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tv   U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  May 22, 2018 6:59pm-8:12pm EDT

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here and that is what the overseas' contingency account tries to accomplish. mr. chairman, i would yield ar minute or such time as he may consume to the ranking member. mr. smith: i agree with mr. nolan on a couple of key points. number one, i think the overseas contingency fund has come to be relied on too much. it was created before the budget control act but the wars have been going on but it ought to be incorporated in the funds. completely zeroing out the overseas contingency fund is irresponsible. while i agree the terrorism threat may have been overblown but it is real. we went into afghanistan after 9/11. we thought we had al qaeda contained and then we had the underwear bomber in detroit and the package bombs that almost
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came into the u.s. and came out of yemen. and we had to respond. so if we want to reduce it and get more transparency, all for that. but to zero it out would basically would be to say we have all these wars and we really have none of it. can't support zeroing out the oversees contingency fund. i support some of the statements. i will have to oppose the amendment. . mr. thornberry: i yield back the balance of my time and oppose the amendment. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from minnesota. texas. minnesota. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. >> mr. chairman, on that i ask
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for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18 further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from minnesota will be postponed. it is now in order to to consider amendment number 3 printed in house report 115-698, for what purpose does the gentlewoman from hawaii seek recognition? >> i rise to offer my amendment, number 106. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 3, offered by ms. gabard of hawaii. the chair: the gentlewoman from hawaii, ms. gabard, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from hawaii. ms. gabbard: thank you, mr. speaker. make no mistake, authorization in section 1225 of the underlying bill authorizes the u.s. military to go to war with iran. this is one of the main reasons i voted against this bill in
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committee is specifically because of this provision that authorizes the secretary of defense and the secretary of state that, quote, development and implement a strategy to counter the destabizing activities of iran, end of quote. the provision does not define what destabilizization acts our -- they want our troops and taxpayer dollars to fight. it does not define a clear end state to achieve. it shuts the american people out of the decision entirely. by giving unilateral power and unending authorization to counter iran through this and future administrations without defining in any way, shape, or form what the objective really is it sidelines congress and the american people entirely with the only requirement being that the administration reports to congress after their plan is being implemented and only for the next four years while the authorization for war has no expiration date.
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it gives after the fact license for what is already happening in the middle east. since 2015, without express congressional authorization, u.s. troops have been providing direct military support to saudi arabia and yemen through information share, logistical support and refueling saudi warplanes to drop u.s.-made bombs on yemeni civilians. the most recent attack was on a yemeni wedding party, two rounds of bombing killing more than 20 people an wounding dozens of others. this saudi-led interventionist war has created one of the worst humanitarian dasters in history, worsen a a -- worsening a situation that led to cholera outbreaks, thousands of civilian deaths and tens of thousands of injuries. would give them -- leave
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u.s. troops there until their goals are accomplished. niki haley said they'd stay there indefinitely until the gells are achieved. someone else said, bomb iran, the united states could do a thor rogue job -- thorough of of thenstruction but israel is only one that can finish the job. secretary of state mike pompeo advote that the u.s. will crush iran with economic and military pressure unless its changes its behavior in the northeast. it's clear if left unchecked, war hawks in the trump administration will drag our country into more middle east wars, leaving destruction nits wake and here at home. trillions of taxpayer dollars have been spent on the regime change wars since 9/11. rather than dumping more taxpayer dollars in these wars as this provision authorizes, we
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should instead be investing in rebuilding our community right here at home. for too long, the u.s. engaged in interventionist wars, sending troops overseas with no clear objective. countering iran is not an end state our military or diplomats can achieve. without a clear objective you end up in endless war. what's the object i of this authorization for war? is it regime change in iran? regime change in syria? more war against iran in syria in yemen? i strongly urge my colleagues to consider the serious consequences of section 1225 being enacted because it would authorize any or all of these. it is congress congress' responsibility and constitutional role to declare war. the american people have a right to real debate on such a declaration. i urge my colleagues to support the passage of my amendment to uphold this responsibility. mr. speaker, how much time do i have remaining?
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the chair: the gentlewoman has one minute remaining. ms. gabbard: thank you. this time i'd like to yield one minute to my colleague from california, congressman ka in a. -- kana. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. khana: this will stop the march of war tpwh iran, another blunder like iraq. i don't understand our foreign policy. it seems the qualification in john bolton's case is to be wrong for the last 25 years and that makes you an expert. wrong about iraq. wrong about the neoconservative philosophy that got us into this mess. this amendment, forget the details, we are rushing again to another historic blunder and this congress needs to stop that. i respect representative gabard for putting this forward so we don't make another blunder in our foreign policy.
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yield back my time. the chair: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentlewoman from north carolina new york. >> i rise to claim time in opposition. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized for five minutes. >> i oppose the amendment to strike section 1225 which is an important and necessary provision in the f.y. 2019 ndaa. iran is a significant threat not only to israel but to the stability of the entire region and this provision provides an effective plan to counter their destabilizing effort. iran has supported militias in syria, provided weapons in hezbollah in lebanon and helped the hutti militia to overthrow the government in yemen. they continue to build up forces near the northern border. this position emphasizes the importance of multilateral cooperation but init encourages the secretary of defense to establish a framework for
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critical investment in i.s.r. and cyber security an cyber defense. ms. stefanik: at its corps it supports the national defense strategy by highlighting the importance of partnerships and the responsibility of all affected nations to contribute to achee shared objectives. it is only through this level of shared objectives that the united states can expect to manage the threats from iran. i thank the chairman and reserve he balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman has the only time remaining. ms. stefanik: i'm pleased to yield the -- yield two minutes to the distinguished gentleman from illinois, mr. kinzinger. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. kinzinger: i haven't talked to many people who don't think ivan a -- isn't a bad actor in the region. it's hard to find anybody except somebody in the iranian regime that would say this. this works with our partners to
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say let's find a strategy to count they are terrible activity this terrible regime. cyber defense. working together for intelligence. what do we do to come together with our friends to make sure we can counter these destabilizing activities. if this amendment would pass, it would hand a victory to a few people. it would hand a victory to russia. russia that has nsted a lot in propping up the apseudo-- assad regime and working with the iranian rejome to do. so this one a huge victory to bashar al-assad who killed half a million of his own people because he won't stay in power. 50,000 of those are children. many of those gasped their last breath on chemical weapons. this would be a victory to hezbollah who has 150,000 rockets aimed at our best ally in the middle east, israel, who is worried about their future callss the same group who
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israel little satan and america big satan. s that nation what that is responsible for almost a quarter of american deaths in iraq that i operated against. a quarter of the american deaths in iraq. i would think it's pretty good to counter that. so ultimately this makes action, military action less likely because we're working with our allies to do what we can to prevent actions by this regime that will make more -- war more likely. as we saw in the escalating situation between israel and iran a week ago. mr. chairman, thank you for yielding the time, i urge my colleagues to resoundly defeat this amendment and i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. stefanik: i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlelady from hawaii. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to.
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>> mr. speaker, i request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentlelady from hawaii will be postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number 4 printed in house report 115-698. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 4 printed in house report 115-698 offered by mr. aguilar of california. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 905, the gentleman from california, mr. aguilar and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. aguilar: thank you, mr. chairman. i want to thank the chair of the full committee and the ranking member for their hard work in developing this product. mr. chairman, our nuclear triad and the strategic deterrence it provides helps protect our
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nation if the exiss ten rble threat of nuclear war. however, the age of its elements must give us pause. our b-52's, of which we have over 70 in use, are over 50 years old. our highway class submarines' life span has been extended from 30 years to 42 years and the first minuteman 3 icbm's were deployed 40 years ago. with the numb of threats increasing around the globe a credible, safe, secure, reliable nuclear deterrent is vital to our national security. just because the modernization is necessary doesn't mean that we should fail to track how much this modernization process will cost. over the next 30 years, we'll be replacing our bombers, icbm's, and ballistic missile submarines while also sustaining and modernizing nuclear bombs and war heads. additionally, the 2018 nuclear posture review called for the development of low-yield knew leer weapons.
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the nuclear arms sea launched cruise missile, continuation of the long range standoff cruise missile. our old requirements in combination with the new initiatives make cost estimates even more important if we hope to balance our conventional and nuclear force investments. my amendment would require the d.o.d. to include a 0-year estimate of the projected life cycle costs of each type of nuclear weapon and delivery platform in an annual report they already produce. a c.b.o. report released in october, 2017, estimated that over a 30-year span, the sustainment and modernization of our nuclear forces will cost $.2 trillion. which of course didn't take into account delays, changes to the weapons systems, and understated estimates. if congress hopes to provide proper oversight of these modernization efforts we must have up-to-date estimates that accurately reflect any updates and changes that impact nuclear bombs, war heads and delivery
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systems. thank you, mr. chairman. with that, i reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from alabama seek recognition? >> mr. chairman, i rise to claim time in opposition to this amendment lt. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i yield myself such time as i may consume. this ealt is -- this amendment is similar to amendment that was been presented to and rejected by this house each of the last four years in a row. one of the reasons this amendment has fail sod many times is that even the obama administration opposed it. a few years ago, president obama's assistant secretary of defense told us this type of multidecade reword -- report was a bad idea. he called such a report burdensome, explaining, quote, as you would expect, looking out that far 25, years, the credibility of the numbers would be very, very suspect. he went on to say, forecasting d.o.d. costs over a 25-year period with any useful accuracy is extremely difficult given the
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challenges of predicting developments in the international security environment and ongoing technological advancements, close quote. the trump administration opposes it too. here's the view of the current department of defense on this idea. quote, projecting out 20 years will result in even lower quality cost estimates with a higher degrees of uncertainty. they go on to say, given these and other uncertainties, cost estimates that project beyond 10 years into the future provide little value in understanding either department's fiscal position or its performance in managing programs. close quotes. this amendment would result in -- would not result in good, effective oversight and transparency. it would result in faults -- false, unreliable data entering the public debafmente this amendment is part of a long standing effort to make our nuclear deterrent appear too expensive by calculating its
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cost over multiple decades. regardless of the trillion-dollar figures thrown around by nuclear disarmament advocates, c.b.o.s that confirmed that our nuclear deterrent will never cost us more than 7% of the defense budget in coming decades. 7% of the defense budget to deter nuclear attack on our country. that's a bargain. as secretary mattis said last year, quote, america can afford survival, closed quote. i urge a no vote and reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. aguilar: thank you, mr. chairman. i think my -- i thank my colleague for his comments. we've had this discussion a number of times. i served on his committee and have a lot of respect for him. but he called this a bad idea. and he said that, you know, it's a bargain. if we just continue the status quo. well, mr. chairman, the
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department of energy asks this exact question. the department of energy produces a fiscal year stockpile stewardship and management plan. it's a 25-year plan with long-term costs. it's required in federal code. we are doing this analysis in other areas. why sblet the department of defense -- isn't the department of defense doing this? the majority seeks to say, why even ask the question? and we have to ask ourselves, what is oversight if we don't ask hard questions? now, i think that there's a reason why folks like the national taxpayers union, who have supported this amendment, and have said that they're going to score this amendment, have signed on to support. it's because we need to ask these tough questions. if we're going to genuinely offer oversite we need to ask how much these programs cost, we need to plan and we need to budget. it seems like a reasonable step to take. i appreciate my colleague's concerns and i would ask an aye
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vote of my colleagues. and with that i'll yield back, mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. mr. rogers: mr. chairman, i'm pleased to yield two minutes to my friend and colleague from colorado, mr. lamborn. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. lamborn: thank you and i thank the chairman of the subcommittee for the great work he's done and his leadership on this issue. i do agree with my colleague from california. yes, we need to do modernization. if you'll remember, president obama pledged to modernize a nuclear -- our nuclear forces in return for the senate passing the new start treaty. the current national posture review, which has been endorsed by scureltings -- security officials from several administrations going back, both democratic and republican, says this, maintaining and operating our current aging nuclear force now requires between 2% and 3% of the d.o.d. budget. the replacement program to rebuild the triad for decades of service will peak for several years at only approximately 4% beyond the
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ongoing 2% to 3% needed for maintenance and operations. this 6.4%, just slightly under the 7% that the chairman mentioned, of the current d.o.d. budget required for the long-term replacement program represents less than 1% of the overall federal budget. and that is a bargain. nuclear warfare, god for bid it should ever happen, but that is an existential threat. 1% of our federal budget devoted to preventing that is truly worth investing in. and the modernization needs to take place. it is well within the moneys that are going to be available to department of defense in the coming years. i agree with the chairman that projecting 20 or 30 years out contains so many potential inaccuracies. it would be kind of an unnecessary and burdensome exercise and not very useful. so, we do have and will have the money.
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it's a vital investment. i agree with the chairman. let's turn this amendment down. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. mr. aguilar: mr. chairman, i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. the now in order to consider amendment number 5 printed in ouse report 115-698. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. garamendi: i rise as the designee of the gentleman from oregon, mr. blumenauer. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 5 printed in house report 115-698 offered by mr. garamendi of
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california. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 905, the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. garamendi: i dwreeled myself as much time as -- i yield to myself as much time as i might consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. garamendi: thank you, mr. chairman. this amendment deals with the w-762 yield d-5 or nuclear warhead. in the ndaa there's the establishment of this new low-yield nuclear warhead. this amendment would fence 50% of the funding for the warhead until such time as the secretary of defense submits a report on the program's impact on the strategic stability and the options to reduce the risk of miscalculation. associated with the inability of the adversary to be able to
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distinguish between an ssbn missile carrying a single low-yield warhead, and a missile carrying several high-yield nuclear warheads, and to preserve the survivability of the second strike capability of the ssbn. it also strikes unnecessary provisions in the mark. people who have looked at these issues, for example, secretary -- former secretary of state, george schultz, and senator lieu, recently wrote, today, that justification for a new warhead fails on many levels. it is unlikely that there is such a thing as a limited nuclear war, preparing for one is folly. back in january, 2018, former secretary of state wrote, -- not wrote, in congressional testimony he said before the senate armed services
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committee, one of the alarming things to me is this notion that we can have something called a small nuclear weapon. which i understand the russians are doing. and that somehow that's usable. he told the panel. he went on to say, your mind goes to the idea that, yes, nuclear weapons become usable. and then we're really in trouble. because a big nuclear exchange an wipe out the world. a senator and former secretary moniz talked about this. they said, the most imminent probability should be the structure and posture u.s. and russian nuclear forces to deter nuclear use and reduce the risk of an accidental mistake or unauthorized launch. against this back drop, the current russian concept of escalate to de-escalate,. i e., limited nuclear -- de-escalate, i.e., limited
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nuclear use to create a pause in the conflict and open a pathway for a negotiated settlement on moscow's term. and the u.s. calls for a more usable nuclear weapon, taken together make the world vastly more dangerous. so what we'd like to do here is simply have a report, again, from the secretary of defense to lay out exactly what this is all about. why it is important. and who it means for our principle deterrent force, the nuclear armed submarines. that's what it is. i reserve my remaining time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from alabama seek recognition? mr. rogers: i rise to claim time in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. rogers: i yield myself such time as i may consume. i strongly oppose this amendment. three successive secretaries of defense, secretary hagel, secretary carter, and secretary mattis, have said that nuclear deterrence is d.o.d.'s highest
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priority mission. in his 2018 nuclear posture review, secretary mattis conducted a clear-eyed assessment of the nuclear threats. in the end, secretary mattis concluded, quote, we must look reality in the eye and see the world as it is, not as we wish it to be. closed quote. this stands in stark relief to the obama administration's 2010 nuclear posture review, which concluded, quote, russia is not answermy, and is increasingly a partner, closed quote. i will not list the many, many ways that this statement from 2010 is so obviously wrong. i will just note that russia has many thousands of low-yield nuclear weapons, including nuclear artillery shells, nuclear land mines and nuclear torpedoes and they recently announced even more. and russia regularly exercises them with its escalate to de-escalate doctrine. which they believe will force the u.s. to surrender in a
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conflict. the n.p.r. rightly states, quote, correcting this mistaken russian perception is a strategic imperative, closed quote. russia is not a partnership but a strategic competitor. and we must shore up our deterrence posture. let me briefly address the specifics of the gentleman's amendment. first, previous ndaas already line item authorize funding for individual warhead programs, regardless of their yield. second, in an april hearing, the navy confirmed that having a low-yield nuclear weapon does not increase risk to the submarine. finally, secretary mattis and general hyde have stated that having this low-yield weapon does not increase the risk of strategic miscalculation. the bottom line here is that this amendment is designed simply to slow down the long overdue modernization and improvement of our nuclear forces. and because of that, i have to urge my colleagues to vote no and i reserve the balance of my
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time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. garamendi: may i inquire as to how much time i have remaining? the chair: the gentleman has 1 3/4 minutes remaining. mr. garamendi: i yield my remaining time to the ranking member of the full committee. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i will agree very strongly with my colleague from the armed services committee, mr. rogers, that we need a strong nuclear deterrent. and russia is primarily the focus of that. but not exclusively the focus of that. china had nuclear weapons, north korea has nuclear weapons. iran aspires to have them. without question we need a strong deterrent. my argument is that we have one. we have over 4,000 nuclear weapons. we do have some low-yield nuclear weapons. we don't have them in the standoff capacity. but more than that, what we need to communicate to russia is not that nuclear war is something of degree. mr. smith: that basically, well, if you were to use a low-yield nuclear weapon, we wouldn't know what to do because we don't have one that is equally as small.
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i think that is the exact wrong approach. our approach should be the nuclear weapons are the red line end to allred lines. there is no such thing as a tactical nuclear weapon. even these tactical nuclear weapons that the gentleman talks about russia having i think are some hundred times over more powerful than the bomb that was dropped on hire shisha. what we need to -- hiroshima. what we need to communicate to russia is, if you use a nuclear weapon we will respond with nuclear weapons. so don't. we don't need to build small nuclear weapons so that military people can start to imagine a survivable nuclear war. and this is the way people used to think in the 1960's and 1970's when we came tiptoeing up very close on more than one occasion to stumbling in to the conflict to end all conflicts, a nuclear war. if we start buying in to russia's philosophy that a low-yield nuclear weapon is like a manageable thing that you can use in a combat situation, that doesn't necessarily lead it a broader nuclear weapon, we are running
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the risk of creating the very thing we're trying to prevent. we need a deterrent. we have a deterrent. and we should not mince words with the russians or anybody else. nuclear weapons are a red line. we will respond and we will not trouble ourselves to make sure that our nuclear weapon isn't bigger than yours. we will deter them in that way rather than running the risk. thank you. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. mr. rogers: mr. chairman, i'm pleased to yield two minutes to my friend and colleague from colorado, mr. lamborn. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. lamborn: thank you, mr. chairman. and i thank the gentleman for the great work he's doing on this. we all agree we want a strong nuclear deterrent and we agree we want that deterrent to be as stabilizing as possible. we don't want destabilizing trends. we all agree with that. the commander of u.s. strategic command testified before the house and said we require a mix of yields and improved platforms to credibly deter the
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threats of the near future. the national posture review directs near-term fielding of a low-yield capability and pursuit of modern nuclear arms. so the commander of u.s. strategic command says we do need this option. and let me also quote james miller, undersecretary of defense for policy under the obama administration. the principal author of president obama's nuclear pots pospisilture review. quote -- posture review. quote, the 2018 nuclear posture review offers continuity with past u.s. policy and plans, including those in the 2010 n.p.r. it deserves broad bipartisan support, its proposal for a low-yield slbm weapon and a new nuclear-tipped sea launch cruise missile are sensible responses to changed security conditions, especially russia and north korea. things have changed since 201.
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that's what the 018 npr addresses. so we have agreement that we do need this he-yield option. that's a stabilizing influence to have more tools in the toolbox. when you have fewer cools -- tools, you have fewer options. that's destabilizing. i ask for rejection of this amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back, the gentleman from alabama is recognized. >> i once again urge a no vote on this amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the noes have it. >> mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman from washington. the chair: i request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition?
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>> i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it, the motion is adopted, accordingly the committee rises. the chair: the commegcommeg -- the committee of the whole house on the state of the union having had under consideration h.r. 5515 directs me to report it has come to no resolution thereon. the speaker pro tempore: the chair of the committee of the whole house on the state of the union reports that the committee has had under under consideration h.r. 5515 and has come no to the no resolution thereon. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that i may be permitted to revise my remarks made during
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general debate in the committee of the whole earlier today beyond technical, grammatical and topographical corrections. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. pursuant to house resolution 905 and rule 18, the chair declares the house in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for the further consideration of h.r. 5515. will the gentleman from louisiana, mr. johnson, kindly esume the chair. the chair: the house is in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for further consideration of h.r. 5515 which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2019 for military activities of the dcht of defense an for military construction to prescribe military personnel strength for such fiscal year and for other purposes. the chair: when the committee of
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the whole rose earlier today, request for a recorded vote on amendment number 5 printed in house report po -- report 115-698, offered by the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi, had been postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. chrman, pursunt to h.res. 905, i offer amendmented en bloc number one. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: enblk number 1 consisting of amendments 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 6, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22, printed in house report 115-698, offered by mr. thornberry of texas. the chair: pursuant to resolution 905, the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry, and the gentleman from washington, mr. smith will each control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry spec i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the
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gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. smucker. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smucker: i rise to support the national defense authorization act and thank the chairman for this bipartisan legislation which support ours troops, provides military readiness and provides for the defense of the nation. i encourage my colleagues to support my amendments numbers 43 and 48. my amendments seek to improve the mental health services provided by the dotcht defense so our troops receive only the best treatment. it comes as no surprise that the high levels of violence and trauma our service members ex-teerns is cause for negative impacts on their mental health. our soldiers suffer from major depression at a rate five times higher than civilian moplation rate. additionally, they dige know soifs post-traumatic stress disorder was 15 times greater than the general population. congress can help. currently there's a serious shortage of mental health prviders at the d.o.d. and our troops are paying the price but
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they don't have. to one of my amendments would help identify the scope of the work force problem at d.o.d. and ensure that an effective strategy is in place so our nation's troops have full access to qualified mental health providers. my other amendment would require the d.o.d. to establish a monitoring program carried out by each branch of the armed services to conduct periodic reviews of the medication prescribing practices of its own providers to treat ptsd. this monitoring program will help ensure that every military branch is reagly -- is regularly monitoring the medications prescribed to treat ptsd to ensure that our troops are getting the proper treatment. some of the greatest wounds inflicted on our brave service men and women are unseen. we should be doing everything possible to ensure that we are treating these wounds as we would any other. i urge my colleagues to support my amendments on behalf of service members and military families we represent. thank you, mr. chairman, i yield back.
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the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: i'm pleased to yield one and a half minutes to the gentleman from california, mr. ruiz. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. ruiz: open air burn pits pose serious threats to our troops yet still to this day our military uses them to dispose of waste and equipment such as human waste and computers on the battlefield. 'm board certified physician and we know if there's a high with a rare tion enough disease we need to act on that suspicion. we could start to do that by doing three things. one, stop our troops exposure to dangerous burn pits out in the
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battlefield. two, conduct public hell education to doctors and veterans to train them to recognize subtle changes in their health, help to catch cancer at an early stage when they can still be treated and save lives and three, get our veterans and service members the medical treatment they need quickly and ensure it's cover by the v.a. and d.o.d. my amendment will help accomplish this first step by directing the department of defense by to the conduct a feasibility study on ending the use of dangerous burn pits by using insen rators or other technology. and i thank the committee leadership for their support of theament and on this emerging health crisis for our veterans and i urge a yes vote to help save our veterans and men and women in uniforms' -- men and women in uniforms' lives. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: i reserve the balance of my time. chip the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i yield one minute to
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the gentleman from washington -- the gentleman from illinois, mr. schneider. the chair: the gentleman is recognize. mr. schneider: destabilizing activities in the middle east are not a new phenomena, but their reach has expanded in iraq and yemen and the establishment of a potentially permanent foothold in syria. such presence enable ice ran's increasing support for hezbollah, including not only weapons transfer bus assistance in building an indigenous rocket producing capacity. i therefore appreciate the work of the house armed services committee including a provision authorizing the secretaries of defense and state to develop and implement a strategy with foreign partners to counter iran's destabilizing activities. my first amendment would ensure the strategy includes specific countries in which iran is operating. an assessment of their destabilizing activity theansd implications thereof. my second amendment would
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require a report on iran's proxy forces in syria, lebanon and an assessment of the threat posed to israel, other regional allies and u.s. interests. it is important to know where iran is operating. what exactly they are doing. who they are backing. and how this impacts the united states and our allies. thank you, mr. chairman. and mr. ranking member for our support for my bipartisan amendment. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: i'm pleased to yield one minute to the gentlelady from puerto rico, miss gonzalez-colon. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. miss gonzalez-colon: i rise in support of this amendment to gather the data necessary to successfully extend the tri-care prime health care benefit to puerto rico to meet the needs of our retired -- retired military famloins the same basis as on the mainland. the v.a. has register almost 100,000 veterans residing in puerto rico yet they face
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disparity in benefits and tricare treats puerto rico as an overseas location with fees and co-pays higher than they would be for prime. dependent of retired veterans in puerto rico get fewer benefits or paid more. puerto rican veterans have fought and bled and died along with comrades from the nation. this will support the decision to give justice to our service members and veterans. thank you and i support this amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from california, mr. ruiz. ep the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. ruiz: i thank the ranking member and chairman for their support of my efforts to help veterans and service members who have been exposed to burn pits. we have a responsibility to protect the health of our men and women in uniform and veterans from the harmful health effects of exposure to burn pits and we can start to do so by
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first stop our troops. -- troops' exposure to dangerous burn pits on the battlefield. second, conduct education and public outreach to veterans and their doctors. third get veterans and service members the medical care they need quickly an ensure it's covered by the v.a. or d.o.d. earlier we discussed my amendment that will address step one and put an end to the use of dangerous burn pits on the battlefield my second amendment will tackle step two, requiring the department of defense to conduct an annual education and outreach campaign to veterans exposed to burn pits and who are qualified to enroll in the burn pits registry. this will improve our understanding of the different health effects of exposure to burn pits and help raise awareness for our veterans to be on the lookout for subtle changes in their health that could be early signs of cancer. again, i thank the committee for their support of this amendment and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields
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back. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: i yield one minute to the gentleman from illinois, mr. schneider. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. schneider: we are still uncovering more about the to depth and breadth of russia's interference in our election so i'm pleased the ndaa requires an estimate of interference by russia and china in democracies around the world including our own. while understanding this threat is an important first step we also need to take action to ensure we are doing everything we can to secure our own elections and defend the integrity of our own democracy. my amendment would require a -- add a requirement that follow the submission of n.i.e. the secretary of defense will report on specific efforts to deter
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such interference both at home and abroad. protecting our elections, the foundation of our democracy, and those of our allies from outside influence by maligned foreign actors is of paramount importance. i thank the chairman and ranking member for including my amendment in this en bloc passage and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: i continue to reserve. the chair: the gentleman from washington. mr. smith: we have no further speakers, i yield back the balance of my time. mr. thornberry: i yield back the balance of my time and urge support for en bloc number 1. chip the -- the chair: the question is on the amendments en bloc offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the en bloc amendments are greed to.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. chairman, pursuant to h.res. 905, i offer en bloc amendments -- amendments en bloc number 2. the clerk: en bloc number 2 consisting of amendments 23, 31, 5, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 38 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 and printed in house report 115-698 offered by mr. thornberry of texas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution the 9/11 05, -- 0905, the gentleman from texas and the gentleman from washington will each control 10 minutes. mr. thornberry: i'm pleased it yield one 911 the distinguished gentleman from north carolina, mr. rouser. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. rouse rouse thank you, mr. chairman -- roustroust thank you, mr. chairman.
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-- rouse rouse -- mr. rouzer: thank you, mr. chairman. recently a veteran battling parkinson's disease contacted my office in a desperate attempt to modify the beneficiary for his survivor benefits plan. in this particular case, the veteran is fighting for his life and because one currently can only make changes during open season, he is unable to change the beneficiary of his plan. my amendment will provide flexibility via waiver to veterans such as this gentleman who desire to change beneficiaries. i appreciate my colleagues' support for this amendment so that terminally ill veterans are given the ability to update their survivor benefit plan as they wish, when they wish. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? mr. smith: reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i'm pleased to yield one minute
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to the distinguished gentleman from illinois, mr. davis. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. davis: i thank the chairman for yielding. last august 10 u.s. navy sailors were killed when the u.s.s. john s. mccain collided with a commercial tanker off the coast of singapore. one of those sailors was petty officer logan palmer of harristown, illinois. logan's death was the first casualty from my district since i became a member of congress. and let me tell you, it's an experience no one prepares you for and i pray no other family will have to go through it. while there is little we can do to lessen the grief of these families, we can ensure they don't have to navigate a complicated bureaucracy. i was a little miffed to learn that if the body of a service member who dies during noncombat operations is flown to dover air force base, we do not automatically arrange and cover the travel costs for their family. like we would have if that service member died in combat. this amendment requires the d.o.d. it automatically arrange
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and cover travel for a family of non-combat service death, just as they do for combat operations. instead of making them get a waiver. an outside organization covered the cost for the palmer family but i think we can make this process easier and ensure these families are taken care of by including this amendment. and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: i continue to reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i have no further speakers on this en bloc package and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: i yield back the balance of my time. urge adoption of the amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendments en bloc offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the en bloc amendments are agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, pursuant to h.res. 905, i offer
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amendments en bloc number 3. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: en bloc number 3. amendments number 39, 40, 41, 2, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53 and 54 printed in house report 115-698 offered by mr. thornberry of texas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 905, the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry, and the gentleman from washington, mr. smith, each will control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i have no requests for time. i urge adoption of this en bloc package and i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: same here. we have no speakers and i urge adoption. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. and the question is on the amendments en bloc offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair,
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the ayes have it and the en bloc amendments are agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, pursuant to h.res. 905 i offer amendments en bloc number 4. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: en bloc number 4 consisting of amendments numbered 55, 57, 58, 59, 60, 68, 2, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 69 and 70. printed in house report 115-698 offered by mr. thornberry of texas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 905, the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry, and the gentleman from washington, mr. smith, will each control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i ask unanimous consent that amendment number 55 printed in ouse report 115-698 be modified in the form i have placed at the desk. the chair: the clerk will rainstorm the modification. the clerk: modification to
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amendment number 55 -- mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i ask unanimous consent the reading of the modification be dispensed with. the chair: without objection, the reading is dispensed with. is there objection to the original request of the gentleman? without objection, the amendment is mod fies -- the amendment is modified. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i have no requests for time for this en bloc package. i urge its adoption and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: i too have no requests for time and yield back the balance of my time, urge adoption of the amendment. the chair: the question is on the amendments en bloc as modified. offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment -- the en bloc amendments as modified are agreed to. the chair understands amendment number 56 will not be offered.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, pursuant to h.res. 905, i offer amendments en bloc number 5. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: en bloc number 5 consisting of amendments mbered 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 82, 83, 8, 79, 80, 81, 84, 85 and 86 printed in house report 115-698 offered by mr. thornberry of texas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 905, the gentleman from texas, mr. thornberry, and the gentleman from washington, mr. smith, will each control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i urge adoption of this en bloc package and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: thank you, mr. chairman. i have no speakers on these amendments, urge adoption and i
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yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendments en bloc offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the en bloc amendments are agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, pursuant to h.res. 905, i offer amendments en bloc number 6. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: en bloc number 6. consisting of amendments numbered 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 98, 99, 4, 95, 96, 97, 100. 101, 102, and 103 printed in house report 115-698 behaved mr. thoshberry of texas -- thornberry of texas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 905 the gentleman from texas and the gentleman from washington will each control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i
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have no speakers for this en bloc package. i urge its adoption and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: i too urge adoption and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendments en bloc offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the en bloc amendments are agreed to. the gentleman is recognized. the gentleman will suspend.
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just one moment. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek reck fligs? mr. thornberry: -- seek recognition? mr. thornberry: mr. chairman, i move the committee now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the committee rises. the speaker pro tempore: mr.
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chairman. the chair: mr. speaker, the committee of the whole house on the state of the union, having had under consideration. had r. 5515, direct knows report that it has can -- that it has come to nos remain title of the resolution thereon. the speaker pro tempore: the chair of the -- the chair of the committee of the whole house on the state of the union reports that the committee has had under consideration h.r. 5515 and has come to nos remain title of the resolution thereon. the chair will now entertain requests for one-minute peeches. the chair lays before the house the following personal request. the clerk: leave of absence requested for mr. stivers of
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ohio for today and the balance of the vehicle -- and the balance of the week. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the request s granted. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2017, the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader.
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mr. garamendi: thank you for the opportunity, mr. speaker, to take a few minutes here on the floor to discuss really something that follows along from the last couple of hours, where we've been discussing national defense issues. going 8 billion that are to be spent in the national defense authorization act by the department of defense is extremely important and there national arts of that defense authorization act that are worthy of discussion. one thing that was not discussed here on the floor, but was taken up in committee over the last several hearings, was the ability of the military actually be able to deliver material, supplies, in the case
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of a major conflict. do we have the ability to deliver the follow-on equipment necessary should a major conflict break out? somewhere in the world? the answer is, no, we don't. and the reason is that the american maritime industry has dwindled over the last several decades. the 1980's we had about 240 american-built and american flagships with mariners, captains and engineers and seamen and seawomen on those ships capable of providing the necessary support for the military sealift command. oday we have about 80 american flagged ships with american sea men on those ships.
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the mariners are in short supply. transcom, responsible for moving the personnel, as well as the equipment that the military needs somewhere in the world, estimates -- well, transcom, as well as the marad, ndicate that we are some 1,800 mariners short of the minimum necessary to man and personnel the ships to move the equipment somewhere in the world. this is a major national defense issue. not really taken up and discussed in the ndaa. so what are we going to do about it? can our shipyards actually produce the necessary ships for the american military? the answer is not now, but they
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need to. in the national defense authorization act, there's a section that calls for the construction of the ships. actually construction by foreign shipyards. seems strange that we would find the what was once one of the great maritime nations, the united states, in such a quandary, that we do not have the personnel or the ships to move our national defense. there is something we can do about this, and it is not directly in the area of the department of defense, although, it is important to our national defense. it seems that over the last decade, we have become an energy-producing nation, but with the pracking and other
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techniques, we are now an exporter of oil and natural gas. this is part of the energy revolution that is taking lace place in the united states. that oil and natural gas is a strategic national asset, as is the united states' department of defense, the navy, the army, the air force and the marines. as well as the coast guard. now, if we are to maintain our ability to defend this nation and to conduct military operations anywhere in the world, we have to have a strong maritime industry. if we consider for a moment the combination of that strategic necessity of the maritime industry and the strategic
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benefit that comes from the production of natural gas and value of e economic exporting natural gas and oil, a can come to what we call solution. the solution is to take a very small percentage of the production or the export of l.n.g. and oil and require that it be exported, transported on american-built ships, american-flagged with american marinners. we call this the energizing american ship building act. it was introduced today --
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actually yesterday, and we announced it in a press conference earlier today. joining me at that press nference was senator roger wicker, who will be carriering the bill on the senate side, chairman of the coast guard and maritime sky of the house transportation infrastructure committee, duncan hunter, member of the armed services committee, donald norcross and member of the transportation and infrastructure committee and subcommittee of coast guard and maritime representative lowenthal, together with members of the industry, the shipbuilders council, h.b. halter out of mississippi, the representatives of the maritime unions that work in the
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shipyards -- work on the ships and unions that work in the shipwards yards. we are prepared to move this bill and let me tell you if we are successful in energizing the maritime shipbuilding act. it will build ships once again. we start with 1% of the l.n.g. that is exported over the next 20 years, we will build ships. l.n.g. and if we ramp that up to full 15%, we will be building those carriers. similarly, if we begin at the small percentage of the oil that
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is exported, we will build another 30 l.n.g. tankers. so that in the course of some 15 to 20 years, we will be able to build some 50 ships in american shipyard, providing thousands of jobs not only in the shipyards but in the supply of engines and pumps and pipes and electronic fittings and the steel industry that would be providing the steel for these ships would also be playing a major part. do keep in mind this is a very mall part of the total part of l.n.g. vessels that will be needed. just to supply the necessary transport for american l.n.g., some 225 l.n.g. vessels would be
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built. we would be looking at a small percentage of those that would be built here in the united states, but nonetheless, that would represent a major opportunity for the american ship building industry. similarly for the export of oil, that would similarly build ships here throughout the shipyards of the united states. exactly how many? well, we'll have to figure it out as it goes out if we ramp up the amount of oil and natural gas, perhaps we will build more than 50. but perhaps the mariners will work on these ships. as they work on these particular ships, they will be developing the skills necessary to transfer over to provide the personnel necessary for the military on the cargo ships, the roll-on and
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rolloffs and the oil tankers that the military will need as it transports the personnel and equipment around the world. this is what we are trying to do. we are trying to energize the american shipbuilding industry by requiring that the small amount of l.n.g. that will be exported from the united states and will be on american ships with american marinners. that's our goal. and i believe we will be able to accomplish this on the days ahead as we move this thing through the process and get it under way. we have strong bipartisan support, republicans and democrats supporting the bill and we also have strong bicameral support with the bill being introduced by senator wicker and here in the house by myself and chairman duncan hunter.
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so we bring this to the attention of the congress and the american public that it is our goal to make it in america, that in america there is a better deal for america that we pass a law that requires this stra teague particular national asset be on on an important asset, american ships, and that those ships be manned by american sailors and officers. that's our goal. and with that, mr. chairman, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess subject to the
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with moonnt trump met jae-in today. president trump said it may not work out for june 12, the date of his planned meeting with kim jong-un, but he added there is a good chance we will have the meeting. >> thank

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