tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN November 19, 2013 4:00pm-6:01pm EST
ply, i think clarifies and rectifies and we can have some certainty in the law and that i think is the important part of creating american energy. with that i don't think that this amendment adds anything to that. i urge rejection of the amendment. with that i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the noes have it. ms. jackson lee: i would like a recorded vote, the yeas and nays. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18 further proceed thonings amendment of the gentlewoman from texas will be postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number five printed in part a of house report 113-271. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from hawaii seek recognition? ms. hanabusa: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number five printed in part a of house
report 113-271 offered by ms. hanabusa of hawaii. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 419, the gentlewoman from hawaii, ms. hanabusa, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from hawaii. ms. hanabusa: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. hanabusa: this amendment is similar to one i offered last congress which was agreed to by voice vote this amendment simply adds to title 2 the planning for america energy act of 2013, subsection 8 which mirrors the language found in a prior subsection addressing native american tribal land. it requires the inclusion of hawaiian homes commission act land. as you know, hawaii is a unique situation in that in 1920, this
congress created the hawaiian homes commission act. there's a special body of 2 23,000 acres of land in hawaii under the control of congress. congress approves whether or not things can be amended in the act, even upon statehood that right was retained by congress. this amendment seeks to have those hawaiian home lans that the state agency responsible for the administration of the land has selected to be used for the cooperate to have geothermal, solar, and other renewable energy sources included in the draw quadrenall onshore federal production strategy. it has no other implications other than the fact that these lands could be used for renewable development and these lands have somehow become forgotten and -- but do necessarily fall under federal jurisdiction. with that, mr. chairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman -- mr. hastings: would the
gentlelady yield to me? ms. hanabusa: yes. mr. hastings: i have no problem with your amendment, it was accepted by a voice vote last congress. it adds more land for energy production and as the gentlelady thoughs i'm in favor of that we accept the gentlelady's amendment and yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman from florida yields back the balance of my time -- of her time. the question season oh theament offered by the gentlewoman from hawaii. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number six printed in part a of house report 113-271. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. marino: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment number six offered by mr. marino of
pennsylvania. the chair: the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. marino, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. marino: study after study found that pipelines are the most environmentally friendly way to ship natural gas. a company in my district try t.d. build a new pipeline through a recreation air cra but were unable to do so because of bureaucratic red tape and mess. instead of expanding a pipeline in the ground before the recreation area was created, they had to loop the pipeline around the recreation area to provide natural gas to residents in new jersey. this forced them to add seven additional miles of pipeline even though it would be more environmentally friendly to build a pipeline through the park. yet the level of bureaucratic red tape in trying to construct oil and gas pipelines throw
through federal lands is nothing short of ludicrous my amendment wouldn't resolve the problem we experienced in my district, however this amendment takes a small step in addressing the difficulties in constructing pipelines by requiring the secretary of interior to include a plan for addressing new demands from transmission lines and pipelines for distribution of oil and gas across federal lands to ensure that energy produced can be distributed to areas of need. commonsense tells us that without the necessary pipeline infrastructure to transport the energy, it will be much more difficult to meet america's future oil and gas demands. i yield back. mr. hastings: would the gentleman zeeled mr. marino: i yield. mr. hastings: i thank the gentleman for bringing this bill to the floor. i think it does a lot for what
year trying to do in this country mr. marino: i reserve my time. the chair: do members seek time in opposition to the amendment? the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized. the gentleman from pennsylvania yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from pennsylvania. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment number 7 printed in part a of house report 113-271. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? mr. polis: i have an amendment at the desk, 113-26. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number seven printed in house report 113-271. offer pid mr. polis of colorado. the chair: the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis and a member opposed each will control five
minutes. mr. polis: i offer my amendment along with representative huffman of california, it's a simple amendment. it would require the national academy of sciences to study and report to congress about the impact of flooding on oil and gas facilities and resulting in -- and resulting instances from leakages and spills from tanks, wells, and pipelines. sadly this is an issue that hits very close to home in my district in colorado. we recently suffered from the great flood of 2013 many counties in my district were declared federal disaster areas. many of those counties are also home to significant extraction operations. floods can happen anywhere, and this one occurred well outside of the floodplain. it's important to understand how to minimize damage to oil and gas infrastructure in the event of a flood. constituents in my district in colorado are rebuilding, we're working hard, and we wish, frankly that we had the kind of information that this study
would produce years before the flood so we could have better prepared with regard to oil and gas infrastructure and the safeguards around it. we do know a few things about the impact of the floods so far with regard to oil and gas facilities in northern and northeastern colorado. over 43,000 gallons of oil and 26,000 of produced water spilled from the tanks. wells and pipelines in the flood water. if we have a lot to learn from -- learn from this experience i hope future areas impacted by flooding as well as ours, which we never know whether the next flood is decades or years centuries away will be able to avoid these kinds of spills in our communs. and on september 25, i did join representative the fazio sending a letter to chairman hastings requesting a hearing to understand the consequences resulting from the flood. i continue to hope that the gentleman from alaska will be open to scheduling that hearing
with regard to the impact of flooding or perhaps more generally disasters and how we can better safeguard our oil and gas infrastructure in our country thism floods in colorado shed a light on the need to better understand how to safeguard our oil and gas from disaster in our case a terrible flood that had seven confirmed fatalities and hundreds of millions of dollars of property damage. we would all benefit from learning more about how disasters like the colorado flood can impact states and the federal government. experts in oil and gas technology and innovation an the academy of sciences can help enhance our understanding of thousand prevent damage to oil and gas infrastructure and avert spills and leaks in other communities. we don't want our communities to have to learn the hard way as ours has done. i urge my colleagues to support them a and reserve the balance of my time.
the chair: the gentleman reserves. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? mr. hastings: i rise to claim time in opposition. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. hastings: thank you, mr. chairman i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hastings: mr. chairman, in light of the recent flooding in the gentleman's home state of colorado i can appreciate his concern about this issue. however -- however, this amendment contains no restrictions on the scope and breadth of the study and it seems to be endless. in fact the study is not focused on the tragic flooding in colorado, and it's so expansive it can include all flooding anywhere and the term oil and gas fa ill sill -- facilities is undefined. that's what the amendment says. oil and gas facilities could be interpreted to mean many things. much of which is outside of the jurisdiction of this commefment
this could include corner gasoline stations or private gas meters and, quote, leaking and spills from tanks, wells, and pipelines, end quote, does not have to be associated with natural gas. it can be anything. such as septic or water or sewer tanks and pipelines. further this amendment does not specify that the study be conducted in conjunction with production on federal lands, which of course is what this legislation specifically deals with. the result is a nationwide study that can touch a variety of sources right down to private homes, the results of which will have nothing to do with the energy production process that this legislation seeks to streamline. this study undoubtedly at the expense of taxpayer dollars will have no impact on energy production and frankly it has no clear goal.
now finally, the proper place to examine the effects of flooding in colorado is in colorado. a testing done by the colorado state department of public health and the environment found that pollute stands from oil and gas in the aftermath of the spills at 29 specific sites but no pollutants entered into colorado's water. however the incidence of e. coli in raw sewage was measurable and did have an impact on public health. which is clearly not limited to one industry. in fact it's not even covered by this study. so mr. chairman, for a variety of rps and i think i've tried to touch on the major ones that i just enounsuated i urge rejection of this amendment and reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from colorado is
recognized. mr. polis: thank you, mr. chairman. with regard to the language of the amendment, of course it is not designed to apply narrowly to colorado. that would be considered an earmark, pribted under the rules of the house. in addition it's not designed just to serve the needs of my district. what this is designed is to learn from this so other areas of the country don't go through the same damage from flooding to oil and gas infrastructure that occurred in my district. the language is very limiting with regard to the report to congress very boilerplate language we've youed -- used for other studies reporting to congress, and i quote from the bill, on the effect of flooding on oil and gas facilities, and the resulting incidences of leaks and spills from tanks wells, and pipelines. precisely what has occurred sthroiflt flood in colorado and could, of course, occur as a result of flooding in other areas of the country that have a significant presence of these
the extraction industry. i hope my colleagues will support this measure, that my colleague mr. huffman and i have brought forward. i think it would have a commonsense report that would be of great value to this congress in protecting our infrastructure and our environment from the impact of flooding. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. hastings: i'm pleased to yield one and a half minutes to the author of this legislation the gentleman from colorado, mr. lamb born. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lamborn: i thank the gentleman. i want to applaud and commend my colleague for his concern and thoughtfulness to the people impacted in colorado. many of which were in his and representative cory gardner's district, some town farther south in my district where there was unfortunately some los of life also. we all share that same concern. to put things in perspective, though, when we look at the oil
and gas impact of the flooding, there was no hydraulic fracturing going on during the flooding and the spillage that was later determined to have taken place was relatively minor. there were about 1,000 gallons, excuse me, barrels of oil and gas spilled with about 400 barrels of production water system of that's about 1,500 barrels which is about 62,000 gallons. to put that in perspective, this was considered a trillion-gallon rainfall in a period of seven days or so. and that would amount to more than that every second. every single second would have 67,000 barrels of river flow. so one second's worth of oil and gas in the entire horrific
rainfall i think puts things in perspective. i would ask for a no vote on this amendment, it's a lot broader than just the federal lands that this legislation talks about, and so goes beyond the scope of the legislation, and i don't think is really called for considering how -- the chair: the gentleman has one minute remaining. mr. hastings: i yield the gentleman 30 second. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. lamb brn: i think there were a lot more serious issues with the flooding, some of which continue to today and will continue far into the future. those are the issues we should really concentrate on. for that reason i ask for a no vote on this amendment and yield back. the chair: the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from colorado is recognized for 45 seconds. . mr. polis: this amendment has been advanced to the floor by the rules committee with the
necessary waivers grantsed. so it does not need to go through any other committee. it is here for the full house to consider. i appreciate it being included in the rule. i encourage members to make the decision on the merits it has been granted the necessary waives to be considered on the house floor. i think this study will be a value to congress. if in fact 43,000 gallons of oil don't represent any kibet of danger or riss -- any kind of danger or risk, that will be included in the report. the academy of sciences will have access to the information, that my state will need for future planning and other states that have an extraction industry will benefit from in the event of a flood. this can save the health of people, it can save lives, it can save costly infrastructure in the oil and gas industry, it's a commonsense measure. a useful study. i encourage mying -- my colleagues to volt yes and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman from washington voiced for 45 seconds. mr. hastings: mr. chairman, which state am i from? the chair: washington. mr. polis: will the gentleman yield for an apology?
mr. hastings: of course wli yield but the gentleman does vunt voluntary to apologize. mr. polis: i deeply apologize. the chair: the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. hastings: i thank the gentleman. i yield myself the balance of the time. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hastings: as i mentioned in my initial remarks, this amendment really is very, very broadly written and when we had other amendments talking about potential lawsuits, boy, adopting this amendment here would really, really be a litigant's dream if it were to be part of the legislation. so i urge rejection of this amendment and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. mr. polis: mr. chair. the chair: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: on that i request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado will be
postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number 8 printed in part a of house report 113-271. for what purpose does the gentleman from oregon seek recognition? mr. defazio: amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 8 printed in part a of house report 113-271 offered by mr. defazio of oregon. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 419, the gentleman from oregon, mr. defazio, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from oregon. mr. defazio: much of the majority's argument here is based on providing relief to the american consumer and this amendment would provide a real and potentially immediate relief to american consumers. two years ago in the senate, in the spring, when we were having a big run-up in oil prices they had the head of exxonmobil testify and he said, hey, don't blame us for those high prices.
he said blame wall street. he basically said that 60 cents to 70 cents per gallon at the pump is going to wall street's speculators. so if we want to provide real relief to the american people, we need to rein in speculation. but the republicans have only got one watchdog out there commodity future trading commission. they're supposed to set up position limits for nonparticipants, you know, people who are just speculating on price, not people who actually utilize these commodities. that hasn't been done. and they're otherwise under relenting attack, including a $10 million cut in their budget by the republicans. so if we really wanted to do something to help consumers, we would pass this amendment get a few more watchdogs downtown, put in place those position limits on speculators and next may you wouldn't see prices run up $1, $1.25 $1.50 a gallon like we see every may. that has to do with two chings.
refinery ma nip -- things. refinery manipulation and speculation by wall street. we're not addressing either of those things. today we're talking about putting more land up for leasing but today, you know we have a total of $35,397,010 -- 35,397,010 acres of active leases and the nonproducing leases are 30,019,256. i.e., you know, that's about, you know, 85% of the leases are nonproducing leases. they have had plenty of places to go now. it's in their interest to constrain supply somewhere along the way. it hasn't been on the side of protection because we're exporting crude oil, we're still exporting gasoline even. it has been on the refinery side and has been speculation by wall street that's driven up the price. i urge adoption of this amendment and reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman
reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? mr. hastings: i seek time in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman from washington is recognized for five minutes. mr. hastings: i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. hastings: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, i rise to claim opposition to this amendment. and let me be very, very clear. i do oppose this amendment. this amendment is costly and wasteful. the amendment would redirect $10 million away from federal permitting streamlining, which we know will help lower costs and produce more energy and instead funnel money to another fruitless study of the unfounded position of somehow market speculation is impacting energy prices. mr. chairman earlier this year researchers insteadle and pindike from the massachusetts institute of technology's sloane's school of economics, m.i.t., found that speculation wasn't driving up energy
prices. and i will quote them, mr. chairman. i'm quoting right now. back to those pesky speculators for a moment. surely their bets on oil have had some effects on prices. according to our latest research, the answer is, not really. in our recent paper, we explore the link between speculation and inventory changes. we calculate a series of speculation-free prices by creating a stable inventory of oil, providing us with a picture of what the market might look like in the absence of speculation. we focus on inventory for a simple reason. if oil prices are changing because of speculators, then there would have to be commensurate changes in inventories. a buildup of when prices are increasing and a drawdown of when prices are falling. but when the economy was strong and oil prices were increasing, we didn't see large increases in inventories.
in fact, they fell somewhat. this means that peak prices would have actually been higher if you take away the effects of speculation, end quote. let me repeat that final part. when the economy was strong and oil prices were increasing, we didn't see large increases in inventory. if fact, they fell somewhat. that means that peak prices would have actually been higher if you take away the effects of speculation. again, end quote. time and time again we have heard from those opposed to oil and gas drilling, that it is the shady wall street speculators, the minds behind the curtain, is is driving up energy prices. the truth is that the best way to fight speculators or foreign cartels is simply to outproduce them. and that's what our solution here should be. we should be working to figure out a way, how to use the more
than 2% of our federal lands for energy development. we should find a way to have federal lands keep pace with private lands and the revolution of energy production as currently taking place in the united states. yet the congressional research service tells us then, and i quote, all of the increase in federal 2007 to 2012 increase took place on nonfederal lands and the federal share of total u.s. crude oil production fell by seven percentage points in that time. yet, instead of reversing this trend, streamlining permitting, the gentleman, author of this amendment, wants to stifen off -- siphon off money for studies. the legislation before us today is designed to stream line and produce more onshore energy production. this will create jobs and reduce our dependence on foreign imports. it demands an all-of-the-above
energy agenda and i would like to think that folks on the other side would at least embrace that part of it. so i urge my colleagues to reject this amendment and support the underlying bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from oregon is recognized. mr. defazio: may i inquire as to how much time i have left? the chair: the gentleman from oregon has 2 1/2 minutes. mr. defazio: with that i yield two minutes to the gentlelady from california. the chair: the gentlelady from california is recognized for two minutes. ms. waters: thank you, mr. chairman. i rise in support of the gentleman's amendment today. which helps ensure that our derivatives regulator can protect our financial markets and economy. this amendment improves the funding situation of the cftc by giving back $10 million that my republican colleagues propose to cut earlier this year. many americans are unaware that the cftc is charged with enforcing laws designed to thwart wall street from manipulating the price of commodities which effects the
price of gas at the pump and the price of food at our plates. the cftc has been tasked with writing and enforcing rules reforming the financial markets and participants like a.i.g. that contributed to the worst financial crisis since the great depression. for these reforms to have teeth, we need a cop with the resources and staff to hold the financial industry accountable and yet derks spite the overwhelming need -- and yet, despite the overwhelming need, house republicans want to cut the cftc's budgets, deciding this year to provide the cftc a funding level that is 40% below the president's request. this funding level is in addition to sequester cuts, which have caused temporary staff layoffs as well as the agency-wide closure for two weeks during the republican shutdown. mr. chairman, we're witnessing a multifaceted effort by the republican majority to undercut laws and regularlations which republicans -- regulations which republicans and certain special interests disagree
halting legislation while simultaneously depriving our market cops of resources. the defazio amendment is a first step toward countering this offensive, by funding wall street's cop at a minimum with the same resources as last year. i thank my friend from oregon and ufrpbl adoption of this amendment -- urge adoption of this amendment. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman from california yields back. the gentleman from oregon reserves. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. hastings: mr. chairman, i am prepared to close if the gentleman is prepared to close and i'll reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman from washington reserves. the gentleman from oregon is recognized. mr. defazio: well -- the chair: the gentleman has 30 seconds remaining. mr. defazio: then, according to the m.i.t., then the head of exxonmobil purgered himself under oath in the senate. the federal reserve bank at st. louis is wrong, because they have an in depth study not paid for by the industry that says indeed speculation is a major factor. and i don't know how we can describe -- here's over one
month where you see the price of -- vary by up to $11 per day. now, you're telling me the supply chain -- changed by $11 worth in a day and then, whoops, the next day it's back down and then when ben bernanke says that -- here's a quote from when he said he saw a further decline coming, the industry tanked, oil futures by $6. this is pure speculation. don't defend it. support the amendment and give the american people real relief from high gas prices that run necessary. the chair: the gentleman from washington is recognized. the gentleman has one minute remaining. mr. hastings: i yield myself the balance of the time. the chair: the gentleman from washington voiced for one minute. mr. hastings: mr. chairman, i know there is will there is no truisms specific -- i know there is no truisms specifically in economic theory. the one thing we do know about crude oil, and that is it is subject to international pricing. and we do know that a big part
of the international pricing and production is conducted by a cartel, namely opec. the last figure i saw was about 45% of the international market. well, when you have 45% control by one entity, you're going to have some price pressures that are coming, indeed, you probably have some speculation. . this is part of what the underlying bill does and the bill we'll have ton the floor tomorrow does. the only way to beat cartels is to out-produce them. the whole idea if you have somebody that controls a big part of the marketplace the way you beat them to out-produce them. this bill allows america to out-produce our foreign competitors. this amendment adds nothing to da. i urge rejection of the amendment and yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the question is on the amendment
offered by the gentleman from oregon. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the -- mr. defazio: i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from oregon will be postponed. mr. hastings: i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly the committee rises. the speaker pro tempore: mr. chairman. the chair: mr. speaker, committee of the whole house on the state of the union having had under consideration h.r. 1965, directs me to report it has come to no resolution thereon.
the speaker pro tempore: the commow of the -- the chairman of the committee of the whole house on the state of the union reports the committee has had under consideration h.r. 1965 and has come to no resolution thereon. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> i send to the desk a privilege red port from the committee on rules for filing under the rule. the chair: the -- the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title. the clerk: report to accompany house resolution 420, providing for consideration of the bill h.r. 1900 to provide for the timely consideration of all licenses permits and approvals required under federal law with respect to the citing, construction expansion or other pipeline project. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the house calendar and ordered printed.
pursuant to clause of rule 20, the chair will postpone further proceedings today on the motion to suspend the rules on which a recorded vote or the yeas and nays are ordered or on which the vote incurs objection under cluzz 6 of rule 20. any record vote on the postponed question will be taken later. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass senate bill 1545, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title -- >> and pass senate bill 1545. period. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will reminority title of the bill. the clerk: senate 1545, an act to extend authoritying relating to global h.i.v.-aids.
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule the gentleman from california, mr. royce, and the gentleman from new york, mr. engel, will each control 20 mins. mr. royce: if i may ask that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and to include any extraneous materials that they might wish to include on this resolution. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. royce: thank you mr. speaker. i will yield smeist such time as i may consume. mr. speaker, i rise in support of senate bill 1545, they call it the pepfar stewardship and oversight act of 2013. it was just over a decade ago that aids threatened to decimate an entire generation of men and women and children around the world and particularly in africa. without access to life-saving treatment, there was then no incentive to get tested. without testing, it was
impossible to detect and prevent new infections. in the hardest-hit countries an estimated 35% of the population was h.i.v. positive and life expectancy in those countries dropped to as low as 34 years this eglobal aids pandemic was a massive humanitarian challenge but it also threatened our economic and national security. the pandemic struck down men and women in their most productive years. the economies of emerging trade partners contracted. sose yo economic conditions deteriorated. tens of millions of orphan children forced to fend for helmses, became vulnerable to trafficking. they became vulnerable to criminality and recruitment by extremists. infections among security forces in southern africa was disturbingly high. it was against this backdrop
that the united states mounted the most significant effort of any nation to combat a single disease in history. authorized by congress in 2004 an re-authorized in 2008 the president's emergency plan for aids relief, or pepfar as we call it today, was a game changer and has since become the aamong the most successful u.s. foreign aid programs since the marshall plan. like many of my colleagues, i have been to africa and witnessed the saved lives. today nearly 10 million people receive treatment supported by pepfar. 13 countries have reached a tipping point in their aids epidemic, the point where the number of adults on treatment exceeds the number of new infections. so across africa, the new infections have declined by 33%. there is now hope that an aids-free generation may be within reach. we should be proud of that
effort but the united states cannot and should not do this alone. it is in our interest to ensure that our bilateral programs, our programs like pepfar are complemented by an effective, efficient, and accountable global fund to fight aids malaria and tuberculosis. the pepfar stewardship and oversight act of 2013 provides a framework for the continuation of pepfar success and among other things, this legislation locks in important social values provisions, mandated in the 2004 and 2008 bills that should be jettisonned if we don't move forward with this legislation. it improves transparency and reporting in a way that replects the current direction of the program and it extends limitations on u.s. participation in the global fund, including a 33% limitation on u.s. contributions and a 20% withholding requirement linked
to transparency and management reforms at the global fund. so this bill members is time sensitive. during the week of december 1, the global fund will convene a donors conference. without the 33% cap and 20% withholding requirements firmly in place which is what the bill does, the ability of the united states to leverage both our contributions and our reforms would be diminished. soy urge my colleagues to support this important timely measure and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: i rise in strongport of s. 1545 the pepfar stewardship and oversight act and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: thank you, mr. speaker. i echo the words of my friend. this important legislation which passed the senate by unanimous
consent re-authorizes key authorities that helped the president's plan for emergency aids releaf pepfar, changed the trajectory of the aids epidemic around the world. before president bush anouned pepfar in his 2003 state of the union address and congress passed authorizing legislation in may of that year, h.i.v. and aids were ravaging the continent of africa. by then, more than 25 million people had died from hiv-aids and 14 million children had been left as orphans. another 42 million people were infected an though life-saving treatments had been developed, far too many people no access to the medications necessary to save their lives. therefore pepfar became and remains the largest commitment by any nation to combat a single disease internationally. today nearly six million people are receiving life-sustaining
anti-retroenvironment treatments. more than 11 million receiving treatment were pregnant women and as a result of treatment the one millionth baby was born h.i.v. free this year. aids is no longer threatening to wipe out an entire yen ration of the continue then of africa. a sustained effort by the united states has made it possible for experts and researchers to talk about achieving an aids-free yen ration. pepfar is in the midst of an important transaction as they take on greater ownership of h.i.v.-aids program. as at this critical juncture it's an important demonstration of our ongoing, bipartisan support for the fight against h.i.v.-aids. this legislation also contains critical provisions that will enable congress to provide the oversight necessary to ensure pepfar cons to save millions of lives while protecting our
taxpayers' hard earned money. the bill calls if continued coordination by the inspectors general for the state department, department of health and human services and u.s. agency for international development in conducting audits and oversight of the pepfar program. it requires a more robust annual report from the office of the global aids coordinator which will ensure better accountability. this legislation also extends key finding requirements for treatment and care portion of the program as well as funding for orphans and vulnerable children. historically the united states contribution to the global fund has been capped at 33% of total contributions. this cap has been an effective tool to leverage contribution from other countries as well as push for reforms as necessary within the global fund. however, when pepfar's authorization ended at the end of september, this 33% cap lapsed as well. i believe it's crucial that this
33% cap be reinstated going into the global fund replenishment conference which will be the first week of -- which will be held the first week of december here in washington and this legislation would accomplish this important policy objective. mr. speaker, by all accounts, pepfar has been an incredible success and a program we should all be proud to be part of. i would like to thank am bass -- the ambassador for his hardwork on manufacture of pepfar and his lifelong dedication to those living with hiv-aids. i commend chairman royce, representative lee and representative ros-lehtinen as well as nart menendez and senator corker for their hard work on this legislation. it has been a pleasure working with all of them in such a bipartisan and bicameral manner. i would like to thank the house leadership for allowing this to come to the floor in a timely
manner and again, i think chairman royce and i have shown that bipartisanship does exist in this congress. it certainly exists on our foreign affairs committee and this is a product of that bipartisan comity. so i urge my colleagues to support this legislation and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: it's my honor to give four minutes of time to congresswoman barbara lee of california who has been so instrumental in fighting for this legislation and other aids legislation for so many years in the congress. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for four minutes. ms. lee: thank you very much. first, let me thank our ranking member for yielding but also let me just thank you so much for your tremendous leadership on
this issue and on the foreign affair committees and for your recognition and hard work in achieving and seeking to achieve an aids-free generation. i want to say it's a pleasure to be with you today and to be back with you today, actually work the committee that i served on for eight years system of thank you again so much. let me also thank the chair of the foreign affairs committee, chairman royce, for ensuring that pepfar continues as a bipartisan effort. and for your commitment to an aids-free generation. i just want to thank you for that leadership because you know oftentimes we wonder if there is bipartisanship in this body and i think today once again we can fight. when it comes to saving lives, pepfar is a clear example of how to work together to do just that. i need to thank, must thank my co-chair on the congressional h.i.v.-aids caucus, congresswoman ileana
ros-lehtinen of florida. i have to thank her for her work on hiv-aids initiatives. i'm proud to have played a role in the creation of pepfar and proud of the leadership of the congressional black caucus and our chair at that time, congresswoman eddie bernice johnson. even before the world knew about this program congresswoman johnson knew the importance of presidential leadership and put this on the congressional black caucus' agenda during our first meeting with president bush. to quote from a 2002 letter to president bush, the c.b.c. called for an expanded united states initiative to respond to the greatest plague in recorded history and then following that in president bush's 2003 state of the union speech he laid out what this important initiative should look like and made a serious commitment to this effort. . we've worked closely with the late chairman hyde, chairman
lantos as well as senator kerry, former the late senator jesse helms, senator bill frist, congressman jim leach, congressman mcdermott, so many and i share this because i think it's important that this body recognize that the history of thises that been bipartisan -- of this has been bipartisan because we kept our eye on the prize. we knew that we wanted to save lives and we wanted to see an aids-free generation and so many people, so many members of this body, so many outside organizations and our staff have worked so hard to get us to this point. and so now, a decade later, i'm especially proud once again to be a co-author of the bill before us today. as i said, this is a bipartisan compromise. and in the end i think we have a very good bill. we agreed on the need to protect funding for h.i.v. treatment and programs for orphans and vulnerable children. we agreed on the need to preserve support and extend the expired 33% cap on united
states contributions to the global fund. this cap is a proven tool for leveraging donor funding and is especially important as the united states prepares to host the fourth replenishment conference on the global fund or for the global fund next month. our bill also updates the annual report to better guide pepfar's transition toward greater country ownership while enhancing oversight. and i'm especially pleased that we included reporting requirements on efforts to engage key stakeholders, including faith-based organizations and united states minority-serving institutions. i can tell you as a member of the appropriations committee pepfar has transitioned from, and this is very important and i want to thank our ranking member engel and our chairman once again, mr. royce, for helping us realize the need for transition from an emergency response to a means of supporting country leadership in their work toward an
aids-free generation. so this bill will fundamentally help continue to move our programs in that direction. may i have an additional 30 seconds? the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for an additional 30 seconds. ms. lee: thank you very much. i just want to thank the ambassador for his tremendous leadership, who actually lives in my congressional district in northern california. also the doctor who now leads the global fund and so many more. pepfar has supported nearly six million people on life-saving treatment, more than 11 million pregnant women who have received h.i.v. testing and counseling, and one million babies born h.i.v.-free this year. so this bill represents the real achievements that we can make when we put aside our differences and work together to achieve an aids-free generation. thank you again. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. >> thank you mr. speaker.
it's my great honor now to yield one minute to the gentlewoman from california, our democratic leader, who i think has done more than anyone else to fight for these things, from almost the time that she came to congress, leader pelosi. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized for one minute. ms. pelosi: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding and for his kind words. it's just that i've been here for such a long time. when i first came to congress, the mere mention of the word aids on the floor was something i thought was the most natural thing to do. but some of our colleagues squirmed at and we've come indeed a long way from that time. and so today is a proud day. it's democrats and republicans coming together to extend and re-authorize our efforts to fight the global hiv-aids and infectious diseases in the poorest countries around the world. thank you, chairman royce, and ranking member engel, for working together to bring this important legislation to the
floor today. and thank you congresswoman barbara lee, for your unwavering leadership on these issues since day one, that you came to the congress. so many of our colleagues deserve recognition and you acknowledged some of them. i will just add that this marks the 10th anniversary of the historic tom lantos-henry hyde-u.s. global leadership against aids, t.b. and malaria act. this legislation has been the foundation of the u.s. initiative to provide sustained, constructive leadership in the global fight against aids. the original pepfar authorizing legislation followed by the excellent work of the appropriations committee over the last decade has provided life-saving, antiretroviral treatment care and prevention for millions of people especially focused on the most vulnerable infants and children. have traveled on this aids issue for a very long time in
our country and abroad and i've seen firsthand the difference that pepfar has made. i've been to clinics where certainly you have, mr. mcdermott, congresswoman lee, and others who are here, congresswoman -- the head of the congressional black caucus congresswoman christensen and now newer members mr. himes i see there, hopefully going to speak on this and david, thank you for your leadership. but there's so many people because what was wonderful about it is we went to places where people were so poor and so desperate and so -- but they were not desperate that they were not without hope. and pepfar gave them hope. because they said, originally we wouldn't even want anybody to know that we had aids. why would we even be tested for aids? people found out that we had
aids but why would we come to a clinic, what hope did we have? well, pepfar gave them hope. it gave them a path. and so today we know and congresswoman lee mentioned, some of the figures, some bear repeating and some others i will mention, treatment for over five million people, antiretroviral drugs for 750,000 pregnant women living with h.i.v. to prevent mother-to-child transmission of h.i.v. averted 230,000 infant h.i.v. infections in 2012 alone. h.i.v. testing and counseling for almost 47 million people. and this year the one millionth baby will be born h.i.v.-free because of the pepfar support. that means a child that might have been born h.i.v.-infected -- the congresswoman says that the doctor lives in her district. his parents and where he was raised was in my district.
so we all take great pride in his work. over the years we've made tremendous progress. first with president clinton. we increased the bilateral programs to fight hiv-aids and we authorized the global fund. then under the leadership of president bush and this has to be a source of great pride to president bush, an important part of his legacy, we established pepfar and provided the necessary funding to ramp up the emergency response to the crisis. i might add a thank you to bono for his role that he played in, again, ramping up the resources and making sure the public understood as did those of us in elective office, and especially in the executive branch where maybe this was a newer issue to them, that we needed to have the resources to make this happen. thank you, bono. not only did he help us with the loan forgiveness to some of
these same countries but now to the alleviation of poverty the eradcation of disease, that was his -- that is part of his agenda and he worked with us to enhance our efforts. president obama has provided leadership as well and has established to strengthen those efforts and boosted our investments to put us on the brink of an aids-free generation. president obama also is to be commended for lifting the travel ban on those with h.i.v., enabling the international aids conference to return to the united states in 2012. i remember as a brand new member attending the conference in, what 1987, where this ban was in existence. it was an embarrassment, that scientists could not come here or people coming here with hiv-aids, from whom we could learn, and there could be scientific collaboration, well, that was not allowed because of the travel ban. but thank you, president obama, for lifting it so that we can
have a truly scientific, truly comprehensive conference in 2012, in the united states, very proudly. today the congress will pass legislation to extend our global aids investment, even in these difficult fiscal times. we know that cutting back is a false economy, that costs more in the future. hiv-aids is still adapting and so must we. it's a very resourceful virus. it just keeps finding ways mutating and finding ways and we have to be as resourceful or more resourceful in our fight against it. i thank you to the authors of the legislation, to the ranking for bringing the bill to the floor, for adopting our policies to meet the continued challengeses i poasted by aids t.b., ma liquoria and dead -- malaria and deadly diseases around the world. i'm so pleased that we will
probably have a unanimous vote on this important bill and that is indeed an honor to be a part of. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: thank you mr. speaker. i now yield two minutes to the gentleman from rhode island, a very valued member of the foreign affairs committee, mr. cicilline. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from rhode island is recognized for two minutes. mr. cicilline: i thank the gentleman for yielding and i thank chairman royce and ranking member engel, leader pelosi, and my colleague, congresswoman lee, for your strong leadership. as a long-time advocate for a strong government response to the hiv-aids public health crisis in my home state of rhode island, and now as a member of the house foreign affairs committee, i rise today to strongly support the president's emergency plan for aids relief re-authorization. this year we mark the 10th anniversary of pepfar, which is always enjoyed -- which has always enjoyed broad bipartisan support. first in 2003 there was bipartisan support for
addressing this public health emergency, then in 2008 in response to some progress pepfar transitioned into a more sustainable program with greater country ownership. over the past decade, pepfar has significantly expanded access to antiviral therapy from those suffering from h.i.v. and aids which has led to a decrease in deaths from devastating disease all around the world. we've made real progress because of pepfar and we must remain vigilant and build upon this progress. the fight is not over. according to the world health organization, to date almost 70 million people have been infected with the h.i.v. virus and about 35 million have died of aids. it's critical that the united states continued to be a leader in an increasingly international effort to eradicate this disease. mr. speaker, the role of the united states remains critical to combating the worldwide h.i.v. and aids epidemic and the pepfar stewardship and oversight act is a necessary and commonsense piece of legislation. this bill extends vital authority and strengthens oversight of the pepfar program
and most importantly the bill would also extend the 33% limitation on u.s. contributions to the global fund. this cap has proven to be an effective tool for leveraging funding from other donor countries. just 30 years ago we knew almost nothing about h.i.v. and aids. and we were not able to treat those who were suffering from this disease. to have made such progress since then is remarkable. and it's a real testament to what we can achieve when we work together in a bipartisan way. i urge my colleagues to vote yes and to continue our efforts toward an aid-free generation which for the first time may be within our reach. thank you and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: thank you mr. speaker. i now yield two minutes to the gentleman from washington, mr. mcdermott, a classmate of mine. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is recognized for two minutes. mr. mcdermott: request to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered,
the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. mcdermott: mr. speaker, i associate myself with all the remarks of my friends. we have had a remarkable occurrence in this -- in my time in the congress. this was once a death sentence. today we are on the verge of being able to produce an aids-free generation. we're great and always excited when we do something new big and exciting but maintaining and pushing forward to finish the project is really where we are. this bill will pass without a vote against it, i'm quite sure. but the real question is, what do we put in the budget? because if we don't maintain what's going on in the world today, we will lose, we will go backward. it's like a dike that we've built and we're holding back the sea. but the fact is that if we don't have the drugs available when mothers deliver children and you can do the infant -- you can could do that intervention right at the appropriate time, you will not prevent the children from
getting it you will not be able to give the long-term care to the mothers as they raise these children. and in my view, that's really where we are. this was the crowning achievement i think, of the administration of george bush. his starting this was a statement to the world that the united states cared about an epidemic that affected the entire face of the universe. . and we've done a good job. i say this because i worry about the sequester. what does the sequester mean to this? what will be the reductions? because i'm getting calls from my friends in south africa and in zimbabwe and uganda and kenya saying how much money is there going to be next year will we be able to expand the program, will we be able to keep it the same or retrench? that's what the world is watching as we face this
upcoming vote on the budget. i hope that we have as many votes for funding the program as we do for re-authorizing it here today in this bill. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. >> thank you mr. speaker. mr. engel: i yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from the virgin islands, dr. donna christensen. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from the virgin islands is recognized for two minutes. mrs. christensen: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i rise in support of the pepfar stewardship and oversight act of 2013. this year marks the 10th anniversary of pepfar, a program that has literally saved millions of lives in africa and other hard-hit nations around the globe. thanks to pepfar, more than five million individuals have received h.i.v. and aids treatment. more than 46 million confidential h.i.v. testing and counseling and in 2012 alone
750,000 pregnant women living with h.i.v. received anti-retroviral drugs to prevent transmission to their babies. this bill builds on the enormous strides that pepfar has made in its 10 years and bolsters oversight and reporting requirements. it also includes provisions that will expand international donor support as well as continue to empower and enhance country ownership and health thus promoting sustainibility. mr. speaker, more than 1 hubbed organizations, most of which are on the frontlines fighting this pandemic across asia, africa the caribbean countries, strongly propose this bill. -- are proponents of this bill. i have seen the effectiveness firsthand. they save lives. as a physician who's practiced for more than 20 years before
coming here, i know what happens when individuals who are at great risk of h.i.v. infection don't get accurate testing, education counseling or when those who are infected do not receive anti-viral drugs. the outcome is disastrous. as a member representing the u.s. fertory in the caribbean, the second hardest hit region of h.i.v. and aids i can't tell you how strongly in passing the pepfar stewardship act is today. the lives of millions of individuals in our global community are are currently battling h.i.v. and aids depend on it and the health and wellness of millions more who are at risk of h.i.v. infection but who are currently h.i.v. free depend on it. we haven't agreed on much on health care and health care related as of late, but this is a bill we can agree on. i urge my colleagues to support this. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: mr. speaker, may i ask how much time is left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york has four minutes remaining. mr. engel: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from connecticut, mr. himes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from connecticut is recognized for two minutes. mr. himes: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you, mr. engel, for yielding. i'd like to thank the chairman and the ranking member of the foreign affairs committee for the bipartisanship with which they have led this bill and which i think we will accomplish some very good things tomorrow. the figures around this program speak for themselves. the millions of lives saved the orphanage that are no longer full, the many pregnant women that will not transmit a dead lie virus to their children this is without question pepfar and the global fund one of the most effective foreign aid programs ever conceived in this chamber. but americans might ask, in good faith why spend money in places like africa and asia and
in the caribbean when the needs are so intense right here at home? and the answer to that question could not be more clear. africa and asia, where pepfar and the global fund do the most good, are areas of great instability but of great promise. where countries like china are buying up commodities, are exerting their influence, are throwing their weight around. we have the opportunity through the continuation of programs such as pepfar and the global fund to win for generations the hearts and minds of people who will think back on american assistance as the reason that their family had continuity, as the reason that their country continue to develop. so the question we're answering when we think about continuing these programs and our involvement and our taxpayer dollars should really be, are we a country that offered the opportunity to continue to save lives, will we do that? do we want to save lives if we
can? do we want to be known just for our economic and military strengths or do we want to also be known as an unqualified force for good in this world? i would say at this point in our history, our ability to say it is not just about economic and military power, but it is about a quality of mercy that we all cherish that this is a wonderful opportunity for us to say who we are by supporting this legislation. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from connecticut's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: thank you, mr. speaker. i'm very happy to yield one minute to the gentlewoman from illinois, ms. schakowsky. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from illinois is recognized for one minute. ms. schakowsky: we can celebrate pepfar's 10 years of success in saving millions of lives by passing the bipartisan pepfar stewardship and oversight act.
nearly six million people are receiving life-sustaining anti-retroviral treatment and providing care and support to nearly -- to more than 4.5 million orphans and vulnerable children. that's pepfar. this bill extends critical authorities and strengthens programs' oversight to ensure access to essential prevention and treatment services, and most importantly, this bill extends existing requirements for treatment and -- for treatment of orphans and vulnerable children. we have brought to the world a tipping point in the fight against aids, and i urge all my colleagues to vote yes on this very important bill. i thank my colleagues like barbara lee who've supported and initiated this amazing help for saving millions of lives and thank the chairman -- the ranking member for yielding to me.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california continues to reserve. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: thank you mr. speaker. in closing, let me just again say what i said at the outset. i want to thank chairman royce and i'm really proud of this legislation. it's truly been a bipartisan product. we're doing something really, really good here today. we're doing something really, really -- that we can proud of today. we're saving lives, and we're showing once again that the united states is the most compassionate nation on earth. when all is said and done, isn't this really one of the greatest things we can do? i urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: i thank elliot engel should be proud of this bill,
he's the original author of the house-passed version, and i would say that in the interest of expediting this measure he and we in the foreign affairs committee worked frankly not only across party lines but across chambers in order to draft legislation that preserves congressional prerogatives that advances u.s. interests and as mr. engel said so sussstinketly, that saves human lives and this senate bill does that. it achieves this objectives and we worked in tandem with the senate in -- on eliot's original draft to get this done. now, this doesn't affect spending, it doesn't affect revenues. it does not create any new
policy provisions. i want the members to understand that. it is a streamlined bipartisan measure that does extend critical pepfar authorities that expired, and it maintains the gains achieved through the 2008 re-authorization process. i'd also like to recognize, besides the leadership of mr. engel on this bill the work of representative ros-lehtinen and lee to help shape this measure as well as efforts by our leadership to ensure that we do not miss this narrow window of opportunity to send this bill to the president's desk without further delay. i'd also share with our members that it helps get us on a path toward graduating countries from assistance. it conditions and limits assistance to the global fund. i urge my colleagues to support this bill, and i yield the balance of his time.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate 1545. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table.
the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house the fonl personal requests. the clerk: leave of absence requested for mr. thompson of pennsylvania after 1:30 p.m. today. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the request is granted. the gentleman will suspend. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2013, the gentleman from indiana, mr. messer, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader. mr. messer: now, thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today for an important
special order. this time to focus on republican solutions to our national health care crisis. the president's health care law has hurt more people than it's helped. taxes are going up, premiums are rising to unaffordable levels workers' hours are being cut, and people are losing the plans they like. after more than $500 million spent, the website doesn't even work. the truth is that despite all these problems the american people needed genuine health care reform before president obama signed his signature law, and we still do. the american people deserve an tesht to the failures of the president's health care law, and we have one -- the
affordable health care reform act. this important bill replaces the president's health care law with patient-centered reforms that genuinely lower costs while keeping you in charge of your health care. i have a few colleagues here with me today to join in this conversation and certainly would like to start by recognizing congressman barton. thank you for your leadership on this important issue. mr. barton: well thank you. i want to recognize your leadership and republican study committee and the health task force on preparing the legislation that you just referred to. i'm the past chairman of the energy and commerce committee, the past ranking member of that committee, and when the affordable care act came through the congress, i was the senior republican on the committee of jurisdiction. i don't want to tell you and
the american people i told you so, but i told you so. we knew that this wasn't going to work. just for example, we had a hearing today about the affordable care act in the energy and commerce subcommittee on oversight and investigation and it was focusing on the security of the website and all the problems and when the administration knew about those problems and what they did or didn't do but in the course of that hearing congressman cory gardner of colorado, was asking the senior civil servant, mr. chao from c.m.s. about some questions and the gentleman from c.m.s. just kind of off the cuff said 60% to 70% of the programs haven't been developed yet 60% to 70%,
and congressman gardner followed up and said, what are you talking about? he said, all we're working on right now is the website to get people registered. we haven't done anything or we we haven't completed that portion of the program about billing, that portion about counting for treatment, how we interact with the hospitals and the patients and the doctors basically 60% to 70% of the system hasn't been programmed yet. can you imagine can you imagine if we're having the who are endouse problems of getting people interacted with making choices of which kine of coverage they are going to choose, the problems that you
have when you have to actually use the system for real health care in january. you and other members of the subcommittee are talking about the legislation. i think we're going to begin to push to delay the affordable care act. i have a bill h.r. 3348, that makes it voluntary the first year that we aren't going to impose the individual mandate on people. the president has already made the employer mandate -- he's delayed that for a year. and my bill would delay the individual mandate so as we work to solve the problems, people can choose to participate or choose not to participate. but i think it is becoming more apparent every day that the
affordable care act is like that shiny automobile that you go into the show room or the car lot and you see it and the salesman says, this thing is great. it gets 30 miles a gallon it doesn't use much oil. everything is power steering and great stereo system, so you put your downpayment and take it down the road and son of a gun, the thing doesn't go above 50 and burns oil like it's going out of style, the air conditioning doesn't work the stereo system doesn't work, it's just a lemon. the affordable care act is a lemon and the democrats who voted for it are having remorse. so what we need to do is delay it repeal it or at least make it voluntary and look at some of
these alternatives like the legislation we put into play where we give people real choices where it is a patient-centered client-centered system and allow insurance to be sold across state lines. we beef up affordable health savings accounts. we do cover pre-existing conditions and you'll talk about that later on, but we do it with the high-risk pool on a state-by-state basis. the democrats have told us time after time in the general debate you republicans are just against the affordable care act but you don't have an alternative. but we have an alternative. and i think it's a good alternative. i'm a sponsor of the legislation and i'm here to support you in this special order and as we go
through and outline what's in it, i think the american people and other members of the house that are watching these proceedings, i think more and more of them will say we don't like that lemon that we have, maybe we ought to go back and maybe we ought to start over and maybe some of these ideas in the alternative, we should take a serious look at. i commend you for your work on the legislation and for leading this special order this evening. >> i appreciate your long-standing leadership on this issue. and as you have said no one wants to say i told you so, but what's unfolded in the most recent weeks and months is what was present predicted. mr. messer: you could see from the beginning the bill was
fundamentally flawed. i would like to cite numbers the number 701, that's the number of hoosiers who have successfully signed up for health insurance on the affordable care act exchanges according to the department of health and human services. and indiana isn't alone states across the country are experiencing dismal enrollment numbers, what's worst millions of americans, are getting policy cancellation notice from their health insurance companies. these notice are coming at a faster rate than people are able to sign up through the hell care plans under the president's health care bill. the president called a press conference once again last week to announce to the american people, that if you like your
health care plan, you can keep it. no matter how many times the president makes that promise, the promise still isn't true. saying the promise over and over again doesn't magicically make it true. one of my constituents, michael sturg is of greens burg, called to let me know he received a cancellation letter from his cancellation company. he was told his monthly premium was going to increase from $397 a month to $831 a month, almost $500 increase per month. his $5,000 deductible will now go up to $7,300. we are spending more money for a plan that gives him less.
this is unacceptable and it is certainly not affordable. that's why we need to pass the american health care reform act. so people like michael and the millions of americans like him all across this country can remain in charge of their own health care. and now i would like to recognize a colleague of mine, another person who has shown great leadership on this important issue and close personal friend of mine as well the gentleman from north carolina mr. meadows. mr. meadows: i thank the gentleman for representing the great people of the state of indiana and on a daily basis we have had conversations a number of times not only how this health care law is affecting families but we must find a way to work together to stop the harmful effects on those men and
women that we call neighbors friends and constituents. i thank the gentleman for yielding and americans across the country are feeling the impacts of obamacare. than and many of them are fearful of what lies ahelp. and i know in my state alone, we have had 470,000 people that lost their health care coverage due to obamacare and they keep asking what's coming next what's the next thing, whether it's a web site that doesn't work whether it's cancellation policies or security concerns. they are concerns. i held a town hall meeting last night and 85% 85% of the callers' questions were all related to obamacare. i never seen it overwhelmingly lopsided on one issue. it was the families of western north carolina.
i had veterans asking me does this mean i'm going to lose my health care coverage, is tricare going to be sucked into the obamacare. and even though we mad promises to the contrary, there is a real move afoot to minimize and bring it down. so our commitment to our veterans is one that has to stay strong and i know you gee with me on that particular issue. there was a wife who was worried about how she and her husband were going to be able to afford the premiums because their premiums tripled. and then i have business owners who employs between 26 and 28 people and he said i'm not sure how we are going to be able to continue to provide health care coverage as premiums escalate and it is about trying to make sure i keep them gainfully employed and i'm trying to
figure out how to pay for these premiums that have increased. these are real people. this is not politics. they have faces and names and we've got to address it. people across the country have become gravely concerned. and recent polls showed more than 58% of the people believe that obamacare is not ready for prime time. and despite this overwhelming stress over obamacare the one question i continue to hear is, well, what's your solution? many of the democrats claim that republicans only want to repeal the law rather than trying to fix it, but i can tell you that's not the case. because even in this congress, republicans have offered over 102 bills to fix some of the problems with the affordable care act while the democrats have only offered 17 solutions. now, last week we passed one of the solutions, keep your health plan act to make sure that if
you like your health care plan, you can keep it. much more needs to be done. the american health care reform act that you were talking about now has over 102 co-sponsors. it's a comprehensive solution that's put forth by house republicans to address the serious problems that we have in our nation's health care system. it is a multi-faceted piece of legislation that provides array of reforms and lower costs something that the current bill doesn't do. we talk about affordable care but it hasn't really been lowering the costs but this one keeps it patient-centered and allows it to make sure that health care is a decision between a patient and a doctor and not the government and the patient so it provides tax reform for companies and families and levels the playing field for providing health care for all americans. fully repeals the president's health care law and eliminates
billions in taxes, thousands of pages of unworkable mandates that we are only now starting to find out what the implications are. it spurs competition to lower health care costs. we know that competition will do that. and yet, it allows for the purchase of health insurance across state lines enabling businesses to kind of pool together, small businesses to lower the health care costs. but it's really about reforming what we're seeing. it reforms medical malpractice laws in commonsense way that limits trial lawyers' fees but yet at the same time, does not diminish the protection for our patients if something were to go wrong. and it expands health savings accounts, something that increases the ability for pre-tax dollars to make sure what they can do is use those dollars to provide for their health care expenses. ultimately it's a safeguard.
it safeguards us against the pre-existing conditions. i know you have heard from your constituents and mine that one of the good things about the affordable care act it makes sure the pre-existing conditions are kfered covered this does the same thing and makes sure they are protected and making sure that the high-risk pools are extended and availability, the protection that many americans depend on and need. i want to thank your leadership on this particular issue. i believe it's time we worked together in a bipartisan way to fix this problem piece of legislation. we have put forth a proposal. i urge my colleagues across the aisle to join us and i thank you for your leadership in highlighting this this evening and i yield back. mr. messer: i appreciate the gentleman and his leadership. i'm sure you have been asked by many, both privately and publicly the same thing i have been asked, well aren't you rooting for obamacare to fail?
the comment i make no, i'm rooting for the millions of americans who are now being harmed by this bill. all the moms and dads are worried that are going to have insurance that had it before the people that were promised would magicically have insurance and now they're not getting it. and the areas across the country where there were promises that rates would go down and rates are go willing up, these folks now are calling this plan and i do think we have a responsibility -- you and i both know, anybody who has been following here, we were opposed to obamacare and led efforts along with many others to try to make sure that we didn't have it. but we also have always recognized that the status quo wasn't acceptable in health care, that while we have a lot of great things in our system, certainly some of the best health care treatment in the
world, we have a program that was unaffordable and rates were going up. we have free enterprise parblete-centered based solutions that can make a difference and i appreciate your leadership. . . i know i have physicians in north carolina who are looking at retiring dealing with the bureaucracy of this law. we have hospitals who thought it would be a great advantage covering those costs that are looking and saying the implementation of it is really what we're promised and getting may not be exactly the same. mr. meadows: so we need to make sure that we right this ship, that we do what's right. i'm honored to be able to co-sponsor this legislation with you and look forward to your leadership. i thank you. mr. messer: thanks again. thank you very much. for months the president has unilaterally enacted
modifications, repeals and delays to his own law. yet, none of those so-called fixes have fixed this flawed law. health care costs have continued to skyrocket. this is a huge burden on employers, individuals and families. the american health care reform act will drive down the cost of health care through increased competition. individuals will be able to purchase health insurance across state lines, and as my colleague highlighted, businesses can pool together to get the same buying power as large corporations. under the american health care reform act, families will have the flexibility to pick the coverage that best fits their needs. when people are in charge of their own health care, they become better consumers, which will encourage competition in the health care market.
real savings will only happen when people not washington bureaucrats, are in charge of their own health care. and next up i'd like to highlight a real leader on this important issue of providing an alternative to the failed programs of the president's health care law, my friend and colleague from louisiana, the chairman or -- chairman of the republican study committee, mr. scalise. great to have you here. mr. scalise: i want to thank my friend and colleague, mr. messer from indiana, for yielding and for your leadership and talking about this on the house floor. you know i think a lot of us over those last few years that this law's been on the books while we've been pointing out all of the many problems that it's creating for families and unfortunately we saw this coming, the train wreck, as it's called, by the lead sponsor in the senate who rammed the bill through, called it a train wreck recently because he acknowledged how
devastating this would be. the president, we all remember that promise that was repeated time and time again, if you like what you have you can keep it, something we allem braced. of course i knew you knew, so many of us knew, i think the president knew unfortunately, that he was making the promise time and time again over the last three years that that promise could not be met. the government bureaucrats that come between patients and doctors and getting the middle of health care and i.r.s. agents coming with a hammer to enforce this law, we all knew, we saw there would no way people would keep the health care they like. it wasn't real until recently when millions, millions of families started getting cancellation notices, losing the good health care they have today and enjoyed. i know i've gotten letters from so many of my constituents. we reached out through social media through facebook and twitter, share with steve, and
i remember shawn from covington who said i'm losing the good health care. i posed the question to secretary sebelius, a guy in my district, we are hearing this over and over again, what do you tell them? go to the marketplace. not one person's been held accountable, by the way, for that failure. as we point out all these failures we say there is a better way. we as conservatives said we ought to put on paper what we are for market-driven health care that will increase access. we put it together in a bill called the american health care reform act h.r. 3121 a bill you can look up and read, a bill less than 200 pages long with all the great reforms in it comparing and contrasting that to the president's health care law with over 2,700 pages, all these unworkable mandates. what the bill does is basic
commonsense reforms that should have been done years ago. allow people buy across state lines. people -- americans are probably the best consumers in the world with the internet with so many options people go online every day to find good products for their family. it's good for their family they're going to buy it. really with health care you don't really have that opportunity. and so the health care law has taken those options away from families. and so what we say is, let's empower people again. let's put patients in charge of their health care solutions. i'm from louisiana. if i found a better plan in the state of maryland, i can go buy that plan. right now i really can't. you do that with car insurance and so many other products you're able to buy across state lines and it gives you so many opportunities. we do so many things to make sure that people with pre-existing conditions can't be discriminated against, allowing small businesses to pool together. this is a bill that's been put together by conservatives in the house. in fact, a number of medical
doctors, actual medical doctors, people with real-world experience in health care that helped draft this bill and ultimately we brought it forward and we have over 100 co-sponsors. i think the momentum is building as the president's law continues to collapse and his credibility collapses with it. people i think are looking for that better way and we have it with the american health care reform act. again, i thank the gentleman from indiana for his leadership. i yield back. mr. messer: i certainly appreciate the gentleman from louisiana and his leadership. i know you were quoted over the weekend on fox news by george will describing that the tragic circumstances that most americans see themselves in, those that have lost their health care plan and so i'd like you to expand on that a little bit, if you don't mind. mr. scalise: sure. they referred to people's plans that had good plans. they refer to many of them as lousy plans. i've been in hearings where we
had obama administration officials, in fact, the president himself goes around chastising people saying, yeah, you might be losing your plan but it probably not that good of plan anyway. who is it -- who is it for the president to say that shawn's plan was lowsing when shawn liked his -- lousy when shawn liked his plan? the president wasn't, if barack obama likes the plan you can keep it. the promise was if you like your plan you can keep it. no bureaucratic or i.r.s. agent should be able to take that away from you. as that was happening and berating people, your plan wasn't that good, it was a lousy plan it's a guy that burns down your house and shows up with an empty bucket of water and gives you a lecture on how bad and lousy your house was before the fire. all you want is your house back. you didn't want somebody to burn it down in the first place. people just want their good health care. they sure don't want to be lectured by some bureaucrat or
politician in washington saying, hey, your plan wasn't really that good because i don't think it was that good when in fact the person back home said it was good for my family. my doctor can go see my kids and i want to continue that relationship with my doctor, and they're about to lose it. and they're losing it with these washington politicses who helped ram this bill through -- politicians who helped ram this bill through. as why the president's law collapses, we need to put up an alternative and we have an alternative called the american health care reform act. we want to help, bail those people out with a real bucket of water and a real relief sign that there is something that we're doing, not only to point out how bad the law is, they're seeing it play out every day, but actually how we can fix the problems that are becoming even worse because of this law. mr. messer: again, i thank the gentleman, thank your leadership. as we talked about before, the american people needed health
care reform before the disaster of obamacare rolled out. obviously we need it now more than ever, given the failings of recent days. and h.r. 3121, the american health care reform act, is an answer. there are several principles upon which we should all be able to agree when it comes to genuine health care reform. first, patients should not be denied health insurance because of pre-existing conditions. second, any federal policy changes must be designed to drive costs down, not up as we've seen under the affordable -- so-called affordable care act. third, you should be able to keep your health care plan if you like it. and i agree with former president bill clinton when he has said that given that very clear promise that was made by
president obama on behalf of the federal government to the american people, we need to pass legislation -- we've already passed a bill in the house. we need to pass legislation to make sure that promise is kept. if we need -- we do need commonsense medical liability reform. it puts an end to the expensive system of defensive medicine that we have now. health care decisions should be left up to you and your doctor, not washington bureaucrats. the american health care reform act is centered on these five principles. frivolous lawsuits are driving up health care costs and forcing good doctors out of the medical field. the american health care reform act improves medical liability
law. frankly, indiana has been a leader in this area because of leadership from former governor doc bowen, a physician back in the 1960's, the indiana medical malpractice reform approach would be a great federal model. and its principles from that plan are part of h.r. 3121, which we're talking about today. we need improved medical liability law that allows doctors to continue practicing medicine without fear of excessive and unfair penalties. i'd also like to talk to you a little bit about the importance of medical savings accounts. fellow hoosier pat rooney is known as the father of health savings accounts from his work as the president and c.e.o. of golden rule. they were established in 2003
while pat rooney was the chairman of the golden rule insurance company. pat believed people should own their own health care. health savings accounts have proven to be a useful tool for individuals and families while navigating the health care system. our plan h.r. 3121 expands health savings accounts and enhances their performance by increasing the cap on contributions and expanding the allowable uses of health savings accounts' funds. this gives people more control over how they spend their health care doctors and allows them to invest pretax dollars toward their future health care needs.
mr. speaker, no one doubts that real reform is needed, but there are two distinct visions for the future of health care in our nation. the president's plan expands the federal government's role in health care, raises taxes and imposes unfair and unworkable mandates on the american people. our plan h.r. 2121 -- 3121 the american health care reform act, puts people in charge of their own health care. it encourages competition to lower costs and expand coverage. american families, businesses and individuals deserve real solutions to the very serious problems that exist in health care in america today. the american health care reform
act provides a path to true reform. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from illinois seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to talk about the devastating tornado that hit my area. the tornado which has been classified hit speeds up to 190
miles an hour. a city was hit especially hard. more than 200 structures in the city of 35,000 people were damaged and 75 homes were left unhabitable. many people lost not only their homes but their possessions. gary and his wife were in church on sunday when the tornado hit. they took shelter in the hallway. when they were able to drive safely back home, they didn't even recognize their house. much of the roof was gone, and battered car lay in the rubble. the people of illinois are generous and compassionate people as well as resilient and hard working. i have no doubt we will recover from this storm. but this type of disaster to happen anywhere. as we continue to debate the issues of the day i call on all
of us to think of people who hit hard by natural disasters. we owe it to them. mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 3 2013, the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader. mr. garamendi: mr. speaker, thank you very much for this
opportunity. i usually, at least once a week we come before the house to talk about jobs, that little four-letter word that is so important on everybody's mind. can i get a job what does it take to get a job in america? we have high unemployment and still have a great need to make sure that our jobs produce the kind of wages and opportunities that americans really want and want to be able to buy a home, have a car, raise their family and provide the necessities and see their kids get a great education and opportunity. we still have a ways to go. one of the critical ways in which america can and must build jobs is to build the infrastructure, to make sure that those foundations upon which the economy will grow, upon which cities will be built those things that allow us to prosper, critical investments,
in this case, the physical investments. the issue we are going to talk about today. we have an opportunity, beginning tomorrow, a conference committee will be formed here in the capitol, made up of senators republican and dem cat and members of the house of representatives -- democrat and members of the house of representatives sitting down together, tomorrow morning 9:30, to begin a conference committee on the water resource development act otherwise known as wrda. the rest of the world needs to know it is the water resource reform development act. 13 million jobs in america depend on how well that conference committee does its
work. the house of representatives put out its version of the bill, the senate did several months ago. senator boxer from california, will be chairing that committee, and we have work to do. we have the task of making sure that 13 million american jobs that depend upon the water resources reform and development act will be secure. it's a big one. what is involved in the water resource development act? well, how about this? 99% of america's international trade travels through our parts and waterways. that's a big number. i suppose there are is some 1% travel on airplanes and those are high-ticket items. but if you are talking about the majority of america's work goes
through our ports and waterways. and this is what the water resource development act. it's about our great ports, waterways in america. about the dams on the rivers. let me put this up for just a second. an interesting map. i don't know if many americans have considered the map of the united states and the waters of the united states. obviously, the coastline, we don't have alaska on this map, but it should be there also. the great east coast golf coast, pacific coast and on and around alaska. that's not all. each of these rivers also is a waterway upon which commerce flows. and tomorrow with the conference committee, the wrrda bill, we will be discussing how to make
these rivers more attune to the environment and to commerce. on the great mississippi river missouri, the ohio and illinois river and all the way up into wisconsin, the enormous amount of america's commerce flows on those rivers and joining me will be a representative from illinois, representative mr. enyart:. but this great river system is the highway, the major highway of america. there are interstate records tobacco sure and local and county roads but most of them feed into this great system that moves up and down the mississippi river. the water resource development act is all about that. it's all about that commerce on that great river and about whether the lox and levees are
-- lochs and levees are adequate. for those of us on the west coast and east coast and even into the gulf of mexico, it's about the ports, it's about the ports of america and whether those ports are adequate for the commerce that we need to have. so when you happen to go by a port and you see one of these tied up at the dock you can think about the american economy and about 99% of the international trade that goes in and out of our ports. it's a big deal. it is a very, very big deal. and most of america's ports are old. they are the shoals, the mud and sand at the bottom of the ports that has built up over the last several years and needs constant dredging.
part of what we will be dealing with at the wrrda conference are the ports and the shore side. these are subjects that we'll come to in the next few minutes as we talk more about how we can build jobs in america and at the same time building the american economy and infrastructure. you see all those rivers there, critically important -- critically important for commerce and trade and obviously water and agriculture and all the rest, but sometimes virtually every year, they are also a major problem for america. this happens to be a picture of a levee break on the sacramento river system, which i happen to represent, 200 miles of the
sacramento river. this break is all too common across america. so the water resource development act, which will be up tomorrow in the conference committee, not going to being finished, but will make some progress towards completion, will deal with the levees. the army corps of engineers is responsible -- the responsible federal agency for the maintenance of the rivers, for the waters of america, whether they are on the rivers or along the shore, they are responsible for the ports, that is for the maintenance of the ports, not the ports themselves, and in my district, the army corps of engineers plays a major role in public safety, because it's their responsibility to make sure these levees are adequate with the challenge of a flood. and when those levees aren't adequate, great damage is done across america. it's probably about 22 -- $22.3
billion of annual, unspent american treasure that is still in the pockets of america and the governments of america when these levees work. when they fail, a huge expense. floods flood damage and the like. i would like to call on my colleague, mr. mr. enyart: from illinois to share with us his view for the water resource reform development act and the way it helps and protects his district. if you would come up and join us. mr. enyart: i thank the gentleman from california for his time to speak about the importance of the water resources development act. mr. garamendi was talking about the coast, east coast and west coast and great coastlines of
our nation and i like to tell folks out here that i represent the west coast of illinois. and i get a strange look when i say that and sometimes a chuckle, but i represent the westernmost of illinois, river counties reaching from alton, know to cairo, illinois. and that piece encompasses the economic highway that is the economic backbone of our inland agriculture industry, indeed, all of our inland industries. the illinois river, which transits from the mississippi up to the great lakes, flows into the mississippi directly across from my district, the missouri river feeds into the mississippi. and then as you go downstream, the mississippi and the ohio converge at the very southern tip at cairo, illinois.
so we understand in southern illinois the importance of these river systems. we understand the importance of port authorities. port authorities are not just limited to los angeles and new york and the east and west coast or the gulf coast, but they are very important to our inland maritime industry also. back when i serve as the commanding general for the illinois national guard, i had the unfortunate problem of dealing with floods on the mississippi and on the ohio and back when i was a young officer we had a terrible flood of 1993, and 2008 and 2011 and last winter, we had the terrible drought that dropped the river levels and the mississippi was so low that it nearly stopped navigation on the river. so we need to work on this infrastructure for the three
reasons that i ran for congress. when i ran for congress, i said i ran for jobs, jobs and jobs. and this is what this is about. when the rivers started drying up and the drought hit and the barges couldn't transit the mississippi and having to go up and down the mississippi with much lighter loads it did several things to impact our economy. first of all, the barges couldn't transport nearly as much corn or soybeans. and the world's corn supply was less than 30 days. 30 days for the entire world. the world needed that corn from illinois and from iowa, the dakotas and missouri. that corn gets shipped on the mississippi river and the missouri river. and when that river was drying up, that corn didn't flow. and coming upstream is the oil that goes into the refineries at
wood river illinois. the steel that gets processed at the steel mills in atlantaon illinois and granite city illinois. and the fertilizer that goes on the fields throughout southern and central illinois. there are several provisions in this bill that passed through the senate that we think need to be added to the house bill that would help those navigation requirements on the mississippi river. . additional we have provisions in the bill that would improve the levee system. the levee system is critical not only throughout my district, but indeed up and down the rivers because of the problems with flood insurance. i have families who have lived for generations in homes located near the missi
IN COLLECTIONSCSPAN Television Archive Television Archive News Search Service The Chin Grimes TV News Archive
Uploaded by TV Archive on