Executive Session (Engelhardt Nomination)
May 07 2018 04:35 PM
Senator Schumer: (3:29 p.m.)
- Spoke in tribute to Michael Beaver.
- "Michael Beaver, an assistant parliamentarian here in the Senate, passed away unexpectedly last week. His death at the young age of 39 is shocking and its suddenness tragic for the family, friends, his children, coworkers that he left behind. Michael was incredibly bright, unfailingly honest, had a quick wit and a dry sense of humor. I know that as an assistant parliamentarian, he was a member of a small but crucial team of behind-the-scene staffers without whom the senate couldn't function."
- Spoke on the pending judicial nominations.
- "I've been able to work out judge nominations in a bipartisan way in the Senate when we had a Republican president, a Republican governor. But that was overrun. This is now the second time that Chairman Grassley has ignored the blue slip tradition in this Congress. Here's the part that really burns me, and I think many others who are fair-minded in the Senate and in this country. The seat that Mr. Brennan would fill on the Seventh Circuit was held opened for six years, six years via blue slips. Senator Johnson did not turn in a blue slip and the seat stayed vacant. Now that blue slip of Senator Baldwin that we have a Republican president is being ignored."
- Spoke on health care reform.
- "Now, on the subject of health care, last week insurance companies in the state of Virginia announced that health insurance premiums would be much higher this coming year, more than 100,000 Virginians who rely on these plans are staring at a proposed 2019 premium that will be 15% or 27% or 64% higher depending on which insurer they use. In filing their rates, the health insurers are pointing to the actions of the Trump administration and congressional Republicans as major reasons for the premium increases. The Trump administration and our Republican friends in Congress are the reason - are the reason these premiums are going up according to insurers."
- Spoke on tax reform.
- "Even though that theory has been debunked over and over and over again. Still President Trump repeatedly promised that workers would see a raise of $4,000 or more as a result of the Republican tax bill. I'd like to ask most Americans if they've gotten a $4,000 raise as the White House promised because according to the April jobs report, hourly earnings have not increased significantly and are actually up just 2.6% over the past 12 months. Last month average hourly earnings increased by just 4 cents, hardly $4,000."
Senator Cornyn: (3:59 p.m.)
- Spoke on the nomination of Gina Haspel to be C.I.A. Director.
- "But one of the important positions that we are going to be taking up this week is Gina Haspel who has been nominated to be director of the Central Intelligence Agency, and her confirmation hearing will be before the Senate Intelligence Committee this Wednesday. I will proudly support her to be the first female C.I.A. director in our nation's history. Certainly not for that reason alone, but because she is an outstanding nominee. I hope our colleagues and their ideological soul mates across the aisle will cease and desist from untruthful attacks on this talented, well-respected woman who is much revered by her fellow professionals if in the intelligence community."
Senator Nelson: (4:15 p.m.)
- Spoke on the situation in Puerto Rico.
- "One particular location up further up the mountain, no electricity. So I asked the residents that I talked to, how are you coping? What do you do? They had a generator, but because of the shortage of fuel and the cost of the fuel, they can't run the generator all the time so they use it for the necessities of cooking and other chores basically during the day, therefore, they have no refrigeration. I asked, what do you do? They showed me. The fellow had just come from the grocery store down the mountain, which they have to go and get their groceries that are perishable every day, cook them for that day, consume them because they do not have refrigeration, and it's eight months after the hurricane."