Thursday, Sep. 6, 2018

Senate Opening

Senate Opening

Sep 06 2018 12:00 PM

The Senate convened.  

McConnell

Opening Remarks

Sep 06 2018 12:21 PM

Today -

  • The Senate will convene at 12:00 p.m.
  • Following leader remarks, the Senate will be in a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak therein for up to 10 minutes each.

 

Senator McConnell: (: p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
    • "Through that testing, the Senate got to see exactly why the American Bar Association deemed this nominee to be unanimously well-qualified. That's the highest possible rating, a distinction many of our Democratic colleagues in the past have called the gold standard. We saw precisely why he's earned such praise from accomplished legal figures like Lisa Blatt, a self-described liberal and leading Supreme Court litigator, who proudly introduced Judge Kavanaugh before the committee, and Neal Katyal, the Obama administration solicitor general, who said, quote, it is very hard for anyone who's worked with Judge Kavanaugh, appeared before him, to frankly say a bad word about him."
  • Spoke in tribute to Walter Oleszek.
    • "Walter arrived in Washington in the summer of 1968 from upstate New York. He signed on with the legislative reference service, now the congressional research service, and has been serving ever since. Over five decades Walter has grown into an institution unto himself. He is not only the longest-serving C.R.S. team member but also a dedicated and integral part of its operations, while also finding time to teach and lecture on the side. Alan Frumin, the former Senate parliamentarian, was actually one of Walter's students at Colgate University years ago."
  • Unanimous Consent –
    • Under a previous order, at 1:45 p.m. today the Senate will proceed to Executive Session to consider the following nominations:
      • Executive Calendar #693, Marilyn Jean Horan, of Pennsylvania, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Pennsylvania.
      • Executive Calendar #731, William F. Jung, of Florida, to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Florida.
      • Executive Calendar #778, Kari A. Dooley, of Connecticut, to be United States District Judge for the District of Connecticut.
      • Executive Calendar #779, Dominic Lanza, of Arizona, to be United States District Judge for the District of Arizona.
      • Executive Calendar #782, Charles J. Williams of Iowa, to be United States District Judge for the Northern District of Iowa.
      • Executive Calendar #838, Robert R. Summerhays, of Louisiana, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana.
      • Executive Calendar #839, Eric C. Tostrud, of Minnesota, to be a United States District Judge for the District of Minnesota.
      • Executive Calendar #893, Alan D. Albright, of Texas, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Texas.

Schumer, Cotton, Blunt

Morning Business

Sep 06 2018 12:46 PM

Senator Schumer: (12:18 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
    • "His lifelong record as a hard-right warrior, if he talked about it and talked about his views would rule him out, so he hides. That should not happen when it comes to nominating one of the most powerful positions in American society. Let me just mention a few topics judge Kavanaugh ducked. Judge Kavanaugh would not expand or even revisit his views on presidential power. He already enumerated some in the Minnesota law review article. As Senator Klobuchar pointed out, he's already talked about them publicly. Why can't he elaborate?"

 

Senator Cotton: (12:18 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Dominic Lanza to be a District Judge for the District of Arizona.
    • "He received the Bearer Award for being the outstanding graduate of his class in achievement, character, and leadership. In law school together, he excelled, graduating with honors, serving as a member of the law review. He went on to clerk for Judge Pam Rymer on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. For five years, he worked in private practice with Gibson, Dunn, and Crutcher in their constitutional law practice and won awards for his pro bono work. For the last ten years, Dom has served the people of Arizona and the people of this country and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Arizona."

 

Senator Blunt: (12:34 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
    • "It was clear from that conversation that he is clearly the best person available, in my view, to fill the vacancy left by Justice Anthony Kennedy. His opening remarks this week, I think, gave great evidence to that. He said he described himself, quote, as a, he said a judge must be an umpire, a neutral and impartial arbiter who favors no litigant or policy. He went on to say I do not decide cases based on personal or policy preferences. I am not a pro-plaintiff or pro-defendant judge. I am not a pro-prosecution or pro-defense judge. I am a pro-law judge. That ends the quote of that comment he made describing himself."

Murray, Leahy, Merkley, Portman

Morning Business

Sep 06 2018 01:46 PM

Senator Murray: (12:45 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the appropriations process.
    • "Madam President, I come to the floor today to join the vice chairman of the Appropriations Committee, who will be joining me shortly, in urging our colleagues to avoid at completely unnecessary crisis and work together with us and get all of our spending bills signed into law. Madam President, we should be able to do this. I'm very proud of the work that we've done so far. Under the leadership of the chairman and vice chairman of the Appropriations Committee, we've been able to negotiate and pass bills under regular order in a way we have been unable to do for years. We did this by rejecting the awful and counterproductive budget ideas from president trump and his administration and by pushing aside poison pill riders that would derail this process - issues from attacks on women's health care, higher education, patient protection, public schools, workers' rights and more."

 

Senator Leahy: (12:58 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the appropriations process.
    • "And in the wake of uncertainty and chaos caused by trade wars and unnecessary tariffs, our farmers and rural communities deserve better than inaction on appropriations. Both the house and the senate have passed their investigators of the bill, so let's just get to work, send the conference bill to the president. Now, the same goes to the transportation, housing, and urban development bill. Critical infrastructure investments across the nation, and we desperately need it. Improving the nation's infrastructure was actually one of president trump's key campaign promises, but instead of proposing realistic solutions, he has criticized the very budget deal that made increases in infrastructure possible."

 

Senator Merkley: (1:13 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
    • "It's the mission statement of our nation, a nation of the people, by the people, for the people, as president Lincoln so eloquently stated. Not a nation of, by, and for the powerful and the privileged. But the powerful and privileged are working overtime to undermine our constitution, and ironically they are using the courts to do it. We have seen it happening all week long as the judiciary committee barrels ahead with hearings on Judge Brett Kavanaugh's nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court. This is the same Judge Kavanaugh whose record from five years of serving in a presidential administration is still being hidden from the Senate and from the people of the United States of America."

 

Senator Portman: (1:28 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
    • "We have the opportunity here for the first time in a couple of decades to actually get our work done. And it's incredibly important for all the right reasons, including having proper oversight of the federal agencies and departments. He deserves credit for that. My colleague just talked for a moment about the Kavanaugh hearings and he talked about the fact that he believes there's not enough information out about Brett Kavanaugh. Let me just say this, there has never been more information about any nominee to the supreme court ever in the history of our country. In fact, there are more pages of documents that have been provided on Brett Kavanaugh than for the past five Supreme Court confirmations combined."
  • Spoke on the opioid epidemic.
    • "These new efforts that we should move forward on will build on what this Senate has already done with regard to the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, the CARA legislation, that is implemented in my state of Ohio and around the country and the 21st century cures act had additional funds for states to fight the opioid addiction. That's smart because there are smarter ways to fight the opioid epidemic."

Wrap Up (The Senate Stands Adjourned)

Wrap Up

Sep 06 2018 05:44 PM

Wednesday, September 12 -

  • The Senate will next meet for legislative business at 3:00 p.m.
  • Following leader remarks, the Senate will proceed to Executive Session and resume consideration of Executive Calendar #1013, Charles P. Rettig, of California, to be Commissioner of Internal Revenue.
  • At 5:30 p.m., the pending cloture motion will ripen.
  • Note: on Thursday, September 6, cloture was filed on Executive Calendar #1013, Charles P. Rettig, of California, to be Commissioner of Internal Revenue.