let me just say i hope that all americans will allow the fbi to continue this investigation no matter how long it takes, because the importance thing is -- important thing is for us to identify the facts in this. america is an open society. we value our freedom and diversity. isil has leveraged those freedoms to their advantage to attract misguided individuals who or carry out acts of hate. isil has created a global battlefield, and many of you have asked is this inspired, is it enabled or is it directed. there is no differential today. global, a global battlefield is what isil has been able to create through the use of social media. and now individuals around the world, not just here, are targets of that solicitation.
here's one reality, one fact: you cannot negotiate with people that want to till you x. the challenge -- that want to kill you. and the challenge for us and this administration is that we must adopt a strategy now. a strategy that eliminates the safe haven that isil has, their ability to plan external plots against the united states, against europe and against the rest of the world. and my hope is that we will glean enough information out of the orlando attack to guide the policymakers to make the right decisions. leader? >> take a couple of questions, and then we've got to -- yeah. >> yesterday donald trump suggested that the president -- [inaudible] sympathetic in some way to the terrorists and the killer in orlando. do you think that was an appropriate way for -- >> yeah, i'm not going to be commenting on the presidential candidate today. >> if the senate has to act on an faa extension again, which is
seeming more likely, would you consider doing energy extenders? >> look, there are all kinds of things that could be considered. i'm not here today to announce the circumstances or conditions under which we will deal with faa. [inaudible conversations] >> do you think that the founders anticipated assault weapons that could very quickly kill 50 people? >> senator cornyn, do you want to talk about the gun issue? >> sure. well, you know, we have to decide whether we actually would like to solve the problem or not or whether we just, people just want their political talking points. and right now our democratic friends seem to be more interested in op opportunisticay using this tragedy to advance their agenda rather than working with us to solve problems. there are ways for us to work on people who are mentally ill, to keep them from becoming a danger
to themselves and others. there's also, as chairman burr said, we need a strategy to defeat isis which is the inspiration for these home-grown attacks here at home. we need to give the fbi the tools they need in order to do investigations, to identify people who become radicalized here in the united states who take it upon themselves to kill innocent people. that's where we ought to focus our efforts. and i hope we can work with our democratic colleagues to do that. >> let me just add, we're going to have the director of the fbi the secretary of homeland security up here tomorrow afternoon at 4:00. if we want to engage in a serious legislative effort, we're going to talk to the experts about what we could do that would be helpful. our suspicion is this is basically a politically-motivated effort that we're likely to see on commerce justice state, but we're open. nobody wants terrorists to have firearms. we're open to serious suggestions from the experts as to what we might be able to do
to be helpful. [inaudible conversations] >> rico bill -- do you expect to consider the house puerto rico bill -- >> yeah. on puerto rico, we'll be taking up the house bill sometime before the end of the month. thank you. >> speaker ryan said he's sending over a package of counterterrorism measures. will you take them up? [inaudible conversations] >> well, a little bit of news there from republican leaders on what may be ahead with, you heard from mitch mcconnell, the puerto rico debt relief bill before the end of the month. they have been busy so far on the senate floor earlier today passing the defense authorization bill by a vote of 85-13. and that's also passed in the house, although the white house has issued a veto threat against the bill. here on c-span2 we're waiting for the senate to gavel back in. should be shortly. they're having their official portrait coming up this
afternoon, and we expect them also to take a vote on moving forward with the next appropriations bill on their docket, the commerce, justice and science spending bill for fiscal year 2017. reporters still standing by. we may see the democratic leaders come to the podium, so we'll stand by as well as we are waiting for the senate to gavel in also. senator mcconnell talked about a briefing with the fbi director, with jeh johnson. that'll happen in the senate tomorrow. it's happening or will happen in the house this afternoon about 3:00 eastern, we understand. a closed briefing for house members. so the house will gavel out for a bit this afternoon and then back later to finish up work, actually, to begin work later on on their spending bill that should dominate much of the week. the defense p pending bill for fiscal year 2017. again, the senate today passing the defense authorization bill, the bill that sets pentagon programs and policy. the house today taking up the
>> heads up. >> heads up, guys. [inaudible conversations] >> we have to be quick today, we've got a picture. wait for us. we had a terrific caucus. senator sanders took time to talk to us about his experiences. it was really very, very moving. our nation was shaken this weekend by the worst mass shooting in modern american history.
49 dead, scores injured, some of them very, very critically. there's an attack on the lgbt community, the latino community and america, everyone in america was attacked. and it demands action. people of orlando ponded to this un-- responded to this unimaginable tragedy with unity, courage and generosity. they came together in a time of crisis to get things done. that had to get done. here in congress we must react the same way. that starts with closing the terrorist gun loophole. according to the government accounting office, more than 2,000 suspected terrorists were able to buy guns from 2004-2014, in that ten-year period. terrorists have urged home wolfs -- lone wolfs, i'm sorry, to take advantage of america's lax gun laws.
a spokesman for al-qaeda said, and i quote: america's absolutely awash with easily-obtainable firearms, so what are you waiting for? close quote. al-qaeda. and we have a republican -- [inaudible] not guns. what is the response of the republicans? more guns, of course. it's shameful republicans care more about the nra and their fight they're having with the gun owners of america and each driving the other further into radicalism than protecting american citizens. absolutely shameful. why did they run for office in the first place if the republicans are following nra more than their own constituents? democrats are going to force a vote on this terrorist loophole, and we'll do it on the cgs appropriations bill. there's no excuse for allowing suspected terrorists to buy guns, and that's not going our
only amendment. we've got other things to do. how about funding the fbi? they a complain about the fbi, the republicans, they're not doing enough. they always shortchange the resources they have. republicans vote against this common sense proposal last december. it was a terrible mistake. and they have a chance to make it right. we're also going to force a vote to, i repeat, fully fund the fbi. republicans are short changing the funding president obama requested for the fbi by more than $100 million. both of these amendments are germane and deserve an up or down vote. so i hope republicans will find the courage to help us pass meaningful legislation to protect the american people. certainly, they're doing a good job of protecting donald trump. senator durbin. >> i guess the lesson of orlando, the lesson of san bernardino, the lessons that we
have learned all across america with these horrible mass shootings, we need to do a better job in america keeping guns out of the hands of those who would misuse them. felons, mentally unstable and people with a terrorist connection have no business owning guns in america. if that is what this election is going to be about, a referendum on that question, i'll stand by the american people. common sense dictates that we as a congress listen to the pleas across america to stop this gun violence. what happened in orlando was heartbreaking. but what has happened in the city of chicago since the first to have year is heartbreaking too. over a thousand gun violence incidents, over 200 people killed in that great city. it breaks my heart. i love that city. breaks my heart to have people in neighborhoods all across that city scared to death of firearms and what they're doing. do we have the guts to stand up and do something as a congress? or are we going to cower, afraid
of the national rifle association? i hope we have the courage to do something. i'd like to make another statement about an issue that is directly related. in times of crisis, our nation expects leadership grounded in american values. president george w. bush, after the epic tragedy of 9/11, made it clear that those responsible would be held accountable, but he warned america not to hold all muslims responsible for the radical views of a few. after orlando, the worst mass shooting in our nation's history, president obama condemned this act of hate and terror and promised to dedicate every resource to investigate and hold accountable those responsible for this tragedy. contrast this bipartisan leadership with donald trump. trump, the man who would be the republican president, in the wake of the orlando tragedy congratulated himself for his bigotry toward muslims and
wasted no time blaming president obama for the deaths. the questions facing republican leaders again this week is whether they will ignore the fact that their candidate for the presidency is totally unsuited to lead this nation. his emotional rants, his serial insults, his bizarre conspiracy theories and his divisive singling out enemies to be loathed and feared distinguish him from any other candidate in modern american political history. to hear the republican speaker and the republican senate majority leader endorse trump and characterize his outrageous comments as only being off message and unscripted is to dismiss the toxic rhetoric of donald trump as only a product of poor political coaching. it is more. his hateful rants are a window on his character and his soul. how many of these same congressional leaders are making plans to attend the republican convention in cleveland?
how many are going to bring their family, their children, their friends to join them in a standing ovation to honor the lethal rage of their unhinged nominee? history will
remember them as willing participants at the scene of this political crime perpetrated on mr. lincoln's grand old party. >> senator schumer? >> thank you. well, last year 244 people on the terror watch list tried to purchase guns. 244 suspected terrorists walked into gun shops and attempted to purchase a firearm. 223 were able to get the firearm. only 21 went empty handed. that is 91% of terrorists, 91% of suspected terrorists. when they sought to purchase a gun last year, were successful according to gao to. let our republican colleagues
contemplate that. they want to fight terrorism? but they say they're going to continue a situation where 91% of suspected terrorists can get a gun? who are they kidding? i have a simple question for republican senators and for the nra. when they, when the senators voted against the terror gap last year, why is that acceptable? why should suspected terrorists be able to purchase a firearm? why? why, why? no reason. no reason. the answer is obvious. and the american people agree, republicans, democrats, independents all agree it's absurd to allow terror suspects to purchase guns. but the nra is the tail that wags the republican dog when it comes to congress and guns. the nra is more concerned with the rights of suspected terrorists than they are with the victims of gun violence, and
our republicans bow down to that nra horrible, horrible value choice in america. if they continue to oppose the terror gap, the nra, the nra itself will be in part responsible in every terror attack that involves a gun in this country. plain and simple. there's no other way to avoid that fact. so on this upcoming bill, we're going to try yet again to close this dangerous loophole once and for all. when the senate considers the next appropriation bill. can we win? we'll win. sooner or later. we'll keep trying. we're not giving up. reporters come over and say, well, you can't win. why do it? every time we have a vote, hopefully we can win. hopefully they'll change their
minds out there. but if not, they will face the consequences, and that makes progress move forward. the moment of soul searching for our republican colleagues is now. what's it going to be? are they going to side with the extremists and the nra or the vast majority of their constituents and all americans who simply don't believe terror suspects should have access to guns. the only people who seem to believe it are the republican senators on the floor of
that house -- of that body. >> senator murray. >> since sunday night tens of thousands of people around the country from l.a. to boston, from charleston, south carolina, to fort worth, texas, from seattle to spokane have turned out for vigils to mourn the heinous act of terror that erupted over the weekend in orlando. that was an attack on our
values. an attack on the lgbt community that has endured so much violence and hate over the years and an attack on every single family across the country. the question these families are asking around their kitchen tables is what will it take for this congress to enact common sense reforms to keep our communities safe? it is mind-boggling. every state in this country including my home state of washington has been affected by horrific gun violence. and it is far past time for congress to have a vigorous debate about what we can do to stem the tide. the republicans continue to block us at every turn. they are so adamant that we do nothing. they blocked us on the most obvious amendment of all, to prevent people who are on the terror watch list from being allowed to buy a gun.
when you have politicians so beholden to the gun lobby that they can't even support the idea that potentially dangerous criminals and terrorists shouldn't be allowed to walk out of a store with a gun, there is a serious problem with our priorities. but that is not going to stop us from pushing this amendment. not to mention the other common sense reforms like expanding background checks, something 90% of americans want. like so many americans, i'm tired of hearing the thoughts and prayers of my colleagues with zero follow-up. it's time for action. we cannot wait for another mass hooting, and i -- shooting, and i hope that our colleagues on the other side of the aisle will finally wake up to the problem at hand and work with us to make progress on a crisis that is hurting us all every single day. >> i'm always pretty good at answering questions, but we do
have 98 senators -- well, how many? 96, i guess, waiting for us. so i'll take a couple quick questions. [inaudible conversations] >> do you support an assault weapons ban? >> do i? >> yes. >> yes. [inaudible conversations] >> gun sales to american citizens on the watch list without showing probable cause to a judge? should the government be able to listen to phone calls if you're >> you've been taking too many cues from the nra. the answer is that's foolishness, okay? last question, last question. >> you pushing to get energy tax extenders on an faa bill if it comes back -- >> you know, the fact is we would love to get an extender. we shouldn't do it on a short-term basis. we're a hong ways from that. we're a long ways from that. [inaudible conversations] >> democratic leaders wrapping it up there.
they're being called into the senate chamber. the annual photograph of the u.s. senate underway inside the chamber, and then they'll gavel back in for work this afternoon. we expect part of that work to be continued work or work on advancing the commerce, justice and science spending bill for disfiscal year 2017. they passed earlier today the fiscal bill for defense. lots of comments from both the democrats and republican leadership. reaction to the shooting in orlando on sunday night. we'll show you his remarks as we wait for the u.s. senate to a gavel in shortly. >> i know the country is in shock and still trying tog evaluate as we continue to learn from the fbi's investigation more about the terrorist attack in orlando, one that killed
almost 50 people and, of course, left dozens injured. according to the latest reports, one of the victims was frank escalante from texas.m my heart goes out to frank and his family and friends and all those others who lost loved ones early sunday morning and for those living with the wounds that hay sustained -- they sustained this that terrible attack. ha, with this act of violence and hatred, orlando sadly joins ari growing list of american cities and cities around the world changed forever by radical islamic extremism. the jihadists, like those in san bernardino before him, declared allegiance to the islamic state. and like the two boston marathon bombers, he was previously investigated by the fbi for connections to terrorists or known terrorist groups. and in similar fashion to those who carried out the gruesome attacks in paris last november.
like those terrorists, the terrorists in orlando targeted hundreds of unarmed civilians,s and isis has used the internet to urge lone wolves to imitate these types of attacks. in other words, not only are we concerned about people in the middle east who pledged allegiance to isis coming to tha united states, we're concerned about americans coming from the united states going there and c training and coming back home, but the worst and perhaps the most difficult of all to deal with is, are people in place -- american citizens like this plae shooter -- who are radicalized in place.ll and, of course, this is the biggest challenge that the fbi has. but coming together now, we must work not only to mourn and grieve those lives lost, but also to try to make a difference. it's time to act. the orlando attack was not just a random act of violence. it was a calculated act of terror.
by aiming his gun at innocent civilians, this jihadist opened fire on our freedoms, on our way of life and on the bedrock principles that make us a diverse and vibrant democracy. we have to take these threats seriously and do everything we can to counter the ideology which provides a threat to our security both within and without our borders. but we also need an honest conversation about how to move forward legislation that might have the effect of preventing attacks like this in the future. some of those conversations are already happening, and i hope w' won't stop until we make some progress. the one place we could start is a measure i introduced last year which would prevent known or suspected terrorists from purchasing firearms in the first place. wou it would not just block someone from buying a gun because of mere suspicion, but it would set up a process to actually detain
if, based on evidence they are deemed to be a threat to society, prevent them from buying guns and put them behind bars where they can't be ato danger to other people. if potential terrorists are dangerous enough to not be allowed to own a gun, i think they're dangerous enough to be taken off the streets. we shouldn't forget a person who feeled compelled to commit a terrorist act will not be stopped by just being unable legally to purchase a firearm. the 9/11 attackers used box cutters and airplanes, these boston marathon bombers used homemade explosives, and the terrorists in paris and brussels used illegal firearms and suicide bombs. in the case of the orlando attacker, it does not appear he was on a watch list at the time he purchased the weapons he used to carry out that horrific attack. in fact, the fbi had twice cleared him of being an active
terror threat, so we need to be clear-eyed about this if we'reg actually serious about -- >> senator john cornyn on the floor earlier today. we'll take you back live to the u.s. senate as they gavel back in. up first this afternoon, a vote on whether to proceed to the 2017 commerce, justice and science spending bill. live senate coverage now here on c-span2. the fiscal year ending 2016 and for other purposes, signed by 17 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent, the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is it the sense of the senate that debate on the motion to proceed to h.r. 2578, an act making appropriations for the departments of commerce and justice, science and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, stw*eubgs stw*eubgs -- 2016 and for other purposes shall be brought to a close. the yeas and nays are ordered
mr. leahy: mr. president? mr. leahy: mr. president, i suggest the absence of a quorum. i withhold that. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. mr. leahy: i withhold the request. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: motion to proceed to the consideration of h.r. 2578, an act making appropriations for the departments of commerce and justice, science and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2016, and for other purposes. the presiding officer: the senator from vermont. mr. leahy: i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
a senator: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from minnesota. a senator: thank you, madam president. i ask that the quorum be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. franken: thank you. madam president, i rise today to address the tragic events in orlando, florida. in the early hours of sunday, a gunman walked into pulse, a popular crowded lgbt nightclub on latin night and opened fire taking the lives of 49 people and wounding 53 more in an act of terror that's been called the worst mass shooting in american history. it's also the deadliest attack on lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender, on their community that our nation has ever known. state and federal authorities are continuing their investigation into the assailant and his motives. it was latin night and i believe 44 of the surnames of those who died were latino. according to the f.b.i., the shooter previously had been investigated for potential ties to terrorist organizations, and during the attack the shooter called authorities and pledged his allegiance to isil. we must do everything in our power to eradicate this evil and to combat the recruitment and radicalization, and we must make sure that our efforts and our rhetoric do not scapegoat an
entire community based on the actions of a single sick individual. the investigation is ongoing and many details are still emerging, but we know this. the 49 men and women who lost their lives on sunday night were murdered by a man with hate in his heart. perhaps even hate directed within and with an assault weapon in his hand. madam president, following each and every tragic shooting, one thought haunts me, and that is that we in congress are failing the american people. we have failed to answer their repeated calls to address gun violence in this country. we have failed to take steps necessary to make our communities safer and as a result, we are complicit in
creating the circumstances that give rise to these events. we can't pretend that this part isn't on us. now, our state of minnesota has a proud tradition of responsible gun ownership. generations of minnesotans have learned to hunt from their parents, their grandparents, their aunts and uncles, friends and neighbors. but when i speak to constituents on this issue, the message is clear. minnesotans want congress to take commonsense steps to reduce gun violence and ensure their families' safety. there is a balance to be struck here, and i strongly believe that we are capable of striking that balance.
the second amendment doesn't protect the rights of everyone to carry whatever weapon he likes in anyplace he wishes, for whatever purpose he wants. the second amendment does not entitle criminals, potential terrorists or people with serious mental illness to carry guns. it does not entitle americans to own guns designed to slaughter scores of people in seconds. we can't turn back time. we can't bring back the lives that we have -- we have lost. but for god's sakes, what is it going to take? how many tragedies like this does this nation have to endure before we find the moral conviction to do something about gun violence? it is important for us to
acknowledge not just how this atrocity was committed but who the gunman targeted and where. in his remarks on sunday, president obama rightly drew the nation's attention to the site of this most recent tragedy, to pulse, a gay nightclub that barbara pulma opened to honor the memory of her brother john who she lost to aids years earlier. barbara explained that her family was strict and had a strong sense of tradition. being gay was frowned upon. coming out could not have been easy for john, but when he did, his family welcomed him with acceptance and -- and with love. pulse was named for john's heart beat, and it was a place, according to his sister, where he was -- quote -- kept alive in
the eyes of his friends and his family. in describing the shooting, president obama described the -- quote -- the place where they were attacked was more than a nightclub. it was a place of solidarity and empowerment, where people have come together to raise awareness, speak their minds and advocate for civil rights. but it is also important to note that like so many of the bars and nightclubs serving the lgbt community, pulse was a place where people could come together to feel safe, like the historic stonewall inn in new york city, the birthplace of the gay rights movement, to bar 19, a pub in loring park that has served
minneapolis' community since 1982, pulse was a sanctuary. not everyone is welcomed by their family and their friends with acceptance and love. even today, not everyone is able to walk down the street holding the hand of their loved one without fear. for those in search of solidarity in community, for those in search of safety, pulse provided refuge. regrettably, even today that refuge is sorely needed. despite long overdue victories, leaders in the lgbt movement have perceived an increase in violence directed against their community. lgbt americans continue to face threats, intimidation and violence in the street, in the workplace and at school.
and by and large, they remain vulnerable to discrimination. as americans come together in the days and weeks ahead, as we seek comfort in community at pride celebrations and candlelight vigils, it is incumbent upon all of us but most especially policymakers to do everything in our power to change the culture of hate to pursue a more equal union. it is simply unacceptable that in 28 states, including florida, there are no protections to prevent a survivor of the orlando attack from being fired just because he is gay. in 28 states, including florida, there are no protections to prohibit a homeless shelter from turning away a survivor of the orlando attack because she is a
lesbian. in 29 states, including florida, there are no protections to prevent a business from refusing service to a survivor of the orlando attack because she is transgender. that isn't right. this is not who we are as a country, and it must change. congress must take up and pass the student nondiscrimination act to protect our children, our children and our schools. and congress must take up and pass the equality act to make clear that discrimination and hate have no place in our workplaces, in our homes. i was around 10 years old at the height of the civil rights
movement. my family used to -- to watch -- eat dinner watching tv on -- on plates on -- we had tray tables and we would watch the news. and i remember seeing -- we'd see footage of police in the south siccing dogs on black civil rights demonstrators, going after them with fire hoses and billy clubs. and i never will forget my dad pointing at our television screen and saying to me and my brother no jew can be for that. no jew can be for that. it was obvious to him, as it should be to all of us, that when some members of our
communities face injustice, we all do. in the face of that pervasive discrimination, that stain on our values and our history, our nation recognized then as it should recognize now that some problems demand a national solution. we must take action to make our communities safe. all our communities safe. we must engage in these difficult conversations about persistent inequality and about gun violence, and we must dedicate ourselves to securing real change. i implore my colleagues let us make our -- our laws our sanctuaries. let us honor the memory of those
mr. thune: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from south dakota. mr. thune: madam president, i ask unanimous consent that the quorum call be suspended. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. thune: madam president, i rise today to remember the victims of the terrorist attack in orlando, florida. 49 people were killed and even more were wounded when a self-proclaimed isis sympathizer attacked pulse nightclub in the early hours of sunday morning. madam president, i can't imagine the trauma experienced by those who were present in the club or the suffering of the families now mourning a beloved son or daughter. my thoughts and prayers are with the victims and with the families of the did he seed and with all those currently sitting at the hospital beds of the injured. my thoughts and prayers are also with the people of orlando whose sense of security has been shattered by this deadly attack.
madam president, every deadly ideology of the last century has been characterized by a fundamental disregard for the sacredness of human life. the form of radical islam espoused by isis and its adherence is no different. like every radical ideology before it, it regards individual human beings as expendable human, in its pursuit of a utopia. it sees certain visdz as not only -- individuals as not only expendable but dangerous and seeks to exterminate them accordingly. the blood-soaked villages of isis-controlled iraq and syria bear terrible witness to the slaughter of christians, yazidis, moderate muslims and anyone else felt was standing in its way. madam president, as a nation, we have to stand against the threat of terrorism. we have to ensure that our
military is equipped to destroy terrorist organizations abroad and that our law enforcement personnel are equipped to confront terrorist threats here at home. we need to control our borders and modernize our immigration system so that we know who's coming and who's going from our nation. we need to invest in our intelligence agencies and hold them accountable as they work to keep our homeland safe. we have to support our allies who are taking the fight to the terrorists. and, most of all, most of all, we have to show the utter bankruptcy of an ideology that regards human beings as expendable. america has a proud history of standing up for the dignity and freedom of a human person against tyrants of all stripes. we stood against the deadly ideologies of the 20th century and we will stand against the deadly ideologies of the 21st. madam president, on sunday
morning we saw the darkest side of humanity. but as so often happens, when we see the worst of human beings, we also saw the best. the d.j. who helped a patron escape from the club, the man who stuffed his bandanna into the bullet hole on a stranger's back to stop the bleeding, the man who pulled a wounded stranger to safety behind a car and then kept him conscious on the way to the hospital, the long lines of orlando residents who came forward to donate blood, and, of course, the police officers who walked into that club and who wake up every day ready to lay down their lives for the rest of us. against that spirit, terrorism will never prevail. madam president, our whole nation grieves with the citizens
the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. mr. brown: thank you, madam president. i ask unanimous consent to dispense with the quorum. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. brown: i ask unanimous consent to speak as if in morning business. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. brown: thank you. i'm joined with my colleague and friend, rob portman, the other the senator from ohio, to discuss the passing of a dear friend of his and mine. i will make a few short remarks. i believe senator portman will be speaking at his memorial service later on in the week in cleveland will offer some comments and a resolution. this weekend we were awakened on sunday to learn we lost george voinovich. as mayor of the city, the city i call home, cleveland, a two-term governor of ohio and as my colleague for my first four years in the senate before senator portman succeeded him,
george dedicated his life to public service, a man of strong conviction. he was always willing to listen to the other side of an argument and to put what he believed was best for our state and for our country ahead of partisan politics. of course we didn't always agree but we worked together in the senate to make progress for ohio on everything from judicial nominees to supporting our manufacturing industry to cleaning up our great lake, lake erie. when i came to the senate in 2007, we assembled a commission of distinguished ohio lawyers of both parties to find the candidates, again, of both parties to recommend as nominees for the federal judiciary. i thank senator portman. actually this began with senator dewine and senator voinovich and it's now continued through their service to senator portman and me doing the same thing. george had a life long love affair with what he called the jewel of the great lakes, lake erie. his fight to clean up and
protect our lake began when he joined the ohio legislature almost exactly 50 years ago. at that time people wrote lake erie off as a polluted, dying lake but over the past century people have had a habit of trying to write off ohio. and like all of our state's champions, george wouldn't accept that. as my colleagues know, there is an enormous painting on the stairway outside the senate depicting the american victory in the battle of lake erie. george fought what he referred to as the second battle of lake erie, pushing for the first great lakes water quality agreement cochairing the senate's great lakes task force working with me to introduce the clean water advocate -- afford ability act. that tenacity paid off. our lake made an incredible comeback. we've still got work to do. every summer we have to deal with the return of toxic algae blooms. and senator portman and i have worked on that issue in the western basin of lake erie near
toledo. because of the work and investment of people like george he was able to catch yellow perch not far from his own backyard in colin wood, a section in the east side, on the lake on the east side of cleveland. it will be up to all of us who love lake erie and understand how vital it is to our state to continue that work for our great lake. george was the son of serbian and slovenian immigrants and he understood the importance of investing in our nation and investing in public works that create jobs and power in communities and our economy. in retirement, george voinovich continued to push for ways to finance our nation's infrastructure. just this year he reached out to his friend, senator carper, from delaware and to me about the need for dedicated public works funding. he was willing to reach across the aisle to work with us on projects like the bridge which we need to rebuild and loan guarantees and taxes, centers for ohio's manufacturers and small business. he was a deeply religious man.
he was guided by his faith through nearly half a century in public service. that faith sustained him through the worst tragedy that any parent can imagine when his nine-year-old daughter, molly, was killed during george voinovich's first campaign for mayor much cleveland. he said of that experience later, when one loses a child, things come into focus, what's important, what's unimportant. you see more, you feel more, you experience more. we all take so much for granted. i hope we'll take george's passing as an opportunity to reflect on what we take for granted and what's important to us as a country. on behalf of everyone in this body, i send my deepest condolences to janet voinovich, to her children, to george's children, to everyone touched by his life and, frankly, her life of public service. his legacy will of live on through the lasting contributions he made to his beloved cleveland, to ohio, and to our great country. thank you, madam president.
i yield to my friend from ohio. mr. portman: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. mr. portman: madam president, i thought those remarks beautifully described a great public servant, george voinovich. i'd like to add a little to it and at the end of my remarks i'm going to offer a resolution for the entire senate to vote on as a tribute to the life of george voinovich. we have put together a resolution which talks about a lot of his accomplishments and as i think my colleague has said very well, gives us an inspiration for the future. and from his life, hopefully we can learn about how to better do our jobs right here on the floor of the united states senate. he was an amazing public servant. he was just, as some know, not just mayor of cleveland during a critical time but governor of ohio, of course here for two terms. i think he represented the very best of public service.
by that i mean whether it was his efforts to tackle the debt, give children more choice and parents more choice in their schools, modernize infrastructure, he never made it about him. it was always about others, and specifically it was about his constituents. he was a very proud grandson of immigrants, serbian and slovenian. he was also the son of a great neighborhood in cleveland called colinwood where i was over the weekend visiting with janet voinovich and he was raised with the values of that neighborhood. honesty, integrity, hard work. he said that his father used to tell him that in america, we have more of the world's bounty than any other country on earth because of our freedom, because, and i quote, "we get more out of our people through the free enterprise system and our education system." he never forgot those early lessons. wherever he went, whatever title he had, he us would the plain
ernest spoken kid from collinwood. as a boy he was diagnosed with a bone marrow disorder which kempt him from enjoying things like sports. it didn't let him get him down. he brought all of his energy into his studies, one reason he was such a good student i think and he got around cleveland on his red bike which he called bessy which was his pride. late near life i had the opportunity to be in par rides with -- parades with george voinovich and there he was on his bicycle. i don't know if it was named bessy but i know janet was by his side riding that bicycle in parades and then governor voinovich, then senator voinovich loved those bicycles always with a smile on his face. that difficult health care struggle that he had early in his life i believe shaped his character and gave him a heart for all those who are suffering or who are just different. with so many of his decisions, he would go to the lord for inspiration, start with a humble
prayer. and dethis at collinwood high school. he said he prayed for guidance asking god what he should do with his life. he got an answer. he felt he had a calling and that was to get involved in student government. and so he ran. and he was elected class president as a senior. he went on to serve as student body president at ohio university when he was in undergragraduate school and he s president of his class and the young republican club while in law school at ohio state university. so people wonder how did he get into politics? it all started in high school and through college and law school. that was the track he chose for himself. over half a century he served his neighbors in so many different rolls, local, state, federal. he was a county commissioner in calvert county. he was county auditor. he was mayor as we'll talk b. he was a state representative. he was an assistant attorney general. he was lieutenant governor.
he was governor for two terms. he was the united states senator for two terms. this is a guy that voted his life to public service. in 1959, as a young man, he volunteered for the mayoral campaign with a guy named tom ireland. we don't know much about ireland because he lost but george voinovich won because in that election he met a young woman, a beautiful and intelligent fellow volunteer named janet allen. janet and george were married for more than 50 years. having been with her over the weekend, she's an extraordinary woman and their relationship, tear partnership is a real model and example for all of us and certainly it has been over the years for jane and for me. george used to say about janet, she was god's greatest blessing on me. that was clear to anyone who knew them. they had four wonderful
children, george, betsy, peter and molly. he was lieutenant governor in 1978 when his true calling came. and i say true calling because this was a time of urgency in his hometown of cleveland. it was in trouble. that same year cleveland had become the first american city since the great depression to default on its debt which by some measure totaled more than $100 million which was a lot of money back then. people were worried. some people were leaving the city all together. from his neighbors and from his conshens, -- conscience, george voinovich heard the came all to come back home. short lil after he run the republican nomination for mayor, tragedy struck their family. george's youngest daughter molly was hit by a car. she was walking home from school at 9 years old. it's a tragedy no parent should have tone dur but george and janet endured it and turning to their faith, they per veered. -- persevered. they went on to win that election. george says that through that
trial, his faith deepened even further and his compassion for others grew even stronger. senator brown just talked about things come into focus when you lose a child. i think that's what you said. that's how he felt. it deepened his faith and brought things into focus. he did win the mayoral election and turned cleveland into the comeback city. it was not an exaggeration i don't think to say that he personally saved the city from default in the sense he had incredible energy and infectious optimism that could happen, sheer force of will, a great work ethic, and he brought people together having talked to some of the city fathers at that time, some of whom are still with us. it was george voinovich bringing a team together that saved the city of cleveland. he lifted people's hopes. a decade later it was the entire state of ohio that needed to be turned around after winning reelection if cleveland as mayor by two landslide votes he was elected governor in another landslide. ohio was facing a massive debt just like cleveland had been.
george came to the rescue again saying he would get the state government working harder and smarter doing more with less. anybody who knew george voinovich knew that was his favorite motto, doing more with less and working harder and smarter and with god all things are possible. dedo more with less. he cut taxes by $24 billion to get the economy moving but also trimmed governor spending by $720 million in just two years. with his experience as mayor, he wasn't afraid to delve into the details of the budget. he rolled up his sleeves and got involved. that was his trademark. the only thing he knew better than his budget was his constituents. he helped hundreds of thousands of people who were stuck on welfare to find jobs as unemployment in ohio fell to 25-year lows. he modernized our roads and bridges. he was a big infrastructure guy. after a landslide reelection he left the buckeye state with nearly a billion dollars in a rainy day fund. by the way, when he was mayor, he served as president of the
u.s. conference of mayors and when he was governor, he served as president of the national governors' association. the only person in america to have ever done that. pretty amazing. he rose to the top. he loved to particular. wildlife fishing in lake erie was his favorite thing. he got me started on that which i now do every year. he loved his lake. and if you go to his home today as i did over the weekend, you know, he's a couple houses from the lake. you can see how proud he was of that lake by the way in which he supported efforts to make it clean and make it safe. he was also a strong supporter of our coal miners in eastern ohio and he became the first government executive in the world to recognize the independent ens of his homeland of -- independence of his homeland of slovenia. his last speech was friday night of last week and it was on slovenia independence day, 25-year anniversary. he was reelected in governor in 1994 with 72% of the vote the
biggest landslide of any governor in history. he was elected by another large margin to this chamber, the united states senate. he was reelected in 2004 with more votes than any senate candidate ever received in the state of ohio. in the senate he focused on expanding nato, including -- to include slovenia. he authored a federal law that helps monitor and fight antisemitism all around the world. he passed bipartisan legislation to help protect american intellectual property. if you want to see his biggest impact, go to ohio and you'll see it everywhere, whether it's the inner belt bridge named off him or the voinovich bicentennial okay or public affairs at his beloved ohio university in athens, ohio, whether it's the voinovich atrium at the rock 'n' roll hall of fame which by the way some say would not be in cleveland but for george voinovich's leadership. i talked last week to the director of the hall of fame who happened to be here, the rock 'n' roll hall of fame was here for a visit. we talked about george
voinovich's roll and being sure the financing was put together to have the rock 'n' roll hall of fame be in cleveland, ohio. these are all the testament to the love and respect the people of ohio had for him and continue to have from. above all, talk to those who knew him. he made an impact on all of us. for me he was a friend ch he was a great mentor over the years, happied me in my career, was someone who gave me a lot of inspiration to get into public service in the first place. in our conversations, by the way, for all of his political successes and accomplishments and all we had to talk about, he always wanted to talk about family. that was in his heart. he said how is family? that's how he would start the conversations. jarn net was -- janet was his soul mate and partner and he loved those grandkids so much. they were the anchor for everything. family and faith. that was one of the reasons he was so successful in my view. he had that grit. he had that work ethic. he had natural talents but he
also had that foundation and that moral foundation of his family and faith and gave him the confidence to do so many other great things for so many people. when he announced his retirement he said, i have a philosophy. it's god, family, country, and community. pretty good priorities. george put himself last. it was never about him. it was about others. he was the public servant. he put the servant part first. he had the heart of the servant because he was a humble man. some know back home he was proud of the fact that he drove a torres. he shined his own shoes. he loved to buy his clothes on sale, he was a penny pincher, he was a good fiscal conservative. janet and he lived in the same house they bought in cleveland in 1972. no matter where he was, what his title was, he was in many respects still that main kid from collinwood, george from collinwood. he was a man of deep faith, a
devout catholic and he went to mass several times a week. he took comfort in praying the rosary. bernie kosar tells us the store he prayed the rosary with his mom at the stadium during the browns double overtime comeback play victory over the new york jets. everybody gives bernie all the credit for that. it really is george voinovich and a higher power that intervened. after retirement, he did not slow down. as i said just this past friday he was at cleveland city for the 25th anniversary of slovenia independence and at the republican headquarters in downtown cleveland last thursday to open what we call the voinovich lobby of that new headquarters. he was also planning to serve as a delegate at the next month's republican national convention. we were so looking forward to paying tribute to him in many ways at that convention. we still will but oh, i wish he was going to be there to be part of it. it's been a great honor to succeed him as united states senator when he decided to
retire, he called me here to washington. i'll never forget the dinner we had together where he said i'm not telling anybody this yet but i'm planning to not run again for reelection. incidentally, i just helped him with an event in ohio. i was strongly supporting him for reelection. but he said he'd had it. it was time for him to go back home. he encouraged me to run. he endorsed me the day i got in. i don't believe i would be here but for the fact that he called me to washington that day and encouraged me and told me that knowing public service was in my heart, too, that this was the time to step forward and to help our country. i owe him for so much but most importantly for his model and for his example that he set. he was certainly an independent voice, including on this floor. senators on both sides of the oil will tell you that he was an attentive and thoughtful listener. he treated people with respect and dignity. you talked to some of the staff this week about george voinovich, some who had been
here a while and remember him, all had the same thing to say. they cherished his friendship. they felt like he cared about them. he had good friends, senator shaheen and senator cardin on the other side of the aisle, good friends on this side of the aisle. he used to refer to danny as being a brother to me. he was a member from hawaii on the other side of the aisle. his selfless example of public service, to enact change on a bipartisan basis i think does provide a lesson for us right now and really for all time. i think we can best honor him by carrying on that tradition. by figuring out how to solve problems and that involves reaching across the aisle and getting things done. he was a man who believed that we could make a difference here in this place. and majority leader mcconnell has joined us on the floor. i'm sure senator mcconnell will tell you george voinovich always had that belief that things could be better.
he was ultimately an optimist. and his ability to fipg out -- figure out how to get to a solution was something that all of us can learn from. in ohio he was a public servant without equal. tonight i would like to offer a resolution honoring his memory. i urge all my colleagues to support it. i would like to ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to consideration of s. res. 493 submitted earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 493 relative to the death of george v. voinovich, former united states senator for the state of ohio. the presiding officer: objection to? vrd without objection. the presiding officer: i ask unanimous consent -- a senator: i ask that the preamble be agreed to and the motions to reconsider be considered and laid on the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. a senator: thank you, mr. president. a senator: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: mr. president, before the senate from ohio leaves the floor, i had an
opportunity to listen to his tribute to our former colleague, senator voinovich. and he was indeed a stunningly successful public servant -- i mean, just thinking about any republican getting elected mayor of cleveland is -- it's hard to imagine such a thing. and then to be so extraordinarily successful at every step in his career. i was privileged to get to know him when he came to the senate. you knew him a lot longer than i did. but i just wanted on behalf of all of us who served with george to thank you for an extraordinary tribute to his outstanding life. mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the senate be in a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak therein for up to ten minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of
s. res. 494 submitted earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 494, designating september, 2016, as national child awareness month, and so forth. the presiding officer: is there objection to proceeding to the measure? without objection. mr. mcconnell: i further ask the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to and the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today, it adjourn until 9:30 a.m. tomorrow, wednesday, june 15. following the prayer and pledge, the morning business be deemed expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date, the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day. finally, that following leader remarks, the senate be in a period of morning business until 10:30, with senators permitted to speak therein for up to ten minutes each.
finally, that following morning business, the senate vote on the motion to proceed to s.r. 2578. the presiding officer: is there objection? without objection. mr. mcconnell: so if there is no further business to come before the senate, i ask that it stand adjourned under the previous order under the provisions of s. res. 493 as a further mark of respect to the late george v. voinovich, former senator from the state of ohio, following the remarks of senator whitehouse. the presiding officer: without objection. the senator from rhode island. mr. whitehouse: thank you, mr. president. in a chamber where the debate on climate change has become woefully one-sided, and in a congress where the house republicans just voted unanimously to oppose the only
climate solutions -- climate solution republicans have come to, i want to use my 140th climate speech to remind us of a time when global warming concerns came from both sides of the aisle. nearly 30 years ago this week, a republican chair of the senate environment and public works subcommittee on environment pollution who also served twice as governor of my state and as secretary of the navy convened a two-day five-panel hearing on ozone depletion, the greenhouse effect and climate change. it was june, 1986, and senator john chafee, republican of rhode
island, gave opening remarks warning of, and i quote, the buildup of greenhouse gases which threaten to warm the earth to unprecedented levels. such a warning -- such a warming could within the next 50-75 years produce enormous changes in a climate that has remained fairly stable for thousands of years -- end quote. there is a very real possibility, senator chafee went on to say, that man, through ignorance or indifference or both, is irreversibly altering the ability of our atmosphere to perform basic life support functions for the planet. mr. president, last weekend, "the washington post" wrote an article recalling this historic
hearing entitled "30 years ago, scientists warned congress on global warming." what they said sounds early familiar. i ask unanimous consent that the article be submitted to the record at the conclusion of my remarks. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. whitehouse: imagine, by the way, a republican-controlled senate that would even have a subcommittee on environment pollution. how things have changed. the present republican chairman of the environment and public works committee is the author of the greatest hoax, how the global warming conspiracy threatens your future. the contrast is stark between what senate republicans and their hearing witnesses were saying 30 years ago and what the
polluter-funded g.o.p. is saying today. 30 years ago, senator chafee declared this is not a matter of chicken little telling us what what -- us the sky is falling. the scientific evidence is telling us we have a problem, a serious problem -- end quote. but according to our current e.p.w. committee chairman, much of the debate over global warming is predicated on fear rather than science. the depth and sophistication of climate science has done nothing but increase since the chafee hearings, and the damage from climate change is not just a projection. it has started to occur. scientists are now able to connect the dots. australian researchers, for example, have determined that
the ocean warming that led to widespread and devastating coral bleaching, killing off a significant chunk of the great barrier reef in march, was made 175 times more likely by human-caused climate change. as one researcher put it, this is the smoking gun. sadly, as the scientific consensus about the causes and consequences of human-driven climate change has strengthened, over 30 years the g.o.p.'s trust in science has eroded. they don't appear to even believe the science in their home state universities. all you have to do is go to look at your own home state universities position on climate and how it is presented. it's right there. but when one looks at how that
party is funded and how it has become now virtually the political wing of the fossil fuel industry, one can understand this sad state of affairs. three decades ago, republican senator chafee said scientists have characterized our treatment of the greenhouse effect as a global experiment. it strikes me as a form of planetary russian roulette -- end quote. he went on to say by not making policy choices today, by sticking to a wait-and-see approach, by allowing these gases to continue to build up in the atmosphere, this generation may be committing all of us to severe economic and environmental disruption without ever having decided that the value of business as usual is worth the risks. those who believe that these
problems -- that these are problems to be dealt with by future generations are misleading themselves, he said. man's activities to date may have already committed us to some level of temperature change. even with 30 more years of solid science buttressing it, many in the present day g.o.p. deny that basic understanding and ignore even the home state mainstream climate science that underpins it. a few, a very few republicans in congress are now so bold as to accept mainstream established science as it is taught in their home state universities, as it is accepted by all our national science agencies and laboratories and as it is warned of by our military and intelligence services. which is a nice step, but none
will yet act on that understanding. even that tiny cohort behaves in the face of this known risk, a risk the party recognized 30 years ago as if it is enough to accept the science and do nothing. all 14 of the house members who sponsored the house resolution on climate change, all 14 of them just voted with exxonmobil and the koch brothers against a carbon fee. when the whip comes down. 30 years ago, the chafee hearing witnesses included the long-time director of nasa's goddard center, dr. james hansen. dr. michael oppenheimer of princeton.
dr. robert watson, and then-senator al gore of tennessee. dr. hansen, now one of the leading advocates for immediate and decisive climate action within the science community, educated the subcommittee on the theory underpinning global climate models. dr. oppenheimer, a member of the intergovernmental panel on climate change, talked about the need for immediate, 30 years ago, climate action. uncertainty, he told the senators, was no excuse for inaction. dr. watson, who would go on to chair the intergovernmental panel on climate change between 1997-2002 said, and i quote him here, it is not wise to experiment on the planet earth by allowing the concentration of these trace gases to increase without fully understanding the consequences. senator gore agreed with these scientists, testifying that there is no longer any
significant difference of opinion within the scientific community about the fact that the greenhouse effect is real and is already occurring. but the current g.o.p. chair of our e.p.w. committee has mocked dr. hansen and the ipcc and vice president gore, reserving a particular disdain for vice president gore, who he says is, and i quote him, drowning in a sea of his own global warming illusions, and i'll quote him again, desperately trying to keep global warming alarmism alive today -- end quote. 30 years ago, the tone of the g.o.p. was much different. where republicans today mock the prudential rule, senator chafee actually advocated for prudence in environmental policy. he said this -- the path that
society is following today is much like driving a car toward the edge of a cliff. we have a choice. we can go ahead, take no action and drive off the edge, figuring that since the car will not hit the bottom of the canyon until our generation is already long gone, the problem of coping with what we have made inevitable is for future generations to deal with. we can hope that they will learn how to adapt. on the other hand, we can put the brakes on now before the car gets any closer to the edge of the cliff and before we reach a point where momentum will take us over the edge with or without application of the brakes. end quote. present-day republicans just want to turn up the radio to the tune of drill, baby, drill and jam the accelerator to the
floor. our current e.p.w. chair has even said co2 does not cause catastrophic disasters. actually, it would be beneficial to our environment and our economy -- end quote. 30 years ago, senator chafee knew there was much yet to learn about climate change. scientists will agree on the margins that there still is more to learn. but senator chafee said then that we have to face up to it anyway. i quote him again. we don't have all the perfect scientific evidence. there may be gaps here and there. nonetheless, i think we have got to face up to it. we can't wait for every shred of evidence to come in and be absolutely perfect. i think we ought to start to try to do something about greenhouse gases and certainly to increase the public's awareness of the problem and the feeling that it is not hopeless. we can do something.
six and a half years ago, the united states was preparing to join the gathering of nations in copenhagen for the 2009 u.n. climate change conference. when that happened, business leaders took out a full-page ad in "the new york times," calling for passage of u.s. climate legislation for investment in the clean energy economy and for leadership to inspire the rest of the world to join the fight against climate change. we must embrace the challenge today to ensure that future generations are left with a safe planet and a strong economy. please don't postpone the earth. if we fail to act now, it is scientifically irrefutable that there will be catastrophic and irreversible consequences for humanity and our planet.
well, interestingly, one of the signatories of that advertisement was none other than donald j. trump, chairman and president of trump industries. and it's also signed by eric f. trump and ivanka trump. even the 2009 version of the man who is now the republican party's presumptive nominee understood and put his name to the need to act on climate change. mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that a copy of that advertisement be added at the conclusion of my remarks. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. whitehouse: what does this individual, now the republican party's presumptive nominee, now want to do? he's proposing to roll back president obama's clean power plan and cancel, he said, the
landmark paris climate agreement. this same guy who signed this advertisement has since labeled decades of research by thousands of honest and honorable climate scientists a hoax, a con job, and b.s., to use a more polite form of his expression. all the while on his business side, he wants a sea wall to protect his golf resort from global warming and its effects, end quote. what do actual climate scientists think about the republican nominee to be's energy policies? in reference to canceling the paris agreement, dr. paul higgins, who is the director of the american meteorology society program -- and i quote -- "undoing these efforts would mean future emissions of carbon dioxide would be larger and
future atmosphere concentrations would be higher. higher co2 concentrations would mean larger changes in climate and faster rates of change. larger and faster changes in climate in turn pose greater risk to society." end quote. dr. kevin trendworth is a senior scientist at the national center for atmospheric research. he said my quick reaction is that his comments show incredible ignorance with regard to the science and global affairs. end quote. incredible intphoerpbs, -- incredible ignorance, that's the party standard. dr. michaelmann director of the earth system science center put it this bluntly. it is not an overstatement to say these climate change views of this man and policy proposals
constitute an existential threat to this planet. end quote. dr. catherine heyhoe, director of the climate science center at texas tech university, that famous liberal left-wing university, texas tech university, has spoken of the potential economic cost of inaction, and i'll quote her here. as the impacts grow evermore evident, severe and costly, what was obvious to the 195 nations who met in paris will become obvious to every human on this planet. doing something about climate change is far cheaper than not. so a quick aside on dr. heyhoe's comment, when this becomes obvious to every human on this planet, what will then be the
legacy of the republican party? not a proud one. indeed, it will be a legacy to run from. the fossil fuel companies, their trade associations and front groups and many in the g.o.p. have spent the 30 years since the chafee hearings obstructing responsible climate action, despite better scientific understanding and growing public support for climate action. the fossil fuel industry has particular blame. they have erected a multitentacled climate denial apparatus that has deliberately caused that obstruction. and there are plenty of scientists looking at that now. citizens united is what gave that industry the unprecedented political weaponry that it has
used to accomplish that end. the g.o.p., citizens united, fossil fuel industry nexus will earn history's condemnation. let's just hope that it's not too late. "the washington post" in its article asked dr. oppenheimer to reflect on the intervening 30 years. dr. oppenheimer said this hearing helped bring the concern together and essentially painted a picture that things are kind of spinning out of control, that science is trying to tell us something, that the world seems to be changing even faster than our scientific understanding of the problem. and worst of all, our political leaders are way behind the eight ball. end quote. i knew senator chafee. he was a friend. he was a family friend.
he may have been my father's best friend. he was an optimist, a pragmatist. he used to say given half a chance, nature will rebound and overcome tremendous setbacks, but we must, at the very least, give it that half a chance. end quote. but he also knew nature's tolerance is not unlimited. at those groundbreaking hearings, senator chafee warned it seems that the problems man creates for our planet are never ending. but we have found solutions for prior difficulties and we will for these as well. what is required is for all of us to do a better job of
anticipating and responding to today's newspaper environmental warnings before they become tomorrow's environmental tragedies. and with those words, i close and yield the floor. the presiding officer: under the previous order and pursuant to s. res. 493, the senate stands adjourned until 9:30 a.m. on wednesday, june 15, and does so as a further mark of respect to the late george voinovich, former senator from
to not that we operated in secret and tell them all but millions of americans have set in the galleries to observe some of the debates during business when dash visit to washington but today they can watch from their own homes when. >> and the senators have been acting on the stage the audiences in the gallery in by our action today we have not fundamentally change the situation but a large the galleries who have pushed down the walls to include all of the american people who wish to watch.
the solicitation. here is one reality. , which but we must adopt a strategy now. that eliminates the safe haven of the ability to play an extra row plots against the united states my hope is we believe enough information out of the orlando attack to guide the policy makers to make the right decisions. of. >> cry will direct comment on the presidential candidates' home.
>> would you consider doing energy? rick there are all kinds of things that could be considered by not here to announce those circumstances that could be reached. >> teeeighteen day founders anticipated assault weapons hot? >> senator? >>guest: to talk about of a dead issue? -- the gun issues. >> his view of lake to solve the problem horovitz's is just political talking points? right now the democratic friends seem to be were interested in opportunistic leave using this tragedy trivia's their agenda -- rather than in advance their agenda.
keeping up with a danger to themselves really need a strategy to defeat isis for inspiration for these home grown attacks we need to give the fbi the tools they need so they can identify those who have become radicalized period united states that take it upon themselves to kill innocent people. >> i will add a lot of the director of the fbi and the secretary of komen security tomorrow afternoon at 4:00 to engage in a serious legislative effort we will talk to experts about what we can do. our suspicion is politically motivated effort, the we are open for but nobody wants terrorist to have a serious
suggestion as to what we can do to be helpful. >> we will take up the house bill about p.r. by the end of the month. thank-you. >> what about the terrorism efforts? >> gun-control legislation against a suspected terrorist in future funding for the fbi man ebla's joined by other democratic leaders. >>
[inaudible conversations] we have to be quick today we have a picture we had a terrific conference senator sanders took time it was very moving. our nation was shaken this weekend by one of the worst mass shootings and american history 49 dead scores injured some critical the attack on the lgbt community and everyone in america was attacked it demands action. people responded to this tragedy came together in a time of crisis and it had to
get done here in congress to close that loophole according to the it gao were the 2,000 suspects suspected terrorist bought guns in his tenure period they have urged lowe's to take advantage of america's lax gun laws al qaeda said america is awash with firearms so what are you waiting for? we have the republican who said the problem is not done as. -- guns the response is more guns? that is shameful from the
nra and is going further into radicalism and it is shameful why did we run for office in the first place if the republicans followed the nra more than their constituents? and redo this on the appropriation bill. there is no excuse for the suspected terrorists to buy guns we have other things to do. about funding? they complain that they're not doing enough republicans to vote against this it was a terrible mistake we also reinforce the vote to fully fund the fbi the republicans
church change that funding the $100 million this is germane and deserve the upper down vote so to correct the american people certainly you done your job to protect donald trump. >>. >> against the of less than zero of orlando and what we have learned all across america with the horrible mass shootings, we need to do a better job keeping guns out of the hands of those with the issues. the mentally unstable and those with terrorist connection have no business owning guns in america if that is what this election will be about and i will stand by the american people.
it dictates that we as a congress listen to the pleas across america to stop this confinements what happened in orlando was heartbreaking and over today people killed it breaks my heart for carla that city to we have the guts to stand up to do something i hope we have the courage to do something. and leadership from the values president bush after the epic tragedy of 9/11 said those responsible would be held accountable but he
warned americans not to hold all muslims responsible with the worst mass shooting in nation's history the president condemned this act to dedicate every resource to hold accountable those responsible for this tragedy contrasts the bipartisan leadership with donald trump , the man who would be the republican president in the wake of the orlando tragedy congratulated himself with his bigotry toward muslims wasted no time blaming president obama for the deaths but again this week asking leaders of they will ignore the fact if he is totally unsuited to lead this nation his emotional rance and insults and conspiracy theories to single out enemies
distinguish him from any other candidate in modern political history to hear the republican speaker and majority leader to characterize his outrageous comments is only off message and unscripted from the toxic rhetoric and those hateful rance fun his character and sold. sign of how many arab making plans to convention in cleveland to join them in a standing ovation to honor their rage of the nominee? history will remember them as a participant perpetrated for mr. dinkins grand old party.
>> last year to under 44 people those tears somewhat stingier gunshots only 21 went empty-handed. just those of suspected terrorist when they were successful let the republican colleagues contemplate that. when 90 percent of suspected terrorists can get a gun who are they kidding? when the senators voted against that gap last year why is that acceptable?
why should they be able to purchase firearms? why? no reason. the answers of it -- obvious. republicans and democrats to allow terror suspects to purchase guns that is the tail that wags the republican dog it is more concerned with the rights of suspected terrorists bin with gun violence as they bowed down to the nra horrible value choice in america. if they continue to oppose that gap the nra itself will be in part responsible to involve a again in this
country principle. there is no other way to avoid that fact so with this upcoming bill we will try to close the of dangerous loophole with the next appropriation bill can we win? we will. sooner or later we're not giving up. reporters say if you can't win it then why do what? every time we have a vote whole fleet they will change their minds. if not they will face the consequences and that makes progress move forward. of momentum of soul searching for our republican colleagues is now. what will lead the? will they side with the extremist of the nra or the vast majority of their constituents who simply don't believe terror
suspects could have access to dozens? kinnealey ones that seem to believe it or the republican senators. >> since sunday night tens of thousands around the country to mourn the heinous act that erupted over the weekend in orlando. that was an attack on our values. the attack on the lgbt community with every single family across the country the question families are asking is what will it take for this congress to enact common-sense reform to keep our communities safe?
every state in this country including my home state of washington is affected by horrific gun violence and it is far past time for congress to have a vigorous debate about what we can do to stem the tide. as republicans continued to block us at every turn, they are so adamant that we do nothing they block as on the most obvious amendment of all, to prevent people from the terror watchlist from being allowed to buy a gun. when you have politicians beholden to the gun lobby they cannot even purport the idea that potentially dangerous criminals and terrorists should not be allowed to walk out of the store with a gun there is a serious problem with our priorities. babylon stop us from pushing this amendment or common-sense reforms like
background checks something 90% of americans want. like so many americans i retired of hearing the thoughts and prayers of my colleagues with his hero follow-up it is time for action. we cannot wait for another mass shooting in the hope colleagues on either side of the aisle will finally wake up to the problem at hand and work with us to make progress on the crisis hurt taken us all every single day. >> ideas to have senators waiting for espy will take us a couple quick questions. >>. >> american is the dissidents are they on the watch list?
former ohio senator who died at last sunday at the age of 79. here are those remarks now. ob >> matter president i am joinedd with the senator from ohio to discuss the passing of a dear friend of his and mine. i will make if you short remarks on senator portman who will be speaking at his memorial service later in the week in cleveland. we will offer a resolution and some comments to the resolution. this weekend, we were awakened on sunday to learn that the state of ohio and the city of cleveland lost one of its champions.or as mayor of my beloved city, the city i call home, cleveland, thr two-term governor was my colleague for the first four years in the senate.
george dedicated his life to public service but he was a man of conviction. he was willing to listen to the other side of the argument and put what he believed best for our state and for our country ahead of partisan politics. of course we didn't always agree but we worked together in the senate to make progress for ohio everything from judicial nominees to supporting manufacturing industry and cleaning up our great lakes, lake erie. i came to the senate in 2007. thousand seven.in we assembled a commission of distinguished ohio to find the candidates of both parties to recommend this nominee for the federal judiciary. this began and it's now continued through their servicen and me doing the same thing. george how to lifelong love affair of what he called the jewel of the great lakes, lake erie. his fight fight to clean up and protect the late began when he joined the ohio legislature
almost 50 years ago. at that time people wrote lake erie off as a polluted dying lake. over the past century, people have had a habit of trying to write off ohio but like all of our champions, he wouldn't accept that. my colleagues know there is a norm is painting outside the senate depicting the american victory at the battle of lake erie. george pushed for the great lakes water clean water affordability act and i continue to work on that since his retirement in december 2010. it has made in the incredible comeback. we have work to do every sunday. we have to deal with the return of toxic algae blooms. we have worked on that issue in the western basin near toledo. because of the work and investment like george, he was
able to catch yellow perch not far from his own backyard in a section on the eisai side of cleveland. u it will be up to all of us who love lake erie to understand how vital it is to our state to continue that work for our work great lake. george is the son of immigrantsj he understood the importance of investing in our nation and investing in public works that create jobs and empower the economy in our community. he continues to push for ways to improve the infrastructure. he reached out to his friends iw delaware and to me about the need for dedicated public works funding. he was willing to reach across the aisle to work with us on projects which we still need to rebuild and loan guarantees and taxes for ohio's manufacturers and small business. he was a deeply religious man guided by his faith through
nearly half the century in public service. that faith is sustained him when his 9-year-old daughter was killed during his first campaige when one loses a child, things come into focus. what's important and what's unimportant. you see more, you feel more and you experience more.akop we all take so much for granteda i hope to think his passing is an opportunity to reflect on what we take for granted and what's important to us as a country. on behalf of everyone in this body, i send my deepest condolences to janet, her children and georgia's children and everyone touched by his wife and frankly her life of public service. his legacy will live on through the lasting contributions he made to his beloved cleveland, to ohio and to our great country.
i yield to my friend. thought >> madame president, i thought those remarks beautifully described a great public servant and i would like to add a little to it and then at the end of my remarks am actually going toe offer a resolution for the entire senate to vote on as a tribute to the life of george. we put together resolution which talks about a lot of his accomplishments and as i think my colleague said very well, it gives us an inspiration for the future. from his wife hopefully we can learn about how to better do oua jobs right here in the united states senate. he was an amazing public servant he was governor of ohio, senator of the year for two terms and i think he represented the best of public service. by that i mean whether it was his effort to tackle the debt oc give children more choice in
their schools, he never made it about him. it was always about others and specifically it was about his constituents. he was a very proud grandson of immigrants. he was also the son of a great neighborhood in cleveland and he was raised with the values of that neighborhood. >> honesty, integrity, hard word he said his father used to tell him that in america we have more of the world's bounty in any other country because of our freedom, because i quote, we get more out of our people through the free enterprise system and are education system. he never forgot those early lessons. he always was that same earnest plain spoken kid wherever he
went. as a boy, he was diagnosed with bone marrow disorder. that kept him from enjoying many childhood joys like sports. it didn't let him get it down.f in fact he brought all of his energy into his studies and that's one reason he was such a good student i think. c he got along cleveland on his red bike. later in life i had the opportunity and i'd be marchingi along and there he was on his bicycle. i don't know if was named bessie but i know it was at his side when he was riding bicycles inho the parade. he loved his bicycles. it always put a smile on his with so many >> there was a struggle that shaped his character and gave him a heart for all those who are suffering or who were different. so many of his decisions hee would go to the lord fort inspiration.hould
he did this in high school. he said he prayed for guidance asking god what he should do with his life. he got an answer. he he thought he had a calling and that was to get involved in student government.. so he ran and he was elected president as a senior. he went on to serve as student body president at ohio university when he was an undergraduate school and he was president of his class and public president of the young republican club in law school. so people wonder how you get into politics, it all started in high school and through college. that was the track he chose for himself.ssioner he had so many different roles, he was a county commissioner and county auditor. he was mayor and the city representative. he was an assistant attorney general. he was lieutenant governor. he was governor for two terms.li
he was the united states senator for two terms. this is the guy who devoted his life to public service. in 1959, as a young man he volunteered for the mayoral campaign. we don't know much about him because he lost but george one because in that election he met a young woman, a beautiful intelligent volunteer named janet. janet and george were married for more than 50 years. i was with her over the weekend. she is an extraordinary woman. their relationship and partnership is a real model an example for all of us and certainly it has been for the years for jane and for me. he used to say she was god's greatest blessing on me. that was for anyone who knew him. together they have four wonderful children, george, 1978
his 1978 when his true calling came. i say true calling because this was a time of urgency in his hometown of cleveland. it was in trouble. that same year cleveland had been the first city to default on its debt which totaled more than $100 million. people were worried. some people were leaving the city altogether. from his neighbors and from his conscience, he had the call to t come back home.re shortly after he won the republican nomination for mayor tragedy struck georgia's youngest daughter molly was hit by a car. she was walking home from school. she was nine years old. tragedy no parent should never have to endure but george andpe janet endured it and turning to their faith, they persevered. they they went on to win the election. through that his faith depend even further and his confidence
in others group. he said things come into focus when you lose a child. may that's how he felt.d it deep his faith and brought things into perspective for him. it was not an exaggeration tofan say that he personally saved the city from the fall this edible energy that could happen, a sheer force of will and a great work ethic. he brought people together. having talked to some of the city fathers, some of of whom are still with us, it was him bringing a team together that saved the city of cleveland. lifted people's hopes. a decade later it was the entirs state of ohio that need to be turned around after winning reelection by two landslides, ohio was facing a massive debt just like cleveland had done. george came to the rescue again.
he said he would get the government working harder and smarter doing more with less. anyone who knew him knew that was his favorite motto, doing more with less and working harder and smarter.24 >> he did do more with less. he cut taxes and get the economy moving but he also trimmed government spending by $720 million in two years. his experience, he wasn't afraid to delve into the budget.of the only thing he knew better than his budget was his constituents. he helped hundreds of thousands of people who were stuck on welfare to find jobs. he modernized our roads and bridges. he was a big infrastructure guy. after a landslide reelection he left the landslide state. he served as president of theer
when he was governor he served as president of the governors association per he's the only person in america to have done that. pretty amazing. he rose to the top. he loved to fish. while i fishing in lake erie was his favorite thing.is he got me started on my which i now do every year. he loved his lake and if you go to his home today, he is a couple houses from the lake and he that lake in the way he supported it to make it clean and safe. he was also a strong supporterd of our coal miners in eastern ohio. he became the first to recognize his homeland. his last speech was on friday night last week and was on sylvania independence day. he was reelected governor in 1994 was 72% of the vote. after he had reached his term as
governor he was part of the united states senate. he was reelected in 2004 with more votes than any candidate- ever received in the state of ohio. he offered a federal law to fight anti-semitism all aroundd the world. if he passed bipartisan legislation to help protect intellectual property. one of his biggest impact was in ohio and you will see everywhere. whether it's the bridge that'sno named after him or the bicentennial park in cleveland or the school leadership and his beloved university or the atrium at the rock 'n roll hall of fame which by the way sums they would not be in cleveland if it wasn't for his leadership. i just talked last week to a director of the hall of fame who happen to be here for a visit and coincidentally we talked about his role and made sure thl financing was put together tond
have that he put in cleveland ohio. these are all a testament to tho love and respect people had and continue to have for him. above all, he made an impact on all of us. for me he was a friend and a great mentor over the years. he helped me in my career with someone who gave me a lot of inspiration. in our conversations, by the the way for all his political successes and accomplishments and all we had a talk about with political issues, he would always start with family. he would always say house family that's how we would start conversation. janet was his soulmate and his partner and he loved his kids and grandkids so much they were the anchor for everything, family and faith. that's why he was so successful in my view. he had grip. he had a work ethic and natural talent. he also had a moral foundation
in his family and faith and that gave him the confidence to do so many other great things for so many people. when he announced his retirement he said it's god, family, country and community. pretty good priority. he put himself last. it was never about him. it was about others. he was the public servant. he put the servant part first. he wasn't a humble man. he loved to buy his close on sale, he was a penny pincher and a conservative.e they lived in the same house they bought in 1972. two. no matter where he was he was in many respect that same kid, george.
he was a man of deep faith in a devout catholic and as busy as he was he went to mass several times a week.he he also took comfort and put praying the rosary. he tells a story that george prayed the rosary during the 1986 double-overtime comeback with the new york jets.oi so they really should give himhe credit for that in the higher power that intervened.it he slow down after retirement. he was also observed in headquarters in downtown cleveland last thursday to open what we call. he was also planning to serve as a delegate. retire i wish he would be here to celebrate.
i'll never forget the dinner where he said i'm not planning to run for reelection. i had just helped him with an event in ohio. the he encouraged me to run. he encouraged me the day i got in. i don't believe i would be here except for the fact that he called me to washington and he said this was the time to step forward and help our country. i own for so much but most importantly but for his model and for what he said they will tell you he was in a tentative and thoughtful listener. i talked to some of the staff here and some who had been here for a while and remember him and they all had the same thing to
say. they cherished his friendship and felt like he cared about them. he had good friends. he used to refer to danny as being like a brother to me. he was a member from hawaii on the other side of the aisle. him his selfless example of public service in his ability to enact change on a bipartisan basis, i think that will always provide a lesson for us, right now. really. really for all time. i think we can best honor him by carrying on that tradition, by figuring out how to solve problems and that involves bel reaching across the aisle and getting things done. he was a man who believed that we could make a difference in this place. they will continue to tell youy that george always had that belief that things could be better. he was an optimist. his ability to figure out how to
get to the solution is something that we can all work on. tonight i would like to honor a his memory and i would like to ask unanimous consent that we proceed the consideration of 493 which was submitted earlier today. >> center resolution 493 relative to the death ofte george.of it, united states senator. >> the resolution be agreed to in the preamble be agreed to in the motion to be considered be considered with no intervening action for debate thank you mr. president. >> the majority leaves later.toi
>> i had an opportunity to listen to his tribute to our former colleague and he was indeed a stunningly successful public service. just thinking about any republican getting elected mayod of cleveland is hard to imagine such a thing. his then to be so extraordinary successful at every step of his career, i was privileged to get to know him when he came to the senate. you knew him a lot longer than i did but on behalf of all of us i wanted to thank you for that tribute to his outstanding life. >> former ohio senator died last sunday at the age of 79. members past the 2017 defense authorization bill.
six republicans and democrats voted against the bill which authorizes $200 billion for defense programs and policy. the blocks president obama from closing the prison at guantánamo bay and requires women to register for the draft. barbara boxer and bernie sanders did not vote. they moved on to begin work on the 2017 spending bill for commerce, justice and science. the debate continues on wednesday. follow the senate live on c-span2 when members return at 9:30 a.m. eastern. >> c-span "washington journal", live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up wednesday morning homeland security committee ranking democrat of mississippi will discuss threats to the u.s. homeland in light of sunday's mass shooting in orlando florida. then rob whitman on u.s. efforts to combat isis overseas and
whether the military is prepared should the current tactics be changed. jackie spear will discuss the latest on the mass shooting in what lawmakers learn from tuesday's closed-door briefing with national security officials. be sure to watch c-span's "washington journal" beginning live at seven am the eastern wednesday morning. join the discussion. >> now to today's white house briefing with josh earnest. he answered questions about the mass shooting and great britain's upcoming vote of whether to stay or leave the union. >> we need to continue to press congress to take commonsense and meaningful gun safety steps that
would actually strengthen our homeland security and make sure that even as we are in the midst of an important campaign and political debate across the country that we don't confuse political talking points for a counterterrorism strategy. if you have questions on this or other topics, i'm happy to take them. >> would you give us a little bit of insight into what it is that led them to go on? >> i think there has, there's a tendency based on those who have been covering this political debate for the last few months to focus in on one candidate, but many republicans have been making exactly the case that the president has expressed concern about. it was governor bush who initially advocated for a
religious test for individuals entering the country. it was senator cruise who made the case for increased surveillance of muslim communities. it is chris christie who expressed concern about admitting syrian refugees to united states. this is not, unfortunately, it's not just about one politician in the republican party who is reacting out of fear. and using language that the president is concerned my impact homeland security. so the president is quite passionate, i think as was
evident about doing what's necessary to protect the american people. it took us twice in the last seven and a half years to faithfully execute the duties of the office of the presidency and to fulfill his number one priority which is protecting the american people. that commitment to our national security and to our homeland security and to making sure that all americans enjoy that protection is something the president gets quite passionate about, particularly because, as he also discussed, he sees firsthand the substantial commitment and sacrifices that are made by our men and women in uniform, that are made by the men and women in the intelligence committee and our diplomats and our law-enforcement professionals, that are made by officials at the department of homeland
security to keep us safe. they too have taken an oath. they put their lives on the line, many of them, every, every single day, to protect our country. as the leader of the country and the commander-in-chief the president feel strongly about making sure we are executing a strategy that is consistent with the sacrifices they are making. that would explain the president's passion today. >> some of the other candidates that you have mentioned think that donald trump is the republican candidate. >> he's the loudest voice out there. >> but he's not the only one and that is the problem. there is a tendency to reduce this to one person. that is to deny the reality about what is happening.
>> another question regarding the orlando shooting. are there any plans for him to reach out on thursday? >> first of all the president has had the opportunity to speak with buddy dyer who is the mayor of orlando. other senior white house officials have been in touch with governor scott directly and there have been a number of conversations between obama administration officials and their counterparts in florida to ensure that we are effectively coordinating the efforts of federal authority with state and local authority as well. so i would say that is an important principle here. they need to investigate the situation and make sure they get to the bottom of it. standing in solidarity with the
community that is grieving. the president will be traveling to orlando. we want to invite him to be part of the president's arrival and hopefully he will have the opportunity to see governor scott there. >> i've seen those reports but i do not know if the president has been briefed but this administration takes our cyber security, our nations cyber security quite seriously. as you've heard me discuss before there is a specific proposal to improve our cyber
security including resources that are needed for that pursuit the president has put forward a specific plan, laid out how he believes we should pay for it to enhance our cyber security and republicans have indicated they do not even want to talk about it. that is rather disappointed i do not make a habit of discussing ongoing criminal or national security investigations so questions related to so i'd direct you to the homeland security and the fbi. >> i'm wondering whether.
[inaudible] >> the president there are reports that they were killed outside paris. this is a concerning situation and is only enhanced by indications that the killer may have had a terrorist affiliation they have been in touch with french authorities. they are our allies. our partnership is critical to the national security of both of our countries. i would anticipate that the united states will do what we can to assist french authorities as they conduct this investigation that they take the steps they believe are necessary
to continue to protect their country. >> i'm wondering, have you talked at all about this coordination that the discussion >> i'm not aware of any advance coordination or notification that was provided by the white house to the clinton campaign of the president's comments today. >> that said, i don't think you should be particularly surprised that the president's comments and views on this topic are similar to the views and
principles that articulated by the woman who served as his secretary of state during his first term in office. we often, you often hear me indicate that the president believes it's important for his successor to build on the progress of our country and not scrap it. i often make that argument in the context of our country's success in digging out of the worst economic downturn since the great depression. it it is certainly true in that context. it also happens to be true in the context of our national security. they do believe it's important that his successor is somebody who recognizes that our country is safer than it was eight years ago. we have enhanced our standing around the world and strengthened our alliances. we have refined and improved and strengthened our homeland security.
and the american people do face a? whether or not they want to build on that progress because there is sure is more to be done to prove upon our security. he did talk about how it would be important that we build on the progress that we made the last year. it doesn't just apply to the economy but it also applies to when it comes to the american people. >> i'm wondering, obviously about why he thought the u.k. should stay in the eu. is there anything more that we
can prompt him to do to make a last-ditch effort or anything the treasury department or white house is doing to prepare for what's happening to the financial market? >> well, just as you often hear me say, i'm confident there are well compensated individuals in the united states that provide a public analysis of polling data here in this country i'm sure the same is true in the u.k. again, i will leave that analysis to them. what i will say is that the president did have an opportunity to travel to london and in the context of a news conference with prime minister cameron described how the united states benefits from having the u.k. as a well integrated with europe. we have a special relationship
with the united kingdom. the united states has an opinion and it's an opinion that the president has shared publicly. but the president was also quick to add, as i am that this is a decision for the british people to make. it's a consequential decision for them to make. we are confident that the british people will consider their options carefully and it certainly is important for them to weigh in on this decision. it's awaited one and one that they alone will make. >> they said the administration has rolled out additional action. what have you been doing and state your preference for congress to come up with a solution.
>> i'm not to take any option available to the president off the table. we do continue to believe that a congress should coordinate and cooperate with the administration in pursuit of a bipartisan national security goal. even if there are some republicans that don't support that bipartisan goal, they should at least be interested in trying to save taxpayers money and in many cases there is a substantial amount of money that could be saved without increasing the risk to the american people by closing the prison at guantanamo bay. we will continue to implement the strategy that we been focused on for quite some time which is clear for review of the case files of the individuals who are currently housed there and we will continue to work with our partners all around the world to find appropriate security circumstances in which
those individuals can be safely transferred. that work continues. i don't have any transfer analysis to make today but we will certainly keep you informed if there are any upcoming. >> i just wanted to follow up on the question of secretary clinton's comments and the phrase that the secretary used that somehow there are magic words and they said there's no magic words. they were both used around the same time of pittsburgh so there is no discussion at all between the campaign and the white house? >> it seems such an unlikely coincidence. >> again, i'm i'm not aware that
anyone in the white house gave the clinton campaign advance notice of the president's comments, but i'm also not sitting here telling you that it's a coincidence. i think it should be apparent to all of you that president obama and hillary clinton have similar priorities. i'm not making the case that it's a coincidence. i'm making a bold case that they agree that these are principles that are worth fighting for and articulating and that the use of the word radical islam is a political talking point. it is not a counterterrorism strategy. in fact to use that political talking point only gives our enemies the legitimacy that they are desperately craving. giving them that legitimacy only makes it easier for them to recruit and making it easier for them to recruit makes it harder
for us to keep the country safe. >> there is some discussion going on between the white house and the clinton campaign about this very thing. >> again there are appropriate confines within the law where the clinton campaign can be in communication with the white house. we announced a video to announce his support for her in the general campaign but when it comes to his comments, i don't know of anyone providing advanced comments. [inaudible] >> it's my understanding that sanders and clinton are planning to get together.
[inaudible] 's secretary clinton has already clinched the delegates needed. >> i think he came away that senator sanders understands exactly how important the general election is and senator sanders addressed all of you right outside that window and made clear how important it is that the republican nominee for president not be elected for president of the united states. that was a view he expressed. so he clearly understands the stakes. at the same time the president walked into the meeting well aware of the fact that senator sanders has more than earned the right to make his own decisions on his own timeframe about the
future of his campaign and the president is certainly respectful of that. >> what is the presidents expectation about his campaign. >> that the expectation that he will make his own decision for his own campaign. >> it has a very different feel to it. there was anger and frustration and parts of it did feel like a political, is that your assessment question and. >> that's not my assessment. i think what was different about this meeting is the fact that this meeting was convened 48 hours after the worst shooting in american history. as the president and fbi have indicated is likely the result of an individual who became radicalized. so yes, it gets fair to say that this meeting took on a different
flavor than it usually does at the same time the national security team was able to report to him important and critical progress in implementing our's strategy to ultimately destroy isil. in terms of reducing the foreign fighters in the ranks of isil fighters and reducing the amount of territory that they can control and their ability to fund their operations isil is under increasing pressure because of the strategy that has been led by the united states and effectively implemented by our 65 coalition partners. there is no that we are making progress and that's important. but there's also no denying that the american people are grieving after a terrible tragedy. there is intense focus on what steps we can take from
preventing that from ever happening it again. some of those include closing the loophole for people who are currently on the no-fly list to walk into a gun store. if it's too dangerous to board an airplane it should be too dangerous to buy a firearm. the president believes we should change the assault weapons ban. right now it's too easy for a homegrown extremist to get his or her hands on weapons of war. the president also believes it can important not to confuse political talking points for political strategy. when it comes to protecting the american people the president is quite passionate about that. i think that passion was on display about an hour ago.
>> it does get heated up, especially as a viewer about the ban on muslims. he mentions scapegoating the muslim community. with casual dissent from american values. this is the president stating his role. >> i think what is clear is that there is a basic question about american values. that to discriminate against people due to their religious views undermines american values the president is quite passionate about defending american values. the president is also quite passionate about protecting the american people and there are consequences for using political rhetoric that alienates or
marginalize or targets muslims. it only serves to feed the narrative and confer legitimacy on isil's argument. that is the thing that i so desperately crapes. we know that leaders wake up desperate to try to find ways to convey to the rest of the world that they are fighting the west in the name of islam. they call themselves religious leaders, they label the individuals who are in their ranks as holy warriors and they are seeking to perpetuate this notion that they represent the world's muslims, more than a billion of them in the fight against the west. they are wrong about that.
that's why the political rhetoric that we too often here on the campaign trail is so disconcerting. it feeds the false narrative and the myth that our enemies depend on for their survival. the president feel strongly about that. the president is concerned that there are some that are willing to overlook that fact just because it might be good politics and again, i think it's important to step back. i'm not just talking about a candidate or several candidates for president. it's not uncommon to turn on cable television and see some republican congressmen i've never heard of talking about the
presidents nonuse of the word radical islamic extremism to the finer enemy. those are facts. the president wants to make clear why that matters. >> isn't this inherently a political speech? >> this is a speech about what is necessary to protect our values and keep our country safe. that is the subject of intense political debate right now. it should be that way. we should have a debate about what's important in keeping the country safe. >> that's white others are asking you because it feels like this is perhaps perhaps what we will hear tomorrow in wisconsin. >> i think the president feels quite strongly about making sure his successor is someone who
wants to build on the progress he has made in strengthening our country and protecting our homeland. the rhetoric that we hear from a large lot number of republicans undermines that. the president gave a pretty concise explanation for why that is. it's not just the great offense that many americans take at undermining core american values. religious liberty is a founding principle of the united states of america. we don't discriminate against people because of the way they worship god. they we don't treat them differently because of where they attend religious services. that is not something we do. the president is passionate about protecting that value. it doesn't stop there. i think the president's passion that was on display earlier this afternoon is not just a
reflection of the way our values have been undermined but it is a reflection of the risk associated with pursuing that cynical strategy. it undermines our ability to protect the american people, particularly for talking about an attack that was carried out two days ago by an american citizen who had been radicalized by an enemy whose narrative is only advanced when we hear that rhetoric from politicians. >> saudi arabia is a very key ally in the fight against isis. will they be meeting with them? >> we will see some changes to the schedule this week. we will keep you posted as things get added but i don't have anything to announce right
now. >> and he's not coming to the white house at all. >> i don't have have anything to announce. we canceled the trip on wednesday and added a trip to orlando and thursday. the next two days are in flux. if anything gets added, including an eating that you are referring to, we will you know. >> can you discuss a little bit more about what the senate might do in orlando on thursday? also is there reason he hasn't called the governor yet. the governor has been critical and he wants a zika response by wednesday and is not responding to this federal emergency declaration after the shooting in their state. >> what i will tell you real quickly is the fact that, i do
want to say that the president will have an opportunity to see governor scott when he travels to florida on thursday. he will be invited and hopefully governor scott will be there. i'd make clear that senior officials at the white house have been in touch, not just with governor scott office but also with governor scott directly. he's been in touch with mayor dyer directly in a range of federal officials have been in touch with there's state and local car parts to ensure a seamless courtney response to this terrible situation. >> what about the emergency declaration? >> i know it's going through the regular process. it is rather extraordinary to make a specific request like this for an event that is not ongoing, but that will be
considered through the regular channels and once a determination has been made about that request we will obviously let you all know. >> and your response, does it have anything to do with governor scott endorsing the president or is that a conflict between the president and the governor? >> i will leave it to the governor to describe how he may or may not be influenced by politics but president obama believes but in terms of mobilizing federal resources to respond to a grieving community policy has space set aside and that is certainly president obama's approach to the situation. on zika, i think we've made it white clear that this is a serious situation and our public
health, almost four months ago, put together package that was submitted to the white house from congress of the resources that they believe are necessary to do everything possible to protect american people from the zika virus. democrats have strongly supported their request was made by our public health professionals but for reasons that are difficult to explain, republicans in in congress have resisted offering up the support that our public health professionals say is necessary to protect the american people. we certainly welcome governor scott's advocacy with his fellow republicans to get congress to provide the resources that public health professionals and dates, particularly a big state like florida need to protect
against the zika virus. >> there is no war of words that seems to have made, but the president devoted a big chunk of this address to those words. this has been set for a long time. why is he so angry about the rhetoric now? you yourself said you will turn on cable television and see some congressmen you've never heard of before. why does this matter so much? why is he so furious today. >> i think what i would describe as a president who is passionate about doing everything that's necessary to protect the american people. too often we hear republicans
making an argument that what's necessary to protect the country is for the president to describe the threat as the threat of radical islamic extremism that is used as a substitute as actions we should take to enhance our national security because maybe there is a republican argument to be made without using the magic words they are welcome to make that argument. with the president thinks of that congress should make to prevent people who are on the no-fly list from being able to buy a gun. that would make it safer and harder for someone who has, who is suspected from being involved in terrorism to get a gun. that doesn't undermine the second amendment right of
law-abiding americans to have a gun. congress says will were scared of the nra so don't want to do that, but why don't we confirm the financial expert who is responsible for critical element of our rifle strategy which is shutting off their funding but for more than a year this financial expert who has served in democratic and republican administrations has been blocked for reasons they admit are only related to politics do they not. >> do they not see a distinction between calling it islam and calling it radical islamic tear? some people would say what's the difference. if you're getting specific enough to call something radical islamic tear when it clearly is,
why is that such a big deal. >> michelle, to the extent that it would be helpful, we could provide you the numerous instances of when the president has discussed that this is a perversion of islam and part of their strategy is to recruit potentially vulnerable members of the muslim community in the united states and around the world. he has on a number of occasions talked about the responsibility that leaders in the muslim community, both here in the u.s. and around the world have to speak out against those radical elements that are seeking to recruit people and their communities. so the president certainly doesn't misunderstand that. here's the problem, michelle, the counterterrorism strategy articulated by republicans is that the president should utter the magic words to defeat isil. that's their magic strategy. the president says let's define
our enemy and make sure we define our enemy precisely. our enemy is not the religion of islam. our enemy are radical violent extremists that seek to pervert islam and advance the narrative that they are representing islam and war against the west. that's false. that's a myth. that's not true the question really is why are those republicans in congress actually focus on things that are magic words but our contribution to our homeland security. let's close the know by no-fly loophole. let's authorize the men and women in uniform to win this war against isis. there are tangible things congress could do but time and time again they refused because they think that somehow the magic words are somehow more
important. >> do you think anyone sees those magic words a strategy and they're not just pointing out the fact that the president hasn't wanted to say them for very long time even though others have? it just seems like when he talks about people painting this with a broad brush, it seems like maybe you're painting this with a broader brush than it needs from the beginning. >> what have those critiques offered in terms of fighting isil? they haven't. this is the thing they constantly come back to i'm not the one who constantly brings up radical islamic terrorism. that's not me. it's the republicans, many i haven't heard of who booked themselves on cable television so they can make this argument. again it's cynical. they know it's not true. they know, while i don't know if they know this but the president knows that it undermines our ability to defeat isil.
it undermines our ability to prevent them from recruiting in the united states. >> hillary clinton says and she says she's happy to say it. are they been undermining values and strategies? >> i haven't heard them criticize the president for not using the magic words. i think that's the point. the president has been very specific and precise about how to define our enemy and for people who say the only reason we haven't defeated isil's because the president hasn't used those magic words that they have chosen, that's cynical politics and it doesn't do anything. >> what did he think he was adding to make something that is
about fighting the acts that we just saw an fighting republican rhetoric? what did he think that was going to add? does he think that republican rhetoric is so strong out there that he needs to counter it when he's talking about counterterrorism? >> president believes that it is worth having a debate about the most effective way to protect our country. it's worth having a debate about who the person in the oval office making those decisions. there will be ample opportunity. i think they will care about what they have to say with it, but what the president was
talking about today was making sure that we don't repeat mistakes we've made in history when we acted out of fear and a willingness to compromise our values. this is something our nation and our leaders have previously regretted. >> it was directed toward a domestic audience of the american people. terrorist groups and their adversaries across the area are now focused on what he is saying. and for it in fact there are also focused on what you have to
say. what does he want to say to the american people and directly to those who want to see the american people harmed? >> i think similar to what the president had to say which was a message focus on the u.s. audience the world should understand that the world is committed to the founding principles that make our country great. a protection of a free press protecting freedom of speech, protecting the ability to worship god in the way that we choose, those are central to the founding of our country. compromise them because we are scared or fearful is something that we are going to regret are
they the same kind of people who understand democracy and would understand freedom of the press and freedom of religion means in their world and their environment? >> if you're talking about isil leaders, i think the president's message to them is quite direct. it is we are going to succeed in mobilizing to destroy your organization. if you threaten or harm americans, we are are going to find you and hold you accountable for it. i made reference yesterday to them and he made reference to using force to protect the american people. there are also complicated questions about what were going to do here in the united states to protect the homeland and protect the american people.
it does have a direct impact on our core american values and our commitment to a society that reflects the diversity of our country and things like dignity and inclusiveness and tolerance. these are the profound concepts that in some ways we take for granted in our day-to-day life that are what make america the greatest country in the world. >> you said they won't be distracted by calls from small remarks by donald trump and republicans you said, is it safe
to say the president is annoyed by those. >> we all have to endure the challenge of differentiating the challenges on the campaign trail. there is a suggestion and this is what i was talking about yesterday that somehow the president may have been complicit or not concerned about the terrorist attack that occurred in orlando on saturday night, early sunday morning. that is what i was responding to when i made those comments yesterday. i think the president's comments today's for themselves. he wants to make sure we don't confuse a political talking point to a political strategy.
and a counterterrorism strategy. >> i want to find out the status on some gun control after the charleston church massacre in the legislation that was drafted then probably right now the democrats are trying to force a vote on no-fly know by. the white house response on that >> they strongly support common sense gun legislation. they said it today, meaningful gun control, gun legislation is critical to our homeland security. this is a homeland security issue now. it is a source of concern fire homeland security that it is too easy for terrorists to get their hands on weapons of war and use them against innocent americans. this is a homeland security issue every it that it is a question about protecting the second amendment rights of all
law-abiding americans. we can take commonsense steps that will do more to protect the american people without undermining or gutting the basic constitutional rights of law bid abiding american spirit i think the question is, given this moment, given what we have endured why wouldn't they act on it? >> do we know exactly if the president will meet with the doctors who are heroes and save those lives? we heard from a few of them today. do we know if he is going to meet with those impacted and obviously the first responders in the doctors as well? >> he is certainly interested in spending time with people in the orlando community that were touched by this terrorist attack and by people who are acting quickly to save lives.
the plans up for the to travel to orlando were initiated at the end of the day yesterday so our advance team has only arrived in orlando this morning. we are still in the early stages of planning this trip. as more details come together i will certainly keep you posted on what the president plans to do when he is in orlando. >> yesterday you talked about lining up to donate blood was powerful and that's what this is all about in this country. but they said that gay men or women had to be celibate for a year. are they going to revisit that policy? >> this is a decision that was made by the fda. it was made consistent with the advice that our scientists have offered about the best way to
ensure the safety of the blood supply. you do know, and i think you touched on this that there was a policy decision that was made to change what had been a lifetime ban on gay men donating blood to a one-year deferral that you described. there has been a policy change, again that was a policy change that was made consistent with the advice of our best scientists and public health professionals but the president believes that when it comes to these kinds of questions that we will rely on scientific advice. >> is there an opportunity for a pro to change or will that have to happen during another administration? >> if there are additional changes that are made it'll be rooted in the advice that we are getting from the scientists at the fda.
>> when did the president expand his remarks? it appeared to be two separate speeches in a way and when he decided to do that, did he go to the treasury department, did the white house arrange that on camera availability with that in mind, that message? >> no, this meeting, the president convened with his national security team to get an update on progress against isil. it's one that has been on the books for a couple weeks now. every two or three weeks the president sits down with his national security team to review our strategy in our progress and look for ways to intensify those elements of our strategy that are showing promise against isil
this is a previously scheduled meeting but obviously it occurred at a rather poignant moment, just about 48 hours after the worst incident, the worst mass shooting incident on american soil in our history. there are indications that the individual who perpetrated that shooting was radicalized. so it is not uncommon for the president to speak to all of you on camera after that meeting occurs, but yes those comments were different given the context that they were delivered. i know the president spent some time working on his remarks last night and this morning. this is something the president has really been thinking about. >> paul ryan earlier today said i do not think a muslim ban in
the country is in the best interest. there are others that have said the same. does the presidency a difference between a republican republican who says they will vote for donald trump but oppose this, this type of proposals coming out of the campaign. >> i think it's an interesting question but it's much more interesting for the individuals who do have concerns about imposing religious tests on people entering the united states and supporting a candidate that supports that band. i think that's a very difficult pair of positions that they will need to figure out how to reconcile. >> will he bring this up when he speaks with his regular conversations on the republican side? >> i don't know if they will take up this particular issue or the challenge of reconciling these two has come up in his
private conversations with individual congressional leaders. >> you mentioned earlier that you want congress to pass and confirm so we can win this war. the administration is operating under a very old, it was designed in a way under an acting capacity. is he going to change things tomorrow drastically? there's no denying that despite the fact that congress has been a wall when it comes to these critically important issues related to our war against isil that our men and women in uniform continue to perform their duties and do their job against isil, even when congress won't. the individuals in his office
continue to do their job to figure out how to shut down isil financing even though congress won't do their job and actually confirm him. >> wouldn't be dramatically easier for any of those parties to do their job. >> our men and women in uniform would appreciate knowing that the united states congress supports their efforts on battlefield. i visit our allies and they would appreciate seeing congress way and with their support of our strategy to defeat isil. i know that when adam zubin is doing meetings with his counterparts around the world it could only enhance his negotiating position and enhances leveraging conversation if the individuals that are sitting across the table know that adam has the strong bipartisan support of the congress. the only reason he doesn't have that now, the only reason he can't take the strongest possible negotiating position to defeat isil is because a bunch of republicans in the senate are
playing politics. it's shameful. it intensely disrespects the government service of a financial as bert expert. it's rather unfortunate the way that he has been treated. i hope that it doesn't dissuade other dedicated qualified individuals like him from serving the american people in our government. i hope it won't. >> two topics, california lawmakers have plans to extend the healthcare changes and i'm hoping that the president, from
round 2009 - 2010 is this something that the white house. [inaudible] >> this is a state policy. i'm not aware of the policy decision they made so i defer you to my counterpart governor brown's office for why they have chosen to pursue it. [inaudible] >> it is different than the policy than the federal government has pursued. that fact is true, but again as a variety of republican governors have not hesitated to demonstrate, they are, in many cases willing to use their own authority as they choose.
>> as far as gun control goes, has ever been any national security studies or reports that have said gun control would be an effective counterterrorism measure? >> the director of homeland security said it today so i think that's a pretty good endorsement. i think it's also ironic that you asked this question, fred, because as because as you know republicans have routinely prevented the cec from conducting any studies about the impact of gun violence. so to answer your question is something that republicans are scared to learn regarding the possible ban on automatic rifles , would any of these measures prevented the shooting in orlando?
>> investigation into orlando is barely 48 hours old so it's too early to know what could've been done differently or what different laws or regulations would have prevented this terrible tragic terrace incident from occurring, but the truth is , homeland security made a pretty intuitive argument. he has a lot of expertise in this area but there's also a lot of common sense that informs his position. if any individual can walk into a gun store buy a weapon of war and walk out that same day that certainly enhances the ability of the would-be terrorist to kill even more innocent americans. why wouldn't we prevent that from happening?
i don't know why republicans want to prevent that from happening. >> you and the president have been talking a lot about the importance of not having a litmus test and yet there's been a great debate about the mandates and religious liberties. there is no timetable that has been set to and that. [inaudible] what's the holdup. >> i don't have an update but we are trying to arrive at a compromise as we have been doing for years. i don't have information but you wanted check on the doj to see
where that stands. >> they are taking videos of planned parenthood employee talking about selling fetal parts. is this a good time to look at what planned parenthood does? >> this is honestly something that has cracked up a fair amount over the last year. what the obama administration has made clear are couple of things. planned parenthood is an organization that provides needed healthcare services and it's a needed service that many rely on. they've made clear that there are important rules and laws consistent with our moral
obligations that are on the books and we expect to follow them. planned parenthood has indicated that they do follow them. >> do they ever slam those down on the desk and i've had enough of donald trump's criticism and i have to answer back. was there a straw that broke the camels back? >> no, not that i'm aware of. i thing the president does continue to be concerned by the rhetoric that we here from a variety of republicans including the present presumptive republican nominee that isn't just contrary to our values, it actually undermines her homeland security and as someone who sworn oath to protect our values
after spending the last 48 hours when they've been briefed, the conditions came together for the first time for them to deliver a forceful and tactful message about what's necessary to protect the country and political rhetoric and magic words aren't the threat. if anything, ironically they could make that threat because it serves to advance the threat that our enemy is seeking to perpetuate. >> considering the mood that the president reflected earlier today,.
[inaudible] [laughter] >> i was gonna say there ever ever a bad night for barbecue? did you guys have a picnic set aside for staff? the vice president mention that in his speech. >> what typically happens when they're set up to host members of congress, usually the day before or day after it ministration officials will enjoy picnic to thank them for their service to the country and the government in the same way that we are thinking members of congress and their staff for their commitment to serving the government. there was an event last night much like the one that one. >> i think rsvps are collected everywhere i can't collect all
>> tonight, the house oversight committee looks into allegations of sexual misconduct at the national park service, senate leaders comment on the shooting at an orlando nightclub. and how presidents use power in conducting the war on terror. an inspector general's alleged sexual misconduct by national park service workers at the canaveral shores. jonathan jarvis addressed the allegations and discussed ef