Blunt, Cornyn, Markey, King

Executive Session (Brennan Nomination)

Senator Blunt: (3:10 p.m.)

  • Spoke on Democrat obstructionism.
    • "If you're going to reject one of your colleagues in the Senate, that was probably a pretty debatable moment, maybe justified the 20 hours or 30 hours that is now initially insisted on by everybody, and many of them take a portion of that. And what really is lost is the other work that could happen in the course of the week. That's why in 2013 and 2014 when Democrats were in control of the senate, a bipartisan group of senators got together and said, let's eliminate a lot of these confirmations that we really -- really - isn't worthy of Senate time. Let's - let's take that when there are only one or two in the whole government in 1882 might have been worthy of a Senate debate and Senate vote, but let's take them off the list now that there are 210 of them to be confirmed. Let's take them off the list. Of course, neither of those numbers are numbers from the debate, but that's what we did."

 

Senator Cornyn: (3:47 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Gina Haspel to be C.I.A. Director.
    • "She exemplified the core attributes we've come to know about her since she was nominated. Professional integrity, innate sense, and a drive to work hard, not just for the advancement of her individual career but to protect Americans and put our national security first. The fact that she is here today as President Trump's nominee to him about the first female director of the Central Intelligence Agency is a testament to both her character and her exceptional decades-long career as an intelligence professional. All the while she's endeared herself to her colleagues in the intelligence community who have an immense amount of respect for her and her work. In fact, in addition to being the first female director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Miss Haspel would be the first operations officer in perhaps 40 years or more."
  • Spoke on prison reform.
    • "The committee's passage of this bipartisan legislation advances prison reforms tried out and proven in states like Texas, Rhode Island, and Georgia and elsewhere, which if successfully implemented rehabilitate low-risk offenders and save taxpayer dollars while reducing the crime rate and helping people reestablish themselves as productive members of society. This is not true across the board. I'm not naive enough to think that people that go prison will be able to salvage and save every single one who comes out. But I do believe we can do much better if we give people the opportunity, those who have the will and the determination to take advantage of the opportunity to turn their lives around, to deal with their addiction, to deal with their lack of skills and education, and if when given the opportunity to do so decide they want to take advantage of that to turn their lives around."

 

Senator Markey: (4:09 p.m.)

  • Spoke on net neutrality.
    • "We are speaking out because the American people know that it the internet is the most powerful platform for commerce and communications in the history of the planet. They know that the internet is for everyone and was invented with the guiding principle of nondiscrimination. The internet is designed to democratize access to in fact everything to opportunity. They know that the health of our economy, our civic life, our educational system and so many other parts of today's American experience all depend on the internet being free and open to everyone, not just those who can afford big telecom's price of admission.  They know that strong, clear, and enforceable net neutrality rules are the only way to protect the internet as we know it."

 

Senator King: (4:21 p.m.)

  • Spoke on net neutrality.
    • "This is exactly what we're worried about with the internet. It could come roaring back if we don't re-impose net neutrality rules. It's not hard to imagine that if paid prioritization which would have a customer on the pipes of the internet be able to get a faster speed, it will cement the companies - but it will stifle the development of smaller competitors who can't afford the access fees. One of the great things about the internet is low barriers to entry. If indeed the major internet providers are able to impose barriers to entry, it will by definition stifle small businesses across the country. That's been the glory of the internet, is the enabling of the development of small businesses throughout the length and breadth of this country."