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Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. KING of New York. Mr. Chairman, I must say that I strongly oppose this amendment, and I disagree with virtually every word spoken on the floor tonight by the gentleman from New Jersey.

Let's understand one thing. The NYPD has the most effective counterterrorism unit in the country. There are 1,000 police working day in and day out. As a result of that, almost 13 or 14 attempts, terrorist attempts, Islamist terrorist attempts to attack New York have been stopped.

Now, let's get something straight. The President's Homeland Security Advisor, John Brennan, recently visited with the NYPD. During that meeting, or following that meeting, Mr. Brennan, President Obama's Homeland Security Advisor, stated:

I have full confidence that the NYPD is doing things consistent with the law, and it's something that again has been responsible for keeping this city safe over the past decade.

Mr. Brennan, the President's Homeland Security Advisor went on to say:

If we are going to have the ability to identify and stop terrorist operatives and terrorist attacks here on our shores, the national government cannot do it alone. The NYPD is a model of how a community can come together.

He closed by saying to the NYPD:

You have had a very difficult job. I think you've done it very well. The success is in the record in terms of keeping your city safe.

In addition to that, FBI Director Mueller has stood by the NYPD, said that they are in full compliance with the law. CIA Director Petraeus, there was an IG inspection done, that the NYPD's relationship with the CIA was in full compliance with the law.

These slanderous attacks by the Associated Press and The New York Times cannot point out one instance of a law being violated or one provision of the Constitution being violated.

We should be here tonight giving the NYPD a medal. We sit here, 10 1/2 years after September 11, and the most effective law enforcement, counterterrorism unit in the country is being attacked? We are attempting to cite the Constitution and provisions of law as somehow an attack on the NYPD, when no one complies with these more than the NYPD.

And again, we go through, whether it's Director Petraeus, whether it's Director Mueller, or whether it's the President of the United States, his own Homeland Security advisers have said this.

Now, I work closely with the NYPD, those in New York, whether it's Mayor Bloomberg, whether it's City Council President Christine Quinn. She's a Democrat; he's an independent. Both stand by the NYPD because of what they have done.

And to think that the most effective organization is being attacked by the Associated Press, The New York Times, and those attacks are being joined here on the floor of the Congress of the United States, without one fact to back them up. There is no spying. All this is good police work.

The reality is we're not going to sit back like we did on September 11 and allow the enemy to come. If we know that an attack is coming and we're told, for instance, that operatives are coming from a particular country and there's a community in New York City where those people live, then obviously you go, you conduct open surveillance. No one's talking about any violations to the Constitution.

I remember years ago when the Justice Department was going after the Mafia, they went to the Italian American communities. When they were going after the Westies, they went to the Irish American communities. When you're looking for the Russian mob, you go to the communities in Coney Island and Brighton Beach. That's where the enemy comes from.

Ninety-nine percent of the people are law-abiding. But if you're looking for the person who is going to that community to carry out a crime, you look in that community. If you're looking for an Islamic terrorist, you don't go to Ben's Kosher Deli. When they were looking for the Italian mob, they didn't go to an Irish bar. They went to the Italian social clubs.

This is solid law enforcement. That's not profiling. That's an abuse of the term ``profiling'' to even suggest that.

So I cannot be more emphatic or stronger in my denunciation of this amendment, calling for its defeat and urging people to stand by the NYPD, which has kept New York safe for 10 1/2 years.

I went to too many funerals. I attended too many wakes. I lost too many constituents. I'm not going to allow it to happen so long as I'm in this Congress.

I oppose this amendment.


Mr. KING of Iowa. I rise in support of the Huelskamp amendment. I listened to the gentleman from Colorado say at least three times, a government takeover of marriage. Yes, the faith and the church and the churches have been the ones who have established marriage over the centuries and over the millennia. But when it comes to civil marriage, the government writes the rules. If the government is writing the rules, it's not a takeover of marriage. The definition of marriage from the beginning of time has been a man and woman joined together, hopefully in holy matrimony, for the purposes of encouraging a family unit and raising children and pouring our values down through that crucible of marriage into the next generation because that's the most successful and effective way that we can advance civilization.

Government has an interest in promoting marriage for the purposes of holding together the continuity of our culture and our civilization. It is not a nefarious thing. It's not the government taking over marriage. It is the voice of the American culture and the American people seeking to advance into the following generations the best values that we have.

And those that say it is discrimination to determine what marriage is, I would argue instead, Mr. Chairman, that government provides a license. The States provide licenses for marriage. A license is a definition to do that which is otherwise illegal. A license to hunt, a license to carry a gun, a license to fish, for example.

Mr. POLIS. Will the gentleman yield?

Mr. KING of Iowa. I want to finish my statement, but if I have time, I will yield to the gentleman from Colorado.

States issue marriage licenses because they want to promote and encourage an activity and a behavior, not because they want to punish another behavior. It is because there is something that they have determined has value, and so they give a permit to do that which is otherwise illegal, and that's what a definition of a license is.

With regard to the President and the executive branch, the Constitution and the oath that's implied in the Constitution, the oath that the President takes that is implied that he adheres to in the Constitution says he shall take care that the laws are faithfully executed.

And so the law of the United States is DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act. The President's obligation, and his appointees and all of those in the executive branch of government, is to take care that the laws are faithfully executed. The appointments of the President and the executive branch are bound by his oath, and they take their own oath to uphold this Constitution. And when the President of the United States decides he is going to flip on his position, or maybe let it evolve into a condition, and then direct, and I believe it is direct, the Department of Justice to first refuse to support and have the Solicitor General no longer support Federal law passed by a majority of this Congress, the House and Senate and signed by President Clinton and then turn around, and now we're concerned that they are going to use taxpayer resources to defy a legitimate law that is the will of the people and on the books in the Federal Register.

That's what the amendment does that Mr. Huelskamp has offered. It says it's bad enough that you don't keep your oath to take care that the laws of the United States are faithfully executed, and we want to say to you, Don't at least turn a 180 on us and go against the will of the American people and use taxpayer dollars to work against the will of the American people, against your oath of office and against the statute.

So out of courtesy, I would yield to the gentleman from Colorado.

Mr. POLIS. I thank the gentleman from Iowa.

Just for a brief question, the gentleman's home State of Iowa does allow same-sex couples to marry, and I would just like to ask in reference to the first part of your remarks whether your home State of Iowa in any way, shape, or form, whether civilization is in jeopardy or if any of the things that you mentioned in the early part of your remarks have, in fact, hurt your home State of Iowa?

Mr. KING of Iowa. Reclaiming my time, civilization is in jeopardy. It's in jeopardy when you have seven supreme court justices in the State of Iowa who declare that they have found rights in the Constitution that were up to this point ``unimagined.'' If you have justices that find unimagined rights in the Constitution, they are completely unqualified to legislate from the bench or determine what's constitutional and what's unconstitutional; and three of the seven were up for a retention ballot a year ago last November, and they were all three voted off the bench, the first time in the history of the State, partly because people disagreed with the policy they sought to impose by legislating from the bench, mostly because the people in the State understood that you cannot have judges that will find rights in the Constitution that were up to this point unimagined.

Judges that can imagine rights in the Constitution will take your rights away. A President that will change his position, that will not uphold his oath of office to take care that the laws are faithfully executed, that will direct the Department of Justice to work against and the Solicitor General to work against Federal law will turn this thing 180 and use the Federal resources against the will of the people of the United States, and that's the Huelskamp amendment, and I support it.

I yield back the balance of my time.


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