Corker, Shaheen, Toomey, Stabenow, Isakson

Vehicle for Trade Promotion Authority (H.R. 1314)

Senator Corker: (10:51 AM)

  • Spoke on trade.
    • "I think all of us understand that the president has said he would veto T.P.A. if it has this currency provision in it. We've had treasury secretaries, ten of them, highly respected on both sides of the aisle, who have told us, told us, that we should not have currency provisions of this type in a T.P.A. agreement. I think we understand the difficulties that having these currency provisions in T.P.A. will create in actually completing the T.P.P. agreement, which again, I've mention before, obviously it is important to us economically but hugely important to us from a national security standpoint and from our national interest standpoint. I know these currency issues sometimes are difficult to deal with. I just want to urge my colleagues. I think it is important certainly for senators to be able to express concerns about things that may happen in their own states, and I respect that. I respect that. But I hope as a body we will rise above giving another bailout, another bailout to the auto industry, which, if we do, greatly complicate our ability in T.P.P."

 

Senator Shaheen: (11:03 AM)

  • Spoke the highway trust fund.
    • "The National Interstate and Defense Highways Act of 1956 ensured dedicated federal funding to build a network that today encompasses more than 46,000 miles of roadways. That system has transformed our economy and it's created countless millions of jobs, but it's now six decades old. It's dedicated funding mechanism, the highway trust fund, is in constant shortfall and today it's just two months away from becoming insolvent. For Congress to pass yet another short-term extension is damaging and dysfunctional. It kicks the can down a road that is crumbling, congested, and increasingly uncompetitive. It is time for Congress to come together on a bipartisan basis to break the cycle of patchwork fixes."

 

Senator Toomey: (10:10 AM)

  • Spoke on the National Institute of Health.
    • "My message is when you think about where we are, you think about how close we are to these stunning cures of some amazingly devastating diseases, and I think we should set our goal as curing these diseases. Our goal shouldn't be to figure out how do we treat this, how do we extend life for a few months? We'll do that for as long as we have to. But our goal should be a cure. Our goal should be to cure cancer. Our goal should be to cure heart disease. Our goal should be to cure Alzheimer's. We're going to be able to do this, and we should make that a goal. We should make this a priority. We have a lot of competing priorities for the limited resources that are available to the federal government. I can't think of any that are higher than this extremely noble effort, and I can't think of any reason not to. It is within reach, the progress is stunning and exciting, and it's happening all across America and very much in Pennsylvania."

 

Senator Stabenow: (11:26 AM)

  • Spoke on trade.
    • "So let's have fast-track, let's have fast-track about the things that really matter to people in this country, which is getting back to having the middle class where you can stay in the middle class, and while we're at it, let's pass an amendment that makes it clear that we get how important currency manipulation is. And when we're giving up our right to amend a trade agreement, when we're giving up our right to be able to use a 60-vote threshold on a trade agreement, that at least there ought to be a provision in there that says do your best on currency and by the way if you get some language, how about we make it enforceable this time. Five million jobs and counting. That's what we've lost and that's enough. I hope my colleagues will come together and support the Portman-Stabenow amendment."

 

Senator Isakson: (11:43 AM)

  • Spoke on Memorial Day.  
    • "As chairman of the Veterans' Affairs Committee of the United States Senate and on the eve of Memorial Day, I think it's appropriate that we pause for a moment. We debate as Democrats and Republicans today on the floor of the Cenate currency, trade, national security, fast-track, the issues of the day in a contentious debate. We do so freely. We do so without fear of retribution. We do so when we go home tonight we're at peace and comfort knowing we're in a safe nation and we are because of the men and women who have worn the uniform, sacrificed and gave their lives so America could exist today. So I think it's only appropriate that each of us on the Senate floor take a moment to pause and give a prayer for our soldiers who have risked their lives and gave their lives for our country."