NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2013--Resumed.
(Senate - December 04, 2012)

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[Pages S7381-S7392]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




   NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2013--Resumed.

  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will report the pending business.

       A bill (S. 3254) to authorize appropriations for fiscal 
     year 2013 for military activities of the Department of 
     Defense, for military construction, and for defense 
     activities of the Department of Energy, to prescribe military 
     personnel strengths for such fiscal year, and for other 
     purposes.

  Pending:

       Kyl modified amendment No. 3123, to require briefings on 
     dialogue between the United States and the Russian Federation 
     on nuclear arms, missile defense, and long-range conventional 
     strike systems.

  Ms. STABENOW. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Akaka). The Senator from Virginia.
  Mr. WEBB. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. WEBB. Mr. President, we are about to wrap up the Defense bill. 
This is the sixth Defense bill I have had the privilege of working on 
as a member of the Armed Services Committee. It is also the final 
Defense bill I will be working on as a Member of the U.S. Senate. I 
want to take this opportunity to say what an honor and privilege it has 
been to serve as a member of that committee and express my thanks to 
Chairman Levin.
  As someone who began his time on Capitol Hill as a full-committee 
counsel on the House side many years ago and then spent 5 years in the 
Pentagon--often working over here on the Hill--and now after 6 years in 
the Senate, I can say that Senator Levin is a five-star committee 
chairman. He is what one always hopes for when he or she serves on a 
committee in the U.S. Congress. It has been a true honor.
  This committee is an example of how committee work should be 
undertaken in the U.S. Congress. People like to say this is the 51st 
consecutive year we have, hopefully, been able to pass a Defense 
authorization bill. I would suggest to my colleagues that perhaps that 
example should be used more broadly in this body. I think it would make 
for good governance if it did.
  I want to also express my appreciation to Senator McCain, the Senator 
from Arizona. I have known him as a colleague and friend for more than 
30 years. He comes from a family that has a long tradition of military 
service to our country that continues even until today. Senator McCain 
and I have had occasional disagreements on the conduct of foreign 
policy, but I think it has been very rare that we have seen differently 
as to our views of how the Department of Defense should undertake its 
responsibilities.
  As the subcommittee chair of the personnel subcommittee, I want to 
express my appreciation to my staff, Gary Leeling, Jon Clark, Brie 
Fahrer, and Jennifer Knowles. They have always been accessible and 
extremely professional. It has been a great privilege to work with 
them.
  I also want to take a special moment of privilege here to recognize 
Gordon Peterson, who has been my military assistant throughout my time 
in the U.S. Senate. Gordon Peterson and I graduated from the Naval 
Academy in the same year. He was a very fine and respected athlete at 
the Naval Academy. He went on to become a helicopter pilot in combat in 
Vietnam. He gave our country 30 years of distinguished service as a 
naval officer. He was later the editor in chief of Seapower magazine, 
and was a special assistant to the Commandant of the Coast Guard. He 
has been unflagging in his attention to detail in everything we have 
worked on in the last 6 years.
  We were talking a few days ago about whether either of us would have 
thought that during the days of our plebe summers so many years ago we 
would be sitting on the floor of the U.S. Senate as stewards of the 
well-being of our country and of the people who served it. I give a 
special thanks to Gordon Peterson as he moves on to other challenges in 
his life.
  Again, it has been my privilege to serve on this committee.
  With that, I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. UDALL of New Mexico. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that 
the order for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Webb). Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  Mr. UDALL of New Mexico. Mr. President, I wanted to come down and 
talk about an amendment I am working on to the Defense authorization 
bill. Last week Senator Corker and I filed amendment No. 3049, which 
would create an open burn pit registry in the Defense Authorization 
Act.
  Our veterans and Active-Duty members suffering from exposure to burn 
pits should not have to wait any longer. The Senate Veterans' Affairs 
Committee agrees and has passed the legislation after holding hearings. 
However, I understand there is currently opposition to passing this 
amendment via a managers' package.
  I would note that we have already passed two amendments dealing with 
veterans yesterday, both the Pryor amendment No. 3291 dealing with 
veterans employment and training and the Reed of Rhode Island amendment 
No. 3165 dealing with housing assistance for veterans. Both of these 
were outstanding amendments and help maintain the trust we have made to 
our veterans and our current servicemembers whom we have an obligation 
to care for when they have completed their service.
  In both Afghanistan and Iraq, open-air burn pits were widely used at 
forward operating bases. Disposing of trash and other debris was a 
major challenge. I believe, like the rest of my colleagues, that if we 
are forever in debt to our veterans for their service, we must be 
asking this question: How did these burn pits impact the health of our 
returning heroes? This amendment is a step toward finding the answers 
we owe them. It is supported by numerous groups, including Burnpits 
360, Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Association of the U.S. Navy, 
Retired Enlisted Association, the Uniformed Services Disabled Retirees, 
and the National Military Family Association.
  I am hopeful that we can pass this amendment No. 3049 through a 
unanimous consent agreement, but I respectfully request a vote at this 
time if no such agreement can be made.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Oklahoma.
  Mr. COBURN. I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum 
call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

[[Page S7382]]

  Mr. COBURN. I just wanted to spend a few minutes talking about Reed 
amendment No. 3255 and to point out to my colleagues I know this 
amendment will pass, but I believe we ought to be on record as voting 
to add $1.7 billion in additional funds that our kids are going to pay 
for.
  This is paid for, but it is smoke and mirrors. We have used a trick 
in how we do this. Ultimately, what is going to happen is here is 
another bill that will require funding from the health account at the 
Pentagon, which is in operations and maintenance, which means we will 
not have $1.7 billion for naval exercises, for flight training, for 
tank training, for range training. In other words, out of this account 
is where it comes to all the preparedness.
  I must give President Obama credit. He has recommended what the 
committee recommended doing for the last 2\1/2\ years. Now we have an 
amendment that takes where the committee went to, actually, a small 
copay, increasing copay on pharmacy benefits for retirees, and reverses 
that and forces our veterans to have to use mail order. I am OK with 
mail order. I know we save a lot of money with that, but the CBO says 
as soon as we stop this one year, the mandate is going to go back the 
other way and the cost is going to be this amount of money. They have 
met the literal requirements of pay-go, but they haven't met the 
functional requirements. Here we have another amendment that we will 
take out of the operations and maintenance account, and that is 
important. But the most important issue in this debate is we continue 
to want to have benefits for our retired military that are growing 
faster than the rate of inflation--certainly faster than--and not have 
them help pay for the increase in the benefits.
  We have $16.4 trillion worth of debt this morning. We have $88 
trillion worth of unfunded liabilities, and now we are at this juncture 
where we are having a discussion between the Speaker of the House and 
the President on how we get over the fiscal cliff and start to solve 
some of these problems. We have an amendment put up because there is a 
very powerful force, all the service organizations and everything else, 
that said don't do this.
  Everybody in our country, if we are to get out of the problem, is 
going to have to pay a small sacrifice. This is not a large amount of 
money, unless you are absolutely destitute, in terms of the copays. The 
President has recommended we do that, the committee recommended it and 
we are reversing it and using the gimmick so there can't be a budget 
point of order on it.
  There will be a time in the not-too-distant future when the decisions 
to control our future will be out of our hands in terms of the 
economics and the debt. Delaying that now, because we do not want to 
yield against the popular criticism, will cause us to pay a further 
great price. The very people who are going to be asked to contribute as 
part of fixing our country are going to be paying a greater price.
  I just received a book from our colleague, the Senator from Rhode 
Island, Sheldon Whitehouse. I received it today, and I have already 
finished half of it. It has a wonderful introduction. I would recommend 
to all my colleagues--I know they will get one--to read it. It is a 
collection of thoughts and sayings. If we read what Daniel Webster 
said, we read what Benjamin Franklin said, and we read what Winston 
Churchill has said about bowing to the public pressure rather than 
doing the best right thing, we will not regret it.
  This is a popular amendment. It is going to pass. The service 
organizations want us to do it, but it is not the right thing to do. We 
have to begin, as we negotiate, to increase revenues from the very 
wealthy in this country, declining expenses at the Defense Department; 
everybody has to share, everybody in America. If they don't share now, 
they will share much more painfully in the future.
  I don't have anything else to say on this other than I will vote 
against it, not because I want veterans to have to have a copay but 
because I want our country to get out of the hole we are in. Part of 
the sharing of that is a copay on retail pharmacy.
  I yield the floor, and I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Franken). The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. McCAIN. I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum 
call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The Senator from Arizona.
  Mr. McCAIN. As we are wrapping up, I would like to tell the Senator 
from Oklahoma he is correct.
  Former Secretary of Defense Gates, probably the most respected 
Secretary of Defense we have had in many years, said, ``Health care 
costs are,'' in his words, ``eating us alive.''
  None of us, I don't know a single Member of this body, no matter 
where they are, who doesn't want to make sure our veterans are cared 
for, the widows, the orphans, the veterans, as Abraham Lincoln 
described them. We are going to have to find ways to bring these costs 
under control and still, at the same time, provide our veterans with 
the benefits they have earned.
  I know of no one who joined the military because of TRICARE--I hear 
from all the retirees and all that--they joined the military because of 
TRICARE. I have not yet met a single 18-year-old, including my own son, 
who joined the Marine Corps who said: Gee, I want to join the Marine 
Corps because of TRICARE. No, they joined the military because they 
want to serve their country.
  They understand our obligation to them is not to hand them a bankrupt 
Defense Department, that all the costs are in things such as TRICARE 
and retirement benefits and other personnel costs so we can't provide 
them with what they need to fight.
  I understand the positions of the veterans groups in this country. I 
respect them, I love them, and I appreciate them. But we are going to 
have to get serious about entitlements for the military just as we are 
going to have to get serious about entitlements for nonmilitary.
  I admit our veterans are in a special category. No group of Americans 
has been willing to serve and sacrifice as our veterans have, although 
there are certainly other Americans who sacrifice and serve in many 
other ways.
  I say to my friend from Oklahoma, I look forward, perhaps next year--
I hope the Reed amendment will not be proposed at this time. We need to 
sit down with the chairman, and we will have to have some hearings to 
find out what these future costs of health care will be. For example, I 
believe it has gone now from 11 percent--health care costs have gone 
from 11 percent now to 13 percent of the entire defense budget, and it 
will continue higher. We can't keep doing that.
  We adopted an amendment by Senator Gillibrand on autism services. The 
way it is written will require an increase of $1.7 billion over the 
next 10 years and no way to pay for it. I appreciate the dedication of 
the Senator from New York, but her answer was: We would like to work 
with you on that.
  We have to do more than work on it. We have to solve it. All I can 
say is while we are waiting, I hope we understand that here it is. The 
DOD health care costs represent nearly 11 percent of the total budget 
request for DOD, and it will continue to rise to more than 13 percent. 
Then it will go even higher and higher and higher.
  There was an editorial in the Washington Post today that says, ``Time 
to Rein in TRICARE.'' It says, in part:

       . . . the administration plans cuts, including shrinking 
     the Army and the Marine Corps. This is risky, given the 
     potential threats the United States faces.

  Unfortunately, Congress is compounding the problem by protecting 
expensive items that inflate personnel costs without any corresponding 
payoff in defense readiness.''
  So I would urge my colleagues to pay attention to the editorial in 
the Washington Post, ``Time To Rein In Tricare,'' because I think it is 
important for us to understand.
  Let me quote from the article:

       Tricare's costs have surged in recent years from $19 
     billion in fiscal year 2001 to $52.8 billion in fiscal 2011.

  I repeat: In 2001 TRICARE costs were $19 billion. In 2011 it was 
$52.8 billion.

       Much of the growth was driven by Congresses' 2001 decision 
     to add what is essentially a free Medigap plan for retirees 
     over 65. But the main issue is the ultra-low fees and 
     deductibles--which give retirees still of

[[Page S7383]]

     working age little incentive to economize or choose employer 
     plans. President Obama's budget plan would save $12.8 billion 
     over five years by gradually increasing working-age retirees' 
     annual enrollment fees, with lower-income retirees paying the 
     least, and then adjusting them according to national health 
     spending growth thereafter.

  We would not be doing any of that with this bill. We would not be 
doing any of that. But I would argue this is not the time now, as we 
finish with this bill, to add another additional cost that we have not 
found ways to pay for, which consumes a larger and larger part of the 
defense budget.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Michigan.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. President, in a moment I am going to note the absence 
of a quorum unless there is someone who wishes to speak.
  I want to try to work through this pending issue. I think it is the 
last issue we need to work through in some way before there will be a 
unanimous consent request that is propounded. If we can figure out the 
best way to handle this, and then offer a unanimous consent request, we 
will be able to reach the end of the bill this very day.
  So I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  Oh, I withhold that.
  Mr. McCAIN. I would just ask my friend--I understand we have a 
managers' package--is it his preference we have the managers' package 
done at the same time as the UC; do that together?
  Mr. LEVIN. It is.
  Mr. McCAIN. Hopefully, we will do that shortly.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


 Amendments Nos. 2927, 3019, 3062, 3113, 3175, 3241, 3242, 3277, 3285, 
                             3226, and 3117

  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. President, I call up a list of 11 amendments which 
have been cleared by myself and Senator McCain: Kyl amendment No. 2927, 
as modified by the changes at the desk; Akaka amendment No. 3019; 
Toomey amendment No. 3062; Brown of Ohio amendment No. 3113, as 
modified by the changes at the desk; Rubio amendment No. 3175, as 
modified by the changes at the desk; Carper amendment No. 3241; Carper 
amendment No. 3242; Thune amendment No. 3277, as modified by the 
changes at the desk; Moran amendment No. 3285, as modified by the 
changes at the desk; Bennet amendment No. 3226, as modified by the 
changes at the desk; and Hatch amendment No. 3117, as modified by the 
changes at the desk.
  Mr. McCAIN. These amendments have all been cleared on this side.
  Mr. LEVIN. I ask unanimous consent that the Senate consider these 
amendments en bloc, the amendments be agreed to, and the motion to 
reconsider be laid upon the table.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendments were agreed to, as follows:


                    amendment no. 2927, as modified

       At the end of title XXXI, add the following:

                       Subtitle D--Other Matters

     SEC. 3141. CONGRESSIONAL ADVISORY PANEL ON THE GOVERNANCE 
                   STRUCTURE OF THE NATIONAL NUCLEAR SECURITY 
                   ADMINISTRATION AND ITS RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER 
                   FEDERAL AGENCIES.

       (a) Establishment.--There is established a congressional 
     advisory panel (in this section referred to as the ``advisory 
     panel'') to assess the feasibility and advisability of, and 
     make recommendations with respect to, revising the governance 
     structure of the National Nuclear Security Administration (in 
     this section referred to as the ``Administration'') to permit 
     the Administration to operate more effectively.
       (b) Composition.--
       (1) Membership.--The advisory panel shall be composed of 12 
     members appointed as follows:
       (A) Three by the speaker of the Committee on Armed Services 
     of the House of Representatives.
       (B) Three by the minority leader of the House of 
     Representatives.
       (C) Three by the majority leader of the Senate.
       (D) Three by the minority leader of the Committee on Armed 
     Services of the Senate.
       (2) Chairman; vice chairman.--
       (A) Chairman.--The speaker of the House of Representatives 
     and the majority leader of the Senate shall jointly designate 
     one member of the advisory panel to serve as chairman of the 
     advisory panel.
       (B) Vice chairman.--The minority leader of the House of 
     Representatives and the minority leader of the Senate shall 
     jointly designate one member of the advisory panel to serve 
     as vice chairman of the advisory panel.
       (3) Period of appointment; vacancies.--Each member of the 
     advisory panel shall be appointed for a term of one year and 
     may be reappointed for an additional period lasting until the 
     termination of the advisory panel, in accordance with 
     subsection (f). Any vacancy in the advisory panel shall be 
     filled in the same manner as the original appointment.
       (c) Cooperation From Federal Agencies.--
       (1) Cooperation.--The advisory panel shall receive the full 
     and timely cooperation of the Secretary of Defense, the 
     Secretary of Energy, and any other Federal official in 
     providing the advisory panel with analyses, briefings, and 
     other information necessary for the advisory panel to carry 
     out its duties under this section.
       (2) Access to information.--Members of the advisory panel 
     shall have access to all information, including classified 
     information, necessary to carry out the duties of the 
     advisory panel under this section. The security clearance 
     process shall be expedited for members and staff of the 
     advisory panel to the extent necessary to permit the advisory 
     panel to carry out its duties under this section.
       (3) Liaison.--The Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of 
     State, and the Secretary of Energy shall each designate at 
     least one officer or employee of the Department of Defense, 
     Department of State and the Department of Energy, 
     respectively, to serve as a liaison officer between the 
     department and the advisory panel.
       (d) Report Required.--Not later than 120 days after the 
     date that each of the members of the advisory panel has been 
     appointed, the advisory panel shall submit to the President, 
     the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Energy, the 
     Committee on Armed Services of the Senate, and the Committee 
     on Armed Services of the House of Representatives an interim 
     report on the feasibility and advisability of revising the 
     governance structure of the Administration to permit the 
     Administration to operate more effectively, to be followed by 
     a final report prior to the termination of the advisory panel 
     in accordance with subsection (f). The report shall include 
     the following:
       (1) Recommendations with respect to the following:
       (A) The organization and structure of the Administration, 
     including the roles, responsibilities, and authorities of the 
     Administration and mechanisms for holding the Administration 
     accountable.
       (B) The allocation of roles and responsibilities with 
     respect to the safety and security of the nuclear weapons 
     complex.
       (C) The relationship of the Administration to the National 
     Security Council, the Nuclear Weapons Council, the Department 
     of Energy, the Department of Defense, as well as the national 
     security laboratories, and other Federal agencies, as 
     appropriate.
       (D) The role of the Administration in the interagency 
     process for planning, programming, and budgeting with respect 
     to the nuclear weapons complex.
       (E) Legislative changes necessary for revising the 
     governance structure of the Administration.
       (F) The appropriate structure for oversight of the 
     Administration by congressional committees.
       (G) The length of the term of the Administrator for Nuclear 
     Security.
       (H) The authority of the Administrator to appoint senior 
     members of the Administrator's staff.
       (I) Whether the nonproliferation activities of the 
     Administration on the day before the date of the enactment of 
     this Act should remain with the Administration or be 
     transferred to another agency.
       (J) Infrastructure, rules, and standards that will better 
     protect the safety and health of nuclear workers, while also 
     permitting those workers the appropriate freedom to 
     efficiently and safely carry out their mission.
       (K) Legislative or regulatory changes required to improve 
     contracting best practices in order to reduce the cost of 
     programs without eroding mission requirements.
       (L) Whether the administration should operate more 
     independently of the Department of Energy while reporting to 
     the President, through the Secretary of Energy.
       (2) An assessment of how revisions to the governance 
     structure of the Administration will lead to a more mission-
     focused management structure capable of keeping programs on 
     schedule and within cost estimates.
       (3) An assessment of the disadvantages and benefits of each 
     organizational structure for the Administration considered by 
     the advisory panel.
       (4) An assessment of how the national security laboratories 
     can expand basic science in support of ancillary national 
     security missions in a manner that mutually reinforces the 
     stockpile stewardship mission of the Administration and 
     encourages the retention of top performers.

[[Page S7384]]

       (5) An assessment of how to better retain and recruit 
     personnel, including recommendations for creating an improved 
     professional culture that emphasizes the scientific, 
     engineering, and national security objectives of the United 
     States.
       (6) Any other information or recommendations relating to 
     revising the governance structure of the Administration that 
     the advisory panel considers appropriate.
       (e) Funding.--Of the amounts authorized to be appropriated 
     for fiscal year 2013 and made available to the Department of 
     Defense pursuant to this Act, not more than $1,000,000 shall 
     be made available to the advisory panel to carry out this 
     section.
       (f) Sunset.--The advisory panel established by subsection 
     (a) of this section shall be terminated on the date that is 
     365 days after the date that each of the twelve members of 
     the advisory panel has first been appointed.


                           AMENDMENT NO. 3019

(Purpose: To amend the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 with respect to 
          the State Trade and Export Promotion Grant Program)

       At the end of subtitle H of title X, add the following:

     SEC. 1084. STATE TRADE AND EXPORT PROMOTION GRANT PROGRAM.

       Section 1207(a)(5) of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 
     (15 U.S.C. 649b note) is amended by inserting after ``Guam,'' 
     the following: ``the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana 
     Islands,''.


                           amendment no. 3062

(Purpose: To require the Government Accountability Office to include in 
  its annual report to Congress a list of the most common grounds for 
          sustaining protests relating to bids for contracts)

       At the end of subtitle E of title VIII, add the following:

     SEC. 888. INCLUSION OF INFORMATION ON COMMON GROUNDS FOR 
                   SUSTAINING BID PROTESTS IN ANNUAL GOVERNMENT 
                   ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE REPORTS TO CONGRESS.

       The Comptroller General of the United States shall include 
     in the annual report to Congress on the Government 
     Accountability Office each year a list of the most common 
     grounds for sustaining protests relating to bids for 
     contracts during such year.


                    amendment no. 3113, as modified

       At the end of subtitle E of title VIII, add the following:

     SEC. 888. SMALL BUSINESS HUBZONES.

       (a) Definition.--In this section, the term ``covered base 
     closure area'' means a base closure area that, on or before 
     the date of enactment of this Act, was treated as a HUBZone 
     for purposes of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 631 et 
     seq.) pursuant to section 152(a)(2) of the Small Business 
     Reauthorization and Manufacturing Assistance Act of 2004 (15 
     U.S.C. 632 note).
       (b) Treatment as HUBZone.--
       (1) In General.--Subject to paragraph (2), a covered base 
     closure area shall be treated as a hubzone the purposes of 
     the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 631 et seq.) During the 5-
     year period beginning on the date of enactment of this Act.
       (2) Limitation.--The total period of time that a covered 
     base closure area is treated as a hubzone for purposes of the 
     Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 631 et seq) pursuant to this 
     section and section 152(a)(2) of the Small Business 
     Reauthorization and Manufacturing Assistance Act of 2004 (15 
     U.S.C. 632 note) may not exceed 5 years.


                    amendment no. 3175, as modified

       At the end of subtitle E of title III, add the following:

     SEC. 344. SENSE OF THE CONGRESS ON NAVY FLEET REQUIREMENTS.

       It is the sense of Congress that--
       (1) the Secretary of the Navy, in supporting the 
     operational requirements of the combatant commands, should 
     maintain the operational capability of and perform the 
     necessary maintenance in each cruiser and dock landing ship 
     belonging to the Navy;
       (2) for retirements of ships owned by the navy prior to 
     their projected end of service life, the Chief of Naval 
     Operations must explain to the Congressional defense 
     committees how the retention of each ship would degrade the 
     overall readiness of the fleet and endanger United States 
     National Security and the objectives of the combatant 
     commanders; and
       (3) revitalizing the Navy's 30-year shipbuilding plan 
     should be a national priority, and a commensurate amount of 
     increased funding should be provided to the Navy in the 
     Future Years Defense Program to help close the gap between 
     requirements and the current size of the fleet.


                           amendment no. 3241

   (Purpose: To repeal or modify certain mandates of the Government 
                         Accountability Office)

       At the end, insert the following:

                 Subtitle __--GAO Mandates Revision Act

     SEC. _01. SHORT TITLE.

       This subtitle may be cited as the ``GAO Mandates Revision 
     Act of 2012''.

     SEC. _02. REPEALS AND MODIFICATIONS.

       (a) Capitol Preservation Fund Financial Statements.--
     Section 804 of the Arizona-Idaho Conservation Act of 1988 (2 
     U.S.C. 2084) is amended by striking ``annual audits of the 
     transactions of the Commission'' and inserting ``periodic 
     audits of the transactions of the Commission, which shall be 
     conducted at least once every 3 years, unless the Chairman or 
     the Ranking Member of the Committee on Rules and 
     Administration of the Senate or the Committee on House 
     Administration of the House of Representatives, the Secretary 
     of the Senate, or the Clerk of the House of Representatives 
     requests that an audit be conducted at an earlier date,''.
       (b) Judicial Survivors' Annuities Fund Audit by GAO.--
       (1) In general.--Section 376 of title 28, United States 
     Code, is amended--
       (A) by striking subsection (w); and
       (B) by redesignating subsections (x) and (y) as subsections 
     (w) and (x), respectively.
       (2) Technical and conforming amendment.--Section 376(h)(2) 
     of title 28, United States Code, is amended by striking 
     ``subsection (x)'' and inserting ``subsection (w)''.
       (c) ONDCP Annual Report Requirement.--Section 203 of the 
     Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 
     2006 (21 U.S.C. 1708a) is amended--
       (1) in subsection (a), by striking ``of each year'' and 
     inserting ``, 2013, and every 3 years thereafter,''; and
       (2) in subsection (b), in the matter preceding paragraph 
     (1), by striking ``at a frequency of not less than once per 
     year--'' and inserting ``not later than December 31, 2013, 
     and every 3 years thereafter--''.
       (d) USERRA GAO Report.--Section 105(g)(1) of the Veterans' 
     Benefits Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-275; 38 U.S.C. 4301 
     note) is amended by striking ``, and annually thereafter 
     during the period when the demonstration project is 
     conducted,''.
       (e) Semipostal Program Reports by the General Accounting 
     Office.--Section 2 of the Semipostal Authorization Act 
     (Public Law 106-253; 114 Stat. 636; 39 U.S.C. 416 note) is 
     amended--
       (1) by striking subsection (c); and
       (2) by redesignating subsections (d) and (e) as subsections 
     (c) and (d), respectively.
       (f) Earned Import Allowance Program Review by GAO.--Section 
     231A(b)(4) of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act (19 
     U.S.C. 2703a(b)(4)) is amended--
       (1) by striking subparagraph (C); and
       (2) by redesignating subparagraph (D) as subparagraph (C).
       (g) American Battle Monuments Commission's Financial 
     Statements and Audits.--Section 2103(h) of title 36, United 
     States Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (1), by striking ``of paragraph (2) of 
     this subsection'' and inserting ``of section 3515 of title 
     31'';
       (2) in paragraph (1), by striking ``(1)''; and
       (3) by striking paragraph (2).
       (h) Senate Preservation Fund Audits.--Section 3(c)(6) of 
     the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2004 (2 U.S.C. 
     2108(c)(6)) is amended by striking ``annual audits of the 
     Senate Preservation Fund'' and inserting ``periodic audits of 
     the Senate Preservation Fund, which shall be conducted at 
     least once every 3 years, unless the Chairman or the Ranking 
     Member of the Committee on Rules and Administration of the 
     Senate or the Secretary of the Senate requests that an audit 
     be conducted at an earlier date,''.


                           Amendment No. 3242

   (Purpose: To intensify efforts to identify, prevent, and recover 
    payment error, waste, fraud, and abuse within Federal spending)

  (The amendment is printed in the Record of Thursday, November 29, 
2012, under ``Text of Amendments.'')


                    amendment no. 3277, as modified

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. ___. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING SPECTRUM.

       It is the sense of Congress that--
       (1) the Nation's mobile communications industry is a 
     significant economic engine, by one estimate directly or 
     indirectly supporting 3,800,000 jobs, or 2.6 percent of all 
     United States employment, contributing $195,500,000,000 to 
     the United States gross domestic product and driving 
     $33,000,000,000 in productivity improvements in 2011;
       (2) while wireless carriers are continually implementing 
     new and more efficient technologies and techniques to 
     maximize their existing spectrum capacity, there is a 
     pressing need for additional spectrum for mobile broadband 
     services, with one report predicting that global mobile data 
     traffic will increase 18-fold between 2011 and 2016 at a 
     compound annual growth rate of 78 percent, reaching 10.8 
     exabytes per month by 2016;
       (3) as the Nation faces the growing demand for spectrum, 
     consideration should be given to both the supply of spectrum 
     for licensed networks and for unlicensed devices;
       (4) while this additional demand can be met in part by 
     reallocating spectrum from existing non-governmental uses, 
     the long-term solution must include reallocation and sharing 
     of Federal Government spectrum for private sector use;
       (5) recognizing the important uses of spectrum by the 
     Federal Government, including for national and homeland 
     security, law enforcement and other critical federal uses, 
     existing law ensures that Federal operations are not harmed 
     as a result of a reallocation of spectrum for commercial use, 
     including through the establishment of the Spectrum 
     Relocation Fund to reimburse Federal users for the costs of 
     planning and implementing relocation and sharing 
     arranagements and, with respect to spectrum vacated by the 
     Department of Defense, certification under section 1062 of 
     P.L. 106-65 by the Secretaries of Defense and Commerce and 
     the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff that replacement 
     spectrum provides comparable technical

[[Page S7385]]

     characteristics to restore essential military capability;
       (6) given the need to determine equitable outcomes for the 
     Nation in relation to spectrum use that balances the private 
     sector's demand for spectrum with national security and other 
     critical federal missions, all interested parties should be 
     encouraged to continue the collaborative efforts between 
     industry and government stakeholders that have been launched 
     by the National Telecommunications and Information 
     Administration to assess and recommend practical frameworks 
     for the development of relocation, transition, and sharing 
     arrangements and plans for 110 megahertz of federal spectrum 
     in the 1695-1710 MHz and the 1755-1850 MHz bands.


                    amendment no. 3285, as modified

       In lieu of the matter proposed to be inserted, insert the 
     following:

     SEC. 1064. COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES REPORT ON 
                   DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE SPENDING FOR CONFERENCES 
                   AND CONVENTIONS.

       Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of 
     this Act, the Comptroller General of the United States shall 
     submit to the congressional defense committees a report 
     setting forth an assessment of Department of Defense spending 
     for conferences and conventions. The report shall include, at 
     a minimum, an assessment of the following:
       (1) The extent to which Department spending for conferences 
     and conventions has been wasteful or excessive.
       (2) The actions the Department has taken to control 
     spending for conferences and conventions, and the efficacy of 
     those actions.
       (3) Any fees incurred for the cancellation of conferences 
     or conventions and an evaluation of the impact of cancelling 
     conferences and conventions.


                    amendment no. 3226, as modified

       At the end of subtitle F of title V of division A, add the 
     following:

     SEC. 561. TROOPS-TO-TEACHERS PROGRAM ENHANCEMENTS.

       (2) Memorandum of agreement.--The Secretary of Defense and 
     the Secretary of Education shall enter into a memorandum of 
     agreement pursuant to which the Secretary of Education will 
     undertake the following:
       (A) Disseminate information about the Troops-to-Teachers 
     Program to eligible schools (as defined in section 2301(3) of 
     the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
     6671(3)), as added by subsection (b)(2)).
       (B) Advise the Department of Defense on how to prepare 
     eligible members of the Armed Forces described in section 
     2303(a) of such Act to become participants in the Program to 
     meet the requirements necessary to become a teacher in an 
     eligible school.
       (C) Advise the Department of Defense on how to identify 
     teacher preparation programs for participants in the Program.
       (D) Inform the Department of Defense of academic subject 
     areas with critical teacher shortages.
       (E) Identify geographic areas with critical teacher 
     shortages, especially in high-need schools (as defined in 
     section 2301(4) of such Act, as added by subsection (b)(2)).
       (b) Definitions.--Section 2301 of the Elementary and 
     Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6671) is amended--
       (1) by redesignating paragraphs (2) through (5) as 
     paragraphs (5) through (8), respectively; and
       (2) by inserting after paragraph (1) the following:
       ``(2) Charter school.--The term `charter school' has the 
     meaning given that term in section 5210.
       ``(3) Eligible school.--The term `eligible school' means--
       ``(A) a public school, including a charter school, at 
     which--
       ``(i) at least 30 percent of the students enrolled in the 
     school are from families with incomes below 185 percent of 
     poverty level (as defined by the Office of Management and 
     Budget and revised at least annually in accordance with 
     section 9(b)(1) of the Richard B. Russell National School 
     Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1758(b)(1)) applicable to a family of 
     the size involved; or
       ``(ii) at least 13 percent of the students enrolled in the 
     school qualify for assistance under part B of the Individuals 
     with Disabilities Education Act; or
       ``(B) a Bureau-funded school as defined in section 1141 of 
     the Education Amendments of 1978 (25 U.S.C. 2021).
       ``(4) High-need school.--Except for purposes of section 
     2304(d), the term `high-need school' means--
       ``(A) an elementary school or middle school in which at 
     least 50 percent of the enrolled students are children from 
     low-income families, based on the number of children eligible 
     for free and reduced priced lunches under the Richard B. 
     Russell National School Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1751 et seq.), 
     the number of children in families receiving assistance under 
     the State program funded under part A of title IV of the 
     Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), the number of 
     children eligible to receive medical assistance under the 
     Medicaid program, or a composite of these indicators;
       ``(B) a high school in which at least 40 percent of 
     enrolled students are children from low-income families, 
     which may be calculated using comparable data from feeder 
     schools; or
       ``(C) a school that is in a local educational agency that 
     is eligible under section 6211(b).''.
       (c) Program Authorization.--Section 2302 of the Elementary 
     and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6672(b)) is 
     amended by striking subsections (b) through (e) and inserting 
     the following:
       ``(b) Program Authorized.--The Secretary may carry out a 
     program (to be known as the `Troops-to-Teachers Program') to 
     assist eligible members of the Armed Forces described in 
     section 2303(a) to obtain certification or licensing as 
     elementary school teachers, secondary school teachers, or 
     vocational or technical teachers to meet the requirements 
     necessary to become a teacher in an eligible school.
       (d) Years of Service Requirements.--Section 
     2303(a)(2)(A)(i) of the Elementary and Secondary Education 
     Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6673(a)(2)(A)(i)) is amended by 
     striking ``6 or more years'' and inserting ``4 or more 
     years''.
       (e) Participation Agreement.--
       (1) Amendment.--Section 2304 of the Elementary and 
     Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6674) is amended--
       (A) by striking paragraph (1) of subsection (a) and 
     inserting the following:
       ``(1) In general.--An eligible member of the Armed Forces 
     selected to participate in the Program under section 2303 and 
     to receive financial assistance under this section shall be 
     required to enter into an agreement with the Secretary in 
     which the member agrees--
       ``(A) within such time as the Secretary may require, to 
     obtain certification or licensing as an elementary school 
     teacher, secondary school teacher, or vocational or technical 
     teacher to meet the requirements necessary to become a 
     teacher in an eligible school; and
       ``(B) to accept an offer of full-time employment as an 
     elementary school teacher, secondary school teacher, or 
     vocational or technical teacher for not less than 3 school 
     years in an eligible school, to begin the school year after 
     obtaining that certification or licensing.''; and
       (B) by striking subsection (f) and inserting the following:
       ``(f) Reimbursement Under Certain Circumstances.--A 
     participant who is paid a stipend or bonus shall be subject 
     to the repayment provisions of section 373 of title 37, 
     United States Code under the following circumstances:
       ``(1) Failure to obtain qualifications or employment.--The 
     participant fails to obtain teacher certification or 
     licensing or to meet the requirements necessary to become a 
     teacher in an eligible school or to obtain employment as an 
     elementary school teacher, secondary school teacher, or 
     vocational or technical teacher as required by the 
     participation agreement.
       ``(2) Termination of employment.--The participant 
     voluntarily leaves, or is terminated for cause from, 
     employment as an elementary school teacher, secondary school 
     teacher, or vocational or technical teacher during the 3 
     years of required service in violation of the participation 
     agreement.
       ``(3) Failure to complete service under reserve commitment 
     agreement.--The participant executed a written agreement with 
     the Secretary concerned under section 2303(e)(2) to serve as 
     a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces for a 
     period of 3 years and fails to complete the required term of 
     service.''.
       (f) Effective Date.--The amendments made by subsections (b) 
     through (e) shall take effect on the first day of the first 
     month beginning more than 90 days after the date of the 
     enactment of this Act.


                    amendment no. 3117, as modified

       At the end of subtitle C of title III, add the following:

     SEC. 322. RATING CHAINS FOR SYSTEM PROGRAM MANAGERS.

       The Secretary of the Air Force, in managing system program 
     management responsibilities for sustainment programs not 
     assigned to a program executive officer or a direct reporting 
     program manager, shall comply with the Department of Defense 
     instructions regarding assignment of program responsibility.

  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mrs. Shaheen). The clerk will call the roll.
  The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the only 
additional first-degree amendment remaining in order to the bill be the 
following: McCain amendment No. 3262, on Syria, as modified with 
changes that are at the desk; that there be 20 minutes equally divided 
in the usual form on the amendment; that any remaining time prior to 
4:30 p.m. be equally divided between the chairman and ranking member 
for general debate on the bill; that at 4:30 p.m., all postcloture time 
be considered expired; that the Senate proceed to votes in relation to 
the McCain amendment, as modified; that no amendments be in order to 
the amendment prior to the vote; that

[[Page S7386]]

upon disposition of the McCain amendment, the Senate agree to the 
pending Kyl amendment, which is a Kyl-Kerry amendment, No. 3123, as 
modified; that upon disposition of the Kyl amendment, the Senate 
proceed to a vote on passage of S. 3254, as amended; that upon passage 
of S. 3254, the Armed Services Committee be discharged from further 
consideration of H.R. 4310 and the Senate proceed to its consideration; 
that all after the enacting clause be stricken and the text of S. 3254, 
as amended and passed by the Senate, be inserted in lieu thereof; that 
H.R. 4310, as amended, be read a third time, passed, and the motion to 
reconsider be laid upon the table; that the Senate insist on its 
amendment, request a conference with the House on the disagreeing votes 
of the two Houses and that the Chair be authorized to appoint conferees 
on the part of the Senate, with the Armed Services Committee appointed 
as conferees; that no points of order be considered waived by virtue of 
this agreement, all with no intervening action or debate; and finally 
that the bill be printed as passed by the Senate.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection? Without objection, it is 
so ordered.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I thank all of our colleagues.
  Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that I be added as a 
cosponsor of the McCain amendment and that Senator Coons also be added 
as a cosponsor of the McCain amendment.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The Senator from Arizona.


                    Amendment No. 3262, as Modified

  Mr. McCAIN. Madam President, I call up amendment No. 3262, as 
modified.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Arizona [Mr. McCain] roposes an amendment 
     numbered 3262, as modified.

  The amendment is as follows:


                    amendment no. 3262, as modified

       At the end of subtitle C of title XII, add the following:

     SEC. 1233. REPORT ON MILITARY ACTIVITIES TO DENY OR 
                   SIGNIFICANTLY DEGRADE THE USE OF AIR POWER 
                   AGAINST CIVILIAN AND OPPOSITION GROUPS IN 
                   SYRIA.

       (a) Report Required.--Not later than 90 days after the date 
     of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Defense shall, 
     in consultation with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of 
     Staff, submit to the congressional defense committees a 
     report identifying the limited military activities that could 
     deny or significantly degrade the ability of President Bashar 
     al-Assad of Syria, and forces loyal to him, to use air power 
     against civilians and opposition groups in Syria.
       (b) Nature of Military Activities.--
       (1) Principal purpose.--The principal purpose of the 
     military activities identified for purposes of the report 
     required by subsection (a) shall be to advance the goals of 
     President Obama of stopping the killing of civilians in Syria 
     and creating conditions for a transition to a democratic, 
     pluralistic political system in Syria.
       (2) Additional goals.--The military activities identified 
     for purposes of the report shall also meet the goals as 
     follows:
       (A) That the United States Armed Forces conduct such 
     activities with foreign allies or partners.
       (B) That United States ground troops not be deployed onto 
     Syrian territory.
       (C) That the risk to civilians on the ground in Syria be 
     limited.
       (D) That the risks to United States military personnel be 
     limited.
       (E) That the financial costs to the United States be 
     limited.
       (c) Elements on Potential Military Activities.--The report 
     required by subsection (a) shall include a comprehensive 
     description, evaluation, and assessment of the potential 
     effectiveness of the following military activities, as 
     required by subsection (a):
       (1) The deployment of air defense systems, such as Patriot 
     missile batteries, to neighboring countries for the purpose 
     of denying or significantly degrading the operational 
     capability of Syria aircraft.
       (2) The establishment of one or more no-fly zones over key 
     population centers in Syria.
       (3) Limited air strikes to destroy or significantly degrade 
     Syria aircraft.
       (4) Such other military activities as the Secretary 
     considers appropriate to achieve the goals stated in 
     subsection (b).
       (d) Elements in Description of Potential Military 
     Activities.--For each military activity that the Secretary 
     identifies in subsection (c), the comprehensive description 
     of such activities under that subsection shall include, but 
     not be limited to, the type and the number of United States 
     military personnel and assets to be involved in such 
     activities, the anticipated duration of such activities, and 
     the anticipated cost of such activities. The report shall 
     also identify what elements would be required to maximize the 
     effectiveness of such military activities.
       (e) No Authorization for Use of Military Force.--Nothing in 
     this section shall be construed as a declaration of war or an 
     authorization for the use of force.
       (f) The report required in subsection (a) shall be 
     delivered in classified form.

  Mr. McCAIN. Madam President, I believe the Senator from Kentucky is 
here to speak on the amendment.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Kentucky.
  Mr. PAUL. Madam President, the amendment before us requires that the 
President submit a plan for a no-fly zone for Syria. I want to 
compliment the authors for including in this amendment a clause that 
says nothing in this amendment shall be construed as a declaration of 
war or an authorization for the use of force. I think it is very 
important in our Nation today that we are not saying we are starting, 
beginning, or getting involved in a new war.
  However, I do think this amendment is ill-advised for two reasons. 
No. 1, I don't think I know with certainty whether the Syrian rebels 
will be freedom-loving, tolerant, constitution-toting believers in a 
republican form of government or whether they will institute an Islamic 
republic that will have no tolerance for Christians and no tolerance 
for people of any other faith.
  It still remains to be seen whether a secular government will be 
established in Libya, Tunisia, or Egypt. There is the question of 
whether al-Qaida is more or less of a threat in Libya today since the 
rebels have won the civil war. I don't think we know for certain what a 
rebel government in Syria will do with the 1 million Christians who 
live in Syria.
  Since the Iraq war, hundreds of thousands of Christians have fled 
Iraq and gone to Syria. Even after the war, apparently Syria was seen 
as more of a tolerant nation than Iraq. Will a rebel Islamic government 
in Syria tolerate or persecute Christians? Will a rebel Islamic 
government institute the death penalty for blasphemy, for conversion, 
or for apostasy? Will they have a true democracy, a secular government, 
or will they have a Syrian rebel government that is less tolerant than 
what they currently have? In many ways the Arab spring has become the 
Arab winter.
  In Egypt we have a leader from the Muslim Brotherhood who recited 
amen when a radical cleric stood up and said: Death to Israel. As a 
radical cleric said: Death to Israel and anyone who supports them, this 
Muslim Brotherhood leader of Egypt that came out of the Arab spring is 
nodding his head in assent and seemed to be chanting amen.
  Will they seek peace with Israel or war? Will the Syrian rebels seek 
a secular government or one ruled by Shari'a? I think there are many 
unknowns we need to be asking ourselves before we involve ourselves in 
a civil war.
  Secondly, I think it is a bad idea to discuss contingency plans for 
war. While I am in favor of the Senate retaining our prerogative to 
declare war, I believe that the details of the execution of war are in 
the purview of the Executive. In other words, we do have the power to 
begin or to not begin a war. That is the power the Constitution gave 
us, but I don't think the Constitution intended to have 535 generals. I 
don't think it intended to have us explicitly talking about every 
contingency plan for every possible war in every corner of the globe.
  Our Defense Department, no doubt, has contingency plans for a 
ballistic missile attack on the United States, a conventional land 
invasion, naval or air encounters throughout the world, but we don't 
necessarily openly discuss them or encourage them. I don't think it is 
best to openly discuss these plans for defending against an attack and 
especially not for involving ourselves in a civil war.
  Our Nation and our soldiers are weary of war. Our Nation yearns for 
leaders who will strive to keep us out of war. Our Nation yearns for 
leaders who are reluctant to begin a new war or get involved in a new 
war. I hope my colleagues today will not encourage a rush to war by 
publicly clamoring for a plan to become involved in Syria's civil war.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Delaware.

[[Page S7387]]

  Mr. COONS. Madam President, I rise today to speak in favor of 
amendment No. 3262, which I am honored to cosponsor with Senators 
McCain and Levin. I thank the Senators for their disciplined, diligent, 
and very strong leadership of this year's NDAA process. This is an 
authorization bill that has been taken up and considered by the Senate 
for 52 years, and despite a lot of challenges and a lot of difficulties 
we had getting to bills, getting past objections, getting to reasonable 
processes and amendments, these two fine Senators have led admirably in 
a very difficult environment.
  This amendment does what I think we need to do next, to put before 
the Senate in an appropriate classified setting useful information 
about the possibilities before us and before our allies in a very 
difficult and very complex region that is, as Senator Paul has noted, 
currently undergoing dramatic conflict.
  Let me speak to a few points that persuaded me to join Senator McCain 
and Senator Levin in cosponsoring this amendment.
  First, despite the comments from my colleague from Kentucky, these 
plans will be delivered to the Senate in classified form. They will not 
be accessible to the general public, and they will not be broadcast to 
our opponents or those who might seek to learn about America's plans. 
They will only be delivered in classified form.
  Second, and I think most important, it is explicit in this amendment 
that nothing in this section shall be construed as a declaration of war 
or an authorization for the use of force. Senator Paul's repeated 
concerns that we are rushing headlong into an overengagement in a civil 
war that is best left to the people of Syria is reflected clearly and 
in plain language in that provision within this amendment.
  Earlier today we took up and voted on the Convention on the Rights of 
Persons with Disabilities. I spoke to this issue as well. Despite the 
plain language of that convention that would prevent it from having any 
of the noxious impacts it would have on families in the United States, 
despite the plain language of that convention and the various 
restrictions and reservations that were added to it, it would have no 
impact on homeschooling and no impact on reproductive rights in the 
United States. It would have no impact on any of the variety of things 
that were cast about on the floor of the Senate today. So, too, here we 
should not allow--despite this plain language--Senators to mislead our 
colleagues into thinking that somehow secretly embedded within this is 
an authorization for the use of force.
  So what is this? This is asking that the United States, in 
consultation between the Department of Defense and this Senate, make 
reasonable assessments of what our path forward in dealing with the 
tragic situation in Syria might be. This amendment is clear that it 
will not consider ground troops being deployed onto Syrian territory. 
It will only look at a means that might be used by the United States or 
our allies to stop Assad's reckless, relentless criminal use of 
airpower to murder his own civilians and his own citizens.
  I have been heartbroken as I have read account after account of jets 
and helicopters being used to stray from red lines, being used to bomb 
hospitals and schools, and of the thousands of innocents who have died.
  The Syrian civil war is a very complex conflict. Senator Paul asked 
what I really think is the central question. He said: How can we be 
confident that the opposition will be tolerant, inclusive, peaceful, 
and that it will not prosecute or persecute Christians; that they will 
be an ally to Israel and not impose the sorts of threats and 
difficulties he cited from Libya, Egypt, and other countries? That is 
exactly the core question at issue for us going forward: Should the 
United States stand on the sidelines as Bashar al-Assad massacres tens 
of thousands more of his civilians or should we consider what ways we 
can be involved through providing humanitarian assistance?
  Should we support our regional allies, Turkey and Jordan, through 
multilateral engagement, supporting Turkey's request to NATO for 
defensive material? Should we better learn and understand what the 
opposition on the ground is inclined to do and set clear standards for 
how, if they demonstrate they are reliable partners in pursuing peace 
and if they commit themselves to the elements of the national coalition 
and the Free Syrian Army and to being exactly what Senator Paul would 
hope--tolerant, inclusive, pro-democracy--why would we stand on the 
sidelines of history and allow Islamic extremists to instead write the 
future of the Syrian people?
  For these and many reasons I am grateful for the opportunity to join 
with Senators McCain and Levin in cosponsoring this amendment.
  Mr. McCAIN. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the Senator 
from Connecticut be allowed 4 minutes, the Senator from Michigan be 
allowed 3 minutes, and I be allowed 2 minutes before the vote.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The Senator from Connecticut.
  Mr. LIEBERMAN. Madam President, I am honored to rise to support this 
amendment and just to make a few points. The first is to assure all of 
our colleagues that this is just an amendment that asks the Pentagon to 
conduct a study. It is nothing more than that. I want to particularly 
say that to reassure anyone who is concerned that somehow this is an 
authorization for the use of military force. Look at the wording. That 
is just not the case.
  All we are debating and voting on is whether the Pentagon should be 
asked to do a study of the possibility of how we might stop Bashar al-
Assad's air force from committing acts of murder against his own 
people. In my way of thinking, to tell the truth, it is two things: 
One, this amendment is simply a way of saying that we in the Senate are 
concerned and care about the slaughter that is going on in Syria and 
agitated that the United States and the rest of the world is not doing 
more to come to the assistance of those who are fighting for their 
freedom and lives in Syria.
  I want to point out that there are a lot of options for the Pentagon 
to study. One is a traditional no-fly zone. We know a lot of people in 
the Pentagon are concerned that to carry out a traditional no-fly zone 
with our aircraft, we need to spend a lot of time and energy and assume 
risks to knock out the Syrian air defenses. Well enough.

  But there are other ways to achieve the goal of keeping Assad's 
aircraft from destroying Syria's people. One is to use Patriot 
antimissile batteries to keep Syrian planes--placed in Turkey and 
Jordan--out of the air. The second, of course, that I can think of is 
to fire precision guided missiles from offshore to hit the Syrian Air 
Force on the ground so it cannot take off.
  All of those should be considered as part of this study, as the most 
obvious, which is to make sure that the freedom fighters on the ground 
have their own antiaircraft weapons to fire from the ground at Assad's 
aircraft so they can protect their own lives.
  The truth is, in supporting this amendment, I come to say that I 
continue to be troubled, deeply, by why the United States and so much 
of the rest of the civilized world is standing by and letting this 
happen. To me--and I speak only personally, and I do so with respect--
getting involved in this on behalf of the opposition in Syria has been 
now for 18 months as close to a no-brainer as America ever has the 
opportunity to get involved in in foreign policy.
  I say that because from the beginning we knew which side was fighting 
for freedom and which side was against it. And America is supposed to 
be on the side of the freedom fighters. Secondly, this has developed 
into a humanitarian disaster: 40,000 people killed. And, third, we have 
not just humanitarian interests here and values interests, we have 
strategic interests because Assad's government is the No. 1 friend of 
our No. 1 enemy in the world, which is the Islamic Republic of Iran. If 
he goes down, Iran and its radical regime suffers a body blow. If we 
continue to stand back, we run the risk of terrible sectarian conflict 
in Syria, which runs the risk of spreading beyond, between Sunni and 
Shia, also between secular and religious modernizers and people who do 
not want to modernize.
  We have every good reason to come to the aid of these people in need, 
and I do not see an argument for not at

[[Page S7388]]

least studying how we might better do that.
  I thank my colleagues. I am proud to support the amendment.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Mississippi.
  Mr. WICKER. Madam President, I wonder if I might be able to proceed 
for 1 minute before we begin the votes.
  Mr. McCAIN. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that 1 minute be 
added and that the Senator from Mississippi be recognized for that 1 
minute.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The Senator from Mississippi.
  Mr. WICKER. Madam President, I thank my colleagues for allowing me to 
breeze in here at the last moment.
  I would like to speak today about a Department of Defense policy that 
has an impact on American jobs and is in urgent need of greater 
transparency. Until recently, this policy picked industry winners and 
losers. We must ensure that the Federal Government's adopted standards 
for green buildings are consensus-based, fair, and established by sound 
science.
  Before last year's Defense authorization bill was signed into law, 
the Department of Defense exclusively recognized or showed preference 
for a single green building rating system.
  The U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and 
Environmental Design--or LEED--became DOD's adopted benchmark for green 
building.
  This raised concerns, primarily because LEED standards are not 
developed in a transparent manner and do not allow meaningful input 
from all affected stakeholders.
  For example, for some reason LEED standards are unreasonably biased 
against American timber.
  Obtaining the highest LEED certifications often requires green 
buildings to exclude domestic wood. Instead, the use of bamboo, often 
shipped from overseas, is favored over more cost-efficient local 
timber.
  The next version of LEED threatens to eliminate the use of other 
approved materials and proven products that are currently used to 
achieve true energy savings.
  It makes sense to anticipate that a blanket adoption of LEED by the 
Department of Defense would have a significant impact on American 
industry.
  To put the scope of DOD's green building policies into perspective: 
DOD has more than 500,000 facilities, covering more than 2 billion 
square feet. If we combined all of the nearly 5,000 Wal-Mart buildings 
in America, it would make up about a third of DOD's real estate.
  That is why I fought for language--included in the 2012 Defense 
authorization conference report--requiring DOD to conduct a cost-
benefit analysis of various green building rating systems.
  Last year's Defense authorization conference report prohibited the 
use of funds to implement LEED standards.
  This year, the Armed Services Committee accepted language I offered 
to extend the prohibition of funds for LEED until 6 months after the 
cost-benefit study is reported to Congress.
  I look forward to the findings of this study but remain concerned 
about DOD's adoption of any green building standards that are not 
transparent and consensus-based.
  I have yet another amendment that would direct DOD to utilize green 
building standards that are driven by consensus as determined by the 
American Nationa Standards nstitute, and include sufficient input from 
all affected stakeholders.
  My amendment also would support green building standards that 
consider the full environmental benefits provided by a building 
material throughout its lifetime. Life Cycle Assessment is a science-
based approach used to measure these benefits.
  Together, I believe these provisions would create a level playing 
field for materials to compete for green building and energy savings in 
DOD construction.
  The Federal Government should be in the business of choosing winners 
and losers, Adoption of LEED only--or/any other green building standard 
not developed by consensus--would discriminate against American-made 
products, reduce transparency, impact jobs, and ultimately undermine 
energy savings and sustainability sought using taxpayer dollars.
  Although I am going to withhold my amendment, I will continue to 
closely monitor this issue to ensure that fair competition is part of 
DOD's construction of green buildings.
  I want to thank the chairman, ranking member, and all the members of 
the committee.
  In conclusion, as we have learned, there is more than one way to have 
green building standards. The Defense Department has tilted toward the 
LEED standards in the past. I think we have authorized now a scientific 
analysis of other methods that is proceeding apace. I had planned to 
offer yet another amendment which would be withdrawn directing that the 
Department of Defense utilize green building standards that are driven 
by consensus as determined by the American National Standards 
Institute. As I say, I am withholding that amendment.
  I do appreciate the language that is in the bill now, and I think we 
will end up with green building standards that save energy and serve 
the purposes of national defense and do not tilt toward one industry 
over the other.
  I thank the Presiding Officer for her indulgence, I thank my 
colleagues on the committee, and I yield the floor.


                    Amendment No. 3262, as Modified

  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Michigan.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I very much support the amendment offered 
by Senator McCain and thank him for it.
  The suffering of the Syrian people and, increasingly, the people of 
the region continues to grow daily. This amendment tells the Secretary 
of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs that we want a 
classified assessment of the effectiveness of various military 
solutions to the problems that are there in Syria and in the region.
  This information is going to help inform Congress on the challenges 
and the obstacles to various solutions, including the very challenges 
and questions which were identified by Senator Paul. Those are the 
kinds of questions--not the total list, but the kinds of questions--
which this assessment will help us to address. It will also help inform 
us about the budget and the policy decisions that the congressional 
defense committees make in the upcoming fiscal year.
  The principal purpose of this amendment, as is stated in the 
amendment, is ``to advance the goals of President Obama of stopping the 
killing of civilians in Syria and creating conditions for a transition 
to a democratic, pluralistic political system in Syria.'' That is what 
is on the mind, I believe, of all of us.
  This report--an assessment, to use the word in the amendment--is 
critically important to Congress, and I very much support the effort of 
Senator McCain and thank him for it.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Arizona.
  Mr. McCAIN. Madam President, I would point out again that section 
(d)(e) of this amendment says:

       No Authorization For Use Of Military Force.--Nothing in 
     this section shall be construed as a declaration of war or an 
     authorization for the use of force.

  And it will be in ``classified form.''
  Yesterday, this was the front-page headline of the Washington Post: 
Obama Sternly Warns Syria. There is no doubt that as this conflict has 
dragged on and on, the risk of a wider conflict and terrible 
consequences can ensue. It is well known that Bashar Assad has a very 
large inventory of chemical weapons, including sarin gas, which is a 
deadly nerve agent.
  I am not predicting that the United States has to be involved, but 
there is very little doubt in anyone's mind that as this conflict 
escalates, the risk of spreading, the risk of greater jihadist 
involvement, the greater risk of problems on the borders of Lebanon, of 
Iraq, of Jordan increase.
  And if military action has to be taken in order, for example, to 
prevent sarin gas to be used, the Congress of the United States has to 
be involved. We have a thing called the War Powers Act. The War Powers 
Act expressly calls that Congress make decisions. The Congress needs to 
be informed. I believe all this amendment does is informs, in a 
classified manner, the Defense committees so that we will have the 
information necessary to understand the various eventualities that 
could result in this terribly, terribly

[[Page S7389]]

escalating and deteriorating situation in Syria.
  As my friend from Connecticut said, 40,000 people have already been 
slaughtered. I think the U.S. Congress needs to be made aware not of 
what we should do but what we can do in case of that eventuality. I 
urge my colleagues to vote for the amendment.
  I thank my colleagues. I thank the Senator from Connecticut, the 
Senator from Delaware, and, of course, the chairman of the committee.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Under the previous order, all postcloture time 
is expired and the question occurs on agreeing to McCain amendment No. 
3262, as modified.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I ask for the yeas and nays.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there a sufficient second?
  There appears to be a sufficient second.
  The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk called the roll.
  Mr. DURBIN. I anounce that the Senator from West Virginia (Mr. 
Rockefeller) is necessarily absent.
  Mr. KYL. The following Senator is necessarily absent: the Senator 
from Illinois (Mr. Kirk).
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Are there any other Senators in the Chamber 
desiring to vote?
  The result was announced--yeas 92, nays 6, as follows:

                      [Rollcall Vote No. 220 Leg.]

                                YEAS--92

     Akaka
     Ayotte
     Barrasso
     Baucus
     Begich
     Bennet
     Bingaman
     Blumenthal
     Blunt
     Boozman
     Boxer
     Brown (MA)
     Brown (OH)
     Burr
     Cantwell
     Cardin
     Carper
     Casey
     Chambliss
     Coats
     Coburn
     Cochran
     Collins
     Conrad
     Coons
     Corker
     Cornyn
     Crapo
     Enzi
     Feinstein
     Franken
     Gillibrand
     Graham
     Grassley
     Hagan
     Harkin
     Hatch
     Heller
     Hoeven
     Inhofe
     Inouye
     Isakson
     Johanns
     Johnson (SD)
     Johnson (WI)
     Kerry
     Klobuchar
     Kohl
     Kyl
     Landrieu
     Lautenberg
     Leahy
     Levin
     Lieberman
     Lugar
     Manchin
     McCain
     McCaskill
     McConnell
     Menendez
     Merkley
     Mikulski
     Moran
     Murkowski
     Murray
     Nelson (NE)
     Nelson (FL)
     Portman
     Pryor
     Reed
     Reid
     Risch
     Roberts
     Rubio
     Sanders
     Schumer
     Sessions
     Shaheen
     Shelby
     Snowe
     Stabenow
     Tester
     Thune
     Toomey
     Udall (CO)
     Udall (NM)
     Vitter
     Warner
     Webb
     Whitehouse
     Wicker
     Wyden

                                NAYS--6

     Alexander
     DeMint
     Durbin
     Hutchison
     Lee
     Paul

                             NOT VOTING--2

     Kirk
       
     Rockefeller
       
       
  The amendment (No. 3262), as modified, was agreed to.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I move to reconsider, and I move to lay 
that motion on the table.
  The motion to lay on the table was agreed to.


                  Kyl Amendment No. 3213, as Modified

  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Under the previous order, amendment No. 3123, 
as modified, is agreed to.


                         Export Controls Reform

  Mr. BENNET. Madam President, I rise to engage the chairman of the 
Armed Services Committee in a colloquy.
  Mr. LEVIN. I would be happy to have a colloquy with the Senator from 
Colorado.
  Mr. BENNET. Earlier this year, I introduced a bill that reforms 
export controls on satellites and their related items. Under the 
current law, satellites must be subject to the most restrictive export 
controls regardless of whether they are sensitive, militarily 
significant, or widely available outside of the U.S. This has both 
diminished our Nation's economic competitiveness and our national 
security. In fact, the State and Defense departments recently concluded 
that the ``current law forces the U.S. Government to continue to 
protect commonly available satellites and related items on the USML, 
thus impeding the U.S. ability to work with partners and putting U.S. 
manufacturers at a disadvantage, but providing no noticeable benefit to 
national security.''
  My bill reforms our export control laws so that the executive branch 
has the discretion to determine the appropriate level of export 
controls for satellites and related items. The executive branch 
currently has such discretion for all other types of items whether the 
item serves a military or a dual-use purpose. The bill also prohibits 
the transfer of such items to China, North Korea, and state sponsors of 
terrorism.
  Last week, I filed an amendment to the defense authorization bill 
that mirrors my legislation. Senators Rubio, Warner, Mark Udall, and 
Cardin cosponsored the measure. While I had hoped to offer and pass our 
amendment, it is my understanding that the chairman intends to address 
these reforms in conference. Is my understanding correct?
  Mr. LEVIN. I first want to thank the Senator from Colorado for his 
work on reforming our Nation's export control laws. The House version 
of the National Defense Authorization Act includes provisions 
addressing these issues. I support his efforts in this area and I 
intend to work with the House of Representatives to address these 
reforms in conference.
  Mr. BENNET. I thank the chairman for his support and assurance.


                           amendment no. 3054

  Mr. McCAIN. Madam President, I rise to explain the scope of, and 
intent behind, my amendment on naval vessel naming. Amendment No. 3054, 
as modified, to the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 
2013 is a direct response to recent criticism that the Secretary of the 
Navy has, in some instances, politicized the ship naming process.
  Since its establishment, the U.S. Navy has developed a rich tradition 
of vessel naming. Traditional sources for vessel names customarily 
encompassed categories such as geographic locations in the United 
States; historic sites, battles, and ships; naval and military heroes 
and leaders; and, other noted individuals who have made distinguished 
contributions to the Navy or our Nation's national security. The name 
the Navy selects for a vessel should reflect the very best of our 
Nation's and our Navy's great heritage. It should impart a sense of 
honor and serve as an inspiration for the vessel's crew. It should not, 
in any way, be tarnished by controversy. Unfortunately, controversy and 
criticism have surrounded some of the Secretary's recent vessel naming 
choices.
  This amendment seeks to avoid similar controversy in the future. It 
sets forth necessary and appropriate standards, grounded in historical 
practice, to guide the Secretary of the Navy's decisions on vessel 
naming. It requires that the Secretary assure the Senate and House 
Committees on Armed Services that the proposed vessel name comports 
with those standards 30 days before announcing or assigning a vessel's 
name.
  Under the procedure established by my amendment, I fully intend and 
expect that the Navy will not move forward with any vessel naming 
proposal, unless the Congressional defense committees approve. Much as 
the Department of Defense seeks prior approval for reprogramming 
requests, the Secretary of the Navy should secure the prior approval of 
the Congressional defense committees before announcing or implementing 
a vessel naming proposal.
  I take no joy or pride in this amendment, but believe it is 
necessitated by the spate of controversies over the last few years. I 
sincerely hope the amendment helps the U.S. Navy preserve the high 
standards it has traditionally employed for vessel naming.


                           amendment no. 2943

  Mr. LEAHY. Madam President, I was very pleased that the Senate 
adopted last night an amendment to improve the Law Enforcement Officers 
Safety Act, LEOSA. I was pleased to join Senator Webb, a member of the 
Senate Armed Services Committee, as a cosponsor to strengthen a policy 
that is important to our Nation's law enforcement community. I thank 
Chairman Levin and Senator Webb for their efforts.
  The amendment we adopt today will place military police and civilian 
police officers within the Department of Defense on equal footing with 
their law enforcement counterparts across the country when it comes to 
coverage under LEOSA. The LEOSA law permits active and qualified 
retired law enforcement officers to carry a concealed firearm across 
State lines. This law, which has been in place since 2004, gives our 
law enforcement officers, should they choose, the peace of mind that 
they are protected wherever they may be.

[[Page S7390]]

  One of the qualifications required of active or retired officers to 
be covered by the LEOSA law is that they must have ``statutory arrest 
authority''. Some law enforcement personnel within the Department of 
Defense do have such statutory arrest authority. Others do not. For 
example, civilian police officers that conduct law enforcement 
activities on military bases or installations derive their authority 
from the Uniform Code of Military Justice. This authority, while 
statutory, is ``apprehension'' authority. Due to that difference 
between the LEOSA law's specific enumerated requirements, and the 
authority pursuant to which civilian police in the military operate, 
these law enforcement officers have not been able to obtain the law's 
benefits.
  To remedy this, the amendment we have adopted will expressly include 
within the LEOSA statute currently non-covered civilian police officers 
and military police. It will do so by adding a statutory citation 
within Title 18 of the United States Code to the relevant portion of 
the Uniform Code of Military Justice. This will provide legal certainty 
for the Department of Defense, and will provide the needed LEOSA 
coverage for currently non-covered law enforcement personnel within the 
military.
  The Senate has agreed unanimously to extend LEOSA to the law 
enforcement officers that serve within our military who are currently 
not eligible for coverage under LEOSA. They are no less deserving or 
worthy of this privilege and I am very pleased we have acted to 
equalize their treatment under the Federal law. Given the productive 
discussions we have had with the Department of Defense Office of Law 
Enforcement Policy and Support, and with Chairman Levin in developing 
this amendment. I expect that it will be implemented without delay so 
that those intended to be covered may gain the law's benefit quickly. 
These police officers, who largely perform the same duties as their 
counterparts elsewhere in the Federal Government and at the State and 
local level, deserve the equal treatment this amendment will provide.
  Mr. CASEY. Mr. President, today I wish to discuss what more we can do 
to prevent the scourge of suicides among our servicemembers. I have 
been concerned for quite some time about the physical and psychological 
challenges facing the men and women who serve in our military, 
including the unique challenges faced by members of the National Guard 
and Reserve.
  Despite a variety of programs to address the rate of suicide among 
National Guard and Reserve personnel, current statistics raise ongoing 
concerns about what more we can do to address this serious issue. In 
2011, 165 Active-Duty soldiers and 118 Guard and Reservists took their 
lives, and the Army is on track to meet or surpass the same number of 
suicide related deaths again this year.
  I appreciate that the Armed Services Committee has included Section 
512 in the fiscal year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, which 
establishes a suicide prevention and resiliency program specifically 
for the reserve component of the military. In order for these programs 
to succeed, all members of a community must work together and watch out 
for one another. This includes involving the private sector and 
universities, who can contribute valuable resources. I would note that 
the Department's Office of Suicide Prevention, in carrying out Section 
512 and 722 of this bill, must work with private sector and university 
partners to develop and implement suicide prevention training for 
community-based organizations, including schools, hospitals, religious 
organizations and employers, to raise awareness and provide tools for 
intervention to members of the National Guard and Reserve and their 
families. Universities and researchers, including those throughout 
Pennsylvania, have explored this issue and stand ready to support our 
returning servicemembers.
  This is a national challenge and Congress must work hand in hand with 
the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs as well with State and 
local community leaders to end this terrible epidemic.


                           Amendment No. 3232

  Mr. SCHUMER. Madam President, I would first like to take this time to 
thank my colleagues Senator Menendez and Senator Kirk for putting forth 
a comprehensive plan to arm the administration with the tools they need 
to put a stop to Iran's rogue nuclear program and for working to put 
together the final text of this amendment.
  Look, time's a-wasting, so we need to ratchet up the sanctions now.
  And rest assured--this is a powerful package that will paralyze the 
Iranian economy.
  I believe that when it comes to Iran, we should never take the 
military option off the table. But I have long argued that economic 
sanctions are the preferred and probably most effective way to choke 
Iran's nuclear ambitions.
  It should come as no surprise that today the head of International 
Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, suggested that his inspectors in Iran are 
coming under increased duress amid fears that the Iranian regime might 
be aspiring to make atomic arms. And according to published reports, 
Iran could have at least one workable nuclear weapon by next year and 
another maybe 6 months after that. This cannot be allowed!
  Additionally, the IAEA has reported that Iran possesses a highly 
organized program dedicated to acquiring the skills necessary to 
produce and test a nuclear bomb.
  Earlier this year, Director of National Intelligence Jim Clapper told 
the Senate Intelligence Committee that Iran's leaders seem prepared to 
attack U.S. interests overseas.
  Just last year we saw U.S. authorities successfully thwart an Iranian 
plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in this very city.
  So by giving the administration the capability to tighten their 
crippling sanctions on Iran should they continue with their nuclear 
weapons program, the Senate is continuing to address the very real 
threat Iran poses to the United States and our allies, particularly 
Israel.
  And make no mistake--after Hamas initiated their bloody rocket 
attacks against innocent civilians in Israel last month, who did they 
thank afterwards? They actually thanked Iran for their support in 
helping make ``Israel scream with pain.'' Iran sends rockets to 
terrorist groups to kill innocent civilians. That is just one out of 
many reasons why the international community just cannot allow Iran to 
have a nuclear weapons capability.
  This bill will do several important things to strangle Iran's ability 
to continue with its illegal nuclear program.
  First, it designates Iran's energy, port, shipping, and shipbuilding 
sectors as ``entities of proliferation concern'' due to the role they 
play in supporting Iran's proliferation activities.
  Secondly, it blocks and prohibits all transactions in property in the 
United States by any person who is part of Iran's energy, port, and 
shipping sectors.
  Additionally, it sanctions the sale, supply, and transfer of certain 
materials and precious metals to Iran.
  And importantly, this bill sanctions foreign financial institutions 
for knowingly conducting transactions on behalf of any sanctioned 
Iranian person.
  Mr. President, I believe my colleagues Senator Menendez and Senator 
Kirk have done an excellent job ensuring that the administration has 
the tools they need to put a stop to Iran's rogue nuclear program.
  I strongly urge my colleagues to support this amendment.
  Mrs. HAGAN. Madam President, as we conclude our work on S. 3254, the 
fiscal year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, I would like to 
draw attention to yet another important role my State is playing in our 
national defense.
  North Carolina is home to the two major lithium suppliers in the 
United States. Not only are these important employers in my State, but 
they are serving our defense industry with critical materials that are 
vital to our Nation's defense capabilities both now and in the future.
  The Defense Department has recognized through its Defense Production 
Act Title III office that ``Li Ion batteries are extremely attractive 
to military customers with the most demanding set of requirements such 
as the space/satellite communities for spacecraft applications and the 
Special Operation forces.''
  Lithium metal is an important component in a wide range of defense 
applications. For over a decade, the US

[[Page S7391]]

military has been widely using non-rechargeable--primary--lithium 
batteries to provide power for mines, missiles, torpedoes, sonobuoys, 
guided artillery, fuses, communication devices, countermeasure devices, 
global positioning systems, and guidance systems. Presently, primary 
lithium batteries are the power source of choice for a majority of 
devices that a servicemember uses in combat and realistic training 
operations. An infantryman on a 72-hour mission in Afghanistan carries 
around 30 pounds of batteries. Lithium metal used in these defense 
applications affords today's Armed Forces fluid movement on the 
battlefield and in remote areas.
  We need to remain vigilant to the world's lithium supply situation. 
Offshore suppliers of lithium are poised to expand their capacity at 
the risk of domestic U.S. lithium production capability. It will be 
essential to our future national defense needs that we are able protect 
and enhance our domestic supply chain of battery-grade lithium metal.
  Mr. President, I recognize the importance of this industry to our 
Nation's defense. I am proud that over 600 men and women in my State 
are dedicated to creating these critical materials for our Armed 
services and urge that we continue to recognize the essential role this 
industry plays in our future defense strategies.


                           amendment no. 3291

  Mr. PRYOR. Madam President, I want to thank Chairman Levin and 
Ranking Member McCain for the work they have done on the National 
Defense Authorization and for working with me on this amendment.
  This bipartisan amendment, the Helping Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans 
Return to Employment, HIRE, at Home Act, introduced by myself and 
Senator Johanns encourages states to consider the training 
servicemembers receive during active duty when determining eligibility 
for State licenses and certifications.
  This amendment will encourage States to consider the specialized 
military training and experience servicemembers acquire on active duty 
as filling all or some of the State certification and licensing 
requirements. Specifically, the amendment will apply to individuals 
seeking employment as commercial truck drivers, certified nursing 
assistants or emergency medical technicians.
  By eliminating the expensive and time consuming hurdles 
servicemembers often face, this amendment will help ensure our 
returning veterans come home to new job opportunities and help lower 
the high unemployment rate among our young veterans.
  Mr. CARDIN. Madam President, I rise in support of the National 
Defense Authorization Act, NDAA, for Fiscal Year 2013. I wish to 
commend Senator Levin and Senator McCain for their leadership in 
bringing this legislation to the floor. The Senate has passed the NDAA 
every year for over one-half century. Senators Levin and McCain have 
played a key role on NDAA over the past several years, and I am 
grateful for their dedication and concern for the men and women of our 
Armed Forces and the defense of the Nation.
  I am pleased that NDAA, as amended, includes three of my amendments, 
including a sense of the Senate resolution regarding conflict-induced 
displacements in Afghanistan. As Afghan refugees are being pushed into 
faster repatriation, they are often forced into returning to a country 
where they have little or no hope. In particular, Pakistan, which has 
hosted Afghan refugees for more than 30 years, plans to cancel refugee 
status for the 3 million Afghans at the end of this year. Forcing these 
refugees back into Afghanistan would only exacerbate the crisis for a 
country that is still struggling with an ongoing insurgency, an economy 
dependent on U.S. foreign assistance, and the impending withdraw of 
NATO troops in 2014.
  According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, 
UNHCR, more than 5.7 million refugees have returned to Afghanistan 
since 2002, increasing the population of the country by approximately 
25 percent. In both urban and rural areas, however, more than 40 
percent of the returnees have not integrated into their home 
communities. In addition to difficulties returning refugees face, 
internal displacement has been dramatically on the rise.
  The conflict-induced displaced Afghans face numerous challenges due 
to continuing violence, tribal conflicts, lack of land tenure and 
housing, limited opportunities to earn a livelihood, and reduced access 
to public services and water. As winter approaches, I am especially 
concerned for the children who will be vulnerable to the harsh weather 
and illnesses likely to occur from living in such severe conditions. 
Last winter, there were many reports of children freezing to death in 
settlement camps and other temporary shelters.
  The sense of the Senate resolution not only expresses these concerns 
for the dramatic rise in conflict-induced displacements in Afghanistan 
and the corresponding humanitarian needs; it also recommends that the 
Department of State's Bureau of Population, Refugees & Migration and 
the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan jointly develop 
a comprehensive strategy to address these displacement issues.
  I am also pleased that the Senate passed my two amendments to add the 
Coast Guard to the current baseline NDAA sections addressing military 
diversity and military hazing. Nearly 2 years ago, the Military 
Leadership Diversity Commission issued a report with 20 recommendations 
to the Armed Forces, including the Coast Guard. The Commission found 
that the services' leadership does not reflect the diversity of the 
enlisted members they lead or the American population they fight to 
protect. While the Coast Guard has made strides in addressing its lack 
of diversity among women and minorities, it still has significant 
obstacles to overcome. For instance, of the 91 graduates of the Coast 
Guard's Officer Candidate School last year, only five were African-
American, four were Asian, and nine were Hispanic. The Coast Guard can 
and must do better to enhance diversity among its senior leadership, 
which will have a positive impact for generations to come. And like 
other branches of the Armed Forces, the Coast Guard continues to suffer 
from hazing incidents. Just last year, seven members of the Coast Guard 
were found to have tied down their fellow crew members and performed 
sexual hazing on them.
  I am also pleased that the Senate adopted the Feinstein amendment, 
which restricts the ability of the U.S. Government to detain without 
charge or trial U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents suspected 
of carrying out terrorist activities. The role our civilian-led 
military plays within the borders of the United States has always been 
balanced with the protections of civil liberties, civil rights, and the 
due process of law.
  On the subject of detainees, however, I am disappointed that the 
Senate approved the Ayotte amendment, which prohibits the use of funds 
for transferring or releasing detainees from the detention facilities 
at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for prosecution and trial in the United 
States. In my view, any provision that extends the life of detention 
facilities at Guantanamo Bay unnecessarily sullies America's human 
rights record. The Ayotte amendment also represents a significant cost 
burden going forward for the U.S. Government, as it would force the 
Guantanamo Bay detention facility to remain open indefinitely. The 
Ayotte amendment also handicaps our Federal courts. Our Federal 
courts--unlike military tribunals--have an excellent track record of 
trying and convicting the most dangerous criminals and terrorists in 
the world, and Congress should not tie the hands of our law enforcement 
and intelligence agencies to use our Article III courts. Our Federal 
prison system can also securely hold for life those convicted of 
terrorism offenses.
  When it comes to personnel issues, I support the baseline NDAA bill, 
which will improve the quality of life for our men and women in uniform 
and their families. The bill provides a 1.7-percent pay increase for 
all Active, Reserve, and Guard servicemembers. The bill prevents the 
Department of Defense from increasing TRICARE deductibles and annual 
catastrophic caps and levying enrollment fees for TRICARE Standard and 
TRICARE for Life. Also, the bill further advances service opportunities 
for women by directing the Secretary of Defense to make further 
regulatory and statutory changes in

[[Page S7392]]

combat-related restrictions. Finally, I want to commend the Senate 
Armed Services Committee for authorizing veterans to participate in the 
Transition Assistance Program for 1 year after their discharge so that 
they can be better prepared to lead a productive civilian life.
  On another crucial personnel matter, however, I am deeply 
disappointed that the Senate defeated my amendment to prevent an 
across-the-board cut to the Defense civilian workforce that could lead 
to an additional 36,000 government job losses in the coming years. 
These cuts--on top of cuts that already will occur--would be made 
without consideration to required workload, mission, or funding as 
currently required by law. The Senate version of NDAA, if unchanged, 
will force an arbitrary, sequestration-type of cut in the DOD's 
civilian workforce, injuring the defense industrial base and 
undermining economic recovery. There is a better way to make judicious 
personnel decisions in the Department of Defense than the bill's 
section 341. I hope the NDAA conferees will heed the administration's 
deep concerns with regard to section 341, which the House NDAA--H.R. 
4310--does not include.
  A bill this large and complex won't please everybody entirely. I have 
just outlined some of the provisions I support and some of the 
provisions I don't support. I will vote to pass NDAA to advance it to 
conference. H.R. 4310, like S. 3254, has good and bad provisions, in my 
estimation. For instance, it contains provisions that further restrict 
the transfer of Guantanamo detainees into the United States or foreign 
countries, and it limits the administration's ability to implement the 
New START Treaty or to set U.S. nuclear weapon policy to further 
nuclear force reduction. But, on the other hand, it doesn't contain 
section 341. I hope the legislation the conferees report will be 
something I can support.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam President, I will be very brief. I feel so grateful 
and so proud that the tradition of our committee and this Senate has 
been maintained on our 51st consecutive Defense authorization bill, a 
bill that is so vitally important to the Nation. I am grateful to all 
of our colleagues for working on a bipartisan basis through the normal 
and open legislative process to produce this bill. I am grateful to 
stand here with my partner, Senator McCain--we worked together on this 
bill--to all of the members of the committee, to our staff and the 
floor and cloakroom staff. We passed over 100 amendments. It was a 
process that allowed us to be just as accommodating as we humanly 
could.
  One person I wish to single out as someone who has worked for the 
committee for 41 years--this will be her last year--is Chris Cowart. 
She is our chief clerk, and I would like to take an additional 2 
seconds to mention her name as a symbol of the staff for whom we are so 
grateful.
  I don't know if Senator McCain is here, but I know that I speak for 
him about our staffs and about our colleagues on the committee.
  I yield the floor.
  The bill was ordered to be engrossed for a third reading and was read 
the third time.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The bill having been read the third time, the 
question is, Shall it pass?
  Mr. BAUCUS. I ask for the yeas and nays.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there a sufficient second?
  There appears to be a sufficient second.
  The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk called the roll.
  Mr. DURBIN. I announce that the Senator from West Virginia (Mr. 
Rockefeller) is necessarily absent.
  Mr. KYL. The following Senator is necessarily absent: the Senator 
from Illinois (Mr. Kirk).
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Casey). Are there any other Senators in 
the Chamber desiring to vote?
  The result was announced--yes 98, nays 0, as follows:

                      [Rollcall Vote No. 221 Leg.]

                                YEAS--98

     Akaka
     Alexander
     Ayotte
     Barrasso
     Baucus
     Begich
     Bennet
     Bingaman
     Blumenthal
     Blunt
     Boozman
     Boxer
     Brown (MA)
     Brown (OH)
     Burr
     Cantwell
     Cardin
     Carper
     Casey
     Chambliss
     Coats
     Coburn
     Cochran
     Collins
     Conrad
     Coons
     Corker
     Cornyn
     Crapo
     DeMint
     Durbin
     Enzi
     Feinstein
     Franken
     Gillibrand
     Graham
     Grassley
     Hagan
     Harkin
     Hatch
     Heller
     Hoeven
     Hutchison
     Inhofe
     Inouye
     Isakson
     Johanns
     Johnson (SD)
     Johnson (WI)
     Kerry
     Klobuchar
     Kohl
     Kyl
     Landrieu
     Lautenberg
     Leahy
     Lee
     Levin
     Lieberman
     Lugar
     Manchin
     McCain
     McCaskill
     McConnell
     Menendez
     Merkley
     Mikulski
     Moran
     Murkowski
     Murray
     Nelson (NE)
     Nelson (FL)
     Paul
     Portman
     Pryor
     Reed
     Reid
     Risch
     Roberts
     Rubio
     Sanders
     Schumer
     Sessions
     Shaheen
     Shelby
     Snowe
     Stabenow
     Tester
     Thune
     Toomey
     Udall (CO)
     Udall (NM)
     Vitter
     Warner
     Webb
     Whitehouse
     Wicker
     Wyden

                             NOT VOTING--2

     Kirk
     Rockefeller
       
  The bill (S. 3254), as amended, was passed.
  (The bill will be printed in a future edition of the Record.)
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Under the previous order, the Committee on 
Armed Services is discharged from further consideration of H.R. 4310, 
and the Senate will proceed to the consideration of the measure, which 
the clerk will report.
  The legislative clerk read as follows:

       A bill (H.R. 4310) to authorize appropriations for fiscal 
     year 2013 for military activities of the Department of 
     Defense, for military construction, and for defense 
     activities of the Department of Energy, to prescribe military 
     personnel strengths for such fiscal year, and for other 
     purposes.

  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Under the previous order, all after the 
enacting clause is stricken, and the text of S. 3254 as passed is 
inserted in lieu thereof.
  The clerk will read the title of the bill for the third time.
  The amendment was ordered to be engrossed and the bill to be read a 
third time.
  The bill was read the third time.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Under the previous order, H.R. 4310, as 
amended, is passed, and the motion to reconsider is considered made and 
laid upon the table.
  Under the previous order, the Senate insists on its amendment, 
requests a conference with the House, and the Chair appoints the 
following conferees:
  Mr. Levin, Mr. Lieberman, Mr. Reed of Rhode Island, Mr. Akaka, Mr. 
Nelson of Nebraska, Mr. Webb, Mrs. McCaskill, Mr. Udall of Colorado, 
Mrs. Hagan, Mr. Begich, Mr. Manchin, Mrs. Shaheen, Mrs. Gillibrand, Mr. 
Blumenthal, Mr. McCain, Mr. Inhofe, Mr. Sessions, Mr. Chambliss, Mr. 
Wicker, Mr. Brown of Massachusetts, Mr. Portman, Ms. Ayotte, Ms. 
Collins, Mr. Graham, Mr. Cornyn, and Mr. Vitter.

                          ____________________