The Senate Is Not In Session
Senate Session - January 19, 2018

In a 50-49 vote, the Senate failed to invoke cloture on a bill to avert a government shutdown. Republican Senators Mike Lee (UT), Jeff Flake (AZ), Lindsey Graham (SC), and Rand Paul (KY) and all but five Democrats voted against the measure. The five Democrats voting “no” were Joe Donnelly (IN), Claire McCaskill (M), Joe Manchin (WV), Heidi Heitkamp (ND), and Doug Jones (AL).Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) voted against the bill for procedural reasons.

A three-week stopgap measure that would have funded the government through February 8 also failed.

Speakers:
Time
Action
  • 10:59:23 AM

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    C-SPAN2.

  • 11:00:11 AM

    THE PRESIDENT PRO TEMPORE

    THE SENATE WILL COME TO ORDER. THE CHAPLAIN, DR. BARRY BLACK, WILL LEAD…

    THE SENATE WILL COME TO ORDER. THE CHAPLAIN, DR. BARRY BLACK, WILL LEAD THE SENATE IN PRAYER.

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  • 11:00:23 AM

    THE CHAPLAIN

    LET US PRAY. SPIRIT OF THE LIVING GOD, FALL AFRESH ON US. AS THE CLOCK…

    LET US PRAY. SPIRIT OF THE LIVING GOD, FALL AFRESH ON US. AS THE CLOCK TICKS TOWARD ANOTHER DEADLINE INSPIRE OUR LAWMAKERS TO BE INSTRUMENTS OF YOUR PURPOSES. MAY THEY HUMBLY SEEK TO DO WHAT IS BEST FOR OUR NATION AND WORLD, ACHIEVING TOGETHER WHAT CANNOT BE DONE WITHOUT ALLIES. LORD, GIVE THEM THE WISDOM TO SEE THAT THERE IS A PRACTICAL MORALITY BASED ON ABSOLUTES THAT THEY SHOULD FOLLOW. REMIND THEM THAT THEY ARE ACCOUNTABLE TO YOU FOR THEIR THOUGHTS, WORDS, AND DEEDS. MAY THEY SPEAK TRUTH AS YOU GIVE THEM THE ABILITY TO COMPREHEND IT, FINDING WORKABLE SOLUTIONS TO CHALLENGING PROBLEMS. WE PRAY IN YOUR GREAT NAME. AMEN.

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  • 11:01:54 AM

    TEMPORE PLEASE

    PLEASE JOIN ME IN RECITING THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO OUR FLAG. I PLEDGE…

    PLEASE JOIN ME IN RECITING THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO OUR FLAG. I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, AND TO THE REPUBLIC FOR WHICH IT STANDS, ONE NATION UNDER GOD, INDIVISIBLE, WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL.

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  • 11:02:47 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    MADAM PRESIDENT, THE DEADLINE TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT IS NEARLY UPON US.…

    MADAM PRESIDENT, THE DEADLINE TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT IS NEARLY UPON US. THE SENATE IS NOW JUST HOURS AWAY FROM AN ENTIRELY AVOIDABLE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT, FUNDING FOR PROGRAMS THAT MILLIONS OF AMERICANS RELY ON, VETERAN SERVICES, OPIOID TREATMENT CENTERS, DEATH BENEFITS FOR THE FAMILIES OF THE FALLEN SOLDIERS, AND HEALTH INSURANCE FOR NINE MILLION VULNERABLE CHILDREN WOULD BE THROWN INTO CHAOS, THROWN INTO CHAOS. LAST NIGHT THE SENATE BEGAN CONSIDERATION OF A BILL PASSED BY THE HOUSE WHICH WOULD ERASE ALL OF THESE THREATS. THE BILL KEEPS THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OPEN. IT EXTENDS THE STATE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM WHICH PROVIDES COVERAGE FOR NINE MILLION CHILDREN AND LOW-INCOME FAMILIES FOR SIX YEARS. THIS VOTE SHOULD BE A NO BRAINER. AND IT WOULD BE EXCEPT THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER HAS CONVINCED HIS MEMBERS TO FILIBUSTER ANY FUNDING BILL THAT DOESN'T INCLUDE LEGISLATION THEY ARE DEMANDING FOR PEOPLE WHO CAME INTO THE UNITED STATES ILLEGALLY ILLEGALLY. WHAT HAS BEEN SHOE HORNED INTO THIS DISCUSSION IS AN INSISTENCE THAT WE DEAL WITH AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION ISSUE. HE'S INSIST TENTSZ WE WON'T SUR -- THAT HE WON'T SUPPORT ANY LEGISLATION AT ALL FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, NO MATTER HOW NONCONTROVERSIAL OR HOW BIPARTISAN UNLESS WE PASS A BILL ON ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION FIRST. IF THAT MEANS SHUTTING DOWN THE FUNDING FOR VETERANS, MILITARY FAMILIES, OPIOID TREATMENT CENTERS, AND EVEN FEDERAL GRANTS TO HIS HOME STATE OF NEW YORK, SO BE IT. IF IT MEANS THROWING A WRENCH INTO THE GEARS OF THE U.S. ECONOMY JUST AS AMERICANS ARE STARTING TO FEEL THE BENEFITS OF HISTORIC TAX REFORM, SO BE IT. IF IT MEANS FAILING TO RENEW THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH PROGRAM WHICH THE HOUSE-PASSED BILL FUNDED FOR A FULL SIX YEARS, APPARENTLY THAT'S JUST FINE WITH THOSE ON THE OTHER SIDE. NEARLY EVERY DEMOCRAT IN THE HOUSE MADE THE SAME DEMAND. THAT'S BEEN THEIR STATED POSITION, NOTHING FOR HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF AMERICANS AND NO HEALTH CARE FOR NINE MILLION VULNERABLE CHILDREN UNTIL WE SOLVE A NONIMMINENT ISSUE RELATED TO ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION. MADAM PRESIDENT, TO EVEN REPEAT THIS POSITION OUT LOUD IS TO SEE HOW COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS IT IS. NOW THAT WE'RE 13 HOURS AWAY FROM A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN THAT DEMOCRATS WOULD INITIATE AND DEMOCRATS WOULD OWN, THE CRAZINESS OF THIS SEEMS TO BE DAWNING ON MY FRIEND, THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER. PERHAPS, PERHAPS HE'S REMEMBERING HIS OWN WORDS FROM 2013. HERE'S WHAT HE SAID BACK THEN ABOUT THREATENING A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. NO MATTER HOW STRONGLY ONE FEELS ABOUT AN ISSUE, YOU SHOULDN'T HOLD MILLIONS OF PEOPLE HOSTAGE. THAT'S WRONG. A FEW DAYS LATER, THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER ADDED, IT'S SORT OF LIKE THIS. SOMEONE GOES INTO YOUR HOUSE, TAKES YOUR WIFE AND CHILDREN HOSTAGE, AND THEN SAYS, LET'S NEGOTIATE OVER THE PRICE OF YOUR HOUSE. HE WENT ON TO SAY, WE'RE SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT. WE'RE NOT GOING TO RAISE THE DEBT CEILING TIL YOU PASS IMMIGRATION REFORM, IT WOULD BE GOVERNMENTAL CHAOS. END QUOTE. NOW MAYBE, MAYBE HE'S REMEMBERING THOSE WORDS TODAY BECAUSE NOW HE IS SAYING NEVER MIND. I REALLY DIDN'T MEAN IT. AND I'M CALLING FOR AN EVEN SHORTER SHORT-TERM FUNDING BILL. OF COURSE, LAST DITCH PROPOSALS WOULD DO NOTHING FOR THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH PROGRAM OR THE NINE MILLION CHILDREN THAT ARE WAITING ON US TO RENEW IT. AND WHAT IS MORE THE INCREDIBLE SHORT-TERM CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS HE'S NOW PROPOSING DO NOT MEET ANY OF THE DEMAND, NONE OF THEM, THAT HE AND HIS OWN CONFERENCE AND DEMOCRATS IN THE HOUSE HAVE BEEN MAKING FOR WEEKS. NONE OF THAT WOULD BE SOLVED IN A SHORT-TERM -- A FEW DAY C.R., THE STUFF THEY'VE BEEN CALLING FOR. SO APPARENTLY NOW HE WANTS HIS MEMBERS TO DEFAULT ON THEIR OWN DEMANDS. IT'S BEEN DAYS APPARENTLY PERSUADING ALL OF HIS COLLEAGUES TO INSIST WE CANNOT PASS ANOTHER CONTINUING RESOLUTION. NOW HE WANTS THEM TO PASS ONE. HE SPENT WEEKS GETTING HIS MEMBERS TO PROCLAIM THAT WE SHOULD NOT DO ANYTHING TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT UNLESS WE ADDRESS THE DACA ISSUE, AND NOW APPARENTLY CALLING ON THEM TO DO JUST THAT. THESE INCREDIBLY SHORT-TERM EXTENSIONS WOULD NOT EVEN GIVE US ENOUGH TIME TO ACTUALLY WRITE THE LEGISLATION THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER IS DEMANDING. ONE EXTREMELY SHORT-TERM C.R. WOULD LEAD TO ANOTHER AND ANOTHER, EXACTLY THE OUTCOME DEMOCRATS HAVE DECLARED THEY CANNOT ACCEPT. NOW, MADAM PRESIDENT, I WISH FOR ALL OF OUR SAKES THAT THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER WOULD FIGURE OUT WHAT HE ACTUALLY WANTS. I FEEL BAD FOR HIS OWN MEMBERS. HE'S PAINTED THEM INTO A CORNER. BUT I ESPECIALLY FEEL BAD FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WHOSE GOVERNMENT, THE DEMOCRAT -- GOVERNMENT THE DEMOCRATS ARE THREATENING TO SHUT DOWN AND THE NINE MILLION CHILDREN WHOSE HEALTH INSURANCE COULD BE THROWN INTO JEOPARDY BECAUSE SENATE DEMOCRATS CANNOT GET THEIR STORY STRAIGHT. NOW, MY FRIEND THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER NOW WANTS HIS MEMBERS TO PASS A BILL THAT ALLOWS SCHIP TO EXPIRE. APPARENTLY HE NOW WANTS EVERY DEMOCRAT IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES TO BREAK THEIR WORD AND PASS A SEPARATE FUNDING BILL OF HIS OWN THAT DOES NOT ADDRESS THE ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION ISSUE THEY SAID THEY MUST HAVE. SO LET'S THINK ABOUT THIS FOR A MINUTE. FIRST HE LEADS HIS OWN TROOPS INTO A BOXED CANYON, THEN TELLS THEM IT WAS REALLY ALL FOR NOTHING. MAYBE IT'S TIME TO COME BACK TO REALITY. WE ALREADY HAVE A BILL THAT WE KNOW CAN PASS THE HOUSE BECAUSE IT ALREADY DID. WE HAVE A BILL THAT WE KNOW THE PRESIDENT WILL SIGN INTO LAW BECAUSE HE'S ALREADY COMMITTED TO DO JUST THAT. WE KNOW THAT WITH ONE NONCONTROVERSIAL AND BIPARTISAN VOTE, WE CAN KEEP THE GOVERNMENT UP AND RUNNING. WE CAN FUND THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH CARE PROGRAM FOR SIX YEARS, AND WE CAN GIVE OURSELVES THE TIME WE NEED TO FINISH ONGOING NEGOTIATIONS ON DACA, BORDER SECURITY, AND THE LONG-TERM NEEDS OF OUR MILITARY AND, MADAM PRESIDENT, WE COULD DO ALL OF THAT TODAY. ALL OF IT. OR -- OR OUR DEMOCRATIC FRIENDS COULD CONTINUE TO TAKE THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER'S ADVICE AND VOTE TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT GOVERNMENT, DESTABILIZE FUNDING FOR OUR TROOPS, SHUT DOWN THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH CARE PROGRAM, AND STILL NOT GET WHAT THEY'RE DEMANDING ON ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION IMMIGRATION. IT'S REALLY UP TO THEM. I LOOK FORWARD TO VOTING SOON ON CLOTURE ON THE HOUSE BILL. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, THE CITIZENS WHO ACTUALLY ELECTED US, WILL BE WATCHING. THEY WILL SEE WHICH SENATORS MAKE THE PATRIOTIC DECISION TO STAND UP FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AND VOTE TO CONTINUE GOVERNMENT FUNDING AND EXTEND CHILDREN'S HEALTH CARE WHILE WE CONTINUE OUR BIPARTISAN TALKS. AND THEY WILL SEE WHICH SENATORS VOTE TO SHOVE ASIDE VETERANS, MILITARY FAMILIES, AND VULNERABLE CHILDREN TO HOLD THE ENTIRE COUNTRY HOSTAGE, HOLD THE ENTIRE COUNTRY HOSTAGE UNTIL WE PASS AN IMMIGRATION BILL THEY HAVEN'T EVEN WRITTEN YET. THIS IS COMPLETELY UNFAIR AND UNCOMPASSIONATE FOR MY DEMOCRATIC COLLEAGUES TO FILIBUSTER GOVERNMENT FUNDING, HARM OUR TROOPS, AND JEOPARDIZE HEALTH COVERAGE FOR NINE MILLION CHILDREN BECAUSE EXTREME ELEMENTS OF THEIR BASE WANT ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION TO CROWD OUT EVERY OTHER PRIORITY. APPARENTLY THEY BELIEVE THAT THE ISSUE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVERYTHING ELSE, ALL THE GOVERNMENT SERVICES THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DEPEND ON. I WOULD RECOMMEND STOP THE WILD GOOSE CHASE. DON'T GO TO A DESTINATION THAT CANNOT BE EXPLAINED. LET'S FULFILL THE CORE RESPONSIBILITIES OF CONGRESS. LET'S FUND THE GOVERNMENT. PROVIDE FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, AND THEN RESUME SERIOUS NEGOTIATIONS ON THE ISSUES THAT MATTER MOST. LET'S FUND THE GOVERNMENT FOR A FULL MONTH SO WE CAN ACTUALLY GET SOMETHING DONE.

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  • 11:13:30 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    UNDER THE PREVIOUS ORDER, THE LEADERSHIP TIME IS RESERVED. MORNING…

    UNDER THE PREVIOUS ORDER, THE LEADERSHIP TIME IS RESERVED. MORNING BUSINESS IS CLOSED. UNDER THE PREVIOUS ORDER, THE SENATE WILL RESUME CONSIDERATION OF THE MOTION TO CONCUR IN THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO THE SENATE AMENDMENT H.R. 195 WHICH THE CLERK WILL REPORT.

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  • 11:13:45 AM

    THE CLERK

    HOUSE MESSAGE TO ACCOMPANY H.R. 195, AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 44 UNITED…

    HOUSE MESSAGE TO ACCOMPANY H.R. 195, AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 44 UNITED STATES CODE AND SO FORTH AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES.

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  • 11:13:56 AM

    MR. DURBIN

    MADAM PRESIDENT?

  • 11:13:59 AM

    R DEMOCRATIC

    DEMOCRATIC WHIP.

  • 11:14:00 AM

    MR. DURBIN

    MADAM PRESIDENT, LET'S LOOK AT THE REALITY OF WHAT WE FACE AT THIS MOMENT…

    MADAM PRESIDENT, LET'S LOOK AT THE REALITY OF WHAT WE FACE AT THIS MOMENT IN THIS COUNTRY, IN THIS CHAMBER. THE REPUBLICANS ARE IN MAJORITY CONTROL OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE. THE REPUBLICANS ARE IN MAJORITY CONTROL OF THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. THE REPUBLICANS ARE IN CONTROL OF THE WHITE HOUSE. THE REPUBLICANS THROUGH THEIR APPOINTEES HAVE A PRETTY DECISIVE EDGE WHEN IT COMES TO THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT. IN OTHER WORDS, WHEN YOU LOOK ACROSS THE SPECTRUM, THE THREE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT, THE REPUBLICANS ARE IN CONTROL. WHAT ARE THEY OFFERING US? THE FOURTH C.R. NOW, A C.R. IS WASHINGTON TALK. IT'S A CONTINUING RESOLUTION. WHAT DOES IT MEAN? IT MEANS THAT THE REPUBLICAN MAJORITY HAS FAILED, FAILED IN 119 DAYS TO PRODUCE A BUDGET FOR THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. THE REPUBLICAN MAJORITY IN THE HOUSE AND SENATE WITH THEIR PRESIDENT HAVE FAILED TO COME UP WITH A BLUEPRINT FOR SPENDING FOR THIS GREAT NATION THAT WE SERVE AND ARE PROUD TO BE PART OF. THEIR FOURTH FAILURE TO PRODUCE A BUDGET IN THIS FISCAL YEAR WHICH BEGAN OCTOBER 1 IS BEFORE US NOW. WAS IT NEGOTIATED BETWEEN THE REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS? NO. IT WAS PRODUCED IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND WITH THE SENATE. IT WAS PASSED THERE BY THE REPUBLICANS AND A HANDFUL OF DEMOCRATS WHO SUPPORTED IT, AND IT WAS SENT OVER HERE ON A TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT BASIS. WELL, YOU SAY, AT LEAST WE'RE GOING TO KEEP THE LIGHTS ON, AND THAT'S ALL A CONTINUING RESOLUTION DOES, KEEP THE LIGHTS ON. IT DOESN'T ALLOW AGENCIES TO MAKE IMPORTANT DECISIONS TO INVEST TAXPAYERS' DOLLARS WISELY AND TO SAVE TAXPAYERS' DOLLARS, AND LAST NIGHT THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE REPORTED TO US, THEY'RE SICK AND TIRED OF THE CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS WHICH THEY HAVE FACED FOR THREE YEARS. NOTE I SAID THREE YEARS. BECAUSE WE HAVE FAILED EVEN ON THE DEMOCRATIC SIDE TO COME UP WITH APPROPRIATIONS IN THE PAST AND BUDGETS IN THE PAST. AND SO I'M BEING VERY HONEST ABOUT IT. BUT IF WE ARE GOING TO CHANGE THIS MENTALITY OF NEVER PRODUCING A BUDGET, NEVER PRODUCING APPROPRIATION BILLS, KIND OF STUMBLING INTO THE FISCAL YEAR FOR MONTH AFTER WEARY MONTH, IF THAT IS THE NEW NORM AROUND HERE, SHAME ON US AND SHAME ON THE MAJORITY PARTY, THE REPUBLICANS, FOR SAYING THAT'S THE BEST THEY CAN DO. WE CAN DO BETTER. WE NEED TO GET BEYOND THIS WORLD OF CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS, AND WE NEED TO GET INTO A WORLD WHERE WE ACTUALLY MAKE A DECISION WHICH IS GOOD FOR THE TAXPAYERS AS WELL AS THE SECURITY OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. THE BEST THAT THE REPUBLICAN LEADER IN THE SENATE CAN OFFER US IS ANOTHER BAND-AID, ANOTHER FOUR WEEKS OF TEMPORARY FUNDING, A WASTEFUL GESTURE, A WASTEFUL EXERCISE, AND HE KNOWS IT. THERE IS MORE TO THIS ISSUE. HE BRINGS IT UP, SENATOR McCONNELL BRINGS IT UP REGULARLY. LAST NIGHT HE DID AND AGAIN TODAY. HE GLORIES IN SAYING THAT THIS IS ALL ABOUT ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS, ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS. LET'S BE HONEST WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT HERE. WE ARE TALKING ABOUT THOSE WHO WERE PROTECTED AND ALLOWED TO LIVE IN THE UNITED STATES LEGALLY UNDER AN EXECUTIVE ORDER OF PRESIDENT OBAMA UNTIL SEPTEMBER 5 OF LAST YEAR WHEN PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP ANNOUNCED HE WAS ELIMINATING THIS PROGRAM, AND AS THAT PROTECTION IS ELIMINATED, AS THEIR TWO-YEAR PROTECTION EXPIRES, YES, THEY MOVE INTO ILLEGAL CATEGORIES. SO ARE THEY ILLEGAL TECHNICALLY AFTER THEY HAVE LOST DACA? YES. WHAT CAUSED IT? PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP CAUSED IT BY HIS ANNOUNCEMENT ON SEPTEMBER 5 THAT THIS PROGRAM IS FINISHED BY MARCH 5. THAT'S THE REALITY. AND YOU KNOW WHAT HE ALSO TOLD US? I'M GOING TO END THIS PROGRAM. NOW I CHALLENGE YOU IN CONGRESS TO PASS A LAW TO REPLACE IT. SO WHAT HAS THE REPUBLICAN MAJORITY IN THE HOUSE AND SENATE DONE IN THE FOUR AND A HALF MONTHS SINCE WE RECEIVED THAT CHALLENGE FROM PRESIDENT TRUMP? NOTHING. NOTHING. AND THEN I HEAR SENATOR McCONNELL SAY WE HAVEN'T EVEN SEEN A WRITTEN PROPOSAL FROM THE DEMOCRATS ON THIS. THE SENATOR KNOWS BETTER. A GROUP OF US, SIX OF US, THREE DEMOCRATS AND THREE REPUBLICANS ACCEPTED PRESIDENT TRUMP'S CHALLENGE AND PRODUCED A BIPARTISAN SOLUTION. WE HAVE DESCRIBED IT TO EVERYONE, DEMOCRAT, REPUBLICAN ALIKE. IT WAS A GOOD-FAITH EFFORT. REAL COMPROMISE. PAIN ON BOTH SIDES. IT'S READY. IT'S READY TO BE BROUGHT TO THE FLOOR OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE. IT'S READY TO BE PASSED INTO LAW. FOR SENATOR McCONNELL TO SAY HE DOESN'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT IT, I'M SORRY, BUT WE HAVE BEEN VERY OPEN ABOUT WHAT'S INCLUDED IN THERE. HE KNOWS IT'S A PRODUCT OF LONG AND HARD BIPARTISAN WORK. I'D LIKE TO ADDRESS ANOTHER ASPECT OF WHAT HE HAS SAID ABOUT THESE SO-CALLED ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS. LAST NIGHT, LATE LAST NIGHT, AFTER USING THAT TERM, I NOTICED THE GALLERY WAS FILLED OVER HERE WITH YOUNG PEOPLE WHO APPEARED TO BE AT FIRST GLANCE HERE TO WATCH THE DEBATE ON THE DREAM ACT, THE DEBATE ON DACA. AFTER THE MEETING OF THE SENATE, I INVITED THEM INTO MY OFFICE. THERE WERE ABOUT 40 OF THEM. THEY WERE FROM ALL ACROSS THE UNITED STATES BUT PRIMARILY FROM THE STATE OF OREGON WHO CAME ALL THE WAY OUT HERE TO TRY TO SEE IF THIS SENATE WAS GOING TO MEET PRESIDENT TRUMP'S CHALLENGE AND PRODUCE AN ALTERNATIVE. IT TURNS OUT MOST OF THEM WERE PROTECTED BY DACA, THE EXECUTIVE ORDER THAT IS BEING ABOLISHED BY PRESIDENT TRUMP. ONE OF THEM SAID TO ME I AM SKIPPING MY FIRST WEEK OF CLASS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS. I SAID WHAT'S YOUR MAJOR? SHE SAID NEUROSCIENCE. I SAID DON'T SKIP TOO MANY CLASSES. THAT'S GOT TO BE A TOUGH THING TO DO. BUT YOU CAME HERE BECAUSE WHAT'S AT STAKE IN THIS CHAMBER, WHAT'S AT STAKE IN THIS DEBATE WILL DECIDE WHETHER OR NOT SHE CAN CONTINUE TO LIVE IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. FOR SENATOR McCONNELL TO DISMISS THIS ISSUE AND SAY WE'LL GET AROUND TO IT LATER IS TO IGNORE THE OBVIOUS. FOR MANY OF THESE YOUNG PEOPLE, THIS DEBATE, THIS MOMENT MAY DECIDE THEIR FUTURE. IT MAY DECIDE THE FUTURE OF THEIR FAMILY. ARE THEY WORRIED? TO SAY THE LEAST, HALF OF THEM WERE CRYING AS THEY CAME INTO MY OFFICE. AT A POINT WHEN I WAS TALKING TO THEM, I SAID WE WILL DO EVERYTHING WE CAN TO HELP YOUR PARENTS, THEY ALL BROKE DOWN CRYING. THAT'S WHAT THIS IS ABOUT. THIS IS ABOUT A HEART-WRENCHING ISSUE THAT IS BEFORE US BECAUSE PRESIDENT TRUMP MADE A DECISION SEPTEMBER 5 TO END A PROGRAM WHICH ALLOWED THESE YOUNG PEOPLE TO GO TO SCHOOL, TO WORK IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. IT WAS PRESIDENT TRUMP THAT CHALLENGED US TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT, AND WE HAVE DONE NOTHING, NOTHING. AND THAT'S THE CHALLENGE WE FACE. TO SAY WE'RE IN NO HURRY. WELL, WE MAY NOT BE AS SENATORS AND CONGRESSMEN, BUT THESE YOUNG PEOPLE ARE IN A HURRY TO FIND OUT WHETHER OR NOT THEY HAVE A LIFE. THAT'S WHAT IT COMES DOWN TO. THERE WAS AN ANNOUNCEMENT JUST A FEW MINUTES AGO FROM THE HOUSE SIDE FROM THE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP THAT THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, DESPITE THE FACT THAT WE DO NOT HAVE AN AGREEMENT MOVING FORWARD, IS GOING TO LEAVE. THEY'RE GOING TO LEAVE WASHINGTON. I DON'T KNOW FOR HOW LONG AND I DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY'RE GOING TO DO WHEN THEY LEAVE, BUT I WOULD BEG THEM DON'T TURN YOUR BACK ON YOUR RESPONSIBILITY RIGHT HERE IN WASHINGTON TO WORK WITH US, TO FIND A WAY TO MOVE FORWARD. WE HAVE COME UP WITH A PROPOSAL. IT IS A SHORT-TERM LAST-STEP CONTINUING RESOLUTION OF JUST A FEW DAYS. I HAVE BEEN AROUND HERE FOR A WHILE. YOU GIVE THIS SENATE AND HOUSE A COUPLE OF WEEKS, IT TURNS INTO A COUPLE OF MONTHS. IF WE DO THIS IN A MATTER OF THREE OR FOUR DAYS TO REACH AN AGREEMENT ON THESE KEY ISSUES, EVERYTHING INCLUDED IN THE C.R. THAT WE HAVE BEFORE US AND EVERYTHING THAT SHOULD BE, I THINK WE'LL ROLL UP OUR SLEEVES, GET DOWN TO WORK AND DO IT. WE DON'T WANT TO SHUT DOWN THIS GOVERNMENT. WE WANT TO SOLVE THE PROBLEMS FACING THIS GOVERNMENT AND THIS NATION, AND THAT MEANS WORKING TOGETHER, SOMETHING WHICH SENATOR McCONNELL HAS NOT ENGAGED IN WHEN IT COMES TO THIS C.R. IT'S TIME FOR US AS DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS TO SIT DOWN IN A ROOM TOGETHER, THINK ABOUT THIS GREAT NATION AND THE FRUSTRATION THEY HAVE WITH OUR POLITICAL SYSTEM AND THOSE OF US IN POLITICAL LIFE. NINE OUT OF TEN, MAYBE EVEN MORE WOULD SAY TO US FOR GOODNESS SAKES, WILL YOU STOP YOUR FIGHTING, WILL YOU STOP YOUR BICKERING, WILL YOU STOP YOUR DEBATING, WOULD YOU GET INTO A ROOM, ACT LIKE GROWN-UPS AND DO SOMETHING TOGETHER FOR THE GOOD OF THIS NATION? THAT'S WHAT WE'RE PROPOSING. TO SIT DOWN TOGETHER FOR THE GOOD OF THIS NATION AND MOVE FORWARD. WHEN HE WAS ASKED JUST A FEW DAYS AGO, SENATOR McCONNELL SAID HIS BIGGEST PROBLEM WAS HE DIDN'T KNOW WHAT PRESIDENT TRUMP WANTS. I CAN UNDERSTAND THAT. I HAVE BEEN IN MEETINGS WITH THE PRESIDENT WHERE HE SAID ONE THING ON A TUESDAY AND A DIFFERENT THING ON A THURSDAY AND THEN TWEETED SOMETHING ENTIRELY DIFFERENT THE NEXT MORNING. HE IS A MOVING TARGET WHEN IT COMES TO THE POLICIES AND DIRECTION AND LEADERSHIP OF THIS ADMINISTRATION, AND WE NEED TO DO OUR JOB, AND I HOPE HE'LL BE PART OF IT. I HOPE THE PRESIDENT WILL JOIN US. IF HE WILL, WE CAN SOLVE THIS PROBLEM. IF HE STANDS ON THE SIDELINES, WE CANNOT. I THINK WE CAN FIND COMMON GROUND. THAT'S WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE EXPECT. WE SHOULD GIVE THEM NOTHING LESS. AND OF COURSE WE SHOULD SOLVE THE PROBLEMS INVOLVING A CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM AND COMMUNITY CLINICS AND HELPING OUR VETERANS AND THE OPIOID CRISIS AND DEFENSE SPENDING AND A SANE APPROACH, A REASONABLE APPROACH WHEN IT COMES TO THESE YOUNG PEOPLE WHO HAVE BECOME ILLEGAL BECAUSE OF THE DECISION BY PRESIDENT TRUMP ON SEPTEMBER 5 OF LAST YEAR. TOGETHER WE CAN GET THIS DONE, BUT NOT IF THE HOUSE REPUBLICANS LEAVE TOWN. WE NEED TO CONTINUE TO BE HERE IN WASHINGTON DOING OUR JOB AND MAKING SURE THAT WE SPEND EVERY WAKING MOMENT SERVING THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE ELECTED US. MADAM PRESIDENT, I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 11:25:10 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM UTAH.

  • 11:25:15 AM

    MR. HATCH

    UTAH.

  • 11:44:52 AM

    A SENATOR

    A SENATOR: MADAM PRESIDENT.

  • 11:44:54 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM MARYLAND.

  • 11:44:57 AM

    MR. VAN HOLLEN

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. LET ME START BY AGREEING WITH THE SENATOR FROM…

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. LET ME START BY AGREEING WITH THE SENATOR FROM UTAH THAT WE SHOULD EXTEND THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. WE SHOULD DO IT FOR SIX YEARS. AND I WANT TO COMMEND THE SENATOR FROM UTAH FOR HIS WORK IN CREATING THE CHIP PROGRAM ALONG WITH SENATOR KENNEDY. GOO/ GOOD WORK AND WE NEED TO EXTEND IT. WE ALSO HAVE AN OBLIGATION ON A BIPARTISAN BASIS TO GET TOGETHER AND PUT TOGETHER A BUDGET FOR THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. WE'RE NOW FOUR MONTHS INTO THE CURRENT FISCAL YEAR. AND WE DO NOT HAVE A BUDGET THAT PROVIDES THE RESOURCES NECESSARY FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE. WE DO NOT HAVE A BUDGET THAT PROVIDES RESOURCES TO FIGHT THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC. A LOT OF TALK HERE IN THE UNITED STATES SENATE ABOUT FIGHTING THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC, BUT NO RESOURCES TO DO THAT. WE NEED A BUDGET TO GET THAT DONE. SO, YES, WE SHOULD EXTEND THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. WE NEED TO DO THAT. BUT WE ALSO NEED TO DO OUR JOB WHICH WE SHOULD HAVE DONE BACK IN OCTOBER 1, THE FIRST DAY OF THIS FISCAL YEAR, AND ACTUALLY ADOPT A BIPARTISAN BUDGET FOR THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. AND THE TRAGEDY HERE RIGHT NOW IS THAT AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT, THE GOVERNMENT WILL SHUT DOWN UNLESS THE SENATE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP COMES TO ITS SENSES AND SUPPORTS A BIPARTISAN BUDGET AGREEMENT. A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT WHICH IS REALLY IN PLAIN SIGHT RIGHT HERE IN THE UNITED STATES SENATE. LOOK, THE AMERICAN PEOPLE UNDERSTAND VERY CLEARLY THAT REPUBLICANS CONTROL THE WHITE HOUSE. REPUBLICANS CONTROL BOTH HOUSES OF CONGRESS. AND WITH THAT COMES A RESPONSIBILITY TO GOVERN FOR THE GOOD OF THE ENTIRE COUNTRY AND NOT FOCUS ON NARROW PARTISAN INTERESTS. BUT INSTEAD WHAT WE HAVE HERE AS THE CLOCK TICKS IS DYSFUNCTION AND CHAOS. YESTERDAY I HEARD THE REPUBLICAN LEADER, SENATOR McCONNELL, SAY HERE ON THE FLOOR THAT HE WOULD NOT SUPPORT A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT REACHED BY SENATORS RIGHT HERE UNLESS HE KNEW WHERE PRESIDENT TRUMP STOOD ON THOSE ISSUES. AND THEN IN THE SAME BREATH HE INDICATED HE DID NOT KNOW WHERE PRESIDENT TRUMP STOOD ON THOSE KEY ISSUES. MADAM PRESIDENT, WE ARE A SEPARATE AND EQUAL BRANCH OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT WITH OUR OWN CONSTITUTIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES. AND WE HAVE A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT HERE ON SO MANY OF THESE ISSUES. AND WE SHOULD NOT BE NOW OUTSOURCING OUR CONSTITUTIONAL DUTIES TO A WHITE HOUSE THAT DOESN'T KNOW WHERE IT STANDS ON THESE ISSUES ACCORDING TO SENATOR McCONNELL. SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM HAD IT RIGHT WHEN HE SAID WE DON'T HAVE A RELIABLE NEGOTIATING PARTNER AT THE WHITE HOUSE. AND IN THE LAST WEEK, WE HEARD PRESIDENT TRUMP'S OWN CHIEF OF STAFF GENERAL KELLY ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THE PRESIDENT WAS, QUOTE, UNINFORMED ON SOME OF THE ISSUES BEING DEBATED HERE. SO LET'S DO OUR JOB AS THE UNITED STATES SENATE WITH OUR OWN RESPONSIBILITIES UNDER THE CONSTITUTION AND NOT SAY WE'VE GOT TO WAIT SOMEHOW ON A DYSFUNCTIONAL WHITE HOUSE, AND NOT SAY WE HAVE A WAIT ON A PRESIDENT WHO ONCE TWEETED OUT THAT WE NEED, QUOTE, A GOOD GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. THERE ARE NO GOOD GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWNSHUTDOWNS, AND WE SHOULD BE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO AVOID ONE AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT. SO LET'S ACTUALLY DO OUR JOB HERE AND LET'S COME UP WITH A BUDGET FOR THE UNITED STATES FOR THIS FISCAL YEAR. YOU KNOW, A SMALL BUSINESS COULD NOT SURVIVE WITHOUT PUTTING TOGETHER ITS BUDGET, AND IT DOES GREAT HARM TO OUR COUNTRY AND TO OUR GOVERNMENT WHEN THIS CONGRESS CANNOT GET ITS ACT TOGETHER AND PUT TOGETHER A BUDGET IN TIME. WE HAVE NOW BEEN KICKING THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD MONTH BY MONTH SINCE OCTOBER 1. THAT'S WHY SENATOR GRAHAM SAID THIS MORNING, AND I QUOTE, I'M NOT GOING TO SUPPORT CONTINUING THIS FIASCO FOR 30 MORE DAYS. IT'S TIME CONGRESS STOPPED THE CYCLE OF DYSFUNCTION, GROW UP, AND ACT CONSISTENT WITH THE VALUES OF A GREAT NATION. UNQUOTE. AMEN TO THAT. THAT IS OUR CONSTITUTIONAL DUTY. THAT'S WHAT WE NEED TO DO IN ORDER TO PROTECT OUR MILITARY AND OTHER VITAL INVESTMENTS IMPORTANT TO OUR COUNTRY AND OUR ECONOMY. HERE'S WHAT THE PENTAGON'S CHIEF SPOKESPERSON SAID ABOUT THIS ABOUT CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS. QUOTE, THEY ARE WASTEFUL, THEY ARE DESTRUCTIVE, AND THE LONGER THEY GO ON, THE WORSE IT IS. AND SHE WENT ON TO SAY THAT THESE CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS ERODE OUR DEFENSE CAPABILITIES AND HAVE NEGATIVE CONSEQUENCES FOR THEM. SO WHY IN THE WORLD DO WE WANT TO KICK THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD ANOTHER 30 DAYS WHEN WE CAN GET IT DONE RIGHT NOW AND AVERT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN? WE NEED THAT BUDGET TO SUPPORT OUR MILITARY. WE ALSO NEED IT TO SUPPORT THE CRITICAL INVESTMENT IN OUR KIDS' EDUCATION. WE NEED A BUDGET PLAN THAT'S GOING TO PROVIDE VETERANS. THE HEALTH CARE THEY DESERVE. WE NEED A BUDGET THAT'S GOING TO FIGHT THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC, ONE THAT KEEPS COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS OPEN. THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION HAS FACED HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS OF CUTS. THEY'RE NOT GOING TO BE ABLE TO DO THEIR JOB IN MAKING SURE FOLKS GET THEIR SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS ON TIME IF WE CONTINUE TO STRANGLE THEIR BUDGET. AND THE SAD THING IS, WE'VE KNOWN ABOUT ALL OF THESE ISSUES SINCE LAST SEPTEMBER. I'M GLAD WE'VE COME TO SOME RESOLUTION ON THE ISSUE OF THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. WE'VE KNOWN ABOUT THAT SINCE LAST SEPTEMBER. BUT WE'VE ALSO KNOWN ABOUT THE NEED TO FIGHT THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC. WE'VE KNOWN ABOUT THE NEED TO FUND COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS. WE'VE KNOWN ABOUT THE NEED TO MAKE SURE OUR VETERANS HAVE THE HEALTH CARE THEY DESERVE. AND WE'VE KNOWN ABOUT THE NEED TO ADDRESS THE DACA ISSUE, THE DREAMERS, BECAUSE IT'S LAST SEPTEMBER WHEN PRESIDENT TRUMP REVOKED THE DACA PROGRAM EFFECTIVE A VERY SHORT TIME FROM NOW. THAT PROGRAM HAD MADE SURE THAT DREAMERS COULD BE HERE LEGALLY IN THE UNITED STATES AND CONTRIBUTING TO OUR COUNTRY. SO WHEN PRESIDENT TRUMP TOOK THAT ACTION, HE MANUFACTURED THE CRISIS WE ARE IN NOW. BUT HE ALSO SAID OKAY, I'M GOING TO REVOKE THIS LEGAL STATUS, THIS PROGRAM, BUT I WANT CONGRESS ON A BIPARTISAN BASIS TO COME UP WITH A LONG-TERM SOLUTION. THAT'S WHAT HE SAID BACK THEN. HE SAID THE SAME THING JUST A FEW WEEKS AGO. I THINK THE NATION SAW HIM ON TV. HE INVITED A BIPARTISAN GROUP OF SENATORS, MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE, TO THE WHITE HOUSE. HE INVITED EVERYBODY TO COME UP WITH A SOLUTION. AND A NUMBER OF OUR SENATORS ON A BIPARTISAN BASIS TOOK THE PRESIDENT UP ON HIS REQUEST. IT'S WHERE SENATOR GRAHAM AND SENATOR DURBIN AND TWO OTHER REPUBLICANS AND TWO OTHER DEMOCRATS CAME UP WITH A PLAN WHICH NOW HAS VERY BROAD SUPPORT, INCLUDING THE SUPPORT OF SEVEN REPUBLICAN SENATORS. SO THEY DID EXACTLY WHAT PRESIDENT TRUMP ASKED THEM TO DO. AND THEY ADDRESSED ALL THE ISSUES THAT PRESIDENT TRUMP HAD OUTLINED. I THINK WE KNOW WHAT HAPPENED AFTER THAT. SENATORS GRAHAM AND DURBIN WENT DOWN TO THE WHITE HOUSE TO PRESENT THEIR BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT TO THE PRESIDENT. MEANWHILE, HE INVITED SOME OTHER SENATORS OVER, AND THEY SABOTAGE SABOTAGED THE DEAL. AND THE PRESIDENT MADE THESE REPULSIVE RACIST REMARKS AT THAT MEETING. SO THE PRESIDENT WHO HAD ASKED SENATORS TO COME UP WITH A SOLUTION ON A BIPARTISAN BASIS, WHEN THEY DID WHAT HE ASKED, HE THREW IT BACK IN THEIR FACE. AND SO WHY IS THE REPUBLICAN LEADER, SENATOR McCONNELL, NOW SAYING TO THE SENATE WE CAN'T DO OUR JOB HERE UNTIL I KNOW WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN DOWN AT THE WHITE HOUSE. WHY SHOULD WE BE OUTSOURCING OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES TO THE WHITE HOUSE WHEN WE HAVE AN AGREEMENT WHICH IF IT WAS PUT ON THE FLOOR OF THIS SENATE TODAY, IT WOULD PASS.? A BIPARTISAN SOLUTION. SO, MADAM PRESIDENT, I REALLY BELIEVE THAT IT'S TIME FOR US TO DO OUR JOB HERE, REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS ALIKE. HERE'S WHAT PRESIDENT TRUMP SAID AT THE TIME OF THE LAST GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. THAT'S WHEN WE HAD A 16-DAY SHUTDOWN BECAUSE SOME OF THE REPUBLICAN SENATORS DIDN'T WANT TO FUND THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT AT THE TIME, SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT FOR 16 DAYS. THEN CITIZEN TRUMP SAID, AND I QUOTE, IT ALWAYS HAPPENS TO BE AT THE TOP. I MEAN, THE PROBLEMS START FROM THE TOP. AND HAVE TO GET SOLVED FROM THE TOP. THIS IS WHAT CITIZEN DONALD TRUMP WAS SAYING ABOUT PRESIDENT OBAMA AT THE TIME OF THE LAST SHUTDOWN. HE WENT ON TO SAY, QUOTE, THE PRESIDENT IS THE LEADER, AND HE'S GOT TO GET EVERYBODY IN A ROOM AND HE'S GOT TO LEAD. HOW TIMES CHANGE WHEN CITIZEN TRUMP BECOMES PRESIDENT TRUMP. YOU HAVE A WHITE HOUSE IN CHAOS, DYSFUNCTION. SENATOR GRAHAM HIMSELF SAID IT, AN UNRELIABLE NEGOTIATING PARTNER. AND YET THE REPUBLICAN LEADER WANTS THIS SENATE TO OUTSOURCE OUR JOB TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND SAYS THAT WE'RE GOING TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT HERE BECAUSE WE DON'T KNOW WHAT PRESIDENT TRUMP THINKS ABOUT ALL THIS. THAT IS A DERELICTION OF THE DUTY OF THE SENATE, AND WE NEED TO DO OUR JOB TODAY AND AVOID A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. THE ANSWER IS IN PLAIN SIGHT. LET'S GET TO WORK. LET'S GET IT DONE. I YIELD THE FLOOR. MADAM PRESIDENT, I SUGGEST THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 11:57:32 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:…

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:

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  • 12:03:16 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

  • 12:03:19 PM

    A SENATOR

    MR. PRESIDENT, WE ARE HERE TODAY BECAUSE REPUBLICANS AND PRESIDENT TRUMP…

    MR. PRESIDENT, WE ARE HERE TODAY BECAUSE REPUBLICANS AND PRESIDENT TRUMP HAVE FAILED IN THEIR MOST BASIC --

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  • 12:03:24 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    MOST BASIC --

  • 12:03:26 PM

    A SENATOR

    QUORUM CALL. A SENATOR: MR. PRESIDENT, I ASK FOR A VITIATION OF THE QUORUM…

    QUORUM CALL. A SENATOR: MR. PRESIDENT, I ASK FOR A VITIATION OF THE QUORUM CALL.

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  • 12:03:30 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION. NOW THE ABLE SENATOR FROM MASSACHUSETTS.

  • 12:03:36 PM

    MR. MARKEY

    MASSACHUSETTS.

  • 12:20:15 PM

    A SENATOR

    A SENATOR: MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 12:20:18 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE ABLE SENATOR FROM UTAH.

  • 12:20:21 PM

    MR. LEE

    FROM UTAH.

  • 12:27:07 PM

    DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

    THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE: ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL. ALL,…

    THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE: ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL. ALL, THEREFORE, ARE ENTITLED TO LIFE. BUT TO BE SURE, NOT EVERYONE SHARES THE BELIEF THAT ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL. AT VARIOUS TIMES THIS VERY BELIEF THAT IS SO MUCH AT THE CORE OF WHO WE ARE AND WHAT WE BELIEVE AS AMERICANS HAS BEEN CALLED AN ERROR OF THE PAST GENERATION. IT'S EVEN BEEN CALLED A SELF-EVIDENT LIE. FEW TODAY WOULD DENOUNCE THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE IN SUCH TERMS. BUT DEFENDERS OF ABORTION REPUDIATE THE DECLARATION BY THEIR ACTIONS AND THE ARGUMENTS THEY ADVANCE TO PROTECT ABORTION. DEFENDERS OF ABORTION NO LONGER DISPUTE THAT UNBORN CHILDREN ARE LIVING HUMAN BEINGS. HOW COULD THEY? SCIENCE TESTIFIES UNEQUIVOCALLY TO OUR SHARED HUMANITY. MOST SOPHISTICATED DEFENDERS OF ABORTION DO NOT EVEN DISPUTE THAT ABORTION IS A VIOLENT ACT. IF YOU DON'T BELIEVE ME ON THIS POINT, PERHAPS YOU'LL BELIEVE RONALD TORKIN FOR THE PRO-CHOICE POSITION. ABORTION, HE WRITES, IS DELIBERATELY KILLING A DEVELOPING HUMAN EMBRYO. HE GOES ON TO DESCRIBE ABORTION AS A CHOICE FOR DEATH. SO IF ABORTION DEFENDERS DO NOT DENY THE HUMANITY OF THE FETUS AND IF THEY DO NOT DENY THAT ABORTION KILLS THE FETUS, HOW THEN DO THEY DEFEND ABORTION? IN SHORT, THEY DO IT BY SEGREGATING THE HUMAN FAMILY AND AFFECTING THE TWO CLASSES: HUMAN BEINGS

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  • 12:28:47 PM

    AFFECTING THE TWO CLASSES

    AFFECTING THE TWO CLASSES: HUMAN BEINGS WORTHY OF LIFE, SOMETIMES CALLED…

    AFFECTING THE TWO CLASSES: HUMAN BEINGS WORTHY OF LIFE, SOMETIMES CALLED HUMAN PERSONS. AND HUMAN BEINGS WHO ARE UNWORTHY OF LIFE, HUMAN NONPERSONS. ACCORDING TO THIS VIEW, HUMAN BEINGS DO NOT DESERVE PROTECTION ON THE BASIS OF THEIR HUMANITY ALONE. RATHER, THEY ACQUIRE THE RIGHT TO LIFE WHEN THEY ATTAIN CERTAIN CHARACTERISTICS, USUALLY SOME LEVEL OF COGNITIVE ABILITY OR BODILY DEVELOPMENT. SINCE THE UNBORN LACK THESE MAGICAL PERSONHOOD QUALITIES, THEY LACK THE RIGHT TO LIFE AND MAY BE DISMEMBERED IN THE WOMB. THEY ARE HUMAN NONPERSONS OR SO THE ARGUMENT GOES. THERE ARE MANY PROBLEMS WITH THIS CHILLING VIEW. IT HAS BEEN REBUTTED AT LENGTH BY SMARTER MEN AND WOMEN THAN ME, BUT FOR THE PURPOSES OF TODAY IT'S ENOUGH TO POINT OUT THAT THE TRACK RECORD OF THIS ARGUMENT IS DUBIOUS. BECAUSE IT JUST SO HAPPENS THAT EVERY TIME MANKIND HAS BEEN ARTIFICIALLY DIVIDED INTO CLASSES, INTO PERSONS AND NONPERSONS BASED ON THEIR RACE, SEX, GENETIC FITNESS OR ANY OTHER ATTRIBUTE, THE RESULT HAS BEEN CALAMITY. WHICH LEADS TO A VERY SIMPLE QUESTION THAT HAS NEVER BEEN SATISFACTORILY ANSWERED BY ABORTION DEFENDERS. WHY SHOULD WE BELIEVE THAT THIS TIME IS ANY DIFFERENT? ABORTION IS A VERY DIFFICULT SUBJECT MATTER FOR SO MANY REASONS, BUT ON ANOTHER LEVEL IT'S REALLY QUITE SIMPLE. OUR SOCIETY HAS TO CHOOSE BETWEEN THE TWO VISIONS OF HUMAN DIGNITY DESCRIBED ABOVE. PUT SIMPLY, DO WE BELIEVE THAT ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL OR THAT SOME PERHAPS ARE SOMEHOW MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS? THIS SIMPLE QUESTION DESERVES A SIMPLE RESPONSE. WE MUST CHOOSE THE FIRST OF THESE OPTIONS AND AFFIRM THAT ALL HUMAN BEINGS ARE CREATED WITH DIGNITY. AND WE MUST REJECT ALL ATTEMPTS TO SEPARATE THE HUMAN FAMILY INTO HIGHER AND LOWER CLASSES. LET US SEE THESE ATTEMPTS FOR WHAT THEY ARE, CRUEL FICTIONS THAT CHEAPEN LIFE ITSELF. JUST AS THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS LIFE UNWORTHY OF LIFE. THERE'S NO SUCH THING AS A HUMAN NONPERSON. THERE ARE JUST PEOPLE, AND WE ARE EACH FEARFULLY AND WONDERFULLY MADE. YES, DIGNITY WAS OURS BEFORE WE STIRRED IN THE WOMB. IT IS STAMPED ON TO THE VERY FABRIC OF OUR GENOME. IT IS PRINTED ON TO OUR SOUL. THIS IS THE TRUTH SO BRILLIANTLY PROCLAIMED IN OUR NATION'S FOUNDING DOCUMENTS, EVEN AS IT IS DENIED BY OUR LEGAL SYSTEM STARTING WITH ROE V. WADE. BUT EVEN THOUGH THE LAWS OF MAN ARE AGAINST US FOR NOW, THE TRUTH IS WITH US. AND THE TRUTH CAN ERODE EVEN THE MOST FORMIDABLE EDIFICE OF LIES. AND SO ON THIS 45th ANNIVERSARY OF ROE V. WADE, LET US RESPOND TO ROE AS FREDERICK DOUGLASS RESPONDED TO A SIMILAR INDIGNITY IN SCOTT V. SANFORD. HAPPILY FOR THE WHOLE HUMAN FAMILY, THEIR RIGHTS HAVE BEEN DEMIND, DECLARED -- DEFINED, DECLARED AND DECIDED IN A COURT HIGHER THAN THE SUPREME COURT. THOSE WORDS, MR. PRESIDENT, ARE AS TRUE TODAY AS THEY WERE WHEN THEY WERE SPOKEN. THEY CALL ON US TO CONTINUE THE WINDING MARCH FOR JUSTICE AND FOR LIFE UNTIL THE UNALIENABLE RIGHTS OF EVERY HUMAN BEING ARE RESPECTED IN OUR LAND. THANK YOU, MR. PRESIDENT. A SENATOR: MR. PRESIDENT? THE

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  • 12:32:53 PM

    A SENATOR

    PRESIDENT. A SENATOR: MR. PRESIDENT?

  • 12:32:54 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE DISTINGUISHED SENATOR FROM VERMONT.

  • 12:33:02 PM

    MR. ANDERS

    THANK YOU VERY MUCH, MR. PRESIDENT. TODAY I COME BEFORE MY COLLEAGUES HERE…

    THANK YOU VERY MUCH, MR. PRESIDENT. TODAY I COME BEFORE MY COLLEAGUES HERE IN THE SENATE TO URGE IN THE STRONGEST POSSIBLE TERMS THAT THE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP HERE ACCEPT ITS RESPONSIBILITY AND NOT ALLOW THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TO SHUT DOWN. REPUBLICANS CONTROL THE U.S. SENATE. THEY CONTROL THE U.S. HOUSE. AND A REPUBLICAN IS IN THE WHITE HOUSE. PLEASE DO NOT SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN. A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WILL BE EXTREMELY DISTRESSING AND DIFFICULT FOR MILLIONS OF PEOPLE IN EVERY STATE IN OUR COUNTRY WHO UTILIZE GOVERNMENT SERVICES. A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WILL BE EXTREMELY PAINFUL FOR MILLIONS OF FEDERAL EMPLOYEES WHO DEPEND UPON THEIR PAYCHECKS TO PROVIDE FOR THEIR FAMILIES. AND A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WILL MAKE IT MUCHES MORE DIFFICULT -- MUCH MORE DIFFICULT FOR THE UNITED STATES MILITARY, THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO ARE PUTTING THEIR LIVES ON THE LINE TO DEFEND US, TO DO THEIR JOBS. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DO NOT WANT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. I DO NOT WANT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. AND I BELIEVE THAT MOST OF MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES DO NOT WANT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. AND IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT PRESIDENT TRUMP UNDERSTANDS DESPITE WHAT HE SAID IN MAY THAT THAT STATEMENT IS WRONG. WHEN HE SAID OUR COUNTRY NEEDS A GOOD SHUTDOWN, THAT IS WRONG. OUR COUNTRY DOES NOT NEED A GOOD SHUTDOWN. WHAT WE NEED IS AN ANNUAL BUDGET THAT ADDRESSES THE MANY NEEDS OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. JUST LAST NIGHT, MR. PRESIDENT, THIS IS WHAT A SPOKESPERSON FROM THE PENTAGON STATED. AND I QUOTE. WE HAVE BEEN WORKING UNDER A CONTINUING RESOLUTION FOR THREE YEARS NOW. OUR CURRENT C.R. EXPIRES TOMORROW, JANUARY 19. THIS IS WASTEFUL AND DESTRUCTIVE. WE NEED A FULLY FUNDED FISCAL YEAR 2018 BUDGET OR FACE RAMIFICATIONS ON OUR MILITARY. END OF QUOTE. THIS AFTERNOON I SAY TO SENATOR McCONNELL, THE REPUBLICAN LEADER HERE IN THE SENATE, PLEASE DO NOT SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN. YOU KNOW, SENATOR McCONNELL, THE POLITICAL REALITY AS WELL AS ANYBODY IN OUR COUNTRY. IN THE SENATE YOU NEED 60 VOTES TO PASS THIS BUDGET AGREEMENT. YOU DON'T HAVE 60 VOTES. PLEASE, SIT DOWN WITH DEMOCRATS AND START NEGOTIATING IN GOOD FAITH. PLEASE DO NOT SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN. MORE AND MORE DEMOCRATS ARE SICK AND TIRED OF KICKING THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD, TIRED OF US NOT ADDRESSING THE MAJOR CRISES FACING THIS COUNTRY, TIRED OF RUNNING A $4 TRILLION OPERATION WHICH IS WHAT THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT IS ON A MONTH-TO-MONTH BASIS. BUT IT'S NOT JUST DEMOCRATS WHO ARE DEMANDING THAT WE FINALLY HAVE AN ANNUAL BUDGET. IT IS REPUBLICANS AS WELL. MY UNDERSTANDING IS, WHAT I HAVE HEARD FROM THE NEWS MEDIA, IS THAT THEY ARE NOW -- THAT THERE ARE NOW FIVE REPUBLICANS PREPARED TO VOTE AGAINST THIS CONTINUING RESOLUTION AND EVEN MORE WHO HAVE VOICED DEEP CONCERNS ABOUT THE LACK OF AN ANNUAL BUDGET. THEY KNOW AND I KNOW THAT JUST PASSING ANOTHER TEMPORARY BUDGET IS TOTALLY IRRESPONSIBLE AND IS ABDICATING THE JOB THAT WE WERE ELECTED TO DO. WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE UNDERSTAND, WHAT EVERY BUSINESS PERSON IN THIS COUNTRY UNDERSTANDING, WHAT EVERY FAMILY IN AMERICA UNDERSTANDS IS THAT YOU CANNOT RUN A GOVERNMENT GIVEN THE MANY, MANY CRISES THAT WE FACE ON A MONTH-TO-MONTH BASIS. WE CANNOT CONTINUE TO AKD AKD INDICATE OUR RESPONSIBILITY -- TO ABDICATE OUR RESPONSIBILITY. FINALLY WE MUST ADDRESS THE PROBLEMS FACING THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. LAST NIGHT THE PENTAGON TOLD US CORRECTLY AND I STATE AGAIN. THIS IS WHAT THEY SAID. QUOTE, WE NEED A FULLY FUNDED FISCAL 2018 BUDGET OR FACE RAMIFICATIONS ON OUR MILITARY, END QUOTE. BUT IT'S NOT JUST THE MILITARY THAT FACES A CRISIS SITUATION BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF AN ANNUAL BUDGET. AND LET US NOT FORGET WE ARE THREE AND A HALF MONTHS INTO THE FISCAL YEAR. THREE AND A HALF MONTHS HAVE COME AND GONE, AND THE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP HERE HAS STILL NOT GIVEN US AN ANNUAL BUDGET. BUT AGAIN IT IS NOT JUST THE MILITARY THAT IS FACING A CRISIS SITUATION. MR. PRESIDENT, TODAY 27 MILLION AMERICANS GET THEIR PRIMARY HEALTH CARE, DENTAL CARE, MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING AND LOW-COST PRESCRIPTION DRUGS THROUGH THE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER PROGRAM. IN MY STATE OF VERMONT, ONE OUT OF FOUR VERMONTERS GET THEIR PRIMARY HEALTH CARE THROUGH COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS. THREE AND A HALF MONTHS HAVE GONE SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THIS FISCAL YEAR, AND THE REPUBLICANS HAVE NOT YET REAUTHORIZED FUNDING FOR THE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER PROGRAM WHICH IS NOW FACING A SEVERE CRISIS IN TERMS OF RECRUITING AND RETAINING THE DOCTORS, NURSES, AND OTHER MEDICAL STAFF THEY NEED TO MAINTAIN THE QUALITY OF SERVICE THEY MUST MAINTAIN. WHAT DOCTOR, WHAT NURSE IS GOING TO COME TO A COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER WHEN HE OR SHE DOESN'T EVEN KNOW IF THAT FACILITY IS GOING TO RECEIVE FUNDING. 27 MILLION AMERICANS DEPEND UPON COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS. I'M GLAD THAT AS I UNDERSTAND IT THE REPUBLICANS NOW ARE PREPARED TO REAUTHORIZE THE CHIP PROGRAM. NINE MILLION KIDS NEED THAT PROGRAM. THREE AND A HALF MONTHS COME AND GONE. FINALLY THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT REAUTHORIZING CHIP. THAT'S GOOD. BUT YOU CANNOT FORGET COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS. MR. PRESIDENT, THE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER PROGRAM IN THIS COUNTRY IS 50 YEARS OLD. IT WAS DEVELOPED IN THE 1960'S. IT IS SUPPORTED BY VIRTUALLY EVERY DEMOCRAT AND I THINK THE VAST MAJORITY OF THE REPUBLICANS. AND YET IT HAS NOT BEEN REAUTHORIZED. THIS IS A CRISIS WHICH CANNOT BE KICKED DOWN THE ROAD. IT HAS TO BE ADDRESSED AND ADDRESSED NOW. MR. PRESIDENT, ON VETERANS DAY EVERYBODY HERE GOES RUNNING ALL OVER THE COUNTRY GIVING GREAT SPEECHES ABOUT HOW MUCH WE LOVE THE VETERANS. BUFF THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION -- BUDGET THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION CANNOT CONTINUE TO PROVIDE DECENT AND QUALITY CARE TO THOSE OF OUR VETERANS WHO PUT THEIR LIVES ON THE LINE TO DEFEND US WHEN THEY HAVE OVER 30,000 VACANCIES. IN VERMONT AND AROUND THE COUNTRY, V.A. PROVIDES GOOD QUALITY CARE, BUT YOU CAN'T PROVIDE CARE IN A TIMELY MANNER WHEN WE HAVE 30,000 VACANCIES AT THE V.A. THIS IS AN ISSUE THAT CANNOT BE KICKED DOWN -- THE CAN CANNOT BE KICKED DOWN THE ROAD. IT MUST BE ADDRESSED NOW, NOW, NOT NEXT YEAR. MR. PRESIDENT, AS EVERYBODY KNOWS, LOUISIANA AND VERMONT, ALL OVER THIS COUNTRY THERE IS A HORRIBLE, HORRIFIC OPIOID AND HEROIN EPIDEMIC SWEEPING THIS COUNTRY. IT HAS HIT MY STATE OF VERMONT HARD. IT HAS HIT STATES ALL OVER AMERICA. LAST YEAR 60,000 PEOPLE IN OUR COUNTRY DIED AS A RESULT OF OPIOID OR HEROIN OVERDOSES. WE NEED TO HELP STATE GOVERNMENTS, LOCAL COMMUNITY, FAMILIES, POLICE DEPARTMENTS ADDRESS THE OPIOID AND HEROIN EPIDEMIC. THIS IS A CRISIS WHICH CANNOT BE KICKED DOWN THE ROAD. IT MUST BE ADDRESSED NOW, NOT THROUGH A CONTINUING RESOLUTION WHICH ABSOLUTELY IGNORES THIS CRISIS. MUST BE ADDRESSED NOW. MR. PRESIDENT, LAST YEAR UNBELIEVABLY, SOME 10,000 PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES DIED WHILE AWAITING A DECISION FOR THE APPLICATIONS THEY MADE TO THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION FOR DISABILITY BENEFITS TO BE APPROVED. PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES APPLY FOR BENEFITS. THEY WAIT. THEY WAIT. AND THEY WAIT. LAST YEAR 10,000 PEOPLE DIED WITH DISABILITIES WAITING FOR A DECISION. AND MANY OF THEM DIED BECAUSE THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION IS TODAY GROSSLY UNDERFUNDED, UNDERSTAFFED, AND SIMPLY NOT ABLE TO DEAL WITH THE VOLUME OF CLAIMS THAT THEY RECEIVED. BUT IT IS NOT JUST PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES. IN MY STATE OF VERMONT, I HEAR THIS EVERY DAY. THERE ARE OLDER AMERICANS WHO ARE NOT GETTING THE QUALITY OF SERVICE THEY NEED FROM THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION. OUR JOB IS TO ADEQUATELY FUND THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION SO THEY CAN PROTECT THE NEEDS OF SENIOR CITIZENS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES IN OUR COUNTRY. THIS IS A CRISIS WHICH CANNOT BE KICKED DOWN THE ROAD. IT HAS TO BE ADDRESSED NOW. AND THIS CONTINUING RESOLUTION THAT I PRESUME WE'RE GOING TO VOTE ON LATER TODAY DOES NOT DEAL WITH IT. MR. PRESIDENT, A MILLION AND A HALF AMERICANS ARE IN DANGER OF SEEING THEIR PENSIONS CUT BY UP TO 60%. THESE ARE TRUCK DRIVERS, CONSTRUCTION WORKERS, MACHINISTS, AND OTHERS WHAT WHO HAVE WORKED THEIR ENTIRE CAREERS WITH THE EXPECTATION THAT THEY WOULD RECEIVE A DECENT PENSION WHEN THEY RETIRED. WE WE HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY TO PROTECT THE PENSIONS OF THESE HARDWORKING AMERICANS AND KEEP THE PROMISES THAT WERE MADE TO THEM. THIS IS ANOTHER CRISIS THAT CANNOT BE KICKED DOWN THE ROAD. IT HAS TO BE ADDRESSED NOW, AND THE CONTINUING RESOLUTION THAT'S GOING TO COME BEFORE US HAS NOT ONE WORD TO SAY ABOUT THAT. AND THEN WE HAVE A CHILD CARE CRISIS IN THIS COUNTRY. MILLIONS OF WORKING FAMILIES CAN'T FIND QUALITY, AFFORDABLE CHILD CARE. WE HAVE A STUDENT DEBT CRISIS IN THIS COUNTRY. 40 MILLION PEOPLE, MANY OF THEM DEEPLY IN DEBT, UNABLE TO GET ON WITH THEIR LIVES FOR THE CRIME OF HAVING GONE TO COLLEGE. THAT IS A CRISIS THAT WE HAVE TO DEAL WITH. WE HAVE AN INFRASTRUCTURE CRISIS IN THIS COUNTRY ALL OVER AMERICA. ROADS, BRIDGES, WAIT WATER PLANTS ARE COLLAPSING. HOW DO WE CONTINUE TO IGNORE THOSE CRISES? MR. PRESIDENT, AT A TIME OF MASSIVE INCOME AND WEALTH INEQUALITY, WHEN THE RICH ARE GETTING RICHER AND EVERYBODY ELSE IS GETTING POORER, OUR JOB HERE IN CONGRESS IS NOT JUST TO GIVE TAX BREAKS TO BILLIONAIRES. OUR JOB IS NOT JUST TO TRY TO THROW 32 MILLION AMERICANS OFF OF THE HEALTH INSURANCE THEY HAVE OR TO DENY THE REALITY OF CLIMATE CHANGE OR TO END NET NEUTRALITY OR MAKE RACIST COMMENTS ABOUT COUNTRIES THROUGHOUT THE WORLD. OUR JOB IS TO REPRESENT THE NEEDS OF ORDINARY AMERICANS. WE CANNOT CONTINUE TO IGNORE THESE PROBLEMS. WE CANNOT CONTINUE TO KICK THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD. SO ONCE AGAIN, I SAY TO THE MAJORITY LEADER LET US BEGIN TO NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH. LET US REACH DECISIONS WHICH WILL IMPROVE LIFE FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, NOT SIMPLY IGNORE THEIR NEEDS. MR. PRESIDENT, WHEN WE TALK ABOUT THE CRISES FACING THIS COUNTRY, WE ARE ALSO TALKING ABOUT A CRISIS PRECIPITATED BY PRESIDENT TRUMP IN SEPTEMBER OF LAST YEAR. AS A RESULT OF PRESIDENT TRUMP'S RESCINDING PRESIDENT OBAMA'S EXECUTIVE ORDER ON DACA, SOME 800,000 YOUNG PEOPLE IN OUR COUNTRY ARE TODAY LIVING IN FEAR, UNCERTAINTY, AND ANXIETY. IF WE DO NOT ACT AND ACT NOW, IT IS POSSIBLE THAT MANY OF THESE YOUNG PEOPLE WILL LOSE THEIR LEGAL STATUS AND BE SUBJECTED TO THE POSSIBILITY OF DEPORTATION. THIS MUST NOT BE ALLOWED TO HAPPEN. THIS ISSUE, TO MY MIND, MR. PRESIDENT, IS ONE OF THE GREAT MORAL ISSUES OF OUR TIME. THESE YOUNG PEOPLE WHO WERE BROUGHT INTO THIS COUNTRY, SOMETIMES AT 2 YEARS OF AGE, 3 YEARS, 5 YEARS OF AGE, ARE PEOPLE WHO HAVE LIVED VIRTUALLY THEIR ENTIRE LIFE IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. THEY ARE WORKING, THEY ARE IN SCHOOL, THEY ARE IN THE MILITARY. 20,000 OF THESE YOUNG DACA PEOPLE ARE NOW TEACHING IN SCHOOLS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY. IT WOULD BE ONE OF THE CRUELEST ACTS IN MODERN AMERICAN HISTORY OR HISTORY IN GENERAL, OUR HISTORY IN GENERAL IF WE SAID TO THESE YOUNG PEOPLE WHO KNOW NO OTHER COUNTRY BUT THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA THAT THEY COULD BE DEPORTED FROM OUR SHORES. IT WOULD BE AN UNSPEAKABLE CRIME, AND WE MUST NOT ALLOW THAT TO HAPPEN. BUT THAT IS NOT JUST THE OPINION OF SENATOR BERNIE SANDERS. THAT IS THE OVERWHELMING POINT OF VIEW OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, OF DEMOCRATS, REPUBLICANS, AND INDEPENDENTS. A POLL JUST CAME OUT LAST NIGHT, MR. PRESIDENT, FROM CBS, AND WHAT THE POLLS SHOWED IS THAT 87% OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE BELIEVE THAT WE SHOULD PROTECT THE LEGAL STATUS OF THE DREAMERS. 87%. AND THAT POLL IS CONSISTENT WITH POLL AFTER POLL AFTER POLL, WHERE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES ACROSS THE POLITICAL SPECTRUM ARE SAYING WE CANNOT TURN OUR BACKS ON THESE DREAMERS , AND THE VAST MAJORITY OF PEOPLE BELIEVE WE MUST PROVIDE A PATH TOWARD CITIZENSHIP. THERE IS NOW BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION THAT HAS BEEN WRITTEN BY SENATOR DURBIN, SENATOR GRAHAM, AND OTHERS, AND I SAY TO SENATOR McCONNELL IF 87% OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE THINK WE SHOULD PROVIDE LEGAL STATUS TO THE DREAMERS, LET US DO OUR JOB. LET US PASS THIS LEGISLATION. THIS IS NOT A PROFILE IN COURAGE. THIS IS WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WANT, AND LET US DO WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WANT. MR. PRESIDENT, AS YOU WELL KNOW, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE HURRICANES STRUCK TEXAS AND FLORIDA AND PUERTO RICO AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS MONTHS AND MONTHS AGO, AND PEOPLE ARE -- PEOPLE THERE ARE STILL SUFFERING. MANY PEOPLE IN PUERTO RICO TODAY STILL DO NOT HAVE ELECTRICITY. AND THEN THERE ARE DEVASTATING WILDFIRES AND MUDSLIDES THAT HAVE TAKEN PLACE IN CALIFORNIA. HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THIS CONGRESS TO RESPOND TO THE CRISES FACING OUR FELLOW AMERICANS? MR. PRESIDENT, WHAT I SAY IS WE WERE ELECTED TO DO OUR JOBS IN REPRESENTING THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. THAT'S WHAT WE ARE PAID TO DO. WE CANNOT RUN A GOVERNMENT ON A MONTH-TO-MONTH BASIS. SENATOR McCONNELL DOES NOT HAVE THE 60 VOTES HE NEEDS, AND NOW IS THE TIME FOR HIM TO SIT DOWN WITH THE DEMOCRATIC LEADERSHIP AND NEGOTIATE IN SERIOUS AGREEMENT ON THE BUDGET SITUATION, ON PARITY BETWEEN DEFENSE AND NONDEFENSE SPENDING, NEGOTIATE A SERIOUS AGREEMENT ON DACA PROVIDING LEGAL STATUS AND A PATH TOWARD CITIZENSHIP FOR OUR 800,000 YOUNG PEOPLE, NEGOTIATE A SERIOUS AGREEMENT ON DISASTER RELIEF. AND THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER IS WE CAN DO IT, WE CAN DO IT. THE DIFFERENCES OF OPINION ARE NOT THAT WIDE, BUT WE CANNOT DO IT AND WILL NOT DO IT UNLESS WE FINALLY SIT DOWN AND START NEGOTIATING IN A SERIOUS MANNER, AND THAT IS WHAT I IMPLORE SENATOR McCONNELL TO DO. AND WITH THAT, MR. PRESIDENT, I WOULD YIELD THE FLOOR AND NOTE THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 12:53:14 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL:

  • 12:53:22 PM

    Quorum Call

  • 01:19:35 PM

    A SENATOR

    A SENATOR: IS THE SENATE IN A QUORUM CALL?

  • 01:19:38 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

  • 01:19:39 PM

    A SENATOR

    ARE. A SENATOR: I ASK THE QUORUM CALL BE SUSPENDED.

  • 01:19:42 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 01:19:43 PM

    MR. THUNE

    MR. PRESIDENT, TODAY, AS THEY DO EVERY YEAR AT THIS TIME, TENS OF…

    MR. PRESIDENT, TODAY, AS THEY DO EVERY YEAR AT THIS TIME, TENS OF THOUSANDS OF AMERICANS FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY, INCLUDING FROM MY HOME STATE IN SOUTH DAKOTA, WILL MARCH FROM THE NATIONAL MALL TO THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT TO STAND UP FOR THE RIGHT TO LIFE. THE MARCH IS ALWAYS INSPIRING. THE HUGE CROWDS WHO COME YEAR AFTER YEAR, THE COMMITMENT AND ENTHUSIASM OF THE PARTICIPANTS. AND MOST OF ALL, MR. PRESIDENT, THE YOUNG PEOPLE -- TEENAGERS, COLLEGE STUDENTS, YOUNG ADULTS. ABORTION HAS BEEN AN UGLY SCAR ON OUR NATION FOR A LONG WHILE NOW. BUT SEEING ALL THESE YOUNG PEOPLE AT THE MARCH FOR LIFE EVERY YEAR FILLS ME WITH HOPE, BECAUSE I KNOW THAT THESE YOUNG PEOPLE GET IT. THEY KNOW THAT LIFE MATTERS, AND THEY'RE READY AND WILLING TO STAND UP AND SAY THAT. STAND UP FOR THE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF UNBORN AMERICANS WHO ARE KILLED EVERY YEAR IN THIS COUNTRY BY ABORTION. MR. PRESIDENT, THIS YEAR I HOPE TO SEE CONGRESS CONSIDER THE PAIN-CAPABLE UNBORN CHILD PROTECTION ACT. THIS LEGISLATION WOULD PROTECT UNBORN CHILDREN WHO HAVE REACHED THE AGE OF 20 WEEKS. THAT'S FIVE MONTHS OF PREGNANCY FROM BEING KILLED BY ABORTION. RIGHT NOW, THERE ARE ONLY SEVEN COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD THAT ALLOW ELECTIVE ABORTIONS AFTER 20 WEEKS OF PREGNANCY. SEVEN COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD. AND AMONG THOSE COUNTRIES ARE CHINA, NORTH KOREA, AND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. I'D LIKE TO SUGGEST, MR. PRESIDENT, THAT THAT'S NOT THE COMPANY THAT AMERICANS WANT TO BE KEEPING WHEN IT COMES TO PROTECTING HUMAN RIGHTS. MR. PRESIDENT, 63% OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE SUPPORT A BAN ON ABORTION AFTER 20 WEEKS OF PREGNANCY, AND THAT DOESN'T SURPRISE ME. TAKE A LOOK AT A 5 MONTH OLD UNBORN BABY ON AN ULTRASOUND. IT'S PRETTY DARN OBVIOUS THAT THAT'S A HUMAN BEING IN THERE. AND I THINK MOST PEOPLE INSTINCTIVELY KNOW THAT HUMAN BEINGS, NO MATTER HOW SMALL THEY ARE, ARE WORTHY OF PROTECTION. MR. PRESIDENT, FIVE MONTHS INTO A PREGNANCY, BABIES ARE DOING A LOT. THEY'RE SUCKING THEIR THUMBS. THEY'RE YAWNING AND STRETCHING. THEY ARE ACTIVELY MOVING AROUND. THEY ARE RESPONDING TO NERVES. AND THEY FEEL AND RESPOND TO PAIN. THE SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE ON THIS POINT IS CLEAR. FIVE MONTHS INTO A PREGNANCY, UNBORN BABIES FEEL PAIN. AND YET, MR. PRESIDENT, IN OUR COUNTRY, IT'S LEGAL TO ABORT THESE BABIES. THE PROCEDURES USED TO PERFORM THESE ABORTIONS ARE SO BRUTAL AND INHUMAN THAT IT'S DIFFICULT TO EVEN TALK ABOUT. MOST AMERICANS WOULD RIGHTLY SHRINK FROM TREATING AN ANIMAL THE WAY THAT WE TREAT UNBORN HUMAN BEINGS. MR. PRESIDENT, EVERY YEAR THERE ARE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF ABORTIONS IN THIS COUNTRY. PLANNED PARENTHOOD REPORTS THAT IT PERFORMED 321,384 ABORTIONS IN 2016. THAT NUMBER IS SO LARGE, IT'S HARD TO FATHOM. TO PUT THAT INTO SOME KIND OF PERSPECTIVE, THAT'S EQUIVALENT TO MORE THAN ONE-THIRD OF THE POPULATION OF MY HOME STATE OF SOUTH DAKOTA. UNFORTUNATELY, THE PAIN-CAPABLE UNBORN CHILD PROTECTION ACT WOULD NOT ELIMINATE ALL OF THESE ABORTIONS, BUT, MR. PRESIDENT, IT WOULD MAKE A DIFFERENCE AND IT WOULD BRING US ONE STEP CLOSER TO THE DAY WHEN EVERY CHILD BORN AND UNBORN IS PROTECTED IN LAW. TO ALL THOSE WHO ARE MARCHING FOR LIFE TODAY, THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE. THANK YOU FOR REMINDING ALL OF US ABOUT AN INJUSTICE THAT IS ALL TOO EASY FOR US TO IGNORE. THANK YOU FOR STANDING UP FOR ALL THOSE BABIES. THE FIGHT MAY BE LONG, BUT I KNOW THAT AT THE END OF THE DAY, IT IS LIFE THAT WILL WIN. MR. PRESIDENT, I YIELD THE FLOOR AND SUGGEST THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 01:24:12 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    QUORUM.

  • 01:25:40 PM

    A SENATOR

    A SENATOR: MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 01:25:43 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM MARYLAND.

  • 01:25:45 PM

    MR. CARDIN

    I WOULD ASK CONSENT THAT THE QUORUM CALL BE DISPENSED WITH.

  • 01:25:48 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 01:25:49 PM

    MR. CARDIN

    MR. PRESIDENT, BEFORE COMING TO WASHINGTON TODAY, I WENT TO ANNAPOLIS. THE…

    MR. PRESIDENT, BEFORE COMING TO WASHINGTON TODAY, I WENT TO ANNAPOLIS. THE MARYLAND GENERAL ASSEMBLY IS IN SESSION. I HAD A CHANCE TO MEET WITH SEVERAL OF OUR REGIONAL DELEGATIONS IN THE MARYLAND GENERAL ASSEMBLY, WITH OUR SENATORS, AND WITH OUR MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE. OBVIOUSLY, THE QUESTION THAT WAS ASKED THE MOST IS WHAT'S HAPPENING IN REGARDS TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, WHAT'S HAPPENING IN REGARDS TO THE F.Y. 2018 BUDGET? WILL GOVERNMENT BE FUNDED PAST MIDNIGHT TONIGHT? I MUST TELL YOU, I WAS TALKING TO BOTH DEMOCRATIC AND REPUBLICAN MEMBERS OF THE MARYLAND GENERAL ASSEMBLY, AND THERE WAS A COMMON CONCERN, FOR YOU SEE THE MARYLAND GENERAL ASSEMBLY WILL SHORTLY BE RECEIVING FROM GOVERNOR HOGAN THE F.Y. 2019 BUDGET, THE F.Y. 2019 BUDGET. AND A GOOD PART OF ANY STATE'S BUDGET IS THE -- IS THE FEDERAL FUNDING PROGRAMS, AND THE STATE OF MARYLAND AND NONE OF OUR LOCAL JURISDICTIONS HAVE THE F.Y. 2018 BUDGET LET ALONE A BLUEPRINT FOR LIKELY ACTION BY CONGRESS FOR THE F.Y. 2019 BUDGET. THE BUDGET SHOULD HAVE BEEN PASSED BY OCTOBER 1 OF LAST YEAR. THAT'S THE BEGINNING OF THE FISCAL YEAR. WE HAVE BEEN OPERATING UNDER CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS DURING THE ENTIRE PART OF THIS YEAR. IN FACT, WE HAVE BEEN OPERATING ON CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS FOR YEARS, AND IT'S CAUSING SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE TO THIS COUNTRY. THE REPUBLICANS CONTROL THE HOUSE, THE SENATE, AND THE WHITE HOUSE, AND THEY CAN'T PASS A BUDGET FOR OUR COUNTRY. SO WHEN THE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP ASKED US IN SEPTEMBER OF LAST YEAR FOR A CONTINUING RESOLUTION TO HAVE MORE TIME TO NEGOTIATE A BUDGET FOR F.Y. 2018, WE HAD NO CHOICE BUT TO GO ALONG WITH THE CONTINUING RESOLUTION TO GIVE MORE TIME. BUT THEN ON THREE ADDITIONAL OCCASIONS, THE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP HAS COME FORWARD IN SAYING WE NEED ADDITIONAL TIME. I REMEMBER THE DEBATE WE HAD IN DECEMBER BEFORE THE HOLIDAYS, AND THE LEADERSHIP WAS VERY CLEAR THIS WOULD BE THE LAST CONTINUING RESOLUTION THAT WAS GOING TO BE NEEDED, THEY WERE CLOSE TO WORKING OUT DEALS, ET CETERA, ONLY TO FIND OUT TODAY WE ARE STILL NO CLOSER TO GETTING IT RESOLVED. AND HERE'S THE TRAGEDY. OUR AGENCIES CANNOT EXIST ON CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS. THEY HIT A POINT WHERE THEY ARE NO LONGER ABLE TO CARRY OUT THEIR MISSION IN THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. WE HEARD THAT LAST NIGHT ON THE FLOOR OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE WHEN THE REPRESENTATIVE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE INDICATED THAT OUR NATION'S PREPAREDNESS, READINESS CANNOT BE MAINTAINED BY A CONTINUING RESOLUTION WITH LAST YEAR'S BUDGET. YOU SEE, A CONTINUING RESOLUTION, IT DOES NOT REFLECT OUR CURRENT PRIORITIES. IT'S WHERE WE WERE ON THE LAST TIME WE PASSED A BUDGET, WHICH IS OVER A YEAR AGO. AND THAT'S THE SPENDING PRIORITIES THAT AN AGENCY MUST COMPLY WITH. WELL, IF YOU'RE IN THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, A LOT HAS HAPPENED DURING THAT PERIOD OF TIME. LOOK WHAT'S HAPPENING IN NORTH KOREA. LOOK WHAT'S HAPPENING WITH RUSSIA. LOOK WHAT'S HAPPENING AROUND THE WORLD. OUR DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE NEEDS TO HAVE A CURRENT-YEAR BUDGET, NOT ANOTHER CONTINUING RESOLUTION. WE'VE GOT TO REACH THIS DECISION. SO HERE'S OUR CONCERN. IF WE JUST CONTINUE TO GO ALONG WITH THESE CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS, WE'RE GOING TO HURT OUR NATIONAL SECURITY, WE'RE GOING TO HURT OUR AGENCIES' ABILITY TO GET THEIR WORK DONE, AND IT'S GOING TO COST THE TAXPAYERS OF THIS COUNTRY MORE MONEY, AND THEY'RE NOT GOING TO GET THE SERVICES THAT THEY NEED. SO TO ME, THERE IS AN ALTERNATIVE FOR THIS DATE THAT WE NEED TO CONSIDER, AND THAT IS LET US COMPLETE OUR WORK. NOW, I KNOW WE HAVE A DEADLINE AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT. I KNOW THAT THE GOVERNMENT WILL SHUT DOWN UNLESS WE GET SOMETHING DONE. I MUST TELL YOU WE SHOULD MAKE SURE THE GOVERNMENT STAYS OPEN. NO ONE WINS WHEN THERE IS A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. BUT WE'RE NOT DOING ANYONE ANY FAVOR IF WE DON'T COMMIT OURSELVES TO GET THE JOB DONE. WHAT I WOULD URGE LEADER McCONNELL0 TO DO SO -- McCONNELL TO DO, ALLOW US TO VOTE ON A VERY SHORT-TERM CONTINUING RESOLUTION AND KEEP US HERE UNTIL WE GET THE F.Y. 2018 COMPLETE. WE KNOW THERE'S BEEN REPORTED CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN THE LEADERSHIP IN THE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE AND IN THE SENATE AND THERE'S A DEAL THAT CAN BE MADE, BUT WE HAVE TO HAVE A DEADLINE. HERE'S THE DANGER OF ANOTHER LONG-TERM C.R. WITHOUT HAVING THAT. BECAUSE WE HEAR THAT THERE IS A GROUP IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES THAT IS CONTROLLING THE DEBATE OVER THERE. THEY DON'T REPRESENT A MAJORITY IN THE HOUSE, FAR FROM IT. THEY CERTAINLY DON'T REPRESENT THE VIEWS OF THE MAJORITY OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE OR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, BUT UNLESS WE GIVE A DEADLINE NOW AND GET THIS DONE, WE'RE GOING TO BE FACED WITH THE SAME CONCERNS A MONTH FROM NOW AND WE'RE NOT GOING TO BE ABLE TO GET A BUDGET DONE SO THAT WE CAN DEAL WITH THE PROBLEMS OF THIS COUNTRY. WE SHOULD NOT HAVE A SHUT DOWN. ALL OF US SHOULD BE COMMITTED TO PASS A SHORT-TERM C.R. TO KEEP US HERE AND AVOID A GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN. EVERYONE LOSES ON A SHUT DOWN. MR. PRESIDENT, I HAVE THE HONOR OF REPRESENTING ONE OF THE LARGEST NUMBER OF FEDERAL EMPLOYEES OF ANY STATE IN THE COUNTRY. MARYLAND IS THE PROUD HOME TO MANY INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT FACILITIES AND INSTALLATIONS AND MANY TALENTED FEDERAL WORKERS WHO ARE ON THE FRONT LINE OF FEDERAL SERVICE AND THEY WORK HARD FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE EVERY SINGLE DAY. I AM PROUD TO REPRESENT THEM IN THE UNITED STATES SENATE. OUR FEDERAL WORKFORCE HAS ALREADY SACRIFICED ON BEHALF OF OUR BUDGET. THEY'VE GONE THROUGH TOO MANY C.R. WHICH COMPROMISE THEIR ABILITY TO GET THE JOB DONE. THEY'VE GONE THROUGH TOO MANY THREATS OF SEQUESTRATION, TOO MANY PAY FREEZES OR PAY ADJUSTMENTS THAT ARE INADEQUATE, ADDITIONAL COSTS FOR THEIR PENSIONS. THEY HAVE CONTRIBUTED. WHAT THEY EXPECT FROM US IS TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OPEN AND GET A BUDGET SO THEY CAN GET THEIR MISSION DONE. SO FOR THE FAKE OF OUR FEDERAL WORKFORCE, LET'S KEEP THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OPEN. IT'S A REAL HARDSHIP IF WE MISS THIS DEADLINE. IT IS NOT WITHOUT COSTS. LET ME MAKE THAT CLEAR TO MY COLLEAGUES. IF THERE'S A GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN, HARDWORKING FEDERAL WORKERS AREN'T GOING TO GET A PAYCHECK, YET THEY STILL HAVE TO PAY THEIR MORTGAGE AND SUPPORT THEIR FAMILIES. THOSE -- OTHERS THERE HAVE TO TAKE UNPAID LEAVE. THOSE WHO DEPEND ON FEDERAL CONTRACTS TO KEEP THEIR BUSINESSES GOING WILL NOT THAT ASSURANCE AND WILL BE FACED WITH THE PROSPECT OF LAYING OFF WORKERS, INDIVIDUALS WHO NEED GOVERNMENT SERVICES WILL FIND IT MUCH MORE DIFFICULT, IF NOT IMPOSSIBLE, TO BE ABLE TO GET THOSE FEDERAL SERVICES, WHETHER IT'S TRACKING DOWN A CHECK THAT THEY DESPERATELY NEED, GETTING A TYPE OF ASSISTANCE TO PROCESS WITH THE V.A. OR WHETHER IT IS A MATTER OF SECURITY AND THEY NEED THE CONTACT OF OUR GOVERNMENT. ALL OF THAT IS GOING TO BE PUT AT RISK AND THE TAXPAYERS OF THIS COUNTRY ARE LEFT HOLDING THE BILL. WE'VE GONE THROUGH GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWNS BEFORE AND WE'VE DONE ANALYSIS EACH TIME AND EVERY TIME IT COSTS THE TAXPAYERS MORE. IT COSTS THE TAXPAYERS MORE. SO ALL OF US WHO ARE CONCERNED ABOUT FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY, WE NEED TO FIND A PATH FORWARD TO MAKE SURE WE DON'T SHUT DOWN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. IT MAKES NO SENSE. I'VE INTRODUCED LEGISLATION THAT I WOULD URGE MY COLLEAGUES TO MAKE SURE WE PASS BECAUSE YOU MAY BE SURPRISED TO FIND OUT THAT IF WE MISS THE DEADLINE AND WE GO A FEW DAYS AND THEN WE GET IT DONE THAT THOSE FEDERAL WORKERS WHO WERE PUT ON FURLOUGH WILL NOT BE PAID FOR OUR NEGLIGENCE IN KEEPING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OPEN. THAT'S NOT RIGHT. EVERY TIME WE CORRECTED THAT BY LEGISLATION, BUT THERE SHOULDN'T BE THAT UNCERTAINTY ON THE FEDERAL WORKFORCE. I URGE MY COLLEAGUES, LET US PASS LEGISLATION. I HAVE THE SUPPORT OF OVER 20 OF MY COLLEAGUES WHO COSPONSORED THIS LEGISLATION TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR FEDERAL WORKFORCE KNOWS THAT THEY WILL RECEIVE THEIR FULL COMPENSATION. IT'S ALSO IMPORTANT IN THAT WE MOVE FORWARD ON GETTING THIS BUDGET DONE AND GETTING WORK DONE BECAUSE IF WE JUST TAKE THE HOUSE APPROACH AND WE SAY, OKAY, EVERYTHING'S FINE, WE'LL BE BACK IN 28 DAYS AND WE'LL SEE THIS MOVIE AGAIN, WE'VE GOT ISSUES THAT CANNOT WAIT TO BE REEL SOLVED. WE HAVE TO RESOLVE ISSUES. THE ONE THAT HAS THE MOST ATTENTION -- THERE'S A LOT OF ISSUES OUT THERE, BUT YOU ONE -- BUT ONE THAT HASN'T GOTTEN A LOT -- HAS GOTTEN A LOT OF ATTENTION IS THE DREAMERS. THE PRESIDENT SET A SIX-MONTH DEADLINE ON THE REMOVAL OF THE DREAMERS. WE DIDN'T HAVE A PROBLEM UNTIL THEN. WE NEEDED TO FIX OUR IMMIGRATION SYSTEM, DON'T GET ME WRONG, BUT WE DIDN'T HAVE DATE ON THE BACK OF INDIVIDUALS WHO KNOW NO OTHER COUNTRY BUT THE UNITED STATES AS TO THEIR SHELF LIFE HERE IN THE UNITED STATES. WE DIDN'T HAVE THAT UNTIL THE PRESIDENT INITIATED THIS PROBLEM. SO WHEN THE PRESIDENT DID THAT IN SEPTEMBER, I APPLAUD COLLEAGUES ON BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE, DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS, WHO SAID, LET US COME TOGETHER AND FIX IT IN THE LEGISLATION. I AGREE WITH THAT. WE NEED THAT. WE SHOULD HAVE LEGISLATION SO WE CAN FIX THE DREAMERS SO THEY CAN HAVE A PATHWAY TO CITIZENSHIP AND THEY KNOW THAT AMERICA IS THEIR HOME AND THAT THEIR FUTURE IS HERE. THAT SHOULD BE DONE. WE HAD BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION READY TO GO, READY TO MOVE FORWARD ON IT, ONLY TO FIND OUT THAT WHILE THE PRESIDENT SAID HE WAS FOR LEGISLATION, HE THEN SAID, WELL, WE'VE GOT TO DEAL WITH OTHER ISSUES. I HAVE THIS WALL I'M CONCERNED ABOUT. I HAVE BORDER SECURITY I'M WORRIED ABOUT. SO THE BIPARTISAN GROUP WORK IN GOOD FAITH WITH THE PRESIDENT AND NARROW THE ISSUES THAT NEED TO BE RESOLVED TO A VIEW AND THEY TALK ABOUT BORDER SECURITY, THEY TALK ABOUT THE ISSUES CONCERNING THE FAMILY ISSUES AND FAMILY REUNIFICATIONS AND DEALING WITH THE LOTTERY SYSTEM ON VISAS FOR FAMILIES WITH DIVERSITY AND THEY REACH A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT, AS REQUESTED BY THE PRESIDENT, AND THEY THOUGHT WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. YES, IT DOES PROTECT THE DREAMERS AND IT PROTECTS THOSE IN TEMPORARY PROTECTED STATUS. MARYLAND HAS A LARGE PERCENTAGE OF PEOPLE FROM HAITI AND EL SALVADOR, EVERYTHING THOUGHT WE FINALLY RESOLVED THIS ISSUE, WE COULD GO ON TO THE NEXT ISSUE ONLY TO FIND THAT THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES FLIPPED HIS POSITION ON IT. NOW, MR. PRESIDENT, I WANT TO BE GAUGED WITH THE PRESIDENT. AS THE MAJORITY LEADER SAYS, HE HAS TO SIGN BILLS. I GET IT, BUT IT'S TOUGH TO NEGOTIATE WITH SOMEONE WHO TELLS YOU ONE THING ON ONE DAY AND THEN DOES THE EXACT OPPOSITE ON THE NEXT DAY. WE HAVE OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO ACT. WE HAVE A BILL THAT IS BIPARTISAN AND HAS A ENOUGH SUPPORT AND CLEARLY PASS THE UNITED STATES AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND IT PROTECTS THE DREAMERS AND PROTECTS THOSE WITH T.P.S. STATUS AND DEAL WITH BORDER SECURITY. WE NEED TO THE GET THAT DONE NOW ALSO. AND WE ALL KNOW THAT WE HAVE HEALTH CARE EXTENDERS THAT NEED TO BE COMPLETED IN ADDITION TO CHIP. CHIP'S VERY IMPORTANT TO GET DONE. IT SHOULD BE MADE PERMANENT, I SHOULD TELL YOU. WE HAVE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS AND MANY OTHER ISSUES THAT NEED TO BE DEALT WITH IN THIS LEGISLATION. WE HAVE DISASTER RELIEF. WE TALKED ABOUT THIS MANY TIMES. WE COME TOGETHER AS A NATION TO HELP THOUGH WHO HAVE BEEN DISTRESSED THROUGH NATURAL DISASTERS, THE PEOPLE OF TEXAS AND OF FLORIDA AND PUERTO RICO AND THOSE THAT HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY THE WILDFIRES. AND THEN, OF COURSE TO ME, THE ISSUE I HEAR THE MOST ABOUT, MR. PRESIDENT, IS THE OPIOID CRISIS. WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT THE FEDERAL PARTNERSHIP IS STRONG TO DEAL WITH THIS NATIONAL CRISIS. SO WHAT SHOULD WE DO? WELL, LET US WORK TOGETHER. I MUST TELL YOU, MY CONSTITUENTS, YOUR CONSTITUENTS ARE NOT INTERESTED IN A BLAME GAME HERE. THEY ARE MAKING HAD SURE THAT THEY HAVE A CHECK TO PAY THEIR MORTGAGE PAYMENTS. IF THEY ARE IN NEED OF VAR SERVICES -- V.A. SERVICES, THEY WANT TO MAKE SURE THOSE SERVICES ARE AVAILABLE TO THEM, THEY WANT TO MAKE SURE THEY ARE GETTING THE BEST MONEY FOR THEIR TAX DOLLAR AND THEY WANT THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS TO WORK AND RESOLVE THESE ISSUES. THEY EXPECT US TO PASS A BUDGET AND DEAL WITH THESE ISSUES AND WE HAVE A GAME PLAN TO GET ALL OF THAT DONE IN A METER OF DAYS IF WE -- IN A MATTER OF DAYS IF WE MAKE THE COMMITMENT TO GET THAT DONE. SO THAT'S WHY I HAVE SUGGESTED TO THE MAJORITY LEADER, THERE'S SUPPORT HERE FOR US TO STAY AND GET THE JOB DONE. KEEP US IN SESSION, KEEP GOVERNMENT OPEN, AND WE WILL GET THE WORK DONE. LET US COME TOGETHER WITH A TRULY BIPARTISAN BUDGET THAT REFLECTS THE WILL OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AND THE INPUT OF ALL THE MEMBERS OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. A BUDGET THAT MAKES SENSE FOR OUR DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, MAKES SENSE FOR THOSE DOING THE RESEARCH AT THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH AND KEEP OUR FOOD SAFE AT THE F.D.A., AND THOSE ON THE FRONT LINES OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION HANDLING THE ISSUES WITH OUR SENIORS. LET'S GIVE THEM THE TOOLS IN A BUDGET THAT MAKES SENSE FOR OUR COUNTRY. LET'S MAKE SURE THAT WE PASS THESE OPEN ISSUES THAT ARE URGENT, SOME OF WHICH HAVE BEEN CREATED BY THE PRESIDENT, SUCH AS THE IMMIGRATION ISSUES. WE HAVE A PATH FORWARD TO RESOLVE THOSE ISSUES NOW. LET'S DO THAT. IF WE DO ALL OF THAT, THEN WE REALLY ARE SERVING THE INTEREST OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. SO I URGE MY COLLEAGUES ON BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE, OUR FIRST RESPONSIBILITY ARE TO THE PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY. LET'S NOT BLAME EACH OTHER. LET'S STAY TOGETHER AND DO SOMETHING THAT WE DON'T DO ENOUGH OF. LET'S LISTEN TO EACH OTHER. LET'S GET OUR WORK DONE, KEEP GOVERNMENT OPEN, AND DO WHAT'S RIGHT FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. WITH THAT, MR. PRESIDENT, I SUGGEST THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 01:41:20 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL, PLEASE. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM…

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL, PLEASE. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:

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  • 01:45:11 PM

    Quorum Call

  • 02:04:10 PM

    MR. WYDEN

  • 02:04:12 PM

    OFFICER SENATOR

    . SENATOR IS RECOGNIZED.

  • 02:04:14 PM

    MR. WYDEN

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO VACATE THE QUORUM CALL.

  • 02:04:17 PM

    THE PREIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 02:04:19 PM

    MR. WYDEN

    THANK YOU, MR. PRESIDENT. MR. PRESIDENT AND COLLEAGUES, CHAIRMAN HATCH WAS…

    THANK YOU, MR. PRESIDENT. MR. PRESIDENT AND COLLEAGUES, CHAIRMAN HATCH WAS ON THE FLOOR A BIT AGO TALKING ABOUT THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, AND BECAUSE HIS REMARKS GREATLY MISLEADING, I THOUGHT IT WAS IMPORTANT, HAVING HEARD MY GOOD FRIEND -- MY LONG-TIME FRIEND -- EARLIER. I THOUGHT IT WAS IMPORTANT TO COME TO THE FLOOR THIS AFTERNOON AND SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT ABOUT THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. THE FACT IS THE CHAIRMAN AND I DID NEGOTIATE AN IMPORTANT CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM EXTENSION BACK IN SEPTEMBER, BIPARTISAN, AND I PUT IN A LOT OF TIME BOTH INSIDE THIS CONGRESS AND OUTSIDE THE HALLS OF CONGRESS IN ORDER TO LINE UP BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR THAT EFFORT. AND WE DID, IN FACT, IN THE FINANCE COMMITTEE HAVE NEAR UNANIMOUS BIPARTISAN SUPPORT. THAT WAS MONTHS AND MONTHS AGO. THE FACT IS AT THAT POINT THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM COULD HAVE PASSED THE CONGRESS WIN DAYS, BUT UNFORTUNATELY THE REPUBLICANS IN THE OTHER BODY HAD SOME OTHER IDEAS. FROM THE MOMENT THE SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE PASSED THE BILL IN A BIPARTISAN WAY, THE KIDS BECAME HOSTAGE TO THE REPUBLICAN POLITICAL AGENDA. FIRST THE HOUSE REPUBLICANS TRIED TO FORCE IDEOLOGICAL CUTS IN IMPORTANT HEALTH PROGRAMS, INCLUDING MEDICARE, TO ALLOW THIS DEAL TO GO FORWARD. THEN THEY CONDITIONED HELPING THE VULNERABLE KIDS ON KICKING AMERICANS OFF THEIR PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE. WHEN THAT DIDN'T WORK, THEY TOOK YET ANOTHER HOSTAGE, VACCINES AND PREVENTIVE HEALTH. FOR SOME REASON THE OTHER BODY, THE HOUSE, WANTED TO CUT OFF PROGRAMS THAT MAKE AMERICANS HEALTHIER BY PREVENTING DISEASE IN THE FIRST PLACE. FOR OBVIOUS REASONS DEMOCRATS WEREN'T WILLING TO SACRIFICE THAT HOSTAGE EITHER. NOW, MONTHS AFTER THERE WAS A BIPARTISAN DEAL TO FINALLY GIVE PEACE OF MIND TO THESE PARENTS AND CHILDREN, THE HOUSE REPUBLICANS HAVE TAKEN YET ANOTHER HOSTAGE. THIS TIME WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THE PROPER FUNCTIONING OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. THE REPUBLICANS HAVE BEEN STUMBLING FROM ONE C.R. TO ANOTHER CONTINUING RESOLUTION SINCE THEY TOOK POWER, SACRIFICING THE READINESS OF THE MILITARY, IMPEDING THE FEDERAL RESPONSE TO NATURAL DISASTERS, AND HANDICAPPING RURAL HOSPITALS THAT DON'T KNOW WHEN THEY ARE GOING TO GET PAID FOR THE CARE THEY PROVIDE. WE'RE NOT GOING TO SACRIFICE THIS HOSTAGE EITHER. THE MINORITY LEADER, SENATOR SCHUMER, HAS MADE A GOOD-FAITH OFFER TO GIVE THE SENATE A WEEK TO ACTUALLY COME TO AN AGREEMENT TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT FUNCTIONING, AND I THINK IT MAKES SENSE BECAUSE THE CYCLE OF DESTRUCTIVE, NAKEDLY POLITICAL BAD-FAITH GOVERNING CANNOT CONTINUE. WHAT YOU HAVE IS A DISPLAY OF THE WORST OF AMERICAN PUBLICS. THE FACT IS THE REPUBLICANS CONTROL THE WHITE HOUSE, THE SENATE, AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. THAT MEANS YOU GET TO SET THE AGENDA, YOU GET TO SET THE SCHEDULE, BUT REPUBLICAN LEADERS WATCHED AND DID NOTHING AS THE DEADLINE FOR CHIP FUNDING PASSED IN THE FALL. SO WHAT YOU HAD AT THE END OF THE YEAR, MR. PRESIDENT, IS THIS PICTURE OF HOW MILLIONS OF AMERICAN KIDS WERE LOWER ON THE LIST OF THE REPUBLICAN PRIORITIES THAN BORROWING $1.5 TRILLION IN ORDER TO GIVE ADDITIONAL MONEY TO MULTINATIONAL CORPORATIONS, THE POLITICAL DONOR CLASS, AND THE MULTINATIONAL CORPORATIONS WERE ALREADY AWASHED IN CASH. SINCE THEN THERE'S BEEN A NEAR CONSTANT STREAM OF REPUBLICANS SAYING IN PRINT AGAIN AND AGAIN THEY ARE ALL FOR THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, BY GOD, THEY JUST WANT TO TAKE CARE OF THE KIDS. THE FACT IS THOSE REPUBLICANS SPEAKING OUT ON TELEVISION HAD MONTHS TO ACT. THEY HAD ALMOST A YEAR. THE PROGRAM EXPIRED 111 DAYS AGO, AND THE FINANCE COMMITTEE PASSED A BIPARTISAN BILL WHICH REALLY KICKED THIS ALL OFF. I FELT VERY STRONGLY ABOUT DOING THAT. THE CHAIRMAN HAS A LONG HISTORY OF WORKING ON IT, AND I WANTED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE WERE COMING RIGHT OUT OF THE BOX AND GETTING A STRONG BIPARTISAN BILL KNOWING THAT PERHAPS THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE WOULD RETIRE. SO IF THERE WAS AN UP-OR-DOWN VOTE ON THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH PROGRAM IN THE SENATE AFTER WE MOVED LAST FALL, IT WOULD HAVE GOT 80 VOTES, PROBABLY MORE, AND PROBABLY 300 VOTES IN THE OTHER BODY IF THAT BIPARTISAN MEASURE THAT CAME OUT OF THE FINANCE COMMITTEE IN THE FALL HAD HAD AN UP-OR-DOWN VOTE. THE FACT IS THE ONLY REASON THAT HASN'T HAPPENED, MR. PRESIDENT, IS THE CYNICAL POLITICAL STRATEGY THAT I HAVE DESCRIBED THAT EVOLVED OVER THE MONTHS SINCE THE FINANCE COMMITTEE ACTED IN A BIPARTISAN WAY AND HAS PRODUCED THIS CRISIS THIS BODY FACES NOW. EVEN THE PRESIDENT APPARENTLY IN A MOMENT OF UNSUPERVISED SO-CALLED EXECUTIVE TIME SAID THAT THE CHIP BILL SHOULD MOVE FORWARD UNOBSTRUCTED. A FEW WEEKS AGO, AND I MADE A SPECIAL PUSH FOR THIS, BECAUSE IT WAS CLEAR DUE TO THE UNADVISED CHANGES THAT WERE PART OF THE TAX BILL, THAT COVERAGE WOULD BE MORE EXPENSIVE IN THE PRIVATE EXCHANGES AND CHIP WOULD LOOK LIKE AN EVEN BETTER INVESTMENT THAN IT ALREADY WAS. AND AS A RESULT OF THAT INFORMATION WE OBTAINED, IT IN FACT SAVES MONEY TO MAKE THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM PERMANENT, MAKING IT PERMANENT, AS AMAZING AS IT SOUNDS IS A BETTER DEAL THAN A SIX-YEAR EXTENSION AND LESS OF AN EXPENSE FOR THE TAXPAYER. TRUE FISCAL CONSERVATIVES, IN MY VIEW, OUGHT TO BE TRIPPING OVER THEMSELVES IN ORDER TO A PASS -- IN ORDER TO PASS A PERMANENT CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM WITHOUT PRECONDITIONS, BUT YET AT EVERY TURN IN THIS PROGRAM ABOUT THE FUTURE OF SO MANY VULNERABLE KIDS -- NINE MILLION KIDS -- WHAT WE SAW WAS NOT ACTION BUT REPUBLICAN LEADERS TAKING YET ANOTHER HOSTAGE. SO I WANT TO BE CLEAR, MR. PRESIDENT, I THINK WHAT WE HAVE SEEN OVER THE LAST FEW MONTHS IS THE EXPLOITATION OF CHILDREN BY THE GOVERNING PARTY HERE IN THE NATION'S CAPITAL. IT'S WRONG. IT'S CAUSING NEEDLESS PANIC AMONG MILLIONS OF FAMILIES CARING FOR SICK KIDS. THIS IS A CRISIS MADE OVER THE LAST FEW MONTHS BY THE GOVERNING PARTY HERE IN WASHINGTON, AND IT OUGHT TO END HERE TODAY WITH THE GOVERNING PARTY, THE REPUBLICANS RELEASING THE HOSTAGE, PASSING, ALL OF US TOGETHER, A CLEAN, VERY SHORT SPENDING BILL THAT WOULD ALLOW THIS CONTINUING RESOLUTION NONSENSE TO END ONCE AND FOR ALL. AND I BELIEVE IT IS IN THE COUNTRY'S INTEREST TO HAVE A PERMANENT EXTENSION OF THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. IT'S AN EXTENSION THAT SAVES THE TAXPAYERS MONEY AND, MR. PRESIDENT, WHAT YOU DO BY MAKING THIS PROGRAM PERMANENT IS YOU GIVE MORE YOUNGSTERS IN AMERICA THE OPPORTUNITY FOR BETTER HEALTH WHICH GIVES THEM MORE OPPORTUNITY FOR THEM TO ACHIEVE THEIR FULL POTENTIAL IN THE YEARS AHEAD. AND I'LL CLOSE WITH THIS, MR. PRESIDENT. MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE WHAT I HAVE TRIED TO DO IS DEDICATE MY TIME IN PUBLIC SERVICE TO WORKING IN A BIPARTISAN WAY ON HEALTH CARE. I'VE ALWAYS FELT THAT HEALTH CARE WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE. I WAS DIRECTOR OF THE SENIOR CITIZEN FOR ALMOST SEVEN YEARS. THE GROUP WAS CALLED THE GRAY PANTHERS. I RAN THE LEGAL AID OFFICE. I DECIDED THEN THAT IF YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES, MY GOOD FRIEND, THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE WHO WORKED WITH ME AND DID SUCH GOOD WORK ON THE VETERANS BILL, ANOTHER IMPORTANT ISSUE, I ALWAYS FELT THAT IF YOU AND YOUR FAMILY DIDN'T HAVE THEIR HEALTH, THEN EVERYTHING ELSE DIDN'T MATTER. YOU COULDN'T GO TO THE FOOTBALL GAME. YOU COULDN'T FIND A WAY TO PICK UP A NEW SKILL AND HAVE SOME EXCITING JOB OPTIONS IN THE FUTURE BECAUSE IF YOU DIDN'T HAVE YOUR HEALTH, IT WENT BY THE BOARD. SO EVERYTHING I'VE TRIED TO DO IN HEALTH CARE -- A.G. -- I'VE TRIED TO SAY OUGHT TO BE BIPARTISAN. AND, YOU KNOW WHAT? USUALLY THERE'S A SET OF OPTIONS FOR FINDING COMMON GROUND. SO OFTEN, FOR EXAMPLE, I FELT THAT MY PARTY WAS RIGHT ABOUT WANTING TO EXPAND COVERAGE BECAUSE, IF YOU DON'T GET EVERYBODY COVERED, YOU HAVE A LOT OF COST-SHIFTING, NOT MUCH PREVENTION. AND YOU THOUGHT REPUBLICANS HAD SOME VALID POINTS AS WELL WITH RESPECT TO A ROLE FOR THE PRIVATE SECTOR. SO WHEN IT BECAME TIME TO GET THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM EXTENDED, GET IT EXTENDED AND DO IT IN A BIPARTISAN WAY, I WAS VERY PLEASED TO MEET THE CHAIRMAN OF OUR COMMITTEE, MY FRIEND CHAIRMAN HATCH, IN A BIPARTISAN WAY FOR A LONG-TERM EXTENSION WITH ADDITIONAL FUNDS. AND THAT COULD HAVE BEEN DONE IN THE FALL. AND YET OVER THE MONTHS SINCE THEN, I'VE DESCRIBED ALL OF THE HURDLES, ALL OF THE OBSTACLES THAT REPUBLICANS HAVE PUT IN FRONT OF MAKING THAT BIPARTISAN EFFORT, WHICH AS I JUST INDICATED HAS GOTTEN EVEN MORE ATTRACTIVE WITH THE NEW ESTIMATES THAT PERMANENT EXTENSION SAVES MONEY HAD -- THE REPUBLICANS HAVE MADE IT HARDER TO TAKE THAT BIPARTISAN WORK THAT WAS PART OF WHAT I HAVE ALWAYS THOUGHT WAS THE WAY TO DO BIPARTISAN HEALTH POLICY IN THE FALL AND MAKE IT LAW. THERE'S STILL TIME, MR. PRESIDENT, TO DO THAT. THE WAY WE'RE GOING TO DO IT IS NOT THROUGH THE KIND OF MISLEADING STATEMENTS THAT, UNFORTUNATELY, WE HEARD THIS MORNING ON THE FLOOR. WE'RE GOING TO DO IT BY WORKING IN A BIPARTISAN FASHION. WITH THAT, MR. PRESIDENT, I YIELD THE FLOOR AND I WOULD NOTE THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 02:17:41 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:

  • 02:17:48 PM

    Quorum Call

  • 02:35:50 PM

    MR.SULLIVAN

  • 02:35:51 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM ALASKA.

  • 02:35:53 PM

    MR.SULLIVAN

    MR. PRESIDENT, ARE WE IN A QUORUM CALL?

  • 02:35:55 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WE ARE.

  • 02:35:56 PM

    MR.SULLIVAN

    I ASK THAT THE QUORUM CALL BE VITIATED.

  • 02:35:58 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 02:36:00 PM

    MR.SULLIVAN

    MR. PRESIDENT, EVERY WEEK I TRY TO GET DOWN ON THE SENATE FLOOR AND TALK…

    MR. PRESIDENT, EVERY WEEK I TRY TO GET DOWN ON THE SENATE FLOOR AND TALK ABOUT SOMEONE IN MY STATE WHO IS MAKING OR WHO HAS MADE OUR STATE A BETTER PLACE FOR ALL OF US. IT'S ACTUALLY ONE OF MY FAVORITE PARTS OF THE WHOLE WEEK. I KNOW THE PAGES REALLY ENJOY IT. IT'S WHAT I CALL OUR ALASKAN OF THE WEEK, AND IT'S ONE OF THE MOST FULFILLING THINGS THAT I DO. NOW, NO DOUBT MANY HERE IN THE CHAMBER AND THE PEOPLE WATCHING FROM HOME AND UP IN THE GALLERY HAVE SEEN PICTURES OR TELEVISION SHOWS ABOUT ALASKA. HOPEFULLY YOU'VE BEEN UP THERE. MY STATE HAS CAPTURED THE COUNTRY'S IMAGE NATION. WE HAVE LONG EXPANSES OF TUNDRA RANGES, GLACIERS, SALMON-FILLED STREERMS. SOB EVERYBODY WATCHING BACK HOME -- STREAMS. SO EVERYBODY WATCHING BACK HOME COME VISIT ALASKA. IT WILL BE A TRIP OF A LIFETIME. A STATE IS DIFFERENT FROM A COMMUNITY. A STATE IS A PLACE TO GO AND A COMMUNITY IS A PLACE WHERE PEOPLE LIVE, AND IT TAKES GOOD AND GENIUS PEOPLE TO BUILD -- GENEROUS PEOPLE TO BUILD A COMMUNITY. TODAY I WOULD LIKE TO HONOR SOMEONE WHO HAS BEEN BUILDING COMMUNITY IN ALASKA. HIS NAME IS GEORGE BROWN, WHO WITH HIS WIFE PEGGY, RAN ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR DINERS, ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR RESTAURANTS IN ANCHORAGE SINCE 1955. THE LUCKY WISHBONE IS THAT PLACE THAT FOR DECADES PEOPLE FROM ALL WALKS OF LIFE, VETERANS, POLITICIANS, OIL WORKERS, HOSPITAL EMPLOYEES, YOU NAME IT, THEY CAME TO THE LUCKY WISHBONE, CONVERGED ON THIS WONDERFUL ESTABLISHMENT IN ANCHORAGE FOR SOME OF THE BEST FRIED CHICKEN AND BEST STRAWBERRY SHAKES EVER. I KNOW FROM FIRSTHAND EXPERIENCE, TRUST ME. GEORGE BROWN WAS BORN IN 1922. HE JOINED THE NATIONAL GUARD IN. AT 21, HE HAD ALREADY RISEN TO THE RANK OF MASTER SERGEANT WHEN HE QUALIFIED FOR OFFICER'S CANDIDATE SCHOOL, AND THEN IN 1973, HE FINISHED FLIGHT SCHOOL AT LUKE FIELD, ARIZONA, AS A SECOND LIEUTENANT IN THE ARMY AIR CORPS. IN THAT SAME YEAR GEORGE MET THE LOVE OF HIS LIFE, PEGGY, AND MARRIED SOON AFTER. AFTER HE WAS MARRIED, GEORGE RECEIVED ORDERS TO DRIVE B-24'S ACROSS THE HIM LAY GENTLEMAN'S -- HEM LAY GENTLEMAN'S. HE EARNED THE DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS AN AIR MEDAL FOR HIS BRAVERY AND SERVICE DURING WORLD WAR II. INCIDENTALLY, THE LATE, GREAT SENATOR TED STEVENS FROM ALASKA, WHOSE DESK I OCCUPY HERE ON THE FLOOR, ALSO FLEW THE HUMP WITH THE ARMY AIR CORPS DURING WORLD WAR II, AND I KNOW HE WAS A FRIEND OF GEORGE'S. SO AFTER THE WAR, GEORGE AND PEGGY AND THEIR TWO CHILDREN MADE THEIR WAY TO ALASKA TO FORGE A NEW LIFE. EVENTUALLY THAT LIFE FOUND SHAPE IN A BUILDING THAT GEORGE BUILT BY HAND IN DOWNTOWN ANCHORAGE, THE LUCKY WISHBONE. ITS DOORS OPENED ON NOVEMBER 30, 1955, IN A KIND OF LIVING ROOM FOR THE COMMUNITY WHERE YOU COULD ALSO GET GREAT FOOD WAS BORN IN ANCHORAGE. MR. PRESIDENT, AS YOU KNOW, MOST WALLS DON'T TALK, BUT THE WALLS OF THE LUCKY WISHBONE DO TALK. THEY ARE FILLED OF PICTURES OF ANCHORAGE AND ITS HISTORY. IT TELLS THE STORY OF A HARD SCRABBLE TERRITORY, ALASKA, THAT FOUGHT FOR SELF-DETERMINATION AND GAINED CITIZENSHIP AND STATEHOOD IN 1959. THEY TELL THE STORY OF A TOWN, ANCHORAGE, REBUILT AFTER BEING HIT BY THE MOST POWERFUL EARTHQUAKE EVER RECORDED IN NORTH AMERICA, 9.2 ON RICHTER SCALE. THE WALLS TELL THE STORY OF A STATE BRIMMING WITH EXCITMENT WHEN PRODUCEDO BAY -- PRUDO BAY WAS DISCOVERED AND TENS OF THOUSANDS OF JOBS WERE CREATED. THEY TELL THE STORIES OF THE CRASH IN THE 1980'S AND THE LONG AND HARD RECOVERY AND TELL THE STORY HOW A COMMUNITY AND OUR CITIZENS IN ALASKA RELY ON EACH OTHER. AS ALL OF THIS HISTORY WAS IN THE MAKING, GEORGE AND HIS WIFE PEGGY, WHO BY THEN HAD FOUR CHILDREN AND WENT TO WORK EVERY DAY, THEY KNEW THEIR CUSTOMERS BY NAME AND THEY CONTINUED TO MAKE THE BEST FOOD IN TOWN. SADLY PEGGY DIED IN 2011 AFTER SHE AND GEORGE CELEBRATED OF 67 YEARS TOGETHER. GEORGE CONTINUED TO GO TO WORK EVERY DAY. I SAW HIM THERE, AND HE CONTINUED TO FLY HIS PLANE UNTIL HE WAS 94 YEARS OLD. A WONDERFUL, GRACIOUS, TOUGH, PATRIOTIC ALASKAN AND A GREAT AMERICAN. MR. PRESIDENT, GEORGE PASSED AWAY EARLIER THIS WEEK. AN AMAZING LIFE. HE WAS 96 YEARS OLD. HE LEFT BEHIND HIS FOUR CHILDREN, PATRICIA, COURT ANY, LOTS OF -- COURTNY, LOTS OF GRAND CHILDREN AND GREAT GRANDCHILDREN. THE LUCKY WISHBONE, ONE OF HIS MANY LEGACIES WILL LIVE ON. THE WISHBONE HAS BEEN PASSED DOWN TO HIS DAUGHTER. MR. PRESIDENT, I ASK THAT MY FOLLOWING COMMENTS APPEAR IN A SEPARATE PART IN THE CONGRESSIONAL RECORD.

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  • 02:42:50 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 02:42:53 PM

    MR.SULLIVAN

    MR. PRESIDENT, A FEW HOURS WE ARE LIKELY GOING TO HAVE A SIMPLE CHOICE TO…

    MR. PRESIDENT, A FEW HOURS WE ARE LIKELY GOING TO HAVE A SIMPLE CHOICE TO MAKE HERE ON THE SENATE FLOOR, EITHER PASS THE HOUSE'S CONTINUING RESOLUTION THAT PASSED YESTERDAY TO CONTINUE TO FUND OUR GOVERNMENT AND OUR MILITARY, AND IMPORTANTLY, REAUTHORIZE THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, CHIP, FOR SIX YEARS OR THE VOTE WILL BE TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT -- SHUT DOWN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. BUT IF YOU'RE WATCHING THE SENATE FLOOR DEBATES FROM HOME OR IN THE GALLERY ABOUT ALL OF THIS, YOU MIGHT BE A BIT CONFUSED. ACTUALLY I WAS ALMOST CONFUSED LAST NIGHT, PARTICULARLY IF YOU'RE LISTENING TO THE MINORITY LEADER AND MINORITY WHIP'S NEW TALKING POINTS THEY WERE USING LAST NIGHT IN THEIR REMARKS NN THE PAST FEW DAY -- REMARKS AND IN THE PAST FEW DAYS. LET ME GIVE YOU A LITTLE BACKGROUND. THE PRESIDING OFFICER, WHO HAS BEEN ARE AROUND THE SENATE FOR SOME TIME -- I SIT IN THAT PRESIDING OFFICER'S CHAIR A LOT, IN FACT, THE 11:00 A.M. HOUR ON WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY'S, SO I GET TO LISTEN THE MAJORITY AND MINORITY WHIP GIVE THEIR OPENING STATEMENTS. A COUPLE OF TIMES A WEEK I WATCH IT ON C-SPAN, LIKE A LOT, AND YOU GET TO HEAR THE DIFFERENT PRIORITIES OF THE DIFFERENT LEADERS OF THE PARTY. EVERY DAY I HEAR THIS. I RESPECT EVERYBODY. I RESPECT OUR MEMBERS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE. WE ALL HAVE AREAS THAT WE FOCUS ON, BUT I WILL TELL YOU THIS, REBUILDING THE MILITARY, INCREASING MILITARY READINESS, INCREASING DEFENSE FUNDING HAS NOT BEEN A KEY AREA OF FOCUS FOR THE MINORITY LEADER OR THE MINORITY WHIP. THAT'S JUST A FACT. IT'S NOT ANYTHING BAD OR GOOD, IT'S A DIFFERENT PRIORITY. I ALSO SIT, MR. PRESIDENT, ON THE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE AND THE VETERANS' AFFAIRS COMMITTEE, AND THERE'S A LOT THAT WE FOCUS ON IN THOSE COMMITTEES TOO, PARTICULARLY ARMED SERVICES AND A LOT OF US HAVE BEEN CONCERNED ABOUT THE DRAMATIC CUT IN SPENDING, 2010 TO 2016, THE MILITARY HAS BEEN CUT BY 25% EVEN THOUGH WE HAD A DRAMATIC INCREASE IN NATIONAL SECURITY CHALLENGES. NOW, THERE'S A CERTAIN GROUP OF SENATORS, I WOULD SAY IT'S LED BY THE SENATOR OF ARIZONA, THE CHAIRMAN OF THE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE, SENATOR McCAIN, WHO FOCUSED ON MILITARY ISSUES, MILITARY READINESS, INCREASING FUNDING FOR THE TROOPS. WHO REALLY CARE ABOUT THESE ISSUES, FOCUSED ON THIS DAILY. I CONSIDER MYSELF ONE OF THEM. A LOT OF REPUBLICANS, SOME DEMOCRATS. BUT THE MEMBERS OF THIS BODY KNOW WHO THAT IS. AND WE FOCUS ON THIS A LOT. SO IMAGINE MY SURPRISE YESTERDAY WHEN -- AND LAST NIGHT WHEN THE MINORITY WHIP AND THE MINORITY LEADER STARTED WITH NEW TALKING POINTS EMPHASIZING THAT THIS IMPASSE WE'RE GETTING READY TO SEE HERE AND THE IMPENDING POSSIBLE SHUTDOWN IS ALL ABOUT THEIR CONCERNS ABOUT THE MILITARY, THEIR CONCERNS ABOUT THE MILITARY, HOW THE C.R. WAS GOING TO HURT THE MILITARY. WELL, WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, THAT'S KIND OF THE FIRST TIME IN THREE YEARS HERE THAT I HAVE HARDER THE LEADERSHIP OF THE OTHER PARTY REALLY EMPHASIZE THAT ISSUE. AGAIN, I HAVE A LOT OF RESPECT FOR THESE MEN, BUT THEY JUST TOO TALK ABOUT THIS ISSUE -- BUT THEY JUST DON'T TALK ABOUT THIS ISSUE, THEY DON'T. BUT THAT'S WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THAT'S THE NEW TALKING POINT. THIS ISN'T ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE. IT'S ABOUT OUR TROOPS. WELL, I THINK THE NEWEST TALKING POINTS ARE SOMETHING THAT'S TRYING TO CONFUSE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. DON'T BE CONFUSED BY THIS. THESE ARE NOT THE SENATORS WHO COME DOWN EVERY DAY AND BATTLE FOR MORE SPENDING FOR OUR TROOPS. THESE ARE NOT THE SENATORS WHO COME DOWN AND CARE ABOUT READINESS. THE NEW UP TO THES ARE A LITTLE BIT HARD TO SWALLOW -- THE NEW TALKING POINTS ARE A LITTLE BIT HARD TO SWALLOW. WHAT WAS ALSO SURPRISING LAST NIGHT IS THE NEW TALKING POINTS, IS HOW LITTLE THE MINORITY LEADER TALKED ABOUT THE REAL ISSUE. AND IT IS A SERIOUS ISSUE, THAT EVERYBODY IN THIS BODY, EVERYBODY IN THIS CITY NECESSARY IS THE REAL ISSUE. HERE IT IS. THE OTHER SIDE IS SAYING, UNLESS THERE IS A DEAL ON THE DACA ISSUE, WHICH IS A SERIOUS ISSUE, THEY WILL SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT. THAT'S THE REAL ISSUE. THERE'S NO DEBATING IT. IT'S NOT ABOUT THE MINORITY LEADER'S NEWFOUND CONCERN ABOUT MILITARY READINESS. THAT'S THE ISSUE THAT WE'RE DEBATING. NOW, I THINK IT'S A SERIOUS ISSUE. THE DREAMERS -- I HAVE A MET WITH THEM. WE HAVE, YOU KNOW, ABOUT 150 IN ALASKA. I THINK WE NEED TO HELP THOSE YOUNG MEN AND WOMEN. THEY'RE GREAT AMERICANS -- NOT AMERICANS YET, BUT THEY'RE GREAT YOUNG PEOPLE. WE ALSO NEED TO FOCUS ON BORDER SECURITY, IMMIGRATION REFORM. I CERTAINLY WANT TO HELP THEM. BUT HERE'S A FINAL POINT. WHAT WAS MISSED LAST NIGHT IS THIS TALK ABOUT -- YOU HEARD THE MINORITY LEADER SAYING THE C.R. IS GOING TO BE BAD FOR THE MILITARY, A CONTINUING RESOLUTION IS BAD FOR THE MILITARY. AGAIN, NEWFOUND FOCUS ON THE MILITARY. I HOPE HE JOINS US AS PART OF THE NUMBER OF SENATORS WHO REALLY CARE AND FOCUS ON MILITARY READINESS AND DEFENSE SPENDING EVERY DAY, NOT JUST LAST NIGHT. BUT WHAT'S WORSE FOR THE MILITARY, BEYOND A CONTINUING RESOLUTION -- AND A CONTINUING RESOLUTION IS BAD. BUT WHAT'S WORSE, THERE'S NO DOUBT ABOUT IT -- THE DEPUTY SECRETARY OF DEFENSE SAID IT TODAY DASH IS A SHUTDOWN OF THE GHAST, IS A SHUTDOWN OF THE GOVERNMENT. THAT REALLY, REALLY HURTS THE MILITARY. SO ALL I WANT TO DO IS ENCOURAGE MY COLLEAGUES, LET'S NOT DO THAT. LET'S NOT DO THAT. YOU WILL -- WE WILL DEFINITELY BE HURTING THE MILITARY THEN. LET'S GET BACK TO WORK. LET FUND THE GOVERNMENT. LET'S PASS THIS CONTINUING RESOLUTION. LET'S PASS A REAUTHORIZATION OF CHIP, WHICH A LOT OF MIZE COLLEAGUES HAVE BEEN SAYING WE NEED TO. I AGREE. LET'S DO IT TONIGHT. AND LET'S FIND A RESOLUTION FOR THE BORDER SECURITY, DACA, IMMIGRATION ISSUES THAT WE CAN GET TO A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT ON. BUT WHAT WE SHOULDN'T BE DOING HERE IS COMING DOWN WITH NEW TALKING POINTS ABOUT HOW MUCH THE MINORITY LEADER CARES ABOUT MILITARY READINESS, MILITARY FUNDING WHEN, TO BE TRUTHFUL, THAT'S THE FIRST I'VE HEARD IN THREE YEARS, AN EMPHASIS IN THAT AREA. LET'S FUND THE MILITARY, CERTAINLY. LET'S FUND OUR GOVERNMENT. BUT LET'S NOT SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT TONIGHT. THAT'S NOT GOING TO HELP ANYONE. AND IT'S CERTAINLY, CERTAINLY NOT GOING TO HELP OUR TROOPS. I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 02:50:10 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR MONTANA.

  • 02:50:12 PM

    MR. TESTER

    I WANT TO THANK YOU, MR. PRESIDENT. BEFORE I GET INTO MY PREPARED REMARKS,…

    I WANT TO THANK YOU, MR. PRESIDENT. BEFORE I GET INTO MY PREPARED REMARKS, I JUST WANT TO SAY THAT WE'VE BEEN AT HEART FOR 16 YEARS. AND THE SENATOR FROM ALASKA IS CORRECT. WE DON'T NEED TO REBUILD OUR MILITARY. THERE'S NO IF, ANDS, OR BUTS ABOUT IT. IT'S NOT SOMETHING THAT JUST CAME ABOUT LAST NIGHT. IT'S SOMETHING WE SHOULD HAVE BEEN DOING WITH THIS BUDGET THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN PASSED TO GO INTO EFFECT THE END OF SEPTEMBER. AND IF YOU REALLY WANT TO TALK ABOUT THE HYPOCRISY OF THIS BODY -- THERE'S PLENTY OF IT -- THE FACT THAT WE'VE GOT FOLKS COMING TO THE FLOOR WHO HAVEN'T SET A PEEP ABOUT CHIP -- AND IT ALSO, BY THE WAY, RAN OUT OF MONEY TEND OF SEPTEMBER -- AND TALK ABOUT HOW IMPORTANT IT IS FOR THOSE KIDS -- AND BY THE WAY, IT IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR THOSE KIDS -- WHEN IT IS THE FIRST TIME WE'VE HEARD A PEEP OUT OF THERE IS INTERESTING. BUT THE FACT IS THAT WE DO NEED TO COME TOGETHER. AND WE DO NEED A LONG-TERM BUDGET DEAL. AND BY THE WAY, WHEN I'M TALKING ABOUT LONG TERM, I'M NOT TALKING ABOUT YEARS AND YEARS. I'M TALKING ABOUT THROUGH THE END OF SEPTEMBER OF THIS YEAR. THAT'S ALL WE GOT TO HAVE. A BUDGET DEAL TO THE END OF SEPTEMBER OF THIS YEAR, THAT ADDRESSES MORE THAN JUST CHIP. AND CHIP IS IMPORTANT. IT NEEDS NEEDS TO ADDRESS OUR MILITARY. IT NEEDS TO ADDRESS OUR SOUTHERN BORDER SECURITY. THE CHAIRMAN KNOWS THIS. WE WORK TOGETHER ON THE APPROPRIATIONS SUBCOMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY. HE UNDERSTANDS HOW IMPORTANT THIS IS. WE'VE GOT TO MAKE SURE OUR BORDERS ARE SECURE. AND WE'VE GOT TO MAKE SURE WE HAVE DOMESTIC PROGRAMS THAT WORKING FAMILIES AND BUSINESSES DEPEND UPON FOR THIS COUNTRY -- LIKE CHIP. LIKE FUNDING COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, LIKE MAKING SURE THERE'S DOLLARS THERE FOR RURAL AMBULANCE SERVICES. AND THE LIST GOES ON AND ON. BUT WE'VE HAD AN INCREDIBLE FAILURE OF LEADERSHIP HERE. I THINK WE'VE HAD THREE PATCHES TO THIS BUDGET -- THREE OF THEM. THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE DONE 111 DAYS AGO. 111 DAYS AGO WE WERE SUPPOSED TO HAVE A BUDGET THAT LASTED FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 2018. WE WERE SUPPOSED TO HAVE A BILL THAT KEPT THE SERVICES FOR THE U.S. GOVERNMENT OPEN AND OPERATING SO THAT MONTANANS AND MESHES COULD HAVE THE CERTAINTY -- MONTANANS AND AMERICANS COULD HAVE THE CERTAINTY THAT THEY ELECTED US TO CREATE. BUT FOR 111 DAYS, THE LEADERSHIP ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE -- AND I MEAN INTENTIONALLY SO, I BELIEVE -- HAVE PLAYED POLITICS AND KICKED THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD. THIS IS NOT NUCLEAR PHYSICS, FOLKS. THIS IS ABOUT FUNDING OUR GOVERNMENT. IT'S NOT THAT TOUGH. BUT WE'VE HIT DEADLINE AFTER DEADLINE AFTER DEADLINE, AND WHAT WE'VE BEEN TOLD IS LOOK, WE'LL EXTEND IT OUT ANOTHER MONTH OR TWO AND WE'LL GET AN AGREEMENT. OH, WE'LL EXTEND IT OUT ANOTHER MONTH AND GET AN AGREEMENT. AT CHRISTMASTIME, I WAS WILLING TO WORK HERE AND GET AN AGREEMENT. THIS WAS A BASIC JOB WE WERE ELECTED FOR IN THIS BODY. BUT ON I BELIEVE DECEMBER 19, ONCE AGAIN, WE KICKED THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD AND IT WAS SAID, YOU KNOW WHAT, WE'RE GOING TO HAVE A DEAL BY JANUARY 19. WELL, GUESS WHAT? JANUARY 19 AND NOW WE'RE GOING TO MOVE THE GOALPOST AGAIN. EACH OF THOSE PREVIOUS PATCHES I VOTED FOR. WHY? BECAUSE I BELIEVED THEM. I EXPECTED THE LEADERS OF THIS BODY TO WORK IN GOOD FAITH AND GET THE JOB DONE. I WAS WRONG. BECAUSE FOR 111 DAYS THEY'VE REFUSED TO PROVIDE LONG-TERM FUNDING FOR COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, FOR 111 DAYS THEY HAVE PAID TO PASS A PAIL -- THEY HAVE FAILED TO PASS A BILL THAT SECURES OUR BORDERS, THEY'VE REFUSED TO REAUTHORIZE CHIP, FOR 111 DAYS THEY'VE FAILED TO DOT MOST BASIC AND FUNDAMENTAL ASPECT OF OUR JOB AND THAT IS PASS A LONG-TERM BUDGET THAT WORKS FOR THIS COUNTRY AND WORKS FOR MY HOME STATE OF MONTANA. NOW TODAY WE'RE ABOUT NINE HOURS BEFORE THE GOVERNMENT IS SET TO RUN OUT OF MONEY. FOLKS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE ARE POINTING THEIR FINGER OVER HERE AND SAY, GEEZ WE'VE GOT TO REAUTHORIZE CHIP. IF WE DON'T, ALL THESE KIDS -- WELL, GUESS WHAT? THAT SAME ARGUMENT COULD HAVE BEEN MADE SIX MONTHS AGO WAND AS WAS NOT. WE'VE GOT KIDS IN MONTANA AND THEY'VE BEEN WATCHING AND THOSE FAMILIES HAVE BEEN WATCHING AND SAYING, WHY, WHY HASN'T IT ALREADY BEEN DONE? WHY ARE WE ALREADY 111 DAYS AFTER THE BUDGET HAS BEEN PASSED AND WE STILL HAVE NOTHING? THERE'S A CHIP BILL THAT'S BEEN SITTING ON THE MAJORITY LEADER'S DESK FOR MANY A MONTH TO REAUTHORIZE CHIP. I BELIEVE IT HAS 24 COSPONSORS ON IT. AND NOW THERE ARE MEMBERS OF THIS BODY WHO ARE NOT EVEN COSPONSORS OF THAT BILL WHO HAVE FOUND RELIGION AND COME TO THE FLOOR TO IMPASSION ATLY TALK ABOUT CHIP AND WE HAVEN'T HEARD CRICKETS FROM THEM UNTIL THE LAST DAY OR TWO. TO THE FOLKS WHO HAVE BEEN DOWN HERE ON THE FLOOR AND ON CABLE TELEVISION TALKING ABOUT WITH A A GREAT PROGRAM CHIP IS -- AND IT HAS BEEN A GREAT PROGRAM; IT IS ONE OF THE FIRST PIECES OF MAJOR LEGISLATION I VOTED 0EN WHEN I WAS IN THE MONTANA SENATE -- WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN? WHY HAVEN'T WE HAD IT ON THE FLOOR AND VOTED ON IT? IT IS IMPORTANT. IT'S PURE HYPOCRISY. IT IS WHAT THE SENATOR FROM ALASKA TALKED ABOUT, ONLY ON A DIFFERENT ISSUE. THIS DYSFUNCTION AND FAILURE HERE IS WAY, WAY, WAY TOO DEEP. THIS BILL ALSO FAILS TO FUND COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, AND I'M GOING TELL YOU, I'VE TALKED TO THE ADMINISTRATORS OF THE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, THESE FOLKS ARE SWEATING BULLETS. THEY'RE AFRAID THEY'RE GOING TO HAVE TO CLOSE THEIR FACILITIES DOWN. THEY PROVIDE PRIMARY HEALTH CARE TO 100,000 FOLKS. THAT MIGHT NOT SOUND LIKE MUCH, LIKE MANY PEOPLE, BUT IN MONTANA BE, A STATE OF JUST OVER 1 MILLION FOLKS, IT IS A BIG DEAL. THESE ARE ESSENTIAL FACILITIES TO OUR COMMUNITIES ACROSS MONTANA. THEY PROVIDE BASIC HELP AND THEY KEEP FAMILIES ALIVE. THE FOLKS THAT RUN THESE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS HAVE TOLD MEIFIES FACE, IF WE DON'T GET THE FUNDING, WE'RE GOING TO HAVE TO CLOSE THE DOORS. IT'S ABOUT 111 DAYS AND WE SHOULD HAVE HAD A BUDGET TO FUND THE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS AND WE'RE STILL STANDING HERE TODAY SAYING, GUESS WHAT? WE COME BACK HERE IN FEBRUARY, THINGS GOING TO BE JUST FINE, JUST LIKE THEY SAID IN DECEMBER. I GOT NEWS FOR YOU. NOTHING IS GOING TO CHANGE BETWEEN YOU MOND A FEBRUARY. SO LET'S GET A LONG TERM BUDGET DEAL TODAY THAT ADDRESSES SOME OF THESE ISSUES. THIS BILL ALSO FAILS TO MAKE OUR BORDERS SECURE. AS I SAID EARLIER, THE CHAIRMAN OF THE BODY RIGHT NOW AND I HAVE WORKED ON THE HOMELAND SECURITY APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE THAT DRAFT A BILL THAT WORKS, THAT INVESTS IN A WALL WHERE A WALL MAKES SENSE AND HIRES MORE BORDER AGENTS. THAT BILL WAS NEVER BROUGHT UP TO THE FULL COMMITTEE. I'M SORRY THAT NEVER HAPPENED BECAUSE IT WOULD HAVE BEEN GREAT. AND IT IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE BILL BEFORE US TODAY. TIME AND TIME AGAIN OVER THE LAST 403(B) -- LAST FOUR MONTHS, GOOD BIPARTISAN BILLS HAVE PILED UP ON LEADERSHIP'S DESK. RATHER THAN PASS A LONG-TERM BUDGET, A MORE FISCALLY RESPONSIBLE BUDGET, THE SENATE HAS JUST SAID, NO, GUESS WHAT? WE'LL DO IT NEXT MONTH. AND WE'LL DO IT THE MONTH AFTER THAT. AND WE'LL DO IT THE MONTH AFTER THAT. IT IS TIME TO STOP PUTTING THE BAND-AID ON OUR BUDGET. BECAUSE IN FOUR WEEKS WE'LL BE BACK HERE AGAIN IF THIS PASSES, AND IT'LL BE THE SAME PROBLEMS. WHEN IN FACT WE CAN SOLVE THEM TODAY AND WE NEED TO SOLVE THEM TODAY. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. CONGRESS HAS THREE TIMES PASSED SHORT-TERM STOPGAP CRISIS- CRISIS-FUNDING BILLS. THESE BILLS FAIL MY CONSTITUENTS AND WASTE TAXPAYER DOLLARS. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. MR. PRESIDENT, PEOPLE ARE TIRED OF THIS. AND I KNOW THEY'RE TIRED OF IT ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE BECAUSE THEY'VE TOLD ME. THEY'VE TOLD ME IT'S TIME TO DO OUR JOB HERE. THEY'RE AS FRUSTRATED AS I AM, THEY'RE AS FRUSTRATED AS MONTANAIANS ARE, WHEN I MEET HEM THEM IN TOWN HALLS AND COFFEE SHOPS. MONTANANS DON'T RUN THEIR BUSINESSES LIKE THIS AND OUR GOVERNMENT SHOULD NOT RUN LIKE THIS. ESPECIALLY -- ESPECIALLY AFTER I HEAR PROMISES TO DRAINING THE SWAMP. THIS IS EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE. BRINGING THIS GARBAGE BILL TO THE FLOOR IS A DERELICTION OF DUTY. IT IS INCOMPETENT AND MOSTLY IT IS A FAILURE OF LEADERSHIP. IT IS A FAILURE OF VISION. IN ANY OTHER BUSINESS IN THIS COUNTRY, IF MANAGERS ACTED LIKE THE LEADERSHIP OF THIS BODY, THEY'D LOSE THEIR JOBS. IT'S ALMOST AS IF THE MAJORITY HAD PLANNED THIS ALL ALONG. TO GET US TO THIS POINT FOR POLITICAL PURPOSES. WELL, GUESS WHAT? WE SHOULD NOT BE HERE FOR POLITICAL PURPOSES. WE SHOULD BE HERE AS AMERICANS DOING OUR BEST TO GIVE PEOPLE THE CERTAINTY THAT THEY NEED. RATHER THAN PLAYING WITH A HOT POTATO SAYING, YOU KNOW WHAT? WE'LL DO IT NEXT MONTH. WE WERE SENT HERE TO GOVERN. WE OUGHT TO GOVERN. PUT POLITICS IN THE CLOSET. WE GOT NINE HOURS TO DO A JOB. WE NEED TO DO IT. IF THE MAJORITY LEADERSHIP AND THE WHITE HOUSE ARE GOING TO CONTINUE TO SIT BACK AND TWITLE THEIR THUMBS, LET'S BRINGPASS THEM. LET'S -- BYPASS THEM. LET'S GET A DEAL. WE NEED TO SIT DOWN AND GET A DEAL THAT WORKS FOR THE REST OF THIS YEAR. THAT'S TIL THE END OF SEPTEMBER, NOT THE 19th OF JANUARY. THAT SUPPORTS RURAL HOSPITALS, THAT FIXES DACA. NOW, I KNOW THAT THERE ARE SCORES AND SCORES OF FOLKS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE THAT WANT TO DO THIS. NOBODY SHOULD LEAVE OUR DESKS IN THIS BODY UNTIL THIS JOB IS DONE. WE ARE NEARLY FOUR MONTHS INTO THIS FISCAL YEAR. AT SOME POINT IN TIME, THE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE SHOULD BE STARTING TO WORK ON THE 19 19th FISCAL YEAR BUDGET BUT WE'RE NOT BECAUSE WE CAN'T GET THROUGH 18. NOBODY WANT AS SHUTDOWN. THAT'S WHY WE NEED TO STAY HERE AND DO OUR JOBS. MR. PRESIDENT, I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 03:01:18 PM

    MR. GARDNER

    MADAM PRESIDENT?

  • 03:01:19 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM COLORADO.

  • 03:01:21 PM

    MR. GARDNER

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. I REALIZED A LONG TIME AGO SOMETHING VERY…

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. I REALIZED A LONG TIME AGO SOMETHING VERY UNIQUE AND UNFORTUNATE ABOUT THE WAY CONGRESS CAN WORK. IT SEEMS SOMETIMES THAT IN WASHINGTON AND ONLY IN WASHINGTON THE MORE PEOPLE AGREE ON SOMETHING, THE LESS LIKELY IT IS TO GET DONE. IN THE REAL WORLD, BACK IN COLORADO, IN ALASKA AS THE PRESIDING OFFICER IS FROM, THE MORE PEOPLE AGREE ON SOMETHING, THE MORE LIKELY IT IS TO GET DONE. THE MORE LIKELY YOU'RE ABLE TO SEE PROGRESS ON AN IMPORTANT ISSUE TO THE PEOPLE OF COLORADO, TO THE PEOPLE OF ALASKA. BUT HERE IN WASHINGTON, THE MORE YOU AGREE, THE MORE PEOPLE SEEM TO WANT TO PUSH BACK TO FIGHT AND TO DIVIDE. AND SO HERE WE ARE APPROACHING THE ZERO HOUR OF A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN, AND I HEAR FROM MY COLLEAGUES ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE, WHERE'S THE GOOD FAITH THEY SAY. IT'S BEEN 111 DAY. THESE PROGRAMS HAVEN'T BEEN PERMANENTLY REAUTHORIZED. WHERE'S THE GOOD FAITH, THEY SAY. THEY SAY THAT WE JUST MAKE IT WORSE BY PASSING A FOUR-WEEK CONTINUING RESOLUTION. WHERE'S THE GOOD FAITH? LET ME JUST TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT WHERE WE ARE RIGHT NOW. I'VE BEEN A PART OF A BIPARTISAN WORKING GROUP, VERY PROUD OF THE WORK THAT WE'RE DOING TRYING TO FIND A SOLUTION ON A VERY IMPORTANT ISSUE DEALING WITH SO MANY THOUSANDS OF CHILDREN AROUND OUR COUNTRY AND OUR OUR STATE. IN COLORADO, THIS ISSUE OF DACA, OF DREAMERS, INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT NOT JUST TO PART OF THE STATE, NOT JUST TO DENVER OR THE FRONT RANGE. TWO KIDS OF MINE GO TO SCHOOL WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE BROUGHT HERE AT A VERY YOUNG AGE THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN AND WE AGREE, ALL OF US, THAT THERE NEEDS TO BE A SOLUTION FOR THOSE KIDS. WE AGREE THAT WE SHOULD ADDRESS THE OPIOID CRISIS THAT IS GRIPPING THIS NATION, THAT IS TEARING FAMILIES APART, THAT IS RESULTING IN THE DEATHS OF FAR TOO MANY PEOPLE. WHEN YOU HAVE A CRISIS THAT'S ACTUALLY RESULTING IN THE AGE AND LIFE EXPECTANCY OF AMERICANS DECLINING, LIKE THE OPIOID CRISIS HAS, WE SHOULD ADDRESS THAT. WE HAVE MEN AND WOMEN IN UNIFORM AROUND THE COUNTRY DEFENDING THIS NATION. HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS IN KOREA FACING DOWN A THREAT FROM NORTH KOREA. ARTICLE IN "THE WALL STREET JOURNAL" TODAY TALKED ABOUT THE SPECIAL OPERATORS WHO ARE NOW IN THE PHILIPPINES DIRECTLY INTERVENING IN THE WAR ON TERROR IN THE PHILIPPINES, FIGHTING RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISTS. OF COURSE WE ALL KNOW ABOUT THE WORK THAT'S TAKING PLACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST, THE CONFLICT IN SYRIA, THE CONFLICT IN IRAQ, IN AFGHANISTAN AND THE PROGRESS WE HAVE MADE FIGHTING BACK ON ISIS, FIGHTING BACK ON TERRORISTS. THE FACT THAT WE HAVE SHRUNK THE GROUND A THEY HAVE TAKEN -- GROUND THAT THEY HAVE TAKEN. ONE OF THE GREAT VICTORIES THAT PEOPLE HAVEN'T EVEN REALLY TALKED ABOUT YET BECAUSE THEY'D REALLY TALK ABOUT DIVISIVE ISSUES. BUT TO THINK THAT WE ARE HOURS AWAY FROM A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN THAT SOMEHOW PEOPLE THINK IT'S GOING TO MAKE IT BETTER. THEY'RE GOING TO SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN AND SOMEHOW THAT MAKES IT BETTER FOR THE MILITARY. THEY'RE WILLING TO SLUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN BECAUSE THEY -- SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN BECAUSE THEY CAN GET A CONTINUING RESOLUTION. ONLY IN WASHINGTON CAN A BAD SOLUTION BE FIXED BY A WORSE SOLUTION BUT THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT PEOPLE WANT TO DO. IT SEEMS TO ME THAT THIS PLACE OUGHT TO GET TO WORK AND IT DOESN'T GET TO WORK BY SHUTTING THINGS DONE, BY GOING TO YOUR PARTISAN CORNERS, PICKING UP YOUR STICKS AND GOING HOME. BUT YET THAT'S WHAT SOME IN THIS BODY WOULD LIKE TO DO. WE HAVE A CONTINUING RESOLUTION THAT REPRESENTS POLICIES THAT PEOPLE SUPPORT. THERE'S NOT A THING IN THERE THAT PEOPLE DISAGREE WITH THAT THEY VOTE AGAINST. AT LEAST THAT'S WHAT WE'VE BEEN TOLD. CHIP REAUTHORIZATION, HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS, IN FACT, LET'S LOOK AT THE CHIP REAUTHORIZATION. I HEARD FROM MY COLLEAGUE FROM MONTANA SAY THAT THIS IS A GARBAGE BILL. A GARBAGE BILL THAT REAUTHORIZES CHIP FOR SIX YEARS, A GARBAGE BILL THAT WILL PROVIDE HEALTH CARE FOR HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS -- 8.9 MILLION WOMEN AND CHILDREN WITH SCHIP COVERAGE. THIS IS A GARBAGE BILL THAT PROVIDES THE LONGEST EXTENSION OF WOMEN AND CHILDREN'S HEALTH CARE SINCE IT WAS CREATED. I HEAR FROM MY COLLEAGUES ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE, THEY DIDN'T TALK ABOUT IT. THEY DIDN'T CARE. I'VE BEEN A COSPONSOR OF THAT BILL FOR MONTHS BECAUSE I BELIEVE IT'S IMPORTANT. IT'S IMPORTANT TO THE PEOPLE OF MY STATE. THE FACT IS, PEOPLE ACROSS THIS COUNTRY ARE TIRED OF THE FINGER POINTING. THEY'RE TIRED OF THE BLAME GAME AND THEY'RE TIRED OF THE SHUTDOWN POLITICS THAT WE'RE JUST HOURS AWAY FROM SEEING PLAYED OUT BECAUSE PEOPLE WOULD TAKE THIS COUNTRY, THIS GOVERNMENT HOSTAGE TO THE POLITICS OF THEIR CHOICE. I'M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER BACK IN 2013 WHEN PRESIDENT OBAMA THOUGHT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WAS A BAD IDEA. WHEN THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER BELIEVED THAT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN COULD RESULT IN GOVERNMENTAL CHAOS WHEN YOU SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN OVER THE POLITICS OF YOUR CHOICE. AND YET HERE WE ARE HOURS AWAY FROM PEOPLE WISHING TO DO JUST THAT. WE CAN FIND SOLUTIONS TO OUR NATION'S BIGGEST CHALLENGES. I'M PART, AGAIN, A BIPARTISAN WORKING GROUP TO WORK ON THESE SOLUTIONS BUT IT MAKES IT MORE DIFFICULT, NOT LESS DIFFICULT TO FIND SOLUTIONS WHEN PEOPLE SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN. NOT ONLY THAT, THE COLLATERAL DAMAGE THAT OCCURS AS A RESULT, THE COLLATERAL DAMAGE ON MEN AND WOMEN ACROSS THIS COUNTRY WHO ARE HURT BECAUSE OF WHAT THIS GOVERNMENT THEN CANNOT DO TO HELP THEM. WE'RE IN ONE OF THE MOST SEVERE FLU SEASONS THIS COUNTRY HAS SEEN. C.D.C. HAS A LOT OF WORK FOR DO. SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN, THE C.D.C. CAN NO LONGER GET THE INFORMATION FROM THE STATES ABOUT WHERE THAT EPIDEMIC IS HEADING. THAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE ON WHERE THEY SEND VACCINES TO. DON'T VOTE FOR THIS GOVERNMENT? DON'T VOTE FOR THIS BILL TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OPEN? 8.9 MILLION WOMEN AND CHILDREN COULD BE AFFECTED. BECAUSE OF THE RISK IT PUTS TO CHIP, SCHIP. LET ME JUST TALK ABOUT A STORY FROM MY HOMETOWN. FIVE MILITARY BASES IN THE CITY OF COLORADO SPRINGS. HERE'S A HEADLINE FROM A LOCAL NEWSPAPER. A POTENTIAL SHUTDOWN WOULD HIT HARDEST AT COLORADO SPRINGS MILITARY BASE. THERE ARE MEN AND WOMEN AT FORT CARSON, COLORADO, AND ACROSS COLORADO SPRINGS, OVERSEAS DEPLOYED IN OUR WAR ON TERROR PROTECTING US AT HOME SO THAT WE CAN COME TO WORK EACH AND EVERY DAY, SO WE CAN HAVE DEBATES ON THE SENATE FLOOR. 6,000 CIVILIANS ARE GOING TO BE FURLOUGHED IF THIS GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN OCCURS. NOW, THESE ARE CIVILIANS WHO SUPPORT THE WAR ON TERROR, WHO SUPPORT OUR MEN AND WOMEN IN UNIFORM AROUND THE GLOBE AND YET SOMEHOW SHUTTING THE GOVERNMENT DOWN, FURLOUGHING 6,000 CIVILIANS IS DEEMED TO BE BETTER THAN A FOUR-WEEK C.R.? ONLY IN WASHINGTON CAN PEOPLE CLAIM THAT A BAD BILL SHOULD BE REPLACED BY A WORSE BILL. ONLY IN WASHINGTON CAN PEOPLE DECIDE THAT BAD POLICY SHOULD BE -- SHOULDN'T BE PREFERRED OVER SOMETHING THAT'S WORSE. AND THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT THE ARGUMENT SEEMS TO BE. THEY DON'T LIKE IT SO MAKE IT WORSE. THAT'S NOT FAIR TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. IT'S NOT FAIR THAT COLLATERAL DAMAGE HURT MEN, WOMEN, AND CHILDREN ACROSS THIS COUNTRY WHEN WE CAN DO THE RIGHT THING AND WE CAN BRING A SOLUTION TO OUR IMMIGRATION CRISIS. WE CAN BRING A SOLUTION TO THE CHALLENGE OUR MILITARY FACES. WE CAN BRING A SOLUTION TO THE OPIOID CRISIS. LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT A BUSINESS IN FORT COLLINS. THEY HAVE MADE A BREAKTHROUGH IN THE WAY THAT A TREATMENT IS DELIVERED FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE ADDICTED TO OPIOIDS. IT'S A MEDICATION THAT IS LIQUID AND WHEN IT'S INJECTED, IT SOLIDIFIES. IT'S TIME RELEASED OVER A MONTH. SO IT DOESN'T RELY ON DAY-TO-DAY MEDICATION. IT DOESN'T RELY ON A PERSON TO FAITHFULLY TAKE THEIR MEDICATION BECAUSE IF THEY HAVE A RELAPSE, IT CAN DISRUPT THEIR MEDICATION AND WHAT THEY'RE DOING IN THEIR TREATMENT. THIS TAKES AWAY THAT CONCERN, GIVES THEM THAT TREATMENT FOR A MONTH. THAT WAS APPROVED THROUGH AN F.D.A. EMERGENCY EXPEDITED REVIEW PROCESS. BUT THERE'S LEGISLATION THAT THIS BODY NEEDS TO PASS IN ORDER TO MAKE SURE THAT IT IS AVAILABLE IN A WAY THAT WILL HELP THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN AND WE CAN'T GET THAT DONE. COMMITTEES CAN'T MEET. THE WORK CAN'T PROCEED. BUT I GUESS THAT'S THE SOLUTION THAT PEOPLE WANT. I GUESS SHUTTING THE GOVERNMENT DOWN SEEMS TO BE THE CURE ALL FOR THEM. TAKE A HOSTAGE. PUSH IT OFF. AND SOMEHOW THAT MAKES IT BETTER. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE JUST WANT US TO FIND AN ANSWER. THEY JUST WANT US TO HAVE GOOD-FAITH SOLUTIONS TO OUR PROBLEM AND MEN AND WOMEN OF GOOD FAITH IN THIS BODY AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES ARE TRYING EACH AND EVERY DAY TO DO THAT. BUT DON'T PROVE TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE THEIR WORST SUSPICIONS THAT WASHINGTON DOESN'T CARE. PASS THE CONTINUING RESOLUTION. CONTINUE NEGOTIATIONS. WE HAVE TIME TO TALK. WE HAVE TIME TO COMMUNICATE. WE HAVE TIME TO WORK. AND WE HAVE TIME TO SOLVE. STOP THE TEMPER TANTRUMS. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DESERVE BETTER. MADAM PRESIDENT, I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 03:11:00 PM

    MR. BARRASSO

    MADAM PRESIDENT?

  • 03:11:01 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM WYOMING.

  • 03:11:02 PM

    MR. BARRASSO

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. MADAM PRESIDENT, I COME TO THE FLOOR WHERE…

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. MADAM PRESIDENT, I COME TO THE FLOOR WHERE WE'RE FACING THE PROSPECT OF A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT, FUNDING RUNS OUT. THE LIGHTS WILL GO DARK. AND WHEN THAT HAPPENS, EVERYONE SUFFERS. NO ONE WINS. EVERYONE SUFFERS. BUT I KNOW THAT. MADAM PRESIDENT, YOU KNOW THAT. REPUBLICANS KNOW THAT. AND WE'VE OFFERED A SOLUTION THAT KEEPS THE GOVERNMENT OPEN AND EXTENDS THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. AS A DOCTOR I WILL TELL YOU HOW VALUABLE THAT PROGRAM IS FOR CHILDREN ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY. THE HOUSE HAS ALREADY PASSED THIS LEGISLATION. DEMOCRATS IN THE SENATE HAVE PROMISED TO BLOCK IT, TO STAND IN THE WAY. SOME HAVE ACTUALLY BEEN BRAGGING THAT THEY CAN SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT AND THAT THEY WANT TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT. WHY WOULD SOMEONE WANT TO DO THAT? WELL, HERE'S WHAT "THE NEW YORK TIMES" SAYS. THE FRONT PAGE THIS MORNING, SENATE SHUTDOWN LOOMS AS SPENDING BILL ADVANCES. HOUSE APPROVES A STOPGAP MEASURE WHILE DEMOCRATS DIG IN ON IMMIGRATION. THAT'S THE REASON THE DEMOCRATS WANT TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT AND THIS ENTIRE COUNTRY OVER THE ISSUE OF IMMIGRATION. THAT'S "THE NEW YORK TIMES." HERE'S "THE WASHINGTON POST" THIS MORNING. SHUTDOWN LOOMS DESPITE HOUSE ACTION. DEMOCRATS TIE DREAMERS TO PASSAGE OF BUDGET DEAL. THERE IT IS. "NEW YORK TIMES," "WASHINGTON POST." THE MINORITY LEADER IS FORCING A SHUTDOWN OVER THE ISSUE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION. DEMOCRATS ARE READY TO SET ASIDE ALL OTHER ISSUES. ALL OTHER DEADLINES, ALL OTHER PRIORITYIES. REPUBLICANS HAVE WRITTEN IN PAST LEGISLATION THAT FUNDS THE GOVERNMENT. THAT MEANS FUNDING FOR OUR MILITARY, FUNDING FOR OUR VETERANS. IT MEANS FUNDING FOR OPIOID TREATMENT. IT MEANS FUNDING FOR EVERYTHING THAT OUR FEDERAL GOVERNMENT DOES NOW. AND IT FUNDS THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, AND NOT JUST FOR A WEEK OR A MONTH. IT FUNDS IT FOR THE NEXT SIX YEARS. MADAM PRESIDENT, THIS IS A PROGRAM THAT HELPED PROVIDE MEDICAL CARE FOR ALMOST NINE MILLION CHILDREN AND NEEDY FAMILIES ACROSS THIS COUNTRY. THERE ARE MORE THAN 7,300 PEOPLE IN MY HOME STATE OF WYOMING WHO BENEFIT FROM THIS PROGRAM. THE MONEY FOR THIS PROGRAM IS GOING TO START RUNNING OUT IN SOME PLACES VERY SOON. THE FUNDING HAS BEEN IN LIMBO SINCE LAST FALL. SOME STATES ARE GETTING READY TO SEND OUT LETTERS TO FAMILIES, LETTERS THAT TELL THOSE FAMILIES THAT THEIR COVERAGE IS GOING TO BE DISCONTINUED BECAUSE THIS SENATE DIDN'T ACT. STATES HAVE BEEN ASKING FOR CERTAINTY. THAT'S WHAT WE'RE DOING WITH THIS LEGISLATION. WE'RE PROVIDING THAT CERTAINTY. WE'RE TAKING CARE OF THIS PROGRAM SO VITAL TO FAMILIES ACROSS EVERY STATE IN THIS COUNTRY FOR THE NEXT SIX YEARS. DEMOCRATS ARE BLOCKING IT. IT DOES SEEM TO BE THAT WHAT THEY REALLY WANT TO DO IS MAKE A POLITICAL POINT AT THE EXPENSE OF EVERYTHING ELSE AND EVERYONE ELSE. THEY'RE WILLING TO HOLD NINE MILLION CHILDREN AND THEIR FAMILIES HOSTAGE TO DO IT. THEY'RE WILLING TO HOLD HOSTAGE MORE THAN 300 MILLION AMERICANS WHO COULD BE HARMED BY A PROLONGED GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. AND IT'S ALL OVER THE IMMIGRATION ISSUE AS THEY TALK ABOUT IN "THE WASHINGTON POST," IN "THE NEW YORK "THE NEW YORK TIMES," AN ISSUE KNOWN AS DACA. IT STANDS FOR DEFERRED ACTION FOR CHILDHOOD ARRIVALS. NOW, IT WAS INTENDED AS A TEMPORARY PROGRAM, TEMPORARY PROGRAM TO DEAL WITH THE PROBLEM OF PEOPLE WHO WERE BROUGHT TO THIS COUNTRY ILLEGALLY WHEN THEY WERE JUST YOUNG CHILDREN. THE PROGRAM WAS SET UP BY AN EXECUTIVE ACTION BY PRESIDENT OBAMA. IT WASN'T DONE BY A LAW. IT WASN'T A BIPARTISAN PROGRAM. TWAPT A DEMOCRAT PRESIDENT -- IT WAS A DEMOCRAT PRESIDENT ACTING ON HIS OWN TO KICK THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD ON THIS ISSUE. THE ISSUES RELATED TO IMMIGRATION AND SPECIFICALLY ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION ARE VERY TOUGH, AND WE NEED TO KEEP WORKING TOWARD A SOLUTION. THERE ARE DISCUSSIONS GOING ON EVERY DAY WITHIN THE SENATE, REPUBLICAN AND DEMOCRAT, BETWEEN THE HOUSE, BETWEEN THE SENATE. WHY DO PEOPLE WANT TO RISK BLOWING UP THESE DISCUSSIONS? WELL, IT SEEMS THAT WHATEVER WE AGREE TO NEEDS TO INCLUDE IMPORTANT MATTERS OF BORDER SECURITY BECAUSE, TO ME, BORDER SECURITY IS NATIONAL SECURITY, AND THAT HAS TO BE INCLUDED IN THAT DISCUSSION AND DELIBERATION. ANY SOLUTION IS GOING TO HAVE TO INCLUDE REAL FIXES TO OUR BROKEN IMMIGRATION SYSTEM SO THAT WE'RE NOT JUST HAVING THE SAME ARGUMENT OVER AGAIN IN A COUPLE MORE YEARS. COMING UP WITH A SOLUTION LIKE THIS DOES CONTINUE TO TAKE TIME. NOT CERTAINLY SOMETHING WE CAN GET DONE BY MIDNIGHT TONIGHT, MADAM PRESIDENT. IT'S NOT EVEN A GOOD REASON WHY WE NEED TO RUSH TO SHOVEL THIS PROBLEM IN A FEW -- TO SOLVE THIS PROBLEM IN A FEW HOURS. THE FACT IS NO CURRENT DACA RECIPIENTS ARE GOING TO LOSE THEIR BENEFIT FOR ANOTHER SIX MONTHS. DEMOCRATS ARE SETTING AN ARBITRARY DEADLINE OF MIDNIGHT TONIGHT AND THEY'RE THREATENING TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT IF THEIR DEADLINE IS NOT MET. THE LEGISLATION REPUBLICANS HAVE OFFERED TAKES CARE OF ONE EMERGENCY AND IT GIVES NEGOTIATORS TIME TO REACH CONSENSUS ON THIS SEPARATE AND UNRELATED SUBJECT. THE CONTINUING RESOLUTION ALREADY PASSED BY THE HOUSE PROVIDES CERTAINTY TO THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, AND IT ALLOWS US A CHANCE TO WORK OUT SOME CERTAINTY ON THE DACA ISSUE. SOME DEMOCRATS ARE SAYING THEY REFUSE TO DO THAT. WHY? WELL, IT'S INTERESTING, MADAM PRESIDENT, BECAUSE IN 2013 THE MINORITY LEADER, SENATOR SCHUMER, THOUGHT THAT A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN, AT THAT TIME HE SAID WAS A TERRIBLE IDEA. HE SAID NO MATTER HOW STRONGLY ONE FEELS ABOUT AN ISSUE, HE SAID YOU SHOULDN'T HOLD MILLIONS OF PEOPLE HOSTAGE. THESE ARE HIS WORDS. HE SAID THAT'S WRONG AND WE CAN'T GIVE INTO THAT. HE EVEN SPELLED OUT THE EXACT SITUATION WE'RE FACING TODAY, AND HE DID IT NOT JUST ON THE SENATE FLOOR, HE DID IT ON TELEVISION IN 2013. ABC'S "THIS WEEK." OCTOBER 6, 19 19 -- HE SAID WE BELIEVE STRONGLY IN IMMIGRATION REFORM. WE'RE NOT GOING TO RAISE THE DEBT CEILING UNTIL YOU PASS IMMIGRATION REFORM. HE SAID IT WOULD BE GOVERNMENT CHAOS. THAT'S WHAT SENATOR SCHUMER SAID IN 2013, AND NOW HE'S TRYING TO CREATE EXACTLY THAT SAME GOVERNMENT CHAOS THAT HE DESCRIBED BACK THEN. AND IT'S FOR THE EXACT SAME REASON THAT HE TALKED ABOUT IN 2013, THE EXACT SAME REASON THAT "THE WASHINGTON POST" CITES AS THE REASON, TODAY'S FRONT PAGE, DEMOCRATS TIE DREAMERS TO PASSAGE OF BUDGET DEAL. THE SAME REASON AS OUTLINED ON THE FRONT OF THE "NEW YORK TIMES" TODAY. DEMOCRATS DIG IN ON IMMIGRATION. WHAT'S DIFFERENT NOW IS THAT DEMOCRATS HAVE DECIDED TO STAKE ALL OF THEIR POLITICAL HOPES ON THIS ONE ISSUE. THEY'RE HOLDING AMERICA HOSTAGE TO DO IT. MADAM PRESIDENT, NOBODY BENEFITS FROM THE DEMOCRATS SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT. NOBODY BENEFITS FROM THE GAME THAT DEMOCRATS ARE PLAYING WITH THE SECURITY AND THE SAFETY OF AMERICAN FAMILIES. TO ME, IT'S IRRESPONSIBLE FOR THEM TO SEEK THIS SHUTDOWN OVER THEIR AGENDA ON THIS ISSUE OF IMMIGRATION. WE SHOULD PASS THE RESOLUTION THAT WE HAVE BEFORE US TODAY. IT'S TIME FOR DEMOCRATS TO STOP BACK FROM THE DAMAGE THIS SHUTDOWN WILL CAUSE TO CHILDREN, TO OUR VETERANS, TO OUR ECONOMY, AND RETURN TO THE TABLE TO DISCUSS THE ISSUES ON WHICH THEY ARE FOCUSED. I RECOMMEND TO MY COLLEAGUES, MADAM PRESIDENT, ACROSS THE AISLE, THAT THEY FOLLOW THE ADVICE FROM SENATOR SCHUMER IN 2013. DON'T PLAY POLITICS WITH PEOPLE'S LIVES AND CREATE GOVERNMENTAL CHAOS. THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 03:19:54 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM VIRGINIA.

  • 03:19:57 PM

    MR. KAINE

    FROM VIRGINIA.

  • 03:25:33 PM

    IMPORTANT PRIORITIES

  • 03:29:44 PM

    A SENATOR

    THE SENATOR FROM INDIANA.

  • 03:29:46 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM INDIANA.

  • 03:29:48 PM

    MR. DONNELLY

    INDIANA.

  • 03:29:51 PM

    IMPORTANT ISSUES

    TWO IMPORTANT ISSUES: KEEPING OUR GOVERNMENT RUNNING AND PROTECTING -- AND…

    TWO IMPORTANT ISSUES: KEEPING OUR GOVERNMENT RUNNING AND PROTECTING -- AND I KNOW HOW STRONG YOU ARE ON THIS AS WELL -- AN IMPORTANT TOOL IN THE FIGHT AGAINST THE -L OPIOID EPIDEMIC. TODAY WE FACE A -L DEADLINE TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT. IT'S THE MOST BASIC DUTY OF CONGRESS TO KEEP OUR GOVERNMENT RUNNING. I WAS ELECTED BY THE PEOPLE OF INDIANA TO WORK EVERY DAY ON BEHALF OF HOOSIERS TO DO MY JOB AS A UNITED STATES SENATOR. KEEPING THE GOVERNMENT RUNNING IS OUR JOB, AND I WILL VOTE TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OPEN. I HOPE THAT REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS WILL JOIN TOGETHER TO REACH AN AGREEMENT AND AVOID A SHUTDOWN. WE STILL HAVE THAT OPPORTUNITY TO PREVENT A SHUTDOWN. I STAND READY TO WORK WITH ANYONE. I SHARE THE FRUSTRATION OF MANY WHOSE HOOZ -- MANY HOOSIERS AND AMERICANS. WE'VE BEEN DOWN THIS ROAD BEFORE BUT CONGRESS DOES NOT NEED TO FOLLOW THAT PATH AGAIN. AS A POTENTIAL SHUTDOWN LOOMS, THE PRESIDENT'S OPIOID PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY DECLARATION IS ON THE VERGE OF EXPIRING. AND ACCORDING TO REPORTS TODAY, THE ADMINISTRATION IS PLANNING TO CUT THE OFFICE OF NATIONAL DRUG CONTROL POLICY BY 95%. LET ME SAY THAT AGAIN. THE PRESIDENT'S OPIOID PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY DECLARATION IS ON THE VERGE OF EXPIRING AND ACCORDING TO REPORTS TODAY, THE ADMINISTRATION IS PLANNING TO CUT THE OFFICE OF NATIONAL DRUG CONTROL POLICY BY 95%. ONDCP COORDINATES FEDERAL EFFORTS TO COMBAT OPIOID ABUSE AND HEROIN USE AS WELL AS DRUG TRAFFICKING IN INDIANA AND ACROSS THE COUNTRY. IN ADDITION, ONDCP ADMINISTERS THE HIGH INTENSITY DRUG TRAFFICKING AREA OR HIDTA PROGRAM WHICH SUPPORTS AND ENHANCES COOPERATION BETWEEN FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TO COMBAT DRUG TRAFFICKING. IT'S A PROGRAM THAT EFFECTIVELY BRINGS TOGETHER CRITICAL LAW ENFORCEMENT PARTNERS IN INDIANA AND THE REPORTED CUTS TO ONDCP COULD UPEND THE GOOD PROGRESS THAT'S BEING MADE. AS WE WORK TO CONFRONT THE OPIOID CRISIS, WE SHOULD BE INVESTING IN CRITICAL TOOLS FOR HOOSIER LAW ENFORCEMENT AND COMMUNITIES TO COMBAT DRUG ABUSE AND TRAFFICKING. THIS IS A CRISIS. IT'S NOT A TIME FOR THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO TAKE CRITICAL TOOLS FOR HOOSIER COMMUNITIES OFF OF THE TABLE. WE SHOULD BE DOUBLING DOWN ON EFFECTIVE EFFORTS. WE MUST CONFRONT THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC WITH ALL POSSIBLE TOOLS AVAILABLE AND EVERYONE WORKING TOGETHER TO ADDRESS THIS PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY. I YIELD BACK.

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  • 04:20:06 PM

    MR. TILLIS

    MADAM PRESIDENT?

  • 04:20:07 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM NORTH CAROLINA.

  • 04:20:09 PM

    MR. TILLIS

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. MADAM PRESIDENT, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT -- I…

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. MADAM PRESIDENT, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT -- I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT I BE ALLOWED TO ENTER A COLLOQUY WITH THE GENTLEMAN FROM OKLAHOMA.

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  • 04:20:21 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 04:20:23 PM

    MR. TILLIS

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. MADAM PRESIDENT, WE'RE HERE TO TALK A LITTLE…

    THANK YOU, MADAM PRESIDENT. MADAM PRESIDENT, WE'RE HERE TO TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT IMMIGRATION REFORM AND MAYBE A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE LOOMING GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. I WANT TO START WITH THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN BECAUSE IT'S INTRINSICALLY LINKED WITH AT LEAST SOME OF THE ARGUMENTS BEING MADE BY MY COLLEAGUES ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE. AND WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO DO -- IT'S FAIRLY SIMPLE. YEAR TRYING TO FUND OUR SERVICE MEMBERS, WE'RE TRYING TO FUND OUR VETERANS. WE WANT TO GET A LONG-TERM AUTHORIZATION FOR THE CHIP PROGRAM. THE CHIP PROGRAM ACTUALLY EXPIRED LAST YEAR BUT THERE WERE SUFFICIENT FUNDS ON ACCOUNT TO CONTINUE FUNDING, BUT THEY'RE RUNNING OUT. IN STATES LIKE NORTH CAROLINA AND OTHER STATES, THIS PROGRAM IS GOING TO START BEING SHUT DOWN IF WE DON'T GET MUCH-NEEDED RESOURCES. WE'RE TALKING ABOUT A MULTIYEAR REAUTHORIZATION FOR THE PLAN. AND OF COURSE CONTINUING TO FUND NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH, WHICH IS A CRITICALLY IMPORTANT PART OF US COMBATING DISEASES, FINDING TREATMENTS AND CURES. THAT'S ALL WE'RE TRYING TO DO WITH THIS SPENDING BILL. THE OTHER THING WE'RE TRYING TO DO IS CREATE A BRIDGE FOR THE MONTH SO WE CAN GET OUR COLLEAGUES ON BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE TALKING AND HOPEFULLY GET SOME CERTAINTY IN TERMS OF FUNDING GOING OUT INTO NEXT YEAR AND IF IT WAS UP TO ME AND SENATOR LANKFORD FOR SEVERAL YEARS. BUT IT WOULD BE GOOD TO GET SOME LONG-TERM CERTAINTY IN THE FUND FUNDING PROCESS BECAUSE RIGHT NOW THESE CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS ARE KILLING US. WE'RE LIVING PAYCHECK TO PAYCHECK. IT CREATES ALL KINDS OF INEFFICIENT PROCESSES. IT'S WASTING TAXPAYER DOLLARS. BUT WE'VE AT LEAST GOT TO START WITH YOU UNDERSTAND IFING THE GOVERNMENT TONIGHT. AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT IF WE DON'T ACT ON A CONTINUING RESOLUTION, THEN WE WILL BE SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT. I FOR ONE AM GOING TO VOTE FOR THE CONTINUING RESOLUTION, LIKE I HAVE FOR EVERY RESOLUTION FOR THE LAST THREE YEARS I'VE BEEN HERE BECAUSE I BELIEVE WE NEED TO PAY OUR BILLS, FUND OUR SERVICE MEMBERS, KNOW THAT THE CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES CAN COME BACK TO WORK ON MONDAY AND WE NEED TO DO A BETTER JOB OF ACTUALLY GETTING TOGETHER AND COMING UP WITH CENTERED SOLUTIONS THAT GAINING ENOUGH SUPPORT ON BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE TO DO THAT. NOW I WANT TO TALK ABOUT WHY WE'RE AT THE SHUTDOWN. WE'RE MAINLY AT THE SHUTDOWN BECAUSE SOME MEMBERS ACTUALLY -- ACTUALLY, HOLD UP JUST A MINUTE -- SOME MEMBERS WANT TO PUT ALL OF OUR GOVERNMENT FUNDING AT RISK, ALL OF THE FUNDING I WAS TALKING ABOUT HERE AT RISK, BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT YET REACHED AN AGREEMENT ON IMMIGRATION REFORM. NOW, SENATOR LANKFORD AND I HAVE SPENT A LOT OF TIME ON THIS. IN AUGUST OF LAST YEAR WE INTRODUCED THROUGH SEPTEMBER THE SUCCEED ACT, WHICH WAS AN HONEST EFFORT TO GET INTO THE DISCUSSION ON HOW WE COULD COME UP WITH A LONG-TERM SOLUTION FOR THE DACA POPULATION. AND WE GOT WITH SENATOR DURBIN, WE GOT WITH SENATOR GRAHAM, A NUMBER OF OTHER MEMBERS, TO TRY TO NEGOTIATE OUT OUR CONCERNS -- DIFFERENCES. WE MADE SOME PROGRESS. NOW I'LL BRING YOU FORWARD TO A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO. WE MET WITH THE PRESIDENT TWO WEEKS AGO ON A THURSDAY, REPUBLICAN MEMBERS THAT INCLUDED MYSELF, SENATOR LANKFORD, AND OTHER MERGERS AND WE TOLD THE PRESIDENT THAT WE THOUGHT WE WERE MAKING PROGRESS. SENATOR GRAHAM WAS IN THE MEETING AS WELL -- THAT WE WERE MAKING PROGRESS, BUT WE THOUGHT TO REALLY GET THE DEAL DONE, WE NEEDED A BICAMERAL, BIPARTISAN MEETING. THE PRESIDENT THOUGHT IT WAS A GOOD IDEA, AND HE HOSTED THE FIRST MEET THAT FOLLOWING TUESDAY. THE MAJORITY OF THE MEETING WAS TELEVISED. PEOPLE COULD SEE THE DISCUSSION GOING ON, PEOPLE SAW A LITTLE OF GOOD INTERCHANGE. THERE WERE CLEARLY GAPS BUT WE THOUGHT WE WERE MAKING PROGRESS. AND WHAT WE AGREED IN THAT MEETING IT IS WHAT THERE WERE FOUR MAIN PILLARS. THE IDEA OF COMPREHENSIVE IMMIGRATION REFORM SOUNDS GOOD EXCEPT IT'S FAILED EVERY TIME THEY'VE ATTEMPTED IT. WE DECIDED THAT WE SHOULD START WITH A MORE -- I THINK MORE FOCUSED EFFORT TO ADDRESS SOME OF THE BORDER SECURITY CONCERNS AND CERTAINTY FOR THE DACA POPULATION. SOUNDED LIKE A GOOD IDEA, SO WE DECIDED THAT WE WOULD HAVE THE NUMBER-TWO LEADERS IN THE HOUSE AND THE SENATE, THE DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS, FOUR PEOPLE, GET TOGETHER THE FOLLOWING DAY AND DEVELOP A SCHEDULE SO THAT A SUBSET OF THAT GROUP OF A COUPLE OF DOZEN PEOPLE THAT MET WITH THE PRESIDENT COULD GET TOGETHER AND WORK OUGHT OUR DIFFERENCES. AND WE KNEW GOING INTO IT -- SENATOR LANKFORD AND I KNEW GOING INTO IT THAT IN ORDER TO COMPROMISE, WE WERE GOING TO HAVE TO ACCEPT POSITIONS THAT WERE, WELL, SHORT OF WHAT WE WANTED BUT THAT'S THE WHOLE PURPOSE OF COMPROMISING. NOBODY GETS EVERYTHING THAT THEY WANT. SO WE'RE LOOKING FORWARD TO WHAT WE HAD HOPED WAS GOING TO BE A SCHEDULE COMING OUT OF THE WHIPS -- THE DEMOCRATS AND THE REPUBLICANS, THE FOUR THAT WERE IN THE MEETING -- AND THAT NEVER HAPPENED. WHAT WE INSTEAD FOUND OUT IS ON THURSDAY A SUBSET OF THE GROUP, WITHOUT TALKING WITH ANY OF US, DECIDED TO HAVE A MEETING WITH THE PRESIDENT AND SEE IF THEY COULD OFFER THEIR SOLUTION. AND THAT'S WHAT A LOT OF THEM HAVE BEEN TALKING ABOUT ON THE FLOOR. THEY SAID OUR SOLUTION IS READY TO GO. WE'VE GOT BIPARTISAN SUPPORT. WE CAN LET IT GO. WELL, LAST NIGHT I FINALLY GOT THE FULL TEXT OF THEIR SOLUTION. I WANT TO SHARE IT WITH YOU ALL HERE. THERE IT IS. IT IS A TITLE. IT IS NOTHING. THERE ARE NO SPECIFIC PROVISIONS. THERE IS ENOT A BILL FILED. THERE'S NO EVIDENCE THAT THEY'VE SPOKEN WITH PEOPLE TO TRY TO BRIDGE THE GAPS. IT'S COMPLETELY COUNTER TO WHAT WE AGREED TO DO THAT TUESDAY A WEEK OR SO AGO. SO I'M ASKING MY COLLEAGUES TO RECOGNIZE THAT PEOPLE LIKE ME AND SENATOR LANKFORD CARE ABOUT THE DACA POPULATION. WE WANT TO PROVIDE THEM WITH CERTAINTY. WE ALSO WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE PUT BALANCE INTO THE PROPOSAL SO THAT WE'RE NOT HERE AGAIN TEN YEARS FROM NOW, SO THAT WE CAN MAKE SURE THAT WE HAVE SOMETHING OF ENDURING VALUE. WE DON'T WANT TO DO SOMETHING QUICK WHERE MAYBE YOU PLAY GOTCHA, YOU PUT SOME PRESSURE ON SOMEONE AN GET A BILL PASSED BECAUSE THEY'RE ALWAYS AT RISK OF BEING REVERSED. WE'VE ALREADY TAKEN HITS BACK IN OUR STATES. THERE ARE PEOPLE THAT THINK WE SHOULD HAVE NEVER EVEN HAD THIS DISCUSSION BUT WE CARE ABOUT THE DACA POPULATION. WE CARE ABOUT BORDER SECURITY. WE CARE WITH HOMELAND SECURITY AND A NUMBER OF THINGS THAT HAVE TO GO TOGETHER SO THAT WE PROVIDE A SOLUTION BUT THEN WE ALSO MAKE SURE IT'S HIGHLY UNLIKELY THAT SENATORS 10, 12, 15 YEARS FROM NOW ARE IN THE SAME PLACE. BEFORE I TURN IT OVER TO SENATOR LANKFORD, I WANT TO GO BACK AND TALK LITTLE BIT ABOUT WHY BORDER SECURITY SHOULD BE ARGUED ON COMPASSIONATE GROUNDS. I WAS DOWN IN TEXAS BACK IN FEBRUARY. I SPENT A WEEK DOWN THERE WITH SENATOR CORNYN AND SOME OF THE OTHER MEMBERS. I WAS ALL ALONG THE BORDER. I MET WITH BORDER PATROL AGENTS, SOME OF THEM HAD BEEN SHOT HAD, WE HAD STORIES OF SOME OF THEIR COLLEAGUES WHO HAD BEEN KILLED. I WAS IN LAREDO WHERE THEY SHOWED ME THE DOOR OF A HELICOPTER THAT HAD JUST BEEN SHOT THROUGH A COUPLE OF WEEKS EARLIER FROM SOMEONE JUST CROSS THE RIO GRANDE IN WHAT THEY CALLED LUWUEBE, LA RAY LOWE DOUGH. THERE IS A COMPASSIONATE BASIS FOR TRYING TO KEEP OUR BORDER SECURITY AND C.I.S. AGENTS SAFE. THERE IS ALSO A COMPASSIONATE CASE FOR KNOWING WHO'S CROSSING THE BORDER AND WHERE THEY ARE. WHY? BECAUSE 10,000 PEOPLE HAVE DIED -- 10,000 PEOPLE HAVE DIED CROSSING THAT BORDER THE LAST 20 YEARS, ALMOST 1,000 OF THEM KIDS OR MINERS. THAT DOESN'T INCLUDE THE NUMBER THAT GET KILLED. THE WAY IT WORKS DOWN THERE IS THEY HAVE THESE HUMAN TRAFFICKERS OR SMUGGLERS WHO CHARGE THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS TO GET SOMEBODY ACROSS THE BORDER. SOMETIMES THEY GET ACROSS. OFTENTIMES THEY DON'T. THE CARTELS THAT RUN THE DIFFERENT PLAZAS, THE GEOGRAPHIES ACROSS THE SOUTHERN BORDER -- IF YOU GO THROUGH THIS PLAZA, YOU BETTERING PAYING A TOLL OR YOU'RE GOING TO DIE. MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN WERE KILLED. TO SEND A MESSAGE, THEY KILL THESE PEOPLE. IF WE'VE 10,000 DIE HERE, THEY DIE BECAUSE WE DIDN'T KNOW THEY WERE THERE. WE DIDN'T HAVE THE SITUATIONAL AWARENESS THAT WE'RE TRYING TO GET DONE WITH THE BORDER SECURITY PROVISIONS THAT ARE IN A COMPROMISE BILL THAT WE'VE OFFERED. I CAN ALSO TALK ABOUT THE MILLIONS OF DOSES OF DRUGS THAT CROSS OUR BORDER EVERY WEEK -- WEEK. EVERY WEEK MILLIONS OF DOSES OF POISON CROSS OUR BORDER. NOW, WE TALK ABOUT THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC. , AND WE KNOW A VAST MAJORITY OF THE OPIOIDS, THE HEROIN, THE FENTANYL, THE DIFFERENT VARIANTS OF OPIOIDS THAT ARE COMING ACROSS THE BORDER, ARE COMING FROM SOUTH OF THE BORDER. EITHER BY WATER OR OVER LAND. SO IF THAT'S NOT A COMPELLING CASE OF COMPASSION NAT, A COMPASSIONATE CASE FOR MARRYING BORDER SECURITY WITH WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO DO WITH IMMIGRATION REFORM, I DON'T KNOW WHAT IS. WE'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT A WALL. WE'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT A 2,300-MILE WALL. I'VE BEEN CHRIS SITED FOR YEARS BECAUSE I SIT ON THE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE. WE'VE HAD A UMIN OF HEARINGS THAT WOULD -- WE'VE HAD A NUMBER OF HEARINGS THAT WOULD NEVER MAKE SENSE. PEOPLE, TECHNOLOGY, INFRASTRUCTURE IS WHAT BORDER SECURITY CALLED IT. WE'RE ASKING FOR THE BASELINE FUNDING AND BUILD IT OUT OVER TIME. WALLS WHERE IT MAKES SENSE, FENCES, AND RECONNAISSANCE IN SOME PLACES. THAT'S ALL WE'RE ASKING FOR. THERE IS A DEAL TO BE STRUCK HERE VERY CUCKLY. BUT YOU DON'T DO IT BY GOING AROUND A PROCESS THAT TWO DAYS BEFORE YOU AGREED TO PARTICIPATE IN. I -- I WANT TO THANK SENATOR LANKFORD BECAUSE HE HAS DONE AN TROD ORDINARY JOB -- AN EXTRAORDINARY JOB -- AND I WANT TO THANK OUR STAFF BECAUSE THEY HAVE DONE AN AMAZING AMOUNT OF WORK -- TO DO SOMETHING THAT WAS EMBASED BY SENATOR DURBIN, BUT THEN THINGS BROKE DOWN BECAUSE THEY WANTED TO TALK ABOUT THE DACA PROGRAM AND THEY DIDN'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT THE IMPACTFUL, COMPASSIONATE SOLUTION THAT I THINK WE WOULD GET 60 VOTES FOR. SENATOR LANKFORD, I WOULD LIKE TO GET YOUR THOUGHTS AND COMMENTS AND YIELD THE FLOOR TO YOU.

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  • 04:31:03 PM

    MR. LANKFORD

    MADAM PRESIDENT.

  • 04:31:04 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM OKLAHOMA.

  • 04:31:07 PM

    MR. LANKFORD

    SENATOR TILLIS AND I HAVE COME TO THE FLOOR TODAY BECAUSE WE HAVE SOME…

    SENATOR TILLIS AND I HAVE COME TO THE FLOOR TODAY BECAUSE WE HAVE SOME INCREDIBLE FRUSTRATION AND WANT TO BRING SOME FACTS OUT TO THE CONVERSATION. I ABSOLUTELY AGREE FOR THE FEDERAL -- GRIEVE FOR THE FEDERAL WORKERS IN MY STATE AND THERE ARE SOME PHENOMENAL PEOPLE THAT DO AN AMAZING JOB THAT MOST PEOPLE WON'T KNOW ABOUT WHERE THEY GET UP EVERY DAY TO SERVE THE PEOPLE. THERE ARE FOLKS IN THE MILITARY WHO EVERY DAY SERVE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. THERE ARE CIVILIANS AROUND THEM, THOUGH NOT LISTED AS FEDERAL EMPLOYEES, ARE CONNECTED TO WHAT WE'RE DOING WITH THE FEDERAL TASK FOR PEOPLE. THEY ARE TRYING TO FIGURE OUT THIS AFTERNOON WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THEM THIS WEEKEND AND NEXT WEEK. THEY ARE FRANTICALLY GETTING TOGETHER IN OFFICES ALL OVER OKLAHOMA AND ALL OVER AMERICA TRYING TO PIECE TOGETHER THE NOW WHAT'S OF A GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN DISTRACTING THEM FROM DOING THE THINGS THAT NEED TO BE DONE THAT THEY WERE BACKLOGGED ON, FOR WHAT? THIS FOCUS ON LET'S DO A GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN OVER NOT HAVING TO HAVE REAL DISCUSSIONS ABOUT DACA AND IMMIGRATION IS NOT ONLY NOT ACCURATE, BUT IT'S ALSO SOMETHING THAT IS ALREADY IN PROCESS THAT SOMEHOW IS BEING SHORT CIRCUITED. ALL OF THESE FEDERAL WORKERS AND ALL OF THESE CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES GOING THROUGH THIS TURMOIL TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHY DACA IS NOT RESOLVED AND THAT IT IS AT THE BEGINNING OF MARCH, IS CONFUSING EVERYONE. LET ME WALK EVERYONE BACKWARDS FOR A FEW MONTHS HERE. IN SEPTEMBER THE NATION WAS SURPRISED WHEN PRESIDENT TRUMP ANNOUNCED HE IS NOT GOING TO RENEW DACA. HE WANTS A LEGISLATIVE LONG-TERM FIX FOR DACA. THAT VERY DAY THAT HE MADE THAT ANNOUNCEMENT, I RELEASED OUT A STATEMENT SAYING, IN AMERICA WE DO NOT HOLD CHILDREN ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE ACTIONS OF THEIR PARENTS. WE DON'T DO THAT IN AMERICAN LAW. JUST A COUPLE OF DAYS AFTER THAT, THE PRESIDENT CALLED ME LATE ONE NIGHT AND HE SAID, HEY, I SAW YOUR STATEMENT IN A REPORT ABOUT THAT AND WE TALKED ABOUT 20 MINUTES LATE THAT EVENING TALKING ABOUT THIS POLICY AND GETTING A LONG-TERM SOLUTION FOR DACA FOR THE KIDS THAT HAVE TO RENEW EVERY TWO OR THREE YEARS, HE WANTED SOME PERMANENCE FOR THEM AND HAVE SOLUTIONS FOR BORDER SECURITY THAT WEREN'T CONTROVERSIAL A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO. TO SAY WE NEED TO DEAL WITH BORDER SECURITY AND WITH DACA. CAN WE PUT THIS TOGETHER? THE PRESIDENT -- AT THE TIME I TOLD THE PRESIDENT THAT SENATOR TILLIS AND I ARE WORKING TO GET SOMETHING PUT TOGETHER. BECAUSE FOR THE LAST 15 YEARS THE DREAM ACT HAS COME UP BEFORE THE HOUSE AND SENATE AND FOR 15 YEARS IT HAS FAILED EVERY SINGLE TIME. THE DREAM ACT FAILED WHEN THERE WAS A DEMOCRAT SENATE, A DEMOCRAT PRESIDENT, AND A DEMOCRAT HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. THAT BILL IS NOT GOING TO PASS. WE KNEW THAT SO WE WENT TO WORK SAYING, WHAT IS A BETTER SOLUTION THAT WILL PROVIDE SOME SEMBLANCE OF PERFORMANCE ON THIS? OUR CONVERSATION WAS A LOT OF THE PUSHBACK OF WHY THE DREAM ACT HAS NOT PASSED IN THE PAST IS THAT A LOT OF AMERICANS FEEL LIKE I UNDERSTAND THIS GROUP OF INDIVIDUALS HAVE GROWN-UP IN OUR COUNTRY, PLEDGED ALLEGIANCE TO OUR FLAG, SPEAK ENGLISH, THIS FEELS LIKE HOME TO THEM, BUT IT'S NOT HOME, THEY WANTED THEM TO HAVE THAT OPPORTUNITY BUT THEY DIDN'T WANT THEM TO, QUOTE, UNQUOTE, CUT IN LINE. SO WE PUT IN A PROCESS TO SAY, HERE IS A WAY THAT THOSE INDIVIDUALS COULD BE NATURALIZED CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES, BUT THEY HAVE TO GO THROW A PROCESS JUST -- GO THROUGH A PROCESS, BUT THE EXCEPTION WOULD BE THAT THEY ARE ALREADY HERE AND WOULDN'T HAVE WHAT DACA PROVIDED. DACA PROVIDED TWO YEARS OF WE WON'T ARREST YOU, BUT NO LEGAL STATUS. THIS WOULD PROVIDE IMMEDIATE LEGAL STATUS AND AN OPPORTUNITY AFTER TEN YEARS TO EARN NATURALIZATION. THAT HAD NEVER BEEN OFFERED LIKE THAT BEFORE. WE WORKED THROUGH ALL THE DETAILS OF THAT AND LAID OUT A PROPOSAL AND SAID, THIS IS A SECTION OF A LARGER BILL. WE FEEL LIKE THIS IS A WAY TO GET PAST WHAT HAS BLOCKED THE DREAM ACT YEAR AFTER YEAR AFTER YEAR AND WHAT HAS BEEN A MAJOR FRUSTRATION FOR THOSE CONCERNED ABOUT THE DREAM ACT. WE WANT TO BE ABLE TO RESOLVE THIS BUT IT HAS TO BE RESOLVED WITH BORDER SECURITY ATTACHED TO IT. I DIDN'T THINK IT WAS AN UNREASONABLE REQUEST. I WAS SURPRISED TO HEAR ABOUT IT BECAUSE IN THE PREVIOUS GANG OF EIGHT VERSION THERE WAS A LARGE SECTION IN IT ABOUT BORDER SECURITY. SO I ASSUMED THIS WOULD BE A NONISSUE TO BE A PART OF HAD THOSE ISSUES TOGETHER. IT SEEMS IRRESPONSIBLE TOLL DEAL WITH THE DACA ISSUE AND TO NOT ADDRESS HOW DID THAT HAPPEN IN THE FIRST PLACE, TO SAY THAT WE HAVE A SECURE BORDER AND SAY WE DON'T NEED TO ADDRESS ANYTHING WOULD BE TO IGNORE 12 MILLION EXAMPLES IN OUR COUNTRY OF THAT RULE BEING VIOLATED, EITHER THROUGH VISA OR THROUGH COMING ACROSS THE BORDERS WHO CAME TO OUR COUNTRY ILLEGALLY. WE HAVE A VERY RECEIVING COUNTRY. HALF A MILLION PEOPLE CROSS OUR SOUTHERN BORDER EVERY DAY. A MILLION PEOPLE A DAY LEGALLY BECOME CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES MANY WE ARE NOT A COUNTRY THAT IS ANTI-IMMIGRATION, WE JUST WANT IT DONE THE RIGHT WAY. WE THINK THE LAW SHOULD APPLY TO EVERYONE EQUALLY ALL THE TIME AND DON'T LIKE ANYTHING CIRCUMVENTING THE LAW. SEPTEMBER 5, THE PRESIDENT MAKES THE ANNOUNCEMENT, WITHIN DAYS WE HAVE CONVERSATIONS WITH THE PRESIDENT ABOUT IT. HE AGREES THERE SHOULD BE SOMETHING SHA A LONG-TERM -- THAT IS A LONG-TERM SOLUTION. WITHIN TWO WEEKS SENATOR TILLIS AND I RELEASE OUT OUR BILL. THANKFULLY IN OUR CONFERENCE SENATOR CORNYN IS ALSO WORKING THROUGH BORDER SECURITY TO BE ABLE TO PARTNER WITH THIS, AT THE SAME TIME SENATOR COTTON AND SENATOR PERDUE ARE ALSO WORKING ON OTHER AREAS DEALING WITH CHAIN MIGRATION, KNOWING THIS COULD BE PARTNERED TOGETHER FOR A FINAL BILL. THEY ARE INDIVIDUAL TITLES OF A LARGER PROPOSAL. WE WERE BRINGING THOSE OUT. IN OCTOBER THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES RELEASED A LONG REPORT THAT SAID WHAT HE WOULD LIKE TO HAVE IN THE BILL WITH GREAT DETAIL IN IT SAYING THIS IS WHAT HE EXPECTS THE BILL SHOULD LOOK LIKE WHEN IT IS RESOLVED. NOW IT IS OCTOBER. HE SAID, WE HAVE TO GET THIS RESOLVED, WE HAVE THREE DIFFERENT BILLS, THE PRESIDENT HAS RELEASED OUT SOMETHING, AND WE WANT TO START NEGOTIATION. IN NOVEMBER WE ARE IN NEGOTIATIONS WITH A P BIPARTISAN GROUP AND -- WITH A BIPARTISAN GROUP AND EVERY DAY IN THE BIPARTISAN GROUP THE DEMOCRATS ONLY WANT TO TALK ABOUT DACA. OUR STAFFS MEET EVERY DAY, WE MEET EVERY OTHER DAY, AS MEMBERS GOING THROUGH IT EVERY DAY AND EVERY DAY IT'S DACA AND WE SAY THERE ARE OTHER ASPECTS, AND EVERY DAY THEY SAY, LET'S WORK ON DACA SOME MORE. SO IN SEPTEMBER I ASKED WHEN ARE WE GOING TO GET TO TALK ABOUT BORDER SECURITY? WE HAVE TO TALK ABOUT THAT. GUESS WHAT HAPPENED, THE NEXT MEETING I WASN'T INVITED TO ATTEND. NEITHER WAS I INVITED TO THE NEXT ONE AND NEITHER WAS SENATOR TILLIS. OUR STAFF FINDS OUT THEY ARE MEETING AND WE SAY WE WANT TO GET TO A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT. THEY WON'T TELL US WHEN OR WHERE THEY ARE MEETING. WE DIDN'T TUCK AWAY FROM NEGOTIATIONS. -- WALK AWAY FROM NEGOTIATIONS. WE WERE KICKED OUT OF NEGOTIATIONS BECAUSE WE BELIEVED THIS NEEDED BORDER SECURITY AND DACA. FOR A GROUP THAT SAID BASICALLY WE DON'T WANT TO DEAL WITH BORDER SECURITY, THEY WERE NO LONGER INTERESTED IN US, WHICH BRINGS US TO A STALEMATE OF GETTING THIS RESOLVED. WHICH BRINGS US TO TWO WEEKS AGO. THE PRESIDENT INVITES US OVER IN A BIPARTISAN, BICAMERAL CONVERSATION AND SAID THAT WE HAVE TO GET SOMETHING. AND WITH 26 MEMBERS FROM BOTH PARTIES WE MADE AN AGREEMENT, THERE WILL BE FOUR AREAS OF THIS FINAL AGREEMENT AND THESE ARE THE NEGOTIATORS TO PUT IT -- TO PULL IT TOGETHER, THE WHIP FROM THE REPUBLICAN AND DEMOCRAT FROM THE HOUSE AND SENATE. THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO GET IT DONE. THAT WAS ON TUESDAY. THE GROUP WENT BACK TO THE PRESIDENT AND SAID WE HAVE TO -- LET'S TRY THIS. I KNOW ON TUESDAY WE AGREED TO DO THE OTHER PROCESS, BUT WE HAVE ANOTHER IDEA TO KIND OF END RUN THE WHOLE PROCESS. CLEARLY, THAT SAID A LOT OF US TO SAY WE'RE TRYING TO DO A BIPARTISAN DEAL. WE'RE TRYING TO WORK THIS THROUGH THE PROCESS. WE'RE TRYING TO BE GOOD FAITH IN THIS AND SO FAR THERE HAVE NOT BEEN GOOD-FAITH NEGOTIATIONS ON BORDER SECURITY AT ALL. WE CANNOT DEAL WITH THE ISSUE OF INDIVIDUALS THAT ARE IN OUR COUNTRY ILLEGALLY, EVEN IF WE AS AMERICANS SEE THEM AS NEIGHBORS, FRIENDS, AND FUTURE CITIZENS OF OUR COUNTRY AND IGNORE WHAT HAPPENED IN THE FIRST PLACE. THAT WOULD NOT BE RESPONSIBLE OF US. NOW, THERE ARE SOME THAT WANT TO SAY THIS IS BECAUSE YOU ARE SIMPLY A RACIST, WHICH IS INFURIATING AND INACCURATE AND BELITTLES THE CONVERSATION. TO STAND UP AND SAY THE ONLY REASON YOU THINK THIS IS BECAUSE YOU ARE A RACIST IS TRYING TO SHUT DOWN THE CONVERSATION, NOT ENGAGE IN IT. THESE ARE MY FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS AS WELL. WE'RE LEGISLATORS AND WE HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY TO SOLVE ISSUES, NOT BELITTLE EACH OTHER AND NOT MAKE FALSE ACCUSATIONS. THERE ARE MILLIONS OF PEOPLE THAT HAVE CROSSED OUR BORDER TO BE ABLE TO WORK OR CONNECT WITH FAMILY. I FULLY UNDERSTAND THAT. MANY OF THEM LIVE AROUND MY PLACE, GO TO CHURCH WITH ME. I GET THAT COMPLETELY. BUT THERE ARE ALSO MANY PEOPLE THAT CROSS OUR BORDERS BECAUSE OF CRIME, AND WE WOULD BE FOOLISH TO IGNORE THAT REALITY AS WELL. THERE ARE PEOPLE THAT CROSS THAT BORDER TO BE ABLE TO TRAFFIC DRUGS, TO BE ABLE TO TRAFFIC IN TERRORISM, TO BE ABLE TO MOVE PEOPLE, HUMAN TRAFFICKING, LABOR TRAFFICKING. WE SHOULD HAVE A SECURE BORDER SETUP FOR THAT. AGAIN, THIS USED TO NOT BE A PARTISAN ISSUE. IN 2006 SENATOR SCHUMER, AND AT THAT TIME SENATOR OBAMA, VOTED FOR THE SECURE FENCES ACT WHICH PUT IN 650 MILES OF FENCING ON THE SOUTHERN BORDER. LET ME SAY THAT AGAIN. SENATOR SCHUMER AND SENATOR OBAMA, AND A LOT OF OTHER DEMOCRATIC SENATORS THAT ARE STILL HERE, VOTED FOR THE SECURE FENCES ACT IN 2006 TO PUT IN 650 MILES OF FENCING ON OUR SOUTHERN BORDER BECAUSE THIS DIDN'T USED TO BE A PARTISAN ISSUE, AND IT SHOULDN'T BE TODAY. BORDER SECURITY IS NOT PARTISAN, IT'S NATIONAL SECURITY. THE PROPOSALS THAT HAVE COME OUT AT TIMES AMAZE ME. LET'S ACTUALLY GET SERIOUS ABOUT TRYING TO RESOLVE THESE ISSUES. BASIC BORDER SECURITY ISSUES SHOULD INVOLVE NOT JUST FENCING IN SOME AREAS, OR WALLS IN SOME AREAS OR TECHNOLOGY IN SOME AREAS, ADDING ADDITIONAL MANPOWER IN OTHER AREAS, THOSE ARE REASONABLE THINGS ALONG THE BORDER THAT EVERY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD IS ORGANIZING, BUT IT ALSO INVOLVES DEALING WITH SOME OF THE GAPS IN OUR LAW THAT IF SOMEONE CROSSES INTO THE UNITED STATES, THINGS NEED TO BE ADDRESSED. FOR INSTANCE, THE REMOVAL OF MULTIPLE FELL ANYMORE CRIMINAL ALIENS. WHY IS THIS CONTROVERSIAL? THIS SHOULDN'T BE A CONTROVERSIAL ISSUE AT ALL BUT FOR SOME REASON IT IS. ENDING THE PRACTICE WITH GREATER FINES AND PENALTIES OF PEOPLE WHO SMUGGLE IN PEOPLE FOR PROFIT. WHY WOULD THAT BE CONTROVERSIAL? BUT FOR SOME REASON IT IS. DEALING WITH ADDITIONAL JUDGES BECAUSE WE HAVE 600,000 PEOPLE IN A BACKLOG IN OUR IMMIGRATION COURTS, 600,000 PEOPLE IN OUR IMMIGRATION COURTS IN A BACKLOG, WHY WOULD IT BE CONTROVERSIAL NOT TO HAVE TO DEAL WITH A BACKLOG? WHY WOULD IT BE CONTROVERSIAL TO SAY WE'RE BEHIND ON FAMILY MEMBERS THAT HAVE PETITIONED TO BE A PART OF THIS COUNTRY BUT WE'RE, GET THIS, 20 YEARS IN A BACKLOG. WHY WOULD THAT BE CONTROVERSIAL TO SAY WE NEED TO DIVERT SOME OF OUR ATTENTION TO CATCHING UP ON THE BACKLOG? THERE ARE A LOT OF ISSUES THAT WE NEED TO DEAL WITH AND THIS IS A COMPLICATED ISSUE, BUT FOR OTHER MEMBERS, CAN I JUST SAY, WE'RE VERY CLOSE TO NEGOTIATING THIS AND PEOPLE -- IF PEOPLE WILL DO GOOD-FAITH NEGOTIATING, BUT TO SAY WE'RE GOING TO SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN AND DO IT OUR WAY AND DO AN END RUN SEEMS ABSURD TO ME AND IT SEEMS ABSURD TO THE FEDERAL WORKERS IN MY STATE WHO ARE NOW GOING THROUGH CHAOS THIS AFTERNOON BECAUSE SOME PEOPLE WANTED TO END RUN AROUND THE PROCESS THAT WAS ALREADY IN PLACE. LET'S FINISH THE PROCESS, NOT TRY TO CREATE SOME ARTIFICIAL CLIFF AND CHAOS TO TRY TO SAY, DO IT MY WAY OR I'LL SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN. LET'S FINISH THE PROCESS. THERE ARE WILLING PARTNERS ON BOTH SIDES, AND THERE ARE REASONABLE PROPOSALS TO BE ABLE TO FINISH OUT WHAT WE'VE ALREADY STARTED AND WORKED MONTHS ON TO BE ABLE TO GET TO THIS PROCESS. I THANK SENATOR TILLIS FOR THE ENGAGEMENT HE HAS ON THIS, BECAUSE HE AND HIS TEAM HAVE WORKED EXCEPTIONALLY HARD. HIS TEAM AND THE MY TEAM HAVE WORKED EXCEPTIONALLY HARD. WE WANT TO GET THEM RIGHT. SENATOR CORNYN AND HIS TEAM HAVE WORKED EXCEPTIONALLY HARD ON THESE ISSUES. LET'S DO IT AN GET IT RIGHT. BUT LET'S NOT SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN WHILE WE'RE IN THE MIDDLE OF NEGOTIATIONS BECAUSE WIKIMEDIA PANT $WANT -- BECAUSE PEOPLE WANT TO BE ABLE TO HAVE IT THEIR WAY. WITH A THAT, I WOULD YIELD BACK.

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  • 04:46:09 PM

    MR. TILLIS

    I'LL CLOSE. I SEE SENATOR CORNYN HERE WHO HAS DONE AN EXTRAORDINARY JOB.…

    I'LL CLOSE. I SEE SENATOR CORNYN HERE WHO HAS DONE AN EXTRAORDINARY JOB. IT WAS SENATOR CORNYN WHO HOSTED THE TRIP THAT I MADE DOWN TO THE BORDER THAT GAVE ME AN INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT PERSPECTIVE FOR THE CASE ON BORDER SECURITY. I JUST WANT TO LEAVE MAYBE A FINAL COMMENT FOR THE DACA POPULATION. SOME PEOPLE SAY, WHAT'S THE CRISIS? WE'VE GOT UNTIL MARCH 5. I UNDERSTAND THAT EVERY SINGLE DID A THAT YOU WAKE UP AND THAT DATE SEEMS LIKE TODAY. I KNOW THAT WE NEED TO MOVE MORE QUICKLY. QUITE HONESTLY, WE COULD HAVE GOTTEN THIS DONE A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO, IF PEOPLE HAD ENGAGED, RECOGNIZED THEIR DIFFERENCES, ACCEPTED A COMPROMISE. WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING THAT WE CAN TO GET IT DONE MUCH SOONER THAN MARCH 5 BECAUSE WE UNDERSTAND THAT THERE ARE TEACHERS, THERE ARE E.M.T.'S, THERE ARE SOME 00 -- SOME 900 SERVING IN THE MILITARY, THERE ARE HARDWORKING PEOPLE, KIDS IN SCHOOLS. THERE'S HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF GOOD PEOPLE IN AND A PROPOSAL THAT WE'VE PUT TOGETHER -- OVER A MILLION -- THAT WE WANT TO WELCOME INTO THIS NATION BECAUSE THEY'RE GREAT CITIZENS, THEY LOVE THIS COUNTRY. THEY'RE PRODUCTIVE CITIZENS, AND I WANT THEM KNOW THAT WE KNOW THAT. I WANT THEM TO NONA THERE ARE DOZEN OF REPUBLICANS -- I WANT THEM TO KNOW THAT THERE ARE DOZENS OF REPUBLICANS PREPARED TO VOTE ON A COMPROMISE BILL THAT'S BALANCED, THAT BRINGS BORDER SECURITY AND PROVIDES CERTAINTY TO THE DACA POPULATION, AND WE'RE GOING TO DO EVERYTHING WE CAN, EVERY DAY THAT WE'RE HERE, TO MAKE SURE THAT WE DELIVER ON THAT PROMISE. MADAM SECRETARY -- OR MADAM PRESIDENT, THANK YOU, AND I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 04:47:44 PM

    MR. CORNYN

    MADAM PRESIDENT?

  • 04:47:45 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE MAJORITY WHIP.

  • 04:47:47 PM

    MR. CORNYN

    WHIP.

  • 05:18:44 PM

    A SENATOR

    A SENATOR: MADAM PRESIDENT.

  • 05:18:46 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM ARKANSAS.

  • 05:18:50 PM

    MR. BOOZMAN

    MADAM PRESIDENT, I RISE TODAY TO EXPRESS MY SUPPORT AND HIGHLIGHT THE…

    MADAM PRESIDENT, I RISE TODAY TO EXPRESS MY SUPPORT AND HIGHLIGHT THE IMPORTANCE OF REAUTHORIZING THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, CHIP. IT EXPIRED IN SEPTEMBER CAUSING GREAT CONCERN AND WORRY FOR FAMILIES AND PROVIDERS WHO DEPEND ON THIS PROGRAM TO CARE FOR OUR NATION'S NEEDIEST PROGRAMS. MANY STATES HAVE BEEN OPERATING ON RESERVE FUNDS WHICH WILL SOON RUN OUT. IT'S TIME WE PROVIDE THE PROGRAM WITH THE NECESSARY FUNDING TO TAKE CARE OF AMERICA'S CHILDREN. I KNOW ARKANSAS FAMILIES WHO RELY ON THE PROGRAM TO PROVIDE MEDICAL CARE FOR THEIR CHILDREN ARE PLEASED WITH THE INCLUSION OF A SIX-YEAR REAUTHORIZATION FOR CHIP INCLUDED IN THE LEGISLATION BEFORE THIS CHAMBER. THIS WOULD MARK THE LONGEST EXTENSION FOR THE PROGRAM SINCE ITS INTERCEPTION. I WANT TO THANK CHAIRMAN HATCH, THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR OF CHIP, FOR HIS DEDICATION TO THE HEALTH OF OUR NATION'S CHILDREN AND HIS BIPARTISAN EFFORT WITH RANKING MEMBER WYDEN THAT'S BROUGHT A FIVE-YEAR CHIP REAUTHORIZATION OUT OF THE SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE LAST FALL. APPROXIMATELY 50,000 CHILDREN IN ARKANSAS AND NEARLY NINE MILLION LOW-INCOME CHILDREN NATIONWIDE RECEIVE HEALTH CARE THROUGH CHIP. CURRENTLY THESE CHILDREN, THEIR FAMILIES AND PROVIDERS ARE LIVING IN A CLOUD OF ANXIOUS UNCERTAINTY. TAKE, FOR INSTANCE, THIS STORY OF A YOUNG ARKANSAN. IN LITTLE ROCK, A PRECIOUS LITTLE GIRL MARKS THE MILESTONE OF TURNING EIGHT MONTHS OLD TOMORROW IN THE CARE OF ARKANSAS' CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL FIGHTING AN INFECTION. SHE'S BEEN IN THE PEDIATRIC INTENSIVE CARE UNIT AND OTHER FLOORS THERE SINCE THE DAY SHE TURNED TWO MONTHS OLD. HER MOTHER AND HER FOUR OUR CHILDREN SPENDS EVERY HOUR SHE CAN AT HER DAUGHTER'S BEDSIDE. EVERY ONE OF THOSE HOURS AND AN HOUR SPENT AWAY FROM THE BABY'S BROTHERS AND SISTERS, TWO AND A HALF HOURS AWAY IN FORT SMITH. AGAIN, SHE HAS OTHER CHILDREN SHE'S TRYING TO TAKE CARE OF AT THE PRESENT TIME ALSO. IN ADDITION TO HER MEDICAL CONDITION, HER MOTHER'S WORRIED BECAUSE HER DAUGHTER'S CARE IS COVERED BY CHIP. AS MUCH AS SHE LOOKS FORWARD TO BRINGING HER DAUGHTER HOME, THIS MOTHER KNOWS THAT EVEN THOUGH SUPPLIES SHE NEEDS TO MAKE THAT HAPPEN, TUBES, MEDICINE, FLUIDS -- ALL OF THOSE ARE AT RISK WITHOUT THAT COVERAGE. THIS STORY HIGHLIGHTS THE REALITY SO MANY FAMILIES ARE CURRENTLY FACING. FAILING TO REAUTHORIZE THIS IMPORTANT PROGRAM WOULD HAVE REAL DIRECT AND SERIOUS CONSEQUENCES. WE MUST WORK TO ENSURE THESE FAMILIES NEED NOT WORRY EVERY YEAR, WHEREAS OF NOW MONTHS REGARDING CONTINUED ACCESS TO BENEFITS FOR THE HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF THEIR CHILDREN. WE MUST COMMIT TO PASSING THIS EXTENSION TO PROVIDE THESE FAMILIES PEACE OF MIND AND STABILITY. BECAUSE ARKANSANS RECOGNIZE HOW IMPORTANT THIS PROGRAM IS, MY OFFICE HAS RECEIVED SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF INQUIRIES ON THE ISSUE. OUR RESPONSE HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE SAME. EVERYONE IN CONGRESS IS WORKING IN GOOD FAITH TO FIND A SOLUTION, AT LEAST IT SEEMED THAT WAY UNTIL A FEW DAYS AGO. I WOULD HAVE SUPPORTED A FIVE-YEAR REAUTHORIZATION LIKE THE ONE MY COLLEAGUES ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE WERE PUSHING FOR, AND GUESS WHAT? WE DID EVEN BETTER WITH A SIX-YEAR REAUTHORIZATION ATTACHED TO THE CURRENT C.R. NOW THOSE SAME MEMBERS WHO HAVE BEEN ASKING FOR A FIVE-YEAR REAUTHORIZATION JUST DAYS AGO ARE REFUSING TO SUPPORT THE LONGEST EXTENSION OF THE PROGRAM SINCE ITS INCEPTION. THIS IS NOT NEGOTIATING IN GOOD FAITH. THAT IS NOT BEING PART OF THE SOLUTION. THAT'S BEING PART OF THE PROBLEM. ADDITIONALLY, I CONTINUE TO BE FRUSTRATED BY THIS UNFORTUNATE NEW NORMAL OF CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS AND STOPGAP MEASURES TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT YEAR AFTER YEAR. THE IDEA OF WILLINGLY FACILITATING A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN IS RECKLESS. BUT UNFORTUNATELY, IT APPEARS THAT SOME OF MY COLLEAGUES PREFER STALEMATE OVER ROBUST DEBATE. WE NEED TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OPEN AND SOLVE OUR DIFFERENCES THROUGH REGULAR ORDER, UNDERSTANDING AND COMPROMISE. GOVERNING BY HOSTAGE AND CRISIS DOES NOT FULFILL OUR MORAL CONSTITUTIONAL -- OUR MORAL AND OUR CONSTITUTIONAL DUTIES TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. WE MUST NOT LOSE SIGHT OF OUR SHARED GOALS AND PURPOSE OR THE IMPACT OUR DECISIONS HERE HAVE. WE MUST AIM TO USE THE POWER OF OUR OFFICES FOR GOOD, SUPPORTING CHILDREN'S HEALTH CARE AND PASSING THIS CONTINUING RESOLUTION IS CERTAINLY A COMPONENT OF THAT GOAL. I HOPE MY COLLEAGUES REMEMBER THE STORY THAT I SHARED TODAY AND THE STORIES I KNOW THAT THEY'VE HEARD FROM THEIR CONSTITUENTS, AND VOTE IN FAVOR OF CHILDREN'S HEALTH. I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 05:24:18 PM

    MR. DAINES

    MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 05:24:20 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM MONTANA.

  • 05:24:23 PM

    MR. DAINES

    FROM MONTANA.

  • 06:05:37 PM

    A SENATOR

    A SENATOR: MADAM PRESIDENT.

  • 06:05:38 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM PENNSYLVANIA.

  • 06:05:41 PM

    MR. CASEY

    THANK YOU, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO VITIATE THE QUORUM CALL.

  • 06:05:43 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WE ARE NOT IN A QUORUM CALL. YOU ARE RECOGNIZED.

  • 06:05:47 PM

    MR. CASEY

    THANK YOU. I ASK CONSENT TO SPEAK AS IF IN MORNING BUSINESS.

  • 06:05:50 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 06:05:52 PM

    MR. CASEY

  • 06:25:43 PM

    FOLLOWING

    THE FOLLOWING: FUND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, MAKE SURE THAT RETIREES HAVE…

    THE FOLLOWING: FUND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, MAKE SURE THAT RETIREES HAVE THEIR PENSIONS THAT THEY HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR FOR A LONG TIME. COAL MINERS HAVE BEEN COMING TO THIS TOWN FOR YEARS NOW TRYING TO GET THEIR HEALTH CARE. THEY WERE PROMISED THAT IN EARLY 2017. IT DIDN'T HAPPEN BECAUSE THE MAJORITY MADE THEM WAIT. THEN THEY WERE PROMISED IN 2016, LATER IN THE YEAR IT WOULD HAPPEN IN THE FALL, WHEN THE FINANCE COMMITTEE GOT THE COAL MINERS HEALTH CARE BILL DONE. IT DIDN'T HAPPEN IN THE FALL. THE MAJORITY MADE THEM WAIT. THEY SAID AFTER THE ELECTION IN DECEMBER OF 2016 IT WILL HAPPEN THEM, BUT THE MAJORITY MADE THEM WAIT. SO AFTER MONTHS AND MONTHS OF PRESSING, THESE COAL MINERS FINALLY GOT THE PROMISE FULFILLED BY GETTING THEIR HEALTH CARE IN APRIL OF 2017. AND AT THE TIME THEY SAID WE APPRECIATE THE FACT THAT WE HAD THE HEALTH CARE PROBLEM SOLVED. NOW WE NEED TO WORK ON THE PENSIONS. SO THE PENSIONS FOR COAL MINERS DIDN'T START JUST IN APRIL OF 2017. THAT WAS PART OF THE ORIGINAL BILL, BUT WE WERE ONLY ABLE TO GET THE HEALTH CARE PART OF IT DONE. SO MINERS' PENSIONS GOES BACK MUCH FURTHER THAN THE EARLY PART OF 2017. IT GOES BACK TO 2016 AND 2015 AND YEARS BEFORE THAT. SO I WOULD HOPE THAT BEFORE WE MOVE TO BRINGING THE SIDES TOGETHER THAT WE WOULD MAKE THOSE PENSIONS AND THOSE RETIREES A PRIORITY. I WOULD HOPE WE MAKE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS A PRIORITY AS WELL, AS WELL AS GETTING DONE FOR CHILDREN WHAT WE SHOULD GET DONE. ONE POINT ABOUT THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM. I'M GLAD THAT MY REPUBLICAN FRIENDS ARE FINALLY TALKING ABOUT THE PROGRAM. THEY WERE RATHER QUIET THE LAST COUPLE OF MONTHS WHEN THEY REFUSED TO BRING IT UP ON THE FLOOR. OF COURSE, EVERYONE KNOWS IF YOU PUT A CHIP BILL ON THIS FLOOR TONIGHT, IT WOULD PASS IN MINUTES. WE GET AN OVERWHELMING VOTE. SO IF THE MAJORITY REALLY CARES ABOUT IT, THEY WOULD DO THAT JUST AT WE'VE BEEN ASKING FOR FOR MONTHS. BUT OF COURSE CHILDREN WEREN'T A PRIORITY BECAUSE THEY HAD TO GET THE TAX BILL DONE. THAT WAS THE BIG PRIORITY. HAD TO GET THAT TAX BILL DONE SO THAT THE CORPORATIONS WOULD BE HAPPY WITH REPUBLICAN SENATORS. LET ME JUST MAKE ONE POINT ABOUT CHILDREN'S HEALTH. WE'VE GOT TO GET THAT DONE AS WELL. BUT THE PROBLEM IS THAT SINCE FOR A LOT OF REASONS THE COST HAS CHANGED A GOOD BIT. HERE'S THE REALITY. THE CHIP PROGRAM, ACCORDING TO THIS PROPOSAL, IS LIMITED TO IN TIME TO SIX YEARS. IF REPUBLICANS INCLUDED A TEN-YEAR EXTENSION, IT WOULD ACTUALLY SAVE BILLIONS OF DOLLARS AND, MORE IMPORTANTLY, WOULD REMOVE US FROM THE CYCLE OF FUNDING CRISES TO WHICH WE'VE GROWN ACCUSTOMED. SO IF IT IS LESS EXPENSIVE AND EMPROVICED MORE CERTAINTY -- IMPROVISED MORE CERTAINTY, WHY DON'T WE DO CHIP FOR TEN YEARS. I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE IT PERMANENT. THAT WOULD BE THE OPTIMAL RESULT BUT WHY NOT TEN YEARS? BECAUSE OF A WHOLE SERIES OF DYNAMICS THAT HAPPENED OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF MONTHS THE COST HAS ACTUALLY GONE DOWN. IF YOU CAN GET A CHEAPER RATE, SO TO SPEAK, AFTER, FOR A TEN-YEAR EXTENSION, WHY NOT MAKE IT TEN YEARS? I KNOW THE FREEDOM CAUCUS AND HOUSE REPUBLICANS CAME UP WITH SIX, BUT I THOUGHT THEY WANTED TO SAVE MONEY, AND I HOPE THEY WANT TO SAVE MONEY AND HELP KIDS. SO I WOULD HOPE THAT WE COULD COME TOGETHER ON THAT AS WELL. LET'S MAKE IT A TEN-YEAR COMMITMENT TO OUR KIDS. I THINK THE SENATE REPUBLICANS PASSED A TAX BILL THAT HAD A CORPORATE TAX BREAK WHICH IS PERMANENT. PERMANENT TAX RELIEF FOR BIG CORPORATIONS. WHY NOT AT LEAST GIVE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE, THE CHILDREN WHO DEPEND UPON IT, AT LEAST TEN YEARS. GIVE THEM A DECADE; RIGHT. THAT'S NOT A BIG, THAT'S NOT A BIG SACRIFICE. OF COURSE IT WOULD BE BETTER IF WE GAVE THEM PERMANENT CERTAINTY LIKE THE CORPORATIONS GOT WITH THEIR TAXES. BUT AT LEAST GIVE THEM TEN YEARS. NOW THAT BOTH PARTIES ARE BEYOND THE FIVE YEARS, LET'S GIVE THEM TEN YEARS, AND IT HAS THE ADDED BENEFIT OF SAVING BILLIONS OF DOLLARS. SO WE COULD DO ALL THIS IN THE NEXT NUMBER OF HOURS AND DAYS. WE CAN GET ALL OF THIS DONE, AND THEN WE CAN MOVE FORWARD IN A BIPARTISAN WAY ON TO OTHER PRIORITIES, BUT WE CAN'T SIMPLY ACCEPT A MEASURE FROM THE HOUSE THAT IS FULL OF HOLES. IT DOES NOTHING FOR RETIREES, IT DOES NOTHING FOR COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, IT DOES NOTHING FOR THE OPIOID CRISIS. WE COULD EASILY FUND MORE OF OUR LOCAL COMMUNITIES. I HOPE WE DON'T LISTEN TO THIS STATEMENT HERE THAT SOMEHOW THIS IS SOMETHING THAT IS GOOD FOR THE COUNTRY. WE NEED TO STAY HERE AND CONTINUE NEGOTIATIONS, AND IN SOME CASES, WRAP-UP PROMISING NEGOTIATIONS THAT HAVE ALREADY REACHED CONSENSUS. WE SHOULD STAY HERE TONIGHT AND SATURDAY AND SUNDAY AND MONDAY AND TUESDAY AT LEAST, AND THAT'S NOT ASKING MUCH TO NEGOTIATE HARD FOR FOUR DAYS. SEE WHAT WE CAN GET DONE IN A COUPLE OF DAYS AND THEN SEE WHERE WE ARE. MR. PRESIDENT, I WOULD YIELD THE FLOOR AND NOTE THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 06:31:34 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:

  • 06:31:54 PM

    Quorum Call

  • 07:01:40 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    MADAM PRESIDENT.

  • 07:01:44 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE MAJORITY LEADER.

  • 07:01:45 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK THAT FURTHER PROCEEDINGS UNDER THE QUORUM CALL BE DISPENSED WITH.

  • 07:01:50 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 07:01:51 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT NOTWITHSTANDING RULE 22 THE SENATE VOTE ON…

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT NOTWITHSTANDING RULE 22 THE SENATE VOTE ON THE MOTION TO INVOKE CLOTURE ON THE MOTION TO CONCUR ON THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO THE SENATE AMENDMENT AT 10:00 P.M. TONIGHT.

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  • 07:02:03 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE OBJECTION? WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 07:02:27 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I NOTE THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM CALL.

  • 07:02:29 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK LL CALL THE ROLL. -- THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL:…

    THE CLERK LL CALL THE ROLL. -- THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: A SENATOR: MADAM PRESIDENT?

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  • 07:02:40 PM

    Quorum Call

  • 07:45:01 PM

    A SENATOR

    MADAM PRESIDENT?

  • 07:45:02 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

  • 07:45:05 PM

    A SENATOR

    JERSEY. A SENATOR: I ASK THAT THE PROCEDURE UNDER THE QUORUM CALL BE…

    JERSEY. A SENATOR: I ASK THAT THE PROCEDURE UNDER THE QUORUM CALL BE VITIATED.

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  • 07:45:11 PM

    MR. MENENDEZ

    MADAM PRESIDENT, I COME TO THE FLOOR ON THE VERGE OF WHAT COULD BE A…

    MADAM PRESIDENT, I COME TO THE FLOOR ON THE VERGE OF WHAT COULD BE A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. AND I HAVE LISTENED TO MY COLLEAGUES THROUGHOUT THE DAY SUGGEST, PARTICULARLY ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE, THAT THIS IS ONLY ABOUT DREAMERS. ALTHOUGH DREAMERS SHOULD BE ABLE TO REALIZE THEIR DREAM. AND I HAVE BEEN AS PASSIONATE AS ANYONE ABOUT BELIEVING THAT THESE YOUNG PEOPLE WHO ONLY KNOW THAT FLAG, THE FLAG OF THE UNITED STATES, ITS STARS AND STRIPES, WHO ONLY SING ONE NATIONAL ANTHEM, THE STAR-SPANGLED BANNER, WHO ONLY KNOW ONE COUNTRY, THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, HAVE AND SHOULD HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO ULTIMATELY REALIZE THEIR DREAM. THEY HAVE RESPONDED TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT'S REQUEST AND SAY COME FORWARD, REGISTER YOURSELF, GIVE US ALL TYPES OF INFORMATION, TRUST, AND THEY DID, AND NOW THE GOVERNMENT MUST RESPOND TO THEM. BUT IT IS -- WHAT'S GOING ON HERE IS BEYOND DREAMERS. THIS IS THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HURLING FROM SHORT-TERM FUNDING RESOLUTIONS TO SHORT-TERM FUNDING RESOLUTIONS INSTEAD OF HAVING THE APPROPRIATE APPROPRIATIONS PASS WHEN IT WAS DUE LAST OCTOBER, LAST OCTOBER, BUT INSTEAD OF WORKING TO PASS THE NECESSARY APPROPRIATIONS TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT NOT JUST OPERATING BUT TO DO IT EFFICIENTLY ON AN ANNUAL BASIS SO THAT OUR INSTITUTIONS CAN APPROPRIATELY PLAN, SO WE CAN SAVE MONEY INSTEAD OF SPENDING MORE MONEY BECAUSE OF WHAT IT COSTS FOR SHORT-TERM PREPARATIONS. OUR REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES, THEY WERE BUSY, YES, BUT THEY WERE BUSY IN OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER, NOT PREPARING FOR THE GOVERNMENT'S NEED BUT TO HAVE A DRIVE, AND EFFICACY TOWARDS TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHIEST PEOPLE IN THE COUNTRY AND LARGE CORPORATIONS ON THE BACKS OF MIDDLE CLASS AND WORKING FAMILIES. THAT'S WHAT THEY SPENT THEIR TIME ON. AND THEN THEY COME AND SAY OH, BUT IT'S URGENT THAT WE DO THIS NOW. YOU HAD MONTHS IN WHICH YOU DID NOTHING, NOTHING. NOW, I MUST SAY THAT FOR MY FRIENDS, I HAVE HEARD FROM MANY OF THEM, BUDGET HAWKS, DEFICIT HAWKS, THIS IS NO WAY TO RUN A GOVERNMENT. MUCH LESS THE GREATEST COUNTRY ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH. IF WE WANT TO DICTATE TO COUNTRIES WHERE WE'RE TRYING TO GIVE THEM ASSISTANCE AND GET THEM TO TRADE THINGS ABOUT BEING RESPONSIBLE, AND THIS IS THE IMAGE WE SEND TO THE WORLD? NOW, ONLY IN WASHINGTON -- I HAVE BEEN HERE A WHILE. ONLY IN WASHINGTON COULD REPUBLICANS WHO CONTROL THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, THE UNITED STATES SENATE, AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AT THE WHITE HOUSE TRY TO BLAME A DEMOCRATIC MINORITY FOR THEIR FAILURE TO GOVERN. LET'S BE CLEAR WHY WE ARE HERE TODAY. INSTEAD OF PROVIDING OUR MILITARY, OUR FIRST RESPONDERS, OUR HEALTH CARE CENTERS AND ALL OF OUR FEDERAL AGENCIES WITH LONG-TERM FUNDING THEY NEED TO EFFICIENTLY AND EFFECTIVELY SERVE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, SENATE REPUBLICANS WANT TO PASS YET ANOTHER, ANOTHER, ANOTHER STOP-GAP HOPEFULLY INSUFFICIENT SHORT-TERM CONTINUING RESOLUTION. NOW, IN FAIRNESS, I TRIED TO GIVE MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT. I VOTED FOR THE FIRST CONTINUING RESOLUTION. I VOTED FOR THE SECOND CONTINUING RESOLUTION. BUT ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. I GOT MY START IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT. I WAS A MEMBER OF A SCHOOL BOARD. THEN I WAS A MAYOR. THEN I SERVED IN THE STATE LEGISLATURE. LET ME JUST SAY THERE IS NO PLACE THAT MY EXPERIENCE COMES FROM THAT WE COULD DO WHAT WE DO HERE. YOU NEEDED TO HAVE A BUDGET DONE ON TIME AND MAYBE YOU MIGHT LAPSE A DAY, WHAT WOULD HAVE BEEN FOR US LAST OCTOBER, BUT YOU COULDN'T GET BEYOND THAT. YOU COULDN'T DO THAT IN THE STATE LEGISLATURE FOR THE STATE BUDGET, COULDN'T DO IT ON THE CITY COUNCIL, COULDN'T DO IT ON THE SCHOOL BOARD. CAN'T DO IT, FAMILIES CAN'T DO IT IN THEIR OWN LIVES. WE SHOULDN'T DO IT ON BEHALF OF THE 230-SOME-ODD MILLION -- THE 320-SOME-ODD MILLION PEOPLE WHO CALL AMERICA HOME. NOW, THE C.R., THIS CONTINUING RESOLUTION TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OPEN ONE MORE TIME FOR THE FOURTH TIME -- NOT THE FIRST TIME, NOT THE SECOND TIME, NOT THE THIRD TIME, BUT THE FOURTH TIME. ALL BUSY ABOUT TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY BUT NOT TAKING CARE OF EVERYBODY IN TERMS OF GOVERNMENT FUNDING. IT KICKS THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD AGAIN WITHOUT MAKING THE NECESSARY INVESTMENTS INTO OUR COMMUNITIES. IT CONTINUES THE CHAOS AND THE DYSFUNCTION THAT HAS DEFINED THE LAST YEAR OF REPUBLICAN CONTROL. IT DOESN'T FUND COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, SOMETHING THAT I'M SO PROUD OF IN MY HOME STATE OF NEW JERSEY, FEDERALLY QUALIFIED HEALTH CENTERS. IT TAKES EVERYBODY THROUGH THE DOOR, ALL TAKERS. YOU HAVE INSURANCE, GREAT. IF YOU DON'T HAVE INSURANCE, WE BRING YOU, WE TAKE CARE OF YOU. IF YOU HAVE MEDICAID OR MEDICARE, FINE. BOTTOM LINE, A SYSTEM THAT DELIVERS HIGH-QUALITY HEALTH CARE, THIS DOESN'T DO IT. IT LEAVES THEM LURCHED OUT THERE. THE C.R. DOESN'T SET BUDGET NUMBERS TO FUND NATIONAL SECURITY OR DOMESTIC INVESTMENT PRIORITIES. YOU KNOW, WE TALK ABOUT OUR NATIONAL DEFENSE, AND YES, I'M ONE OF THOSE, I'M WILLING TO PUSH UP NATIONAL DEFENSE. IT IS ABOUT HOMELAND SECURITY, THE F.B.I., THE SECRET SERVICE, THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT, THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH THAT PROTECT US IN TERMS OF ILLNESSES, THE C.D.C. ALL OF THESE ELEMENTS ARE IN THE NONDISCRETIONARY -- ARE IN THE NON-- I SHOULD SAY THEY ARE ALL IN THE DOMESTIC DISCRETIONARY SIDE OF THE BUDGET, SO THEY'RE IMPORTANT, TOO. BUT YOU DON'T FUND BUDGET NUMBERS THAT ALLOW YOUR NATIONAL SECURITY OR DOMESTIC INVESTMENT PRIORITIES TO TAKE PLACE. I HEARD LEADER McCONNELL SAY THE C.R. IS ABOUT HELPING ALL AMERICANS. I TELL YOU, IT DOESN'T DO SQUAT FOR THE 3.5 MILLION AMERICANS WHO CALL PUERTO RICO THEIR HOME AND WHO ARE SUFFERING AN APPALLING HUMAN CATASTROPHE IN THE WAKE OF DEVASTATING STORMS. IT DOESN'T ADEQUATELY ASSIST COMMUNITIES IN TEXAS AND FLORIDA AND WESTERN STATES RAVAGED BY FIRES THAT ARE STILL WAITING FOR CONGRESS TO ACT ON DISASTER RELIEF. AND EVEN THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE'S SPOKESPERSON SAID THAT WE HAVE BEEN WORKING UNDER A CONTINUING RESOLUTION FOR THREE YEARS NOW. OUR CURRENT C.R. EXPIRES TOMORROW. THIS IS WASTEFUL -- THIS IS THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE'S SPOKESPERSON. THIS IS WASTEFUL AND DESTRUCT DESTRUCTIVE. WE NEED A FULLY FUNDED F.Y. 2018 BUDGET OR FACE RAMIFICATIONS FOR OUR MILITARY. AND I WOULD ADD THAT THESE YOUNG PEOPLE, MANY OF THEM WHO WEAR THE UNIFORM OF THE UNITED STATES, WILLING TO RISK THEIR LIVES AND DIE FOR THE COUNTRY THAT SEEMS TO WANT TO REJECT THEM, THEY DESERVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE A RESOLUTION AT LAST. NOW, LET ME JUST SAY THAT I KNOW THAT THE PRESIDENT HAS SAID MAYBE THE COUNTRY NEEDS, WILL BENEFIT FROM A GOOD SHUTDOWN. I DON'T EVER THINK THERE IS A GOOD SHUTDOWN. AND I KNOW THAT IN THE PAST WHEN IT WAS PRESIDENT OBAMA, HE SAID THAT, OH, IT'S THE PRESIDENT WHO IS THE LEADER, IT'S THE PRESIDENT WHO HAS TO BRING EVERYBODY INTO THE ROOM, IT'S THE PRESIDENT THAT HAS TO GET PEOPLE TO COME TO A CONCLUSION. WELL, WOW, YOU SHOWED UP LATE IN THE GAME, VERY LATE IN THE GAME, IN THE FINAL HOURS. AND FINALLY, I THINK ALL OF US WHO HAVE BEEN AROUND EITHER THIS INSTITUTION OR THE CONGRESS KNOW THAT YOU NEED 60 VOTES IN THE UNITED STATES SENATE. I HAVE COMPROMISED MANY TIMES ON FOREIGN POLICY, COMPROMISED WITH MY COLLEAGUES TO TRY TO ACHIEVE A SOLUTION FOR THE DACA. HARD CHOICES TO BE MADE, THINGS I DON'T LIKE, BUT I COMPROMISE. BUT LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING. 60 VOTES, YOU DON'T EVEN HAVE YOUR 60 VOTES. TWO OF THE REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES HAVE SAID -- AND I UNDERSTAND WHY -- THEY DON'T WANT TO KEEP KICKING THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD, THEY SAID NO, THEY'RE NOT GOING TO VOTE FOR THIS. ONE OF OUR COLLEAGUES IS NOT HERE. SO YOU ARE NOT GETTING ANYWHERE NEAR YOUR NUMBERS. SO THAT MEANS WHEN YOU NEED 60 AND YOU'RE FAR FROM IT, THAT YOU HAVE TO ENGAGE IN A NEGOTIATION AND A COMPROMISE. IT IS NOT JUST STICK IT AND ACCEPT IT. BECAUSE WHEN THAT HAPPENS, THEN WE'RE ON THE DANGEROUS PATH THAT WHEN THIS SHORT-TERM RESOLUTION DOESN'T SOLVE ITSELF IF WE AGREE TO A MONTH, THEN ULTIMATELY WE'LL HAVE ANOTHER C.R., AND MAYBE WE WON'T LIKE -- WE'LL LIKE EVEN LESS WHAT'S IN THAT C.R. MAYBE THERE WILL BE LANGUAGE THAT WE'LL FIND PARTICULARLY A PROBLEM. MAYBE THERE WILL EVEN BE NUMBERS WE DON'T CARE FOR. THE POINT IS THAT IF YOU KNOW YOU NEED 60, YOU DON'T WAIT UNTIL THE FINAL HOURS TO TRY TO COME TO A NEGOTIATION. I WOULD RATHER LIVE A DAY ON MY FEET THAN A LIFE ON MY KNEES IN DEFENSE OF THE NINE MILLION PEOPLE WHO CALL NEW JERSEY HOME TO MAKE SURE THEY GET WHAT THEY NEED, NOT WHAT I'M SHAFTED TO TRY TO HAVE TO ACCEPT. SO I PERSONALLY AM FOR A VERY SHORT-TERM RESOLUTION THAT MAKES LEADERSHIP AND THE WHITE HOUSE AND ALL OF US, AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED, HERE WORKING TO ACHIEVE WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DESERVE, WHICH IS A FULL FUNDING OF THEIR GOVERNMENT. NO MORE SHORT-TERM LURCHING FROM CRISIS TO CRISIS. AN OPPORTUNITY TO TAKE CARE OF THOSE AMERICANS WHO HAVE BEEN HURT IN HURRICANES AND STORMS AND FIRES AND THE PEOPLE OF PUERTO RICO. AN OPPORTUNITY TO GIVE DREAMERS THEIR DREAM. AN OPPORTUNITY TO FUND OUR PUBLIC HEALTH CENTERS, AN OPPORTUNITY TO FUND THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, NOT FOR SIX YEARS BUT FOR A DECADE. AND WE'VE SEEN STUDY AFTER STUDY THAT SAYS WE COULD SAVE MILLIONS IF WE FUNDED IT OVER A DECADE. WHY SHOULD WE NOT SAVE MILLIONS? AN OPPORTUNITY TO DEAL WITH THE PENSIONS THAT PEOPLE WHO WORK A LIFETIME AND THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN NOW FIND THEMSELVES SHORT OF, LET'S HELP THEM RETIRE WITH THE DIGNITY THEY DESERVE. AN OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE SURE THAT THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH THAT ARE DOING GROUND-BREAKING RESEARCH ON THE ALZHEIMER'S THAT TOOK MY FATHER'S LIFE, ON THE PARKINSON'S THAT AFFECTS OUR NEIGHBORS, ON THE DISEASES THAT AFFECT OUR PEOPLE, BUT YOU CAN'T DO LONG-TERM TRIALS IF YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOUR FUNDING IS GOING TO BE. AND THE LIST GOES ON AND ON. THE PEOPLE OF AMERICA DESERVE FAR BETTER THAN WHAT THEY ARE GETTING HERE, AND I REJECT THE PROPOSITION THAT YOU CAN JUST STICK IT TO US AND SUGGEST THAT WE HAVE TO ACCEPT THAT YOU CREATE THE CRISIS AND THEN YOU WANT US TO ACCEPT IT. WELL, IT'S TIME TO GET THE JOB DONE ON BEHALF OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. THAT'S WHY SOME OF US WILL NOT SUPPORT A LONGER TERM FUNDING RESOLUTION, BECAUSE ALL IT WILL DO IS GET US RIGHT BACK TO WHERE WE ARE TODAY. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DESERVE MUCH MORE THAN THAT. THEY DESERVE THAT, AND THERE IS NO REASON WE CAN'T DELIVER THAT. WITH THAT, MADAM PRESIDENT, I YIELD THE FLOOR AND OBSERVE THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 07:58:04 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:…

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL: QUORUM CALL:

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  • 08:00:23 PM

    Quorum Call

  • 10:13:15 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 10:13:16 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATE MAJORITY LEADER. THE SENATE WILL BE IN ORDER.

  • 10:13:25 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK CONSENT THAT FURTHER PROCEEDINGS UNDER THE QUORUM CALL BE DISPENSED…

    I ASK CONSENT THAT FURTHER PROCEEDINGS UNDER THE QUORUM CALL BE DISPENSED WITH.

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  • 10:13:29 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 10:13:31 PM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT THE MANDATORY QUORUM CALL BE WAIVED.

  • 10:13:34 PM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE OBJECTION? WITHOUT OBJECTION. THE CLERK WILL REPORT THE MOTION TO…

    IS THERE OBJECTION? WITHOUT OBJECTION. THE CLERK WILL REPORT THE MOTION TO INVOKE CLOTURE.

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  • 10:13:44 PM

    THE CLERK

    CLOTURE MOTION. WE, THE UNDERSIGNED SENATORS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE…

    CLOTURE MOTION. WE, THE UNDERSIGNED SENATORS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF RULE 22 OF THE STANDING RULES OF THE SENATE, DO HEREBY MOVE TO BRING TO A CLOSE DEBATE ON THE MOTION TO CONCUR IN THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO THE SENATE AMENDMENT TO H.R. 195, SIGNED BY 17 SENATORS.

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  • 12:00:06 AM

    >>

    VOTE: VOTE:

  • 12:16:20 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    ARE THERE ANY SENATORS IN THE CHAMBER WISHING TO VOTE OR WISHING TO CHANGE…

    ARE THERE ANY SENATORS IN THE CHAMBER WISHING TO VOTE OR WISHING TO CHANGE THEIR VOTE? IF NOT, ON THIS VOTE, THE YEAS ARE 50, THE NAYS ARE 49, AND THE MOTION IS -- THREE-FIFTHS OF THE SENATORS DULY CHOSEN AND SWORN NOT HAVING VOTED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE, THE MOTION IS NOT AGREED TO. THE MAJORITY LEADER.

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  • 12:16:39 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ENTER A MOTION TO RECONSIDER THE VOTE.

  • 12:16:42 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE MOTION IS ENTERED.

  • 12:16:44 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I JUST WANT TO CALL TO THE ATTENTION OF MY COLLEAGUES THE STATEMENT OF THE…

    I JUST WANT TO CALL TO THE ATTENTION OF MY COLLEAGUES THE STATEMENT OF THE -- A PART OF THE STATEMENT OF THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY TONIGHT, PRESUMABLY ON BEHALF OF THE ADMINISTRATION. IT SIMPLY SAYS WE WILL NOT NEGOTIATE THE STATUS OF UNLAWFUL IMMIGRANTS WHILE DEMOCRATS HOLD OUR LAWFUL CITIZENS HOSTAGE OVER THEIR RECKLESS DEMANDS. IT APPROPRIATELY REPRESENTS THE WHITE HOUSE VIEW OF WHERE WE ARE. MR. PRESIDENT, WHAT WE HAVE JUST WITNESSED ON THE FLOOR WAS A CYNICAL DECISION BY SENATE DEMOCRATS TO SHOVE ASIDE MILLIONS OF AMERICANS FOR THE SAKE OF IRRESPONSIBLE POLITICAL GAMES. THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WAS 100% AVOIDABLE, COMPLETELY AVOIDABLE. NOW IT IS IMMINENT. ALL BECAUSE SENATE DEMOCRATS CHOSE TO FILIBUSTER A NONCONTROVERSIAL FUNDING BILL THAT CONTAINS NOTHING, NOT A THING THEY DO NOT SUPPORT, NOTHING THEY DO NOT SUPPORT. PERHAPS ACROSS THE AISLE, SOME OF OUR DEMOCRATIC COLLEAGUES ARE FEELING PROUD OF THEMSELVES, BUT WHAT HAS THEIR FILIBUSTER ACCOMPLISHED? WHAT HAS IT ACCOMPLISHED? THE ANSWER IS SIMPLE. THEIR VERY OWN GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. THE SHUTDOWN EFFECTS ON THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WILL COME AS NO SURPRISE. ALL WEEK AS WE SAID ON THE FLOOR AND BEGGED OUR COLLEAGUES TO COME TO THEIR SENSES, SENATE REPUBLICANS HAVE DESCRIBED EXACTLY, EXACTLY WHAT THIS WILL MEAN FOR AMERICA'S MEN AND WOMEN IN UNIFORM, SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT MEANS DELAYED PAY. FOR THE MANY THOUSANDS OF CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES WHO SUPPORT THEIR MISSIONS, IT MEANS FURLOUGHS. AND FOR THE FAMILIES OF FALLEN HEROES, IT MAY WELL MEAN A FREEZE ON SURVIVOR DEATH BENEFITS. FOR VETERANS WHO RELY ON OUR PROMISE OF CARE, SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT MEANS THREATENING THEIR ACCESS TO TREATMENT. FOR SO MANY AMERICANS STRUGGLING WITH OPIOID ADDICTION, THE SAME IS TRUE. THANKS TO THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER'S DECISION TO FILIBUSTER AN EXTENSION OF THE STATE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM, LOW-INCOME FAMILIES WILL SLIP CLOSER TO LOSING HEALTH COVERAGE FOR THEIR KIDS, AND MANY STATES, THIS IS AN EMERGENCY. I'M HAVING TROUBLE UNDERSTANDING WHICH ONE OF THESE OUTCOMES MY DEMOCRATIC COLLEAGUES COULD POSSIBLY BE PROUD OF. WHICH ONE OF THEM? I THINK OUR FRIENDS ON THE OTHER SIDE TOOK SOME BAD ADVICE, REALLY BAD ADVICE. I WOULD HATE TO HAVE TO BE TRYING TO EXPLAIN THIS MYSELF. IGNORE THE GOVERNORS -- IGNORED THE GOVERNORS, INCLUDING SEVEN DEMOCRATS WHO WROTE CONGRESS BEGGING US, BEGGING US TO EXTEND S-CHIP FOR NINE MILLION CHILDREN. THEY IGNORED THE NEEDS OF MILLIONS OF AMERICANS WHO RELY ON THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FOR IMPORTANT SERVICES. THEY HELD ALL THIS HOSTAGE, ALL OF IT HOSTAGE OVER THE COMPLETELY UNRELATED ISSUE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION. REPUBLICANS IN THE SENATE HAVE DONE ALL WE CAN TO CONTINUE THE NORMAL OPERATIONS OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND SECURE CERTAINTY FOR THESE S-CHIP KIDS. WE CAN PASS IT TONIGHT. IT COULD GO TO THE PRESIDENT FOR SIGNATURE. THESE KIDS WOULD BE OKAY. WELL, WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO DO ALL WE CAN. WE'LL VOTE AGAIN SO THAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE KNOWS WHO STANDS FOR THEM. AND WHEN OUR FRIENDS ACROSS THE AISLE REMEMBER WHO IT IS THEY ACTUALLY REPRESENT, WE'LL BE READY TO COME TOGETHER IN A BIPARTISAN DISCUSSION THAT WILL BE NECESSARY TO CLEAN UP ALL OF THIS MESS. WE HAVE ALL BEEN HAVING PRIVATE CONVERSATIONS HERE ON THE FLOOR. ALMOST EVERYBODY ON BOTH SIDES DOESN'T UNDERSTAND HOW WE ENDED UP HERE BECAUSE MOST OF THE STUFF WE AGREE ON. THERE IS ONLY ONE REASON WE ENDED UP HERE. IT'S SHOEHORNING OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION INTO THIS DEBATE. NOW, HAVING SAID THAT, THERE IS A LOT OF SYMPATHY IN THIS BODY FOR DOING SOMETHING ABOUT THE DACA KIDS. IT'S NOT LIKE NOBODY'S INTERESTED IN THAT. WE HAVE BEEN TALKING ABOUT IT FOR THREE MONTHS. BUT THE ONE REASON WE ARE WHERE WE ARE IS BECAUSE WE COULDN'T CLOSE OUT ANY OF THESE OTHER COMPONENT PARTS BECAUSE OUR FRIENDS ON THE OTHER SIDE SAID YOU'VE GOT TO DEAL WITH THIS ISSUE. THIS ISSUE'S THE KEY TO GETTING DEFENSE SPENDING. THIS ISSUE'S THE KEY TO GETTING HELP FOR S-CHIP KIDS, AND ON AND ON AND ON. I THINK MOST OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE BELIEVE THAT SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVERNMENT OVER THIS ISSUE, WHICH DOESN'T EVEN RIPEN UNTIL MARCH, IS IRRESPONSIBLE, AND I HAVE JUST LISTED ALL OF THE PEOPLE WHO ARE GOING TO BE ADVERSELY IMPACTED BY THIS ACTION. SO WE'RE GOING TO KEEP ON VOTING , AND THE GOVERNMENT MAY BE HEADING INTO SHUTDOWN, BUT THE SENATE'S NOT SHUTTING DOWN. AND WE'RE HOPING TO TALK AND TO RESOLVE THIS. I DON'T THINK IT MAKES THE INSTITUTION LOOK VERY RESPONSIBLE. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE SHOULD EXPECT BETTER FROM US THAN THIS.

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  • 12:23:18 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER.

  • 12:23:21 AM

    MR. SCHUMER

    MR. PRESIDENT, VERY SADLY, WE ARE ON THE PRECIPICE OF A GOVERNMENT…

    MR. PRESIDENT, VERY SADLY, WE ARE ON THE PRECIPICE OF A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN. THE MAJORITY LEADER ONLY JUST ALLOWED US TO VOTE ON A CONTINUING RESOLUTION THAT HE KNEW LACKED THE VOTES LONG BEFORE THIS HOUR. IT'S NOT JUST DEMOCRATS WHO OPPOSE THIS C.R. SEVERAL REPUBLICANS DID AS WELL. ALL OF TODAY, MR. PRESIDENT, WE HAVE ENDEAVORED TO REACH AN AGREEMENT WITH PRESIDENT TRUMP AND THE REPUBLICANS THAT WOULD HAVE NOT ONLY SPARED A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN BUT CEMENTED AN AGREEMENT ON SPENDING CAPS, INCLUDING THOSE FOR OUR MILITARY, THE HEALTH CARE ISSUES, DISASTER RELIEF AND IMMIGRATION ISSUES. PRESIDENT TRUMP REACHED OUT TO ME TODAY, THIS MORNING, TO INVITE ME TO THE WHITE HOUSE TO TALK ALL OF THESE ISSUES OVER, AND I ACCEPTED. WE HAD A LENGTHY AND SUBSTANTIVE DISCUSSION. DURING THE MEETING, IN EXCHANGE FOR STRONG DACA PROTECTIONS, I RELUCTANTLY PUT THE BORDER WALL ON THE TABLE FOR DISCUSSION. EVEN THAT WAS NOT ENOUGH TO ENTICE THE PRESIDENT TO FINISH THE DEAL. MANY DEMOCRATS DON'T WANT TO GO THAT FAR ON THE BORDER. MANY REPUBLICANS DON'T EITHER. BUT WE WERE WILLING TO COMPROMISE WITH THE PRESIDENT TO GET AN AGREEMENT. IN THE ROOM, IT SOUNDED LIKE THE PRESIDENT WAS OPEN TO ACCEPT IT. THIS AFTERNOON, IN MY HEART, I THOUGHT WE MIGHT HAVE A DEAL TONIGHT. THAT WAS HOW FAR WE HAD COME. THAT'S HOW POSITIVE OUR DISCUSSION FELT. WE HAD A GOOD MEETING. BUT WHAT HAS TRANSPIRED SINCE THAT MEETING IN THE OVAL OFFICE IS INDICATIVE OF THE ENTIRE TUMULTUOUS AND CHAOTIC PROCESS REPUBLICANS HAVE ENGAGED IN IN THE NEGOTIATIONS THUS FAR. EVEN THOUGH PRESIDENT TRUMP SEEMED TO LIKE AN OUTLINE OF THE DEAL IN THE ROOM, HE DID NOT PRESS HIS PARTY IN CONGRESS TO ACCEPT IT. SPEAKER RYAN AND LEADER McCONNELL, WITHOUT THE COMMITMENT OF THE PRESIDENT, WOULD NOT AGREE TO ACCEPT ANYTHING EITHER. WHAT HAPPENED TO THE PRESIDENT TRUMP WHO ASKED US TO COME UP WITH A DEAL AND PROMISED THAT HE WOULD TAKE HEAT FOR IT? WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT PRESIDENT? HE BACKED OFF AT THE FIRST SIGN OF PRESSURE. WE HAVE THE OUTLINE OF A DEAL ON CAPS. WE HAD THE OUTLINE OF A DEAL ON HEALTH CARE. WE HAD THE OUT LINE OF A DEAL ON -- OUTLINE OF A DEAL ON IMMIGRATION, THE TOUGHEST ISSUE. IT WAS REAL. IT WAS AN HONDAS-TO-GOODNESS BREAKTHROUGH. WE COULD HAVE PASSED A SHORT-TERM EXTENSION OF FUNDING SO THAT WE COULD CROSS THE T'S, DOT THE I'S, AND BE DONE WITH IT ALL. BUT THE DYNAMIC OF THE PAST FEW WEEKS DURING WHICH THE CONGRESSIONAL REPUBLICANS LOOKED TO THE PRESIDENT FOR GUIDANCE AND THE PRESIDENT PROVIDED NONE PREVAILED AGAIN TODAY, UNFORTUNATELY. THE SAME CHAOS, THE SAME DISARRAY, THE SAME DIVISION AND DISCORD ON THE REPUBLICAN SIDE THAT'S BEEN IN THE BACKGROUND OF THESE NEGOTIATIONS FOR MONTHS UNFORTUNATELY APPEARS ENDEMIC. IT IS STANDING IN THE WAY OF BIPARTISAN SOLUTIONS TO ALL OF THE ISSUES NOW BEFORE US. EVERY AMERICAN KNOWS THE REPUBLICAN PARTY CONTROLS THE WHITE HOUSE, THE SENATE, THE HOUSE. IT'S THEIR JOB TO KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OPEN. IT'S THEIR JOB TO WORK WITH US ON A WAY TO MOVE THINGS FORWARD, BUT THEY DIDN'T REACH OUT TO US ONCE ON THIS C.R. NO DISCUSSION, NO DEBATE, NOTHING AT ALL. IT WAS PRODUCED WITHOUT AN OUNCE OF DEMOCRATIC INPUT AND DROPPED ON OUR LAPS. AND MEANWHILE, THEY CAN'T EVEN GET ON THE SAME PAGE AS A PARTY. THEY CONTROL EVERY BRANCH OF THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS, AND IT'S THEIR RESPONSIBILITY TO GOVERN, AND HERE THEY HAVE FAILED. SEVERAL REPUBLICANS VOTED AGAINST THE C.R., AS WELL AS DEMOCRATS, FOR THE SAME REASON WE VOTED AGAINST IT. ONE OF THE MOST SERIOUS CONSEQUENCES OF HAVING CONTINUING RESOLUTION AFTER CONTINUING RESOLUTION IS THE DAMAGE IT DOES TO OUR MILITARY. AS THE PENTAGON SPOKESMAN SAID LAST NIGHT, ANOTHER C.R. WOULD BE WASTEFUL AND DESTRUCTIVE TO OUR MILITARY. THE NAVY SECRETARY SAID THAT BECAUSE OF C.R.'S, THE NAVY HAS PUT $4 BILLION IN THE TRASH CAN, POURED LIGHTER FLUID ON IT, AND BURNT IT. THAT'S THE NAVY SECRETARY BECAUSE OF WHAT YOU HAVE DONE. THIS IS NO WAY TO CONDUCT THE NATION'S BUSINESS. REPUBLICANS KNOW IT, DEMOCRATS KNOW IT, THE AMERICAN PEOPLE KNOW THAT THIS PARTY IS NOT CAPABLE OF GOVERNING. SO WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? I BELIEVE MANY OF MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES SINCERELY WANT TO GET A DEAL. I KNOW THEIR HEARTS ARE IN THE RIGHT PLACE. I KNOW THEY LAMENT THE FACT THAT WE NOW ACCEPT BRINKMANSHIP WHERE BIPARTISANSHIP USED TO BE. IN THE PAST, THERE WAS ALWAYS DISCUSSIONS ON THESE ISSUES. EVERYONE KNEW IN THE SENATE YOU NEEDED BOTH PARTIES TO WORK TOGETHER. NONE OF THAT HAPPENED HERE TODAY. NOW, ALL THIS PROBLEM IS BECAUSE REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP CAN'T GET TO YES BECAUSE PRESIDENT TRUMP REFUSES TO. MR. PRESIDENT, PRESIDENT TRUMP, IF YOU ARE LISTENING, I AM URGING YOU, PLEASE TAKE YES FOR AN ANSWER. THE WAY THINGS WENT TODAY, THE WAY YOU TURNED FROM A BIPARTISAN DEAL, IT'S ALMOST AS IF YOU WERE ROOTING FOR A SHUTDOWN, AND NOW WE'LL HAVE ONE, AND THE BLAME SHOULD CRASH ENTIRELY ON PRESIDENT TRUMP'S SHOULDERS. THIS -- THIS WILL BE CALLED THE TRUMP SHUT DOWN. IN WILL BE CALLED THE TRUMP SH DOWN BECAUSE THERE IS NO ONE -- NO ONE -- WHO DESERVES THE BLAME FOR THE POSITION WE FIND OURSELVES IN MORE THAN PRESIDENT TRUMP. HE WALKED AWAY FROM TWO BIPARTISAN DEALS, INCLUDING ONE TODAY IN WHICH I EVEN PUT THE BORDER WALL ON THE TABLE. WHAT WILL IT TAKE FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP TO SAY YES AND LEARN HOW TO EXECUTE THE RUDEMENTS OF GOVERNMENT? TOMORROW MARKS A YEAR TO THE DAY PRESIDENT TRUMP TOOK THE OATH OF OFFICE ON THE CAPITOL STEPS. UNFORTUNATELY A TRUMP SHUT DOWN WOULD BE A PERFECT ENCAPS LAYINGS OF THE -- ENCAPSULATION OF THE CHAOS HE HAS UNLEASHED. INSTEAD OF GOVERNING FROM THE MIDDLE, HE HAS OUTSOURCED HIS PRESIDENCY TO THE EXTREMES. INSTEAD OF LIVING UP TO THE GREAT DEAL MAKER HE MARKETED HIMSELF TO BE, HE HAS BEEN THE SINGLE FORCE OF SCUTTLING DEALS IN CONGRESS. NOW HIS BEHAVIOR IS ON THE VERGE OF GRINDING OUR GOVERNMENT TO A HALT, A TRUMP SHUT DOWN. DEMOCRATS WILL CONTINUE TO STRIVE FOR A BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT ON ALL OF THE OUTSTANDING ISSUES. I KNOW THERE ARE MEN AND WOMEN OF GOODWILL ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE WHO ARE JUST AS UPSET AS I AM WITH THE DIRECTION WE'RE HEADED IN. I PLEAD WITH THEM TO SEE REASON AND PREVAIL UPON THEIR LEADERS, AND MOST OF ALL THE PRESIDENT, TO GIVE US IN SPACE TO WORK TOGETHER, TO LET US DO THE JOB THE AMERICAN PEOPLE SENT US HERE TO DO. WHEN PRESIDENT TRUMP DECIDES HE IS FINALLY READY TO LEAD HIS PARTY TO A DEAL, DEMOCRATS WILL BE READY, WILLING, AND EAGER TO CLINCH IT. THERE IS A PATH FORWARD. WE CAN REACH IT QUICKLY, TOMORROW. THE PRESIDENT AND THE FOUR LEADERS SHOULD IMMEDIATELY SIT DOWN AND FINISH THIS DEAL SO THE ENTIRE GOVERNMENT CAN GET BACK TO WORK ON MONDAY. I YIELD THE FLOOR.

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  • 12:32:50 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I COMMEND THE FIVE DEMOCRATS WHO VOTED NOT TO SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN.…

    I COMMEND THE FIVE DEMOCRATS WHO VOTED NOT TO SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN. THE NEW SENATOR FROM ALABAMA, DURING HIS CAMPAIGN, SAID IT WAS IMPORTANT TO FUND THE CHIP PROGRAM BEFORE IT RAN OUT OF MONEY. HE LISTENED TO THE DEMOCRATIC GOVERNORS WHO SAID, THIS IS AN EMERGENCY. WE NEED HELP. SO THERE WERE FIVE COURAGEOUS DEMOCRATS ON THE OTHER SIDE WHO STOOD UP TO THIS RIDICULOUS ARGUMENT, AND IT MADE SENSE SOMEHOW TO SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT OVER AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION ISSUE THAT THE VAST MAJORITY OF THIS BODY WOULD LIKE TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT ANYWAY. SO I WANT TO PARTICULARLY COMMEND THE FIVE DEMOCRATS WHO HAD THE COURAGE TO STAND UP TO THIS RIDICULOUS STRATEGY. THEY PUT THEIR PARTY IN AN INCREDIBLE PREDICAMENT. AS WAS JUST INDICATED, THE PRESIDENT IS NOT GOING TO TALK ABOUT IT WHILE THE GOVERNMENT IS SHUT DOWN. HE SAID WHEN DEMOCRATS START PAYING OUR FIRST RESPONDERS WE WILL REOPEN THE IMMIGRATION REFORM. SO THIS PARTICULAR STRATEGY HAS ELIMINATED THE POSSIBILITY OF GETTING A SIGNATURE ON THE THING THAT SHUT DOWN THE -- SHUT THE GOVERNMENT DOWN OVER. CAN ANYBODY EXPLAIN TO ME THIS STRATEGY? I'M PERPLEXED. I WASN'T FIRST IN MY CLASS BUT I WASN'T LAST EITHER. HOW DOES THIS GET THEM WHAT THEY ARE LOOKING FOR? WELL, WE'LL CONTINUE TO TALK BECAUSE WHEN ALL THE GAMES STOP, THE ISSUES ARE STILL THERE. EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM ARE STILL THERE. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE EXPECT US TO ACT LIKE ADULTS, TO GET TOGETHER AND SOLVE THE PROBLEMS. NOW, I'LL BE OFFERING AN AMENDMENT TO CHANGE THE DATE TO FEBRUARY 8. WE WILL, UNFORTUNATELY, NOT BE ABLE TO GET THAT VOTE TONIGHT BUT I WILL SUBSEQUENTLY ASK FOR A CONSENT, BUT WE WILL BE VOTING ON FEBRUARY 8, AND THAT'S THE DATE THAT THE SENIOR SENATOR FROM SOUTH CAROLINA AND I HAVE BEEN TALKING ABOUT, THE DEMOCRATIC LEADER AND I HAVE BEEN TALKING ABOUT, WHICH BEGINS TO MOVE A LITTLE BIT CLOSER TO WHERE OUR FRIENDS ON THE OTHER SIDE SAID THEY WANTED TO BE, BUT A REASONABLE PERIOD OF TIME IT TAKES INTO ACCOUNT, A STATE -- ACCOUNT THE STATE OF THE UNION, PARTY CONFERENCES, AND THE AMOUNT OF TIME IT TAKES TO WRITE A BILL ONCE YOU HAVE AN AGREEMENT. YOU CAN'T REACH AN AGREEMENT AND SNAP YOUR FINGERS AND EVERYTHING ALWAYS IN INTO PLACE AND YOU'RE READY TO GO. SO A REASONABLE PERIOD TO FIRST AGREE AND THEN WRITE AND GET READY TO PASS THIS NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT THAT WE'VE BEEN WORKING ON FOR MONTHS, FEBRUARY 8 IS A VERY REASONABLE TIME. SO I'M GOING TO GIVE -- I HEAR THE SENTIMENT FOR THAT -- THERE'S SENTIMENT FOR THAT ON BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE. I HOPE SO. WE'LL VOTE ON THAT OPTION. WE CAN'T GET THAT VOTE TONIGHT, BUT I'LL GOING TO ASK CONSENT TO HAVE THAT VOTE TONIGHT. I MOVE, MR. PRESIDENT, TO TABLE THE MOTION TO REFER.

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  • 12:36:00 AM

    Senate Vote 15 - On the Motion to Table H.R. 195

    Federal Register Printing Savings Act of 2017

    Motion to Table Agreed to (55 - 44)
    Yea
    Nay

    Vote Details: Yea - 55
    Republican - 50
    Democratic - 5

    Vote Details: Nay - 44
    Democratic - 42
    Independent - 2

  • 12:36:57 AM

    MR. SCHUMER

    I ASK FOR THE YEAS AND NAYS.

  • 12:36:59 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE A SUFFICIENT SECOND? THERE IS. THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL.…

    IS THERE A SUFFICIENT SECOND? THERE IS. THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. VOTE: VOTE: VOTE:

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  • 01:13:17 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    ARE THERE ANY SENATORS IN THE CHAMBER WISHING TO VOTE OR TO CHANGE THEIR…

    ARE THERE ANY SENATORS IN THE CHAMBER WISHING TO VOTE OR TO CHANGE THEIR VOTE? IF NOT, THE YEAS ARE 55, THE NAYS ARE 44. THE MOTION TO TABLE IS APPROVED.

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  • 01:13:29 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 01:13:30 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE MAJORITY LEADER.

  • 01:13:32 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I MOVE TO TABLE THE MOTION TO CONCUR WITH FURTHER AMENDMENT.

  • 01:13:36 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE QUESTION IS ON THE MOTION. ALL THOSE IN FAVOR SAY AYE. ALL THOSE…

    THE QUESTION IS ON THE MOTION. ALL THOSE IN FAVOR SAY AYE. ALL THOSE OPPOSED, NO. THE AYES APPEAR TO HAVE IT. THE AYES DO HAVE IT. THE MOTION TO TABLE IS AGREED TO.

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  • 01:13:49 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I MOVE TO CONCUR IN THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO H.R. 195 WITH A FURTHER…

    I MOVE TO CONCUR IN THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO H.R. 195 WITH A FURTHER AMENDMENT.

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  • 01:13:55 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL REPORT.

  • 01:13:57 AM

    THE CLERK

    THE SENATOR FROM KENTUCKY, MR. McCONNELL, MOVES TO CONCUR IN THE HOUSE…

    THE SENATOR FROM KENTUCKY, MR. McCONNELL, MOVES TO CONCUR IN THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO THE SENATE AMENDMENT TO H.R. 195 WITH AN AMENDMENT NUMBERED 1917.

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  • 01:14:07 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I SEND A CLOTURE MOTION TO THE DESK ON THE MOTION TO CONCUR WITH AMENDMENT.

  • 01:14:12 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL REPORT THE CLOTURE MOTION.

  • 01:14:14 AM

    THE CLERK

    CLOTURE MOTION. WE, THE UNDERSIGNED SENATORS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE…

    CLOTURE MOTION. WE, THE UNDERSIGNED SENATORS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF RULE 22 OF THE STANDING RULES OF THE SENATE, DO HEREBY MOVE TO BRING TO A CLOSE DEBATE ON THE MOTION TO CONCUR WITH THE FURTHER AMENDMENT IN THE HOUSE AMENDMENT TO THE SENATE AMENDMENT TO H.R. 195, SIGNED BY 17 SENATORS AS FOLLOWS.

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  • 01:14:30 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK THE READING OF THE NAMES BE DISPENSED WITH.

  • 01:14:33 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 01:14:34 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I MOVE TO REFER THE MOTION TO THE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS AND TO…

    I MOVE TO REFER THE MOTION TO THE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS AND TO REPORT BACK FORTHWITH WITH INSTRUCTIONS.

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  • 01:14:40 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL REPORT.

  • 01:14:42 AM

    THE CLERK

    THE SENATOR FROM KENTUCKY, MR. McCONNELL, MOVES TO REFER THE HOUSE MESSAGE…

    THE SENATOR FROM KENTUCKY, MR. McCONNELL, MOVES TO REFER THE HOUSE MESSAGE ON H.R. 195 TO THE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS WITH INSTRUCTIONS TO REPORT BACK FORTHWITH WITH INSTRUCTIONS -- WITH AN AMENDMENT NUMBERED 1918.

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  • 01:14:56 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT NOTWITHSTANDING RULE 22, THE MANDATORY QUORUM…

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT NOTWITHSTANDING RULE 22, THE MANDATORY QUORUM CALL BE WAIVED AND THE SENATE IMMEDIATELY VOTE ON THE MOTION TO INVOKE CLOTURE WITHOUT ANY INTERVENING ACTION OR DEBATE.

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  • 01:15:06 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE OBJECTION?

  • 01:15:08 AM

    MR. SCHUMER

    I OBJECT.

  • 01:15:09 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    OBJECTION IS HEARD.

  • 01:15:28 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM MISSOURI.

  • 01:15:33 AM

    MRS. McCASKILL

    MR. PRESIDENT, THIS SHOULDN'T TAKE LONG. I WAS DISAPPOINTED WHEN THE…

    MR. PRESIDENT, THIS SHOULDN'T TAKE LONG. I WAS DISAPPOINTED WHEN THE PRESIDENT PUT OUT A STATEMENT THAT TRIED TO DIVIDE US BASED ON PARTY WHEN IT CAME TO THE SUPPORT OF OUR MILITARY. THERE IS NO SUCH DIVISION. EVERYONE IN THIS CHAMBER KNOWS IT, AND SO AS WE HAVE IN OTHER INSTANCES WHEN WE HAD A SHUT DOWN, I REMEMBER IN 2013, WE DID THIS RIGHT OFF THE BAT, I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE SEND A VERY CLEAR SIGNAL THAT WE DON'T WANT ANY MOMENT TO PASS WITH THERE BEING ANY UNCERTAINTY WITH ANY SOLDIER ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD THAT THEY WILL BE PAID FOR THE VALIANT WORK THAT THEY DO ON BEHALF OF OUR NATIONAL SECURITY. UNANIMOUS CONSENT -- I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT THE SENATE PROCEED TO THE IMMEDIATE CONSIDERATION OF CALENDAR NUMBER 36, H.R. 1301, THAT THE AMENDMENT AT THE DESK PROVIDING FOR CONTINUING APPROPRIATIONS FOR PAY AND FOR DEATH BENEFITS BE AGREED TO, THE BILL BE CONSIDERED AND READ A THIRD TIME AND PASSED THE MOTIONS TO RECONSIDER BE CONSIDERED MADE AND LAID UPON THE TABLE WITH NO INTERVENING ACTION OR DEBATE.

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  • 01:16:53 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE DEBATE?

  • 01:16:56 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I OBJECT. MY HOPE IS THAT WE CAN RESTORE FUNDING FOR THE ENTIRE GOVERNMENT…

    I OBJECT. MY HOPE IS THAT WE CAN RESTORE FUNDING FOR THE ENTIRE GOVERNMENT BEFORE THIS BECOMES NECESSARY. I'M GOING TO OBJECT FOR TONIGHT BUT WE'LL DISCUSS AGAIN TOMORROW. THEREFORE, I OBJECT.

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  • 01:17:10 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    OBJECTION IS HEARD. THE SENATOR FROM FLORIDA.

  • 01:17:13 AM

    MR. NELSON

    MR. PRESIDENT, MANY OF US HAVE PARTICIPATED IN THE LAST FEW HOURS IN…

    MR. PRESIDENT, MANY OF US HAVE PARTICIPATED IN THE LAST FEW HOURS IN SEVERAL CONVERSATIONS TRYING TO BRING THE PARTIES TOGETHER AND, INDEED, A LOT OF MOVEMENT HAS OCCURRED. THERE SEEMS TO BE ONE SUBSTANTIAL ISSUE REMAINING WITHIN WHICH THINGS COULD COME TOGETHER. SO, MR. PRESIDENT, I'M GOING TO ASK THAT WE HAVE -- WE DELAY THE SHUT DOWN FOR AT LEAST ONE DAY. MOST OF US ON THIS FLOOR DO NOT WANT A SHUT DOWN, AND SINCE THERE WERE DISCUSSIONS HERE IN ERNEST IN A BIPARTISAN WAY, WE OUGHT TO GIVE THOSE DISCUSSIONS A CHANCE TO BAYER FRUIT -- BARE FRUIT. MR. PRESIDENT, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT THE SENATE PROCEED TO THE IMMEDIATE CONSIDERATION OF CALENDAR 36, H.R. 1301, THAT THE AMENDMENT AT THE DESK THAT WOULD PROVIDE FOR A CONTINUING RESOLUTION TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT THROUGH SATURDAY, JANUARY 20, 2018, BE CONSIDERED AND AGREED TO, THE BILL, AS AMENDED, BE CONSIDERED READ A THIRD TIME AND PASSED, THE MOTIONS TO RECONSIDER BE CONSIDERED MADE AND LAID UPON THE TABLE WITH NO INTERVENING ACTION OR DEBATE.

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  • 01:18:56 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE OBJECTION?

  • 01:18:59 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I OBJECT.

  • 01:19:02 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    OBJECTION IS HEARD.

  • 01:19:05 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATOR FROM MONTANA.

  • 01:19:10 AM

    MR. TESTER

    MR. PRESIDENT, I HAD THE FEELING AT ONE POINT IN TIME TONIGHT THAT WE WERE…

    MR. PRESIDENT, I HAD THE FEELING AT ONE POINT IN TIME TONIGHT THAT WE WERE VERY CLOSE TO AN AGREEMENT. I THINK AS WE LOOK AROUND THIS BODY, WE SEE FOLKS ON BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE WHO WANT TO COME TO AN AGREEMENT AND WILL WORK HARD FOR AN AGREEMENT. IT IS A FACT THAT WE NEED A BETTER BUDGET, WE NEED A BUDGET THAT WORKS FOR AMERICA, WE NEED A BUDGET THAT GOES TO THE END OF THE FISCAL YEAR, WHICH ISN'T THAT LONG, BY THE WAY, ONLY TO THE END OF SEPTEMBER. IT IS A FACT THAT WE NEED CHIP FUNDING AND MONEY FOR COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS, AND CERTAINLY FOR OUR MILITARY, AND MONEY FOR THE NORTHERN AND SOUTHERN BORDERS AND THE MAJORITY LEADER SAID THEY HAVE BEEN WORKING ON A BUDGET SETTLEMENT FOR WEEKS. I THINK MOST OF US, IF NOT ALL OF US, ARE WILLING TO STAY HERE UNTIL THIS WORK GETS DONE. I'M CERTAINLY WILLING TO. THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE THE MOST DELIBERATIVE BODY IN THE WORLD. I KNOW THERE ARE SOME WHO SAY THERE IS NOT ENOUGH TIME. THERE IS. I HAVE SEEN THIS BODY WORK WHEN IT IS NECESSARY. I THINK A GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN WOULD REQUIRE THAT. WE HAVE PUSHED THIS BUDGET OFF NOW FOR 112 DAYS. THAT'S WHY I'M PROPOSING A THREE-DAY CONTINUING RESOLUTION SO WE CAN WORK TOGETHER TO COME TO A CONCLUSION TO DO WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WANT, AND THAT'S HAVE A BUDGET THAT WORKS TO THE END OF THE FISCAL YEAR THAT FUNDS CRITICAL PROGRAMS FOR MILITARY AND DOMESTIC. SO, MR. PRESIDENT, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT THE SENATE PROCEED TO THE IMMEDIATE CONSIDERATION OF CALENDAR NUMBER 36, H.R. 1301, THAT THE AMENDMENT AT THE DESK THAT WOULD PROVIDE FOR A CONTINUING RESOLUTION TO FUND THE GOVERNMENT THROUGH MONDAY, JANUARY 22, 2018, BE CONSIDERED AND AGREED TO, THE BILL, AS AMENDED, BE CONSIDERED, READ A THIRD TIME AND PASSED, AND THE MOTIONS TO RECONSIDER BE CONSIDERED MADE AND LAID UPON THE TABLE WITH NO INTERVENING ACTION OR DEBATE.

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  • 01:21:15 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE OBJECTION?

  • 01:21:17 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I OBJECT.

  • 01:21:45 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 01:21:46 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE MAJORITY LEADER.

  • 01:21:48 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    FOR THE INFORMATION OF ALL OUR COLLEAGUES, THE SENATE WILL CONVENE AT 12…

    FOR THE INFORMATION OF ALL OUR COLLEAGUES, THE SENATE WILL CONVENE AT 12 NOON TOMORROW. IT'S MY HOPE THAN AN AGREEMENT CAN BE REACHED. WE'LL BE HERE IN SESSION TOMORROW WORKING TO FINALLY RESOLVE THE WAY FORWARD. SENATORS SHOULD EXPECT VOTES TOMORROW. I SUGGEST THE ABSENCE OF A QUORUM.

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  • 01:22:09 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE CLERK WILL CALL THE ROLL. QUORUM CALL:

  • 01:22:21 AM

    Quorum Call

  • 01:28:13 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    MR. PRESIDENT.

  • 01:28:14 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE MAJORITY LEADER.

  • 01:28:16 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK THAT FURTHER PROCEEDINGS UNDER THE QUORUM CALL BE DISPENSED WITH.

  • 01:28:21 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 01:28:22 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT -- COULD WE HAVE ORDER.

  • 01:28:25 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    THE SENATE WILL BE IN ORDER.

  • 01:28:27 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT WHEN THE SENATE COMPLETES ITS BUSINESS TODAY,…

    I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT WHEN THE SENATE COMPLETES ITS BUSINESS TODAY, IT ADJOURN UNTIL 12 NOON TOMORROW, SATURDAY, JANUARY 20, FURTHER, THAT FOLLOWING THE PRAYER AND PLEDGE, THE MORNING HOUR BE DEEMED EXPIRED, THE JOURNAL OF PROCEEDINGS BE APPROVED TO DATE, AND THE TIME FOR THE TWO LEADERS BE RESERVED FOR THEIR USE LATER IN THE DAY, AND MORNING BUSINESS BE CLOSED. FINALLY, FOLLOWING LEADER REMARKS, THE SENATE RESUME CONSIDERATION OF THE HOUSE MESSAGE TO ACCOMPANY H.R. 195.

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  • 01:28:55 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    IS THERE OBJECTION? WITHOUT OBJECTION.

  • 01:28:57 AM

    MR. McCONNELL

    IF THERE IS NO FURTHER BUSINESS TO COME BEFORE THE SENATE, I ASK THAT IT…

    IF THERE IS NO FURTHER BUSINESS TO COME BEFORE THE SENATE, I ASK THAT IT STAND ADJOURNED UNDER THE PREVIOUS ORDER.

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  • 01:29:03 AM

    THE PRESIDING OFFICER

    PREVIOUS ORDER.

Statistics

115th Congress - Senate
Total Hours: 1668 (After 506 days)
  • Debate1019 Hours
  • Quorum Calls384 Hours
  • Votes265 Hours

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Source: Resume of Congressional Activity (senate.gov)