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Senate Proceeding on Nov 5th, 2009 :: 7:15:00 to 7:27:25
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Jim DeMint

7:14:42 to 7:15:03( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: the hand of the executive branch of government and close down the side of the war on terror that has been most effective at incarcerating and punishing our terrorist enemies. with that, i yield the floor back to my distinguished colleague and again thank him for his courtesy.

Jim DeMint

7:15:00 to 7:27:25( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Jim DeMint

Jim DeMint

7:15:04 to 7:15:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: mr. demint: madam president. the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina. mr. demint: south carolina is right. thank you, madam president. i would first like to just associate myself with leader mcconnell and thank him for his leadership on the guantanamo bay issue. i know as the president looks to to -- to close this facility which costs the american

Jim DeMint

7:15:25 to 7:15:46( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: taxpayer $275 million, the people around the country, including my own state, charleston, south carolina, are concerned that we're now going to move some of the world's most dangerous people into a civilian area that is not designed for this type of security threat, and i appreciate senator mcconnell's leadership on this

Jim DeMint

7:15:47 to 7:16:08( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: and trying to bring some rational thinking. but i'd like to take a break from the discussion of guantanamo bay and the appropriation bills that we have on the floor just to discuss briefly the situation in honduras. honduras is one of america's best allies in this hemisphere. for the last four months, they have been involved in a constitutional crisis.

Jim DeMint

7:16:09 to 7:16:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: i have been very critical of the administration's handling of the honduras situation. in fact, i have held two nominees, one to latin america, one to brazil, in order to shine a spotlight on the situation and get this administration and this congress to focus on what i

Jim DeMint

7:16:30 to 7:16:51( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: considered was very bad policy towards a very close friend of the united states. and while i have been very critical, i think it's important when t administration changes its view and puts things on the right course, i want to be the first to thank secretary

Jim DeMint

7:16:52 to 7:17:14( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: clinton, secre for their work in honduras and wanted to talk a little bit about that situation. as pt of my talk, i want to make sure senator reid knows that it is my intent to release my holds on the nominees so that they can move forward now that i believe the adm

Jim DeMint

7:17:15 to 7:17:37( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: set a good course for our allies in honduras. let me just take a few minutes to go through the background on this situation because not many people around the country or even in the congress have paid much attention to this. over four months ago, i believe our administration rushed to judgment in declaring the

Jim DeMint

7:17:38 to 7:18:03( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: removal of president zaliah from office as a military coup. all branc government agreed that he should have been removed. tribunal, the attorney general, the supreme court.

Jim DeMint

7:18:05 to 7:18:29( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: all institutions of democracy in honduras agreed that the president had violated the constitution and the law and need to be removed from office. for weeks leading up to his arrest, president manuel zaliah defied his nation's laws and attempted to illegally rewrite the honduran constitution so that he could remain in office

Jim DeMint

7:18:30 to 7:18:50( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: past his term. that probably sounds familiar because that's the same course hugo chavez has taken in venezuela, ortega in nicaragua. of course we know about the castros. of course it's pan democrat nick latin elect leaders who change the constitution and become dictators.

Jim DeMint

7:18:51 to 7:19:11( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: and zaliah was on that same course until the democratic institutions in honduras stopped him short. he attempted to force a national vote to allow himself to stay in office. and he went so far as to try to relieve a violent mob to try to retrieve ballo that had been

Jim DeMint

7:19:12 to 7:19:33( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: printed in venezuela that had been confiscated by the honduran authorities so he could not have the national referendum that he wanted to have. as i mentioned before, every honduran institution supported his removal. because of his open defiance of the laws and the constitution. the people of honduras have

Jim DeMint

7:19:34 to 7:19:55( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: struggled too long to have their hard-won democracy stolen from them by a would-be dictator. the honduran government had little choice but to act in accordance to the honduran constitution in their own rule of law. they had to remove zelaya from office to protect their democracy. since june, our own law library of congress made public a

Jim DeMint

7:19:56 to 7:20:16( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: thorough report defending the actions undertaken by the honduran institutions in contradicting the claims made by the obama administration. our own state department says they have secret legal memos of their own supporting their own action, but they have refused our request to release them and they have kept them hidden from the public.

Jim DeMint

7:20:17 to 7:20:38( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: instead of siding with the honduran people, the administration decided to put their full support behind mr. zelaya, who is a close ally of hugo chavez and whom the state department even said had undertaken provocative actions that led to his removal. despite this admission, the

Jim DeMint

7:20:39 to 7:21:01( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: obama administratn has waged a war directly against the honduran people by denying visas, terminating aid, and refusing to acknowledge that free a fair elections would solve the problems in honduras. the present election is on schedule for november 29. it has been scheduled that way since 1982 when their

Jim DeMint

7:21:02 to 7:21:22( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: constitution was put in place. under honduras' one-term limit requirement, zelaya could not have sought re-election anyway. the current president roberto ichiletti, who i just got off the phone with, he was installed

Jim DeMint

7:21:23 to 7:21:43( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: after zelaya's removal per the constitution, and he is not on the ballot either. he is not seeking power in honduras. the presidential candidates were nominated in primaries ovea year ago and all of them, including zelaya's former vice president, expect these elections to be free and fair

Jim DeMint

7:21:44 to 7:22:04( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: and transparent, as has every other honduran election for almost a generation. so as i have said, i have been terribly disappointed with the administration's policies on honduras and have consistently argued that the upcoming november 29 elections are the only way out of this mess, and

Jim DeMint

7:22:05 to 7:22:26( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: we as a nation have to send the signals that we will recognize these elections. i personally visited honduras last month and was satisfied as to the legitimacy of the interim government of micheletti and the legitimacy of the lonscheduled presidential elections that will be held later this month.

Jim DeMint

7:22:27 to 7:22:49( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: i'm happy to report today that after many months, secretary clinton and secretary shannon have led the obama administration back in the right direction. i met yesterday with the assistant secretary of state of latin america, tom shannon, and i spoke today with secretary clinton, and i can report that

Jim DeMint

7:22:50 to 7:23:11( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: we now appear to be on the right track. both assistant secretary shannon and secretary clinton assured me that notwithstanding any previous statements by administration officials, the united states will recognize the november 29 honduran election, regardless of whether the honduras government votes to reinstate zelaya.

Jim DeMint

7:23:12 to 7:23:34( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: and they have made it clear the administration will recognize the elections regardless of whether the honduran congress votes on the zelaya restatement before or after the november 29 election. the independence, transparency, and fairness of those elections has never been in doubt, and now thanks to the reversal of the

Jim DeMint

7:23:35 to 7:23:56( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: obama administration, the new governments sworn into office next january can expect the full support of the united states and i hope the entire international community. i applaud the administration. i'm thankful that they have ended its focus on who i consider a would-be dictator zelaya and is now standing firmly with the honduras people

Jim DeMint

7:23:57 to 7:24:19( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: and for a honduran solution to this problem. today stops -- really starts a major step forward for the cause of freedom and democracy for the western hemisphere, for the united states, and especially for the brave people of honduras. they're proving that despite crushing hardships and impossible odds, freedom and democracy can succeed anywhere

Jim DeMint

7:24:20 to 7:24:40( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: people are willing to fight for it. the condemnation heaped on the free people of honduras these last several months never had to happen. the obama administration erred in its assessment of the situation on honduras because of a rush to judgment based on bad information. i think we have all learned a

Jim DeMint

7:24:41 to 7:25:02( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: lesson about distinguishing friends from foes, and the paramount importance of constitutional democracy to international stability. for months, i have made it clear that i would continue to object to two state department nominations until the u.s. reversed its flawed honduras policy. my goal has been to get this

Jim DeMint

7:25:03 to 7:25:24( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: administration to recognize the november 29 elections. now that this has happened, i will -- i will keep my part of the bargain and i will release these holds and i will notify senator reid that these nominations can move ahead on his schedule. it's no secret that i have been critical of the administration

Jim DeMint

7:25:25 to 7:25:45( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: of handling these issues, but i want to take this opportunity today to thank secretary clinton and shannon for re-engaging the honduran government and working out a solution that president micheletti and the government in

Jim DeMint

7:25:46 to 7:26:06( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: honduras as well as the honduran people feel is fair. there are still a number of concerns. i talked to president micheletti just moments ago. he is concerned that the organization of american states continues to support deposed president zelayand are organizing along with zelaya a

Jim DeMint

7:26:07 to 7:26:27( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: lot of mischief related to the upcoming elections, encouraging people to take to the streets and encouraging violence. i hope the state department and the obama administration, along with this congress, will cont people and make sure that the organization of american states and any other country will

Jim DeMint

7:26:28 to 7:26:48( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: support the agreement that has been signed by the people in honduras and we have agreed to. so again i'm very thankful for the opportunity to speak on this issue, to again bring it to the attention of this congress and the american people, and i look forward to releasing the holds of these nominations and

Jim DeMint

7:26:49 to 7:27:12( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: continuing to follow the situation closely, particularly the november 29 elections as honduras continues as a free and democratic nation. thank you, mr. president, i

Jim DeMint

7:27:13 to 7:27:25( Edit History Discussion )

Jim DeMint: yield back. mr. demint: mr. president, i note the absence of a the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll.

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