PROVIDING FOR CONSIDERATION OF H.R. 4200, NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2005 -- (House of Representatives - May 19, 2004)
Mrs. MYRICK. Mr. Speaker, by direction of the Committee on Rules, I call up House Resolution 648 and ask for its immediate consideration.
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Mr. MATHESON. Mr. Speaker, I rise today because several worthy amendments to this bill were not ruled in order for consideration, including my own amendment that I offered, which was an amendment that was very simple. It said, if this country is going to resume the testing of nuclear weapons, it would first have to be authorized to do so by Congress.
I think Congress, the people's Representatives, ought to be involved in such a significant decision. This is not a partisan issue. It is an issue about having the people's Representatives involved.
The United States did conduct over 900 nuclear weapons tests at the Nevada test site from 1951 until 1992, and during most of this time, people who lived downwind of the test site were not warned about the adverse health effects associated with radiation exposure.
What is not widely known is that the fallout from weapons testing traveled across the entire country. Studies by the National Cancer Institute concluded that people in every single county in the lower 48 States were exposed to fallout.
A moratorium on nuclear weapons testing was instituted in 1992, but recent funding decisions in the appropriations process by Congress are leading us down the path to renewed nuclear testing and, therefore, as far as I am concerned, it is important that the people's Representatives, the United States Congress, ought to be asked to come up for a vote on whether or not we should resume nuclear testing.
This amendment was not ruled in order and, therefore, I encourage all my colleagues to oppose this rule.