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Providing for Further Consideration of H.R. 1960, National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Ms. LEE of California. Let me thank the gentleman for yielding, for your support, and for your tremendous leadership on so many issues.

Let me rise, first of all, in strong opposition to this rule. I am extremely disappointed that Congress was denied the opportunity on this floor to have a full and necessary debate about our constitutional role in declaring war and our obligation to conduct vigorous oversight, accountability, and to demand transparency.

While I appreciate the committee making my bipartisan amendment with Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen with regard to HIV discrimination in order, I offered a number of other amendments to audit the Pentagon and to end the overly broad 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force, which is a blank check.

I have long called for repeal of this authorization, dating back to the horrific days of 9/11, right when we debated that resolution for no more than an hour on September 14. We did not have a meaningful debate 12 years ago, and by blocking my amendment, this Congress will not be able to exercise its constitutional war-making duties today.

Let me also say that I am pleased to join Representatives McGovern, Jones, Garamendi, and our Armed Services ranking member, Adam Smith, on an amendment which was made in order, which will at least give us an opportunity to open that door and begin to talk about the fact that it is time to bring our troops home, and that once 2014 is here, then we need to determine what Congress will authorize, if anything.

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