense and my inclination is to support the amendment. mr. mckeechin? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to soesh stateassociate your comments. we owe every one of them a debt of gratitude. mr. chairman, my father was an officer in the united states army and he said the only thing a soldier asks for is the best. that's what this amendment is doing, to do our best to decide to put on the uniform, stand opposed and defend our nation and i would hope that this amendment would pass unanimously, mr. chairman. and i yield to mr. carbohall. >> for those who have served in the military, i've served in the
6:01 pm
marine corps and i will tell you that there are a thousand touch points that as veterans, as military personnel we have with our administration. processing in, processing out. there's ample opportunity to give you a piece of paper to touch at those opportunities. so there's no extraneous added costs. it just means, happennd a piece paper to inform people when they give you that exit interview and i yield back, mr. chair. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> in afghanistan there was a big deal and permanent residents go into the military and classified information and restricted in terms of their
6:02 pm
ability to become officers and so merely -- i think it's important to utilize the full capability of expediting this issue and certainly by informing them of the process. >> mr. molten, did you -- >> did you, mr. chairman. as someone who has also served on the front lines with many of these brave warriors, i also want to associate myself with mr. kaufman's remarks with your remarks with the remarks of mr. carbohall. this is a very simple step. to make the excuse that there's too much bureaucracy or government cost is ridiculous given the other costs we're forcing on the department of defense in this hearing. this is simply what we should do to do right by those who put their lives on the line for our country. i yield back. >> mr. bacon? >> thank you, mr. chairman.
6:03 pm
i think i agree with you that it should be limited, not hard to do. i'm reminded of the seven sailors who gave their life on the collision at sea. five of those were immigrants. i think we owe them a hand to make that transition to become citizens. thank you. >> i don't know that i could add anything more than has been said by those men and women who have served in the military alongside men and women who were not citizens at the time they chose to serve. this is really something important. we should give these people every opportunity to become citizens. >> mr. norcross? >> thank you, mr. gentleman. with all due respect to the committee and its members, if you die while in service to your country and you were serving as a legal residence, you
6:04 pm
automatically become a legal citizen. what better way to say you have love and respect for this country than the willing to give up your life in many ways, i'm shocked that we're having this discussion. they signed an oath when entering the military. willing to give up your life. i'm a u.s. citizen. i didn't serve. but you know who did serve? my daughter-in-law who came from mexico. serving in a chemical response unit willing to give up her life. this isn't only the right thing to do, it's the right thing to do. i yield back. >> the question occurs on the amendment offered by the
6:05 pm
gentleman from california, mr. carbohall. those in favor say aye. those opposed say no. the amendment is adopted. further amendments? >> i have an amendment at the desk. >> the clerk will distribute 153-r-1. without objection, it's considered as read and the gentleman from texas is recognized for five minutes. >> mr. chairman, thank you for the opportunity to offer an amendment to increase officer diversity. my amendment will direct the secretary of defense to evaluate the effects among u.s. military officers if 2012 daca beneficiaries were able to apply to u.s. service military academies. a report by the diversity commission found while the pentagon has created a force
6:06 pm
which mimics the american public, the same cannot be said the higher you go up the officer ladder. according to the report, officers are much more diverse. they comprise 77% of active duty officers. similarly, african-americans account for 12% of the population but represent just about 8% of active duty officers. latinos make up 15% of the u.s. population and only a number of 5% of officer corps. the lack of diversity in the officer class should be concerned for members of the armed services committee. and while the scope of future military operations remain uncertain, a force with diverse cultural backgrounds can only increase operational capacity to address future threats. the u.s. military relies on military service academies as an avenue for fresh talent and yet
6:07 pm
despite the need for a diverse officer class, a particular group of young men and women are barred from even applying to the institutions like west point or the u.s. naval academy. and regardless of your thoughts on immigration or the president's executive actions on immigration, daca beneficiaries represent a pool of diverse men and women to draw talent from but only requires our defense department to objectively evaluate how changing current policies can impact the future diversity of high-ranking officers in the armed forces. furthermore, my amendment does not add any more new direct spending. i urge the committee to accept this amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. >> gentleman yields back. >> craig? >> mr. chairman -- just a second. gentleman from texas yields back, right? he said reserve but i want to
6:08 pm
make sure we're tracking. >> yes. >> let me yield to myself for just a second and maybe group a couple things together. we had a vote on a similar amendment last year. my view is that getting into military academies, as we all know very well, is extremely competitive, limited number of slots, lots of folks want to go who are not able to go. now, the challenge is for those people who are not in the country legally, there are laws which limit their ability to access the military and certainly to get a security clearance. so my view is for us to try to force in some way expansion into
6:09 pm
the military academies before these broader issues are decided will only put more pressure on the academies and deny others who may have an opportunity to go and serve because generally these folks at this point do not have the opportunity to serve. now, having said that, the secretary of defense has a way to get them into the military and, as a matter of fact, daca individuals have served in the military because they have certain skills but forcing them through the academy method i think doesn't work.
6:10 pm
i'm getting ahead to the next amendment. for us to try to debate immigration in this bill, it doesn't work very well. i hope we can have a conversation about what makes sense for immigration law. i do not believe, however, that it happens on this bill. therefore, i do not support mr. veasey's amendment and i will have a substitute for mr. giyago in just a few minutes to try to keep the focus of this bill on military. other comments? mr. brooks? >> thank you, mr. chairman. getting into a military academy is a highly competitive undertaking that american children, our grandchildren compete for. it's very difficult to obtain
6:11 pm
admission. what this bill does it allow or encourages the allowance of illegal aliens to compete for what are already highly competitive positions that are being filled by our own american kids. and if we have to make a judgment, my judgment is that we should be protecting those military service positions for americans over illegal aliens and i would ask that we vote no on this amendment that directly or indirectly encourages the director of defense to allow illegal aliens to take those military service opportunities in our military academies from lawful immigrants and american citizens. >> mr. cayago?
6:12 pm
>> thank you, mr. chair. service to the academy is not a right that any american has and that's found within u.s. citizens or daca recipients and why do we not at least explore that? because we should be looking at the best national security apparatus and offer support in this country, not to try to stop some of these people that are the strongest, smartest and hardest working americans minus the fact that they, unfortunately, came here without permission but said that they could stay, including your president who said that they shall stay and shall be protected. >> will the gentleman yield?
6:13 pm
>> i will yield. >> just curious, by what legal standard will the gentleman suggest that daca recipients are not illegal aliens have they not committed the crime of illegal entry? >> we can debate the status of immigration issues but i'm focussed on the status of whether or not they are going to be helpful in terms of creating the army -- the military in the future. if you'd like to have a side conversation on this, we can certainly do that. the fact is, we're here to talk about what is the best military in the world. we want to continue to have the best military officer court and explore the possibility of this population being part of that potential recruitment in the future. and i yield back. >> mr. russell? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to associate myself with
6:14 pm
the spirit of that and my task force that i chandommanded in i was 36, 40% and a lot of good things there. with regard to daca, this is a completely different issue. these folks are not permanent residents and are not vetted and not even under a military ascetion to qualification and they sort of have fallen under that umbrella because we don't know who they are. they have taken no allegiance like a permanent residence receives. even with the program that meets the vital interests, it's been
6:15 pm
replete with problems to include foreign infiltration, so much so that the department of defense is seeking to suspend the program due to those concerns and i can't really discuss some of that here in this setting, but there are some major issues when it comes to vetting. with regard to daca and the service academies, even permanent residents are not allowed to become officers. no ability to be vetted to be in our service academies and has been raised as ahead of those who are american citizens and can be vetted to create the future leaders for the defense of our republic. for example, 1 out of 3 were not
6:16 pm
either born in the united states or they were not born to parents that were born in the united states and yet they faithfully served our nation. that's not what we're talking about here. we can't conflate these issues together. for those who cannot be properly vetted, have no legal status of any kind, the military has never allowed those who have no legal status to enter the programs that we're suggesting here and for that reason i agree with you, mr. chairman, that there are other ways that we have to address this and should not support this. there are a lot of complications and i urge my colleagues to vote against it. i yield back my time. thank you, mr. chairman.
6:17 pm
i yield back. >> there's no discussion. on the amendment by mr. veasey, say aye. those opposed say no. the nos have it and the amendment is not agreed to. next amendment in this section, gentleman from arizona gallego. >> thank you. i have an amendment at the chair. >> the clerk will distribute the amendment. without objection, it's considered as read and the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. for most of our history, your patronism was more important than families who have been here for generations. not all of them came here
6:18 pm
legally but they earned their citizenship in the best possible way by serving their new country in uniform. even at this divisive moment in history, i hope we can come together to renew this proud and american tradition. mr. chairman, i'm offering an amendment to encourage secretary mattis to enable young documented people by serving in our armed services. today in america, these kids known as dreamers can be drafted but cannot voluntary enlist. that simply does not make any sense. we in this room tonight have the power to correct this obvious injustice. mr. chairman, dreamers granted relief have already been thoroughly vetted by the department of homeland security. more importantly, these young men and women speak and honor and show their patronism all the time.
6:19 pm
and to deserve the chance to defend the country they love and and one of the things that make america great already and serving in our armed services. mr. chairman, those who fight in uniform shows an expression for love of our country. please support my amendment and give those the opportunity to enlist in the armed services. i'll yield back. >> i yield to myself and i have a substitute amendment at the desk. i would ask the clerk to distribute the substitute. okay. without objection, the
6:20 pm
substitution is considered as read. i yield to myself briefly for explaining the substitute. as i mentioned a while ago, many of us have sympathies with some of the sentiments expressed by the gentleman from arizona on these folks who came to the united states as young people and are still here. at the same time, the current law makes it generally where they cannot serve and cannot get a security clearance. there is an exception and that is if any noncitizen has particular capabilities that the secretary of defense determines are needed in the united states military, the secretary can bring them into the military. and so my substitute amendment reaffirms that position that says the secretary can enlist
6:21 pm
anybody who does not otherwise meet the citizenship or residency requirements of enlistment if the secretary determines that it's important to the national interests. i think that reaffirming that is the important thing to do at this point. but as i said a while ago, i am sure that outside of this chamber we will continue to have discussions about daca kids, about immigration in general. that's where that should occur, i think not here. is there further debate on the substitute amendment? mr. -- well, let me go to mr. gallego first. >> thank you. in the spirit i support your amendment. >> further discussion, mr. gearamendi? >> this apparently speaks
6:22 pm
directly to the secretary. could the secretary issue a memorandum in order to say that those who are entering the military, instead of a person by person blanket authorization? >> if the gentleman would yield to me, my understanding of the law is that the secretary has the authority to waive. how broad a category he has the authority to waive, i don't know that it's ever been tested. as was previously mentioned, there are about 10,000 people serving for whom he has waived it. i doubt he has examined each one of them individually. now, the other challenge that we are finding for some of these noncitizens is vetting is
6:23 pm
difficult and i think mr. russell mentioned that a little bit earlier. >> let me just state my position. i think that these individuals, the daca who have been cleared for employment, have been vetted and they ought to be allowed. i think there are some questions here about exactly how this works down through the process. if it's your intent to allow the secretary to set a program or a policy position that would allow these people to serve in whatever position the military thinks is useful, then i would think your support, your amendment is in order and would support it. >> if there's no questions on the substitute amendment offered by me, say aye in favor. those opposed say no. the substitute is agreed to.
6:24 pm
is there any comment about the gallego amendment as substituted by me. those in favor say aye. aye. those opposed say no. the ayes have it. the amendment is adopted. >> gentleman from colorado? >> mr. chairman, i ask for unanimous consent to call up block 5 consisting of amendments that have been worked out and approved with the minority. >> without objection so ordered. if the clerk would distribute block 5 without objection the amendment is considered as read and the gentleman from colorado can explain the package 5. >> it's comprised of the following amendment. 089 by miss spear which directs that the military sexual harassment incidents involving
6:25 pm
nonconsensual distribution of private sexual images shall be included in the annual sapro reports. amendment 090 by miss spear which requires the annual dod sexual assault and response report to include data on sexual assaults committed by service members against their spouse, intimate partner or other defendant in addition to the data included in the annual family advocacy report. amendment 1 through 5 by miss davis which requires the secretary of defense to review restrictions on service member appeals to the u.s. supreme court. amendment 011 by mr. larson which directs the department of defense to brief on status of force of the future gamut as preservation pilot program. and 053 by miss porter and to
6:26 pm
provide briefings on the best method to ensure uniform high standards across the military services for social media, used by service members to require enlistees for violations. amendment by miss songas for administrative review board and the claims involve sexual assault. >> the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed say no. the ayes have it and the amendments are adopted. further amendments to this
6:27 pm
portion of -- gentleman from texas, mr. veasey? >> i have an amendment at the desk. >> the clerk will distribute the amendment and it's considered as read. gentleman from texas recognized for five minutes. >> mr. chairman, thank you for the opportunity to offer an amendment to streamline the naturalization process for immigrants who serve in our country's armed forces. my amendment will establish an office of naturalization within the department of defense that would be responsible for identifying and conducting naturalization outreach for new noncitizens service members. in addition, they will ensure they are provided with every opportunity to naturalize prior to the end of their service. the legislation expands the current naturalization at basic training program to all training facilities and ensures that new recruits interacting with a military entrance processing sent ters are presented with
6:28 pm
information about naturalization. recent reports from the aclu and news coverage share that noncitizens service members have been deported after faithfully serving the u.s. for sometimes relatively minor infractions. a 2002 executive order made immigrant service members and despite these changes, some veterans may not complete the naturalization process before they are honorably discharged from the service. today, the latest information from the department of defense reports that 65,000 immigrants were serving on active duty as of 2008. and every day immigrant service members risk their lives on behalf of fellow citizens and we must do all that we can to ensure that regardless of their immigration status, our service members receive all the benefits they've earned, including naturalization benefits.
6:29 pm
fu furthermore, my amendment does not direct new spending. i've learned that there are jurisdictional issues. however, i look forward to working with the committee and department of defense to continue working on this important issue and, therefore, i respectfully withdraw my amendment and yield back the balance of my time. >> if the gentleman will hold with withdrawal very briefly for the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi. >> the issue of immigration plagues this nation and certainly plagues this committee. it's very controversial and involves emotional issues. it also involves members of our military. i'm sorry that this amendment is going to be withdrawn. it might have solved a serious problem that we have found in one of the air bases that i represent. a master sergeant that has served nearly 30 years and has
6:30 pm
played a critical role in making sure that the isr platforms are maintained. he and his wife of 17 years attempted to return from duty in the united kingdom. their passports were expiring and they were required to go to the u.s. consulate to have their passports renewed. the sergeant's passports were -- his passport was renewed. his wife was confiscated and she was told that she could not return to the united states. the situation was such that as a very young child, unbeknownst to her, her mother had used a young -- an older daughter's birth certificate to obtain a passport. or another birth certificate.
6:31 pm
she had spent some 35 plus years of her life believing she was an american citizen. she is now in mexico. her children are in the united states with her husband and i think this committee would understand the dilemma. i don't know how many times i've heard the top military brass come before us and talk passionately about family, about the role that spouses play. this woman served side by side with her husband for nearly 20 years and she's deported. she cannot return to the united states. presently, the solution is for a new duty assignment in japan so that she can join her family. something is terribly, terribly wrong here and we need to find a solution to this and it speaks
6:32 pm
to the larger immigration issue and an issue that exists within the military. i would suggest that there are probably many, many military family situations similar to what i've described and we must find a solution to this. this naturalization office might have solved a problem had the woman known that she was not a citizen she thought she was. turned out, that's not the case. so with that, i'll let it go and i yield back my remaining 13. >> the gentleman from texas with dr withdrew the amendment. we are now going to proceed to vote on those amendments where a roll call vote was ordered. i believe there are two and i believe they are both offered by miss spear. and the first one is spear
6:33 pm
number 96 on selective service and the secretary will call the roll. >> mr. thorn berry? >> no. >> mr. smith? mr. smith? mr. jones? mr. jones? mr. brady? mr. brady votes aye. mr. wilson? mr. wilson votes no. mrs. davis? mrs. davis votes aye. mr. labiando? he votes no. mr. longerman votes aye. mr. bishop. mr. bishop votes no. mr. larsen. mr. turner. mr. turner votes no. mr. cooper? mr. cooper votes aye. mr. rogers?
6:34 pm
mr. rogers votes no. mr. franks? mr. franks votes no. mr. courtney? mr. courtney votes aye. mr. schuster? mr. con na way, mr. con na way votes no. mr. garamendi? mr. garamendi votes aye. mr. lamb born votes no. mrs. spear? aye. mr. whitman votes no. mr. veasey? aye. mr. hunter? mr. hunter votes no. miss gamburn? mr. kaufman? mr. kaufman votes no.
6:35 pm
mr. oroake. aye. mrs. harstler votes no. mr. nor cross. aye. mr. scott? mr. scott votes no. mr. gallego? mr. gallego votes aye. mr. brooks votes no. mr. molten? mr. moelten votes aye. miss hanaboosa? she votes aye. mr. bride den stein. votes no. miss shay porter votes aye. dr. wentzer votes no. miss rose en?
6:36 pm
aye. mr. burn. mr. burn votes no. mr. graves? mr. graves? mr. carbohall votes aye. miss stefanic votes no. mr. brown. mr. brown votes aye. miss mcsally, miss mcsally votes aye. mrs. murphy? mrs. murphy votes aye. mr. knight votes no. mr. conna votes aye. mr. russell? mr. russell votes no. mr. ohalloren votes aye. dr. dayjarlay votes aye. dr. abraham?
6:37 pm
dr. abraham votes no. mr. wohlz votes aye. mr. kelly votes no. mr. gallagher. mr. gallagher votes no. mr. gates. mr. gates votes no. mr. bacon? mr. bacon votes no. mr. banks. mr. banks votes no. miss cheney. miss cheney votes no. mr. smith, mr. smith votes aye. mr. jones? mr. jones votes no. mr. larson? mr. larson? miss gaberd? miss gaberd? mr. graves?
6:38 pm
mr. graves? mr. gentleman from washington state? how is mr. larson recorded? mr. chairman, mr. larson is not recorded. >> mr. larson votes aye.
6:39 pm
>> how is mr. graves recorded? mr. graves is not recorded. however, he's now recorded no. >> the clerk will report the tally. >> mr. chairman, there were 28 aye votes and 33 no votes. >> the amendment is not adopted. okay. next we have a roll call vote on spear number 95 and this deals with contraception and tri-care, right? the clerk will call the roll. >> mr. thornbury? >> no. >> mr. thornbury votes no. mr. smith? mr. smith?
6:40 pm
mr. smith votes aye. mr. jones? mr. jones? mr. brady? mr. brady votes aye. mr. wilson? mr. wilson votes no. mrs. davis? mrs. davis votes aye. mr. lobiando votes no. mr. longeman votes aye. mr. bishop? mr. bishop votes no. mr. larson? mr. larson votes aye. mr. turner? mr. turner votes no. mr. cooper? mr. cooper votes aye. mr. rogers? mr. rogers votes no. miss bordillo votes aye. mr. franks? mr. franks votes no. mr. courtney? mr. courtney votes aye. mr. schuster votes no.
6:41 pm
miss psongas votes aye. mr. conaway votes no. mr. garamendi votes aye. mr. lamborn votes no. miss spear? miss spear votes aye. mr. whitman? mr. whitman votes no. mr. veasey? mr. veasey votes aye. mr. hunter votes no. miss gaberd? mr. kaufman? mr. kaufman votes no. mr. oroake votes aye. mrs. hartzler votes no. mr. norcross votes aye. mr. scott? mr. scott votes no.
6:42 pm
mr. gallego votes aye. mr. brooks? mr. brooks votes no. mr. molten? mr. molten votes aye. mr. cook? mr. cook votes no. miss hanaboosha votes aye. mr. bridenstein votes no. miss shay porter? miss porter votes aye. dr. wenstrop votes no. miss rosen and mr. graves, mr. graves votes no. mr. carbohall, mr. carbohall votes aye. miss stefanik votes aye.
6:43 pm
miss mcsally votes aye. mrs. murphy votes aye. mr. knight? mr. knight votes no. mr. russell, mr. russell votes no. mr. owe hall letter ron votes aye. dr. dayjarley votes no. mr. swazey votes aye. dr. abraham? dr. abraham votes no. mr. wolz votes aye. mr. kelly? mr. kelly votes no. mr. gallagher? mr. gallagher votes no. mr. gates? mr. gates votes no. mr. bacon? mr. bacon votes no. mr. banks? mr. banks votes no. miss cheney? miss cheney votes no.
6:44 pm
mr. jones? mr. jones votes no. miss gaberd? miss gaberd? >> mr. chair, how am i recorded? >> how is mr. knight recorded? >> mr. chairman, mr. knight is recorded as voting no. >> mr. night wants to be a yes. >> mr. knight is voting yes.
6:45 pm
>> the clerk will report the tally. >> mr. chairman, there were 30 aye votes, 31 no votes. >> the amendment is not agreed to. if there are no further amendments, the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado, mr. kaufman, for the purposes of offering a motion. >> i move to adopt the subcommittee report on military personnel as amended. >> questions on the motion of the gentleman from colorado? those in favor say aye. those opposed say no. the opinion chair, the ayes have it. the motion is adopted.
6:46 pm
>> the committee will now report t and postpone recorded votes on amendments to this particular subcommittee mark until consideration of all amendments to this subcommittee mark has concluded. the chair recognizes the chairman of the subcommittee, the gentleman from alabama, mr. rogers. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i would like to first thank chairman thornbury and ranking member smith for their continued work for making this committee as successful as the alabama football program when it comes to legislating. for the past five years, it's been my privilege to lead this with tim cooper. he sets the standard for bipartisan thoughtful consideration and i thank him for that. one of the issues mr. cooper and i have work on closely in the
6:47 pm
last year is space reform. this addresses the continued failed stewardship of the space domain by the current air force space organization. since we went public with this subcommittee mark, i've been disappointed in claims from the air force leadership. they say the proposed initiatives will set back efforts to respond to adversary threats. let me be clear, that is not the case. our plan empowers the secretary of the air force with the ability to shape the composition of the space corps, streamline the authorities and prioritize space as the important war-fighting don't main that it is. i continue to look forward to having productive conversations with the air force and departmental and national security assets. i want to thank the subcommittee members and our staff for their hard work. it's been my pleasure for the full committee which includes a
6:48 pm
number of key provisions. those provisions include, reorganizing the national security space enterprise to ensure prioritization of a space domain by creating a u.s. space corps. this will be a separate under the civilian and space command with the subunified command with strategic command -- u.s. strategic command. we prohibit the secretary of defense for satellite services that pose a cybersecurity risk where services are performed by satellites launched by foreign countries. on launch, let me be clear. it ensures continued focus on the development of an american-maiden jin american-maid american-made engine but does not specify which one to use. it ensures we do not use launch vehicles like the delta 4 heavy over new launch vehicles to
6:49 pm
protect assured access to space and end reliance on russian-made engines. we simply don't have enough money in the defense budget to build new launch vehicles for as many at three commercial companies. we have a provision creating strong oversight processes to ensure the nation's nuclear command remains robust and secure during ongoing recapitalization efforts. and we authorize the funding level for the national nuclear security administration's nuclear weapons activities and defense nuclear nonproliferation program. including critical efforts to modernize the nuclear weapons stockpile. we require the missile defense to begin development space sensor layer for ballistic defense and $705 million for co-production and co-development of israeli missile defense systems including iron dome and
6:50 pm
arro aero and produce a modernized schedule that meets war fighter requirements for replacement of the legacy patriot air and missile defense system. i urge the committee to support the legislation and in doing so, make america safer. and i yield back. >> the chair recognizes the rarnging member of the subcommittee, the gentleman from tennessee, mr. cooper. >> in view of the late hour i would just say ditto to my friend, the chairman of the subcommittee's remarks and look forward the amendment process, which we in the subcommittee have tried to foreshorten. without further ado, i yield back my time. >> is there any further discussion of this subcommittee mark? are there any amendments? >> the gentleman from arizona, mr. franks. >> mr. chairman, i'm concerned about the current balance of the funding levels between r&d and
6:51 pm
procurement for israeli missile defense programs in this mark. i would ask the gentleman from alabama, my friend chairman mike rogers of the strategic forces subcommittee to personally commit that if there are any issues wherein we need to shift funds, from our r&d to procurement or from procurement to r&d, that he will work with me to insure that indeed that that happens. and that we do right by our noble allies in israeli. and i would yield to him such time as he may consume. >> i thank the gentleman from arizona, the vice chairman of strategic forces for his interest in israeli defense. i'm proud that hr 2810 carries $705 million for u.s./israeli missile defense cooperation, fully funding the request from our ally. since i've been the chairman of this subcommittee we've provided over $2 billion for missile defense cooperation with israel. these resources have saved lives and created a more stable middle east if there's some question about the appropriate mix of r&d
6:52 pm
funding and procurement funding, i will be happy to work with the gentleman from arizona to make sure we get it right, you have my word. >> re claiming my time briefly. i sincerely thank the gentleman from alabama for his continued commitment to israel. and i deeply appreciate his assurances and look forward to continuing to work with him on this tremendously important issue moving forward. mr. rodgers is truly an honorable man and i have no doubt whatsoever that he will keep his promise and with that i would yield back. >> is there further discussion on this subcommittee mark? >> are there any amendments to this subcommittee mark? gentleman from ohio? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to begin first by -- >> does the gentleman wish to offer -- >> i'm sorry, thank you, i forgot the process, i have an amendment at the desk. >> if the clerk would distribute the amendment, without objection the amendment is considered as
6:53 pm
read and the gentleman from ohio is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, i want to begin again by commending the chairman of strategic forces, mr. rodgers. hey done an excellent job in balancing important issues for our security and missile defense, our nuke portfolio, and space and certainly as was just highlighted, our relationship with israel and the importance of their missile defense system. so my amendment is by no means a criticism of mr. rodgers chairmanship of the strategic forces or his work. i find him to be one of the most knowledgeable members, having been chairman of the strategic forces, i know of his dedication and his hard work. i feel the need to offer this amendment to amend the mark to remove the provisions that establish the space corp. and call instd for the study of the establishment of a spaes koece . duncan hunter asked us to look at the wall in font of us that
6:54 pm
have the seals of the various service branches this would have us add another. just like the united states marine corps, where it says department of the navy, this would be depart. of the air force, united states space corps. my concern is that we just have not riz ton the level of the knowledge for us to make a decision since 1147 to put a another seal up there. i have a friend who wrote the thesis on the formation of the air force. for their doctorate and i read it. and it was a compelling story. because it talked over the work at the white house of the president, of the administration through congress, through d.o.d., all of the studies and all of the work that went into the formulation of the air force. now for the space corps, with the work we've done so far, you would not be able to write your thesis, you would be able to write a memo. the memo would be we had several discussions. even though we had discussions in the subcommittee when it came to actually debate on whether or not there's a space corps we had a immediate meeting. even though i'm an active member
6:55 pm
of the subcommittee i was unaware of this, i chastised my staff, how could i not know we're going to establish another service branch and they said they had a meeting and you missed it. a meeting is not enough. my amendment again is not to criticize the chairman in any way and/or to say this is not right. maybe we do need a space corps. and mr. rodgers may well become the father of the space corps and i would commend him for that. the issue of what information do we need and the precedent of rising to the level of a subcommittee mark, establishing a service branch is my concern. now certainly i agree with the chairman on the failures in this space program under the air force. but a lot of that is our own responsibility. it's our own funding, our own legislative responsibility, it's the administration's responsibility. it's not an arbitrary responsibility. we're not going to solve it by another emblem on our wall.
6:56 pm
we'll only empower it by empowering the air force, funding the air force. we're doing this coming off sequestration, what a great message we have, these are our new priorities, we're going to create a new service branch. and obviously, the just the minimum out sha that will be required for establishing this is burdensome and something we need to consider that should be undertaken in a study. emblems, uniforms, how people report to each other. all of this is are issues that i think bear more than a meeting and they bear more than just discussions in a subcommittee of the armed services. we've not had secretary mat toys te mattis here to tell us what this means. if you read the bill it requires that the person who become the space corps join the joint chiefs of staff. we're expanding the president's joint chiefs of staff. we should hear from the secretary of defense as to whether or not the joint chiefs of staff need to be expanded.
6:57 pm
to establish a service branch. now, i can tell you as you all probably know that the secretary wilson, secretary of the air force is opposed. she just got in her job and she's asking you know can you give me a chance, there's a new three-star deputy chief of staff for space that's designated the a-11 of the air force. she has said this will make it more complex, add more boxes to the organization chart and cost more money. if i had more money, i would put it into lethality, not bureaucracy. i don't need another chief of staff. another six deputies chief of staff. i recognize that the chairman has put in his mark that she wouldn't have to have six deputies chiefs of staff. i know it's the signal of the fact that this is a bureaucracy. in the air force chief of staff, who would then get a co-peer, because this doesn't report to him, says this -- if you're
6:58 pm
saying the word separate and space in the same sentence, you're moving in the wrong direction, the secretary and i are focused on how to integrate space. so i want to commend the chair, because he has worked diligently and hard to try to integrate space and to try to hold the air force accountable and try it get us to accomplish things we're not accomplishing. but i just think that as a body, as a committee, there's a whole lot of work that we need to do before we go to the extent of establishing another service branch. and at least one of those steps should be, a study and one of those steps should be a hearing and it should be in conjunction with the department of defense. and with that, i yield back. >> the gentleman from alabama? >> i appreciate the gentleman's comments but i would say there's
6:59 pm
been nothing short-sighted about this. we have been incredibly deliberative. the fact is, we have started, we started working on this last september. as a committee. vigorously. we have had countless meetings, briefings with experts, who have put thought, have advised us, as to how this should be construed. in fact, this idea for a space corps is one of the solutions to the problem with air force space. came from the roosevelt commission in 2001. as one of the four options that would be a solution. it came again as part of the alley commission three years later. the gao has done three studies on this all of which have said you cannot maintain the current construction of the air force and solve the acquisition problems, the operational
7:00 pm
problems that we have. this has been the first studied. this is my 31st year as a legislator. one thing i know as a legislator is you can't beat it, you try to slow it down and delay it with a study this is all this is meant to do. the air force is like any other bureaucracy, they don't want to change. and they certainly don't want congress telling them they have to change. but this is our role. this is what we're here for, it has been painfully apparent, from the briefings we've gotten, from our general officers, that both russia and china have nearly cut us in space capabilities and on a path to surface us, soon. >> we have a real sense of urgency in our committee. the members of our subcommittee, democrat and republican have heard the briefings, they know there's a sense of urgency to delay this in my view would be irresponsible. it would be legislative malpractice for us to delay this. what we are directing in this language is for the air force to
7:01 pm
start designing this. next year. the safety of the air force is designed the structure that will facilitate the efficiencies and effectiveness that we need. but i do want you to understand, there's been an enormous amount of deliberation in our committee. this is not a time for delay. this is a time for action, unless we want to let the russians and chinese surpass us with capability and with that, i yield back, mr. chairman. >> mr. coop centre. >> i would like to reinforce the chairman's remarks, whether we like it or not, space is the new war fighting domain and space has not been given adequate priority by our friends in the air force this is not to criticize the air force next do many things wonderfully well. this is a new area, new responsibility that a corps would help us address more effectively. the chairman pointed out that we've never faced such threats,
7:02 pm
in space, it's no longer a peaceful area we can take for granted. the chinese and the russians in particular have been aggressive, so we must meet this challenge, and the space corps is a good way to do it. the chairman has been very gentle, but firm in his approach. and he's had countless meetings over ten months, i don't know where my friend from ohio has been. i know he's busy with other responsibilities. but this is our appropriate and historic step. to defend america. because we could wake up one morning, we could be at supper one night and be blinded and deafened by adversary powers. so much of our most precious assets are up in space. we have got to do more to protect them. and to develop other capabilities. so i would urge my friends on both sides of the aisle to take this initiative to heart. this is an historic moment for this committee. i'm proud of this moment and i think it will serve our nation well.
7:03 pm
thank you, mr. chairman. yield back my time. >> yield the ranking member. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to associate myself with the remarks of mr. rodgers and mr. cooper. two points. one the committee has done a great deal of work on this. mr. rodgers has thought about this for a long period of time. and pulled it together in a comprehensive and intelligent way. and not just saying doing it right now. just saying, air force, you need to do this, get this set up. i think it's being done in a deliberate and intelligent manner and second, what mr. cooper said, space has changed. we took for granted for too long the fact that we dominated space and for a long time we did, but we don't any more. you mentioned china and russia, even north korea has launched a satellite. there are, other folks who were out there and involved and we need to be ready to confront this. and yes, buried deep within the air force you could do that. but it doesn't get the priority that it deserves, given how important it is and how it
7:04 pm
impacts everything that we do. so i thank mr. rodgers for his leadership on this. i urge support for the amendment. let me just yield to myself briefly. first, i want to commend the subcommittee, especially chairman rodgers and mr. cooper. they have spent a tremendous amount of time on this and they have done it together. in a bipartisan way. as i recall, the first event the subcommittee had this year was a day-long seminar on this topic. on space and the options that years of studies have offered on where we need to go. and i believe there are some changes that the pentagon cannot make on their own.
7:05 pm
and it's our job. to make those changes. now we need to study, we need to be careful about what we're doing. there are consequences to it. this is a big change. but i also believe just like it was congress, that created the air force, in 1947, when it became time, it was congress that created the department of defense and forced the army and the navy together. it was congress that did goldwater-nichols. there are times when an issue becomes developed and ripe and it is our responsibility to act. and personally i think space, both the adversaries are doing and our failures, those things lead me to believe this is the time for us to act. >> i told mr. rodgers it's dangerous to keep track of one speeches. i look back when i talked at the space symposium out in colorado springs, back in the late '90s,
7:06 pm
where i argued that this was something that we ought to look at. and this was something whose time would come. and i think it has. so personally i've been interested in watching this. but the key is, mr. rodgers and mr. cooper. have talked with an endless number of people over the past year or so, looking back at study after study over the past 15 years plus, i think they've done the work and i think it's time for this to move forward, even though i completely recognize what the gentleman from ohio said this is a significant change. i think the world demands significant change in this field right now. so i support what the subcommittee is doing. other comments about the turner amendment, mr. bacon? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i support the chairn


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on