tv U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN February 24, 2021 9:59am-11:06am EST
president won the presidency because of the stimulus -- we heard it would be the first thing he did on his first day, but on his first day he shut down the pipeline and put thousands of men out of work. host: ok, ruby, and that is the president's stimulus plan, $1.9 trillion is headed to the floor for a vote later this week. majority leader steny hoyer ruling it will go into the floor on friday afternoon. the house is in session. live coverage here on c-span.
[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.] the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c. february 24, 2021. i hereby appoint the honorable jim costa to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, nancy pelosi, speaker of the house of representatives.
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 4, 2021, the chair will now recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour debate. the chair will alternate recognition between parties with time equally allocated to the parties and each member other than the majority and minority leaders and minority whip will be limited to five minutes. but in no event shall the debate continue beyond 11:50 a.m. this morning. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from oregon, mr. blumenauer, for five minutes. mr. blumenauer: thank you, mr. speaker. the nation watched in horror at the terrible situation in texas this last week with horrific
weather conditions and then the aftermath dealing with problems with safe drinking water and supply. it was levied a little bit by the plight of ted cruz who is notoriously struggling to tell the truth. this time as he fled his state and leaving his constituents behind and then watching him contort trying to change his story over the course of the next few days. it was sort of a national joke. what was happening in texas was not a joke. these conditions were unprecedented, but they found texas unable to really respond in a way despite the fact that 10 years ago there was a similar situation. it's fascinating. ted cruz isn't the only one struggling with the truth, the governor of texas, governor abbott, thought to blame wind energy for their plight. wind energy which supplies less than 10% of the total energy
supply for the state, performed better than fossil fuel which provided the majority of it. and think for a moment how they attempted to target the green new deal and a.o.c. while ted cruz was struggling to get his story straight, our colleague, alexandria ocasio-cortez was raising millions of dollars to help people in texas cope. blaming a green new deal which has never actually been enacted, it's an aspirational goal, is foolish. what we have seen in texas with those extreme weather events are a preview of coming attractions. what we saw in australia this last year and in the western united states with horrific wildfires. looking at once in a century weather event is becoming
routine and it's going to happen more and more frequently. i would suggest that texas leadership could take a look at what they have done. they are famously deregulated energy system has given the family with a $16,000 electric bill? or former governor and energy secretary rick perry, saying people would just be happy to have a few days without energy to be free of the dangers of federal regulation. i think people in the surrounding states that survived much better and didn't have $16,000 monthly electric bills might review that. i would suggest that the folks in texas' leadership could start first of all by telling the truth. it's not renewable energy, it was fuel that failed.
and continued reliance on fossil fuel is going to make events like this much, much more frequent. we need to deal with reliability in texas and around the country. and last but not least, we must fight for climate justice and a low-carbon future. that will help make these situations less frequent and more bearable. and it's path forward that we can take confident that history will reflect were on the right side. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentleman from north carolina, mr. budd, for five minutes. mr. budd: thank you, mr. speaker. over the past year the government has appropriated over $4 trillion, that's with a t, $4 trillion in covid relief. now we are standing here this week and we are debating whether or not to add another
$2 trillion to that enormous pile. but what should shock taxpayers across the country is that $1 trillion of covid relief, it still remains unspent. that means funding is still left over from last december and funding is still left over from even last march. that's money that the current administration has not spent for vaccines. it hasn't spent it for testing. it hasn't spent it on school reopening. and not even, most certainly not even to reopen our country. mr. speaker, i think people in washington often forget that the dollars that we are debating, they really aren't ours. they are the next generation's. and this money belongs to that generation and the american people. is it not too much to ask what the current administration plans to do with the $1 trillion in unspent taxpayer
funds, mr. speaker? especially before we toss another $2 trillion on to that pile. this is a basic question that would come up during a family budget discussion with a lot less zeros. much less the government of the united states talking about trillions of dollars. but before and beyond the unspent funds, what the democrat package does spend money on is yet another partisan wish list. with about 9% actually going to covid. meaning, 91% of it not even covid related. mr. speaker, this bill's minimum wage increase, for instance, would kill 1.4 million blue collar jobs and its unemployment insurance would keep incentivizing workers to stay at home which is a real strug until my district when an employer wants 2,000 people to come back to work and they are competing with the federal government. this makes it where is.
-- it worse. under this bill, mr. speaker, stimulus checks would go to illegal immigrants, and under this bill taxpayer funding for abortion is allowed, and planned parenthood is eligible for p.p.p. loans. and under this bill, funding is allowed to flow to colleges and universities that partner with companies that are controlled by communist china. under this bill, $110 billion would be sent to schools regardless if they reopen or not. and there's no support for families who are desperate for educational options for their kids. and of course, democrats hid irrelevant spending in this bill just like environmental justice grants, $800 million in aid to other countries, and $112 million earmark for a big tech subway in silicon valley. bottom line, mr. speaker, we
are again debating a liberal wish list disguised as covid relief. the american people aren't fooled by any of this. and they see through the game. and they know that this town can and should do better. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. mcgovern, for five minutes. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, over the past two decades i have traveled to colombia more than a dozen times. on each trip i have had the privilege of meeting human rights defenders and social leaders. in cities, towns, and remote rural areas these brave men, women, and young people have confronted violence all their lives. and they are -- and they and their communities are targeted by illegal armed groups, paramilitaries, guerrillas, and criminal organizations. they have been targets of the colombian military and too often harassed under illegal
surveillance by the state. simply for speaking out on behalf of others. organizing to meet basic meet. carrying out the duties of the profession, teacher, doctor, farmer, lawyer, journalist, pastor. they are threatened, assaulted, and murdered. during my last trip i spent a few days in the mountains. i met with indigenous leaders defending their right to ancestral lands. i met with afro colombian leaders creating small general prizes to support their families and children. i met with demobilized foxx shoulders hoping to build a new life and future. i met with farmers determined to stop growing coca and move into the legal economy. we sat together, we eight together, they shared their -- -- we ate togget, we shared their plans they dreamed of a colombia at peace, valuing all people. including those struggling to survive in the most violent rural areas. brave, intelligent, vulnerable,
and humble these leaders have literally bet their lives on the peace accord being fully implemented. they are counting on the peace accord to deliver the protection, economic development, truth, and justice it promised. but the colombian state has abandoned them just as it has throughout colombia's history. the state has failed to put in place the individual and community-based protections demanded by the peace accord. the state has failed to dismantle the criminal networks and armed actors that daily threaten the lives of social leaders. and the state has failed to identify and prosecute those who finance profit by and order the murders and violence aimed at human rights defenders and social leaders. even worse, the colombia state has chosen to remain absent from large parts of the country, failing to establish state presence, basic services, and leaving local leaders defenseless. since the peace accord was signed over 500 rights defenders have been murdered, according to the united nations human rights representative.
colombia's own ombudsman reports higher numbers, documenting more than 700 murders during that same period. nongovernmental organizations placed the total higher. rather than seeing this grim reality as a call to action, the government of the president has tried to obscure the number of murder victims. his government defends all the promises it has made on paper without changing by one iota the reality on the ground. it acts as if these murders and threats were some kind of public relations crisis. a battle over statistics and optics. but it's not a p.r. problem, it's lives on the line. economists have written books on the human capital and development of a prosperous economy. lack of political will to prevent these murders and protect these local leaders is literally bleeding colombia of the very human capital it needs to consolidate peace and create a more prosperous, more dynamic future. two weeks ago human rights watch issued a report on the murders of colombia's social
leaders and human rights defenders. it outlines practical actions and reforms the colombian, federal, state, and municipal governments could take to prevent, reduce, and stop the murder of violence. sadly, these recommendations were met with indifference, hostility, or rejected out of hand. they were treated more like bad press than a serious attempt to offer help and provide a road map to interrupt the spiral of violence. this is why i'm calling on the biden administration to make the protection of human rights defenders and social leaders one of america's highest priorities in its relationship with colombia. the biden administration and congress should review the human rights watch report and determine how u.s. policy and aid can advance the full implementation of the peace accord. support its protective. i call upon my colleagues to stand up for peace, for human rights, and an end to the violence against human rights defenders and social leaders in
colombia. these courageous social leaders deserve nothing less than america's full and unconditional support. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentlewoman from north carolina, ms. foxx, for five minutes. ms. foxx: thank you, mr. speaker. government intervention often causes more harm than good. i spent my time in congress working to protect individual freedoms from unnecessary bureaucratic burdens. i recognize that a strong family is vital to our nation's progress and prosperity, which is why i work to advance legislation that allows families to flourish and protects life at all stages. it's unconscionable that in america where we fight for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness we tolerate this systemic extermination of an entire generation. the right to life demands that we protect our nation's most
vulnerable, including the unborn. our first amendment is a powerful instrument that is protected -- has protect the our most sacred freedoms for hundreds of years. few other countries provide the same protections and freedoms that our first amendment guarantees. we are the land of the free because of it. . our vined liberties are the envy -- our individual liberties are the envy of the world. yet, today, these essential rights are under attack. h.r. 5 is the latest example of democrats misleading and partisan manner of legislating. as a former educator and the republican leader of the education and labor committee, i can tell you that the bill may have equality in the title, but it certainly does not serve all americans. this legislation has a clever
name and an allegedly noble purpose, but it is a vehicle for serious, harmful consequences. the equality act would empower the government to interfere in our regular american -- how regular americans think, speak, and act. specifically, it would amend the civil rights act of 1964 to make sexual orientation and gender identity protected classes. according to the national review, this extreme legislation, quote, redefines sex to include gender identity, undermines religious freedom, gives males who identify as females the right to women spaces, and sets a dangerous political precedent for the medicalization of gender youth, end quote. under h.r. 5, our nation's k-12 schools would be forced to treat gender as being fluid, subjective, and not tied to
biological reality. the bill would undermine title 9 protections for girls by outlining sex-based sports competitions. the bill has a destruction of religious freedom protections. colleges and universities that maintain students code of conduct, hiring practices, or housing rules reflecting sincerely held beliefs about marriage and sexuality risk losing federal funding under the equality act. as such policies would be deemed discriminatory. beloved secular private colleges that maintain single sex policies like smith college and morehouse college would be forced to change their policies or forgo federal funding. in the state of virginia, we've already seen the displeasure among parents regarding such
policy implementation in an opinion piece published by "the washington post" in 2019. a former middle and high school teacher whose children attend arlington public schools said, quote, it would erode parents' rights over their children's education, co-rode title -- crowed title 9 -- corrode title 9 protection for girls, and say that their bodies are wrong and must be altered by hormones and altered by surgery. i'm submitting my amendment that will protect religiously affiliated groups and individuals from being forced to perform abortions. this bill is a brazen attempt to replace long-standing constitutional rights with the identity politics at the moment. we venture treacherous waters by considering legislation that stiffles proven bipartisan
solutions and more seriously, our bill of rights. it's outrageous that democrats would advertise these proposals as guaranteeing fundamental civil and legal rights. mr. speaker, as elected representatives, we all strive for equality before the law. but h.r. 5 is another classic example of democrats casting a law now and figuring out what it means later. this is no way to legislate. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentlewoman has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. costa, for five minutes. mr. costa: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to speak on behalf of the american rescue plan. the critical need to provide economic relief for struggling americans and communities across the nation could never be more evident than it is now. a year into this pandemic, the world is reeling from the fallout of the coronavirus
pandemic. this time last year we had a handful of people that had sadly passed away from the covid-19 as it slowly made its way across the country. this week, we mourned over 500,000 lives lost and countless family members and loved ones that will be impacted forever, and we are still not out of the woods. yesterday evening, we appropriately honored and recognized those americans who lost their lives. this pandemic has created a deep economic crisis for american families and small businesses. economic inequities continues to accelerate, sadly. our communities are hurting, they're hurting, and the time for decisive action is now, just as we did in a bipartisan effort last year. think about it. america, america, the richest country in the world, and yet the numbers are staggering.
over 18 million americans are receiving unemployment benefits. nearly 24 million americans are going hungry, including 12 million children. 12 million children. and nearly 40 million americans cannot afford to pay the rent and possibly face eviction. we must get more funding to our states and local governments so they can help those immediately impacted. this will allow us to begin to open up our schools safely, which we must do. in addition to the rest of our economy. this is a key component of president biden's american rescue plan, which i support. now, let me repeat, the american rescue plan will work to keep communities safe, and reopen schools with a robust vaccine plan for the public and educators that has been absent until the last six weeks.
in my own circumstance, my own constituency, the city of fresno, the heart of my district is facing a multimillion dollar budget short dl fall. like most -- shortfall. they will be having to force to cut jobs without federal support. the same is true in the communities of madera and merced, also in my district. the american rescue plan will bring $3 million to these communities combined providing critical relief needed to get things my constituents need. now the vaccines are being sent, we need to continue to build on that momentum. for gaining the upper hand over this disease is on the horizon if we stay the course and implement the plan the president has outlined. but we must do more to help americans than just providing
vaccinations. obviously, that is at the front lines, and we will produce more vaccines in the next month and in the next two months so that, as the president said, 300 million americans by this summer will have the ability to be vaccinated. but economic relief is part of the necessity to help them, and the american rescue plan does that. now, i heard some of my colleagues on the other side talk about the concerns about the fiscal impacts to our economy. i'm a blue dog. i believe that we need to have fiscal discipline. and i believe, after being here 17 years, that happens when democrats are willing to deal with expenditures and republicans are willing to deal with revenues. and unless we deal with those two things together, it isn't going to happen. and the last administration indebted this nation over $7.5 trillion. $7.5 trillion in the last four years. i didn't hear much discussion during that time about the
fiscal deficit. but i learned another thing in 17 years here. when democrats are in charge, the debt matters. when the republicans are in charge, who cares? so let's get real about this deficit. america is hurting today, and it needs our support and needs it now. over 140 executives of major american corporations are supporting this plan. over 140 of the major companies in america think that this is necessary, the $1.9 trillion to get this economy going and to put our country back on a track that we can be safe from this pandemic. so i urge my colleagues to do the right thing and to vote in favor of the american rescue plan, as we did previous measures, on a bipartisan effort. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. thompson, for five minutes. mr. thompson: thank you, mr.
speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today to recognize february as career and technical education month. each year this month highlights the benefits of a skills-based education and the valuable contributions that c.t.e. students make to the american workforce. a one-size-fits-all approach to education is not an effective way to prepare students for the workforce. we're doing students a great disservice when we only promote what is considered a traditional college experience. my father, after leaving the navy, went through a c.t.e. program which led him to a job. eventually decided to start his own business which became quite successful. as co-chair of the career and technical education office and senior member of the committee on education and labor, i support c.t.e. programs with career ready skills.
from agriculture to the arts, from marketing to manufacturing, c.t. programs work to develop america's most valuable resource, its people. c.t. has established itself a path that many high-achieving students choose in pursuit of industry certification and hands on skills that they can use right out of school and skills-based education programs or in college. congress recognized the importance of the c.t.e. when we promoted the 21st century act which helped close the skills gap by modernizing the federal investments in c.t.e. programs and connecting educators with industry stakeholders. this bill was later signed into law by president trump in 2018. while this is a major milestone, there's still more work to be done. that's why i'm supporting additional pieces of legislation on the horizon to keep updating or promoting workforce development throughout our nation. these include the skills renewal act, which creates a flexible skills training credit in the
amount of $4,000 per person that may be applied to cover the cost of a wide range of training programs that builds skills expected to be in high demand by employers in the coming months. there's also the skills investment act, which enhances the covered savings accounts. these tax advantage savings accounts for educational expenses so american workers can use the accounts to pay for their skills-based learning, career training, and workforce development. and lastly, the cybersecurity skills integration act, which creates a $10 million pilot program within the department of education to award except tiff grants to -- competitive grants for the development, implementation and/or expansion of postsecondary c.t. programs that integrate cybersecurity education into curricula, preparing students for careers in critical infrastructure sectors. covid-19 has demonstrated the need for c.t.e. many have come to deem life
essential employees or those that made their pathways through the career and technical education pathway. it gives people from all walks of life an opportunity to succeed and restores runnings on the lad -- wrungs on the ladders of opportunity. i would like to thank my co-chair and i, mr. langevin, on the bipartisan career and technical education caucus, to equip individuals of all ages with the skills necessary to fill jobs now and in the full. thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. and now the chair will recognize the gentlewoman from georgia, ms. bourdeaux, for five minutes. ms. bourdeaux: thank you, mr. speaker. black history months come to answered, but i want to be clear, every month is black history month because black history is american history. today, i'm thinking of the
amazing black women and men who inspire us daily and who change the world. i'm thinking of ruby bridges who, at only 6 years old, became the first black student to integrate a southern school. and i'm thinking of the first black woman to be a school superintendent in georgia. and hank aaron who showed the meaning of black excellence when he broke babe ruth's home run record and he was a proud georgian. i'm thinking of dr. martin luther king jr., an atlanta preacher who shared his dream with the world and in the process changed it forever. and i'm thinking of senator warnock, who preached from the same pulpit of dr. king. i'm thinking of kamala harris, our nation's first black and first female vice president. and of all the black and brown girls around the country who are finally able to look at the white house and see themselves reflected there. finally, i'm thinking of our beloved georgia friend, mentor and colleague, john lewis.
congressman lewis would have turned 81 this weekend. congressman lewis spent his life getting into good trouble. at 21 he was one of the original 13 freedom riders. at 23, as chairman of snick, he spoke at the march on washington. at 25 he led the march from selma to montgomery, in the process, getting hatred that the locals could throw at him. he served for more than 35 years, becoming the conscience of the congress. the tireless work of heroes like john lewis pushes me to continue pursuing equitable and just policies. over the past two years, our country has had a much-needed awakening to the systemic inequality people of color face every single day. i promise to continue using my privilege as a member of congress to try to break down that inequality wherever it is found. in that spirit, i am proud to be
co-sponsoring some critical pieces of legislation being considered in congress. h.r. 1, the for the people act, a transform aigsal bill that -- transformational bill that seeks to have easy access to the ballot box, secure nonpartisan redistricting and puts people over dark money and special interests in elections. the george floyd justice in policing act, the first-ever bold comprehensive approach to holding police accountable, changing the culture of law enforcement, and building trust between law enforcement and our communities by addressing systemic racism and biases in order to help save lives. . h.r. 4 which creaths a commission to study reparations. h.r. 55 the emmitt till anti-lynching act. h.r. 959 to address the black mortality crisis in america. a resolution looking at the problems black veterans face. and award the congressional
gold medal, congress' highest honor torques freedom riders. of course while it hasn't been introduced you can be certain my name will be one of the first ones to sign up to co-sponsor the john lewis voting rights act which will restore and modernize portions of the voting rights act scrapped by the supreme court. the right to vote is sacred. john lewis knew that better than most and we must protect it. nor is it enough to sign on and call it a day. just as black history should be celebrated every month, every piece of legislation we consider must also be looked at for how it will impact our black communities. mr. speaker, as i deliver remarks today in celebration of black history month, i would be wrong to not acknowledge that yesterday was the one-year anniversary of the murder of, yes, the murder of ahmad arbury. he was killed while going out for a job. a simple luxury so many of us enjoy without fear of harm.
his case and the way it was handled continue to show us all that in inherent biases and systemic racism remain prevalent in our society. we hear on this floor -- we here on this floor must do everything we can to break those barriers down. you have my word i will continue to do so. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yield back the balance of her time. the chair will now recognize the gentleman from florida, mr. rutherford, for five minutes. mr. rutherford: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to congratulate an invaluable member of my staff on her well deserved retirement. jacqueline smith, jackie to those of us that love her, this week, mr. speaker, after two decades of service to the fourth congressional district, more than a half century of work in government, education, and politics, her contributions
to the state of florida and her colleagues are immeasurable and our nation is truly better off thanks to her efforts. jackie began her life of service as a teacher, moving often because her husband's assignment as a united states air force pilot. she eventually found herself in politics working on a presidential campaign before eventually becoming district director to my predecessor, former congressman crenshaw. and when i took office in 2017, i was fortunate that jackie stayed on as the director of special operations in my jacksonville office. mr. speaker, for over 20 years jackie has served northeast florida. she has helped countless families with casework, served as my representative throughout the district, and made a significant impact on thousands of young people and students in
our community. jackie has truly helped shape the next generation of americans. especially those who will be going into military leadership. each year jackie runs the military academy nomination program. she works tirelessly with students who apply, coaching them through the process, and vouching for their selection. mr. speaker, i can tell you no one knows more -- or works that system harder and better than jackie smith. she does it simply for the been fit of her students. -- ben fifth her students. thanks to her efforts, district four historically has one of the highest selection rates in the country. jackie also runs our congressional arts program and the congressional medal program. both recognizing the many talented students in our community of northeast florida. jackie often serves as my liaison to community groups,
many of which she's already a part, including the rotary club, the u.s.o., and local chamber of commerce. it often seems she knows everyone in northeast florida and unsurprisingly they all consider her a friend. she loves them and they love her. every day jackie comes to work with a servant's heart, a sharp wit, and a contagious optimistic attitude. no job is too big or too small. most importantly she embodies the virtues of integrity, hard work, and selflessness that americans expect from their government. jackie leaves big shoes to fill in my office. however as she is known to do she leaves a better than when she found it. on behalf of the fourth congressional district of florida, congratulations, jackie. may your retirement be filled with warm sandy beaches and continued memories with your husband, david, and your many friends and loved ones. we are so proud of your many
achievements and we thank you, jackie, for your service to this nation. mr. speaker, i want to tell you i look forward to hearing all about her next career as a used shoe salesman. for ocean sole africa. as they improve the lives of citizens of kenya and boost the economy here at home. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentleman from illinois, mr. garcia, for five minutes. mr. garcia: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to honor a family man, a caring neighbor, and a selfless public servant, my dear friend, raul mon at the sr. raul was the ward superintendent for the 22nd
ward in the city of chicago. the community known as little village. raul and i share a common background. we both came to this country at a young age, settled in the chicago neighborhood of little village, and started organizing for the improvement of our neighborhood and for the greater political representation of chicago's latino community. raul created a block club in our neighborhood that worked to improve and beautify homes, back yards, and streets. they incalled lamps in their front lawns, planted sod in their parkways, and established block watches and activities for children and teens. this deep involvement in community life is why i appointed raul as a democratic precinct captain of the sixth precincts when i was a member of chicago city council. he was the most effective and
beloved precinct captain in chicago's 22nd ward. his hard work helped me and many others win elective office. as pardon superintendent in the department of streets and sanitation, he was frequently seen driving down streets and alleys, conversing with neighbors and paying personal attention to their service requests. even after he retired, he would ride around the neighborhood asking people if they needed anything to be fixed in their homes or streets. raul organized the best block parties and loved to sing and dance with his wife, maria. they enjoyed traveling, spending time with their grandchildren, and, of course, having big parties. hes are enjoyed helping out -- he also enjoyed helping out at the corner grocery store or restaurant to stay busy and catch up on what was going on in the neighborhood after he retired. last month, raul died of covid-19, leaving a huge void
translation of your remarks for the record. mr. garcia: the remarks in spanish say that we are recognizing the life -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman will suspend. in writing. the gentleman will provide a translation in writing. the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from kansas, mr. mann, for five minutes. mr. mann: i rise today to thank the farmers and ranchers who worked -- whose work is none stop. -- nonstop. even in extreme temperatures, kansas did strong. the big first district of kansas is one of the most productive agricultural areas. it's home to more than 60,000 farms, who feed, fuel, and clothe the world. i spent thousands of hours on tractor and fields and horseback in our family's feed
yard. i know well the working conditions are demanding on a good day but especially so when our business partner, mother nature, has been so unforgiving. in the past month kansas spent 13 consecutive days below freezing. we have not seen that in our state for 40 years. for those standing with snow up to their knees, or hot water in summer, agriculture does not take the days off. our ag producers head to work long before most of us are awake and stay up late. they are people like cody who bust ice like hams at all hours so the cattle have access to water. and still able to joke that zero degrees feels like a heat wave. and the one who delivers baby calves so where they can be bottle fed to insure they can survive. they are the ones stand staying
up at night. the neighboring producer has help they need to milk their herd so people like you and i have a safe and secure food splifmente as many across the country learned this past spring, our food does not come from the grocery store shelf. this represents millions of people working every day in the u.s. it begins with farmers, ranchers, and growers and includes food processors and manufacturers, transportation workers, and finally those working in the grocery stores and restaurants. each of these people are vitally insures -- are vital in insures we have food. i know the message cannot be lost on the way to the grocery store. on behalf of kansans and all americans, i say thank you to the farmers, ranchers, and producers who supply our food. thank you for pulling the baby calf out of the snow bank and nursing it back to lifmente thank you for busting ice. thank you for putting the needs of your livestock before yourselves. thank you for your never-ending back breaking case.
thank you for especially in cold days working so hard. your efforts feed us and keep us warm. it is an honor to represent you in the u.s. house of representatives and the house agriculture committee. may god bless you. mr. speaker, i also rise today to celebrate the national f.f.a. week. it was founded by a group of young farmers in 1928 as the future farmers of america. their mission was to prepare future generations for the challenges of feeding the world. today more than 760,000 blue corduroy jacket wearing f.f.a. members and more than 8 - 700 chapters across the country. and 220 chapters in kansas alone are working hard to advance our nation's most critical industry, food anding a afplgt these members are our future farmers, ranchers, engineers, doctors, lawyers, teachers, scientists, communicators, and businesspeople. they are the next generation of leaders. this week they'll celebrate national f.f.a. week to respect agriculture heritage. as a past president and a proud
alumnus, i'm honored to join nearly 80 of my colleagues to introduce house resolution 150 expressing support for the designation of the february 20 to february 27, 2021 as national f.f.a. week. we recognize the important role of the organization and providing the next generation of leadership will change the world and celebrating 50 years national f.f.a. alumnus and supporters. an as f.f.a. and the organization have had a profound impact on me. it taught me belonging. the first time i put on my own jacket. responsibility when caring for my family's livestock in the bitter winters. and pride in sharing about the organization i love on the house floor today. because of f.f.a. and the next generation of agriculture, i know our brightest days are ahead. happy national f.f.a. week. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentleman from texas, mr. bevan, for five minutes -- babin, for
five minutes. mr. babin: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to honor the life of a community leader and longtime friend, w. eugene burrow who passed away on wednesday, december 30, 2020, at the age of 86. eugene was a life-long cattle rancher, rice farmer, and civic leader in southeast texas. he had the respect of all who knew him. he was born on october 27, 1934, in beaumont, texas, to louise and walter. he began farming rice at the age of 18 and worked in that role until the age of 21 when he decided to serve his country in the united states army. after serving in the army from 1955 to 1957, where he was stationed overseas in germany, eugene returned home and
continued rice farming, an occupation that would last for 52 years. apart from growing rice, he was also a dedicated cattle rancher for more than 70 years. eugene served as a board member on numerous industry and community boards, such as the american rice and corporate board in houston, american rice grower boards in cheek, texas, the cultural cattleman's association board, and west jefferson municipal water district, and the texas rice festival, where he volunteered with his wife, sandra, who was the love of his life. in 1999, eugene was named the texas rice festival farmer of the year and subyou is wently as pioneer -- subsequently as pioneer farmer of the year in 2017. his steadfast faith was always very important to him. in fact, he served as a member of the knights of columbus
organization. his friends and family lovingly referred to him as dad, papa, boogie and fred. he attended their sporting events and various competitions over the years. it was always a very top priority with him. eugene is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, sandra rae burrow, daughters, karen, and her husband, charlie, and kelly alton and her husband, randy, son, troy, and his wife, shelly, grandchildren, landon, and his wife, hillary, william and his wife, amanda, lane stewart, reid alton, mary alton, cody burrow, and cameron burrow and his wife, lauren. great-grandchildren, eli, ella, and briar and numerous nieces and nephews. he's preceded in death by his parents, and his brother, james.
mr. speaker, i'd like to honor my friend, w. eugene burrow for his very many, many years of faithful service to his community. my prayers remain with liz his family and friends -- remain with his family and friends during this difficult time. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentleman from texas, mr. crenshaw, for five minutes. mr. crenshaw: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to take this opportunity to express my deep disappointment in the bloated partisan bill my friends are calling the covid relief package. that's the name on the bill but the reality is far from it. the reality is we just passed a $900 billion package in december. the package wasn't perfect but it was bipartisan. this one is not.
reality is that hundreds of billions of dollars remain unspent. as of last week there were undisspent or undispersed relief that included $180 billion for another round of p.p.p. $199 billion for health care. $136 billion for expended un -- expanded unemployment insurance. and $36 for direct stimulus payments. this is money we still have unspent. the reality is that this administration can't or won't even give congress an honest estimate of where that money is and what they will do with trillions more. the reality is that this bill is not for emergency relief but for left-wing spending programs years from now. nearly half the funds in this bill won't be spent until 2022. billions of dollars for state and local governments, mostly to blue states, that impose costly lockdowns, even though california is reporting a $10 billion surplus. billions to bail out
multiemployer pension plans. a massive expansion of medicaid with no reforms to address waste, fraud, and abuse within the program. meanwhile, a mere 1% of this is for vaccine distribution. really? maybe that's perhaps because the trump administration indeed did have a plan for vaccine distribution. i don't know. of the billions they provide for schools, less than 5% will be spent this fiscal year. with zero requirements to get kids back in the classroom. the reality is that a $15 minimum wage will only hurt the small businesses that democrats claim they want to hurt. many in my district already told methyl' lay off workers or -- told me that many will lay off workers or shut down. my colleagues who say the money they're willing to spend, this is not how you help. this is not how you govern
responsibly. this is not a contest to see how much debt we can rack up for whatever constituency or special interests you favor at the moment. americans don't want handouts. they want a vaccine and they want their businesses open. they want their kids back in school because they know it's safe despite what the teachers unions are saying. and they don't want to wear three masks after getting a vaccine. if you want to work with americans, assess what has been spent and what hasn't and focus on small business relief that increases jobs instead of killing them and republicans will be right there with you. until then, expect some serious opposition. mr. speaker, i also rise today to recognize the tremendous strength of the people in houston, whom i'm honored to represent in congress. as we all know, last week an historic arctic blast hit much of the south, including the state of texas, plunging millions of texans into darkness. in the millions of freezing cold darkness, millions weren't able to heat their homes, access water. i had to personally had to
gather water from a swimming pool in our apartment complex after the water was shut off. through it all, the community came together. my friend, jim mcenveil, known as mattress mac in houston, he gave people a warm place to eat, sleep, or get out of the cold for a few hours. plumbers helped their neighbors fix their pipes free of charge. people who had power used it minimally so electricity can flow back to their neighbors faster this is what we call houston strong. that is what got us through harvey and will get us through this difficult time as well. finally, mr. speaker, i wish a happy 50th birthday to the protective service. thank you to the men and women who protect more than 9,500 federal facilities and the 1.4 million employees who work in those offices on a daily basis.
whether it's the 1995 oklahoma city bombing or just last year, bravely defending the federal courthouse in portland. we should remind americans it's every day you are there holding the line. i rise today to tell you we are thankful, we're appreciative of your service and your commitment to keeping our nation safe. thank you and happy 50th anniversary. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentleman from georgia, mr. carter, for five minutes. mr. carter: mr. speaker, i rise today in remembrance of sheriff randy royal who recently passed away at the age of 57. sheriff royal served ware county in georgia to the best of his ability throughout his four terms. he was known as a man of faith and deep commitment, to bettering his community and those around him. everyone he worked with can attest to his exceptional work ethic, focus and innovative mindset.
sheriff royal selflessly worked without ever complaining and his legacy will surely last for countless years to come. i am thankful for the life he lived. as waycross is better off because of him. my thoughts and prayers go out to sheriff royal's family, friends, co-workers, and all who knew him during this most difficult time. mr. speaker, i rise today to wish a happy 25th anniversary and a happy 25th birthday to the national museum of the mighty eight air force. located only minutes from downtown savannah where the eighth air force was activated in 1942, the museum features exhibits, interactive displays, historical artifacts and a remarkable collection of aviation art. throughout its existence, they have preserved stories of courage, patriotism displayed by the men and women from world war
ii to the present. one of the projects they worked on in recent years is the b-17 restoration project. once completed, the b-17 flying for tres city of savannah will be restored to its full combat configuration, including operational systems and components. the goal of the project is to make the finest asthetic b-17 bomber display in the world. as the former mayor of pooler, i had a deep appreciation for the museum and its contributions to the pooler community. i am thankful for all the mighty eight's wonderful volunteers and workers throughout the past 28 years and i'm especially grateful for the men and women the museum honors. mr. speaker, i rise today to remember and honor those who lost their lives or were injured during the tragic explosion that occurred 50 years ago at a chemical plant in woodbine. in 1971, the fire at the
munitions factory triggered blazes culminating with an explosion. it caused the loss of life of 29 lives. those employees were heroes, as they were working to help our country during wartime with commitment and courage. following the event, the fire memorial project was first downed to keep that terrible day alive and to help the victims. i had the pleasure of meeting folks from the organization and i have been encouraged by the work they've done to ensure every victim is properly remembered and honored. the project maintains a beautiful exhibit in kingsland, georgia. although it's been 50 years, the event and the women will never be forgotten. mr. speaker, i rise today to recognize pharmacies assisting in the covid-19 vaccine
administration across the country. thanks to former president trump's operation warp speed, the vaccine is now available to about 6,500 pharmacies nationwide. it's expected that the covid-19 vaccine will eventually be shipped to roughly 40,000 pharmacies across the country. many of the participating pharmacies have gone above and beyond in their administration to vaccine doses. for instance, recently at costco in oregon, an elderly couple scheduled vaccinations for themselves within 20 minutes and reported the efficiency and safety in receiving the doses. as a life-long pharmacist, i thoroughly understand the vital role pharmacists play from administering vaccinations for covid-19. i want to thank them for their ensuring safe and effective vaccine administration across the country. we can look forward to a brighter future because of them. thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair will now recognize the gentlewoman from georgia, mrs. taylor greene, for five minutes. mrs. greene: thank you, mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. mrs. greene: thank you. i rise today in defense of women, girls, and children. i'd like to talk about the equality act. it's a bill that we'll be voting on this week. it's a bill that was passed before, but it's a bill that needs to be struck down. this is a bill that will add sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes under the federal 1964 civil rights act. we live in a nation, thank god, that declares all of us equal. there should not be discrimination of anyone in the united states of america, and i fully believe that. but i ask everyone to take pause
and truly consider what the equality act will do, because it has very serious consequences. you see, women have come very far in america and our rights are extremely important. the work of our grandmothers and mothers to declare women as equal and push our way into the workplace and into sports has been remarkable achievements. voting, being able to own businesses, achieve education the same as men in america is the gift that i feel so honored and blessed by, and i know that every american woman treasures this. but you see, the equality act will change all of that, because it will put trans rights above women's rights, above the rights of our daughters, our sisters, our friends, our grandmothers, our aunts. it's too much. . i competed against biological
women. it's a wonderful thing to be able to compete and prove yourself. competition in a great, great thing. little girls all over the country play sports. they play their hearts out. they practice, they enjoy time with their friends. then they compete at higher levels where they can earn scholarships, where they can go to college. and achieve and receive an education through playing a sport for their university or college. there's women that move on into professional sports fields and do remarkable things. incredible things for women. for example, florence griffith joyner became the fastest world in 1988 when she ran the 100 meter dash in 10.49 seconds. i could only dream of being that fast. but in 2019, matthew bowling caught the fastest high school 100 meter time ever in 9.98 seconds.
an entire half second quicker than the fastest woman in the world. biological women cannot compete against biological men. biological little girls, cannot compete against biological little boys and they shouldn't have to. i have a daughter that is a d-1 athlete. we traveled the country for 10 years where she competed at the highest level. she earned her scholarship and now she plays fast pitch softball. i can't tell you how much fun i had watching her play this past weekend and she hit a home run. but if she has to compete against boys in her sport, not only will they be on her playing field that she has to compete against them, they will be in her locker room, they will be in her showers, they will be in her bathrooms, they will be in her hotel room when she travels with her team. all under the equality act. this is wrong. this isn't about political parties. it's not about democrat, republican. this is about right and wrong.
this is about girls and women's rights. furthermore, it affects women in prison. transmen, biological men that identify as women, will be put with women in prison. battered women's shelters, women that have been beaten and abused by men will have men in their battered women shelters. drug rehab centers, and the list goes on and on. it is one thing to stop discrimination of a class of people, but it's another thing to completely violate and destroy the rights of girls and women in order to achieve this. this bill must be struck down. it's completely wrong. furthermore, we are in an institution where it says in god we trust. it says in genesis, god created us male and female in his image he created us. science has two sets of chrome
so manies -- chromosones that prove male and female. 80% to 90% of children with gender dysphoria completely outgrow it after puberty. the equality act will force doctors and nurses to perform surgeries on girls who want to have their breasts removed. and doctors to perform abortions because according to the act a doctor cannot say no. i ask that everyone please pause and consider and not -- vote no for the equality act. we can't do this in america. it needs to stop with political parties. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the chair seeing no further speakers, pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess