tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN May 9, 2012 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT
a few of them, but let me hit a few high points. it's not just about your age and location, it's do you have hot and cold running water? do you have a bathtub or shower in do you have a sink with a faucet? do you have a stove or range. do you have a refrigerator in do you have telephone service? how many automobiles, vans or one-ton vehicles do you have in your home? let me keep going, about how much do you think the house or apartment would sell for if you were to sell it right now? what's the annual payment for your fire hazard and flood insurance on this property? how much is the monthly payment on your second mortgage for this property if you have one? is the person who lives in this home a united states citizen? how about this one, how well does the person in this home speak english? where did this person live a year ago and give the address for that. because of mental, physical or emotional conditions, does this person have serious difficultly concentrating, remembering or making decisions? does this person have
difficulty dressing or bathing? how many times has this person been mar sflid does this person have his or her own grandchildren 18 or younger living with it. how many times did this person and another rode together last week. last week, was this person laid off from their job? when did this person last work, even for a few days? what was your income that the last 12 months and not a range, the actual listed income. did you have any interest and dividends? rental income? royalties? public assistance or welfare payments? it goes on and on and on. this is not just a few simple questions. this is a form that if i walked up to anyone in this chamber and said, i'm going to ask you a few questions and i'm going to write these down, tell me first your income. then let's go to, do you have dividends? do you have royalties? do you have a bathtub or shower? you would look at me and say, go away.
which is what thousands of people in america are saying to this survey. this exceeds what we should ask as americans. mr. fattah: any one of millions of americans, and we have people answering these questions and then some. you think it's strange that people get to answer questions. if they can do it for a bank they can maybe do it for our country. here's the question. you said this was new and hadn't been done before. this was fully implemented in 2005 under president bush. so why would you stand on the -- i don't understand. this is not new. this is -- mr. langevin: we started rolling it out -- mr. lankford: the administration asked for 50,000 more a month and has asked for $52 million more to increase the usage of this. path f.t.a. thank you for clarifying that it's not new. thank you.
the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from florida. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. mr. dicks: madam speaker, we have someone who wanted to speak on this amendment. can we ask unanimous consent and allow the gentleman from missouri speak, strike the requisite number of words. this would not be a process that will continue. this is a one-time only. the chair: the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman rise? >> thank you, madam speaker. i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. clay: the american community survey is absolutely vital. that's why i just -- i'm kind of stunned at what i'm hearing. it was -- it's not only made it
easier for everyone to participate in the dicennial census, but it provides all americans with important information. but one particular area is of great concern to me and that's the use of a.c.f. data in determining the distribution of a substantial proportion of federal assistance. now, we talk about accountability here. well, let's start being accountable. put your -- put your actions to words. in fiscal year 2008 184 federal domestic assistance programs use a.c.s.-related data to help guide the dispribution of $416
billion and that's not chump change. it's taxpayer dollars. this represents 29% of all federal assistance. the a.c.s. guided grants accounted for $389.2 billion or 69% of all federal grant funding. most of a.c.s. guided federal assistance goes to state governments through a handful of large formula grant programs to aid low-income households and support highway infrastructure. medicaid alone accounts for 63% of a.c.s.-guided funding. a.c.s. guided funding is highly
concentrated in a small number of programs. recipient states, departments and budget functions. state per capita a.c.s.-guided funding is positively related to income inequality, high annual pay, high poverty, medicaid income limits and the percent of the population that is rural. the higher per capita funding tends to be. you know, the a.c.s. is absolutely vital. so if you want to eliminate that, i'm sure you have certain reasons to do it, but it will take away an essential tool for us to be accountable with taxpayer dollars. so sign your name on the bottom line if you want to, but i suggest you think twice before you eliminate the a.c.s. and,
madam speaker, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from -- mr. fattah: i ask unanimous consent that we have a recorded vote on this amendment. mr. lankford: i object. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia rise? mr. wolf: i object. the chair: you object. the gentleman objects. mr. fattah: no problem. we'll have an opportunity to have a vote notwithstanding. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> madam chair, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will read the amendment. >> amendment number 55 -- excuse me -- 57 to start with.
the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. 57. the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. flores of texas. page 101, after line 10, insert the following new section. section 542, none of the funds made available by this act may be used to enforce section 526 of the energy ibbeds and security act of -- independence and security act of 2007, public law 110-142, u.s.c. 17142. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. flores: thank you, madam chair. i rise to offer an amendment which would address another restricted and misguided federal regulation. section 526 of the energy independence and security act prohibits federal agencies from
entering into contract for the procurement of an alternative fuel unless its life cycle, greenhouse gas emissions are less than or equal to emissions from an equivalent conventional fuel produced from conventional petroleum sources. in summary, my amendment would stop the government from stopping this ban on all federal agencies funded by the c.j.s. appropriations bill. the purpose of section 526 was to stifle a defense department plan to develop coal to liquid jet fuels and this stifle was based on the opinion by environmentalists that coal-based jet fuel produced more greenhouse gas emissions than petroleum. i offered amendments to four appropriations bills last year and each passed this house by a voice vote. my friend, mr. conaway, also had language added to the defense authorization bill last year to exempt the defense department from this burdensome regulation. we must ensure that our military has adequate fuel
resources and can efficiently rely on domestic and more stable sources of fuel. but section 526 ban on fuel choice now affects all federal agencies, not just the defense department. this is why i'm offering this bill -- this amendment again today, for the c.j.s. appropriations bill. federal agencies should not be burdened with wasting their time studying fuel emissions when there is a simple fix and that's not restricting their fuel choices based on extreme environmental views, misguided policies like section 526. with increasing competition with energy fuel resources and the continued volatility and instability in the middle east, it is now more important than ever for our country to become more energy independent and to further develop and produce our domestic energy resources. placing limits on federal agencies' fuel choices is an unacceptable precedent to set in regard to america's energy policy and independence.
madam chair, section 526 makes our nation more dependent on middle east oil. stopping the impact of section 526 will help us promote american energy, improve the american economy and create american jobs. let's remember the following facts about section 526. it increases our reliance on middle eastern oil. it hurts our military readiness, national energy security. it prevents the increased use of safe, clean and efficient north american oil and gas. it increases the cost of american food and energy. it hurts american jobs and the american economy. and last and certainly not least, it costs our taxpayers more of their hard-earned dollars. i urge my colleagues to support passage of this commonsense amendment. thank you. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania rise? mr. fattah: i rise to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. fattah: the congress of the united states in a bipartisan vote passed the energy independence and security act
of 2007. it was signed into law by president bush. it just suggests that in federal procurement when we seek an energy that the department should use, energy efficient sources, so that we don't rely on unnecessary middle eastern supplies for oil, this removes this requirement. so i hope we would vote against it. this has been a part of the law for a number of years now and has helped save taxpayers money. so i would ask for a no vote on the amendment. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman yield back? -- the chair: does the gentleman yield back? mr. fattah: i'd be glad to yield. mr. dicks: this is an effort to overturn a law that was passed in 2007 that says -- try to do the most energy efficient approach to running the government. i mean, i think -- mr. flores: if the gentleman will yield? mr. dicks: i think it's common
sense and i urge a no vote on the amendment. the chair: does the gentleman yield his time? mr. fattah: i'd be glad to yield. mr. flores: let's walk through this again. if you can't use oil that's refined from canadian oil sands which is blended in with fuels with oil -- fuels from oil -- all sorts of oil sources, then you're stuck to use conventional sources which means you're stuck with middle eastern oil. mr. fattah: reclaiming my time. reclaiming my time. the section that you attempt to strike from the energy independence and security act that was passed in a bipartisan way, signed by president bush, does not specify canadian sand oil. what it says is you have to use the most energy efficient source that's available. that is what our government's been doing over a bipartisan administration. it has saved billions of dollars. mr. flores: if the gentleman will yield? mr. fattah: it saves billions of dollars for our taxpayers.
so you're offering this effort to prohibit -- it should be handled in the energy committee. mr. flores: if the gentleman will yield? mr. fattah: i'd be glad to yield. mr. flores: what the navy said to develop other alternative fuel sources because they're not sure where they will get their fuels is to use biofuels at a cost of $20-plus a gallon instead of using jet fuel. that is not easier on the taxpayers. mr. fattah: we are not trying to decide parochial decisions by which is good and not. the law passed by the congress and signed under president bush requires the department to act in terms of energy efficiency and to save taxpayers money. you want to prohibit that. on behalf of what you think is a more appropriate way to go, we should make an amendment to that law, bring it to the floor, bring it to the energy committee and not attach it as
a rider on this appropriations bill because we can't have an appropriate debate on the matters thereof. thank you. i yield back the remainder of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. . the chair: the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. mr. flores: i request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas will be postponed. >> madam chair. mr. wolf: i ask unanimous consent that i request a recorded vote on the amendment of the the gentleman from florida, mr. webster. the chair: is there any
objection? without objection, a recorded vote is requested on the webster amendment. pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from florida will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> madam chair, i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used to implement the national ocean policy developed under executive order 75 federal register 43023 relating the stewardship of oceans, coast and the great lakes. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. flores: i rise to offer a simple amendment overreach by the executive branch. my amendment bans the use of federal funds for implementation
of executive order 14537. it requires that various bureaucracies essentially zone the ocean and resources. it could cause the federal government to have jurisdiction over your property since that drop will eventually wind up in the ocean. concerns have been raised that the recently created national ocean policy may not only restrict ocean and inland activities but given it hasn't received its own funding, it will take scarce funds away from federal agencies and its activities that are critical to the ocean and coastal economies as well as our overall economy. i look at chart one which reveals how overreaching and overly burdensome and ill conceived this plan is. the natural resources continues to ask questions about ocean
zoning, however we aren't getting answers from the administration. where's the watershed? this chart, which is the watershed for the mississippi river shows that 26 states would be affected by ocean zoning. it gives -- this executive order would give unprecedented federal reach by the federal planning bodies to areas far inland to dictate activities that may affect the ocean and great lakes and this is one example of the incredible reach of this particular law -- this particular executive order. when you hear the words national ocean policy it sounds benign, but that is only a small part of the story. the scope and reach of this regulation is why we have the chamber of commerce, american farm bureau, timber, mining and fisheries groups weighing in against this executive order. it affects our whole nation and our whole economy. a drop of rain ta falls on your
property could be subject to this law. now, the last thing we need in washington today is more bureaucracy and you can see this executive order creates a huge bureaucracy at a time when we are trying to grow our economy. this law, this policy has been debated in the last four congresses, and each time congress elected to do nothing. so congress explicitly do not intend for the oceans intend to be zoned. executive 13547 has no specific statutory authority and no congressional appropriations to pay for the cost of this new bureaucracy. there are 63 agencies that are involved with this new policy. the last thing we need is more federal bureaucracy trying to
say that this policy doesn't cost anything. the last thing we need are more regulations from bodies like this and in an already uncertain economic environment. we have a list of 83 groups that are in support of our proposed amendment. and these groups include as i said before the american farm bureau, chamber of commerce, national association of home builders, offshore fishing industry, not only recreational and the renewable energy industries. we have letters of support for this as well. in closing, there are significant concerns that remain relating to the implementation of this executive order, the impact, the limit of its authority and the lack of true stake holder involvement. the particular agency that is affected is the coastal and
marine spacial planning office and that was zeroed out in fiscal 2012, but this is the -- that red chart shows you that it's still actively involved in the process. where they're getting the money, i don't know. but we have to assume it's from the taxpayer. i'm asking that congress do what congress intended and that's not to have this activity and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania rise? mr. fattah: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. fattah: i actually applaud the president's efforts. i was at the coastal zone conference when the ocean policy was applauded by nearly thousands of americans from cross the country when it was held in chicago last year. we as a nation have more responsibility for the world's oceans than any other nation on the face of the earth. there are documented challenges to the ocean's health that have
been, i think, well documented. if you have a problem with the executive order, the problem is really not with the president of the united states but with the united states congress. we have passed laws giving various responsibilities and duties to over 63 different agencies having to do with our stewardship of the ocean. and only thing that exists in the executive order is the president not taking any new action but to coordinate and supervise the implementation of the existing laws as passed by this congress under the past four presidents of the united states so that we can come to grips with the dire conditions to the oceans of the world. so i applaud the president. i oppose this amendment that
seeks to prohibit essentially the executive branch from implementation of congressional laws that have been passed by the congress. absolutely no other -- this idea that there is any kind of power grab in the executive order, i would invite members to read it. it does not do anything other than to move more efficiently implement laws passed by our congress. i yield back the remainder of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington state rise? mr. hastings: i move to support the amendment offered by mr. flores, a member of the natural resources committee. we have had had several hearings on this executive order and the potential impacts that this executive order would have far, far beyond ocean policy. the natural resources committee also obviously has concerns about our environment.
that's probably one of the reasons that the committee was created many, many congresses ago. but this step by this administration, with this executive order goes far, far beyond what anybody would envision and it's being done without going through the normal process. the gentleman from texas in his remarks stated several organizations that are opposed to this executive order, and amongst those, the farm bureau. when one thinks about the farm bureau, they are an organization that represents our diverse agriculture industry across the country, but you don't society the farm bureau policies with the oceans or lakes. you society them with crops that are grown in dry land or irrigated land or whatever the case may be. so that being the case, why should the farm bureau be concerned about a policy dealing with ocean planning?
well, the reason why is obviously in the fine print, because in the fine print of the executive order, it says that this ocean policy should look at a number of things, including, and i quote, by promoting and implementing sustainable practices on land. so it means that implementing practices on land are those positive or negative? i would be happy to yield to my friend. mr. dicks: one of the problems we have is with runoff from agricultural lands that goes into the chesapeake bay, that goes into puget sound. mr. hastings: reclaiming my time. mr. dicks: that has to be dealt with. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hastings: i would be more than happy to respond to my good friend in that regard.
so this is the concern because of that and they say, then, that rightfully so in the letter that was sent out to all members of congress that instead of being limited to oceans and coasts, the policy could extend to the regulation of every farm and ranch in the united states. now, i think they are right on on that, but we do have statutes, by the way, that deal precisely with what my good friend from washington brought up to me just a moment ago, and that's the clean water act. that's what part of that is all about. this is an executive order that gives potential authority, far, far beyond those acts and it's done by executive order. now, there is a process to go through -- sometimes we can agree or disagree but at least go through that process with the congress making the policy.
that's the issue here with this executive order. and finally, let me make this observation since my good friend from washington brought this up. our state of washington has an ocean policy. it was done by statute. and in it, specifically says in that statute, and i quote, the marine management plan, meaning the ocean policy, the marine management plan must be developed and implemented in a manner that recognizes that respects existing uses, end quote. i think that's good policy. in fact that's probably why so many organizations are in support of the flores amendment. but the policy that is driving this executive order is contrary to that. and let me take a direct quote, a direct quote out of this policy driving this executive order, it says, and i quote, the task force is mindful that these recommendations may create a level of uncertainty and anxiety
among those who rely on those resources, resources, meaning the land. now, mr. chairman, i have to say, does this not sound suspiciously like we have to pass the bill what's in it? does that sound somewhat familiar? i think the gentleman from texas is exactly right on. the way we can exercise our prerogative and our authority is to deny funding, and by the way, we have the council of economic quality in front of our committee asking where is this funding coming from. they have yet to respond. so it is not showing up on anybody's budget -- the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. hastings: i ask unanimous consent for one additional minute. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for one additional minute. mr. hastings: this amendment is saying, we are going to exercise
our authority and our authority is not to give any agency that contributes to this policy any funds. if nothing more than that. i urge my colt etion to support -- i urge my colleagues to support the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas and i yield back. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. farr: it was your committee, mr. chairman, that passed the bipartisan bill that created the ocean commission. signed into law by president clinton and the appointees to that commission made by president bush. chair was admiral watkins, former head of the navy, former secretary of energy, great republican, the great admiral who understood ocean policy. oil and gas executives, fish
processors, all kinds of people, because we set up a commission to look at these conflicts at sea, why? because as was stated, america has more ocean water than any other country in the world because of the exclusive economic zone that applies to guam, hawaii and so on. what is happening there? we were having all kinds of conflicts, conflicts between dredge boats, seismic boats going out to look for oil and gas, fishermen who had crab pots, stationary pots, buoys and they said the only government that can resolve this is the united states government because there are federal agencies. we need to resolve this. >> would the gentleman yield? mr. farr: had hearings all over the united states and came back with their policies. and when we had commission work,
we implemented those policies. i worked hard on it, but i wasn't going to be the leadoff on the bill because it was a republican administration. your colleague gilchrist offered that bill, your colleague, mr. kurt weldon. these were republican bills before your committee and guess what? and mr. pombo wouldn't hear them. admiral watkins came in and asked for a hearing. that policy has been lingering for over a decade. . guess what this administration did? they asembinged every agency in the -- they assembled every agency. ambassador for fish, for example, it's in the state department. all these things needs to be discussed and resolved and they
came up with this ocean policy. this is to avoid conflicts. and the navy needs it. the military needs it for security purposes. you're not -- >> if the gentleman will yield? mr. farr: you say your committee hasn't heard it which is false because your committee had that bill not just one session, two sessions, three sessions, about four sessions and never took it up. they never dealt with the policy. it was all there. for lack of congressional action, this is now done by executive order. thank god it's done by executive order. and the farm bill, those are the people opposed because they say these things may happen. my god. >> if the gentleman will yield? mr. farr: some think that potato farmers will be affected by ocean policy, come on, that's a stretch? >> if the gentleman will yield? mr. farr: so i tell you this amendment is not only not good,
it puts this -- it goes backwards in being able to deal with the conflicts at sea and being able to do what the united states government has to do. lead, lead the world on ocean policy, not take a second seat to it. >> if the gentleman will yield? farr -- mr. farr: if the gentleman will yield? mr. hastings: the gentleman started his remarks by saying the committee which i have the privilege to chair started the ocean commission. i wasn't on at the time but they did create it. this is the crux of the matter. one of the recommendations that came out of that committee was this. it said that the policies -- the ocean council should work with congress and so on to develop a flexible and voluntary process for the creation of regional ocean councils. states working with relevant stake holders should use this
pro-- stakeholders should use this process to establish regional ocean council. now, that is exactly what we -- process should -- we should be going but the executive order is 180 degrees from that. 180 degrees. so the legislation that the gentleman is citing is being used contrary to what he is trying to promote. the whole point of this amendment. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. hastings: i ask unanimous consent that the gentleman get another two minutes. mr. farr: thank you very much. the chair: is there objection to an additional two minutes? the gentleman from california, without objection, the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. farr: the council has to be created by congress. i hope that the leadership of your committee and jurisdiction would create those councils so that they will have some bottoms up authority. i mean, we have the -- mr. hastings: if the gentleman will yield to me real quickly?
i just want to make the point. the gentleman makes the point of how maybe the process should work and the commission was created. my objection and i think the gentleman from texas' objection is this is being done by executive order and the way that the process is laid out totally ignores the recommendation that came out of that policy. that is the whole point. mr. farr: reclaiming my time that you yielded to me, thank you very much. look, the responsible issue here is we want to do that, let's have it -- congressional hearing, oversight hearing on this ocean policy. i'd be proud to defend it. but to say -- whack and say whatever it is, whatever accomplishments we are not going to allow it to be implemented i think is reckless and irresponsible. mr. hastings: if the gentleman will yield for just a moment? we have had five hearings on this just to make a point. the chair: does the gentleman yield back the balance of his time? >> mr. chairman, i rise in
opposition to this. the chair: does the gentleman move to strike the last word? >> thank you very much. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. markey: it is time for the republicans to stop being afraid of commonsense initiatives like the national ocean policy. and why is that? well, it's because the national ocean policy will reduce bureaucracy, streamline government operations and why would anyone be opposed to that? could it be because big oil doesn't want anyone other than themselves to have a voice in how we are using our coastal resources? is that what this is all about? is this really just northern drill, baby, drill issue where the oil industry has the policy, the oil industry has a voice and what we're trying to say here is that others should
have a voice too? they are america's ocean, not exxonmobil's ocean. so following a decade of discussion and shareholder engagement, president obama established the national ocean policy in july of 2010. creating such a policy was a cornerstone recommendation of president bush's u.s. commission on ocean policy, and now following even more public engagement we await the final national ocean policy implementation plan to come out this summer. now, the assertions that the policy will create new regulations, usurp state authority, patently false and misleading. >> if the gentleman will yield? mr. markey: it will allow federal agencies to better coordinate amongst themselves and with other levels of government and all stakeholders to eliminate red tape while
managing effectively with multiple ocean uses. opposing ocean planning is like opposing air traffic control. you can do it but it will cause a mess of the -- or lead to dire consequences. our coastal communities are home to 108 million people, 36% of our nation's population. these numbers are steadily increase. there's a saying in washington, if you're not at the table you're on the menu. when it comes to our nation's oceans, more and more guests are coming to dinner. fishing grounds, shipping lanes, navy training ranges, offshore energy production, wildlife habitats and other uses are increasingly in competition and the national ocean policy will help ensure that everyone has a seat at the table. instead of supporting a plan for our oceans, the republican majority continues to pursue
scare tactics claiming that the policy creates additional regulation and kills american jobs. and yet they have no evidence that that is the case. so let's go to what this bill proposes to do. it proposes to slush $93 million from the noaa budget, threatening the health, the safety and the prosperity of americans. >> if the gentleman will yield? mr. markey: specifically, the bill calls for a $5 million reduction to the noaa coastal services center which helps the states, the localities and individuals, protect private property and addressing infrastructure associated with flooding, sea level rise and other coastal hazards. two, this bill, the republican bill seeks to cut $32 million in the national marine fisheries service which has the difficult responsibility of managing fisheries to sustain our coastal communities and
ocean ecosystems. and they also want to cut $30 million which will be cut from noaa's competitive climate research budget at a time when much of our country has been experiencing severe drought and other extreme weather. we need to study and understand these extreme weather events in order to protect lives and livelihoods by sticking our heads in the sand and refusing to act, we do a disservice to the people we are elected to represent. we know that the oceans are warming and warming draw matcally because of climate change. we know that tornadoes are now ripping through the midwest in february, not in april or may. should we be studying that? we know that people now all across the country are becoming more fearful of these ever-intensifying climate conditions that are threatening the lives and the livelihoods of tens of millions of
americans. should we be studying this? what do the republicans say in their budget? no. so i understand that some of them do not believe that this should be studied. i understand that they do not believe that the ordinary american is becoming concerned about the change in climate but i say they are. i urge a no vote on the republican proposal. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington rise? mr. dicks: i rise in strong opposition to the flores amendment. the chair: does the gentleman seek to strike the last word? mr. dicks: the information -- the chair: does the gentleman seek to strike the last wod -- word? mr. dicks: yes, i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. dicks: this will maintain, protect and restore our ocean, coastal, island and great lakes ecosystem which provides jobs, food and recreation and serves as a foundation for a substantial part of our nation's economy. only healthy, functioning and
resilient marine and freshwater ecosystems can support the fisheries which we depend on so heavily. across the continental united states, our coastal and ocean ecosystems are suffering from an outdated issue approach to stewardship and management. we are already seeing the threats posed by ocean acidification, low dissolved oxygen, harmful algae blooms and dead zones in the gulf, the chesapeake and puget sound, unfortunately. and throughout our nation's coastal waterways, the national ocean policy will help us better address the threats to our aquatic ecosystems from overfishing, coastal development, stormwater runoff, carbon emissions and other pollutants entering our waterways and will also help us balance the many overlapping ocean uses. the core approach of the national ocean policy is to improve stewardship of our
oceans, coast, islands and great lakes by directing government agencies with differing mandates to coordinate and work better together. the national ocean policy creates no new authorities. the result of increased coordination would be better stewardship of our national heritage through improve government efficiency, better development and use of data and information and a process of open and transparent stakeholder engagement. this increased coordination between agencies is the sort of effort that needs to be taking place on a federal level in order to reduce inefficiency, waste and redundancy between agencies. the national ocean council brings together state, local, tribal, governments and all of the ocean users, including recreational and commercial fishermen, boaters, industry, scientists and the public to better plan for, manage, harmonize and sustain uses of ocean and coastal resources.
it develops and facilitates the planning process, deals with many overlapping ocean uses and expedites the approval process of new uses being introduced. the national ocean policy offers an avenue for thoughtful planning and is the best choice for these stakeholders looking to be involved in the process or at least having some voice in the discussion. while not required to participate, most states and regions see the benefit of marine planning as a way to leverage their interest and achieve desirable outcomes. i would say to my friend from texas, in the pacific ocean there is debris the size of the state of texas. now, if you think we're taking care of our oceans, if we're taking care of our rivers and streams and lakes, you are at best ill-informed. we need a national effort, an international effort to clean up the oceans, to protect the
oceans. and what do we get from the republicans? a nonscience, nonfactual approach to this problem. it's disgusting to say the least. mr. hastings: if the gentleman will yield? the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. dicks: i yield to the gentleman. the chair: members are admonished to direct their comments to the chair. mr. hastings: i appreciate the gentleman for yielding time. . the gentleman when he made remarks about all the challenges we are facing, nobody is arguing about that. it is the structure in which we are talking about here. and we have, unfortunately, we have had -- we have experienced painfully in this body and this country, when we have a structure of a top-down solution, it always seems to come out wrong and that's what the issue is all about. we have had five hearings on
this issue. but the way that this is set up, it was designed to be voluntary and designed to be in corroboration with the states. our whole state of washington has responded to that. but the way this is written and way it is interpreted and it is a top-down issue and -- mr. dicks: reclaiming my time. what we have been doing isn't working. the oceans are in trouble. we have got acidification that affects our shellfish and it's because of toosh carbon dioxide going into the oceans. the oceans are warming. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. dicks: i ask for one additional minute. mr. dicks: i ask unanimous consent. the chair: is there objection? the gentleman is recognized for one additional minute. mr. dicks: there is a problem with fertilizer off of
agricultural lands. we have it in puget sound. these are serious matters and to look the other way is not a solution. mr. hastings: do you yield? mr. dicks: i yield. mr. hastings: clean water takes care of that. sometimes we agree and sometimes we don't. i want to make an analogy i think the gentleman would agree with. we had a long debate last night on catch shares. the gentleman was defending very much so, and i agree with him, the fact that there is regional planning and catch shares work in our part of the country. that is all we are saying and that is probably a better model. this executive order is contrary to that. my argument over and over has been the model and we should come back and do it correctly. mr. dicks: no more hearings. let's have a bill. thank you, i yield back. the chair:. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado rise? >> i seek to strike the last
word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> i yield to the gentleman from texas. >> i thank you, mr. gardner. mr. flores: my amendment doesn't roll back any regulation that doesn't exist or strike any money for any agency that is currently looking at how the ocean works. my amendment does nothing like that. my amendment specifically says that if this process is going to be done, that it's going to start where the constitution says it starts. it starts in the united states congress. now mr. farr talked a few minutes ago about how this was already an authorized activity and to that extent he introduced a bill in the 111th congress, h.r. 21. january 6, 2009. that has now become law.
there has never been an appropriation that has been issued to support that. on the other hand, here's what the executive order does do. it creates -- let me see if i can find the -- it creates 10 new national policies, nine new national priority objectives, nine new strategic action plans, seven new national goals for coastal marine special planning, 12 new guiding planning for coastal marine spacial planning. in addition, the agencies are advised to evaluate necessary and appropriate legislative changes to regulations to address the constraints. that, my friends, did not start in the united states congress pursuant to the constitution. now, it's been said this is not going to cause any additional
regulation. it's been said this isn't really ocean zoning. let me give you an example of one of the things it requires to happen. it requires the department of transportation to inventory and manage best management practices from aid from the federal highway. let's see, what are some of the other interesting once here. people say where it is not zoning, it allows for a comprehensive look at multiple-sector demands which would provide a valuation of economic effects. i have no problems doing that, but as long as the congress authorizes it and the congress properties the money to do so. the constitution doesn't say the president is king and under the
executive order, he can do whatever he wants to. >> would the gentleman yield? the chair: the gentleman from colorado controls the time. mr. flores: establish or modify existing water quality programs. that sounds like government speak for regulation. thr executive order is an overreach. the cost of this executive order is being hidden. the national ocean council specifically asked agencies to tell us what this is going to cost and the agencies specifically refused to comply. the natural resources committee asked for the cost of this program and we specifically been ignored. now if these agencies are spending this money to implement this program, this executive order, where are they taking it from? what legislatively authorized activities are not being done
and what appropriated dollars are being used from the appropriated function for something else? what's going on? there are 83 interest groups in this country that are not the type that you would not like, it includes cattlemen and farmers that think this is an overreach and could damage our way of life. we want to have a clear, transparent and constitutional process for this to be carried out. >> would the gentleman yield? mr. flores: i yield. the chair: the gentleman from colorado controls the time. mr. gardner: for the sake of expediting, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia rise? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes.
>> i rise in opposition to this amendment. the purpose of this policy is to improve our nation's ocean management effort to protect and to create jobs and grow our economy by ensuring all the multiple uses of the ocean are coordinated in a seamless manner far from a heavy directive. the policy will streamline government programs and regulations. it will reduce bureaucratic red tape and enlists local stake holders in the decision-making process and shouldn't be a partisan issue. the national ocean policy was a recommendation of both the oceans commission which was chaired by leon panetta and the commission appointed by george w. bush. both commissions called for
harmonizing of the 27 different agencies with jurisdiction over some aspect over ocean management. the current arrangement has led to ineffective management of resources and taxpayer dollars and increased costs. strategic planning maximizes and use of public resources. the policy will improve opportunities for community and citizen participation in the planning process and facilitate sustainable economic growth by providing transparency, for economic investments. it's a science-based strategy to align conservation and restoration goals at the federal, state, the tribal, local and regional levels and will strengthen the integration of federal and non-fd systems in data management into one national system.
of particular interest to me, chesapeake bay, the chesapeake bay is poised to benefit from the plan. it will help advance the bay's health from advancing public school education to creating a mapping tool for the chesapeake bay watershe that allow stake holders to share ideas and calls for the establishment of a national shellfish initiative in partnership with commercial and restoration al qaeda what culture communities which they can explore the benefits of shellfish al qaeda whatculture while increasing shellfish production in u.s. waters. that is so important for our economy. and they are critical components. they are home to more than half of all americans. they generate an estimated $8
trillion. declining ocean health and lack of effective coordination is putting this great economic engine at risk. this will ensure the stability of nation's seaports as additional users of ocean space evolve, including the responsible development of offshore energy resources but we must make no mistake to delay the national ocean policy is a dangerous political move that puts the health of our oceans, coastal communities, our jobs and fishing industry atlanta risk. we need to protect, maintain and restore the health of our oceans and coast. continuing to develop the national ocean policy offers our nation the best path forward. i urge my colleagues to oppose this misguided amendment and do something that is very much needed for our economy and for our coastal communities. let's do the right thing and
let's get these users working together naa streamlined consistent policy. it's the right thing to do. let's defeat this amendment. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. >> i do yield back the balance of my time. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado rise? mr. gardner: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. fattah: this is different from the optimism in chicago at the coastal zone conference where the ocean policy just had such an enthusiastic response from constituencies all around the country and in other parts of the world. at the heart of the development of this is bipartisan. the pe one foundation head quartered in my city of philadelphia, another foundation led by studying the oceans and
we have seen the work that has been done that led to this. i would hope we oppose this amendment and hopefully have legislation come out of the natural resources committee. i thank the gentleman for yielding me time and i thank all the people who participated in this debate and i hope we vote this amendment down. mr. polis: i would like to yield time to the gentleman from california, mr. farr. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. farr: we have worked at this for a long time and i'm ranking member of the agricultural subcommittee. i have one countyy and we do billions out of that county. and coastal agriculture is very much concerned about all of these issues that are coming up and really support the idea that
we could have a coordinated effort. this is a long effort. we had the military involved in this. we have fema involved in this. we have the department of agriculture involved in this. and every other agency and it's how you resolve conflicts that are there. yes, we in congress have nabblingt enacted an awful lot of law. we gave them authorities and didn't require them to sit down and talk about conflicts and how to resolve conflicts. we have a huge responsibility. this is a long effort to create a national ocean policy. it's the smart thing to do. it has all the federal agencies at the table finally and all the user groups, both private and public. i think this is a meat-ax approach. let's do it in the regular legislative order and not just say we are going to eliminate
that hole for them to resolve conflicts. you will end up with more lawsuits and a lot of concerns by more people who wonder what the future holds without a good comprehensive plan. i ask my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to reject this amendment. it would be a very dangerous thing to do in this country to adopt it. >> i thank the gentlemen and i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? interior interior request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas are postponed. mr. wolf: i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the committee do now rise.
those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the committee rises. . the chair: mr. speaker, the committee of the whole house on the state of the union having had under consideration h.r. 5346 directs me to report thereon. the speaker pro tempore: the committee of the whole house on the state of the union has had under consideration h.r. 5346 and come to no resolution thereon. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? >> mr. speaker, i send to the desk a privilege red port from the committee on the budget. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: report to accompany hmpt r. 4966 a bill to amend the balanced budget and emergency deficit control act of 1985 to replace the sequester established by the budget control act of 2011.
the speaker pro tempore: referred todd union calendar and ordered printed. -- trevered to the union calendar and ordered printed. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah rise? >> mr. speaker, i send to the desk a privileged report from the committee on the budget. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: report to accompany h.r. 5652, a bill to provide pursuant to h r. 201. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the house calendar and ordered printed. the claire -- chair the claires the house in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for further consideration of h.r. 5346. will the gentleman from
georgia, mr. price, resume the chair. mr. price: the committee will be in order. -- the chair: the committee will be in order. the house is in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for further consideration-h.r. 5326 which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: a bill making appropriations for departments of commerce and justice for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2013, and for other purposes. the chair: ewhen the committee of the whole rose earlier today a request for a recorded vote on the amendment offered by the quelt from texas, mr. flores, had been offered and the bill had been read through page 101, line 10. proceedings will now resume on those amendments on which further proceedings were offered in the following order, an amendment by mr. tierney of utah, an amendment by ms. black burn of tennessee, and
amendment by mr. schweikert of arizona, an amendment by mr. webster of florida, the first amendment by mr. flores of texas, the second amendment by mr. flores of texas. the chair will reduce to two minutes the time for any electronic vote after the first vote in this series. the unfinished business is the request for a recorded vote on the amendment offered by the gentleman from utah, mr. chaffetz, on which further proceedings were postponed, and on which the ayes prevailed by voice vote. the clerk will redesignate the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. chaffetz of utah. the chair: a recorded vote has been requested, a recorded -- those in support of a recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having risen a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the
the chair: the yeas are -- members are reminded that the unfinished is request for a recorded vote on the amendment offered by the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. tierney, on which further proceedings were postponed and the clerk will redesignate the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. tierney of massachusetts. the chair: a recorded vote has been requested. those in support of a recorded vote will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned
260rk the amendment is not adopted. the unfinished business is the request for a recorded vote on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from tennessee, mrs. blackburn, on which further pr seedings were postponed, on which the ayes prevailed by voice vote. the clerk will redesignate the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mrs. blackburn of tennessee. the chair: a recorded vote has been requested. those in support of the request for a recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having risen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the chair: on this vote, the yeas are 229, the nays are 194, the amendment is adopt the unfinished business is the request for a recorded vote on amendment number 38 offered by the gentleman from south carolina, mr. duncan oren which further proceedings were postponed, and on which the ayes prevailed by voice vote. the clerk will redesignate the amendment.
the clerk: amendment number 38, printed in the congressional record, offered by the gentleman from south carolina, mr. duncan. the chair: those in support of the request for a recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having risen, a recorded vote is ordered. this is a two-minute vote. members will record their votes by electronic device. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the unfinished business is the request for a recorded vote on the amendment offered by the gentleman from new jersey, mr. garrett, on which further proceedings were postponed, and on which the ayes prevailed by voice vote. the clerk will redesignate the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. garrett of new jersey. the chair: a recorded vote is requested. those in support of the request for a recorded vote will rides and be counted. a sufficient number having risen, a recorded vote is ordered. . members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the chair: the yeas are 238 and the nays are 185 and the amendment is adopted. the unfinished is request of a recorded vote on the amendment offered by the gentleman from arizona, mr. schweikert, on which further proceedings were postponed and the ayes prevailed. the clerk will redesignate the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by
mr. schweikert of arizona. the chair: a recorded vote has been requested. those in favor of a recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
webster, on which further proceedings were post poped and on which the ayes prevailed by voice vote. the clerk: first amendment offered by mr. webster of florida. the chair: a recorded vote has been requested. those in support of the recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
190 and the amendment is adopted. the unfin earned business is request for a recorded vote on the first amendment offered by the gentleman from texas, mr. flores, on which further proceedings were postponed and the noes prevailed. the clerk: first amendment offered by mr. flores of texas. the chair: a recorded vote has been requested. those in support of a recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the chair: on this vote, the yeas are 250 and the nays are 173 the amendment is adopted. the unfinished business is request for a recorded vote on the second amendment by mr. flores and the noes prevailed. the clerk will redesignate the amendment. the clerk: second amendment offered by mr. flores of texas. the chair: a a sufficient number having arisen having arisen. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a two-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the
last word. the chair: the jell is recognized for five minutes. mr. polis: i rise today to address the importance of computer science in a balanced program of math and science. i thank the committee for including language, but i would like to highlight specific needs in the area of computer science. more than 1.5 million high-wage computing jobs will be created in the u.s. by -- in 2013 but few computer science classes are available to students and where they're offered they're usually electives. many states don't have certify cages for computer science. a number of computer science -- the number of bachelor degrees in computer science in the u.s. actually fell over the last few years. i have legislation that focuses on this issue but there's other steps i'd like to take as well. first, i believe it's important that federal stem education programs incorporate the broad
definition of science, technology, engineering and math as in the president's definition this definition helps make sure stem is sufficiently interpreted and not too far rely to cover just math. second, to ensure there's a comprehensive pipeline for science from k-12 to the work force of it's essential that the n.s.f. and other agencies identify our highest work force needs and use that information to prioritize stem-related subjects in our schools. i very much look forward to working with the chairman to address these issues as the bill continues to move forward through the appropriations process. i'm grateful to the chairman for this conversation and his perspective on this issue and i yield to the gentleman. >> i -- mr. wolf: i thank the gentleman for his support and -- on stem education. we would be happy to work with the gentleman to ensure that nmple s.f. and other agencies
are getting the most appropriate information on stem education needs and priorities. mr. polis: i thank the gentleman, i thank you, mr. chairman, and i yield back. the chair: who seeks recognition? the wrelt from virginia. for what purpose does the gentleman from west virginia seek recognition? >> i rise for the pup of a colloquy with the chairman. the chair: does the gentleman move to strike the last word? >> i rise for the purpose of the a colloquy if with the chairman. >> ey, strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. mckinley: i thank you for the opportunity to discuss one of my top priorities with you today, noaa's large comprehensive -- comprehensive large data array, known as
class. this program has been funded at the same base level of $6.5 billion for each of the past 10 years. despite an increase in their mission. this is noaa's enterprise system for handling all its environmental data critical for weather predictions. simply put, class therefore must rely on programs within the satellite program to overcome the $24 million funding shortfall. we should be creating certainty for the noaa class program instead of expecting them to rely on the other satellite programs to transfer funds for their own budget to class. under last year's budget, class fell short of the necessary funding to sustain core mission values. mission failure of class will
continue if we don't provide class with funding certainty this year. and not depend on transfers from other satellite programs. mr. chairman, i ask that the appropriations committee consider the importance of the class mission in conference and encourage the chairman to adequately fund their mission, a mission to find a level of funding equal to last year and no job losses. mr. chairman. mr. wolf: if the gentleman would yield? mr. mckinley: i yield. mr. wolf: i've got to be careful to say this right, i want to thank the gentleman for speaking on this issue. funding weather satellites is a high priority as well as the data systems used to store and process data from the satellites. we'll work with you and also our other colleagues in the body to ensure that the class program is adequately funded.
mr. mckinley: thank you, mr. chairman, i look forward to working with you on this matter. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? who seeks recognition? the gentleman from louisiana. for what purpose does the gentleman from louisiana seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: can the gentleman kindly specify the amendment? >> the turtle exclusion device amendment, i don't have the number. the chair: clerk will report the amendment.
the chair: an amendment by the gentleman from louisiana, insert the following, none of the funds may be used to propose a rule for turtle excluder device as described in the southeast fishery bulletin published by the national oceanic and atmospheric administration on may 8, 20 12. the chair: the gentlelady from -- the gentleman from louisiana is recognized for five minutes in support of his amendment. >> noaa and the fishing industry have a long record of working together. noaa -- the fish -- noaa had a system to protect turtles while not harming our fisherman. they said they would -- the fishermen agreed remove their nets from the water
periodically to allow trapped turtles to escape. mr. landry: by doing that, they wouldn't have to use the turtle exclusion device. now noaa intends to regulate these shrimpers and force them to use t.e.d.'s. the recent rule making replace this is partnership and places the whims of the environmentalists ahead of the scientific data or the local fishing community. there is no day that -- data that lack of the use of t.e.d.'s are causing harm in the turtle population. this regulation if implemented, will affect thousands of fishermen in louisiana. fishermen will lose money due to the cost of the t.e.d.'s equipment and theals money from the loss of -- and also a loss of money from the catch. i yield back.
the chair: the gentleman yields back. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california. >> mr. chairman, i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> i move to oppose the gentleman's amendment. turtle excluder devices are already required in other shrimp trawl fisheries to reduce sea turtle catch. in many cases, fishermen reported using the t.e.d.'s because when they're used properly, it allows 98% of turtles to escape while allowing 97% of shrimp to be caught. mr. schiff: they can prevent other by-catch and other debris from entering the trawl. t.e.d.'s also cut down on unwanted debris to increase the drag on fishing nets, causing fishermen to incur other costs.
at this stage, mnfs is considering this rule and will have ample time for other meetings and comment before any plans are put in place. i wreeled back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from louisiana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the noes have it. the amendment is not adopted. mr. landry: i would like to a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment of the secret from louisiana will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: could the gentleman kindly specify the amendment?
>> the amendment concerns the national oceanic and atmospheric administration's asset forfeiture fund. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 32, printed in the congressional record, offered by mr. gardner of colorado. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes in support of his amendment. mr. gardner: i thank you mr. chairman, and i thank the chairman of the subcommittee for his support. i appreciate his time and consideration. the appropriations bills before us present an opportunity to provide oversight that is one of the most important duties and functions of the congress, to make sure that we are looking at the ways our federal agencies, our administration, is spending money and making sure it is carried out properly. one of the areas where i believe this congress needs to further its oversight and step up its oversight concerns the
national oceanic and atmospheric administration's asset forfeiture fund. this is money excised of funds paid -- fines paid by those who violate the act that is the primary law governing fish fgget in -- management in federal waters, responsible for protecting our fishing and preventing overfishing. it can only be connected from those who violate laws laid out in statute. such as property seized, paying off valid liens or mortgages, reimbursing any agency that assisted noaa in enforcing the law. unfortunately, what we have seen is a pattern of unaccountability, a pattern of abuse of this money, including a purchase of a $300,000 yacht that was used for personal use by certain officials within
noaa. this amendment simply says that the law, the money in the asset forfeiture fund should only be used for those express purposes defined in statute, making sure these abuses do not continue and making sure this congress steps up its role in oversight when it comes to fuppeds of the crites. with that, mr. chairman, i yield back my time and ask for a a yes vote on the amendment to make sure we are accountable for the funds from the taxpayer. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. mr. gardner: i ask for a recorded vote on a very good accountability amendment. the chair: propursuant to the rule, proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado will be postponed. who seeks recognition?
the gentleman from new york. >> mr. chairman, i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i have an amendment at the desk. on may 24, 2011 -- the chair: the gentleman will suspend. the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 28 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. engel of new york. the chair: the gentleman from new york is recognized for five minutes in support of his amendment. mr. engel: thank you, mr. chairman. on may 24, 2011, president obama issued a memorandum on federal fleet performance which requires all new light duty vehicles in the federal fleet, to be alternate fuel vehicles such as hybrid, electric, natural gas or biofuel by december 31, 2015. my amendment echoes the
presidential memorandum by prohibiting funds in the commerce, justice and science appropriations bill from being used to lease or purchase new light duty vehicles except in accord with the president's memorandum. last year i introduced similar amendmented to four different appropriations bills. agriculture, defense, energy and homeland security. all were accepted and passed by advice vote. -- voice vote. our transportation sector is by far the biggest reason which send $600 billion a year to hostile nations to pay for oil at ever-increasing costs. but america doesn't need to be dependent on foreign sources of oil for transportation fuel. alternative technologies exist today that when implemented broadly will allow any alternative fuel to be used in america's automotive fleet. the federal government operates the largest fleet of light duty vehicles in america. according to g.s.a., there are over 660,000 vehicles in the
federal fleet with over 41,000 being used by the department of justice and another 2,400 with the department of commerce. by supporting the diverse array of vehicle technologies in our federal fleet, we will encourage development of domestic energy resources, including biomass, natural gas, agricultural waste, hydrogen and renewable electricity. expanding the role these energy sources play in our transportation economy will help break the leverage over americans held by foreign government-controlled oil companies and will increase our nation's domestic security and protect consumers from price spikes and shortages in the world oil markets. so i ask that you support the engel amendment. on a similar note, i've worked with my colleagues, john shimkus and ross could he batter -- roscoe bartlett and steve israel , to bring h.r. 1687. i particularly worked with congressman shimkus on this bill in this congress.
our bill would require 50% of new automobiles in 2014, 80% in 2016 and 95% in 2017 to be warranted to operate on nonpetroleum fuels in addition to or instead of petroleum-based fuels. compliance possibilities include the full array of existing technologies, including flex fuel, natural gas, hydrogen, biodiesel, plug-in electric drives and fuel cell in a catch-all for new technologies. i encourage my colleagues to support my amendment and the open fuel standard as we work toward breaking our dependence on foreign oil. and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? mr. wolf: strike the requisite number of words. i think this amendment's productive and we accept the amendment. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from florida. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the ayes have it. the amendment's adopted. who seeks recognition? for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois seek recognition? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: would the gentleman kind i -- kindly specify the amendment? >> amendment 24. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. walsh of illinois. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available in this act for the state criminal alien assistance program under the heading department of justice, state and local law enforcement activities, office of justice programs, state and local law enforcement assistance may be used in contravention of section 642 of the illegal immigration reform and immigrant responsibility act of 1996, 8,
u.s.c., 1373. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes in support of his amendment. mr. walsh: thank you, mr. chairman. immigration enforcement, whether issuing it or revoking a visa, deportation, and even providing citizenship is a federal responsibility and should remain so. however, our law enforcement in cities and states are sometimes the first line of defense in these federal courts. in 1996, almost 20 years ago, congress passed the illegal immigration reform and immigration responsibility act. this bill not only required localities to commune cate with federal agencies when legal and illegal aliens may have been picked up for crimes, but also provided money to help them do so. since then additional programs such as the criminal alien assistance program and secure communities have been implemented to ensure further that localities have the
resources they need to meet their responsibilities. and the federal government has stated time and again that participation in these programs is not optional. yet despite that, some cities and even whole states blatantly ignore federal requirements. what is even worse is that these sanctuary cities still receive money for their so-called immigration efforts under state criminal alien assistance program. in fact, one city received $1.1 million at the same time it designated itself as a city and county of refuge. and one state has even passed laws that prohibit, prohibit law enforcement agencies from detecting or apprehending those in violation of u.s. immigration laws. for this reason today i am offering an amendment that would prohibit the department of justice from providing funds to
these sanction wear cities for immigration enforcement efforts. this is a smart amendment that will require america's local law enforcement officers to do just that, enforce the laws we pass to receive the money we provide them to do so. and i urge the house to vote in its favor. thank you, mr. chairman, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks time? the gentleman from california. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> mr. chairman, i move -- i rise in opposition to the amendment which provides that none of the funds in the scamp program can be used in contravention of existing law. this amendment is like several others we've considered today that simply says either the obvious, which is federal funds can't be used in violation of federal law, in which case the amendment is unnecessary and accomplishes nothing, or the amendment seeks to go beyond existing law and set new policy in which case the policy that it
would set is one that is disadvantageous to states and local law enforcement. mr. schiff: states and local community safety policies prioritize budgetary and law enforcement resources according to community needs while still permitting federal immigration enforcement to take place. in many cases such local laws support community safety by encouraging citizens who are crime victims or witnesses to come forward and work with police regardless of their immigration status. these local policies don't interfere with federal enforcement. in fact, a 2007 justice department audit of such laws found that in each instance where cities were so-called sanctuary cities, the local policy either didn't preclude cooperation with i.c.e. or included a policied to effect that those agencies and officers must assist i.c.e. or share information with i.c.e. as required by federal law. that year d.h.s. secretary testified before congress,
quote, i'm not aware of any city, although i may be wrong, that actually interferes with our ability to enforce the law. the amendment would -- if it went beyond the mere statement that you can't spend federal funds in contravention of federal law, might deny funding to already cash-strapped police departments and for these reasons we are -- we urge a no vote on the amendment and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from illinois. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the ayes have it. the amendment's adopted. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california. >> thank you. i move to strike the last word and, mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. the gentleman will suspend. does the gentleman have an amendment? mr. rohrabacher: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: can the gentleman specify the amendment?
the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. rohrabacher of california. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following -- mr. rohrabacher: mr. chairman. i move to strike the last word. the chair: will the gentleman suspend? the clerk will read. the clerk: none of the funds made available in this act to the department of justice may be used with respect to the states of alaska, arizona, california, colorado, delaware, district of columbia, hawaii, maine, maryland, michigan, montana, nevada, new jersey, #, oregon, rhode island -- new mexico, oregon, rhode island, washington, that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana . the chair: the gentleman is recognizesed for five minutes in support of his amendment. mr. rohrabacher: thank you very much, mr. chairman. i rise today along with mr. hinchey, mr. mcclintock, mr. farr in support of a commonsense amendment that would prohibit the department of justice from
using funds to prevent states from implementing their own state laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana. this amendment would take a step in the right direction of respecting states' rights, individual liberties, would help the federal government prioritize its very scarce resources and show compassion for those thousands of ailing patients across our country. to date 17 states including the district of columbia have passed laws allowing for the medical use of marijuana. the list continues to grow. kentucky is in the process -- connecticut is in the process of passing a similar law as well. many of these state laws, including in my own home state of california, have passed these statutes through the initiative process, meaning the majority of california voters specifically decided that sick individuals ought to have the right to use
this herb for medical purposes. why the federal government continues its hardlined prohibition then is completely beyond me. as far as the medical marijuana is concerned, individuals ought to have a right and ought to be able to act in accordance with their respective state laws without the federal government coming in and interfering. neither should the federal government threaten to prosecute state employees who are carrying out the implementation of their state laws. indeed, the founding fathers wanted criminal law to be the domain of local and state government. unfortunately, however, this is not the approach that recent administrations have taken, including the current administration. for example, the governor of washington state received a letter from the department of
justice and was warned that, and i quote, state employees who conducted activities mandated by the washington legislative proposals would not be immune from the liability under the c.f.a., end of quote. additionally, the d.e.a. has conducted numerous raids on medical marijuana dispenseries that are in full compliance with state law. business people and cooperatives who are licensed and certified within these states to function asly the medical marijuana dispenseries have seen their businesses locked down, as ets frozen, businesses driven away and in some cases, you know, the victims of a swat squad coming into their operation. it is simply outrageous that we are spending scarce federal dollars to interfere with the medical needs of individuals, especially when it's been recommended by a physician and approved by the voters of the
state. importantly this amendment does nothing to prevent the federal government from being able to go after drug traffickers. in fact, it makes it easier because it prioritizes and gives those people a chance to go after drug traffickers rather than the sick people. under this amendment the d.e.a. would still have the power to arrest anyone selling marijuana for recreational use or engaging in any activity that is not expressly allowed under state law. but they will have more time to go after the drug traffickers if they're not -- if they're not going after people who are providing medical marijuana to people who are sick. we need to respect states' rights, get serious about prioritizing our federal government's activities and show some common sense and compassion when dealing with the sick among us. i urge all my members to vote yes for the rohrabacher-hirschly-mcclintock- farr amendment, to prevent the department of justice from
continuing to engage in activities that has no business engaging in. the chair: the question is on -- for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? mr. wolf: i rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. wolf: not only does this amendment -- what does this amendment say if a young person, 15, at a high school in whatever state is watching the house at 7:30 and they see the united states congress is ready to make it easy to get marijuana and their mom or dad -- what is going on? this amendment hurts law enforcement, law enforcement people are jeopardizing their lives. marijuana is one of the most widely abused drugs in the united states.
according to the drment e.a., more young people are now in -- to the d.e.a., more young people are in treatment for marijuana dependency than alcohol and other illegal drugs combined. this does not address the problem of marijuana abuse and possibly makes it worse by sending the message that there can be health benefits. marijuana has been called the top revenue generator for mexican drug trafficking organizations, a cash crop that finances corruption and the carnage and violence year after year. all you have to do is look at the news, that's why we put money bab in here for the national gang intelligence unit to keep the mexican gangs from coming into the united states. the mexican gangs are being funded and they have a marijuana operation.
i don't understand. i mean, i respect that maybe for medical use at a time, and i will tell you, the first time this issue came up, i voted for it. but it was in a narrow way. this is wide open. you're going to tell your 15-year-old or 16-year-old don't use drugs. well, we've got the marijuana centers downtown, everybody is going in the f.d.a. has stated, quote, to smoke cannabis has no acceptable use and treatment in the united states. i could go on. i think the message that this amendment would send to young people is that the congress wants to aid and abet, you will, and we all know, we watch 60 minutes and all these shows if somebody truly would, really, my mom died of cancer, so many people, in my family
tide of cancer, -- died of cancer. this is so wide open, they're coming in and pouring over. i think this message is bad for our country. in our hearings, we had that more young people are diing from overdose of drugs, they have marijuana, then into heroin, then we go into oxy con tin, you saw today's "washington post" where some of the drug companies were promoting pain operations which are basically pushing oxy con tin, hiring some really prominent lawyers in this town to represent them. this would not be a good amendment for the country, it would be a bad amendment for the young people. i urge defeat of the amendment and yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman from new york. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. the chair: does the gentleman move to strike the last word. >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes.
>> i rise today in strong support of this amendment and i thank particularly my friend from california for what he said about it just a few minutes ago. very clearly. this is amendment is very simple. it directs the federal government to respect the laws enacted by states that have legalized marijuana for medical use. mr. min chee: the constitution of the united states has been clear. it authorize -- mr. hinchey: the constitution is very clear. it gives state rights to except those given to the federal government. 16 states and the district of columbia have legalized medical marijuana benefiting over 730,000 patients nationwide. in addition the state of connecticut will soon sign a similar bill into law. president obama has made it clear that the justice
department should not prioritize medical marijuana arrests. especially when there are so many other, more significant issues that need attention. unfortunately, some in the d.e.a. clearly didn't get the memo. that's why we're here today. according to americans for safe access, since october, 2009, the justice department has carried out an estimated 170 raids of medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers in nine states that have legalized medical marijuana. without a doubt, these raids are clearly a waste of taxpayer dollars. but they are also fundamentally wrong. medical marijuana is proven to reduce pain and increase quality of life for patients suffering from debilitating diseases, including cancer,
multiple sclerosis and hiv-aids. medical marijuana is a safe and effective treatment for many of the symptoms that accompany these diseases. however, the d.e.a. wants to deny patients medicine that can dramatically improve their lives or reduce their suffering. this is wrong. and it needs to stop. this amendment does not do anything to advocate any violations of the law. it just says those states that have approved medical marijuana ought to be able to determine how to take care of their own people effectively. this amendment does not affect states that have not approved medical marijuana. it does not require or encourage other states to adopt medical marijuana laws. this amendment does not stop
law enforcement officials from prosecuting the illegal use of marijuana. this amendment does not encourage drug use in children. studies actually suggest that teen use of marijuana has declined in states that have passed medical marijuana laws, that in and of itself is very interesting and important. the purpose of this amendment is to allow these 16 states to give relief to people suffering from horrific diseases without fearing federal intervention or prosecution. i urge members to support this amendment and support states' rights and compassion. doctors and these 16 states know what is best for their patients. the d.e.a. should not stand in the way of these doctors and
their patients. all of this is serious situations for the health and safety of many, many people in these 16 states. in fact, others -- other states are coming into this as well. this is something that needs to be enacted because it is safe and secure and reasonable. thank you. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california. the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. rye -- -- mr. rohrabacher: -- >> thank you, mr. chairman. i rise in support of this amendment. it's clear from the votes we've been casting that this body insists on protecting rights of
states to define marriage, this body insists on protecting the rights of states to set abortion policies. mr. farr: this body insists on protecting the rights of states to determine education curriculum and standards. just yesterday, this body decided that certain states get to enforce federal immigration laws however they see fit. but when it comes to protecting the rights of states to set medical scope practice laws this body balks. all of a sudden, states no long ver the right to determine what's best for their citizens when those rights include medical marijuana. this amendment doesn't change federal law. it doesn't change drug policy. however, it does protect states' rights. for those of you who come from states that do not have medical marijuana laws, nothing in this amendment will impact your state. everything in your state remains exactly status quo. for those of you who come from
states that do have medical marijuana laws, and that means the state of alaska, arizona, california, my own state, and it's interesting what we've done in california. we decriminalized the possession of medical marijuana. it's an infraction, not a felony. we also legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes. but the voters at the same time turned down an intensive legalization bill so it's very controlled. the laws are tight and they are enforced. the other states that have passed laws are colorado, delaware, district of columbia, hawaii, maine, maryland, michigan, montana, nevada, new mexico, iowa, vermont and washington. for your states, very little will impact your state except that you will now have a state that will be able to implement the laws without fear of retribution or retaliation from
the federal government. i also note that in addition to the 16 states i just mentioned, the state of connecticut just passed a medical marijuana bill last week and the governor said he'll sign it. so to the list of 16 state, we soon have added number 17, the state of connecticut. if states rights aren't a good enough reason to pass this amendment, do it because of compassion. compassion demands it. we offer this amendment for terminal cancer patients, for aids victims for persons who suffer chronic pain. we offer this amendment not only to protect those people but we offer this amendment to protect the states that are progressive enough to provide alternative medical options to those who need it. i urge all my colleagues to support the rohrabacher-hinchey-farr amendment and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california. >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> i rise in support of the
amendment and want to share a slightly different perspective on it. i served as assistant u.s. attorney in los angeles for six years. in 1987, when i started in the office, the office had a guideline where we wouldn't take a case involving less than a kilo of cocaine for prosecution that didn't mean it didn't get prosecution but it meant it was referred to the district attorney's office. we just didn't have the resources to go after every cocaine case involving less than a kilogram. a couple of years later, we had to raise the guideline to five kilograms because we had so many one-kilogram cases we couldn't handle even those prosecutions. mr. schiff: i don't know what the policy is now, 10 kilograms, 20 kilograms but the reality is, we have finite resources within the department of justice to prosecute drug cases. in that limited world and the funds for drug prosecutions have to compete with funds for terrorism cases, carjacking
cases, bank robberies, t-check thefts and what not, we are in a limited resource world. i don't think it's a good use of our federal law enforcement resources to be prosecuting medical marijuana cases in states that have legalized medical marijuana. on the priority list of federal law enforcement priorities that ought to be near the very bottom and at a time when we can't even keep up with the more serious narcotics cases, and when we have so many other unmet needs in the justice department, this is not where we should be putting our resources and i urge support for the amendment. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. for what purpose does the gentleman seek recognition? >> i move to strike the last word.
>> i want to congratulate and thank the sponsors of this amendment for introducing this amendment. it begins to break down the taboo in american politics about discussing drug policy intelligently. mr. nadler: it also begins to hopefully result in the federal government having a more humane and human policy on medical marijuana. i heard the gentleman from virginia say that the d.e.a. says there's no medical use for marijuana. it's true. they've said it. the d.e.a. has no credibility with people who have looked at this on this subject, on most subjects with respect to drugs these days. one reason is -- there is no proof of medical -- of successful medical use of marijuana is because the d.e.a. systematically tries to make sure there's no adequate
research on that. denies the use of supplies of marijuana for medical research. but we have ample proof in the 16 states that have legalized the medical use of marijuana, we have ample anecdotal proof. we know that for people suffering pain, for people suffering nausea from aids and cancer, for many people, marijuana is the only thing that produces relief and enables them to eat and get sustenance and to regain weight and to perhaps regain health. we know this. we know this from thousands of cases. the d.e.a. doesn't know it because it refuses to see it and refuses to allow systematic research. that's wrong. it's inhumane. now it may be that -- i wish this amendment didn't specify the 16 states, because maybe a 17th and an 18th will come along this year. i hope it will. but certainly the federal government has a better use for its resources than trying to prevent the policy that 16
states have adopted, the humane policy of allowing the medical use of something that has been proven to be medically useful in many cases, to prevent that. doctors and other medical professionals ought to determine treatment, not bureaucrats in washington. so i support this amendment and i hope that maybe, maybe if it passes, maybe if we have a rational policy with regard to medical marijuana, maybe two other things will happen. maybe the d.e.a. will get its head out of the stand and will permit proper research so we'll get better research and better results an maybe we'll begin a discussion of our general drug policy toward marijuana which is certainly a much, much more benign drug than alcohol, which is legal, than tobacco, which is legal and we have a very irrational policy toward it. a policy which reminds one of the policy in the 1920's that had such dell terious affects
with regard to alcohol and alcohol use. i so i congratulate the sponsor -- so i congratulate the sponsor of this amendment who has the courage to help break the taboos concerning this subject and for introducing an amendment that if it passes will result in many, many thousands of people being more helpful and more comfortable and will be a great thing for this country. i thank you and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from tennessee. >> thank you, sir. i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. speaker. there have been quite a few good arguments made, excellent arguments, for the reason this amendment should pass. mr. cohen: justice bran dies is one of my favorite justices and he said the laboratories of democracy are the states. and indeed 16 states mostly through, if not entirely threw, referendum have determined that they wanted to try to find out whether medical marijuana laws would work. the federal government should not be infling -- infringing on what the states have determined
and their citizens have determined in the most direct form of democracy that this nation knows, state referendum and the federal government has been using its resources that could be used in better ways, to police the jurisdictions that have voted it in. that's what this amendment does, is this says there won't be any additional spending of federal moneys to try to thwart the will of the people of the states on issues in which they have voted. this is the most basic democracy that we could be talking about. you talk about the founding fathers, this is the people who give us power, they have voted in their states to make it the law. and the federal government has taken its heavy hand and tried to come in there and have come in there and prosecuted individuals. it's for the state to prosecute those individuals if they want. as the gentleman from california, mr. schiff, has pointed out, federal priorities have to be made to meet the resources available.
the moneys that they're spending now on -- in these states could be spent on border traffic, could be spent on policing against heroin and cocaine, which cause people, when they get hooked, to commit violent crimes, to get their money to buy their drugs. that's never been known to be the case with marijuana. and is not the case with marijuana. that's where our priorities for law enforcement should go and prosecution should go, is crack and cocaine and heroin. and they're not being used there. so this is a commonsense, basic democratic proposal to tell our federal government that has gone astray to not use its resources on -- against the people of this country who have made this determination. now, as far as some of the other statements that have been made, i think the public who listens knows that this is not about
legalization. this is not about 14-year-olds or 15-year-olds or 18-year-olds. it's about states, democracy, doctors and people who have cancer, glaucoma, aids, m.s., whatever. montel williams has testified how it's helped him with his illness. i had a navy seal friend who died of cancer. there is no question but that marijuana, which he smoked, helped him with his appetite when he wasn't eating and his cancer took him from 215 pounds to 115. and his grandmother said, it's the only thing that makes him laugh and it's the only thing that makes him eat. and when he was dying, my friend, i wanted him to have whatever he could have to make his illness less damaging to him and less difficult to deal with. so i rise here to assure people that it won't affect your states, it will just be those states where it was voted in. it will save resources and be able to give our government the proper direction to use its
resources, to protect us against heroin, crack and cocaine. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. who seeks time? the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. frank: mr. chairman, i salute -- i seek to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frank: thank you. if i could i would strike many of the words we've heard today. i first want to acknowledge the leadership of my colleague from california. he has a characteristic that is all too rare in politics, an intellectual consistency. we have people who on the one hand talk about freedom and individual liberty and respect for states' rights, but when it comes up against some pet project of theirs, all that goes out the window. let's be very clear. this is not a case of people advocating that other people smoke marijuana. it is, for me, an advocacy that
we allow people some degree of free choice. i listen to the gentleman from virginia and i admire his diligence, but i have to say, i disagreed with almost everything he said. there was one thing he said that i thought was appropriate. he said, he would shouldn't be debating this -- debating this at 7:30 and i agree. we should have been debating it at 4:20. that would have been a much better time. but other than that he said, what about 15-year-olds? they'll see marijuana. they see liquor stores. the notion that because something is inappropriate for a teenager or a child, adults should not be allowed to use it, is mindlessness. you can't run a society that says, we're not going to let a 15-year-old see the things a 15-year-old can't do. liquor stores would be a great example. i have been disappointed on this point in the obama administration. the clinton administration was quite sensible on this. the bush administration slipped
back and i had hoped that with the obama administration it would be more sensible. the gentleman from virginia said, well, this is a great source of money for the mexicans. sure, because we won't let people grow it in america. to the extent that people are buying medical marijuana from mexican drug cartels, i think is a somewhat lewdly overdone thing with regard to this, that's because we've had people refusing to allow them to grow it here in america for that use. people say, and again, i'm surprised at some of my conservative friends, there's no medical value. the federal government now becomes the arbiter who tells the states, you may not make that judgment that there's medical value? we know a lot of people think it has medical value for them. as to addiction and the notion that, oh, you get all these drugs together. what marijuana has in common with objectiony cotton which the gentleman from virginia
mentioned and other drugs is that we treat them the same. they're not the same in any rational way. they're not the same in adistrictive -- addictive prospects. they're not the same in that we treat them the same and we're the ones by this foolish policy that i regret the administration i support is engaging in who give people the notion that they're the same thing. it's a very simple point. people in the states have voted that marijuana should be available for people who want to use it for medicinal purposes and the states are then in charge of setting up ways to deal with it. and we have people out of their ideology opposition announcing that they will not be able to do it, that they will tell people it has no medical use despite the testimony of so many who think it does. this again is a form that i thought we learned didn't work and it's prohibition of the worst sort and by the way it is going to lead to very infective law enforcement -- ineffective law enforcement because we are a free country. you cannot impose in a free society like ours a regime of
law enforcement that the public rejects. without a great deal of oppression. state by state by state, the people of the state have voted to allow this. so when we send the federal agencies -- agents in to disregard what the state did, to disregard state law, of course you're going to have resistance. i have to say, and i would just close by saying, i think tonight's c-span has merged with turner movie classics because the great movie from the 1930's appears to be shown on both channels. this notion that because 15-year-olds are watching us talk about how people who are ill and in pain should be allowed with the vote of the state to get marijuana prescribed by a doctor and that's going to lead a 15-year-old to want to do it makes no logical sense and as i said, if you're worried about
what 15-year-olds can see, they can see x-rated movies that are being advertised, they can see cigarettes being sold widely. they can see alcohol, they can see all manner of things that we don't want them to do. this is a very sensible amendment. no one has shown, let me state finally, and you know the d.e.a., they want to do this. i have not seen the evidence that says that medical marijuana has led to any problem. i haven't seen it linked to crime, i haven't seen it linked to anything negative. what we have frankly are some prejudices being used to interfere with people's rights. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks time? the gentlelady from california. ms. lee: thank you, i rise to strike the last word. thank you, mr. chairman. i rise in strong support of this bipartisan amendment and want to thank mr. rohrabacher and all of the co-sponsors of this amendment for their leadership and for bringing this amendment forward. this amendment would prohibit the department of justice from using federal funds to prevent
the implementation of state laws authorizing the use of medical marijuana. in recent months the federal government has stepped up raids on legally operating clinics in many states where it is permissible for seriously ill patients to be prescribed medical marijuana by their doctors. these raids are shutting down legally operating businesses and are putting the health and the well-being of patients with cancer, h.i.v. and aids, multiple sclerosis and other serious illnesses in jeopardy. marijuana has proven medical uses that improves the quality of life and extends the lives of desperately ill people. by shutting down clinics, federal agents are forcing patients who may be dying, for example, of cancer, out into the streets, to buy prescription drugs like narcotics which oftentimes leads to prescription
drug addiction. these raids also undermine the ability of states to faithfully implement the will of their voters. the people in my home state of california have voted to make medical marijuana legal. these laws have been enacted to allow patients safe and legal access to appropriately produced and dispensed medcal marijuana in the safest possible environment. yet in that last 18 months, for whatever reason, the drug enforcement administration has raided and shut down many licensed and regulated dispenseries which rleal, mind you, under state law. for example, the berkley patients group in my district, which had worked closely with the city of berkley to stay in compliance with local and state laws in order to serve critically ill patients in my community has been forced to close its doors and turn their parents -- patients away. complying with the state law and relying on a memorandum from the
department of justice thousands of small businesses across my state have invested millions in dollars in building their businesses, created good-paying jobs and have paid millions in taxes. the business owners in my home district are doing everything they can to comply with the law, but clinics in oakland and berkley continue to be subject to raids by federal authorities. many of my colleagues and i have made repeated requests to the department of justice to seek clarification regarding the enforcement policies on medical marijuana. mr. chair, this is about recognizing the will of the voters. the federal crackdown ignored the will of the voters in 16 state as i cross the nation. the clinics, doctors and businesses which bring medicine, medicine, mind you, to suffering patients need clarity, certainty and an end to arbitrary raids. we should be protecting, not undermining,ou