Proceedings, Debates of the U.S. Congress
May 18, 2017
115th Congress, 1st Session
Issue: Vol. 163, No. 86 — Daily Edition
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Thursday, May 18, 2017
Older Americans Month: Senate agreed to S. Res. 172, designating May 2017 as ``Older Americans Month''.
National Police Week: Senate agreed to S. Res. 173, designating the week of May 15 through May 21, 2017, as ``National Police Week''.
Branstad Nomination--Agreement: Senate resumed consideration of the nomination of Terry Branstad, of Iowa, to be Ambassador to the People's Republic of China.
During consideration of this nomination today, Senate also took the following action:
By 86 yeas to 12 nays (Vote No. 132), Senate agreed to the motion to close further debate on the nomination.
A unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing that at approximately 3 p.m., on Monday, May, 22, 2017, Senate resume consideration of the nomination, post-cloture; that the time until 5:30 p.m. be equally divided in the usual form; and that notwithstanding the provisions of Rule XXII, the post-cloture time on the nomination expire at 5:30 p.m.
Sullivan Nomination--Cloture: Senate began consideration of the nomination of John J. Sullivan, of Maryland, to be Deputy Secretary of State.
A motion was entered to close further debate on the nomination, and, in accordance with the provisions of Rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, a vote on cloture will occur upon disposition of the nomination of Terry Branstad, of Iowa, to be Ambassador to the People's Republic of China.
Nominations Confirmed: Senate confirmed the following nominations:
By 52 yeas to 46 nays (Vote No. EX. 131), Rachel L. Brand, of Iowa, to be Associate Attorney General.
Todd Philip Haskell, of Florida, to be Ambassador to the Republic of the Congo.
Tulinabo Salama Mushingi, of Virginia, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Senegal, and to serve concurrently and without additional compensation as Ambassador to the Republic of Guinea-Bissau.
Routine lists in the Foreign Service.
Nominations Received: Senate received the following nominations:
David J. Redl, of New York, to be Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information.
Claire M. Grady, of Pennsylvania, to be Under Secretary for Management, Department of Homeland Security.
Neomi Rao, of the District of Columbia, to be Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget.
4 Army nominations in the rank of general.
Routine lists in the Army, Marine Corps, and Navy.
Messages from the House:
Executive Reports of Committees:
Statements on Introduced Bills/Resolutions:
Authorities for Committees to Meet:
Record Votes: Two record votes were taken today. (Total--132)
Adjournment: Senate convened at 10 a.m. and adjourned at 2:24 p.m., until 3 p.m. on Monday, May 22, 2017. (For Senate's program, see the remarks of the Majority Leader in today's Record on page S3048.)
Committee on Armed Services: Committee concluded a hearing to examine the nominations of Kari A. Bingen, of Virginia, to be a Principal Deputy Under Secretary, and Robert Story Karem, of the District of Columbia, who was introduced by Senator McConnell, and Kenneth P. Rapuano, of Virginia, who was introduced by Representative Comstock, both to be an Assistant Secretary, all of the Department of Defense, after the nominees testified and answered questions in their own behalf.
DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL POLICY
Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs: Committee concluded a hearing to examine domestic and international policy, including S. 1002, to enhance the ability of community financial institutions to foster economic growth and serve their communities, boost small businesses, increase individual savings, S. 976, to restore States' sovereign rights to enforce State and local sales and use tax laws, S. 881, to reduce risks to the financial system by limiting banks' ability to engage in certain risky activities and limiting conflicts of interest, to reinstate certain Glass-Steagall Act protections that were repealed by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, after receiving testimony from Steven T. Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury.
Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation: Committee ordered favorably reported the following business items:
S. 1129, to authorize appropriations for the Coast Guard, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute;
S. 118, to make exclusive the authority of the Federal Government to regulate the labeling of products made in the United States and introduced in interstate or foreign commerce, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute;
S. 396, to make technical amendments to certain marine fish conservation statutes;
S. 793, to prohibit sale of shark fins, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute;
S. 1057, to amend the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act of 1998 to address harmful algal blooms, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute; and
S. 1096, to amend and enhance certain maritime programs of the Department of Transportation, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute.
Committee on Energy and Natural Resources: Committee concluded a hearing to examine the nomination of David Bernhardt, of Virginia, to be Deputy Secretary of the Interior, after the nominee, who was introduced by Senator Gardner, testified and answered questions in his own behalf.
Committee on Finance: Committee ordered favorably reported an original bill entitled, ``The Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act of 2017''.
Committee on Foreign Relations: Committee concluded a hearing to examine the nomination of William Francis Hagerty IV, of Tennessee, to be Ambassador to Japan, after the nominee, who was introduced by Senator Alexander, testified and answered questions in his own behalf.
Committee on the Judiciary: Committee ordered favorably reported the nomination of Amul R. Thapar, of Kentucky, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit.
House of Representatives
Reports Filed: Reports were filed today as follows:
H.R. 953, to amend the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act and the Federal Water Pollution Control Act to clarify Congressional intent regarding the regulation of the use of pesticides in or near navigable waters, and for other purposes (H. Rept. 115–131, Part 1); and
H.R. 1726, to amend title 14, United States Code, to improve the organization of such title and to incorporate certain transfers and modifications into such title, and for other purposes (H. Rept. 115–132).
Speaker: Read a letter from the Speaker wherein he appointed Representative Marshall to act as Speaker pro tempore for today.
Recess: The House recessed at 10:55 a.m. and reconvened at 12 noon.
Guest Chaplain: The prayer was offered by the Guest Chaplain, Pastor Glen Berteau, The House Modesto, Modesto, CA.
Recess: The House recessed at 1:04 p.m. and reconvened at 2:15 p.m.
Probation Officer Protection Act of 2017--Rule for Consideration: The House agreed to H. Res. 324, providing for consideration of the bill (H.R. 1039) to amend section 3606 of title 18, United States Code, to grant probation officers authority to arrest hostile third parties who obstruct or impede a probation officer in the performance of official duties, by a recorded vote of 230 ayes to 184 noes, Roll No. 264, after the previous question was ordered by a yea-and-nay vote of 226 yeas to 188 nays, Roll No. 263.
Recess: The House recessed at 3:45 p.m. and reconvened at 3:56 p.m.
Thin Blue Line Act: The House passed H.R. 115, to amend title 18, United States Code, to provide additional aggravating factors for the imposition of the death penalty based on the status of the victim, by a yea-and-nay vote of 271 yeas to 143 nays, Roll No. 265.
Pursuant to the Rule, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 115–17 shall be considered as adopted, in lieu of the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the Committee on the Judiciary now printed in the bill.
Suspension--Proceedings Resumed: The House agreed to suspend the rules and pass the following measures. Consideration began Tuesday, May 16th.
Honoring Hometown Heroes Act: H.R. 1892, to amend title 4, United States Code, to provide for the flying of the flag at half-staff in the event of the death of a first responder in the line of duty, by a \2/3\ yea-and-nay vote of 411 yeas to 1 nay, Roll No. 266.
Adjournment: The House met at 10 a.m. and adjourned at 6:29 p.m.
COAST GUARD REQUIREMENTS, PRIORITIES AND FUTURE ACQUISITION PLANS
Committee on Appropriations: Subcommittee on Homeland Security held an oversight hearing entitled ``Coast Guard Requirements, Priorities and Future Acquisition Plans''. Testimony was heard from Admiral Paul F. Zukunft, Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard.
EMERGING TRANSPORTATION TECHNOLOGIES
Committee on Appropriations: Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies held a hearing entitled ``Emerging Transportation Technologies''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
APPROPRIATIONS--U.S. CAPITOL POLICE
Committee on Appropriations: Subcommittee on Legislative Branch held a budget hearing on the U.S. Capitol Police. Testimony was heard from Steven A. Sund, Assistant Chief of Police; and Matthew R. Verderosa, Chief of Police.
APPROPRIATIONS--LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
Committee on Appropriations: Subcommittee on Legislative Branch held a budget hearing on the Library of Congress. Testimony was heard from Carla D. Hayden, Librarian of Congress; Bud Barton, Chief Information Officer, Library of Congress; and Robert R. Newlen, Deputy Librarian for Institutional Advancement, Library of Congress.
AMPHIBIOUS WARFARE IN A CONTESTED ENVIRONMENT
Committee on Armed Services: Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces held a hearing entitled ``Amphibious Warfare in a Contested Environment''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
REGULATORY BARRIERS FACING WORKERS AND FAMILIES SAVING FOR RETIREMENT
Committee on Education and the Workforce: Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions held a hearing entitled ``Regulatory Barriers Facing Workers and Families Saving for Retirement''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
Committee on Energy and Commerce: Subcommittee on Health held a markup on H.R. 1222, the ``Congenital Heart Futures Reauthorization Act of 2017''; H.R. 2410, the ``Sickle Cell Disease Research, Surveillance, Prevention, and Treatment Act of 2017''; and H.R. 2430, the ``FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017''. H.R. 1222 and H.R. 2430 were forwarded to the full Committee, as amended. H.R. 2410 was forwarded to the full Committee, without amendment.
LESSONS FROM THE IMF'S BAILOUT OF GREECE
Committee on Financial Services: Subcommittee on Monetary Policy and Trade held a hearing entitled ``Lessons from the IMF's Bailout of Greece''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
U.S. INTERESTS IN AFRICA
Committee on Foreign Affairs: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``U.S. Interests in Africa''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
DISAPPEARED, JAILED, AND TORTURED IN CHINA: WIVES PETITION FOR THEIR HUSBANDS' FREEDOM
Committee on Foreign Affairs: Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations held a hearing entitled ``Disappeared, Jailed, and Tortured in China: Wives Petition for Their Husbands' Freedom''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
Committee on Homeland Security: Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence held a markup on the H.R. 2453, the ``DHS Intelligence Rotational Assignment Program Act of 2017''; H.R. 2468, the ``Unifying DHS Intelligence Enterprise Act''; H.R. 2471, the ``Terrorist Release Announcements to Counter Extremist Recidivism Act''; H.R. 2454, the ``Department of Homeland Security Data Framework Act of 2017''; H.R. 2470, the ``Homeland Threat Assessment Act''; H.R. 2443, the ``Department of Homeland Security Classified Facility Inventory Act''; H.R. 2427, the ``Pathways to Improving Homeland Security At the Local Level Act''; H.R. 2433, the ``Homeland Security Assessment of Terrorists Use of Virtual Currencies Act''; and H.R. 2442, the ``Office of State and Local Law Enforcement Information Sharing Review Act''. H.R. 2443 and H.R. 2471 were reported to the full Committee, as amended. H.R. 2427, H.R. 2433, H.R. 2442, H.R. 2453, H.R. 2454, H.R. 2468, and H.R. 2470 were reported to the full Committee, without amendment.
FROM THE BORDER TO DISASTERS AND BEYOND: CRITICAL CANINE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE DHS MISSION
Committee on Homeland Security: Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency held a hearing entitled ``From the Border to Disasters and Beyond: Critical Canine Contributions to the DHS Mission''. Testimony was heard from Jennifer Brown, Canine Search Specialist, Team Veterinarian, Florida Task Force, Urban Search and Rescue, and the following officials from the Department of Homeland Security: Damian Montes, Director, Canine Training Program, Customs and Border Protection; Melanie Harvey, Director, Threat Assessment Division, Transportation Security Administration; Peter Jaquez, Acting Deputy Chief, Law Enforcement Operations-Specialty Programs, Border Patrol; and Patrick Carrick, Director, Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency, Science and Technology Directorate.
Committee on the Judiciary: Full Committee held a markup on H.R. 1973, the ``Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse Act of 2017''; and H.R. 2473, the ``Enforcing Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2017''. H.R. 1973 and H.R. 2473 were ordered reported, as amended.
Committee on Natural Resources: Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans held a hearing on H.R. 2371, to require the Administrator of the Western Area Power Administration to establish a pilot project to provide increased transparency for customers, and for other purposes; and the ``Water Rights Protection Act''. Testimony was heard from Dennis Sullivan, Chief Financial Officer, Western Area Power Administration; Chris Treese, External Affairs Manager, Colorado River District; and public witnesses.
FEDERAL EMPLOYEE COMPENSATION: AN UPDATE
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``Federal Employee Compensation: An Update''. Testimony was heard from Joseph Kile, Assistant Director for Microeconomic Studies, Congressional Budget Office; Robert Goldenkoff, Director of Strategic Issues, Government Accountability Office; and public witnesses.
BUILDING A 21ST CENTURY INFRASTRUCTURE FOR AMERICA: IMPROVING WATER QUALITY THROUGH INTEGRATED PLANNING
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure: Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment held a hearing entitled ``Building a 21st Century Infrastructure for America: Improving Water Quality Through Integrated Planning''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
HOW TAX REFORM WILL GROW OUR ECONOMY AND CREATE JOBS
Committee on Ways and Means: Subcommittee on Tax Policy held a hearing entitled ``How Tax Reform Will Grow Our Economy and Create Jobs''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
CURRENT STATUS OF THE MEDICARE PROGRAM, PAYMENT SYSTEMS, AND EXTENDERS
Committee on Ways and Means: Subcommittee on Health held a hearing entitled ``Current Status of the Medicare Program, Payment Systems, and Extenders''. Testimony was heard from Mark Miller, Executive Director, Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.
No joint committee meetings were held.
No meetings/hearings scheduled.
Committee on Armed Services, Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, hearing entitled ``Fiscal Year 2018 Priorities and Posture of the National Security Space Enterprise'', 8 a.m., 2118 Rayburn.
Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Environment, hearing entitled ``Drinking Water System Improvement Act and Related Issues of Funding, Management, and Compliance Assistance under the Safe Drinking Water Act'', 8:30 a.m., 2123 Rayburn.
Committee on Ways and Means, Subcommittee on Oversight, hearing entitled ``IRS Reform: Lessons Learned from the National Taxpayer Advocate'', 9 a.m., 1100 Longworth.
Program for Monday: Senate will resume consideration of the nomination of Terry Branstad, of Iowa, to be Ambassador to the People's Republic of China, post-cloture, and vote on confirmation of the nomination at 5:30 p.m.
Program for Friday: Complete consideration of H.R. 1039--Probation Officer Protection Act of 2017.
Babin, Brian, Tex., E660
Bost, Mike, Ill., E669
Brat, Dave, Va., E665
Cohen, Steve, Tenn., E661
Cole, Tom, Okla., E664
Comstock, Barbara, Va., E665
Costa, Jim, Calif., E660
Courtney, Joe, Conn., E667
Dingell, Debbie, Mich., E670
Frankel, Lois, Fla., E662
Higgins, Brian, N.Y., E660
Hudson, Richard, N.C., E662
LaHood, Darin, Ill., E665
McEachin, A. Donald, Va., E666
Napolitano, Grace F., Calif., E659
Norton, Eleanor Holmes, The District of Columbia, E671
Payne, Donald M., Jr., N.J., E669
Pingree, Chellie, Me., E663
Schiff, Adam B., Calif., E659
Smith, Christopher H., N.J., E669
Stefanik, Elise M., N.Y., E667
Trott, David A., Mich., E671
Valadao, David G., Calif., E664
Welch, Peter, Vt., E667
Wilson, Joe, S.C., E662