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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  December 8, 2010 12:00pm-5:00pm EST

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of the serious and fundamental problems with this legislation. for over 70 years the hallmark of our nation's labor policy has been the principle that employment and labor relations between a state, city or town and its own employees should not be a matter of federal law, but a matter of local law.that bedry rooted in our national labor policy, its eats also firmly fixed in our constitution, and our traditions of federalism. yet today the proponents of this bill seek to overturn this hallmark principle and to radically change decades of unbroken federal law and policy. the enormity of this change is only matched by the prospect that it could occur as a result of total disregard for processes of the senate and the complete absence of any meaningful opportunity for modification. you would think the senate would consider such a bill only after careful examination and due deliberation.
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sadly, you would be wrong. this legislation has not had a senate committee hearing or a markup this congress or the two congresses before this one. the "help" committee has never meddle a hearings on this bism the bill grants enormous power over states to a virtually unknown federal agency. yet we have never so much as asked a representative sampling of officials for their views. nor have we ever asked the federal agency involved if if feels up to the job we'd impose on it. these shortcomings alone show that the bill is being pushed not because it is good policy but because some see it as expedient policy. this bill would require that every state, city, and town with more than 5,000 residents open its police, firefighters, and first responders to unionization t would impose this federal mandate not in the absence of any state consideration of this issue but this direct opposition
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to the legislative will of several states. proponents of this legislation have attempted to maintain the fiction that it actually does little to disturb state laws. that simply not the case. this bill would expressly overturn the law in 22 states. in fact, 16 states have specifically considered and rejected legislative proposals splar to the law that would be federally imposed under this bill, and they've done it in recent years. some states such as wyoming have chosen to either extend collective bargaining in a more limited manner than the bill before us or not to extend it at all. in this next chart, proponents of this bill have told senators from states that do have "full public-sector collective bargaining laws" that it bill would not change anything that their respective home states. however, labor experts have identified at least 12 of the states where the viability of one or more provisions of their own current state law would be in question if this bill were
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enacted. that's the yellow states on here. supporters of the bill base their argument on a provision which allows the federal board that would be ruling over all these states to ignore instances where the state law is not as broad as the federal mandate if "both parties" agree that it's sufficient. make no mistake, this provision is completely hollow. first there are hundreds of thousands of parties that will have the authority to agree or disagree about the sufficiency of states' laws. every public-sector officer and his authority sl have this authority. it is so broadly defined in this bill that many employee groups that may surprise you meet the definition, such as paramedics, lifeguards, security guards, and more. what are the odds all of these groups agreeing to look the other way? further, anyone who has ever been a party to negotiation
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knows about leverage. the ability to place one phone call and have an entire state's law on a subject overturned and taken over by the federal government is one of the most powerful leverages i've ever heard of. let's be completely clear about what this legislation would do. a vote for this bill is a vote to overturn the law and the democratic will of the citizens of many of our states and to invalidate the democratic action of their voters and legislators. and this is really important: that's why mayors of major u.s. cities that already provide collective bargaining rights also oppose the bill. new york city mayor bloomberg along with the mayors of boston, cleveland, denver, minneapolis, san diego, philadelphia, and mesa, arizona, all wrote to the senate yesterday asking us not to enact this poorly thought out bill and it isn't just the chief executives objecting. major newspapers across the
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country such as "the denver post," the richmond times dispatch and "the washington post" have editorialized against this proposal, and i'd ask unanimous consent that these materials be placed in the record at the end of my statement. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. enzi: i formerly served as the mayor of gillette, i would wyoming, city of 20,000 people. there are too few here who have had experience trying to balance a budget for a city or town, which may explain why this unfunded mandate proposal is being brought up with so little attention given to how it will increase the dire financial situation of states and miewments. a recent report found that municipalities will face a shortfall between $56 billion and $83 billion from 2010 to 2012. headlines across the country
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confirm that city leaders are responding to deficits with layoffs, furloughs, payroll deductions, and cutting city services, all of which will impact the police, fire, and emergencies services departments. this week it was camden, new jersey, laying off several hundred employees. another survey found 87% of the city finance officers said that they were less able to meet the city's fiscal needs in 2010 than a year before. the outlook for states is just as dire, especially considering that federal stimulus dollars which many states have used to partially fund budget gaps, will run out after 2012. states will face an estimated $300 billion budget shortfall for 2011 and 2012, and the extent to which states and municipalities are facing unfunded public employee pensions is truly staggering. a pew center on the states
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report oust this year's -- out of this year -- out this year pegs it at a $1 trillion gap -- that's to be able to pay pensions. during this downturn cities across america are sthug struggling to maintain solvency. unlike the federal government, they cannot print money. they have to actually balance their budgets. here's the reality: without regard to pay or benefits, just the administrative costs alone of collective bargaining represent a very significant line-item that congress now proposes to force on states, cities, and towns. towns, particularly small towns, that currently don't have the resources to negotiator and administer multiple collective bargaining agreements, must now hire and pay these additional services. towns and cities that do not devote the long hours of municipal time to the complicated process of bargaining and overseeing multiple union contracts and to
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administering contract provisions and resolving disputes under a collective bargaining system will be required to spend that time. nobody should be fooled. those additional manpower and man-hour requirements are enormously costly and burdensome. this bill would impose those costs by federal mandate but would not provide a single penney of federal money to help offset these costs. as a former mayor and the only accountant here in the senate, i would remind my colleagues about the cold realities of municipal finance. if you increase municipal costs, you role is two ways to meet those additional costs: either increase revenues or decrease services. this bill will unquestionably place many municipalities in the difficult position of comosing between raising state and local taxes or decreasing and eliminating local municipal services. mere consideration of this bill today reveals that many of this body remain sadly out of touch with the real needs of our
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constituents and the real fiscal problems that our cities and towns face every day. with stagnant or declining property values and and heless parade of increasing fixed costs, don't our cities and towns already have enough on their plate without the federal government imposing new costs through this mandate? mr. president, since this legislation before us has not gone through the committee process, i have a number of amendments i will have to offer here on the floor. i always like doing it in committee. it is a smaller group, more understanding of what the different issues are, and it also gives you the chance to kind of grow an idea to get the germ after an idea and grow it between several people that are interested. that doesn't happen on the floomplet it is all up or down. but i do have a number of amendment thailz have to omplet these amendments are directed towards protecting the fiscal health of our committees that fall under this mandate ensuring the integrity of the public service safety organizations and preventing union abuse of
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public-sector employees, among other issues. but these problems represent only the tip of the iceberg. if this body decides to take this issue up today and spend the next week debating it you'll hear more detail on thigh concerns and those will be raised by others opposed to this proposal who have also never had any chance in the process for input. mr. president, i urge my completion to oppose the motion on public safety ands employee-employer cooperation act, senate 3991. i yield the floor and reserve the balance of my time. i also suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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mr. schumer: i ask unanimous consent that the quorum -- are we in a quorum call? the presiding officer: we're.
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mr. schumer:zy that the quorum be discriminated. the presiding officer: without objection. shiewm mr. president, i rise today in strong support -- mr. schumer: mr. president, i rise today in strong support of the 9/11 health and compensation afnlgt now, yesterday we observed pearl harbor day, marked the 69th anniversary of that tragic attack on american soil. nine years ago our nation was attacked once again. september 11, 2001, was a day of indescribable horror, not only for new york, the city i'm proud to call home, but for the entire nation. in the mince, hours, and days after the twin towers collapsed, thousands of first responders rushed to lower manhattan to dig through the rubble. first they searched for survivors. we all remember the horrible -- i -- i -- i -- this is vivid in my mind, mr. president. the signed people were holding. have you seen this person? it is my husband, my wife, my
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child, my parent. because no one knew where everyone was amidst the rubble. and we thought, unfortunately we were disappointed deeply, that there were survivors amidst the rubble. and time was of the essence. and time was of the essence to find them. then in days later when we realized that there weren't many survivors, there was still a great need to sadly search for the bodies of those who perished. you can imagine the anguish of families who wanted a sign, something, remains of their loved ones and that search continued. valiant men and women, not just from new york or new jersey or connecticut, but from minnesota and colorado and all around the country, came -- firefighters, first responders, police officers, ordinary citizens --
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to help us in our horrible hour of need, a moment, a day, a week, a month that i will never forget. i still look out my window from my home in brooklyn every day when i'm home and note that those two twin towers are no longer there and i think of the people i knew who were lost. a guy i played basketball with in high school, a businessman who helped me on the way up, a firefighter who dedicated his life for my neighborhood in brooklyn where i was raised to helping get people to donate blood. so we think of all these people this a. they were resolute, they were brave, they were selfless, those who were lost, and then those who came to the rubble: construction workers, they didn't ask if they were going to get paid. they didn't ask what the danger was to them. they were brave. they were resolute.
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they were selfless, as were firefighters, e.m. it's and others. amidst the chaos and the carnage, they said to themselves, "this is what i am trained for, and i will do whatever it takes to help, even if it means risking my life." though the dust is settled and the ruins of the world trade center have been cleared away, the effect of the attacks are still being felt now more than ever by thousands of those first responders. medical experts have determined that on september 11 and the days after, the air around ground zero was filled with microscopic cement and glass particles. this dust has caused thousands of first responders to develop chronic respiratory and gastro intestinal diseases. just last week we lost 9/11 first responder kevin turesky,
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an nypd, new york police narcotic detective. he's the third he troe pass away in the past -- third hero to pass away in the past month. back in 2006, doctors from the mount sigh knee medical center -- mount sinai medical center that then-senator clinton worked so hard to bring into the picture, found that a staggering 70% of 9/11 rescue workers suffered from health problems, many of which were irreversible. and the fact is, mr. president, right now there are people who rush to those towers who don't know that they're ill. the symptoms of these illnesses and diseases, when you get these particles in your lungs and in your gastro intestinal system, the cancer and other illnesses that develop take years and
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years before they can be detected. so we know that in the coming years there are going to be more heroes who will become ill, and those who are already suffering may see their conditions worsen. the 9/11 health and compensation act will finally put these first responders at ease with the knowledge that they'll receive treatment for health problems related to rescuing victims of the attack and helping clear the debris from ground zero. -- the bill ensures those who get sick have a right to treatment. the bill also ensures ongoing data collection and analysis for exposed population so we can try to cure or treat in advance people who might become ill, and critically. the legislation would ensure steady funding for these vital programs so that those in
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treatment no longer have to wonder whether or not congress will appropriate adequate funds to allow their treatment to continue year to year. we have appropriated funds every year. everyone in this chamber has voted for those funds. but when it's yearly funds and you need an ongoing medical regime, it's very hard to plan, to buy that machine to, set up a team that would work for three or four or five years under normal circumstances. the heroes who rushed to the towers deserve to be guaranteed proper treatment, not to have their medical needs subject to the whims of what's going on at that month, that time in washington. and let me say this: in addition to addressing health needs, the bill would reoept victims -- reopen the victims compensation fund allowing those who missed the deadline of december 22, 2003, to seek compensation. this deadline unfairly barred
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responders who became ill or learned of the fund after the date. you rush to the tower, as of 2003 you were aware of the fund but you didn't apply. you didn't have anything wrong with you. and six months later you get cancer of the lungs or cancer of the esophagus or stomach, which we found so many getting. why unfairly prevent them? so, mr. president, this bill is an opportunity to send a clear message to the thousands of first responders who risk their lives on that fateful day nine years ago. we say to them, in our nation's time of need you gave us your all. now in your time of need, we will give you our all. let's not forget. on both sides of the aisle we have mightily struggled to help our veterans from the wars in iraq and afghanistan.
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in 2001 and 2002, we saw that veterans health care was not up to snuff, and there was a bipartisan effort to bring it up to snuff, to make the health care adequate for the new needs of the veterans who risked their lives for us in iraq and afghanistan. why? because this nation has a tradition, when you volunteer, as our soldiers do today, and risk your life to protect our freedom, particularly at a time of war, we will be there for you and deal with your medical problems that were caused in that conflict. i would argue to every one of my colleagues here today, those who rushed to the towers in those fateful hours and days after 9/11 are no different than our veterans who we exalt. it was a time of war; our nation was attacked. they volunteered. no one compelled them to do it.
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and they rushed to danger, like our veterans do. so when they are injured, which god -- which has happened, they should be treated the same as our veterans. this is nothing we should play politics with, just like we don't play politics with veterans' needs. i want to make sure that everybody hears us. i know there's other legislative concerns, whether it's tax bills or funding bills or whatever. i would say to my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, it the not fair and it is not right to say we will not remember these people who volunteered and risked their lives to protect our freedom at a time of war. we will not help them until x or y or z gets done. not fair, not right. it is also time for those who
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are against this bill to stop spreading lies about it. they say it's vulnerable to fraud. it's been very tight. my good colleague, the senator from new york, senator gillibrand, has documented thoroughly and completely how the existing compensation has not created any fraud or other types of problems. and so, we're here. we've debated this bill for years. it's been like running a marathon and this is the last 100 yards. thousands of first responders, police officers, firefighters, construction workers and other heroes who are ordinary citizens from each of the 50 states is waiting for us to act. and for all too many of them, help cannot come soon enough. the finish line is in view. let us on both sides of the aisle cross it together.
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i implore my colleagues to vote in favor of the 9/11 health and compensation act. before i sit down, i just want to praise my colleague who has led the fight on this, senator gillibrand from new york. she has made it her passion. she works for hours every day and has done an amazing, amazing job. and i also want to thank our other colleagues on this legislation, particularly my colleagues from across the river: senators lautenberg and menendez, who have been our partners in this. i want to thank peter king, caroline maloney, gerald madler in the house and many others in new york and their delegations. and again, hope that those efforts will not go in vain not because of the people who worked on the bill like we did, but because of the people who need
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our help like those who have all kinds of illnesses because they volunteered to help our great nation and preserve its freedom in a time of war. i yield the floor. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from colorado. mr. bennet: tha*urbgs mr. president. i'd like -- thank you, mr. president. i'd like to thank the senior senator from new york for all his efforts over many years to make sure that the first responders from 9/11 receive the settlements that they deserve. i rise today, mr. president, to speak in strong support of the dream act. the dream act will enable some of the best and brightest young people who graduateed from our schools to serve in the armed forces and to excel in college and their careers. and the dream act actually raises revenue to reduce our deficit. and it's for these reasons that the dream act has a history of bipartisan support and why i urge my colleagues to support this bill today, both republicans and democrats. i have been a strong supporter
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of comprehensive immigration reform that will secure the border, reform our broken family and it employment visa systems. address employers who willfully break the law and unkweurd -- require the undocumented to become legal, pay a fine, back taxes, learn english and pass criminal background checks. unfortunately, congress has been unable to get comprehensive immigration reform done even as our immigration system becomes more and more broken. as a result, we need to look at smaller measures to make sure that we are addressing the immigration issues that can't wait. franklin raines, recently the -- for instance, the senate approved $6 million to send 1,500 new border patrol agents additional unmanned aerial drones and communications equipment to our southwest border in order to stem the flow of undocumented immigration and prevent the further smuggling of weapons and money. this is an effort that i supported. the dream act is another step
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toward improving the overall system. it is a program targeted for a relatively small, defined, select group of immigrants who are currently in this country with few options through no fault of their own. these are students and graduates of our schools who did not choose to come here but have succeeded and begun to contribute to our country. this debate is about whether a child who's excelled in the classroom has the opportunity to attend college and later contribute to society as a tax-paying citizen. this debate is also about whether a child whose only home, whose only home is our country, can have the opportunity to serve america in our armed forces. and it's about whether it makes good fiscal sense to have our government invest in the education of these young people and generate what the congressional budget office estimates to be $1.4 billion in savings through new revenues to be generated when these kids
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enter our workforce armed with an education or valuable military experience. each year roughly 65,000 united states-raised students who would qualify for the dream acts benefits graduates from high school. these include honor roll students, star athletes, talented artists, homecoming queens, aspiring teachers, doctors and u.s. soldiers. as a former superintendent of public schools i saw firsthand the achievement and potential of these young people. students like kevin who wrote my office this fall to tell his story. kevin graduated from high school in colorado with a 3.9 grade point average and always dreamed of becoming an engineer. he graduated from the university of denver with a 3.5 grade point average and a bachelor of science in electrical engineering with a specialization in control and robotics and minor in math. unfortunately because of his
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status and despite the fact that our country is in desperate need of engineers, kevin cannot pursue his dream of becoming an engineer and is now working at a fast-food restaurant. this is just one example of our failed politics, where washington settles for rhetoric over common sense. according to defense secretary robert gates, about 35,000 noncitizens serve at 8,000 permanent resident aliens enlift in our military every year. in a letter to senator durbin this past september, the defense secretary wrote that the dream act represents an opportunity to expand this pool to the advantage of military recruiting and readiness. passing the dream act would provide the opportunity for fanny, another young woman, to serve in the military. she came to denver at the age of 7. when she entered high school, fanny joined the air force rotc program, the drill team and color guard. her dream was to attend the air
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force academy and serve in the military. unfortunately fanny is barred from service in spite of the fact that this is the only home she knows. rather than opening the doors to service in this time of war, young people like fanny who want to stand proudly and serve our country are precluded from doing so. taxpayers also stand to gain from the dream act, who will receive a significant return on investment through the contribution of youth to our society and the revenue generate bid their newly legalized tax-paying status. it's been estimated by the congressional budget office that successful dream act applicants will generate $2.4 billion in new tax revenue. this is based on the fact that these youth will be able to transition into higher-paying jobs and will be paying their fair share of taxes. if we're going to get our fiscal house in order, we need to make sure we're getting the full return on our investment and not closing the door on new tax revenues. i know many of my colleagues may
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still be undecided. some have supported the "dream" act in the past only to move away from it in face of heated rhetoric around the issue of imgraismtion i ask that before any of you make a final decision that you step back and take a fresh look at the facts and the reality facing these youth. support for the "dream" act is not only a matter of conscience for me, since it is the right thing to do, it's also a practical solution. continued delay is an irresponsible waste. we owe it to the taxpayers who have invested in the education of these youth, the teachers who have fostered their development and our military who can benefit from these new recruits to move forward on the "dream" act. i plan to vote "yes" and strongly urge all my colleagues to do the same. thank you, mr. president. i yield the floor. the presiding officer: under the previous order, the senate stands in recess until 3:30 p.m.
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tands in recess until 3:30 p.m. >> the senate has recessed to attend a party caucus. senators voted unanimously to convict federal judge thomas foris of lying removing him from office. he is the eighth federal judge in history to be impeached and convicted by congress. senators passed ball four impeachment articles. senators religiously of work at 3:dirty eastern. number of bills are awaiting action including collective bargaining rights for police and firefighters and a onetime payment to social security recipients of $250. live coverage when the senate gavels back in on c-span2. >> the obama administration faces criticism from democrats about a tax cut deal with republicans and democrats controlling the house are promising to freeze the budget for the cabinet departments
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while rapping congress's unfinished annual spending bill into a single catch all measure. spokesman robert gibbs will face questions about those and other issues facing the administration this afternoon at 1:00 eastern and we will have live coverage. a senate governmental affairs subcommittee is investigating the may 6th flash crash on wall street when the dow jones dropped 700 points in a few moments. live coverage will start at 3:00 eastern on c-span3. fourth amendment rights and illegal search and seizure saturday on c-span radio's landmark supreme court cases. >> all those that claim there was a search warrant there was no evidence of any magistrate asked for a search warrant. there was no record. >> this into arguments on c-span radio washington d.c. nationwide on channel 1 birdy to an online at just in time for the holiday season the supreme court, c-span's latest book is being
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and update on special republican leadership elections and democratic reaction to the administration's tax-cut deal with republicans. >> let's begin with last night. the democrat from maryland who was negotiating on this tax deal met with rank-and-file republicans. coming out of that where is the temperature of house democrats? >> caller: i think they felt left out. at the very least. but obama gave away his story here. it was to the hill today to talk noun but especially the progressive caucus they are not pleased with what went down. >> host: yesterday, nancy pelosi treated, provisions and tax proposals healthily the
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wealthiest 3%. don't create jobs and add billions to the deficit. >> one of the good indicators in the senate, talking to senate democrats apparently openly combative. the senate is openly combative. it will be a heck of a deal today because in the house as they are in the senate sometimes, they are angry -- one of the things i heard is they think he should have held out for a 13 month extension. and other stimulus provisions. i think peter defazio said yesterday that obama should have considered all the transportation projects that will not be funded. there's a lot obama could have done and the fact that obama
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agreed to extent these -- upper level taxes. that is something they didn't want for a long time. they are really upset about this. >> host: one caller said this is a lot of rhetoric from democrats in the house and senate. when it comes down to what will they be voting yes and if not where will vote come from? is this likely to pass through the house? >> anything could happen. at the end of the day it will probably pass but they won't like it. the democratic caucus did want a full extension of the tax cut. a lot of those people lost reelection so they are not beholden to nancy pelosi any more. they can do whatever they want and are coming back next year. most republicans think the deal goes through.
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>> let's move on to the other headline coming out of the house. chairman faces changes with republican steering committee to the leader. what is the latest on who will chair the committee's 4 republicans? >> the people that will head up to the committee next year, what was settled. the two races we were watching willie appropriations committee and conference committee. how rogers from kentucky has been on the appropriations committee for a long time. he was passed over for jerry lewis and we had fred upman from michigan in the energy and commerce committee. >> host: what does it say that those folks were chosen over -- for the leading candidates for those committees? >> guest: they were leading candidates for the most part.
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upman was the most senior member after barton, the current ranking member. as was how rogers. barton and jerry lewis from california, both of them were ranking members work chairman for three consecutive terms which is the two year term of republican rule. he said he didn't plan on serving another term to do that. republican steering committees would have to give away for which would allow them to go beyond their term limits. that is something john boehner was not ready to do and republican transition committee led by greg walston in oregon said they would recommend that will stay in place. it really wasn't a surprise that these two were not permitted to continue in their service as the top republican on those panels. >> host: the wall street journal editorial on the steering
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committee thanking how rogers for chair of the appropriations committee says oversight -- not happy the steering committee and leadership picked out rogers but they wanted to say that john boehner really wants to make amends he should in short that there's real power in the form of a new spending oversight panel. conservative groups were unhappy about the news that john boehner's steering committee voted to give the committee that sense of federal dollars to how rogers whose spending record 3 rivals that of any free-wheeling democrat. whar you hearing about a possible oversight panel on this appropriations committee? >> guest: i have heard nothing about that yet but that doesn't mean it is not happening. republicans won't have the earmarks next year and if that continues to be the case this panel is going to have to change our operate at the end of the day. promised more oversight on all
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committees. it wouldn't necessarily surprise me but how rogers will not have the same challenge his predecessors did. everyone who was up for this position has been appropriated for long time. a lot of people got behind jack kingston from georgia who has been an appropriate for a long time. he is more conservative in some areas. they are appropriated at the end of the day. every one of these has to revamp how they do business. >> host: thank you for joining us this morning. >> congress should take time to continue the agreement on tax cuts the package should be signed into law. the president cited support from a number of economists for the agreement and focused on a meeting with the president of
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poland. >> we announced this agreement over the last couple days economy, looked at what would be the result of getting this agreement through congress and it is worth noting the majority upwardly revised their forecasts, and noted as a consequence of this agreement expected more job growth in 2011/2012 as originally anticipated. it is important for congress to examine the agreement and look at the facts and have a for a debate and get this done. the american people are watching and expecting action on our part. >> washington journal talk to ottawa's democratic senator about the tax-cut deal president
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obama made with republicans. this is 45 minutes. >> senator tom harkin, francs for being here. we want to begin with what president obama said at his news conference yesterday on why he negotiated with republicans and what they came up with. we will get a response. >> this notion that somehow we are willing to compromise too much reminds me of the debate we had during health-care. this is the public option debate all over again. so i passed a signature piece of legislation where we finally get health care for all americans, something democrats have been fighting for for 100 years. but because there was a provision in there that they didn't get that would have
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affected a couple million people, even though we got health insurance for thirty million people and potential for lower premiums for 1 hundred million people, somehow that was a sign of weakness and compromise. if that is the standard by which we are measuring success or core principles, let's face it, we will never get anything done. people will have the satisfaction of a pure position with no victories for the american people. and we will be able to feel good about ourselves and sanctimonious about how pure our intentions are and how tough we are and in the meantime the american people are still not able to get health and -- health insurance because of pre-existing conditions. or not being able to pay their
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bills because their unemployment insurance ran out. that can't be the measure of how we think about public service or what it means to be a democrat. >> your reaction? >> guest: i am not opposed to compromise. i have been in this for a long time. i developed a lot of compromises myself, chairman of the agricultural committee and two farm bills that pass over republican votes and democratic votes and work compromises on major pieces of legislation. ward 90 with the americans with disabilities act, sponsor in the senate or later a lot of compromise. on my health bill on the health bill, education health committee, i am not opposed to compromise. that is the art of the possible in washington.
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the question gets down to when you compromise and how you compromise i often said that a good lawyer compromises on the court rooms -- court house steps. so if there is some dismay among democrats it is because they didn't perceive that we were really willing to stay in and fight hard and compromise that the right time on the right kind of a structure. i disagree with the president when he referred to it as a political fight. this is not a political fight. this is what fight about what our country is about and what the economy will look like. it is a fight about the divergence between the rich and for in this country. the gap is growing wider and wider. is about fairness and justice and what is right or wrong in terms of how we divide the pie
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in our country. if we are going to grow the pie who gets the better parts of the pie as it grows. it is not a political fight. quite frankly, i think perhaps a better deal would have been gotten had we persisted a little bit longer. >> the lame duck agenda is short. the timetable for it and other issues he wants to get to. >> one thing the president forgot to mention he has in his cool kit is the legal pad. that is a powerful instrument to. president clinton and other presidents, president reagan was famous for say i have the legal and. that was never rule out.
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at a possibility of getting the republicans to compromise differently on this deal. i think the fact that so much of this is going to the upper income, tax breaks for high income, the wealthiest americans, it is unconscionable. i realize we will have to compromise at some point, but i would hope the way to the compromise about two things getting the economy moving in a different direction but also advocating a different tax approach, different approach. what we bought into at least what appears we bought into is we are going to accept the bush era economic formula. the trickle-down formula which has never worked. hasn't worked in the last decade and is not working now but we bought into that. we should have a different approach. raising the level of the income tax credit. not just extending it by raising
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the base level. increasing child care tax credits. raising the cap on payroll taxes. i often said why is a person who makes $40,000 a year pays the full load on payroll taxes on every dollar that he earns when someone who makes $400,000 only pays $0.25 on the dollar. that is not fair. making everybody pay, if you make $4 million you pay everything you make in the social security trust fund. we could have put on the table what we are only going to deal with what we have out there. to propose a new approach in how we're going to get the economy
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going again. >> host: you a no vote on this tax cut deal? >> as the deal was first proposed diamond find to vote no but as senator reid said yesterday this is still in work in progress but we don't know what the package will look like yet. i learned a long time ago the say yes or no and to you define the product. >> host: what could be put into the bill to get your vote? >> guest: i have to take a look at the parameters. i am disturbed that the tax breaks for the wealthiest are there for two years but the unemployment benefits for the poorest people, the people who are out of work is only one year. why is that one year but tax breaks for the wealthiest are there for two years? and secondly, what happened on
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estate taxes is mind-boggling, estate taxes, in ten years, the exemption on state taxes has gone up 5fold the exemption. and the rate has gone down 20% to 55% to 30% so the wealthiest people with the largest states payless and less on their state taxes and who makes up the difference? working americans. working people are making up the difference. either working americans pay more taxes or putting a bigger debt on our kids and grandkids and to meet fed is not fair. >> host: if the proposed deal goes forward and you are inclined to vote no, would you join senator sanders in a filibuster against it? >> guest: maybe you don't know but i have been an opponent of filibusters' for a long time. 15 years ago in 1995 i
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introduced a major at the beginning of the time to do away with the filibuster. i got 19 votes but didn't get very far. i am not a fan of the filibuster. there ought to be reasonable debate. there's a reason for slowing thing is down but in this end i believe a majority of the senate should work its will. i am a big fan of the filibuster. in terms of extended debate and getting the data out so the american people know what we are voting on i have no problem with that. >> host: let me ask about analysis that president obama is alienating the left with his alienating the left with his move on the tax cuts and him and may not vote for him in 2012. guest: well, there is a long
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time between now and the election. i know the president feels he has to make some compromises. that is the art of the possible. but again, what the progressives in this country are looking for, what i am looking for, is a president who is willing to take a stand and say, here is my veto pen. i said i was for tax cuts for everyone below two and $50,000, and by the way, between now- and the next usually when you get 53 votes you win but 60 by , votes in the senate which is the the senate. reason we post the filibuster you have the supermajority to pass anything is unconstitutional. progressives are that right now.for it is for progressives are looking for tht some ofsident at some point to push
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rhetoric,his onslaught of right wing rhetoric and right wind sort of rollback everything. giving everything to the wealthiest in our country.he that is what we are looking forh no one is opposed to compromise but when you compromise and howt you compromise means a lot. >> host: you said if this goes forward president obama better hope sarah palin is nominee for the republicans in 2012.obama br areme ask you about a primary challenge. that there are murmurs on the te left that there could be a primary challenge to obama. >> there's a long time between now and the next election but i do believe the president needs to be thinking about -- more progressive about the progressive issues on which he campaigned and on which people placed so much hope in no him as president.
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president expecting miracles but we do expect that a progressive president like president obama about andeast be forceful in talking about and fighting for progressive middle-class values and progressive values as ronald wg reagan was fighting for conservative value conservative values. ronald reagan compromise a lot. they started from a strong position so he pulled the compromise towards his decision. that is what progressives are lookinkig for in this presidentt >> host: chris in manhattan. you are the first phone call. taxaller: i just want to know. if tax cuts are going to be exd extended for all high income hm earners why do you think nk pree president obama didn't extend unemployment insurance to all 10 or 15 that are unemployed, not the the benefits about to run out.
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>> talking about the 99 ears who those thatbeyond 99 weeks. more people are falling off then edge of the cliff because they they have gone through their entire unemployment benefits and alify. unqualified any more. that is an issue that needs to o be be addressed. you are right about that. of they're out of the equation., bd equation,d be in the equation. and help for them not to be a part of it. >> host: next call from hawaii.y first go ahead. >> it is a pleasure to talk to senator tom harkin.d hav i would like to have been ent ae guesident at one time. it is a great -- has done a lot. my comment is something people are missing. huge amounts
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we have huge amounts of money in this election by unknown sources coming in with no real knowledge, who was backing or coming from. in little towns in little citiet all over our country people whog were running for office. over couldn't win over the that big money because laws could be told with nothing to support those lives and the thing is with our. president, have an independent and don't always vote democrat.r i don't always vote republican.i sometimes i write somebody else. i may not be the smartest guy in the world but i know this president we have right now wasg facing a worldwide depression.te the world has benefited from president obama. president obama. >> host: we will leave it there.
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i> guest: sound like a smart guy to me. you make some good points. realy the question really is how you u compromise and when you compromise. one more point, when you give unem tax breaks or unemployment the. compensation to people they most of that money and 20 or 30 years ago, if you get a oe someone that money and they of e spend it most of its state in when they this country but now when you o give a person extra money and they buy clothes or shoes or a v a goet or whatever it might be a good share of that money is overseas. hat is why new economics, we at get a lot of bang for the buck f
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doing it that way. i you get more bang for the buck if we actually employed people , in infrastructure projects and f rebuilding the infrastructure of america with roads, bridges, sewer and water systems, communication and energy systems, most would stay in america so we have a bigger mur multiplier effect on dollars fen the dollar. extra dollars to go out and f ts spend. but more of that goes overseas tan it did 20 or 30 years ago.e and this headline was in the paper. it's a luxury spending is back in fashion. luxury spending is back in ag fashion but underneath, laging essential shows income debt.thit
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that was in october b right befe the election. soou all these tax breaks to upr income people they might get a y will buyristwatch in switzerland. some new or maybe some jules or diamond , encrusted rolex watch. for a cashmere scarf. those things don't help our cas. economy that much. rea what helps our economy is when t you put money in pockets of oini future forple and doing something built a better futures for kids and grandkids. that is why i heart so much on . infrastructure spending, getting into education and report that e came on about how the united s states is down in the world and, we have to ad that is something
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we have to address. stimulus-you are arguing for stimulus initiative. the business n his column, business section of the new york times that that is what president obama traded for. gave the republicans extension of these tax cuts and in return, was able to get an extension of cut payroll taxes, business taxes and extended grab bag and tax credits for college tuition and other items. which amounts to people like david say and another stimulus package looks not achievable. >> i have no argument with that. was the same point was was this dono at the right time. to oe tax side. we will cut child-care, head
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start programs, elderly, meals l on wheels, thing that tended toe support low income people but we will start cutting back on. wast 8 that was not part of the deald and should have been. .leadeehost: chris in alabama is tweeting in -- so if you support the compromise in the end, why not -- guest: i am saying i think we could have gotten a better deal, had the president not agree to the compromise up front. and frankly, as i said, this is a work in progress. this is not the final deal. we are hoping to partner with the president in making this better. host: westminster, maryland. scott, republican line. caller: good morning.
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senator harkin, the debt commission, for one of their recommendations is to abolish the home mortgage reduction. will you introduce a bill in the senate to abolish the home mortgage tax reduction? guest: i do not know if we should abolish it, but it should be changed. it depends on who you are trying to help. if you are tried to help first- time home owners, young people try to get a start with low- income housing, that is fine. if you are tried to help someone who is going from a $250,000 home to an $800 and dollar home,
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i do not know if they need that help. -- $800,000 home, i do not know if they need that help. we need to be helping people on the lower income scale. host: ian writes in -- guest: that is another thing that i disagree with the president on, and others. this 2% cut in the payroll tax that goes to social security trust funds. the last thing we need to do is invade the social security trust fund to pay for things right now for people's living. they will make that up by taking from the general fund, in other words, debt. that bothers me. as i argued earlier, i think the
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cap we have on the payroll tax right now should be raised. everyone should pay on every dollar they make into social security. it bothers me that we are now going to establish principles where we can take money out of the trust fund and replace it with debt. i am very bothered with that. i think there should have been a different way to do that. host: ann in waldorf, maryland. caller: thank you, senator harkin. you remind me of a state's a politician. we throw these words out at each other like communist, fascist, and what i think of it is the
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old english term common wheel. it seemed like we have lost our sense of our commonwealth. i wonder if you could talk about that a little bit. people say we are an exceptional country, but that is what made us exceptional. i would really appreciate hearing back from you. thank you so much. guest: thank you. you are right. i talk a lot about the common good. we tend to forget about that. we often think the common good can only be attained by answering one group or by trickle-down economics, which i have fought against my whole life. this tax plan seems to be more of the same. i think we have to think more about legislation, how our government reacts to making sure
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we have a ladder of opportunity for everyone. it is not right for the government to provide cradle to grave-type of support, but one of the functions of our government is to make sure the wrungs are on the latter. if you are willing to work hard, you can get up there. decent education, health care, job retraining for people who need that, social security in your old age. there are certain things that the government can do to build this common good. what i see happening now, more and more, the common good is being pushed aside only to focus on narrow, special interest groups. host: another e-mail from a
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democrat. guest: a fifth tier. i am not certain i understand what that means. there are unemployment benefits. i am not certain i understand that question. host: we will move on. maybe they will e-mail back in. richard from maryland. caller: good morning. thank you for letting people like myself get a chance to speak to the nation. from my understanding of history, i have always known republicans are for the rich, democrats are for the poor, but democrats wanted a tax cut and all of these hippies wanted tax
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cuts. i do not hear the democrats talking about tax cuts for everybody, including the port. this is not a communist country. what happened to the political correctness on the democrat side? it kind of goes back to where republicans are racist, democrats are not, but it was abraham lincoln that ended slavery. hogwash. how come they are not talking about a tax cut for the poor? it may not be big, but everything helps. i appreciate you being there answering questions, giving us your time. thank you. guest: thank you. i think that was a very intellectual approach to what you just said. we have to forget, there is another part to this problem,
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and that is the deficit that we face. we want to stimulate the economy and get the economy going. you really need to look at middle income americans. by that, i do not mean people making $250,000 or more a year, i am talking about people making $25,000, $40,000, $50,000 a year. we wanted to restrict the tax breaks. i think the people in the upper bracket, they do not need help. people in the lower bracket need help for their families. someone making $5 million a year, they do not need help.
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they do not need an extra $100,000 a year, which is what this tax break would give them. they might buy another wrist watch or a diamond brooch, or something like that, but it is not going into thing that will stimulate our economy. it is kind of like wasteful spending, but we are borrowing from our kids and grandkids in order to give the wealthy and extra $100,000 a year. if we are going to borrow from our kids or grandkids, let's put it into things that will make a better country for them. better roads, bridges, highways, education system, health care system, all the things that will enable our kids and grandkids a better life, and a better economy. host: he was referring to a fifth extension, something you
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already addressed. next phone call from pittsburgh. caller: good morning, senator harkin. i was born and raised in a small town in iowa called muscatine. i am planning to move back in a couple of years. my question is the cola for social security. we have had no increase. i understand they base it on what individuals between 25 and 30 purchase on it. host: are you still there? i think we lost her. she was asking about colo. what are the prospects -- cola. what are the prospects of something happening to that? guest: the caller is absolutely
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right, we are not basing our cost of living on the elderly. their expenditures are higher, their drugs are higher priced. the cost of living formula for social security is kind of skewed. i guess, against the elderly. we are trying to get a bill through to get an extra $250 to the elderly, but we have had a lot of opposition on the republican side to that. hopefully, that is part of the compromise. host: if it is added, what does that do to the prospect of getting a yes vote from you and others? guest: it would move me more in that direction. host: silver springs, west virginia. norman.
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caller: good morning. i would like to say that today, obama, democrats are a completely different breed than the old democrat. of course, by following the things that president obama had to adjusted, -- suggested, [inaudible] host: we are having difficulty hearing you. your television is on and we are getting some feedback. you are saying that today's democrats are different from older democrats? what did you mean by that?
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caller: i mean, the old democrats would never think about cutting taxes. it was always about raising taxes. host: senator harkin? guest: i do not know how to respond to that exactly. democrats are looking for a fairer tax system. we have to pay taxes. hopefully, we are a primitive world power, but that requires taxing, things to make our country work better. the real question is, what is fair and equitable in our tax system? that is where we have some problems. that has been going on since the 1980's. we have skewed our tax system -- again, trickle-down economics.
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the idea that you give more to the wealthy and it trickles down. i have often used an analogy on this. you do not fertilize a tree from the top down, you fertilize it from the roots. if you want to get our economy going, you do not put the money in at the top, you put it in at the bottom. as far as i am concerned, that has been the message of democrats going back almost a century. host: "the washington post" with --s had donheadline carl allen writes in --
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guest: well, i would tend to agree we are overspending, but what are we spending it on? that is the problem. we are spending it on frivolous tax breaks for the wealthy who do not need it, we are spending it on wars of choice. look at what we have done in iraq, afghanistan, maintaining bases around the world. look at what happened to britain a couple hundred years ago, they were doing the same thing. we are not investing our resources wisely. just take something like education. we need to do more in preschool.
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we have data from a long time ago that the more you put into early education, the better off kids will be later on, but we hardly do anything on preschool education in this country. that is where we should be investing our money. we should be investing in better communication systems, better power systems. that is going to take a lot of money, but it puts a lot of people to work, the money stays in our economy, and what happens is our kids and grandkids will have a better platform on which to compete in the world economy. we are just not spending our money wisely, we are wasting. a lot of what we are doing right now is more of the same. i do not think it will get us
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out of bell whole. host: larry from new jersey. democrat's line. caller: i believe i understand the president's reasoning for what he did. he is trying to be practical, but that does not quell the anger over which the way this came about, which i consider consort -- extortion. it is a shame that in this day and age, a political party, quite unabashedly, stands for wealth and not the common person. you have a lot of people on fox news complaining about the president and his idea of wealth redistribution. look at the numbers. the numbers are astounding as to where the wealth is going.
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a lot of this has to do with the fact that unemployment is high because people do not have anything to do. the republican party voted to do away with tax breaks for companies to send their jobs overseas. all the facts that the republicans brought up to support their claim that this was necessary for all wrong. there is nobody paying attention. thank you. guest: thank you. i think that is a good point. people should not always be upset with president obama. it was the republicans who held us hostage. people at their most desperate, people who had run out of their unemployment benefits during this holiday season, republicans were willing to hold them hostage to deny them any kind of support, especially this time of
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year, in order to get their tax breaks for the wealthy. they were holding them hostage, you are absolutely right. whatever disagreement i may have with the president in terms of his methods, what we should have done in the process, pales in comparison with my disagreement with republicans for holding these people hostage. it is just not right the way it is done. host: republican eric cantor has taken issue with those kinds of phrases, taken hostage, and it does not help getting the economy back on track. guest: i disagree. we tried five times to pass a bill on the senate floor to extend unemployment benefits.
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the republicans filibustered it. what else can i say? those are the facts. in fact, look at the letter that senator mcconnell and all of the republicans signed. they would move nothing on
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>> one of the things i look for when watching your videos is you, the student. i want to see you and your personality come and that helps make your videos stand out from all the rest. >> what i like is he knows in the student can entries are a real investment in care in the topic that you have been telling us about. be sure to be interested in what you are telling us. if you are not interested in what you're presenting, chances are we will not be either. >> one tiebreaker from lsu was requirement of using c-span video. i'm looking for betas were people of look at the content and said, what elements of
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c-span video make the most sense for telling a compelling story i'm trying to tell. >> for all the rules, including deadlines, price information and how to upload your video go to the student >> the details of the government emergency 2011 budget cutting spending and raising taxes. the lower house apartment must pass the budget before islands can receive a loan from the european union and international monetary fund. following the finance ministers statement, reaction from the opposition spokesperson. this is about an hour and 15 minutes. >> before calling on the finance, i remind members remain confidential while the minister has announced.
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[shouting] >> before the conclusion of the statement. i will now call on the minister of finance to make his budget statement. >> this has been a dramatic and worrying time for the citizens of our country. they are concerned we had to seek external support to help us with her economic and financial difficulties. they are worried about the impact of this momentous a difficult decision on all our lives. yet in fact even as this complex, there are clear signs of hope. paternal in the financial sector over recent months, it is very easy to lose sight of the fact that economic activity in this country has stabilized. from a drop of 7.6% in 2009, gdp will record a small increase this year. recovery in the real economy is beginning to take shape. as anticipated this recovery is being led by exports.
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our exports increased by nearly 7% in real terms, in the first half of this year. the manufacturing sector was up 12% in the third quarter, and surveys point to strong growth in export orders of both goods and services. agriculture and the aggro food sector have strengthened this expansion. but growth is broadly based and is being driven on by a pickup in demand of our trading partners, but also by significant improvement in our competitiveness that have been achieved in recent years. yes, domestic demand remains weak as households and businesses continue to work off the excesses of the boom. continued export growth will protect and expand high-value employment, to stimulate domestic sectors of the economy at times this will reduce unemployment, help build confidence among households and firms come and stimulate new growth in consumer spending and investment. there are signs that conditions
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of labor market have begun to stabilize. alive registered has followed the third month in a row. the first time since early 2007. redundancies in the last three months were over 30% lower for the same period last year. our underlying budget has stabilized at 11.6% of growth and domestic product. our tax revenues are ahead of target, despite a weak start in the year and are spending has been brought under control. so our action to stabilize the public finance has made progress. the balance of payments is expected to record a small surplus next year, meaning the economy as a whole will be paying its way in the world. these data taken together paint a picture of an economy that is returning to growth after a deep and prolonged recession. for the period after 2014, read growth of domestic is forecast by my department to increase by an average of almost 2.75% a year with real gnp growing just
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over 2% a year in the same period. so if the real economy is posted to grow why do we need the help of the imf and the e.u.? the answer is we neither support to break the vicious cycle that is threatened our national finances, our banking system since the second quarter of this year. following the greek crisis the spring, the rising cost idea with the banks became evidence and the growing concerns about the prospects of the global economy reinforce doubtful international investors about the sustainability of our finances come at a capacity to repair the financial system unaided. the joint program of assistance involving standby resources of up to 85 million provides us with the backup and firepower that we need to restore our confidence, to strengthen the financial sector, and to press ahead with our plans to reduce
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the budget deficit, and facilitate the economy's return to sustainable growth. without this support there would have been serious doubts about the capacity of the state to raise funds, to pay for essential public services come to provide a functioning banking system. that is the reality. yes, we are in a position, as i said last week it is not credible to suggest that we could have retained and sovereign wealth while expecting others to make resources available to us. policy set out which closely reflect our national republic land are not in in apart you. are, in fact, a continuation of the government strategy for recovery which has remained steadfast since the onset of this crisis. over the last two and half years the government has worked hard to bring spending back under control. very difficult decisions have been made. citizens have demonstrated enormous forbearance in accepting the need for those
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decisions. we have secured an overall adjustment of 14.6 billion to date. without this adjustment our underlying deficit would already have ballooned to more than 20% of our gross domestic product. the budgetary adjustment we plan for the coming four years are large, but if we put more, a justice will be needed at a later date that our proposed budgetary measures have been laid out in considerable detail to give certainty to households and confirmed so that they can plan for the future. it is the government's strongest economy can continue to grow while we make the budgetary adjustments outlined for the national recovery plan. we need to ensure that our economic growth is built on solid foundation, that are sustainable socially, economically and environmentally. the government is committed to the introduction of a new national performance indicator. this will be used to guide
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policy development. it will allow the public to invest progress. the statistics of this new national welfare index our attractiveness of the country in which to live, is an important part of our our overall competitiveness. this time last year for the adjustment of 70 that they would lead to a deficit of 3% of gdp by 2014, a target agree with our european partners. because medium-term growth prospects have been revised down, because our debt interest, this has been revised upwards to 50 million. and recovery plan was set at a timetable for achieving this adjustment over the next four years. these targets are effective in a joint program, because the of the commission has more concerted forecast for the medium-term, we have been given an extra year to reach the 3% deficit target required in stability and growth pact.
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but this change is not our targets nor our timetables for reaching them. as outlined in the planned 6 billion of the overall adjustment be made in today's budgets, vascular this adjustment is demanding but it demonstrates this very sense of our intent. in simple terms the gap between government receipts and spending is almost 19 billion this year. that gap must be closed. we got into this position by seeking with the full support of those, to spread the benefits of them across every section of the population. between 2000-2008, public spending increased by over 140% by the consumer price index increased by just 35%. working in social aides are now more than twice the rate spending 2000 ago this entry the state pension almost doubled. these increases were well ahead of the cost of living. at the same time taxation was reduced and the proportion of income earners exempted income tax increased from 34% in 2004,
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to estimate of 45% this year. all of this was made possible by the very large property related tax intake during the boom years. and are dramatically changed budgetary circumstances is cladistic underload report this level of social provision. the changes i am announcing today are substantial, but it is important to keep matters in perspective. the current spending reductions set out in the national recovery plan out to play 14 will bring total growth of income and spending back to 2007-2008 levels of the income tax measures in the plan will bring us back to the levels present as recent as 2006. those years were not years or times of hardship. the reductions will impact our living standards, but the fact is that social will care a design this country a much higher than our nearest neighbor. budget 2011 continues the task of bringing the cost of public services back to levels that can
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be sustained by the economy. i do not propose a repeater today the spending reductions that have been outlined in the national recovery plan and will set out to get an estimate published today. the one area in which decisions have not yet been our social welfare. for someone to confirm that public as a second know deduction this year. it's a definite increase the pension in the last 10 years, and it is the governments view the security this is brought to older persons should be parlayed. to be a reduction of about 4%. the government has maintained his payments at a rate which far exceeds total inflation since 1997. the 2011 basic working age payment will be almost 117% more than it was in 1997. team that can inflation of the same period was 40%. regrettable as they are the impact of the reductions will continue low inflation. the rates in question must to be
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slightly ahead of the 2007 working age rates of payment. the fact is we've built up a generous level of welfare provision in the last decade, though they must not be reduced somewhat. and record of commitment of need stands up. the next four years of further reductions of social welfare expenditure are unavoidable. failure to reduce the budget deficit. the composition of these reductions will depend on the rate of decline of unemployment, the effectiveness of anti-fraud and control measures, and reform of the benefits system. our number one priority for 2011 and onward must be economic growth at and vancomycin employment creation. that demands improve competitiveness which at the heart of the social welfare and labor market measures that we have proposed. there will be a 10 year reduction both lower and higher child benefit rates within addition of 10 year reduction for a third child only. these reductions will be rates
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of payments back to the 2006 rates for the first and second child, to the 2005 rates for the fourth and subsequent children with a rate for the third child affected the 2004 rates. after three times higher than they were in 1997. details of the specific social welfare measures as set out along with a number of other changes to social welfare schemes and entitlements. in view of the harsh weather conditions experienced in recent weeks, i am allocating an additional 14,000,002 that you team -- to the fuel team. the department of social protection putting measures in place to roll out the additional payment as soon as possible, and many households will receive this payment this year. we know from the 1980s the importance of the helping the unemployed with skills and keeping them close to the labor market. to that and we are refocusing the national private action plan to establish clear pathways to
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employment by ensuring that state agencies interact early enough and with those who've lost their jobs to great opportunities for education, training, work expenses as appropriate. building on the many existing workplaces and train places that have already been introduced i am providing for an additional 15,000 activations placement in support of the unemployed at a cost about 200 billion year old. the intern program would provide up to 5000 place in the private sector with a contribution from that sector of an additional 38 million to pay some of the cost of the internship. the workplace and program would provide up to 5000 places in the public service. similar announcements from other sectors will be made by ministers in the months ahead. a new committee workplace would provide up to 5000 additional places in the community and voluntary sector. the labor activation measures
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would be complemented by the extension of the employer your scheme to the end of 2011, and by the transformation of business expansion scheme with new employment and investment. a national recovery plan provides for form of the labor market and the removal of barriers to job creation resulting from the current level of minimum wage. began to is to provide more job opportunities, especially for younger persons. we will continue to spend significant sums on investment. the exchequer capital program will amount to some 3.6% of gnp in 2011. this program will be augmented by the investment program of various commercial state sponsored bodies. in addition to national fund has confirmed is willing to invest in irish infrastructure for the commercial basis, in partnership with third party institutional investors bet the government will help identify opportunities for the npr at and other private
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investors. i want to acknowledge a substantial contribution made by public service to national recovery. in my department i see day in, day out, and on weekends the commitment of both passionate about and beyond the call of duty shown by civil servants accepted a significant pay cuts. more work is being done with less staff and at lower cost. this is real public service reform. to meet our targets the cost of delivering public services must go further. savings will continue to be made through planned reductions, the number of public servants through greater efficiency in which public services are delivered. despite the economic constraints, the government has about about a fullback agreement on pay, and pension terms. public servants, their unions and the measures for their part must keep their commitment to pursue flexibility in reform in every part and level of the public service. we have made commitments to continue reduction for the public service.
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these reductions must be delivered. the effect of the pension levitt of the pay cut introduced earlier this year amount to 28%, and 20% in the case of ministers. the changes in budget as a de facto will bring a further reduction in net pay for all officeholders. nonetheless, the government has decided to introduce another reduction. it would be further reduced by over 14,000 per and, and it will be reduced over 10,000 year old per and a. this brings overall reduction in growth day to over 90,000 in the case of ministers, to over 60,000 or details to changes in government transportation arrangement, and ministers pay and pensions are set out in a company documentation. the government believes there
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should and maximus our rate of 250,000 euro at the public sector but only a few of us cuts out above this level at present, and the large number in state agencies. while there are issues about the contractual position of income the post holders, i think the position of the minister for finance our statutory stakeholder in can be used to enforce the objective of the maxxum salary within a reasonable timeframe. the 10% reduction in the pay of new entrants to the public service campaign in a national recovery plan will be applied to the rate of those appointed to the judiciary and 2011. at 250,000 maximum also be to all justices. to reduce maxxum rate of pay of 250,000 year old would apply to the next president of ireland. i want to recall the significant contribution made by the current president since his downturn began has played a significant of her generation are i tend to
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make provision for these reductions in legislation. in addition to reduced pay raise come on recruits to integrate of the public servants but start at the first point at about the pay scale without exception. this measure will ensure a medium-term reduction of the overall public service pay. the cost of providing public service pensions has increased in recent years. pensioners have grown from 76,000 in 2006, to about 103,500 this year. that is an increase of 36%. expenditure as increased by 56% from 1,433,000,000, two, two by 35 million, century. public service pensioners so far have been unaffected by the reductions. the government considers this appropriate but those pensioners who can't afford one now show
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the burden of the adjustment. accordingly, public service pensions of both will be reduced by an average of 4%. does any page and the 12,000 a year to roughly because of its ongoing, we accepted. the reductions will be applied fairly. those in higher pensions will pay most bigger will apply to former political holders can retype them as of the judiciary committee and their survivors or depended. public service pensions have been unaffected. the grace period under which created such levels are to be reduced to attack the entitlements was due to expire at the end of 2011. this is being extended by two months to prevent a buildup of public service retirement in 2010 of an end to spread the addition of pension lump sums over a more management period in both 2011, and 2012. but i want to make it clear the public service that are retiring during this very will be subject
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to the pension reduction. so the reduction i am introducing today will apply from today. legislation will be brought later this week. further details are provided in a summary of budget measures. these are exceptional times. the government has to make the savings come and pension in 30 significant part of public expenditure. failure to reduce the cost could undermine the longer-term viability of the whole public service pension system. furthermore, they remain unaffected by serving staff on low pay half their pay reduced. a new single pension scheme for new entrants which i announced in last just budget will come into effect and 2011. this would bring future public service pension more in line with private sector provision to pensions would be based on pre-average yearning rather than final.
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post requirement would be linked to retail price inflation rather than pay. this new scheme is a crucial part of the longer-term required to put the public finances on a sound basis. the legislation will be published very shortly to assure the new scheme can be put into operation for new entrants and 2011. the primary purpose of the tax system is to provide the resources to pay for the services the public expects a mistake. our tax system no longer fulfills that purpose well. a line of least resistance would be to increase the rates. but revenue is generated by economic activity, not by increasing tax rates. high tax rates on interbase of economic activity may raise far less revenue and lower rates on a much wider base. we cannot have a texas and the damages are potential to grow. that is why the government has decided that two-thirds of the art of budgetary adjustment the
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period 2011-2014 should so expenditure reduction come and one-third should be raised by taxation. our income tax system as it stands today is no longer fit for the purpose. two q. income earners pay any income tax. this year just 8% earning 75,000 will pay 60% of all income tax. while almost 80% earning 50,000 or less will contribute 17%. at another level, five -- far too many, both of these structural defects must be addressed. our system is unduly complex with false overcharges and income, each in its own terms contains too many distortions can dance and discontinuities. our goal must be too great a system that is rational, sustainable and fair and delivers the resources needed. such a system cannot be created
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in one budget, but today we will take a major step forward in the reform process. this budget we will have abolished the income levy, and how slowly, governed by one set of rules and a broad-based remove the employee. ceiling, increase the rating for the self-employed, for high earning public service and for officeholders, reduce the body of bands and credits by 10% in light of the overall reductions and incomes. tackle excessive relief or private pension system, abolished or restrict many tax relief that higher earners use, and target the remaining relief more clarity on employment role. by broadening the base at both ends of the income spectrum, a nominal rates of tax can be kept lower but the effective rate can be raise in a way that is fair to all. the measures and presenting today, those are the new reduced minimum wage would not be brought into the tax rates.
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the tax net. the top marginal tax rate would be capped at 52% for all taxpayers. as i said in the 2010 budget, universal charge requires that everyone makes some contribution. however, small the provision. discharge is separate from income tax which is levied proportionally as income increases. universal social charge does not apply to other payment. the changes made today generally either to maintain or enhance the essential to work. for him a couple without children are in 25,000 euro, their net income will fall but 2.8%, or 12 year old per week. for a similar thing with two children, that income will fall by just 1%, or five euro a week of us all all ensure an appropriate benefit. i believe that it sees most difficult of circumstances we have struck the right balance. our objective is to move steadily in the direction of an
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income tax system that is fair, universal in its application, and more easily understood. this budget marks a decisive step towards the unified income tax system with a minimum of tax shelters, the broadest base and competitive rates to a unified income tax system with appropriate tax credits would facilitate the close with the welfare system. in the last just budget i said i earned a tax considered schemes must contribute more. the restriction of relief measure which increase of 20, to 30% last year is already having a significant impact. but we can't and must do more to financial recovery plan contains a commitment for the abolition or curtailment of tax expenditure, and the failed demolition. the 16 measures identified in the plant will be given for legislative effect. today i will abolish or restrict a further nine related bringing the total to 25. the first full details are set
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in a summary of budget measures. property-based relief have been abolished, as some legacies remain. such will be further restricted as a result of today's changes. three new measures in particular will be targeted. restrictions will carry forward. and impact progressively over the next few years. from 2011, section 23 release will be restricted to income from section 23 property. and a key team provision will assure that all the allowances after 2014 effects in 23 relief are lost to exist off the will effectively terminate all property-based relief by 2014. again, full details are set out in a summary of budget measures. that base for capital acquisition tax is being broadened by reducing the tax rate threshold by 20%. this reduction follows the economy life all in recent years
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and built on a similar measure reduce in the supplementary budget of 2009. finally, i'm increasing the department interest for tax rate in ordinary deposit accounts by 2%, to 27 person a can of a can of other terms by 2% to 30%. the national recovery plan contains a commitment to significant reform of pension tax relief. today i'm abolishing employee. relief on pension contributions. i'm reducing the annual earnings cap for tax relief. the portion of retirement lump sum, about 200,000 euro would be subject to tax and the maximum allowable tax refund would be reduced. employer. relief and contribution will be reduced by 50% for the first of january next. the effects of tax rates on accrue for retirement funds will be increased by raising the distribution of assets from 3%
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to 5% per year, and that distribution subject full income tax each year. again, details of these measures are set out in a summary of budget measures. two weeks ago all political parties in this house supported a motion calling for the 12.5%. our commitment to the 12.5% rate was restated in a national recovery plan your i welcome recent comments by european finance ministers who understand the importance of this issue to a higher than that there will be no change to items cooperation tax ratio. small and midsized companies are the wealth spring of employment and innovation of the economy. the business expansion scheme health coverage to gain access to capital investment. but given the job creation and protection is a top priority it is essential that the schemes for startup companies are targeting and evaluated against the jobs created or retained. accordingly it will be revamped
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and renamed as the employment and investment incentive. this incident will come into operation once the necessary approval from european commission has been received. in the meantime the existing scheme will continue to operate. other than the incentives the limits that can be raised by companies will be increased from 2 million euro to 10 million euro t to 10 million euro. the amount that could erase any 12 month rate will be increased to 2.5 million euro. in addition the certification requirements will be simplified. they will expire on the 31st of december, 2013. i have decided can do for your cooperation tax from startup companies in 2011, and to amend it so the relief will be linked to the amount of employers paid by the company. this change will focus the relief on employment creation reportnempanies that create jobs. i've also decided to extend the et cetera capital allowance
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scheme for energy-efficient equipment for a further three years. again, details of the change were set out in the budget measure summary. i'm undertaking a form with immediate effect. to stimulate the property market, to provide necessary devaluation information, and to increase market transparency for the smooth operation of the market. there will be a flash rate of 1% on all residential property tends -- transactions, with 2% applying to amounts above 1 million euro. ii am abolishing all existing relief and exceptions on residential property. this means 1% would be paid on all residential property sales new or old. this is inhabited place instead of the previous, it would have lessened the effect of tax revenue of the boom and bust we have seen. the information gathered from this new machine can be used to
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compile data to inform if i do wish and database. this data will bring a far greater degree of transparency that had been previous action. markets operate as where buyers and sellers have reliable information available to them. new rates apply to property transfers on or after today. the transition a provision on our after the eighth of december, 2010, tomorrow. a traditional provision will be put in place to assure that anyone who is entered into a binding contract to purchase a residential property before the eighth of december, 2010, and to execute the transfer of the property before the first of july, 2011. it allows local tennis to purchase a home i discovered i am announcing a sharp turn an us and team her to his locker aspect to it by introducing a higher discount for existing tenants. the detail of this enhances team would be set out by the minister for housing.
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the construction sector has been at the vortex of this economic downturn. they will be sometime before the sector returns to a sustainable level. at the meantime the government wants to ensure that existing employment levels are protected and allowed to go by reducing opportunities and industry. today i'm proposing significant reform of development complex holding a tax regime which complies meet the economy. to foster compliance, new withholding rates of 20% would apply to subcontractors registered for tax with an established record with the existing 35% retained for subcontractors not registered for patrick in addition the system will the strength to enhance the effectiveness and reduce the opportunities for fraud. the recent cold weather
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conditions once again demonstrate the benefits ensuring that homes are as energy efficient as possible but i plan to introduce a new tax incentive in this area which will support employment by improving energy efficiency. a new incentive will come from grants and aids, currently available from the sustainable energy authority of ireland. standard rate of tax rate will be available on expenditure, up to 10,000 euro. the total relief available under the scheme in any one tax year would be 30 million euro would allow for immediate work to be carried out on a minimum of 15,000 homes. contractors must be registered with the revenue commissioners. this incident together with the proposed changes in tax would support construction businesses operating in the legitimate economy. full details of this would be provided in the finance bill. in your travel tax on the 30th
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of march 2009. attacks is expected to ease 105 million in 2010, despite impact of the cache of air travel earlier this year. similar tax is applied in united kingdom, france, australia, new zealand and the united states. air travel tax will play germany and austria from january 2011. having called for the abolition of the tax that was blamed for the reduction in our visitor numbers, having examined the issue in detail, i have decided to introduce a singular revised rate of three train want to come into effect the first of march 2011. but let me be clear. this reduced rate is being applied on a temporary basis until the end of next year. the position will be reviewed next year and the right will be increased at an appropriate response from the airline. i do not want to see the reduction in attacks being used by airlines as an opportunity to raise their fees and charge you in conjunction with this
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incident, a dublin airport authority is prepared to introduce an incentive scheme for all airports, and to provide subject to the conditions a full rebate of airport charges for any additional traffic above the current levels. at dublin airport would provide further details of the scheme. excise will be increased by 4%, and 2-cent per liter both increases from midnight tonight. in the light of its success they introduced last year with the extended a further six months to the first of june, 2011. the trt provides will be able to reduce maximum of 1250 euro. i've also decided to extend the trt release versus production for two years to the end of 2012. the rate of release will be up to 1500 euro.
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they will continue as up to 2500 of the 31st of december, 2012. a review will be undertaken at the excise duty paid for licenses for trade and off license for products during 2011, to ensure the system is both transparent and fair. i am making in this adoration to ensure that they are subject to the same as applied to main street shots the details are set out in annex in a company documentation. full details of these measures and related measures are contained in a summary of budget measures. >> public debate of our party difficulty focus is focused on almost exclusively on our banks. most of that is playing on them. for example, a taxpayer will end up bearing more or most of the cost of the banks bad loans. that is not the case.
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as the governor of the central bank previously indicated, over the period 2008-2012, the total loan loss of the domestically owned banks are expected to reach 70, 80 billion. equivalent to about half of this year's gdp. loan losses on the scale are unforgivable. they reflect the recklessness of this decisions during the bubble years, and the weaknesses of the previous regulatory framework. we must ensure they never happen again. it's almost entirely overlooked, however, is the fact that tens of billions of these have been absorbed by the private shareholders of these banks. it is clear that the no taxpayer bailout for bank shareholders. neither has a been a bailout for holders of the banks balance. these bondholders have absorbed losses of about 7 billion to date and legislation to facilitate further sharing by subordinated bondholders would be submitted next week. there is a limit to burden sharing. as i said in his house last week, there is something no way
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this country is banks are dependent on international investors can unilaterally renege on a single bondholders against the wishes of european partners and the european institutions. .. >> this budget is a first installment of the national recovery plan. the plan charts a course to stainability for our country, sustain public finances,
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sustainable growth and employment. it is a sessionble, rational plan in the circumstances which we find ourselves. everybody who can pay, pays, age those who can pay most will pay most. to contribute to the support of local services, to pay more for the support of college education. this budget has not captured any sex gnat interest. the focus of the distribution of the tax burden and reductions in public spending and reforms that institutes is for the common good. politics in this country must put the common good on center stage. the job of the government on behalf of the state is to ensure that the common good is served, and that requires saying no, at least as often as saying yes, but there's public debate about political reform in the current crisis. some has been in headlines and
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other is constructive and innovative. anything relating to the future of the country and department and the size of the government must handle their objective in pursuit of the common good. since i was appointed for minister of finance in may of 2008, i handled the worst crisis in our history. this is the fourth budget in that period. in every measure introduced on behalf of the government, we sought to stalize our public finances and in doing so, we protect those in need. the model has shown sha the measures introduced on behalf of the government has been progressive and districted the burden fairly. it is clear what went wrong in the economy. in the period leading up to the crisis, the property prices grew to unsustainable levels. the appetite of our rampant building industry for labor and other resources put pressure on
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our cost structures, and as a result it was damaged and lost market share for our goods and services. public spending was on the back and taxes of the boom added to the overheating of the economy. construction related investment was the final and most lethal ingredient in the cause of the crisis. it added pace in se serety. the government accepted that analysis. more should have been done to counter balances in the economy. i'm not convinced any alternative government could have done better. we have taken steps to ensure the mistakes that led to this crisis will never be made again. we have broken the precedent and key appointments. it is a widely regarded governor of the central bank. the highly qualified professional is the new financial regulator and
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introduced new regulation to reform the framework for the banks and the central bank increased its resources. we have a program of budget reform in the national recovery plan and legislation providing for fiscal speedometer law is -- responsibility law is in preparation to ensure the public finances on a sustainable footing is binding in law. in other words, this government has faced up to its responsibilities. we've acknowledged our mistakes, worked mice and men to rectify them and installed measures to be sure these mistakes can never be made again. our country must move forward with confidence and purpose. the overlying strength is by the actions of the successive governments that survived this crisis. we continue to the highly skilled labor force with the highest levels of formal education in the oecd. during the boom, we built a world class road network, invested in transport, education
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and social infrastructure, continued capital investment in the next four years ensures that the economy is well-equipped for recovery. we have a highly competitive proenterprise tax system that incentivizes innovation and high combing activity. the measure i introduced today benefits the sectors who were hit by this downturn. we will defend the 12.5 corporation tax rate against all commerce. the actions taken in government over the last two years helped us regain competitiveness. wages adjusted and cuts have fallen. more needs to be done, but we are pricing ourselves back in the markets, and the export sector is proof of success. we know we can have sustained growth in the economy. we had it in the past, and we have what that takes to win it back if we pursue the correct policies. we have been through a hard two years in our exist en.
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today's budget is the first step in ensuring that we can get firmly back on our two feet. it is a substantial down payment on the journey back to economic help. we can emerge as a stronger and fitter economy, provide sustainable jobs and decent public services for all of our citizens. there is every reason to be community about this economy and country. if only we have confidence and belief and faith in ourselves, i commend this budget to the house. [applause] [applause] [inaudible conversations]
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>> [inaudible] now calling deputy -- [inaudible] [inaudible conversations] each speaker remits the figure on behalf of the labor party with a 40 minute speech. >> thank you very much. this budget is the budget of a puppet government who have been doing what nay were told by the ims and public bank. they are doing so to draw out the bailout funds now that the country is invol vent. it is a contribute to the failed administration. they have learned nothing and forgotten nothing, and they are
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destined to comet their mistake in their last budget. these mistakes are easily recorded, but their consequences are tragic. the government's policy have wrecked the economy, destroyed the confidence of the people. they put 450,000 people out of work. they forced over 100,000 of our adult children to immigrate. they've increased poverty, and they have underminded many concepts of social justice in our society. the government has made three major mistakes, and they continue to make them today. the two half budgets which were introduced to correct the fiscal crisis were in coherent in policy and undermind their own objectives. the government never learned they cannot tax one way's out of a recession. they can only grow out of a recession.
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they were failing to grow measures in the economy. not a single progressive idea to support job creation or to get our economy growing again. unfiscal correction, the intentions of the minister of finance were sound, but his policies were woefully misguided. the more he did, the worse it got. some months ago, the country became insolvent and i'll put it bluntly, we went bust. the policy on its own, however, would not have destroyed the country. it's due to the financial banking policy. think of the hubris of a small country having 450 in funds and a cost of 32 billion to the taxpayer and think of the extraordinary improvements of
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nama. think of the failure of regulation. think of the child-like belief that the banks were telling you the truth. think of the failure to hold anybody to account, think of the decision to keep the directers of banks in place, the decision to recruit new management from the second tier of banking management and think of the dpp. think of the fatal ignoring of merril so all the shareholders were wiped out, those who leased wreck leslie were not pinnished. how could anyone have confidence in an irish banks system underpinned by this set of policies promoted by you, minister, and your colleagues in
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government? the financial problems of the sovereign state were difficult, but the financial problems of the sovereign state were manageable. bank debt became national debt and the position became unsustainable. . the current deficit is 2% of gdp, and the government can no longer borrow. that's why you're out of the market because you cant borrow any longer. we have become insolvent, and we have to be rescued by europe and the ims. now, in case anybody on the front benches or back benches thinks this happens by accident, it didn't. it's a direct result of your banking policies which we pointed out to you when you promoted them in the house would not work. we pointed them out to you they would cause extra trouble, and they caused us this now, and we are where we are now. i wonder if members of the
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government every feel ashamed. i felt ashamed when i read the letters from the minister of finance when applying for assistance and the ims. the first sentence in both your letters, minister, reads as follows "ireland faces a crisis without parallel in recent history. the problems of low growth, doubts about fiscal stainability and a crashes system are feeding on each other underminding confidence." your critics couldn't have put it better. it's an indictment of your own policies in both of the letters which you wrote to our new masters in europe and in washington. you know, if it wasn't so serious, it would be kind of funny because when you read the
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letters, it sounds like confessions beaten out of you. it's like as if they water boarded you in water street and made you sign the letters, or maybe they were motivated by mock humility of the culture to think you would get the 85 million more easily. [inaudible conversations] it was a handout. [inaudible conversations] is this is hit me now intervention? [laughter] [applause] [inaudible conversations] >> without intrurption. >> the current biggest mistake of the government is to think the purpose of all the pain and
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suffering is to restore ireland to where it was. the dream of restoring the last camelot is always a huge mistake, that ireland is dead and done and will never be restored. the false trips to florida are gone, the subsidized travel out of the clutch fund is gone, the flipping -- [inaudible conversations] the flipping -- [inaudible conversations] >> you allow members to address this house without interruption. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> the flipping of property in the fashionable pubs of after work on a friday will not happen again. the bubble cannot be reinflated, and the government policy designed to restore lost times cannot succeed. we need a new ireland, a lean and more joan rows --
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generous ireland sporting strong families and strong communities and volunteerism is honored and people work hard and are rewarded for their hard work. we need to reform the political system and a talented fit-for-purpose public service needs to be developed once more. we need new policies to support growth and jobs, and this is a faceless, law los budget. there's nothing there to get the economy growing again, and you'll recall, minister, your plan is based on 1.755% on the 29th of november and the european marked that down to 0.9%. your figures won't reach target without growth in the economy. you've been advised of that and you're still persisting without a growth and jobs strategy.
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we need a fair society and the test of any policy is the answer to two very simple questions. is it a fair policy and protect the most vulnerable in society? it is against those objectives that i intend to measure this budget. the minister was very sparse in his details to them. you know, two minutes before you sat down, we got a main feature of the budget, so it's difficult to know very quickly when you don't read out the major detail of the budget how exactly the full implications are. if we take the public expenditure area first, of the 6 billion in correction which you committed, 4 billion of that is in public expenditure cuts, and 2 billion then is in taxation. now, it's very difficult to know what the expendture cuts are, and these documents present it.
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we had an experience in the olden days when a budget was prementded, -- presented, and we came to government and found the figures didn't add up, and there was no policy decisions taken to underpin the expenditure cuts. he'll be in here tomorrow, state clearly what the policy decisions are which underpin the expenditure cuts and are readjusted to the tables # in the back here. i hope you're not faking it, but i want you to explain what the cuts are. i noticed, minister, in the green vote before the four year plan, there was a figure of the state assets that were 700 million euros, and i notice in the tables in the back here today, that that figure is rounded off to 660 million euros. there was one reference that was in your speech.
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i'm told that comes from your intention to sell more, that you have permission from the european commission to pay the next checker by way of dividends and you are slept on it -- silent on it in your speech. i worry about the accuracy of your figures. you made no reduction in capital spending today. yes, a quick look at the tables in the back suggest you take 1.8 billion out in capital spending. you have not nominated the key projects in those cutbacks. it's meant not in proceeding for example. what are the heavy hits? what are the heavy hits? [inaudible conversations] you'll be walking home. you'll have no metro. [laughter] walking with swords. [inaudible conversations] >> allow everyone to make their contributions. >> so since two-thirds of
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adjustments to get to 6 billion derives from expendture cuts, i believe that the minister for finance didn't do it, we comepped to the house tomorrow morning and spell out the policy decisions that you're taken which underpin expenditure cuts up to 4 billion euro because the finance minister has not done it today. your income tax adjustments are equally puzzling. while you say you're going to cut the tax credit by 10%, and that's fairly obvious, your universal social charge is a mystery. it resolves with a long memory recalled that last year the minister announced his intention to put the health levy, the prsi, and the income levy together, and this would be a one universal social charge.
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when questioned in the budget debates, if i recall correctly, the minister said the tax new true position for this charge would be 7.5%, and while it would tax little in the sense that it would collect the same amount of revenue, but obviously it would have a distributional effect, where it would be harder on poorer people and less on wealthy people. now, when i was preparing the budget proposals in the last couple of weeks which we announced on friday, we ran the proposal by the department of finance who do an independent costing, who do an independent costing of these proposals. the department of finance reviewed the text note to position was now in excess of 9%, and if one wanted to collect extra income, one has to go beyond that. now, curiously in your speech
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today you talked about introducing the universal social charge and you never nominated the rate being introduced. that is not fair, minister. when you present a budget, you need to be transparent, and you cannot fool the people by announcing a universal social charge and not nominating in your speech the raises in the plan. now, the second issue -- the second issue is -- [inaudible conversations] in fact, back in the -- [inaudible conversations] it wasn't in the speech. now, -- [inaudible conversations] >> please -- >> in the charge, the deputy pointed out to me it's in the appendix, is it the intent to revenue a new truth or the intent to collect extra revenue for the universal social charge? that is is very important policy announcement which you should have made in your speech, and you didn't, so there's a lot of
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things not clear in this budget, a lot of things not leer clear in this budget. >> be silent, please. [inaudible conversations] >> i order him to make his presentation without interruption. >> i notice too you don't have high regard for carer because the tax credit is down to 100 from 310. you didn't exemplify that. i tell you, they have it tough, and it's one of the vulnerable areas you should have protected, and you didn't protect us. i'm glad that you exempted the pensions, the contribute and noncontribute from the social welfare cuts. like, why would you distinguish between all the extensions and regular extensions? under what find of social
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compass would suggest that widows can afford the cuts and all others can't? why would you do that? why would you cut blind pensions and carer's pensions, and the only exemption, you know, that was forced on you is the pension. that, you see, this is one of the things i don't understand why a government would be so socially blind as to include vulnerable persons where the total extake is so small anyway. you got mostly what you wanted from the main social welfare addings, and yet you had pension, blind pension, widow's pension, and that's what we mean on this side of the house when we say you don't really care about the most vulnerable, and our policy is to protect the vulnerable and the house.
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you've cut job seekers by eight euros and made no increase in the child announcement social welfare, same as last year, and that's what i think is remarking. it's down by 10 euros per child for the first child and second chill. minister, what do you have against poor children? in your speech you said -- in your speech you said it would be an extra 10 euros cost benefits of the third child only the fourth child wouldn't be cut, or the 20th child wouldn't be cut -- [laughter] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] did some poor child beat you up on the way home from school when you were a young fellow?
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[laughter] seriously, what do you have against poor children? [inaudible conversations] i have no invested interest. i'm a 4th child myself. [laughter] >> what happened with the second child is you birthed a twin. [inaudible conversations] >> some of them are welcome. certainly someone has to do something to get the property market going again. i think nama destroyed the property market because they took everything out and put nothing back. before you leave office, you should call them and tell them to put 2 billion or 3 billion worth of property under market at sale prices. it might sell cheap, but it puts a floor on the property market and people will go again. prices are continually falling and nobody can get in the market.
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wait until they hit bottom, somebody must put a fore floor on it so sell a trench of their assets even if you sell them cheap and get the thing started again. now, you're 1% universal levy on all property and 2% over a million, that's an honorrous enough charge, but when the market picks up, it will be a heavy charge. i suggest to you in the course of the finance bill, if you looked at a capital gains tax on a family home, it's less honorrous. it's going to hit everybody in negative ceo -- equity and people who didn't have the capital gains code, you could exament all those -- exempt all those categorses. i suggest rising the taxes. there's a lot of change, and a lot were announced before and
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the levies were announced in the plan. public servants won't like them, but i spoke to a lot of them and they are really at the end of the day didn't object to trade on an equal basis with existing public service so the times we're in, i'm not going to quarrel with that. you didn't nothing for people with negative equity, and i thought that was a very, very serious gap. again, we had a proposal, and you know, we won't charge you a penny if you implement it in the bill. if you look at the market between 2004 and 2008, and if you increase their tax relief to 30% to be about 900 euros a year, now that's a target of relief. now, you could pay for it by not having mortgage relief for anything that sold from june to 11 up. you have to cost your department, and that's the way it works out, and anyone buying next they are buying at the
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bottom of the market. they don't need to be assisted to buy property. they are buying it at knocked-down prices. if you look at proposals like that and try to make some adjustments, you have theories proposed and based on the financial resolutions tonight. you have proposals on ministers and td's salaries, and a cap on public servant's salaries. i believe that if we don't start cutting in our own prospects, in our own salaries, we don't have the moral authority to prescribe tough medicine for others. it's not clear what you are doing with td's. i mean, somebody who is here for 30 years if they are reelected in the middle of march, the figure week of march, and if so, are they going to be hit by the
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10% reduction? is that your intention because the phrase in your speech is ambiguous, and i think it should be spelt out. the public wants to know what's happening with our own pay and conditions, and it has to be spelled out and it needs no riddles whatsoever. i thought you might take the opportunity to introduce the changes that you announced in the four year plan on that. it's your intention and negotiated a deal with the ims to take the 21% up to 22 and budget two or budget three. the retail sector won't like that, but a lot of us charged at the higher rate of that is imported. now, i think you should restructure again there, and you should try and do something for jobs by taking the lower represent, the 13.5% rate if you can. the lower rate of that applies to all the domestic stuff, the
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building industry, restaurants, the full trade and bars, hair dressing, newspaper industry, and the service industries are high employers, they are high employers, law margin usually, and a very small adjustment gets people back to work there, and i'm not making political points when i say there are theories of measures that you could introduce to get more people back to work, and that's one of them. that's one of them, and it would work because p you bring finish did if you bring down the cost there, you will get people back to work. you tried to reduce the minimum wage by a euro. this is an alternative way of doing it where you get, you know, you'll probably get the value of it, and we also proposed that the 8.5% prsi employer's rate should be abolished up to the minimum wage, a a low cost measure
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again. you know you're it's difficult to employee people, young people, who are not skilled at the bottom end of the market, so you should look at, you know, what the economists call supply side initiatives. i know you haven't got millions to spend or billions to spend, but these kind of measures are focused, targeted measures to increase employment, to get more growth in the economy, and to have the great advantage of, you know, costing very, very little indeed. they are silent on carbon tax which is something to move on again, but you're moving on fossil fuels. now, you have to make up your mind on how to tax fossil fuels. are you going to continue on the excise root or carbon tax? when you do it both ways, everybody gets hit twice. it was not so long ago when there was animal increase in taxes, and now we're back to excise taxes again.
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it's not creating jobs whatsoever, and it's taxing the food industry, and you don't mention that in your speech, and overall, the budget is a little incoherent and it's certainly hard on the poor and easy on the rich. the times ahead will be hard, minister. we all know that, and the government has sought to tie the hands of its successors with a theory of specific commitments over the next four years. the part of the incoming government, we will stick to the targets set down, and we will renegotiate the specific measures for the next three budgets. i have been assured by commissioner of the ims that they will cooperate with us in doing so. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> i believe the result -- [inaudible conversations] i believe those now are a flaw
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in ireland's approach to europe which arises from the hubris of the celtic tiger years. since we joined the hubris, the department of foreign affairs have taken lead role in our relationships with the union and with the individual member states. it was quite common when the distinguished visitors gallery when he was minister for foreign affairs. this was quite common for ireland to make alliances with the smaller member states in particular to advance our interests. it was common for inform mall alliances to be intrd to push -- entered to push interests. we seem to have lost our way over the last decade and forgotten our friends who used to protect our interests. i suppose at a time when irish ministers can clear any bar from
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berlin to barcelona can get rich through speculation and ireland used to be the richest country in europe, i suppose it's easy to forget our friends when that was going on, and when irish ministers were bragging, it was easy for our friends to forget us. we must now mend our ends. we have to be reconstructed to build alliances with member states who share our interests, and the central law of diplomacy to protect our interests and relationships in europe must be restored. in this regard in a major new initiative like the decision on the issue of euro bonds was being discussed at yesterday's counsel of ministers meeting. i believe it was disstressful that ireland was not remitted by a cabinet minister. i think that's negligent. i know you are doing the budget, but it was the weekend anyway. why wasn't someone there?
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it could solve a lot of our problems if the euro problems is there. traditional dip plo matic friends. of the irish with the main proposal of it, and there was no ire rich cabinet minister there to push the project along which was so much in our vital interest. despite -- [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> yesterday, is not today. [inaudible conversations] >> des pilot -- -- despite -- [inaudible conversations] >> continue without interruption. >> despite everything that has happened, i do not believe our country is ruined beyond repair. if it weren't for the banks, our problems are manageable, and with the recently announced initiative to downsize the banks, we can come through this. the foundations of everything is certainty. that is why we are committed to
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reducing the deficit to 3% by 2014 and to a total adjustment of 15 billion. we want to give that certainty to people out there, and we are committed. once we have certainty, we can build confidence in this country. that is why we are committed to an extensive jobs and growth program. once we have confidence, people will grow in hope and optimism and begin to spend money and up vest again. that is why we believe that the margin rate of income tax must be kept low, but the 1 2.5% is essential component of our industrial policy and that the 13.5% rate of that should be reduced to 12% when the standard rate is increased as i proposed already. we want a pro-jobs tax economy so the economy can grow and jobs can be created. we believe we can meet our
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budget targets for the next two years, and hopefully after two years of meeting our targets, we will be back borrowing in the bond market and have less waste from the 5.8% negotiated by the government and the bailout package. we want the ims out of here. we are an educated, talented, accomplished people well capable of running our own affairs. a times of crisis we tend to turn to the heros of the past for inspiration, to collins and griffin to ms and all the members on all sides of the house do that, therefore, i will finish by reference to a quotation attributed to michael collins which we can all ponder. he said, "give us the future. we have had enough of the past. give us back our country to live in, to grow in, to love."
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thank you very much. [applause] [applause] [applause] [applause] >> the senate has gone into recess so democrats can attend a party caucus. they voted unanimously this morning to convict federal louisiana judge of corruption and lying removing him from office. senators will return at 3:30 eastern with a number of bills awaiting action including collective bargaining rights for police and fire fightsers and social security recipients of $250. live coverage here on c-span2.
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a subcommittee is up vest gaiting the flash -- investigating the flash crash. you can see live coverage starting at 2 p.m. eastern on c-span3. 4th amendment rights saturday on c-span radio's supreme court cases.
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>> speakers include the head of u.s. customs and border protection. it's about 50 minutes. [applause] >> thank you, anne, and thank you again to the chamber for providing an opportunity to share cbp's thoughts and perspectives on something as critical of the north american competitiveness and in the global supply chain. what i want to do this morning
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before opening it up to question is actually take the paradigm that we have become accustomed to thinking about trade and facilitation and questioning it even in someone as practiced and knowledgeable as anne, you notice when she talked about trade and facilitation, she talked about dual goals and purposes of cbp, she talked about achieving simultaneously security and facilitation, and this is the way we think about it. we have a paradigm that looks at these as mutually exclusive as matters that have to be balanced rather than as a single phenomena. what i want to do this morning is challenge that paradigm, one that in fact i up until just relatively recently, myself, adopted in 1995. i was the united states attorney in the southern district of california on the u.s. mexico
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border, and attorney reno's border representative rs and the first man of the traveler's programs, the century program was introduced at that time as a result of legislation sponsored by representative jack brookes of texas and lynn shank in california, and it authorized the nation's first trusted travel program involving mexican citizens and u.s. citizens crossing the border, and i remember advocating for that program talking about the need to balance trade and facilitation. it was seen as a zero-sum game in which if you were to enhance security by definition, you would decrease facilitation in the movement of travelers across the u.s. mexican border. i now do not accept that paradigm as a useful one, and
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want to challenge all of you today and then have you challenge me back in the question and answer period about the relationship of security and facilitation because it is i submit critical to the examination of your subject today, north american competitive inns in the supply chain. remember where that came from, those college students of any vintage will remember it introduced by a historian of science who wrote a terrific book now according to my children is not on the reading list of the histories of science, but it was the revolution and introduced the par time, par time being the -- paradigm being the way to see the world or the lens by which theories of reality were interpreted in which people in each age interpreted their
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world. a paradigm, for example, as applied by coon said that during the era when the pyramids were built, the version or the reality for egyptians in that time was that the earth was the center of the universe, and that the solar system and other planets rotated around the earth, and coon's thesis was that that sense of what human beings were actually impart explained this bold construction of something as monumental of the pyramids in a very early period in human history, and then as you go on and coon's shows it was demonstrated that in fact the earth was not at the contenter of the -- center of the universe, but in
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the solar system based on the sun, and earth was one of several planets of the way in which people viewed themselves was different. he goes on and shows how quantum mechanics actually affected the way people saw, and the one just the other example i give in my last pitch for you to pick up that book some day is that during the renaissance, he relates the renaissance to gal lay owe and it was that the scientist can be reflected in the scientific writings and in his art and so on and so on so you look in the 21st century where we deconstructed art and modern art and a wholly different way of seeing the world than in the renaissance, but you take my point. a paradigm is a way of seeing the world, so the usual paradigm
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in security facilitation debate is that the two are truly exclusive. if not everyone thet call to one another, they have to be balanced, and i'd like to challenge that today and make the argument that in fact in the contemporary security context, you have to see security and facilitation as, in fact, the same phenomenon, that in fact where we are today, the trade community tends to see its job in advocating before cbp and other border related agencies as less enforcement, and then cbp and other border enforcement agencies such as the consumer products safety commission or food and drug administration, we are perceived to saying what we need is more enfor thement, -- enforcement, and the discussion
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isless enforcement, more facilitation. that economy is a false one and a self-defeating one. in fact, if you look at the way in which trade operates today, pick the decimal point, 1 to 9 consists of lawful car gone and travelers, and we are looking for the very small number of cargoes and small number of persons who threaten the american homeland or the american people, so in fact, we are faced with a situation in which we are looking for a needle in a hay stack in order to find and do our job at cbp of keeping people in danger, things away from the border. when i asked my colleagues at cbp to understand is they cannot do that unless we actually
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improve our relationship with the intelligence community, you can pluck the needle out of the hay stack if you know where it is, but sense that happens with pressure little frequency, the more reliable method, and one we rely on is reduce the syces of the hay stack, and reducing the size of the hay stack requires that you facilitate and move quickly that traffic which you know something about, you know either to be trusted or about which you have sufficient information to make a judgment that the person or the cargo is not a threat, does not present a high risk, and by moving that traffic and those passengers through the supply chain quickly, you actually increase the proalt that you -- proabilityd that you can -- probability that you can reduce the needle in the hay stack. trade, promotion, and security
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are not mutually exclusive. in fact, in today's environment, we can only improve our security profile by segmenting the traffic in the way that i'm suggesting to you this morning, so let me illustrate the implications of that new view of the relationship between security and facilitation by reference to the last three terrorist acts or attempts against the american homeland. the effort made by mutallab, the nigerian traveler who attempted to blow himself up on the northwest airline over detroit now just under a year ago in december 2009, the effort of fie
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sal to blow up a car in times square and reek havoc on the new york population once again last spring, and most recently, the yemen cargo plot in which two packages addressed to chicago synagogues were dispatched into the global supply chain with the expectation that they would blow up two cargo planes over the united states. let us analyze those three in light of the paradigm i'm suggesting to you today. in the first instance with abdul, the fat of the matter is bcp was prepared by risk manager
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proceed cheers and was prepared to take him into secondary when he arrived at the detroit airport. he had been identified for secondary inspection, but, of course, it would have been too late had he been able to ignite the petn in his underwear and explode the plane over detroit. the second incident with shahzad, he was identified and arrested boarding the plane by cbp officers because he was identified in targeting procedures because he had traveled to the area between afghanistan and pakistan and had traveled there frequently enough so that when he came back or be
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he a naturalized united states citizen born in pakistan, he was identified and a report was written up which then after he left the car in times square with the keys in it, the police were able to trace the car very quickly to the woman in connecticut from whom he had purchased the car, and while she could not identify shahzad, he did retain his phone number in her cell phone address book or history record, and that cell phone number permitted the authorities to locate and identify shahzad and then permitted him to be arrested and identified as being on the flight manifest on the airplane
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last spring. then just recently, in fact, the two packages from yemen most likely would have been identified in the targeting procedures used by the national targeting center for cargo since they had come from yemen and were addressed to chicago synagogues, they most likely would have been identified for secondary inspection or primary inspection when they landed in jfk in new york. again, too late. the targeting would have picked out these dangerous cargoes in the stream of commerce, but too late. when you look at those three incidents, and you put them in the context of your subject today and cbp's challenge
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regarding facilitation and security, what are the implications of that? well, the first is for customs and border protection, we must begin to see the borders not as lines on a map, lines in the sand that physically separate one country from another, delimiting where one jurisdiction ends and another sovereignty begins, but rather in addition to borders being physical boundaries and points of entries, sea ports, airports, or land ports, borders need to be looked at as flows, flows of goods and people, ideas, capital, and cultures across a global landscape, and it is by
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looking at borders as a combination of physical boundaries, but also as flows of goods and people that we begin to understand the global supply chain and its interaction with border protection and border security. that's first. the second implication of the analysis of the three events is that we need to make judgments about passengers and cargoes as early in time and as far away geographicically as we can from the -- geographically as we can from the boundaries. in fact, we need to secure the flows of goods and people and we do that by obtaining information
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and by applying rules sets that can differentiate among the various risks that these passengers and cargoes appropriate to the security -- present to the security function. it also requires that the information be obtained predeparture and that the assessments of risks be made before a plane, a train, or a ship actually departs from the home port. so, in fact, as you look at what we in the maritime context and partnered with the
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chamber to introduce the ten plus two imf requirements having to do with maritime cargo, it applied that par time if you will -- paradigm if you will. 24 hours before containers are loaded on to ships bound for the united states, there is a requirement that cbp receive 10 elements having to do with the shipper and the cargo and two elements having to do with the placement on the ship, the container placement on the ship, and that information then is analyzed and typically we can prevent cargo from being loaded or we can certainly mark it for special inspection before it arrives in the united states some days or even weeks
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thereafter. in the aftermath of the yemen cargo plot, the same model was adopted only be it with completely different rules of collaboration and engagement with the private sector, and i want to come back to that in the context of the partnerships that are implied by this paradigm change. in fact, when we get the maritime information, and now as we begin obtaining cargo information from express carriers as well as commercial airlines having to do with aviation cargo, we get it before departure, and then we assess it according the rule sets that have been developed that reflect the threat streams that the intelligence community brings to the attention of the
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targetters. it permits us to do risk management in a new much more effective way predeparture, so that judgments can be made about how enforcements ought to be carried out and importantly in a complimentary sense, what cargoes can be identified as lawful and trusted, and therefore expedited to thin out the hay stack? the key is targeting risk management, risk assessment, and traffic segmentation. the keys to cbp and its border protection function in a world in which borders or flows
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towards a physical port of entry , so what are the very direct operational implications of this paradigm change? first of all, partnership, not in a rhetorical way, but in a very important sense that is critical to security and economic competitiveness. this involves first partnerships within dhs. i can tell you since the christmas day bombing attempt, the collaboration between cbp and the transportation security administration is unprecedented in its depth and its breath.
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in the wake of the yes , yemen cargo plot, john pistol, psa administrator and i, were able to call on this collaboration built up in the staffs so we can see the kind of progress i will describe to you in a moment that's taken place in terms of securing the flows of air cargo towards the united states. the same kind of partnership, i should say par renne thetically, needs to be engaged by our other board es with the united states coast guard, but let me leave that for another day. the second implication is partnership with the private sector.
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perhaps the most important partnership of all because in fact it should be clear from the paradigm i present to you that government agencies cannot alone security the global supply chain. we're 99.x% of the traffic that is lawful and legitimate without engaging with the shippers #, the freight forwarders, freight consolidators, the carriers, and the importers who agent for that flow -- who account for that flow and who know their cargo as we can never know it so unless we engage with the private sector in new and different and more intensive ways, we will not be able to increase our security
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profile or our economic competitiveness by driving down transaction costs at the physical ports in a way that will be sufficient to either goal. what does that mean? that means first of all that programs like ct pad, customs trade, partnership against terrorism, needs to be taken to a new level. yes, we are very proud that we have 10,000 partners in ct pack, but we need to increase that dramatically in order to obtaining tape the benefits of segmentation which the paradigm suggests are so necessary. we need to take the trusted traveler programs like global entry which is grown from 10,000 members to 100,000 members in 2010 and we need to take that to
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3.5 million members over the next 24-36 months so that we can, in fact, when we return from foreign air travel, go up to the kiosk, swipe our passports, put our 10 finger prints down for biometric match of the passport, answer the declaration questions on a touch screen, and then move through that airport without otherwise stopping because we are trusted travelers, because we have embedded, and we are part of that group where there is confidence and where we know that if we expedite your movement through the airport, our inspectors will be able to
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spend time on those passengers about whom we do not have sufficient information to make a judgment to haste p your -- hasten your movement through the line. third, implication of partnership with the private sector, and this one falls heavily on customs and border protection. we need to modernize our processes. we need to not only continue to digitize them, but we need to modernize all of the ways in which we do business. we begun two pilots that the chamber is fully aware of, and i hope will be a critical friend throughout the develop of them managing accounts rather than lines of commerce. companies need to be dealt with
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on an account basis with an account executive responsible for that account, and we need to move toward that model, and we've begun a pilot in new york city with regard to the electronic industry, and you need to help us make this into a standard way of doing business with many of our clients. the second is the center of excellence and expertise in los angeles having to do with the pharmaceutical industry in which we will modernize the ways in which we operate with regard to the industries accounting for much of american trade by becoming in concert with the private sector, an expert of the business in those industries. we need to modernize the way in which we do business, and the way in which we relate to the private sector, and fourth, in
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terms of the implications for building this partnership, we need to enter into the grand bargain with the private sector. a grand bargain in which have many historical and traditional ways in which americans think about the relationship with their government is actually revisited in a very specific way. we americans ever since the 17th century have resisted sharing information with the government, sort of a healthy streak built into the dna of liberty in this society. it is the reflection sense that the less the government knows about our affairs, the beers off -- better off we are enlighted in political philosophy, and also just an independent american
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frontier streak that has served us well as the people and as a nation. i submit to you though in the context of the world in which we live of instantaneous communications, the global flows, we need to revisit that bar bargain on a very specific negotiated basis. we will share information with the government about ourselves on two conditions. first, that the government will maintain that information in privacy and confidence. there's something par renne thetically with the wikileaks disgrace, but someone revealing that information indiscriminately has put it in doubt, but i'm confident we'll address it as a government and as a people, but the first part
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of the bargain is keep the information confidential, and use it for the purpose in which the government was provided it by shippers or travelers, and the second condition is expedite the movement of those people through the inspection lines and the cargo through the cargo lines, that basis for a bargain exists, and we need to work toward it, and it's part of the implications of the paradigm change i've asked you to consider this morning. we all grew up thinking that information is power, and in fact, information is power, but the lesson that we drew from that is that we should horde the
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information. in fact, many bureaucracies operate on that notion that if we don't share the information, we therefore accrue to our function greater power, and the world in which we live in today, ladies and gentlemen, that actually it not true. it is by sharing information that we lever our influence and our reach. it is by sharing not by hording that we acreed power. those four implications of this for the private sector are joined by one additional lesson. we must, in fact, partner
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internationally. we must, in fact, have mutual recognition agreements so that these risk management traffic segmentation and enforcement techniques are not simply flows coming towards the united states to the physical borders, but rather involve the global flows to the full extent practicable depending on the quality of the proposed partnership and of the proposed partner, and lastly with regard to management when the flow reaches the physical boundary, we need to do a better job at kbp of partnering with the fda, federal highway transportation authority, and the variety of other partners for whom we serve as executive agents at the physical line.
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i propose to you today a paradigm that says that security and facilitation are not mutual exclusive, but in fact, they are the same phenomenon, and in the regime today of national security, we need to view the flows in that fashion. there's another reason why we need to operate to see expediting lawful traffic and travelers as being critical to american national security, and that's because in the economic world of today, if the united states is to remain competitive, we need to make north america
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competitive, and we make north america competitive by driving down the transaction costs of doing business within the nafta context by 10 to 15 or 20%, and a fair amount of that competitive cost cutting can take place in removing the frictions at the land backwarders between the united states -- land borders between the united states and canada, and mexico, and this is something not of which we have much of a choice. i believe history will record the united states unlike any other power coming out of a war world like world war ii where it was the single dominant superpower, and then preceded in the marshall plan and truman doctrine to build back europe, and in the east asian context to
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build back japan as we help build back germany, and then per seeded over the -- preceded over the next generation to support economic growth around the world by opening up our borders to trade that have been the basis for moving from 3% of the world's population having a middle class aspiration to 40% of the world's population having an opportunity to think about a middle class life. we did that, but now it's time for americans to heed the president's call to double our exports over the next five years, to roll up our sleeves and become once again the economic future for the world,
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and i believe we can do that, and i believe that border and borders have a lot to do with whether we can remain competitive starting on a continue thenal basis here in north america, so i salute your conference summit, and i look forward to you changing the paradigm change that i suggest we make as we work towards a competitive north america and an economically and physically secure american homeland. thank you very much. [applause] [applause] >> thank you, we appreciate your comments here today, and especially your talks about the partnerships and not just
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rhetoric, and you have shown that sense you started your tenure, and i appreciate that very much. would you have a few moments for a question? please wait for a microphone to come to you and identify yourself. we'd appreciate it. here's one right here. >> good morning, commissioner. i echo and's comments and i have a question regarding risk management and implimentation. if you can distinguish those, that without helpful and if risk segmentation requires treating trusted traders differently than the rest of the trade because that's my understanding but it's in practices we vice president seen. >> the two are obviously related. risk management is the acquisition of information and the application of the targeting rules that permit you to
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differentiate the risks. when i say segment the risks, i'm referring to the way in which you then treat the judgment about the threat presented, so it's more strictly speaking than that, it's risk management and traffic segmentation. >> i'm mike mullen from the express association of america, and i wanted to follow-up on the comment you made about improving the partnerships between other agencies and the government involved with border management. you -- during your time in office have made enormous efforts in that area, and i wanted to see if you could give us a frank assessment of how you think it's going.
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obviously the meetings from october, the reports from that were pretty good, but there is some existing legislation, for example, that has to tell the other agencies they have to participate by tds, but so far it's been a voluntary process. do you think there's more legislation needed, or how do you think that's going to come out? >> mr. mullen, with regard to the private sector before moving on to the other government agencies or the partner government agencies. as you know, and i actually indicated that i'd come back to this in my remarks, and i never did, so thank you for giving me the opportunity to do that. we did have this ten plus two arrangement maritime of the history of the relationship of the private sector that was imposed by cbp on the trade, and that it was initially resisted
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through years later as a tribute to both the trade, private sector and cbp and hardly anyone disputes the importance of getting the information of containers beforehand and being able to academy on that a private departure and certainly prior to coming into the united states. as you know, in the aftermath of the member states men yemen cargo plot us taking the lead and secretary national recovery poll tan know -- napotano was involved from the very beginning, and correct me if i'm wrong, from the very beginning, this was a partnership to address the issue in a cocreation style so that in
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fact the announcements that will be made with regard to the third security directive as it comes out over the next coming weeks will actually be a product for which the government is responsible to be sure, but what reflects very in deep and early involvement of the private sector. that is a very important direction secretary has given, and it reflected in the way in which we as a nation and as a government, not only as a government, have reacted to the yemen cargo plot, and we've started to see the partnership begin to produce the results that that kind of public-private collaboration will bring. we start to have the discussions with the private sector about the conditions under which early
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provision of information will lead to early release of cargo in a very direct way that this situation has provided us the opportunity to follow, so with regard to the private sector i think it's going well. it's going well. we need to continue to work at it each month now. cbp has a trade day in which starting at 9:30 in the morning and going to 6:30 at nights, one association after another offers its views and engage in dialogue and the candor and directness is admirable and leading to getting issues on the table that can only produce better results for everyone and most importantly for the american people and the american economy and north american competitiveness. with regard to the partner
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agencies, there are 47 agencies in the american government that have something to do with the border read as a physical line. there are 12 major partner agencies for which the united states, customs and borders agency serve as a particular agent. it was remarkable cialg but i'm -- remarkable, but i'm told the products safety commission and a commissioner, more great peggy hamburg and cbp hosted for the first time these 12 agencies, 10 actually showed up, sat and met as a high-policy level to talk about how to manage the border in concert with the private
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sector, and the most important outcome of that meeting aside from the determination to revitalize the automated commercial environment which kbp is committed to doing, in concert with the itds is agreement that all of the agencies subscribed would create a mechanism by which we could conduct our discussions regarding border management, and we would have a mechanism by which differences of views could be reconciled. in the past when there was a difference between kbp commissioner and others with an enforcement strategy, there was really no way to resolve that. there would be two different ways of viewing enforcement, and in fact, as you know in the private sector, the consequences
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were largely visited on the private sector. we are determined here in accordance with the obama administration's determination to double exports and to streamline strad to correct that, so with the private sector making great progress and partner agencies making significant progress, but this is something that has to be sustained, and the way you sustain it is by insisting on the paradigm i proposed to you this morning which is not to get trapped in a dichotomy between strengthening the american economy to improved practices at the border and the notion of security which is foremost and primary among the missions at cbp.
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>> i think we have time for one quick question. last question here, and then we'll wrap things up. >> yes, eric coollig from american shipper magazine. you talked about the trusted trader programs of the customs trade partnership against terrorism in which companies, you know, follow security guidelines and get vetted ahead of time, and you've been talking about that for awhile, what kind of concrete steps do you specifically have in mind, you know, to modernize that program and get more participants, and when should we see the changing be implemented? >> yeah. two major directions there. first is to expand the reach with foreign partners so we've begun mutual recognition agreement discussions with the european union in the way that
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we've already reached them with canada and new zealand and jordan and korea in terms of mutual recognition of shipper programs. we need to do this in a more concerted and affective way in a quicker timeframe recognizing that we need to be satisfied as our foreign partner would need to be satisfied of us that there are appropriate validations with regard to supply chain security checks. the second major area is by actually engaging with the private sector to overcome this notion that the benefits of being in ct pack have not been realized. i think, in fact, when you look at the inspection rate and you look at the release rate, you
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begin to see that in fact there have been significant benefits so that i would suggest consistent with my remarks here this morning that the next level is what are the additional benefits that we need to actually build into the program that are consistent with the notion of enhanced supply chain security so that in fact where there is -- let me give you one example, but there are dozens we could draw on. where there are companies that have relied on manufacturers abroad and have several entitied that are involved in the transportation and clearance of that cargo on its way to the american shelf, we need to actually build in a single identifier that would percent us to track that from the
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manufacturing floor to the department store shelf in a way that would then make the partner responsible for the supply chain validating the supply chain for each of the lengths. yes, that would be an up vestment of time and -- investment of time and money, but the return time would be in an earlier release time in the way we are contemplating with commercial airlines, air cargo, or expressed carrier with respect to air cargo, and that would again be consistent with the grand bargain and other aspects of partnerships that i e leaded to -- alluded to earlier. let me thank the chamber again for the opportunity to address all of you. thank all of you for your consideration of this new paradigm, and i look forward as
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the further visits here that we will take this new prism of viewing american security and economic competitiveness and prosperity, we can actually given a little more texture and a little more grain to the vision, and then we can develop programs in support of policies that are consistent with it as i think hold out great promise for the american economy, for american security, and for the american private sector that is at the core of our efforts to continue the economic miracles that have been performed within the american -- the framework of american history. thank you very much. >> thank you, commissioner. we appreciate your time. [applause] >> senators have returned from their recess. members will vote on proceeding
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to a number of pending bills including collective bargaining rights for police and firefighter, and a one time payment of $250 to social security benefits. that measure did not pass in the house today. if none of the bills get the go ahead in the full senate, majority leader, harry reed, lays out policy for the next year. now live coverage of the senate here on c-span2.
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mr. sanders: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from vermont. mr. sanders: i ask that the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: we are not in a quorum call. mr. sanders: in that case i would ask to say a few words. the presiding officer: the senator is recognized. mr. sanders: mr. president, later on this afternoon we're going to be voting on a very simple and straightforward piece of legislation called the emergency senior citizens relief act. this legislation is cosponsored by majority leader reid, senators leahy, schumer, similar rod brown, whitehouse, lautenberg and menendez. and what this legislation would do is at a time when for the second consecutive year seniors and disabled veterans have received no cost-of-living
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adjustment, ko cola on their sol security, this would provide the equivalent of a 2% increase by providing them with a one-time $250 check. in addition to the senate cosponsors, this legislation is supported by president obama, and i appreciate that. it is also supported, for all the right reasons, by virtually every senior organization in the country and every veterans organization because this benefits not just seniors, many of whom are struggling hard to pay their bills when their health care costs and prescription drug costs are rising, but also impacts disabled veterans. the organizations that are supporting this legislation are the aarp, which is the largest senior organization in america, the american legion, the largest veterans organization in america, the v.f.w., the
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national committee to preserve social security and medicare, the disabled veterans americans, the national association of retired federal employees, vietnam veterans of america, and many other veterans and senior organizations. mr. president, just this morning earlier today 25 members of the house -- 253 members of the house, including 26 republicans, voted to provide the same $250 cola included in the bill that we are going to be voting on within a short time. so it won overwhelmingly in the house. in the house they put it on the suspension calendar. it needed two-thirds vote. didn't quite get the two-thirds. i am confident if we can come together here, get the 60 votes that we need, the house will reconsider the measure and pass
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it with a strong majority over there. mr. president, in the state of vermont, and i think all over this country, seniors are wondering as to how come they are not getting a cola this year when they are experiencing significant increases in their expenses. and the reason that they are not getting their cola is that, in my view, we have a very flawed methodology in terms of how we determine colas for social security. what the department of labor now does is kind of combine all of the purchasing needs of all americans, people who are 2 years old, kids who are 16 years old and people who are 96 years of age. and the flaw there is that while lap top computers and ipads and
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other communications technology may, in fact, have gone down, lowering the cost of inflation, the needs of seniors and what they spend money on have not gone down. most seniors spend their disposable income on health-related costs, visits to doctors, health care, prescription drugs. those costs, in fact, have gone up. so it is unfair for seniors when all of the american purchasing habits are combined because i think what is not fairly appreciated are what they are spending money on. just give you one example. "the new york times" reported last year that 2009 marked the highest annual rate of inflation for drug prices since 1992 with the prices of brand name prescription drugs going up by about 9%.
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seniors spend a lot of money not on flat-screen tvs or ipads or computers, but, in fact, on prescription drugs. according to the aarp's public policy institute, the average price of brand named prescriptions most widely used by medicare beneficiaries rose by 3.88% from march of 2009 to march of 2010. medicare part-b premiums have more than doubled and deductibles increased by 55%. seniors enrolled in prescription drug plans have seen their premiums increase by 50% between 2006 and 2010 including an 11% increase between 2009 and 2010. in other words, the seniors who are calling up my office, and i
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suspect your office, and offices all over this country are saying, excuse me, our expenses are going up, we need some help. and this is especially true for the millions of seniors and disabled veterans who are living on limited incomes. they are in trouble. and, furthermore, mr. president, what i would say that in the midst of this great debate we're having now on how we go forward in terms of taxes, there are a lot of seniors out there who are wondering how we can provide hundreds of billions of dollars in tax breaks to the top 2% and, yet, we cannot provide a $250 check to a disabled veteran or a senior on social security. so, mr. president, this is a very simple piece of legislation. the house has already passed it with a strong majority. i hope very much that we can
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pass it this afternoon. thank you very much. and i yield the floor. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. a senator: parliamentary inquiry? how much time do we have left? the presiding officer: 5 1/2 minutes. mr. harkin: mr. president, i yield myself the remainder of the time if i can. i see no republicans on the floor right now. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. harkin: mr. president, our first responders are swren win heroes. on -- genuine heroes. they confront criminals and put their lives on the line to protect our families and communities. they have invaluable skills an knowledge on how to protect our public and stay safe on the job. one of my moss vivid memories is of 9/11 when we saw people running away from the collapsing building and the clouds of dust and smoke, that terrible tragedy, people running away from it. at the same time you saw the firefighters and first responders running into that to
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save lives. unfortunately under current law first responders have no decision in what affects their lives and livelihoods. currently the public sector employees have the right to form a union if they choose. we leave it up to states as to whether firefighters can form a union. now over half of the states allow collective bargaining, almost 300,000 police officers an 141,000 firefighters nationwide are legally forbidden from exercising their basic fundamental right to collective bargaining. that's an injustice to our police an firefighters. it's inconsistent with our american values and with the wagner act of 1938. that's why i support the public safety employee employer act. this has the support of a wide coalition of senators, republicans and democrats. this bill protects the fundamental rights of our first
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responders by requiring states to provide them with four basic protections, the right to form and join a union, right to sit down at the table and talk, the right to sign an inforcible contract when both parties agree and the right to go to a neutral third party if there are disputes. the benefits of this bill go to our first responders and the communities they serve. we know that collective bargaining improves safety for workers. the firefighter fatality right for those without collective bargaining is higher than in states with these rights. it addresses worker fatigue, on the job errors, employee fitness and safety hazards like asbestos. equally important in these times, there are countless examples across the country of union firefighters and police officers voting to forgo scheduled salary increases,
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defer pension payments, pay increased benefit premiums or to reduce overtime hours in order to help states cut the cost and avoid layoffs. while guaranteeing the fundamental right to organize, the act reserves maximum ability for states to shape their own laws. the 26 states that allow collective bargaining will not have to change their laws at all. other states will have to ensure the four basic protection that's i just mentioned. but everything else about how to craft their labor laws is left entirely to state's discretion. mr. president, it is long past due, past time when we ensure that our public safety officers have the basic same rights that private sector workers across the country already enjoy. mr. president, earlier today, my colleague from wyoming was on the floor and made some statements about this bill, my
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ranking member, senator enzi. i just wanted to respond to a couple of those. my friend from wyoming said that the bill didn't go through the "help" committee during this congress and we weren't given a right to consider the bill in the appropriate venue. well, senator gregg on the republican side has introduced this bill for the last five congresses. the "help" committee has marked up this bill and approved it twice and a majority of the senate has twice voted to consider the bill. so we have been debating this bill for years. simply because it didn't go through the committee this time doesn't mean it didn't go through the committee many times before, which it did. secondly, the bill does not impose an unfunded mandate on our states that was mentioned. it does not require cities and states to spend money. only to engage in a dialogue. it does not allow strikes and it does not impose arbitration or require particular terms.
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these are indeed left up to the states. mr. president, i also wanted to put into the record a report -- excuse me. a senator: would the senator yield? i believe he is using my time. the presiding officer: i still is using his own time. mr. sessions: i was told wrong. thank you. mr. harkin: mr. president, i just ask to put into the record a report that we got from -- that we got from the g.a.o. and others on the -- on the private sector schools and the for-profit schools, and i wanted to just get that into the record today. i will have more to say about the report coming up. the presiding officer: without objection. the senator's time has expired. mr. harkin: i ask unanimous
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consent to enter this report into the record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. harkin: and that my remarks on the report come in front of the report that's in the record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. harkin: thank you. mr. president, i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the senator from alabama. mr. sessions: mr. president, i want to share a few thoughts about the legislation that i understand we will be voting on -- at least voting on cloture later this afternoon, on the "dream" act. one of the most major themes of the recent election was an idea idea -- an idea set forth in the declaration of independence. the idea is a bedrock principle of our country, and that is the government derives its just powers from the consent of the governed, but many americans have felt for some time now that washington has become disconnected from the people it
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serves. indeed, a recent poll found that only one in five americans feel that the government is operating with consent of the governed, and now on the heels of a historic midterm election, the democratic leadership in this lame-duck session are, i believe, further eroding those bonds of trust by refusing to listen and moving an amnesty bill that violates, i believe, a clear american view that border security should be first, and the american people are correct in that. it's not a negative, mean-spirited thing. the american people understand understand -- and i think congress is coming to understand
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also -- that ending the lawlessness at our borders is the first thing that must be done, and at some point after that, then we can wrestle about what to do about people here illegally, or else we are surrendering to lawlessness. the democratic leaders have introduced now four investigators of the "dream" act in just the last two months, three in the last two days or three days, a shell game, really, that abuses the process. we have not had hearings on it in seven years. meanwhile, the "dream" act has been promoted as a bill for ambitions used on a track to graduate from high school or college or join the military, but the truth is far different from that talking point. in reality, the "dream" act would grant nearly unrestricted
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amnesty, a guaranteed path to citizenship, to millions of illegal aliens, adults and youth alike. they do not even need a high school diploma. they certainly do not need a college degree, and they do not need to join the military. in fact, the bill's eligibility provisions are so broad that even repeat criminal offenders would fall within its loose requirements and qualify for this mass amnesty. the public has pleaded with congress time and again to secure the border, but those pleas have been ignored by those that have been pushing this bill. why aren't we seeing calls for that? americans want us first to enforce the laws we have, but the bill would reward and encourage the violation of american laws. americans want congress to end the lawlessness, but this bill would have us surrender to it. it's really a give-up-type
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approach. consider the "dream" act core features. it is not limited to children first. illegal aliens as old as 30 or 35, depending on the bill, are eligible on the date of enactment, and they remain eligible to apply at any future age. as the registration window does not close. one does not need a high school diploma, a college degree or military service. a person illegally here can receive indefinite legal status as long as they have a g.e.d. the alternative to a high school diploma. they can receive that in foreign language, and they can receive permanent legal status and a guaranteed path to citizenship as long as they then complete
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two years of college or trade school, but their status changes upon application after having a g.e.d. i would just -- my faithful staff has just discovered -- made a copy of this google page, and it has had 273,000 hits, and the title of it is "fake diploma." and it has places on here that one can obtain fake diploma, fake degree, fake diplomas. or how about another one? fake diplomas, fake g.e.d.'s, high school diplomas. buy a g.e.d., high school diploma, college diploma, college transcript, college degrees or high school transcripts at diploma company, your online source. it goes on down there. fake diploma, fake diploma, fast delivery, fake diploma,
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transcript, birth certificate. so this is not going to be easy to enforce, and i would assure you we have insufficient personnel to go out and run down all these matters. so one version of the "dream" act offers illegal aliens in-state tuition for which many americans are not eligible. all four investigators that are now pending provided illegal aliens with federal education benefits such as work study programs, federal student loans and access to public colleges that are already funded, but we would like to have more money for these loan programs and all, but it would have to be spread out and the budgets tight. so more people would be then rewarded, illegal aliens would be rewarded for these programs.
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the c.b.o., the congressional budget office, has said the bill over time would add $5 billion to the national debt, but the number, i believe, is likely to be higher because c.b.o. clearly failed to account for a number of major cost factors with the "dream" act, including public education costs, chain migration and fraud, and nor does the c.b.o. take into account what history has proven, that passing amnesty will incentivize even more illegality and lawlessness at the border. i wish it weren't so, but experience teaches us that it is. if you have -- if you're here legally or illegally and you have a young brother, a nephew, they can get into our country and get into a high school. they can't deny them if they are illegally here. and they can get a degree or a
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g.e.d., they are put on a guaranteed path to citizenship, and at the point that that occurs, they could even make application for their family member to be given a priority, the one who was illegally here to begin with who brought them here. and that's the reality under our immigration procedures. in addition, the c.b.o. assumes a large portion of these individuals will obtain jobs, but there is no job surplus today. indeed, there is a surplus of labor who can't find employment. so this score does not count unemployed american citizens who can't get jobs because of additional competition. estimates conservatively say between 1.3 and 2.1 million illegal aliens will be immediately eligible for the "dream" act amnesty. but that number will grow
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significantly as there is no cap or sunset. moreover, those who do obtain legal status can do the same for their relatives, as i indicated. many -- with criminal records will also be eligible for the "dream" act program. they simply must have less than three misdemeanor violations. less than three. those potentially eligible would include drunk drivers, gang members, even those who have committed certain sexual offenses. many of those are misdemeanors, and a most recent version of the bill also gives the secretary of homeland security broad authority to waive ineligibility for even the most severe criminal offenders, and those who pose even a threat to national security.
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remember, every day for a host of reasons -- i was a federal prosecutor, a state attorney general. i know for a fact that every day for a host of reasons, maybe a witness didn't show up. maybe the caseload is overwhelming. prosecutors allow people to plead to misdemeanors when the offense they have actually committed is a felony. so allowing a person to have three misdemeanors is a serious loophole and does not suggest that the criminal activities they have been participating in is insignificant or nonconsequential. surprisingly, those who commit document fraud or who lie to immigration authorities are eligible for the amnesty as well. this is particularly troubling as it contains a potential loophole for high-risk individuals to be placed on a pathway to citizenship.
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one of the warning signs missed prior to 9/11, as we recall, were the fraudulent visa applications submitted by the 9/11 hijackers. the "dream" act even contains a safe harbor provision that would prevent many applicants from being removed as long as their application is pending, even if they have a serious criminal record. this provision would dramatically, dramatically hinder our federal authorities and will undoubtedly unleash a torrent of costly litigation. one of the things that's been happening too much is what we call catch and release. people are apprehended, they are placed in jail, and then they are released, illegal aliens and told to report back to the court for final disposition of their case. not surprisingly, over 90%, i think, 94% don't show up.
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so when you allow these processes to be delayed significantly, it reduces the ability of the law enforcement offices to be able to process cases and allows many to be released on bail from which they abscond and do not return. mr. president, how much time is left on this side? the presiding officer: 12 seconds. mr. sessions: 12 seconds. thank you. so, mr. president, this country needs to end the lawlessness and after that's done and it can be done shortly, the american people want us to wrestle with how to handle people who have entered our country illegally. the reverse is not true. the presiding officer: senator, your time has expired. mr. sessions: i thank the chair. the presiding officer: the senator from illinois.
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mr. durbin: i see the minority leader, senator mcconnell, on the floor. i will make a unanimous consent request, but i want to make certain he has his opportunity to speak. i would like to ask consent that after senator mcconnell has completed his remarks that i be given 10 minutes to speak and an equal amount of time offered to the republican side of the aisle before the first roll call vote. the presiding officer: is there objection? mr. mcconnell: reserving the right to object. did you say ten minutes? mr. durbin: ten minutes. and i'd offer the same amount to your side. mr. mcconnell: i would say to my friend from illinois, we don't need ten minutes. mr. durbin: then i ask for ten minutes to complete after you've completed your remarks. mr. mcconnell: is my friend from illinois asking a consent? mr. durbin: i would ask unanimous scoant after you
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complete your remarks, i have ten minutes to speak, and i believe it will accommodate everyone's schedule. the presiding officer: is there an objection? mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the republican leader. without objection. mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the republican leader. mr. mcconnell: mr. president, i'm just going to proceed for a couple of minutes here on my leader time. the presiding officer: the senator is recognized. mr. mcconnell: mr. president, it's perfectly clear by now that our friends on the other side are more interested in pleasing special interest groups than in addressing our nation's job crisis. once again, they're insisting that the senate spend its last remaining days before the end of the session voting on a liberal grab bag of proposal as that are designed to -- proposal as that are designed to fail. they don't even intend to pass these items. they just want to show that they care enough to hold these show votes. which raises a question: are we here to perform or are we here to legislate? our friends have focused on partisan votes for four years now. meanwhile, millions of americans
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have lost jobs and homes and in many cases hope. and the nation's debt has skyrocketed through misguided spending on government programs americans did not want. it's time to put them aside and actually accomplish something the american people support. it's time to give back the legislative process to the people who sent us here. and that means, mr. president, preventing a tax hike that's about to slam every working american. it means doing something to address the jobs crisis to give families and small businesses the tools they need to revive this economy and get people back to work. it's time toned the posturing and to work together to accomplish something not for the liberal base but for the vast middle of america that needs us. the white house has signaled it's concerned over the economy, that its policies aren't helping and that it's time to work with republicans on forging a new path. we've reached a bipartisan agreement. it's time democrats in congress
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reach a similar conclusion and enable us to act for the good of the whole country. americans are counting on us. they've waited long enough. mr. president, i yield the floor. mr. durbin: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from illinois. mr. durbin: mr. president, once again, let me thank the minority leader for giving necessity opportunity to speak. mr. president, later in this cue of votes there, will be a vote on an issue known as the dream act. i introduced this bill ten years ago. ten years ago. what i'm attempting to do in this bill is to try to resolve an item of great injustice in america. all across this country are young boys an and girls, young n and women who came to this country with their parents when they were only children, who were brought in by parents who were here in illegal status. they could have been parents who came here on a student visa and stayed beyond when they were supposed to. but the children have been raised in america. they've grown up in this
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country. i came -- i learned of this issue in chicago when a young korean american mother called and said, my daughter, i brought her here when she was two years old, and i never filed any paperwork. she just completed high school. she's been accepted to juilliard school of music. she's an accomplished pianist, what should die? when i acted -- what should die? when i contacted the institution, they said send her back to korea, she's not an american citizen. now multiply that many times over and you'll understand why i introduced the dream act. if you were pulled over by a policeman and given a ticket, we'd understand it. thesbut if they gave a ticket to your daughter in the back seat, that would not be fair. she was not driving. but they've achieved some remarkable things. i've met these young men and
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women across america. they are inspiring in ems of tef what they've achieved coming from poor immigrant families. they're the valedictorians of their classes, they're presidents and stars on the sports teams and the people who win the college bowls, and they are undocumented, they have no country, and they have no place to go. so we said, in the name of compassion and justice, give these young people a chance. i introduced the bill ten years ago and i've been fighting ever since to pass it, and this afternoon we will have that chance to move to this bill, the dream act. but we don't make it easy on these young people. despite the fact that half of the hispanics in this country today don't graduate from high school, we require, for example, that all children covered by the dream act must tbrad waited from high school -- graduate from high school. and this argument from the senator from alabama that they may go to a phony high school, let me tell you, these young people are going to be carefully scrutinized. they have to meet the test.
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that isn't all that they have to meet there. will be other tests too. have then been guilty of a felony beyond simple misdemeanors? disqualifies them. voter fraud or unlawful voting? disqualifies them. committed marriage fraud? disqualifies them. have they abused the student visa? disqualifies them. have they engaged in any kind of activity that would create a public health risk? it disqualifies them. and for ten years, for ten years, we'll have a chance to -- these young people will have a chance to do one of two things. to enlist in our military -- think of that. we have young undocumented people in this country today who are willing to risk their lives to serve in the united states military alongside our heroes, our men and women currently serving. let me tell you the story of one that i've met. this is caesar vargas. this is an extraordinary young man who came to new york at the
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age of five, brought here by his parents. when 9/11 occurred, caesar vargas went down to the recruiter's office and said, i want to sign up, i want to fight for my country. they said, mr. vargas, this isn't your country. you may have lived here all your life, but you have no place here. you cannot enlist. he was disappointed but he didn't quit. he went on to finish college. he is now in law school. caesar vargas at new york school of law has a 3.0 g.p.a. he's fluent in spanish, italian, french and english, and he's mastering cantonees and russian. when he graduates from law school, he will an i choice candidate at some major law firm. that isn't what he wants to do. he wants to enlist in the military of the united states of america. he cannot do it today because caesar vargas, who has lived his entire life, to his knowledge, in this country, has no country. the dream act will give him a chance to volunteer to serve
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america. and if he does, it puts him on a path to become a citizen. i think that's fair. we also say to the young person -- if a young person completes two years of college, we will put them on the path to legalization. do you know what percentage of undocumented students go to college today? 5%, 1 out of 20. it is a huge obstacle for these people. and yet they are prepared to clear that obstacle. and necessity do -- and if they do, they will wait for ten years -- ten years -- with conditional immigrant status. what does it mean? they have no legal rights for ten years, even if they do these things: enlist in the military or go on to finish two years of college. for ten years, they cannot draw a pell grant, a federal student loan, no medicaid, no government health programs. they don't qualify for any of it. for ten years. and then we put them in a process of another three years
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of close examination and scrutiny before they reach the stage of legalization. 13 years. and do you know what? some of them are going to make that journey successfully because that's who they are. if you meet these young people, you will understand some of the things said on the for are so wrong. -- said on the floor are so wrong. these are the most energic, idealistic young people you could meet in your life. they're tomorrow's lawyers and doctors and engineers. that's why major business groups have endorsed this legislation, saying we need this talent pool. that's why the secretary of defense has endorsed this legislation, saying we need these young men and women in our military to serve our nation. we can give them a chance to serve, we can put them on a road where it will be difficult but no more difficult than what they've gone through in their lives, or we can say no, wait for another day. some of my colleagues have said oh, we'll take up the dream act once the borders of america are safe. mr. president, i have signed up for every bill, virtually everything that's been proposed to make our borders safe.
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come july, we put $600 million more into border protection. i didn't object. do it. let's make our borders safe. but for goodness sakes, is it fair to these young people to say to them, you cannot have a life until our borders are the safe nest the world, when we have the longest border in the world between the united states and mexico? keep working on making those borders safe but give these young people a chance. these people embody what i consider to be the immigrant spirit which makes america what it is today. i am proud to stand here as the 47th senator from illinois and the son of an immigrant. my mother came to this country at the age of two from lithuania and i thank god that her mom and dad had the courage to get on that boat and come over here and fight the odds and give me a chance to become an american citizen and a united states senator. that is what america's about. that's a story of our country -- that's the story of our country, the strength, the determination of these immigrants and their children. these people are important to
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our future. these young men and women deserve that chance, and we'll have an opportunity today. now, i know that some will vote against it for a variety of reasons and i don't question their motives at all. but i hope they get a chance to meet these young people. they're all over capitol hill. they don't have paid lobbyists. they're walking around usually in -- in graduation gowns and board because that's what they want, a chance to go to schoolimprove themselves. and if you meet -- school and improve themselves. and if you meet them and talk to them, you'll be convinced, as i am, that this is the single best thing we can do for the future of this country. it's the single best thing we can do in the name of justice. this is our current challenge when it comes to the future of immigration. i urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to really ignore and set aside some of the arguments that have been made that really don't stand up to scrutiny, to understand that what we are doing in this bill is to give these young people a chance but to hold them to a standard which very few of us could live up to.
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we want to make sure that they apply within one year of this bill passing. we want to make sure that they have their chance to succeed. and when they do, we'll be a better nation for it. all across this country, the leaders at universities and colleges tell us these are the young people we want who will make this a better nation. some of the arguments that have been made suggest this is going to be a piece of cake and so easy for these young people. it won't be. it will be a hard, hard process and a difficult road for them to follow. but in the name of justice, in the name of fairness, give these young people a chance. a chance to be part of this great country. every single one of us, but for those who were native americans here long before the white people arrived, have come to this country as immigrants, not this generation, perhaps, but in previous generations. those who are african-american may have come against their will. but the fact is, they are here and they are what makes america the great nation that it is.
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our diversity is our strength and these young people are as strong as they come. let's pass the dream act. let's make these dreams come true. let's stand up once and for all and say, this just nation not only has room but welcomes all of this talent that has come to our shores. mr. president, i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the clerk will report the motion to invoke cloture. the clerk: cloture motion. we, the undersigned senators, in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate, hereby move to bring to a close the debate on the motion to proceed to calendar number 662, s. 3991, the public safety, employer-employee cooperation act of 2009. signed by 18 senators. mr. sessions: may i make an inquiry. was there ten minutes to either -- both sides? mr. durbin: mr. president, senator mcconnell said that your side did not want the ten
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minutes. mr. sessions: i would ask unanimous consent to have three additional minutes before the vote. the presiding officer: is there objection? without objection, the senator from alabama. mr. sessions: just briefly, i would say to my distinguished colleague, senator durbin, who i know cares deeply about this issue. i think there's not really an injustice today. the law is, if you're born here, even from illegal parents, you are a citizen. but if you come into the country or are brought into the country, you're here illegally. that's what the law is. it's not an injustice to enforce the law. number two, i would note that millions of people apply and wait for citizenship but these individuals who came illegally, maybe at 14, 15, 16 apply and get to the head of the line or
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people who waited for -- over people who have waited for a long time. and i don't know that that's justice. the military already allows people who are not citizens and people who are illegally in the country to join the military, and they're given citizenship. lots of them achieve citizenship that way. this bill is not necessary to do that. and the ten years, i would just say that the cost is scored there by c.b.o. as $5 billion. there is a cost. and, in addition, for pell grants -- this is grants, not loans, that students get to go to college -- these individuals would be eligible for those as soon as they get in college. after even a g.e.d. instead of a high school die p.l.o. mavment and the idea is that we're already doing enough at the border and we're doing everything that's possible. i would note that this administration has not completed
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the fence that congress authorized. we are not deporting people effectively. they've sued the state of arizona, who tried to help the federal government enforce the laws. they refused to make the e-verify program permanent. no workplace raids are being conducted. they were stopped soon after this administration took office. so i would say for a host of reasons we are not doing what can be done and should be done to bring the lawless no, sir an end and to -- the law alsoness to an end and, to deal with people who violated with the law and came nil legally. i thank the chair and yield the floor. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent, the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate on the motion to proceed to s. 3991, a bill to provide collective bargaining rights for public
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safety officers employed by states or their political subdivisions shall be brought to a close? the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
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the presiding officer: are there any senators in the chamber wishing to vote or change their vote? on this vote, the yeas are 55. the nays are 43. three-fifths of the senators duly chosen having sworn, not having voted in the affirmative, the motion is not agreed to. mr. reid: mr. president? mr. president? mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. reid: could we have order, please. the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. the senate will be in order.
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if we could clear the aisles and any conversation into the back. mr. reid: mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. reid: if i could have the attention of the senate. the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. mr. reid: as always happens, there's always bumps in the road here in the senate, most of which we don't foresee. we have scheduled now four votes. we're going to move to the next one as soon as we can. the house of representatives is in the process of voting on their don't ask -- sorry. wrong problem. on the "dream" act. and they're going to do that, but they may not get to it for a couple of hours. i need to have them finish their
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vote before we vote over here. so, having said that, we may be in a little down time here after we finish this vote for a couple of hours, or whenever we can get to it, but i have to have that vote completed over there. they know we're in a hurry to get that. we also will get today from them the continuing resolution to allow to us do something about the spending. so i'm doing my best to work through these issues, including the issue that is -- that has overwhelmed us all over the last few days, and that's the framework for the tax thing that's been negotiated. the main reason for interrupting everyone here today is the next two votes will not flow automatically. we need to do them sometime tonight. i'm working with senator collins, senator lieberman, september 11 and others to -- senator levin and toers try to come up -- and others to try to come up with some way to work on the defense bill. there are other things going on
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around here like the start treaty and a few other things. we're trying to work through that. i'm sorry we're not going to be able to proceed right through these votes. we may have to have down time for a few hours. we're going to vote right now, mr. president. the senior citizen co-op. the presiding officer: there are four minutes of debate equally divided prior to the next cloture vote. mr. sanders: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from vermont. mr. sanders: thank you, mr. president. mr. president, i'd like -- the presiding officer: order in the chamber, please. order in the chamber. the senator from vermont. mr. sanders: thank you, mr. president. i'd like a minute naval if i could, and then -- a minute and a half, if i could, and then i'd like to yield to senator whitehouse. the presiding officer: take your conversations to the cloakroom. the senate will be in order.
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the senator from vermont. mr. sanders: thank you, mr. president. this is a pretty simple and straightforward piece of legislation. mr. president, at a time when millions of seniors and disabled vets -- the presiding officer: the senate please be in order. please, any conversations, take it to the cloakroom. clear out the front if we would, please. if we could clear down in front, we would appreciate it. the senate will be in order. mr. sanders: thank you, mr. president. i'd like a minute and a half then i will yield to mr. whitehouse. the reality today is that millions of senior citizens and disabled vets are hurting. they are spending a whole lot of money on prescription drugs. they're spending a whole lot of money on health care. and yet, for the last two years they have not gotten any cola
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because, in my view, of poor methodology in terms of how we determine cola's for senior citizens. what this amendment does -- the presiding officer: please, the senate be in order. mr. sanders: what this amendment does is provide a one-time $250 check to senior citizens and disabled vets. that's what it does. this amendment is supported by the aarp, the largest senior group in american, the american legion, the veterans of foreign wars, the national committee to preserve social security and medicare. virtually every senior group, every veterans organization. people are wondering how it could be that we could provide $1 million in tax breaks to the richest people in this country but we couldn't come up with $250 for struggling seniors and disaibled vets. i hope that -- disabled vets. i hope my colleagues will support this important piece of
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legislation. i yield to my colleague from rhode island. mr. whitehouse: mr. president, in rhode island seniors get an average social security benefits of $13,500, which makes it tough sledding to live on in the cold northeast in the winter time. the cola adjustment is misfiring for seniors. their heating costs go up, their prescription costs go up, their pharmaceutical costs go up, and we missed the cola twice. we fixed it in 2008 with a one-time vote, we fixed in 2009 with a one-time vote. let's, please, do it again for 2010. support senator sanders amendment and let's not be scrooges to our seniors while we're so fabulously generous to our mega millionaires. the presiding officer: who yields time?
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the republican leader. all time is yielded back. the clerk will report the motion to invoke cloture. the clerk: cloture motion: we, the undersigned senators, in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate, do hereby move to bring to a close debate on the motion to proceed to calendar number 655, s. 3985, the emergency senior citizens relief act of 2010 signed by 18 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent the mandatory quorum call has been waived. question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate on the motion to proceed to s. 3985, a bill to amend the internal revenue code of 1986 to extend certain expiring provisions and for other purposes shall be
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brought to a case. the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
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