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Senate Proceeding on Mar 7th, 2011 :: 0:14:40 to 0:37:00
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Jeff Sessions

0:14:36 to 0:14:56( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: time is not on our side. would the chair announce morning business. the presiding officer: under the previous order the leadership time is reserved. under the previous order the senate will be in a period of morning business until 4:30 p.m. with senators permitted to speak therein for up to 10 minutes each. the senator from alabama.

Jeff Sessions

0:14:40 to 0:37:00( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Jeff Sessions

Jeff Sessions

0:14:57 to 0:15:20( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: mr. sessions: well, i don't think the 6% reduction in spending proposed by the house is going to cause the united states government to sink into the ocean. states are making far more serious reductions in spending than that. these -- the language the majority leader's using seemed

Jeff Sessions

0:15:21 to 0:15:42( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: like, to me, recalls the old language in 1994, reckless republican spending cuts and poor people are thrown into the streets and that sort of thing. but what happened in 1994? in 1994 the american people, through their newly elected congress, balanced the budget in four years.

Jeff Sessions

0:15:43 to 0:16:05( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: they balanced the budget when people said it couldn't be done. they said that the spending reductions were going to destroy america and growth an prosperity and everyone -- and prosperity and everyone else that they could imagine. but it didn't happen. it helped create a period of outstanding growth. tuesday, we're told, we'll have a tea vote.

Jeff Sessions

0:16:06 to 0:16:28( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: it's a very important vote because it deals with the level of spending this country is going to participate in. it's going to make a national decisions that really important. we passed a resolution that reduced spending by $4 billion over that period keeping us on track to meet the

Jeff Sessions

0:16:29 to 0:16:52( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: house passed goal of a $61 billion reduction in spending this fiscal year. it was a good, small first step. but the big step will be coming up, i suppose, a week from this friday when the c.r. that we just passed will expire and we have to pass another one.

Jeff Sessions

0:16:53 to 0:17:13( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: at what level will we pass it? perhaps the microphone would help. at what level would we pass this c.r.? that's the question that will be before us. will we continue to trend -- the trend of reduced spending that the house started us on that the american people people started us on by the election last

Jeff Sessions

0:17:14 to 0:17:35( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: november just four months ago or do we continue business as usual? continue to be in denial to say no more, no mass, we can't do anymore. we give up. well, a vote for the democratic plan that will be presented tomorrow will be a vote to do something. that's the fact.

Jeff Sessions

0:17:36 to 0:17:58( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: it will be a vote to say we are still in denial. it will be a vote that says deficits don't matter. we can just continue to spend, just continue to invest. it will all get better in the end. it is a vote for more investments and more spending.

Jeff Sessions

0:17:59 to 0:18:19( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: indeed, we have the -- in a budget committee, which i'm the ranking republican last week, testimony from the department of education. they're asking for an 11% increase when the inflation rate is 2. the department of energy asked for a 9.5% increase.

Jeff Sessions

0:18:20 to 0:18:40( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: amazingly the department of education came in with a 62% increase in spending. is this the way to bring this country under control? is this what the american people expected when they voted last election and sent a new house of representatives and new senators here? i don't think so. and what do we hear?

Jeff Sessions

0:18:41 to 0:19:03( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: there will be another vote for fear that we can't reduce spending because the nation will sink into the ocean. i don't think so and the american people don't think so and cities and counties and states are facing these same situations and make tough decisions and being successful at it.

Jeff Sessions

0:19:04 to 0:19:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: so the decision we make on spending could well determine the fate of our nation and our economy. it's that important. it really is. 40% of every dollar we spend today is borrowed. we will spend this fis year $3.5 trillion, but we only

Jeff Sessions

0:19:25 to 0:19:47( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: take in $2.2 trillion. did you know that? congress knows that. they're in denial some, but that's the fact. it's indisputable. it's in the president's budget. over the next 10 years the budget -- pursuant to the budget, the plan that the president gave us, ton the debt

Jeff Sessions

0:19:48 to 0:20:08( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: will go -- on the debt will go from $200 billion last yea to $844 billion in one year. we will double the entire national debt, the gross debt from $13 trillion to $26 trillion. they claim they're saving $1 trillion. i guess it would have gone to $27 trillion.

Jeff Sessions

0:20:09 to 0:20:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: save $1 billion -- $1 trillion when -- when the deficit's going up every single year. the lowest single year of deficit is $600 billion. the highest single deficit year president bush had, which was too high, was $450. the lowest they'll hav is $600 billion according to the president's own numbers he sent

Jeff Sessions

0:20:30 to 0:20:51( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: to us. this is not an acceptable pattern. we have -- we're on the wrong road. this is a road to decline. it's the road to dependence on foreign sources of money to finance our spending spree. it's not road to prosperity and growth. we simply have to make some tough choices.

Jeff Sessions

0:20:52 to 0:21:13( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: we have to make this government leaner and more productive. we need to create growth and prosperity. and the growth and prosperity has to be in the private sector. that's who pace the taxes that a -- pace the taxes that a -- pays the taxes that allows us to have a healthy government. a failure to act in this point

Jeff Sessions

0:21:14 to 0:21:36( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: in history, after all of the discussion that we had and the debt commission has all called for substantial reduction in spending. but congress doesn't get it. so this is a demoralizing thing, really, for our people, for our -- our government, for

Jeff Sessions

0:21:37 to 0:21:59( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: investors in the united states, for businesses sitting on capital and thinking about what the future's going to be like. is this not going to be a sound economy any longer? is it -- is the government of the united states incapable of altering its projectry? -- trajectory? they thought perhaps this election was that way. the house has sent a clear

Jeff Sessions

0:22:00 to 0:22:20( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: message. some think it could have done further. it processed a $61 billion reduction in the discretionary spending accounts. that's a 6% reduction. we've already gotten four off

Jeff Sessions

0:22:21 to 0:22:42( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: that so it would be $57 billion. when you take these numbers, mr. president, and the american people, i hope, will think about this. when you reduce the baselin by $61 billion for spending in the discretionary accounts, that is far larger than some people think. one of the things that's gotten

Jeff Sessions

0:22:43 to 0:23:03( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: us in trouble is the geo metric problem of increasing spending. when you increase spending for 7% a year for 10 years, double the size of government just like your bank account doubles at 7% interest compounded. but when you're reducing spending, the same thing occurs, $61 billion, a reduction in the baseline.

Jeff Sessions

0:23:04 to 0:23:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: if there were no more reductions over 10 years built into the baseline, it would result in about $850 billion in savings in 10 years, almost $1 trillion. just a $61 billion cut. it does make a difference. it does make a difference and

Jeff Sessions

0:23:25 to 0:23:47( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: it's significant. but president obama's plan, the senate democratic plan do almost nothing. he proposes, as i understand it, a 6%, $6 billion cut for the rest of the fiscal year. that's just about a 1 half of 1%

Jeff Sessions

0:23:48 to 0:24:10( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: reduction in -- one half of 1% reduction in spending. and the senate democrat plan it appears to be me to be a $4 billion reduction, less than 1 half of 1% reduction in spending this year. those are fake cuts. they're not real cuts. this is washington talk. this is why this country's virtually broke.

Jeff Sessions

0:24:11 to 0:24:31( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the president says that we -- he proposed a budget to the united states congress, as law requires him to do, and that budget would cause us to live within our means and to begin paying down the debt. that's what he said. that's what his budget director said in testimony before the committee.

Jeff Sessions

0:24:32 to 0:24:52( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: what planet are they on? the lowest single annual deficit -- and if anybody on this floor wants to dispute this, i'd like to hear it -- the lowest single annual deficit is over $600 billion in its 10-year plan. and they're going up in the out years to almost $900 trillion in

Jeff Sessions

0:24:53 to 0:25:14( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the tenth year of his 10-year plan. that's why experts tell us this is an unsustainable course. i -- i wish we weren't in this fix. i guess i'll have to take some of the blame too. i voted against a lot of these spending programs, but i supported them. and we've gotten ourselves in

Jeff Sessions

0:25:15 to 0:25:38( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: some -- and we've gotten it's going to be hard to get out of it. not impossible. but we're going to have to take some action. it cannot be business as usual. of course not. but that's what the majority leader is proposing to do, nothing. do nothing. let the interest on our debt go

Jeff Sessions

0:25:39 to 0:25:59( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: from $200 billion a year t to $844 billion. where's that money going to come from? education budget is $60 billion, highway budget $40 billion, $844 on interest. what is it going to crowd out that we'd like to spend government money on? and what if we have a debt crisis?

Jeff Sessions

0:26:00 to 0:26:20( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: this assumes interest rates are at 3.5%. well, a lot of people think this interest rate is not so stable. a lot of people are afraid that we could have a national or even international debt crisis, interest rates could surge. i remember when i bought my first house, the interest rate was double digits.

Jeff Sessions

0:26:21 to 0:26:41( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: i think it was 11.5%. you think that we can't have that happen? and then instead of $844 billion in interest, we have a trillion and a half in interest in 10 years? crowding out all other kinds of spending. this is irresponsible. this is an irresponsible course. everyone knows it.

Jeff Sessions

0:26:42 to 0:27:02( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: you can't borrow your way out of debt. so what is going to snap -- going to happen? let's just pull back the curtain. let's just talk about what the plans are here. it's pretty clear if you look at it and been around this town a little bit.

Jeff Sessions

0:27:03 to 0:27:23( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: so the democratic leader accepted, he didn't want to have a debate, in very sort order -- short order accepted the reduction in two weeks. the american public thinks things are rolling along pretty well. at least we avoided a government shutdown and things are moving

Jeff Sessions

0:27:24 to 0:27:44( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: along pretty well. now we're going to have another quick vote tomorrow. that was just decided apparently today on two different plans, the house plan, a 6% reduction, a democratic plan, basically no reduction. and then we'll vote. neither one will pass. and two weeks from this -- a

Jeff Sessions

0:27:45 to 0:28:06( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: week from this friday, the c.r., the two-week c.r. will expire and we'll be heading toward a government shutdown. so secret negotiations will begin and they'll all start talking. maybe the vice president will get in there and talk a little bit and they'll -- they'll move around and the special interest will be involved. the american people won't be in

Jeff Sessions

0:28:07 to 0:28:28( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: on the discussions. they probably won't invite me in on the discussions. i don't know who all will be there. but they'll begin to negotiate and talk and they'll seeking some toothless compromise. crocodile tears and warnings will be shed. oh, we can't have a government shutdown.

Jeff Sessions

0:28:29 to 0:28:49( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: we've had a half a dozen for short periods of time and we certainly don't want one. but that's the way they'll talk about it. so we just can't cut anymore. it's going to end -- schools are going to close. health care programs are going to close. all of that -- you heard it

Jeff Sessions

0:28:50 to 0:29:13( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: before. every state, county that goes through this has the same political rhetoric out there. you can't do it. it just won't happen. then they're going to expect, i guess, the republicans to cave

Jeff Sessions

0:29:14 to 0:29:34( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: and the plan, of course, as it's been from the beginning is business as usual. business as usual. politicians win again. people lose. elections nullified. business as usual. well, i don't think so.

Jeff Sessions

0:29:35 to 0:29:56( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: business as usual has put us on the road to bankruptcy. and the voters did speak, and there's a moral responsibility of this congress to respond to the legitimate cries of the american people. don't we have that responsibility? i know one senator told me that

Jeff Sessions

0:29:57 to 0:30:17( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: during that election, they ran every single ad that talked about reducing spending and won by anybody predicted. there's no doubt that the american people expect us to reduce spending. they know that there will be some people won't get as much money as they were getting

Jeff Sessions

0:30:18 to 0:30:40( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: before, but they know we're spending too much. that's common sensical. and a vote for the democratic proposal truly for the status quo. it would be a victory for the status quo. it would be seen clearly as a

Jeff Sessions

0:30:41 to 0:31:01( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: victory for the big spenders. it would be a continuation of the unsustainable fiscal path that we are on, the path to decline, the path to dependence, debt dependence. the whole world is watching, really, just like we watched the british, they stepped up to the plate and made

Jeff Sessions

0:31:02 to 0:31:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the germans have criticized the united states for our excessive spending. the european union has criticized the united states for our excessive spending. canada has done a lot better than the united states has in containing spending. the world is watching. what is the united states going to do? is it going to get its house in order like the other developed

Jeff Sessions

0:31:25 to 0:31:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: nations are working to do? have they made a national decision to reform their unsustainable actions or not? some say these $61 billion in cuts would hurt growth.

Jeff Sessions

0:31:47 to 0:32:07( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: i contend that absolutely is not so. in terms of the total government spending, we spend spend $3,500,000,000,000, $60 bi llion reduction in that spending total is not going to throw this economy into a -- a recession. indeed, what it would do would be send a message to the financial world that the

Jeff Sessions

0:32:08 to 0:32:28( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: american people have gotten it, that the congress has gotten it, and they are at last beginning to end the unsustainable trajectory that they -- this government is on. the idea that we can borrow money, pay interest on it and create jobs has not worked.

Jeff Sessions

0:32:29 to 0:32:49( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: if it were such a good idea, why don't we borrow three times as much and spread around three times as much money? it's not an economically sustainable theory. it won't work, and it has not worked. so we're facing a huge national

Jeff Sessions

0:32:50 to 0:33:10( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: decision, and i believe many of my democratic colleagues get it. they tell me they do. they've said so publicly, many have, but talk is not enough. action will be needed. we'll begin to take action tomorrow when we cast this vote. party loyalty is fine. we all have to try to wor

Jeff Sessions

0:33:11 to 0:33:33( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: our leadership, and nobody complains about that to a degree, but we're not to be lemming. we do have a duty to our constituency, our country and our future to make some tough decisions.

Jeff Sessions

0:33:34 to 0:33:54( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: for example, just share one more thought, and i'll wrap up. i see my colleague, senator roberts, our able senator from kansas, here. don't think that we are cutting spending, this 6% reduction from some tight base line of spending

Jeff Sessions

0:33:55 to 0:34:15( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: like may be so in your state, your city or your county, and the in the last two years, the nondefense discretionary spending has increased 23%, and that does not count the stimulus

Jeff Sessions

0:34:16 to 0:34:36( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: package money, the $850 billion, the largest expenditure ever in the history of this republic, in the history of any other nation, in the history of the world. that's on top of the 23% spending. for example, the e.p.a. in two years got a 36% increase in base

Jeff Sessions

0:34:37 to 0:34:57( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: line spending in two years. they can't take a 6% reduction, plus they got an almost -- they got a 70% increase from the stimulus package, a $7 billion infusion on top of their their $10 billion budget.

Jeff Sessions

0:34:58 to 0:35:19( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: what about the state department? they got 1 2% increase in spending in the last two years, plus $1 billion for the stimulus package. and the education department asked for an 11% increase this year, got an 11% increase previously, and hold your hat,

Jeff Sessions

0:35:20 to 0:35:40( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: their budget is about about $63 billion now, they got got $97 billion out of the stimulus package, more than the whole budget. so, mr. president, we borrow 40 cents out of every dollar we spend.

Jeff Sessions

0:35:41 to 0:36:02( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: our debt will soon outgrow our economy. interest on the debt under the president's budget will rise to to $844 billion a year. the question is not whether we are headed for a crisis, but whether we have time to act to prevent it. our character is tested by how we respond in times of great challenge.

Jeff Sessions

0:36:03 to 0:36:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: this week, the senate faces such a test. how do we respond to the growing fiscal crisis facing our nation that every expert, including the debt commission, has told us is real? this is a defing vote in the career of every senator and a defining vote for the senate.

Jeff Sessions

0:36:25 to 0:36:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: a .5% proposed reduction in spending by this administration is -- is not anything, is basically doing nothing. we need every group, every concerned citizen to reach out to congress to tell congress to get off this road to fiscal calamity and to every fellow senator i say now is the time to

Jeff Sessions

0:36:47 to 0:37:00( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: stand and be counted. are you going to be the vote th back from the fiscal cliff or the vote that pushed the economy that much further toward the edge?

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