Peters, Durbin, Barrasso, Isakson, Coats, McCain

National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 1735)

Senator Peters: (9:51 AM)

  • Spoke on his maiden speech.
    • "Federal investment in research and development is just that, an investment that has paid off many times over. Investment in research supports the new technologies and industries of the future, drives job creation and produces technologies critical to our national security. Necessary federal investment in infrastructure and innovation is only possible if those of us here in Congress take our jobs seriously as stewards of taxpayer dollars and look for places to end unnecessary wasteful spending. We also will not be able to accomplish anything without embracing pragmatism and bipartisanship. We cannot focus on whether ideas come from a Republican or a Democrat. We need to focus only on whether the idea has merit and is good for the country."

 

Senator Durbin: (10:11 AM)

  • Spoke on sequestration.
    • "Sequestration is a mindless cut when it comes to education and health care and medical research I mentioned earlier. So Democrats are saying to Republicans here we are on June 17, our fiscal year ends on October 1, let us not wait until the last minute to sit down and work out this problem. But what we hear from the other side of the aisle is we're not going to do it. We're just going to ignore it. That's the problem in Washington. When you don't face challenges squarely, honestly, on a bipartisan basis. So here's what's likely to occur this week. We're going to vote for an authorization bill on the Department of Defense. Some of us will oppose the way it's being funded, but others will vote for it. And then we'll come to the defense appropriation bill and I think what you will find is a unified effort on the Democratic side to say to the Republicans now is the time to sit down."

 

Senator Barrasso: (10:22 AM)

  • Spoke on ObamaCare.
    • "One person said their company is requesting an increase of 14.3% in Connecticut. Democrats say the average may be only 4%. Some people will be paying over 14% more next year. The person asks, does the average worker get a 14% salary increase? That's not what the people of Michigan or Washington or Connecticut or anywhere else thought they were going to get when Democrats called the law the Affordable Care Act. Sometime in the next couple of weeks, the Supreme Court is going to decide whether it's legal or not for President Obama to spend some of the billions of taxpayer dollars that he's been spending on the health care law. Now, the decision could affect more than 6 million Americans. Republicans have been watching this case very closely. We've been working on ideas to protect these people and to protect all Americans from the damages caused by the president's health care law."

 

Senator Isakson: (10:31 AM)

  • Spoke on ObamaCare.
    • "So as we look at the results of what's going to happen with King V. Burwell if king is ruled in favor and the courts throw out the subsidies on the Affordable Care Act, we need to first of all do no harm, that nobody immediately loses insurance that they planned on. We need to keep the promise President Obama made and never kept. That's number one. In you be two, we need to get everybody in the same room, Republicans and Democrats alike, providers and beneficiaries alike and let's build a health care system for the 21st century for America. That rewards the best health care system in the world by allowing it to innovate, by encouraging it to compete and not by making arbitrary decisions on cost and taxation which drive people out of the marketplace and out of business."

 

Senator Coats: (10:38 AM)

  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "I have offered amendment 1877 which both require the secretary of the Navy to submit to both House and Senate Armed Services Committees a report detailing the potential impacts to the industrial base if the July, 2017, start date for the refueling and complex overhaul of the U.S.S. George Washington is delayed by six months, one year or two years. As we have learned last year, when the administration briefly considered postponing the scheduled overhaul of the U.S.S. George Washington, is that such delays only drive up costs because of the uncertainty it creates among the industrial base. I hope to avoid a repeat of this mistake by requiring the Navy to report on the true costs of any delay, and I hope the Senate will agree to this amendment."

 

Senator McCain: (10:54 AM)

  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "For the amount of money that Congress appropriated for medical research last year, at the Department of Defense, again, most of which had nothing to do with the military and which the department did not request, we could have bought 12 f-18 super-hornets, or roughly one army brigade combat team. My friends in these days of sequestration, that is not acceptable. Once again, once again, I am sure every member of this body agrees that this research is vitally important to Americans suffering from these diseases, to the families and friends who care for them and to all those who know the pain and grief of losing a loved one. But this research should not be funded by the Department of Defense. It belongs in civilian departments and agencies of our government. Appropriating money in this way only harms our national security by reducing the funding available for militarily relevant materials that helps protect men and women on the battlefield and for military capabilities they desperately need to perform their missions."