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tv   U.S. House of Representatives Legislative Business  CSPAN  February 9, 2016 6:00pm-7:01pm EST

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we got a five-year transportation bill done, we reformed the no child left behind bill to make sure that we're not overtesting our students, we got a budget agreement thanks to the good work of a lot of people signature on this stage right now, not me, that allowed us to ensure that we would not abide by sequester caps, that would undermine our ability to invest in economic and national security priorities. . we got the debt limit extended without significant drama or delay. we got i.m.f. reform, something we had long sought. we got a re-authorization of the export-import bank. most of those were things republicans were strongly opposed to. at least they said they were strongly opposed to them. but yet we were able to work aggressively and find common ground with republicans. none of the bills i just described were perfect but they did all reflect compromises and
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republicans who were part of those compromises deserve credit for trying to find that kind of common ground that's in the best interest of the country. our experience last year gives us some optimism about what is possible this year, particularly when you consider that there are so many opportunities that are ripe for bipartisan agreement. the kinds of things that shaun laid out, that do represent bipartisan potential, are not things that we -- there's -- these aren't positions we're ascribing to republicans. if you called republicans' offices, which i hope you'll do after the briefing, they'll tell you they themselves are interested in things like expanding the eitc program to promote work and give an incentive to workers who don't have children. the -- obviously cancer research, there's a lot of audiocassette talk on the campaign trail both among republicans and democrats in new hampshire right now about doing more to fight opioid addiction and heroin abuse. and we often talk about
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cybersecurity. that's actually a boish compromise that was achieved at the end of last year that i failed to mention. there was legislation this administration put forward at the beginning of last year and urged congress to pass. took them the whole year to do it but they did it. they did it not because we talked them into it but because we put forward a good proposal that would strengthen the country's cyberdefenses. so i think the experience of last year certainly informs our relatively optimistic view about this year. and the fact that we have some legitimately bipartisan proposals that both democrats and republicans acknowledge to be good for the country that we can put forward and hopefully ork on together. >> let me pile on a little bit. it would be interesting to go back and look at the press releases they put out last year that the president's budget came out. i think the words dead on arrival were heard quite a bit. mr. donovan: relevance was
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questioned and to josh's point, not only did we get a lot of wins but the budget agreement struck in october and the omnibus in december followed the structure that the president laid out. we got 90% of the increased investment that the president called for. it was dollar for dollar on the defense and nondefense side. those were the two bright lines the president laid out at the beginning on funding. he said, we have to end sequester. we have to do it dollar for dollar, defense-nondefense. the third thing he laid out, we have to do it without poison pill riders. and in fact that's what happened. we defeated the poison pill riders in the deal. below the surface, there were many, many things, whether it's the types of things that josh talked about, we made a down payment on the opioid epidemic last year. cecilia talked about our investments in head start. we made a big start toward over $400 million of increase in head
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start toward full day, full year, a plan which the president laid out. state grants to expand universal pre-k, aparen disships, i could go on and on. there's a broad range of things we got done last year that were bipartisan. we also got a bunch of things done like the green climate fund. we got funding to implement the president's clean power plan. we got important new investments at the i.r.s. which the republicans said there was no way were going to happen. both on bipartisan things and things that were priorities of the president but not shared, we got a lot done last year. the only other thing i would just say on this, and there are many of those same priorities that are in this bill that i think have real bipartisan support and others that i think we have a lot of leverage to get. the question here is not for the admrgs. we took a very clear position, we were going to hi by our word, we were going to write our budget to the deal last year,
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even if that meant we were going to make some tough choices and we made those tough choices. as josh said a budget is very specific, you have to show your priority. the question here isn't a fight between the administration and republicans, it's a fight within the republican party. we're already seeing despite some people saying on the republican side, we're seeing others that say we ought to cut below the deal. we're seeing others that say we ought to raise spending above defense. i think the question for the republican party is where do they stand on this? are they going to be able to function in congress? that's really the the question. it's going to be up to them whether this is something we have done our part with this budget. it's going to be up to them to see whether they can deliver on their promises to get back to regular order this year. >> angela. just wait for the mike so the dozens of people watching on camera here an hear.
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>> we at bloomberg have dozens watching us. angela with bloomberg. question on the revenue projections for the international tax reform proposals. they've more than doubled since last year's budget and we're trying to figure out where that doubling comes from. goes to $480 billion from $238.3 billion last year, which is a pretty sizable difference. and then one other question along those same line the per barrel oil tax last week was billed at $10, today it's $10.25, so what accounts for that difference as well? >> why don't i take both of those. i have to check the numbers. the proposals for business tax are very similar to last year. i thought the scores were argely similar to last year. there's a difference in the budgetary treatment of the whole package.
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a package that passed at the end of last year. mr. furman: last year we treated business tax reform as revenue neutral, but it in a pox in the budget and didn't have any of those policies adding into the budget totals. this year we continue to be committed to business tax reform and we're committed to it on the same basis we were last year, which is to say, we think it should pay for tax extenders. we had proposed to pay for tax extenders last year in a compromise with congress in order to get things done, we agreed to do last year without paying for them. but if we come back and reform the business tax system, we'd want to make up for that revenue this year system of the current budget treatment flows through all the different tax loophole closers and structural changes to the business tax system toward the overall budget number with the goal of being revenue neutral relative to the baseline we established last year, in other words, paying for tax extenders.
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i'll take a look and you can also talk to treasury about how any plarl item changed in terms of its scoring, often there's technical changes in the score bus there were no major policy changes. in answer to your second question we can described the oil tax as about $10 per barrel, it phases in over five years, it's indexed to inflation. it's literally a different number in each of those years and we were giving you the rounded number. >> on the international tax side, i think we have also seen an increasing number of companies that have -- are proposing or have actually been carrying out inversions and so one of the things that is contributing, there are other technical issues but one of the things contributing to that change in score is treasury observing a larger number of companies that are taking advantage of what we think are
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loopholes that need to be closed. mr. donovan: we've taken significant actions with our existing authority, but we're also calling on congress to move changes to stop inversions as well and that's something that is highlighted by the change in numbers that you point to. >> mary bruce with abc news. wondering on the $10 a barrel oil tax, how much of that do you anticipate will be passed on to consumers and is there concern that that could hinder the broader economic growth you've been discussing? also on the time, can you explain why the decision was made to release today what is the biggest political items, if the super bowl was a factor, why not hold it for later in the week? terms -- on it in
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our way to work, roads, transit, businesses are losing money, paying lots of money and are undermining their position in the global economy because our infrastructure is no longer a source of competitive advantage, in fact, it's a vulnerability. it's a hidden tax on consumers or commuters, some estimate says that's over $900 per year in lost hours and fuel costs. mr. zients: so there's uveragetcy to build on what congress did at the end of last year and invest significantly in our infrastructure. in terms of the fee itself, it is a -- it is paid by oil companies. we anticipate that oil companies will pass some of that on to the consumers of various oil products and that's important here in that this is not just about automobiles, it's about airplanes and rail and other forms of transit that consume oil and oil, as i said earlier, is responsible for about 30% of
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carbon pollution. this is a strong plan that addresses the fact that we have this hidden tax on consumers and businesses because of the inadequacy of our infrastructure across all nodes and we think it's an important proposal that preempt ours competitiveness and as i said, will save consumers and commuters time and energy costs. >> just on the question about timing, obviously february in general is crowded this year. and so i'm not sure, given both the february statutory release date and frankly the fact that congress was so late in getting the budget done, that we were going to be able to find a day that was sort of free from other distractions. i think the important point here is, you know, based on the president's absolutely
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determined focus on using every day of his last year to deliver for the american people, we had a state of the union that was one of the earliest on record. mr. donovan: we've already before today rolled out more than 20 specific proposals that are in the budget and actually we think given the distrabses that we have more broadly, from candidates that are, you know, talking down the country and frankly presenting a dark picture of where the u.s. is headed, we've been able to capture, i think, a remarkable amount of attention to a broad set of budget proposals that really are about the future and about the hopefulness that the president has about the country. so i think despite the timing of the day today, this has been a budget release that's been ongoing for a number of weeks now and i think certainly my
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sense, and i give a lot of credit to our press team and others that have worked on it, that this is something where we really have captured the american people -- the imagination of the american people in a lot of ways. >> the last thing i'd say about that is, i think republicans canceling the budget hearing is actually the clearest evidence that it's republicans who don't want a public discussion about the budget. mr. earnest: we welcome the opportunity and maybe we'll get them to change their mind. kevin? >> kevin corker, fox news. about that, does the lack of an invitation resonate with you in a way that makes you understand that there's not going to be a lot of bipartisanship, maybe not a lot of cooperation coming up in this year, or am i overreeding that? i think the second question, you can also weigh in on that if you would, josh, the second question i have is, is there a tax increase in this budget? and if so, what's that level? and last, i notice that there's
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specific read on immigration reform as a means for saving money within the budget. i'm just curious how that plays out when you consider the lack of the likelihood that immigration reform will actually ake place even in fiscal 2017. >> i talked about the broad fiscal progress we've made under the president's leadership and that this budget would continue that progress. mr. donovan: one of the key areas where we've made enormous progress is on health care costs. the president came in and identified health care costs as the -- as one of the single most important drivers of our long run fiscal challenges and through the a.c.a. and a range of other steps we've taken, we've made enormous progress.
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just to give one specific example the budget makes clear, just in the year 2020, we believe that we will save about $185 billion just in that one year because of the slow growth of health care costs and better projections since the affordable care act was passed. so enormous progress on what is among the biggest drivers of it. the second thing we have to realize is that a big fiscal challenge we have is keeping our promises to the baby boom generation. the budget goes through and i won't get into all the detail bus we're moving from where just a few years ago, we had 3.2 workers per retiree, to a place we can see in the next decade where we'll have 2.4 workers per retiree. one of the most important things about immigration reform is that it brings in more workers, those
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workers contribute to society they pay taxes, they boost our economy, and these are not just our numbers. the congressional budget office says the same thing. their projections are that we would save $170 billion in this decade. we've adopted those numbers in the budget and that savings grows. it becomes almost a $1 trillion when you add in the second decade. so immigration reform is not just the right thing to do for families and our economy, it's the right thing to do for our fiscal future. on the point about bipartisanship, josh is very clear up front that we're going to keep putting out what we think is right. independent of whether we think it's something that will be adopted by republicans. but we should remind you that there was bipartisan support for exactly the bill that we are adopting in our budget. it passed in the senate with bipartisan support and our hope
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would be that after we get through the distractions and the bombast of this political season, that we could return to doing the right thing for the country and we think immigration reform is part of that. >> in answer to your question on taxes, the budget proposes $277 billion of tax cuts for middle class families. that helps everything from child care, with tripling the child tax credit for people with younger children, pro work by having a tax credit for secondary earners. it simplifies and expands tax crets for college. it expands a tax break to encourage both small businesses to offer savings plans and people to take them up. and also expands the eitc for people without qualifying children, either because they don't have children or they're noncustodial parents.
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take all of this together and the main experience most persons -- most americans would get in terms of their taxes as a result of this budget would be a tax cut for things like child care, college, retirement savings, work, and low income households. as part of the deficit plan, the budget does as a whole curb a set of tax breaks for high income households. one of those, for example, limits the tax deduction and tax exclusions for high income households to 28% that would only affect households making above $250,000 a year. and it's something that my predecessors - my have all described as more akin to a spending cut because it's spending that takes place through the tax code for high income households. another example of that is a loophole for high income households on their net
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investment income which we would propose to close here. so the revenue is coming from high income households, it's coming from cutting back on tax expenditures, closing tax loopholes, not raising rates. >> can i just add one thing to that? you talked about the tax side but this is a balanced proposal in our budget. as i said, we decided to live by the agreement that was reached last year. mr. donovan: and we've made some hard choices. we have 117 different cuts, consolidations or savings proposals in the budget. we talked a little bit about health care savings, about $275 -- about $375 billion there but we got 15 different proposals that cey over $115 billion on program integrity, for example. we have smart savings proposals on everything from crop insurance to a range of other things. and i think it's important to step back, since the president
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came into office, we've had deficit reduction of about $4.5 trillion. this budget adds $2.9 trillion additional dollars of deaf cyst reduction. if you put those all together, we're still getting more than 50%, even if we adopted every one of the proposals in the president's budget that jason just talked about, we're still etting more than 50% of that $7.4 trillion in deficit reduction from spend regular ducks, not revenue increases. we believe this is a balanced proposal, both on the spending side and the tax revenue side. nd we stand by that. deficits to g.d.p. are under 3% every year of the budget window and debt to g.d.p. we take from under current law if we did nothing, would be increasing substantially over the window and we stabilize debt to g.d.p.
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and start bringing it down through 2025. >> i want to go back quickly to the bipartisan thing, we've observed many times that with republicans in control of congress and democrats in charge of the white house, anything that gets done is going to have to be by definition, bipartisan. so the question really for republicans at this point is, are they going to do anything? are they going to use their majority in congress to strengthen our cybersecurity, to fight opioid addiction tombings cure cancer? or are they not? i think the question is for them. we put proposals in our budget for how precisely we can do that. this gentleman right here. >> charlie charge with government executive media group. the republicans seem to want to have a reduction in number of workers in the federal work force and maybe even abolish some agencies. i'm just wondering, is the upside of this budget a net increase in the size of the federal work force or the size
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of the goth? >> we do have particular places within the federal government where we think there needs to be increased investment in the number of people as well as the skills of those people. mr. donovan: cybersecurity is a very good example where that's a place that's a critical national need where we do propose both increasing number of personnel as well as raising their skills. we have $62 million investment as part of the cyberplan that the president announced today that really goes to this work force piece of the issue. but we have other places, for example, the veterans administration, where we continue to enhance the number of people we have there to respond to what is really a wave of veterans that we are bringing
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back from overseas and that's a sacred promise that the president has made. i would also point to another example of a place like i.r.s. where the cuts from the republican congress have been so deep that we got to a place last year where we were only answering 40% of taxpayers' phone calls. 40%. now we had a win in the budget last year where we got almost $300 million of increase. we're now up to answering 60% of taxpayers' phone calls but obviously that's not acceptable. and by the way, we're losing billions of dollars of revenue from taxes that should be paid, that are due to the federal government, because we don't have the personnel. so there are clearly places where we do need more workers. but there are other places where we're making smart changes and finding efficiencies and overall what we see is just a small
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proposed increase in the federal work force overall when you balance those together. mr. earnest: right here in the front. >> julie davidson from l.r.p. publications. to build on that, can you talk about how the budget supports the people, culture, pillar of the president's management agenda and how you decided on a 1.6% increase for federal employees? mr. donovan: to take the second question first, obviously, particularly with the second year of the budget deal being less than the president had called for in his budget, we had difficult choices to make in a number of areas and one of those is the tough choice about how much we should be increasing pay for federal workers. we worked closely with the military, with d.o.d., see their
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results of their review of compensation and ultimately we settled on a 1.6% increase both for military and for civilian workers. that is something that obviously builds on the progress that we've made, the progress on our deficit and our progress more broadly economically and allows us, as opposed to in past years, where we had a freeze and then 1% increase and then for 2016 a 1.3% increase, we're obviously making progress here. i think it also is important to recognize that inflation overall has remained very, very low. and in fact, to the point where we are starting to see significant wage growth, probably the best six months of wage growth we've seen of the recovery over the last few
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months. i think this represents progress workers of paying goth what they deserve put also -- but also one where we did have some tough choices to make. the only other thing i would just say in terms of other critical investments that we're making, our people are one of the single most important assets we have in the federal government and we do have major investments in training, many employee engagement, we have been encouraged that the employee viewpoint survey across the federal government showed real progress, in fact, for the first time in history, every single question in that survey showed positive movement. there wasn't a single question where results went down. and we think that that is a measure of the progress that we're making, in addition to the work that we're doing to upgrade and improve our recruiting,
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moving our systems into the 1st they'reand i think that doing a terrific job moving us forward at o.p.m. >> ron allen from nbc. josh, you said in your opening that this is about priorities and you can tell what's most important to the administration. is there anywhere in the budget that takes a covet the plan to close guantanamo bay and why not and what's there and if not, how do you -- how is that going to happen now? or sit something the that you've given up on or the president has given up on? mr. earnest: we have always envisioned putting forth a plan for congress' consideration that would factor in some of the financial impact of moving forward with closing the prison at guantanamo bay. one of the chief reasons we have advocated for closing the prison
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is that the individuals who are detained there and need to costn detained can be more effectively detained in the united states. and that's what our proposal will underscore. there are a number of them that would be transferred, a number of others that are going through a criminal justice process, either through military commission or article 3 court. but cost effect i haveness is one of the reasons that we are looking to close the prison. the other reason, obviously, is we know that extremist organizations use the continued operation of the prison at gauntaun moe bay as a recruiting tool system of that's why you have seen democratic and republican national security experts come forward and advocate for the closure of the prison. we'll put forward a plan to congress at some point. i don't know when in terms of timing but when we do it will include some information, at least, about the budgetary impact and that's information we
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won't just present to congress, we'll present it to all of you. >> but why not put it in your budget which as you say is your statement of your most cherished priorities and that, as i understand it, is one of the president's -- mr. earnest: it is a priority, the plan is not done yet, when it is we'll have more about it. >> there was a specific provision in the defense defense authorization bill that set up a process to do it separately with a timeline that didn't match up with the budget. mr. donovan: it is a very high priority but for reasons that there was already a separate process in place, it didn't make sense to marry it up with the udget. >> is the plan done and you are waiting for the opportunity to move it forward, is it not done or is it? mr. earnest: the latest update i have received is the president
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has not signed off on a final plan at this point. >> i can confirm that. > aisha roscoe with reuters. is there concern that those measures could be perceived as cuts and that could be used against democrats on the campaign trail, and then also on a separate issue, there seem to be proposals to cut spending on refugee bus yet the administration has called to upp up asylum and -- or ramp the asylum program so how do you reconcile that or is that a misinterpretation? >> follow this briefing at c-span.org. the house gaveling in for one vote on recognizing the 9/11 memorial in new york city as a national memorial. live coverage on c-span. the ru and pass h.r. 3036 on which the
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yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 317, h.r. 3036, a bill to designate the national september 11 memorial located in new york city, new york, as a national memorial and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the ayes have 378, the ys are --
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 381, the nays are 12.
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the speaker pro tempore: on his vote, the ayes have 383, the --
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the ayes have 387, the nays are 12. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are su spended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table.
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the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. he house will be in order. the house will be in order. members please take your conversations off the floor.
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the chair will now entertain requests for one-minute speeches. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. thompson: i request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend. the house is not in order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the house is not in order. please remove your conversations off the house floor.
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the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. last week, i visited penn state university, located in pennsylvania's fifth coon gregsal district for a discussion on the effect invasive species are having across our commonwealth. i was joined by several experts from in the field of entomology from across the country. among the insects discussed were the gypsy moth and the emerald ash bore. these experts discussed at length the challenges these species present and the efforts to stop the devastating impact and spread. i know that my state is not alone in thesques of these
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pests are being felt across the nation. i applaud the research being done at penn state university, foresters and entomologists around the nation. research and applying that science will go a long way to stop the spread of these species. i hope we can all work together to make sure our forests remain healthy, ecologically and economically. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair lays before the house the following enrolled bill. caller: h.r. 3033, an act to require the president's annual budget request to congress each year to include a line item for the research and disabilities education program of the national science foundation and to require the national science foundation to conduct research on dislex y. -- dyslexia.
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for what purpose does the gentlewoman from nevada seek -- the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from nevada seek recognition? without objection. ms. titus: this afternoon, the cola passed h.r. 677, the act, legislation i introduced with dr. abraham of louisiana. this will ensure veterans receive automatic cost of living increases annually based on the consumer price index. unlike with social security, congress must act each year to provide veterans with the cola increases they need and deserve. now by permanently adjusting benefits to include cost of living increases, we are providing critical peace of mind to those who have so heroically served our country. furthermore this legislation includes two provisions to address the v.a. appeals problem which currently has 440,000 claims in the backlog. the first authored by
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congressman o'rourke creates a fully developed appeals pilot program, and the second i introduced with chairman miller to create a task force to examine the appeals process and make recommendations for improvements before the situation gets worse. h.r. 677 and some of the other bills we passed today take important steps toward ensuring that our veterans are able to get the benefits they earned and deserve. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> i rise today to honor maria being and -- for recognized as minnesota's top youth volunteers. mr. paulsen: maria was recognized after setting up a program called read indeed,
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which provided millions of books to underprivileged children. it's estimated that 800,000 students have received books. zachary is a senior at alamal, and is a finalist for raising money to fight a devastating fire in minneapolis. he raised $1 million in one week after the fire to help victims. the work by these young people should be inspiring to us all and thanks to their actions, countless people have been helped. their selflessness will serve them well in the future and their accolades are well deserved. congratulations to maria and zachary. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois seek recognition? without objection the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to honor dr. st. elmo brady. he was the first african-american to obtain a
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ph.d. degree in chemistry in the united states. he received a ph.d. in chemistry for work done at the noise laboratory at the university of illinois in 1916. mr. foster: dr. brady was a pioneer in the teaching of science, both at tuskegee university and at howard university in washington, d.c. his work included work on determining the structure of organic acids, methods of determining proper use of alkaloids, and infrared spectroscopy. this later research resulted in the formation of the fisk infrared laboratory and fisk infrared institute. in conjunction with faculty from the university of illinois, dr. brady established summer program in infrared spectroscopy, open to faculty and staff from all colleges and universities.
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he's just one of many african-american pioneering scientists whose work should be lifted up as the role models they are, not just during black history month but all year round. thank you and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from south carolina ek recognition? mr. wilson: today, the president's budget proposal erminated fund ink to stop m.o.x. the president hasn't acknowledged how crucial it is to environmental cleanup. support for m.o.x. is bipartisan and shown by former new mexico governor and secretary of energy bill nelson. they are experts who advocate the

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