tv [untitled] CSPAN June 11, 2009 2:00pm-2:30pm EDT
critical interests is to give the administration the scope to develop intensive, multiple approaches to rebuild, to strengthen the relationship to pakistan. we believe the republican substitute is a more workable basis than the underlying bill for being a partner with pakistan at this critical time. the substitute heeds the concerns raised by secretary gates and the joint chief's chairman, admiral mullen, who wrote about this underlying bill. the department is concerned about aspects of this bill. in particular, those provisions that impose conditions on the furnishings of military assistance that may undermine current administration authorities such as the global trained and equipped authority. and furthermore, this will
allow -- this will allow the department to use the funds expeditiously and effectively without these purse strings as evolving circumstance may warrant in an effort to implement the president's strategy for the region most effectively. . i think substitute gets to what the department of defense wants to do, what the obama administration wants to achieve what, our democratic allies in pakistan and here, our strong military in the u.s., wants to achieve. a robust, free, and democratic pakistan upon which we can build that level of trust again. i hope our colleagues support our republican substitute. with that i yield back the balance of my time. reserve the balance 6 my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from california. for what purpose does do you rise? mr. berman: i rise for the purposes of yielding time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman virginia tech. mr. berman: i'm pleased to yield
two minutes to the gentleman from virginia, very knowledgeable on issues affecting pakistan and u.s.-pakistan relationships and yield the gentleman two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for two minutes. mr. moran: i rise in strong support of the underlying bill proposed by the international relations committee and in opposition to the republican substitute. because however you spin it it's basically a continuation of the republican's blank check policy towards pakistan. what has that gotten us after eight years of that policy? well, it's time to assess it. $12 billion of taxpayers' money has been spent and we have nearly half a million pakistani troops on the border with india, our ally. and one brigade fighting the taliban and al qaeda, our enemy.
their principle defense priority is f-16's which is a combat aircraft. our enemy doesn't have combat aircraft. we don't want to be funding a nation to fight against another ally. we want them to fight with us against our enemy. what this bill does is to enable the children of pakistan to have a decent public education and not be forced to go into the madrasahs where they learn violent extremism against india. this enables the women of pakistan, particularly the young girls, to grow up to be women of influence and power and consequence. this enables pakistan to develop economically, not to use its resources and a military posture against india but use its resources to become a full fledged first world nation. pakistan is our ally and this bill will enable it to stand on
its own two feet. not to be able to fight india. not to be able to engage in nuclear proliferation, but to help us fight against the forces of violent extremism. pakistan is a valued ally. this will enable us to give them the resources so that we can count on that ally to do the right thing. and continue the same blank check policy which has made matters worse rather than better, i think is a terrible mistake. i urge defeat of the amendment. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentlewoman from florida. ms. ros-lehtinen: thank you. mr. speaker, i'd like to yield five minutes to the gentleman from michigan, mr. hoekstra, the ranking member on the house permanent select committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for five minutes. mr. hoekstra: i'd like to thank my colleague for yielding the time. pakistan, afghanistan is a very difficult part of the world. as we develop the strategies, i
think many of us all have the same goals and objectives in mind. but we need to take a look at exactly what we are doing today. i'm proud to support the republican amendment to the pakistan enduring assistance and cooperation act of 2009. interestingly i believe that this substitute supports our current president's direction that he has outlined for pakistan and afghanistan. it supports president obama's strategy to address the situation in pakistan, to restore peace and stability to that region. maybe once again this is another foreign policy initiative where president obama has decided that perhaps following some of the direction outlined under the bush administration may not be a bad idea. i'm one of many republican ranking members to come forward today to express concern about the majority's bill and to urge
support for the republican substitute. the democratic bill places too many restrictions on the ability of the president's advisors and the u.s. military to conduct diplomacy and military operations in the region. in a letter to the armed services committee, secretary of defense gates and chairman of the joint chiefs of staff mullen raised their concern about the majority's bill noting that, quote, the degree of conditionality and limitations on security assistance to pakistan in h.r. 1886 severely constrains the flex beibility necessary for the executive branch and department of defense given the fluid and dynamic environment that currently exists in pakistan. but obviously they are saying our troops in afghanistan and the military in pakistan and our support of the military efforts in pakistan require more flexibility than what this bill
will allow. from intelligence briefings, i understand how volatile the situation is in pakistan. just on tuesday there was a hotel bombing, 18 people killed. the back stand army has been engaged in a battle in the swat valley against taliban militants. any legislation on pakistan must give the administration both flexibility to react to the fast-paced developments and the opportunity to develop a plan on how it will implement its strategy for pakistan and afghanistan. instead of flexibility, this bill is full of restrictive and intrusive provisions that i'm not sure would even apply to the united states. where the democrat majority is trying to dictate and micromanage the president's administration's pakistan policy. their bill even includes language to increase pakistani teacher salaries. it goes into the detail of the level of assistance for student
meals. wow. that doesn't sound like we are giving the pak is a whole lot of flexibility. this down in the weeds language may represent a new low for congressional micromanagement, not to mention a distraction from the crucial issue of bringing peace and stability to the region. we need to defeat al qaeda and the taliban in pakistan. that is our goal. that is our mission. this congress shouldn't be be dictating to the pakistanis teachers salaries and the level of assistance it needs to provide students for meals in pakistan. republicans have been unfairly criticized in the press as being the party of no. not only are the republicans being the party of yes on this bill, we are also being more supportive of the obama administration's pakistan policy than the democrat majority. we support president obama's
efforts in the region. we want them to succeed. i believe the republican amendment presents the best way congress can ensure and move towards success in pakistan and at the same time make sure that we stay united on foreign policy because this amendment, this substitute supports the president's pakistan strategy. so let's stand with the president. let's move forward. let's make sure that we are united, republicans and democrats, house, senate, and the administration in supporting this president's direction for pakistan. i ask my colleagues to support the republican substitute. thank you. with that i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california. mr. berman: mr. speaker, i yield myself 15 seconds.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 15 seconds. mr. berman: the gentleman from michigan just spoke on behalf of the republican substitute but he's a major co-sponsor of the reconstruction opportunity zones. unlike the bill in front of us, the republican substitute does not contain the r.o.z.'s, the reconstruction zones. i'm wondering how the gentleman squares that with his position. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. berman: i now yield two minutes to the gentleman from massachusetts who has done remarkable work on the issue of how the $12 billion given to pakistan over the past seven years -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts is recognized for two minutes. mr. tierney: i thank mr. berman for allocating the time. i sometimes wonder listening to this particular substitute whether some people here wlrks it's the administration or our friends on the other side of the aisle have been sleepwalking through history. if you want to see a repeat of the last eight years, fine let's
gets rid of the accountability. $1.5 billion for the next five years will be given on the pakistanis on the civil side of things. in the past there have been tens ever billions of dollars since their independence. we have a structure that's supposed to be a school or clinic somewhere but no teachers, no nurses, no doctors nocy thames that work because it's been a total lack of accountability. this substitute amendment would continue that lack ever accountability. on the security side of things, we have a situation where we had $6.2 billions in the coalition support funds which were a blank check to the military over there. what we got in return when we finally doing some oversight in january of 2007, and afterwards, was a determination that some 40% of that had vaporized. cannot be accounted for. it was supposed to be going for things that would counterinsurgency. it disappeared somewhere.
this particular bill that the substitute is trying to undermine would put in place the accountability provisions. they are flexible enough. they simply say you have to fight those extremist that are mutual problems. you have to make sure you stop people from going over the boardtory create problems in afghanistan. you have to cooperate on nuclear nonproliferation. reasonable things. the american people have a right to expect that their representatives are going to be accountable for the billions of dollars. we are supposed to be having a partnership and mature relationship with the pakistanis. let's get over this notion that we are going to offend their sensibilities so that they won't actually cooperate with us if we want to put some conditions to make sure that our mutual problems are addressed with the billions of dollars of american citizens' money. we have had eight-plus years of not having accountability on funds of that country and others. we have had times in 2002 where we have had totally no accountability. let's stop sleepwalking. let's get the problem resolved. let's make sure we have
accountability. i say vote against the substitute, vote for the underlying bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentlelady from florida. ms. ros-lehtinen: mr. speaker, i'd like to yield an additional minute to the ranking member on the intelligence committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for one minute. mr. hoekstra: i thank my colleague for yielding. but i felt i needed to respond as my name was brought up from my colleagues on the other side of the aisle. the r.o.z.'s in this rule process regardless of the underlying bill will be part of the final package that moves through. what happens with the democrat base bill here is they undercut many of the things and put in a lot of restrictions that as congressman van hollen and i tried to craft a bill together, we wanted to make sure there was enough freedom for these programs to be successful. and the important thing here is can -- you can vote for the substitute. the r.o.s.'s become part of the
program -- r.o.z.'s become part of the program when the substitute passes after it replaces the underlying democrat amendment. i thank you -- i think i understand the rule, but to say that we were -- that i was not supportive of the r.o.z.'s because i was supporting the substitute i don't believe is an accurate indication of what -- my time is up. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california. mr. berman: mr. speaker, i yield myself 15 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman virginia tech. mr. berman: the gentleman's point is -- the gentleman is recognized. mr. berman: the gentleman's point is incorrect. the republican substitute replaces the entire bill. and therefore were the republican substitute to pass, the r.o.z.'s the gentleman has fought for would not be part of the bill that was sent.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from -- who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california. . the gentleman from california. mr. berman: i'm pleased to yield one minute to a member of the committee, the delegate from american samoa, mr. eny faleomavaega. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american samoa is recognized for a minute. mr. faleomavaega: i ask unanimous consent that my comments may be revised. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. faleomavaega: i have tremendous respect for the gentlelady from florida, a dear friend, and her understanding on this substitute -- her proposal on this substitute, however, i must disagree with her on this issue. i rise in opposition to the substitute version. it provides $1.5 billion in
nonmilitary assistance to pakistan for fiscal year 2010. and regrettably, the substitute requires no oversight, no accountability and no meaningful role for congress to play. like my colleagues, i'm appreciative that they've provided some support for the u.s.-led anti-terrorism coalition. and pakistan is congratulated for allowing the u.s. military to use bases within its country. however, i do not believe we should provide billions in aid to pakistan without some sort of accountability. h.r. 1886 includes robust, monitoring and evaluations to ensure that assistance and -- two seconds. mr. berman: i yield the gentleman an additional 10 seconds. mr. faleomavaega: i urge my colleagues to oppose this substitute. the speaker pro tempore: who seeks recognition? the gentleman from california,
do you seek recognition? mr. berman: mr. speaker, may i get an indication of how much time remains on each side? the speaker pro tempore: i'll give you more than an indication. i'll give you an exact amount. the gentleman from california has seven minutes remaining. and the gentlelady from florida has 1 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. berman: i'm very pleased to yield on the republican substitute to the chairman of the subcommittee on the middle east and south asia, vice chair of the committee, mr. ackerman, two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for two minutes. mr. ackerman: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. ackerman: mr. speaker, the ros-lehtinen substitute is not just a step back in policy. it's a step back in time. it attempts to reinstate the failed bush-cheney-rumsfeld managing the wars in iraq and afghanistan. it gives the president a massive blank check and then walks away from its responsibility as a co-equal
branch of government. the ros-lehtinen substitute strips out all policy from the bill. it has no package to encourage to change their behavior. it has no provisions for keeping congress involved in the process. it has no guidance whatsoever for the president about how taxpayer dollars ought to be spent. this is not legislation. this is advocation. as pakistan -- is pakistan cooperating with the u.s. to dismantle nuclear supplier networks? apparently it doesn't matter in the republican substitute. are they ending their support to extreme groups? judging by the republican substitute, who cares. is pakistan working to prevent cross-border attacks on its neighbors and strengthening its counterterrorism laws? if the republican substitute is any guide, in the words of jackie mason, this is not my business. we've tried the minority approach. it is completely devoid of policy. it encourages abuse.
it doesn't work. but it does have one advantage. it allows members of congress to avoid any responsibility for the war in afghanistan. mr. speaker, it's too late to go back to stra t.j.ertegery. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: -- stragery. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. berman: i yield to the gentlelady from texas, sheila jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from texas is recognized for two minutes. ms. jackson lee: i thank the distinguished chairman. we cannot wait, and i just suggest to my colleagues if they would look quickly at these pictures where the pakistan military is fighting terrorism. and this is the activities that are happening in that area. people are fleeing terrorism, and the people that are in these camps are suffering. we cannot wait for this legislation, and i oppose the republican substitute because i
want not in isolation of pakistan, i want a regional response, a comprehensive regional strategy, including the role of countries outside the region in supporting pakistan's efforts to combat al qaeda and the taliban, a global effort. the republican substitute has a one-on-one effort. we need a global effort. let me also suggest that there is important language in this legislation because if we suggest that the pentagon is not favorable, the pentagon has indicated that they are aware of the counterinsurgency efforts that the pakistan military's engaging in and they're satisfied with the structure of this legislation that would help them continue to fight terrorism. we can work out some of the kinks, but are we going to wait while people are suffering? this legislation also has a recognition that we're establishing a new relationship with pakistan and the united states, a friendship relationship. we're acknowledging the recent efforts of the pakistan military and swat, and we are also suggesting that if there are changes in pakistan we will
reconsider some of the requirements or some of the struck ures that we put in place. i would also say to my colleagues that i hope the republicans who are so interested in pakistan would be interested in making sure the international monetary fund is funded like the president would like it to be and that they would join in that support because they're so strongly in support of pakistan, which got money from it in the last year. in addition, there are issues dealing with trade, but the afl-cio is supporting it. we're helping them establish a better economy, but at the same time representing our trade requirements over here in the united states. this is a way to address this issue, but i can't imagine that my colleagues want to leave pakistan and the people of pakistan in these dire conditions. pakistan americans recognize we are establishing a new friendship, and on that new friendship we need to oppose the republican substitute and support h.r. 1886. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the the gentlelady has expired. who -- the time of the
gentlelady has expired. who seeks recognition? the gentlelady from florida. the gentlelady from florida. the gentleman from california. mr. berman: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the comments, the statement of the gentleman from maryland, mr. van hollen, be included within the general debate section of the bill and ask for general leave to include -- the speaker pro tempore: without objection, general leave is order. mr. berman: mr. speaker, may i inquire, who has the right to close? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has the right to close. mr. berman: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlewoman from florida. ms. ros-lehtinen: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to yield myself a minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for one minute. ms. ros-lehtinen: we fully agree with the gentleman that much of the investment in pakistan has failed to yield all of the results we hope for. and it is appropriate to
require the administration to develop scientific, specific, meaningful performance-based measures. where we differ, where we differ, mr. speaker, is that we do not mandate that the executive branch follow a specific new connelly mandated methodology which may not even be technically correct even before the new administration has had time to operationalize their new south asia strategy. our substitute, therefore, requires that as part of the comprehensive, interagency strategy and implementation plan, mandated by the legislation, that the administration put together a robust financial plan, a description of the resources of the programming, of the management of the united states foreign assistance to pakistan, including the criteria used to determine this pry ortyization. we believe -- prioritization. we believe this is the correct approach. and i reserve the balance of my
time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. berman: mr. speaker, i have no further requests for time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentlewoman from florida. ms. ros-lehtinen: thank you. i'd like to take up our remainder time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for 30 seconds. ms. ros-lehtinen: thank you. mr. speaker, our republican substitute will allow for the development of specific credible measures of effectiveness that are tightly linked to the president's strategy for the region and are therefore preferable to those that stem from the legislation. and i would like to briefly address -- don't have much time -- some of the issues raised in favor of the underlying bill and fwens my substitute. first, some of the speakers are seeking to fuel distrust between pakistan and india. and they use the congress' strong support for the world's largest democracy, india, to create the impression that u.s. assistance has been and would be used against india.
that is counterproductive. it is not correct. it is dangerous and disinjen with us. i urge my colleagues to adopt the republican substitute and reject the underlying bill. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the the gentlelady has now expired. the gentleman from california is now recognized for 3 1/2 minutes. mr. berman: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to include within the record a letter from the premiere pakistani american organization, the pakistani american leadership center endorsing h.r. 1886. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. berman: mr. speaker, i rise strongly to oppose the republican substitute. i'm pleased to see that the substitute does support the president's request for $1.5 billion a year in nonmilitary assistance for pakistan. the same amount is in the underlying bill. but that's where the similarity ends. with all due respect to my colleagues on the other side of
the aisle, this substitute amounts to nothing more than a blank check. it requires no real oversight, no serious accountability, no congressional role beyond getting briefings on what we could ask for without any new law. since 9/11, i repeat again, we have point of order more than $12 -- we have poured more than $12 billion into pakistan without little to show for it. this is a continuation of the same failed policy. h.r. 1886, on the other hand, expresses or sense of priorities for a democratic, economic and social development assistance without tying the president's hands. unlike the substitute, our bill provides robust monitoring and evaluation to ensure that the assistance is reaching the pakistani people. why would you support another $1.5 billion of economic assistance unless you knew it wasn't just going for ghost
schools and to disappear into unspecified budget support? you need the monitoring and evaluation, the kinds of provisions we haven't had in the past and that our bill proveeds and the republican substitute doesn't. the republican substitute treats pakistan in virtual isolation with a brief mention of the afghan-pakistan cooperation. h.r. 1886 requires a comprehensive regional strategy, including the role of countries outside the region in supporting pakistan's efforts to combat al qaeda and the taliban. a global effort is required to make pakistan a success and the substitute's failure to recognize this fact is another serious flaw. our accountability provisions -- read the bill. please read the bill. those provisions are not rigid, they are not inflexible. we stated very clearly simply that we expect pakistan to make progress in their fight against the extremists and to sustain
their commitment. if the president can't tell us that pakistan is meeting that very minimal standard we should be asking ourselves much deeper questions about what we're really trying to achieve here. the thing is on our minority colleagues to explain why. given pakistan's recent history, we should provide more weapons without making sure the equipment is being used properly. in this context, i find it curious that the substitute is totally inconsistent with the arguments that my friends just made yesterday during debate on the state department authorization bill. then all the repeated arguments were more accountability. we need stricter accountability for critical foreign policy priorities. here we have the most critical foreign policy priority. and in the republican substitute the absence of any provisions regarding accountability, evaluation, auditing or monitoring. i -- this substitute begs the question, why do -- why does
the minority support total flexibility for president obama in pakistan but everywhere else in the foreign policy or domestic sphere they try to contrain him? this is at the top of our list of national security challenges. our approach is the better approach. i urge defeat of the substitute and the adoption and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: all time has expired. does the gentleman have a unanimous consent request? mr. berman: can i ask unanimous consent that the speaker be authorized on this legislative day to entertain motions that the house suspend the rules relating to house resolution 529? the speaker pro tempore: are there any objections? hearing none, so ordered. pursuant to house resolution 522, the previous question is ordered on the bill as amended and on the amendment offered by the gentlelady from florida, ms. ros-lehtinen. the question is on the ament