RAISING A QUESTION OF THE PRIVILEGES OF THE HOUSE
(House of Representatives - June 25, 2015)

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[Congressional Record Volume 161, Number 103 (Thursday, June 25, 2015)]
[Pages H4662-H4664]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                              {time}  1000
           RAISING A QUESTION OF THE PRIVILEGES OF THE HOUSE

  Mr. THOMPSON of Mississippi. Mr. Speaker, I have a privileged 
resolution at the desk.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Clerk will report the resolution.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                              H. Res. ___

       Whereas on December 20, 1860, South Carolina became the 
     first State to secede from the Union;
       Whereas on January 9, 1861, Mississippi seceded from the 
     Union, stating in its ``Declaration of Immediate Causes'' 
     that ``[o]ur position is thoroughly identified with the 
     institution of slavery - the greatest material interest of 
     the world.'';
       Whereas on February 9, 1861, the Confederate States of 
     America was formed with a group of 11 States as a purported 
     sovereign nation and with Jefferson Davis of Mississippi as 
     its president;
       Whereas on March 11, 1861, the Confederate States of 
     America adopted its own constitution;
       Whereas on April 12, 1861, the Confederate States of 
     America fired shots upon Fort Sumter in Charleston, South 
     Carolina, effectively beginning the Civil War;
       Whereas the United States did not recognize the Confederate 
     States of America as a sovereign nation, but rather as a 
     rebel insurrection, and took to military battle to bring the 
     rogue states back into the Union;
       Whereas on April 9, 1865, General Robert E. Lee surrendered 
     to General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House in 
     Virginia, effectively, ending the Civil War and preserving 
     the Union;
       Whereas during the Civil War, the Confederate States of 
     America used the Navy Jack, Battle Flag, and other imagery as 
     a symbols of the Confederate armed forces;
       Whereas since the end of the Civil War, the Navy Jack, 
     Confederate battle flag, and other imagery of the Confederacy 
     have been appropriated by groups as a symbols of hate, 
     terror, intolerance, and as supportive of the institution of 
     slavery;
       Whereas groups such as the Ku Klux Klan and other white 
     supremacist groups utilize Confederate imagery to frighten, 
     terrorize, and cause harm to groups of people toward whom 
     they have hateful intent, including African Americans, 
     Hispanic Americans, and Jewish Americans;
       Whereas many State and Federal political leaders, including 
     United States Senators Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker, along 
     with Mississippi House Speaker Philip Gunn and other State 
     leaders, have spoken out and advocated for the removal of the 
     imagery of the Confederacy on Mississippi's state flag;
       Whereas many Members of Congress, including Speaker John 
     Boehner, support the removal of the Confederate flag from the 
     grounds of South Carolina's capitol;
       Whereas Speaker John Boehner released a statement on the 
     issue saying, ``I commend Governor Nikki Haley and other 
     South Carolina leaders in their effort to remove the 
     Confederate flag from Statehouse grounds. In his second 
     inaugural address 150 years ago, and a month before his 
     assassination, President Abraham Lincoln ended his speech 
     with these powerful words, which are as meaningful today as 
     when they were spoken on the East Front of the Capitol on 
     March 4, 1865: `With malice toward none, with charity for 
     all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the 
     right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind 
     up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne 
     the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which 
     may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among 
     ourselves and with all nations.' '';
       Whereas the House of Representatives has several State 
     flags with imagery of the Confederacy throughout its main 
     structures and House office buildings;
       Whereas it is an uncontroverted fact that symbols of the 
     Confederacy offend and insult many members of the general 
     public who use the hallways of Congress each day;
       Whereas Congress has never permanently recognized in its 
     hallways the symbols of sovereign nations with whom it has 
     gone to war or rogue entities such as the Confederate States 
     of America;
       Whereas continuing to display a symbol of hatred, 
     oppression, and insurrection that nearly tore our Union apart 
     and that is known to offend many groups throughout the 
     country would irreparably damage the reputation of this 
     august institution and offend the very dignity of the House 
     of Representatives; and

[[Page H4663]]

       Whereas this impairment of the dignity of the House and its 
     Members constitutes a violation under rule IX of the Rules of 
     the House of Representatives of the One Hundred Fourteenth 
     Congress: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the Speaker of the House of Representatives 
     shall remove any State flag containing any portion of the 
     Confederate battle flag, other than a flag displayed by the 
     office of a Member of the House, from any area within the 
     House wing of the Capitol or any House office building, and 
     shall donate any such flag to the Library of Congress.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The resolution presents a question of 
privilege.


                            Motion to Refer

  Mr. McCARTHY. Mr. Speaker, I have a motion at the desk.
  The SPEAKER. The Clerk will report the motion.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Mr. McCarthy moves that the resolution be referred to the 
     Committee on House Administration.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from California is recognized 
for 1 hour.
  Mr. McCARTHY. Mr. Speaker, all time yielded is for the purpose of 
debate only.
  Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for bringing this resolution to 
the attention of the House.
  As I have said many times before, I am a big believer in the 
committee process to discuss all issues that come before the floor, 
especially one of this importance. I think this resolution should be 
referred to the Committee on House Administration to give other Members 
an opportunity to weigh in.
  I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Mississippi (Mr. Thompson) 
for the purpose of debate only.
  Mr. THOMPSON of Mississippi. Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the gentleman 
yielding the time.
  Mr. Speaker, to someone who has lived his entire life in the State of 
Mississippi and has had to endure a symbol that represented bigotry, 
hatred, and everything this country is not, I am convinced that an 
effort to remove this flag from the hallowed Halls of the House of 
Representatives is the right thing to do.
  We all know the history of the South. We know the secessionists' 
motivations behind the Civil War, and my ancestors were those 
individuals who were held in bondage against their will.
  We are a Nation of laws. We should not identify with symbols of 
hatred and bigotry. That flag, those symbols should be put in a museum. 
They should not be flown under any circumstance where there is freedom 
and dignity in this great institution of ours.
  I know it is a hard choice for Members to do, but I saw what happened 
in Charleston, South Carolina, last Wednesday. The whole world saw it, 
and they did not like it. This is one step toward getting us healed as 
a Nation.
  I take it personally. I have had churches burned in my district. I 
have had men and women killed for trying to do the right thing; yet, 
when I see people trying to defend that way of life which that flag 
represents, this is not who we are as an institution.
  Because of that, I offer the privileged resolution. I understand 
where we are with it, but I have issues with it.
  I appreciate the gentleman yielding the 2 minutes.
  I urge my colleagues to oppose the referral of this resolution to 
committee.
  Mr. McCARTHY. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentlewoman from 
Michigan (Mrs. Miller), the distinguished chair of the Committee on 
House Administration.
  Mrs. MILLER of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, I certainly thank the majority 
leader for yielding the time.
  I would just say, Mr. Speaker, to my colleague from Mississippi, I 
certainly was moved personally just listening to him speak now; and I 
listened to him last night when he offered his privileged motion.
  I would say that the Committee on House Administration is looking 
forward to hearing more from Representative Thompson, as well as all of 
the congressional delegation from the great State of Mississippi, on 
this resolution. As well, our committee, of course, would want to have 
an opportunity to hear from all of the elected representatives at the 
State level of the great State of Mississippi.
  We want to say that we sincerely appreciate Representative Thompson 
for offering his privileged resolution and to assure the gentleman from 
Mississippi, Mr. Speaker, that our committee will give this measure 
every serious consideration and every thoughtful consideration.
  Mr. McCARTHY. Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time, and I 
move the previous question on the motion to refer.
  The previous question was ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion to refer.
  The question was taken; and the Speaker pro tempore announced that 
the ayes appeared to have it.
  Mr. THOMPSON of Mississippi. Mr. Speaker, on that I demand the yeas 
and nays.
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to clause 8 of rule XX, this 15-
minute vote on the motion to refer will be followed by 5-minute votes 
on adoption of House Resolution 338 and the motion to suspend the rules 
on H.R. 1615.
  The vote was taken by electronic device, and there were--yeas 240, 
nays 184, not voting 9, as follows:

                             [Roll No. 385]

                               YEAS--240

     Abraham
     Aderholt
     Allen
     Amash
     Amodei
     Babin
     Barletta
     Barr
     Barton
     Benishek
     Bilirakis
     Bishop (MI)
     Bishop (UT)
     Black
     Blackburn
     Blum
     Bost
     Boustany
     Brady (TX)
     Brat
     Bridenstine
     Brooks (AL)
     Brooks (IN)
     Buchanan
     Buck
     Bucshon
     Burgess
     Byrne
     Calvert
     Carter (GA)
     Carter (TX)
     Chabot
     Chaffetz
     Coffman
     Cole
     Collins (GA)
     Collins (NY)
     Comstock
     Conaway
     Cook
     Costello (PA)
     Cramer
     Crawford
     Crenshaw
     Culberson
     Curbelo (FL)
     Davis, Rodney
     Denham
     Dent
     DeSantis
     DesJarlais
     Diaz-Balart
     Dold
     Donovan
     Duffy
     Duncan (SC)
     Duncan (TN)
     Ellmers (NC)
     Emmer (MN)
     Farenthold
     Fincher
     Fitzpatrick
     Fleischmann
     Fleming
     Flores
     Forbes
     Fortenberry
     Foxx
     Franks (AZ)
     Frelinghuysen
     Garrett
     Gibbs
     Gibson
     Gohmert
     Goodlatte
     Gosar
     Gowdy
     Granger
     Graves (GA)
     Graves (LA)
     Graves (MO)
     Griffith
     Grothman
     Guinta
     Guthrie
     Hanna
     Hardy
     Harper
     Harris
     Hartzler
     Heck (NV)
     Hensarling
     Herrera Beutler
     Hice, Jody B.
     Hill
     Holding
     Hudson
     Huelskamp
     Huizenga (MI)
     Hultgren
     Hunter
     Hurd (TX)
     Issa
     Jenkins (KS)
     Jenkins (WV)
     Johnson (OH)
     Johnson, Sam
     Jolly
     Jones
     Jordan
     Joyce
     Katko
     Kelly (PA)
     King (IA)
     King (NY)
     Kinzinger (IL)
     Kline
     Knight
     Labrador
     LaMalfa
     Lamborn
     Lance
     Latta
     LoBiondo
     Long
     Loudermilk
     Love
     Lucas
     Luetkemeyer
     Lummis
     MacArthur
     Marchant
     Marino
     Massie
     McCarthy
     McCaul
     McClintock
     McHenry
     McKinley
     McMorris Rodgers
     McSally
     Meadows
     Meehan
     Messer
     Mica
     Miller (FL)
     Miller (MI)
     Moolenaar
     Mooney (WV)
     Mullin
     Mulvaney
     Murphy (PA)
     Neugebauer
     Newhouse
     Noem
     Nugent
     Nunes
     Olson
     Palazzo
     Palmer
     Paulsen
     Pearce
     Perry
     Pittenger
     Pitts
     Poe (TX)
     Poliquin
     Pompeo
     Posey
     Price, Tom
     Ratcliffe
     Reed
     Reichert
     Renacci
     Ribble
     Rice (SC)
     Rigell
     Roby
     Roe (TN)
     Rogers (AL)
     Rogers (KY)
     Rohrabacher
     Rokita
     Rooney (FL)
     Ros-Lehtinen
     Roskam
     Ross
     Rothfus
     Rouzer
     Royce
     Russell
     Ryan (WI)
     Salmon
     Scalise
     Schweikert
     Scott, Austin
     Sensenbrenner
     Sessions
     Shimkus
     Shuster
     Simpson
     Smith (MO)
     Smith (NE)
     Smith (NJ)
     Smith (TX)
     Stefanik
     Stewart
     Stivers
     Stutzman
     Thompson (PA)
     Thornberry
     Tiberi
     Tipton
     Trott
     Turner
     Upton
     Valadao
     Wagner
     Walberg
     Walden
     Walker
     Walorski
     Walters, Mimi
     Weber (TX)
     Webster (FL)
     Wenstrup
     Westerman
     Westmoreland
     Whitfield
     Williams
     Wilson (SC)
     Wittman
     Womack
     Woodall
     Yoder
     Yoho
     Young (IA)
     Young (IN)
     Zeldin
     Zinke

                               NAYS--184

     Adams
     Aguilar
     Ashford
     Bass
     Beatty
     Becerra
     Bera
     Beyer
     Bishop (GA)
     Blumenauer
     Bonamici
     Boyle, Brendan F.
     Brady (PA)
     Brown (FL)
     Brownley (CA)
     Bustos
     Butterfield
     Capps
     Capuano
     Cardenas
     Carney
     Carson (IN)
     Cartwright
     Castor (FL)
     Castro (TX)
     Chu, Judy
     Cicilline
     Clark (MA)
     Clawson (FL)
     Clay
     Cleaver
     Cohen
     Connolly
     Conyers
     Cooper
     Costa
     Courtney
     Crowley
     Cuellar
     Cummings
     Davis (CA)
     Davis, Danny
     DeFazio
     DeGette
     Delaney
     DeLauro
     DelBene
     DeSaulnier
     Deutch
     Dingell
     Doggett
     Doyle, Michael F.
     Duckworth
     Edwards
     Ellison
     Engel
     Eshoo
     Esty
     Farr
     Fattah
     Foster
     Frankel (FL)
     Fudge
     Gabbard

[[Page H4664]]


     Gallego
     Garamendi
     Graham
     Grayson
     Green, Al
     Green, Gene
     Grijalva
     Gutierrez
     Hahn
     Hastings
     Heck (WA)
     Higgins
     Himes
     Hinojosa
     Honda
     Hoyer
     Huffman
     Israel
     Jackson Lee
     Jeffries
     Johnson (GA)
     Johnson, E. B.
     Kaptur
     Keating
     Kelly (IL)
     Kennedy
     Kildee
     Kilmer
     Kind
     Kirkpatrick
     Kuster
     Langevin
     Larsen (WA)
     Larson (CT)
     Lawrence
     Lee
     Levin
     Lewis
     Lieu, Ted
     Lipinski
     Loebsack
     Lofgren
     Lowenthal
     Lowey
     Lujan Grisham (NM)
     Lujan, Ben Ray (NM)
     Lynch
     Maloney, Carolyn
     Maloney, Sean
     Matsui
     McCollum
     McDermott
     McGovern
     McNerney
     Meeks
     Meng
     Moore
     Moulton
     Murphy (FL)
     Nadler
     Neal
     Nolan
     Norcross
     O'Rourke
     Pallone
     Pascrell
     Pelosi
     Perlmutter
     Peterson
     Pingree
     Pocan
     Polis
     Price (NC)
     Quigley
     Rangel
     Rice (NY)
     Richmond
     Roybal-Allard
     Ruiz
     Ruppersberger
     Rush
     Ryan (OH)
     Sanchez, Linda T.
     Sanchez, Loretta
     Sarbanes
     Schakowsky
     Schiff
     Schrader
     Scott (VA)
     Scott, David
     Serrano
     Sewell (AL)
     Sherman
     Sinema
     Sires
     Slaughter
     Smith (WA)
     Speier
     Swalwell (CA)
     Takai
     Takano
     Thompson (CA)
     Thompson (MS)
     Titus
     Tonko
     Torres
     Tsongas
     Van Hollen
     Vargas
     Veasey
     Vela
     Velazquez
     Visclosky
     Walz
     Wasserman Schultz
     Waters, Maxine
     Watson Coleman
     Welch
     Wilson (FL)
     Yarmuth

                             NOT VOTING--9

     Clarke (NY)
     Clyburn
     Hurt (VA)
     Kelly (MS)
     Napolitano
     Payne
     Peters
     Sanford
     Young (AK)

                              {time}  1038

  Mses. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON of Texas and DelBENE, Messrs. HASTINGS, 
CLAWSON of Florida, SERRANO, and JOHNSON of Georgia changed their vote 
from ``yea'' to ``nay.''
  Messrs. FLORES and BURGESS changed their vote from ``nay'' to 
``yea.''
  So the motion to refer was agreed to.
  The result of the vote was announced as above recorded.
  A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.
  Stated for:
  Mr. HURT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I was not present for rollcall 
vote No. 385 on H. Res. 341. Had I been present, I would have voted 
``yea.''
  Stated against:
  Ms. CLARKE of New York. Mr. Speaker, earlier today, I was unavoidably 
detained in a meeting with constituents and missed recorded vote No. 
385. Had I been present, on rollcall No. 385, On the Motion to Refer 
the Thompson (MS) Resolution to the Committee on House Administration, 
I would have voted ``no.''
  Mrs. NAPOLITANO. Mr. Speaker, on Thursday, June 25th, 2015, I was 
absent during rollcall vote No. 385. Had I been present, I would have 
voted ``no'' on the Motion to Refer the Thompson (MS) Resolution to the 
Committee on House Administration.

                          ____________________