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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  December 16, 2015 9:00pm-12:01am EST

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and so while it is. lowey: and so while it not what i wanted to be, the good lord has not put me in charge. so we have to deal with what's our colleagues have put together. i want to say thank you again for all of the time put into will be i think that we able to go to regular order next year, have this house passed the bill, and hopefully have the senate passed some bills and to send them to the president, for better or for worse. and then let the american people outagain the process play in that way. mr. chairman: will the gentlewoman yield?
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i will yield. mr. chairman: we will have regular order when we have the senate passed these bills. they have got a rollover there. bring up anyannot bill unless you have asked the votes, even in appropriations -- an appropriations bill. what happened to majority rule? if the senate would a bride -- abide by the rules and 11 be considered, we could break this cycle and no longer have these huge bills that a lot of people do not know what is in them. mrs. lowey: again, i agree very much with of the chair man. when people talk to me about it, it spoke to a group on monday, i did my best to explain to them that it requires 60 votes to
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bring up the bill. so when a house is criticized for what we do or not do, we are given all that responsibility which is one reason i bring up article one, section seven, is that it is important for the public to understand that these bills must be passed to go to the president. and i believe it was the ranking member who pointed out that this was what has been done here and it would avoid a threat by the white house. so the white house has a consideration, because we do not have the votes to override the veto and neither does the senate, so i would ask my colleagues who are not happy with this legislation. that may not let perfect be the enemy of the good. canthat we do everything we
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to accept the positive things, increased funding for n.i.h. is wonderful. not putting in this bill legislation that would bail puerto rico out and set a new for bankruptcy is a good thing. i think a lot of times we need to accept what is not in the legislation as a good thing and not grieve about what did not get in. so, thank you both very much and thank you to the staff for all of their hard work. i yield back. mr. chairman: does the gentlewoman wish to engage in this? i just would like to thank you for your eloquence. we do represent many states, many different kinds of
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communities, that is what is great about our democracy. we can finally get together and compromise. but i could not resist to tell you that i am still hopeful that within the democratic process, whether it is through this process or whether speaker ryan can come up with another way to help puerto rico, i think it is so essential. and i have been a strong advocate for assisting puerto rico and helping them work out their bankruptcy problems, because there are so many, many people who are in desperate need of a solution. so we can differ on that issue, but i just wanted to say on the record that i think it is very important and i was pleased that we were able to find a solution for the 9/11 funding and i want to thank both sides of the aisle
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for your support of that. i do hope that perhaps we could talk further, my good friend, miss fox, perhaps we can find a solution that i know the speaker is working on and i would be very supportive. so maybe we can talk further. as you know, i am usually found here on the floor or in my office. here a lot of the time. mrs. lowey: thank you. let's talk further about it and i hope in the following weeks after this does pass, we will be able to find a constructive solution to dealing with the desperate situation that puerto rico faces. thank you. mr. chairman: the gentlewoman yield back her time. the gentleman from massachusetts. >> i want to thank you for being here. . think we have said it enough
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we have before us a bill that is over 2000 pages long. i do not think that any of us will truly know what is in it. until it comes up for a vote on friday. that is unfortunate. we can vote for or against a based on trust with you guys and whether or not we agree with most of what is being said or disagree, this -- and genetic editing, there are things in here that many people do not know what we are talking about and will have to figure that out. but that will have to be after this bill. so this is frozen. no point to ask questions. on thewill be up or down floor. i know this is not the way that you wanted it to come before us, but it is what it is. you know, people try to go through this the best they can
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and throw the dice and vote the way they think is the right way on friday. and move on. i yield back. mr. chairman: thank you very much. the gentle man from oklahoma. mr. cole: i want to welcome to my very favorite members, my ranking member of this committee . some time, every time you show up, something happens around here. some things get done. and i know how hard both of you have worked on this and i want to express my personal appreciation for what each of you has done in a very divided conference -- congress in making sure that the government actually functions. i see my own very tired chief court that there, susan ross. i must say, i will miss this process in some ways, because every morning for the last several weeks when i would get up at 5:00 mother would be --
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5:00 mother would be -- there would be an e-mail from susan ross sent at 3:15 a.m. they work incredibly hard. and i will yield. mr. chairman: thank you for yielding. cole works on. labor hhs, the biggest nondefense spending. but the staff is remarkable on this committee. they have -- since one month ago, november 16, they have had one day off. that was thanks giving day. whatever, allay, night long. .e do not think them enough so i thank you for recognizing them. mr. cole: i thank you mr. chairman.
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and i think we have them on both sides of the aisle. i know that my friends from new york would agree. >> if you would yield to me. mr. cole: i would certainly yield, my friend. >> the staff every day, working through the weekend, and i know they do not get sleep. absolutely. a couple of observations. i listen to my friend mr. burgess and he made a very good case, he obviously has in his district in texas, it immediately came to my mind if we restored earmarking we might be able to help right away. toi would for that forward consider, because that frankly is one of the virtues of that,
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taking care of a really important problem really quickly . i am not asking my friend to sign up for that. i will yield. >> i was actually interested in this as well. when i look back over the last 15 years, the years i was able to earmark within the budget, there has not been -- it has remained steady. the committee has done a good job of making sure allegations go where they are supposed to go. mr. cole: i appreciate my friends observation, that is not something that is commonly understood. earmark is not extra money, usually within the budget we say these things are so important, it needs to move to the front. million people a living under the threat of a breakdown of a dam, that is something that congress ought to look out. in fact, mr. burgess knows the problem and can bring it to our
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attention. i want to make a couple of observations about the bill itself without going into it. it has been an issue. i have gone to two conferences, i have talked to our web team about this. i have listened to friends on the other side. i think broadly speaking it is interesting to me that the republican complaints about the ,ill or about what is not in it and in the democratic complaints are almost all about what is in it. it is -- it strikes me that there has been a lot of compromise on both sides. but to my friends on my side that are worried about it, i largely agree. but i reminded them that most of them to sit on authorizing committees can do these things and they need to do these very things, not rely on it. members need to think long and hard when they ask us to do things that we are -- and that they are experts at hand we know
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about the appropriations process, but we do not listen to all hearings on whether it is syrian refugees, i could go through a whole list of things that really are more appropriately dealt with by committees of authorization. they cannot pass it on their bill, then basically they are asking us to pass it on ours, when they were not able to get it through with regular order. there are times when that is appropriate and i am not opposed to doing that, but it does create a law of problems. and most of my friends that are not appropriators cannot understand the real power of this committee, it is frankly, if you look at it is incremental and gradual. you change things slowly over time. movehift resources, you things, it is very seldom traumatic. dramatic. it is actually very cautious.
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and i appreciate ms. foxx reminding everybody that it does have limits. our friends in the senate willing to pass the same thing and the president willing to sign it, they have convictions and principles too and they do not always agree with the majority. heardo areas that i have very little debate about and i commend both of my friends in front of me for this, i have heard almost nobody complained about the military spending in this bill, which is over half of the total. yet people know we are in a dangerous era, we are sending them to do tough things and want them to be well-equipped. practically no complaints, but very little thank you's either. in my bipartisan budget meant -- budget agreement -- if we do not pass this bill we will cut the military very dramatically.
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the other area that i hear very little complaints about is the distribution of money within a nonmilitary part of the budget. this has been element of compromise. you know, president -- the president wanted an increase of $1 billion. congress said that was not enough and we will make a $2 billion, we think it is important to get that started it i could go through a list of things where there is a republican budget. obviously, a democratic budget. but where the appropriations committee worked through these things i bipartisan basis and i think found common ground. a $1.1 trillion spending bill, not to mention the tax portion of this, another $6 billion. that is a range of compromise and for those who are worried and they appropriately can be
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concerned because this should be frank. ese should's -- th come to the floor. but i want to thank my ranking member because these did come to the committee. everyone of them was vetted and there were amendments offered by each side, discussions and obviously the final bill is the product of a lot of compromise. at the full committee level, which you two guys did, and the leadership that he provided on both sides when the final -- when the issues that could not be resolved, could be done. so this is not the best way to legislate, i prefer bills on the floor, but it certainly beats a resolution that these things have been carefully considered and fully debated at the committee level. six of them have gone across our
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floor. and our friends in the senate, we hope that they will do the same. and just to give the senate aipac -- a pat on the back, they thierere asked bills -- bills through. a so things are starting to fall and work and nobody has done more to do that than my friend the chairman, whose goal has been to get this running. and our ranking member. who's -- and i would say that themyear came closer before and next year offers the opportunity. since we all have a top line on spending numbers, offers all of us, appropriators and non-appropriators, the opportunity to put them on the floor and have a debate and let everybody participate in the process. once they see it and like it,
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the american people will be impressed. i want to commend my two friends, all they have done to get is from this point. they were continuing resolutions, they were abdicating for institutional power by this body, you both restored this process a great deal and it speaks well of your institutional knowledge, your commitment to the process and frankly her ability to work together. acrosse differences and the aisle. i will yield. mr. chairman: back to the editing. i hate to leave it as we left it. you chair the subcommittee that unds the n.i.h. as i understand it, this provision would conform fda's
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n.i.h. on a that of gene editing, which is a to edite that attempts in anan's -- genes embryo. and n.i.h. is concerned about what that may mean for future generations, so that is about as far as i can -- mr. cole: i am not a scientist, but i think that the chairman is right. there is a different thing what we allow in terms of genetic modification for food, livestock , and as far as human beings are concerned. it is an area where you can be careful. -- this ishis is not largely a compromise, each side has wins and losses. my friends, by and large, have a
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different view on some of these issues than i do. but they felt comfortable enough with this to sign off on it, both the administration and -- administered of and legislative levels, so i do not think that my friends will be surprised. mr. mcgovern, we will all be better off with this. bills get better. i have had a number of people come to meet with particular -- come to me with particular problems that i did not know about. had we had a bill on the floor, these are not members of the committee, that i would probably have said, yeah. we can accept that amendment. but they are coming late in the process, so these are not your marks, these are common sense adjustments you need to make in a country of 350 million people across a vast continent with great complexity to it. and when we do not bring a bill
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across the floor, we denied average member a chance to do that and to educate us on something maybe they know more about than anybody on the committee. particularly if it is my friend from texas, if it is particular to his district, may be something i would not know about. so you really want these bills to come down where each member can do that. again, we are stepping closer to that process. this is a bipartisan compromise and our job is spending the money, it is not authorizing legislation, but the amazing thing to me is how little i hear about how the money has been spent on both defense and nondefense alike. which the appropriations committee has done its job pretty well in a bipartisan nature and these other things that were attached on, i am a big believer with what we are doing with taxes and lifting the
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oil ban. but i think, and i am happy to do it, but again our friends the authorizer's need to authorize. they need to get this stuff done and let us do the thing we know most. but if you want to cede all the power to the committee, it wouldn't be in better hands. so if you want to make us the only committee that matters in congress, that is ok by me. i yield. mrs. lowey: you are the distinguished chairman, of the committee that funds programs and i am. s particularly impressed with the investment we are making. we all face so many challenges,
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our friends, our collins, so we want them to know that this investment can really save lives. , although wenk you all wish we could have put more money into head start, you did with a good job there educational initiatives and workplace initiatives. i cannot say if you had even more money to spend in those areas, we could help even more children. but i want to thank you for your leadership and funding the national institute of health. so, thank you. i yield to the chairman. mr. chairman: i have just been handed the statement of administration policy, the white house recommends this bill and urges its passage as well as the is anending, so that
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important piece of information that we have now. ome as a problem on our side, but we will work through it. again this is a compromise. mr. cole: i wish it would have been smaller bites and more transparent so that more members could appreciate it, but we are where we are and it is late in the year. but this is a major a compliment. this is something honestly that the people can vote for, take a great deal of pride, whether they are democrat or republican, because there are a lot of good things. i want to echo my friend ms. foxx who made an important point, do not go against the bill for what is not in it. that is a perverse way of doing things. if you are opposed to what is in the bill, that is a different thing. but you cannot ask us to say,
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give me everything i want, even though i like the rest of this -- the military needs to be funded, and i too want to see the nih out there fighting alzheimer's and cancer, the center for disease control protecting us from diseases, i cannot vote for that. really, i think we hopefully can and i think we have an opportunity as members learn more about this bill, to get a big bipartisan vote. a really substantial number of votes on both sides. so again, i commend you for all you have done. i look for to working with them. we want to get this across the finish line. and going home to certainty for the american people at christmas time. i yield back. mr. chairman: thank you german -- gentleman. he'll take time to judge
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hastings. judge hastings: thank you. i want to thank the ranking members as well as their staff. statements in the administration policy i want to put that in the record. and i want to read one sense -- sentence, the all the ministers to appreciates -- and want unrelated riders and take a critical step for a strong economy and urges congress to pass this legislation, contemplated both what we talk about as well as other tax extenders. i am hesitant to bring this up, because it is a segue into chairman of the ranking member of our sub committee on the
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rules committee, we have two subcommittees and chairman would all -- woodall has indicated a desire, or perhaps even a suggestion, that we have two-year budgeting. differences of the we have had a getting to this point, i am hesitant to bring it up. chairmanld like, -- chairman rogers , you have been here a long time and this is not the first that summary has mentioned to your budgeting. i am not try to be facetious. i am abdicating that i have abdicated this before and i thought that maybe we should have two-year budgeting, but i find that this place cannot
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think beyond next week, let alone too much on the future. in a sentence, would either of you talk about a practical idea in reference to whether or not we could it, that?that -- accomplish mr. chairman: i think if we do to your budgeting -- two-year budgeting it would be a big help because it would give us certainty it is about -- certainty about next year. we have had that in previous terms, renewing in advance what we would do the next year. however, we need annual appropriations. to your budgeting would give us to your appropriations and things change. he cannot predict that until the time comes.
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it would give us certainty about respondsk agencies to to us. if we do to your appropriations appropriations, so i like the idea of a budget with one year prorations. mrs. lowey: i thank you for bringing up that issue and you can see why the chairman and i work so well together, because i agree with him 100%. the world is changing, things are happening with the tremendous challenge of isis and i think that is essential that we review all bills to make sure that we are responding, so that i agree with the chairman. good hastings: that is a lead in.
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i will yield to my friend from georgia who is probably glad that i brought that up. thank you. mr. chairman: the gentleman yield back his time. the gentleman from georgia, the vice chair of the committee is organized. mr. woodall: things tend to stay the same. i understand that the committee has a desire to get work done each and every year. it does not provide much certainty to anyone when our constituents do not get october money until december, and that is if they are lucky. i am reminded of the last cycle where we had a 2 year budgeting process where you had a topline number you could work with andy moved to the first appropriations bill out of the
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committee in the last week coming moved it 416-1. and it went to this and it where it sat -- senate where it sat and did nothing and the da did not get money until february. at some point, it is not a process issue, it is a personality issue and we cannot count on one another to take our work seriously, then it does not matter what rules we have for valuable -- it is process. it is valuable to have an example of what the committee would do when you have your topline numbers earlier, the cross the house floor before the end of april, that is a real step. i want to ask one other question with my time to it ordinarily we -- time.a conference
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so ordinarily we would do a conference, everybody would put their signature on it and that is what we would have. but instead we have a deal and a joint statement, can you help me oferstand the legal dynamics this, instead of having a conference report everything is wrapped in legislative language with the bill and the joint statement attached? mr. chairman: i am not sure i understand. landoodall: the law of the at the end of the process when the president says he encourages the signing of the bill, what will -- we will have a bill that has appropriations language in it, but will also have a joint explanatory statement that goes along with the bill. instead of a conference report that would have captured everything, line by line.
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mr. chairman: safed informs me staff informs me that we have a statement of explanation that has the same -- this not being a conference report, we have language in the bill explaining that it will have the same effect as a conference report. we have moved so many conference reports, it would not surprise me to move another one. i have been watching the eyelids drooping of your team, they have
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gone to the nonstop rush to the finish line. i appreciate you all. i yield to the chairman. mr. chairman: there is liquid in the bill. " the explanatory statement regarding this act, created in the house of representatives, by the chairman of the committee for appropriations of the house shall have the same effect with respect to the allocation of funds and implementations of were ans -- as if it joint statement of the committee of conference." ". i think the chairman for that. for us that have been here five years or less, we have not seen that process. so here 20 years or less, we've not seen that. i think it was 1998 that we
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finished 13 bills by the start of a fiscal year. i am so optimistic about that in this upcoming cycle and the truth is whenever the two of you come before this committee i am optimistic when i leave, more optimistic. and i thank you for making a possible. mr. chairman: vitamin yields back. let me tell you that the perspective from here looks great. [laughter] mr. chairman: gentleman from colorado. >> i am just seeing this for the first time. it does not seem like we have a lot of time to get these out. i am trying to figure out what is in the bill. do you know what the bill will end up doing, one program i am 5 programs the eb
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that was set to expire. what happened with that? mr. chairman: it is a one-year extension. >> i know that there were negotiations in it was widely agreed-upon, the longer-term extensions that made important reforms that democrats and republicans in both the house and senate -- and i was hopeful that that would have made its way into this though. i am hopeful to see if we can do that. but i want to ask you about the status of the longer-term authorization. that particular item was negotiated with the leadership that could not come. mrs. lowey: i would like to comment on that. as our chairman said, this is a when you're asked to check my a oneect example -- extension.
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this is a perfect example of a discussion we had about doing theira work. this is a program that should be discussed by the authorizer's. proposed, its should be thoroughly debated by did sides, and if they their work it would not be part of the appropriations process at all. >> it should have been done months ago, certainly. is, if the house voted it would be very important, it creates jobs, drives investment in the country. i am glad that it is not expiring, so this will prevent it from expiring, but like some of the things, markets and people can react better with things unpredictable over time on authorizing statutes. said expenditures will change each year and you do that job
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well, you do your best. -- the authorization authorizing legislation should be done in a more predictable manner over time. so i was hoping that he longer-term version would be included in this bill. that will go back to the authorizing process. at least it will not expire in this bill. other than that, i am beginning to read this bill myself. so i will have to find people later for questions. i yield back. mr. chairman: the gentle many yields back -- gentleman yield back. the gentleman from ohio. i appreciate you for being here. it is not an easy process and you have been at it for a very long time. i want to ask a few questions. i think that the gentlelady from new york asked about the wholesale language. the solar tax credit and the wind tax credit was included, is
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it possible there was an error that fuel cells were not included, does that because they have always been done together historically -- included, because they have always been done together historically? or is this about winners and losers? mr. chairman: the item was chosen by the leadership. mrs. lowey: i was going to say the same thing. as you know, during the process there are certain issues that had there is point of view, but could not be resolved and this was a leadership decision. mr. stivers: ok. like everybody else, i have things i like in the bill and things i do not like. i am proud of the work that you did. this is a hard job to find common ground in this institution, so i appreciate what you did and i appreciate
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all the hard work and i do care about the fuel cell language. industry inel-cell ohio and they will be disadvantaged compared to wind and solar, when you look at the above energy policies i believe it -- in. stivers, the mr. doctor is going to testify shortly on the tax bill could which i think that tax bill. which i think was clear. mr. stivers: maybe he will be able to tell me, because it is a tax portion. mr. chairman: it was moved. mr. stivers: but it was negotiated. ok, no problem. i am not trying to be difficult, it is something medicare about and i hate it -- something i care about and i hate it when there is winners and losers. mrs. lowey: this is not resolved
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in the conference, but i believe that he will be here and he is going to request an amendment regarding fuel cells. today? mr. stivers: i heard that earlier, so that was news to me. but i am excited about that. we should treat them equally, that is my -- thatlowey: i am sure that will be appreciated. i do not know if he is here, but i think that was his intention. thank you. stivers: i yield back. back on ato go question i asked my colleague. the language -- it has the same effect in the conference report, mainly for
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clarification. but is it not true that that language can be used for other use ins, such as lawsuits or pushing a position that gives some affect to an outside this agreement? -- and outside this agreement -- diagreement? mr. chairman: i do not know the answer. can, becauseyes it it has. just to let you know so that your staff can catch you up, this is a georgia issue, this is a dealing with water issue from something that was really pretty interesting. and i want to read a few minutes on this. this is not something that has come up overnight. this is not something that has -- and this has been something
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that has been a historical letter -- an historical letter was sent a few weeks ago from all 16 come up with republican and democrat, from the state of georgia dealing with this. any language that basically what we have -- what we feel like infringes upon the states rights issue of dealing with waters between georgia and alabama. this is an issue in which i on the state level have worked on for the past years i was in the house come about also while i have been here. the best solution here is for congress to stay out. unfortunately, there was language appropriated in from directly, side that that it said it interferes with the state's ability to solve
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this issue, which has been litigated for many years. concern is not only for this but for the joint letter of -- between the language here, is how do we get this out? let the governor's solve this. ist disturbs me about this there is a lot of stuff that you ,orked hard on, the you all that whether you disagree with or agree with, this is something that i know georgia and other places as well have spent millions of dollars trying to solve. and it specifically said keep the federal government out of have th because again we one the arguments and then we have to go back and fight after this is added in. this is wrong. this should not continue to happen in these bills when you
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have writers put on that affect, basically state issue and state problems. with staff, leadership, i know that i -- we are on the long and of the road. but this is something we need to fix. it should affect the other states that are involved in this and should not come in the form of writers. this is part of the issue for me, saying why? the language that is added is basically taken as a slap in the face, this is not something that should be in here, not something we should be dealing with. if the committee chair wants to actually work on this, then we will deal with it that way. it is concerning that this language got in here, we will see what we can work on. i want to thank you for the main part of the bill which it did not come with these writers.
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we will continue to work on this . i wanted to bring this forward, because this is an issue that will not be fixed unless it is gone or we can mitigate it. we should not have to do this. when all 16 members of the bicameral delegation came together and said this is a really problematic point for us and now the language that was added could involve other states and the joint explanation, by putting more states, could involve other states. not just georgia. there could be disagreement about that, but when you look at it from that perspective there is issue. i have made my case. there are a lot of things going on. i hope we can continue to work on this. this is a problematic issue for us, we are working on this trying to fix this. i wanted to use this time to say thank you for your work, there are a lot of things i am
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appreciative of. but it is a shame to me that we get this lingers. mr. chairman: the omnibus blocks all senate efforts that would disadvantage alabama over other states. proposald the senate that would have prohibited from reallocating or studying the reallocation of water in the alabama river basin. it blocked the expansion of that proposal through the flint river basin. and it toppling was that would have elevated florida's environmental concerns within it acf river basin and halted senate language that would have required notification of any instant for a river basin, withdrawing water in
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excess. the legislation also replaces problematic report language regarding notifications from the andt to deal with -- core violations of water contracts involving the ac t. at the new report language is not specific to any water basin, merely asks for a report from the doj of any violations of water contracts recorded by the corps. however, the doj indicates they have never received any notifications of violations from the corps and do not expect any. so therefore the report would not include any information of the violations. mr. collins: i appreciate that and i appreciate the staff working on that. the problem is what was left. there is a genuine disagreement.
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it is one of those things that may seem odd to you if you look at it. if i told you to comment on this piece of paper, this is all you see, what i do not show you is i wanttory behind what you to comment on. what we are dealing with is a history that involves far beyond a single focused issue of the language that has been presented. it was taken out, we understand that. and we appreciate it. but it was then turned around and added in a liquid that is problematic -- language that is o-matic. -- rob o-matic. the issue that we have should be noted that a similar attempt was inserted, when it was said that this was language that was a clarification for a non-whatever you want to call it language, and then it ended up in a lawsuit in this case. this is not sibley an issue of
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-- simply an issue of language and how it is written, this is an issue of 30 plus years of history. it is used for leverage. this is the problematic part. i know this is an increase -- disagreement. the issue we have is we have history backing it up, but this is problematic. by being nonspecific and not having a report is not the issue. but the gentle man who offer agree, because they wanted it in this way. this is nonspecific. when you look back to 2005, it is an interesting date to go back to when you say multistate, georgia is one of those involved in multistate water negotiating problems. i think the issue is that i've issue,espect for you -- mr. chairman i've great respect
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for you. but alabama and georgia need to sell this. mr. chairman: we understand. we are talking about some way to help you solve this problem. we will continue to work with you. mr. collins: you have to understand from my perspective, the needs to be solved with governors of the state. they need to get together and quit this plane with the writers . this will come back unless we can work it out and get it fixed. i yield my time. mrs. lowey: i just want to say again, i do not know a thing about this issue, but you explain yourself so eloquently and is another reason why they -- why we should not be legislating on the preparations bill. mr. collins: that is why i am proud that we are going to be working these on order and this is what needs to be done, the people of this country need this
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and we need to adjust this in this order. i yield back. mr. chairman: the good gentleman from alabama is recognized. >> thank you. that the defense is the same as was provided for in the -- et chairman: when thornberry was here, the amount ragged edge ofer what the joint chief of staff said what they needed and what was reached was $5 billion below the amount. so the appropriators have followed with a budget deal said, that actually went below the lower ragged edge is what we were told from the gentleman. i assumed that this appropriations bill saved money
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for the refugee program for the department of state. mr. chairman: yeah, the bill maintains the whole 15 levels for migration and refugee assistance, three point -- 3.06 -- billion dollars total. additional funds are available if needed to respond to humanitarian crisis overseas, but not for the domestic refugee issue. would fit into that would be up to the executive branch and not up to us? is that right? right?
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mr. chairman: ask the question again. mr. byrne: the decision about who would fall into the category of somebody who would be able to come in on the program would be up to the discretion of the executive branch? mr. chairman: that is right. mr. byrne: we know that the president ordered the executive branch to admit 10,000 refugees from syria, so this funding would allow him to do that, use this money for that under his discussion -- discretion?
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mr. chairman: as i understand it, there is no specific amount or what is called resettlement that is within the discretion of these active branch -- executive branch. mr. byrne: it was ordered from the president to admit 10,000 people from syria, certainly it will be used for that month according to the present orders -- for that, according to the president orders?
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mr. chairman: it would be in the president's discretion to do that. they would have to go through all procedures to bring -- mr. byrne: they could let in the 10,000 refugees that the president has ordered?
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mr. chairman: the funding is at last year's level and two out of the three is for resettlement overseas. mr. byrne: so they could not use any money appropriated from this bill to pay for the resettlement of syrian refugees in this country? mr. chairman: it could. -- o mr. byrne: up to? mr. chairman: some of the money could be used for that purpose. mr. byrne: last year one of the big issues was whether there was
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money being a prorated for the president to grant executive amnesty to immigrants. is the funding here to implement those? mr. chairman: there is no money for that purpose. mr. byrne: it is safe to say that if you voted for this appropriations bill, you would not be voting to fund an executive action by the president to grant amnesty to immigrants? mr. chairman: that is exact we write. mr. byrne: important to know. the department of labor has issued that rule and i assume funding is in place for them to use the funding to implement that role. mr. chairman: yes. mr. byrne: thank you, i appreciate the clarification on those points. i yield back. mr. chairman: the dome and yields back -- gentleman yield
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i will recognize myself are as much time as they need. [laughter] mr. chairman: this is not directed at the two witnesses. mr. sessions: i share much of the frustration in the process that we find ourselves. the speaker has stated that this is not where we should be and i agree with that. i think that the fact, what we have sitting in front of us, the bill we are considering which the dominant from colorado has not had time to read and i admit that have not either, a lot of things in their -- there are good and many that we would have . hard time voting yes on so the frustration, i have had a lot of questions over the last
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several weeks for many parties on how things are going, where i could notfrankly answer very well. part of this process, many of us found ourselves in that situation, because negotiations are at much higher levels. so to what ever regular order is, the committee is doing the bulk of the work and i think it will be a healthy thing, one that will give us the ability to help us feel like we are contributing. it is much more where the underlying intention of the process is supposed to be. anyway, just to echo some of the frustrations i have heard from the other questioners today. having said that without going into a lot of detail, there are some things in the build i find should be pointed out as far as
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my perspective, coming from the state of washington per speblingtive. from the western part. some were addressed some were not. one particular thing that was probably close to number one on my list and so i have to at least offer a word of thanks for the recognize nisks the federal government's responsibility to continue nuclear cleanup in my state. we have the largest nuclear cleanup project in the nation. there are several around the country and so the commitment that is expressed in the bill is, i think, admirable and it underscores the federal government's responsibility as well as its important obligation. along those lines, also there's funds to continue look at yucca mountain as an option for
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nuclear waste depositories. that's a positive thing to point out. jumping around, i would have to take the other position that the think the country of origin label -- language that is in the bill is a good thing. it will avoid us as a nation having to be subjected to a uge amount of unfair, i think, retaliatory tariffs from our two neighbors, mexico and canada, so i think it was a huge thing to get that language in the bill and appreciate that very much. as you know, the western united states is experiencing some very interesting walks -- weather issues, drought situation, so addressing some of that with some increased funding toward trout relief was important. along those lines in, my district in central washington we the last two years have had
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record-setting, catastrophic ile -- wildfires and provisions in this language in the bill addressed that so that we can move forward toward better forest management on our national lands and get out of the cycle of battling these catastrophic fires. preventing them in the first place and managing our federal forests. appreciate that very much as well. there's many things. we can all point to good things in there. but there's p also some things that are larking in this bill and like i said, many of us in the rural and western parents of the united states find a long list of things that have been omitted from this negotiated deal. there are several members in the, waiting to speak on this, and i see the chairman of our estern caubous, mrs. loomis, want -- caucus, mr. loomis, wanting to i think take some
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time to talk about these issues. i'm hopeful that some of those priorities will be moved forward at some point in the very, very near future. you know, issues that maybe don't many people in -- in congress can't relate to but a huge part of the western united states is federal property. and many things the federal government does impacts us and our ability to improve our economy, to create jobs, and i'm talking about things as it relates to environmental protection agency, the regulations as it pertains to clean, a clean wearkts the restrictions that are placed on people in the west and their ability to grow an economy are huge. and we have issues with endangered species, with particular ones like sage grouse and prairie chickens and
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things like that that have a huge impact. other provisions i think are probably more widespread around the nation. you could talk about the stream protection rule and what impacts the -- that will have on our coal strirks which not only impact the west, but many areas of this country and in ways that maybe we haven't realized, not just in jobs, but also in our nation's electricity production and what the higher cost of power will be in our country. so just a lot of the things are concerning that were left out. i think that speaks to the process itself, though. it's unfortunate that we couldn't get all 12 bills passed through the interior of the house so we couldn't discuss some of these things member d have every feel like they had input and
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priorities brought up, issues that other people don't know about in other parts of the country could be included because they are huge priorities in certain parts of the country. so that's a huge failing of this system that we're using today. so count me as a fan of regular order, and i think from what i hear from other people in the room that there are many of us in that boat. so i guess, all that, there should be a question in there some wrks but i guess my to tion would be pertaining some of those issues in the natural resources department of interior area, would there be a commitment on the part of the chairman and the ranking member to bring those issues forward that they could -- can be considered in a more productive way? maybe if you could speak to that and why they weren't included in this particular piece of legislation?
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>> there were -- there are a number of provisions that relate to the concerns of the gentleman. r example, we prohibit the e.p.a. from implementing various harmful, costly regulations, including regulating the lead content in ammunition and fishing tackle, for example, implementing onerous greenhouse gas regulations for livestock producers, wen hansed the congressional oversight of e. prving a.'s review of mining permits. we forced the department of the interior to work with states on the stream buffer zone rule, someone referred to it, to prevent unnecessary harm to mining operations. we prevent the bureau of land management from hiking oil and
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gas inspection fees and burdening ranchers with higher grazing fees. we prohibit fund r -- funding for the fish and wildlife place sage grouse on the endangered species list, we pro hibipt the department of interior from administratively creating new wiltder -- wilderness areas. we've cut the e.p.a. sunday -- funding seve errly. they're now back to a funding level of 1989. so there are a number of things in this bill that i think would satisfy the gentleman. not perfectly, we didn't get all we wanted, or i didn't, but we're on track. and i'm very deeply interested in the western u.s. problems that the rest of the country
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doesn't know much about. representative lowey: if the gentleman would yield, i want to commend the gentleman on the thoughtful presentation and remind us that there are 435 members of congress, manying with different point of view arks -- and many be should be taken up in the authorizing process where there has to be healthy debate. so i'm just not going to comment on each of them. some we can agree on. many i would disagree with but i do think that your thoughtful approach warrants further discussion, and i would hope that as we begin the new fiscal would he authorizers take responsibility for
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debates, thoughtful agreements and disagreements, and i'm sure your input would be respected and considered. but what happens when the authorizers don't do their work, every side of these debates, which are very serious, may or may not be resolved. and as we were saying b. that some of these issues cannot be resolved among the appropriate ators, among the chair and the ranking member and all the ranking members of the 12 committees so they're stuck at the end to the -- pushed up at the toned the leadership level. so i just want to say that i appreciate your thoughtful questions and i hope we can address them request more thoughtfully in the next session of congress. >> appreciate that. i agreement it should be in the jurisdiction where the expertise lies.
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>> amen. >> amen. >> i appreciate that. >> the gentleman from texas? >> thank you. thank you very much. and nita, i want to thank you for taking time to be here. this is more jon -- than just our lick at us and your lick back at us but to go into these bills and determine more about them. i'd like to say straight up i've been pleased with the amount of information that is available to not only our members in a summary form but also the american public, who can look at all 12 spending bills, ascertain where we are -- were, where we're headed, what's included, the important, hich might be extraneous material about what the key issues were, it's available to our members. it's available to them before they have to make a decision
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necessarily on friday. >> will the gentleman yield? >> yes, sir. >> it's also available to the public online. >> yes, sir, and to the public. online. i will apologize for the rules committee as chairman i have to recognize this, last night and part of today, the parliamentarian and the rules committee web site was virtually inundated, not taken down, it was inundated with millions of requests for a lot of data, a lot of information, and i do recognize that. o next time we go to the, to ask for more money in the brges maybe they'll hear us and be more beneficial to us. but i want you to know i do recognize that but it is available. now, for my time what i'd like to say is thank you.
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thank you to each one of you for sticking to your duty, sticking to working together. i will tell you i'm interested in not just understanding what might be a texas issue, but rather an issue for the entire country. lifting the oil ban would create an estimated one million american jobs that would impact all 50 states. and wayne matter of years, just within a year or two as it icks off, nita, would add 1 -- $170 billion annually to our g.d.p., but there's more to the story. the more to the story is that what would happen is, is that lifting the ban would also increase overall energy supplies, which would directly benefit the consumer, and cording to the government accounting office, consumer gas prices here at home could drop
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13 cents per as gallon. well, just a few short years ago we became distressed all cross this country, in particular i work with lots of disabled families who many times have larger vehicles, things that might be called gas guzzlers but they need them because they have a lift for people who would be associated with bheached and lots of our veterans and veterans' families who are trying to take care of these veterans who have need of a wheelchair. and we were faused with a near disaster as families were rying to strugtol pay $4 and some for gleefpblet this weekend, dallas, texas, $1.71 for gasoline. $1.71 for gasoline, which means that families have seen a huge advantage for not only the
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technology, but also the willingness of this united states congress to stay after this. and mr. chairman, i know not everybody has to agree with it, but gettling $170 billion worth of g.d.p. out of this arrangement is an important thing. all 50 states, jobs for people, one million american jobs. you know, i don't know how it the said best, but you know, success has many fathers or many mothers, even people who vote no if this passes will get the benefit of $170 billion worth of g.d.p. and a million american jobs. and 13 cents a gallon. i'd like to say that's exhibit mr. he kind of work,
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chairman, you have pro d.c.ed for this country on a bipartisan basis for the untry and i'm going to admit the processes sometimes get difficult on us, but the success is the product. the success is the product, and this has much to be done. so maump, i will give you back my time. yes, sir. mr. chairman: absolutely. the gentleman from texas. >> chairman rogers, i know we've been here a long time and i apologize, but today we saw the federal reserve raise rates a quarve a percentage point. at what point do we need to begin to factor that back into our budgetary estimates? that's going to have a direct impact on the payment of the
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national debt, is it not? and the president of moneys left for discreation -- discretionary spending? mr. chairman: that's correct but i have no expertise on that. >> and i see mr. levin here. accept might be able to give a more thoughtful response. >> i will await that. mr. chairman: i want to thank our esteemed panelists this afternoon and thank you for coming the thank you very much for being here. >> thank you very much, maump. >> and i want to thank the chairman and repeat again that as the ranking member it's been pleasure working with the chairman and i'm particularly grateful for the extraordinary staff on both sides, because they'll be delighted to finally get to sleep when there is finally a vote on this bill.
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>> i don't know why we gave them one day off to sleep! >> i don't know why we couldn't make this happen on thursday. can you make that happen? >> so i'll close the hearing on the omnibus portion of today's hearing and there will be amendments to that. there are some people? thank you. >> ok, now, we're now going to move as we announced previously, we're going to now finish off the last portion of this, which would be the tax portion of this h.r. 2029, then we'll go immediately to amendments. the committee on ways and means would have the gentleman from texas -- yes, sir?
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>> mr. chairman, i'm not quarreling with the procedure, ut were the other members that are here, here for the omnibus or -- >> yes. thank you very much. we have members of the committee and i did not know who all was going to be here. we have one member coming in here -- the first part as we announced, we're going to go do this part, the tax part and then amendment. but this closed that portion that of hearing. so we'll now go to the gentleman, mr. braidy, the gentleman mr. levin, with the expert squizz who is here and i brady, hted, chairman that you decided to include that. what we want to do is get it right and the explanation that would be before this committee is always most important and i lot of people are watching.
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so thank you very much. without objection, anything you have in writing we would love it have you leave for our awesome sten 0 grapher. it only helps her get right whatever you said. >> thank you. happy to be here with the ranking member, mr. levin but also with our expert on tax licy the our goes, on this bill, our focus has been on delivering a package that will grow our economy and help american taxpayers keep more of their hard-earned dollars and that's what this bill does. first it prevents a major $600 billion tax increase on the american people. second, by making a number of temporary tax provisions permanent, it will deliver predakettability, clarity rand certainty to individual pax -- taxpayers and businesses trying to invest and manage for the full. as we know all too well, our country's tax code sometimes
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makes no 1e7b89s how can families and businesses depend on tax code each year when congressional -- congress does not? with this bill in place, americans will no longer have to worry each december if copping will take action on items they have come to rely on, including state and local tax deductions for families and also the research and development tax credit. third, this is a pro-growth by. it will make it easier for employers to plan ahead, grow their work force and invest. many those who are frustrated which washington waste will be pleased that our bill contains strong measures to fight fraud and abuse in federal tax programs. these are the first significant revisions since the 1990's. they're only a small down payment on republican effort to
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make she's tax provisions that are today far too prone to error and abuse more accountable. next year congress will take more actions to make sure people cannot take improper advantage of the current broken tax system. fifth, it reins in the i.r.s. and empowers taxpayers. requires i.r.s. employees to respect the taxpayer wifble its -- bill of rights and prohibits i.r. ssks missouri from using personal emple mail account for official business. we can all agree these are important taxpayer victories. finally, this bill serves as he path for the pro-growth tax reform, by assuring we will no longer have to spend months each year debating on tax provisions. i'm proud of this legislation and grateful to all the members
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of the ways and means committee and those on our g.o.p. conference who have helped us throughout the course of our negotiations. there is a lot in this but these are the kai principles. the bottom line is it prevents tax increases, creates more job opportunities, makes it easier for americans to do their taxes. that's a great gift for american taxpayers and people who want and deserve a stronger u.s. economy. one more point about this bill, last week i was here to talk ams the bipartisan cust report that will help american workers. the house has done its work but the senate has failed to move forward and we have to extend the deadlines for the outer wear provisions and are cut tariffs on six environmental provisions. with that i'm happy to take your questions. the doctor and i are available to visit with the committee about this bill.
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>> chairman brady, thank you very much. mr. leven, welcome back. we're delighted that you are here. i would remind the gentlemen that sometimes we do have problems here and with our great witnesses we would remind you to speak directly into the microphone. >> thank you. hello, everybody. i oppose this bill. we don't have the final score, i don't think, but it will add $600 billion to the deficit. tax extenders are troyer for a good reason. to address their impact on the deficit and also to take them up in the context of overall tax reform. in this -- and this bill does just the opposite. it essentially says there's a free lunch.
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it's the opposite of what was done by the previous chairman, davidcamp, who looked at all these provisions, made some of them permanent and others not, and paid for them. lus the fact that this bill is not balanced. businesses receive about 60% of hese cuts. so let me just say a few words about the impact of proceeding this way, of essentially effect -- affecting the budget baseline and making these permanent, unlike the temporary . if you make them temporary, you have to pay for them in terms of the baseline, this just folds it into them. it will have a major impact op discretionary spending in the
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years ahead. that's the consequence of adding $600 billion to the deficit. nondiscretionary, nondefense appropriatitions -- appropriations today are at the lowest level in terms of overall economic structure since 1962. he lowest. lso, what this does by not offsetting now essentially saying they won't have to be ever, and so that means that therefore it's possible for, therefore, there to be so-called tax reform with tax reductions that mainly benefit e very wealthy, and they
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essentially are arguably paid for themselves. on bonus depreciation, it's another example of what we should not be doing. bonus depreciation that's -- has been used during periods of recession, be the recession is behind us. the interest rate's been raised because of economic improvement. so what this bill does is keep the 50% for three years and hen coup to 40 and then to 30. the likelyhood is that that will continue add continued -- continue and the overall cost of bonus depreciation on a 10-year basis is over $200 billion. also, as part of this $600 billion package, and i'll be breervings you've been here a
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long time, it takes the two international tax provisions, tax provisions that should be looked at in tax rorges tax provisions in one case $86 billion, that has kept for a number of years and the other the look-through, that's made permanent. these tax provisions have been used, from what we know, semly as tax havens to avoid -- essentially as tax havens to avoid some legitimate tax purposes. there are a number of provisions in here that we very much like. the child tax credit and the other two that are very important, the eitc and the education provision, but the proice -- price is too high in terms of an overall package, a package of $600 billion.
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i'll close with this because we've been going through this now for month after month with the majority republicans. they passed out of committee provisions that would essentially make permanent these tax provisions, and it came up to are, 7, $80 month billion. -- $800 billion. the notion, i gerks was that the more you increase the doifers the easier it's going to be to raise, to cut other taxes. it's -- it's counterintuitive. it works only if you believe that making other tax cuts pay for themselves -- we've been through that now for years and years. it has president worked out. and that's another reason why
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this $600 package on balance is a serious mistake and that's why i and many other democrats in the house oppose it. thank you. >> thank you very much. the testimony from both of you is important for this committee. it's important for members who are listening. it's important for the american public. we'll go thrur these some 223 pages. our web site has been inundated with people trying to get at this to determine what it is, what's in, what's out, what might be included. i don't want to argue with anyone -- any one of you. i will err on the side of believing that i believe maump brady, what you have done is awesome. i'm not going to try to quarrel with you we've saved $600 billion or not. i would characterize that we
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should not have taxed and should have made permanent i.r.s. contributions to chairy. we were going to do that every year also but instead of uncertainty, maump uncertainty,e are getting certainty. i do not want to argue with anybody about what is right or wrong, about depreciation on two thirds of the tax code. as you accelerate it appreciate, it -- the depreciation, it keeps our businesses young, nimble, new, so we do not grow old and stagnant. a person's business means that they update with the times. problemsthey fix the that they have. whether it is 88 or modernizing -- ada or modernizing with the times. and lastly, r&d. , i came fromleman
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high-tech when i came to this job. thank you from the original bell labs team that invented broadband back in 1986. we developed broadband. we do not know what the future was, but we knew what would spawn off a revolution. , comes fromr&d incubators, labs, all sorts of things that accelerate to make life better. we should never tax, and i don't think we were going to, tax r&d. it is a regular part of doing business. we gave it to people without having them worry about it at the end of every year. what you have done is give them certainty. i would not make the claim that we saved $600 billion, because what we have done is begun a
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revolution in this country where people can now all of their business plan -- follow their business plan from january 1 from now on. decisions,hoices and go out and purchase american-made products. i am proud of you. i am proud of you and i think it is a job not only well done, but a great lift for people who benefiting, and making our country stronger. dr. burgess? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to relate to how optimistic i am about the future of this bill in front of us today. today is important, and i appreciate the work you put in as i think about that year and the things to come. the good things to come. at the the wind is at our back at fundamental tax reform. happen.going to make it i'm proud to be a part of that.
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i want to thank you for being here today. thank you for working so hard on this. i cannot wait to see what is next. >> the gentleman from as is recognized. express my frustration over this whole process. i do not particularly like the , at the last minute we are being presented with this big package of a little bit of everything. white frankly, none of us are going to know completely what is in it by the time we vote for it. the process is frustrating. that is not the fault of anybody isting at this table, it this institution and the other body as well. but it is a reflection on how our priorities have not always been right and i think we need fundamental tax reform. -- i do not believe that we have leadership where we
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should see it. in charge,een proposed something, and nothing happened. franklyankly, -- quite i am not confident that unless things change here, we will ever see it. but let me say this. dilemma i can see right now. as much as i agree with all that they have said in terms of the of where the line share of the tax code goes, one of the things that is frustrating me the most about the congress over the years is the fact that i have felt the most vulnerable in this country have been neglected time and time again. in this deal there is the theanent suspension of child tax credit.
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i wish it were indexed. permanently things extended to the people i care most about, is something that ghtly.nnot take li this train is moving out of the station, whether we like it or not. this is going to the white house, this is what the white house has said they will sign. if it gets to them. the dilemma for people like me is trying to figure out what is the right vote. the process is flawed. the fact that they are unpaid for is flawed. train is leaving the station, and something that is helping people that i think have been neglected for far too long, the people who run this in -- by the people who run this institution, what do you do? i'm going to go through this and read it and figure out what the
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right vote is. here.k you for being point weully at some will get a better process in place we were are not having to deal with these kinds of things at the last minute when nobody pages, trying to figure out what the implications are. this is not the way it should be run. without ideal back. -- with that, i yield back. >> do you seek time to engage the witnesses? >> i don't want to cut anybody off. >> a brief comment, with the indulgence of the chairman. we are going to do tax reform. and a lot of hard work has been done over the past four years on the committee.
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we have examined the entirety of the code. we have put a lot of proposals out there. the american people want to tax reform. but a something we can agree upon in a bipartisan way. the country this music -- country desperately needs growth. it is not going to happen without tax reform. package, have broken a cycle that has been around for a long time. much in terms of tax, and at the last minute we extend these tax provisions on a temporary basis. it has created a tremendous amount of uncertainty for the american people with businesses to plan, at a time when it is already an atmosphere of uncertainty with the economy to begin with. it is a terrible environment for business. the american economy must be made stronger, it must put back in a position of prosperity and to build we are going a lead in the global economy
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growth which is also struggling. proposal we have broken the cycle. we are making some of these provisions permanent that we agree should be made permanent. we are setting the stage for tax reform. furtheruld have had cooperation with the administration, and our colleagues in the senate, perhaps we could have gone even further. i think this is a very ambitious package. it is progrowth. it will help not only businesses, but families. for staffry important to moving forward on tax reform. -- first step on moving forward on tax reform. i hope it will continue next year with our colleagues on the ways and means committee in the house and in the senate with moving forward. tax -- >> let me amend what i said. tax reform that will go passed both chambers, and to the white
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house, part of my critique of some of the issues is that they seem to be focused on people who are well off, and ignore people who are struggling and full durable. i think it is important, and i always said, in this package there is an extension of the current income child tax credit. i am not diminishing that. the only thing that can be paused here. i have been troubled over the years because that population has been consistently and deliberately ignored. i can hope we can get the tech system in balance. tax system in balance. up was this was brought not ideal. but we cannot ignore the fact that people are struggling in this country. 60 million people could be
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helped by this, and these are people who this congress has ignored. i appreciate it. me a comment very briefly? i think your feelings are totally shared. i think one needs to understand [inaudible] it will become permanent. let me say a word about certainty and uncertainty. when you do $600 billion unpaid is certaintylt that the pressure on discretionary nondefense will
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grow and grow and grow. said, it is the lowest level in terms of our economic package since 1962. it has been going down and down after in the few years the 2008 election. not only is this a step backwards in terms of tax reform, but it is also creating events --creating immense essures on the people who are lower middle class and struggling out of poverty to be of to address discretionary programs, nondefense, so that we reverse this trend towards more, less and less discretionary
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spending. weathers education,, health whether it is education, whatever it is, health research, whatever it is. the pressure has been so immense matter sograms that much that we have not found real money for infrastructure. million works is further and further in this direction. >> i get it. again, this train is moving out of the station. and in it, there is something i feel very deeply about. where we are going to have to wrestle with over the next couple of hours. i yield back. >> do you seek time? the gentleman is recognized. >> i think there are going to be members here that are going to
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the votet because of on the really complicated matter in a short time frame. this bill is 233 pages. i doubt very seriously of three quarters of the membership has a clue about what is in it and what is not in it. also, members are going to have some angst about the cost of this measure. i need to get a firm figure by mr. brady,levin and what is the cost estimate for this measure? >> $629 billion for 10 years. >> is that correct? >> that is the latest. billion, we have an updated measure. >> i would be interested in seeing what the deficit talks in the congress would say.
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if they do not have any angst, i guess i should shut up. does the gentleman wish to seek the time of the committee witnesses? >> yes, mr. chairman. >> i will be equally brief. the good news is, we have seen these provisions. these were extended a year ago. unfortunately, this is temporary for a year backward. this means families, small businesses cannot even count on that tax relief they were owed. we all voted on this exact same package as well four years ago. of us have memorized the tax provisions here. the difference is we are making many of them permanent sore families and businesses can count on them. my thought is we ought to stop this charade on the cost. beenruth is we have extending these provisions for one year at a time, every year. some of these have been extended 419, 17ears, some
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years. we know them well. whether you extend them one year without paying for them, and you should not, or two years, or ise, or 10, the annual cost exactly the same. whether you buy the pie one slice at a time or you buy the whole thing, the cost is the same. the mostrence is disappointing recovery since world war ii. our families and businesses need the relief. the tax increase is never a cost. we have always worked hard as republicans to stop washington from taking more money from the hard-working taxpayers who earned it. our belief is this is not washington's money this is our taxpayers money. in this instance, the exact same price, we will provide them the tax relief they can count on. a $600 billion, $629
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billion a charade, is a serious mistake. it is a serious mistake for a number of reasons. when they are temporary and has two the benefits -- temporary it two benefits. you can examine them, you can delete them. it is also a major impact in terms of the tax basis and whether or not you have to pay for these reductions in taxes. your notion basically is you do not have to pay for tax cuts because they pay for themselves. that has been the notion behind the tax policies of the republicans.
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>> extending these temporarily have zero benefits. of the ways and means committee, you extend these provisions without paying for them. you had no complaints about them. --t have honest and true >> don't say i did not have any complaints. when we extended them i did not extend them thinking they would be permanent. >> so for that timeframe. >> yes, but you are doing this on paying for primarily -- unpaid for permanently. >> the difference is that people cannot count on these. >> i will just reclaim my time. have q, i'm sure, argumentshese
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repeatedly. that i amre you pretty glad that i am not on the ways and means committee. [laughter] if you talk about getting called , i am delighted for it. i am delighted to know that that weretax credits set to expire that are going to be considered. my overall concern is that when you do things like bonus depreciation and other measures that are going to get more to national corporations and other benefits, i just savor for avor poor people over big corporations that go overseas and do in version and other things that effect our economy in any meaningful way. i recognize that they can create
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some jobs but they do serious damage by not paying taxes themselves. and the thrust always is on the poor. that is why stand against this measure, and prepared to vote against it in spite of things like the cadillac tax and other measures. i will be voting no. the gentleman yield back his time. the gentleman from georgia? >> thank you. the issue does feel a little duplicitous sometimes, to have that conversation sometimes and not other times. i have to agree with the chairman, the worst boat i have taken was the vote last year to extend the tax provision for what amounted to 17 days and retroactively just over 11 months. why in the world and i incentivizing to do something that they should have already done?
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we cannot get it through the committee, we have gone backwards. i'm conflicted over the amount of money that is involved here because it is absolutely weighing on my deficit conscious. on the budget committee, i want to balance the budget and see the future go forward. but every year i sit around in that budget committee, i spend months crafting a budget that pretense that tax provisions will last a year that has gone on for decade after decade after decade. if i'm going to have a serious conversation with my colleagues about whether it is lifting up. folks outmic ladder -- the economic ladder, i need to have serious servers to have that conversation with. the more we can do to get out of the fiction business, and given
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the tough decision making business the better off we will all be. we had an examination of these measures, and we critically looked at everyone one of these things and struck about half of everything each year, that are absolutely be on board with you mr. levin. but my experience is exactly the opposite. exerciseerformance every year that is nothing but undermine people's confidence in our system. you all are better than that. i was listening in in the back all are foru said tax reform, we will deliver tax reform. this is not the final question on whether or not this is the best tax policy to build america. this is the final statement of whether or not we will continue fixing the tax policy and that we will get about the serious business of reform in the
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future. >> i appreciate your comments and i agree with them. last two years, we have actually examined these provisions in committee, in hearings, we have marked them up, and we have subjected these tax provisions regular order. in the past we had this kick the can down the road attitude where at the end of the year quickly we have to put a package of extenders together to extend it for another year with no certainty. you are absolutely correct. there were farmers who wanted to buy new equipment, and they had , if anyhort window window at all, depending on whether cash flow was because of the way bonus depreciation was weated last year in what did. that is unacceptable. we cannot grow this economy, we cannot give certainty to the businesses. small businesses are the backbone of this economy. for those who are struggling out there and need jobs, if we help our small businesses, they will create jobs, and people will
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move up the ladder. gentleman frome florida as well, these are not just committees on tax, we're looking at well for -- welfare reform to move them up the ladder. we need certainty. we need a good down payment to move this forward. >> you really hit the right note. i didn't agree with many parts of the proposal. least it was serious, and it was honest. for, what it proposed, and it looked at everything. it looked at bonus depreciation. what this bill does is to take
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two international tax revisions and to take them out of tax throughmaking the look permanent. that is for a number of years. advance of the proposal, the other one that is , what it does is to take the outside of tax reform. and that is a mistake. you should not say that there has never been an effort to do tax reform. what happened was it was put forward, it was dismissed by the have is and now what we piecemeal efforts. mistake,nk that is a
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and the impact of $600 billion, as i have said, in terms of ,iscretionary programs appropriations, is going to be immensely serious. i appreciate the time. not presume to know more about tax policy than any of you sitting at that table. but i would say that my experience watching tax extender policy is no more persuasive to me that this bill closes the than it isese issues to say that the fact we have been doing it every year for a decade leads these businesses to assume it will go on in perpetuity anyway. in the context of fundamental tax reform i believe, i welcome the chairman to disabuse me of this notion, i do not know how you get a copy tax reform unless everything is on the table -- comprehensive tax reform unless everything is on the table. thingsvote for these
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today, everything is off the table. i will share concerns with mr. levin. weare providing certainty can today with everything on the table. >> you are absolutely correct. is tot, the first step answer the question what is the tax code? today, there is confusion. is it with the current law is, isn't part of the tempora, all of the temporary provisions? this makes a true and honest accounting of the true tax code. it creates formatting for going forward. this is a critical step. elevatingcontext of the fictions that are around here.
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-- eliminating the fictions that are around here. at kroger, who shop walmart, safeway, they pay every one of those taxes and there the least stable to be able to do that. the more we can expand transparency in the tax code, the better. of american fan our pay more in gas tax than they are an income tax breaks to pepper and joined the fiction that we are fiddling with the income tax to help them get ahead is distortionary. code,e created a welfare not a tax code. people who work for wages do not have any other choices than to pay these taxes where the first getting -- where the government gets the first bit.
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we need to look at that tax that is so burdens working families in this country. i thank you all. i yield back. >> the gentleman from ohio. >> thank you. i was like -- i would like to ask the chairman, we talked about the fuel-cell language that was excluded and the solar language that was included in the tax credit. could you explain to me again why that was not on the table or get included? thank you for raising this issue. like you, we have developing fuel-cell technologies, and another number of areas, thermal, we tax credits -- wind tax credits. they were not included because their provisions have not expired. they will expire in 2016.
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thosewas no need to make extensions in this bill. the larger package of her novels does include a five-year extension of the solar tax credits, which was a key discussion point in this overall package, especially related to the effort to lift the oil export ban. they stay in law until 2016. >> thank you. that is an important competitiveness issue. it means wect, cannot pick winners and losers. i'm glad to hear that the reason it was not included is a was not expiring. we can have that debate next year. hopefully it will not expire. we can have that debate next year when it is time. i know everything happens when it is time. i appreciate all of the hard work of everybody here. i actually think this is a good compromise package. everybody gets a little bit
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something. think they might like, not like,. it helps low-income people with the child tax credit. it >> and it looks if a lot of individual extensions for a shorter term. but i think it sets you up really well for tax reform as you said, mr. chairman, and i appreciate all of your hard work on it. i am sorry we are not going to get a unanimous vote on it, but i will support it. >> he yields back his time. the gentleman from alabama. >> a lot of the clock is the gift to humanity. i have no question. >> chair yields back. the gentlemen from washington. >> as scrooge i will just have a short question or comment
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about the legislation. i come from a state that we don't have a state income tax. every year the question of hether you can deduct your state sales tax comes up. sometimes we get it, sometimes we don't. but it is a big deal. those people in the state of washington that do take advantage of that deduction, it is huge. almost a third of the tax payers do, and it comes up to almost $2 billion that impacts families in my state. t may be counted as increasing the deficit, but in my way of thinking that is their money, not our money. that is not the u.s. government's money. let 're going to taxpayers keep more of their hard-earned money, i don't
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think that is a cost. i think that is a real benefit. i am very appreciative that is in there and made permanent and we don't have to argue that. it is also very important for many people in agriculture in my start, just as you were talking about the certainty of being able to play financially and not the last minute of the year, if you are fortunate enough to have any money left over, do you buy that piece of equipment or not, to have the ability to make those plans 12 months instead of maybe 12 days early i think is a huge thing. so i am very appreciative of those kind of things. research and development tax credits are very good. there are a lot of good things in there. like anything we do around here, everything is probably not perfect. but i appreciate very much your work on it and look forward to supporting it. >> thank you, sir. >> gentleman yields back his time. i want to thank all three of you for taking time for being with us today.
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i know you had to excise a lot of your afternoon for this. it is important for this committee, important for members, important for us to express not only in the hearing form, but to get the correct expertise to address this properly. all three of you have done that. thank you for your time. >> thank you. if you would, leave for our awesome stenographer anything you brought in, in writing. i would like to call up the panel of members. i recognize that what we are doing here now is allowing testimony that would be on any part of the two pieces that we have today. i would just simply ask that anyone who is wishing to give testimony would specify to us really which bill they are in eference to and give us that help. would ask the gentleman from
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mr. new york, delaware, mr. jordan from ohio, mr. griffith if he chooses from the state of virginia. she has been the most faithful person. i pet you they will let you sit next to mr. carney. give her that chair. you were very kind. >> mr. griffith, if you choose to be with the other, i would allow you to. we will hustle through this. i know you have been very patient. >> mr. jordan might have been here for the same matter. we will include him. ms. lunch mis, you get the award for being here the
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longest. the gentle woman from wyoming is now recognized. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i very much appreciate the work of president prorkses -- of this appropriations committee and the developers of this omnibus bill. i would take an environment slither out of this bill and subject it to a continuing resolution until philbin and allow the rest of the bill to without being subject to a c.r. so it would be only that very sliver that relates to the interior and environment subcommittee's component of this omnibus bill that would be subject to a c.r. the reason that i am asking for
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this amendment is that i dope want to interfere with the very good work that negotiators have completed in the remainder of the bill. but it appears to the we were states in particular and people that are very concerned about the interior department and e.p.a. components of this bill, that the position that the negotiators took left the stern states and coal-producing states and natural resource issues on president negotiating table in a way that was a greater sacrifice than any other component of the bill. in other words, the west in particular is particularly aggrieved.
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so it wants to receiver itself out and continue negotiations on that part of the bill through february and allow the rest of the omnibus to go through as negotiated. let me give you some examples. i'm sorry that the gentleman from oklahoma who is on this committee isn't here to hear this. earlier while i was listening he was explaining his concern that authorizing committees are not doing their job. therefore, riders are put on , lls that are policy-oriented and we should limb appropriations bills to appropriations. yet this very bill violates that premise in a big way. this very bill funds the land and water conservation fund even though it's authorization ust lapsed two months ago, and
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even though the natural resources committee has had a hearing on a working draft to re-authorize the land and water conservation fund and to implement some reforms to return that program to its original intent. over the years the land and water conservation fund has morphed into a bill that largely funds the acquisition of more federal land in states that are already dominated by federal land, when the original intent of the land and water conservation fund was to prioritize states' projects and states' funding. there are also some other changes to that bill that we have been working through in negotiations to authorize or re-authorize the land and water conservation fund in the
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natural resources committee. yet this bill preempted our ommittee work and funds that we are trying to re-authorize. there is an issue i would wish to point out. there are things that were removed from this bill that were in both base bills, the house and the senate pace bills. we were just told that there as language added to this bill to ledge mize this as a conference -- to legitimize this as a conference committee record. if something is in both base bills, it stays in the bill. t is not a process where the particular negotiators don't like what both houses decided, so they thorough it outand yet that is what has happened in this big. as specifically to the stream
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buffer rule allowance, that is evastating to cole -- coal -producing states, particularly my colleagues who have underground mines, although the rule is extended to apry to surface mines it could affect the availability of electricity -- coal from cole nationwide. since that is such a huge component of our pace load in electricity, it could have dramatic effects in the ability of this country to provide electricity at a time when we are not ready to replace coal with wind, and solar, and natural gas and nuclear. so this is something that the
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coal companies and the coal producing states find extremely egregious. lastly -- and this is just of many. and i am referring specifically to a hand-out that was prepared y nita lowey, and it is on her website. it is marvelous. it is an amazing piece of work. it shows that she was successful in negotiating out of this bill. now this bill allows new standards for existing sources of greenhouse gas emissions. it allows the extension of navigateable waters. a allows the cost of carbon into any guidance. it allows rule on hydraulic
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fracturing federal and indian lands. we have a rule in my state on hydraulic fracturing. and in wyoming and all the other states there is federal nd surrounded by and rounded by private land, and this drilling goes under all of them. whose rules apply? the state's rule or this new federal rule? it is stacked real making with change. ability to it allows wolves to stay on the -- ngered speak cease species to stay on the endangered list despite the fact they are supposed to be taken off the list. it prohibits the incidental take of the northern long eared
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bat. this bill allows interior to implement and enforce the threat and spess' enforce yt of the lesser prairie chicken. and it allows the department of interior to continue to use its listing the sage greenhouse. that takes 11 million akers of stern land out of the -- acres of western conference land out of the process of beg available for oil, gas or recreation. this is something that we find as members of the western caucus and the intermountain states to be a bill that is so weighted against the west as to be unfair to the west. u have con congressional
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districts that are extremely egregiously affected by this sliver of the bill that came out of the interior and environment appropriation subcommittee's negotiated product. that is why we want to take a rifle shot and say only this omponent of the bill will be subject to a continuing resolution so we can continue negotiations as to that part of the bill until february and allow that part of the bill to produce. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. gentlewoman he that i was unaware, which is why we do hearings. i have contacted a former member of the rules committee, mr. bishop, as chairperson of the committee. i would like to advise that i am going to ask mr. newhouse if
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he would come back and play chairman for a few minutes and allow me a chance to go and investigate this issue. i have accepted your testimony on the surface that you have described. i have gathered together the information that i believe i need, and going to have to go look at this. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> i take very seriously, in tanko, who is here with a very important provision. i know that the former governor from delaware has contacted me about important things -- currently governor markel. we are looking at things. you have come to the right place. this is the right time. we are going to measure plea times and try and saw once. so i would ask the gentleman, mr. newhouse, if he said come and take my place, and we would go with the gentlemen for
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questions. > do you have any questions? [inaudible question] >> mad only rappinging member, her work product is wonderful. i am not happy with what it says, but it sure is clear. she did a fabulous job of compiling and explaining what is in this bill. please give her my compliments. >> i shall do that. e aim to please in new york. >> do any other members hatch any questions? mr. burgess? >> i want to thank the win for
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pointing out the issue on the authorization side of things. as a humble authorizer, i recognize that we do authorize a lot of stuff. authorizing bills with few exceptions are not must-pass pieces of lemming simulation, which is why everything win owes down to an appropriations bill at the end of the year. so it is not exactly fair to imbullpen the intent of the authorizers. we do our work. we do a lot of work. but our bills are not structured as must-pass pieces of legislation. and if they are bottled up, there they sit until a must-pass piece of legislation comes up to which it can be attached. i held my tongue. i couldnt stand it any longer. i had to speak out. thank you, and i yield back. >> not a problem.
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> i should say, too, and ms. lumus, you have announced you are retiring, and your presentation today tells me we are going to miss you greatly. you very well verbalized it. i couldn't have said it better. you put into easy to understand terms the situation we face in the west. so i appreciate that. you mentioned a couple of things, the land and water conservation fund. it was actually increased in the amount of the funding they go without any of the reforms the committee was seeking. as far as the sage greenhouse goes, certainly it is going to impact the ability to utilize resources around the west, and recreation, but also in some ses it impacts militaryplaces, which is a concerning thing.
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that is something we shouldn't compromise. appreciate much your testimony. > thank you, mr. chairman. >> no one else? i appreciate that. mr. tanko, you are recognized. >> thank you. members of the committee, i thank you for the opportunity to present an amendment to the omnibus bill that amends section 302. basically this addresses the investment texas credit extension for solar technology. i certainly support solar strongly and feel this is a basic need for the industry. they are epcouged and strengthened by these incentives. but i want to bring what i believe is an oversight to this committee's attention. as currently written, this
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anguage excludes other technologies from benefiting --. 20-20 threshold i believe we should inall the technologies, including fuel cells. this bill is straight-forward, it would add these other technologies to the extension to 2020, and we would ask that be approved, be looked upon favorably by this committee so that we can speak to what we oversight here. >> mr. carney? welcome to the rules committee. >> thank you mr. acting chairman and the ranking member and ibs members of the committee. i am here to support the amendment, which does exactly
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as he described it. it adds into the extension of 48-c, investment tax credits the other technologies that are currently apartment of the code that weren't included. it is our understanding based on agreements with leadership over in the senate, mr. read and mr. mcconnell, it was supposed to include this whole list. qualified fuel cells, which is the particular technology that i am interested in. that we mentioned when talking about the governor it would negatively affect an operation in our state that bloom energy fuel cell ey build places.
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people are making good middle-class wages at that facility. they have borqued as a delegation to advance the extension of this credit to the fuel sell technology, and it was the senator's understanding in a conversation he had with leader reed, that that would be included. we have been told over here on capital, that it was not part of the agreement over here, and there forethat would have to come to the house leadership. this amendment is simply a mechanism to carry that agreement forward if that communication occurs, recognizing we are at the 11th hour here on a very important piece of legislation. i would like to thank all the negotiators for the time they were putting into this, to emphasize how important this
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particular provision is, not just for the installation in our state, but for inthrations around the country. in the scheme of things, it is a small i'd. who work 200 people in facilities, it is a very important matter and about would that could mean whether they continue to have a job or not. with that as my request, i would be happy to answer any questions that members might have. thank you for hearing us out and appreciate your favorable consideration to this request. >> thank you both for being here today and the information brought forward on a very important issue. think i understand, and this was brought you were earlier. aybe you were in the room.
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the bill before us is a bipartisan piece of work. i think i heard the chairman of ways and means say this tax credit doesn't expire until next year. if that in fact is incorrect, i would certainly like to know that. if that is correct and changes at this time would maybe threaten the entire package, if hat is true, i think the scombleffed desire of everybody would be to work through regular order. >> mr. chairman, i would suggest that after having heard conversation for the past several hours, respectfully i certainly, th which i endorse as a fundamental dynamic of the effort made by the house.
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so if we can extend that certainty to 2020, i believe we of accomplishing the spirit this cut. i, too, have organizations like plug power in the capital region of new york that would be tremendously impacted if this were not allowed. i heard talk about doing it next year, but you strike when the iron is hot. you have a package here that is dealing with renewables. we should include all the other technologies for the sake of e fairness, and certainly no -- for certainty's sake. this what aid in the effort to crow jobs, keep jocks, and provide for encouragement and predictable. i think that is important.
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i, too, have been informed that there was an agreement. there was a bipartisan agreement in the united states senate, the draft does not reflect that agreement. and that we should do our best here for what is a very small piece of a very small bill to go forward and address certainty in this given moment so that we are doing the best for this company. it speaks to the best of the american economy. this would bolster opportunities. so i realizefully would encourage us or this committee to look favorably upon the request. again, thank you for the opportunity to present it, and thank all the members of the house who have worked so diligently on the omnibus bill. >> what you say is exactly right. just to go back to the rationale for my support of
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this and the intent of the rules committee to approve this amendment is to provide a mechanism to allow an agreement that we believe occurred in the senate to move forward. about ue, what you say the expiration of the tax credits. the rules of engagement here in the hold-outs were not to include those provisions as part of this overall agreement. but those were not the rules in the nate in terms of determine nations being made for what was included, and not these were extended and the argues was made because of the need for certainty and because the need for advanced financing of mechanisms that these lists of additional technologies be included in the
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agreement so that those agreements could be made with the expectation that those credits would be available to the financing of the overall package. but fundamentally it is about preserving a mechanism, a vehicle for an agreement that took place under a different set of rules. i have been told in terms of what was on the table for them in terms of these tax changes. >> appreciate that. there again, some of the frustration with the system we find ours under. mr. mcgovern. >> i appreciate them for raising this issue. it is about jobs, which we all say we care about. it just seems to me even at this late stage that a couple of phone calls can't be made where we say ok, nobody is
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object to go this, this is not a big deal in the scheme of things. put it in an amendment, or self-execute it or give an up or down vote. that is what telephones are for, and we ought to be able to figure this out. in response to the gentleman, the acting chair talking about returning to order, i hope that we do. but i hear that every week, and we don't. so maybe in the new year, people were start vote fog regular order and well be able to get more things done. like to think we could get a couple of people on the telephone and work it out and do it and move on. but thank you for being here, and i appreciate your leadership on this. >> efforts are under way to
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make that happen by the way. >> good. i support those efforts, so thank you. i used back. >> and if it makes it any easier, you can omit the word acting. >> anybody else? >> mr. chairman i had a quick question, thinking about the difference between a clerical error that got confused in the negotiations. how would the members characterize this. do we think we had this included and somehow it was gone? >> no, i don't think it happened that way. i think the daily gation in this case let by senator carpe research went to mr. read and that these are the things i would like to see. it made it to leader
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mcconnell's side of it. and assurances were given back that this was done. when it came out, included similar, which wasn't the main focus, but it is the top one on the list and didn't include the others. on this tied, we have talked and had a willingness to engage the issue by congressman dent others. some of those people that work at this facility live in his district. and chairman brady. to look at the issue. on this side of the capital it was represented that because this experience next year. those weren't the rules of engagement on the other side of the capitol. his is all we are trying to do
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, for rules to be included, that it was an agreement we should carry forward. >> i know how hard it is to get something on a tax when they are using their full band width. >> i don't know. what i do know is these technologies are really moneyor . >> i know it has been scored, but i don't have that number available, and we could probably get that to the committee. >> thank you both. mr. chairman i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. anybody else on the republican side. mrs. fox? >> i want to thank both of you for coming. you make a compelling case. we appreciate your testimony. as a good chairman would say you have done well enough that you are welcome to come back. >> thanks for hearing us out. [inaudible question]
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nko this from ta afternoon, and he said we believe there was an error somewhere, and that the powers that be will want this done. if we could have some idea that we could get this on to the floor as an amendment, maybe we can do some good with it tomorrow. that is what we would like to see. but it is awful to leave thisous. geo thermal are making a great comeback in my part of the state. we shouldn't stop that great nnovation and the ability to explore that further. it would be very important to me and i think to most of the up le from the cold country there to have this go on. >> thank you very much to the
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members of the committee and the chair. thank you. >> absolutely. >> and i apologize, i did not see you slip back in. >> oh, no. i wanted to get here, and i knew you would be gracious to let me do that. >> thank you, gentlemen. >> we appreciate it. >> thank you. >> gentlemen from south arolina and west virginia -- virginia. >> virginia. did i say west virginia? i apologize. [inaudible] [laughter] >> just to make up for that, mr. griffith you are recognized. >> prosecute chairman, i will tell you that we are here in support of the amendment offered by mr. jordan of ohio,
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114-39. i will speak on two parts of at, and mr. muschamp laney will speak on two parts. mine is dealing with the amendment we have put forward. it was believed that this stream buffer rule was going to be in the agreement. somehow, as often happens late at night when negotiations are going on, it was left out. this basically the sections al with the buffer rule, put a moratorium on that for one year. it covers the time period of the funding and says that you shall not spend any money in regard to the further ransom of that rule and that the old rules will stay in place for the remainder of this budget period. i have been here most of the afternoon partly because i joy listening to the rules
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committee and partly because this is important in the coal-producing regions of the united states. we are losing thousands of jobs. i have lost thousands of jobs in my district, direct or indirect, in relation to the coal industries alone. these are hard working men and women trying to put food on the table. my district now has the dubious discretion of having the highest rate. it is a serious concern. the stream buffer rules laid out july 7 will not just negatively impact the coal industry. some have depicted it as being the final nail in the coffin of the coal industry. this is a very serious matter. it goes way beyond what others
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would reasonably have expected. we need to do something about it. as opposed to putting in an entire new bill, this just says let's delay the funding and thus put a moratorium during this acts is taking place. we will put a moratorium on it and not move forward. we will see if folks can let cooler heads prevail and come up with a rational policy that will let us safely mine coal and protect the streams, but coming off the other legislation, half my companies are in bankruptcy. it is a very depressing sight to travel through the coal field of southwest virginia that i represent. that is an important aspect, and we would ask in this amendment, the jordan amendment, that this be found in order and give us a chance
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to fight on the floor. e do think there is an idea. he will speak on into of these. three bills have passed regarding siberia security sections. the language that is in the omnibus that we are looking at now as i understand it basically combines the two house versions. there are friends of mine who voted against fourth. mr. are friends of mine who voted for both, and then there were people like me who went through and trying to figure out what was the right policy. there were numerous complicated differences, this is exactly what mr. jefferson laid it. it calls for a cowens between the house and the senate to issues. he
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these are complicated matters which should not be determined in an omnibus, where it is a take it or leave it opportunity. we would pull those out and recommend those things are not able -- some of them would resolve some of the issues. with that being said, mr. chairman, i am happy to answer questions or i can turn it over to my colleague, and he can adress the other two part of the jordan amendment. >> mr. griffith, thank you very much. i note that we have at least two other members who have walked in. programs only mr. amash would wish to john a.: you. . meadows, wisconsin concerned. thank you for joining this distinguish the panel.
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mr. griffin inn is a good man to me. we want to have you a good panel. mr. griffin has been here about five hours today, so i was willing to let him go first. time? vaney, do you seek >> yes, sir. >> recognized. i appreciate the opportunity to speak on behalf of mr. jordan, who was not able to be here. why are we doing this? ordinarily when i come in, try and talk to everybody, but i want to talk to my own colleagues a little built. why are we here? we want to support the omnibus. i think just about all of us here to speak on behalf of the amendments vote the against the budget bill. i suspect that several of you on the panel did as well. but we are trying to anything
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out a way to support the effort on the omnibus. there is a precedent for that. back during the ryan murray debate, many of us voted ainst the ryan murray budget deal but then voted for the omnibus that came from it. we knew we had lost the battle on spending limits. the majority wanted to spend her. we had that battle, and we lost. there four we knew the federal government is going to pen a certain amount of money. we know the federal government is going to spend $1.1 trillion according to this omnibus. we also believe if we can control the purse springs and direct that money in some fashion, it might allow us to support the largers am bus bill. the four things contained in this meant us would allow us to
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do that. i know mr. amass wants to speak on. we want to speck on the syrian refugee issue and pro life issues. i just spent last night in las vegas. he topic of immigration took about half the time. the syrian refugees was half of that. so almost an hour. we took the time to address the issue three weeks ago. we made the effort to fashion a bill that not onlying collected a dramatic majority in the represent party, we had 47 diems voting for it. we had a vote-proof idea for how to deal with the syrian refugee issue. it was important to us, still important to the american people, and it is not in the am bus, which makes vlingt sense
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to me. we have language that we know is not a poison pill. it is the safe act and calls for what speaker ryan has described as a pause in the program until we can put in the protections we all know are so important. why isn't it in here? they were supposed to be in here. we are accused of taking a show vote on the floor. no, it is not a show vote. we will always have a chance to attach it to the am bus. it is not here, and i don't know how to explain that to people back home. yes, we deal with the visa waiver program, and we should. in the greater scheme of things it may be a greater threat to national security. but it doesn't mean it isn't a threat, and it doesn't mean it is not important to people back home. it is. all this bill does it take the language that almost 300 of us
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supported in the house and puts it in the omnibus. the last piece deals with some pro life issues. we have had some fights in here, dealing with the de-funding planned parenthood. again, we fought, and in a fair fight, lost. i get that. i would hope we can continue to press some pro live issues. what we have done is added three smaller pro live ricers on this mend ep unlimited. number one would be to take planned parent out of the medicaid program. some tried in texas and were sued. they were not allowed to do that. a state government tried to move planned parenthood out of medicade and was sued. our amendment would give them that ability to do that. we add the abortion, non-discrimination act language, which would simply
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protect those, and the medical providers providing things based on their personal belief. i was overseas with a bipartisan group two years ago and was disturbed to find out that our stapleton uses our money to in-- that our state department used our money to ins influence countries. they said do you know that you extort us, that your state department will come to us asan you won't get our money if you enforce your ban on gay marriage, you won't get our money if you continue to enforce your laws against abortion. we are using our taxpayer dollars to force those people to change their laws or not follow them, than is wrong. we go after a piece of that. united to de-fund the
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nations population fund as part of this amendment. we think they are good amendments, we don't think there is any excuse for them. the question mr. cole asks, could we support the bill if the amendment passes? the answer is tucson particularally we could support the bill if the amendment passed. i thank you for your time, mr. chairman. i yield back. >> i am taking in what you have said. thank you for the completeness of your testimony. sir, you have had several people sitting around for a taken ong time, who have in the entire afternoon. we are delighted that you are joining us. you arrived just in time. the gentleman is appreciated and respected and the gentleman is recognized. >> i appreciated these fine
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gentlemen who held my place in pipeline. i want to thank you, mr. chairman, and i want to thank the members of the committee. i always appreciate the opportunity to be here to talk about these issues, and i appreciate that you give us the chance to do so. i just want to echo a lot of what mr. griffith said earlier. there is a suber villain here that is more than 100 pages long and has no business being in an omnibus. it is something that is contention. it has bipartisan opposition, and it had some bipartisan support. the previous versions of this bill. but the current version of the bill is something we have never seen before. there have been changes to the language. you talk to privacy groups, and if you talk to those who have look the at this bill
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carefully, many of us, including myself, think that it anti-privacy legislation we have seen since the patriot act. it is being snuck into a 2,000-page am bus. and it is not fair to the members of congress who vote on this legislation. it is not fair to our constituents at home who expect a full debate. and i am worried, frankly, that many of my colleagues who were concerned about patriot act votes in the past and other votes they have taken on surveillance measures in the past where they found out later that those bills did much more than they thought, i am afraid that is going to happen here and you are going to have members of congress from both party go home and find out a ear or two later that they voted for something that they
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never voted because because it was snuck into an appropriations bill, where it has no place. i would encourage the committee, i would encourage the leadership team to reconsider having this language in this bill. it deserves a debate on the floor. i think we can all agree that if we debate it on the floor and people support it, that is ok. but we should do that in front of the american people with everyone having full knowledge of that we are voting on. that is not what is happening today. there are people in the surveillance community, people who are concerned about these issues, talking about it online. you will see that. but you don't hear many members of congress talking about it because most of them don't know it is in there. i would just urge us to reconsider this. to pull out this language. let's have a vote own an
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appropriation bill. let have a vote on measures that have been considered thoroughly. let not have a vote on this right now. i am convinced that special on the other side of the aisle, they are going to be surprised at what is in here and very concerned about it. there are a lot of members on our side of the aisle as well who are going to be very concerned later on. with that i am happy to take questions and he appreciate the opportunity. >> thank you very much. i am just going to say this because i think i know the answer. but if there are any other members of congress seeking to give testimony, that is the last panel. i know mr. meadows is here. i am not asking him to rethink, but i am mcgahee sure. this is the last panel, and that is what we are doing here. mr. griffith, let me tell you that one of our colleagues from
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west virginia has fought and ught and fought and fought and most of the time been so genuine and fair that it hurt me to see him get turned down so many titles on this coal ash .ssue >> let say i don't know what i am talking about >> no, no, no. >> all i am trying to say is it is very relevant. it represents your district, his district and probably eight or nine first base zribblingts. i have no more sympathy than i do for a member of congress trying to represent their district, especially went they see people are laying off, missing their job, people wanting to work but can't find it. this committee, and i am going
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it -- to say this to all three of us -- to varying degrees we are a powerful committee. are also a very important committee to provide data, information, hold hearings, allowing your colleagues who are up here, who spent hours and hours and hours of their week and their tight, to come and represent others. what we are being asked to do, and this is no surprise to anybody here, and i respect you for being here and few rguments have been as cogent and convenient because you said you do what i do for the bill. normally we don't ask that question because it is really not fair. you have volunteered this in a most genuine say. weapon find and
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ours at the end of the year, and our role is try to vet the bill. we are trying to talk what has been negotiated, right, wrong or indifferent, and there may be senators and house members -- i was one of those -- i was not consulted during the entire time, but i consulted during the entire time on a number of the provisions that are in here. other members got engaged. i know they did. it is hard when it comes down to it and you see things added that you udidn't -- didn't expect. i appreciate you being here. i am not going to recommend we make any of these an order, and it is not because i am not for any of threets provisions. i would want and hope that this becomes -- and i am not saying
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this because it could happen next year or the next year. i am hopeful that the team which i am on and which you are on learns how to more rapidly, to actually give whether it is mr. griffith or someone else, an answer. i think an sure is due each of you. maybe this was the answer. maybe the negotiators would chase to say you got our answer now. i don't know. what i do know is you are indictmented to answers, and i am glad you are here. is that a fairway to put it? that way i can go back to dallas, texas, and tomorrow i good e told that i denied friend of mine's amendments, things i agree with. but i am simply suggesting that
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the process -- that is where we are today. and i realize you for tag taking all day. >> as you rightly describe, this is our only chance to publicly participate in that process. >> i am going to say as i have looked at others, i thought i could look at him and say what i said every time, but we are going to handle the issue that you spoke on. i think you are entitled to an answer. the answer that i am going to tell you up here. maybe people disagree with me. but i appreciate you being here, and i respect the heck out of all theo of you guys. if you see mark meadows, tell him weapon appreciate it. >> mr. chairman, we respect the fact that you took president time and went through the process. we understand the process, but when you are fighting for your folks, you have to take every opportunity. >> you are right.
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i admire that. i do want to thank the gentlemen for being here because i have a great deal of sympathy for all these amendments. i think they are appropriate and well thought out. i agree with my friend from virginia that they do take every opportunity. the one question that has always been asked and ablely answered by my friends from south carolina, i just want to make one statement to my friend in the back of the room from north carolina, christmas present received and appreciated and it has all been devoured. i yield back. i failed to get it. the gentlewoman from new york. >> i want to thank you also. i am glad you brought to my attention that there are 100 pages of cyber security in there that i knew nothing about. we have some pondering to do on that. but thank you for your work. i always appreciate it when a
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member delves in full bore with what they are trying to get done. i am grateful to you for that. >> thank you. >> mr. mcgovern? did you offer an amendment? >> yes. and my amendment is included in his amendment. there are four parts to the amendment and i don't agree to the other parts. i will offer amendment specifically under cyber security because that is what i do feel. i think we need a cybersecurity bill, and we want to make sure it is done in a way that protects privacy and respects our liberties and traditions here. just want to say this bulldogs i co-chair the human
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rights commission. you mentioned your problem with the u.s. state department threatening to with hold moneys from governments that somehow pass laws that we don't like or won't change their laws. you mentioned the issue of africa and the lbgt community. i it tell you that i am glass and i hope our government is is not to -- i hope we are saying to them that we are not going to support your government when you have policies like that. universal, there are a lot countries in the world that have those kinds of laws. and by the way, who to pass those laws are funded by entities here in the united states. i think if we stand for anything. lawed.ht to be out
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we shouldn't be micro managing other people's laws, but human rights ought to matter, as to whether or not we are giving taxpayer money to other country. when it comes to lbgt laws, there are countries in africa where they get the death penalty. i hope we are making a big stink about that because we fall on the opposite side of that as a nation. i would like to think we do anywhere. but i appreciate you being here nonetheless, and we will see you on the floor tomorrow, i guess. >> gentleman yields back his time. the gentleman, from lewisville texas, dr. burgess. >> some four hours ago when we started this hearing, the points that were brought up about the safe parenting act and planned parenthood funding,
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i made those same remarks to the chairman. i would encourage us to thoughtfully consider this amendment and make people not understand why we are not taking the steps necessary to protect our people. can we not just put a pause on this until we figured out? i think we nor it and our own political peril but more importantly at our countries peril. i rely on you whenever there are civil liberties questions.

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