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tv   U.S. House of Representatives Legislative Business  CSPAN  February 11, 2016 6:00pm-7:01pm EST

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oklahoma. chip pickering, zach wamp. just some really good players. and so we won like 10 or 11 games in a row against the democrats. d mike enjoyed being a winner. and so as those guys began to retire, mike decided it might be time to turn it over and i have right here the last trophy that the republicans won and it is true that we actually did use to win baseball games. we have lost six in a row but when mike was the manager we won i think 10 or 11 in a row and the trophy is my office but there's mike oxley as manager nd joe barton who is the assistant coach the last trophy that the republicans won. he was a great manager and great guy and switch over from his
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baseball career to his legislative career. he is remembered as the chairman what we now call the financial services committee. but before that, mike was on the energy and commerce committee, when the republicans took the majority in 1995. tom bliley became the chairman of mikes oxley became one the energy and commerce committee chairman. he was an excellent chairman. he did his homework and as has been pointed out. he was very bipartisan. he worked with the democrats on the other side of the aisle. after mr. thompson: retired, we term-limited our chairmanmen to three terms of six years. in 2001, we had to pick a new
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chairman. billy tose and had switched parties and was a republican. the top two were mike oxley of ohio, long time republican, and billy tozan. d it was a hotly contested race and divided the house. i was on the steering committee at the time. it was a close vote. and billie tozan was picked. but because of the esteem and respect that mike oxley was held in, he had served on what was called the banking committee but had never been a subcommittee chairman but was elevated to be chairman of the banking committee and given the
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securities jurisdiction that had long been energy and commerce, renamed the financial services committee and became the chairman of the committee and just an outstanding chair. sarbanes-oxley was the most notable achievement. he was a great person, a good friend. i never saw him down or unhappy. he was great on the floor. he was great in committee. he was a super guy on the baseball field. after he retired, he continued to frequently come by and visit when we were practicing. when he became ill, he kept a very, very upbeat demeanor. last time i talked to him on the
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telephone was right before he passed and by that time, he couldn't speak or couldn't speak very well, he could just whisper, but he said, i appreciate you calling and i told him i loved him. i really respect mikes oxley and he helped me a lot as a young congressman. we had a lot of fun on the baseball team. his family should be very proud of him. he will be missed. t we will also honor him and hopefully this summer if he is looking down from heaven, he will watch us beat the democrats and with that, i yield back. mr. chabot: there are so many members that have had an opportunity to speak here this
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evening and only had an hour unfortunately and we would lot to go on a lot longer but our hour is up. let me conclude by saying to mike's family, his wife pat and his son elvis and to his grandson max and to all his family and his chief of staff who was family and told the other family members, i think ou know by the testimony the reflections, the personal stories that you heard here this evening that mike was a beloved figure in this house, the people's house. he will be missed. and will be long remembered. we know that you all love him very dearly and we loved him, too. mr. speaker, i yield back.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the gentlewoman from new jersey, mrs. watson coleman is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee as the minority leader. mrs. watson coleman: i ask that members can include extraneous material. and before i start, let me extend my condolences who are formerg the death of our congressman. as i'm sure all of my colleagues are aware, we are now in primary election season. this year, the american people will elect a new president of the united states. unfortunately, there is a great possibility that hundreds of
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thousands of americans will be barred from casting their vote. in 2012, i watched horrified as voters were forced to stand in outrageous lines at their polling places. states across the country have set up new barriers, cutting back on hours and adding new difficult identification hurdles that limit people of color. and we call ourselves the model of democracy for the whole world to follow. instead of embracing every opportunity to improve and facilitate one of the corn stones of our democracy, we are allowing it to crumble. there is quite a lot to fix but this congress isn't doing anything about it. our states have widely voting
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systems. some allow same-day registration in one state but not in the next. i could think congress to take on such standards for federal electrics at a minimum and provide the biggest possible opportunity for our constituents to pick the people that represent them. we have americans that have made mistakes in their past, but have completed their sentences for nonviolent convictions. they have come back to society as tax-paying, law-abiding citizens. unfortunately, we ban millions of these americans from the ballot box despite their rehabilitation. it seems to me that congress should get involved in offering individuals offering those rights that we have as americans.
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but we are not. mr. speaker, there is also a conversation for this body to have about technology. smartphones and other mobile devices have fingerprint centers. i can pay for lunch without swiping a credit card or signing my name. i acknowledge there are real challenges we face in bringing technology to the ballot box but .e should use in to expand this right there alone there are three steps we could take on voter rights in our nation. unfortunately, we can't even begin these discussions because we have traveled to a dark place in our nation's history when it was most legal and common to limit ack test to polling places.
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despite opportunities to move forward, we are rolling backward. since 2010, 22 states have passed laws that have made it more difficult for americans to vote, most commonly in the voter i.d. laws that diss proportionate communities of women, students and low-income individuals. the voting rights act which had previously curtailed these restrictions was gutted in 2013 by the supreme court. in the so-called first in the nation primary held this week in new hampshire, voters encountered new i.d. laws. they vouched for voters without approved i.d.'s and gives them the leeway to discriminate against some voters.
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laws like the ones in new hampshire were those to protect. republicans have used this time and again to scare americans that some dark figure is hijacking their election, a notion that has been discredited and disproved time and again. between 2002 and 2005. the department of justice made prosecuting voting fraud a top priority. in that time frame, hundreds of millions of votes were cast, but only 38 cases were brought to trial and only one involved one impercent nation fraud. a professor at the loyola university law school has tracked every allege of voter fraud since 2000 and has found
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just 31 cases, just 1 cases of impercent nation. 31 ballots out of more than one billion. the fact of the matter is the kind of intention national shady voter, these laws were based on did not exist. mr. speaker, protecting the right to vote the foundation that built our democracy, the right for which countless americans have fought for more than 200-year history, protecting and expanding and strengthening that right should be one of our greatest priorities. i hope my colleagues can join me and many of my colleagues on the democratic caucus and join me in taking action that will facilitate, expand and provide
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opportunities for every eligible person who can vote to be able to vote. thank you, mr. speaker. and with that, i yield the balance of my time to the congresswoman, sheila jackson lee. ms. jackson lee: let me thank the gentlelady for yielding and i'm delighted to yield her on the special order focusing on the congressional progressive caucus to ensure every american can vote. we have worked with the congressional hispanic caucus and worked together with the congressional black caucus and work together with the democratic caucus and i encourage the entire house to be committed to the very values of this nation. this should not be a republican or democratic issue of which it has become. we stand here as democrats
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arguing for the empowerment of voters all over the nation, but yet legislative initiatives have been introduced by members of the judiciary committee and others. i have joined a number of those legislative initiatives and these initiatives cannot be heard or voted on. and the american people need to know that. and there is no other reason than the republican majority does not want to have empowered voters. and this is unlike what we did in years past. i have had the privilege of being on the house judiciary committee for a number of years and the most powerful and moving experience and there have been many experiences on the house judiciary committee when we came together to help write the restoration or re-authorization of the 1965 voting rights act. it was a tearful moment.
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it was a moment of great extensiveness. 15,000 pages of testimony. many, many, many witnesses. individuals explaining how how precious the vote is and more importantly not having protection for the vote and just allow them to vote and the republican president, being joined by republican and democratic members on a joyful, sunny day, signing the legislation re-authorizing the voting rights act of 1965. that bill exhibits, if you will, the pain and suffering of so many who marched and marched and marched and marched. not only did they march, they died. like billy lee jackson and our own colleague, like john lewis and being beaten near to death
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in his march across the edmund pettus bridge. hey he reminds us of the right to vote because dr. martin luther king jr. marched again, they made it. with so many people. they made it to montgomery, alabama. on that fateful trip back, after everybody was celebrating, that they'd marched for the voting rights act, gotten through without violent, attributable to a texas president by the name of lyndon baines johnson, a wonderful, wonderful lady, whose children i had the pleasure of meeting, some foot soldiers, when they were driving back, viola louisa was behind the wheel, somebody, violently took a gun and killed her. so voting has never been easy.
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voting rights have never been easy. a lot of blood was shed. and it baffles me why we're faced with a situation where the united states supreme court eliminated section 5, not an illegal provision, but a provision that somebody disliked because i believe it empowered voters. and so what the congress was tasked to do by the court, who i think incorrectly and wrongly ignored 15,000 pages of testimony, ignored tens upon tens of witnesses and a meticulous rewriting of the voting rights act to prove that it was still necessary in its skewed deliberation, the supreme court decided to reject it. indicating that it was long passe and of course some brilliant legislators used the example that because we have
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eliminated polio, because of the vaccination, is it appropriate to get rid of the vaccination? no, it is not, mr. speaker. and so with that, skewed and if i might use the term, weird, reasoning, we're left holding the bag and the door is open to the kinds of laws such as voter i.d. laws that spread across america like a contagious disease because we did not have the protection of section 5. which was the idea of section 5 was a preclearance for men and women of good will to look and determine whether or not a procedure was going to block individuals from voting. and of course the vote i.d. law from texas sprung up and you will soon hear from a gentleman mitigating circumstance dear friend and colleague, mr. vee , -- veesy, you'll hear from
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him because he was the leader on the lawsuit but in going on, let me say that that terrible law blocked a lot of people from voting. and i want to remind people that the day, august 6, 1965, in the presence of such luminaries as the reverend dr. martin luther king, roy wilkins of the naacp, whitney young of the national urban league, jane foreman of the congress of racial equality, a. phillip randolph, hubert humphrey, everett dirksen a lady was missing but there were many women that were foot soldier the point was made on the voting rights act, the vote is the most powerful instrument ever devised by man for breaking down injustice and destroying the terrible walls which imprison men because they're different from other men and i'd modify it and say women. when the voting i.d. law because of the misgive offings the state
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of texas and its legislature was put in place, there were 80 counties at least in texas that did not have a department of public safety office for individuals to be able to register or to be able to get an i.d. i'd say -- that's a tragedy. and each moment there is something coming out of texas that wants to in essence put down the rights of individuals to vote and one case that should be brought to our attention is a case before the supreme court that indicates a group of petitioners who don't like the fact that you represent a population of people, they want to characterize and get a definition of what a person means. and they want to make that person be an eligible voter. so in essence a sick person, laying in a bed who needs health care and needs to be represented is not an eligible voter osm a
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senior citizen who has gotten so old and feeble that they may not have been registered because of their illness and their feebleness but they need to be represented. or it may be a child, hispanic, african-american, anglo, or asian, who is not at the age of voting and they're not an eligible voter. or as i know that they are focusing on, it's hard working individuals who happen to be immigrant and they're not yet eligible to vote and this case is brought primarily to make sure that those people who need to be represented to the extent that their taxpayers but not yet statused, they will not be counted. now, this case is not anything to do with voter fraud. these people are not trying to vote. they're just trying to survive. but you're telling me they're human beings and this case is suggesting that they cannot be represented. this is the devastating impact
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of not having voter protection in section 5. so i rise today to ensure that it is heard throughout the land. we can pass voter restoration, voter advancement, we can pass fixing the voting rights act and restoring section 5. and there are many people in this congress who previously were here when we stood with president bush a republican, and republicans and democrats, 98-1, 98-2 in the senate, massive support in the house, to restore the voting rights act, let me ask the question, mr. speaker, why now? why are we struggling in this presidential year not to allow people to vote? let me close my remarks because , how d go on with the should i say it, the irony and as well the wrongness of not passing legislation, but let me say this in closing.
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redistricting is a result of the voting rights act. and those of us in texas are still in litigation, for 20 years some of us, on the question of redistricting and making fair districts that all people are represented. and the gerrymandering that has been done, that disallows and disenfranchised whole chunks of minorities, disallowing them from voting for the person of their choice, you know what it brings about? it brings about this house in the majority, good friends of mine, having the sheer gall to deny the president's representative of the office of management and budget to present the president's budget. in a 41-year history, that's never happened. but because we have these districts that are drawn, not representing the vast numbers of people who should be able to hear the president's statement about his budget, by having his representative, the o.m.b. director, come before congress
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and speak about what the president is trying to do, reducing the deficit, providing for education, protecting for health care, job creation, economic security, universal access to child care, education for all, year-long pell grants, all of that and national security for peace, we can't hear from the o.m.b. director because of the skewed redistricting that allows for the majority to be so overwhelmingly in charge that they would deny the normal processes of government. the voting rights act and the empowerment of vote sers crucial in a fair -- and a fair redrewing of lines to let all the people be heard and all the voters be able to speak is why i'm on the floor today. i'm looking forward to reasonable people coming together and fostering legislation that answers the constitutional call that we all are created equal with certain inalienable right, eright to life, liberty and the pursuit of
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happiness which is embodied in the vote of the american people. i thank the speaker for this time and i'm delighted to yield all the rest of my time to the distinguished gentleman and fighter for justice and voting rights from texas, the honorable mr. veasey. the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the gentleman from texas, mr. veasey, is recognized for the remainder of the hour as the designee of the minority leader. mr. veasey: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to thank my colleague, the gentlelady from texas, who represents the houston and harris county area, who does such a great job about speaking out on these issues, her and really the entire delegation down there, representative green, representative gene and al green, along with representative jackson lee do a great job of keeping this on the forefront of texans' minds and
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on the united states' mind. texas is such a large state that oftentimes legislation that is passed out of texas has an impact on the rest of the nation. and it does seem that much of the discriminatory laws regarding redistricting, regarding voter suppression, like the voter i.d. bill, sadly has emanated from our state. mr. speaker, let me tell you just how bad it is in our state. this is going to be really hard for some people to believe. but in the state of texas, if a young person on a college campus were to, you know, find themselves, their freshman year lost on campus or if they were to find themselves in a little bit of trouble on campus they would be able to show their student i.d. to the proper law enforcement official who is a police officer, recognized by the state of texas, on the
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campus, to identify themselves and that i.d. works for them to be able to legally identify themselves. but in the state of texas today that same young person would not be able to show that same student i.d. at the voting place, at the voting booth, to be able to cast the vote. but you bring your concealed handgun license in, then you can cast a vote. the student will be given a provisional ballot that wouldn't count and the person with the concealed handgun license would be able to cast a legal ballot. you know who is that really going to hurt? you have so many young people, particularly young people that don't come from wealthy families, whose parents struggle to send them to college and they don't have cars in college, so they don't have their driver's license and they really rely on their student i. identify case for everything that they do. in the state of texas they absolutely cannot use that i.d. and there are many things about
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the texas voter i.d. law that i'll be honest with you, i really don't like. i became a plaintiff in the suit to try to scale back what i consider a very egregious act against voters in the state of texas. and i was very delighted that back in july, that the u.s. court of appeals for the fifth circuit actually upheld a lower court's decision that the texas voter i.d. law had a discriminatory effect on minority voters and violated section 2 of the voting rights act. i mope that this means that the proper action will be taken to do something to scale back this law and the impact that it's having on people that simply want to exercise their suffrage, people that simply want to be able to vote. we take that for granted that you can simply vote but this texas voter i.d. law and many
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other laws from my time in the state legislature that were proposed and luckily some of them never advanced, that would really roll back the clock on individuals that want to exercise their right to vote. and i'll tell you that what i've done in the meantime is joined as an original co-sponsor of the voting rights advancement act of 2015 that restores the right and advances voting rights that were provided to us in 1965 by providing a modern day coverage test which will protect our communities from these type of discriminatory practices. i'll tell you, i'm very proud to join with terry sewell, representative judy chu, with representative linda sanchez, and of course with representative john lewis who understands probably more than anyone in this body, what
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discriminatory laws can do to affect a community. and what this bill does, mr. speaker is that it provides coverage for 13 states upon enactment, alabama, georgia, mississippi, florida, south carolina, north carolina, arkansas, arizona, california, new york, virginia, and sadly, and i'm a very proud texan, i love everything about our state, but you know, unfortunately, we've been in the forefront of discrimination against voters and texas is included under this legislation as well. and this new geographic formula is based on current conditions and a 25-year look back provision. and so i hope that we'll be able to work together in a bipartisan manner to protect all of our voters, not just some of our voters, but to protect every single voter in the united states that would like to cast a
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ballot, doesn't matter if the voter is poor and they weren't able to go and renew their driver's license and so they're -- so their driver's license may be 61 days expired, doesn't matter if it's a student whose parents are just putting every bit of money they have to get them through college and because that, they don't -- their only i.d. is their student identification card, and they'd like to use that we need to make it easier for individuals to vote in our state. everybody wants people to be able to lawfully vote, too. and we ought to be able to work together in order to pass strong voting rights laws that protect all of our citizens because we certainly don't want to discourage anyone from voting and we don't want to look like we're going backwards from where we once were back in the 1960's.
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the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas, mr. green, for 30 minutes. mr. green: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days within which to revise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous material. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. green: mr. speaker, i'm honored to be here tonight as a proud member of the national association for the advancement of colored people, known as the naacp. and i'm a member and i'm a life member and i believe they have had a profound impact on my life. hence, tonight, i'm going to talk about the naacp and i'm the person who is the sponsor of the
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original resolution for 2016. and in doing this, i want to praise the national association for the advancement of colored ople, the naacp, on this its 106th anniversary. this resolution has 24 co-sponsors. i want to thank all of them. i want to thank the whip for allowing us this time to talk about the naacp. and i thank the leadership for the opportunity. mr. speaker, this is the 11th time that we have introduced a resolution to honor the naacp. it is the the oldest civil rights organization in the united states of america. we introduced it first in 2006. and it was passed in house by voice vote and in the senate by unanimous consent. i would also add that when it
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passed the house in 2006, it did not do so because we were able to do it with our help alone. our help, meaning the congressional black caucus. i want you to know, mr. speaker, james sense senbrener who was the chairman, he was there to help us get this amendment passed. mr. sensenbrenner was part of that history. i assure we would not have passed this resolution in 2006. we went on to pass it in 2007 and passed the house with a vote of 410-0. 403-0. it passed 10, 421-0 and 2010 and
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thereafter, we stopped passing resolutions on the floor of the house, although we may still present them and talk about them on the floor of the house. tonight, this is what we will do. i would like to mention the mission of the naacp, ensure the political, education and economic equality of all persons, not just black people. not just people of color. but all people and the naacp desires to eliminate racial hatred and discrimation. these are lofty goals because we understand we have had much racial discrimation in this country and the naacp took it upon itself to eliminate much of it as possible and did a good job. let's look at the history of the
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naacp. back in 1909, a group of people decided they were going to do chings. g about the lync thousands of african em-americas were limped. lynching was done with mob violence and people were taken to a tree and they were lynched and it was done a good many times with impuents. no one was prosecuted and there were people in this country who decided they were going to do about this gin justice. among the people who done this ida wells white and
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barnett. these persons met and they should a call and 60 persons met this call and the naacp was born. the naacp did not have its first african-american secretary until 1920. many of the founders of the naacp, many of them were not of african-american ancestry. and the officers were of european ancestry. the first five executive secretaries. and dr. wright became chairperson after the naacp had a good number of white chairpersons. so the naa crmp p has never been
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and is not an organization for blacks'-only. it has stood for an integrated society. i would like to note in 1954, the naacp under the leadership and counsel of thurgood marshal won brown versus board of education. this was a giant leap forward because this lawsuit integrated schools throughout the country, the term that was appropriately used was desegregated. hey were ordered to be desegregated with all deliberate speed. a good many years later, many would contend we haven't integrated our schools. in 1955, naacp member, rosa parks, an african-american lady
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decided she was going to take a stand and took that stand by taking a seat. she took a seat on a bus and in so doing she ignited the civil rights movement. and there are many people she did this because she was tired. well, she may have been tired but she wanted to take a stand. she was tired of a society real debating her to the back of the bus and took a stand against it bus e had the montgomery boycott and the line was integrated in alabama. interesting note on this point about the integration and desegregation. there was a three-judge panel that heard the litigation associated with this transportation issue and on that
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three-judge panel there were judges who had a great debate about this. but there was one federal court judge that we could fly the brown decision to public transportation and this was the very first time it was done under the leadership under the honorable frank m. johnson. it is important to note there were others that were helping us. franklin johnson was a republican apointed by president eisenhower and he went on to help us integrate schools throughout the south and the department of public safety and went on to help us with the facilitation of voting rights act, with the implementation of laws that prohibited persons from discriminating from persons in the workplace environment.
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he played a significant role, as did many other persons who were associated with the naacp. because i don't have evidence of him having been a member. i want to move forward if i may to 2008 and i move forward to 2008 because this is when the naacp supported the civil rights crime act of 2007. there are many unsolved cases in the history of this country with with reference to things that happened to african-americans. they pushed and supported legislation which we can have the opportunity to bring some of the dass tarreds that have caused great harm to people, bring them to justice. the na arch c pmp has fought this. sen tin brated their
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area victory. it is a great victory. in 2012, the naacp supported the smart and safe campaign that brought attention to the overpopulated prisons and mass incarceration in this country. people who study this is issues are well aware that in this country we have an overpopulation of persons who are incarcerated and this has to do with mandatory sentencing laws and laws that allow persons who are convicted of one type of fense, drugs, to receive a hasher penalty, could contain. and crack could contain. these harsh sentencing laws have
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caused a good many people to be carcerated should not be incarcerated. and three strikes and you are out have caused people to go to prison. the naacp wants a just society and people who commit crimes ought to be punished but ought to be punished in a fairway and the naacp has supported to do what it can due to unjust laws. the na arch cp joined a lawsuit challenging the texas strict voter i.d. law. in texas and you heard colleagues talk about this, we have one of the most draconian photo i.d. laws in the country. it is one that requires that
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people voting all of their laws, person at the polling place knows who you are and if you show up, you have to present a photo i.d. if you vote by mail, you don't have to do this. and most of the fraud that takes place, probably takes place by mail because you don't have the same identification process. i find it onerous that we in texas would be subjected to this type of law and we are doing what we can to get it disposed of. we are making sure this is done. in 2014, we were the leader in strengthening the voting rights act and the voting rights act as has been explained by my colleagues has section 4 aadvice rated and as a result section 5
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has been amass can you lated. and it brought certain places in the country under the purview of the voting rights act. section 5 is the section that imposes the standards that have to be adhered to. you can't have a strong section 5 if you don't have a section 4 to outline, to specify, to delineate the areas that are to be covered by the voting rights act. get aacp are helping us to a strong voting rights act so people who have been discriminated against will have the right to vote. . after the death of trayvon martin, naacp advocated for the arrest of his killer.
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they never said he had to go to jail but the belief was the perpetrator should be prosecuted. there should at least be a trial. there should be an opportunity for the world to understand what happened to trayvon martin. and as a result, there was a trial. there was a finding, but the naacp was at the forefront, a part of the avant-garde, if you will, to make sure that trayvon martin received justice and a trial was what ultimately occurred and i would dare say that but for the naacp and many other perps of good will this would not have taken place. finally, before i yield to a tend who is on the floor right now, the honorable chaka fattah, i want to point out that the naacp has ventured into what's happening in flint, michigan. this is some serious business that we have to take care of in michigan. in flint, michigan, we have a
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circumstance wherein children, among others, but children have been poisoned. poisoned. and this was not at the hands of some major corporation that was doing something that was inappropriate. not at the hands of a civilian, some person who just decided he was going to do something ugly. not at the hands of some person associated with some sort of terrorist organization. this was done by the government. at the hands of the government. children have been poisoned at the hands of the government. that's an important point for us to digest. because one does not expect that one would be poisoned by consuming the elixir of life,
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water, in this country. and especially one would not assume this given that this country has some of the best technology and filtration systems in the world. in fact, there are none better than ours. and one would not expect it in a city wherein the water was fine before the hand of the government was imposed upon citizens, such that they couldn't make the choice themselves as to how they were going to regulate their water, a personal person put in charge at the hands of the state government, the governor having the authority to appoint a person who literally took control of the city and in so doing caused great harm to befall young people, children if you will. when this happened, we have a duty, a responsibility, and an
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obligation to take immediate action, to not only bring people to justice who would do this, but also to impose a just system such that persons who have been harmed can be made whole to the extent that people can be made whole, and i say this because truth be told, you cannot make these persons completely whole. all of the intelligence that we're receiving indicates that once you receive lead poison, you don't recover totally and completely. there will be some residue. and this could go on for years and years and years. so the naacp went there immediately and made it clear that it expected action and had a 15-point plan. i would say more about the 15-point plan if time permits because i want to honor my colleague, the honorable chaka fattah, if he is available at this time and given that he is on his way, i will continue.
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e 15-point plan has 15 priorities that are listed. and i'll go through these priorities rather quickly. they are, one, emergency financial manager law must be repealed. this is the law that i spoke of earlier that allows for the governor to impose upon the citizens of flint, michigan, this emergency financial manager. and much of this was done, unfortunately, under the us a pises of saving money. some persons have said that we're talking about about $00 a day. saving some small amount of money so that some person who holds public office could stand before the public and say, i saved you money. i saved you money. look at what i have done. well, look at what you have done. you have changed the lives of innocent people forever in an
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effort to save a little bit of money and hold yourself out as a person who is cutting the budget, who is saving money for the taxpayers. there are times when tax dollars are used effectively and efficaciously and what they were doing with the water prior to this cut was a pretty good example of how things that are doing well can be corrected such that harm is placed upon people. and i regret that it happened and i am proud, however, that the naacp is there to hope us with this process of making people whole. the second part of the plan would require water distribution by the national guard and that is currently being required by the national guard to be done by local people. the national guard does a good job and i salute the national forward for what they're doing
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but the truth is that local people need work and this would provide them the opportunity -- them the opportunity to work, to be part of the water distribution process. there is all of the good sense in the world in working out a system so that we can pay people who need work to help themselves by distributing water in their community. the third point is to assess -- access to fresh fruits, vegetables, and other food items because to a certain extent, this is a food desert area in some parts of the place, flint, michigan, and as a result there is a desire to make sure all persons can have access to fresh fruits and fresh vegetables. good, clean, wholesome food. number four. all flint citizens must be provided free home inspections. free home inspections.
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there are many homes that have not been properly inspected. the water source that leads into the home has to be inspected, the line. and this should be done at no cost to all citizens, the naacp stands for this. my belief is that this will happen but i'm proud that the naacp voiced a concern that it should happen. i'm on number four, and i mention the honorable chaka fattah from pennsylvania's second district, so i will yield to him at this time with the notion that i will reclaim time he may not utilize. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields, the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. fattah. mr. fattah: thank you, i want to thank the gentleman from the lone star state, he's a good friend and i know that we've had occasion to work together on water systems in texas in my role as a member of the appropriations committee and we were able to work successfully on aiding communities that needed access to clean, safe
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water. we had a hearing the other day, yesterday, on the hill, on flint. we heard from the mayor and a host of people. but it is a circumstance in which i think we should have the utmost urgency and that the army core should move addressively. i would even hope the president would take action if necessary to nationalize the guard, to move to make sure that people of flint get water. but i'm rising today in honor of the birth of the naacp. this is the most loved, most hated, the largest, the oldest, the boldest civil rights organization ever created. it has been at the very forefront of efforts to have our tion become the more perfect union that the founders had envisioned and at every point it
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has agitated both in the streets and in the suites to make changes and here on the hill there is not an organization that is more consistent -- that has more consistently let their voice be heard on a rage of issues. i just rise to thank those who have been a part thereof and continue to be. i just had a -- with a local naacp of philadelphia, we had an anti-violence march all the way across a major thor rogue fare in our city, 52nd -- thoroughfare in our city, 52nd street and it was great to see an organization that has a lot of sophistication but also has the touch at the neighborhood level to reach out to people and have people understand that individual responsibility to make communities safer is as important as public policy initiatives that might be generated in calls of the
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legislature like here. so i want to thank the naacp for all it has done. we hosted the national convention in philadelphia, i got a chance to open up the convention and to fly in with the president when he came to address the criminal justice reform. we have so much to do in our country and we have the understanding that in order to do complicated work, we need organizations to do it. individuals, it is difficult for individuals themselves to achieve a lot but when working together we can achieve almost anything. and we're in a range of dates here of import. just the other day we had to acknowledge the announcement date in which president barack obama announced he was going to run for president. yesterday was the day that nelson mandela walked free from a prison cell in robbers island for over two decades. so, but this date, february 12,
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when people of different of ethnic backgrounds, different racial backgrounds, got together, people like ida b. wells and w.e.b. dubois, got together and said there was going to be an effort to put together a membership based organization, rooted in neighborhoods, rooted in individuals who would come together in their local communities and who would fight on a variety of levels orange the policy level, in the courts, and also work in neighborhoods, at a neighborhood level in term os -- in terms of improving this elife chances of people in our country, particularly people who have been disproportionately ill served by government institutions and people of color in our country who had to work for years, in fact, centuries, without a paycheck and who were prohibited by law to do base
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exthings like marry or own a home or own land. who had to bear the brunt of a criminal justice system that even to this day is yet to be perfected. so we have a history but it is made better because of the naacp. i wanted to come and just thank my colleagues for holding this special order here on the house floor. i don't usually speak in special orders, over my 0 years it's a very unusual thing but i came today because the naacp has laid the foundation under which so much of the progress we've made as a country has been made possible. so i yield back to the gentleman and i look forward to an opportunity to continue to work with him on issues of importance to his state, to our country, and to this world. thank you and i yield back.
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mr. green: thank you and i thank you especially for taking to the floor tonight and sharing your views on the naacp. i also especially thank you for the good work you've done in the congress of the united states of america. you have served your constituents well and you should be saluted. mr. speaker, it has been said that if we did not have the naacp, we would have to create it. that's just how vital it is to the american system of justice. it is not an official arm of the american system of justice but it is an aid to justice in this country, such that people expect the naacp to be there under certain circumstances and in certain places. this gets us back to flint. people expected the naacp to be there and the naacp was there. as i continue, mr. speaker, permit me to ask, how much time do i have left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has three minutes.
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mr. green: thank you, mr. speaker. in consuming this time let me continue to point out some of the things that the naacp has within its 15-point priority plan. number five is that all flint residents must be provided federally funded replacements for their damaged systems and appliances. what they are what they are saying. there are some appliances that have been so damaged that they cannot use these appliances. and as a result, they have to be replaced. these are people of not any great means and get a good quality of life. the naacp has indicated that fairness, justice must be examined in rate hikes and in continued


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