Video archive of the US Congress

Senate Proceeding on May 25th, 2010 :: 1:53:35 to 1:59:45
Total video length: 2 hours 11 minutes Stream Tools: Stream Overview | Edit Time

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Jim DeMint

1:53:31 to 1:53:51( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: the senate's business ought to be totally open to the public. i suggest -- a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina is recognized. mr. demint: thank you, mr. president.

Jim DeMint

1:53:35 to 1:59:45( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Jim DeMint

Jim DeMint

1:53:52 to 1:54:12( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: i want to commend my colleague, senator grassley and wyden, for wanting to solve a problem. i appreciate them willing to put some solutions forth here. but i think it's really important that we talk about the bigger picture when we talk about secret holds. and i do want to make it clear i'm not interested in holding anything in secret.

Jim DeMint

1:54:13 to 1:54:33( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: as a matter of fact, whenever we do as part of steering personally, we let the cloakroom know they can tell anyone they want that we're holding a bill. i'm not trying to preserve any kind of aspect of a secret hold. but i think it is important that america know what we're talng about here.

Jim DeMint

1:54:34 to 1:54:56( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: at this point in the senate, 94% of all the bills are passed unanimous consent. 94%. so this is hardly a lack of productivity. and what this means is 94% of the bills that pass the senate have no debate, no vote,o amendments, no reading of the

Jim DeMint

1:54:57 to 1:55:19( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: bill, no online disclosure, and very often no score from the congressional budget office. when i first took over the steering committee, one of the things i learned real quickly is that whenever we're having a break, if we're going for aeek like we are this week, on my way to the airport, i would get a call from staff telling me there

Jim DeMint

1:55:20 to 1:55:40( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: were dozens of requests to pass bills unanimous consent, because they knew we were all going out of town. and a lot of them had some pretty big price tags on them. folks, you don't get $13 trillion in debt when you're doing things right. part of the problem is that 94% of the bills that pass the senate pass in secret. the problem is not secret holds.

Jim DeMint

1:55:41 to 1:56:01( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: it's the secret passing of bills, when very often we don't even know who's requesting bills. and if we didn't have staff available at night when they run their so-called hotlines, which means the phone in your office rings, they ask if you will agree to pass a bill.

Jim DeMint

1:56:02 to 1:56:23( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: you haven't read it, you don't know its cost. but if you don't agree to pass it by unanimous consent, you are holding the bill. if you ask to read it for the next day or two, it's very likely that some association is getting e-mails from either the republican or the democrat side

Jim DeMint

1:56:24 to 1:56:44( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: that senator demint is holding this desperately needed piece of legislation, which nobody else has read. i'd be glad to work with my colleagues on dealing with this issue if they believe secret holds are a problem. but i frankly think passing 94% of the bills without anybody even reading them or knowing they're getting passed is not a good way to do business.

Jim DeMint

1:56:45 to 1:57:05( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: i think it's fair to have some system where, first of all, you cannot secretly ask for a bill to be passed unanimous consent. and that's what goes on here today. and we should look at the coburn-mccaskill amendment where if you want something passed unanimous consent in the dark of night, that you have to put it on the internet for at least three days with a cost from the congressional budget

Jim DeMint

1:57:06 to 1:57:28( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: office so we know what we're getting into. again, i want to remind you, we don't have a problem in washington of not passing enough bills or spending enough money. the problem we have is we're passing bills that we don't even read that have price tags that are running our country into a crushing debt.

Jim DeMint

1:57:29 to 1:57:50( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: again, i want to work with my colleagues, but if you're opposed to secret holds, which are really not a problem, and i'm not aware of one where we don't know who's holding it. but i have a problem with people secretly asking that bills be passed in secret and that 94% of the bills in this place get passed that way. there are a lot of pressing

Jim DeMint

1:57:51 to 1:58:12( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: issues that we face as a country, but one of them is not secret holds. and if we want to spend floor time debating it, i want to be involved with that debate. but we have no problem here of things that are being slowed down. the problem we have is every week, just like this week,e're adding to the spending, we're borrowing more money as a

Jim DeMint

1:58:13 to 1:58:33( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: country, we're increasing our national debt and we're expanding the federal government. this is not something we need to speed up. we need members of the senate to read bills. we don't need to be talking about holding a bill when someone innocently asks to read a bill and let me let you know tomorrow.

Jim DeMint

1:58:34 to 1:58:54( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: let's work on this. if you want bills to go through quicker, let's get rid of secret passing of bills that have never been on the internet, that have never seen the light of day. and this is something, again, that my colleagues, i know are well-intended, but they've only gotten a piece. the real problem are secret

Jim DeMint

1:58:55 to 1:59:15( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: bills and members secretly asking them to pass. i'll be glad to let you know i'm holding them. a senator: would the senator eld for a question? mr. demint: i will in just moment. mr.: your floor taoeufplt. the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina has the floor. mr. demint: let me ask a question and then i'll yield.

Jim DeMint

1:59:16 to 1:59:36( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: could we include in your legislation the idea that whenever someone wants to pass a bill unanimous consent, that they have to come to the floor and say "i, senator, jim demint, want to pass this bill, a bill i've not read, which has not been online for three days, which has no score from the congressional budget office.

Jim DeMint

1:59:37 to 1:59:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: and i desire to pass this bill with no debate and no roll call vote." if we would do that as individual i'll be glad to

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