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National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2005

Location: Washington DC

Mr. GRAHAM of South Carolina. I appreciate the Senator yielding.

I saw Senator Dodd this morning at breakfast. I am sympathetic to what he was trying to do. I said, put me down. I did not look at the substance. I apologize. The Senator is absolutely right in what he is trying to do.

I agree with the chairman that these people coming out of school are not ready to perform this work. But I promise the Senator from Connecticut you will have a Republican ally if we have a transition period that is more reasonable-if not on this bill, we will do it some other time. It bothers me greatly that our interrogation system is being outsourced. We do not know who is interrogating the people in prison because we do not know who they are and who they answer to.

I apologize to the Senator from Connecticut for not being able to live up to my word. I told him I would support the amendment, but I did not look at the amendment. I will never do that again. However, I do want to help-if not on this bill, we will do it soon.

Mr. GRAHAM of South Carolina. Mr. President, I would like to speak for 2 minutes.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from South Carolina is recognized.

Mr. GRAHAM of South Carolina. Mr. President, many thanks to a lot of people for resolving an issue important to South Carolina. This amendment is a work product of Senators CRAPO, CRAIG, myself, and others. Senator Crapo has been terrific to work with, along with Senator Craig.

We have now put into place an amendment that well defines what we were trying to do. I am trying to clean up 51 tanks of 37 million gallons of high-level nuclear waste in South Carolina, 23 years ahead of schedule, saving $16 billion. My intent has been to do just that and no more.

The Crapo-Craig-Alexander amendment clearly says the agreement between DOE and South Carolina is South Carolina specific. Senator Alexander's language says the Nuclear Regulatory Commission will always retain the power to determine what high-level versus low-level waste is. The $350 million in question will flow to Idaho and Washington regardless of an agreement or the lack thereof. The Crapo-Graham amendment has been worked with Senator Cantwell, and it does not prevent the disposition plan that has been agreed to in South Carolina.

I thank all Members. There will come a day when Idaho and Washington will need like help, and I will be there. I want the people in South Carolina to know without the help of Washington and Idaho, this would not have happened. There will be a day when they need our assistance, and I will be there. This is a win-win. There is nothing in this amendment that will prevent section 3116 from moving forward.

I yield back any time I have

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