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Public Statements

National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. TURNER of Ohio. This is the first in a number of amendments that are going to come from the other side of the aisle which are targeted at weakening our national missile defense system.

This is at a time that we see rising and increased threats from both Iran and North Korea. We have Secretary Gates having said that North Korea's programs are becoming an absolute threat to the mainland United States.

It also comes, coincidentally, at a time when our President has had what is known as the ``open mic incident'' when he was in South Korea and was speaking with President Medvedev of Russia and indicated that he was hopeful for a time when he could get past this next election so that he could have greater flexibility on missile defense.

This secret deal that the President has with the Russians to weaken our missile defense is consistent with the amendments we are going to be seeing from the other side of the aisle. We know the deal is secret because, after the President returned back to the United States, we asked him to tell us what is this increased flexibility and what is his intention in weakening our missile defense system. He won't tell us. So it remains a secret, but it is consistent with the amendments we are seeing on the other side of the aisle to weaken our national defense.

This amendment, disturbingly, tries to cut our Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, which currently is the only system that actually protects the mainland United States. It is part of the public portion of the President's plan that this be sustained. Again, we don't know what his secret deal is, but this system actually includes the CE I interceptor, which is three for three in its successful intercepts. We know this is a system that works, and we know this is a system that's important.

We also know, if people on this floor are serious about trying to reduce the deficit, perhaps they should support the Ryan budget.


Mr. TURNER of Ohio. I want to encourage everyone to oppose this amendment which, again, is the first of a series of amendments on the other side of the aisle to weaken our National Missile Defense System. This is the only deployed system that we have that protects the mainland of the United States, and it is consistent with the President's secret deal.

The President has never answered our request as to what are the terms of his secret deal with the Russians where the President in a meeting with Medvedev said: ``I have greater flexibility after I get past the election.'' Imagine the audacity of saying that when he's no longer subject to the electorate, that he's going to disclose a new missile defense deal or arrangement with the Russians. In fact, Putin himself acknowledges the agreement in a March 2, 2012, interview with a Russian newspaper. He indicates that ``they made us a proposal just during the talks. They told us we would offer you this, we would offer you that, and they asked him to put it down on paper.''

There are ongoing negotiations between this administration and the Russians. The President got caught in an open mic. There is a secret deal with the Russians that the President needs to answer to. This amendment would weaken our national defense and our missile defense system, as would the President's secret deal with the Russians. Vote ``no'' on this amendment.


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