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Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN. Mr. Chairman, personally, I believe that we do need to rein in excessive government spending and promote fiscal discipline, and I've been heavily involved in that.
With that said, I want to thank you, Representative Flake, for bringing this very important project to everyone's attention. I know we can all agree on the importance of math and science education. Throughout my career in county, in State and now in Washington, I've been a strong proponent of instilling an interest in STEM education in our young people so that they may tackle our country's and our planet's most pressing issues.
The Drew University Environmental Science Initiative--and Drew is located in Madison, New Jersey--fits perfectly in line with this goal of advancing science education. This program benefits Drew's undergraduate students, and it assists Drew in expanding its partnership with local elementary, middle and high schools. Many speakers had come to the floor earlier, saying, you know, How are we going to meet the challenges of China and India?
One of the ways you meet the challenges of China and India with regard to their educational systems is to make sure that there are colleges and universities that are doing what they can to graduate students who are heavily involved in math and science studies.
I strongly share Drew's belief that, in order to confront tomorrow's environmental challenges, we must capture the interest and imagination of our Nation's youth early in education, and Drew does this.
I'd also add that this project, this science initiative, like all others proposed for funding, has been thoroughly vetted and completely transparent.
And may I add, unlike the gentleman's home State of Arizona, which ranks 21st in the Nation in tax dollars returned from Washington, my home State of New Jersey ranks 50 out of 50, dead last. So, quite honestly, I don't apologize for looking after my State, my public and private universities, because we want the best of America to be well educated, and I think the investments we're making in science, math, technology, and engineering in New Jersey and colleges and universities across the country is money well spent.
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