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House Proceeding on Jul 29th, 2009 :: 1:34:20 to 1:43:30
Total video length: 2 hours 45 minutes Stream Tools: Stream Overview | Edit Time

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Jeff Flake

1:34:16 to 1:34:37( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: resolution, the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on appropriations or their designees each may offer one pro forma amendment to the bill for the purpose of debate, which shall be controlled by the proponent. section 3, the chair may entertain a motion that the committee rise only if offered by the chair of the committee on appropriations or his designee.

Jeff Flake

1:34:20 to 1:43:30( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Jeff Flake

Jeff Flake

1:34:38 to 1:34:59( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: the chair may not entertain a motion to strike out the enacting words of the bill as describe 18. section 4, during consideration of h.r. 3326, the chair may reduce to two minutes the minimum time for electronic voting under clause 6 of rule 18 and clauses 8 and 9 of rule 20.

Jeff Flake

1:35:00 to 1:35:20( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from arizona rise? mr. flake: i raise a point of order against h.res. 685 because the rule violates section 425-a of the congressional budget acts. it contains a waiver of all points of order against consideration of the bill which includes a waiver of section 425 of the congressional budget act which causes a violation of

Jeff Flake

1:35:21 to 1:35:41( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: section 426-a. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arizona makes a point of order that the resolution violates section 426-a of the codge budget act of 1974. the gentleman has met the threshold burden under the rule and the gentleman from arizona and a member opposed will control 10 minutes of debate on question of consideration. after that the chair will put the question to consideration.

Jeff Flake

1:35:42 to 1:36:02( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: the chair recognis the gentleman from arizona. mr. flake: i thank the chair. i don't know if there are unfunded mandates in this bill. that is not the reason i raise a point of order. it's the only reason that those of us in the minority have to talk about this process that has been extremely restricted. the rule for the defense bill

Jeff Flake

1:36:03 to 1:36:23( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: markets the 12th time during the appropriations season that the majority has shut down what has traditionally been an open process. the defense is considered last and we'll have just about a day to consider it. in recent years this bill has been rifed with earmarks going

Jeff Flake

1:36:24 to 1:36:45( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: to for-profit companies. there are 1,102 earmarks stuffed into this bill and nearly 550 of them worth at least $1.3 billion are going to private for-profit companies. the corrupting nature of this practice, which the president himself has publicly noted, has been itself evident with the

Jeff Flake

1:36:46 to 1:37:06( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: p.m.a. scandal that's centered around campaign contributions and earmarks. it is for this reason and this reason alone that i chose to offer 552 amendments to the rus committee each one fargetting an earmark that the sponsors listed on their website as going to a for-profit company.

Jeff Flake

1:37:07 to 1:37:27( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: these amendments have been derived as an abuse of the process. i'd like to address this criticism, which i think is wholly unfair. it's unfair because the office of legislative counsel is not in any way inconvenience by the drafting of these amendments. my staff wrote them and wrote them indivually. they were delivered to the

Jeff Flake

1:37:28 to 1:37:48( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: rules committee well in advance of a 3:00 p.m. monday deadline given them enough time to process these amendments accordingly. in fact, i'm told that the rules committee closed up shop at around 8:00 p.m. friday night. at the rules committee meeting yesterday, there were 12 -- i'm

Jeff Flake

1:37:49 to 1:38:09( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: sorry -- and the rules committee met yesterday, and the 12th rule of this appropriation process was passed, which restricted amendments again. that meeting lasted just one hour, one hour, the rules committee met and in one hour dealt apparently with more than 600 amendments that were submitted.

Jeff Flake

1:38:10 to 1:38:30( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: that is almost equivalent to the appropriations committee meeting for 18 minutes to pass this bill out of committee, a bill with more than 1,000 earmarks, more than 500 earmarks that are no-bid contracts to private companies, passed by the appropriations committee in 18 minutes. now, the majority talks a lot

Jeff Flake

1:38:31 to 1:38:51( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: about making sure that we do this all in a timely process. i would suggest there's something to be a bit more thorough. you cannot vet more than 1,000 earmarks, more than 550 of which are no-bid contracts to private companies in 18 minutes. and you can't restrict it in

Jeff Flake

1:38:52 to 1:39:12( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: this way coming to the floor and expect this to be a thorough process. it ia quick process. maybe the trains are running on time. but we're not doing our job here. the flawed process by which the rules committee reported this bill does not appear to have been delayed or inconvenienced in any way by submission of these amendments. referring to these amendments

Jeff Flake

1:39:13 to 1:39:34( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: submissions as an abuse of the process is far-fetched considering the severe restrictions the rules committee has placed on our ability to offer amendments to appropriation bills. this is a process, again, that has been traditionally open. excluding the defense bill, more than 800 amendments were submitted to the rules committee for 10 appropriation bills thhouse has already considered this summer. at the start of the process,

Jeff Flake

1:39:35 to 1:39:55( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: the chairman of the appropriations committee said, quote, there are a limited number of hours between now and the time we recess. if we don't get our work done, we have to limit the amount -- if we want to get our work done, we have to limit the debate time that we spend on these bills. the majority leader he canowed this sentiment as an explanation for -- echoed is sentiment as an explanation for

Jeff Flake

1:39:56 to 1:40:16( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: clamping down the process. quote, the reason is to give us the opportunity to go to the rules committee and provide for, as i said, time constraints in which we can effectively complete this bill. this has been the exclues that's been -- excuse that's been used so far, an excuse to make in order only 18% of the amendments submitted for appropriation bills we've seen so far.

Jeff Flake

1:40:17 to 1:40:38( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: i realize that amongst my colleagues i've been the most fortunate. i've been permitted to offer more than 40 amendments, 26% of all of the amendments ruled in order in total of these bills. i suppose i should be grateful. for any crumbs that fall from the appropriations committee or the rules committee. but my amendments were ruled in order at the expense of other,

Jeff Flake

1:40:39 to 1:40:59( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: perhaps more substantive amendments, in many ways as at majority to deflect blame and to preve their members from making tough votes on some of the other amendments that were submitted. when i was on the house floor with a couple of bills, i offered time and time again, in fact, 16 times i asked for unanimous consent to substitute

Jeff Flake

1:41:00 to 1:41:21( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: some of my colleagues' amendments for my own. we already had the time constraints for the bill. so the notion that we had to make the trains run on time, we had to get ts debate done was not the point. but i was rejected 16 times in a row, not because the amendments offered by my colleagues weren't germane. they were.

Jeff Flake

1:41:22 to 1:41:42( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: they simply weren't ruled in order by the majority because they didn't want to face those amendments. and that, if we're going to talk about abuse of the process, there it is. it's not offering 550 amendments because we're doing more than 550 no-bid contracts to private companies. that's not where the abuse lies. the abuse lies in the majority

Jeff Flake

1:41:43 to 1:42:04( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: saying we're only go to entertain those amendments that we know we can beat or that we want to entertain or that are entertaining, apparently. not the ones that may be difficult for us. now, when republicans were in the majority, i've often said we did a few things that we shouldn't have, holding a vote open for three hours.

Jeff Flake

1:42:05 to 1:42:25( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: it wasn't a good thing. but i've never seen any abuse of the process like this. no matter how the republicans when they were in power didn't want to see amendments like some of mine they allowed them. we spent i think three days on the interior appropriation bill because members kept coming forward offering amendments

Jeff Flake

1:42:26 to 1:42:47( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: that our own majority didn't want to see but they knew that they shouldn't shut down this process, which has been traditionally open. but the new majority has decided to completely close it. and to not have one apprriation bill this year come to the floor under an open rule. and in particular, when some will make the argument that,

Jeff Flake

1:42:48 to 1:43:08( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Flake: well, hay, back in the 1970's therwere other -- occasions when the appropriation bills were not brought in order to the floor. bills are brought to the floor that have been stuffed to the gills with earmarks like this bill that we're considering today, more than 1,000 earmarks, more than 500 of

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