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Senate Proceeding on May 5th, 2011 :: 0:53:25 to 1:15:25
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Jeff Sessions

0:53:05 to 0:53:25( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: quorum call: mr. sessions: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from alabama's recognized. mr. sessions: i would ask that the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. sessions: mr. president, i understand that maybe there's an agreement that another member would speak at 11:00. if so, will yield at that time.

Jeff Sessions

0:53:25 to 1:15:25( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Jeff Sessions

Jeff Sessions

0:53:26 to 0:53:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: i am concerned about the financial status of our country. we are clearly on an unsustainable spending path. the people are rightly furious with their congress. we should, as they well know, never ever have gotten ourselves

Jeff Sessions

0:53:47 to 0:54:08( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: in the financial situation we're in today in which we are are projected to have a deficit this fiscal yea september 30th of $1.5 trillion, the largest deficit the country has ever had on top of deficits the last two

Jeff Sessions

0:54:09 to 0:54:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: of $1.2 trillion, $1.3 trillion. we're on a path to double the entire united states debt in less than four years. in the last three years, maybe one more year, we will double the entire debt of the united states. we are on an unsustainable path, as every witness who's ever

Jeff Sessions

0:54:30 to 0:54:50( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: testified before our budget committee, at least in recent years has stated it is an unacceptable situation that we are in. there shalacking of big

Jeff Sessions

0:54:51 to 0:55:11( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: government folks. we've not even two year, 735 days, we have not had a budget. the budget act requires that congress pass a budget by april 15th. the house has done theirs. the republican house has passed

Jeff Sessions

0:55:12 to 0:55:32( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: a budget, a historic budget. the republican democratic senate now is talking about commencing hearings and i hope that we have a good hearing and maybe we will have

Jeff Sessions

0:55:33 to 0:55:54( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: so, i will just say, that our members, the republican members of the budget committee asked our chairman to do as the house did and make public your budget in advance of the hearing so that it can be it's a complex document. it's takes some time and effort,

Jeff Sessions

0:55:55 to 0:56:15( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: not just to prop it down the day the hearing starts and i've been informed that -- that business as usual will continue unlike what the house did in the -- to have a document out early. they will have -- bring us out a budget that day and we'll commence our guests to try to

Jeff Sessions

0:56:16 to 0:56:37( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: vote on it. and i don't think that's a healthy way to -- to proceed. we are facing the greatest financial risk maybe this country has ever faced. the president appointed a fiscal commission, we call it the debt commission.

Jeff Sessions

0:56:38 to 0:57:00( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: ers kin bowles -- erskine bowles an alan simpson, appointed by the president, they wrote a document they presented to us as their remarks through the budget committee that said this nation is facing the most predictable economic crisis in its history. in other words, they're saying the path we are on is so unsustainable that it's easy to

Jeff Sessions

0:57:01 to 0:57:21( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: predict that we're facing and heading toward a financial cris. and there's no higher duty, no higher responsibly for members of congress of the united states than to protect the people of this country from a foreseeable danger. when asked by chairman conrad

Jeff Sessions

0:57:22 to 0:57:42( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: when we might have such a cris, mr. bowles said in his opinion it could be two years, a little less, a little more. a financial crisis. something like greece is what he's referring recession, a surge of inflation, a surge in interest rates. that's the kind of thing he's

Jeff Sessions

0:57:43 to 0:58:04( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: talking about. senator simpson, the co-chairman of the commission said, i think it could be one year. the s&p 500 bond evaluators have warned they could downgrade our debt.

Jeff Sessions

0:58:05 to 0:58:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: in fact, moody's in december warned that they could reduce the rating of the american debt in less than two years. we're at a -- we're in a serious, unsustainable position. we haven't even had a budget. well, the president is r by law to submit a budget.

Jeff Sessions

0:58:30 to 0:58:51( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: every president does. i ask that when he made his state of the union address that he would address and discuss the danger we are in why the nation needs to reduce spending, why it's not some partisan brouhaha, but a real threat to the future of the

Jeff Sessions

0:58:52 to 0:59:14( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: that we must take steps to pull back. he really did not do that in his state of the union. he talked about investments, investments, and more investments. then a few days after -- and then i asked did he produce a budget to help get us off the unsustainable path. i was never more disappointed in

Jeff Sessions

0:59:15 to 0:59:35( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the president's budget. he claimed it would sav save $1 trillion over 10 years. how much is that? well, according to the congressional budget office, that objectively analyzes these things, the deficit will increase at rate we're spending over the next 10 year

Jeff Sessions

0:59:36 to 0:59:58( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: years $14 trillion. so what is saving $1 billion? not nearly enough. -- enough to get us off the unsustainable path. the debt commission recommended a spending, which was not enough either.

Jeff Sessions

0:59:59 to 1:00:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: this was his own commission that he appointed. and that was not enough, but at least the numbers were fairly honest. the president's numbers, unfortunately, were not even honest. the congressional budget office analyzed his budget, and they concluded that it would increase the debt, not reduce the debt

Jeff Sessions

1:00:25 to 1:00:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: rate projections. it would not reduce the projected increase in debt from 14 to 13. what c.b.o. said it was worse. it would add to the debt $2.7 trillion over the c.b.o. baseline. i said at the tim

Jeff Sessions

1:00:47 to 1:01:07( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: irresponsible budget ever presented. maybe somebody can find somewhere in the distant past a more irresponsible budget. but when we know we are facing debts and interest rates, the likes of which we've never seen before, we need to recognize that we need to make changes.

Jeff Sessions

1:01:08 to 1:01:28( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: and his budget did not change. just, for example, let me note his budget called for a 10.5% increase in educational funding. it called for a 9.5% increase in the energy department.

Jeff Sessions

1:01:29 to 1:01:52( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: it called for a 10.5% increase in the state department and a 60% increase in spending transportation department without any real source of revenue to pay for it in to have a monumental new program to build high-speed rail and other things there.

Jeff Sessions

1:01:53 to 1:02:16( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: and we don't have the money. inflation rate is not above 3%, 2% or so, and we're getting double-digit increases when the country cannot afford the path we're on? it's unbelievable really. so after taking great heat from objective observers and so

Jeff Sessions

1:02:17 to 1:02:38( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: forth, the president made a speech. the president's speech. and he said it seems that -- he had a paragraph or two in his speech about the reason we need to take some restraint couldn't just invest, invest,

Jeff Sessions

1:02:39 to 1:03:00( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: invest; why we needed to restrain spending. that was in his speech. at least he acknowledged it a little bit, although it was not the kind of detailed, serious engagement of the american people in a discussion as to why we can't continue at the pace we're in. it just wasn't sufficient to my way of thinking. maybe i'm biased. i don't think so.

Jeff Sessions

1:03:01 to 1:03:21( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: i do not think he's done and in fact when the republicans in the house proposed reducing spending this year, he steadfastly opposed it. so we have a pattern with the president. he says he's for doing something about the debt path we're on. he opposes that actually makes a difference

Jeff Sessions

1:03:22 to 1:03:45( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: in that regard. and then finally when they were dragged kicking and screaming into saving about $300 billion over ten years, the president took credit for it, like it was his idea. well, they had been opposing it all along. the democratic leader here proposed a $4 billion reduction

Jeff Sessions

1:03:46 to 1:04:06( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: in spending, which was nothing. so i just would say i'm worried about where we're heading, how serious we are. now, the senate republican budget staff has looked at the president's speech and tried to see what's in it and see where

Jeff Sessions

1:04:07 to 1:04:27( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: we could go from there. what they found is it does not reduce spending by $4 trillion. does not. his framework, as he called it, to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion would actually grow the deficit by $2.2 trillion above

Jeff Sessions

1:04:28 to 1:04:49( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the congressional budget office baseline. the american people deserve an honest fact-based budget. instead, the president's deficit speech was the biggest gimmick yet. an analysis of the president's april 13 speech

Jeff Sessions

1:04:50 to 1:05:11( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: falsity of the claim that this new framework would result in $4 trillion in deficit reduction. the analysis reveals that the president's framework is simply a rhetorically packaged, repackaged version of the budget he submitted on february 14, a budget that the c.b.o. estimated

Jeff Sessions

1:05:12 to 1:05:34( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: could actually worsen our deficits by $2.7 trillion. the committee staff has concluded the president's framework compared to the current c.b.o. baseline would now worsen the debt by $2.2 trillion over ten years. the president's speech is a sleight of hand process that

Jeff Sessions

1:05:35 to 1:05:55( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: creates the impression of bringing new deficit-reduction measures to the table without actually doing so, leaving us at bottom with the original flawed proposal only presented in language that seems to here's how the process worked in

Jeff Sessions

1:05:56 to 1:06:16( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the speech and how we analyze it, and i believe this is a fair analysis of it. first, he offers the same proposals in his framework as his formal budget submission, but using new language. two, he assumes savings from his february budget that the congressional budget office has

Jeff Sessions

1:06:17 to 1:06:39( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: already found to be bogus. he continues to assume savings that the objective congressional budget office says are not legitimate savings. so if you score savings budget, you can claim you've made savings when you haven't. we've seen that time and time again. in fact, it's one reason this

Jeff Sessions

1:06:40 to 1:07:01( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: government is in so much debt. the c.b.o., by the way, is a bipartisan group, but its leaders are selected by the democratic majority. they have the majority. this is a group that's not hostile to the president. they've rejected many of his claims of savings.

Jeff Sessions

1:07:02 to 1:07:22( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: number three, it calculates the savings over 12 years. everybody's been talking about 10. it's been a 10-year budget he submitted. so to make his numbers look better, he extends it to 12 years and claims more savings than otherwise would be the case if you're comparing apples to

Jeff Sessions

1:07:23 to 1:07:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: apples and oranges to oranges. a ten-year budget. he adds long-term savings from the the continuing resolution. claims credit for the spending reductions the house of representatives forced on us. some said it wasn't nearly enough. that's really true.

Jeff Sessions

1:07:47 to 1:08:08( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: they had proposed saving about $800 billion over ten years. about time democratic resistance had gone forward and the president had resisted, we ended up with only about a $300 billion savings over ten years. he claims credit for that in his numbers.

Jeff Sessions

1:08:09 to 1:08:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: as the analysis demonstrates, the framework in his speech offered no new proposals beyond the dangerously flawed february budget. even if they used their own estimates that have been discredited by c.b.o., the

Jeff Sessions

1:08:30 to 1:08:53( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: framework still falls an astonishing $3.2 trillion short of what the deficit commission that he appointed recommended. perhaps this is why the white house has been unwilling to heed the call of the senate budget committee republicans. we wrote him and asked that he

Jeff Sessions

1:08:54 to 1:09:15( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: ta that he submitted -- and it is documents. we sai speech now and if you've changed what you had in your translate that into a new budget and send it to us -- we've had that done in the past a number of times.

Jeff Sessions

1:09:16 to 1:09:39( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: they refused. why? because a speech is more generalized, it's harder to score, hard to analyze. and when you put it in actual print, it can be analyzed. the numbers can be totaled, the deficits can be calculated, and you find out whether or not it actually does anything worthwhile.

Jeff Sessions

1:09:40 to 1:10:03( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: they refuse to do it. so as it stands now, we have no plan to have any real reduction of the deficit that we're face tpr-g this administration -- that we're facing from this administration or the democratic senate, let alone a framework to reduce it by $4 trillion.

Jeff Sessions

1:10:04 to 1:10:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: but they pretend it's so, that's offensive, and the american people are not happy about it, and they know that this senate and this congress has a responsibility under the law and under any morality and decency to produce a budget that says what we're going to do with their money the next year and how much deficit we're going to

Jeff Sessions

1:10:25 to 1:10:47( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: incur, how much debt we're going to increase. and they have a right to see that. and all we've seen is a push back and talk of that so we're heading to it. we're heading to a budget situation in the committee next

Jeff Sessions

1:10:48 to 1:11:08( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: week, i hope that we will. and i think senator conrad, our democratic chairman, will sph-t a budget -- will submit a b better than the president's budget. surely it will be. i can't imagine it won't be substantially better than the budget the president has submitted.

Jeff Sessions

1:11:09 to 1:11:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: but the question is will it be enough? they've already blamed paul ryan in the house budget committee as being draconian, ideological and unreasonable with their budget, which would reduce spending trillion in honest numbers that

Jeff Sessions

1:11:30 to 1:11:51( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: they've laid out and defended publicly, that actually confronts some of our long-term spending entitlement programs and tries to get them on a rate of growth not quite as high as it currently is. try to bring this country into a financial sound position. i don't think the house budget

Jeff Sessions

1:11:52 to 1:12:13( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: probably goes far enough in the first ten years to bring our debt under control. but it's an honest, respected document that every objective commentator has praised. and well, if you disagree with mr. ryan's budget, at least it

Jeff Sessions

1:12:14 to 1:12:34( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: was honest, and you need to put your own out there with the same degree of honesty as he did. mr. bowles was president clinton's chief of man chosen by president obama to

Jeff Sessions

1:12:35 to 1:12:55( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: head his fiscal commission. this will be really perhaps the most important budget in decades, maybe ever, because our debt situation is deep. it's not easy to get out of the fix we're in. a lot of it is driven by long-term commitments that we

Jeff Sessions

1:12:56 to 1:13:17( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: made that are unsustainable. and we've got to confront that honestly and find out how to deal with it in a way that's fair and just. well, they say we can't cut spending. we need more money for education, 10.5%.

Jeff Sessions

1:13:18 to 1:13:40( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: the state department needs more money, 10.5%. the energy department needs more money, 9.5% increase. this year they are proposing commencing october 1, 2012 budget, that's the number the presiden well, we don't have it. i would ask some of the members

Jeff Sessions

1:13:41 to 1:14:06( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: of this body maybe to call governor cuomo in new york or governor christie in new jersey or tkpwo ft bentley in -- or governor bentley in alabama. he just announced he's having to reduce spending by 15%, reduce -- prorate the spending for the rest of this fiscal year by 15%.

Jeff Sessions

1:14:07 to 1:14:27( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: and i just feel like that's a message that's been lost in this body. i see my colleague, senator klobuchar, here, mr. president. i wanted to share these remarks this morning. the vice president, i believe, is meeting with some people, house and senate republicans and democrats today. maybe it will be budget number three.

Jeff Sessions

1:14:28 to 1:14:49( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: and maybe the vice president can fix something here. i hope they gave him the responsibility and the freedom to make a decision, or have they told him he can't cut spending really in any significant way. i don't know what they'll tell the vice president, but hopefully something will come out of that.

Jeff Sessions

1:14:50 to 1:15:11( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: and maybe we can get on procedure. but at this rate, at this point in our process, we're not in a good position. and i'm worried about it and hopefully we can reach some agreement. and if not, we're going to fight it out on the floor of the senate, of the house, in conference committee, and we're

Jeff Sessions

1:15:12 to 1:15:26( Edit History Discussion )

Jeff Sessions: going to change the debt course of this nation because the american people are going to demand it. i thank the chair and would yield the floor. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the recognized. ms. klobuchar: mr. president, i

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