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tv   U.S. House Legislative Business  CSPAN  October 1, 2015 9:00am-4:01pm EDT

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the speaker: the house will be in order. the prayer will be offered by our chaplain, father conroy. chaplain conroy: let us pray. almighty god, we give you thanks for giving us another day. we pray for the gift of wisdom to all with great responsibility in this people's house for the leadership of our nation. along with millions of men and women around the world, we join praying for those in leadership in our world. those you have entrusted to lead in local and national governments in this nation and all the nations of the world. guide them, lord, with wisdom and truth. may they seek you in the
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decisions they make and in the way they live. in praying for them, we are also reminded to pray this morning for those on life's margins who are affected by extreme poverty, poor health care, polluted and diseased water, unjust societies, division and terror and those who do not have the opportunity to receive a quality education. lord, the suffering of the world is all around us. stimulate our hearts and minds so that everything we may do this day would be for your greater honor and glory. amen. the speaker: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces to the house his approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1 the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance today will be led by the gentleman from oklahoma, mr. bridenstine. mr. bridenstine: i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to
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the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the speaker: the chair will entertain up to five requests for one-minute speeches on each side of the aisle. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> mr. speaker, i rise to ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker: without objection. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. lamalfa: i rise to congratulate a high school in grass valley for being one of those 335 schools to be recognized as the national blue ribbon school this year. first established by president reagan in 198 , the blue ribbon schools programs recognizes excellence of k-12 schools for those closing achievement gaps toward groups. this is certainly fitting for the school. as a small school in nevada county in northern california ith an emphasize on personal
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teaching, they are helped to be college and career ready . to the students, teachers, administrators, congratulations on this distinct honor and thank you for setting the standards of excellence in education for our students in northern california. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from michigan seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i seek unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. well, in a fox news interview yesterday, the republican speaker in waiting admitted to something that we have all known all along and that is that the real motive of the select committee on benghazi was simply to politically attack, drive down the poll numbers for hillary clinton. mr. kildee: spending millions of taxpayer dollars for a political mission and unbelievably the speaker in waiting mentioned this in response to a question as to
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what was the accomplishment of the republican congress. the accomplishments of congress . the number one accomplishment he quamecame up with was to use taxpayer dollars to create a committee for the specific purpose of affecting the presidential campaign and driving down the polling numbers of a democratic candidate. is that your job? when it took until yesterday to get a budget for just two months to the floor of this house, but you spend millions of dollars, thousands of hours, specifically for the purposes of driving down the polling numbers of a presidential candidate in the democratic party? give me a break. this is gone too far. something needs to change in this house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from oklahoma seek recognition? >> unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. speaker, i rise to congratulate colonel cheeseburgy of the 138th ighter wing located in oklahoma. he received his commission at arizona state university. he transitioned to the oklahoma national guard as a c-26 instructor pilot before retraining in the f-16. he has logged over 3,800 military flight hours and deployed five times to fight our nation's wars. as the 138th commander since december, 2012, he led the air national guard's best fighter wing of over 1,200 airmen. he exemplifies the self-sacrifice and patriotism of the citizen warriors in the national guard. colonel burgey, thank you for your service to the 138th, the national guard and our country. i yield back.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: you're recognized. mr. ellison: mr. speaker, we always knew that kevin mccarthy and the republican caucus had gotten together to set up this benghazi task force in order to do a political stunt, but i never thought they would admit it. i was shocked. i mean, can you imagine me or any member of this house setting up a $4.5 million task orce for the sole purpose of electioneering? every one in that task force, every staffer was essentially a campaign staffer and yet paid for with government money to impact a presidential election. this is a scandal, people. i can't believe what i heard. we all knew it was going on but we couldn't prove it but now
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it's documentary proof in front of literally millions of americans, bragged about and set out as, yeah, we did it and it's an achievement we're proud of. now, if one member were to use nair congressional office to campaign -- their congressional office to campaign, that would be an ethics complaint. what if a whole caucus does it? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. dold: i rise today to extend my congratulations to the captain james a. lovell health center on its five-year anniversary. it is the first and only integrated department of veterans affairs and department of defense medical center. in just five years, the center has demonstrated the merits of combining two different health care systems.
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through hard work and dedication, the lovell staff has shown that one health care facility can annually provide excellent care to over 90,000 military personnel, their families, military retirees and veterans. i'd like to personally congratulate dr. steven holt and bob buckley. their vision and enthusiasm facilitated this integration tremendously. i look forward to celebrating many more anniversaries of the lovell federal health care center and i'd like to congratulate them and thank them for their hard work on behalf of our veterans and military personnel. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. newhouse: i rise to recognize a significant milestone in washington. while the tricities led the way in ending world war ii and the
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cold war and was very proud to do so, the federal government has a legal and moral obligation to lien up the legacy nuclear waste at hanford. this week we celebrated cleanup milestone and the transfer of more than 1,600 acres of land back to these communities. this transfer represents the culmination of years of local efforts as well as bipartisan, bicameral cooperation. i commend the work of doc hastings and senators murray and cantwell that laid the groundwork for this achievement. as hanford's cleanup mission is cleated, this unneeded federal land should continue to be returned to the local community for the goals of conservation, preservation, public access and economic development to be achieved. this long-anticipated land transfer will be used for industrial and energy production and creates jobs and boosts economic development in the mid columbia region. this week's transfer is an
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exciting step for the post-hanford future. i continue to work with all parties. thank you, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. pursuant to clause 4 of rule 1, the following enrolled bill was signed by the speaker on wednesday, september 30, 2015. the clerk: h.r. 719, to require the transportation security administration to conform to existing federal law and regulations regarding criminal investigator positions and for other purposes.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from alabama seek recognition? mr. byrne: mr. speaker, by the direction of the committee on rules, i call up house resolution 449 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 62, house resolution 449. resolved, that upon adoption of this resolution it shall be in order to consider in the house the bill h.r. 3457, to prohibit the lifting of sanctions on iran until the government of iran pays the judgments against it for acts of terrorism, and for other purposes. all points of order against consideration of the bill are waived. the amendment in the nature of a substitute printed in the report of the committee on rules accompanying this resolution shall be considered as adopted. the bill, as amended, shall be considered as read. all points of order against provisions in the bill, as amended, are waived. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the bill, as amended, and on any further amendment thereto, to
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final passage without intervening motion except, one, one hour of debate equally divide and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member -- divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on foreign affairs and, two, one motion to recommit with or without instructions. section 2, upon adoption of this resolution it shall be in order to consider the conference report to accompany the bill h.r. 1735, to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2016 for military activities of the department of defense, for military construction, and for defense activities of the department of energy, to prescribe military personnel strengths for such fiscal year, and for other purposes. all points of order against the conference report and against its consideration are waived. the conference report shall be considered as read. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the conference report to its adoption without intervening
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motion except, one, one hour of debate and, two, one motion to recommit if applicable. section 3, it shall be in order at any time on the legislative day of october 1, 2015, for the speaker to entertain motions that the house suspend the rules as though under clause 1 of rule 15. the speaker or his designee shall consult with the minority leader or her designee on the doesings nation of any matter for consideration pursuant to this section. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from alabama is recognized for one hour. mr. byrne: mr. speaker, during consideration of this resolution all time yielded is for the purpose of debate only. i now yield the customary 30 minutes to the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis, pending which i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. byrne: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. byrne: mr. speaker, house resolution 449 provides a rule
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for the consideration of h.r. 3457, the justice for victims of iranian terrorism act, and the conference report to accompany h.r. 1735, the national defense authorization act for fiscal year 2016. . mr. speaker, these two bills are directly related to one of the most important functions of congress which is to provide for the national security of our country. for 53 straight years, congress has come together in a bipartisan fashion to pass a national defense authorization act, to ensure that our military men and women had the resources and the policies they need to do their job. even in an era of deep partisanship in congress, we have still been able to keep the tradition alive and pass an ndaa each year. this rule would allow us to keep that tradition alive. the ndaa process has been a great example of following regular order and doing
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congressional business the way it's supposed to be done. in both the house and the senate, the respective armed services committees held multiple hearings and markups that allowed all members to have a role in the process. here in the house, the ndaa came up for a vote on the floor with a record number of amendments. 135, to be exact. it passed with bipartisan support by a vote of 269 to 151. the senate followed a very similar process, was able to approve their version of the bill by a vote of 71-25. a veto-proof majority. since our bills were different, the last few months have been spent in the conference committee to iron out the differences. the bill doesn't include everything i would like, but it's the true definition of a bipartisan collaborative work product. this ndaa is a textbook example of how congress should work. despite all of that, i am shocked to learn that some of my
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colleagues on the other side of the aisle are not supporting this critical legislation. even worse, the president has threatened to veto this bill. mr. speaker, let's take a quick look at what's going on in the world today. north korea is trying to develop ability to deliver a nuclear warhead to our allies in south korea and to other places. china is building new islands in the western pacific and daring america to come into what they now claim is their new sea space and airspace. russia has pushed into the crimea. it's consolidating its gains. iran has just now been given the ability to get a nuclear weapon. isis and other terrorist groups are running wild in the area that used to be syria and iraq and yemen and libya. and now, now we have russia coming into that same area in
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syria and using their jets for military purposes and daring us to get until the skies with them. in the middle of all of this we should be having a bipartisan, unified front to tell the world, to tell our adversaries, to tell our allies, and to tell our service men and women that we are united. there is no republican, there is no democrat when it comes to the defense policy of this country. instead, we are going to have a debate not about the defense policy of our country, but about whether we are going to fund other functions of government. whether we are going to fund the i.r.s. at a high level that the president wants. whether we are going to fund the environmental protection agency that's attacking businesses across this country. we are going to talk about all those domestic issues and not talk about the defense of the country at this critical juncture. if there ever was a time when we should continue that tradition
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of standing together, it would be today. and for our president, our commander in chief to threaten to veet heo this bipartisan bill -- threaten to veto this bipartisan bill is beyond belief. i expect my friend from colorado will argue that they oppose this bill because we should be spending more money on nondefense programs. and that is a debate worth having. but this is not the time for that debate. there is nothing more important for us to do today than to make sure that we are standing tall and standing unified for the defense of our country. and we should never, ever use the military as a pawn in some political game to increase controversial nondefense spending. today's debate should be about providing for our nation's military women and their families and i hope my colleagues and the president will reconsider their objections. this rule also provides for consideration of h.r. 3457, the
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justice for victims of iranian terrorism act. a lot has been said on this floor recently about the threat and dangers posed to the united states and our allies by the islamic republic of iran. i don't want to rehash that debate. but i do think it's important to remember that iran is the top state sponsor of terrorism on the globe. over the past 15 years more than 80 judgments have been handed down against iran under the foreign sovereign immunities act exception for state sponsors of terrorism. these judgments add up to over $43.5 billion in unpaid damages. this straightforward bill would simply require iran to pay each of these federal court judgments before the president can lift or suspend any sanctions currently in place against iran. let me briefly highlight a few examples of these judgments. in 1985 a navy petty officer
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named robert was killed during the hydrogening of t.w.a. flight 847. hezbollah, an iranian finance terrorist organization was found responsible for the high jacking and his family is now owed $329 million. that's in a federal court judgment. my friend from colorado might be particularly interested in this one. thomas southerland, a teacher at colorado state university for 26 years was the former dean of agriculture at the american university of beirut, he was kidnapped on june 9, 1985, after iran directed terrorists at the kidnap americans in lebanon. he was held in prison until november 18, 1991. his judgment is for $323.5 million. then there's the story of alan bier, an american living in israel, tragically killed after the iranian backed terrorist organization, hamas, blew up a bus in jerslum. there is a $300 million judgment
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against iran for his death. these are a few stories of the americans who were tragically injured, killed, tortured, and kidnapped by iranian sponsored terrorist organizations. i simply can't understand why some of my colleagues and the president won't support this bill. this shouldn't be a partisan debate. american courts have already ruled that iran owes money to these individuals and their families. citizens of the united states. so why is it controversial to require that these payments are made before awarding -- rewarding iran with billions of dollars in sanctions relief? this bill is really pretty simple to me. you can either stand with american citizens or you can stand with the islamic republic of iran. you can stand with the ayatollah, or the families of service members who were killed by iran-backed terrorists. to me this is an obvious choice. so, mr. speaker, both of these
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bills are more than deserving of broad bipartisan support and i hope that they receive just that. so i urge my colleagues to support this rule and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the chair will receive a hedge. the messenger: mr. speaker, a message from the senate. the secretary: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: hadam secretary. the secretary: i have been directed by the senate to inform the house that the senate has passed s. 2078 cited as the united states commission on international religious freedom re-authorization act of 2015 in which the concurrence of the house is requested. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: i thank the gentleman from alabama for yielding me 30 minutes. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentleman is recognized. mr. polis: mr. speaker, i rise in opposition today to this rule and both the underlying bills. both of these bills, the conference report to accompany the annual national defense
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authorization act, and the so-called justice for victims of iranian terrorism act, are simply partisan political charades. they are not a serious effort at the lawmaking process. they are not a serious effort at improving our national defense. nor do they even attempt to solve the problems that american people want this congress to take up. i first like to acknowledge at least these two bills are somewhat related under this rule . in the past we have had bills in different areas, but a couple points about these bills. the national defense authorization bill is not a version of the bill that is going anywhere. it contorts the budget process in a way that doesn't make sense to anybody. it doesn't make sense to budget hawks or defense hawks. it's a way that many members of the majority party don't even seem to understand. neither bill will be signed into law, the president has indicated he will veto them. nor will consideration of them today here on the floor of the
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house advance national security one iota. even after knowing the budget plans the national defense authorization for months, here we have a convoluted bill that won't make us any safer or fangsly secure. what it does is it takes the emergency account, the overseas contingency operations fund, and turns it into a slush fund to temporarily fund all kinds of other programs. so effectively it's a deficit spending bill by fudging the different pots of money that we have for defense. i should point out this doesn't even appeal to the penning pedge or the military. the pentagon strongly dislikes the plan of using overseas contingency money to fund items in the base budget. the question i pose, mr. speaker, is if it's not being done to satisfy defense hawks in the pentagon and it's not being done to satisfy budget hawks because it's an increased spending proposal, who is the
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constituency for this and why are people even proposing this? now, it's completely fiscally irresponsible to disregard budget caps in a way that anybody who cares about our deficit should find maddening. it's why so many of our colleagues and the majority from what we have heard had to even be pushed to even go along with this highly flawed plan. as i mentioned, it doesn't make sense to the defense hawk contingency in this body, either. the pentagon doesn't like the plan, using short-term money for base money, and long-term problems maketsplarning and he procurement nearly impossible on the ground. this budget plan hurts national our ity and it damages fiscal responsibility in our country. like many bills, it's simply not going anywhere. the president has said he opposes a version of the ndaa with this budget gimmick in it. congress needs to pass a national defense authorization bill, unfortunately this time that we are spending on this
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today gets us no closer. passing a national defense authorization act is very important and seems like an obvious and routine thing to do, but with this congress, nothing is surprising. even routine matters are made infinitely more difficult as we jump through these self-created hoops to appeal to whoever is yelling loudest at the time. it seems to be what we are doing today on the floor of this body is turning our national defense into a political football and missing yet another opportunity to provide the stability that our national defense needs to defend our country. now, this could have been an opportunity to address what voters want us to address. we could have talked about an authorization for the use of military force. i have heard from so many of my constituents regarding that. we could be talking about the fact that just yesterday russia supposedly bombing targets in syria in support of assad. we have been corn ducting military operations in that part of the world for over a year
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without a specific authorization for the use of military force. we could have talked about guantanamo bay and how we can approach finally leaving that chapter behind and closing down our detention facility there. we could have debated how we can save money by right sizing our massive nuclear arsenal that would allow us to blow up the world several times over to meet our needs here in the 21st century. perhaps being able to blow up the world once might be enough. for our nuclear arsenal, that would save a lot of money we could reduce the deficit with. instead this bill would have us spend billions upon billions of dollars, reassign money to a slush fund, blow through budget caps that we put in place to reduce the deficit, in support of a war we have never debated, ver voted on, and in support of a failed policy continuing to fight wars we have not approved. and the military arsenal that
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was meant to fight a cold war which ended decades ago. this is simply a charade that does not advance our national security. i urge my colleagues o to reject it. the other -- my colleagues to reject it. the other bill under consideration is another charade, another symbol of the failure of this body to take up the issues that matter to the american people. it's a bill as we talked about in our rules committee, this bill has zero hearings, no markup, no amendments, and was rushed to the floor for unknown reasons. this bill serves as nothing more than another attempt to undermine the agreement that prevents iran from developing nuclear weapons. now, members on my side of the aisle were on varied sides of that iran agreement. some felt that the agreement was the best way to a bert identify ran -- to prevent iran from developing nuclear weapons. others felt there were other ways. nearly everybody on my side agrees that this bill is simply a terrible idea. now we are in the stage of
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implementing the iran nuclear review act consistent with the agreement that was reached to prevent iran from developing nuclear weapons. if we want to advance national security, let's have a discussion about how to enforce the agreement to prevent iran from developing nuclear weapons. . if there is a problem of compensation for victims of state terrorism, we should have a broad bipartisan bill that addresses that. iran is one of the countries but there are certainly other sponsors of state terrorism. if there is a problem collecting court judgments, let's add some teeth to that in a bipartisan proposal to do that rather than attach it to sanctions that were put in place for the specific purpose of deterring iran from developing nuclear weapons. that was the purpose that congress said was the purpose of those sanctions. they were part of that discussion for iran to open them self up to inspections and agreeing not to develop nuclear weapons. this is a separate and
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legitimate issue that there are judgments against iran that are not being enforced. there are probably judgments against a number of other nation states that are not being enforced. that's a perfectly fine issue and one that there's no reason in the world for it to be partisan. we should have a thoughtful, deliberate tiff process with hearings and markup in committee with the opportunity to take good ideas from both sides and simply address that problem to make sure we add some teeth to the ability to make sure payments are made to victims of terrorism. a concept this bill wouldn't even come close to accomplish. this bill adds no teeth to making sure that terrorist victims actually get their money. it merely tries to reinstate sanctions that are tied to the development of iran's nuclear program and makes it no more likely that a single victim of terrorism will ever see any kind of restitution. now, if we're serious about national defense, what in the world have we been doing the last few days? you know what this body, because of this body's inaction in maintaining government
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spending the pentagon has been doing the last few days? they've bebeen focused on planning for a shutdown because we were just hours away from a shutdown when finally this body figured out how to continue funding national defense. we should have done that weeks ago. why do we put the pentagon through the exercise these last few days of figuring out who had to go home, what missions had to be grounded? do you think isis or moscow or the assad regime spent yesterday wondering if they had the money when they showed up for work today? well, that's what this congress has done to our military and risk doing again in december when we face another government shutdown. we might as well be telling our generals, ok, keep doing what you're doing but don't make any plans to combat isis on december 12. well done, congress. i'm sure america and the rest of the world is impressed with your work. it's completely in congress to be discussing a budget trick for defense authorization just days -- a day after we risked
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closing down many parts of our military. just yesterday, 151 republicans voted to shut down the pentagon and the military. they voted to shut down the department of homeland security. they voted to shut down the state department just because they couldn't get their way on an unrelated health care provision for low-income women. and now suddenly the republicans support national security? i don't think so. i urge my colleagues to reject this rule and both of the underlying bills and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. mr. byrne: mr. speaker, the gentleman from colorado made soming from points. he said this is not serious. the president's going to veto it. let me go back over the vote total in the senate. this bill was passed in the senate by a veto-proof majority. it passed in this house by a near veto-proof majority, so if a couple more people from the other side would join with us we can override that veto and we would stand united behind our service men and women so it
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is indeed serious. and if the president were sear yurks he wouldn't be threatening a veto. he would understand the importance at this point in time for the congress and the president to stand together across party lines. we also heard about what's happening in syria. i'm a member of the house armed services committee. i served on the conference committee that brought this report to us. i -- let me assure you, mr. speaker, this bill contains things that are critical to what we're doing in syria. he talked about guantanamo bay. one of the main items i was appointed to the conference committee for is what we'll do and not do with the prisoners there. he talked about the military's view of this. i've talked to dozens of generals, admirals about this very issue, and they would like for us to find a different way, but they understand and agree this way gets us to where we need to go. what's important to them is not which way we get there but the fact that we get there and this gets us there.
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he talks about the fact that there is a failed policy here. there is a failed policy here. it's the failed policy of this administration in the middle east. if we had done what we should have done in the middle east we wouldn't have iran nuclearized. we wouldn't have russia there flying saudis with their jets and daring the united states. the failure of policy here is the failure of the policy of the president of the united states. our committee, the armed services committee, the senate armed services committee, democrats and republicans from both sides here, have tried to work together to give the president the authorization he needed to do the right thing, to make sure we don't have the instability we have today in the middle east. instead, we've seen the president that seems to be inert, doing nothing. russia comes in, makes this big play. what's the president doing? nothing. we were asked this time last year to authorize the training of certain syrian troops to combat isis. well, they trained 50-some-odd. we have about six left.
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so after all of that, a year, all this time, all this money, that's what the failed policy is. the whole idea was not going to work, but we gave him the authorization because we're trying to stand behind our president, we're trying to push him to do the right thing, and still nothing happens except he threatens to veto this bill. if he wants to be the commander in chief that we need, he needs to stand with us. he needs to stand with the congress. we need to stand together as republicans and democrats. we support our men and women in uniform and do what needs to be done. now, my friend from colorado referenced the rand bill and called it a charade. let -- iran bill and called it a charade. let me assure you, this is not a charade to the people that are victims or families of victims. this is far from a charade. this will get them real compensation and he says that there's no teeth here. well, guess what, the sanctions
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don't get lifted unless iran pays this money. i call that real teeth because iran wants that money more than anything else in the world right now because with that money they will go out and fund terrorism throughout the middle east. and what we will do here is not only get money to american people who have been victimized but we'll deny that money to iran that will use it to fund hamas and hezbollah and the houthis in yemen. that's what this is all about. this is dead serious. this is as serious as you can possibly get. and i wish my colleagues on the other side of the aisle would come together with us so we can do right by the american military and the men and women that wear our uniform and do right by american citizens who have been victimized by the largest sponsor of state terrorism. i said this before and will say it again. that bill, that iran bill is real clear. you stand with the ayatollah or you stand with the united states citizens. it's one or the other. and if you stand with the ayatollah, you stand with the
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ayatollah. i'm going to stand with the citizens of the united states who have these judgments. they deserve to be paid. and mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: mr. speaker, if we defeat the previous question, i'll offer an amendment to bring up legislation that will protect jobs in america, to re-authorize the export-import bank. mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to insert the text in the record along with extraneous material immediately prior to the vote on the previous question. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. polis: and to discuss our proposal to save american jobs, i yield three minutes to the distinguished gentleman from michigan, mr. kildee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for three minutes. mr. kildee: thank you, mr. speaker, and i thank my friend, mr. polis, for yielding. i urge my colleagues to join with me in defeating the previous question so that this body can immediately take up re-authorization of the export-import bank. and in fact, immediately take up legislation offered by mr. fincher, a republican, who,
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like many republicans in this house and every democrat, supports the authorization of an institution that has been re-authorized by this body for eight decades routinely, that is essential to supporting small american manufacturers that i represent back home in michigan. during the recess i spent some time with my local manufacturers. i did a couple manufacturing round tables. one in flint, my hometown, one up in the tricities. these are small manufacturers. they're not big companies. no one would recognize their names. but there are small manufacturers that have found they have products that world wants but they didn't feel comfortable entering into that kind of global trade without some help, without some support, without their own government standing behind them where they can and that's what
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the export-import bank provided them. they told me, without exception, that the failure of this congress to re-authorize the export-import bank puts that kind of trade in jeopardy, puts the company itself in jeopardy and puts the workers who build great american products that we could sell to the world in a position of some jeopardy as well. you know, we don't agree on a lot of things in this body, and that's the way it's supposed to be. but when we do agree, the american people expect us to do something about it. we agree in this body on the export-import bank, democrats and republicans. why can't we see a bill come to the floor to simply re-authorize something that is essential to supporting american manufacturers, supporting american exports, supporting american workers?
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sadly, almost ironically, there are more republicans in this congress that support the export-import bank than supported keeping the government open itself. you would think, you would think that somehow we would figure out a way -- there's all this talk about bipartisanship. it's just a word unless we do something about it. it doesn't mean anything unless it translates to something that helps the american worker. here's a chance to do that. we should bring up the export-import bank re-authorization, a republican bill which i will vote for, and we should do it today. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from colorado reserves. the gentleman from alabama. mr. byrne: mr. speaker, i just observed that the gentleman from michigan talked about something that nothing to do with the defense of this country or getting these judgments paid for american citizens who are victims at the hands of iran. what he's talking about may be important at a time down the
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road, but it's not relevant to what we're talking about today. the bipartisanship we need today is to stand up for the american people and defend american people and provide for our service men and women to make the victims of iranian tirney -- tyranny, make them whole. let's get together and be bipartisan about that and maybe we can be more bipartisan about these other issues. let's not confuse what's on the floor today what people want to talk about down the road. let's have a bipartisan majority, a big bipartisan majority, a veto-proof majority to pass both of these bills. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: well, just to be clear, what we are offering is a previous question. if we win the previous question vote, this bill will then be amended and sent back to include a re-authorization of the import-export bank. so the democrats are choosing to focus on protecting american jobs rather than partisan games. unfortunately, i wish either of
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these two bills under this rule had something to do with national defense. they don't. one of them diverts money from overseas contingency fund to a slush fund, which the military says will weaken their ability to prepare for conflict around the world. the other one is another attempt to undermine a deal that prevents iran from developing nuclear weapons and won't lead to american victims seeing money. if they were serious about making sure american victims were compensated, we'd be talking about putting teeth in he ability of america -- american courts to compound assets and make sure judgments are made to victims of state terrorism. why a deal that relates to only one sponsor of state terrorism and deals with a set of tariffs that were put in place to prevent them from developing nuclear weapons? the tariffs that are in place with regard to iranian sponsorship of state terrorism are still in place and weren't even on the table during the discussions around the nuclear agreement.
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mr. speaker, i'd like to yield three minutes to the gentleman from washington who wants to discuss our amendment that will protect and save american jobs, mr. heck. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is recognized for three minutes. mr. heck: thank you, mr. speaker, and i thank the gentleman from colorado. one of the previous speakers, the gentleman and my friend from alabama said, today is not the time. it's not now. i want to remind him that in my effort here to defeat the previous question so that we may take up re-authorization of the export-import bank, the charter for the bank expired three months ago yesterday. the time -- you're right, the time isn't now. it was three months ago. the fact is the ensuing 90 days there has begun a drumbeat of job loss, concrete and measurable and it is real. but you know, i want to start over. today is the first day of the new fiscal year for the federal government, and we can all give
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at least some thanks that we avoided a government shutdown, so let's take a fresh start to this thing, take a step back. you know, the truth is, when i am home in the district talking to people, an amazing number have a consciousness and awareness about the termination of the charter of the export-import bank and its impact, and the most frequently asked question i get is, how could anybody do that? how could anybody do away with an institution that, as my friend, the gentleman from michigan, congressman kildee, so eloquently said, had 81 years almost unanimously re-authorized 16 times by 13 different presidents and has a track record of reducing the deficit and creating jobs. how could anybody do that? that's a very challenging question for me to answer, and adherence to ideological purity is just not something somebody
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can compete when it stands up against the real-life job loss that we've begun to experience. . in my effort which i digress from from taking a fresh start, i want to cite this chamber will take up later today the national defense authorization act. it's not unrelated to our effort to re-authorize the export-import bank. some people actually support what we call the ndaa because they believe it creates jobs. i frakely don't think -- frankly don't think that's a good reason to support the ndaa. one should support or oppose it because how it reinforces and fulfill our national security objectives and goals. that's why you support or don't support the ndaa. some people do support it because of the jobs it helps create. the truth of the matter is, as we said so often, the export-import bank also creates jobs. and in fact, for the last year
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for which we have data, it supported 1 ,000 jobs. we have an exy tension threat to those jobs. the fact is as you have all heard both general electric and the boeing company have announced layoffs directly attributable to the demise of the export-import bank. people are not concluding negotiateations for foreign sales as a consequence -- negotiations for foreign sales as a consequence. the fact of the matter is every single industrialized nation -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. polis: yield an addition am minute. total of a minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. heck: the chinese are developing a wide body aircraft to compete in the international market, code name c 9 19. they think it will be online two years, i think it's more like 10. they'll take business away from us. when they do, they'll take jobs away from us. and i remind you that china has
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not one but four export credit authorities. it's also a relevant issue to the subject we take up later today, ndaa, the truth of the matter is the export-import bank helps protect the homeland very directly. there's a lot of talk about rebalancing the pacific asia and the pivot. but the fact of the matter is in order for us to compete with china we have to retain the heart of our manufacturing base. frankly, the production of aircraft in the aggregate constitutes the largest concentration of engineers in manufacturing capacity within that base. this is vital to our national security. imagine a world 20, 30, 40 years from now in which -- mr. polis: one additional minute. mr. heck: in which the boeing company no longer exists. i don't want to imagine that
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future. think what it would do to our national security circumstance. it would be devastating to our national security. and we are ceding this territory. the irony of this debate and why again i find it so challenging to answer the question why would anybody do this, truly if we never had an export-import bank, we would all be sitting around asking ourselves how do we compete with those other countries all of whom have export credit authorities? we would be devising and standing up the export-import bank. we would say what do we want that to look like? first of all we want it to support american jobs. and secondly, we would say we want to protect american taxpayers and not have them on the hook. guess what, my friends? we already have or had that institution. the export-import bank is transferred in the last generation billions of dollars to the treasury and reduced the
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deficit. the export-import bank has helped create and support millions of jobs. if you want to compete in the global economy, you need an export authority that creates jobs. please defeat the previous question and take up the issue of re-authorization of the export-import. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from colorado reserves. the gentleman from alabama. mr. byrnes: thank you, mr. speaker. i appreciate the words of my good friend from the state of washington, my co-chair for the singapore caucus. i know he feels those words deeply. i agree with him that manufacturing is very important to this contry. manufacturing aircraft is important to my district. we opened up three weeks ago an airbus facility that will make competing aircraft against boeing. that's good for america to have competition. so i certainly agree with him about that. it has nothing to do with these two bills. we are here today, again, amazingly, talking about the most important thing we do in our government and we get off on a side issues shoe.
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and it's a side issue today. maybe a big issue tomorrow, but today we are here to talk about these two bills. my friend from colorado for the second time has referred to the overseas contingency fund as a slush fund. the president of the united states, president obama, has asked for that fund every year that he has been president. and we, the congress, has given him that fund every year that he's been president. i don't think when the president asked for it, when the congress gave it to him, either side thought we were giving a slush fund. it has been used to protect the people of the united states. everyone has agreed on that. it only became a slush fund when they didn't want it to be used for a particular purpose. it's not a slush fund. the purpose for which it will be used are spelled out in detail in the national defense authorization act. an act, as i have said, we have gone through in both houses through committees and floor debate and very lengthy process
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of trying to get to this conference report. this is not a slush fund, this is something necessary to defending the country. i hope instead of using terms like that which does not reflect very well on provepl who asked for it, i think -- president obama who asked for it, i think we should use other terms and get back to the heart of this argument. are we going to stand together for the defense of this country or not? are we going to stand with ayatollah, or stand with people who have been harmed by ayatollah? i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: we haven't even passed an authorization for the use of military force to establish the way the legal -- the legal way for who we are supposed to be fighting against. we are still operating under the post-9/11 authorization for use of military force that names al qaeda. you talk to most military experts, al qaeda is not the pre-eminent threat today. there is a lot of threats in the world, including isis, including threats in the syrian civil war. including threats of the resurgence of the taliban in
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afghanistan. and this body needs to take up an authorization for the use of military force to ensure that funds we appropriate for defense are used in a way that congress is aware of and has oversight of. mr. speaker, i yield three minutes to the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from texas is recognized for three minutes. ms. jackson lee: let me thank my good friend from colorado for miss managing of this bill and also thank the manager as well for coming to the floor and doing the people's bidding. although we disagree in both the purpose of the underlying bill and its effectiveness, there is no doubt that this bill has a good cause. none of us take a back seat to protecting the american people, to seeking compensation, to bringing those who are missing r those who have been captured on false terms back home to the american soil, and i stand here to make that commitment.
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and as well i recognize that we are going down the trail, mr. speaker, that we have done for the affordable care act. one more attempt to undermine a legitimately debated initiative, the iran nonnuclear proliferation, where members made a conscious decision, personal decision, on reflecting on the best direction for the american people in both the senate and the procedures set out for this congress to determine whether this bill, whether this initiative will be turned back. it did not work. so it's the law of the land. and it is an effort to ensure peace, to reconcile in the area, to stop the proliferation of nuclear weapons by iran. it does not in any way diminish the united states stance on iran's terroristic activities. it does none of that. but this legislation under the pretense of not allowing the
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sanctions to go into place, a very -- to be leaved, very key component that by wait has a number of measures in that initiative, a number of measures, another roadblock before those sanctions will be removed upped the pretense of dealing with the -- under the pretense of dealing with the individuals who we all want to be brought home. i don't know how this congress does not know of the negotiations and the engagement that is going on. but they know that this is a legislation initiative that will be vetoed by the president. and i say this in the backdrop of the madison papers. number 51 that says justice is the end of government. it means that we in this floor must do things that really get us in the direction of justice. the end result for the american people. and the reason why i'm so disappointed, i listened to my two colleagues speak eloquently about the export-import bank. i can tell them i was in africa
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with the president and an american stood up and pleaded that he was going to lose 400 jobs if we could not get that export-import. i hesitate to think that his contract and his engagement, what we asked him to do, has slapsed. mr. speaker -- has collapsed. mr. speaker, let me repeat again justice is the end of government. so here we are on a bill that is going to be in a copycat of what we are doing with the affordable care act. i'm so disappointed, mr. speaker, because here i'm on the floor discussing justice and we have yet another disappointing representation of this congress when a leader of the congress can speak and say that the benghazi committee is only a farce, only used to besmirch a public servant. that is not what madison wanted for this nation. didn't want us to stop the economic engine of export-import
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bank. didn't want us to over and over attack the affordable care act that has been passed and upheld by the supreme court. they didn't want us to a bile like the underlying bill dealing with blocking the iran sanctions process of the bill that we passed to stop nuclear proliferation. they didn't want us to do that, mr. speaker. they wanted us to be justice established and they wanted us to do what is right for the american people. i ask to vote against the rule and the underlying bill. justice should beed end of government not what we are doing here today. i thank the speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from colorado reserves. the gentleman from alabama. mr. byrne: mr. speaker, i would just note the gentlewoman from texas talked about justice. one of the bills that's in this rule is the justice for victims of iranian terrorism act. it is about justice for the victims and for the families of victims of state sponsor terrorism by iran.
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it just doesn't undo the iranian deal. if iran pays the judgments, the deal goes forward. that's the law. i would disagree with her with regard tore whole concept of justice. this rule contains a bill that is directly about justice. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from alabama reserves. the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: i'd like to inquire if the gentleman has any remaining speakers. mr. byrne: we have no remaining speakers. mr. polis: i yield myself the balance of the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: it's remarkable the gentleman from alabama hasn't been able to find any other republicans to support these bills to come down and help him argue. i think that speaks volumes about how these bills are simply not contisstevent with promoting our national defense and fiscally irresponsible. they don't have the defense hawks or budget hawks. my poor colleague, mr. byrnes, is left alone to fend for himself. here we are trying to use the
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contingency funding as base funding and use it to somehow form the base from which our military must fund its everyday operations. the commanders, generals all agree this is a bad idea and the gentleman from alabama has even acknowledged that. here we are discussing the bill that won't result in any of the victims of state sponsor of terrorism actually seeing their settlement. when there is another path. we certainly could have a deliberative process around a bill that empowers the impoundment and collection from sponsors of state terrorism, states assets here in our country to ensure the victims see their fees. see their judgments. what this bill does is it ties it to unrelated set of sanctions put in place to prevent iran from developing nuclear weapons. two, settlement of these claims. when actually we should be giving our courts who are concerned about this issue with regard to settlements against sponsors of state terrorism, we should give courts the increased ability to make sure they can
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see that restitution and impound assets from sponsors of state terrorism. now, democrats have come down and offered something if we key feet the previous question that will improve our national defense. it will ensure we have a strong aerospace industry here in our country. the gentleman from alabama has mentioned that airbus is in his district while airbus is a company that will do very well if we fail to authorize the export-import bank because it will put american competitors like boeing and lockheed at a significant disadvantage. i hope that we are fighting to ensure that america maintain its airspace capacity and leadership and we don't cede all of that to european companies like airbus that are welcomed to compete on a level playing field, but it's critical for our national security that we have the ability to lead the world as we have in the aerospace industry. we should be discussing the use for the authorization of
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military force. it contains parameters how money is used but it's not a substitute for authorization of the use of military force. we should be having that debate. who are we even fighting? who are we even fighting? i don't think most people believe that it is still al qaeda from the post-9/11 authorization for the use of military force. now, i don't know what to call what we're doing in iraq and syria. maybe it's a war. maybe it's a security operation. maybe it's occasional support to some syrian rebels or support to the iraqi government or on and off commitment to the kurds. i don't think it's what congress voted on in 2001 and twee. before i was here, before mr. byrne was here, before the vast majority that currently is here. that should be in the history books, not being invoked for legal justification for conducting operations for a world in 2015 which is vastly different than the world of
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2001 and 2003. and who knows how much longer or for how many different wars or security operations will continue to be administered if congress doesn't finally specify and do our job with regard to an authorization for military force. now, that's a hard debate, it's a hard issue. it's not a partisan debate. there are democrats and republicans on all sides and many members when we have that debate will make sure we have the very best information to act on. but when we authorize military force against al qaeda and afill yate groups in twuling -- affiliated groups in twuling, there's been a vast majority, including myself, plug mr. byrne, -- including mr. byrne, including mr. heck, i believe only ms. jackson lee was here when they had that discussion. the people that talk about ndaa, they didn't have the
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choice of the target. the american people deserve and demand this debate. they don't want yet another fight with congresspeople playing budget tricks around defense. they want to know what our nation's plan is for the operations that have been ongoing. they want to see congress take its constitutional responsibility for actions in the world and whether any one of us ultimately vote in favor or against authorization for the use of military force. we all, i hope, are for the debate and we should join in demanding one. on the conference report, mr. speaker, this plan will not work, will not become law. the president will veto it. the generals owe poess it. the budget hawks oppose it. no one came down to talk with mr. byrne in for it. it's a terrible plan. we need to defeat it. the iran bill is -- tries to get a legitimate issue in completely the wrong way. it's not a partisan issue we
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want to see restitution for victims of state terrorism. let's get into that act and look at the enforcement mechanisms rather than try to use these victims at yet another attempt to go after the deal that prevents iran from developing nuclear weapons. i think it's clear from a rules committee debate -- our rules committee debate that everyone supports compensation. the iran nuclear agreement has nothing to do with that and it certainly doesn't prevent that from happening. no matter what country, whether it's iran or other sponsors of state terrorism, we all remain committed to this process of seeing justice. undermining the ability to enforce a nuclear agreement is not the proper way or even a relevant way to achieve this goal. the re-authorization of the export-import bank is ready to go. if we defeat the previous question we'll bring it to the floor. we have the votes in the house. i hope my colleague, mr. byrne from alabama, will join if we defeat the previous question. the president agrees. we can stop this unnecessary
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loss of jobs every single day in districts across our country solely due to our inability to act. and hope we can move to take up highway legislation, e.s.a., immigration reform, these are issues i hear from my constituents irever day. so rather than waste time, waste money, hurt our national defense, let's get to work and accomplish something. i urge my colleagues to defeat the previous question, defeat the rule and i yesh. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. -- mr. polis: and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. mr. byrne: i appreciate mr. polis being concerned that i'm by myself. i know i have the full support of my colleagues behind me. they'll be here to debate the bill after we adopt this rule. extremely important that we understand what we're about in these two bills. it's not about the export-import bank. it's not about immigration. it's not about any of the other issues that he brought up. it's about defending the
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american people and making victims of iran terrorism whole. that's what it's about. now, i've seen the public opinion polls on national security. national security is rocketed up. the number one issue for people of america. i didn't need to see those pofments i've done 18 town hall meetings the last several weeks in my district, and i've looked at my constituents in the eyes and heard their concerns. they don't bring up the export-import bank to me. they bring up the fact that they are worried about what's happening to our country standing abroad. they're worried about what's going on with these brutal terrorists in the middle east. they're worried about the fact that we've just given iran a nuclear weapon. they're worried about whether we'll have adequate defense to continue to protect them as we have for decades now in a bipartisan fashion. that's what they're worried about, and that's what they expect us to come here and do something about.
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these two bills do something very important. the mr. nadler: for 53 years -- the national defense authorization act for 53 years has passed in a bipartisan fashion which has said to the world, which has said to our allies, which has said to our enemies, which is said to the men and women in uniform of the united states of america, we stand as one. and now this president and some, not all of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, some of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are ing to break them after five decades, at this critical time i find that hard to believe. but i accept the fact that it's nonetheless true. i would plead with them to reconsider that. i would plead with the president, who's our commander in chief, not to veto this bill. this is critically important at a critically important time.
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on the justice for iran victims act, you know, we don't get very many opportunities where we in this body can do something that will directly bring some measure of compensation to people, citizens of the united states who have been victimized by the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world. we don't get very many opportunities like it, and we have it right now with this bill. we have the opportunity to take them whole or come close to making them whole. they have judgments from , arched alid judgments with the passage of this bill -- and with the passage of this bill, and the president should sign it, with the passage of this bill we could give them that. what a wonderful thing we could give to them after the suffering they've been through. and we would deny them that because we want to stand with the ayatollah because we think
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iran is more important than they are? if we think for one second that iran's going to take this money that's going to be released and use it for good and peaceful purposes, we are excessively naive. they are going to take this money, based upon what they've done in the past and what they're doing today, and they ll use it to fund hezbollah, hamas, the houthis and other terrorist groups around the middle east and perhaps around the world, not just against other people outside the united tates, against people in the united states. so by passing that bill, we deny them tens of billions of dollars and they won't be able to use it for that. i wish that for once we could come into this room on something of this magnitude and stand shoulder to shoulder, not
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as democrats, not as republicans but as americans, which we have done for decades and it saddens me that the president and some of the members of his own party in this house would not do that. so i would beg my colleagues on the other side of the aisle to reconsider, and i beg the president of the united states to reconsider. there's never been a more important time for us to stand together for the defense of this country and for the men and women in uniform. madam speaker, i yield back the balance of my time and i move the previous question. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on ordering the previous question on the resolution. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. polis: madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: on that i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the
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yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vode by the yeas and nays will -- vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 9 of rule 20, the chair will reduce to five minutes the minimum time for any electronic vote on the question of adoption of the resolution. 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 u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 237, and the nays are 180. the previous question is ordered. the question is on the adoption of the resolution. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the resolution is -- the ayes have it. mr. polis: madam speaker. madam speaker, on that i request a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote is requested. those favoring a recorded vote will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device.
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[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.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on sfo vote -- the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 240. the nays are 181. the resolution is adopted.
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without objection, a motion to reconsider is laid upon the on this vote the yeas are 241. the nays are 181. the resolution is adopted. without objection, a motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. royce: pursuant to house resolution 449, i call up h.r. 3457 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the
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clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 3457, a bill to prohibit the lifting of sanctions on iran until the government of iran pays the judgments against it for acts of terrorism, and for other urposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 449, the amendment in the nature of a substitute printed in house report 114-273 is adopted and the bill as amended is considered as read. the gentleman from california, mr. royce, and the gentleman from new york, mr. engel, each will control 30 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. royce. mr. royce: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to evise and extend their remarks for this measure. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered, the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: i also ask unanimous consent to place into the record letters exchanged with the chairman of judiciary and ways and means committee on this legislation.
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the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: madam speaker, the house is not in order. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is correct. the house is not in order. mr. royce: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: i rise in strong support of this bill. this is the justice for victims of iranian terrorism. and i appreciate the work of the bill's author, mr. meehan of pennsylvania. he's worked very hard on this. there are about 100 co-sponsors in this house. on the foreign affairs committee we have made iran the central focus of our work. as a matter of fact, we had over 30 hearings so far and briefings on iran and on the dangerous nuclear agreement that was struck with this state sponsor of terrorism. madam speaker, since coming to power in the late 1970's --
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1979, the iranian regime has funded terrorist groups such as hezbollah and hamas and directed their operations. the way they do that is they have a special force, it's called the quds, it's headed up by general sole manny. he is in charge of assassinations outside the country. assassinations of u.s. targets, by the way, besides other targets. recently you will have heard of the general because by the way sanctions, european sanctions are going to be lifted on him under these -- this agreement, but you will have read or heard that he traveled, he traveled to moscow to meet with putin. as a result of those meetings, you'll notice the discussions about weapons coming from russia into syria, into the hands of the quds forces. so we look at what he has done
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and what u.s. courts have done as a result. there have been 80 separate attacks on u.s. installations and u.s. individuals. we remember the 1983 bombing of the u.s. marine barracks in beirut. the 1996 bombing of the khobar towers in saudi arabia. those two attacks killed 260 american servicemen and left their widows and left children to be raised by one parent. -- here are judgments the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. mr. race: there are judgments that have been -- mr. royce: there are judgments that have been rendered that directs payment from iran to these families, to the victims' families. unfortunately, under the foreign sovereign immunities act, even though this reward
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has been given, even though u.s. victims of state sponsored terrorism got their day in court, and even though they brought the suits in u.s. courts and had the right to collect these damages, iran has not, as of yet, paid. u.s. courts have held iran libal for the attacks carried out by its terrorist proxies when those attacks were orchestrated and paid for by the iranian regime. so, the judgments that remain utstanding is $43.5 billion in unpaid damages for those 80 cases over the last decade and a half. in one case, $9 billion was awarded to the victims of the bombing of the marine barracks in 1983. again, the government of iran found responsible through lawful proceedings in a u.s.
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court, that judgment remains unpaid. mr. speaker, the obama administration during its negotiations with iran did not seek for iran to compensate the families of those whose lives were taken by iranian terrorism despite these u.s. court judgments. that is very much in contrast with our past procedure. in the case of libya, for example, a decade ago, when we reached that agreement with libya, the u.s. secured the right or the demand that the gaddafi regime compensate the victims of the attacks such as e bombing of pan am 103 over lockerbie, scotland, that was done. that's our procedure. iran will soon obtain $100 billion, approximately, in unfrozen assets. as well as immeasurable economic and financial benefits
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by escaping the sanctions regime and reintegrating into the global economy. iran will get sanctions lifted and american victims will still be out in the cold. that's not right. so this legislation would address that injustice. it's straightforward. it would say that of the 100 some billion in sanctions relief that those judgments will be paid out of that. those -- that $43 billion will be paid to the survivors of those families of those 80 attacks orchestrated, paid for by iran. i reserve the balance of my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. r. engel: mr. speaker, thank you. i rise in opposition to the bill and i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: thank you. let me start by acknowledging my friend, chairman royce. the committee on foreign affairs is the most bipartisan committee in congress.
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we are collaborative. we are productive. and we built a record advancing bipartisan legislation that promotes america's interests abroad and keeps the american people safe. i want to state that chairman royce's leadership thanks for much of our committee's good work. i'm disappointed that house republican leadership decided to ignore regular order on this bill. they rushed it to the floor without any consideration by the foreign affairs committee. as was pointed out we had 30 hearings. we know a little bit about iran on the foreign affairs committee. so rushing it to the floor without any consideration by the foreign affairs committee is wrong. it's a shame. i think left to our own volition we could have sent forward a bill that could make a difference for the victims of iranian sponsored terrorism. iranian sponsored terrorism is there, palpable, and we should do something to try to help the victims. this bill, on the other hand, would not do that. let me explain why. american courts have awarded
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roughly $46 billion to about 1,300 victims and their families. we all want justice for these families. we all want to hold iran accountable for its acts of terrorism against americans. iran should pay these claims. but this bill does nothing for the victims of iranian terror. and here's the problem. let's assume for argument that iran's leaders did change course and decide to pay the claims. this bill would actually make it more difficult for iran to pay these judgments. iran owes american claimants $46 billion, but iran has access to $20 billion of its cash reserves, not 46. the rest, $95 billion, is frozen in bank accounts in europe and asia. on top of that, iran's oil revenues are frozen. when iran sells oil, the payments are kept frozen under the threat of american sanctions, which i support. iran can access these funds only for certain purposes. paying court judgments is not one of them.
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currently u.s. sanctions don't allow it. and under this bill, all u.s. sanctions are kept in effect, absolutely no change is allowed until iran pays the full $46 billion. so where would iran get the money to pay the american claims? the bill says iran pay the claims, but you can't have any of the funds to pay them. . sore it's a catch 22 and who does it hurt? not iran. it hurts the victims. not sangle claim would be paid under this bill. so in my opinion, this bill offers nothing but false hope. i heard some members say, we can pay the claims by seizing iran's frozen assets. that's not virtual the case. the funds frozen is overseas, not in the u.s. though they are frozen by u.s. sanctions, they are beyond the jurisdiction of our courts to seize them. another false promise, virtually all of iran's assets will stay overseas. under this bill, they would be
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required to be kept overseas because all u.s. sanctions would be kept in effect by law with no change allowed. so let's be honest. this bill is not really about helping these victims, it's about exploiting their plight and their tragedy to make a political splash. look, everyone here knows i'm no fan of the iran nuclear agreement. i voted against it, but the other side won, and whether you are for or against the deal, it's time to be realistic about what happens next. in my opinion, there were two potential courses. the first is to do everything we can to strengthen and enforce the agreement and hold iran to its commitments. we should double down ron our support for friends and -- on our support for friends and allies in the region. we should push leaders in tehran to release detained americans and improve its abysmal record on human rights. that's the course i hope we'll take. i'll soon introduce legislation to pursue those aims, and i'll work with members of both
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parties to get these measures to the president's desk. the other course would be doing to the iran agreement what leaders on the other side have tried to do to the affordable care act act, and that's what i'm afraid of here. vote after vote after vote, whether we like it or not, on an issue that has already been voted on in this chamber many, many times. i don't want the dispute on iran to turn into the affordable care act, where we try to kill it 60 different ways. we should not be using this for political purposes. we should be passing legislation which i know we can get out of the foreign affairs committee in a collaborative way that would really do something to help these victims, that would really do something to hold iran accountable for all its reprehensible acts. so i hope that what we're doing today is not the path we're going down, not only now but in he future with other things. there was a measure in the senate that was very similar to this which tried to hold iran to certain things and say that
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the funds couldn't be released unless iran did this or did that. we could do this another 60 times. it would be counterproductive. let's put our heads together. let's figure out a way that we can continue to hold iran accountable, and let's move on that way. so i hope we can move past this bill and start working on measures to ensure that the iran agreement is implemented as strongly and stringently as possible. i hope we can get back to our regular practice in the foreign affairs committee of which we have been so proud and focus on making policy that leaves politics at the water's edge. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: the administration is arguing, mr. speaker, that although the iranian regime has access to over $20 billion, that this judgment is $43 billion, so there isn't enough money there to make payment. but in addition to the $20
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billion-some, iran is in the process right now of negotiation and paying, paying and supporting in transfers to other regimes. for example, a report out this week says iran is purchasing $21 billion of airplanes from russia and satellites from russia. $21 billion. iran somehow has the money to do that but it doesn't have the money for this claim. the report out about a month ago says that iran's annual support for hezbollah is over $100 million per year. somehow they got the spending cash for that. it's -- it's providing the syrian regime, one estimate -- one of the think tanks here in town is they provided them a little over $10 billion a year. so iran somehow has the discretionary money for these other purposes but not for the
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purpose of the judgments won in u.s. court for, you know, over 1,000 victims -- family members of the victims of their attacks. so -- but i yield two minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. poe, the chairman of the foreign affairs subcommittee on terrorism, nonproliferation and trade. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for two minutes. mr. poe: i want to thank the chairman and i want to thank mr. meehan for this legislation. mr. speaker, the iranian ayatollah has preached and practiced death to america since the 1970's. iran is a state sponsor of terrorism. iran has been sued in federal courts by the families of the murdered victims. iran is guilty of the murder of 421 americans in beirut, lebanon, in 1983. iran is guilty of the murder of 19 service members and jurring 372 others in sa -- injuring
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372 others in saudi arabia in 1986. iran is guilty of murdering 1,000 other americans, including some in iraq and afghanistan. federal courts have awarded the victims and families over $40 billion for these crimes, but iran will not pay. it laughs at the death of the innocents it has murdered. it laughs at american justice. well, mr. speaker, it's about time for the long arm of american justice to hold iran accountable for its sins. make them pay. i don't understand why some are concerned or more concerned about the murderous iranian regime than they are about justice. justice for the victims that were murdered by this regime. let the ayatollah know he cannot get a different diplomatic pass or -- diplomatic pass or sanction relief until he has paid for the crimes. he has sown the seeds of iran -- has sown the seeds of murder in iran. now it's time for them to reap
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the consequences for their crimes. it seems to me that the voices of the murdered cry out for us to do something for justice, justice for them that's been too long waiting. this bill, in my opinion, will do it. it's about time we have justice because justice is what we're supposed to do in this country, and that's just the way it is. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota is recognized for two minutes. mr. ellison: i want to thank the gentleman for the time and urge members to vote no on this particular bill. you know, once we were able to secure this negotiation and once the deal was put in place, the focus of our attention should shift to making sure that iran lives up to its commitments and we should use this prior negotiation as a template for negotiating other
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issues, including the captives, including the interest of these victims talked about here today. but what this bill does is handcuffs the president and says that the president doesn't have any discretion to do his end of this bargain, to do what's -- to exercise his discretion to forward and help america and the-plus-plus to ive up to our end -- the p-5 plus one to live up to our end of the bill. i think the method they're going about it is just one. let's use the template that has been developed through the negotiation process to go back and say, ok, now we got other things we want to talk to you about. rather than pass legislation on this floor that will do nothing other than to hamstring the president. it's the wrong way to do it. it's a mistake and it should be voted down. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota yields
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back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. smith. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. smith: mr. speaker, in 1983, 241 servicemen in beirut were killed and another 60 injured by a car bomb. one of the marines murdered was my constituent, paul, who lived with his young family in my hometown of hamilton. in my second term as congressman, i joined mourners at his funeral. i will never forget the agony and the sorrow of his family. iranian terrorism killed paul and over the decades has killed or maimed thousands of other americans. a federal court, mr. speaker, a district court found that the 1983 bombing was, quote, beyond question perpetrated by hezbollah and its agents who received massive materiel and tactical support from the yearian government. later, a three-judge federal court appeals panel approved $1.75 billion in judgment against iran for the 1983
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bombing and some other iranian acts of terror. today, iran is poised to get billions of dollars through so-called sanctions relief for an egregiously flawed comprehensive peace plan or plan of action, money that will procure for iran a largely arsenal of sophisticated weapons and an enhanced capability to terrorize, murder and destabilize. they talked about getting weapons, jets from russia. the justice for victims iranian terrorism act, authored by pat meehan, says not so fast. the president has said he will veto this bill. that is wrong, mr. speaker. that's uncaring, it's unacceptable and it's unconscionable. support court-ordered victim payments by the terrorist state of iran. fundamental justice demands that this bill become law. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york.
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mr. engel: i now yield three minutes to the gentleman from virginia, our colleague on the foreign affairs committee, mr. connolly. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for three minutes. mr. connolly: i thank the speaker and i thank my good friend from new york, mr. elliott engel, and for his leadership on -- eliot engel, and for his leadership on the house foreign affairs committee. this bill prohibits any waivers, reductions or any relief from u.s. sanctions on iran until iran pays all court-ordered damage claims to u.s. victims. those claims total about $46 billion. this bill would prevent the u.s. from implementing its commitments under the iran deal, which is really what my friends on the other side are trying to do. not being able to win directly, let's get at it indirectly, and et's cover it with the respectability. but the real issue is cynically how we use the plight of u.s. victims for another partisan
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shot. we all want to help american victims of iran's terrorism and lack of justice, but this is not the way to help them. it would have the opposite effect, by reducing the chance that any claims, in fact, would be paid, because by freezing assets, iran wouldn't have the wherewithal to do what this bill says it should do before sanctions are lifted. think about this. iran owes $46 billion in u.s. claims, but it doesn't have the money right now, even if it wanted to pay. iran only has access to about $20 billion of its own reserves. realistically, the only funds that could be used are the frozen funds under u.s. sanctions held in banks around the world. but under this bill, the frozen funds couldn't be used to pay the claims, and all the money remains frozen until iran pays the claims. a catch-22 if there ever was
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one. it couldn't sell any oil to use to free up cash because those funds, too would be frozen. another clue about what's really behind this bill is that all of the 76 sponsors are my friends on the other side of the aisle. not a single democrat. regardless of one's position on the iran deal, a deal i probably supported because it keeps iran from becoming a nuclear state, opposing this cynical bill fact is the right vote if you care. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york -- virginia yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield four minutes to the author of this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for four minutes. mr. meehan: i thank the chairman for his leadership. $21 billion for russian jets but not a penny for the victims
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of their own acts of terror. that's what my colleagues are trying to say. in fact, the president can negotiate it. let him reach an installment plan, but let's make sure that these dollars are paid. look, this is a fundamental question. should iran receive relief from united states sanctions before it pays the victims of terrorism, the $43 billion that u.s. courts say these victims are owed? when we say terrorism, what are we talking about? we're talking about iran an-backed assassinations and bombings and attacks across time zones from paris to jerusalem from new york to beirut to east africa to buenos aries. i say not one cent. these victims are united states citizens. they're wives, brothers and sisters, children who hail from all across the nation and they were killed in hijackings and suicide attacks and bombings of buses, planes and buildings and embassies and shopping malls
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and pizza parlors. in fact, i met with one of those victims. today, this morning, and yesterday, the widow of kenneth welch and his child. they're here in washington today. they've been waiting 30 years for the opportunity to see this issue addressed. my friends, by voting against this legislation, you're saying that iran and the perpetrators of these atrocities deserve u.s. sanctions relief before the victims deserve the court-ordered compensation. let me say it again. now, by voting no, you're putting the interests of iran's terror machine before the american victims of that terror. i say, not one cent. to those who say iran can't afford to pay these damages, let me remind you of a few facts. iran has yearly gross domestic product in excess of $1.3 trillion and they just spent $21
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billion on russian jets. the facts show that iran has the money and will have much more if the sanctions are lifted. money our own administration freely admits will go to finance even more terror. i sat yesterday with ken steven, the brother of rob steven, a united states navy diver executed on flight 847. his brother ken said to me yesterday, if the president doesn't this opportunity an congress doesn't take the opportunity to hold iran accountable for the terrorist acts now, i have to ask them, when will they? 30 years, one family, more than 15 for another. when will they? he's talking to us. let's answer him. let's today stand up for the standards of u.s. navy petty officer robert steedham. let's vote as one house to say
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we'll put him and the many victims of iran's terrorism before the criminals who conspired to kill him. until they pay these victims what they're owed, let's say no to iran. not one cent. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. >> i now yield three minutes to the -- mr. engel: i now yield three minutes to the gentleman from oregon, mr. blumenauer. the speaker pro tempore: the zwrelt is recognized for three minutes. mr. blumenauer: i appreciate the gentleman's courtesy in permitting me to speak on this issue. i listened to the impassioned pleas from my friends on the other side of the aisle about horrific acts of the thugs who run iran. nobody disputes that. nothing before us would take away the sangs we have against their terrorist act tvity. we are all committed to justice for those people.
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but bear in mind what this legislation seeks to do is to unwind another critical objective of the united states, of our allies, prevent a nuclear armed iran. that agreement was a signal achievement of diplomacy not just of the obama administration, but of russia, china, germany, france, great britain, working with us to secure the strongest agreement that we have seen that -- to contain these thugs' nuclear ambitions. the world is united with us to restrain a nuclear iran. now, we have had testimony from our partners that if the united
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states walks away from that agreement, we're on our own. they're not going to continue to enforce sanctions against nuclear iran. and ultimately, iran will get its money and a free hand to develop nuclear weapons unencumbered by the allies that we've assembled. and the pressure that we've put on them. now, my friend mr. engel is correct. mr. connolly. the construct here is very difficult, even if this were to be approved, to actually work out on paper. but take it a step further. these elements have been in place for years and have not resulted in any movement for the victims. we've had what the rest of the world thinks is a significant breakthrough with iran. we've got an area of cooperation
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and the world is united with us to put the pressure on them. i would suggest rather than throwing this agreement in the trash can and allow iran to develop nuclear weapons and make them stronger and ultimately they will get their money because india and china are going to go ahead and start buying oil from them again as the sanctions collapse, and it will be the united states against the world again. we couldn't even sanction little bitty cuba to change their regime. it takes multinational efforts to be able to make changes. this agreement is an important first step and i would suggest it gives us an opportunity to continue putting pressure to be able to obtain the justice that we all want for those victims. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has peeksered. -- expired. the gentleman -- >> i yield one minute to the
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gentleman from new jersey, mr. frelinghuysen. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. frelinghuysen: i thank the gentleman for yielding and i want to thank mr. meehan and mr. royce for their leadership. the administration acknowledged that some of this money will be certainly distributed to iranian military global terrorist force, an the quds organization with american blood on its hands. we remember the bombing of the marine bar rocks -- barracks in beirut in 1983. the airmen who died in the khobar towers bombing in saudi arabia in 1985. and what about the victims of iranian financed attack, like lee so who chied in a bus bombing in gaza in 1995 and sara duker of new jersey who was murdered on a bus in jerusalem in 1996.
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who speaks for them? for those innocents and their families? this bill does. thank you and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from texas, mr. hurd, member of the committee on homeland security. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. hurd: i rise in support of this legislation. justice is a powerful word. for those who have been wronged, justice can bring peace and closure. for those guilty of harming the innocent, justice is absolutely necessary to ensure the authority of our laws. without justice, truth becomes irrelevant. so if america is going to continue to be the greatest nation in the world, it is imperative that we pursue justice. but the iran nuclear deal was deexact opposite. it rewards lawlessness and corruption, tell ice ran they can be unjust to our own citizens and the curn
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administration will allow them to get away with it. iran is responsible for sponsoring terrorism that has led to the death of thousands of meshes. when the families of these americans sought justice in court, iran was found guilty and ordered to make reparations. awarded y of cyrus was $300,000 after cyrus was assassinated for criticizing the iranian government. is this administration forcing iran to pay? are they demanding justice for americans like cyrus? no. instead, this administration is handing over an estimated $100 billion to iran. that's not justice. that's outrageous. yield back. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from ohio, mr. when strup. the speaker pro tempore: the for one is recognized
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minute. mr. when strup: -- mr. wenstrup: dan was working at the u.s. embassy in beirut in 1983. a bomb -- ann was working at the u.s. embassy in beirut in 1983. a bomb exploded, broking many of her bones. she received a judgment against iran for the suffering she endured. over the past 15 years, u.s. courts have handed down 80 judgments against iran, adding up to more than $43.5 billion in unpaid damages. iran refuse toss pay. yet the president's nuclear agreement provides iran with $150 billion in sanctions relief. those that have destroyed innocent american lives, iranian terrorists, are being chosen over the american victims themselves.
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this bill would prohibit the president from removing any sanctions in place against iran until the president has certified to congress that iran has paid each federal court judgment. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. fitzpatrick. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. fitzpatrick: i thank the chairman, i thank my colleague from pennsylvania, mr. meehan, for introducing this good bill. it's a compassionate bill. it's a bill that tells victims of terrorism that they're not forgotten. i chair the task force in the house financial services committee to investigate terrorism financing. we had a hearing specifically on the joint plan of action, so called p-5 plus one. there was an to attorney who testified at the hearing about the $43 billion in judgments and how this deal then not approved
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yet, was likely going to sidestep the ability of victims who did all the right things through the legal process, who hired lawyers, who went to court, who got judgments, legitimate judgments, how these judgments would not be paid. on yull 29, i wrote a letter to secretary lew, the secretary of the treasury. secretary kerroif the state department. asking whether or not they had addressed the issue. it was part of the negotiations. that was july 29. i've yet to receive a response from the department of state in any way. mr. chairman, the deafening silence of this administration is completely overlooked the victims of terrorism. we're going to give the money to the islamic republic of iran and not to american victims and that's wrong. this bill is right. i urge my colleagues to support it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield one minute to
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the gentleman from north carolina, mr. holding. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from north carolina is recognized for one minute. mr. holding: iran is shortly set to receive over $100 billion when president obama uses his pen to lift our sanctions against the world's largest sponsor of terrorism. at the same time, mr. speaker, iran owes u.s. victims of terror $43.5 billion. one of these victims was first petty officer michael wagner of columbia, north carolina. he was serving at an american embassy in beirut in 1984 when a car bomb filled with explosives paid for by iran detonated outside his office, killing him and 23 other people. in the case of petty officer wagner and iran's other victim, our courts found iran guilty and ordered iran to pay restitution but iran has not paid a penny. mr. speaker, we should require iran to pay every penny it owes
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to the victims of terrorism before sanctions are lifted. period. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. -- >> i yield one minute to the gentleman from missouri, mr. harper. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. harper: i have and will remain opposed to the joint comprehensive plan of action on iran. it represent ice ran's ability to build a nuclear weapon at a future date while reaping the financial benefits of immediate relief from international sanctions. by removing sanctions to the agreement -- by removing sanctions, the agreement injects almost $100 billion into the iranian regime. iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world, funding hezbollah in lebanon and hamas in gaza. over $43 billion in judgments have been awarded to americans who have been the victims of iranian terrorism.
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the agreement fails to clear those judgments. the agreement at best delays iran's ability to build nuclear weapons and at worse gives the regime more money to engage in terrorism while provide nothing justice to americans already harmed by the regime. the justice for victims of iranian terrorism act is timely. it's appropriate. and it should be supported by every member of this body who believe in the validity of u.s. courts and the federal sovereign immunity act. thank you, mr. chairman, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. >> i yield one minute to mr. hill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. hill: i thank the chairman for yielding me time on this. in fact, the whole point of our debate today because the maximum
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amount of negotiating clout that the united states had over these sanctions was during these negotiations before we relieve sangs. before iran gets access to their oil flow monthly and their $100 billion. $44 billion and 85 judgments. the number of intelligence agent ises that have worked day and night to adjudicate these claims in federal court, the number of f.b.i. agents involved, the federal government's obligation to generate awards for these victims and yet this administration has never raised it in public in regard to the iranian agreement. under under the 1998 and 2006 federal sovereign uniits act, the president is -- mr. royce: i yield the gentleman an additional minute. mr. hill: he's obligated to seek restitution under the
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federal sovereign immunities act. president bush did his duties when he had leverage over libya. he got the claims paid for the victims of terror in libya. every day we come to work in this house and we ask, what can we do to help this country? how can we right a wrong? and today is that day, and i urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support mr. meehan's outstanding bill. let's right the wrong. let's adjudicate these claims. let's get this money back to the victims of terrorism. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arkansas yields back. mr. royce: i yield a minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. costello. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for one minute. mr. costello: thank you, mr. speaker. a majority of this house thinks this deal is bad. a majority of the senate thinks this deal's bad, and a majority of the american people thinks this deal's bad. we have not had any input, and the effort here today is to
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simply make a bad deal a little less bad. and the idea behind mr. meehan's bill is to provide restitution to american victims, and it's not just any american victims. it's the victims of iranian terror. $150 billion is going to flow to iran. it seems to be common sense that the first $43 billion should be paid to the victims of iranian terror. joseph was one of those victims. lived right outside my congressional district. spent five years in brutal captivity before being released in 1991. a vote for this bill today is a vote for the victims of iranian terror, and i also want to say congressman meehan's congressional district is right next to miami mine. i want to thank him for his thoughtful, creative approach and his leadership in this country and in this house on this bill. i yield back.
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the speaker pro tempore: the entleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from colorado, mr. coffman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized for one minute. thank you, mr. chairman. in 1982 i was with the united states marine corps off the coast of beirut, lebanon, waiting on order to do evacuations of the u.s. embassy nd u.s. citizens and their families. the -- our assignment was done in august, 1982. we returned to the united states. i finished my two years with the battalion. the balance tanyon went back
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out. they were in beirut, lebanon, at the airport. in october, 1983, suicide bomber drove a truck laydened with explosives into the marine barracks. 241 marines were killed that day. to my friends who died there, first lieutenant bill zimmerman, captain bill winter, captain joe bosh, captain maya haskell, today is your day, today is your day for justice. god bless you. god remember all of you. mr. royce: i yield the gentleman an additional 30 seconds. mr. coffman: thank you, mr. chairman. today is a day for justice for these marines, for their families who were lost on that day. by iranian-backed hezbollah
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bomber. and so i want to thank the gentleman from pennsylvania for bringing this measure forward, and i urge my colleagues not to forget those who have died and to remember this. that when the iranians say "death to americans," they mean death to americans. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. members are reminded to direct their comments to the chair. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from michigan, mr. bishop. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for one minute. r. bishop: mr. speaker, i rise today to join my colleagues to support this legislation. i want to thank the gentleman for his sponsorship. i'm proud to be a co-sponsor. 31 years ago, one michigan family sleepless worry became a heartbreaking reality. their son, brother, father, u.s. army warrant officer kenneth welch was one of the servicemen to lose their life in the bombing of beirut,
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lebanon. u.s. judgments later found the act of terrorism was sponsored by the iranian regime and that regime for its crimes was ordered to pay damages to the family of kenneth welch. not surprisingly, however, not one dime has been paid to the family yet, today we stand before this country. we find ourselves dealing with an administration that wants to lift sanctions. mr. speaker, i am beside myself to think that this nation -- of this nation that we've become. america's built on bravery and freedom, and it's because of the unwavering strength and sacrifice of men and women in the military. i am forever proud of our soldiers, and i know my colleagues are here as well today too. that's why we can't let the iran terror continue, and we need to do whatever we can to address the victims like ken welch and i yield back my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california.
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mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from illinois, mr. doled. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for one minute. want to thank my good friend from california, the chairman, for yielding me the time and also want to thank my good friend from pennsylvania for bringing this piece of legislation. supporting victims of iranian terrorism is a cause that every single member of this body should be able to support, regardless of where they stand on the iranian nuclear agreement. under no circumstances should we be ignoring the victims of iran's terrorism while simultaneously rewarding the greatest state sponsor of terror the world has seen. make no mistake, under this administration's agreement with iran, iran will be receiving approximately $150 billion in sanctions relief in new funding almost immediately while american victims of iranian terrorism, whether it be bombings, kid nappings and the
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like -- kidnappings and the like, murder, are going basically without resources. where are our priorities? where are our priorities in this chamber while the victims of iranian terror are being ignored, while iran is being rewarded with new funds that will inevitably be used to fund new terror, hezbollah, hamas and those around the globe? iran's terror proxies have killed americans and continue to do so till this day. this is a fact and it cannot be ignored. i certainly hope that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will support this piece of legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: -- mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. rothfus. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for one minute. mr. rothfus: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my colleague, mr. meehan, for introducing this important piece of legislation. the nuclear agreement with iran provides them billions in frozen assets and sanctions relief. one only needs to look at recent history to see what iran
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will do with the financial windfall. while pursuing a nuclear bomb, iran has been engaged in a decades' long campaign of terror that has resulted in the deaths of many, many americans and they continue to bank roll proxies like hezbollah, hamas and the hudey rebels. the murder of bobby, t.w.a. 847, the towers and the murder of a c.i.a. agent are a small taste of what iran state sponsor of terrorism has wrought. this is about everyday americans getting justice. americans like major john, the highest ranking officer killed in the eye tack on the beirut marines barracks. victims of iranian terrorism have successfully brought suit in u.s. courts, yet, billions in judgments remain unpaid. the obama administration failed to secure restitution for the victims of iran in its negotiations with the country, but this legislation can rectify this wrong. i urge my colleagues to support this legislation.
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i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i could inquire as to how much time is remaining, mr. speaker? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has 2 1/2 minutes. the gentleman from new york has 17 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. royce: i'd verve the right to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i yield myself such time as i may consume for the purposes of closing. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: let me say to my friends on the other side of the aisle -- and they know this -- no one has been more of an adversaries of the iranian regime than i have. but, look, a number of us found the deal with iran wanting. we voted no, but it didn't prevail. and now we have to figure out the best way forward, and the best way forward, i sincerely believe is not to keep trotting
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out these bills. no one is condoning what iran has done, particularly with terrorism. it's a matter of how we combat it, and the way i see it is that we have two paths forward. we can choose to mirror what we did with the affordable care act, voting and revoting on an issue that has been settled, to some degree, or we can choose the path that suits our nation's interest the best and this path includes doing everything we can to strengthen enforcement -- in the enforcement mechanisms of this agreement. the path also includes holding iran accountable for its nefarious activities that can he stabilized the region -- destabilized the region as well as release americans and improve their human rights record in the interim. and, of course, taking care of the victims of terrorism and their families. this path requires the strengthening of bilateral partnerships and supporting our allies in the region, both of which help us in the long term. and this is the course i hope we take. we cannot let this opportunity
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go to waste. so that's why i won't be supporting h.r. 3457. after that, we need to work together on measures that strengthen implementation of the agreement as much as possible. i hope we can do that in a bipartisan way as we have for the past three years in the foreign affairs committee. this path promises to bring us back to making foreign policy rather than using political bills that deflect from the important issues at hand. i doubt no one's sincerity of anyone who spoke today. we are all sincere and we all feel the same way. iran is a bad actor and must be held accountable, but this bill is not the correct mechanism to do so. so i urge my colleagues to vote no, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: mr. speaker, consider the case of ann, a usaid worker who was posted in the u.s. embassy in beirut in
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1983. at 1:00 p.m. on april 18 a suicide bomber in a delivery van drove 2,000 pounds of explosives into the front door of our u.s. embassy, and the blast demolished the front of the building and caused the upper floors to collapse on top of each other. and when that went off, she was eating lunch in the embassy cafeteria. until suddenly she awoke outside covered in cement with 19 bones broken, 63 people killed in that blast. now, we have a moral obligation to ensure that these judgments for these victims, which represent iran's legal debt to the victims of its official policy of terrorism are paid. there have been 90 such attacks on americans, and this legislation helps us fulfill that moral obligation we have to our constituents and to all
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americans. what i will share with you is that it is not going to work to release the $100 billion first, because that $100 billion goes into the hands of the irgc. they are the ones who have taken over the companies in iran as of 1979. and the iranian revolutionary guards' force and the quds forces are the ones that carried out these attacks. so the only leverage we're going to have in this negotiation is if we pass legislation that says, first, you got $20 billion in reserves. start the process of paying victims of those attacks. if we don't get them paid now, if we don't get the survivors and their families -- and the family members of those who were killed paid now, it will never happen later. but more importantly, at least we would do this. if it we're going to give $100 billion out of escrow into the hands of the irgc, what do you think they're going to do with
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it? they've already announced $20 billion in sales to russia for fighter planes. they've already announced the money, $100 million that they're going to give to hezbollah. why not at least get our own civilians paid the judgments that they earned upfront? that is exactly what we did with the lockerbie agreement. we were going to lift the sanctions or allow the return of the escrowed money to libya, right? $2.5 billion had to go to the victims of the family members killed in the pan am 103 bombing because of the judgment in u.s. courts. this needs to be done under that procedure. that's why this legislation is necessary. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. pursuant to house resolution 449, the previous question is ordered on the bill, as amended. the question is on engrossment and third reading of the bill.
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those in favor say aye. hose opposed, no. the ayes have it. third reading. the clerk: a bill to prohibit lifting of sanctions on iran until the government of iran pays judgments against it for acts of terrorism and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on passage of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. royce: on that, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceed option the uestion will be postponed. -- proceedings on the question will be postponed.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry, seek recognition? mr. thornberry: pursuant to house resolution 449 i call up the conference report on the bill h.r. 1735 and ask for its
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immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1735, an act to authorize appropriations for the fiscal year 2016 for military activities for the department of defense for military construction, and for defense activities at the department of energy, to describe military personnel strength for such fiscal year and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 449, the conference report is considered read. the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry and the gentleman from washington, mr. smith, each will control 30 minutes. mr. thornberry: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous material. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. thornberry: i yield myself five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: the first and most important thing i can say today is that this conference report is good for the troops and it's good for the country. and nothing that i or anybody
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else is going to say in this next hour is going to be more important than that one basic proposition. we may hear a variety of excuses, ifs, ands, and buts about this, that, or the other thing and i certainly don't agree with every provision in this conference report. but in pulling this bill together, i had to put aside personal preferences and party considerations and other things because getting a bill passed and enacted that is good for the troops and good for the country is more important than anything else. the second point i want to make is that this bill is the product of work of members from both sides of the aisle and both sides of the capitol. about half of the amendments that were adopted in committee and on the floor were from democratic members. democratic conferees played a substantial role in shaping this
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final conference report. and if you look at the substance of what's in the bill, you can see major contributions from both sides. as a matter of fact, we hear a lot these days about regular order. well, this bill went through regular order through the committee with 211 amendments dopted on the floor when 131 amendments were adopt through the a regular conference with a senate-passed bill for the first time in years and now it's back here for approval. so after going through regular order and all of the -- and all that that entails, if there's still partisan opposition, it leads some to ask why? why bother? the third point i want to make, mr. speaker, is just a reminder to members that this is a dangerous world and it is getting more dangerous by the minute. just look at the headlines that are in today's papers. russia has conducted air strikes in syria, not against isis, but
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against the moderate opposition forces. and russia is telling us, the united states, when and where we can fly our airplanes in syria. meanwhile, the palestinians have decided they're going to back away from agreements they have with israel. meanwhile, the taliban son the move in afghanistan and u.s. american troops are sent in to help turn the tide. and that doesn't even count the things happening in ukraine, north korea, iran, china building islands out in the pacific. and so the point of that is that this is no time for political games. this is the time to come together and pass a bill that helps provide for the country's security. and i think that's exactly what this bill does. mr. speaker, this bill authorizes the exact amount of money that the president requested for national defense. now, we did not agree with every single program request. we made some different
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judgments. like preserves the a10 and it's being used today in the middle east. we thought we needed not to retire some of the ships the president wanted to retire. so there were some adjustments, but at the end of the day, the total is exactly the amount the president asked for. are me of those programs under different labels. but frankly whether you call it base funding, oco funding or pumpernickel, it doesn't matter. it is money that goes to the troops. if you're a u.s. soldier today on the ground in iraq or afghanistan or if you're a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine supporting them from the united states or anywhere else, do you really care what the label on the money is? what you care is that the money to help provide for your operation and maintenance is provided. of course there are many other parts of this bill, mr. speaker, acquisition reform which is a significant first step to make
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sure that taxpayers get more value for the money they spend. personnel reform, including a new retirement system. today, 83% of the people who serve in the military walk away with no retirement at all. that changes under this bill. so members are going to vote against this bill are going to tell 83% of the people who serve in the military, you're going to continue to walk away with nothing. this bill requires d.o.d. and v.a. to have a joint form lair for sleep disorders, pain management and mental health issue. we've been told those are some of the most important steps we can take. it takes additional steps to combat sexual assault. it authorizes defensive weapons for ukraine. it gives the president more tools to battle isis in iraq, to provide weapons tectly to the kurds and sunni forces. we take steps for missile, to help defend this country against missiles. mr. speaker, i yield myself an additional 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: we take steps to defend our country against missile attacks, particularly
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important since iran will have more money to put into miss isles. but we also support the israeli missile defense program with more maun than was asked for by the president system of mr. speaker, my point is this bill is good for the troops and it's good for the country and that ought to override everything else it should be -- everything else. it should be passed today. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. -- the gentleman reserves, the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: let me agree on two points with the chairman. there is a lot that is good in this bill. no question about that. i want to thank the chairman for his leadership in making that happen. i think the conference committee process was a model for how the conference committee is supposed to go. the minority was included. there was robust debate about a large number of issues. that were points when we thought we couldn't resolve them and we did. and i think there is a lot that is good in this bill. i also think, without question,
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without debate, this is a very, very dangerous time for our country. no doubt about it. and the chairman laid out some of the challenges, there are many, many more. with what's going on in the middle east, certainly with russia, with thousand we deal with china. very challenging time for national security and we need to be as strong as we possibly can. but the one area where i disagree and i think the chairman also correctly states the fundamental question, is this good for our country? is it good for our troops? i don't believe it is. it is not good for our country and it is not good for our troops and it does in fact matter where the money comes from. for a couple of reasons. first of all, by the budget gimmick that the budget committee in the house and senate put together, by using overseas contingency operations funds for things that are not overseas contingency operations funds, this was all done as a dodge to get around doing what we need to do, which is to lift the budget caps, because you see
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the oco funding for some reason does not count as real money. it's money, it's $38 billion but it enabled the conservatives in the republican party to say that they have maintained the budget caps while still spending $38 billion more. which is incredibly hypocritical and a terrible way to budget. but here are two reasons why that is bad for our country and bad for our troops. number one, it does not lift the budget caps. and these budget caps are in place, i believe, for a another nine or eight years. and unless we lift those budget caps, we are harming our troops and we are harming our country. this bill dodging that issue is precisely a national security issue. because until we lift those caps, the department of defense has no idea how much money they're going to have. all right? oco is one time money. that's why it's not as good as lifting the budget caps and giving the ability to do the five and 10-year planning that
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they do. to do multiyear projects. so that they can actually have a plan going forward. that hurts national security. the inability to raise the budget caps in this bill and the appropriations process is a critical blow to our troops and to our national security. the second reason is -- reason this is important is because the oco funding in this bill is not going to happen. all right? part of it is because the president is going to veto it but the larger part of it is, the senate, as they have been unable to do for a number of years, has not passed any appropriations bills. because they have rejected their own budget resolution. so this $38 billion in oco funding we're going to hear about, all this great money, it's not going to happen. buzz the appropriators have said it is not going to happen. so to have a national defense authorizing bill with $38 billion in imaginary money is not good for our troops. and it is not good for our
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country. we need to lift the budget caps. we need to spend the money that we need to spend on national security. i will also say that there are other pieces of national security. the budget caps remain in place for the department of homeland security. they remain in place for the department of justice. they remain in place for the department of treasury. three agencies that play a critical role in national security for this country. in tracking the money of terrorists and protecting the homeland and making sure we can try and convict terrorists when we catch them. so it is not good for the country to maintain those budget caps. and that is what this bill does. it also relies on money that simply isn't going to be there by having this imaginary oco funding. the second way i think this bill was not good for the troop, not good for the country is something the chairman alluded to, and that is there are restrictions on what the pentagon can do by way of saving money. the chairman mentioned the a10 but there are a whole host of
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other things the pentagon has proposed as a way to save money and spend it more efficiently which over the course of the last two or three years we have blocked almost every attempt. not every attempt. on personnel savings. we have made changes in the retirement system. we have made changes in the health care system. we saved no money for 10 year. for 10 years we save no money in personnel cost while the pentagon tells thause to be able to properly train our troops, to get them ready to go to battle, they need personnel cost savings. if we don't give them that savings, last year, next year, this year, in the future, they will not have the money for readiness that they need to train and equip our troops. so that's not good for the country. there are a number of other provisions, areas, brac would be a big one. we have seen our army and marine kearp shrink substantially. we've seen our entire military is rick substantially. we have not closed any bases. that's not good for the couldn't troy not find savings there. i yield myself 30 seconds.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: to not find savings -- there to spend it on training our troops. over the last two or throo -- or three years we have wound up authorizing and appropriating money in congress for readiness. not this year, assuming you imagine that this oco money will a-- will appear. the bulk of the oco money makes up for the readiness gap. i don't think this bill is good for our country or good for the troops but i do agree with the chairman that that's the criteria on which it should be judged. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is -- reserves, the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: the gentleman -- i yield two minutes to the gentleman from virginia, mr. forbes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. forbes: thank you for your hard work on this bill. mr. chairman, one of the things you won't hear outside of this room is anybody challenging the
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substance of this bill. the opponents of the bill time and time again say what a good bill it is. you won't hear anyone challenging the partisanship of this bill because they will praise chairman thornberry for the bipartisan product he's brought to the floor. . you won't hear them saying the right amount of money, too much or too little, because it's almost the amount of money the president requested. or they took it from another priority because they agree it is the amount of money and spud be spent on national defense. the sole reason the bill is being opposed and the president will veto it is because he wants to use national defense as a battering chip to get everything he wants for the i.r.s., e.p.a., and all the other political agenda he has. can you imagine as chairman thornberry mentioned how strong he looks around the globe when he says america's going to be strong, yet he vetoes the bill that authorizes the national defense of this country and gives him almost everything he wants.
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the president and opponents of this bill also need to realize that if they defeat this bill, they will also defeat the construction of three destroyers, two attack subs, three small surface combatants, and delay the air force bomber and tanker programs. mr. chairman, it's time we stop using national defense as some kind of political poker chip that can be gambled away, and it's time we pass this bill. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia yields back. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: thank you, mr. chairman. i yield myself one minute. first of all, i very specifically challenge the substance of this bill. the o.c.o. funding and the way it is funding is not good for national security and not good for our troops. the substance of the bill is precisely the issue and what it does for defense or does not do for defense. that is why using the o.c.o. funding is the exact wrong way to go. the other thing i will say is i am quite confident that we will get a bill. that's the interesting thing about this argument. as i pointed out the appropriators in the senate
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have already rejected the o.c.o. funding. this $38 billion that we have in here is gone, done, poof, not going to happen. we are going to have to have a further debate about that in the appropriations committee to actually fund any of the stuff that we are talking about in this bill. i am confident that we'll have that debate. i wish i could be more confident it will come out in a positive way. we need to lift the budget caps. we actually need to pass appropriations bills and not shut the government down. we'll see what happens on december 11, but when that happens, we can pass this bill. we are not going to not pass the ndaa. we just need to pass it the right way so it actually helps our country and actually funds the programs that we are talking about. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: i yield myself 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: i thank the gentleman from washington really makes the case when he talks about appropriations, o.c.o. will not happen that way. this is not an appropriation bill. he's exactly right.
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there is more to do to figure all of that out. but that is not a reason to vote against this bill. this bill can't fix what he's complaining about. but it does do something and my point is, why not do what it can? mr. speaker, i yield two minutes to the distinguished chairman of the subcommittee on emerging threats and capabilities, the gentleman from south carolina, mr. wilson. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from south carolina is recognized for two minutes. mr. wilson: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you, mr. chairman. i'm grateful to support the national defense authorization act for fiscal year 2016 and also thank chairman m.a.c. thornberry for his leader -- mac thornberry for his leadership and hard work in bringing this conference report to the floor with bipartisan support. i appreciate serving as chairman of the emerging threats and capability subcommittee to oversee some of the most important aspects of the department of defense. the subcommittee's portion of the bill represents a comprehensive and bipartisan product. for this reason it is said that some our democratic colleagues may vote against this bill and
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worse that the president is threatening a veto. mr. speaker, a veto or vote against this bipartisan bill is a vote against security for american families. and a vote against every member of the armed services and its military families. it would be a vote against authorizations that would strengthen our cyberdefense capabilities. it would be a vote against counter terrorism programs and resource for our special operations forces currently fighting overseas. and it would be a vote against reform efforts and programs that would ensure america maintains superiority in all areas of science and technology. mr. speaker, i urge my colleagues to cross the aisle to support this bipartisan national defense authorization act and for the president to sign this important piece of legislation that will soon cross his desk. a vote of veto against this measure is simply put a vote against in providing and endangering american families and a vote against the american
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dedicated service members who mean so much to our country. thank you, chairman thornberry. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from south carolina yields back. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i yield myself one minute just to make two quick points. first of all, we will have a motion to recommit that takes the money out of o.c.o. and puts it into the base budget. this is a problem that our bill could fix. we didn't have to buy into the o.c.o. dodge and put money in there we knew wasn't going to exist. our motion to recommit will make that obvious. we will simply take it out of o.c.o., put it in the base budget so that you can do long-term planning with it and so we actually get out from under the budget caps. he second point i will make is -- not supposed to name people. the previous speaker who said voting against the defense bill was all of those bad things, well, people have voted against the defense bill. in 2009 and 2010, all but seven or eight members of the republican party voted against the defense bill.
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they voted against the defense bill because they didn't like don't-ask, don't-tell in one instance and didn't like adding lgbt people to hate crimes in the other instance. they all were perfectly willing to vote against the troops and do all of the awful things the previous speaker said for social policy reasons that had nothing to do with defense. so voting against the defense bill does not mean that you don't support the troops. that's proof because most of the people who are now saying that it does have voted against the bill in the past. if i may i'm not sure if this works, i wanted to yield time to -- do we need to go back over there? i will yield five minutes to the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized for five minutes. i thank the gentleman for yielding. this is my 35th year in the congress of the united states. i don't know that i voted
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against prior to this year either a defense appropriation bill or defense authorization bill. i will vote against this bill. i regret that i will vote against this bill because i regret that we have not gotten ourselves on a fiscally sound path and a bipartisan way that makes this country more secure not only on the national defense side but secure on the domestic side as well. i rise in opposition, mr. speaker, to this conference report which i believe does a disservice to our men and women in uniform and undermines our national security. i do not believe this is the chairman's fault. i want to make that very clear. the chairman has been dealt a hand and he's trying to play the best hand he can. and i understand that. i agree, fully, however, with the ranking member with his
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concerns in opposition to this bill not because of its substance but because of the adverse impact it has on so much else. this continues the republicans' see quester sneak around strategy. what do i mean by that? my republican colleagues historically since i have been here talk about spending money. what they don't like to do is pay for things. that's of course what we do in taxes. it's not for free, national security. , law ion, health care enforcement you have to pay for it. and if you want to put a level of doing something, you need to pay for that or you pass it along to the next generation. this sequester seek around
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strategy of blowing through their own defense spending cap by misusing overseas contingency funding for nonemergency base defense spending, that's why the pentagon is opposed to this. that's why the joint chiefs believe this is bad fiscal policy for the military. our military planners and secretary carter made clear, such an approach to funding undermines the pentagon's long-term planning process which is based on multiyear budgets and predictable funding sfreems. unfortunately -- streams. unfortunately, the fiscal policies of the leadership of this house over the last years, six years, have been anything but predictable. we avoided a shut down of government yesterday
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notwithstanding the fact 151 of my republican colleagues voted ot to fund government today. only democrats ensured the fact that we kept the government opened. 91 republicans voted with us. but that was far less than half of their caucus. this proposal undermines the chances for a bipartisan budget agreement to replace the sequester before the c.r. repassed yesterday expires on december 11. 151 republicans voted even against keeping government opened for a short period of time, approximately two months. this approach, including this bill, also harms fundamental national security priorities by characterizing core defense
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items as part of contingency operations. that is not true. it is not fiscally helpful. this includes the iron dome missile defense programs and all other u.s.-israel joint missile defense programs that helps israel protects civilians from hamas and hezz bowl yap rockets. -- hezbollah rockets. unfortunately, this report prevents the administration from closing the detention facility at guantanamo bay which remains a recruiting tool for terrorists and undermine america's role as a beacon of constitutional rights and freedoms around the world. $2.4 ile, we are spending illion per detainee every year for those rehold at guantanamo. -- those we hold at guantanamo. mr. smith: i yield an
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additional minute. mr. hoyer: the ranking member of the armed services committee oppose this is bill, strongly, as do members of that committee. the president has already made it clear he's going to veto this bill. not because he's against national security and ironically republicans have come to the number that the president proposed. there's a difference. the president paid for his number. he didn't pass it along to our children. we must recognize this conference report for what it is, a vehicle for partisan messaging and an instrument for breaking with the murray-ryan principle of parity in defense and nondefense sequester relief. it's not a bill that makes america safer and a stronger force for justice around the world. therefore i'll oppose it. i thank my friend, mr. smith, once again for the work -- for his work trying to improve this bill in committee, on this floor, and in conference. and for his untiring work in support of the men and women in our nation's armed services.
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i thank the chairman of the committee for the same thing. he was dealt a bad hand. i understand he has to play. it's not good for our country. i urge my colleagues to vote no. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. speaker, i yield myself 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. thornberry: i make three brief poivents. number one as this debate goes on it's increasingly clear the real debate is about budget and appropriations not about this bill. secondly, i'm one of those who voted to continue to fund the government because i think it's essential that we pay our troops and there be no lapse in that. unfortunately, we have today the white house playing politics with national security and i think that's what makes an ultimate agreement harder. finally, the president was short in funding israeli missile defense. we fully fund israeli missile defense in this bill and it should be supported. mr. speaker, i yield two minutes to the distinguished
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chairman of the tactical air and land forces subcommittee, the gentleman from ohio, mr. turner. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio is recognized for two minutes. mr. turner: thank you. i rise in support of h.r. 1735, what would be the 5 th consecutive national defense authorization act. what we have here today is, unfortunately, partisan politics at its worse. you have people coming down on the house floor condemning a bill that they voted for. and now they are going to vote against it because the president has decided that he's going to veto it. he's not going to veto it because what's in this bill. he's going to veto it because there's not enough spending on the bureaucracies of the i.r.s. and the e.p.a. we know this because not only has the president said it, even the defense secretary ash carter has said it in front of the armed services committee. now, if this was such a bad bill, you would think this it wouldn't come out -- have come out of our committee for almost unanimous support both sides of
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the aisle, bipartisan, unbelievable support for this bill, and virtually the same structure that it's coming to this floor. only when president obama stepped forward only when the president came out and said, i'm going to veto it, did it lose bipartisan support. this isn't an issue about republicans and democrats. this administration, the author of sequestration, president obama, set forth a plan that's been dismantling our military and needs to be set aside. what we have in this bill is a bill that fully funds national defense even as the minority leader, steny hoyer, said, that fully funds it at the level requested by the president. now you can say there are gimmicks. you can say there are tricks. but you can also say what is important and as you go to the experts to determine whether or not this bill work. chairman dempsey of the joint chiefs of staff stood in front of our committee and asked the question of does the structure of this bill fully fund national
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defense he said absolutely that he could spend it, that it would be the number that is necessary, he also said it was the lower jagged edge of what is necessary for national security. so chairman dempsey says in front of our committee, and he's certainly the expert, that this works, it works. i urge everyone to support this bill, set aside sequestration, set aside partisan politics and support our men and women in uniform. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: at this time i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the distinguished chair of the strategic forces subcommittee, the gentleman from alabama, mr. rogersing for the purposes of a colloquy. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. rogers: i want to thank you for your leadership in getting us here today. i'd like to ask the chairman a question, if i might, does the legislation provide the president the exact amount of money he requested in his budget
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request? mr. thornberry: the gentleman is correct. the total is exactly the amount the president asked for. mr. rogers: that's what i thought. and does the chairman recall who it was that testified that the amount requested for fiscal year 2016 for national defense is, quote, at the ragged edge of manageable risk, close quote. mr. thornberry: as the gentleman from ohio just said, it was the chairman of the joint chiefs said this is the lower raggedofpblge what it takes to defend the country. mr. rogers: and that individual is the president's senior military advisor, isn't he? mr. thornberry: yes, sir. mr. rogers: so we have an easy choice, we can vote for a conference report that sends a bill to the president, that provides authorized funding at exactly the level he requested. or we can send the nation below the quote, ragged edge of manageable risk, closed quote. it's a bill that provides $320
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million increase for our israeli increase on top of the $550 million in the president's request for missile defense cooperation. i'd ask members, especial -- especially those who supported the iran deal, that it's this funning that the administration said was vital to israel's security. because of that deal and it's -- and its termination of multilateral sanctions on ballistic missile proliferation. s that bill that provides $184 billion to -- million to fund an american rocket to end our reliance on russian made rocket engines. s that bill that provides the president's request of $358 million for cooperative threat reduction activities. what does that mean? that's how we fight ebola. mr. speaker, my fellow members, there are some tug boats that we have to take around here from -- tough votes we have to take around here from time to time, this is not one of them. vladimir putin is bombing anti-assad forces in syria. you want to make putin happy, vote against this bill.
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with that, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from alabama yields back they have gentleman from texas reserves this egentleman from washington. mr. smith: i yield myself two minutes. mr. smith: -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. smith: the reason we are at the ragged edge of what defense needs is because of the budget caps. that is the issue. that is the substantive issue in why this is important. tied into that is a regrettable fact. the chairman says repeatedly, look, thises the authorizing bill. don't talk to me about the budget, don't talk to me about propings. the defense budget is over half of the discretionary budget system of unfortunately, the defense bill is about the budget and about the appropriations process. and as long as we have those budget caps locked in place, we will be at the ragged edge of what we can do to protect our national security. we shouldn't be there. we should lift the budget caps. this ndaa locks in those budget caps, uses the oco dodge which
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as i pointed out the senate isn't agreeing to the $38 billion isn't going to be there and even worse, what secretary carter has also said is that the oco funding perpetuates the five years of budget cuts and uncertainty of c.r.'s of government shutdown, of threatened government shutdowns, of not being able to plan. secretary carter has been very clear. he opposes this bill because the oco funding is not an adequate way to fund defense because it is one year money, it is a budget gimmick, it doesn't give them the ability to plan and do what they need to protect our country and take care of our troops. opposing this bill because of oco funding is enormously important to our troops and is a substantive part of this. i want to respond about the committee vote. we in committee said, we didn't like the oco funding, we needed that to be fixed. but we're coming out of committee, we're going to give
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it a chance to work its way through the process. no changes were made, we opposed it on the floor. we didn't just wake up yesterday and oppose this. democrats voted against this bill when it came to the house in the first place. the critically important issue we absolutely made a point of in committee was not fixed. so that is why we are opposing this bill. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the distinguished chair of the subcommittee on readiness, the gentleman from virginia, mr. wittman.
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mr. wittman: recent hi former secretary of state dr. henry kissinger proclaimed the united states has not faced a more diverse and complex array of crises tins the -- since the end of the second world war. this statement holds true today as we combat isis in the middle east, as russia again tests our commitment to global leadership and as china continues to increase its defense spending to record levels. congress has a constitutional duty for providing for the common defense of our nation. if congress and the president fail to act on the nda asks we forgo our constitutional duty and weaken the security of our nation and ability to confront crises that occur around the globe. it is also important to point out that this is not the time to play political games with our national security or to hold hostage funding and authorization for the military for political aim. our nation and our men and women in the military deso -- deserve better and they deserve the proper support that congress is under obligation to provide. as we have heard through testimony from our military leaders before the committee,
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our military is approaching the ragged edge of being able to execute our nation's defense strategy. by not passing this ndaa or by allowing sequestration to continue to devastate our nation's military readiness, we place ourselves in a position where we will be unable to defend against the threats we face today and in the future. i urge my colleagues to support this bill and vote in favor of the national defense authorization act of f.y. 2016. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman in virginia yields back. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i agree with a lot of what the gentleman said about how critical national security is, yet the republican majority insists on maintaining those budget caps that are devastating to our national security. they will not lift the caps that are causing precisely the problems just described and 151 of them voted yesterday to defund the entire military by shutting down the government. so if we realy believe in all those national security priorities, let's start funding
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them. lift the budget caps and actually pay for it. with that, i yield three minutes to the gentlelady from california, ms. davis. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for three minutes. rs. davis: i want to associate myself with the ranking chair. we all work very , -- we all work very, very hard on this committee and i appreciate the work that our chairman has had as well. i have to say, i'm speaking largely as someone who has never not supported an ndaa. i actually did support it in committee and i support it on the floor. but i think we're in a box and sometimes when you get in a box you've got to do something about it. you can't just stay in there and sit. it means making some hard decisions. i've listened in the committee. secretary carter was there. i have to say, i think he was a
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bit badgered in that discussion but at the same time he's a big boy and he can handle that. basically what he said is, of course we support those issues. of course we want a better budget for the men and women who serve our country. because it's in the best interests of the united states of america. but we also have to be concerned about the future, not just about tomorrow. we've got to be able to do this for the men and women and for our country as we move forward. and that's what this doesn't do. we've got to give this a chance. it's got to be a better chance. that's why i feel i have been there. and i have compromised. and there are a lot of members on that committee honestly who are not willing to compromise. we're trying to find that balance. i'm proud of the work we've done on the personnel committee. i'm proud because we made some gains. we sort of shuffled some issues
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a little bit to be able to say to our leaders that we understand their concerns. we understand what readiness means in this country and we've got to deal with that and maybe we can't deal with all these issues that we've tried to make sure we funded to the very, very highest limit that we could possibly do that. we know there's some changes perhaps that are coming and so we do it in incremental way, in a slow way, and something we think is in the best interests of the men and women and the country at the same time. we've got to do that. we have multiple global crises going on in this country so we can't just make a decision for today. it's got to be down the line. what is it that we need to do? we need to be sure -- mr. smith: i yield the gentlelady 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for 30 seconds. mrs. davis: what was secretary carter talking about?
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predictability. not just for our folks at the pentagon to be able to make sure that men and women of this country are provided with everything that they need, but we also need to be sure that those who work with our country, we have a very strong contractual relationship with the public-private sector in this country. and we need to provide for them as well. that's why i stand today. i believe it is in the intest interest to go back and work this out. you know what? mr. smith: i yield an additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. mrs. davis: i work in a community where we have large numbers of military families and guess what. the military is no different than the rest of our country. it is made safer and stronger by homeland security, by law enforcement, by environmental protection, and by strong education programs.
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they care about all those things. so they want us to stand up for their children and for their future. and we can do this together. let's take that chance. it's worth it. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the distinguished chair of the subcommittee on oversight, mrs. hartzler. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for two minutes. mrs. hartzler: thank you, mr. chairman. i agree with the lady that we need to make our choices. but we don't need to do this in this bill. we can't solve the problems that have been reiterated in this bill. this is a budget issue. and i serve on the budget committee as well and i believe we need to undo sequestration for our national defense. we need to come up with a comprehensive plan to address the cost drivers of our country that are causing us to go into debt.
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we need to get our priorities back as a country and make sure we provide for the common defense. we need to do that in a budget, in a comprehensive way. but we don't need to hold our military hostage today by not approving the expenditure of funds for the vital things that they need. that's what my colleagues are doing. so i appreciate their intent. i look forward to working with, and many of us to, to solve this overall problem. but today our military need to know we are standing behind them and we're going to authorize them with the things we need. this bill is full of the things that our country and our men and women in uniform need. and as the chairman of the oversight investigation subcommittee, we're doing an investigation dealing with the transfer of detainees out of gitmo and what happened with sergeantberg dal and the taliban five. i was especially make sure the detapees are not removed from guantanamo bay and
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brought into our local communities. in addition we set up an additional protocol so that the secretary of defense has to certify that any detainees that go to foreign countries, that country is able to detain them, keep them safe, make sure they don't go back into the fight and continue their terrorist activities. this bill takes care of our troops. it addresses the threats facing us. we have so many. whether it is what's going on in ukraine and with russia, whether it is dealing with isil. whether it is the cyberthreat that we have. every day there are threats coming around us and we address them in this bill. that's why we need to pass it. it also provides for the platforms that we need. i urge my colleagues to do the right thing, to stand with our troops, to provide them with what they need. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. speaker, i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the distinguished chair of the subcommittee on
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military personnel, the gentleman from nevada, dr. heck. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from nevada is recognized for two minutes. mr. heck: i thank the gentleman for yielding. as chairman of the subcommittee on military personnel, i appreciate chairman thornberry's efforts. his dedication to our armed forces, families, and veterans is commendable. supporting the men and women who volunteer to pick up a weapon, stand a post, and guard the freedoms and liberties that make our nation great is a primary function of the federal government. article 1, section 8 of the constitution to raise and support armies, to provide and maintain a navy, tood with the adoption of this conference report, we achieve that goal. included in the report are personnel provision that is will allow us to recruit and retain the best and brightest, maintain an agile military force, and ensure our brave men and women in uniform are given the benefits they have earned and deserve. not the president has threatened to veto this conference report even though the report authorizes the amount he requested in his own
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budget because he's not happy with the manner in which it is provided. he is using our military men and women as political pawns to get increases in nondefense spending. i understand that he's urged some of my colleagues to vote no today, and i want to make sure my colleagues know some of the things they would be voting against. a new retirement plan that provides options and a portable retirement benefit for individuals who serve less than 20 years. roughly 8 % of the force. a pay raise for our military men and women, along with many special pays and bonuses, that are critical to maintaining the all volunteer force. and a joint uniformed drug formulary between the department of defense and department of veterans affairs so that transitioning service members get to stay on the drugs that are working for them as they leave active service. and enhance protections for sexual assault victims to include expanding access to special victims' council, protecting victims from
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retaliation, and improving the military rules of evidence. if the president follows through with this veto threat, serpviss members and their families will be -- service members and their families will be deprived of these significant improvements to their compensation and quality of life. i urge my colleagues to stand with our military men and women and their families and support this report. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: may i inquire how much time remains on reach side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington has 10 minutes. the gentleman from texas has 10 1/2 minutes. mr. smith: i yield myself 3 minutes. there was a comment earlier about the military being held hostage by these other needs. and i think it's really important to understand that over the course of the last five years with the military -- what the military has really been held hostage to is the budget caps. one government shut down, multiple c.r.s, and multiple threatened government shut downs. that is what is holding the
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military hostage. you talk to them about how they have tried to figure out what they can spend money on and what they can't spend money on throughout that madness, because we can't pass along a budget because we can't lift the budget caps, because we can't pass appropriations, that is what is holding them hostage. a one or two-month delay in passing the ndaa, which by the way we passed in december for the last three or four years, isn't going to hold them hostage at all. what is holding them hostage is that ridiculous budget process that i just mentioned. why do we have that ridiculous budget process? because the republican majority those on maintaining budget caps. it is those budget caps that are holding our military hostage. unless we lift them, we will not be able to adequately fund defense. i have heard a number of times over here that the only reason we oppose this is because we want more spending on other programs. that is not even close to true
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and it's obvious no one is listening to the arguments i have been making. the reason we oppose this is because it perpetuates our military being held hostage to budget caps, budget gimmicks, c.r.s, and threatened government shut downs. this bill has o.c.o. funding in it. it does not have base budget funding. it does not provide the same amount of money for the president that the president's budget provides. because it's not the same money. and the type of money does matter. if you have actual budget authority, if you have actual appropriations you can spend them over multiple years because you know they are going to be there. it is absurd the way we have budgeted for the last five years. and what we are doing in opposing this bill is standing up to that absurdity for many reasons, i will grant you, but number one is to protect our national security and the men and women who serve in the armed forces who have had to live with that government shut
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down. those c.r.s, those threatened government shut downs, and most importantly, those budget caps that the majority refuses to lift. unless we lift those, the military is going to be in this situation in perpetuity. that is unacceptable for our national security. it is all about national security, it is all about defense for why we are opposing this bill. we can't go on like this and have an adequate national security. we have to lift the budget caps. i'll say one other thing. we have to raise taxes somewhere. in the last 1 years we cut taxes by somewhere in the neighborhood of $7 trillion. now, granted unquestionably places in the budget we can cut and we have cut. i yield myself an additional two minutes. we have cut medicare. i know we have cut medicare because the republican party ran all kinds of ads bashing us for cutting medicare back in 2010. we found about $700 billion in savings which extended the life of the program and saved money.
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so we have saved money. but the flat refusal to raise any revenue is what has got our military with the hand around its throat. because believe it or not, you have to actually raise the money if you're going to spend it. as you stand up here complaining about all the things that we are not funding, -- funding this thuret and insist on maintaining the budget caps and insist on not raising a penny in taxes, that is the grossest hypocrisy i can imagine. if you were unhappy with how much money is being spent on the military, have the guts to raise the caps and raise the taxes to actually pay for it. or just stop talking about it and accept it at that level. we are opposing this bill because the budget process that we have been under is what is throttling our military. and until we break that grip, until we get an actual appropriations process, until we get the budget caps lifted and until, i believe, we
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actually raise some revenues to pay for it, we are not going to be doing adequate service to the men and women of our military. i also want to say that i oppose this bill because it also continues to keep guantanamo bay opened at the cost of nearly $3 million per inmate. in addition to being an international problem, it is unbelievably expensive and not necessary. we should shut guantanamo. this bill locks in place for another year that it will stay open and does not give the president any option or flexibility in that regard. again, don't tell me or anyone over here we'll vote no for reasons that have nothing to do with national security. how can you possibly look at the last five years of budgeting and the impact it has had on the department of defense and say that getting rid of the budget caps isn't absolutely critical to national security? i believe that it is and that's why we oppose this bill. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington reserves. the chair will receive a message. the messenger: mr. speaker, a message from the senate. the secretary: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: madam secretary. the secretary: i have been
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directed by the senate to inform the house that the senate has passed without amendment h.r. 2835, cited as the border jobs for veterans act of 2015. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. thornberry: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. thornberry: i want to make a couple points. number one is i share a lot of concerns about the effects of sequestration on the military. as this conversation continues, it's clearer and clearer that the real problem here is budgets and now we hear taxes. this bill cannot solve either of those problems. we cannot rewrite the tax code or raise taxes. we can't repeal obamacare. there's lots of things we can't do. but we can do some things and we should do that. secondly, a dollar of o.c.o. is just as much as a dollar of base is spent. i don't think if you are in
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afghanistan you care about the label put on the money. the increase in the o.c.o. account is operations and maintenance money which only good for one year anyway. next point, in fiscal year 2013, israeli missile defense was funded in o.c.o. and yet we had members on that side of the aisle, including some who are complaining about that, vote for it. that's what we do sometimes. timely, this president signed into law the exact provisions on restricting gtmo transfers -- i yield myself an additional 0 seconds. mr. speaker, -- 30 seconds. mr. speaker, in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 this president signed into law the exact restrictions on guantanamo transfers that we have in this bill. now, is it all of a sudden such a big deal that he's decided that he's going to veto the bill over it? i think that is a hard case to
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make. mr. speaker, at this point i would be pleased to yield two minutes to the distinguished chair of the house small business committee, the gentleman from ohio, mr. chabot. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio is recognized for two minutes. mr. chabot: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, the passage of an annual national defense authorization act to lay out our nation's defense and national security priorities is one of our most important duties as members of congress. this year's no different. especially given the very serious conflicts happening around the globe in eastern europe, in the middle east, in the south china sea. which have serious implication force our own security and for our allies. this year's ndaa makes a number of positive changes to d.o.d.'s small business contracting policies to help ensure that small businesses throughout the country can continue to perform the critical support functions that help make america's military still the best in the world. mr. speaker, hitting a small
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business industrial base means taxpayers benefit from increased competition, innovation, and job creation. since 2013 we have lost over 25% of the small firms registered to do business with the government. 25%. that's over 100,000 small businesses. the reforms in this year's ndaa, the bill we are considering now, takes steps to reverse that trend. now, the white house is threatened to veto this bill. that's a shame because this partisan, bicameral bill defends small businesses and ensures that the spirit of entrepreneurship is alive and well in our industrial base. this isn't about political gamesmanship, at least it shouldn't be. this is about two of the most bipartisan issues in the political arena, the men and women in uniform, and the small businesses that employ half of our american work force. i sincerely hope that the president reconsiders and enacts this bipartisan,
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bicameral bill. i want to thank a number of members of my committee who have contributed to this year's bill, including mr. hardy of nevada, mr. knight of california, mr. curbelo of florida, mr. raddy wagon of american samoa, and mr. hanna of new york. i'd also like to thank a number of other members and thank mr. thornberry. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. speaker, i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the distinguished gentleman from ohio. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. wenstrup: our military must always be available and able to ready, aim, fire at a moment's notice. the threats we face around the world today demand it. and as a soldier and veteran, i can tell you that ready in the military needs to be spoken as a command not proposed as a question. there's one crucial element our military has to be ready to engage the threats.
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this bill ensures our military readiness, it ensures that there's a plan for 2016, from isis to russia to north korea, the threats we face are too serious to wait any longer. but in the same week that the president was surprised by the russians bombing u.s.-backed forces in syria, he's threatening to veto this national defense bill. veto our national security, really? i encourage the president to use his phone and to paraphrase his own words, to call the 1980's and ask for their foreign policy back because we need it. . that policy demands that it must be backed by the full confidence of this government now. this can't wait. pass this to give our troops new retirement benefits. pass this to keep our weapons systems at operational level. we've been working on this legislation since the beginning of this year. it's a good bill that adhere's to the law and it's the certainty our troops need. pass this bill, our troops need
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it. they don't let you down, don't at the lem -- don't let them down. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: i yield two minutes to the vice chair of the subcommittee on readiness, the gentlelady from new york, ms. stepanek. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. stepanek: thank you to chairman thornberry for his leadership, guidance and tireless efforts on this imperative piece of legislation. ust this -- ms. stefanik: just this past week, this served a as another reminder to us all that this region remains unstable and brins about challenges to our national security. the f.y. 2016 ndaa provides our nation's armed forces with the resources they need to defend our national security. since september 11, the army's 10th mountain division out of
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fort drum, chime honored to represent, has been the most actively forward deployed division to iraq and afghanistan. yet sadly just this past month, specialist kyle gilbert, a soldier from the 10th mountain division, died in afghanistan while serving our nation. in new york's north country, our community and our military families understand what fighting for our nation's liberties and freedoms truly means. so when i express my support for the ndaa, the tools it provides and how it enabled our armeds fors to defend our nation from organizations to who create volatility and terrorism around the world, i'm speaking for my constituents, those service men an women who are overseas right now in highly kinetic come with the zone, foughting to protect you and me, our families, and our nation. colleagues, the f.y. 2016 ndaa allows for our armed forces to plan and operate according to what we as a nation have asked of them wetch must support the
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ndaa to maintain our readiness and provide for our military. and as leaders here today, we task e cannot continue to our troops with doing more with less as defense sequestration cuts remain. the conference report to f.y. 2016 ndaa provides relief from these harmful sequestration cuts but more must be done. let me remind my colleagues across the aisle serk quest ration was proposed by this administration, signed into law by this president, and passed by a previous congress. when the f.y. 2016 national defense -- may i have one minute? mr. smith: i yield the gentlelady 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for 30 seconds. ms. stefanik: when the nda comes across the -- across the president's desk, i hope he -- it is could
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important. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i yield myself the balance of our time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: i'll start with that last comment because it is a popular trope trotted out all the time about how sequestration was the president's idea and not our fault, which is fascinating. i don't think it's clear whose idea sequestration was but the reason we did the budget control act and sequestration was because the republican majority in the house was refusing to raise the debt ceiling. refusing to allow us to borrow money at a time when we had to borrow it. how do we think that would have impacted national security in our troops? i voted against the budget control act. but i've often said, i don't hold anything against those who voted for it. because they basically had a gun to their head. the budget control act was an awful piece of legislation but not raising the debt ceiling,
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not paying our debts, you know, stopping the ability of the united states of america to borrow money, was clearly worse. so this partisan argument that oh, sequestration was the president's idea so therefore it's not our fault is about as absurd an argument as i've ever heard. number one, because like i said, the only reason that discussion was on the table was because it was black mail for raising the debt ceiling which had to be raised but number two, it's been a good five years since then. the republicans now control both the house and the senate, and they had the opportunity to pass the budget resolution this year. and they passed the budget resolution that held those caps and sequestration firmly in place. and that is not good for our troops and it is not good for national security. so let's move on to that appropriations process, get those budget caps lifted for the sake of a whole lot of different issues. which brings me back to the national defense authorizinging at and the fact that by locking
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in the o.c.o., bicepping those budget cap ,000,000,000 using o.c.o. funds, we are once again putting the pentagon in the situation where they don't know how much money they're going to have. they have no predictability whatsoever. it is the o.c.o. in this bill that is the reason i oppose it and the reason that most democrats oppose it because that o.c.o. is harmful to national security. we need a real budget. we need real budget authority and real appropriations. voting for a bill that puts in place the o.c.o. instead of that simply perpetuates the nightmare of the last five years of uncertainty. and like i said, we're going to have a motion to recommit here in a moment that easily fixes this problem. and i agree with 95% of the rest of the bill. i don't agree with all of it. the chairman said we negotiated some things, they were up, they were down, but by and large it's a good bill. but the 5% that's bad is so bad that it does justify a no vote because it perpetuate this is bad budget situation and there's
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a very easy fix. take the o.c.o. out of it and put it in the base budget. it's very simple. that's what we're going to propose in the motion to recommit. you'll see democrats vote for that. because we support funding this. what we don't support is maintaining the budget caps through an obvious budget gimmick. i had a fascinating conversation with a member of the rule committees yesterday on the other side of the aisle who said he was very, very proud of the budget control act. said it was the best vote he'd taken in congress. interesting that it was supposedly all the president's fault. but you know, he really supported the budget control act. he felt those caps were absolutely necessary. and i said, well, then you mist oppose the ndaa because it busts those caps by $38 billion he said a lot of things at that point but never answered my question. so this dodge of saying that we're going to create sort of money that really isn't money in order to, for one brief period of time, fund isolated programs within the pentagon, does not help national security. the only thing that's going to
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help national security is by getting throifed o.c.o. dodge and budgeting honestly. so that's why we oppose this bill. yes, i believe that budget caps should be raised. for the other bills as well. in part becausic a lot of those departments are important to national security. as i mentioned. the department of homeland security. the department of justice. the department of treasury. but more than anything, we oppose this bill because of how bad it is for the pentagon. that's the reason the secretary of defense opposed it. that's the reason all of the joint chiefs of staff oppose it. because they want an actual budget. they want actual, dependable money, the way things used to be, before 2010. when we would actually pass appropriations bills and they could plan more than a month or two at a time. if we pass this bill, we simply perpetuate that process. now we will pass and nda a. we will resolve one way or the other our appropriations difference and we will get it done. but passing this bill now simply perpetuates a bad budget situation that is bad for our troops and bad for national
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security. for that reason i oppose it and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: i yield myself the balance of the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: i want to start with one of the points i made at the beginning and that is to thank the staff, especially on both sides of the aisle who spent a lot of hours disrupt -- a lot of hour, disrutchted a lot of plans, put in incredible effort back and forth to come up with this conference report. members on both sides of the aisle and both sides of the capitol contribute to the product that we are about to vote on. mr. speaker, for 53 straight years, congresses of both parties have passed and presidents of both parties have signed into law defense authorization bills. now there were a handful of times and it's exactly four when a president vetoed a defense authorization bill an every
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single time it was because of something that was in the bill. and so it came back to congress, there were adjustments made, it went back to the white house he signed it into law. never before has a defense authorization bill been held hostage not because of something that's in it but because of trying to force congress to take action on some other matter. we've talked a lot today about appropriations, about budget, even about taxes. none of those things can happen with the defense authorization bill. the reason it has never happened before is because it would irresponsible to hold defense hostage to another domestic agenda, a political agenda, even a broader budget agenda. and it unnecessarily threatens the national security of the united states. this is a first and this first is happening at a particularly dangerous time. there is nothing in this bill that could solve the problem that we've heard so much about. it is an authorization bill.
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it is not appropriations, it is not budget, it is not a tax bill, it is a defense policy bill. now we have heard from time to time the military opposes it. no, they say, i would rather do it differently. and i would too. but i have specifically asked general after general, would you rather have the money or not and they always say they'd rather have the money. because even though it's not an idea way to do budgets, it's better to have the money than not. by the way, last provision in here so if we can, as i hope we do, get a -- reach a budget agreement with a different appropriations matter, the authorizations are adjusted accordingly. the bottom line is, if members vote against this bill, they're voting against everything in it. you may say you're for it but you're voting against it. so what i think our troops deserve and what the world needs to hear, especially at this point in time, is that washington can work. we may not solve all the problems today but we can do
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something that's good and that we are willing to stand up and take action to help defend ourselves. that's what this bill is about. i hope members will support it and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. all time for debate has expired. pursuant to house resolution 449, the previous question is ordered. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? mr. smith: i have a motion to recommit at the desk if this is the right time. the speaker pro tempore: is the gentleman opposed to the conference report? mr. smith: i am. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman -- the gentleman qualifies. the clerk will report the motion. the clerk: mr. smith of washington moves to recommit the conference report on the bill h.r. 1735 to the committee of the conference with instructions to the managers on the part of the house to, one, -- mr. smith: i ask unanimous consent that the read being dispensed with. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to dispensing with the reading? without objection so ordered.
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the motion is not debatable. without objection the previous question is ordered on the motion to recommit. the question is on the motion. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the noes have it. mr. smith: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman ask for the yeas and nays. mr. smith: yes. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 8 and clause 0, this 15-minute -- this is a 15-minute vote on the motion to recommit will be foled by five minute votes on the passage of conference report if 3545 nd passage of h.r. -- 3457.
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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 u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 186 and the nays are 241. the motion is not agreed to. the question is on adoption of the conference report. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the gentleman from washington. >> i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this will be a five-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.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on 7 -- ote the yeas are 2 the speaker pro tempore: on
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this vote the yeas are 270. the nays are 156. the kmps report is adopted. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the unfinished business is on the vote of passage of h.r. 3457, which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 3457, a bill to prohibit the lifting of sanctions on iran until the governments of iran pays the judgments against it for acts of terrorism, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on passage of the bill. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-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.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 251. the nays are 173. the bill is passed. without, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. thornberry: mr. speaker, i send to the desk a concurrent resolution and ask for unanimous consent for its immediate consideration not house. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the tightle of of the concurrent resolution. the clerk: house concurrent resolution 81. concurrent resolution providing for corrections to the enrollment of the bill h.r. 1735. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to consideration of the concurrent esolution? without objection, the concurrent resolution is agreed to and the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from texas seek recognition? ms. johnson: i ask unanimous
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consent that my name be removed as co-sponsor of h.r. 70 . the speaker pro tempore: without objection. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to take from the speaker's table bill h.r. 2617, with the senate amendments thereto, and concur in the senate amendments. the speaker pro tempore: the
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clerk will report the title of the bill and the senate amendments. the clerk: h.r. 2617, an act to meand the fair minimum wage act of 2007 to postpone a scheduled increase in the minimum wage applicable to american samoa. senate amendments. strike all after the enacting clause and insert the following, section 1, minimum wage for american samoa a, minimum wage. paragraph 2 of section 8103-b of the fair minimum wage act of 2007, 29 united states code 206 note is amended to read as follows. two, the minimum wage applicable to american samoa under section 6-a-1 of the fair labor standards act of 1938, 29 united states code 20 -a-1 shall be a, the applicable wage rate in effect for each industry and classification as of september 29, 2015, and b, increased by 40 cents an hour. or such lesser amount.
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. mr. thompson: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. thompson: i request unanimous consent that we dispense with the reading. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the reading is dispensed with. is there objection to the original request of the gentleman from pennsylvania? without objection, the senate amendments are agreed to and the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the gentlewoman from california is recognized. ms. sanchez: mr. speaker, i was absent for the second vote in the series of votes that we just took. on roll call number 532. and if i had been present, i would have voted nay. i just wanted to put that in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman's statement will appear in the record. ms. sanchez: thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman
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from texas rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the committee on energy an commerce be authorized to file a supplemental report on the bill, h.r. 702. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to take from the speaker's table the bill h.r. 1020, with the senate amendment thereto and concur in the senate amendment. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill and the senate amendment. the clerk: h.r. 1020, an act to define stem education to include computer science and to support existing stem education programs at the national science foundation. senate amendment, on page 5, strike lines 3 through 4 and insert the following. 3, in subsections e and f, by striking subsection g, each place it appears and inserting subsection h. the speaker pro tempore: the
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entleman from texas. is there objection? without objection, the senate amendment is agreed to and the motion is re-- to reconsider is laid on the table.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland seek recognition? mr. hoyer: i ask unanimous consent to speak out of order for one minute for the pump of inquiring of the majority leader -- for the purpose of inquiring of the majority leader the schedule for the week to come. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized. mr. hoyer: i thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield to my friend, mr. mccarthy, for information regarding the schedule. mr. mccarthy: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, on monday no votes are expected in the house. on tuesday the house will meet at noon for morning hour and 2:00 p.m. for legislative business. votes will be postponed until 6:30. on wednesday and thursday the house will meet at 10:00 a.m. for morning hour and noon for legislative business. on friday the house will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. last votes of the week are expected no later than 3:00 p.m. mr. speaker, the house will consider a number of suspensions next week, a
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complete list of which will be announced by close of business tomorrow. in addition, the house will consider h.r. 3192, the homebuyers assistance act sponsored by representative french hill. this bipartisan bill will provide relief to everyone who is doing their best to comply with the consumer financial protection bureau's mortgage loan disclosure rule. mr. speaker, the house will also consider h.r. 538, the native american energy act sponsored by representative don young, which is necessary to ex peedate energy production on tribal lands. and finally, mr. speaker, the house will consider h.r. 702 sponsored by representative joe barton. oil exports are key to creating american jobs and furthering american energy renaissance. given the increased security threats facing the united states and its allies, the president -- the presence of
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more american oil in the global marketplace will offer more secure supply options. this will provide america with greater foreign policy influence as well as strengthening our economic and national security. i thank the gentleman and yield back. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman for that information. this, mr. speaker, has been -- the last two weeks have been filled with a lot of things going on in this house. but i know the majority would be profoundly disappointed if i didn't ask him about one thing that doesn't seem to be going on, but which i think is critically important. i know the majority leader, mr. speaker, joins with me in not wanting to see american jobs lost overseas. or american jobs not created here in america for american workers because we are able to make products and sell them overseas. , so mr. speaker, i would ask -- so, mr. speaker, i would ask
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the distinguished majority leader, knowing full well as he does that the c.e.o. of g.e. was here and spoke to both democrats and republicans, i know, talked about 500 u.s. jobs going overseas because we have not yet re-authorized the ex im-- export-import bank. the senate voted 64-29 to reopen the bank. they voted in july, almost 2/3 of the united states senate. the majority leader is tired of hearing, i know, but i still believe that there's a sigma jort of members in this house -- significant majority of members in this house that would vote for it. i want to tell you, mr. speaker, i was extraordinarily pleased to read, i didn't hear, but read the majority leader's comments when he was talking about the failure of the senate to proceed on a vote of
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disapproval or approval on the agreement with iran on nuclear arm as control. -- arms control. and a he said he was deeply dis-- and he said he was deeply distressed that they demand provisions in the senate's procedures. he went on to say, those revisions would be to let the people, in this case the senate, have a voice. i was quoting the "wall street journal" just a few days ago. i would ask the gentleman, i know the gentleman doesn't want us to lose jobs, i know he's quoted as saying that the people's voice ought to be heard, i know he shares with me that this is the people's house. and i ask the gentleman, it's not on the schedule next week, but does the gentleman expect the export-import bank to be voted on in this house before the end of this month? and i yield to my friend. mr. mccarthy: i thank the
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gentleman and, you know, in honor of the late yogi bera, it's like deja vu all over again. there's no action scheduled in the house on ex-im and i yield ack. mr. hoyer: mr. speaker, that's the answer i expected. that's the answer i've been getting. and very frankly that's the answer this house has been getting. i know some of my republican friends are very frustrated by that answer. and i know all of our side is frustrated by that answer. i say respectfully to my friend, i would certainly hope that we could bring that bill to the floor. win or lose, whether you win or win or export-import bank is re-authorizesed or not, you're correct -- authorized or not, you're correct, the voice of the people should be heard on such a critical issue for jobs in this country.
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also i know that we had marked up in committees a reconciliation bill, or bills. those reconciliation bills repeal provisions of the affordable care act and defund planned parenthood. the gentleman, i think, knows full well that the united states senate voted on the planned parenthood issue and only got 47 votes for it. so in the one instance we have an issue that only got less -- got three less than half in the united states senate, being proposed to come to this floor, and an issue that got 64 votes in the united states senate, as the gentleman so correctly observed, is not yet scheduled. can the gentleman tell me whether or not these reconciliation provisions are going to be brought to this
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floor, knowing full well that they won't pass the senate and even if they did the president wouldn't sign them and we would sustain that veto and i yield to my friend. mr. mccarthy: i thank the gentleman for yielding and knowing the rules of reconciliation. i do believe it will pass the senate. the three committees that received reconciliation instructions from the budget committee have marked up their portions as you have said. i do expect the budget committee to meet in the near future to complete their work and we will notify members as soon as that is scheduled for the floor and i yield back. mr. hoyer: thank you. mr. speaker, we may have a difference of opinion but perhaps we'll see who is right on whether it passes the united states senate or not. i understand reconciliation only needs a majority. but we will see. mr. speaker, i want to also ask the majority leader, one of the issues that i know the majority leader has been working on, and i know that all of us on this floor feel it to be very, very
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important to pass before october 30, when the highway bill authorization expires, can the gentleman tell me, and i know he's a strong supporter of it, clearly we need to invest in infrastructure, again, to expand the economy. can the gentleman tell me what prospects we have in passing or at least considering the highway bill? i yield to my friend. mr. mccarthy: i thank the gentleman for yielding. as the gentleman knows, the hardest thing to do in this town is to find pay-fors. but chairman ryan continues to have bipartisan discussions on ways to pay for the long term highway bill. i've had follow-up meetings with him today. they are progressing over on the senate. i have met with chairman shuster, even today as well, and a i expect an announcement very -- and i expect an announcement very shortly on committee movement. and we'll advise members as soon as action is taken to schedule it for the floor. i yield back.
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mr. hoyer: i -- mr. hoyer: i thank the leader. hope that optimism is realized and we have the opportunity to consider a highway bill. i would urge the majority leader to urge those who are working on a resolution, that the pay-fors, which are difficult as he observes, are pay-fors which can be supported in a bipartisan fashion. i think that's important, not only to pass the senate but to be signed by the president and we all, i think, share the view that this is a very, very important bill for us to get done. with, that unless the majority leader may want to reconsider and tell me the export-import bank is coming to the floor, which apparently he doesn't, i will yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. mccarthy: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that when the house adjourns today it adjourn to meet at 1:00 p.m.
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tomorrow, and further when the house adjourns on that day, it adjourn to meet on tuesday, october 6, 2015, when it shall convene at noon for morning hour debate and 2:00 p.m. for legislative business. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the chair will now entertain requests for one-minute speeches. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek to be recognized? without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today to congratulate johnstown, pennsylvania, for hosting the first ever craft hockeyville u.s.a. game this week and the pittsburgh penguins for their 4-2 victory over the tampa bay lightning in the game. the competition to choose america's hockeyville was conducted in partnership with the national hockey league players association and the
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national hockey league. towns across the country submitted stories showing their passion for hockey and more than 20 million votes were cast. but as the contest result reveals, few places in america love hockey like johnstown does and johnstown rightly deserves the title, hockeyville, u.s.a. mr. rothfus: johnstown was home of the fictional hockey team, the charleston chief, in the 1977 movie "slap shot." scenes from the movie were filmed at the war memorial auditor yourum. we also can't forget the johnstown jets who played here from 1950 to 1977, won five eastern hockey league championships from 1951 to 1962. as penguins coach mike johnson said after penguins' victory, it's a great arena, the excitement in the building, the excitement of the town, i just think it's special. i thank the speaker and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california seek recognition? without objection the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute.
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>> thank you, mr. speaker, i rise today to recognize the growing rue mantarian crisis in syria. as a result of the syrian civil war and continuing military operations against isil, over four million people have been forced to seek refuge outside of syria. the syrian crisis has quickly become an international crisis and it requires the attention and the assistance of every nation. ms. sanchez: many may see this crisis as a distant problem but the rl atl is this is -- but the reality is that this is a global world now and everyone is interconnected. as each nation continues to resettle re-- refugees, we must ensure they are provided the best resources and this requires international cooperation. it is not just about providing financial assistance, but understanding that these refugees are people. they're people. who have been forced out of their country, might have left
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their families, and are struggling to survive on a daily basis. as the u.s. is committed to accepting refugees, i urge our country to have compassion and to commit to providing the necessary resources to address this ongoing crisis. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. rohrabacher: i join my colleague from california and her deep concern for what's going on in the middle east and today i rise to speak out about a genocide taking place in the middle east that's being committed against christians across the middle east. they're being victimized and targeted for genocide. violent radical islamists have targeted middle eastern christians for extinction,
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killing them, forcing them from their homes and burning their churches. hundreds of thousands of christians have been forced to flee. the united states needs to do what we can to save these christian victims. as we have saved other refugees throughout our history. all of us who believe in religious freedom andle to lance need to stand up and state clearly that we won't city -- we b won't sit quietly as genocide takes place on our watch. i ask my colleagues to join me in co-sponsoring a resolution i have here in my hand that resolution declaring middle eastern christians as targets of genocide and giving them priority for immigration and refugee status. we have been silent already for too long. it is time for this body to make sure that we are -- that our words are heard and our deeds are take . s that good place to start. i ask my colleagues to join me in this resolution which i will
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now submit to the united states house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from michigan seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. >> yesterday, i and many of my colleagues had to hold our noses as we voted for a short-term continuing resolution. the c.r. thankfully did not cut funding to planned parenthood, 2ich provided $2.7 million to -- which provided 2.7 million americans with medical services this year. but the c.r. is only good until december 11 and leaves out fund for a vital program like the ex-im bank. in less than 10 weeks, we'll be right back here fighting for another -- against another government shutdown. do we really want to fail our
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military veterans our seniors, our families and our voters? i say no. let's do the right thing, let's do our job, let's come up with a long-term budget that serves the american people. the american businesses. and the american economy. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from arizona seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. >> we're called the people's house for a reason. we're sent to washington to be the direct voices of our constituents back home. last week it was my honor to take action on an issue originally brought to my attention by one of my constituents from green valley, arizona. a en thorson served as command for the world war ii when he saw a news report of a little known tax increase that's hurting american families and is
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scheduled to hit seniors in 2015. ms. mcsally: he wrote letters, made phone calls and raised the alarm on this little known issue. after hearing about this issue from him, my office worked with members from both parties in the house and senate to move the issue forward and fix it. those efforts resulted in the introduction last week of legislation to repeal this tax hike and put lauren's ideas into action. mr. speakering this is how hour -- this is hour our government is supposed to work. i'm grateful for lauren's tireless efforts to protect our seniors and i will continue to work to advance his and my constituent's ideas in congress. thank you and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from illinois seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection the gentlewoman is recognized for onemen. >> thank you, mr. speaker. for too long this congress has
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governed from one crisis to the ext. yesterday, when we were hours away from a self-inflicted wound, two news pieces were published i would like to share. number one, the c.e.o. of hewniewell, a company with a significant presence in my district, published an article about the economic damage of congress' failure to re-authorize the export import bank. mrs. bustos: then bloomberg published an article with the headline, boeing risks $1.1 billion order on shutdown. washington gridlock is putting the jobs of thousands of americans at risk. this includes hundreds of people i serve in rockford and the quad cities. but today is a new day. it's a new month. and i urge all of my colleagues to turn over a new leaf of bipartisanship. let's work together, re-authorize the ex-im bank and protect these good paying manufacturing jobs. before it's too late.
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thank you, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> i request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and rhett let's -- and revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. just a few minutes ago, i cast an affirmative vote for the national defense authorization act 230r16. however i do have great concern over an important measure which was all but removed from the legislation we voted on today. earlier this year i offered a medical valuation for parity or meps act. it would improve military suicide prevention by instituting a mental health assessment for all incoming recruits to be used as a baseline for evaluation throughout their career. mr. speaker, this issue has been studied thoroughly over the past several years and i strongly urge the pentagon to act quickly to take steps in better assessing the mental health of
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our service men and women with a commonsense baseline evaluation. a study found one in five enter the service with a psychiatric issue and nearly half of all soldiers first attempted it before enlisted. i call on the pentagon to stop if funding the death of our soldiers. we need to act now. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from texas seek recognition? ms. jackson lee: i ask to address the house and revise and extend for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. ms. jackson lee: i have a great deal of respect for this institution. i've had the privilege of serving it. as a member of the jew dish year committee i'm grateful for the extent of our jurisdiction that embraces the constitution. and i believe justice is important. i rise in great consternation and concern and condemnation of the statement made by the republican leadership. the benghazi committee is not
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for fact finding. it's not for recognizing the tragic loss of four americans. but it is really to insult and degrade a public servant who happens to be a presidential candidate. how tragic that we would engage in such tom foolly -- tom foolery. in spite of that, it talks about doing justice. i was engaged in impeachment prosealedings, the actions in waco, a trial for a federal judge. that is the fact finding role of this nation. but while we are fooling around with a committee that's there to do nothing, our -- to do nothing but to deal with political gran diesing and we have not -- grandizing and we have not passed the act to help our 9/11 first responders, i would ask that we stop and end this committee because it's not doing justice and the united states calls us to do. the constitution gives urs our guide posts. why don't we follow it? i thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield back.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. are there additional one minute speeches in seeing none, the chair lays before the house the following personal requests. the clerk: leaves of abseps requested for mr. culberson of texas for today and mr. gutierrez of illinois for today. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the requests are granted. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the gentleman from texas, mr. flores, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader. mr. flores: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today to honor arthur william "bill" bailey jr. of waco, texas who passed away on august 18, 2015. he was a renowned korean war veterans, a renowned waco businessman and a distinguished alumnus and former regent at baylor university. he will be greatly missed. he was born in waco on april 24,
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1929. he graduated from waco high school in 1946 and enrolled in baylor university. on december 15, 1950, bill married his high school sweetheart, roberta hatch. they were married for almost 64 years prior to roberta's passing in 2013. roberta and bill had three sons witness stand were blessed with 10 grandchildren and four great grandchildren. bill graduated from baylor university in 1951 with a b.a. degree and a law degree. while at baylor he was a member of the debate team and the baylor chamber of commerce. bill served our nation in the united states air force as first lieutenant in the jag division in the korean war. he was ultimately promoted to captain in the u.s. air force reserves. after his concluding -- after concluding his service to our nation, bill returned to waco to enter into the insurance business. in 1956, he established his own
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independent insurance agency, bill bailey insurance agency, which is now known as bailey insurance and risk management. he became a noted state and national leader and the -- in the insurance industry. because of his expertise and risk management, he was called upon to testify before the united states senate and united states house of representatives committees. as well as the federal reserve board. all on behalf of the insurance industry. in 1969, bill teamed up with a group of his fellow texas insurance agents to establish the certified insurance counselors program which focused on teaching advanced insurance topics to assure high quality standards of ethics and professionalism in the insurance industry this program would become the found eags of the national alliance for insurance education and research. today, these certification programs are conducted in all 50 states with more than 150,000 participants annually. bill held many prestigious
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positions on various boards including the chairman of the board of governors for the national alliance for insurance education and research, the president of the independent insurance agents and brokers association of america, the liaison to the national association of insurance commissioners for the infeint insurance agents is -- agents and brokers association of america, and as director of the executive to -- and executive committee member and past vice chairman of the texas national bank of waco. bill's work in the insurance agency -- in the insurance industry was hon in order by the independent insurance agents and brokers association of america when they dedicated their conference room in their washington, d.c., office, the a. william bailey jr. conference room. he was also a recipient of the independent insurance agents and brokers association of america woodforth memorial award for herer tos you service to the insurance profession -- meritorious service to the insurance profession.
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both of these are the highest distings -- distinctions for these respective organizations. bill was active in the waco and baylor university communities and served as the following -- trustee, vice chairman of the board and regent of baylor university, officer, director and pecktive committee member of the waco industrial foundation, member and chairman of the hill crest medical -- hill crest baptist medical center board of development, founder and past president of the waco business league and president of the following organizations, the greater waco united way, baylor waco and baylor bear foundation, the waco and northwest waco rotary club, the waco ymca, waco campfire girls and the baylor stadium corporation. in 1988, bill was honored by the labor alumni association with a w.r. white meritorious service award and in 1997, they honored him as a distinguished alumnus. .
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additionally he was recognized as an alum news. he was a member of the first baptist church of waco where he served as trustee, deacon and chairman of the board of deacon, chairman of the finance committee, founding chairman of the first baptist church of waco foundation, president of the mccaul sunday school class and co-superintendent of the college sunday school department. mr. speaker, bill bailey will not only be remembered for his long list of accomplishments, but most importantly he will be forever remembered as a loving husband, a father, a grandfather, a great-grandfather and a loyal friend to hundreds of central texan as. my wife and i offer our deepest and heartfelt condolences to the bailey family. we also lift up the family and friends of bill bailey in our prayers. as i close, i ask that all americans continue to pray for our country, for our military men and women who protect us
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abroad and for our first responders who protect us here at home. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house a communication. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. flores: mr. speaker, i rise today to honor mehdi lee phillips from brian, texas, who assed away on august 25, 2015, her 103rd birthday. ms. phillips was born in washington county, texas, on august 25, 1912. growing up, mrs. phillips attended school in waco and mcgregor areas and later attended the brian school for colored. she married willy sterling in 1931. they were blessed with five children. later she married eddie phillip, they were blessed with four children. mrs. phillips was a member of the new liberty baptist church in booneville, texas, at an early age and remained a a member until 1941, when she
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became a member of the pleasant grove missionary baptist church at bryant. she was an avid church worker, serving on the pleasant grove church usher board for 35 years and a a -- as a sunday school teacher and a mission teacher. she served on various programs and committees at the church and worked tirelessly at raising funds to help improve church facilities. mrs. phil ins taught and counseled numerous youth during her life. she was a staunch believer in higher education and all nine of her children attended college. mrs. phillips was an entrepreneur bho took suing and tailoring classes through the mail and worked for many years as a self-employed seam stress. she also bought, repaired and resold real estate for additional income. in addition, she successfully owned and operated phillips cafe and barbeque. she led a full life and was well respected in our community. she will be forever remembered for her devotion to her church and her community and as a loving wife, a mother, a
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grandmother, a great-grandmother and a great-great-grandmother and a youth hener to to hundreds and -- mentor had -- men to hundreds and -- mentor to hundreds. we offer our deepest condolences to the families. we also lift up the family and friends of mehdi lee phillips in our prayers. as i close i ask that all americans continue to pray for our country, for our military men and women who protect us abroad and for our first responders who protect us here at home. hank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today to honor henry thomas "tommy" bozzkezz of brian, texas, who passed away on september 12, 2015. tommy served the community in a variety of ways and he will be missed greatly. tommy was born on august 9,
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1962, in bryan, texas. he graduated from bryan high school in 1980, when he was 19 he began his public service career as a city of bryan police officer. he was the city's youngest policeman and served on the force for eight years. he held various assignments including patrols, special advanced traffic investigations and the field training officer program, crime scene aa nal sis and honor guard detail -- analysis and honor guard detail. he was also a member of the texas state guard. he was commissioned as second lieutenant serving as company commander in the 223rd military police battalion to assist state and local authorities in times of emergency. tommy married his high school sweetheart, stela. they were married for 29 years and were blessed with two daughters. tommy earned his associate's degree from glen college and later earned an undergraduate degree in political science in 199 and a master's degree in public administration in 1995,
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each from texas a&m university. during his time at texas a&m and the years that followed, he worked for the university. he started out in the college of medicine are we held various positions, including director of special programs, special assistant to the dean of medicine, admissions committee member, principal investigator and a lecturer in the department of humanities and medicine. he would go on to work for the university system and the office of vice chancellor for human resources. where he assumed a leadership role with the health science center, working as a special assistant to the president. prior to his death, tommy worked as the chief contracts officer and director for contract administrator in the office of finance and administration at the texas a&m health science center. tommy was an active volunteer and engaged parent in the bryan independent school district for over 25 years. he began this service as an elected school board trustee in 2012 and he served as vice president of that board. he also served extensively on
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various local and state-wide charitable and educational organization boards such as the texas association for ac a sess and equity, the -- access and equity, the texas association of advisors for the health professions, the texas area health education centers east, the bryan college station chamber of commerce, the bryan i.s.d. education foundation, the college advisory board, the united way, the boys and girls club, gear up, habitat for humanity and junior achievement. tommy received many acknowledgments throughout his career, including the 2007 texas association of chicanos in higher education and service award and the international walter zeller fellowship award. tommy worked tirelessly to better our community. he will forever be remembered for his devotion to public service and as a loving husband, father and friend to countless citizens.
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my wife and i offer our deepest and heartfelt condolences to his family. we also lift up the family and friends of tommy in our prayers. as i close, i ask that all americans continue to pray for our country and for our military men and women who protect us abroad and for our first responders who protect us here at home. hank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today to honor dr. james f. cooper of bryan, texas, who passed away on august 18, 2015. dr. james cooper was a veteran of world war ii and the korean war. he was a physician, an aviation medical examiner and an active member of the veterans of foreign wars. he touched many lives and he will be greatly missed. dr. cooper was born on august
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30, 1927, in farmersville, louisiana. he was a son of a baptist preacher and grew up in many towns throughout the south. at the age of 17 dr. cooper enlisted in the navy to serve aboard the u.s.s. dorchester in the south pacific. upon returning to the u.s., he used his g.i. bill benefits to attend medical school at tennessee. he then served again in the korean war as deputy medical officer for the destroyer fleet atlantic stationed aboard its flagship, the u.s.s. yosemite. dr. cooper retired from the navy with the final rank of lieutenant commander medical corps. in 1955, dr. cooper moved to bryan, texas, and entered a medical practice with his brother. dr. cooper was a well beloved family doctor and a surgeon at st. joseph's hospital. in addition to his medical practice, the good doctor had a strong afinity for aviation and specialized in aviation medicine. he was involved with the space
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programs at nasa and present at many of the apollo launches. his knowledge and experience with nasa missions earned him the opportunity to be a voice commentary for six apollo launches for television broadcasts and in australia. dr. cooper also served as an f.a.a. senior aviation medical examiner. as a fellow pilot, i was fortunate and grateful to have dr. cooper as my medical examiner for many years. we developed a strong friendship and shared many stories about our mutual love for aviation. dr. cooper was an extraordinary doctor, not only specializing in aviation, but also serving as a chief medical officer for the texas world speedway in college station. in addition to his medical duties, dr. cooper was an active member of d.f.w. post in bryan. he was very passionate about the v.f.w. and even served as a commander of the post. mr. speaker, dr. cooper left a strong legacy for his family
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and for the valley. he will be forever remembered as a great doctor, a dedicated veteran, loving husband, a great father and a grandfather and a loyal friend. my wife and i offer our deepest and heartfelt condolences to the cooper family, we also lift up the family and friends of dr. james cooper in our prayers. as a i close, i ask that all americans continue to pray for our country, for our military men and women who protect us abroad and our first responders who protect us here at home. hank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today to honor allen dwayne waledy of bryan, texas, who passed away on august 22, 2015. allen was a veteran and electrical engineer, an aggie, a pillar of the valley community and a great friend. he led a full life and will be
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missed greatly in our community. al an was born on april 23, 1928, in iowa park, texas. he graduated from lamar high school houston in 1945 and later attended texas a&m university. while at texas a&m, allen was a member of the nationally famous fighting texas aggie band and served as drum major during his senior year. he graduated from texas a&m university in 1951 with a bachelor of science in electrical engineering. from 1946 to 1948,al an served on the u.s. anyway -- allen served on the u.s. navy and from 1951 to 1953 he served as a lieutenant in the urs army corps. after his disarge from the army,al an began a successful --al an began a successful business career which took him to tripoli, libya and canada. in 1995 he moved back to college station to begin his retire. there he served as a volunteer
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for the george bush presidential a library and was a member of the bryan rotary club and the central baptist church. mr. speaker,al an will be forever remembered as a dedicated veteran, a loving husband, a great father and a loyal friend. my wife and a i offer our deepest and heartfelt condolences to his wife, nancy, and to all a of the family. we also lift up the family and friends ofal an in our prayers. -- of allen in our prayers. i ask that all americans continue to pray for our country and our military men and women who protect us abroad and our first responders who protect us here at home. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house a communication. the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of representatives, sir. pursuant to the permission granted in clause 2-h of rule 2 of the rules of the u.s. house of representatives, i have the honor to transmit a sealed
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envelope received from the white house on september 30, 2015, at 8:45 p.m. and said to contain a message from the president, whereby he notifies of designation of funding for overseas contingency operations, global war on terrorism as provided in the continuing appropriations act of 2016. with best wishes i am, signed, sincerely, karen l. haas. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will read the message. the clerk: to the congress of the united states. in accordance with section 114-c of the continuing appropriations act of 2016, also titled the t.s.a. office of inspection accountabilities a act of 2015, i hereby designate for overseas contingency operations global war on terrorism all funding including the rescission of funds and contributions from foreign governments so designated by the congress and the act pursuant to section 251-b-2-a of the balanced budget and emergency deficit control act of 1985 as amended,
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as outlined in the enclosed list of accounts. . the details of this action are set forth in the enclosed memorandum from the director of the office of management and budget. signed, barack obama, the white house, september 30, 2015. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the committee on appropriations and ordered printed. the chair lays before the house a communication. the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of representatives, sir, pursuant to the permission granted in clause 2-h of rule 2 of the rules of the u.s. house of representatives i have the honor to transmit a sealed envelope received from the white house on september 30, 2015, at 8:45 p.m., and said to contain a message from the president whereby he notifies that he has designated an emergency requirement $700 million in emergency funding for urgent wildland fire suppression ctivities as provided in the
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continuing appropriations act of 2016. with best wishes, i am, signed sincerely, karen l. haas, clerk of the house. the speaker pro tempore: clerk will read the message. the clerk: in accordance with section 135 of the continuing appropriations act of 2016, also entitled t.s.a. office of inspection accountability act of 2015, i hereby designate as a emergency requirement all funding so designated by the congress in the act pursuant to budget 251-b-2-a of the control act of 1995 as amended, to the following account, wildland fire management. the details are set forth in the enclosed memorandum from the director of the office of management and budget. signed barack obama, the white house, september 30, 2015. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the committee on appropriations and ordered printed. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek
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recognition? mr. flores: i move that the house do now adjourn. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. the gent from new york, mr. engel, each will control 30 minutes. the chair recognizes the
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gentleman from california, mr. royce. mr. royce: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to evise and extend their remarks for this measure. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered, the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: i also ask unanimous consent to place into the record letters exchanged with the chairman of judiciary and ways and means committee on this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: madam speaker, the house is not in order. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is correct. the house is not in order. mr. royce: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: i rise in strong support of this bill. this is the justice for victims of iranian terrorism. and i appreciate the work of the bill's author, mr. meehan of pennsylvania. he's worked very hard on this. there are about 100 co-sponsors in this house. on the foreign affairs committee we have made iran the
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central focus of our work. as a matter of fact, we had over 30 hearings so far and briefings on iran and on the dangerous nuclear agreement that was struck with this state sponsor of terrorism. madam speaker, since coming to power in the late 1970's -- 1979, the iranian regime has funded terrorist groups such as hezbollah and hamas and directed their operations. the way they do that is they have a special force, it's called the quds, it's headed up by general sole manny. he is in charge of assassinations outside the country. assassinations of u.s. targets, by the way, besides other targets. recently you will have heard of the general because by the way sanctions, european sanctions are going to be lifted on him under these -- this agreement, but you will have read or heard
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that he traveled, he traveled to moscow to meet with putin. as a result of those meetings, you'll notice the discussions about weapons coming from russia into syria, into the hands of the quds forces. so we look at what he has done and what u.s. courts have done as a result. there have been 80 separate attacks on u.s. installations and u.s. individuals. we remember the 1983 bombing of the u.s. marine barracks in beirut. the 1996 bombing of the khobar towers in saudi arabia. those two attacks killed 260 american servicemen and left their widows and left children to be raised by one parent. -- here are judgments
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the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. mr. race: there are judgments that have been -- mr. royce: there are judgments that have been rendered that directs payment from iran to these families, to the victims' families. unfortunately, under the foreign sovereign immunities act, even though this reward has been given, even though u.s. victims of state sponsored terrorism got their day in court, and even though they brought the suits in u.s. courts and had the right to collect these damages, iran has not, as of yet, paid. u.s. courts have held iran libal for the attacks carried out by its terrorist proxies when those attacks were orchestrated and paid for by the iranian regime. so, the judgments that remain utstanding is $43.5 billion in
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unpaid damages for those 80 cases over the last decade and a half. in one case, $9 billion was awarded to the victims of the bombing of the marine barracks in 1983. again, the government of iran found responsible through lawful proceedings in a u.s. court, that judgment remains unpaid. mr. speaker, the obama administration during its negotiations with iran did not seek for iran to compensate the families of those whose lives were taken by iranian terrorism despite these u.s. court judgments. that is very much in contrast with our past procedure. in the case of libya, for example, a decade ago, when we reached that agreement with libya, the u.s. secured the right or the demand that the gaddafi regime compensate the
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victims of the attacks such as e bombing of pan am 103 over lockerbie, scotland, that was done. that's our procedure. iran will soon obtain $100 billion, approximately, in unfrozen assets. as well as immeasurable economic and financial benefits by escaping the sanctions regime and reintegrating into the global economy. iran will get sanctions lifted and american victims will still be out in the cold. that's not right. so this legislation would address that injustice. it's straightforward. it would say that of the 100 some billion in sanctions relief that those judgments will be paid out of that. those -- that $43 billion will be paid to the survivors of those families of those 80 attacks orchestrated, paid for by iran. i reserve the balance of my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. r. engel: mr. speaker, thank you. i rise in opposition to the bill and i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: thank you. let me start by acknowledging my friend, chairman royce. the committee on foreign affairs is the most bipartisan committee in congress. we are collaborative. we are productive. and we built a record advancing bipartisan legislation that promotes america's interests abroad and keeps the american people safe. i want to state that chairman royce's leadership thanks for much of our committee's good work. i'm disappointed that house republican leadership decided to ignore regular order on this bill. they rushed it to the floor without any consideration by the foreign affairs committee. as was pointed out we had 30 hearings. we know a little bit about iran on the foreign affairs committee. so rushing it to the floor without any consideration by
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the foreign affairs committee is wrong. it's a shame. i think left to our own volition we could have sent forward a bill that could make a difference for the victims of iranian sponsored terrorism. iranian sponsored terrorism is there, palpable, and we should do something to try to help the victims. this bill, on the other hand, would not do that. let me explain why. american courts have awarded roughly $46 billion to about 1,300 victims and their families. we all want justice for these families. we all want to hold iran accountable for its acts of terrorism against americans. iran should pay these claims. but this bill does nothing for the victims of iranian terror. and here's the problem. let's assume for argument that iran's leaders did change course and decide to pay the claims. this bill would actually make it more difficult for iran to pay these judgments. iran owes american claimants $46 billion, but iran has access to $20 billion of its
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cash reserves, not 46. the rest, $95 billion, is frozen in bank accounts in europe and asia. on top of that, iran's oil revenues are frozen. when iran sells oil, the payments are kept frozen under the threat of american sanctions, which i support. iran can access these funds only for certain purposes. paying court judgments is not one of them. currently u.s. sanctions don't allow it. and under this bill, all u.s. sanctions are kept in effect, absolutely no change is allowed until iran pays the full $46 billion. so where would iran get the money to pay the american claims? the bill says iran pay the claims, but you can't have any of the funds to pay them. . sore it's a catch 22 and who does it hurt? not iran. it hurts the victims. not sangle claim would be paid under this bill. so in my opinion, this bill offers nothing but false hope. i heard some members say, we
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can pay the claims by seizing iran's frozen assets. that's not virtual the case. the funds frozen is overseas, not in the u.s. though they are frozen by u.s. sanctions, they are beyond the jurisdiction of our courts to seize them. another false promise, virtually all of iran's assets will stay overseas. under this bill, they would be required to be kept overseas because all u.s. sanctions would be kept in effect by law with no change allowed. so let's be honest. this bill is not really about helping these victims, it's about exploiting their plight and their tragedy to make a political splash. look, everyone here knows i'm no fan of the iran nuclear agreement. i voted against it, but the other side won, and whether you are for or against the deal, it's time to be realistic about what happens next. in my opinion, there were two potential courses. the first is to do everything we can to strengthen and enforce the agreement and hold iran to its commitments.
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we should double down ron our support for friends and -- on our support for friends and allies in the region. we should push leaders in tehran to release detained americans and improve its abysmal record on human rights. that's the course i hope we'll take. i'll soon introduce legislation to pursue those aims, and i'll work with members of both parties to get these measures to the president's desk. the other course would be doing to the iran agreement what leaders on the other side have tried to do to the affordable care act act, and that's what i'm afraid of here. vote after vote after vote, whether we like it or not, on an issue that has already been voted on in this chamber many, many times. i don't want the dispute on iran to turn into the affordable care act, where we try to kill it 60 different ways. we should not be using this for political purposes. we should be passing legislation which i know we can get out of the foreign affairs committee in a collaborative way that would really do something to help these
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victims, that would really do something to hold iran accountable for all its reprehensible acts. so i hope that what we're doing today is not the path we're going down, not only now but in he future with other things. there was a measure in the senate that was very similar to this which tried to hold iran to certain things and say that the funds couldn't be released unless iran did this or did that. we could do this another 60 times. it would be counterproductive. let's put our heads together. let's figure out a way that we can continue to hold iran accountable, and let's move on that way. so i hope we can move past this bill and start working on measures to ensure that the iran agreement is implemented as strongly and stringently as possible. i hope we can get back to our regular practice in the foreign affairs committee of which we have been so proud and focus on making policy that leaves politics at the water's edge. i reserve the balance of my
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time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: the administration is arguing, mr. speaker, that although the iranian regime has access to over $20 billion, that this judgment is $43 billion, so there isn't enough money there to make payment. but in addition to the $20 billion-some, iran is in the process right now of negotiation and paying, paying and supporting in transfers to other regimes. for example, a report out this week says iran is purchasing $21 billion of airplanes from russia and satellites from russia. $21 billion. iran somehow has the money to do that but it doesn't have the money for this claim. the report out about a month ago says that iran's annual support for hezbollah is over $100 million per year. somehow they got the spending
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cash for that. it's -- it's providing the syrian regime, one estimate -- one of the think tanks here in town is they provided them a little over $10 billion a year. so iran somehow has the discretionary money for these other purposes but not for the purpose of the judgments won in u.s. court for, you know, over 1,000 victims -- family members of the victims of their attacks. so -- but i yield two minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. poe, the chairman of the foreign affairs subcommittee on terrorism, nonproliferation and trade. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for two minutes. mr. poe: i want to thank the chairman and i want to thank mr. meehan for this legislation. mr. speaker, the iranian ayatollah has preached and practiced death to america since the 1970's. iran is a state sponsor of
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terrorism. iran has been sued in federal courts by the families of the murdered victims. iran is guilty of the murder of 421 americans in beirut, lebanon, in 1983. iran is guilty of the murder of 19 service members and jurring 372 others in sa -- injuring 372 others in saudi arabia in 1986. iran is guilty of murdering 1,000 other americans, including some in iraq and afghanistan. federal courts have awarded the victims and families over $40 billion for these crimes, but iran will not pay. it laughs at the death of the innocents it has murdered. it laughs at american justice. well, mr. speaker, it's about time for the long arm of american justice to hold iran accountable for its sins. make them pay. i don't understand why some are concerned or more concerned about the murderous iranian
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regime than they are about justice. justice for the victims that were murdered by this regime. let the ayatollah know he cannot get a different diplomatic pass or -- diplomatic pass or sanction relief until he has paid for the crimes. he has sown the seeds of iran -- has sown the seeds of murder in iran. now it's time for them to reap the consequences for their crimes. it seems to me that the voices of the murdered cry out for us to do something for justice, justice for them that's been too long waiting. this bill, in my opinion, will do it. it's about time we have justice because justice is what we're supposed to do in this country, and that's just the way it is. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota is recognized for two minutes. mr. ellison: i want to thank the gentleman for the time and urge members to vote no on this
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particular bill. you know, once we were able to secure this negotiation and once the deal was put in place, the focus of our attention should shift to making sure that iran lives up to its commitments and we should use this prior negotiation as a template for negotiating other issues, including the captives, including the interest of these victims talked about here today. but what this bill does is handcuffs the president and says that the president doesn't have any discretion to do his end of this bargain, to do what's -- to exercise his discretion to forward and help america and the-plus-plus to ive up to our end -- the p-5 plus one to live up to our end of the bill. i think the method they're going about it is just one. let's use the template that has been developed through the
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negotiation process to go back and say, ok, now we got other things we want to talk to you about. rather than pass legislation on this floor that will do nothing other than to hamstring the president. it's the wrong way to do it. it's a mistake and it should be voted down. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. smith. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. smith: mr. speaker, in 1983, 241 servicemen in beirut were killed and another 60 injured by a car bomb. one of the marines murdered was my constituent, paul, who lived with his young family in my hometown of hamilton. in my second term as congressman, i joined mourners at his funeral. i will never forget the agony and the sorrow of his family. iranian terrorism killed paul and over the decades has killed or maimed thousands of other
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americans. a federal court, mr. speaker, a district court found that the 1983 bombing was, quote, beyond question perpetrated by hezbollah and its agents who received massive materiel and tactical support from the yearian government. later, a three-judge federal court appeals panel approved $1.75 billion in judgment against iran for the 1983 bombing and some other iranian acts of terror. today, iran is poised to get billions of dollars through so-called sanctions relief for an egregiously flawed comprehensive peace plan or plan of action, money that will procure for iran a largely arsenal of sophisticated weapons and an enhanced capability to terrorize, murder and destabilize. they talked about getting weapons, jets from russia. the justice for victims iranian terrorism act, authored by pat meehan, says not so fast. the president has said he will
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veto this bill. that is wrong, mr. speaker. that's uncaring, it's unacceptable and it's unconscionable. support court-ordered victim payments by the terrorist state of iran. fundamental justice demands that this bill become law. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i now yield three minutes to the gentleman from virginia, our colleague on the foreign affairs committee, mr. connolly. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for three minutes. mr. connolly: i thank the speaker and i thank my good friend from new york, mr. elliott engel, and for his leadership on -- eliot engel, and for his leadership on the house foreign affairs committee. this bill prohibits any waivers, reductions or any relief from u.s. sanctions on iran until iran pays all court-ordered damage claims to u.s. victims. those claims total about $46 billion. this bill would prevent the u.s. from implementing its commitments under the iran
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deal, which is really what my friends on the other side are trying to do. not being able to win directly, let's get at it indirectly, and et's cover it with the respectability. but the real issue is cynically how we use the plight of u.s. victims for another partisan shot. we all want to help american victims of iran's terrorism and lack of justice, but this is not the way to help them. it would have the opposite effect, by reducing the chance that any claims, in fact, would be paid, because by freezing assets, iran wouldn't have the wherewithal to do what this bill says it should do before sanctions are lifted. think about this. iran owes $46 billion in u.s. claims, but it doesn't have the money right now, even if it wanted to pay. iran only has access to about $20 billion of its own
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reserves. realistically, the only funds that could be used are the frozen funds under u.s. sanctions held in banks around the world. but under this bill, the frozen funds couldn't be used to pay the claims, and all the money remains frozen until iran pays the claims. a catch-22 if there ever was one. it couldn't sell any oil to use to free up cash because those funds, too would be frozen. another clue about what's really behind this bill is that all of the 76 sponsors are my friends on the other side of the aisle. not a single democrat. regardless of one's position on the iran deal, a deal i probably supported because it keeps iran from becoming a nuclear state, opposing this cynical bill fact is the right vote if you care.
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i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york -- virginia yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield four minutes to the author of this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for four minutes. mr. meehan: i thank the chairman for his leadership. $21 billion for russian jets but not a penny for the victims of their own acts of terror. that's what my colleagues are trying to say. in fact, the president can negotiate it. let him reach an installment plan, but let's make sure that these dollars are paid. look, this is a fundamental question. should iran receive relief from united states sanctions before it pays the victims of terrorism, the $43 billion that u.s. courts say these victims are owed? when we say terrorism, what are we talking about? we're talking about iran an-backed assassinations and bombings and attacks across time zones from paris to jerusalem from new york to
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beirut to east africa to buenos aries. i say not one cent. these victims are united states citizens. they're wives, brothers and sisters, children who hail from all across the nation and they were killed in hijackings and suicide attacks and bombings of buses, planes and buildings and embassies and shopping malls and pizza parlors. in fact, i met with one of those victims. today, this morning, and yesterday, the widow of kenneth welch and his child. they're here in washington today. they've been waiting 30 years for the opportunity to see this issue addressed. my friends, by voting against this legislation, you're saying that iran and the perpetrators of these atrocities deserve u.s. sanctions relief before the victims deserve the court-ordered compensation. let me say it again.
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now, by voting no, you're putting the interests of iran's terror machine before the american victims of that terror. i say, not one cent. to those who say iran can't afford to pay these damages, let me remind you of a few facts. iran has yearly gross domestic product in excess of $1.3 trillion and they just spent $21 billion on russian jets. the facts show that iran has the money and will have much more if the sanctions are lifted. money our own administration freely admits will go to finance even more terror. i sat yesterday with ken steven, the brother of rob steven, a united states navy diver executed on flight 847. his brother ken said to me yesterday, if the president doesn't this opportunity an congress doesn't take the opportunity to hold iran accountable for the terrorist acts now, i have to ask them,
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when will they? 30 years, one family, more than 15 for another. when will they? he's talking to us. let's answer him. let's today stand up for the standards of u.s. navy petty officer robert steedham. let's vote as one house to say we'll put him and the many victims of iran's terrorism before the criminals who conspired to kill him. until they pay these victims what they're owed, let's say no to iran. not one cent. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. >> i now yield three minutes to the -- mr. engel: i now yield three minutes to the gentleman from oregon, mr. blumenauer. the speaker pro tempore: the zwrelt is recognized for three minutes. mr. blumenauer: i appreciate the gentleman's courtesy in permitting me to speak on this
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issue. i listened to the impassioned pleas from my friends on the other side of the aisle about horrific acts of the thugs who run iran. nobody disputes that. nothing before us would take away the sangs we have against their terrorist act tvity. we are all committed to justice for those people. but bear in mind what this legislation seeks to do is to unwind another critical objective of the united states, of our allies, prevent a nuclear armed iran. that agreement was a signal achievement of diplomacy not just of the obama administration, but of russia, china, germany, france, great britain, working with us to secure the strongest agreement
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that we have seen that -- to contain these thugs' nuclear ambitions. the world is united with us to restrain a nuclear iran. now, we have had testimony from our partners that if the united states walks away from that agreement, we're on our own. they're not going to continue to enforce sanctions against nuclear iran. and ultimately, iran will get its money and a free hand to develop nuclear weapons unencumbered by the allies that we've assembled. and the pressure that we've put on them. now, my friend mr. engel is correct. mr. connolly. the construct here is very difficult, even if this were to be approved, to actually work
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out on paper. but take it a step further. these elements have been in place for years and have not resulted in any movement for the victims. we've had what the rest of the world thinks is a significant breakthrough with iran. we've got an area of cooperation and the world is united with us to put the pressure on them. i would suggest rather than throwing this agreement in the trash can and allow iran to develop nuclear weapons and make them stronger and ultimately they will get their money because india and china are going to go ahead and start buying oil from them again as the sanctions collapse, and it will be the united states against the world again. we couldn't even sanction little bitty cuba to change their regime. it takes multinational efforts to be able to make changes.
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this agreement is an important first step and i would suggest it gives us an opportunity to continue putting pressure to be able to obtain the justice that we all want for those victims. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has peeksered. -- expired. the gentleman -- >> i yield one minute to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. frelinghuysen. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. frelinghuysen: i thank the gentleman for yielding and i want to thank mr. meehan and mr. royce for their leadership. the administration acknowledged that some of this money will be certainly distributed to iranian military global terrorist force, an the quds organization with american blood on its hands. we remember the bombing of the marine bar rocks -- barracks in
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beirut in 1983. the airmen who died in the khobar towers bombing in saudi arabia in 1985. and what about the victims of iranian financed attack, like lee so who chied in a bus bombing in gaza in 1995 and sara duker of new jersey who was murdered on a bus in jerusalem in 1996. who speaks for them? for those innocents and their families? this bill does. thank you and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from texas, mr. hurd, member of the committee on homeland security. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. hurd: i rise in support of this legislation. justice is a powerful word. for those who have been wronged, justice can bring peace and closure. for those guilty of harming the innocent, justice is absolutely
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necessary to ensure the authority of our laws. without justice, truth becomes irrelevant. so if america is going to continue to be the greatest nation in the world, it is imperative that we pursue justice. but the iran nuclear deal was deexact opposite. it rewards lawlessness and corruption, tell ice ran they can be unjust to our own citizens and the curn administration will allow them to get away with it. iran is responsible for sponsoring terrorism that has led to the death of thousands of meshes. when the families of these americans sought justice in court, iran was found guilty and ordered to make reparations. awarded y of cyrus was $300,000 after cyrus was assassinated for criticizing the iranian government. is this administration forcing iran to pay? are they demanding justice for americans like cyrus? no. instead, this administration is handing over an estimated $100
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billion to iran. that's not justice. that's outrageous. yield back. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from ohio, mr. when strup. the speaker pro tempore: the for one is recognized minute. mr. when strup: -- mr. wenstrup: dan was working at the u.s. embassy in beirut in 1983. a bomb -- ann was working at the u.s. embassy in beirut in 1983. a bomb exploded, broking many of her bones. she received a judgment against iran for the suffering she endured. over the past 15 years, u.s. courts have handed down 80 judgments against iran, adding
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up to more than $43.5 billion in unpaid damages. iran refuse toss pay. yet the president's nuclear agreement provides iran with $150 billion in sanctions relief. those that have destroyed innocent american lives, iranian terrorists, are being chosen over the american victims themselves. this bill would prohibit the president from removing any sanctions in place against iran until the president has certified to congress that iran has paid each federal court judgment. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. fitzpatrick. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. fitzpatrick: i thank the chairman, i thank my colleague from pennsylvania, mr. meehan, for introducing this good bill. it's a compassionate bill. it's a bill that tells victims of terrorism that they're not
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forgotten. i chair the task force in the house financial services committee to investigate terrorism financing. we had a hearing specifically on the joint plan of action, so called p-5 plus one. there was an to attorney who testified at the hearing about the $43 billion in judgments and how this deal then not approved yet, was likely going to sidestep the ability of victims who did all the right things through the legal process, who hired lawyers, who went to court, who got judgments, legitimate judgments, how these judgments would not be paid. on yull 29, i wrote a letter to secretary lew, the secretary of the treasury. secretary kerroif the state department. asking whether or not they had addressed the issue. it was part of the negotiations. that was july 29. i've yet to receive a response from the department of state in any way. mr. chairman, the deafening
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silence of this administration is completely overlooked the victims of terrorism. we're going to give the money to the islamic republic of iran and not to american victims and that's wrong. this bill is right. i urge my colleagues to support it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from north carolina, mr. holding. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from north carolina is recognized for one minute. mr. holding: iran is shortly set to receive over $100 billion when president obama uses his pen to lift our sanctions against the world's largest sponsor of terrorism. at the same time, mr. speaker, iran owes u.s. victims of terror $43.5 billion. one of these victims was first petty officer michael wagner of columbia, north carolina. he was serving at an american embassy in beirut in 1984 when a
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car bomb filled with explosives paid for by iran detonated outside his office, killing him and 23 other people. in the case of petty officer wagner and iran's other victim, our courts found iran guilty and ordered iran to pay restitution but iran has not paid a penny. mr. speaker, we should require iran to pay every penny it owes to the victims of terrorism before sanctions are lifted. period. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. -- >> i yield one minute to the gentleman from missouri, mr. harper. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. harper: i have and will remain opposed to the joint comprehensive plan of action on iran. it represent ice ran's ability to build a nuclear weapon at a future date while reaping the financial benefits of immediate relief from international sanctions. by removing sanctions to the agreement -- by removing
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sanctions, the agreement injects almost $100 billion into the iranian regime. iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world, funding hezbollah in lebanon and hamas in gaza. over $43 billion in judgments have been awarded to americans who have been the victims of iranian terrorism. the agreement fails to clear those judgments. the agreement at best delays iran's ability to build nuclear weapons and at worse gives the regime more money to engage in terrorism while provide nothing justice to americans already harmed by the regime. the justice for victims of iranian terrorism act is timely. it's appropriate. and it should be supported by every member of this body who believe in the validity of u.s. courts and the federal sovereign immunity act. thank you, mr. chairman, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california.
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>> i yield one minute to mr. hill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. hill: i thank the chairman for yielding me time on this. in fact, the whole point of our debate today because the maximum amount of negotiating clout that the united states had over these sanctions was during these negotiations before we relieve sangs. before iran gets access to their oil flow monthly and their $100 billion. $44 billion and 85 judgments. the number of intelligence agent ises that have worked day and night to adjudicate these claims in federal court, the number of f.b.i. agents involved, the federal government's obligation to generate awards for these victims and yet this administration has never raised it in public in regard to the iranian agreement.
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under under the 1998 and 2006 federal sovereign uniits act, the president is -- mr. royce: i yield the gentleman an additional minute. mr. hill: he's obligated to seek restitution under the federal sovereign immunities act. president bush did his duties when he had leverage over libya. he got the claims paid for the victims of terror in libya. every day we come to work in this house and we ask, what can we do to help this country? how can we right a wrong? and today is that day, and i urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support mr. meehan's outstanding bill. let's right the wrong. let's adjudicate these claims. let's get this money back to the victims of terrorism. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arkansas yields back.
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mr. royce: i yield a minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. costello. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for one minute. mr. costello: thank you, mr. speaker. a majority of this house thinks this deal is bad. a majority of the senate thinks this deal's bad, and a majority of the american people thinks this deal's bad. we have not had any input, and the effort here today is to simply make a bad deal a little less bad. and the idea behind mr. meehan's bill is to provide restitution to american victims, and it's not just any american victims. it's the victims of iranian terror. $150 billion is going to flow to iran. it seems to be common sense that the first $43 billion should be paid to the victims of iranian terror. joseph was one of those victims. lived right outside my congressional district. spent five years in brutal
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captivity before being released in 1991. a vote for this bill today is a vote for the victims of iranian terror, and i also want to say congressman meehan's congressional district is right next to miami mine. i want to thank him for his thoughtful, creative approach and his leadership in this country and in this house on this bill. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the entleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from colorado, mr. coffman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized for one minute. thank you, mr. chairman. in 1982 i was with the united states marine corps off the coast of beirut, lebanon, waiting on order to do
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evacuations of the u.s. embassy nd u.s. citizens and their families. the -- our assignment was done in august, 1982. we returned to the united states. i finished my two years with the battalion. the balance tanyon went back out. they were in beirut, lebanon, at the airport. in october, 1983, suicide bomber drove a truck laydened with explosives into the marine barracks. 241 marines were killed that day. to my friends who died there, first lieutenant bill zimmerman, captain bill winter, captain joe bosh, captain maya haskell, today is your day, today is your day for justice.
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god bless you. god remember all of you. mr. royce: i yield the gentleman an additional 30 seconds. mr. coffman: thank you, mr. chairman. today is a day for justice for these marines, for their families who were lost on that day. by iranian-backed hezbollah bomber. and so i want to thank the gentleman from pennsylvania for bringing this measure forward, and i urge my colleagues not to forget those who have died and to remember this. that when the iranians say "death to americans," they mean death to americans. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. members are reminded to direct their comments to the chair. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from michigan, mr. bishop. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for one minute. r. bishop: mr. speaker, i rise
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today to join my colleagues to support this legislation. i want to thank the gentleman for his sponsorship. i'm proud to be a co-sponsor. 31 years ago, one michigan family sleepless worry became a heartbreaking reality. their son, brother, father, u.s. army warrant officer kenneth welch was one of the servicemen to lose their life in the bombing of beirut, lebanon. u.s. judgments later found the act of terrorism was sponsored by the iranian regime and that regime for its crimes was ordered to pay damages to the family of kenneth welch. not surprisingly, however, not one dime has been paid to the family yet, today we stand before this country. we find ourselves dealing with an administration that wants to lift sanctions. mr. speaker, i am beside myself to think that this nation -- of this nation that we've become. america's built on bravery and freedom, and it's because of the unwavering strength and sacrifice of men and women in the military. i am forever proud of our
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soldiers, and i know my colleagues are here as well today too. that's why we can't let the iran terror continue, and we need to do whatever we can to address the victims like ken welch and i yield back my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from illinois, mr. doled. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for one minute. want to thank my good friend from california, the chairman, for yielding me the time and also want to thank my good friend from pennsylvania for bringing this piece of legislation. supporting victims of iranian terrorism is a cause that every single member of this body should be able to support, regardless of where they stand on the iranian nuclear agreement. under no circumstances should we be ignoring the victims of iran's terrorism while simultaneously rewarding the
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greatest state sponsor of terror the world has seen. make no mistake, under this administration's agreement with iran, iran will be receiving approximately $150 billion in sanctions relief in new funding almost immediately while american victims of iranian terrorism, whether it be bombings, kid nappings and the like -- kidnappings and the like, murder, are going basically without resources. where are our priorities? where are our priorities in this chamber while the victims of iranian terror are being ignored, while iran is being rewarded with new funds that will inevitably be used to fund new terror, hezbollah, hamas and those around the globe? iran's terror proxies have killed americans and continue to do so till this day. this is a fact and it cannot be ignored. i certainly hope that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will support this piece of legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: --
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mr. royce: i yield one minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. rothfus. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for one minute. mr. rothfus: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my colleague, mr. meehan, for introducing this important piece of legislation. the nuclear agreement with iran provides them billions in frozen assets and sanctions relief. one only needs to look at recent history to see what iran will do with the financial windfall. while pursuing a nuclear bomb, iran has been engaged in a decades' long campaign of terror that has resulted in the deaths of many, many americans and they continue to bank roll proxies like hezbollah, hamas and the hudey rebels. the murder of bobby, t.w.a. 847, the towers and the murder of a c.i.a. agent are a small taste of what iran state sponsor of terrorism has wrought. this is about everyday americans getting justice. americans like major john, the
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highest ranking officer killed in the eye tack on the beirut marines barracks. victims of iranian terrorism have successfully brought suit in u.s. courts, yet, billions in judgments remain unpaid. the obama administration failed to secure restitution for the victims of iran in its negotiations with the country, but this legislation can rectify this wrong. i urge my colleagues to support this legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i could inquire as to how much time is remaining, mr. speaker? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has 2 1/2 minutes. the gentleman from new york has 17 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. royce: i'd verve the right to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i yield myself such time as i may consume for the purposes of closing. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: let me say to my friends on the other side of the aisle -- and they know this -- no one has been more of an
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adversaries of the iranian regime than i have. but, look, a number of us found the deal with iran wanting. we voted no, but it didn't prevail. and now we have to figure out the best way forward, and the best way forward, i sincerely believe is not to keep trotting out these bills. no one is condoning what iran has done, particularly with terrorism. it's a matter of how we combat it, and the way i see it is that we have two paths forward. we can choose to mirror what we did with the affordable care act, voting and revoting on an issue that has been settled, to some degree, or we can choose the path that suits our nation's interest the best and this path includes doing everything we can to strengthen enforcement -- in the enforcement mechanisms of this agreement. the path also includes holding iran accountable for its nefarious activities that can he stabilized the region --
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destabilized the region as well as release americans and improve their human rights record in the interim. and, of course, taking care of the victims of terrorism and their families. this path requires the strengthening of bilateral partnerships and supporting our allies in the region, both of which help us in the long term. and this is the course i hope we take. we cannot let this opportunity go to waste. so that's why i won't be supporting h.r. 3457. after that, we need to work together on measures that strengthen implementation of the agreement as much as senator reid: first, we extend our sympathy, best wishes and all the good thoughts that could come from here to another
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violent e devastating gun action, oregon. we don't know the details and i don't think we know -- i don't -- we're not the only ones that don't know. we hope they'll find the person that did this or the people that did this. very quickly. we had an excellent meeting. we stand united. we've been in close contact with the white house. we need to stop these devastating sequester cuts from hurting our middle class. our middle class is being devastated and our military is being devastated. the example that i use -- i'll continue to use it because it's so illustrative of what sequester has done. national institutes of health cut by almost $2 billion when sequestration went into effect. we've never gotten that money back.
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they are still in almost a $2 billion hole, a hole that is stopping them from leading more research and preventing diseases. it's really a tragedy what has happened with the sequestration. i want to be clear. the coming weeks, our top priority is lifting the sequester caps so we can invest in education, infrastructure, other important priorities for the middle class. this is not a new goal for democrats getting rid of sequestration. we've been fighting to end these unnecessary meat ax cuts for years. it was meant to be so devastating it would force both parties to the negotiating table to find a responsible way to move forward in a bipartisan agreement. the republicans have ignored this. for months we've been telling our republican counterparts again and again we're ready to do just that. we wrote a letter to senator mcconnell four months ago saying let's start negotiations. we were ignored until just a
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few days ago. to his credit he said, and i'm -- he hasn't backed away from it. quote, we're enevidentably going to end newspaper negotiations and we'll crack the budget control act once again, closed quote. we couldn't agree more with nator mcconnell, but to my dismay, yesterday 151 republicans in the house and 20 senators voted to shut the government down over women's health. imagine that. it reminds me when the government was closed for 17 days. 2/3 of the republicans in the house of representatives voted to keep the government closed. after all people had gone through. this is a republican party that is really without belaboring the point in turmoil. everyone knows a bipartisan budget negotiations set new top line numbers need to happen and they need to happen now, not
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some distant time in the month of december. they need to happen now. leader mcconnell said before he left for the august recess, "we have divided government. we have to talk to each other and we have to figure out a way to move forward." nothing happened during the august recess. nothing happened first two weeks in september, but he's moved a little bit in the last few days, so let's go to it now, not on the verge and unnecessary government shut down. leader pelosi. ms. pelosi: thank you very much, leader reid. i join with you in exs wering sympathy and our thoughts are hose affected at the tragedy community college and those in the house and in the senate. as the minority leader said, as the democratic leader of the senate said, last night --
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yesterday 151 republicans voted against opening up government. based on their ideology to hold women's health hostage in our country. this is disappointing but also a signal that we have to observe. the next 10 weeks, as we prepare to write a budget, can be a timetable of progress which we hope it will be or a calendar of chaos. what we need to do is pass a budget that has the proper offsets that grows the economy, reduce s our economy, the deficit. in addition to writing that budget, we have to pass a transportation bill that is robust and worthy of the aspirations of the american people in terms of job creation , cleaning the air, all kinds
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of things that a transportation bill does, improving the quality of life as it creates jobs and promotes commerce. we have to lift the -- honor the full faith and credit of the american people. that will probably happen in november, and we must re-authorize the ex-im bank. in addition to that, we want to pass the 9/11 health bill. so we have a large number of immediate concerns that have timetables on them that must be addressed. we can -- we want to extend the hand of friendship to do this in a bipartisan way, respectful of other views, but also respecting the needs of the american people. so will this 10 weeks be a timetable of progress or a calendar of chaos, it's up to our republican colleagues. 151 republicans, only 91 republicans voted to open up
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government. 151 voted to keep government shut down. that's not responsible. that does not heed the message of pope francis who told us to be respectful of each other's views, to have openness and pragmatism in our decisionmaking and to go forward for the good of all people. so hopefully we're in the spirit that is still with us of francis and honoring our responsibility to the american people. we'll work together as quickly -- not hastily but as soon as possible to remove all doubt that government will be open, that we will honor the full faith and credit, that we will create jobs, that our exports will be well-served and that is job creating as well. and that we will honor the people of 9/11 as we did on 9/11 by passing that important legislation. thank you. senator reid: we'll take a couple questions. yes. >> if the budget negotiations
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extend to november and december, do you expect they'll continue with mccarthy become speaker, and how would that change the talks? senator reid: that's a question i think you should direct to someone over in the house. need a you would ouija board to figure that one out. i'm glad you mentioned indirectly what's going on there. one of the things that we did earlier today, very early this morning, wrote a letter to peaker boehner saying this benghazi committee is a ripoff to the american taxpayer. almost $5 million they spent already. that doesn't include the money spent on six other committees who called hearings. i don't know if he meant to speak the truth, but mccarthy did. witch-hunt, ical
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and it really gives a negative smell that goes on back here and that's too bad. ith the -- ms. pelosi: if i might add, i'm so pleased that the leadership -- the democratic leadership and others in the senate have ritten to the speaker to say disband the benghazi committee. we're not in favor of supporting it. but as long as they're having it, we -- our members -- some of our members still believe we should be present to defend the truth. this is not the only select committee. $5 million. longer than the watergate committee produced nothing. and on top of which our bipartisan, nonpartisan intelligence committee has written its report clearing this issue. so they're wasting time and
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they're wasting taxpayers' dollar. no addition, they want to do a select committee on -- against women's health. i don't know what their title is for it, but that's what i call it. another expense and waste of time when we should be focusing on what our responsibilities are directly to the american people. as we ly as we take -- take this challenge that we all have to the american people, public sentiment will weigh in and the republicans will stand up to the responsibilities that we all have and not have this -- how they can shut down government but how we can keep it open. >> is there a timeline? [inaudible] senator reid: we went to the white house two days in a row.
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yesterday the staff members were there. we're working through that. the push that leader pelosi and i really are going to vess more than anything else is speed. we don't want to wait. we want to move this on. getting the pay-fors to offset, that's painful work, but the pain will be there no matter when we do it. we have to get that done. try to get the pay-fors, top line and then we're going to make sure that we have the riders all resolved and any increases have to be equal between defense and nondefense. those are our -- that was our feelings. that's what we're going to stick to and we are going to do it as quickly as possible. >> what time line are you working off of? senator reid: quick as we can. >> there's been a report that senator mcconnell asked get ent obama to congressional democrats out of the process. does that concern you?
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senator reid: leader pelosi and i have been to the white house more than once in recent days talking about this. we are party to some of the conversation that's gone on. there is at least one of the leaders in the congress that wants to cut us out, but it's not going to happen. ms. pelosi: besides at the end of the day, the president hab -- it has to be a bill that the president will sign and that won't be a bill that republicans will vote for. the republicans know that they have to reach across party lines, as they had to do last night. 186 democrats, 100% of the democrats voted for the bill to open up government. 151 republicans voted. senator reid: republicans need our vote. ms. pelosi: i want to say something about the timetable. we want to remove all doubt in the public's mind that the government will be there, that
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governance will take place, that the investments that we need to be made will be made and some of the other issues that i mentioned will be addressed, like the debt ceiling, because when that wasn't addressed before -- even though they didn't -- we ended up passing lifting the debt ceiling just this thought -- the suspicion it could happen lowers our credit rating. so the timetable doesn't relate to who's in charge. the timetable relates to meeting the needs of the american people in a very strong way. >> leaders, are you going to be co-equal negotiators with president obama and the white house in this negotiation? senator reid: why wouldn't we be? so the answer is yes. >> how much harder do you think to get a budget deal with this new republican leadership in the house, kevin mccarthy? senator reid: what you have to talk is talk to the wizard of os. maybe they can tell you. -- wizard of oz. maybe they can tell you.
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>> it's more than the man behind the screen. senator reid: thanks, everybody. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2015] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> the house done with legislative work for this week. they passed the defense department waiving sanctions against iran until it pays victims of terrorism. and the house passed legislation that would authorize national defense programs and funding for 2016. they're back on tuesday at noon for morning speeches and 2:00 eastern for legislative work. you can watch the house live on -span. and tonight events from the washington's ideas forum which began yesterday. at 8:00 p.m. eastern we'll hear from massachusetts democratic senator elizabeth warren on the
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importance of financial reform and the 2016 presidential race. right after that the republican conference chair cathy mcmorris rogers. she'll talk about planned parenthood funding and government spending. you can watch both events here on c-span. you recallier today, israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu spoke at the u.n. general assembly in new york. he talks about the recent iranian nuclear deal and why he's against it. here's a look. prime minister netanyahu: i've long said the greatest danger facing our world is the coupling of militant islam with nuclear weapons. and i'm gravely concerned that he nuclear deal with iran will prove to be the marriage certificate of that unholy union. i know that some well-intentioned people sincerely believe that this
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deal is the best way to block iran's path to the bomb, but ne of history's most important yet least learned lessons is this. the best intentions don't present the worst outcomes. the vast majority of israelis believe that this nuclear deal ith iran is a very bad deal. and what makes matters even worse is that we see a world celebrating this bad deal, rushing to embrace and do business with a regime openly . mmitted to our destruction last week a major general, the commander of iran's army,
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proclaimed this. "we will annihilate israel for sure. we are glad that we are in the forefront of executing the supreme leader's order to destroy israel." and as for the supreme leader himself, a few days after the nuclear deal was announced he released his latest book. here it is. dealing -page book his plan to destroy the state of israel. , khomeini made his genocidal intentions clear. before iran's top clerical bodies, the assembly of
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experts, he spoke about israel, home to over six million jews. he pledged, quote, there will , end israel in 25 years quote. 70 years after the murder of six million jews, iran's rulers promised to destroy my country, murder my people and the response from this body, the response from nearly every one of the governments represented absolutely nothing. utter silence.
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deafening silence. prime minister netanyahu: perhaps you can understand why israel is not joining you in celebrating this deal. if iran's rulers were working to destroy your countries,
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perhaps you would be less enthusiastic about the deal. if iran's terror proxies were firing thousands of rockets at your cities, perhaps you'd be more measured in your praise. and if this deal were unleashing a nuclear arms race in your neighborhood, perhaps you'd be more reluctant to celebrate. >> just some of what israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu had to say today at the u.n. general assembly in new york. you can watch all of his emarks in their entirety later in our schedule or anytime at c-span.org. >> the c-span networks feature weekends full of politics, books and history. saturday morning at 10:00 a.m. eastern, with nasa's announcement of liquid water on mars, the science, space and technology committee talked to the experts about the
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announcement and the possibility of life in space. and sunday evening at 6:30, policymakers, industry innovators, media personalities discuss the issues driving the national conversation at the washington ideas forum. speakers include former massachusetts governor mitt romney and senior advisor to president obama, valerie jaret. on c-span2's book tv saturday night at 10:00 eastern, martha kumar talks about presidential transitions. she's interviewed by former white house chief of staff mack. and on in depth, we're joined by tom hartman, talking about the clash of 2016, rebooting the american dream and threshold. join our three-hour conversation as we take your phone calls, text, facebook comments and tweets for tom hartmann. on american history tv on c-span3 saturday afternoon at 2:00, in his book "and the dead shall rise," the author
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explores the events of the murder of 13-year-old mary fagan in marietta, georgia, and the arrest and lynching of jewish factory owner leo frank. and sunday afternoon at 4:00 on "real america," the 1975 federal emergency administration on the supply and demand of fossil fuels in the u.s. and the look to alternative energy sources. get our complete weekend chedule at c-span.org. >> the supreme court is scheduled to begin its new term on monday. earlier this year, a poll for c-span on the supreme court and the impact of its decision. you can see here from the poll some of the decisions are more familiar than others to americans. roe v. wade at the top. 67% of americans familiar with that. 46% of americans familiar with brown v. board of education. and it goes on from there. here to talk more about the
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supreme court decisions and c-span's upcoming series "landmark cases" is the executive producer mark. tell us hor about this series? why is c-span doing it? >> all of our history series really need to lend currency to our current programming and when you take a look at the role the court has been playing think the poll really shows that the supreme court is relevant . it is encouraging for us in the landmark cases and it takes a look at 12 decisions over time that have currency today and eight of those decisions are listed in that poll, so i think doesows that the court play an important role in society. the genesis of this was ruth bender ginsburg was talking to the national constitution center dinner and the constitutional center to be taken look
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at is not only the decisions that people involved in the cases. we wanted to take a look at not only historic supreme court decisions that really the people involved, the personal stories, the people i cared enough to take the case all the way to the supreme court. host: one of the series air? and more background about how these cases were chosen. series is a 12 part series that begins monday, october 5, this coming monday as the court comes in on the first monday in october for the new session. each monday night of 9:00 until 10:30 on c-span and c-span3, we will do 90 minute programs and they take a look at all the 12 cases. host: in the background on how these cases were chosen?
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there are a lot more time, proby over 20000 and we had to know it down to 12. you could do a parlor game because we came up with 12 along with our partners at the constitution center. we talked to constitutional scholars, legal scholars on the left and the right to come up with this list. it was tough because there are a lot of great decisions and important decisions not on the list that this is a good next, different amendments to the constitution, personal stories. sometimes these cases are cases where the court got it right and set precedents followed all the way through today and some of these cases, dred scott, korematsu are cases where maybe
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the court got it wrong. host: the supreme court kicks off the new term on monday. tell us which case you will be featuring monday night when the series against and why. mark: one day night, we feature library versus madison, the foundation -- ball bearing versus matzo, the c as the ultif the constitution judicial review which is still being debated today whether the court is stepping into much. ande is a debate going on this shows relevance one the court should decide issues like gay marriage. marbury versus madison establishes that but it is a great case that shows the
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personal stories behind the cases. there is a battle going on in this between john adams, thomas jefferson, and john marshall, behind the scenes that is the story of this case. it has legal importance but the shows are also personal stories that are engaging and i think eliminating all the time pwe ark eliminating all the time pwe >> and just to recap earlier, the house passed a senate compromise on legislation that would authorize national defense programs and funding for 2016. we'll show you the debate now, beginning with remarks from armed services committee chair, mac thornberry. thornberry, seek recognition? mr. thornberry: pursuant to house resolution 449 i call up the conference report on the bill h.r. 1735 and ask for its immediate consideration.
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the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1735, an act to authorize appropriations for the fiscal year 2016 for military activities for the department of defense for military construction, and for defense activities at the department of energy, to describe military personnel strength for such fiscal year and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 449, the conference report is considered read. the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry and the gentleman from washington, mr. smith, each will control 30 minutes. mr. thornberry: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous material. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. thornberry: i yield myself five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: the first and most important thing i can say today is that this conference report is good for the troops and it's good for the country. and nothing that i or anybody
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else is going to say in this next hour is going to be more important than that one basic proposition. we may hear a variety of excuses, ifs, ands, and buts about this, that, or the other thing and i certainly don't agree with every provision in this conference report. but in pulling this bill together, i had to put aside personal preferences and party considerations and other things because getting a bill passed and enacted that is good for the troops and good for the country is more important than anything else. the second point i want to make is that this bill is the product of work of members from both sides of the aisle and both sides of the capitol. about half of the amendments that were adopted in committee and on the floor were from democratic members. democratic conferees played a substantial role in shaping this final conference report.
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and if you look at the substance of what's in the bill, you can see major contributions from both sides. as a matter of fact, we hear a lot these days about regular order. well, this bill went through regular order through the committee with 211 amendments dopted on the floor when 131 amendments were adopt through the a regular conference with a senate-passed bill for the first time in years and now it's back here for approval. so after going through regular order and all of the -- and all that that entails, if there's still partisan opposition, it leads some to ask why? why bother? the third point i want to make, mr. speaker, is just a reminder to members that this is a dangerous world and it is getting more dangerous by the minute. just look at the headlines that are in today's papers. russia has conducted air strikes in syria, not against isis, but against the moderate opposition
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forces. and russia is telling us, the united states, when and where we can fly our airplanes in syria. meanwhile, the palestinians have decided they're going to back away from agreements they have with israel. meanwhile, the taliban son the move in afghanistan and u.s. american troops are sent in to help turn the tide. and that doesn't even count the things happening in ukraine, north korea, iran, china building islands out in the pacific. and so the point of that is that this is no time for political games. this is the time to come together and pass a bill that helps provide for the country's security. and i think that's exactly what this bill does. mr. speaker, this bill authorizes the exact amount of money that the president requested for national defense. now, we did not agree with every single program request. we made some different judgments.
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like preserves the a10 and it's being used today in the middle east. we thought we needed not to retire some of the ships the president wanted to retire. so there were some adjustments, but at the end of the day, the total is exactly the amount the president asked for. are me of those programs under different labels. but frankly whether you call it base funding, oco funding or pumpernickel, it doesn't matter. it is money that goes to the troops. if you're a u.s. soldier today on the ground in iraq or afghanistan or if you're a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine supporting them from the united states or anywhere else, do you really care what the label on the money is? what you care is that the money to help provide for your operation and maintenance is provided. of course there are many other parts of this bill, mr. speaker, acquisition reform which is a significant first step to make sure that taxpayers get more value for the money they spend.
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personnel reform, including a new retirement system. today, 83% of the people who serve in the military walk away with no retirement at all. that changes under this bill. so members are going to vote against this bill are going to tell 83% of the people who serve in the military, you're going to continue to walk away with nothing. this bill requires d.o.d. and v.a. to have a joint form lair for sleep disorders, pain management and mental health issue. we've been told those are some of the most important steps we can take. it takes additional steps to combat sexual assault. it authorizes defensive weapons for ukraine. it gives the president more tools to battle isis in iraq, to provide weapons tectly to the kurds and sunni forces. we take steps for missile, to help defend this country against missiles. mr. speaker, i yield myself an additional 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: we take steps to defend our country against missile attacks, particularly important since iran will have
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more money to put into miss isles. but we also support the israeli missile defense program with more maun than was asked for by the president system of mr. speaker, my point is this bill is good for the troops and it's good for the country and that ought to override everything else it should be -- everything else. it should be passed today. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. -- the gentleman reserves, the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: let me agree on two points with the chairman. there is a lot that is good in this bill. no question about that. i want to thank the chairman for his leadership in making that happen. i think the conference committee process was a model for how the conference committee is supposed to go. the minority was included. there was robust debate about a large number of issues. that were points when we thought we couldn't resolve them and we did. and i think there is a lot that is good in this bill. i also think, without question, without debate, this is a very, very dangerous time for our
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country. no doubt about it. and the chairman laid out some of the challenges, there are many, many more. with what's going on in the middle east, certainly with russia, with thousand we deal with china. very challenging time for national security and we need to be as strong as we possibly can. but the one area where i disagree and i think the chairman also correctly states the fundamental question, is this good for our country? is it good for our troops? i don't believe it is. it is not good for our country and it is not good for our troops and it does in fact matter where the money comes from. for a couple of reasons. first of all, by the budget gimmick that the budget committee in the house and senate put together, by using overseas contingency operations funds for things that are not overseas contingency operations funds, this was all done as a dodge to get around doing what we need to do, which is to lift the budget caps, because you see the oco funding for some reason
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does not count as real money. it's money, it's $38 billion but it enabled the conservatives in the republican party to say that they have maintained the budget caps while still spending $38 billion more. which is incredibly hypocritical and a terrible way to budget. but here are two reasons why that is bad for our country and bad for our troops. number one, it does not lift the budget caps. and these budget caps are in place, i believe, for a another nine or eight years. and unless we lift those budget caps, we are harming our troops and we are harming our country. this bill dodging that issue is precisely a national security issue. because until we lift those caps, the department of defense has no idea how much money they're going to have. all right? oco is one time money. that's why it's not as good as lifting the budget caps and giving the ability to do the five and 10-year planning that they do. to do multiyear projects.
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so that they can actually have a plan going forward. that hurts national security. the inability to raise the budget caps in this bill and the appropriations process is a critical blow to our troops and to our national security. the second reason is -- reason this is important is because the oco funding in this bill is not going to happen. all right? part of it is because the president is going to veto it but the larger part of it is, the senate, as they have been unable to do for a number of years, has not passed any appropriations bills. because they have rejected their own budget resolution. so this $38 billion in oco funding we're going to hear about, all this great money, it's not going to happen. buzz the appropriators have said it is not going to happen. so to have a national defense authorizing bill with $38 billion in imaginary money is not good for our troops. and it is not good for