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tv   U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  June 7, 2018 10:00pm-11:52pm EDT

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market, despite the many benefits of the technology itself. this amendment will ensure that the fuel cell technology's office at the d.o.e. invests in the next generation of fuel cell technologies and maintains u.s. leadership in this critical field. and that's why i urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan amendment. i reserve the balance of my time. . the chair: the gentlewoman from california reserves. . the chair: who seeks time in opposition? the gentlewoman from california is recognized. ms. eshoo: it's nice not to have any opposition. i urge my colleagues to support the next generation of fuel cell technologies and vote yes, and i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman from california. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from
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california. those in favor say aye. those in favor say aye. the ayes have it and the amendment is agreed to. now in order to consider amendment number 4 printed in house report part bmp. mr. perlmutter: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 4 offered by mr. perlmutter of colorado. the chair: the gentleman from colorado and a member opposed will each control five minutes. mr. perlmutter: i offer a simple amendment to increase funding for d.o.e.'s renewable facilities and infrastructure account by $5 million sm i would like to thank the chairman and ranking member of the energy and water subcommittee tore their support of the facilities account over the last few years. as chairman hultdepren knows i
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represent golden colorado in the renewable lab. for more than 40 years, it has led the charge in research and design of renewable energy products affecting the way we secure energy. labs are bringing technological know vagues to the market so we can reduce costs for our customers. the facilities account supports integration facility and integ security and facility of the labs. this is the account that enables them to research dollars into research and technologies. the bill in front of us makes nvestments in equipment at
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d.o.e.'s national labs. it has the same needs for new equipment to stay on the cutting edge and lose avoiding leadership and high performance computer modeling and more. congress has supported the national labs and scientists very well in the last two years. eere's facilities account has remained flat. this is to grow equipment and needs and i urge my colleagues to support this amendment. takes $5 million from the administration account and i resevere the balance. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. mr. simpson: seek time in opposition. i rise in opposition to the amendment. the bill provides 92 million for the facilities and infrastructure program within
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eere account. that level fully funds maintenance activities and is the same amount as was appropriated last year. in light of eere being reduced by $24 million, the bill contains strong support for the maintenance activities. this amendment goes too far in increasing an account that has strong support. i'm concerned that the amendment would have ungin tended con senses. for these reasons, i must oppose back. ndment and i yield the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. perlmutter: i urge a yes vote on this amendment. the facilities account has been held flat. we need to boost and improve some of the equipment this. this is a needed amendment.
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and i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the those opposed, no. the noes have it and the mendment is not agreed to. the chair: it is now in order to consider amendment number 5. mr. hastings: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 5 printed in part brn of house report 115-712 offered by mr. hastings of florida the chair: the gentleman from florida, mr. hastings and a member opposed each will control five minutes. mr. hastings: let me say at the outset, mr. speaker, to the chairman and ranking member that i do not intend to ask for a
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recorded vote on this measure. i thought earlier today that i would withdraw the amendment, but in light of the fact that we are here in the middle of the night, i decided i may as well make my point. mr. chairman, my amendment would increase funding for cybersecurity of the electric power grid by $5 million offset by reduction in research and development. like almost everyone in this body, i'm deeply concerned about the cybersecurity of our nation's electric power deprid. i don't know how many of you know that yesterday, there was a major outage that hadn't reached the news for some reason of the comcast telephone network and i don't think there was anything untoward with reference to it. but the mere fact is we are more reliant than ever on this nation's power grid to provide
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electricity to the massive amount of technologies that contribute to our country every single second, cellular, heating and cooling to our workplaces and cooling in this particular workplace that seems to be overused, in my opinion. and homes. lights that guide us at night on highways and on and on. while we have never been more dependent, our electric grid has never been more vulnerable than it is today. hackers in countries like china, iran and north korea and the rogue hackers, the computers that control our power networks are seen as the most impactful targets for those who wish to do us harm. outages will cause harm not only to our national security, but
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our economic stability as well. they will hurt to name just a few, hospitals, banks, factories, financial networks, water systems, telecommunications and the military bases. i believe we must work with those who operate our grid to give them the tools they need to detect and prevent malicious actors from causing damage to our electric system and critical infrastructure. this funding that i would request and well again somewhere is just a fraction of what is needed. but it sends a signal that we are serious of addressing this vulnerability and that's my purpose. and with that, i yield pack the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from idaho seek time in recognition?
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i agree with everything the gentleman just said but i degree with the amendment. everything you said is absolutely accurate. my colleague's amendment would increase for the emergency response account by using the fossil energy account as an offset and i appreciate the work by the underlying bill reflects that report. the account was provided an increase of $50 million. that is a 52% increase in this bill. that is the single largest percentage increase in any account in this bill. i support the account and efforts to enhance the resilience of our electrical grid. and these research and development activities have ever had. it would take away funds from other activities and the fossil energy accounts and focus on activities that ensure the nation is using natural
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resources. targeted increases to accounts and carbon capture and advanced generation technology. cuts to the account threatens these innovations. in light of the support and the unintindfer tended consequences. i will tell my colleague, i look forward to working with him to address this concern that ought to concern all of us. it will be one of the things we face in coming years. with that, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from florida. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from florida. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. . in the opinion of the chair, the amendment is not depreed to.
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the chair understands that amendment number 6 will not be offered. now in order to consider amendment number 7 printed in house report 115-172. the clerk: amendment numberp printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. rogers of blame. the chair: the gentleman from alabama and a member opposed will each control five minutes. mr. rogers: i thank all the subcommittee colleagues for putting together a strong energy and water appropriations bill this year. as the chairman of the subcommittee, i know how crucial this bill is to our national defense. this is authorized by the ndaa
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are critical to our nuclear deterrent. that is not just the warheads and missiles in d.o.d. but also the people, capabilities and infrastructure in d.o.e. they comprise our nuclear deterrent. my amendment would allow a key aspect related to d.o.e.'s nuclear weapon infrastructure with the nd arch a that the house passed two weeks ago by a bipartisan vote. my amendment provides $24 million to the material facility project which will have operational efficiencies and billions in sayings. this project was initiated in the n dmp arch a omnibus appropriations bill because congress recognized its performance. this project needs to stay on
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track and in line with the f.y. 2019 nd arch arch authorization. i urge my colleagues to vote yes on my amendment. and i yield back. he chair: the gentleman from alabama. mr. simpson: i just want to thank the gentleman for his support for an active lobbying for the weapons activities that are so vital to our country and make shurs that we do our job here and i have no problem with the amendment. and i hope it will pass. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from alabama. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from alabama. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment s agreed to. now in order to consider amendment number 8 printed in
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115-712. house report ms. jackson lee: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 8 offered by ms. jackson lee of texas. the chair: pursuant to house esolution 923, the gentlewoman from texas is recognized. ms. jackson lee: mr. chairman, i offer my appreciation to the rules and committee and chairman and ranking member. this is to emphasize the needs for funding in the army corps of engineers. is a -- an amendment that increases and decreases with the focus on the construction account. and i hold up examples of construction projects are necessary not only in the gulf region but necessary across pt region. but dams, reservoirs, reservoir
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pools and other areas that can be devastated by disaster. this amendment is to emphasize the army corps of engineers' construction account particularly dealing with the need for repair to river and harbor, flood and storm damage and restoration as well to include the need to deal with our ports. and so, my amendment is again to reflect on the devastation of storm that occurred over the last year with the prediction of 14 storms coming in 2018, approximately five or so to be of monumental impact and hitting the gulf region. it is imperative that the army corps of engineers moves on their construction accounts and projects to avoid some of the
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disasters that we have experienced. i ask my colleagues to support my amendment. and i reserve. the chair: does any member rise to claim time in opposition to the amendment? . ms. jackson lee: the port of houston truly needs the corps of engineers' efforts, particularly in dredging. we're a man-made port. that's a very important aspect of our work and that is construction work. the port of houston today is operating with draft restrictions that may last a year or longer. draft restrictions are adding costs to oil and gas and petro chemical operations which are passed on to wholesalers who pass these costs to consumers at the pump. it is also well known that the work that the army corps of engineers does with respect to epair helps the environment. so, again, i ask my colleagues to support the amendment.
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what is a focus on the army corps of engineers' construction account, but i'd like to make the additional point that we in the region need an expedited utilization of those dollars to fix the repairs for oncoming potential disasters, not only in my particular state, but across the region. i ask my colleagues to support the jackson lee amendment. with that, i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman from texas yields back the balance of her time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number 9 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. lamalfa: mr. speaker, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 9 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. lamalfa of california. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from california, mr. lamalfa, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california for
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five minutes. mr. lamalfa: thank you, mr. speaker. my amendment today aims to protect private property rights of farmers and ranchers by upholding the longstanding policy of once a p.c.c. always a p.c.c. otherwise known as a prior converted crop land. there are over 53 million acres of prior converted crop land throughout the country and for more than 30 years, both congress and the administration have clearly stipulated these lands were not waters of the united states. these are lands that have been previously cleared, drained or otherwise altered and operated for decades of farming activity. they do not have the same geographical values as a wetland and should not be regulated as such. this was further reinforced by the clinton administration in its 1993 wetlands plan, specifically exempting prior converted crop land from this regulation. this should apply regardless of
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any change in use, including agriculture, back to nonagriculture use. however in recent years the e.p.a. and army corps have used a creative interpretation of their abandonment criteria to regulate prior converted crop land. massively devaling farm land that had previously been converted to wetlands for the purpose of agriculture decades before. we've already seen this in a number of cases. where the e.p.a. presumes crop land is under the jurisdiction unless the property owner proves otherwise. either through lengthy testing r taking it out. there's no obstacle to prevent agencies from applying this more broadly, including to any project in the u.s. being planned on prior converted crop lands actively used for agriculture production. furthermore, this regulation has set a terrible precedent by being authored in the federal
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register, where there's no public comments or review period. my amendment seeks to unify the policy of the united states department of agriculture on prior converted crop land with e e.p.a. and, indeed, once it's a prior crop land, it's always a prior crop land, regardless of its use. by unifying these policies, the amendment will ensure that all prior converted crop lands that are exempt will remain protected from overregulation and reinterpretation of the army corps and e.p.a. my amendment will not force wetlands back into agricultural lands, it will not prevent any current wetlands from beinging we later as wetlands. it simply says that the land we have already converted away from wetlands will stay that way. and not be unfairly regulated under the intent of congress, when this legislation was originally passed. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time.
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the chair: the gentleman from california reserves the balance of his time. does any member claim time in opposition to the amendment? for what purpose does the gentlewoman from ohio seek recognition? ms. kaptur: i'd like to claim time in opposition. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized for five minutes. ms. kaptur: essentially the lamalfa amendment would prohibit funds from being used to enforce the criteria for abandoned prior converted crop land. currently if land categorized as prior converted crop land has not been used for agricultural purposes for five consecutive years, if the owner of that land wanted to fill or dredge it, they would need to get a section 404 permit from the corps and those are generally wetlands. so this amendment would basically create a once-exempted from having to get a section 404 permit, always exempted standard, overturning 35 years of federal policy. the amendment makes a significant change to the clean water act regulations, one that deserves thoughtful
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consideration. under current law and regulation, activities that convert wetlands that occur as a part of existing, ongoing farming, ranching activities do not require section 404 wetland permits. let me repeat that for my colleagues. the clean water act explicitly exempts certain activities from regulation, including normal agricultural activities like plowing fields, planting andujar vesting crops, and maintaining -- and harvesting crops, and maintaining ditches. the gentleman from california wants to go further than the exemptions already in the law and in the underlying bill. in his view, wetlands should be able to be filled, even when prior converted farm land has had no action or indication of ago actual agricultural use for five consecutive years. that is, there's been no cropping, no management, no maintenance activities related to agricultural production. i say to my dear colleague from california, it is hard to understand how prior crop land wouldn't be abandoned if none of
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the activities of farming are performed there for five consecutive years. i would also like to point out that this specific regulation has been on the books for 35 years. yet this amendment would overturn at least 35 years of policy to create a once exempted always exempted standard for any land that was ever used as farm land. now, let me tell you additionally why this concerns me. according to the ohio, my home state, environmental protection agency, this late 18th century, 90% of ohio's wetland resources had been destroyed. or degraded through draining, filling or other modification. because of the valuable functions, the remaining wetlands perform, including fill tration to adjoining lakes and streams, it is imperative to ensure that all impacts to wetlands are properly mitigated. wetlands help filter impurities from water, sediment settles out of the runoff and contaminants bind to plant surfaces and
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wetlands, resulting in improved water quality. wetlands perform other valuable functions including reducing flood flow and shoreline. we also depend on our wetlands for havens for rare and endangered plants and 1/3 of all endangered species depend on wetlands for survive -- survival. so we should make certain that any changes we make to wetlands policy that may result in the destruction of these important ecological areas are evaluated carefully and that we do not overturn decades' old policy lightly. it is for these reasons that i must respectfully oppose the amendment and i urge my colleagues to do so as well. the chair: does the gentlewoman reserve or yield back? ms. kaptur: i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lamalfa: thank you again, mr. speaker.
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this amendment simply reiterates that the long-held policy that prior converted -- there's the key words. prior converted crop lands. this is always prior converted crop lands were done over 30 years ago, before laws were changed to prevent such activity, of converting wetlands. every intent of congress and even in the clinton administration were to clarify that you cannot use the clean water act, indeed, you talk about 40 years worth of policy, it's only been in recent years that a more aggressive reinterpretation of policy by army corps and e.p.a. has started coming after people, requiring 404 permits if they choose to do something different with their own private land after five years. this is effecting people my own district and they're losing million-dollar lawsuits because of this reinterpretation. not one set up by congress when the original legislation was passed. i'd like to reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman
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reserves the balance of his time. the gentlewoman from ohio is ecognized. ms. kaptur: i'll just yield back my time. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lamalfa: ok, thank you again, mr. speaker. this amendment does not prevent any current regulations on current wetlands. again, it goes after the aggressive rulemaking that e.p.a., with their could he horts in the army corps, have put -- cohorts in the army corps, have put upon farmers and ranchers in recent years. if we sit back and watch bureaucrats attempt to gain control over every ditch, puddle and pond they can get their hands on, then we're in a bad way in agriculture and as well the sake receipt private property rights our nation is founded on. again, the intent here is not to roll back any current -- rollback any current wetlands but simply allow people, they want to make crop changes, they
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want to make decisions on their land, that they're paying the property taxes on, they're paying the mortgage on, if something -- they want to change the use of their land, they should have that right in the united states of america. and not have to get permission for something that's been, key words here, prior converted under the law. mr. speaker, i ask foray votes and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number 10 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. gohmert: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 10 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. gohmert of texas. the chair: pursuant to house
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resolution 923, the gentleman from texas, mr. gohmert, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. gohmert: thank you, mr. speaker. the amendment prohibits the use of funds to prepare, propose or promulgate any regulation or guidance related to the social cost of carbon. social cost of carbon, metric, was a tool and is a tool used to bolster many obama-era regulations. they supposedly targeted ambiguous, vegas and unverifiable costs -- vague and unverifiable costs. an article this week in the "wall street journal" points out that by introducing, quote, social costs, unquote, and, quote, social benefit, unquote, the e.p.a. began factoring in speculation about how regulatory inaction would effect everything from rising sea levels to pediatric asthma. e.p.a. optimists even included
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their guesses about how domestic relationships could have a global impact. meanwhile, the agency ignored the best practices from the office of management and budget, juking the numbers to raise the cost of carbon emissions. this proved as politically useful, as it was scientifically imprecise. months before introducing the clean power plan, the e.p.a. suddenly raised these social costs of a ton of carbon emissions to an average of $36 from $21. completely unverifiable. now, the regulatory specifics will be hashed out in coming month, but there's real potential here to curb the distortions that mask bad policy. if mr. pruitt succeeds, future cost-benefit analysis will be more consistent and transparent. the reform would help to ensure regulation is based on sound
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scientific analysis instead of wishful bureaucratic thinking. with that, mr. speaker, i would reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. does any member rise to claim time in opposition to the amendment? mr. gohmert: just in conclusion, this is ultimately a tax on the nation's poor. the rich, they can handle these added costs that come out of the minds nebraska you louis areas of bureaucrats' minds, but the real ultimate cost is actually to the nation's poor. and i can't help but go back to texasn, elderly lady from that says, you know, i keep having these costs go up and up and up, i'm afraid i'm going to
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end up in my home going back to a wood-burning stove because of the federal government. and i said i hate to be the one break this to you, but your wood-burning stove that your momma used probably wouldn't be allowed today. any way, there is no reason to have this kind of cost and i would ask a passing, urge a passing of this amendment. quit adding unverifiable costs. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from ohio seek recognition? ms. kaptur: i rise in opposition to this amendment. i claim time in opposition to his amendment. mr. gohmert: no one was speaking in opposition, i reserve. ms. kaptur: my good friend, mr.
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gohmert, i have to oppose you in this amendment. you actually want to prohibit fund from being used to implement any activities regarding the social costs of carbon ap this amendment tells the department of energy to ignore the latest meteorological data and changes dealing with weather science and the amendment denies that carbon pollution is harmful. he cost of carbon pollution is zero. had a pink blouse on, it was so full of gray spots and i didn't know what it was. it was carbon and fallout from the chimneys in new york city. so we know that carbon has impacts. this amendment is tantta mount that climb change have no costs and no one will get hurt.
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tell that to sit accepts in puerto rico that lost businesses and hopes and there is no cost from weather changes. last year's devastating hurricane season, almost 5,000 lives lost and 200,000 people displaced from their homes. ouse members can recognize the damages but they captain overturn the laws of nature. m amazed how much water is coming down now, spring rapes at such fierce levels. the way they come is very different when i was first growing up. our nation's leading climate scientists reiterated that climate change is real that we have observed and extreme droughts and say level rise.
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the amendment tells the department to ignore these scientific findings and that is not just now but into the future. unchecked climate change would have catastrophic impacts here in the united states and across the globe. those who are less fortunate will face the heaviest impact. i remember seeing the ninth ward, the poorest people lived in the ninth ward and while claiming that climate change has no costs, the trump administration say they are the champions of the working class crying the eep -- e.p.a. safeguards. amazing to look at maps where trees exist. there are no trees and there is
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a direct relationship between asthma and lack of oxygen and trees. so you don't have to pay attention to the science but it's pretty clear. i think it is outrageous that the opposition party has the nerve to pose as the defenders of working class americans. arranging from dropping food stamps to the g.o.p. tax scam to pay for corporate tax breaks and republican governors not to approve the expansion of medicare and get rid of people companies e-existing out he the evidence is all there if anybody cares to look. the only way to protect the health of american workers is to weaken health protections that
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say we should allow polluters to pollute more. more air and water pollution won't make our citizens healthier and toxins aren't the answer and the answer is president pretending that climate change won't have real costs. i was interesting to hear my colleagues to hear how very, very dry that new mexico is with one of the shortest snowfalls in history. accept reality. climate change is caused by humans and causing serious damage. we are at the beginning of a new hurricane season and rising seas and more frequent storms have a cost. before the trump administration abandoned common sense, this was a conservative and this is
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significantly higher but the social cost of carbon is a much better estimate. unform that is what this government would require this government. and i urge my colleagues to reject this amendment. and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. gohmert: thank you, mr. speaker. i really have such great respect for my friend across the aisle and i truly do mean that, but when i hear talk about what republicans did to our nation's poor and our seniors, i keep coming back to the obamacare vote without a single one of the republicans voting for that bill , democrats have to take full
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credit. they passed it without a single republican vote and cut $716 billion out of the health care of seniors. $716 billion from seniors. president obama said seniors, you don't have to worry. it will come out of the pocket of the rich and greedy doctors. that's not the case at all. it doesn't -- it has affected the elderly completely. it has been a real problem for them because what they have seen is that like if their health care provider don't get paid, they don't get their health care. i would like to say again, i need to urge people to vote for this amendment, making our nation's poor pay for costs and
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say we are making the world tter and making the poor poorer is unstangesable and i would urge a yes vote. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment s agreed to. does the gentlewoman from ohio seek recognition? ms. kaptur: i ask for a recorded vote. pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18. the chair understands that amendment number 11 will not be offered. now in order to consider amendment number 12 of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the
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gentleman from michigan seek recognition? the clerk: amendment number 12 printed in part b of house report number 115-712 offered by mr. kildee of michigan. the chair: the gentleman from michigan, mr. kildee and a member opposed each will control five minutes. mr. kildee: this is a bipartisan amendment. it would spapped the house wounded warrior fellowship program so more wounded service members have the opportunity to continue serving our country by working in congressional offices. we need more veterans in public service. they bring unique perspectives and experiences unlike any other. the veterans that i have hired in my office have given me support and allow me to consider issues that are important to veterans in a more enlightened fashion and their voices are
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important. by investing in the wounded warrior project. expanding this program will enhance the professional development opportunities for those fellows. we in congress do talk about ways to help veterans transition following their service in the military. this is an opportunity for actually for us to do something about that and model what we think all employers ought to be doing. the simple way to expand opportunities for veterans and increase the number of veterans in public service. value this office, i program. i ask my colleagues to pass this amendment. we say thanks to the brave men and women who have given so much for the freedom we all enjoy.
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i will yield. mr. frelinghuysen: we are pleased to accept it. remarkable program and we want to honor those who serve and allow them to serve with us in the further capacity. i believe we have 110 serving in congressional offices and this will provide additional opportunities toll some remarkable young men and women. mr. kildee: i thank the gentleman for yielding. and i yield back. the chair: does anyone rise to claim time in opposition? the question is on the amendment offered bid the gentleman from michigan. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. he amendment is agreed to. the chair: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from connecticut seek recognition?
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ms. esty: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 13 printed in house report 115-712. scharmente pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentlewoman from connecticut, and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from connecticut. ms. esty: i rise in support of my amendment which would allocate $500 to the office of employee assistance under the office of the chief administrative officer house of representatives. this provides valuable services for members, congress and their staff. unfortunately, this office is grossly understaffed. currently, there are six staff in the office of employee assistance to serve the 435 members of congress and their staff. a total of over 9,000 house
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employees. how could a staff of six possibly meet the needs of over 9,000 employees? no company, no state or federal agency would have an employee assistance staff of six to serve 9,000 employees. neither should the house of representatives. managing a team of people and creating a positive work force culture is a unique culture. managing people requires leadership, good communication and interpersonal skills, humility and a good sense of humor. members of congress such as chiefs of staff and legislative directors need additional resources to develop the skills to lead their teams and establish a strong office culture and make this house of representatives a better place to work. members of coming have diverse
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backgrounds, levels of education and work experience as well as varying levels. we are elected to be great leaders, but in order to be effective and to be role models, we must also be great bosses. new and tenured members would benefit from knowledge and support when it comes to organizing their teams, hiring their teams disciplining staff and handling employment complaints including sexual harassment. the office of employee assistance can and should be empowered to provide the support. chiefs of staff and legislative directors need the resources to help them develop their skills and to succeed as managers. chiefs of staff and legislative directors are key to maintaining a positive workplace culture.
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the quality of their training shapes the culture of our offices. i don't claim to be an expert in this area. before i became a member of congress, i had very little experience much less as a manager of 20 employees and two separate offices in two different parts of the country. i was focused on doing what i was elected to do, helping the people of my district. i know now that i would have benefited as a new member for more training and awareness of resources to assist me and my senior staff in running a supportive office. . at a time when this congress is being called on to seriously address longstanding issues of swaurm in our work -- sexual harassment in our workplace, we have an obligation to provide better resources to our
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colleagues and to our staff. making more funds available to the office of employee assistance is an important step for us to take in that effort. our dedicated staff deserve better. absolutely. mr. frelinghuysen: we commend you for your effort. we also commend the effort of those who work in this office dealing with many, many hundreds of cases. we're pleased to accept your amendment. ms. esty: thank you very much. again, they do heroic work. they do important work. there aren't enough of them and i'm hopeful with the support, and i thank the gentleman for his support, i think this is a very important amendment for us to adopt, to demonstrate our commitment to do better for all of our staff and to be leaders, not followers, in this effort. for supportive and inclusive workplaces. the chair: does the gentlewoman yield back or reserve? ms. esty: i do. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. does any member rise to claim time in opposition to the amendment? the question is on the amendment
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offered by the gentlewoman from connecticut. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number 14 printed in . rt b of house report 115-712 it is now in order to consider amendment number 15 printed in art b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from north carolina seek recognition? mr. meadows: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 15 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. meadows of north carolina. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from north carolina, mr. meadows, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from north carolina.
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mr. meadows: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, initiating an independent counsel investigation comes with many political and constitutional challenges. these individuals were bested with the full -- vested with the full power and independent authority for the investigation and empowers -- powers at the department of justice. when the independent counsel statute was re-authorized in 1994, an amendment was made to the law requiring the government accountability office to conduct periodic audits of independent counsel expenditures. this amendment gave congress the ability to audit any and all independent counsel expenses and investigate how those tax pair dollars -- taxpayer dollars were spent. this is an important procedure that was repealed in 2010 and it's time that congress acts to restore this key oversight provision. my amendment re-establishes the semiannual government
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accountability office financial review of obligated expenditures from the independent counsel and requires the report's findings be submitted to congress. whind the -- while the work of the independent counsel is indeed important, it's just as important that we properly take into account the hardworking american taxpayers' dollars and where they go. so to ensure this accountability, i want to urge the passage of this amendment and i want to take one personal privilege of thanking the fine work of chad. and with that i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. mr. shimkus: i'd like to claim time -- >> i'd like to claim time in opposition, please. thank you, mr. chair. i understand that mr. meadows offers this amendment to try to attack the special counsel, special counsel mueller and his team, to imply that there's some sort of impropriety going on here with the russian
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investigation. of course these improprieties aren't with the special counsel, mr. chair. the problems are with russia. mr. ryan: and the people in our country, our political system and our current administration who repeatedly communicated and met with russia -- russian operatives during the presidential campaign. trying to muddy the waters by going after the integrity of the investigators is a classic tactic used by the people who feel threatened by an investigation because they know they've been caught. the bottom line is the way this amendment is drafted, it doesn't do anything. it says, no funds in the bill can be used to, quote-unquote, enforce a repeal of the provision of law that happened a decade ago. not enforcing a repeal is not the same as reinstating the provision that was repealed. this amendment was drafted in this tortured foogs avoid violating the rules of the --
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tortured fashion to avoid vie lighting -- violating the rules of the house. there's no independent counsel, robert mueller is a special counsel, and neither he nor g.a.o. would be affected if this amendment became law. let me just suggest, mr. chair, that if people in this town are interested in ending this situation that we have going on, i would suggest that maybe the president of the united states calls up mr. mueller, goes and clears the air, tells the truth, says what he has to say, and let's move on as a country. for those reasons i oppose the amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman from ohio yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from north carolina is recognized. mr. meadows: thank you, mr. chairman. i find it very interesting that the gentleman opposite would claim to know my motives, in that he's not talked to me about it, mr. chairman. i also find it very ironic that the gentleman makes the argument
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that my amendment does absolutely nothing and yet opposes it. so indeed, if it does nothing, then i can't find any reason why he wouldn't support it. so in that i would certainly urge the adoption of my amendment and, being the late hour that it is, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from north carolina. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. ryan: i ask for a recorded vote, please. the yeas and nays. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from north carolina will be postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number 16 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. takano: mr. speaker, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 16 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr.
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takano of california. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from california, mr. takano, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. takano: thank you, mr. chair. i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. takano: mr. chairman, i rise today in support of my amendment. which would restore funding to the office of technology assessment or o.t.a. i'd like to thank representatives foster, esty, delaney, langevin, lieu and lujan for offering this amendment with me. the foundation for good policy is accurate and objective analysis. and for more than two decades, the o.t.a. set that foundation by providing relevant, unbiased technical and scientific assessments for members of congress and staff. but in 1995, the o.t.a. was defunded, stripping congress of a valuable resource.
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many of the issues o.t.a. studied 20 years ago, like antibiotic-resistant bacteria and electronic surveillance in the digital age, are even more pressing today. mr. chair, congress needs access to unbiased technological expertise, to weigh the pros and cons of policy questions surrounding cybersecurity. artificial intelligence. quantum computing. and so many more matters. the recent facebook hearings made it clear that many members of congress struggle to grasp the policy issues surrounding social media and data security. i applaud the chairman and ranking member for including a study in the underlying bill, to look into the technological expertise available to congress. it is an important first step. but it is not enough. our amendment restores a modest
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$2.5 million to the o.t.a. account for salaries and expenses, to begin rebuilding the office. the cost is offset by reductions to the a.o.c.'s capital construction and operations account. this administrative account will not take resources from specific construction projects. i urge my colleagues to vote yes on this amendment to restore funding to the office of technology assessment. and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. mr. frelinghuysen: mr. chairman, i rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: mr. chairman, this amendment would provide funding to recreate a government agency, as the gentleman mentioned, which was defunded in 1995. 23 years ago. before we recreate an entire government agency, i believe the most responsible thing to do is to study the need for such an
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agency. and to identify the best path forward. after receiving dozens of requests advocating for the restoration of this funding, this bill has included through the work of chairman yoder, and i'm briefly taking his place, and have the pleasure of working with ranking member ryan, we've included in the report accompanying this bill language directing the congressional research service to engage with the national academy of public administration or a similar entity to produce a report detailing, first of all, the current technology assessment resources available to members within the government accounting office, to some extent which is taking over this responsibility for the last 23 years, to possess the potential need to separate, create a separate entity. lastly, are there parts of what are being suggested here already duplicative within the available
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resources and services of the legislative branch? for this reason, i oppose the amendment and urge the members to do so as well. and reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. chairman, i would like to yield a minute and a half to my colleague, mr. foster, from the state of illinois. the chair: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for a minute and a half. mr. foster: thank you, mr. chair. thank you, mr. takano. and my colleagues, for helping me bring this amendment to the floor. we now live in a world where technology has become increasingly important in our personal lives, in our economy, and our democracy. but congress is not adequately prepared to lead on the technical sthoose could have a serious effect on our country's future. the office of technology assessment would provide congress with nonpartisan reports and realtime advice on issues that require leadership from lawmakers, including data
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privacy, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and others. when it was operating, lawmakers used the o.t.a.'s reports to make decisions that saved taxpayers money, which is why this amendment received bipartisan support in the past. before it was defunded, the o.t.a. advised congress, for example, on the importance of interoperability of electronic health records, advice that, had it been acted on, would have saved billions of dollars and thousands of lives. so i urge my colleagues to support this amendment and restore the o.t.a. so congress once again has access to credible and nonpartisan scientific expertise. thank you, and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman from illinois yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. frelinghuysen: i'm prepared to yield back. the g.a.o. does most of what these gentlemen are seeking. i think obviously they have a
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certain feeling and i respect those feelings. i don't think we need to create an agency that's basically the duties of which have been taken for the last 23 years by the general accounting office. i yield back the balance of my time. i urge the members to vote against this amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. . mr. takano: yes, i would like to like to the mr. ryan. mr. ryan: i lend my support. this is a good amendment and positive amendment. and things are moving so quickly and need as much expertise as possible and i urge an aye vote on this amendment. the chair: the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i reserve. tharning you. i want to thank the majority for including the report and i just want to remind the majority also
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that the o.t.a. was never eliminated but just defunded and i believe it's time to fund it again. i think i refer back to the facebook hearings in the senate, and i think people on both sides of the aisle, liberal and conservative, think tanks, observed that the first branch of government, which is the legislative branch of government, needs to have the resources and the capacity to do its own independent analysis. and that's why i believe so many of my republican colleagues will support this tomorrow and i hope those listening on both sides of the aisle, i urge them to support, to everyone support this amendment. and i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. mr. takano: mr. chair, i request a recorded vote.
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the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee seek recognition? mr. cohen: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 17 printed in house report 115-712 fered by mr. cone of tennessee. he chair: the chair recognizes the gentleman from tennessee. mr. cohen: i yield myself such time as i may consume. this amendment is an environmental amendment would prohibit the house to prohibit plastic drinking strauss. risk e an environmental to marine mammals and fish and
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they are discarded in streets and in the oceans and have whales show up with 17 pound of plastic in their stom action and turtles with strauss in their no, sir trills and all kind of marine wildlife. this is an opportunity to show the public there are cities and restaurant associations and other groups that are banning strauss or asking they be made optional for customers so they are not the top taken off or not used and let the customer make that decision. this would be the great thing or the house -- i yield. >> i thank the gentleman for his concern and we also share. mr. cohen: i appreciate the charle and for all his work he has done for many years in the house and i appreciate the
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opportunity to serve with him and i appreciate the ranking member for his help on this amendment. and i ask for the ayes and the caps to win. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from tennessee. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment s agreed to. now in order to consider amendment number 18 printed in part brp of house report 115-7 12.
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it's now in order to consider amendment number 19 printed in 15-712. f house report 1 mr. kildee: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 19 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. kildee of michigan. the chair: the gentleman from ichigan and a member opposed each will control five minutes. mr. kildee: mr. chairman, this amendment is intended to highlight the lack of urgency by the air force to address an
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ongoing drinking water including in my district. i'm not talking about flint but the northern end of my district, base.me of an air force my constituents have had their by ing water contaminated the air force use of firefighting foam. it is linked to cancer and kidney, liver and heart. and it's not just service members. unfortunately the more we learn about this dangerous class of chemicals, the more we are finding it in drinking water. thousands of people who have cancer-causing chemicals are due to air force use of this material. air force does not seem to want to recognize this ongoing crisis.
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i have been pushing the air force to act more urgently to clean up contamination in communities. entire michigan delegation, wrote to appropriators asking for more funding. and so while members are prevented from earmarking legislation to send resources to clean contamination, it's an urgent problem that i wanted to call attention to. this community is near this former air force base and facing contamination issues. and you would think the air force would request additional resources to clean up contamination. the air force has so far refused to request additional resources. the appropriations committee asked if they needed -- the appropriations committee even asked the air force if they
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needed more more money to address this problem but the air force said they did not need any additional funds. i offer this amendment for the purpose of raising this issue. i know it's not possible for us to designate these funds. it's my intention to withdraw this but i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from florida seek recognition? >> to claim time in opposition even though i'm not opposed to the amendment. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized. schultz schultz i'm sympathetic to the gentleman's plight. these chemicals have been found in ground water due to too firefighting foam. in fact, many closed installations have this problem. many decades, the department of defense used chemicals and
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firefighting foam. we now know it is a toxic effect. i would like to work with the gentleman from michigan to ensure that cleanup costs are properly addressed and i look forward to working with him on this issue and i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from michigan is recognizeded. mr. kildee: i thank the ranking member of the subcommittee. this is a serious issue and i know congress takes it seriously but i ask that the air force request the funds necessary to clean up this difficult problem. with that, i know this amendment could present some problems in terms of the way this legislation moves forward, but the commitment that i have will be getting the attention it deserves from congress is important. and with that's correct i will withdraw the amendment. the chair: without objection. he amendment is withdrawn.
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now in order to consider amendment number 20 printed in 115-712. house report >> i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 20 printed in house report 115-712 offered by mrs. torres of california. the chair: the gentlewoman from california and a member opposed each will control five minutes the the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from california. mrs. torres: i rise to offer amendment number 20 of the energy and water development appropriations bill for military construction and veterans affairs. this amendment is meant to address an issue we have in ontario, california.
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i expect the many members of this body have experienced it in their own districts at some point. i referred to this amendment as giving the secretary of defense the ability to finish the job. and that is precisely what we should expect from our service branches when they close military bases during brac rounds. at ontario international airport, that was the guard station, which was established in 1949. this facility remained in operation for decades, assisting, training and support for the korean, vietnam and countless other wars and conflicts. in 1997, the facility was closed as part of the latest base realignment and closure. our armed services moved out. instead of the airport being able to use the land, the old
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site has sat largely unchanged for 20 years due to the environmental has arizona of demolition. it can be devastating to our local communities. at the very least, we should expect our service branches to leave our communities in better shape. in ontario, california, old air force facilities have been left standing at the ontario international airport. these abandoned buildings have been taken by nature with trees and animals roaming free. this unusable space is hindering the growth of the airport and communities surrounding ontario depend on the airport. my amendment would direct the secretary to make available funds from the existing brac
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funding to be made available in this legislation to remove these old facilities. and i reserve my time. the chair: the gentlewoman from california reserves. mr. carter: i rise time to claim time in opposition although i do not oppose this amendment. it does not require d.o.d. to fund anything in particular. i would like to point out that the f.y. 2019 budget submission for defense appropriations ncluded $442.9 million for demolition within the facilities . double the f.y. 2018 level. i would like to remind my colleagues, while from may be a particular interest behind the amendments, these do not direct
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funding to particular activities and the bill does not fund these activities. for this reason, i will not oppose this amendment, but i will yield time to my colleague, ms. wasserman schultz. schultz schultz i find the gentlewoman's concept interesting. getting another brac round is going to be difficult and in response to many services are demolishing services using operation and maintenance funding. the brac funding is used for closing bases. i would be interested to see if there are any cleanup costs with demolishing of buildings and i will not oppose the amendment and i look forward to seing this. i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from texas.
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mr. carter: i yield back. mrs. torres: the underlying bill has funding for brac closures but before we proceed with any new closures, let's finish the job on the old closures and i yes. y colleagues to vote the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment is agreed to. . . it is now in order to consider amendment number 21 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from michigan seek recognition? mr. kildee: mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 21 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. kildee of michigan. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from michigan, mr. kildee, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the
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gentleman from michigan for five minutes. mr. kildee: thank you, mr. chairman. my amendment would provide just over $2 billion to the vocational rehabilitation and employment account. this account invests in programs to help veterans successfully transition to civilian life. our country has been at war for nearly two decades. while these conflicts are still ongoing, a number of veterans in this country -- the number of veterans in this country is going to continue to grow. we have to invest in programs that support this generation of veterans as they seek to reintegrate into the civilian work force. i want to highlight a couple of important programs in this account. the special employer incentives program connects veterans with opportunities where the v.a. reimburses the employer for up to half of a veteran's salary. this is a program that matches veterans with apprenticeship, with the expectation of being hired upon completion. i know from experience that our veterans bring unique perspective and skills to the
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workplace. i've hired, as i've said in previous conversations, multiple veterans working in my office, including a wounded warrior, fellow and a hill vets fellow. we should ensure we're supporting programs that connect veterans with employers. my amendment would also ensure funding for the v.a. to expand its veterans economic communities initiative, a program in which nonprofits and educational institutions build supportive networks for veterans. this is exactly the kind of long-term support that we should have had in place years ago, before launching into these conflicts. for many americans, the american dream is owning your own business and being your own boss. the vocation rehabilitation and employment account includes programs that help veterans do just that. this program places qualified vocational rehab counselors, i'm sorry, the vocational rehabilitation and employment account also includes the vet
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success on campus program which places voc rehab counselors in schools. this would give the v.a. the opportunity tokespand these programs, reaching even more veterans. unfortunately, as this process has moved forward, we've come to understand that the v.a. would intend to reduce the account for direct support for tuition and other supplies for veterans under their rights under the g.i. bill. i ask that this amendment be withdrawn, but i wanted to make sure to make the point that we ought to have a specific carve-out for these vocational programs for these transition -- programs, for these transition programs. it's my hope as we move forward we'll be able to work with the v.a. to be able to identify a source that would not reduce the other benefits that are available to veterans seeking to better themselves. so with that, mr. chairman, i withdraw this amendment. the chair: the amendment is
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withdrawn. it is now in order to consider amendment number 22 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? ruse ruse mr. chairman, -- mr. ruiz: mr. chair, i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 22 offered by mr. ruiz of california. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from california, mr. ruiz, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. ruiz: thank you, mr. chairman. i rise today to offer an amendment to h.r. 5895, to provide $1 million in additional critical funding for the v.a. to conduct educational outreach to veterans about the airborne hazards in open burn pit registry. our military uses burn pits to eliminate tons of waste, including chemicals, plastics, i
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mean, everything. medical waste. human waste. computers. you name it. creating giant plumes of black smoke containing carcinogens and particulate matter and other toxins. for years the department of defense used burn pits in iraq and afghanistan, even while recognizing that exposure to burn pits may pose a health risk to our troops, since the late 1970's. now veterans all across the country, young veterans, 20's and 30's, are developing rare and severe pulmonary diseases, cancers and auto immune diseases, despite living healthy lifestyles and being healthy enough to be sent to war and not having any other risk factors. this may bring up lots of agent orange -- thoughts of agent orange that our vietnam veterans faced. burn pit exposure and the neck -- negative health outcomes are being described by our veterans as a modern day agent orange and we must learn from our past mistakes and act now.
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for more than a decade, veterans exposed to burn pitts and their families have been given the runaway -- runaround. my commonsense amendment would provide additional funding for the v.a. to conduct an educational outreach campaign on the burn pits registry to ensure more veterans register. the purpose of the registry is to collect data from veterans and service members exposed to burn pits, to highlight health patterns and create could he horts for research on -- cohorts for research on the health risks to exposure. after four years, only 144,000 veterans have enrolled. that's only a dismal less than 4% enrollment rate. it is clear that more outreach and education must be done to improve awareness about the registry. these additional funds will also improve health outcomes by raising awareness for our veterans and their physicians so they can be on the lookout for subtle changes in their health, including respiratory issues, early signs of cancer or even
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auto n'diayen -- auto immune diseases. we have a responsibility to protect our men and women in uniform and veterans from the harmful effects to the exposure of burn pits. if there's a high enough suspicion, then we need to act now. and the four things we need to do is, one, stop our troops' exposure to burn pits. two, outreach to doctors and veterans about the illnesses they may face so they can be vigilant. seek and get the appropriate care. and third, give veterans and service members the treatment that they have earned and deserve. and fourth, simultaneously do the research that is needed to understand the full scope of the dangers associated with exposure to burn pits. by investing in this educational campaign about the burn pits registry, my amendment would help tackle two of these fronts, by improving outreach to veterans and providing the v.a. with a larger study sample size to help determine the full scope of the negative health effects linked to exposure. so i urge my colleagues, on behalf of jennifer kemptner, a
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39-year-old mother of two two died of pancreatic cancer after being exposed to burn pits, with no other risk factors, i urge my colleagues, on behalf of all the others who have died of cancer at a young age and left behind families, and those that have acquired pull no mare fibrosis pollerm -- poll no mare -- onary fibrosis and permanent problems. the health of our veterans must be put above bureaucracy. we must help them get the answers and the health care services that they need and deserve now. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from florida seek recognition? ms. wasserman schultz: mr. chairman, to claim time in opposition although i do not oppose the amendment. the chair: without objection, the gentlewoman from florida is recognized for five minutes. ms. wasserman schultz: thank you, mr. chairman. as the gentleman from california said, some veterans have reported respiratory and other
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health conditions that they believe are related to their exposure to burn pits. there are studies that provide information about the health effects related to exposure but not enough to determine the long-term impacts. in response, the v.a. is researching responsibly the issue and has created the airborne hazards and open burn pit registry for veterans and service members. however, many veterans unfortunately do not know about the burn pit registry. the gentleman from california's amendment would help bring attention to the registry to get more veterans registered, so should this issue arise, they can be contacted quickly and receive the care they've earned. there's no cost to the veteran to participate and the veteran does not even need to be enrolled in the v.a.'s health care system. the burn pit registry is a tool to help participants become more aware of their health and to identify health conditions possibly related to exposure to burn pits and other airborne hazards. but it only works if veterans know to sign up and the gentleman's amendment will accomplish that. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: scombrot reserve -- the gentlewoman reserves the balance of her time.
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the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. ruiz: is there anyone who wants to speak on this amendment? if there's anybody? no? well, then i appreciate the chairman and the ranking members and all those who are in support of this specific amendment who will put our veterans above this bureaucracy and give them the care that they need by expanding their access to this burn -- these burn pits registry. i want to say thank you. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentlewoman from florida is recognized. ms. wasserman schultz: thank you, mr. chair. this registry is a tool that can be used to identify health concerns, guide discussions with health care providers, and document employment-represented -- deployment-related exposures. it could literally, as the gentleman from california pointed out, be the difference between life and death. i urge all of my colleagues to support this amendment and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to.
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it is now in order to consider amendment number 23 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? mr. johnson: mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 23 printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. johnson of ohio. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from ohio, mr. johnson, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from ohio. mr. johnson: thank you, mr. chairman. my amendment calls on the department of veterans affairs to develop hospice care standards tailored to unique needs of vietnam-era combat veterans. as vietnam veterans grow older, it's imperative that the v.a. has clear standards in place to care for this group, and future veterans' populations. by the v.a.'s own estimate, there's probablypley 6.5 million vietnam veterans. these veterans have unique medical and psychological needs which must be identified and
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addressed, including lethal diseases associated with agent orange exposure, and a high prevalence of posttraumatic stress disorder, depression and substance abuse. as part of the fiscal year 2018 milcon v.a. appropriations, congress directed the v.a. to submit a report identifying the unique challenges faced by vietnam veterans receiving specialized and hospice care and developed best practices for hospice care specifically tailored to vietnam veterans. unfortunately the v.a. responded with an inadequate two-beige report that did not meet the -- two-page report that did not meet the reporting requirements. what the did -- what the report did state is there are over 4,000 community hospice care providers, maintaining their own resources and training materials. this lack of cohesion indicates that the v.a. lax consistent protocols and clear standard -- lacks consistent protocols and clear standards for veterans' hospice care. the report language for this
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appropriations bill addresses report, calling it woefully inadequate, and requires the v.a. to redo it within 30 days of enactment. however, as it is clear that the v.a. currently lacks consistent hospice care protocols, i am instead calling on the v.a. to establish protocols that will meet the needs of vietnam-era veterans. the v.a. must act now to implement clear and consistent standards of care for our veterans in need of hospice care. developing these standards would also be beneficial for iraq, afghanistan and syria combat veterans in the future. we have a responsibility to ensure that our nation's heroes are receiving the care and benefits they deserve and have earned. and that includes ensuring the v.a. has in place clear hospice care standards and services tailored to the unique needs of these veterans. thank you and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his
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time. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. chair, i rise to claim time in opposition, although i will not oppose the amendment. the chair: without objection, the gentleman is recognized. >> we understand the gentleman's concerns and we'll key -- will keep them in mind for the conference. we've included report language on the top knick both 2018 and 2019 reports. with that, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from ohio is recognized. mr. johnson: mr. chairman, i urge my colleagues to support the amendment and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from ohio. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number 24 printed in part b of house report 115-712. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. carbajal: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. number 24 mendment
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printed in part b of house report 115-712 offered by mr. ruiz of california. the chair: purr subte to house resolution -- pursuant to house resolution 923, the gentleman from california, mr. ruiz, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. ruiz: thank you, mr. chair. i rise today to offer an amendment with my good friend from santa barbara, congressman carbajal, from california, to address an issue impacting veterans that prevents them from accessing health care services they have earned and deserve. . right now veterans calling their clinics to make an appointment are routed to call centers. this makes no sense. this means that veterans end up waiting sometimes more than an hour in our district to be connected to a scheduler, and
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that is it. they can get through at all. some community-based out-patient clinics are not following up with veterans after the call-in center forcing veterans to travel to the clinic just to make their appointment. as a result, veterans get fed up and stop pursuing the care. our nation's veterans deserve timely access and should be able to make their medical appointments without waiting an hour. this directs the secretary to ensure the v.a. phone system to directly call their out-patient centers for appointments rather than having calls be routed to
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if the busy v.a. medical centers. it would reduce wait times and in my district, your district and districts throughout our nation. thank you. and i reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. mr. carter: i lies to claim time in opposition, although i will not op oats the amendment. the chair: the gentleman from texas is recognized. carlt cart we understand the gentleman's concerns and keep them in mind. we will be interested in learning more about this problem that he identified and i yield to ms. wasserman schultz. schultz schultz providing -- shullsshulls call routing is a very important issue and need there is an expectation. there are numerous call numbers
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to veterans who have questions about health care benefits and must ensure the calls are being routed to the cregget place and they are thoroughly addressed. we have an issue with their being a lot of different phone numbers at the v.a. and that is often confusing and i look forward to working with both gentlemen from california and i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman from florida yield back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. ruiz: this is a commonsense fix that our veterans fix. they wait too long and not geting the follow-up and this allows them to call the actual place to schedule an appointment with them. i would lying to thank you for not opposing this amendment and
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for their support and for their support of veterans and i would like to recognize and thank congressman for his staff and his work. and his efforts to improve the lives of veterans in all of our districts. and i urge a yes vote to ensure that veterans have easy access to benefits that they earned and deserve. and i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. nd the amendment is agreed to. the chair: the gentlewoman from arizona and a member opposed
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each will control five minutes the the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from arizona. ms. mcsally: i rise in support of the underlying legislation and urge adoption of my would t this amendment increase needed funding for suicide prevention and outreach programs as part of a broader mental health program. veterans make up less than 9% of the population but veteran suicides account for 18 percent. that puts the risk of suicide at 22% higher among veterans than civilian adults. and suicide rate for female veterans has risen. this is more egregious. according to a recent study from university of arizona, arizona
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veterans are nearly four times more likely to take their own lines than nonveterans. veterans in arizona committed 55 per 100,000. my home state, that means veterans are 391% more likely to commit suicide. 391%. despite these stark testimony statistics, studies show that mental health services specifically suicide prevention continues to go unmet. it is not enough to talk about statistics and studies. lip service will not save lives. with over 500,000 veterans this can be a life or death issue. today and every day, on average, 20 veterans take their own limbs. of my fellow warriors, 20
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heroes, 20 loved ones, sons, daughters, mothers, fathers, 20 vets who often survive combatting the enemy in conflict only to come home and take their own lives. mr. speaker, this is unacceptable. when they raise their right hand and took an oath that they are willing to defend their freedoms with their lives, we have a promise that we've got their back and give them everything they need. i urge my colleagues to support my funding. and we save their lives. reserve. the chair: the gentlewoman from arizona reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas. mr. carter: i claim time in opposition, although i do not oppose. the gentlewoman's concern about providing adequate funding to address mental health needs is shared by every member of our committee.
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we are pleased that the bill rovides $8.6 billion including $196 million for suicide prevention outreach. we will try to maintain these substantial levels in conference. and i yield to my colleague. -- tz schultz i thank ms. wasserman schultz: the gentlelady is correct. 208 veterans take their own limbs. as the chair mentioned, the bill provides $8.6 million and that is $6 million above the budget request. we are proud of the work that the committee has done. $196 million fully funds the crisis line. additionally at $90 million and
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the bill requires the veteran crisis line for individuals to contact them, the immediate hotline assistance and to adhere to all requirements. the potential for suicide and making sure that we take care of our veterans who are facing cries sees. i do not oppose the amendment but it's important to stress that the committee did significantly priority idsed this issue and we appreciate the gentlelady's attention to it. and i i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from texas yields back. the gentlewoman from arizona. ms. mcsally: i thank the chairman and ranking member and i urge our colleagues to support the amendment. the chair: the gentlewoman from arizona yields back. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment
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is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number 26 printed in 712. b of house report 115- mr. welch: i have an amendment at the desk. cherkcherk amendment number 26 printed in house report 115-712 offered by mr. welch of vermont. the chair: the gentleman from vermont and a member opposed ach will control five minutes. mr. welch: my amendment would increase the v.a. medical services account by $5 million for the purpose of strengthening registry.it burn pits were used on u.s. military sites during the iraq and afghanistan wars to burn all types of waste from chemicals, paint, medical waste and human
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waste to plastics and rubber. but as you know, many members of the military who were exposed to burn pits are experiencing negative health effects. and that is why i'm offering this amendment to increase funding to address and assist those suffering more aggressively and quickly. on may 7, mr. speaker, i met with a group of vermont national guard members led by pat cran who have been impacted by burn pit exposure. she is the wife of sergeant major mike crap of the vermont national guard who died this past december from prostate cancer that is believed to be the direct result of exposure of burn pits in iraq and afghanistan. the sergeant major first
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deployed in 2004 with a group of m.p.'s from the 42nd infantry from the vermont national guard. they joined up with the 278th ational cavalry in iraq. all 21 soldiers returned home to their families safely. but since their safe return, this same group has lost two members from prostate cancer and another has been treated to it and they believe their exposure to burn pit toxins. they stay in touch and their families stay in touch and how they have been stuck together throughout the years. but those members that have not had the direct health issues that some of their comrades have are wondering if they will get
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sick. this funding would provide resources to the v.a. to make necessary improvements to the registry and prepare to the long-term for those affected veterans and allow the v.a. to hire analysts and doctors who can connect the registry to make necessary updates to the registry and increase the funding for research. the cost of the war must always include the cost of caring for the warrior and this funding helps to do just that. i thank chairman carter and ranking member wasserman schultz and willingness to help. thank you. and i urge support and i reserve. the chair: the gentleman from vermont reserves.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. carter: i claim time in opposition, although i will not oppose the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. carter: we understand the gentleman's concerns and will keep in mind this concern during our corners. i have heard veterans in my district about the concerns and in fact sat down with some last weekend and this is one of their number one concerns. so this has a health impact. these burn pits are something we need to get into. and we will have this in mind in conference. as ms. wasserman schultz wish time? then i'll yield back? the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from vermont is recognized. mr. welch: i thank the speaker and i thank the gentleman from texas and i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the
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gentleman from vermont. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. now in order to consider amendment number 27 printed in part brn of house report 115-712, for what purpose does the gentleman from kentucky seek recognition? mr. barr: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: house report 115-712 kentucky. mr. barr of the chair: the gentleman from kentucky and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from kentucky. . mr. barr: thank you, mr. chairman. this grant program provides much-needed resources for evidence-based equine assisted
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therapy that helps treat veterans suffering from unscene psychological wounds such as posttraumatic stress disorder, military sexual trauma, and traumatic brain injury. increased funding for equine asift therapy will greatly -- assisted therapy will greatly improve mental health for our veterans, as the chairman of the congressional horse caucus, the representative for the horse caw -- capital of the world, and as someone who cares deeply for our veterans, i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this amendment. thank you, and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. carter: mr. chairman, i rise to claim time in opposition although i will not oppose this amendment. the chair: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. carter: the bill provides $1 million over the president's budget request for the adaptive sports grant, a.s.g. program, for equine assisted therapy.
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as our 2018 bill did also. we understand the gentleman's concern and further increasing this funding, we'll keep it in mind during conference and in my congressional district, we also have equine therapy and i'm very familiar with it. i yield time to ms. wasserman schultz. ms. wasserman schultz: i thank the gentleman for yielding. adaptive sports pro moats the rehabilitation of disabled military service veterans. thanks vital program that allows veterans with disabilities to participate in physical activity, including those with mental health issues, within their home communities. as well as more advanced paraolympic and adaptive sports programs at the regional and national levels. mr. chairman, the committee is a strong supporter of this program. in fact, the bill provides $17.8 million for the program. i appreciate the gentleman addressing this issue today. support this amendment. i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from texas yields
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back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from kentucky. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. carter: mr. chairman, i move hat the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the committee rises.
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the speaker pro tempore: mr. chairman. the chair: mr. speaker, the committee of the whole house on the state of the union, having had under consideration h.r. 5895 directs me to report that it has come to no resolution thereon. the speaker pro tempore: the chair of the committee of the whole house on the state of the union reports that the committee has had under consideration h.r. 5895 and has come to no esolution thereon. for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move that the house adjourns. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the house stands adjourned until 9:00 a.m. tomorrow.
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today the chamber began debate on a spending bill. a final vote expected tomorrow. live coverage when members return here on c-span. president trump met with japanese prime minister actions on a today. then, secretary of state mike pompeo giving an update on next week's summit with north korea. at thesenator ted cruz freedom coalition conference. journal,'s washington
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live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. reed willning, tom discuss immigration and trump administration trade policy and california democratic congressman ted lieu will talk about the upcoming summit in singapore. watch c-span's washington journal live at 7:00 eastern friday morning. join the discussion. during a joint news conference with japanese prime minister abe at the white house president trump talked about the upcoming north korea summit. prime minister abe talked about japanese abductees held in north korea. pres. trump: thank you very much.

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