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tv   U.S. Senate U.S. Senate  CSPAN  May 19, 2022 9:59am-2:00pm EDT

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resources committee thursday at 10 a.m. eastern on c-span 3. onhine at c-span.org, or watchful coverage on c-span now, our free video app. >> c-span is your unfiltered view of government who are funded by these television companies and more including cox. >> cox is committed to providing eligible families access to affordable internet. through the connect and compete, and one at a time. cox, bringing us closer. >> cox supports c-span as a public service, along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. >> senators today will be voting on a bill to provide $40 billion in aid to ukraine. that vote coming up at 11:45 eastern today. president biden has vowed to
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sign it. lawmakers also will be working on a covid-19 relief bill for restaurants, gyms and other businesses. live to the floor of the u.s. senate on c-span2. the presiding officer: the senate will come to order. the chaplain, dr. barry black, will lead the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. almighty god, who stretched the horizon across the ocean, you know we have no power in ourselves. without you, we cannot prevail.
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remind us of the wisdom of psalm 127:1, which states, "unless the lord builds a house, the work of the builders is wasted. unless the lord protects a city, guarding it with sentries will do no good." today, work through our lawmakers to build an edifice for freedom that will endure. lord, inspire them to enact laws that will please you. use our senators to produce a harvest of righteousness that exalts a nation.
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ages, lord, bless u-- and, lord, bless ukraine. we pray in your awesome name. amen. the presiding officer: please join me in reciting the pledge of allegiance to the flag. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the presiding officer: the clerk will read a communication to the senate. the clerk: washington, d.c., may 19, 2022. to the senate: under the provisions of rule 1, paragraph 3, of the standing rules of the senate, i hereby appoint the honorable tina smith, a senator from the state of minnesota, to perform the duties of the chair. signed: patrick j. leahy, president pro tempore. the presiding officer: under the previous order, the senate
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will resume consideration of h.r. 7691, which the clerk will report. the clerk: calendar number 68, h.r. 7691 is an act making emergency supplemental appropriations for the situation in ukraine for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2022 and foreother purposes. -- and for other purposes.
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all have real-world impact on americans and other health. at the forefront of many minds right now is a critically low supply affecting so many american families. american people rely on fda to protect infants health by ensuring they have access to safe formula. i would like to later discuss
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what fda is doing to mitigate shortage and what changes can be made to improve the inspection process of manufacturers. this includes harmful delays and in action at the sturgis, michigan, facility. the agency receiving as early as 2021 but did not inspect the facility until january of 2022. which is unconscionable. i would also like to hear plans to address the backlog before inspections and be a big bipartn landslide. as a matter of moral principle, the united states is proud to support a sovereign democracy's self-defense. innocent ukrainians have been subjected to wanton cruelty, but aid for ukraine goes far beyond charity. the future of america's security
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and core strategic interests will be shaped by the outcome of this fight. anyone concerned about the cost of supporting a ukrainian victory should consider the much larger cost should ukraine lose. in europe, close allies and trading relationships would suddenly be hundreds of miles closer to the territory of an aggressive, emboldened autocrat. our own security requirements on the continent would grow substantially, and adversaries on the other side of the world would be tempted to follow russia's lead. communist china has already been stepping up its saber rattling toward the free people of taiwan. more tough talk, more airspace incursions, more evidence of their utter disregard for the rule of law.
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our friends in the pacific see this connection very clearly. as japan's prime minister put it, quote, we must show that they are -- that there are consequences, consequences, to violence by russia. another quote from him -- ukraine may be east asia tomorrow. many of us are convinced that china is our most significant strategic challenge. successful long-term competition with the p.r.c. will require having european partners firmly on our side. we will sorely need the trust and relationships that abandoning ukraine would exhaust. turning our backs on ukraine would harm our goals in asia, not advance them. so i'll be a proud vote for earthquake in's national interest and vote -- for america's national interest and vote to approve in badly needed assistance today. i encourage every senator on both sided to join this bipartisan supermajority.
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the most expensive and painful thing america could possibly do in the long run would be to stop investing in sovereignty, stability, and deterrence before it's too late. now on a related matter, last weekend i was honored to meet with the leaders of finland and sweden and discuss their pursuit of membership in nato. senators collins, cornyn, and barra row and i visited stockholm just as their governments were preparing to apply for nato membership. it will be a further honor to cohost our friends here in the capitol latest today. for 73 years, nato's collective strength has preserved peace in europe and security for the united states and for canada. even from outside nato's
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membership roster, sweden and finland have been two of our most capable and reliable partners. each as invested in the weapon systems that can operate seamlessly alongside our own. while clearly part of the west, these countries have until now preferred a nonaligned posture. but putin's aggression has changed everything. it is crystal clear which alliance supports basic international principles like sovereignty, stability, appeared human rights -- and human rights and which wannabe empires do not. even if putin's aggression stops in ukraine, he will remain dangerous. he will learn lessons and adopt. more importantly, president xi will learn lessons as well. all of our allies should invest in modernization. the accession of sweden and
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finland will be a strong step in that direction. finland recently agreed to buy 64 f-35 fighter planes. they already commit 2% of their g.d.p. to defense and sweden is on pace to reach that target very soon. these nations are setting an example which current treaty allies would do well to follow. so i'll be proud to continue amplifying their case for accession however i can beginning with the meeting the democratic leader and i will host later today. now, on one final matter, yesterday the average price that american families pay for regular unleaded set an all-time high for the tenth straight day in a row. getting to work, running errands, driving to church, visiting loved ones, hitting the
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highway for a modest family vacation -- all of it costs 88% more at the pump today than it cost when president biden put his hand on the bible last year. and it's not even memorial day yet, the unofficial summer driving season hasn't even begun. to be clear, this is not just putin's price hike. the year 2021 saw the biggest one-year gas price increase in three decades, and that was actually before russia's escalation in ukraine. farmers and ranchers, truckers and small business owners are struggling to keep their tractors, 18-wheelers, and other work vehicles full of diesel, and so in addition to having to fill up their own tanks, working families are paying for high fuel prices again at the checkout counter. one constituent in johnson county in my state wrote to my
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office to lament that rapid lay increasing gas prices are making it difficult for everyday people like me to make ends meet. he said he's facing rising costs but stagnant wages. another in ashland described driving past a gas station on his way to work and seeing that prices have hit $4.25 a gallon. he said he's fortunate to be able to pay those prices but worried others would have to start giving up things just to put gas in their cars. a third in brandenburg was dismayed that the biden administration decided to kill energy lease sales while gas prices are raging. he noted how the timing and nature of this decision display a disturbing -- disturbing -- disregard for the situation facing american families. since day one, from canceling keystone x.l. to freezing lease for new exploration is president biden himself has put american
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energy independence on the chopping block. but while america suffers, the far left digs it deeper. yesterday, for example, secretary granholm said the volatility in prices was just more reason to accelerate the supposedly green energy transition that democrats are trig to force on the country, literally, for years. forget that their preferred energy sources aren't yet reliable or cost effective. forget that they would just be exchanging one kind of foreign dependence for new kinds of foreign depend on russian minerals, china energy for batteries. democrats' proposals fall embarrassingly short. i understand the house is pretending this is all the fault of evil corporate profiteers. evil corporate profiteers.
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i guess the profit motive hadn't been invented yet in 2019. when republicans had unemployment low and inflation low at the very same time. the liberal economist larry summers calls the house democrats' bill, quote, listen to this, dangerous nonsense -- dangerous nonsense. bill clinton's secretary of the treasury. jason furman, another senior obama advisor has said the far left claims about so-called greedflation are, in fact, quote, unequivocally wrong and confused. both summers and furman were part of the obama administration. the biden administration has also drained our strategic petroleum reserve to its lowest level since 1987 in a frantic effort to lower prices. predictably, this gimmick failed, and now we're much less prepared for a possible future
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crisis. so you will recall senate democrats gleefully, gleefully blocked republicans from refilling the strategic reserve to the top back in 2020, when oil was at rock bottom prices. we tried to do that. these guys blocked it. we could have filled the reserve to the top and crude was on a clearance sale, but democrats blocked it, and bragged about blocking it. so washington democrats keep finding new ways to fundamentally misunderstand america's energy needs. i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll.
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quorum call:
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>> to address the shortage and prevent fraudulent products from entering the marketplace and to help acquire better data on the situation in the marketplace. to prevent shortages from happening again we will work to strengthen the workforce focus on formal issues and increase fda inspection staff. but as the ranking member has pointed out, funding is not the only answer. this issue goes beyond funding, and that has to do with a structural problem. for. another time t the quorum e suspended. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. durbin: madam president, it was over a century -- half servery ago that -- half century ago that senator robert kennedy delivered one of the most important speeches of his life. it wasn't in the capital. it wasn't even in the united
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states. it was in south africa, during the darkest days of apartheid. senator kennedy traveled to the university of cape town for the school's day of affirmation, a day to celebrate liberty and inclusivity. he told the students at that school that they had the power to change the world. he said, quote, each time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve a lot for others or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current, which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance. for the past 15 years i've had as a member of my staff a man who knows a great deal about ripples of hope. his name is brad middleton. and this week he is moving on and leaving my office, sadly. over the years, brad has worn
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many hats. for the last few years he's been my top advisor on education, and in that role he has been my invaluable right hand in efforts to hold predatory for-profit colleges accountable. he's done a phenomenal amount of work in making college affordable for millions of students, recently with the affordable college textbook act. soon, he's going to take his talents to president biden's department of education, where he will continue his advocacy for students and their families. he will be a senior adviser for strategy for the department to investigate bad actors that cheat students, their families and the taxpayers. it's it's quite an accomplishment for our rock star from rock falls, by he no he -- i know brad will handle it well. he joined my office in 2006, a fresh-faced intern in springfield, around in the years since has gone from answering the phones in our front office
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to counseling me on a wide range of serious policy questions. before becoming my point person on education, he worked on my foreign policy team, and he helped to pass the international protecting girls by preventing child marriage act. and he worked on the judiciary team as well. every step of the way, brad's been guided by faith, passion for public service, and an unshakeable devotion to the people of my state. brad comes from a long line of proud illinoisans and servants. his dad, jay, is a corn seed salesman, like her father before him. miss mom, laurie, was a state court reporter who retired last august after 40 years of service to whiteside county. laurie's commitment to public service made a mark on brad. from the moment he could walk and talk, brad expressed a desire to get involved and to serve. his journey into politics started very young, in the first grade, when he was elected class
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president. brad took his job very seriously, and he kept his ear to the ground on the issues facing the first grade in his day. while his friends were watching cartoons, brad was on the couch with his parents watching the news on the gulf war or the election of president clinton. that was the first middleton administration. the second middleton administration was inaugurated into the hogs of the famous -- into the halls of the famous school knox college. as student senate president brad banned plastic trace from the dining hall, a defining policy in his sustainability platform, even in those days. brad is remembered so fondly on the knox college campus. several years ago i was invited to deliver the commitment address there. i a i rived with brad -- i arrived with brad. when i arrived it was clear they were happy to see me, they were excited to see brad. illinois is no stronger -- has no stronger champion than brad
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middleton. about ten years ago, brad left washington at my request to open up our new rock island, illinois, office. about an hour west of his hometown of rock falls. brad took it on himself to make sure the community that raised him had the best representation in washington. he always took it personally when it came to delivering for the people of illinois. for a while, it was just brad leading the show in the quad cities as a solo act, with little more than a clipboard, folding chair and determination to get the office open and running. now that office is a linchpin in our efforts to serve the people of the state and untangle of red tape of government. it's one of the many tiny ripples of hope brad has sent forth over the years. here's one more, back when brad worked with my foreign policy team he personally led the effort to avoid the -- to award the congressional gold medal to dr. mohammed yenish, a bang bangladeshi economist and
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personal friend of mine who pine ierd the concept of -- pioneered the concept of micro lending. he was known as the banker to the poor. in brad's office were sticky notes, each with a name of a lawmaker who was yet to voice support for dr. yenish's med as. -- medal. the bill passed both chambers of congressional. thanks to brad, the doctor became the first muslim to receive the congressional gold medal. brad, from every christmas tree you carried into my office for the holiday season, to every college student you helped find financial help, you have been an indispensable part of my team. you've created those ripples of hope that continue to touch lives and will for years to come. i hope you get some well deserved time off in your cabin in the shenandoah area, with your girlfriend, claire, your brother, ben, who also serves his community as police officer in east peoria, your
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sister-in-law katie, and little theodore and rory, your niece and nephew. be sure to kick back with the appropriate refreshment and a plate of piping-hot fish, because your next mission in public service begins immediately. i'm confident you'll do well, and thank you for all you've given me and the people of my state. madam president, i ask that my next statement be placed in a separate part of the report. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. durbin: madam president, i had a visit yesterday from a group of pawrmts from -- parliamentarians from lit lithuania, which has a special plate in my heart, where my mother was born. i've been fortunate to visit there several times over the last 40 years. i saw lithuania in its darkest days as part of the soviet union, and i watched their heroic struggle against the odds to win independence from the soviet union. i've been there to see their
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free government installed again, and to watch this amazing little country grow into a powerhouse. not just economically, culturally, but spiritually. i say that because i believe that time and again lithuania has stepped up to the international challenge. it was my honor to work to bring nato alliance status to the baltics, and certainly to lithuania. it's made all the difference in the world. when i think of vladimir putin's unprovoked attacks on ukraine, i can't help but believe that the baltics would have fallen to putin and his aggression long ago if he had his way. what held him back were not just the -- was not just the cucialg of people who live there, but the -- not just the courage of the people who live there, but friends standing behind them. members of e.u. and certainly members of the nato alliance. lithuania has taken their role in the alliance so seriously.
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they've pledged soldiers and military support time and again when the nato alliance picked a targeted strategy. they're always part of the answer and glad to be. they have dedicated 2.5% of their annual budget to the military. i believe they rank third in the nato ranks in percentage of budget that they are dedicating to the defense of the country. they may be small, but they're mighty, and yesterday the group that came to see me, led by the new lithuanian ambassador included lucas svikas, deputy chairman of the committee for the future, jonas juradis, deputy speaker of the parliament and the deputy chairman of the committee on european affairs. we talked about the current situation in ukraine. they feel it personally. but they also feel personally the aggression of vladimir putin. not far from lithuania is a part
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of russia to the west of lithuania, known as kaleningrad, a military fortress established by the russians on the doorstep of lithuania and poland. it is a source of growing concern because of the armaments we we believe are in place there. that's why nato has made special plans for the baltics to reinforce a commitment, which includes german troops that are now helping out in lithuania, canadian troops in latvia, and british troops in estonia. that sort of commitment is one that needs to be reinforced. i am going to ask that our government consider strengthening that commitment in the future. we're working on the details now. but the baltics are a critical element in the region. not only our friendship and alliance, but in the future. i support the accession of
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finland and sweden to nato. i hope that is agreed to at the nato summit in just a few weeks. i believe that will help the baltics, to have that solid neighbor in finland as part of the nato alinans. it is interesting to note that what has happened since the invasion of ukraine is exactly the opposite of what vladimir putin expected. he thought ukraine would be a pushover. it is far from that. the courage and bravery and resilience of those ukrainian people have fought back the mighty russian military machine time and time again. they were no pushover, and they never will be. anded day will -- and the day will come when neff -- they have peace restored. second i'm sure putin thought when this was over they would be stronger than ever but daily reports tell that the ?aimption
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are taking their toll on the economy of russia and not just in the short term. i was in moscow. i remember the early days and the arrival of the first mcdonald's restaurant. it was in soviet times, and it was an amazing event to think this western corporation would locate a restaurant in moscow, in the middle of the soviet union, and they did. i can remember the dearry, dark, gray scenes in moscow interrupted and punctuated by those golden arches as a reminder that the west was going to show to the people of moscow what was available under a free economic policy and a free society. sadly now, mcdonald's corporation has made the right decision to pull out of russia. hundreds of restaurants will be closed as a result of it. it's an indication to the people of russia that they have to make a choice about their future. do they want to go down the dark and perilous road with vladimir putin or do they want to emerge as a 21st century free country
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that is inspired by democracy and not by authoritarianism? i thank my friends in lithuania who time and again have stood by us and we by them to make sure they continue to, whether it's making certain that the legitimate presidential candidates in belarus have safety and refuge in their country or making certain that they speak up for human rights in places around the world where others fear to tread. they have done that time and again, and they will continue to. i'm looking forward to my return to that country soon. i've been there many times, and i hope to be back soon. just this weekend, sweden and finland declared their intention to apply for rapid nato mip and who can -- mip. i spoke with an amazing person who enjoys an 80% or 90% approval rating and they are talking about waiving the constitutional limitation so
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they can serve another term. he was an appellate lawyer which doesn't sound like an exciting lot to life, but when he became president, he really understood the people of finland and has led them with wisdom and thoughtful leadership. he has attempted to maintain a constructive relationship with putin. if you read the history of finland, you can understand how they managed to stay somewhat neutral during the cold war when many countries couldn't even imagine that possibility. despite their proximity to the soviet union, they managed to pull it off. that relationship with putin, though, has been shaken, if not destroyed, when putin decided to invade ukraine. the finish -- finnish president said when he spoke to putin on the telephone, that he should look in the mirror if he wanted to know why finland was considering membership in the nato alliance.
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when i spoke to another european president, he talked to me about the courage it took for him and for president landsburgis who i guess was the originator of the movement that made such a difference in the pursuit of freedom and democracy in lithuania. they knew the importance, both of them, in solidly embedding their nation in that defensive alliance and never again running the risk that they would lose everything overnight to the onslaught of soviet and russian aggression. is it any wonder these small but mighty baltic states are some of the most vocal in defending democracy in ukraine? they have lived it. they have been under the shadow of russia and the soviet union for so many years and now finally stand proudly with their own sovereignty and human rights record. i applaud their decision, hope
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we can approve their entry into nato without haste. here in the senate we have another immediate need, to pass the supplemental funding package for ukraine. it is embarrassing to say we had to wait a full calendar week in the midst of a bloody war where innocent people are dying and a nation has been driven and reduced to rubble, to sit here for a political purpose and wait for this week for the approval of u.s. aid to ukraine. it should have happened immediately last week, no excuses. i applaud the house of representatives for taking quick and decisive action. this bill shouldn't be delayed in the senate any longer. it's time for us to stand up once and for all and make it clear we are standing by ukraine and their defense of democracy. mr. president, i yield the floor.
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for this week for the approval of u.s. aid to ukraine.
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>> i have, yes, i have looked at it, yes. >> let me just say, what was the allegation that concerns you the most? >> i i would say the most concerning, let me just point out that in my career i frequently been in the position of being the person in charge. the most concerning charge is that the integrity of the organization was compromised. so once that integrity is compromised, the question is how can you trust any of the systems that are in place? >> in fact, and yet whomever look at that report felt there was no need to respond at all
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from october to february until the was a recall. that is a dereliction of duty, in my view, and in addition to which a person who was acting commissioner should have done that and it would appear that person is going to oversee this effort. that is the fox in the hen house. if i can let me ask you this issue. in the guidance that you put forward you list recommended, recommended but not required information from the manufacturers, and the manufacturers are most likely not fda approved. u.s. seven fda approves facilities which you could go to immediately, but what you're talking about is a guidance, is that you list recommendations. recommendations are not required to be followed, and so in fact, they do not even have to include
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your recommendations in their application for certification and/or review. will you commit to not exercising enforcement discretion with respect to critical statutory and regulatory safety requirements? >> yes, with an emphasis on those critical requirements. we will not let infant formula into the u.s. that is not safe. >> well, but these folks do not have to abide by your recommendations. it is a guidance. nothing is required from the potential manufacturers, nothing. >> with due respect, madam chairwoman, you are correct in what you say except that we have the authority to either let the product in or not. so we have control over that. >> well, if you've got, if you've got somebody who certifies and also talk in your
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guidance that people, and efforts can self certify or have a third-party certified so that you would, in fact, do not have the tangible evidence from these facilities that, in fact, their product is safe to be imported, that baby formula is safe. i just want you to commit to the safety portion of this effort. and you don't have in place a mechanism that would guarantee the safety right now. you just don't. that guidance does not allow you to determine and to define the safety of the products that may be coming from facilities that are not fda approved. and why aren't we going to facilities that are fda approved and not allowing all these other
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potential manufacturers to enter into our system with the potential of creating another crisis? guidance does not have, is not standardized. you have no guidance standardized across applications. you pick and you choose. if you don't have standards and they go across the board, you don't have standard application product in which you can judge a product. i apologize to you mr. sherman for going over. >> thank you. thank you, ms. delauro. hopefully we can come back and follow up. at this time i would like to recognize the german from california mr. validator for your questions. >> thank you, mr. chairman. commissioner, thank you for coming to testify in front of the subcommittee today. this hearing is obviously very
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timely as the shortage is in emergency and it has been for which alone. i believe all of us on a committee are hints of our constituents about the dire baby formula situation. between the recall, plant shutdown, , supplies chain disruptions and people panicking, this has become a dangerous and unacceptable situation. low-income and disadvantaged commuters like many imagistic are suffering from consequences of the recall and started three months ago, or four months ago. these families have been suffering through the covid-19 pandemic, ongoing supply chain issues, , inflation and more and they need a break. this administration appears interested in alleviating the issue but has taken too long to get to this point night. we must venture shortages the 6. as you well know recalls a products in our country is not a new thing. when it comes to this, something as vital as the children's food supply, it seems the ft just did
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not take this into seriously as a should. this is about participating popular trend infant for you. this is about access. even one of my own children was relying on a very specific type of formula. as as a father who's had the opportunity, or in a situation where i had to drive all over town to chase specific formulas, and this was far before any shortage, i can only imagine the stress these parents are experiencing. did the fda treats us like every other recall the better deal with or do they understand the gravity of the situation from the beginning? do they know fully grasp how devastating this entire situation has been and continues to be? >> well, first of all, i thank you for raising the specific issues of concern. from day one when we saw the problems with the abbot plant,
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we knew this was a critical plant for the supply chain and the team was meeting on a very regular basis trying to figure out how to manage the situation, hoping to keep the plant open with better quality measures. then it became clear that was not going to work and meta- period of time having to reach a consent decree which is complicated legal proceeding. but as i've indicated were all very aware, many of us a parent or grant branscum many of us of relatives that are in the same situation. we are hearing from everyone so we are very focused on -- >> i appreciate that. limited amount of time obviously, i hope you understand this is something that is having a huge impact and obviously people all over the country are struggling with it. we are here in two weeks and of the chairwoman mentioned that we want to see this open. i would like to know what the fda is doing on the ground at the abbott plant in michigan to
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help the situation as much as he possibly can. are they working with them? are they making sure we can get the facility up and running? >> we are working with abbott every day, and i'm getting a report twice a day in the morning and evening about the progress that is being made. recognize which is on day three now, but it looks like it is going well, and avid has remediated a number of the issues and we're going to make sure it gets done as quickly as it possibly can. >> i understand you've announced principal deputy commissioner. i think you mentioned earlier in a statement, dr. woodcock will have greater role in strategic counsel over the fruit side of the ft. i know shusterman is expertise under drug side but in hearing some concern about whether this decision will lead to a change on the food side especially when she is been the fda for decades. help you understand the rationale of this decision. >> sure. i would say this is just start of a church.
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as i mentioned earlier i knew coming in we're going to make major fortification of the food side of the fda with a focus on the things you all have all brought up. dr. woodcock is every duck and cranny of the fda. she knows how the operations were. she already had information technology, redesign underway which is critically needed. think about our inspectors out the compressor technology they have compared what i saw in my previous job at alphabet. it's night and day, and went six that so they can be efficient. this is just the start of a change. she is not come to be permanently in the job. she still reports to me and we will make further changes that you will thereabout over the next period of time. >> all right appreciated my time is up. i would give expert thank you. at this time i'm delighted to recognize the gentlelady from maine, ms. pingree, you are now recognized for your question. >> thank you so much, mr. chair.
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thank you so much for having this critically at this moment in time, and thank you, mr. commissioner, for being with us today and answering our questions. i just want to associate myself with questions that already been asked by chair bishop, chair delauro, mr. val vale william vos of the aisle. obvious if a very troubling troubling situation. and i'm not contribute all the same questions. i just want to say that i and concerned that you're yog as with more detailed information. i think went to dig deeper into this troubling pattern of leadership challenges and structural issues. on food safety at the fda. this isn't new and went to work on this and this is a huge crisis for american and i'm very, very concerned about where we are. i'm just going to pay that because like i said i feel really grateful that my colleagues have been asking good questions and if others will be asking more as well. i just want to talk about faxing access for children.
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i really appreciate the fda has done some challenging ascent to work over the last two years uncovered, particularly in the vaccine space. one key group with no authorized covid vaccines are children five and under. i totally understand and appreciate how important it is to evaluate safety and efficacy. that's a huge concern and america what i'm hearing of the time from parents and caregivers in maine and also around the country who are just really frustrated and feeling left behind. any further delays that continues his children will enter yet another school year unvaccinated. can you commit to us that reviewing any potential authorization for faxing covering children under five will happen as quickly as possible? and what timeline can we reasonably expect until people you will follow once an application is received? >> i'll answer quickly. i've been involved in children's therapeutics my whole career.
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one of the major lessons is that children are not to small adults so you have to do specific studies for the biology and the size and mechanics of how children dispose of therapeutic interventions. having said that, we now have a moderna application in hand as you know. soon as we are ready, which is a minute, we have a number of dates reserved for the advisory committee meeting. sources we are ready we will have that meeting and have the advisory committee weight in on whether the safety and efficacy are adequate. and there are others, the fisa application should be coming in sometime soon also. so i'm definitely committed as quickly as possible. i have two grandchildren grandchildren under age five so i'm very much in the same boat that is being described. >> so there was some talk for a while that the fda would wait into the fisa application was in, which seems really
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unthinkable not to move forward as quickly as possible but just for some level of efficiency or don't know what the rationale was. can you commit that is not going to happen? >> there is no delay in the moderna application because of another application. each will be considered on its own. i don't need to tell you that sometimes discussions that are held as you develop in the strategy get touted as if that's a decision that is actually been made. that was never the case, i want to refute that from the beginning. >> well, thank you for setting that straight and for moving with all appropriate speed. obviously that's a critical age group and they have different, you know, bodies and needs so i do want to be as safe as possible, but congratulations to you on having two grandchildren under five. i four grandchildren under five, and again we hear the some others and caregivers all the time, so thank you for the work
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that you been doing. and really please continue this conversation about food safety and the huge difficulties people are having today that truly very important to the oversight of this committee. mr. chair, i yield back. >> like to come ms. pingree. now recognize mr. moolenaar for michigan to join a recognized for your questions. >> please unmute, mr. moolenaar. mr. moolenaar? i believe that you're still muted. we will move to mr. newhouse and see if we can get you a technology, get you, come back to you.
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at this time i recognize mr. newhouse, , and will come bk to mr. moolenaar at the earliest convenience. >> thank you, mr. chairman. hopefully the clock will reset. appreciate the opportunity. dr. califf, thank you for being here with us. i won't repeat what others have said, just associate myself much of the concern that is been expressed. i would like to ask you about the money that was just appropriated. i would like to know how in your estimation an additional $28 million assures parents that imported form it would be safe for the children, , how it's gog to help replenish the inventory in grocery stores in a timely manner. did you request this additional funding? especially in light of the fact that just a couple months ago we
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increased the fda budget by over $100 million. $11 million of that specifically for maternal, infant health and nutrition activities. so could you shed some light on some of the money situation for us? >> sure. i . i appreciate the question. i think chairwoman delauro made the case very strongly that safety has to be paramount. so the bulk of the money would go for inspectors to make sure that material is that being put on the shelves which is unsafe, which is a very laborious effort right call be suspended. the presiding officer: the senate is not in a quorum call. mr. thune: thank you. mr. president, this saturday will be be armed forces day, a day set aside to honor the members of the united states military. i first came to know the military through my dad, harold, a fighter pilot who flu
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hellcats. from him i learned the patriotism and humility that characterized the greatest generation and that continue to characterize our military members today. as a member of congress, i've come to know our military through the men and women of the south dakota army and air national guard and through the airmen of ellsworth air force base. as i've said before, i may be biased, but i'm convinced that south dakota has the most outstanding guard troops in the entire nation. as usual, they've been busy over the past year. on saturday, the national guard welcomed home guards men from a deployment to djibouti and honored guard members who were headed to deployment in europe. guard members helped with the response to last week's severe storms in south dakota. they deployed to the border to reinforce an overstretched border patrol. they deployed to guantanamo bay.
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the 114th fighter wing completed a noble eagle deployment across the country to hone their alert mission. just a few weeks ago, 30 national guard members traveled to surname where they provided support to local communities. and, mr. president, the list goes on. south dakota national guard members play an essential role in military and humanitarian operations both here at home and abroad, appeared i am -- and i am tremendously grateful for their service. i really got to know the ellsworth base shortly after my term as a senator. ellsworth found itself slated for closure and the south dakota congressional delegation immediately mobilized to defend the base. i am pretty sure i attended
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every single brac hearing in d.c. that summer whether ellsworth was on the agenda or not. i wanted to make sure i was there in case the chance to advocate for ellsworth arose. many thought south dakota might not have the clout to make the stand that we didn't wield enough influence. we were only given about a 12% odds of pulling through. but we were determined that we weren't going to lose ellsworth. and in august we succeeded in having ellsworth removed from the closure list. but we didn't stop there. we are right to work on building up the base. in 2007 we saw the air force financial services center open at ellsworth. in 2011 we saw the arrival of the 29th attack kwan done and its command-and-control station for the reapers.
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the powder river training complex is the largest training airspace in the continental united states. and it's undoubtedly partly to thanks for this airspace that ellsworth received the news last i do not unthat we had been named main operating base one for the future b-21 bomber, home of the raider. this designation not only means that ellsworth will be the first base to host the b-21 raider but that it will also host the formal training unit and the first operational squadron. once operational, the b-21 raider will be a critical part of the our operations in the future. i am incredibly proud that south dakota and ellsworth were chosen to serve as the first base for the b-21's. my focus now is on ensuring that ellsworth gets everything it needs for that new mission so that it can continue to serve as one of our nation's most essential military assets forked decades to come. to that end, i work to enshould
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you are that last year's national defense authorization act contained not only full funding for b-21 development but full funding for the first of many equipment and support facilities that will be needed for the b-21 mission at ellsworth including a low observable coding restoration facility, a wash rack and maintenance hangar and expanded flight simple later facility -- simulator facility and more. ellsworth is well on its with a i to being abouting raider country. and there's more new construction on the way. currently i'm working to secure additional fund for the low-observable coding facility as well as two additional construction projects, a weapons generation facility, and a radio frequency facility. both will be needed to ensure that ellsworth is able to conduct the b-21 mission. i'm also working to enshould you are that the air force is able to invest in unmanned systems to complement the mission of the b-21 and i continue to work to
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enhance the powder river trading complex. i intend to introduce a measure for this year's national defense authorization act to establish a pilot program that would develop dynamic air space, the most -- i should say the more efficient scheduling of air space and air space boundaries that evolve as exercises or other flights progress. i believe dynamic air space will better enable the pentagon to meet training requirements for fifth-generation aircraft like the b-21, which need hardger -- larger volumes of air space to accommodate longer engagements distances. however, dynamic air space should benefit all users, from commercial planes and general aviation to unmannened and space launches. i look forward to working with the leaders of the armed services and commerce committees to advance this proposal. i'm also focused on ensuring that ellsworth has the resources it needs to take care of our
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military families, particularly as more families move into the area with the impending arrival of the b-21 mission. that includes making sure that ample housing is available and the douglas school district is able to integrate and support air force members' children and provide classroom space. these are critical quality quality-of-life issues, matters that heavily influence whether they stay in the service or leaves for the private sectors, where many of their skills are in high demand. i'm committing to ensuring our military families are able to thrive at ellsworth. as always, i continue to focus on making sure our b-1's have the resources that they need. we still are a ways to go before b-1's are full why i replaced by the b-21, and i'm exited to ensuring the b-1's are a lethal component of the global strike
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command. on arms forces day and every day, i'm more grateful than i can say for our ellsworth airmen, our south dakotay and air -- south dakota army and air national guard and all the men and women of the united states military. because of them, we live in peace and safety, and the freedom that we enjoy is secured by their sacrifice. may god bless all our military men and women, and keep them safe as they stand on watch for us. mr. president, i yield the floor, and i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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i'm sure you all know matter what we will be on top of this issue until we are back to normal. working alone around the clock. it would help if we had a larger number of people because as we diversify the facilities and bring in new sources as the chairman has
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already made the point quite distinctly we're going to need people that can evaluate whether a formula as is safe and whether it's effective especially in these metabolic formulas. there are only a handful of people that understand the illnesses these children have class i yelled back thank you miss underwood. we will try mister molinari again and hopefully we've got the mister montanaro >> thank you for continuing to call me. i hope i'm coming through you are. >> doctor caleb thank you for your testimony today.i know you've been getting questions on baby formula shortage. i wanted to share with you i've been hearing from hundreds of michigan families about how this formula shortage is affecting themand
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someone they know and i wanted to share a couple of stories with you . as for how you as an agency can respond to them . a father in michigan wrote my child has an allergy to milk so she has to have a very specific formula. now that that formula is short, other babies that don't need the formula necessary for my daughter are allowed to purchase it through the wic program making her formula even more scarce. i've had to resort to getting formula from canada at times. the shipping costs are a huge burden and it requires hours of research i could be spending with my family . the mother in my home county roads i've been having issues finding my sons formula since october 2021 i bought in bulk . then everything i had on hand was pre-called. i could get it and even amazon stop getting it back in march.
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i had to switch to a different kind of formula. i'm fortunate enough to be able to afford and buy multiple cans at a time so my mom and my sister bought what i needed to get through six weeks. now the times my son is on isn't even in stock at costco. i pray i have enough to get into his first birthday. my friends have had to search multiple stores to find the kind my baby is on and another changes formula each time she runs out. we just can't breast-feed, our babies rely on formula and it's terrible being a mother right now. i will also add a local grocery store owner wrote me saying it is heart wrenching to have to tell our customers we have no baby formula to offer them. we are concerned our local babies are not getting the nutrition they need. nutrition in general is a challenging problem in our world, period.
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dr. califf what would you tell parents whoare concerned about finding food for their babies ? >> i will tell them we are very concerned and feel badly they are going through this and we're doing everything we can to fix this and if i could make a couple quick pointsabout things that you brought up . as i mentioned the sales are actually higher. people are buying more formula now than before the recall so we have a problem of distribution. the fda has no access under the supply chain data from the companies that manufacture themselves the formula. i've been getting on the phone with ceos using an old-fashioned telephone to get the right product to the right place in an organized way. we are requesting again we have more authority to look at the supply chains much like the banks did years ago
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so that we can preempt these kinds of problems rather than havingg to react to them . >>
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later tonight i'm going to be leading a delegation too brussels, and tomorrow we will receive an update from nato secretary general sultenburg on ukraine and why these funding is urgently needed. i'm going to be proud to tell the nato secretary general that we came together to pass this appropriations. the bill provides military and humanitarian assistance for ukraine, helps defend democracy
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abroad and address the rising global hunger crisis. it includes $8.5 billion in additional presidential drawdown authority for critical weapons transfer, $8.5 billion for the economic support fund to respond to emerging needs in ukraine, and over $5 billion for global food aid. which the distinguished presiding officer has argued for for some time. as chair of the senate appropriations committee, and proudly as president pro tempore of this body, i strongly support its passage. with that said, it's frustrating that once again we failed to provide needed funding to address the ongoing covid pandemic. public health experts warn us every day the virus is not done
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with us. a new wave of cases is expected to crash over our country in the fall. for months the administration has warned that we do not have the necessary vaccines, therapeutics, tests, and other resources to stay ahead of this virus. today countries around the world are already placing orders for the next generation of vaccines, and they're going to be better suited to the variants we face now or also the variants we face in the future. the united states is not one of those countries that without the necessary resources are going to fall farther back in line and more americans will die needlessly. we'll also run out of needed funds for testing and therapeutics before the next wave. after more than two years and one million american lives lost to this disease, time and again
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we've been caught flatfooted because we've refused to prepare for the worst. as chairman of the senate appropriations committee, i will continue to fight for these urgently needed resources in the coming weeks, and i hope both republicans and democrats will join me on that. it's for the good of the american people, the people we represent. if you get covid and you're hospitalized or get one of the variants and you face possible death, nobody cares whether you're a republican or a democrat. you're an american, and we should be doing what we can to protect you. but the people of ukraine today and the millions requiring food insecurity -- with food security require the funds in this bill today. i urge the senate to pass it without further delay. mr. president, i yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.
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the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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>> representative keller,good morning. we were talking with our audience in part about this passage yesterday of that legislation on domestic terrorism . what do you think about the package and what did you vote on ? >> when we're looking at domestic terrorism we don't want to see anything bad happen to anybody and we have laws. we enforce the ones we have and make sure people know we are serious about supporting our law enforcement and dealing with those issues. we usually make sure that we don't go too far and we find traffic and putting people up with legislation that sounds good but we want to make sure we hold people accountable for their own actions and i think a lot of times in washington we need to make sure first that were not passing things for talking points but making sure there's substantive and are going todo the right thing . >> it would call for
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expansions of offices and offices looking at domestic terrorism at the justice department andhomeland security . what'swrong with that approach ? >> i think it's a matter of how you define things . when it comes to things in america when people are talking about parents going to school board meetings and putting focus on that i think we need to be very concerned with how they want to expand what they're calling terrorism and who's in charge of it. there's a lot of concerns i have when it comes to trying to make new laws. we got things that are already illegal and we need to make sure we have these large cities where the district attorneys are prosecuting crimes or letting people go out with no bail. maybe we need to start enforcing the laws we have in holding people accountable and that's i think where we need to start is trying to pass more laws so that we
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have our talking points in a midterm election. >> another couple ofissues when it comes to domestic issues, inflation being one of them . what do you see as the main driver and what's the role of congress you think as far as reversing currentinflationary trends? >> what we're seeing is the effects of what started . >>
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people, help sp on the way, real help, significant help, help that could make sure that the ukrainians are victorious. help is on the way in the form of javelins and stingers and howitzers and other tools critical for victory on the battlefield. help is on the way in the form of food and shelter and supplies for the six million ukrainians who fled to neighboring nations because of the brutal, brutal, nasty, horrible bombardment by putin, who i believe is a war criminal. and help is on the way in the
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form of economic aid, food aid, and assistance necessary to rebuild what putin and russia have sought to tear down but never can, and they can't tear down the hearts, the minds, and the strength of the ukrainian people. now given how important this is, i wish i could say this vote will be totally unanimous. every single democrat in the house voted for this emergency aid package for ukraine, and every single democrat income chamber, the senate, is ready to support ukrainians as they defend their yuk democracy. but unfortunately once again with maga republicans who seep to be way out of lieb in so -- line in so many ways, the story is different on the republican side. while some in both parties want this package done it is beyond troubling to see some republicans oppose ukrainian funding. two days ago 11 republicans
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voted against merely debating this legislation. it appears more and more maga republicans are on the same soft-on-putin playbook that we saw used by former president trump. we all knew how president trump reacted to putin. sometimes it was flattery, sometimes it was just fear, fearful, but always seemed to go along and bow down to putin. now we've seen putin's brutality. we've seen how wrong trump was, but these 11 maga republicans voted against even debating. around the world our enemies are watching what we do right now. what do you think they're going to conclude if they start seeing more and more u.s. senators oppose aid to democracies under attack by authoritarianism? our adversaries might conclude that we're divided, america is divided. they might conclude that we lack purpose. the maga influence on the republican party is becoming all too large and all too dominant. we americans, all of us,
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democrat and republican, cannot afford to stick our heads in the sand while vladimir putin continues his vicious belligerence against the ukrainian people, while he fires its civilian hospitals and targets and kills children and innocent people. but when republicans and a significant number oppose this package, that is precisely the signal we're sending to enemies abroad. still, i'm glad for the most part that this chamber is united in supporting ukraine. and i'm also glad, mr. president, on the same day that diplomats and marines raised -- this chamber unanimously voted richard brink as u.s. ambassador to ukraine. it's the first time we've had an ambassador to ukraine since 2019 and it is terrific news that comes at a critical moment for both our countries.
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finally, later today, leader mcconnell and i will host a bipartisan meeting with the leaders of finland and sweden. their application to nato will come -- soon come before this chamber. after we confirm ambassador brink, i hope to act swiftly in a bipartisan way on a resolution admitting these nations into the ranks of the nato alliance. mr. president, later today the senate will vote to move forward to give restaurants, local gym gitmos and other small businesses a lifeline to get back on their feet after two years. i thank senators wicker and cardin. every single component of this bill was drafted with bipartisan input. it will help businesses in every state in america, particularly those left out of earlier rounds of emergency funding. we should be leaping into action
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to help these places get back on their feet in times of recovery. restaurants, gyms, small businesses are in the business of providing for their communities. we should provide for them. some say our restaurants don't need as much help as they once did. they think because lockdowns are over, it must mean things are great for small businesses. that's dead wrong for too many of our businesses, especially small family owned places. many can't stay open a full day because they're short of labor, don't serve lunch, closed monday and tuesday, don't have people at the bar. so they can't get their full income and at the same time many of these undertook big loans when they were closed during covid. those big loans are coming due. to have banks foreclose on these ongoing businesses that are growing once again, that are
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employing people once again, would be a huge mistake. this bill is a lifeline to prevent that from happening and keep jobs coming in and keep prosperity coming in. so that is true for restaurants, it's true or other businesses and we muss pass this legislation to keep these vital parts of america's economy and america's social and community life going. when minor league teams close, entire towns have fewer options to come together, when theaters close down, it disintegrates the fabrics of communities, restaurants, gyms, this is where people come together. i've heard from small business owners to move forward on today's bill and i thank my colleagues cardin and wicker for their work. now on domestic terrorism.
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mr. president, my home state of new york bs as everyone -- as everyone knows, is still grieving from the who are rented -- who are -- the violence in buffalo. it was the worst shooting in buffalo's history, ten innocent people killed, all of them black americans. what happened in buffalo was an act of domestic terrorism, terrorism fed from the madness of conspiracy theory like white replacement. yesterday i announced that the senate will fight back against the rise of domestic terrorism in america. in the light of the shooting in buffalo, in light of the rise of racist conspiracies like the great replacement. we, all of us, have an obligation to protect americans by treating these incidents of violence like the terrorist acts
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they are. i hope they've given everything that's what's happening across the country, i hope republicans will join us. taking a stand against domestic terrorism should be the easiest thing in the world. when any single community is targeted by racism, it affects every single one of us many we will take action next week on domestic terrorism, and i hope we will take a stand against white supremacy. on baby formula. yesterday, president biden invoked the defense production act to respond to the shortage of baby formula. the president is taking this seriously, invoking the d.p.a. was the right response. i can't imagine how hard it is for families impacted. there is already so much burden
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on the mother of a child, we can't let this formula shortage be another stressor for mothers in this country. the senate should take action to help parents. yesterday the house passed bills to address the baby formula shortage, including a vote to make sure that those who rely on the federal nutrition programs. i hope the senate will pass both bills. senators stabenow and boozman have nearly identical legislation to the wick bill -- w.i.c. bill that passed the house. i hope to send this bill to the president so we can help parents facing this shortage.
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one additional very happy note. today my colleague, senator hirono, in a few minutes will ask consent to pass important legislation to create a congressional commission on the creation of the first national asian american history and culture museum right near the nation's capital. i'm elated and thrilled to vote for this long overdue steps that will have a museum dedicated to telling the story of asian americans. it is a story longover due. asian -- overdue. much of the history is unknown and we see the growing and vibrant asian community from so many parts of the world. from the middle east, from south asia, from east asia, from southeast asia and everywhere else all coming to america and
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working hard and growing families and establishing businesses and making america greater. so the long history, with all the bigotry we have seen and the increase in violence now on asian americans, we have to rebut the nasty view that some people have and forming a museum that will show the greatness of this community, past, present, and future will be so important because from the beginning of our founding, asian americans have played a great role in shaping the country. too much of the history's unknown. students never even come across this stories and lessons in school. that's disappointing, but it's also why this asian-american history and culture museum is important. it will celebrate all americans around the world and support our
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wonderful growing asian-american community. i yield the floor to senator hirono. the presiding officer: the senator from hawaii. n.i.h. hirono i ask unanimous consent to -- ms. hirono: i ask unanimous consent to speak up to five minutes. the presiding officer: without objection. n.i.h. hirono i thank the -- n.i.h. -- ms. hirono: i thank the majority leader. we have an opportunity to pass meaningful legislation to establish a commission to study the creation of a national museum of asian pacific american history and culture. this bill is straightforward. it establishes an eight-person commission appointed equally by senate majority and minority leadership. it will have individuals with expertise in the study and promotion of asian american
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pacific island history. this commission will support a report to congress at which point we should act. asian and pacific islander american communities have sig -- have made significant contributions to american life. but despite the undeniable contributions, our communities have largely been secluded or ee -- ex excluded or rerace. instead of people who have lived in and positively contributed to this country for generations, these narratives have fueled xieno phobia and racism, contributing to racist laws and discrimination and of course most recently led to the rise aattacks and hate-related incidents in our communities. this museum will help combat if
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these harmful narratives by sharing a.p.i. history on an unprecedented scale and we should consider whether or not such a museum should be feasible. and with this bill we can demonstrate our commitment to showcasing the significant contributions of the a.p.i. community to our country's fabric. i think it's really important our country to better understand how the chinese seclusion act -- exclusion act which led to the incarceration of 100,000 japanese americans in world war ii and decades of racial laws contribute to the a.p.i. experience. the establishment of this kind of museum should not be controversial and it has been done before with regard to the
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african american museum, the national museum of american latinos. these museums represent progress. they help us better understand one another and of our shared history as americans. now we have a chance to build on this progress by creating a commission to study a similar museum to highlight the history and legacies of the a.p.i. individuals and communities in this country and of course this bill represents a significant step towards an america that celebrates and encourages the rich diversity of our people. with that, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the committee on energy and natural resources be discharged from further consideration of h.r. 3525, and that the senate proceed to its immediate consideration. the presiding officer: the clerk will report.
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the clerk: h.r. 3525, an act to establish the commission to study the potential creation of the national museum of asian pacific american history and culture and for other purposes. the presiding officer: without objection, the committee is discharged, and the senate will proceed. ms. hirono: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the bill be considered read a third time and passed and the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table. the presiding officer: is there an objection? seeing none, so ordered. ms. hirono: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of calendar number 300, s. 2490. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: calendar number 300,
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s. 2490, a bill to establish the blackwell school national historic site in texas, and for other purposes. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate will proceed. ms. hirono: mr. president, i thank senator cornyn for this bill that we are about to agree to by unanimous consent. it is called the blackwell school national historic site act. and i ask unanimous consent that the cornyn amendment at the desk be considered and agreed to. the bill, as amended, be considered read a third time and passed and that the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table. the presiding officer: without objection. ms. hirono: mr. president, i yield the floor.
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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 do hereby move to bring to a close debate on calendar number 368, h.r. 7691, an act making emergency supplemental appropriations and so forth and for other purposes signed by 17 senators. 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 h.r. 7691, an act making emergency supplemental appropriations for assistance for the situation in ukraine for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2022, and for other purposes shall be brought to a close.
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the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll. vote: vote:
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vote: the presiding officer: on this vote, the yeas are 86, the nays are 11. three-fifths of the senators having voted in the affirmative, the motion is agreed to o -- the motion to commit and the
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amendments pending thereto fail -- fall. and under the previous order the pending amendments are withdrawn. the clerk will read the title for the third time. the clerk: calendar number 368, an act making emergency supplemental appropriations for assistance for the situation in ukraine and so forth and for other purposes. the presiding officer: the question is on passage of the bill. is there a sufficient second? there appears to be. the clerk will call the roll.
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the presiding officer: the yeas are 86, the nays are 11, and the bill is passed. under the previous order, the senate will resume consideration of the motion to proceed to s. 4008, which the clerk will report. the clerk: motion to proceed, a bill to provide covid relief for restaurants, gyms, minor league sports teams, border businesses, exclave businesses, and providers of transportation services. mr. braun: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from indiana.
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mr. braun: i rise here today to talk about the i.r.s. it's not going to take long because it's so easy to understand. the i.r.s. has got a bad track record. they often fail to be good stewards of taxpayer money and protect highly sensitive information. yet, the president and congressional democrats want to throw another $80 billion into the i.r.s. with no real return on investment the way i can see it. it's got a history of weaponizing against conservative organizations and for hassling taxpayers and small business owners with audits. they are hitting small businesses by number a lot more than tax cheats. it is un-american to treat taxpayers in this way. the i.r.s. doesn't need more power, we need to be insured
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that -- ensured that it is going to do a better job at what it's supposed to do. last month i introduced a bill with i.r.s. reforms to help taxpayers. the simplify, don't amplify the i.r.s. act would stop the biden administration from growing the power of the i.r.s. the bill would stop attempts to target americans and small businesses by snooping into their bank accounts, credit union accounts and venmo, it would hold i.r.s. employees accountable when they release private taxpayer information and ensure that the i.r.s. spends time not doing its union activity when it should be helping americans when they've got an issue, especially during tax-filing season.
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the taxpayers deserve the best service we can provide. we can debate how much money the i.r.s. needs. it needs to do its job right first before we give it more money. the solution is don't amplify the i.r.s. act. mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the finance committee be discharged from further consideration of s. 4046, and that the senate proceed to its immediate consideration. further, i ask that the bill be considered read a third time and passed and that the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table. the presiding officer: is there objection? mr. wyden: reserving the right to object, mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator for oregon. mr. wyden: thank you, mr. president. it's not an atomic secret around here that i very much enjoy working with my colleague from indiana. we talk often about issues like health care and economic
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priorities, and i will just say i wished we agreed on this one as well. colleagues, the net effect of this proposal is to hobble the i.r.s. and let the wealthiest in america get out of paying what they owe. and there's a lot to discuss here, and like senator braun, i'm going to keep this short. first, i think it is important to get at this back and forth between the political parties. i see the senator in the chair and he too is interested in tax reform. i'll be the first to say that the tax system in many ways is just a mess. now, the debate with respect to the roles of the parties needs to start with what happened with what happened in 2017.
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we had the tax reform proposal, president trump's proposal, all kinds of changes. if senate republicans wanted to fix the i.r.s. and do what our colleague from indiana is talking about and simplify the system, mr. president, they could have done that in the 2017 tax law. big opportunity. i and others had worked on a bipartisan bill, mr. president. our former colleague senator gregg, our former colleague senators coates and i had similar bipartisan bills. part of it was foarming the system -- reforming the system and our colleagues passed on that. they made it even more complicated. that is point number one. the agency is struggling with
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certain services because year after year there have been republican cuts that decimated parts of the agency to meet people's needs. now republicans are the guy in the hot dog suit swearing up and down to try to find the guy who did this. i will talk for a moment about how this happened. because when the i.r.s. struggled to reform tax laws, tax cheats skipped out on what they owed. they wanted to keep it that way. that was not always the case. ronald reagan, not somebody who was known to worship the government, increased the i.r.s. when he was in office. there used to be bipartisan agreement on these kinds of big issues like i tried with senator
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gregg and senator coates. the i.r.s. was able to do its job if there was basic tax fairness, making sure that everybody paid their fair share. so much for those days. now what we have are wall-to-wall attacks from our colleagues on the other side, budget cuts that hurt middle-class taxpayers and boost wealthy tax cheats. i will close with a couple of specifics. if you want more secrecy and more dark money influencing our political system -- and i've had more than a thousand open to everybody town hall meetings, mr. president, and there are no rallies for more dark money and secrecy in the political system, but that's what you get from the proposal from our colleagues on the other side. in 2017 when charges were
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unveiled against a russian spy, the trump administration, out of nowhere, blind sided the public by opening the floodgates to foreign money and special interest dollars in our elections of the rule makes it even easier for powerful people to try to hot wier our -- hotwire our elections. as it stands today, that rule can be overturned. regretly this proposal looks it in -- regrettably this proposal locks it in place with black letter law. we are coming up on elections, and families from sea to shinning sea are getting mailers. and with dark money, it is harder to figure out who is trying to influence the vote. is the ad paid for by a polluting corporation or a power
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looking to undermine things or a tax cheat who has no interest in working people of america. across the street there are six republicans on the supreme court who seem to look at every opportunity and embrace it to have more dark money make its ways into the nooks and crannies of our political system, mr. president. for example, just a few days ago the court ruled on a campaign finance case brought by our colleague from texas, senator cruz. the six republican justices sided with the republican, you know, senator. a huge win for the most powerful political donors, who as far as i can tell, are going to be able to funnel more shady payoffs into the bank accounts of wealthy incumbent republicans. colleagues, we do not have to go
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along with what i think is a pillaging of core democratic policies. there should be less secrets, not more. and for these reasons i object and i want to tell my colleague from indiana, i look forward to getting back to topics where we have broad agreement. i yield the floor. brawn brawn mr. president. the presiding officer: objection is heard. the senator from indiana. mr. braun: health care is one of the biggest issues that besets the country. he is looking to reform it before we get more government involved in it. hot off the press, $19 billion in improper earned income tax credits from the i.r.s. let's fix the place before we give it more money. i yield the floor. a senator: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator for kentucky.
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mr. paul: i ask unanimous consent that the following interns in my office be granted floor privileges until august 19, 2022. sarah ryan, caleb walker, katie rock, chip wyatt, spencer woodall, and katie webb. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. paul: those senators who voted to gift $40 billion to ukraine argued it is in our national security interest. i wonder if americans across the country would agree if they had been shown the costs, if they had been asked to pay for it. if supporters for ukraine had been honest with americans, they could have implemented a war tax. i'm sure it would have been popular. by my calculation, each person
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would have to pay $500 to support this $40 billion, which by some accounts is down payment and will need to be replenished in about four months. so a $500 tax to every american income taxpayer would be paid to this. that is not how it is done in washington. we say, put it on the tab, we don't want to be honest and transparent with the taxpayer, we just add it to the debt. we could have taken the $40 billion elsewhere in the budget, we could have said we spent $770 billion on our military which is more than the next eight countries combined, we could have taken it out of our military interest. perhaps it could be a military expenditure. we don't want to tax the people. we don't want them to know there is a punishment for this. we don't want to take it from somewhere elsewhere someone else
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is getting rich off of this money. no. we simply borrow it. put it on my tab is what congress says. so, yes, that is what will happen. when americans go to the grocery store, they will pay yet again higher prices and when americans go to the gas pump they will spend more for gas because there is no free lunch. $40 billion cannot be created out of thin air, although it sort of is from the fed. but this increases demand and this causes inflation. debt leads to inflation. now, when the ink is not even dry on the money that we are shoveling out the door for ukraine, the democrats are back. it hasn't been yet an hour. we're still in the same hour that $40 billion was given away to a foreign country. now that that $40 billion is gone, there is -- they are busy with the printing press printing the money up, the ink is not yet dry now they want $48 billion
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more for covid bailouts. perhaps there was another alternative. perhaps instead of locking down the economy, which studies did not change the trajectory of the virus, perhaps instead of locking the economy down and ruining businesses, we could have not locked the economy down. that was an alternative and one if this happens again, we should learn a lesson, it did not change the trajectory of the virus, it's no the answer. the answer is to lock down again and bail people out because guess what? almost $6 trillion was spentsz bailing out the economy. we didn't have it. we didn't have a rainy fund. you can't open a big safe door and say we'll give it to people we ruined by shutting the economy down. there's no money. we're already a trillion dollars in the hole. if you look at our ordinary
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expenses, medicare, medicaid, social security, the military, food stamps, a few more social programs, that's the budget. that's a trillion dollars short. what comes in, what goes out, we're a trillion dollars short and then the last two years we borrowed $6 trillion more. is it any wonder we have inflation. but the other side is not even saying they understand where inflation comes from. they think it's greed. i wouldn't accept that from a third grade class. it's more ronic. what do they suppose? everyone got together and the people that control the gas price became greedy last month. well, that's absurd on the face of it. greed has nothing to do with it. people are always self-interest. inflation comes from the expansion of the money supply. m-2 is a broad measure of the money supply. the last three years the m2 has been expanding at an annual clip. you can't expand the money supply by 15% and not get
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inflation. in january of last year, the m-2 was expanding at an an liesed rate of 27%. why? because we don't have the money to give people. it's dishonest. we give people stuff and say here's free stuff. you don't have to work anymore. we're closing your business down. here's some money. but we don't have it so we'll print it up or borrow it. that's what went on the last two years. congress went on a spending spree. more than $6 trillion was given away. my colleagues may be shocked to learn is that it's never really free. there's no such thing as a free lunch. in fact, lunch actually costs a lot more than it did before. congress started spending all of this free money, but while the $30 trillion national debt continues to climb, congress continues to spend. you would think they would be chasten. we have nearly double din legitimate inflation. you think they would be saying
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oh, my goodness, we have to stop digging the hole deeper. instead they want to send $48 billion more after lunch. last month they sent over a hundred billion dollars in subsidies out. they doubled the size of one of the most wasteful government organizations we s.r. the national science foundation. so no, they're not chastened. inflation is caused by borrowing in debt and the fed monetizing it. what are they doing? they're making it worse. after two years of running up the taxpayers' credit card by $6 trillion, you'd think they would be beginning to grasp the problem. small businesses, hardworking americans simply can't spend any more of the money we don't have. we can't keep giving away money. maybe we shouldn't be surprised that democrats have now come to the realization or have not come to the realization that there are authoritarian lockdowns and ending spending caused the highest inflation in 41 years. in today's exercise, democrats want to spend another $48
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billion. where's the emergency? the lockdowns have mostly been ended over the last year. and yet there's this all hurry up, we must print up more money. the $40 billion we gave to ukraine is -- the ink is not even dry but we have to shuffle out another $48 billion. where is the plrg? there will be $40 billion in this for restaurants, new grants will go to yachts, yacht clubs, limousine businesses, racket clubs and luxury gyms. and minor league sports. oh, boy. we have an emergency that we need to get the minor league sports involved with the bailout. while americans across the country are getting poor. americans can't afford to put the gas in their car to go on vacation. americans are losing income every day. the average american family is paying $100 more every week, $100 more.
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$5200 a year is being lost to inflation for the average american family. what are we doing to protect them? i have great symphony for businesses that were -- sympathy for businesses that were forced to shut down during the pandemic. the lockdowns should never have happened. but we have no evidence that the lockdowns and restrictions altered the trajectory of the virus or saved one live. shutting down businesses is not based on science but based on a perverted political science. no government check, no passing out of a bailout can beat the operating of the market. the marketplace is the only thing that created the great wealth of our country and the only thing that can continue to help us. yet the other side insisted on economic shutdowns only to prop up the market with taix pairs --
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with the taxpayers' wallet and borrowed money. democrats need to wake up and realize that dumping more money in the economy is simply pouring $5 a gallon gas on an already out-of-control fire. america can be a rising nation again if we let it. the people have had enough with mandates and lockdowns. it's time to end the bailouts and once again let the free market rein again. i yield back.
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a senator: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator for utah. mr. lee: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the following senators be permitted to complete their remarks prior to the scheduled votes. senators lee, murray, cardin, and schumer. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. lee: mr. president, in recent weeks, american moms and dads have been scouring supermarkets and drugstores looking for baby formula. parents are desperate to feed their infants and repeatedly check brick and mortar and
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online stores. ask family and friends to purchase and ship formula wherever they might be. purchase mother's milk online and even hospitalize their babies in some instances because they can't find formula. the situation is worse still for those parents who need specialty formula for babies with medically required diets. what parents experience today is rightly called a formula crisis. in one of the most stressful times of life, the parents of newborns are left in an unimaginable position. my heartbreaks for those instants and for their parents. the sound of a baby's cry carries a different weight in times like these. families in my own state feel this crisis quite acutely. utahs that the largest families, the most children per capita, and the highest birth rate of any state in the union. utah's families do indeed feel this acutely.
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i've read and i've heard so many heart-wrenching stories from utah families. their searches have expanded from the local grocery store to stores across town to the internet and finally to total desperation as formula has become out of stock everywhere within reach. unfortunately, when the white house was asked recently what parents should do, the white house said, quote, ask your pediatrician who may have formula samples or possible alternatives, close quote. what an embarrassing stopgap measure. now, look, not every crisis is one like this one is of government's own creation. not every crisis is one like this one could therefore be resolved with very simple action. it's inexcusable that the response was to just ask your pediatrician because your pediatrician might have samples on hand.
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then there are some in congress who simply want to throw money at the problem without addressing the weaknesses in this critical supply chain or without removing the red tape that caused this problem to begin with and is now standing in the way of parents. american babies deserve better. today, mr. president, the senate can help american families by immediately passing my bill called the formula act. this bill responds to the crisis in three simple ways that will help solve the formula crisis and feed american babies. first, my bill would suspend tariff collection and quanity on formula imports. formula that we can bring in from abroad is taxed at a rate of 17.5% upon entering the united states. we can help ease this skyrocketing prices and encourage companies to import as much baby formula as possible simply by suspending this collection of tariffs.
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second, my bill would temporarily allow formula imports from a number of safe countries, like those in europe from which we're comfortable importing pharmaceutical products. this will allow us to access plentiful and safe formula supplies coming from abroad and meet the needs that we have today. finally, my bill would allow wick recipients to buy imported brands of formula with wick vouchers. most wick parents can buy only a specific brand, the brand listed on the voucher label which in many circumstances might be unavailable. my bill will allow these parents to buy from available stock and feed their children. mr. president, keeping american infants fed should be one of the least controversial proposals imaginable. american babies are going hungry
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and the federal government is standing in the way. my formula act will help solve the formula crisis and make sure american babies do not go unfed. i'm pleased to be joined in this effort by senators grassley, daines, cassidy, and wicker. this bill has the support of a number of outside groups and countless americans. we can help solve this crisis today. we can make sure american babies' cries do not go unanswered. we must pass the formula act. to that end, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of s. 4261 which is at the desk. i further ask that the bill be considered read a third time and passed and the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table. the presiding officer: is there objection? murmur mr. president -- murmur mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from washington. mrs. murray: reserving the right to object. i share my colleagues' deep concern about the infant formula shortage but i counterconcern
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with the senator's proposal to address it. so i will be offering the senate an alternative here in just a moment that addresses those concerns while building on common ground and the need to end this shortage. so i object to the senator's proposal and seek recognition to offer my proposal. the presiding officer: objection is heard. mrs. murray: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from washington. mrs. murray: as a mom and grandmother, i share my colleague's concern about this infant formula shortage. and i've been pressing the f.d.a. and infant from la -- infant formula manufacturers for answers and actions on this going back to when the abbott recall was first announced back in february. i'm glad the biden administration is taking some action to address this crisis. f.d.a.'s announcement earlier this week to make it easier to import baby formula during this crisis, and president biden's announcement yesterday that he will use the defense production act to bring more formula to market. because i want to see formula back on the shelves as soon as
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possible. but i also want parents to know the formula that they are giving their child is safe, which is why i have serious concerns about the broad waivers of f.d.a. authority in the bill that was just offered. for example, waiving the nutrient requirements for instant formula. f.d.a. actually requires infant formula to include 30 essential nutrients. too much or too little of those nutrients can put the health of our most vulnerable at risk or labeling requirements for directions on preparation and use which are really important to keep babies safe. i want us to quickly find common ground on steps to end this shortage safely, get parents the formula they need, and make sure this situation never happens again. i'm sure the senator from utah wants that, too. i really do think we can get this done. and that's why i'd like to offer to pass another bill i have right now which ensures f.d.a. can take the steps to increase supply without compromising
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standards in which similar to senator lee's bill would waive tariffs on importing baby formula during this crisis. i do want to continue working on other bipartisan steps here. i know that senator strap now and senator boozman are working on legislation this very moment to make adjustments to the wick program similar to another part of senator lee's effort that i think is also crucial. so while i have concerns with how some of the proposals to waive f.d.a. authority will make it harder for f.d.a. to keep babies safe, i think there is a bipartisan path forward for some of these ideas. and i urge senator lee to work with me and our colleagues to find that. right now, i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of my bill, which is at the desk, to temporarily allow the importation of infant formula free of duty and free of quantitative limitation and to require the food and drug administration to issue guidance related to increasing the supply
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of up phant formula, and i utter ask that the bill be considered read a third time and passed and that the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table. the presiding officer: is there objection? mr. lee: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from utah. mr. lee: reserving the right to object, i appreciate the remarks and the shared enthusiasm that my friend and colleague, the distinguished senator from washington, has expressed, the shared vision is that we wanting to -- that we have for wanting to protect american babies. the reform would put direly needed formula into the hands of millions of americans in need. this is not, of course, the time for political wins. it's a time for solutions. and it can't be ignored that big government has in fact caused the shortage and the crisis involving baby formula. if we walk away from this
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current crisis and we somehow try to attribute its cause to inflation and supply chain disruptions, we will have is inned out on a bigger picture -- missed out on a bigger picture involving how government regulations have contributed to the outcome. if there were not serious prohibitions and restrictions on trade, we would have a far larger baby formula import market. but because the f.d.a. and other health regulators arbitrarily decided that other countries' standards for mixtures are not suitable for american infants, foreign products have been excluded from our grocery shelves at a time when we need them the very most. now, make no mistake, a the abbott recall was not the cause of the short hajj, but, rather, the event of a long-brewing reform. unless we reshape the regulatory environment, we will continue to lack the formula that parents
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need to feed their children. the counteroffer that my colleague has presented does three things. first, it fails to actually put formula into the hands of americans. second, it empowers the very actors who have created the shortage through overregulation. appeared, lastly, this -- and, lastly, it fails to make any reforms to the w.i.c. program. this proposal by my colleague misses the mark and on that basis, i object and would like to offer a counterproposal. the presiding officer: objection is heard. mr. lee: mr. president? the presiding officer: senator for utah. mr. lee: as i stated previously, this is not the time for political wince. it is the time for solutions. so i would like to present a counteroffer. i believe an agreement on meaningful solutions can and should be reached. this bill would incorporate provisions passed by the house yesterday, enabling w.i.c. recipients to buy formula by granting the secretary of agriculture the permanent flexibility to waive certain
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w.i.c. requirements. additionally, this bill would incorporate my colleague's waiver of the tariff. it would waive the excessive regulations on infant formula that have made it possible for safe formula to be available to american families in need, and making it impossibly rather than possible. to that end, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of s. 4262, which is at the desk. i further ask that the bill be considered read a third time and passed and that the the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table. the presiding officer: is there objection? mrs. murray: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from washington. mrs. murray: reserving the right to object -- and i really do appreciate the senator's efforts to address some of the concerns i have here. but the bill that he is offering will still ultimately exempt formula from f.d.a. standards that are really critical for safety. we owe it to parents that when
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we purchase formula, it is safe. so i would like to keep working with senator lee and our colleagues to make progress on this as soon as possible. i hope we can continue to do that. but at this point i object. mr. lee: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from utah. mr. lee: it is foreign note here that nothing in my -- it is important to note here that nothing in my proposal would put formula on the shelves that is not safe. by opening up some of the import and regulatory restrictions, it still adheres to the safety standards we rely on. it does allow for the importation of product from other countries. there's no reason we can't do that here. thank you. mr. cardin: mr. president, shortly we'll be vote something on a resolution to proceed to the bill that will replenish the restaurant revitalization fund for the 170,000 restaurants that were shut out of getting funds when the program was first enacted.
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100,000 got the relief. 170,000 were shut out through no fault of their own. so this is a matter of basic fairness and a matter of need. these restaurants, many of which are ready to go out of business. they need the known pay off their debts and they're competing with restaurants next door that have gotten that relief and they can't compete on a level playing field. we are -- this has been a bipartisan bill from the beginning. we started with this last august, a bipartisan group working on t we have placed guardrails on this bill. there is no double-dipping. you can't have both the p.p.p. money. it has to be subtracted and used for paying down their debt or construction of outdoor seating or protective equipment. there's pro--ladder considerations. i would ask consent to put in the record letters of support from the national restaurant association, the distilled spirits council, the national school transportation association, minor league teams
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and community gym coalitions. these groups have similar circumstances as restaurants. i know that there are members who want to target this and so do we. we believe that we will be able to bring the cost of this bill down, but we first need to get on the bill. i particularly bant to thank senator -- i particularly want to thank senator wicker and senator murkowski and we're going to permit amendments 0en this bill to bring its cost down. senator manchin has made a specific suggestion on making sure we prioritize the payment of debt. we also believe we can target this to the small businesses that need it the most. i with aens to thank senator ossoff, i with aens to thank senator mover murphy. i with aens to thank senator king and so many of our other members who have been working with us no reasonable doubt to get this women to the -- in order to get this bill to the finish line. i would urge my colleagues to vote for the motion to proceed. this is for cloture, this is not for final passage. this is to get on the bill so we
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can take up amendments, target it to the small businesses that desperately they'd it. we have offsets in the bill. it is a responsible bill. it needs to be passed. it carries out our commitment and i urge our colleagues to support the legislation. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. schumer: mr. president, thank you. now, two years after the start of covid, our country has come very far, but it would be a dreadful mistake to think the work is done. today the senate should vote to move forward to give america's restaurants, local gyms, minor league teams and other small businesses a much-needed lifeline. we will give our restaurants a much-needed lifeline to get back on their feet after the pandemic. our restaurants and small businesses are suffering. they need help. this bill says help is on the way. these restaurants are the beating hearts of our communities. we're not talking about huge restaurants. they're not big venues with big publicity.
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the restaurants we're talking about are family-owned restaurants, family-owned businesses where americans have always come together. they're the beating hearts of our communities. to have banks foreclose on these places because they're struggling with loans left over from covid when they were forced to close would be a tragedy, a tragedy for jobs lost, for communities affected, and for creating future prosperity. so the senate should be leaping into action to support our restaurants and small businesses. i want to thank the diligent, persistent work by the great senator from maryland, ben cardin, the work he has done. i want to thank his partner, senator wicker. this is a bipartisan bill. to just debate how we can help these vital parts of the american economy, these vital parts of american communities is not too much to ask. i urge both sides of the aisle for a strong yes vote s i yield the floor and ask for the yeas and nays.
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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, do hereby move to bring to a close debate on the motion to proceed to calendar number 344, s. 400, a bill to provide -- s. 4008, a bill to provide covid bill to restaurants. the presiding officer: the question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate to proceed to s. 4008, a bill to provide covid relief for restaurants, live venue service providers, he is exclave businesses shall be brought not a close? the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll.
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