Skip to main content

tv   [untitled]  CSPAN  June 11, 2009 2:00pm-2:30pm EDT

2:00 pm
2:01 pm
2:02 pm
2:03 pm
mr. dodd: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from connecticut. mr. dodd: i ask unanimous consent the call of the quorum be rescinded. the presiding officer: without objection, so ordered. mr. dodd: mr. president what is the business before the
2:04 pm
senate? the presiding officer: morning business is closed. under the previous order the senate will resume consideration of h.r. 1256, the clerk will report. the clerk: an act to protect the public health by providing the food and drug administration with certain authority to regulate tobacco products and is forth and for other purposes. the presiding officer: under the previous order the time until 2:30 p.m. will be equally divided and controlled between the senator from connecticut, mr. dodd, and the senator from wyoming, mr. enzi, or their designees. mr. dodd: i'm going to ask consent that a colloquy between senator mark warner of virginia and myself be printed in the record. the presiding officer: without objection, so ordered. mr. dodd: i see my good friend from ohio, senator brown, who has been a champion of this issue. not only as a member of this body but in his previous
2:05 pm
incarnation as a member of the other body and before that has cared about this issue very much and spoken on illinois quently already so -- spoken on it eloquently already so let me defer to him. and senator enzi will be here shortly and we will go back and forth. mr. brown: i thank senator dodd. the presiding officer: the senator from ohio is recognized. mr. brown: mr. president, i've watched with great admiration, senator dodd's work on this. i worked with chairman, with henry waxman in the house of representatives. and senator kennedy, senatorred ssenatordodd and congressman wae never given up and i am appear tich particularly to senator dodd. i boil this issue down to almost one sentence: i remember sitting in front of the "help" committee in the house of representatives many years ago and seeing the tobacco company executives stand in front of us, raise their right hand and swear to tell the truth and they didn't exactly
2:06 pm
tell the truth when they talked about nicotine not being an addiction but i learned one simple concept that we have known this number for years, 400,000 americans die every year from tobacco-related illness. that means on the average more than 1,000 americans die every single day from tobacco-related illnesses. no if you are a tobacco executive, mr. president, what you think about is this: you've lot 4 hundred dho 400,000 custou need to replenish your base much what do you do? you need to find 400,000 new customers every year. you don't go to people of senator dodd's and my generation. you don't go, even to my children's age group, they are in their late 20's. you aim your marketing campaign at the young men and women sitting in front of me, the pages that are sitting on the steps in front of the -- at
2:07 pm
presiding officer's feet, you aim at people 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 years old. those are your new customers. you need to find 400,000 new customers, more than 1,000 customers every day. they are successful at it. i heard chairman dodd talk a few minutes ago in another meeting it is something like 3,000 new customers they get 3,000 young people every day to start smoking and of those 3,000, maybe of them, for many of them it becomes a lifelong habit and many of them will die as a result of smoking. so the key point about this legislation, what makes the legislation of chairman dodd so important is to have the food and drug administrationed finally involved in tobacco-related illness, tobacco regulation. what makes it so important is we need somebody to stand between the drug, the very well paid drug company marketing executives and these 13, 14, 15,
2:08 pm
16-year-olds who are not as sophisticated, we need some assistance in making sure that those targeting efforts can't get those young people addicted. 1,000 americans every day die from tobacco-related illnesses. they need 1,000 new customers every day to replenish their customer base, if you will. this legislation will help stop them from making that a reality. that's why it's important. that's why this senate needs to pass this legislation. that's why this 15-year effort to do this right finally is coming to fruition. we need to pass this bill. we need to get it to the president of the united states, president obama is eager to sign it. it will matter so greatly in affecting america's public health in the decades ahead. i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the senator from connecticut. mr. dodd: mr. president, let me thank our colleague from ohio for not only his remarks right now but his effort over the years. this has been a long journey, and, in fact, it goes back 50
2:09 pm
years. it was 50 years ago this year the surgeon jerc surgeon generae united states warned of the health effects of smoking -- half a century. i know we will have a big vote at 2:30 and that's great news. sometimes a large vote like that minimizes the impact of the decision. but i want people to know that this has been a very long battle. someone told me the other day, mr. president, that the issue to ban tobacco smoking on airplanes only passed the congress by one vote. imagine today if someone tried to restore the right or the privilege, whatever you want to call it, to smoke on airplanes, i doubt you would find one in favor of it. even smokers would object. yet only by one-vote margin did the congress vote to ban that practice. on monday we had a cloture vote and, again, people can vote for a lot of different reasons and i'm not suggesting everyone who voted against cloture was in
2:10 pm
favor of the continuation of the tobacco industry to be unregulated, but by a one-vote margin, basically, 61 votes, on a bipartisan basis here we terminated that debate which is bringing us to the vote in 20 minutes. and while it may seem just another vote on this day in june, in this year of 2009, it is a significant vote. i don't know of another vote in the last number of years as important as the one we're about to take. we're going to start a markup in the next wire or so and my good friend from wyoming has been involved in the issues for so long and passionate about the issue of smoking, by the way, and we will begin marking up bills trying to fashion the major health care reform debate in this country. what better way to begin that debate, mr. president, than by the vote we will take in a few minutes to, for the first time in the history of our country, insist that tobacco products be regulated by the food and drug administration? and let me but the this in perspective for you: the f.d.a.,
2:11 pm
the food and drug administration, regulates not only all the food and other products that we ingest, it regulates cosmetics, lap stick, all sorts of products we use, not only that we ingest but that we use in or on our 3w0eds and it controls the products your pets consume -- cat food, dog food, hamsters, whatever else. the f.d.a. has the power to regulate. but for 50 years the tobacco industry has successfully fought the ability to regulate tobacco products. and yet 3,000 to 4,000 kids start smoking every day in this country, 400,000 a year die as we heard from he sherrod brown. it is incredible we have had an opportunity that's gone basically unregulated. and of course the idea that you could put cherry-flavored and
2:12 pm
strawberry-flavored and cartoon figures -- that is not aimed at the 30 or 40-year-old tobacco user but aimed at children, the 3,000 or 4,000 that begin a day, 1,000, by the way, who become addicted and half that number die prematurely. there are people that smoke, i guarantee you, mr. president, there is not a smoark in the country who is an adult that wishes or hopes their child would begin smoking. in fact, i guarantee that almost virtually 100% of adult smokers have man wishes for their children and one wish, i guarantee they have, is that their children never start the habit they did. we're told by health officials, health experts, the average person who smokes and tries to quit tries seven times before effectively kicking the habit -- seven times they try. i'm a former smoker. let me tell you, it is hard. it is hard. and i know others have not smoked and my colleague from wyoming talks about his own
2:13 pm
family members. many americans smoked. my mother smoked greets. my father smoked gars and pipes in our house with six children and many of my siblings smoked growing up but they stopped. it is hard the today, for the very first time ever in the name of my colleague from massachusetts, senator kennedy, for four decades has championed this the henry wab waxman in the house, dick during di dick durb, and sherrod brown of ohio, and it will be an overwhelming vote. our leader, harry reid, insisted we stay here on this matter. that's leadership. he could have said, let's move on to another issue. it's taking too long, another couple of weeks, three weeks, to get it done but because harry reid and dick durbin and my friend mike enzi have stayed with us and insisted we go through a normal process which was right to do in our
2:14 pm
committee, good staff people who worked hard on this, we will get this done today. it might just move along to the next issue but for the first time we're going do make a difference by requiring that the food and drug administration regulate the production, the sale and the marketing of these products much that is history. and i can't tell you how proud i am to be involved in it in the name of ted kennedy, in the name of others who is come before us, mike defin dewine of ohio who championed this along with henry waxman in the other body and the thousands of organization whose have joined us today. mr. durbin: i thank the senator from connecticut for his leadership on this issue. just a few week he had historic legislation on credit card reform. senator enzi, thank you for making this a true bipartisan effort. we wouldn't be here today without your cooperative effort and i thank senator dodd for invoking the name of our great hero, ted kennedy, who really started this fight. in just a few minutes, this
2:15 pm
senate will make a historic decision and i think they'll make the right decision. joe camel will be given a life sentence and put away forever and we're going to give our kids and our families across america a fighting chance for a better life. this bill is historic. it's been a long time coming. thank you for all your hard work to make it possible. mr. dodd: i yield the floor. y mr. enzi: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from wyoming. mr. enzi: mr. president, i rise today in support of the family smoking prevention and tobacco control act. i thought long and hard about this, and after a lot of work and a few good improvements, i believe this bill is the only bill we'll consider seriously that will make it difficult for kids to get tobacco, make it difficult for them to start smoking and that's really the important thing. i want to be clear. i still don't think there's enough in this bill to stop smoking. one smoker is too many, but
2:16 pm
maintaining the current state of tobacco regulation is not acceptable to me. one thing that we haven't discussed much is the cost of tobacco use to nonsmokers. many smokers say it's their business what they put into their bodies. ordinarily, they'd be right. but when it comes to tab corks - tobacco, we all pay for what smokers put into their bodies and breathe out into the air. we all bear the increased financial costs of the diminished health of smokers. when one of your colleagues smokes, your health insurance premiums go up for everybody. every senior who uses tobacco creates a further strain on medicare, and since you pay for that too through your taxes, it puts a strain on your wallet. now, if smokers were the only one who paid the price for smoking, we wouldn't be having this debate at all. but since the extra costs get shifted to the rest of us, it becomes our problem too. secondhand smoke penalizes those who don't smoke, particularly
2:17 pm
the families of smokers. and i hope they listen to that and realize that. unfortunately, i know a lot about this since my parents' smoking impacted me. my mom we thought quit but she became a closet smoker, which goes with senator dodd's comment that it is hard to give it up. and i understand how hard that is to give it up. now, when she quit smoking, then she wasn't smoking around me and my doctor told me that he was glad i quit smoking. i said, i never did. and he showed me the lung x-rays that he'd taken the year before at my athletic physical and that year at the athletic physical. when they quit smoking around me, i also got over extreme hayfever. nearly 22 million of u.s. children aged 3 to 11 are exposed to secondhand smoke. approximately 30% of indoor workers in the united states are not covered by smoke-free workplace policies. those numbers are just too high. we can't keep paying that price.
2:18 pm
i also have concerns about the long-term financial health of this new center at f.d.a. the bill gives f.d.a. increases in funding for this program for the first ten years but leaves it flat after that. i think congress will have to revisit that issue or this program will wither on the vine and we won't have meaningful tobacco regulation, and we can't let that happen. this bill does contain three really important provisions that i thought for. that's increased fines on tobacco companies, larger color graphic warning labels, and some reporting to congress on how the program is going. and i'd like to talk about each of these for a moment. we know from decades of experience that the tobacco companies are not inclined to follow the law. they do not have a history of being forthcoming with the health information in their possession. just two weeks ago, the united states court of appeals for the district of columbia found that the tobacco companies were guilty of -- quote -- "a decades-long conspiracy to
2:19 pm
deceive the american public about the health effects and addictiveness of smoking cigarettes." i'm pleased i was able to add a measure to that bill that increased civil penalties for violations of the new law and sends a strong message that we're serious about expecting compliance from the tobacco industry. the new, larger color graphic warning labels provision i authored will do a lot to reduce smoking. everyone from the world health organization to the congressional budget office says these warnings work. research shows that these warnings have a big impact. approximately one-fifth of the participants reported smoking less as a result of the labels. only 1% reported smoking more. we should want kids thinking about taking up this deadly habit to have a bit of a shock just by looking at the package. we should want smokers to think about thee health messages each time they light up. any tool in our arsenal that makes people think twice about
2:20 pm
taking up tobacco shouldn't be an option. it should be a requirement. and now these labels are a requirement. finally, we now require reports on the performance of f.d.a.'s tobacco center and on the financial situation o of the program. without this regular report, congress would have little insight into the operation and status of this new program. she's reports play an important role in establishing the health of the programs and f.d.a.'s performance in carrying out the law. i want to make sure the agency is doing what it's supposed to do and that the fees really are paying for f.d.a.' f.d.a.'s tobacco-control activities. these reports will help do you say just exactly that. i've always stood against tobacco. the footing would have been better if changes such as my phaseout amendment to reduce tobacco use over a hundred years were accepted. i know how addictive it is. i didn't want to make it too short a period of time. i thought a hundred years was plenty reasonable. we didn't have a chance to debate that or look at it now
2:21 pm
and i actually introduced that a little over a year ago -- a little more than a year ago. it was as a new amendment then. new amendments have trouble getting traction except in new zealand. new zealand liked this comment, this -- this approach to stopping smoking and looked at it in their legislature. they even called it the enzi bill. of course, you have to realize that that's how it sounds and that's the way they spelled it, but in new zealand, n-z stands for their country. so i think they thought they were talking about a country bill rather than something that i had written. but it was kind of fun to watch anyway. and i think we need to look at some approaches like that, where the tobacco companies have to reduce the number of cigarettes that they're selling each and every year. or purchase part of another company to make up for the increase in cigarettes that they got, which would reduce it at least in one part and over a long period of time would eliminate this kind of a
2:22 pm
problem. so this bill is just one step toward the goal. i knogoal i know we all share which is reducing public health toll of tobacco use. and i urge my colleagues not to rest on their laurels. i think this bill is enough to combat tobacco. i intend to continue the fight against tobacco, and i ask my colleagues to join me. i want to thank senator dodd, who's been chairing this effort and work on it difficult getly and giving us a - -- diligently, and giving us a voice and taking us through the possible, extremely valuable. the floor discussion took longer but with less debate than i'd anticipated. but i know some of the other parliamentary things that got in the way of that. we -- we could have had more success with this but -- but there were some additional bills. i always ask people to do relevant or germane amendments to the bills, and when they talk about doing other ones, it sometimes slows our process down dramatically and usually not result in any of those happening anyway. i also to want thank all the
2:23 pm
staff that worked on this bill. they, too, have been very diligent, have looked at everything, have done tremendous research, and i particularly want to thank amy mulberg for her efforts on this. i think she knows the tobacco bill and other proposals better than probably anybody, and she has a real diligence and passion for it. i want to thank greg dean for the efforts that he has. he has a legal mind that helps us on these issues, and i -- i would ask permission to expand that with some other names in the record. but i do intend to continue the fight against tobacco and i do ask my colleagues to join me on this. and i thank senator dodd for all of his efforts. there is true passion. i yield the floor. mr. dodd: thank you. mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from connecticut. mr. dodd: let me thank our colleague. we're getting close to the time of the vote. but i'd be remiss if i didn't also mention our staff. i often say this at a time like this. as senators, we get the
2:24 pm
opportunity to stand here and -- at a little podium and be heard but there are literally dozens of people whose names that most americans will never know who make these moments happen, and they deserve the kind of public recognition because they worked tirelessly, late on the nights, weekends, around the clock negotiating, working with each other trying to iron out provisions of the bill. on senator kennedy's staff, jeff tights and ben olinsky, terry roney, shawn doeherty, porta wu, and jim are all part of senator kennedy's staff and some of them are here on the floor and i thank them immensely. and senator durbin's staff, tom poletti has been terrific in this effort. we thank tom for his work. greg dean and amy milberg. we thank you immensely from senator enzi's staff. worked very, very hard on this. and i want to thank jim fenton in my office and rachel holt and jeremy sharpe, who's sitting next to me here, for picking up
2:25 pm
a lot on this effort, along with senator kennedy's staff and senator enzi's staff and making this moment happen. there are members of the majority leader's staff as well that we always have to thank that -- lula and tim and others who really made this possible, the floor staff as well. we thank you all very much for what you do in making these moments possible. and again, as senator durbin has said and senator enzi and others have said, this is an historic moment for our chamber to be able to do something that 50 years ago -- monica fife, i should have mentioned, and i apologize, as w.30 years ago the surgeon general warned us of tobacco use and a half a century later, we're about to insist that the agency in charge of food and drugs and cosmetics and pet food be also be allowed to include tobacco. and so we're about to do that. and the house bill and the senate bill are very similar and i believe that we'll have a presidential signature on this legislation very, very quickly. so on behalf of -- of millions
2:26 pm
of families across this country and as the father of a four-year-old and a seven-year-old who don't know anything about tobacco yet and whose mother doesn't smoke, never did, father did but has stopped, on behalf of my children and millions of children around this country, we're told by the congressional budget office 11% reduction in youth smoking can happen immediately with the passage of this bill. that may not seem like much but it's a beginning. and we may just reach the goal of my colleague from wyoming of 100% reduction of young people smoking. my hope would be certainly that would be the case. with that, mr. president, with a little bit of time left, i'm prepared to yield back the time. ask at the appropriate moment, when the chair asks for it, ask for the yeas and nays on final passage. the presiding officer: the senator's time has expired. the senator from wyoming has 3 minutes and 30 seconds left. mr. enzi: mr. president, i'd yield back the balance of my time. i would ask permission --
2:27 pm
unanimous consent to include an additional statement in the record. the presiding officer: without objection, so ordered. mr. dodd: i ask for the yeas and nays. the presiding officer: is there a sufficient second? there is sufficient second. the question is on the passage of the bill, as amended. the yaw nays and nays having ben ordered, the clerk will call the roll. vote:
2:28 pm
2:29 pm


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on