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Senate Proceeding 02-15-11 on Feb 15th, 2011 :: 0:18:40 to 0:25:30
Total video length: 6 hours 20 minutes Stream Tools: Stream Overview | Edit Time

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Roger F. Wicker

0:18:37 to 0:18:57( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: nonemergency scheduling helps on morale. awards and recognitions, uniforms, bidding on shifts and procedures used for how they bid on shifts. who gets the 2:00 a.m. shift. all emergency type of situations. this will help give them a

Roger F. Wicker

0:18:40 to 0:25:30( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Roger F. Wicker

Roger F. Wicker

0:18:58 to 0:19:19( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: better morale and i think help in terms of insuring security. don't take my word for it. take the administrator's word for it, administrator john pistole, who said this will help ensure the safety of the traveling public. i reserve the balance of our time. mr. wicker: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from mississippi.

Roger F. Wicker

0:19:20 to 0:19:41( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: mr. wicker: i yield myself five minutes. and, of course, i rise in support of the wicker amendment. senator collins, who spoke earlier, is a cosponsor of this amendment. i might also note that senator coburn has joined as a cosponsor also. the wicker amendment has

Roger F. Wicker

0:19:42 to 0:20:03( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: everything to do with public safety. it has everything to do with preventing excessive litigation when it comes to the definitions of the roles of our t.s.a. workers. it has everything to do with preventing increased deficits here in the united states and in the federal government.

Roger F. Wicker

0:20:04 to 0:20:24( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: and for that reason, groups that support the wicker amendment today and urge -- and i -- urge an eye vote include -- yea include americans for tax reform. now, just a little history for those who haven't followed this

Roger F. Wicker

0:20:25 to 0:20:46( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: debate over the last several days, currently t.s.a. employees are not allowed to collectively bargain. that has been the policy of the federal government since the inception of the transportation security administration. for a decade t.s.a. employees have not been allowed to collectively bargain.

Roger F. Wicker

0:20:47 to 0:21:08( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: their rights and considerations and -- and morale issues have been taken care of in other ways. since the creation of t.s.a., its employees have been treated like those in the f.b.i., the c.i.a. and the secret service for purposes of collective bargaining.

Roger F. Wicker

0:21:09 to 0:21:30( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: in fact, in a 2003 memo, the undersecretary of transportation for security, which is now the t.s.a. administrator, prohibited t.s.a. security screeners from unionizing with collective bargaining rights. and the undersecretary at the time made this decision -- quote -- "in light of their critical

Roger F. Wicker

0:21:31 to 0:21:52( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: national security responsibilities." and that has been their regime -- the regime under which we have operated the t.s.a. for the entire existence of the agents sism now, however, the -- agency. now, however, the obama administration is i think intent on dolling out awards to campaign supporters and moving

Roger F. Wicker

0:21:53 to 0:22:13( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: to reverse this decade-long decision and to allow t.s.a. workers to collectively bargain. my amendment would -- would prevent that and, as i say, would keep the t.s.a. employees under the same restrictions as f.b.i., c.i.a. and secret service.

Roger F. Wicker

0:22:14 to 0:22:34( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: now, senator collins and her modification to my amendment provided some very important safeguards. it allows t.s.a. workers to be under the merit system protection board. it also provides whistle-blower protection act. the protections for t.s.a.

Roger F. Wicker

0:22:35 to 0:22:56( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: employees. now, we're told that our concerns about safety have been taken care of because the agreement -- or the decision by the t.s.a. administrator says we can't have collective bargaining over other security issues. it named several and said other security issues.

Roger F. Wicker

0:22:57 to 0:23:18( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: what does that mean? that's what the former administrator was talking about in the letter to senator collins. this is going to require litigation to determine what -- quote -- "other security issues are." i'll tell you what apparently is

Roger F. Wicker

0:23:19 to 0:23:40( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: allowed under the administrator's proposal, it does allow bargaining over the selection process for special assignments. it allows collective bargaining over the policy for transfer. it allows collective bargaining for shift training as my friend from iowa just acknowledged. all of these are going to make

Roger F. Wicker

0:23:41 to 0:24:01( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: the t.s.a. less flexible and -- and less efficient in going about their business of protecting americans. i would close by saying this, this is a budget debate also. at the other end of this building we're having hour after hour of debate about how to keep this deficit from ballooning.

Roger F. Wicker

0:24:02 to 0:24:22( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: how to keep the cost of government from going up. does anybody think that allowing collective bargaining for 50,000 additional federal employees is going to cut the cost of the federal government? the presiding officer: the senator's consumed five minutes. mr. wicker: i would yield myself the final minute. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. wicker: thank you,

Roger F. Wicker

0:24:23 to 0:24:45( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: mr. president. what is happening out in the states, mr. president? state after state after state is facing bankruptcy. and a large part of it is the cost of government brought on by

Roger F. Wicker

0:24:46 to 0:25:06( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: employee union contracts. that's just a fact. and state after state -- governor after governor, they're coming to washington, d.c., and saying, we're going to have to do something about it this. we're going to have to break these contracts and save us from financial ruin. now, at a time when governors are moving in that direction and

Roger F. Wicker

0:25:07 to 0:25:27( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: trying to get out from under these public employee collective bargaining agreements, wouldn't it be the height of irresponsibility -- wouldn't it be the height of irony if the federal government -- for the federal government to go in the other direction. vote for the wicker amendment and save the taxpayer the additional money that it will take to move to collective bargaining.

Roger F. Wicker

0:25:28 to 0:25:30( Edit History Discussion )

Roger F. Wicker: the presiding officer: the senator from west virginia's recognized.

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