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tv   U.S. Senate U.S. Senate  CSPAN  August 27, 2018 4:00pm-6:55pm EDT

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about to limit debate and advanced that nomination set for 5:30 p.m. we expect senators to come to the floor and pay tribute to republican senator john mccain who passed away at his home in arizona saturday at the age of 81. live coverage now from the senate floor here on c-span2. the presiding officer: the senate will come to order. the chaplain dr. barry black will lead the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. eternal lord god, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations,
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providing us with every good and splendid gift. today we thank you for the gift of senator john sidney mccain. we are grateful for his sacrificial willingness to take the road less traveled, to rise above partisanship, to provide a profile in courage, and to give his life in service to you and country. lord, he praise you for your aware naz, that humanity is wrapped in a blanket of mutuality, so we should not ask for whom the bell tolls. comfort his beloved cindy and all his loved ones.
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bring solace to the multitudes who mourn his death. may his consequential, patriotic, and heroic legacy challenge us all to leave the world better than we found it. we pray in your sovereign name. amen. the presiding officer: please join me in reciting the pledge of allegiance to the flag. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
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the presiding officer: the clerk will read a communication to the senate. the clerk: washington d.c., august 27, 2018. to the senate: under the provisions of rule 1, paragraph 3, of the standing rules of the senate, i hereby appoint the honorable joni ernst, a senator from the state of iowa, to perform the duties of the chair. signed: orrin g. hatch, president pro tempore. mr. mcconnell: madam president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: on saturday evening, a great loss echoed throughout our country. six decades of patriotic service came to an end. we suspected for some time that we'd bid farewell to our
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colleague, the senior senator from arizona, john mccain. john took full advantage of the months since his diagnosis. his hard work continued. but happy reminiscing, fond farewells, final reflections, and time with family actually came to the fore. i was privileged to spend a small share of that time with john. we sat on his back porch in sedona under the desert sky replaying old times. john did things his way these last months. for his colleagues here, the time confirmed but sad the obvious truth. the senate won't be the same without john mccain. i think it's fair to say that passion that john brought to his work was unsurpassed in this
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body. in more than 30 years as a senator, he never failed to marshall a razor sharp wit, a big heart and a spirit. when he saw an issue the same way you did, you knew you just found your most stalwart ally. you would thank your lucky stars. because when you found yourself on the other side of that table, as i think all of us learned he ran for a different kind of unforgettable experience, either way serving alongside john was never a dull affair. i found myself on both sides of that table over the years. john and i stood shoulder to shoulder on some of the most important issues to each of us and we also disagreed entirely on huge subjects that helped define each of our careers. john treated every day, every
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issue with the intensity and seriousness that the legislative process deserves. he would fight like mad to bring the country closer to his vision of the common good. but when the day's disputes were over, that very same man was one of our most powerful reminders that so much more unites us than divides us, that we should be able to differ completely on policy and stay united in love of our country. john himself once put it, we have nothing to fear from each other. we're arguing over the means to better secure our freedom and support the general welfare, but it should remain an argument among friends who share an unshakable belief in our great cause and the goodness of eacher. john -- each other. john and i sure had those fights and sure had that friendship. i'm just glad we never found ourselves in opposite dugouts.
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you see, john and i spent years as neighbors in the russell building often when softball season rolled around, our offices would take the field together as one united mack team we called it. now, as a seriously wounded war hero and a childhood polio survivor, i'd have to say john and i didn't exactly have the makings of an elite double play duo. i took the mound once or twice but i admit we mostly offered moral support. moral support. really, that's what john mccain gave this body and this country for so long. his memory will continue to give it because while john proudly served with us as the senator for arizona, he was america's hero all along. just this month congress finalized a major bill for our
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all volunteer armed forces that we named after john. this might seem like a small detail but really it was a fitting cap stone for a career so thoroughly defined by service in and then service for the ranks of those who wear our nation's uniform. generations of mccains have served with distinction in our great navy. as john described his scottish heritage in one memoir, the mccains were bred to fight and fight they have. one by one mccains have entered the academy's gates in annapolis, one by one they marched past a century's old battle flag bearing the phrase don't give up the ship. but while honorable service is in his d.n.a., john's story was never simple. at annapolis as he'd come to explain with some relish, his
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major distinct tifs were mostly the weakness of his grades and the length of his disciplinary record. the first miracle in john's military career was the fact that he somehow made it through school. but he prevailed and bigger tests soon came. he stared death in the face aboard the u.s.s. forrestal and again when he was shot down and dragged and battered and broken into the hands of our nation's enemies. five and a half hellish years in captivity. merciless beatings for the uniform he'd worn and the values he would not renounce. that stubborn, rebellious streak went from a stubling block to a saving grace. stubborn virtue sustained john. he declined early release in solidarity with his brothers.
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he never gave up the ship. we all know this story but while john didn't shy from sharing his experiences, he insisted he was no hero and no saint. he measured his life in simpler terms. when asked after this diagnosis last year how he'd like to be remembered, here's what he said. he served his country and not always right, made a lot of mistakes, made a lot of errors, but served his country. and i hope could add honorably. he'll certainly get that wish. for many the service and sacrifice that john rendered overseas would have been more than enough, more than a lifetime already. but somehow john mccain was convinced that he still owed this country more. in 1983 he arrived in congress.
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john knew exactly what it meant to swear, to support and defend the constitution of the united states. when he was sworn in here in the senate four years later, he was no stranger to pledging to protect the constitution from enemies foreign and domestic. the following years brought legislative accomplishments to be sure but while john's constituents were lucky to have him as their senator from arizona, john also remembered our titles say united states senator. he worked across the aisle on the select committee on powmia affairs whose work helped heal the wounds of war and normalize relations with vietnam. he led congressional delegations and overseas travel that were famously as grueling, as grueling as they were educational. john was seemingly immune to jet lag and he was never more
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excited that when he had an opportunity to share american values abroad. and of course he was singularly devoted to the men and women of our armed forces from countless visits with deployed units in iraq and afghanistan to his committee meetings right here in this body, john honored their sacrifices in a way that only he could. he never forgot that notwithstanding the grandeur of our military might and technical prowess, our armed services are made up of people, of our constituents, of volunteers, of the brave. john's favorite novel was ernest hemmingway's for whom the bell tolls. i suspect we'll hear it quoted quite a bit in the days ahead. the lead character is an american ex-pat named robert jordan who risked everything in the spanish civil war. he's a little bit brash, maybe a
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little hot headed. in fact, he's a dynamite specialist whoses specialty -- whose specialty literally is blowing things up. and he goes down fighting right down to the book's final pages. i'm sure some of us can imagine why john might identify with this guy. i recently rediscovered something john wrote a few years ago about this book. he noted that his favorite literary hero wasn't some contrived caricature of a hero from central casting. the book is full of complexities the character has to face all of the messiness of life and war. his idealism is challenged, but he realizes the imperfections of this world don't mean the concept of sacrifice is outdated they don't make love of cause or country into something quaint or
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naive. they only make patriotism, service, and hope that much more noble and necessary. it takes one kind of heroism to undergo unimaginable pain and suffering as a p.o.w. but then persist in loyalty. it takes another kind of heroism to sustain that passion for decades more. to withstand the slings and arrows of politic, the compromises, the disappointments, the defeats, and yet consider it a joy and an honor to serve. few have either kind of heroism. john mccain had both. fortunately, all that intensity came paired with a world class sense of humor. as we all know, john really hated to lose. the line he used after his presidential campaigns still
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makes me laugh. some would ask how he's copying with defeat and john would say, actually, i'm sleeping like a baby. wake up every two hours and cry. seriously, it's hard to describe this larger than life figure without lapsing into what sounds like cliches. we've all heard our whole lives about the importance of patriotism and self-sacrifice. but we cannot take that culture of commitment for granted because just like our nation's security and our american liberty, the very notion that some causes really are greater than ourselves only survives because service members and statesmen like john mccain will fight and even die to defend it.
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the bond between john and his country was so deep, but of course other bonds ran deeper still. while john's colleagues grieve our own loss, we also send our love and support to those who know him even better, those who called this man their husband, their son, their father, and grandfather. we stand with john's loving wife cindy. we stand with doug, andy, sidney, meghan, jack, bridget. we stand with john's mother roberta. and for all of john's loyal staff, thank you for lending him to us longer than we had a right. thank you for supporting him while he supported us.
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so john admin has fought his last battles and cast his final votes, but the nation he loved is still not done with him yet. this week will be dedicated to remembering him. on friday, he will lie in state here in the capitol, like other american heroes before him. as the days turn to weeks, i know we are all eager to come together and collaborate on ways we can continue to honor his memory. generation after generation of americans will hear about the cocky pilot who barely scraped through annapolis but then defended our nation in the skies, witness to our highest values even through terrible torture, captured the country's imagination through national campaigns that spotlighted many of our highest values, and
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became so integral to the united states senate where our nation airs and advances its great debates. america will miss her devoted son, her stalwart champion, her elder statesman. i will miss one of the very finest gentlemen with whom i have had the honor to serve. we will not forget him. i consider it our privilege to return some small share of the love that john poured out for this country. it is our honor as americans to say to the late great john sidney mccain, i. i. i., -- mccain, we will done, good and faithful servant, well done.
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you fought the good fight, you finished the race, you kept the faith, and you never gave up the ship. mr. schumer: madam president. the presiding officer: the democratic leader. mr. schumer: on saturday, auguso the day since the death of his friend senator kennedy, our friend and colleague, senator john s. mccain passed away. knowing his prognosis prepared us for the inevitable but it has not softened the blow. we feel a great and inexpressible loss. i know i do. but i also feel lucky that i was
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able to call this great man a friend. today i'd like to share a few reflections, unorganized and incomplete although they may be, i suspect i will have more to say about senator mccain with the benefit of a few days' time. senator mccain and i didn't get along very well at first. he was close to my mentor in the senate, ted kennedy, but not so with me. i never served with senator mccain on any committee. we get to know other senators up close. before our friendship, my closest brush with him was over a comment he made during a debate on defense policy when he said that long island was, quote, regrettably part of the united states. i blasted john's pejorative, which of course prompted him to reply from the senate floor, quote, i'm sorry there is at least one of my colleagues that can't take a joke. i apologize if i offended him
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and hope that someday he will have a sense of humor. like many, i was a victim of senator mccain's aserbic wit. now, things began to defrost when we worked together during the gang of 14 to avoid a change in the senate rules during the bush administration, and a real tight and lasting friendship emerged from our collaboration on immigration reform. we worked in close quarters for nearly a year, hour after hour, day after day, week after week, fine tuning the only piece of major immigration reform to pass this chamber in decades. we visited the southern border together to assess the gaps in our security up close. we were doing what the senate was supposed to do -- grappling with the biggest challenges, working in a bipartisan way to find solutions, overcoming
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obstacles that have so long bedeviled immigration reform and continue to stymie progress today. we couldn't have done it without john mccain. in recent days, many reflected on his presidential campaigns and his military service, rightly so, but he was also a natural legislator, able to seek common ground, sense where to go, knew when to give a little, knew when not to. he had deep principle, but he also knew how to craft a product that could actually pass, and the bill did in the senate with large numbers of supporters from both parties. had we passed immigration reform then, had the house done what the senate did under john's leadership, we wouldn't be quarreling about immigration now, and our country would be a better, stronger, and more unified place. we game so close over that year
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that john mccain started treating my staff like they were his own, and me the same. we spoke so frequently, i knew john mccain's cell number by heart. i mistakenly repeated it during an interview when a reporter asked me how close we were. they had to edit it out to protect john's privacy. i can truly say that the time we spent authoring and passing immigration reform were some of the proudest days in politics for me and the rest of the gang of eight. in no small part because the success was shared with one great leader, one great legislative leader, john mccain. you know, he was so many things to so many people. a fierce friend to those who were lucky enough to have earned his friendship. you had to earn his friendship. a real thorn in the side of those who earned discorn.
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many know that. he was an unofficial ambassador for the united states, a comfort to our allies, an unabashed champion for western values. he was unafraid to take on presidents. he was unafraid to take on his own party. he was equally parts funny and furious, foul-mouthed and statesmanlike. he could put the temper in temperament. he was a brave and honest man. he was a patriot. he was all those things throughout his life, usually more than one at once, until his very last days. remarking on the character of america, senator mccain said that we live in a, quote, big, boisterous, brawling, intemperate, restless, striving, daring, good, and magnificent country. truer words could not be said about the man himself.
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big, boisterous, brawling, intemperate, restless, striving, daring, brave, good, and magnificent. as you go through lave, you meet truly -- a few truly great people. john mccain was one of them. his dedication to his country and to the men and women who serve and protect it was unsurpassed. even in his last weeks, he was calling me every few days to make sure that our defense authorization bill was done and done right, not for him, not for his glory. because he cared about men and women who serve in our armed forces so deeply. his life is a story of american heroism personified, but maybe most of all, he was a truth teller. perhaps it's a reflection of our politics that a man can be so well regarded for simply telling the truth as he saw it, or maybe
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recognizing the demands and failings of our politics, it's more a reflection on the man, that four decades of public life could not warp or dim his if i dealt to the unvarn -- fidelity to the unvarnished truth. i will miss him dearly. in the past year of his illness, during moments of doubt about the direction of our country, i found myself thinking about what john mccain would do or what he would say if he were here. truth be told, there is nothing that i could say that could possibly add or detract from senator mccain's illustrious career. there is nothing any of us have done that compares to the sacrifice he made in a cell block half a world away and half a lifetime ago, a sacrifice he made over and over again for the
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country he loved and the principles he advanced, so that generations will study his example, i propose we rename the senate russell office building, one of only three senate office buildings, after john mccain. it would be a fitting tribute to a man who considered his service here in the senate, headquartered in the russell building where his beloved armed services committee also resides, the most significant of his distinguished career. the man whose name he would replace, senator richard russell, a towering figure in the senate of his day, was nonetheless an avowed opponent of civil rights and the architect of the southern filibuster that long delayed its passage. it's time that we recognize that as times change, so do our heroes. so i will be introducing a resolution with senator flake to change the name of the russell building to the mccain building.
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i hope my colleagues will cosponsor and support the resolution, but it need not be the only way we honor senator mccain. we can honor him by trying to carry out the principles he lived by. we can try, as he did, to put country before party. we can try, as he always did, to speak truth to power. and we can try, as he summoned us to try, to restore the senate to its rightful place in our national political life. up until the very end, john mccain still believed the senate was capable of solving our country's greatest challenges. he believed that our arcane rules and procedures, designed to frustrate one-party rule, were an antidote to the polarization of our politics. at the very least, he believed
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in the senate's ability to make progress, to set aside for a moment our party affiliations, political interests, and personal ambitions in the service of a larger cause. because that's what he did. and for all his cynicism, he still believed the senate could reach that higher calling. deep in the middle of his final speech on the senate floor were these words. quote -- i hope we can again rely on humility, on our need too cooperate, on our dependence on each other, learn how to trust each other again, and by doing so better serve the people who elected us. if we are to truly honor the life and the service of john mccain, let us do that.
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let us do that. i yield the floor. i wills, madam president -- john mccain put out a few final words today. i think some of his staffers put them out. i'd like to read just two paragraphs of that and then ask unanimous consent that they be put in the record. i have often observed, mccain wrote, p that i'm the luckiest person on earth. i feel that way even now as i prepare for the end of my life. i have loved my life, all of it. i've had experience, add have en signatures, and friendships enough for ten satisfying lives. i am so thankful. like most people, i have regrets, but i would not trade a day of my life in good times or bad times for the best of anyone
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else's. and finally, he concluded with this -- do not despair of our present difficulties but believe always in the promise and greatness of america, because nothing is inevitable here. americans never quit. we never surrender. we never hide from history; we make history. farewell, fellow americans. god bless you, god bless america. i yield the floor. the presiding officer: they will be entered without objection. under the previous order, the leadership time is reserved. morning business is closed. under the previous order, the senate will proceed to executive session to resume consideration of the following nomination, which the clerk will report. the clerk: nomination, department of health and human services, lynn a. johnson of colorado to be an assistant secretary for family support.
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the senator from maine. ms. collins: madam president, i ask unanimous consent to speak as if in morning business. the presiding officer: without objection. ms. collins: madam president, the united states senate -- indeed, our entire nation -- is mourning the loss of a great leader and american patriot, our colleague and friend, senator john mccain. madam president, i first met john mccain when i was a young staffer in senator bill cohen's office, and john was serving as the navy's liaison officer. as a fellow senator for the past
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21 years, i knew him as a trusted colleague, a courageous legislator, and a close friend. john was a true american hero who devoted his life to serving his country. courage and character were the hallmarks of his military service as well as his work in congress. in the senate, he was a consequential leader on the most critical issues facing our country. john mccain was one of our congress' most respected voices for a strong national defense and for good government. his word was as much his bond in washington as it was to his brothers in arms in vietnam.
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madam president, i'd like to share with my colleagues a story that i believe demonstrates the essential character of john mccain. in november of 2010, john was part of a congressional delegation on its way to a security conference in nova scotia. bad weather caused their flight to be diverted to bangor, maine, where i live. i shortly received a phone call to come to the airport, and i went and welcomed john and my colleagues on their unplanned visit. as it happened, the troop -- troupe greeters of maine were at the airport at the same time. this legendary group of citizens
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has greeted more than 1. 5 million service members, either leaving to go overseas or returning home. since 2003, never missing a single flight, even in bad weather or the middle of the night. and the presiding officer, i believe, who also has served her country so well, senator ernst, was one of those who was greeted by the troop greeters in bangor, maine. rather than fly out when the weather cleared, john, the others in the delegation agreed to stay and join me with the long line of these patriotic troop greeters to await the aha rival -- the arrival of the
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airplanes. and i remember when i told john that there was a plane that would be arriving shortly and then there was another one in a couple of hours, he said, of course we'll stay. well, madam president, you can imagine having gone through the gauntlet of mainers greeting and welcoming the troops back home, hugging them, cheering them, giving them cell phones, thanking them for their service that all of a sudden the troops realized that they'd just shaken hands with john mccain, the legendary john mccain, who was so popular with service members. and i saw them literally do a double-take when the first group went by, shook his hand, and then turned around and said to each other, wasn't that john mccain who just shook our hands?
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they then came back and, of course, posed for pictures and chatted with him, and held up the rest of the line who were very eager to see john. i will never forget how thrilled these troops were to be greeted when they were first setting foot back on american soil by a true american hero, john mccain, someone who had served our country with such courage and character. by the end of the day, john had spent three hours greeting two planeloads of soldiers. he loved greeting them and posing for pictures. it was such a heartwarming, unexpected event and a very
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special moment, and it not only gladdened the hearts of the troops but also of the troop greeters, who were thrilled to have their hero with them. it was vintage john mccain that he stayed, even after the weather had cleared, and greeted each and every one of those troops. john mccain did what he thought was right, regardless of the political consequences. he had absolutely no interest in scoring partisan political points on the senate floor. he welcomed and would listen to good ideas whether they came from the democratic or the republican side of the aisle. while he was always open to new
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evidence, good ideas, and was capable of changing his mind, he was unshakable when he was convinced of the appropriateness of a course of action. john was impatient. he wanted to get on with solving the problems facing our country. he had no use for the political games that, sadly, far too often are played in the senate. one often overlooked aspect of john was his love for the environment. i once visited him at his beloved ranch in sedona, and i was surprised when he took me all over the property, pointing out birds, naming them, and clearly taking such delight in the wildlife. until that moment, i did not
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know of his interest and love for nature. later on i accompanied john on a trip he organized to the arctic to see the permafrost melting and to meet with native alaskans. we also traveled to antarctica where we spent four days meeting with scientists who told us of the impact of global warming. he took me on so many trips and broadened my horizons. four times we went to afghanistan, four times to iraq. we went to yemen. we went to libya and met with colonel qadhafi before he was overthrown and killed. john taught me so much on these trips. the principles that guided john's life are best summed up
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by his own words from his beautiful auto biography "faith of my fathers." he said, glory belongs to the act of being constant to something greater than yourself, to a cause, to your principles, to the people on whom you rely, and who rely on you in return. john mccain was a statesman and a dear friend who was devoted to a cause greater than himself. and that cause was the united states of america. it has been an honor to serve alongside him for nearly 21 years in the united states senate. although he will be deeply
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missed by all of us, he leaves behind an extraordinary legacy that will inspire americans for generations to come. thank you, madam president. mr. isakson: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from georgia. mr. isakson: madam president, yesterday was a difficult day for me. before i get moo that day, let me -- before i get into that day, let me recognize the senator from oklahoma for a motion. mr. inhofe: i thank the senator. i ask unanimous consent that at the conclusion of the remarks from the distinguished senator from georgia that i be recognized for such time as i shall consume. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. isakson: madam president, yesterday was a difficult day for committee. i'm 74 years old. i was born in 1944. like many americans, my youth was during the vietnam era. the prime of my youth was the vietnam era. in fact, my senior year in
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college i got a graduation diploma hand a draft notice on the same day. they were put in the same book. everybody was going. everybody was being called up for the draft. there was a lottery, but so many people were eligible that almost everybody in my age group would have been drafted if they didn't join the service. i joined -- i joined the national guard, which i am very proud of and am still a guardsman to this day. but it also gave me the chance to serve my country in a way that would not put me inasmuch risk to go to vietnam as it would to be drafted. but i did that because i wanted to do everything i could to stay here an get married to my wife diane. but i was of the age to be drafted and i made the decision to find a way to serve that would not put me in a position of being drafted where i lost control. and i was able to do it and a lot of people were and a lot of people weren't. and i know that. the ones that could know it and the ones that couldn't know it shall did and i breadth knows what i am talking about, being a guardsman herself. i lost my best friend from
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vietnam, jackson elliott conform iii, waynes bore rao, georgia. birddog capital of the world. jack told us he joined the marine core, was going to go to vietnam and fight the bad guys. we all said, jack, don't volunteer to do that. you could get killed. he said, no, i want to do it. it is a great country. i have had a great life. going to university of georgia, wonderful mom and dad, good friends like y'all. i want to go to o.c.s. and be an officer in the marine corps. he did. two years later he was shot in the 11th month of his stint in vietnam by a sniper. alex crumley, and pierre howard, the democrat lieutenant governor of georgia, and myself, we were the three best friends -- the four amigos, if you will. we went to 589 liberty street in
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waynes bore row and spent three nights and four days with emily and jack, jack's dad and mom. when they brought the -- when the marine corps brought the body back, it lied in state in their dining room. we had a wake and service for him. we stood guard. we cried. we talked about the good times. we talked about the bad times. we felt sorry for ourselves because a life that had meant so much to all of us was gone. but jack felt a calling for the country. he did a great service for the country, and i'm proud of him. i'm proud to have been his friend. i tried to do what i could, but never in the category of what john mccain or jack cox did. there were a lot of people of my age that didn't do as much as they probably could have or might have done. and probably from time to time have seconds thoughts about it, too, because the vietnam war was so tough. i had friends that came back who had to dress in blue jeans and khakis when they got off the troop train from wherever they were to atlanta because they
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would get accosted on the street if they were in their uniform during that era. today we go to the airport, we have troops come through, they will fly back from duty somewhere. they get standing ovations. people would give up their seat to let them sit there. it wasn't like that in the 1960's and 1970's. it wasn't like that at all. in fact, many people risking their lives, in fact 58,000 of them did give their lives for all of us. we were making fun of them as a nation. it messed up our politics, messed up our country, messed up our people, messed up everybody else. but america's a great country. and as much as what i am telling you is tragic to me -- and i apologize to everybody that i didn't do everything that i should have done. i think all of us owe each other a commitment to say we'll never let america get that way again. america will always be like it was on 9/11, or 9/12, 2001. we all put american flags on our cars. we all sang the national anthem. we all did the pledge of allegiance after we had been attacked. we rallied. for a few months, we were the
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most patriotic nation in the world. we ought to be that way every single day, because every single day there are those just like those firemen and emergency medical people on 9/11, there were those in the vietnam war who signed up, who fought, risked their lives, in some cases died, like john mccain, like my brother-in-law, rocky davison, my wife's brother, who knew a navy reconnaissance plane in vietnam, one of the most decorated pilots in the navy during that era. people like him were great. like my father-in-law. my father-in-law flew reconnaissance in world war ii, in the pacific. he did everything he could to help the country during a give time. there were so many people who did that in our country. we owe them all a debt of gratitude, a debt of thanks. we need to all remember we're all americans. we owe those who saved us as a country, kept our freedom when we were about to lose it, fought for us, risked their lives, and died for us, we owe them at times like this to elevate them
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to the appropriate place in history. that's what i'm trying to do with john mccain today. i want to elevate john. john was better than me, and i know it. john was the best of my generation. john mccain was and is a great human being. i don't know what's going to be said in the next few days about john mccain, by whomever it's going to be said. i don't know what's going to be done. but anybody who in any way tarnishes the reputation of john mccain deserves a whipping, because most of the ones who were do the wrong thing about john mccain didn't have the guts to do the right thing when it was their turn. we need to remember that. so i would say to the president or anybody in the world, it's time to pause and say this was a great man. he gave everything for us. we owe him nothing less than the respect that he earned. and that's what i intend to give john. in return for what he gave me. john took me to kosovo 20 years
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ago when clinton said we're going to send some people over to verify the crime sites, the ethnic cleansing. i went to pristina with john, went to montenegro, went to the world security conference in munich a few years after that. got to sit with piewp putin then. saw john mccain talk to vladimir putin like they were next-door neighbors. also like they were dutch uncles. i was so proud to be in a country that had a guy like john mccain who could break the ice with the toughest of our adversaries. speak up with pride for america and calm down when they need to be called in. yeah, john and i had some problems, too. mitch mcconnell gave me -- did me the worst favor of my lifetime when he made me the chairman of the ethics committee. that's a hard job. nobody likes the chairman of the ethics committee because they are scared of him. i got the ethics committee job at a time when john mccain was put on a special committee for the ethics committee to decide
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what to do on using airplanes during campaign events as candidates or for our pac's. john had access to a plane which gave him an exemption from the rules that we passed. it made it tough as heck because he didn't have to worry about the cause and effect. but john took a second to understand the problems of a normal legislator that might not have had access to a private plane would have. in the end, john took his circumstances and his abilities to have a private plane and applied it to the changes that were made and see to it that everybody is being treated fair. john didn't expect things to just be good for john. he expected them to be good for everybody. he always did that, and i always learned a lot from him. the other thing i learned was how to consensus. let me -- how to cuss. john mccain could do a lot of things but cuss is one of the best things he did. he was a consummate cusser. he knew had you to do it to have emphasis added. that's what the papers say, when they put the marks in it after
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some statements jim inhofe or i make. john could -- he and i were working on a deal. i am chairman of the veterans committee. he was chairman of the armed services committee. we had a huge veterans bill. we had to come together and meet the minds on in terms of health care. john was late to the meeting. he came in the meeting, he pulled the door behind him and slammed it. for ten minutes laid the best cussing on me and everybody else in the room i ever heard. he said now i haven't got time to put up with this anymore. y'all just listen to what i have to say and tell me what you're going to do. that's a tough way to do business. but john sometimes knew to get us all to think, get us all to talk, if he intimidates you enough so you would fight for what you believed in, you would get a better piece of legislation than if he just let you pass or he intimidates you to death. john knew exactly what he had the capability of doing and he knew exactly when to apply the intimidation and the thanks and the grace. he did it the right time every single time.
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did we agree all the time? no. but i know i'm a better person. my country is a better country, and the world is a better place because of john mccain. in the next three or four days as we go through and we run into kids that we know or relatives or my own children that i will be with this coming sunday in the mountains, we're going to have a little meeting about john mccain, just to make sure they know -- i know that they know what i know about a great american hero, because i want them when they have kids in their 40's, like my kids are in their 40's today, that they will remember on veterans day, on memorial day, on all other days that john -- the john mccains of the world and those that will come after john who put their life and their future and their fortune on the line for the greatest country in the world, the united states of america. and i yield back my time. and note the absence of a quorum.
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mr. inhofe: madam president. the presiding officer: the senator from oklahoma. mr. inhofe: did you put us in a quorum? the presiding officer: the senate is not in a quorum call. mr. inhofe: that's good. i can't think of anything more difficult than to speak after the last two speakers. of course, i have known them for a long time. they are two totally different, opposite people. you have susan collins who is a well-recognized moderate. she is one who understands and has a great appreciation for the environment. not the kind of person that you would associate with a tough guy like john mccain that's gone out there and has done things that other people haven't done that we have just talked about. and then you hear the statement
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from the senator from georgia. it just -- you know, i was thinking about that. i'm a few years older than he is. we have a lot of things in common. i was -- we were just talking about being drafted. i was drafted. i always remember, i was -- actually, i was enrolled -- this is many, many years ago. i was going to be at the university of mexico in mexico city in an international program. and so i was at that time at the university of colorado. i did all of my -- all of my finals and all of that early so i would get back in time to go down to -- down to mexico. so i got back to tulsa where i'm from, and i got a letter from the very person -- a very important person, the president of the united states. i thought how nice of eisenhower to remember me. it was my draft notice. so that changed my life, but it
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changed my life in a way that was the -- is the greatest single experience that i have ever had, and i wouldn't be doing what i'm doing today if it were not for that. the discipline that comes with being in the military. and then we always have, there are always heroes that you deal with, and we are dealing with a hero when we deal with senator mccain. you know, i have often said that i think of timothy when he wrote second timothy 47:00 had john mccain in mind when he said i fought the good fight, i have finished the race, i have september the faith. that's comal what he did. -- exactly what he did. kind of a mean guy. a lot of people didn't like john mccain. he wasn't the most lovable person to be around. but he was a fighter. never shied away from a good fight. he was passionate for the causes that he believed in, a strong
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advocate for human rights and democrat values, standing up for oppressed people around the world. that was a soft side of john mccain that a lot of people don't know about, that he was a fighter, but not just a fighter. he was a fighter for the people of arizona. you know, after he got back from the time that he spent in prison, he got back to arizona, and he started fighting again. he did that for 36 years after his incarceration. he was shaped by his own military service and that of his father and grandfather. it's been said several times statements about his father and grandfather. i have done some studying on them. that is really the -- what formed john mccain. both of them were admirals in the navy. it is natural that he was going to be in the navy, and of course he was during his leadership in
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the senate armed services committee, he continually focused on impact. now, the occupier of the chair right now has served on the armed services committee with senator mccain, and she knows, as i know and anybody else who has served with him, that he was always for the underdog, always for the troops out in the field. i think that the senator from maine articulated that very well, the people that he had compassion for. he would always take care of the sailor, soldier, airmen, marines. he articulated this, by the way, in one of his books, "the faith of my fathers." he was talking about his father and his grandfather. this is a quote, and this says it better than any of the rest of us could say it. he said an officer's obligations to enlisted men with the most solemn of all. an officer must not confer his responsibilities to the men
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under his command. they are his alone. he does not put his men in jeopardy for any purpose that the country has not required they serve. he does not risk their lives in welfare for his sake, but only to answer the shared duty they are called to answer. that's senator mccain. he looked after those individuals who were in -- under his -- under his command. he was a ferocious opponent, but the key thing about senator mccain is he was willing to take on those tough debates with you, become more and more rare in this chamber. we don't see them like we used to. john would relish the debate, earning the respect and admiration of everyone. i can remember, there are so many areas because of all the years that we served together, not just in the senate armed services committee but also in his time in the house, in my time in the house. we had differences of opinion. i think i'm a little bit
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stubborn sometimes, too. i remember the commissary issue. that got pretty violent before it was over. we took on each other. the brac issue. he wanted to have another brac round in this defense authorization bill, and i didn't want one because i thought something we shouldn't be doing is closing down missions right now that we may be needing as we are rebuilding, so we had an honest different opinion. i remember in 2003, that was back when everyone was jumping on this whole global warming thing and that was going to be everyone's ticket to the white house. i remember when john, they had the mccain-lieberman bill. i remember that lasted three days of debate. three days of debate. i had hardly any senators come down on my side of the issue. but we won anyway. after that was over -- and that was one that john had his heart in -- he came over to me, he said good job, you won, i lost, and that was it.
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no hard feelings. that's the kind of person that john mccain is one that we will never forget. remember, a lot of people look at oklahoma and think it's always been a -- always been a republican state. it wasn't. it wasn't until well after 1994. in 1994, i ran for the united states senate. it was a democrat state. i had this guy kind of the dar darlene of the democratic party. only three senators came out and it was senator grassley, senator bob dole and john mccain. now, john mccain came out and i always remember this, we had a lot in common, but i hardly knew the guy. the first time he came out
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because he has a background in aviation, i have a background in aviation. and i remember i had a nice air conditioned twin engine plane, but i lost an engine the night before so i had to fly my kid's plane. it's very hot -- it's called a little gruman tiger. it doesn't have any air conditioning, it was in the 90's, it was close to 100 that day. i wrote down the places we went that day. first we went to oklahoma city, then to shaney, then to lawton, which is the home of fort sil, which is the number one area in the world for ar till tri, and we did our thing there all the time. he was campaigning for me, a guy who couldn't win. we went from there to altas air force base, and that is one
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still one of the top training bases, and we now train k-17 and kc-125's. as a matter of fact, because of john, we'll be flying the kc-46. of course, this is long before that. but, anyway, we worked and ended up in bartelville and hosted a fundraiser with the n.r.a. i guess he wanted to spend more time in the plane because he came back two weeks later and we also did the same thing. now, there was no reason for him to do that. we hardly knew each other when we started. we got to know each other when we were up there in that heat. nevertheless, he was there. and you always remember people who help you when nobody else will. you can say a lot of things about john mccain. you will hear a lot about him
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and you will hear a lot more. what's never in dispute john mccain was a fighter, he was deeply loyal to his country, family, constituents. he was -- we all know that patriotism isn't based on your words, you have to live it. he did that every day. as a young naval officer following in his family's footsteps, his father and grandfather, he kept the faith, he graduated from the naval academy. he never talked about being the outstanding student. in fact, he said i was fifth in the class, fifth in the bottom. but he became a naval aviator and deployed during the vietnam war. he flew 23 missions and then was shot down in enemy territory and -- and -- and we all know the story. we know that he kept his faith and we know it bears repeating
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that five years in north vietnamese, i remember going there and seeing the conditions under which he was during that period of time. and here's a guy who had the opportunity because both his father and grandfather were admirals, he had the opportunity, if he wanted to, to bail out, and he didn't do it. he just wanted to be there. he didn't want to have any special kind of treatment. so that was john. and after the navy, john kept his faith by continuing to serve his country. this time as a congressman and then senator and then ultimately chairman of the armed services committee. he kept true to the causes that were just. now we all grieve because john has finished his race here on earth and on his own terms and surrounded by his friends and his loving family. john served his country faithfully for 60 years.
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we owe him a great debt for that service. this week we will mourn him, honor him, and celebrate the truly remarkable life of an american hero. we all have our john mccain story, a time when we were moved by his stub stubbornness and passion. i look forward to hearing the stories an tributes from my friends. we all grieve for cindy and the family and they'll continue to be in our prayers. and, lastly, i do believe, now that i thought about it, that's what timothy had in mind, i have fought this good fight, i have finished the race, and i have kept the faith. so we say, thank you, john mccain. i yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll.
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quorum call:
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mr. flake: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from arizona. mr. flake: mr. president, until the very end -- the presiding officer: the senate is in a quorum call. mr. flake: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. the senator from arizona. mr. flake: mr. president, until the very end he served his country. until the very end. in service to john mccain meant living something unique in all the history of the world. living in service to something unique. the american idea, e. pleurbus euonym, for many one, might seem like a quaint vessel compared to the brutal and determined divisions of our time, but it
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was an idea that defined john mccain's life. in it and through his service, he defied comarktization -- characterization, frustrated the tired conventions the way party loyalists are supposed to behave, acted against his own political interests time and time again in a way that from our vantage point today is nothing short of awe inspiring and he recognized that democracy was hard but that living in bondage to tyranny was far harder. he talk a lot in this chamber about freedom. no one in this city and few in american history knew as much or as vividly about the price of freedom as john mccain. our words are too often cheap and eminently forgettable, but john mccain paid our freight with his body and with his soul. to our shame, he lived long
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enough to have to take to the senate floor to -- against the ranked tribalism we have fallen into lately. he knew that giving into our worst impulses, to score political victories was as easy as it was dangerous, and was and is a tangible threat to american democracy, the democracy that he gave every bit of his life to. if i may, with your indulgence, read from senator mccain's last speech from this room. on july 25, 2017, bearing the fresh wounds from his last battle, senator mccain stood in this chamber. thinking of himself or not of himself but of his country, he exhorted, inspired, pleaded and conjolled all of us to shake to our senses, reject the
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prevailing ugliness that seized the capitol. one last time he was standing alone to do what was right. in a sure sign of just how desperate he was, he even appealed to our decency and to our reason. qualities that seemed to have long fled washington. that day last summer he said in part, quote, we are servants of a great nation, a nation conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men were created equal. more people have lived free and prosperous lives here than in any other nation. we have acquired unprecedented wealth and power because of our governing principles and because our government defended those principles. he went on. america has made a greater contribution than any other nation to the international order that has liberated more people if tyranny and poverty than ever before in history. we have been the greatest
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example and the greatest supporter and the greatest defender of that order. we aren't afraid. we don't covet other people's land or wealth. we don't hide behind walls. we breach them. we are a blessing to humanity. he continued. what greater cause could we hope to serve than helping america -- helping keep america the strong, aspiring, inspirational beacon of liberty and defender of the dignity of all human beings and their right to freedom and equal justice. that is the cause that binds us and it is so much more powerful and worthy than the small differences that divide us. unquote. until the very end, he served his country, mr. president. and now as he consider the life of this man, in stark relief to what now passes for our politics, he continues to serve.
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as a beacon to who we are and who we can be when we are at our best. if john mccain can forgive the north vietnamese torturers, we can at least forgive each other. but that gesture of senator mccain was not merely a gesture of conciliation for conciliation sake. it was reflective of a world view that saw the humanity even in his enemies, of a sometimes unfathomable decency that could overcome most any difficulty, and a deep dedication to another american idea, the idea that character is destiny. and to the eternally optimistic american preference for tomorrow over yesterday, how i don't know whether or not senator mccain, whether or not john subscribed to the great man or great woman
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theory of history, the notion that the story of humanity is written by the actions and choices of great individuals. i don't know if he believed it or not. but i do know this. he lived it. i know this because it was my great honor of a lifetime to serve in this body with senator mccain. as the other senator from arizona. now long before that privilege was accorded me by the people of my state, i was john mccain's constituent. and when the necessity presented itself to point up examples for my daughter and my four sons of lives lived with principle and purpose, of role models, i had to look no further than my own senator. now i have a pretty good idea that such ap per base would be
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mocked most loudly by john mccain himself. i imagine he would have some choice and colorful language in response to the outpouring of love and tributes since he has left us. we know that like all of us, the senator was not perfect. in fact, if you're interested in an inventory of his failings, mccain himself was the most eager to provide it. but as a former aide of his said in the past few days, mccain wasn't perfect, but he perfectly loved his country. mr. president, words are a poor measure of any life, much less the life the size of john mccain's and the swath he cut on this earth. but yet we must try. we may never see his like again. and so for the sake of the country he loved, we owe it to his memory to try to be more like him so that when the season of mourning is over, that we
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don't merely dispense with our earnest tributes and go right back to our finality, because the poverty of our words notwithstanding, we have lately wasted a lot of words in this town doing and being everything that john mccain was not. we would do well to allow this moment to affect us in ways reflected not merely in our words, but in our deeds. we would do well to reflect on john mccain's example today and ask ourselves if we are living up to it or even coming close. we would do well to honor him by emulating his example. we of course will never have his extraordinary comic timing. he ribbed me without mercy and with only a little exaggeration, that the only way i got elected to anything was because of my hundreds of siblings and
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thousands of cousins. i would have laughed harder if there wasn't some truth in it. we will never possess his grace in both victory and defeat. we will never have his servant's heart nor his power and clarity about the daily effort that freedom requires. john mccain knew firsthand the epic global struggle for freedom. and so he was freedom's greatest champion in the united states senate. he also knew that history is not a straight line and that the ghosts of the great ideological struggle of the 21st century are still here haunting the 21st. as he told jeffrey goldberg of the atlantic, there's always a putin somewhere in the world, and you're meant to oppose him with all the skills god gave you. so as we say goodbye to john
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mccain, let us take up his banner. his was always the good fight. we are fortunate to have known him best in arizona, but he was bigger than any one state. he always belonged to america and to the world. and now he belongs to the ages. farewell, senator. farewell, john. i yield the floor. a senator: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee. mr. alexander: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the mandatory quorum call be waived.
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the presiding officer: is there objection? without objection. the clerk will report the motion to invoke cloture. the clerk: cloture motion, we, the undersigned senators in accordance with the provisions of with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate do hereby move to bring to a close debate on the nomination of lynn a. johnson of colorado to be assistant secretary for family support, department of health and human services, signed by 17 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent, the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate on the nomination of lynn a. johnson of colorado to be assistant secretary for family support, department of health and human services, shall be brought to a close. the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
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the presiding officer:ville all senators voted? any senator wish to change their vote? on this vote the yeas are 60. the nays are 28. the motion is agreed to. the senator from ohio. mr. brown: thank you, mr. president. this week of course we remember
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and honor our colleague and american hero, john mccain. he embodied our most cherished values of service and stprao*eus. -- sacrifice. he understood the preupblgs that make our country great. one of those principles is first amendment protections for a free press, something i always admired about senator mccain even before i got to know him well many years ago was his openness with the journalists, the work-a-day reporters who were doing their jobs every day, who covered him on behalf of the american people. he didn't hide from the people he served. he was always willing to stand up for freedom of the press. when those freedoms came under attack, he stood up and said to journalists, the fact is we need you. he wrote an op-ed in "the washington post" in january i'd like to quote from. this op-ed was parliament in response -- was partly in response to the president
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declaring several times repeatedly that the media are enemies of the people. john mccain put that to rest with these comments: freedom of information is critical for a democracy to succeed. journalists play a major role in the promotion and protection of democracy and our inalienable rights and they must be able to do their jobs freely. only truth and transparency can guarantee freedom senator mccain said. he was right. his moral leadership on this issue -- we will miss his moral leadership on this issue and moral leadership on so many others. it is up to all of us to continue to stand for freedom of the press, to serve and inform our communities. that's why i want to highlight, like i do every week, yet another story in an ohio paper informing the public, reported by a journalist serving her community. last week the "dayton daily news" ran a story by staff writer emily khronenburger on
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trottwood's may -- major arts center. after a remodel the center is reopening and will provide the community with art exhibits, concerts and classes. ms. khron enburger said it will make impacts on the community for decades to come. it informed the readers about a partnership with the state university. it will have a satellite office in the reopen community center that will offer 4-h community programs with everything from agriculture to engineering communities. this kind of reporting is what journalists do every single day in ohio, in oklahoma, and across this country. they do their jobs. they serve their readers. they serve their viewers. they serve their communities. as we pay our respects to senator mccain this week, let us recommit ourselves to the values he fought for his entire
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life. that includes comments of others notwithstanding, that includes a free and independent press. mr. president, i ask that the following remarks be placed in a different place in the record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. brown: americans are getting pretty tired of how much power special interests have in this town. that's why we have the consumer protection bureau to look out for those who don't have armies of lobbyists. it was supposed to be an independent watchdog, a place free from wall street influence that is pervasive -- around here pretty much here all the time. remember when powerful corporations congress overturn a bureau rule that guaranteed customers who were harmed by their bank but have their day in court. you might think that protecting americans' rights for their day
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in court is powerful, but the president had to come down to this chamber in the dead of night so he could break a tie on a vote to repeal. mr. president, we've seen in this town a collective amnesia about what happened a decade ago. people forget a decade ago that people lost billions of dollars in wealth, people lost billions of dollars in their businesses, people lost jobs, people lost their homes, over and over and over we've heard those stories about what happened a decade ago. we saw in our communities. i see it where my wife and i live in cleeve. yet the -- cleveland, yes the banking committee forgot what happened. they are going back to weakening the rules to help wall street as if wall street doesn't have enough. now, imagine if the same people who voted to repeal the rule, that we talked about a moment
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ago, were in charge of deciding whether the consumer bureau could start an investigation into one of the big banks or pay day lenders or credit bureaus like exwhich fax. that's what would happen if we put congress in charge of the consumer bureau budget. do we think the current crowd in charge wouldn't do wall street's bidding and punish the bureau? that's why it's independent. we don't want congress being able to cut its budget every time it goes after the bad guys. so if the consumer bureau decides it wants to go after a pay day lender that has preyed on veterans and service members outside of the air force base, if the consumer bureau decides it wants to clamp down on discrimination in auto lending, we don't want congress at the behest of auto dealers to cut their budget. that's clearly what they do.
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this year under mick mulvaney we have seen what having a consumer bureau that shaccountable to wall street rather than what regular americans looks like. mulvaney canceled enforcement actions against payday lenders. he encourages big banks to throw even more money at members of congress. he went in front of, i believe, the american bankers association and said if you want to get your way with congress, you have to give more money. this was the president's appointed head of the consumer bureau. perhaps most dispick my earlier this month, he announced he would no longer protect service members and their families from shady lenders that try to cheat them. just today, the head student lindy watchdog at the consumer bureau resigned.
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he said in a letter of resignation. it's become clear at this bureau that consumers no longer have a strong independent consumer bureau on their side. because of mulvaney, because of the white house looking like a retreat for wall street executives, this -- this leader in the consumer bureau who is fighting to protect students who have been defraud bidle financial institutions, he said it's clear that consumers no longer have a strong independent consumer bureau on their side. we created that eight years. i pushed to include that office, the student loan section, because i know they struggle with education loans but rarely get help from big banks. the office would be an independent check on the education department which is even more important now that it is run bay secretary -- a billionaire who doesn't seem to understand or care about struggles so many working families face.
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right now we have surpassed $ $1.5 -- that's $1,000 500 billion. that a has sipple effects for families and the entire economy. more than a million families are forced to default on their student loans. that is 2,000 defaults every day. a disproportionate number are students who borrowed for a for-profit school. those -- those schools that cause students to -- students take out large loans and schools that helps students get large loans than mentoring than it does in helping in the job search. that's why we need a true independent watchdog looking for those -- out for those students. that was the job of the outgoing
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schools ombudsman. but he says he can't do that because of director mulvaney. he confirmed what we suspected. that mulvaney is not independent. he's working for the same special interest as the rest of the administration. rather than let the career staff do their jobs, mulvaney put a bunch of political lackeys in charge of the bureau. when the cfpb had an independent director, it recovered $12 billion in leaf for 29 million americans. they had been harmed by wells fargo or a pay-day lender. think about that 29 million americans recovered $12 billion from these companies and these banks that cheated them. the student loan officer was -- office was able to return $750 million specifically to students who had been preyed upon by for-profit schools or predatory collectors.
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on mulvaney, the cfpb simply doesn't do its job. that's why it's important that the senate have someone in charge of the consumer protection bureau. we need someone fighting back against these corporations that take advantage of hard-working families, not taking orders from wall street. i note the absence -- i yield the floor. a senator: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from rhode island. mr. whitehouse: mr. president, i look across the senate and see our colleague, senator
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mccain's desk, silent, draped in black, under a vase of white roses, and it breaks my heart. i'm here to say my farewell, and i have a bit of predicament, which is that i am a very ordinary man here to try and give tribute to a very extraordinary man. john mccain was an extraordinary man. extraordinary in his suffering and resilience, extraordinary in his ideals and principles, extraordinary in his courage and devotion, and extraordinary too in the devotion he engendered.
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we met when i was a new senator and he already a legend, his battles for campaign finance reform and against corrupting earmarks were legendary. he could make a mark on the floor with drama, punch, and declarative force. he could also be unreasonable, and he took a completely unreasonable liking to me. our politics did not match. i could offer him nothing and yet he befriended me. and, as so many colleagues know, john's friendship was a
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treasure. john showed courage in many ways, but he showed real courage in friendship. when an attack was mounted on one of hillary clinton's staff he'sers, he came -- staffers, he came straight to the floor to defend her publicly. when someone attacked the character of president obama at a political event, he said, no, i know him. he's a good family man. loyalty attraction loyalty, and john was loyal. we traveled a lot together, to afghanistan and iraq, to munich and mallee and -- mauli, to many, many places, but most
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pointly to vietnam. my dad served in vietnam and he told me about somebody, admiral mccain, who's son was shot down and wounded terribly but refused early release. as a boy, i went with my father to the air base in saigon, the night the p.o.w.'s returned from cap activity. john had left straight from han hanoi, and did not pass through the air base, but i witnessed how frail and ill and pale and battered his fellow p.o.w.'s were as they clamored out of the helicopters and into the glare of the tv lights. well, i was ready to revere any
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man who had been through that, and to find that this man was so friendly and cheerful and feisty and irreverent, that put me irrevocably into the mccain fan club. i noticed i was not alone. one telling measure of a man is his staff. john attracted people of exceptional talent and ability who became so devoted they would walk through fire for him. john attracted the administrator add -- admiration of foreign leaders, not just from great powers, but from remote and struggling countries. when we traveled in libya, john
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was received like lafayette. he had been there when it counted, when freedom there was in the offing. he was beloved in ukraine. he had spoken there when freedom there was in the offing. and he spent an icy new year's eve with ukrainian troops on their front line. in vietnam, john was revered. i don't know any celebrities, but i do know what traveling with a select is like -- celebrity is like because i traveled with john mccain in vietnam. the statue that stands in hanoi
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by the lake where he was shot down calls him an air pirate, but he was treated everywhere as a hero. and you had to know he liked the air pirate thing. wherever we went in the world, he wanted to meet with prisoners, with the opposition, with whomever was pursuing freedom for their country. john mccain was america's most vigorous and loyal ambassador of freedom. he was fiercely proud that one place he was not welcomeled was russia. putin had banned him. no more holidays in siberia john laughed. well, mark my words.
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one day even russia will turn towards freedom, and when it does, john mccain will be revered there. john made a big difference in a great many ways, but the one i want to close with is the senate. senators are often stuffy. john was not. if there was ever a senator entitled to take himself seriously, it was john. yet he didn't. he effervesced the stol i.d. senate -- s it. ollid senate to the occasional a noahance of some of our colleagues. here, too, john engendered lifetime loyalty and affection and respect.
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lindsey and joe and kelly were his great amigos, none greater than lindsey. but many of us loved him well. millions of americans saw john mccain give the famous c-span thumbs down that put an end to repeal and replace. they probably did not see what happened next. having just cast what was a devastating vote for many of his colleagues, he went back to his seat, and from my seat here across the chamber, i saw john's colleagues gently start moving toward him.
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they may have hated his vote, but there was nevertheless this gentle flow of bodies moving to stand around and near him. his friend dan sullivan of alaska was one who came down from the back row just to stand near john in the aisle. hate the vote, love the man. this place can be complicated. john could be annoying. in munich, accepting an award for john, his beloved cindy said i love him most of the time. his temper could be explosive. i read once of a man nicknamed for a south american volcano because he constantly fumed and regularly erupted. and i thought of john.
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he loved a good fight and was eager to pile in. a fight not joined is a fight not enjoyed, he would say. an extraordinary man is not a flawless man, and in his full humanity, john gave the rest of us more tallies hope. you need not be perfect to try and be extraordinary. well, he was extraordinary. i think we all found in him qualities of affection, principle, courage, and drama that were extraordinary. and at the end of the day, as compass needles turn toward true north, you knew where he would be pointing.
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i will quote some of his last public words here. although the true radiance of our world may at times seem obscured, although we will suffer adversity and setbacks and misfortune, never, ever stop fighting for all that is good and just and decent about our world and each other. i will never forget and will always treasure our friendship, but what i will revere is the way john mccain pointed true north at what was good and just
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and decent about our world and each other. his hero, robert jordan, in "for whom the bell tolls," said as he died the world is a fine place and worth the fighting for. and i hate very much to leave it. we hate very much, john, that you have had to leave it. god bless you. i yield the floor.
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i notice the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senate majority leader. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent that further procedures under the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous
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consent that notwithstanding rule 22, the postcloture time on the johnson nomination expire at 10:who a.m. on tuesday, august 28. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i have one request for a committee to meet during today's session of the senate. it has the approval of the majority and minority leaders. the presiding officer: duly noted. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to alegislative session for a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak therein for up to 10 minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to the consideration of s. res. 619 submitted earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution of 19 -- 619, relative to the death of the honorable john sidney mccain iii, a senator from the state of arizona. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate proceeds to the measure. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous
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consent that the senate proceed to the measure, the preamble be agreed to preamble. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent that the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of s. con. res. 43. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate concurrent resolution 43, providing for the use of the catafox situation in the exhibition hall of the capitol hill visitor center for memorial services to be conducted for the honorable john sidney mccain iii. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate proceeds to the measure. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent that the concurrent resolution be agreed to, and the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table, with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to the immediate consideration of s. con. res. 44. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 44, authorizing the use of the
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rotunda of the capitol for the lying in state of the remains of the late-honorable john sidney mccain iii. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate will proceed to the measure. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the concurrent resolution be agreed to, the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table, with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today, it adjourn until 10:00 a.m. tuesday, august 28. further, that following the prayer and pledge, the morning hour be deemed expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date, the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day, and morning business be closed. and that following leader remarks, the senate proceed to executive session to resume consideration of the johnson nomination under the previous order.
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i ask that the senate recess from 12:30 to 2:15 to allow for the weekly conference meetings. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: if there is no further business to come before the senate, i ask it stand adjourned under the previous order under the provisions of s. res. 619. the presiding officer: under the previous order and pursuant to s. res. 619, the senate stands adjourned until 10:00 a.m. on tuesday, august 28, 2018, and does so as a further mark of respect to the honorable john sidney mccain, late, the senator from the state

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