Smith, Whitehouse, Lee, Perdue

The NDAA (H.R. 5515)

Senator Smith: (4:50 p.m.)

  • Spoke on campaign finance reform.
    • "That's why I'm fighting so hard to reform our campaign finance system. One of the most important things we can do is to enact a constitutional amendment to reverse the Citizens United decision. In my very first month as a senator, I cosponsored Senator Tom Udall's legislation to do that. A few wealthy donors shouldn't dominate the political conversation in this country. But reversing citizens united isn't the only thing necessary to restore fairness to our political process. We should also pass Senator Whitehouse's Disclose Act, which I'm proud to cosponsor. This legislation requires super PACS and big political spenders to disclose to the public exactly where their donations are going. No constitutional amendment is required for this key measure."

 

Senator Whitehouse: (5:07 p.m.)

  • Spoke on climate change.
    • "Mr. President, a crash takes place in a system when conditions in that system reach a tipping point and the system rapidly destabilizes. Climate change promises a lot of tipping points in Earth's natural systems. Ocean acidification, for instance, reaching a tipping point where species like the pteropod have trouble forming their shells and populations of those species crash taking down the trophic levels below them. Polar warming releasing trapped methane from tundra and hyper accelerating the greenhouse effect. At the more local level, seasonally linked species reacting to changing seasons can get out of phase with one another so the feeder and its food source no longer overlap in time. And then they have a crash."

 

Senator Lee: (5:36 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the NDAA.
    • "I would like to respond for a moment and speak for a few minutes about a bipartisan compromise that I introduced with the senior senator from California, Senator Feinstein. The legislation I'm referring to is called the Due Process Guarantee Act. And Senator Feinstein and I have introduced this as legislation and it has been offered up as an amendment to the legislation now before this body to the National Defense Authorization Act. Alexander Hamilton called arbitrary imprisonment one of the favorite and most formidable instruments of tyrants, and with good reason. The Constitution includes safeguards against this form of tyranny, including the right of habeas corpus and that American citizens would not be deprived of life, liberty, by the government."

 

Senator Perdue: (5:56 p.m.)

  • Spoke on tariffs.
    • "We spent billions of dollars behind the Marshall Plan to do just that with Japan and all of East Asia. We then set up trade deals that we knew would help their economy grow, and that made sense then. It no longer makes sense to have an un-level playing field with the rest of the world just so they can develop. Let me give you a reason why. One of the reasons is that because of the American consumer and taxpayer, global poverty over the last 50 years has been reduced dramatically, by some estimates of over 60%. Let me say that again. Global poverty because of the American taxpayer and the American worker has been reduced over 60%."