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Public Statements

Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2010

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC


ENERGY AND WATER DEVELOPMENT AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2010 -- (House of Representatives - July 15, 2009)

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT

Mr. CAPUANO. The gentleman is right. It is an affluent neighborhood, but the school is not affluent. The neighborhood is not doing the work; the school is going to do it. The neighborhood will benefit from it in some indirect way because they all live near the Charles River. The storm water currently runs into the Charles River and pollutes it.

I want to make it clear. This is like many other things, my presumption is--I don't know yet--but it doesn't sound like this objection is with this particular earmark. It's with earmarks as a whole.

I want to make it clear. Based on things I have read in the papers, this college does not have a lobbyist, either a Federal or State lobbyist. No one from the school has ever donated to my campaign. Nothing at the school is named after me or is proposed to be named after me, and to my knowledge, the school has never received an earmark of any sort from the Federal Government prior to this. So unless there is an objection with this specific earmark, I don't know if it fits into all of the categories that I've heard in the past.

Just for the record, I would like to point out that not every Member of the majority wanted this amendment to be offered today, but I don't mind.

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT

Mr. CAPUANO. I will make the offer right here, right now. I will trade every earmark that will be designated for Boston for all of those designated for Chicago any day of the week. And if this gentleman can make it happen, count me in.

As far as where the money comes from, let me point out that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is a donor State across the board. We pay more in taxes than we get back. I dare say that the gentleman's State is not in that category, and I don't mind that. I don't mind that because I see myself as an American, not just a citizen of Boston or a citizen of Massachusetts. I think that's the way we built this great country. So I don't have a problem with that. On occasion, do I think we have some good ideas in Boston? Yes, I do.

As far as the gentleman is concerned about our deficit, I think he's 1 million percent right; actually, 1 trillion percent right. And I would join him in anything he would like to do to actually deal with the deficit. One earmark at a time doesn't do it. It makes good PR. It gets the gentleman up and talking, and it gets other Members--I would really rather be reading the health bill right now, but that's okay.

But I ask the gentleman where was he on November 14, 2002, when this House was voting on roll call No. 482, which was the roll call to maintain the PAYGO rules that were the only things that kept the entire Federal Government constrained?

Only 19 of us voted to keep the PAYGO rules. I was one of them because I share the gentleman's concern about deficits. You don't deal with deficits one nickel or one dime or $1 million at a time. You deal with them across the board, if that's the concern.

If the concern is this particular earmark, I didn't hear too many things that designated this. If the concern is the concept of earmarks, well, I didn't run for office to do nothing. I did not run for office to allow the President or the Governor of the State--and I was a mayor. I don't believe in imperial executives. So we disagree on that issue.

If it is deficit, I will join the gentleman anytime to truly address the deficit problem we have in this country because I think he has a good point on that issue, not on this earmark, which is exactly why I hope this particular amendment is defeated.

And with that, I yield back the balance of my time.

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT

Mr. CAPUANO. The gentleman is right. It is an affluent neighborhood, but the school is not affluent. The neighborhood is not doing the work; the school is going to do it. The neighborhood will benefit from it in some indirect way because they all live near the Charles River. The storm water currently runs into the Charles River and pollutes it.

I want to make it clear. This is like many other things, my presumption is--I don't know yet--but it doesn't sound like this objection is with this particular earmark. It's with earmarks as a whole.

I want to make it clear. Based on things I have read in the papers, this college does not have a lobbyist, either a Federal or State lobbyist. No one from the school has ever donated to my campaign. Nothing at the school is named after me or is proposed to be named after me, and to my knowledge, the school has never received an earmark of any sort from the Federal Government prior to this. So unless there is an objection with this specific earmark, I don't know if it fits into all of the categories that I've heard in the past.

Just for the record, I would like to point out that not every Member of the majority wanted this amendment to be offered today, but I don't mind.

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT

Mr. CAPUANO. I will make the offer right here, right now. I will trade every earmark that will be designated for Boston for all of those designated for Chicago any day of the week. And if this gentleman can make it happen, count me in.

As far as where the money comes from, let me point out that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is a donor State across the board. We pay more in taxes than we get back. I dare say that the gentleman's State is not in that category, and I don't mind that. I don't mind that because I see myself as an American, not just a citizen of Boston or a citizen of Massachusetts. I think that's the way we built this great country. So I don't have a problem with that. On occasion, do I think we have some good ideas in Boston? Yes, I do.

As far as the gentleman is concerned about our deficit, I think he's 1 million percent right; actually, 1 trillion percent right. And I would join him in anything he would like to do to actually deal with the deficit. One earmark at a time doesn't do it. It makes good PR. It gets the gentleman up and talking, and it gets other Members--I would really rather be reading the health bill right now, but that's okay.

But I ask the gentleman where was he on November 14, 2002, when this House was voting on roll call No. 482, which was the roll call to maintain the PAYGO rules that were the only things that kept the entire Federal Government constrained?

Only 19 of us voted to keep the PAYGO rules. I was one of them because I share the gentleman's concern about deficits. You don't deal with deficits one nickel or one dime or $1 million at a time. You deal with them across the board, if that's the concern.

If the concern is this particular earmark, I didn't hear too many things that designated this. If the concern is the concept of earmarks, well, I didn't run for office to do nothing. I did not run for office to allow the President or the Governor of the State--and I was a mayor. I don't believe in imperial executives. So we disagree on that issue.

If it is deficit, I will join the gentleman anytime to truly address the deficit problem we have in this country because I think he has a good point on that issue, not on this earmark, which is exactly why I hope this particular amendment is defeated.

And with that, I yield back the balance of my time.

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT


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