Opening Remarks

Today -

  • The Senate will convene at 10:00 a.m.
  • Following leader remarks, the Senate will proceed to Executive Session and resume consideration of Executive Calendar #624, Stuart Kyle Duncan, of Louisiana, to be United States Circuit Court Judge for the Fifth Circuit, post-cloture.
  • The Senate will recess from 12:30 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. to accommodate the weekly policy lunches.
  • Note: all time during recess, adjournment, morning business, and leader remarks will count post-cloture on the Duncan nomination.


Senator McConnell: (10:03 a.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State.
    • "Later this week we'll take their advice and we'll vote to confirm him. We'll be lucky to have this capable public servant on the job. We know Mike Pompeo is up to the task. After all, we confirmed him with a comfortable and bipartisan majority to lead the C.I.A. In one of the most sensitive positions in our government, the quality of his leadership was directly linked to the security of the American people. West Point valedictorian, Harvard Law, U.S. Army officer, a successful businessman, three-term congressman, serving on the House Intelligence Committee. This is the resume that Mike Pompeo brought to the top job at the C.I.A. with the support of a bipartisan supermajority of the Senate and by all accounts his tenure there has been a big success."
  • Spoke on the opioid epidemic.
    • "Here in Congress, we're doing our best to support the health care and law enforcement professionals who are battling it every single day. Last week I introduced the Protecting Moms and Infants Act, a bipartisan effort to confront the heartbreaking cases of prenatal and infant opioid addiction. It builds on my 2015 bill, the Protecting our Infants Act, and Congress' other recent progress on this issue. In recent years Congress bolstered prevention and treatment efforts through the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act and the 21st Century Cures Act and the recent government funding bill dedicated a record level of resources to saving lives from heroin and prescription drug abuse."
  • Spoke on Republican economic policy.
    • "Now, madam president, on one final matter, the passage of Republican's historic tax reform last December was just the latest illustration of the diverging paths Republicans and Democrats envision for our economy. For the better part of the last decade our Democratic colleagues' ideas ran their course. We were promised they'd help us recover from the financial crisis, but it wasn't a recovery for all Americans. In fact, the path put forward by our Democratic colleagues had two distinct lanes. The express lane was for major cities like New York and San Francisco. Urban areas with more than a million residents captured 90 -- 90% of the nation's population growth and nearly 75% of new jobs created between 2010 and 2016. 75% of new jobs created between 2010 and 2016 went to these large urban areas. Those select communities actually made up some ground. But working families and job creators in America's smaller cities, towns, and rural communities were stuck in the slow lane."