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tv   Public Affairs  CSPAN  December 20, 2012 10:00am-1:00pm EST

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>> let us pray. gracious god, sovereign lord of history, thank you for the exemplary impact of senator daniel ken inouye on our national history. lord, we are grateful for the excellence that distinguished his significant career for the
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quiet grace and dignity with which he represented the aloha state. and for the gift of discernment that enabled him to serve you faithfully for the good of america. as we express gratitude for the laudable footprints he left in the sands of time, give us your power to persevere impromptly doing what is right. may the memory of senator inouye's indefatigable
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faithfulness provide a benchmark for the lives of all who labor for liberty. lord, intensify our dedication to make sacrifices for the good of our nation and world as we put our trust in you to do for us immeasurably, abundantly, above all that we can ask or imagine, according to your power working in and through us. we pray in your sovereign name.
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amen. >> senator dan inouye was a noble soul. one of the finest men i've ever met. united states senate and entire country are poorer for his loss. i'm honored to join senator inouye's family, people of hawaii, and all americans in paying final respects to an american patriot and hero. senator ioway was one -- inouye was one of the deluxe senators to ever walk the hallowed halls of this great building. he leaves behind a legacy of
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public leadership and private kindness that will not be forgotten as long as these walls stand, as long as histories are written. it's fitting he should lie in state beneath the enduring symbol of our democracy, the dome of the capitol. and it's proper he should rest upon the lincoln platform upon which abram ham lincoln, president john f. kennedy, rosa parks, and 26 more of this nation's luminaries have lane in state. -- layne in state. dan inouye was an institution and deserves to spend at least another day in this beautiful building in which he dedicated his life. as the second longest serving senator in our history, dan inouye represented our 50th state from the first day it was admitted to the union. but senator inouye's tradition
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of service began long before he came to the united states senate . he was just a boy when he heard the war planes over oahu, saw the bombs drop on pearl harbor, and ran to give aid to the wounded. he was still a teen when he volunteered to serve this nation overseas even though his people have been declared enemy aliens. and i'm reminded looking at secretary norm mineta here who served in one of those internment camps. senator inouye became a member of the famed 442nd reg mental combat team, the most highly decorated unit in the history of the united states military. that says it all. after being gravely wounded in italy, senator inouye's arm was amputated. he spent 21 months recuperating from his wounds in an army hospital in michigan. there he met a lifetime friend,
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future majority leader bob dole, another young g.i. who had been also wounded in the european theater. senator dole told senator inouye he planned to go to law school and eventually serve in congress. dan inouye was elected to congress in 1959 as hawaii's first congressman. bob dole was elected to congress a year later. senator inouye always joked, i went with the dole plan and i beat him. three years later, dan inouye was elected to the senate and he's been a soft and powerful voice for the people of hawaii ever since. although senator inouye was an unabashed progressive democrat, he always put his country first and his party second. dan was a vibrant and vital presence in the senate and in death he'll remain a legend. his last words on earth, aloha.
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and it is with a heavy heart that i and we bid aloha, goodbye, i love you to a friend and legend of the senate, daniel ken inouye. >> good morning. on behalf of the united states house of representatives, i extend sincere condo lenses to senator inouye's -- condoences to senator inouye's family, colleagues, and constituents. in late 1963 a young freshman senator stood under this splendid dome as we do now in vigil and prayer.
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years on daniel inouye could still recall how quiet this ever boisterous rotunda became when president kennedy's casket arrived. all i heard, he said, was the shuffling of feet. that day absorbed in his thoughts, the son of hawaii and veteran of 442nd couldn't have imagined he would spend another five decades passing through this hall. he couldn't have fathomed all the good that he would do here, helping to build a new state, gaining rights and benefits for veterans, supporting agriculture , speaking out against injustice, and becoming one of the most revered senators in our
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history. he couldn't have fathomed it, and unassuming as he was, he wouldn't have tried. dan inouye's first thoughts were always for the nation he loved, and the state that he served to his last breath. while this may be a quiet ceremony for a quiet man, it will endure long after the respects are paid. for when this rotunda returns to life and the tour guides give their pitch, they will always speak of daniel inouye, the gentleman from hawaii, and one of freedom's most gallant champions.
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>> i reason, jennifer, ken, i said to ken what my father would have said, look at ken, said kid, you got good blood. jessica. henry clay, thaddeus stevens, charles sumner, hubert humphrey, robert byrd, admiral dewy, general macarthur, 10 presidents, 31 in all lay in state, only 31. in the history of the united states of america. under this dome. this is an honor to state the obvious that very few americans, some truly great americans, never, ever received.
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and each and every american who has been granted the honor accorded to danny today, they have been granted it because they possessed a particular quality that we view as uniquely american. and it's thoroughly appropriate that our friend, danny, is granted this honor because he was in every sense the qui at the sention -- quintessential american. he possessed in my view every virtue that we like to ascribe to our country. the dawn of danny's life, the country was emerging from a great war, a war that left the rest of the world in ruins but placed america squarely in the senator -- center of the world
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leadership for the first time in history. getting on the horizon was the greatest economic depression this nation had faced or has faced since. his mother, his mother, the first of her generation in hawaii, his father, an imgray -- imigrae from japan, at a time there was a strong and real prejudice that existed in america. a man who came of age as the second great war burst upon the scene and that very prejudice against japanese americans reached a crescendo. december 7, 1942, as majority leader's alluded to, on the way to mass, on the way to church with your grandfather, listening to the radio about the bombing that was taking place at pearl
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harbor, at first as danny told the story, over several times, at least i heard it, he thought it was ans oron -- orson wells thing. they looked on the horizon and could see, could see pearl harbor. the bombs bursting. he was then labeled an enemy alien. he was labeled an enemy alien, as his family was. because of his japanese ancestry . but he fought, he fought for the chance to fight for his country. he had to fight for the chance to fight for his country. not just to prove that he was a loyal american, but because,
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because he knew, he knew what was at stake, because it was the right thing to do. my mom, as i was telling my colleagues and before we came out used to have an expression, she would say, joey, you're defined by your courage and you're redeemed by your loyalty. you're defined by your courage and redeemed by your loyalty. in the 40 years that i have served here and where i still in the senate serving out that term i would be senate pro tem, i would be the most senior person in the senate, which is a frightening thought to think i'm that old. but i never met a man or woman in that period with as much physical and moral courage as
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danny inouye. i never met a man with as much loyalty to his country, to his family, and to his friends. some who served with him a long time will remember he was one of the few people that would stand on the floor to defend a colleague who was under siege, without ever considering the political consequences to him back home. he always just did the right thing. he always had the moral courage to do the right thing. he had a compass that always directed him to his true north and resolved to do truly extraordinary things. things that few women or men ever contemplate and able to
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consider doing. we all know that on april 21, 1945, and i had the privilege of being with him when the 50th anniversary of d-day we stopped, we went and was with bob dole as well. he and bob dole on a mountaintop, you go up literally as the crow flies, i think it was only about two miles from one another, on the same time, same day, both mortally wounded fighting for their country. just above the bridges of tuscany, but because of danny's sense of honor, that's the only thing i can ascribe it to when you hear the story, when you look at the record, his loyalty first and foremost to his platoon, to the men he had sworn that he would protect. he would do everything in his power to protect them.
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this is a man who kept fighting on that ridge even after his arm was severed. prying a grenade from the hand of a severed arm, prying it out of that hand and charging the next machine gun northwest. -- nest, taking it out in the process, saving his men. a man who was awarded the medal of honor for his incredible bravery, but he didn't do it because he was brave. he did it because he was loyal, he did it because of his sense of duty t he did it because this was his country. robert endersol could have been
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talking about danny when he said when will defies fear, when duty throws the gauntlet down to fate , when honor scorns to compromise with death, that is heroism. danny inouye in every sense of the word was a hero. if that's all he had done for his country, he would have contributed more than 99.9% of all americans have contributed to their country, but his fight for his platoon, his fight for his fellow hawaiians, his fight for his country didn't stop. after 21 months in that hospital being rehabilitated, with two other men he came to know and love who had incredible character and courage as well,
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one has already been mentioned, bob dole, we all know and those who served with him love, and phil hart, one of the finest, most decent men i have ever had the privilege of knowing. i had a great opportunity being elected here as a young kid. there were still giants, still giants, and there's still giants here. giants in the senate. imagine the three of them spent 21 months together during the bulk of that time in rehabilitation. danny went home and joined the movement for statehood. he returned to his beloved hawaii with a heart as full as when he left, which is the amazing thing to me. when hawaii was admitted to the union in 1959, his first representative, as you-all know, was danny inouye. from the very outset his
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colleagues knew this was a special man. danny earned almost immediately what every one of us who ever served in either of these great houses long for, the uncompromising respect and admiration of every one of our colleagues. no one, no one in the 40 years i served with danny ever, ever, ever, ever, ever once doubted he would do what he said. never once doubted his word. never once wondered whether or not he would keep whatever commitment he made. that, that is the most valuable capital any man or woman who has ever served in this place can possess.
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he had it from the outset. no one, as i said, was alive can state that danny inouye ever said something to me that he did not do. that's why he was so successful. no one ever doubted danny's motives. we all spent too much time in both these chambers doubting the other man's motive. you can doubt their judgment but you shouldn't doubt their motive. but no one ever doubted his motives. the love of the people of hawaii had for him extended across the pacific, across the continent into these halls for danny. people not only listened to, respected, and liked danny, almost all of us who got to know him loved danny.
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how many of our colleagues can you say that about? you can turn and say i mean it, i loved this man. i loved this woman. for all danny had come through, from the stinger prejudice to his physical injuries to the depravations he suffered to the losses he had, he would have been forgiven by all who knew him if he had an edge to him. if there was a continuing of bitterness, a touch of cynicism in his heart. he would have been forgiven for that. but the amazing thing to me was, there was none. there was none. i didn't know him his whole life, but i never once saw him even imply, why me? why me?
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danny had the most fulsome embrace of life with one arm that any man or woman could have with two. if you forgive, as you say in the senate, point of personal privilege, he came to campaign for me when i was a 29-year-old kid campaigning for senate. he came to delaware and spoke on the eve of the election and i'll never forget my mom saying, joey, i like that man. i said why, mom? she said, he likes you. i said, how do you know that, mom? she said, joey -- my mother used to have an expression. highest compliment she could give you. she said he has a sixth sense. we all have five senses. very few people have that sixth sense. that intuitive notion, the
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ability to look another man or woman in the eyes and understand them. to see them. to sense what they are thinking. when i lost my family shortly after that, before being sworn in, he was one of the first of my future colleagues at my side. he encouraged me to keep up, go down. awful hard to look at man with one arm who had been through all he had been through and he's telling you to keep up and you say, no, no, i can't do this. your dad did more for me than you'll ever know. when i decided to seek the nomination for president, which i don't advise any of you to do, i didn't have to ask. we have an expression in my family, if someone's really a true friend, the expression goes, if you have to ask, it's
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too late. i didn't have to ask. i got a knock on my door, danny telling me, he would like to be my national campaign chairman. that was the only time any of you started to question his judgment. when i left the race he stood by me when he was hospitalized for a long time at walter reed. he was with me. he supported me. but he did for me what i guess he may have done for a lot of you, because you never know the good deeds another man like danny has done except to speak to him personally. what danny did for me, danny gave me confidence. danny inouye believed in me, i must be worthy of something. i know that sounds strange, but i literally mean it.
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i bet you-all have had a similar experience in your life. someone who you looked at and you knew was a better man or woman than you. you knew it. and they had confidence in you. i think the highest compliment a parent can give another man or woman is to look at their daughters and say, or their son and say, i hope you grow up to be like that man or that woman. there's a lot of great men and women i have had the pleasure of meeting, but all of us, all of them, had some aspect of their personality like i have and everyone else does, it's not particularly admirable, but there wasn't one single attribute of danny's character that i didn't want my sons to
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possess. not one. there's never been another man but my father who i have thought about in terms of my sons and danny. maybe that's why when he passed away the first calls i got from my sons, beau in delaware, and my son hunter was overseas, they had heard before i did. they knew your dad. they knew your husband. what mattered most to them is, they knew he knew them. matter of fact, it mattered so much to my grown son, hunter, when he did his senior paper at georgetown university, he went to danny and asked whether he could do it about the 442nd and would danny help him.
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i don't know how many times i have heard my son tell the stories to his friends about how he sat for several hours with danny hearing firsthand about the 442nd. you know, when you think of danny what struck my family, at least, both not just his physical encourage, eternal optimism, his embrace of life, his trammeled belief in the dignity of every human being. danny is known for all the great things he's done, the physical courage he's shown, what he's done with the veterans. but what drew me to danny was the speech he made in 1968 at the democratic convention about
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civil rights. about human rights. just as my son wrote about danny , future generations will write about danny inouye. they'll learn of his physical fetes, but maybe the most important -- feats, but maybe the most important lesson of all they'll learn is dedication to country, engagement in public life, engagement in politics, being a member of congress, can and should be the most honorable profession of all. danny made me proud to be a senator.
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>> let us pray. o lord our god, we have been taught by the master that no greater love exists than that one lay down one's life for
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another. as we leave this place today, may we never forget this man of gentle, quiet strength who as a young man nearly, literally answered his master's call. for half a century senator inouye did lay down his life day after day serving those who looked to him to see to their security of their lives, liberties, and pursuits of happiness. all of this, thousands of miles from home. may we all be such good and faithful servants. bless us all, but bless especially his family who mourn the loss of so great a man,
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senator daniel k. inouye, amen.
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>> senator daniel inouye will lie in state all day today. the public viewing will begin at 11:30 eastern and will lie in state in the capitol rotunda until 8:00 p.m. this eastern.
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we will have coverage. you can follow that online at the public funeral takes place in washington at the national cathedral beginning at 10:30 eastern. senator inouye will return home to hawaii on saturday. he died monday at the age of 88. the will gavel in at 12:00 today. addressing the pending tax hikes and budget cuts of the so-called fiscal cliff. they will vote on speaker boehner's plan b which would raise tax rates for incomes above $1 million. they'll also vote on a bill that would replace the sequester budget cuts scheduled
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to take place on january 1, and also a vote on the defense authorization conference report. we'll have live coverage of the house beginning at noon here on c-span. and throughout the day. we'll take you live just outside the u.s. house live to hear from majority leader eric cantor who's going to be talking about the plan for the day and the votes ahead. should get under way momentarily. live coverage here on c-span. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012]
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>> here on c-span we're waiting to hear from majority leader eric cantor. they're going to take up the legislation, the plan b, as proposed by speaker boehner on the fiscal cliff. those pending tax hikes and budget cuts set to take place on january 1. they're going to do it in two
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stages. they'll vote on two specific items. plan b, raising taxes on incomes over $1 million a year. and replacing the sequester budget cuts by takes effect in less than two weeks. about that second vote, c.q. writes that the sequester bill is based on a package of cuts the house passed in may that would replace the automatic discretionary spending cuts with -- for fiscal 2013 with $19 billion in reduction in the overall year savings for mandatory programs. so the two votes on -- in particular, on the fiscal cliff, that are coming up today in the house. but it will be a long day of debate. that gets under way at about noon. we'll have it live here on c-span. smoo
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>> good morning. today i am proud to sponsor the spending reduction act, which replaces the sequester in the first year with responsible cuts that protect our national security and adds an approximate $200 billion in additional savings for deficit reduction. now, the bill is designed to stop fraud, to eliminate waste,
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and frankly to replace the sequester that is indiscriminate in its cuts. again, aimed at trying to promote national security, but also to drive towards the underlying issue that faces this country, which is the mounting deficit and load of debt that we're going to leave this generation and the next. we are committed in the house, as you know, to address the underlying problem, which is the spending, and that's why we're bringing this bill forward. together with our vote today to extend permanent tax relief in the middle class -- for the middle class and small businesses, we, house republicans, have taken concrete actions to avoid the fiscal cliff. absent a balanced offer from the president, this is our nation's best option, and senate democrats should take up both these measures immediately. and the president has a decision to make.
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he can support these measures or be responsible for reckless spending and the largest tax hike in american history. i'll take some questions. >> mr. leader -- >> do you think you have the votes to pass it? >> yes, we're being to have the votes to pass both the tax -- permanent tax relief bill as well as the spending reduction account. >> after that, are you worried by having your members vote on this $1 million cutoff, you are binding them to that and making it more difficult to negotiate with the president? >> our members understand that the nation faces the largest tax increase in its history come january 1, 2013. this bill is a bill that provides permanent tax relief for taxpayers earning $1 million and under. we protect 99.81% of american taxpayers from a tax increase in these very difficult economic times. we hope that the senate will take this bill up, along with the spending reduction act, and get the job done in lieu of or
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absent any kind of agreement coming from the white house. we are again taking concrete actions to avoid the fiscal cliff. >> mr. leader, i know this bill presented last night mirrors a piece of legislation that was on the floor earlier in the year. but why not that make -- why was that not made part of the plan b since there was a crew from yir conference that the initial part of plan b did not deal with the sequester and this was a rushed fashion last night? >> listen, our members and our conference have consistently been focused on addressing the spending problem. as you know, last year we had focused primarily on trying to address the unfunded liabilities of this federal government. we're committed to actually fixing the problem here so we can go about a growing economy. we also realize that the president's unwillingness or
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inability to come to a balanced agreement with our speaker presents us with very little option other than to try and work hard to avoid a tax hike on so many millions of americans. that's why we were pushing forward and are on the permanent tax relief bill in plan b. but we also know very well that revenues are not the issue here. it is spending. you know, you look at the size of these bills, even the size of the bills being discussed at the white house. this is just the beginning and a down payment for what i hope will be fruitful bipartisan discussions next congress trying to address the spending problem. >> when will they come back after christmas? >> we do not intend to spend -- send members home after it this vote. we want to stay here. we want to avoid the fiscal cliff from happening. again, i think that the decision is for the white house and the senate democrats to
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come join us so we can avoid the tax hike on american people and avoid the fiscal cliff. >> [inaudible] how hard is it going to be to get the support for a broader bill? >> well, again, deidre, it's up to the senate and the white house. i think we want to see a balanced approach to address in a real way the issues that are facing this country. but to date this president has not come forward with that balanced approach, and we remain ready. i know the speaker has indicated to the president and the white house almost daily that he would like to see a broader, more balanced approach coming from the white house. in lieu of that, we're proceeding with plan b which is the permanent tax relief bill, coupled with the spending reduction act. thank you.
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>> just a program update -- democratic leader pelosi will have a briefing of her own this afternoon. 3:45 eastern. we will have that for you for sure online at meanwhile here on c-span, it will be a full afternoon of house coverage beginning at noon. they will take up -- first, they will take up the rule for the defense authorization conference report. they'll be debating that. they'll also take up the plan b, speaker boehner's plan b on the fiscal cliff, raising taxes for those of incomes above $1 million. they'll also take up the sequester replacement bill. leader cantor saying there he thinks they have the votes for both of those bills. and then the rules committee last night, democrats did not vote on either rule, either on the plan b or on the sequester bill. live coverage of the house when they gavel back in at noon eastern here on c-span. one of the republican members who has expressed some opposition to plan b and did so yesterday is tim huelskamp of
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kansas. he was our guest here this morning on "washington journal." host: joining us is representative tim huelskamp, a republican of kansas, just re-elected to serve in his western kansas district. representative huelskamp, newtown and potential to gun laws before we move into some of the fiscal issues. what's your take on the current mood in the country and the potential mood in congress on changing the gun laws? guest: well, peter, it's a tragic situation and i have four children, 17 and under, including a 6-year-old. so it's pretty close to home. the new mood i see in congress is hopefully we don't move with too much haste and do things that we might regret. we haven't seen any proposals, and so i've just been hopeful we let folks mourn and look at that. i don't support any changes. i think it's an individual
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problem. we had a -- there's some mental illness related issues tied in here that are separate. i do obviously impact -- it does obviously impact the situation. most of my constituents -- actually, i don't think i had anyone call in to my office and say, hey, we'd like to change federal gun laws because what's occurred. host: are you a gun owner? guest: i am a farm kid. i am a gun owner. i have an 11-year-old and a 6-year-old son and we went out hunting during pheasant season so we're familiar with that. it's very important that parents train their children in the use and to respect and also understand the use of guns if you're going to have them in the home. host: representative huelskamp, the so-called plan b vote when the house comes in at noon. what's your take? guest: it seems plan b has become plan c or d or however
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you look at it. it was severely amended last night in the house rules committee. i have not seen the final details. but it was replaced in there a sequester replacement act. here's the issue that bothers me most in the bill. it's clearly a tax increase. but over the weekend speaker john boehner offered this tax increase to the president as part of his offer. it was not approved or even discussed in the republican conference prior to that offer to the president. that's a $1 trillion tack increase. this is affirming that position. frankly i think it's economically foolish thing to do. with this tax increase in the bill it will raise taxes on 41% of all small business income. it doesn't create jobs. it's going to cost jobs and here we are in both parties talk about how can we get the economy going again, how can we great jobs? we want entrepreneurs to succeed. what this would do is punish
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small business men and women who are the backbone of this economy. host: grover norquist came out in favor of plan b? guest: he said it was not in violation of the tax pledge. two years ago and 10 years ago. i understand that. host: does that give cover to conservatives? guest: for me, i actually do know grover and i'll admit publicly i consider him a friend. i made a pledge to 700,000 kansans, nobody here in washington, i don't want to raise their taxes. with this increase in taxes, small businesses, which are the core of my constituencies and small businesses, one, two, four, maybe five, maybe 25 employees, it's going to really hit hard with the tax increases that are proposed in this bill. host: and speaker boehner's fiscal cliff plan b, according to this source by "the new york times," but it's everywhere --
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host: representative huelskamp, for close watchers of congress, they understand that you've had a little bit of a kurfuffle with speaker boehner. what is your current relationship with speaker boehner? guest: for folks that are unaware, i was removed from two committees and three of my colleagues were stripped of their preferred committees as well. i don't believe any of us received any advanced notice. it's big boy politics up here. but recognize i think for most americans it looks petty, it looks vindictive because it was based on the way we voted. there was a secret scorecard, peter, that was involved. the steering committee of about 30 republicans went into a closed door meeting, gave no notice to me. they didn't tell me what committees i'm going to be on
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neck year. for a few weeks, committeeless is not necessarily a bad thing, peter. i -- in this case i'm a fifth generation farmer. someone has been on the ag committee for 101 years from kansas and have the speaker and other g.o.p. leaders punish me for my conservative votes and punish my constituents is what my constituents are very upset about this. host: well, the speaker has said, as has been made clear, there is no scorecard or any other single criteria used to determine committee assignments. the steering committee, which he heads, is a deliberative body that reviews all appropriate information. and then just to build on that, i'm sure you saw this article in "politico" yesterday. it's not got a very nice headline. "the a-hole factor," jonathan allen said you and others were
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difficult to work with and that's why you were taken off. guest: lynn westmoreland, a colleague of mine, it's embarrassing. i have an 11-year-old, 6-year-old and a 17-year-old. this is language we are not allowed to use in the home. those not only go behind closed doors of but engage in name calling. we have serious problems facing our country. but to punish folks who are willing to speak up. i am a conservative. i am following through on that. i don't think it's time for members of congress to sit on hair hands, close their mouths and be told what to do. frankly, people in both parties have created problem, not just in the last two years. it's not president obama's fault alone. it's many, many politicians of both parties. it's time for americans to have a say over there. they go up and voice their opinions. if folks are worried had a someone speaks up too much, say, welcome to the reality.
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the american people are upset. 16.3 trillion dollar debt. as far as the issue of a scorecard, if you look very closely at the washington speaker's statement, there was a scorecard. they admitted that in conference. and in conference with 200 of my fellow republican colleagues, they said, please present the scorecard, it was dead silence. they're not going to do that. if you're conservative and voted your conservative principles, which is fine. i thought that was the way republicans generally leaned, you were graded down on that scorecard. i have been a very active member on both the budget and the ag committee. fifth generation farmer and you have the speaker and other leaders kicking folks off the committee, that looks pretty silly. have a ph.d. in ag policy. i think that matches up on the ag committee. but we'll see what happens. as things go through, you know, i'm not going to be silenced. i am not going to be
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intimidated. i did a poll of my constituents , 88% to 90% said keep doing what you're doing, tim. that's what we sent you to washington. not to work for the speaker or the president, majority leader. you're to work for kansans. i take that oath very seriously. it's a long ways from here. we discussed off the air, it's not an easy trek up here. i go home every weekend. this job is not for fun. it's for serious. we need to address big problems that's facing this country that will impact my children. host: if a compromise between the president and the congress and the senate and the house doesn't occur on january 1, are you ready to go over the so-called fiscal cliff? guest: if that's what happens in this town, we'll have to face that. i find silly the question, who's going to get blamed? it's who's going to get punished for bad policy.
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but this current fiscal cliff was created by a series of bad deals starting two years ago on the august, 2011, debt deal, that's what created. this squegser was created by the president and the majority leader and speaker of the house. i claim no credit for that deal. we're trying to work through that. my goal is to prevent the massive tax increase that will harm and economy. host: tim huelskamp is our guest, representative from kansas. republican line, hi, charles. caller: good morning. i have a comment on both things. first off, on the fiscal cliff, obama keeps this class warfare going with his 98% and 2%. and what i'd like to say is the 2% probably used fewer of the
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government service than anybody else whereas the 98%, probably 90% used most of the government services. so my question on that subject is, why should the 2% who don't use the service pay for the 95% who do? now on the arms control thing, i'd like to point out, both the n.r.a. and those opposed to the n.r.a. never bring up the point of the second amendment that when it was written there was no such thing as an automatic or even semi-automatic weapon. these were all blocks, for god's sake. the law has to be brought up to date. so i'd like to hear your answer to both of those problems. i'll take it off the air. thank you. guest: charles, i appreciate those questions and certainly our guns and weapons of choice have changed throughout the
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years and our laws have changed as well. it's my understanding the state of connecticut had the type of gun laws that have been proposed and they didn't work. at the end of the day it's an individual person, it's a people problem. and changing laws doesn't necessarily change hearts. it is a cultural problem as well. that's why i don't think we need to change these laws but we need to look at an issue of society where violence has become acceptable in many avenues and simply need to turn on the television many nights to see that. the first question was about the top 2% and class warfare and what is going on. but clearly 70% of americans take more from washington than they give. here we are as republicans upsets me that with the vote today and with the offer of speaker john boehner we've given into what the president has agreed. we have to go after the so-called rich. but as i indicated earlier, 41% of small business income is
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going to be taxed at a higher rate. and so this is just not the warren buffetts of the world. this is actually entrepreneurs that are actually paying income taxes on -- it stays in their business. and we estimate 200,000 to 700,000 jobs could be lost by these tax increases. that doesn't help anyone. we don't need to lose them through high taxation. host: beverly, democrat. caller: merry christmas, peter. host: merry christmas, beverly. caller: it's been a long time since i've been able to get in. host: good to hear from you. caller: i have an analogy and then a question. and my question is on the adjustment to the seniors' cost of living, it's going to be down.
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and my question is, does federal employees end the poll -- politicians get a cost of living. yet, those are always higher than the old people. and why is it -- i'm sure it will take this gentleman 10 minutes to answer that. but that's the question. my analogy is the charlie brown , president obama, the fiscal cliff, football, is always being yavepingd out from him from the nancy republicans in both the house and the senate. and isn't it time to let the football, the american people, get a little -- get a touchdown? let's have a touchdown. where is the job bill? you keep talking about jobs. where are -- i haven't heard --
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i watch the news all the time, and i haven't heard republicans prevent any jobs bill. host: and beverly, we got a lot on the table there. we'll get an answer from representative huelskamp. beverly is a -- guest: it's illegal to say merry christmas in congress. i will take that -- the football that lucy holds is usually spending cuts. i'm afraid we are going to take a swing at this fiscal cliff and the football sitting there and we're not going to make any spending cuts. we have a spending problem in washington, d.c., not rieff knew problem. republican today are going to be -- we are never going to get our deficit under control. and we're going to never get
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our debt under control. and that's clearly the facts of the matter. again, you're right on jobs. why we're not talking about jobs. what i believe and what most americans believe is it's not washington that creates job. they actually get in the way. small business men and women who are being harmed by these tax increases are the ones that create most of the jobs in a growing economy. host: this tweet for you, congressman. guest: i think every candidate running for office said i am not going to washington to get along. i am going to stand up for principles. that is to me and to most of my constituents what's wrong with washington. we didn't come up here to vote as a block. i didn't come up here to vote as a republican. i have my principles. sometimes republicans don't stand for those and oftentimes democrats do not. if enough members of congress
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say, hey, we're going to solve this problem, and we can work together, but we need to throw oftentimes our previous partisan leanings out the window and our insider leanings and say, hey, what are we going to do to get this job done. i think everybody can agree in washington, we fail at solving these problems. we have a $16.3 trillion debt. we've already overspent $292 billion in the first two months of the fiscal year. and here we are kicking people off committees who actually bring that to the attention of, whether it's our leadership or the president of the united states. host: so that rule does exist in congress, go along, get along? guest: i think it does. if you'd like to be on the right committees and go on the right overseas trips and those kinds of things. you look at our founders. you know, one thing, you walk up those steps and they're worn out from thousands and thousands of members of congress.
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the only people i care about is the first people in the district of kansas. we want to you solve these problems and quit putting them off until the future. host: cindy, forney, texas, independent. caller: my husband's pay has been cut. also his hours. and, you know, y'all say that raising the taxes up on the rich is not going to amount to anything, but you know with us we don't go to the movies any more. we rent movies from the redbox, $1 movies. and we sit at home and watch them. we limit ourself to hamburger helper. i have medical costs that i can't even meet my deductible. i need surgery. but y'all gets yalls free insurance. y'all don't care about the middle class any more. and when i see y'all bickering like little kids up there and not thinking about us any more,
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it upsets me. it really does. and i would like to see y'all live like we have to. we have to do without. and the rich is not. and that's what i need to say. i don't think y'all need y'all's free insurance. i really don't. and i think y'all need to start cutting like we have to. host: all right, cindy, thank you. guest: cindy, i appreciate your comments. i'm sorry for that situation. and i'll tell you, i think many folks in washington, d.c. have never been through the situations you talk about. and what do we do about them? we can sit up here in washington, d.c. and act like we're helping you, cindy, by creating new programs, by spending more money. but at the end of the day this nation is bankrupt and broke. what we need and i think republicans and democrats will start talking about is we need to create growth and opportunity. we need to make certain that your husband has more hours at work rather than less.
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what washington, d.c. does best is spend money and they borrow money and they're not going to pay it back. and what we need to do is create that opportunity and what i'm afraid of these faxes on the rich which sounds really -- taxes on the rich which sounds really good. i define rich is anybody who makes more than i do. at the end of the day it's small business men and women who are creating the jobs generally that your husband will be looking for. but what hurts me the most is the fact when we make bad policies in washington, d.c., people lose their jobs. in an average economic recovery, we would have about 10 million more jobs out there for american families and so washington has failed. i think it's because we're trying to manage everything from a big government approach, cindy. keep struggling -- i'm going to keep pushing forward. members of congress don't get free health care. they get plenty of subsidies as well and that's unfair. host: bill king tweets in.
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guest: the membership of the caucus is fairly small. of course democrats are a minority in congress as well. they push their philosophy as well. but you know, we call that a representive republican in congress. it's my job not to work for any particular party or any member of congress. there are 700,000 kansans. last year i had 140 in-person town halls and what they told me is the same message every time. balance that budget, reduce spending, roll back regulation and get out of our way. kansans might be different than the rest of americans but they're tired of washington, tired of what's going on and they recognize, they think they can do a better job with their lives than washington could ever do. host: about 15 minutes left with our guest. representative tim huelskamp of kansas.
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amanda in tennessee. republican line. go ahead. caller: hi. how are you doing? please go ahead. i just wanted to talk about the fiscal cliff. ok. if there is such a verbiage as more positive verbiage coming across the media would be a wonderful thing to hear about this time right now. we all started out having to hear every day about the fiscal cliff and of course that in itself sounds horrible. i mean, how many times have i heard fiscal cliff come across my flat screen? i couldn't count the amount of times. and we have the shooting and everybody is jumping on the bandwagon and rightfully so. don't get me wrong. but it's just one thing after another.
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and it's just not good atmosphere for -- not a good positive atmosphere for any of us americans to have to put up with. guest: amanda, i agree. i agree. there's a real downspirit across america with this massive debt and insanely out-of-control government and these type of violent shootings going on. i'm a believer. we need to pray for the future of our country and our leaders. you look back, there have been other times where americans pull together and say, how can i improve our country? most improvements don't come out of washington, d.c. it's locally. it's with your church and community. that's what i encourage folks. there is a limit washington, d.c. can do. they can do a lot of bad. if nothing changes we would have the single biggest tax increase in american history and they've known this two years and here we are the last two weeks of the year and nothing good seems to be happening.
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host: skip, beloit, wisconsin. go ahead. caller: i paid insurance for 49 years and i only had two small surgeries and two children. so i don't think i'm asking the government for anything. then i had a c.e.o. that bought a $2.5 million summer house. they own 12 companies and paid $8 an hour and wonder why people are poor. if they didn't have to meet behind closed doors, have lob lobbyists and they don't know what they are voting. they probably have 100,000 laws and don't know what any of them are. i think the government has a lot to do with it. i think they can afford their insurance and afford to have their kids have an operation. so i'm tired of hearing behind closed doors, kick the can down the road. i just assume to go over the fiscal cliff. thank you very much and i like c-span. guest: i appreciate those comments. i hear that a lot as well.
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what are they doing behind closed doors? i think the american idealists and our system is you got to know how your member's voting. you see what they're doing in public. it seems to be the temptation far too often if they want a deal, they go behind those doors and shut those. both republicans and democrats both promised they -- the parent promised two years ago. they're meeting behind closed doors doing things i think should be in the open and more transparent. host: representative huelskamp, our guest was john yarmuth of kentucky and he said with regard to the fiscal cliff, the four largest employers in his district are very dependent on federal government moneys. humana, university of louisville were two that he mentioned by name. what about your district? how dependent are your farmers, your ranchers, whatever else
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might be out there on the federal government moneys? guest: and i don't have a lot of large employers. it's small business men and women and a lot of ag farm and ranch base and the federal government controls what they do. some on the income side and some on the regulatory side, that's the biggest impact. as i mentioned earlier, 70% of americans receive more from washington than they give. we've created a growing dependency, a growing entitlement state, our budget deficits i think show that. one thing he has opinion talked about is this sequester. it wouldn't have too much an impact. if we look at the sequester, it's budget cuts. and actually what we're being asked to vote on the floor today is undo budget cuts. when did republicans decide that budget cuts were a bad idea? they have become so in washington, d.c. these were budget cuts that were agreed to in august of 2011. we'll be voting on the house floor to undo those cuts that were agreed to. i think most americans look at
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that and say it's more of the same. they say they're going to cut the budget. they have not. it's being going on for decades. i come from kansas, abilene, as we talked about off the air, home of ike. when eisenhower was president was actually the last year, 1955, that washington actually cut its budget from year to year. that's the last time. every other year since then government has gotten bigger. frankly we're getting more government than we can afford to pay for. host: one of the things about the sequester is the estate tax will go up from the current levels. is $1 million ranch, a $1 million farm a big operation or is that a pretty standard from where you come from? guest: that's very small because of the high cost of land and inputs in agriculture. for farmers and ranchers that want to pass on their farm, pass on their ranch, a 55%
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death tax would go in effect at the end of the year with that $1 million exemption would be devastating. most farmers and ramplingers would be broken up. -- ranchers would be broken up. it's not 1970's or 1860's. this is very expensive. there's fought a great return on it either. to keep a farm and ranch together, i have a dad that's 75 and trying to pass that on to his sons and make sure there's enough farmland, if you're going to give 55% to the government, those of the ranches and farms that have been in families for generations will be broken up as a result. host: vicky tweets in to you, sir. why can't congress say merry christmas? this kind of information needs to stop. guest: absolutely. there is an office in the u.s. capitol that reviews every piece of mail we put out and approves that in advance and since 1970, i believe it is,
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members of congress in their official mail are not permitted to say merry christmas. i was joking a little bit to saying that individually. obviously they say you can't email merry christmas. they say you can't say happy holidays, peter. we put out, as a freshman, we send mail and at the end we say merry christmas. they came back and said you cannot say that. that's unethical. against the law. laws that we created in congress. and my constituents thinks that silly, that's stupid. i'll admit upfront, i went ahead and said it anyway. it's an ethics rule over at the house of representatives. you can't say merry christmas in your frank mail. host: next call from congressman huelskamp comes from richard in lake placid,, independent line. caller: representative huelskamp, it appears to me that leader boehner is going to sell us out again. he's going to agree to more taxes, more spending and no
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touch. actually to fix the economy is to cut taxes, cut spending, create an atmosphere where the small business can flourish, prosper, which is 90% of our growth coming from the small business sector. but it doesn't look like that's going to happen. one quick thing on gun control. how does the president and the white house protect his family and the white house from attack? it's with armed guards, secret agents. when his daughters were on vacation, talking about president obama, he sent 60 secret service agent with them armed. we should protect our family, our children, or loved ones and our possessions just like the bank protect our money. we should have appeasement in
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this nonviolence policy and those gun policies that they have in these areas, they are just targets for the crazy people who want to attack and kill the innocent. guest: richard, i appreciate that. especially with the impacts on small businesses and what might happen here. i share those fears that at the end of the day that washington, d.c., both parties, will stand up and say, hey, we have a big grand agreement that will probably likely raise taxes, will not reduce the deficit, will put off spending cuts to sometime in the future and will cost american jobs. we'll see what happens. on the issue of the second amendment and gun control, i'm a strong supporter and the right to conceal-carry. study after study has shown it reduces crime. so i'm going to continue to support those. again, i think the federal role didn't -- should not be changed. i don't think we need any new
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gun laws. what we need is a change in culture, change in society in which violence is not expected or not hyped up in hollywood. instead we respect the value of every individual life. host: woiled and wonderful stweets into you -- you guys haven't done a darned thing for true small businesses since i can't remember when. don't hide behind us to propagandi sdemrmbings ed. guest: what bothers me in this town is you seem like you have to have a lobbyist to get anything done. we have an entire tax code which was written by lobbyists over the years and it's usually small businesses don't have a part in that. and i'm not worried about mr. buffett getting his way. i'm not worried about them being treated fairly. it's the small business men and women. it's the american packaging in hutchinson, kansas. i see the owner at the end of the pew in church sunday.
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tony don't have a lobbyist up here except me. that is the way we grow the economy. and a growing economy, it's small businesses that creates jobs, not the warren buffetts of the world. host: there is a tweet. there must be something about you, congressman, if john boehner kicked you to the cubb. call comes from a republican line. caller: good morning. guest: good morning. caller: i actually do own a small business, and i agree there's not a lot been done for us. my business is -- it sickens me that we even have to consider borrowing money from china or anywhere else and we're worried about a a.a.a. credit rating. why should we even have that as an option? we're the richest country in the world, and we put food out everywhere. also, one brief note on the gun laws issue. they're not going to ban a particular type of car because
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it drove through a crowd. so i don't see how they can target any particular weapon and say it's worse than another. combat loading weapon, you can almost do that as fast as you can pull the trigger also. so it's not a matter of how many rounds you can shoot. it's a matter of an insane person getting a hold of anything -- a knife, a car, anything. so -- guest: keith, and the reality of using guns for whatever illegal purposes oftentimes gets lost into washington, d.c. and the politics. boy, we're going to have to do something. we are going to have a press release, a press conference. there is a second amendment. thankfully the supreme court has recognized it is an individual right and a narrow decision. the one thing i want to go back, small business that you mentioned, keith. what i hear from folks like yourself and others is the massive new regulations coming
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out. instead of helping, we're hindering folks. particularly on the provisions of obamacare and how that's impacting a growing, a -- sluggish economy going in the wrong direction, it's really causing us to lose jobs. but at the end of the day, you raise a great question about borrowing money. we're the greatest country in the world and we have to fund 41% of every dollar where he spend over here at the capitol based on borrowed money. at the end of the day we are going to find some folks aren't going to loan us that money. that's the biggest question. not the fiscal cliff but what's going to happen. early next year as a possible downgrade of our credit rating and that's repercussions that we might not recover from. >> "washington journal" is live every day at 7:00 a.m. eastern here on c-span. the u.s. house is about to gavel in. look at the senate side of the u.s. capitol and the flag at half staff in memory of the late senator daniel inouye who
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died monday at the age of 88. his body is lying in state in the capitol rotunda throughout the day today with a funeral planned for national -- washington's national cathedral tomorrow. you can watch the lying in state coverage on our website at the house coming in next taking up the pending tax hikes and budget cuts of the fiscal cliff. also, the defense authorization conference report. live coverage now on c-span. the speaker pro tempore: the choice will be in order. -- the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c., december 20, 2012. i hereby appoint the honorable robert j. dold to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the prayer today will be offered by our chaplain, father conroy. chaplain conroy: let us pray.
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loving and gracious god, we give you thanks for giving us another day. we ask today that you bless the members of the people's house, to be the best and most faithful servants of the people they serve. on this day, congress honors the life of senator daniel inouye who lies in state in the rotunda . he was the first to serve his state in this assembly. and he served his country for decades as a true patriot, soldier, legislator, statesman and gentleman. always thousands of miles from his own home. endow the members of this assembly with a measure of the courage, integrity and loyalty of such an exemplar of public service. and may all that is done this day and the people's house be
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for your greater honor and glory, amen. the speaker pro tempore: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces to the house his approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1, the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance today will be led by the gentlewoman from kansas, ms. jenkins. ms. jenkins: please join me in the pledge. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house a communication. the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of representatives, sir, permission in the permission granted in clause 2-h of rule 2 of the rules of the u.s. house of representatives, the clerk received the following message from the secretary of the
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senate on december 20, 2012, at 10:02 a.m. that the senate passed without amendment h.r. 3477, h.r. 3870, h.r. 3912, h.r. 5738, h.r. 5837, h.r. 585954, that the senate passed with an amendment, h.r. 4057, that the senate passed with an amendment h.r. 6029, that the senate passed senate 3630, senate 3662, senate 2318, senate 3202, senate 3698, appointment, u.s. united states-china economic review commission. signed sincerely, karen l. haas. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will he want taint up to 15 requests for one-minute speeches on each side of the aisle. for what purpose does the gentlelady from kansas seek recognition?
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ms. jenkins: to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. ms. jenkins: growing up on a kansas dairy farm, i know the estate tax is a threat to family farms. this tax makes bailing hay and shoveling manure sound like a get rich quick scheme when most family farms make an average of $45,000 a year. raising the estate tax to 55% and dropping the exemption to $1 million, might sound feasible to a hedge fund manager but it will jeopardize the future of farmers and their families, forcing many to sell their farms they worked for generations on. many farmers are land rich but cash for poor. the average land value for 65,000 kansas farms is $900,000. throw in a $300,000 combine, a $250,000 tractor and kansas farmers are suddenly millionaires, according to estate tax math.
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but this isn't wealth they can use to pay taxes. it's an asset. farmers provide us with a safe and dependable food supply. we cannot allow an estate tax to put them out of business. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? mr. kucinich: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio is recognized. mr. kucinich: will seniors be pushed off the fiscal cliff? social security did not cause the difficulties, but the white house's plan to lower kansas cost of living benefits could eventually reduce their annual benefits by hundreds of billions of dollars. it is the c.p.i. as cost of living goes up, seniors inevitably turn to cheaper alternatives. for example, if seniors eat steak, they can switch to something cheaper like cat food. and the cost of living calculation would change at a cheaper item -- cat food.
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the less you pay for food the less you get for benefits. the c.p.i. will chain aging seniors to a lower standard of living with cheaper products. the change c.p.i. formula does not take into account for seniors' higher health care costs. if it did benefits would go up. no to throwing seniors off the fiscal cliff. no to cat food christmas. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from ohio is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, just over 100 days ago, four americans were murdered in cold blood during coordinated terrorist attacks on the u.s. consulate in benghazi, libya. mr. johnson: these attacks were premeditated attacks on the united states and the way of life with ties to al qaeda.
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this week the obama administration released a report as to exactly what happened surrounding these terrorist attacks. this report confirmed what we already knew -- there was no protest outside the consulate on september 11. it also cites systemic failures in embassy security, putting in danger the lives of every person at the compound in benghazi. this report is an important step towards stopping another attack on america and american interests overseas but one thing remains clear -- serious mistakes were made by senior officials here in washington. those mistakes cost american lives. there must be accountability. and with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from texas seek recognition? ms. jackson lee: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlelady from texas is recognized for one minute. ms. jackson lee: thank you, mr. speaker. senator inouye lies in state this morning, but as a young
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lute platoon leader in a battlefield in italy, even after being stop in the stomach, he refused medical treatment and still managed to find the courage destroy two machine gun posts, nearly losing consciousness from blood loss, he charged a third machine gun before having a right arm severed by a german machine gun. after those injuries, daniel inouye found a way to toss a grenade that destroyed the third bunker. what an american. what a man who loved this country and stood for the values of diversity. he loved the independence of the congress and he fought for it in the strength of our democracy and the values of america. as well, his words were this -- i represent the people of hawaii and this nation honestly and to the best of my ability. he said, as he remembered, and i think i did ok. senator and to your family, you did more than ok.
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to the asian american community in houston, texas, and texas, i want you to know this hero spoke volumes for what america is all about. that no matter where we come from, we can stand equally under the sun. he thought of that and his beloved hawaii, as his final words, not only in representing hawaii, aloha, but to america. we love you and goodbye. senator, we love you and goodbye. what a great champion, what a great warrior for peace and one who represented all of us so well. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentleman from south carolina seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from south carolina is recognized for one minute. mr. wilson: mr. speaker, today the house will vote on the national defense authorization act for 2013. congratulations to house armed services committee chairman buck mckeon and committee staff director bob simmons for their
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legislation with this -- their leadership with legislation promoting strength. our brave men and women in uniform, their families and our veterans have earned the support and care they deserve by dedicating their lives to keeping american families safe. the passage of today's bill will provide for 1.7% pay increase, control co-pay rate increases for tricare beneficiaries and institute new procedures and regulations to combat and prosecute sexual assault within the military. it is my hope that this legislation will pass the house overwhelmingly this evening, receive full support in the senate and promptly arrive on the president's desk for his signature. our national security depends on it. in conclusion, god bless our troops and we will never forget september 11 and the global war on terrorism. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from new york is recognized for one minute.
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mr. higgins: mr. speaker, the great lakes are our nation's greatest natural resource. they are the source of 95% of our surface freshwater and are directly connected to 1.5 million jobs. though efforts to protect and restore the great lakes have made great strides over the past several decades, many challenges remain. invasive species, pollution, habitat loss in the great lakes have a negative effect on recreation and tourism as well as on the general economy. i was pleased to sign a bipartisan letter, along with other members of the house, to request at least $300 million for the great lakes restoration initiative in the president's fiscal year 2014 budget. mr. speaker, the great lakes restoration initiative has been invaluable in efforts to protect and restore the great lakes. i strongly encourage the president and my colleagues in congress to ensure that it is fully funded going forward. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from mississippi seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from mississippi is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, today this body will take up legislation that will cut spending, replace the dangerous defense sequester and protect millions from the biggest tax hike our country has ever seen. mr. palazzo: this is a good first step. the costs are too high to go over the fiscal cliff. the c.p.a. caucus met with the comptroller to know what it means for long-term reform. walker had six basic principles. first, pro-growth. truly pro-growth policies will empower our small businesses rather than strangle them with taxes and regulation at every turn. second, socially equitable. we are in this together and we can't expect one income bracket for bearing the problems. third, culturally acceptable. we need the backing of the american people to enact good solutions.
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four, mathematically possible. we cannot ignore to ignore the bottom line. i'm a c.p. a. we need to balance -- c.p.a. we need to balance our books. feasible. we need to have proposals both sides can agree on. and fourth, bipartisan support. we can agree to disagree on certain matters, but we must still work together. these six principles can be our bridge forward. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from new mexico is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to honor one of new mexico's great leaders, new mexico speaker of the house, ben lujan, who passed away tuesday night after his battle with lung cancer. speaker lujan is the speaker of our colleague, congressman ben ray lujan. first elected to the legislature in 1974, ben lujan
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served as speaker of the house from 2001 until 2012. throughout his tenure in the house, speaker lujan showed he was a champion for working families, a tireless advocate for his constituents and an absolute master of legislative strategy. mr. heinrich: at the beginning of this year when speaker lujan spoke to the legislature as to his battle with cancer, he asked that their time on earth is worthwhile and to, quote, make a difference for the children, our working families and for the elderly. speaker lujan has inspired me and so many new mexicans to do just that. our good thoughts and prayers are with his wife, carmen, with ben ray, and with the rest of the lujan family. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from tennessee is recognized for one minute.
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>> mr. speaker, it seems there are those who still fail to realize can he can't continue down this street of fiscal insanity. our spending is simply unsustainable. we have not seen a serious proposal from the white house to address our trillion-dollar deficits. the president thinks the answer is more taxes. but while the tax increase that president obama is calling for would hurt small businesses, they'll have little effect in reducing our deficits. that is because our debt is being driven by spending, play and simple. and therefore, to solve our problem, we must implement serious spending cuts and reforms. the good news is that this isn't hard to do. we have to look at the amount of revenue coming in and not spend more than that. rather than spending more than we can afford, we must prioritize our spending. hundreds of millions of americans do this every day. if my constituents in tennessee can balance their budgets, so can washington, and i yield
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back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlelady from california seek recognition? without objection, the gentlelady from california is recognized for one minute. ms. sanchez: mr. speaker, down here in the well you might think that we are not a very friendly bunch towards each other but i want to let people know today that we actually have a lot of friendships here on this floor. and i want to take this time this week before we break for christmas to say good-bye to some of my friends who are leaving from congress, especially from the democratic side. but i have a particularly good friend on the other side. congressman gallegly. and he's had a congressional career here for 25 years, he's been a leader in -- and a fierce defender in animal rights. and with the successful passage of legislation that he recently sponsored, the creation and the sale of videos depicting the
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torture of animals, is forever illegal. and animals across -- lovers across the country are saying -- thankful for his leadership on that. and we a lot of times disagree on a lot of things politically, we've become very close friends over the years and i have sought his guidance on many issues here and on foreign affairs and on transportation and even on some outside things, outside of this. maybe even in my own personal life. so i want to thank him for being a good friend and i wish him a lot of luck in his next chapter of his life. and i just want to tell him that i will miss him and, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia seek recognition? >> address the house for one minute, revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from georgia is recognized for one minute. mr. gingrey: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to honor the distinguished career of someone who is a friend to me and my colleagues and that's jay
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pearson. for 34 years jay has been a mainstay of the house and the floor. he began his congressional career back in 1978 for then republican leader john rhodes. throughout his tenure, he has since worked for speakers newt gingrich, dennis hastert and now john boehner. when i came to the house in 2003 , i have known jay to be a true student of this institution, he has helped me personally and countless other members. he's helped us to learn how this body works and he's been quick to assist a member with any question about the floor or even a good book recommendation. mr. speaker, what most people may not know about jay is that in addition to a bachelor's degree from westmont college and a master's degree from california state university, he earned his ph.d. from the university of maryland. in his upcoming retirement i want to thank jay for his service to this great institution and i wish he and his wife, jo ann, all the best
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in their future endeavors. my friend jay pearson. and i yield back, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from california seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute, revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlelady from california is recognized for one minute. ms. lee: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in strong opposition to the republicans' so-called plan b bill. not only would this address -- not only would it not address the so-called fiscal, but it's really a human cliff, but it's a pure political gimmick to distract from the republicans' failure to negotiate in good faith. mr. speaker, we cannot grow our economy or reduce our deficits by making even more cuts on the backs of children, veterans, our seniors, our disabled and the millions of americans in poverty. low income and middle income americans have already been slammed by $1.5 trillion in cuts to the safety net, mind you, that they rely on every day. a fiscally responsible and
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balanced approach would be immediately passed at $1.5 trillion in new revenue to match the cuts that we've already made while protecting middle class tax cuts. mr. speaker, 98% of american people have already paid their fair share. it's time for the wealthiest 2% to do the same. and let's not forget the over two million who will lose their unemployment benefits december 29. mr. speaker, please don't let them fall off this human cliff during this holiday season. we should extend this today. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute, to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from georgia is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. broun: mr. speaker, we've reached the fiscal cliff, not because we taxed too little, but because we spend too much. we're focusing on whom to raise taxes and by how much.
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this debate really should be about outrageous spending. many people believe that what's happening in greece cannot happen in the united states. but think about it. greece kept borrowing and spending until eventually they couldn't pay their public workers, take care of the elderly or the poor or deliver any of the services promised to their people. the united states is headed down the very same path. we'll be right back here having this same debate very soon if we don't cut spending. instead we'll be discussing the top 2%, next time it will be the top 50%. and so on. until we're all being attacked, every one. but spending so much that we still cannot meet our only gations -- obligations. this debate should be about spending, not taxes. so that we can give the american people what they want, a strong economy and a guarantee that programs like social security and medicare will remain in tact.
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i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from the virgin islands seek recognition? mrs. christensen: address the house for one minute, revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlelady from the virgin islands is recognized for one minute. mrs. christensen: thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker's plan b is bad enough, killing jobs, threatening the full faith and credit of our country and leaving the sequester cuts in place. last night the republicans dug up that horrible reconciliation bill that they pushed through this house in may. they should have left it over in the senate where it went to die a timely death. the reconciliation bill, they will put up for a revote today, it's like plan b, just worse. it will cut food stamps, elimination social security block grants and they can't help themselves. they'll make one more attempt to roll back much of the affordable care act including repealing the public health fund and funding for the exchanges, cutting the children's health insurance
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program and take away all of the medicaid funding that would provide -- was provided for the territories. either way this bill would help many people, the poor, middle class americans, children and seniors. also save tax cuts on the wealthy. americans voted for us to work together to strengthen our country, not weak continue. these highly partisan bills would hurt our country and no one should vote for either of them. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentlelady from texas seek recognition? ms. johnson: ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlelady from texas is recognized for one minute. ms. johnson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i wonder if anybody is listening. the message from the american people is loud and clear. to extend the middle class tax cuts now. republican leadership is holding hostage tax cuts for 98% of americans and 97% of small businesses to give more tax
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breaks to the wealthiest americans. democratic members of congress have commonsense solutions and we can't wait around any longer, as real proposals languish while the house g.o.p. gets their act together. i along with 181 of my colleagues have signed the discharge petition to automatically bring to the house floor the senate-passed middedle class tax cuts -- middle class tax cuts which the president has said he will sign immediately. this could be an opportunity for us to work together, resolve some of our differences and offer the american people the kind of congress they want. working together. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from california seek recognition? mrs. capps: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentlelady ask for unanimous consent? without objection, so ordered. mrs. capps: mr. speaker, i rise
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to express my disappointment the how it's leadership is again playing political games instead of getting the work done. with time running short they've decided to prohibit a vote on extending the middle class tax cuts for families making up to $250,000 per year. instead we will only be voting on the so-called republican plan b. plan b is yet another giveaway to the wealthiest 1% of americans and at the expense of middle class families. it forces middle class families to pay $1,000 more a year in taxes in order to give millionaires a $50,000 break. that's not what the american people voted for in november. they sent a clear message that they wanted us to put aside our differences and work together to pass a balanced plan that protects middle class families and ensures that everyone pays a fair share. we agree, we all agree that families making up to $250,000 should not see their taxes go up on january 1. we could pass that bill today and give millions of families across this country peace of
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mind. but we're not even getting to vote on that bill. instead we're taking a symbolic vote that solves nothing. my constituents, all of our constituents deserve better. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from california seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentlelady from california is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. today i come to the floor to honor a ferocious advocate for seniors and people with disabilities. in her role as executive director of the direct care alliance, i worked closely with her to improve the conditions of work for those who provide in-home care. and with it the quality of care that they provided for others. ms. sanchez: although she lost her battle with cancer on november 19, the battle she waged for quality care and dignity for workers continues. i cannot adequately describe all of her accomplishments in one short minute, so i'm submitting
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a longer statement for the record. but i do hope that in honoring her today and talking about her passion, i hope that her passion for social justice is an inspiration to all of us. thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland seek recognition? mr. cummings: to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman ask for unanimous consent? mr. cummings: yes. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. cummings: thank you very much. today i'm incredibly pleased to congratulate my dear colleague for her aessential to the chair of the senate appropriations committee. the senator's commitment to our great state is undeniable. she has worked tirelessly throughout her prestigious career to serve her fellow marylanders first as a social worker and now as one of the most influential members of the united states senate. the senator is a leader that maryland and truly our nation
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can be proud of. she was the first woman elected to the senate who was not preceded by her husband or father and has continued breaking barriers ever since. this trend continued yesterday when she became the very first female senator in the history of our nation to become the chair of a powerful appropriations committee. i'm honored and proud to serve alongside her here in the united states congress and i look forward to continuing to work together with her for the betterment of our nation. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute, revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman ask for unanimous consent? mr. moran: i do. i rise today first of all to express my deepest condolences to the families and friends of those killed in last week's tragic elementary school shooting in newtown, connecticut. but this incomprehensible act of violence should compel us to address the larger context. the fact that over 10,000 americans are murdered by gun
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violence each year. no other civilized nation on the planet experiences anything like this annual gun slaughter. but we have 5% of the population and own 50% of the world's guns. now, the needed reforms are not radical. many, including closing the gun show loophole and requiring gun owners to report to police lost or stolen guns are even supported by the vast majority of n.r.a. members. it would be far too simplistic and self-serving though to lay the blame for this inaction on the most commonsense measures, entirely at the feet of the n.r.a. which we're inclined to do. because the truth is that we as the representatives of the people are the ones who are ultimately responsible for doing nothing to protect our constituents. the fact is -- the fact is that if we don't take action now we're all complicit in the next
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massacre of innocence. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: by the direction of the committee on rules, i call up house resolution 840 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 169, house resolution 840.
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resolved, that upon adoption of this resolution it shall be in in order to consider the conference report to accompany the bill h.r. 4310, to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2013 for military activities of the department of defense, for military construction, and for defense activities of the department of energy, to prescribe military personnel strengths for such fiscal year, and for other purposes. all points of order against the conference report and against its consideration are waived. the conference report shall be considered as read. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the conference report to its adoption without intervening motion except one, one hour of debate, and two, one motion to recommit if applicable. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah is recognized for one hour. mr. bishop: thank you, mr. speaker. for purposes of debate only, i yield the customary 30 minutes to the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. mcgovern, pending which i yield myself such time as i may consume. during consideration of this
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resolution, all time yielded is for the purpose of debate only. i also ask that all members have five legislative days in which to remarks their remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized. mr. bishop: in consideration of this conference report, this is a closed rule which provides for the consideration of the conference report to accompany h.r. 4310, the defense authorization act for the fiscal year 2013, and provides one hour of general debate with 30 minutes equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on house armed services. and i'm actually pleased to stand before the house in support of the rule and the bill, h.r. 4310, and the conference report that accompanies the defense authorization act for fiscal year 2013. i have to at the beginning also thank the chairman of the house armed services committee, mr. mckeon, for his hard work and his steady leadership on this bill, as well as the ranking
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member, mr. smith of washington, for continuing the time-honored tradition of close cooperation of bipartisanship when it comes to defense and producing this conference report. also, the provingal staff who worked closely on hundreds of difficult and very often technical issues and has done so cooperatively and in an extremely responsible manner. i'm very proud that the committee, armed services committee, produced a bill in a very bipartisan manner. i'm proud of the floor of the house who voted and passed in a bipartisan way this bill back in may. the senate has finally decided to pass the bill in december, but the senate has passed a bill is indeed commendable. unusual but also commendable, but the fact they have done this here gives us an opportunity of passing one of the few bills that must be done in every session of congress. the senate's procrast nation on this effort is -- crow crast
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nation on this effort is -- procrastination on this effort is worrisome. they need to do something more timely on something this important. it's actually a testament to the competency and the professionalism of the house armed services committee staff, the house leadership staff and the rules committee staff that this enormous and hard conference report can come to the floor. in the ruring the other day, -- rules committee the other day, we had mr. hastings refer to the constitution. it is very significant that in the beginning of the constitution the preamble that talked about creating a more perfect union. more perfect union is not a gra matcal flaw that was intro-- grammatical flaw that was introduced by the founding
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fathers. it also talked about promoting domestic tranquility which also had a historical context which had nothing to do with america being sedate or tranquil. it had something to do with private appropriate. it also talked about promoting general welfare even though they had a uniquely definition of welfare than we have today. within all these provisions is also the word that we are supposed to provide for the common defense. it was not unusual that that word was in there, but put in by morrison and the rest of them. see, when the founding fathers met throughout our constitution, they were looking at the historical news of the day and the concepts going on at the time and making sure they solved the problems of the day in a way that would never come up again and the concept of providing are for the common defense came a core of the constitution. we had won the revolutionary war, but we had also, several
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of the states, violated the treaty with britain. inability of some states to protect tori property had given the british the reason to have armed british soldiers on american soil or british forts on american soil. we could not, under the article of confederation, control our borderser. the british were arming groups trying to take down and harm the life of americans. it seems some things never change. but the articles of confederation, congress could not respond to this. they had an army of only 700 people. there was no navy to control the shipping or protect our shipping rights. the articles of confederation, congress realized, we should also realize, if we do not have an adequate or strong defense, not only can we not militarily defend this country but we don't have the ability of diplomatically of trying to reach solutions to problems without resorting to military efforts. they realized this was one of
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the flaws of america when they wrote the constitution. so it is not -- it is not unusual for them to specifically put in here that one of the responsibilities that house has is to provide for the common defense. it is not unusual that in article 1 section 8 there are several clauses, seven of those 17 clauses as well as the introduction talks about military defense and military preparedness. they recognized how significant that was, not just for the defending militarily but also for the future and the diplomatic abilities of the future of the united states. this bill deals with one of the few core constitutional responsibilities that we have. and over the past 51 years, congress has been able to come together in an amazingly bipartisan way to come up with the defense authorization bill that provides our defense agencies the ability to function, to train, to equip our forces and to provide for our military personnel and
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their families. we are betting if we do not do this that the large-scale threats to our national security will be so far in the future we can sort of thread on water, and i hope sometimes they are right, but that threading would not be what the founding fathers would look at as providing for the common defense. now, in a real world, there would be what i would consider to be a more significant and effective bill, but we're not dealing with the real world. we are dealing, though, with real-world issues, and part of the issue is that we are looking at a world that is extremely dangerous for us. we do not know what the future enemy will be, and we're also dealing with the world in which we have continually trying to diminish our military presence. our navy is smaller than it has been since 1917.
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our army will be smaller than it was at the beginning of world war ii. our air force is the smallest it has ever been in the history of this congress with the oldest planes that we have ever had. those issues are issues that are significant. they are important. they must be addressed. and those are going to be ongoing long-term issues. now, this particular bill does not do us much to address that particular problem and give us the security of the future as i wish it could do, but that's not only because -- that's only because we're not dealing in a perfect world where we can establish the setting that we wish to do. we have to deal with the setting which we find ourselves. having said that, there are a lot of things in this particular conference report and the house-passed bill which are very, very positive and they do move us forward. and as we continue the discussion of this rule and the debate on the conference report on the floor, we will talk about some of those things that are positive and that do move us forward. and with that, mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to reserve the balance of my time. and i look forward to
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continuing the discussion about talking about what is in this particular bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to thank the gentleman from utah for the time and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to the underlying bill, the national defense authorization bill. i recognize and appreciate all of the hard work that went into crafting this conference report on both sides of the aisle. i commend chairman mckeon and ranking member smith and all their staff for all the work they have done. i especially appreciate the final version of the bill includes a modified version of the merkley amendment on afghanistan that was approved by the united states senate. but unfortunately the final product contains policies that i simply cannot support. the bill increases funding beyond the peng's request for several programs -- pentagon's request for several programs, including a new missile defense base on the east coast. it denies the pentagon the opportunity to save money with the failure to include a cut to
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the contractor cap. its failure to include a round of base closures and the failure to implement end strength troop reductions even though we're supposedly ending our involvement in two wars. at a time when congress is being asked to look for savings, even considering cutting vital programs like social security, it is unconscionable to me that we would continue to mandate wasteful funding that the military has said it does not need and does not want. how can we look in the eyes of a senior citizen living off of social security and tell them that their cost-of-living adjustment will be smaller so we can buy weapons that the military doesn't even want? also very troubling to me is that this bill continues to prevent the president from fulfilling his commitment to close guantanamo bay prison camp by imposing unnecessary and ill-advised transfer restrictions. mr. speaker, i'm proud to serve
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as the co-chair of the tom lantos human rights commission. we constantly and appropriately criticize other countries for their lack of transparency and adherence to the rule of law. the continued existence of guantanamo undermines our understanding around the worrell. the president has said repeatedly that he wants to close guantanamo. there is broad bipartisan support among national security experts for him to do so. congress just needs to get out of the way. mr. speaker, while i support a great deal of this bill, pearblely programs and services for our veterans -- especially programs and services for our veterans and military, i cannot support a bill this large when we were in the middle of negotiations on the so-called fiscal cliff. the pentagon is more willing than this congress to look at defense budget -- at the defense budget and make significant reductions. this bill continues to show that when it comes to defense spending, congress is part of the problem, not part of the solution. and, mr. speaker, i'd like to
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ask unanimous consent to insert into the record an article that appeared in today's "washington post" by walter pinkett entitled "military funds to spare" in which he quotes secretary defense panetta in a speech who said that the committees here in the congress had diverted about $74 billion of what we asked for in savings in our proposed budget to the congress and they diverted them to other areas that frankly we do not need, end quote. that is from the secretary of defense. i'd also like to ask unanimous consent to insert into the record a letter to the president that was sent to members of congress as well urging that he veto the national defense authorization act because it extends restrictions on transferring detainees from the guantanamo prison. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. mcgovern: let me conclude by opening here to say i want a defense second to none. i believe we need to do
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whatever we need to do to protect the citizens of this country. but just throwing more money at the pentagon doesn't mean that you're getting a stronger defense. you know, expanding the bloat and the waste in the pentagon does nothing to enhance our national security. and we need a new definition of national security. one that includes things like jobs for our citizens, one that includes access to a good quality education, one that includes strong infrastructure, one that includes good health care for everybody in this country and end to homelessness and end to hunger in the united states of america. and i say this because after we debate this rule we're going to take up another rule dealing with the so-called plan b and plan c and plan there's a plan d and e. who knows. but what is particularly troublesome to me is that in the tax version of what the republicans are going to bring to the floor later, it includes
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things like ending programs that benefit middle-income families and poor families. under their proposal, 25 million working families with tens of millions of children will pay an average of $1,000 more in taxes. that's not fair. that undermines the security, the economic security of their family. under their proposal, 11 million families will lose a tax credit that pays for college. how is that in our security? we're told time and time again by all the experts that in order for us to continue to be an economic global power we need a well educated work force. and what are they proposing? that 11 million families lose a tax credit to help pay for college. you know, 50 million seniors and our medicare enrollees health care will be jeopardize as doctors face a cut in medicare payments under this proposal. that's just the tax version of what they're proposing. we haven't gotten to what
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they're proposing in terms of spending cuts. so here we are talking about a defense authorization act that is more money than our pentagon wants, more money than our joint chiefs of staff want, more money than the secretary of defense wants. as we're doing this we're telling the american people, you know, we have to lower your cost of living adjust on social security. we have to lower your quality of health care. we have to cut the money from housing programs. we have to cut snap and food stamps so that you won't have enough to eat. this is crazy. this is crazy. so, yes, we're all for a military and a defense second to none. but i will tell you that some of our biggest threats are not halfway around the world, they're halfway down the block. and we have to start paying attention to what's happening in this country. and so i urge my colleagues to vote no on this bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves.
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the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: reserves. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah reserves. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from texas, mrs. bernice johnson. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from texas is recognized for two minutes. ms. johnson: thank you, mr. speaker, and let me thank the ranking member and the chairman of the rules committee. today i rise to discuss just one portion of the national defense authorization act, a section of the conference report that supports our nation's first responders. and i found the conference report for that section only. in july last year i entered this legislation to re-authorize two programs, the assistance of firefighters grant, the a.f.g. program, and staffing for adequate fire and emergency responders, the safer program. these programs were created to have local fire departments across the country maintain and
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increase their capacity to all that we ask them to do each day. including fighting fires, responding to medical emergencies and providing safety and aid in the face of disasters, either natural or manmade. maintaining the equipment, training and personnel to safely and swiftly respond to calls for assistance is increasingly difficult. fire departments around the country have been forced to lay off firefighters and to do without needed equipment and training. the fire grants program has played an important role in helping local fire departments overcome some of these challenges, providing over $6 billion in assistance since the year 2000. these grants have been essential to maintaining public safety in many communities and they're even more important in the face of our shrinking local budgets. fire is a serious problem in the
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united states. killing over 3,000 people a year . a right higher than all other industrialized countries. additionally each year, nearly 20,000 people are injured. over 100 firefighters are killed in the line of duty. and $10 billion in property is lost due to fire. in my state of texas, 2 ever 2011 was an especially destructive -- texas, 2011 was an especially destructive year. mr. mcgovern: i yield the gentlelady an additional minute. ms. johnson: thank you very much. with four million acres burned, over 5,500 homes and structures destroyed and hundreds of millions of dollars in damages. i thank you for the time and i will ask unanimous donent -- consent to put the rest of the statement in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. johnson: thank you very much. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: reserves. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from
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massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentlelady from ohio, mr. kucinich. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from ohio is recognize for two minutes -- the gentleman from ohio voids for two minutes. mr. kucinich: we meet the moral consequences of our nation's choices over the past decade. we chose war in iraq, afghanistan, pakistan, libya, yemen, somalia and perhaps later on iran. inexplicably we've created openings for al qaeda and radical fundamentalists as a result of our interventions. at home we choose a false notion of security over personal freedom. even if it means we look the other way when the very language of this bill opens the door for indefinite detention of americans. and we choose poverty over plenty by giving over a half this will dollars for the pentagon and nearly $90 billion for wars including afghanistan while facing reductions in domestic spending. we put war on the nation's credit card, including a $5 trillion charge for the war in
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iraq which was based on lies. we gather at a fiscal cliff of our own making and refuse to see the implications of our unrestrained spending for war. but when it comes to providing for the long-term security of our seniors, a cynical ploy using the consumer price index is being used to cut seniors' social security benefits. when did america become more concerned about the control of and the security of foreign lands than the retirement security of our own people? unending war abroad means austerity here at home. it's caviar for the pentagon and cat food for seniors. our choices are being made but when will we choose for america, jobs for all, education for all, health care for all, housing opportunities for all, retirement security for all? when will we choose freedom over fear, when will we break the hold which fear has over this nation and our budget choices?
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i'm voting no on this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. bishop: in the list of things this bill does not do, one could even look at some other areas. i mean, there are other areas in which we have problems in defense of this country and future challenges that are before us. even in the modernization of our weapon system. even as russia has failed at newed a modernized, nukeler deterrents is a need of future modernization and yet this administration, resources -- has cut resources to begin planning for the upgrading and modernization of icbm's and nuclear-based systems that have largely been ignored. this trend simply cannot continue. but having recognized those problems that are there, it is also time to realize what this bill actually does that moves us as a nation forward.
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it will provide $552 billion, which is $2 billion more than the president requested, and that is a plus. it increases the pay for our all-voluntary forces by 1.7% and provides critical bonuses for those who are now working in harm's way. it keeps us safe with a military retirees and our veterans in regard to tricare and it rejects the administration's proposal to increase fees and co-pays -- co-payments on them. it deals with the issue of troop reduction in a responsible way by putting caps on the number of troop reductions that can be placed in a single year. it has a conscience clause for servicemen and chaplains. it implements the hyde amendment. it addresses sexual assault with bipartisan, specific new regulations, procedures for combating and prosecuting sexual assaults within the military. it has a total new program in there to provide and help with suicide prevention for dealing with those people who have volunteered to represent this country in the military. it opens up new, bipartisan
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reforms for competition and innovation in the way the department deals with small businesses and spurs on innovation. it deals with strategic forces like the nnsa reforms. our nuclear oversight, our missile defense system, the iron dome. its provisions dealing with guantanamo bay which prohibit the transfer of detainees to the united states is the exact right thing that should be done. it also is retaining our vital assistance like our naval cruisers, heavy armor and investing in new futures -- new future capabilities that we need like airborne electronic warfare, the aircraft that we need, the submarines, the destroyers that happen to be there and indeed has a section in there dealing with the saxes -- sanctions on iran. all of those are specific and important to us. we have a responsibility to make sure that this core constitutional responsibility of ours is done efficiently. i want it to be known that those who are in the military uniform
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must respond to the higher-ups in which they are dealing with. the secretary of defense must deal in talking about what they have to do and what they wish they could do. in no way does anyone in uniform say the things that are put in this budget is something they do not need or they do not want. we have cut the military in this country when we were cutting nothing else, while we were running up stimulus bills we were still cutting the military. we cut them in the last two years of the bush administration. under secretary gates there was a $400 billion cut. all told the cuts that this congress was put on the fence when it has not cut other areas is between $800 billion and $1 trillion and that doesn't even count what could happen within sequestration. we seem to forget as we are looking, and we take some of the things we have here for granted. the united states has had air superiority since the korean war which means our men on the ground when they hear something overhead don't have to worry about who's insignia will be on that plane. they know it is ours. but if indeed we do not upgrade
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and innovate and improve our air capacity, we don't have that in the future. and what we do now is not just simply what we can do today, what we are authorizing in this bill is what we can do 20 years from now. if we don't start the research and development today, we will not have that capacity. i reject those who say, look, the f-35 is too expensive. let's just mr. more f-16's. even though third-world countries have planes that have the same capacity tech willingly as our f-16's and our f-15's. what we need is a new generation so that if our men are put into a fight it will not be a fair one. and we have the technology, the new generation of technology to make sure that we are in the forefront and to make sure that we maintain that air dominance into the future. it is something that we have had for so long and we've had so many people work so hard to maintain that we here today seem to sometimes take it for granted and we ought not.
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this is our future. this bill is about our future. and we cannot, we cannot simply go back because we wish to change the -- change what is happening here. this is a good bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: let me yield myself such time as i may consume. frave first of all, we have air superiority over every country in the world. we have the strongest military in the world. and i'm proud of the men and women who serve in our military. but, you know, we have to make choices here. and do we really need all these troops deployed in europe that have been there basically since world war ii? i mean, i don't think germany's going to invade france any time soon or russia's going to invade poland. but yet we have a huge amount of deployed american forces in europe. i mean, maybe we need to have a discussion about whether or not we need that. whether or not we can afford that expense.
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whether or not that does anything to enhance our security. again, i want a military that is the best in the world, i want it to continue to be that way, i want it to be second to none. i want to make sure we have all that we need but i don't want to be investing in things we don't need. and when the joint chiefs of staff and when the secretary of defense and all the experts tell us that they don't need something and we here appropriate money to keep something going that is unnecessary, that is unwanted, at the same time while you're trying to cut the benefits of some poor old lady, her social security, there's something wrong with this equation. we got to start thinking about the security of people here in this country as well. and what we're going to do right after this is take up a rule that's going to gut a whole bunch of programs that quite frankly keep people from falling through the cracks. everything from food stamps, you know, to child nutrition programs to education programs. anything that helps anybody
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who's in need is going to get walloped after the next rule is passed. and a tax plan that is so blatantly unfair that i can't even believe my friends are bringing it to the floor of the house for a debate. so, you know, let's talk about what we need to do to maintain the security for our people in this country. we need a strong military, we need to meet the challenges abroad but we also need to meet the challenges here in the united states of america. we need to focus on things like jobs and affordable housing, making sure that people have the ladders of opportunity so they can succeed. so, that's where i object. this bill is more than the people at the pentagon want. we're just throwing more money at this. and i think it's a mistake. mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield three minutes to the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee. mr. jackson: gentleman -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from texas is gentlelady from texas is recognized for three minutes.


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