tv [untitled] CSPAN June 17, 2009 5:30pm-6:00pm EDT
the american people at home and abroad or an assessment of the risk to our u.s. forces by such releases. the guantanamo detainees include the perpetrators of some of the most horrific terrorist acts against americans, including 9/11, the u.s.s. cole bombing and the embassy bombings in africa. director muller of the f.b.i. testified to congress three weeks ago that bringing detainees to u.s. soil poses risk to national security. including providing financing, radicalizing others and undertaking a tax in the united states. additionally the department of defense has reported that at least 14% of former guantanamo detainees have returned to terrorist activity in the region, to say the least we ought to be concerned about the release of people of that kind who threaten our interest
anywhere in the world. this administration is ignoring or disregarding those risks and stonewalling the congress. we need to stop this administration from rushing to transfer or resettlelement of any more detainees at the expense of increased risk to americans and help the president simply fulfill his campaign promise. the president has been very busy since his inaugural. there's little question he's been down many a pathway and he's even found some of those pathways might very well have been a mistake. well, this is a case where i believe a decision was made without being carefully thought through, let alone knowing the serious implications of the actions to be taken and we're attempting by this amendment to help the administration rethink that decision that they have made. and with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time.
for what purpose does the gentleman from west virginia rise? mr. mollohan: mr. chairman, i rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. mollohan: i thank the chairman. mr. chairman, i rise in opposition to this amendment which would essentially probability any funds -- prohibit any funds to be spent with the implementation of the executive order, requiring the closure of the detention facilities at guantanamo bay. i believe that the closing of guantanamo is the right policy decision. the president believes that and the president has acted on that. it's an embarrassment to the country, it's a symbol that has really foemented a lot of opposition to the united states around the world. the continued existence of gitmo is a basic assault on our values and it undermines the success in our counterterrorism programs. president obama and i are not the only ones that believe this.
secretary gates, admiral merl, the top defense officials agree that it should be closed as both president bush's secretaries of state and a variety of other bipartisan political officials. so this is a bipartisan position. we've already clearly communicated to the white house that they must submit a plan showing how they intend to proceed. the white house has agreed and i'm confident that their plan will show a reasonable path forward. the bill for us today -- before you today, mr. chairman, includes provisions to ensure that the congress will have sufficient opportunity to weigh in on that plan when it is submitted to preclude most activities prior to that. the bill does not permit this legislation before us tonight does not permit detainees into the united states during fiscal year 2010. it doesn't permit the transfer
of detainees to the u.s. for detention or prosecution purposes until two months after we've received the plan. it doesn't permit the transfer of detainees to foreign countries without notification and certifications to the congress and doesn't provide any funds for activities relating to the gitmo closure. this will ensure that we have additional opportunities to debate this issue when the administration requests a budget amendment or a supplemental to fund this plan. we've established a good process for consideration of this issue and it should allow to play out before we start parentaling a plan that we don't even have before us. this bill postures this issue in a good way and i oppose the amendment, mr. chairman. reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california. mr. lewis: mr. speaker, i yield the balance of my time to my colleague from kansas, mr. tiahrt.
the chair: the gentleman is recognize for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. tiahrt: i thank the gentleman from california. this is a very important amendment. i think the very important that we understand what's at play here. the current plan by the president through executive order is to close guantanamo bay down. now this facility is a state-of-the-art modern facility. it includes the right strategy as far as layout of the facilities, it also has a modern new courtroom, state-of-the-art courtroom well suited to handle the challenges that we have in trying to deal with these detainees, these self-proclaimed terrorists. now i've been to guantanamo bay twice, i've been to other facilities like fort leavenworth. the idea of moving these self-professed terrorists to american soil is a bad idea. the a worse idea to put this tell in our prisons. we've had two incidences within the last month where american citizens have been recruited by radical islamists in our own prisons when they were released -- prisons. when they were released they committed acts of terror in our country. it's a bad idea to send these
detainees to our prisons. it's a terrible idea to send them to our american streets. now this prison cost less than $100 million to build yet the president's plan has as reported is to send some of these uighurs, some of these chinese terrorists, topy law and we're go going to give them $2 million to take care of these uighurs. this doesn't make sense for our culture, for the safety of our people here in america. i think that one of the excuses that i've heard is that, well, we've www.to close guantanamo bay because it's used as a recruiting tool. well, let me tell you, on september 11, 2001, guantanamo bay did not exist. it was not used as a recruiting tool. what has been used as a recruiting tool is the pictures of these detainees themselves and yesterday's bill, the supplemental, which was passed by this house against my vote did not prevent the release of detainee photos. those will be used. those will be used to recruit other terrorists.
so don't give us that excuse. that's why you've got to close guantanamo bay. finally it makes sense to keep it open. as far as the safety of our country, it makes sense to keep it open. pass this amendment, do the right thing for our country. vote for the lewis amendment. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from west virginia has 2 1/2 minutes. mr. mollohan: yield back the balance of my time, mr. chairman. the chair: all time having expired, the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. the gentleman from california. mr. lewis: i call for a roll call. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. the clerk will read. for what purpose does the gentleman from kansas rise?
>> mr. speaker, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 69 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. tiahrt of kansas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 552, the gentleman from kansas and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from kansas. mr. tiahrt: i thank the speaker. mr. speaker, earlier this year the obama administration told us the stimulus bill was going to be the salvation of our economic woes. they predicted unemployment would top out at 8% and they claimed that jobs would be created or saved immediately. well, we've been significant amount of time since it was passed and our economic woes haven't changed. in fact, the numbers are in stark con draft to who we see today. unemployment is headed toward double-digits. just this week cn thrvings reported that americans saw $1.3 trillion of wealth vaporize in the first quarter of 2009. despite the massive spending -- government spending,
foreclosures continue. car keelership -- dealerships are closing and layoffs continue. home values have continued to decline and the stock market is down 40% from last year. our government is borrowing money it does not is have, inflating programs and projects we do not need. recently it was reported that over 100 wasteful projects were funded through this stimulus bill. there is a project that includes thousands of signs at $300 each to brag about the projects paid for under this bill. there are projects here that could have been funded under regular order. there's $2.2 million for a state-run liquor wear house to put skylights in the installation. there's money for tunnels for turtles. it seems to me like maybe the turtles will are need the signs to find the tunnels. there's over $40 billion in a state slush fund and there's money for education, the secretary of education duncan has admitted he doesn't know how to spend it. this is your stimulus at work here in america.
taxpayers don't understand why so much money is being wasted so quickly with nothing to show for it. my amendment on the floor today would keep a quarter of a billion dollars from our deficit by taking the stimulus dollars to pay for this legislation and other legislation. now at a time when americans are pulling back on their spending and saving more, our government should do the same. the first quarter this year household debt fell by an annual rate of 1.1% to $13.8 trillion. instead of following our our constituents' actions, our government continues to spend money we do not have and when our government spends money that we do not have, one of two things happen. either we borrow it from countries like china and since china isn't buying our debt now, the other solution is that our federal government prints money. we have had the fed pump over $1 trillion of new money into our economy. the problem with infusion of new money into our economy like this is that it causes inflation. when you have more money
available for roughly the same amount of goods, you get inflation. the equation is very simple. more money we print, the less our money is worth. and inflation hits our retired americans the worst. they're on fixed incomes. it hits the working poor the hardest. people who are just getting by and when you take purchasing value away from them, they're worse off. these americans have worked too hard for their money to see the actions of the federal reserve drastically reduce its value. our economic instability uncertainty is making america bonds-toxic. even countries like china and brazil are turning their nose up in favor of international monetary fund bonds. let's follow our quints' lead. let's slow our treasury's printing press, let's act responsibly by repealing the portion of unobligated funds in the stimulus and pay for the portion of the bill before us today. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his
time. the gentleman from west virginia. mr. mollohan: i rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment. i pose this, i scratch my head as i did at full committee, why we would be offering an amendment to jerk the rug out from under the recovery act at a time when the recovery act is beginning to stimulate and help recovery of our economy in the nation? the just the wrong time to do this and i still question the gentleman's logic in this. mr. tiahrt's amendment attempts to prevent the obligation the recovery act funds for the economic development administration. if there's one agency in the federal government that is focused on fomenting economic development, it is the economic development administration. so i think that signaling that out has really -- singling that out has really taken not only the recovery act but the agency that is charged with developing economic development in areas that are most needy, taking it
it head-on and trying to undermine its ability to doity mission. ntia's digital to analog converter box program is also attacked as is construction for research for facilities program to prevent the payment of salaries and salaries responsible for obligating these funds. obviously construction is where we want to get money. i mean, there is criticism if in a lot of areas but certainly in some quarters on the other side of the aisle, those who oppose the recovery act. there is criticism that funds are not getting out quickly enough for construction. those are the areas that demonstratively provide real jobs in realtime. so the unclear why mr. tiahrt's singling out these agency when is so many other agencies, others in this bill, also receive funds under the recovery act. but it is just the wrong time to reach back and to try to undo the stimulus package at a time when the economy is recovery --
recovering. he measured by a lot of things. recovery in the credit markets, improvements in the credit -- in the capital markets. mr. chairman, i rise in opposition to the amendment. it's an unwise time to do this and i would hope that the body would oppose the amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from kansas. mr. tiahrt: how much time is remaining? the chair: the gentleman has 2 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. tiahrt: i thank the speaker. mr. speaker, the reason that we are -- that we would repeal the recovery act or stimulus bill is because it simply doesn't work. in the 1930's we tried a similar philosophy. we borrowed money from other countries and we started programs that had never before been tried and throughout the 1930's we have double-digit
unemployment. in may of 1939 secretary of the treasury, secretary morgenthau, said we have borrowed all this money, we have spent all this money and we have nothing to show for it. the recovery act does not work. in the 199 30's japan tried the same thing. they had a recession, they borrowed money, they started government programs and it didn't work there either. they called that their lost decade where the average per capita income in japan went from second in the world to 10th in the world. if you want something that works, it's not borrowing money and spending money. instead we need to provide opportunity for our economy. four out of five jobs in america are small business jobs. we need to provide small business jobs. remember, general motors started out in a garage. boeing started in a barn. pizza hut started in a building that's smaller than your office. because they had opportunity. and we can provide opportunity without borrowing money from china or printing new money at the treasury. we can do it by reforming our regulation, put them on a cost-based analysis.
we can do it by reforming our health care, making it market based. we can do it by reforming our litigation policy, we can do it by lowering our taxes and making capital welcome in america. capital is a coward and we are scaring it off and you can't create an economy that's strong and recoverable if you don't create small business jobs. so if you really want to do it, you can do it on the cheap and do it successfully. if you want to borrow this money and force this debt on our kid, this $250 billion, then you can go ahead with this plan but there is something better. there is an alternative that actually works and historically it's proven. so what we want to do is repeal the recovery act, the stimulus bill, and provide the opportunity to allow america to grow. because when america grows and our economy grows, the federal revenue grows and that's how we balance the budget in the 1990's. it wasn't bill clinton's budget, it was the house of representatives coming up with opportunity for small businesses. we limited the growth in government.
and we saw our economy expand at over 7% per year and that's how we balance the budget. we can do that again if we just start by getting some common sense and repeal the unobligated funds in the recovery act. i yield the gentleman from texas. the chair: the gentleman's time has expire. the gentleman from virginia. mr. mollohan: this is the wrong time. the markets are improving, confidence in the economy sin creasing, this is the wrong time to jerk the rug out from under the stimulus package, which has gone a long way in achieving this progress. i oppose the amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: all time having expired, the question son the amendment offered by the gentleman from kansas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it the amendment is not aegroo -- agreed to. mr. tiahrt: i ask for a recorded vote.
the chair: the gentleman asks for a recorded vote and pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18 further proceedings are postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman rise? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 102, printed in the congressional record offered by mr. cuellar of texas. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 552, the gentleman from texas and a opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. cuellar: thank you, mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. cuellar: i want to thank mr. mollohan on the leadership he offered on this bill. rise in support of my amendment to edge sure long-term taxpayer
savings. it makes sure no light bulbs will be purchased that do not -- by federal funds that do not meet energy star standards. this amendment, -- this amendment will ensure the federal government makes a long-term investment on lowering costs on inefficient technology. energy star bulbs are proven to use electricity and last longer, saving money. regular light bulbs generate heat instead of light, energy star light bulbs provide the same light as a standard bulb but use 75% less energy and last eight to 12 times longer. i know this amendment was approved in the past appropriations bill and this house accepted this amendment, included in the f.y.--- f.y.-08 legislations.
i want to thank mr. upton, mr. inglis, both democrats and republicans that supported this particular amendment. at this time i'll yield to the chairman. mr. mollohan: i thank the gentleman and commend him for his efforts in this area. it's environmentally conscious and appreciate his amendment to the bill and we accept the amendment. the chair: the gentleman from texas. mr. cuellar: if there's not any other opposition, i stand with the chairman's recommendation and i yield the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. if there's no opposition, the question son the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. price: i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: the gentleman asks
for a recorded vote. further proceedings on the amendment will be postned. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia rise? mr. price: i have an amendment made in order by the rule at the desk, number 96. the clerk: the clerk -- the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 96 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. price of georgia. the chair: the gentleman from georgia and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from georgia. mr. price: there's a simple amendment that says that we ought to take $100 million, we ought to adopt the president's challenge to the departments and we ought to save, remove $100 million from the department of justice in this bill. on april 20, the president held his first cabinet meeting and charged his -- the members of his cabinet with find $100 million out of their departments in savings. this was to try to live up to
his promise of going through the budget line by line. it's important, mr. chairman to put $100 million in context. $100 million reduction in the president's budget would be 1/40,000 of the federal budget. 1,7,830 of the sties of the nonstimulus bill adopted earlier this year. 1,1 -- 1/1,845 of the amount reduced. it's what the government spends every 13 minutes. don't you think we can find $100 million, what we spend every 13 minutes, as savings? it's the equivalent of a family that earns $40,000 cutting $1 out of their budget. mr. chairman, in the context of this bill, it's even more striking. from fy-08, from fiscal year
2008 numbers to this proposal on the table, 24.2% increase, a $13 billion increase, $100 million is less than 1%. mr. chairman, just -- it just makes sense, while the american people are struggling and tightening their belts, while they're clamoring for us to be fiscally responsible and not spend any more of their money to save $100 million. find $100 million. can't we do just that. i urge my colleagues to support this amendment and i redeserve serve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> i rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. >> at this funding level, the bill supports more than $585 million in increases for counterterrorism intelligence programs. at the same time, the bill makes long overdue reinvestments in the department of justice missions like drug and firearm enforcement prork
text of civil rights and liberties, support of the judicial process and state and local assistance. the specific initialtives include $63 million for new funding to address white collar funding, $71 million to improve the safety and security of inmates and guards in federal prisons and $345 million in new funds to safeguard the southwest border, address the mexican cartel violence in support of activities in the department of homeland security. $3.4 billion in grant funding for state and local enforcement assistance, including $298 million to put additional police on the beat and $94 million for tribal law enforcement. these investments are absolutely necessary, unlike what the gentleman has suggested that somehow they're unnecessary, somehow this is change that can be found and these programs can be cut. what we're doing is reinvesting in the law enforcement infrastructure of which country
on the border in our cities, and in issues of white collar crime. and i would hope he would understand that this is an essential part of this legislation than this was carefully crafted as we consulted with people across various jurisdictions within the institutions to make sure we could provide them to be secure and serve the needs of this nation. i think this has been a good faith effort to do that and i would hope we reject the amendment and ask for a no vote. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves his time. the gentleman from georgia. mr. price: how much time do i have remaining? the chair: the gentleman has three minutes remaining. mr. price: carefully crafted? 24.2% increase, $13 billion increase? carefully crafted? i never suggested that these programs weren't important. what i suggested, mr. chairman,
that out out of the entire tpwhoifpblgt department of justice, can we not save a penny on a dollar? can we not save a penny on a dollar? when the american people are struggling across this land to find pennies that they -- that the federal government is stealing from them? can we not just save a penny on a dollar? it's a simple thing to do, mr. chairman. i urge my colleagues to support this amendment and i'm pleased to yield to my friend from texas, mr. gohmert. the chair: the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. gohmert: thank you, mr. chairman. -- mr. speaker. as someone who served as a judge and chief justice and had a constantly -- had it constantly drubbed into my head during hours and hours and hours of ethics classes about the appearance and potential conflict of interest, we know our chairman was deservedly getting accolades from crew and others for recusing himself in
2007 because of the reported investigation by the department of justice. this is an elephant in the room. the department of justice budget is being dealt with here and there's been no indications that there has not been an investigation, so i'm hoping that the record can be clear because it does look funny, it smells bad, if someone is under investigation and they're managing the budget for those who are doing the investigation , i thought it was a wonderful thing that chairman mollohan did in 2007, he deserved the accolades he got for recusing himself and i was wondering, i'd be glad time for the chairman to indicate if there is no further investigation, obviously there's no requirement to respond, but it is an elephant in the room, it clearly is a conflict of interest, and i hope that we can help eradicate the
so-called culture of corruption that appeared to the public by dealing with this issue. thank you. i yield back to my friend from georgia or to the chairman if he wishes. the chair: the gentleman from georgia controls the time. mr. price: how much time is remaining? the chair: 40 seconds. mr. price: i thank the chairman. again, i think it's important to appreciate that in the context of this overall bill, in the context of a bill of this portion of the appropriations process that's gone for $51 billion in 2008 to $64 billion this year, that's a 24.2% increase a $13 billion increase, can we not find $100 million? in fact that's what the president asked. to find $100 million in savings. it wasn't too much for the president to ask. let's help out this administration in their minimal
attempts to provide fiscal responsibility, minimal attempts, i urge my colleagues to support an amendment that all it's asking for is saving less than one penny out of every dollar. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california yields back his time. all time having expired, the question son the amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. mr. price: i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, fourth proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from new hampshire rise? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 98