[Congressional Record Volume 157, Number 85 (Tuesday, June 14, 2011)]
[House]
[Pages H4108-H4183]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]




   AGRICULTURE, RURAL DEVELOPMENT, FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, AND 
               RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2012

  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Chaffetz). Pursuant to House Resolution 
300 and rule XVIII, the Chair declares the House in the Committee of 
the Whole House on the State of the Union for the consideration of the 
bill, H.R. 2112.

                              {time}  1435


                     In the Committee of the Whole

  Accordingly, the House resolved itself into the Committee of the 
Whole House on the State of the Union for the consideration of the bill 
(H.R. 2112) making appropriations for Agriculture, Rural Development, 
Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies programs for the 
fiscal year ending September 30, 2012, and for other purposes, with 
Mrs. Miller of Michigan in the chair.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The CHAIR. Pursuant to the rule, the bill is considered read the 
first time.
  The gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Kingston) and the gentleman from 
California (Mr. Farr) each will control 30 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I yield myself 5 minutes.
  I recommend to the Committee H.R. 2112, the House Agriculture, FDA, 
and CFTC funding bill for fiscal year 2012, and I want to make a few 
remarks about it.
  Number one and foremost, because a lot of people are very concerned 
about the allocation for this bill and the funding level, I want to 
remind everybody of a couple of things: Number one, our national debt 
is now 95 percent of the GDP. It's $14 trillion. For every dollar we 
spend, 40 cents is borrowed.
  Now, both parties have fingerprints all over this. We have all 
overspent. For example, for 8 years under President Bush the national 
debt increased $3\1/2\ trillion. Way too much. And yet, in contrast, in 
just 3 years President Obama has added to the national debt $5 
trillion, an increase of 56 percent. And so much of this is due and 
owed to foreign countries, and much of it to China. Can you imagine 
what kind of deal Communist China, a major competitor of ours, would 
impose upon us if they forced us to restructure our debt? We have to do 
it ourselves.
  Now, the House has passed the Ryan budget, which many people oppose, 
and I understand that. But I want to point out the President of the 
United States' budget failed in the Senate 97-0. Harry Reid voted 
against the President's budget. And in the House, the Congressional 
Black Caucus offered a budget that failed. The Congressional 
Progressive Caucus offered a budget and it failed. The Republican Study 
Committee offered a budget and it failed. The Democrat Caucus offered a 
budget and it failed. In the Senate, budget plans were offered by Mr. 
Toomey of Pennsylvania and Mr. Paul of Kentucky; both failed. The only 
budget that has passed either body is the Ryan budget, and that's what 
we are looking at today, those numbers.
  Now, I understand there's a lot of reluctance to make some of these 
tough decisions. Today in America 61 million people receive monthly 
government checks. That's anything from welfare to Medicare to farm 
payments to veteran retirement to Social Security--lots of people 
receiving lots of money. These programs are enormously popular, and 
they're deeply integrated into our economic system and culture. 
Therefore, reforming these programs is very, very difficult. And to 
further complicate things, 47 percent of American households do not pay 
income taxes. For them the status quo is working just fine.
  So addressing these things is very difficult. And if you look at the 
spending pattern in the last several years, it's frightening: March, 
2008, $29 billion to bail out Bear Stearns; May of 2008, a $168 billion 
stimulus package from the Bush administration; in July of 2008, $200 
billion to bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac; then in November of 
2008, $700 billion for TARP, or the Wall Street bailout; and then in 
January of 2009, $878 billion for the Obama stimulus program, which, by 
the way, Madam Chair, was to keep us from getting to 8 percent 
unemployment.

                              {time}  1440

  Now, we're hovering between 9 and 10 percent, and I don't need to 
remind you but this is the 1-year anniversary of the ``summer of 
recovery.'' There has not been any recovery. We're still looking for 
those jobs. Spending our way into prosperity does not work. If it did 
work, we would be having prosperous times right now.
  So the Ryan budget for this bill is $17.25 billion, our reduction of 
$2.7 billion, approximately a 13\1/2\ percent decrease in spending, and 
yet, despite this, because of the mandatory spending portion of this 
bill, the bill actually has a net increase, mostly driven by food 
stamps and the school lunch program, which have gone up about $7 
billion between the two of them. We still have a net increase in this 
bill.
  Now, there's going to be a lot of discussion on lots of different 
accounts, and one of them is the WIC account, the Women, Infants, and 
Children account, something that I'm very concerned about, something 
that all of our committee has always supported on a bipartisan basis. 
But last year, there was some money taken out of it, $562

[[Page H4109]]

million, to settle a lawsuit which had nothing to do with school 
nutrition. A lot of the critics are going to be saying WIC has never 
been cut. Last year, the Obama administration cut WIC $562 million.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I yield myself 2 additional minutes.
  USDA numbers show that WIC participation has dropped 300,000 from 
February 2010 to February 2011, yet we are still funding it at 8.7 
million people. We do not intend for anybody to fall through the 
cracks. If there is a shortage, there are three discretionary accounts 
that we can draw upon: a contingency fund of $125 million; a carryover 
fund, which is in excess of $350 million; and the Secretary's 
interchange authority, which is $210 million.
  There are a lot of things in WIC we can do to improve to make sure 
that children don't fall through the cracks. Right now, for example, 49 
percent of the kids in America participate in WIC. Do we really believe 
49 percent are impoverished? Perhaps it's oversubscribed. Maybe we can 
work with the WIC folks on that.
  We had a very healthy debate about WIC overhead, and the USDA has 
given us conflicting numbers on that. We're planning to meet with the 
USDA and find out what the real story is. I understand there may be 
amendments to say let's all agree what an overhead limit should be for 
WIC and then not spend money on overhead for that.
  We are concerned about these things, but I want to close with this. 
Today, in America, a child under 5 years old is eligible for 12 Federal 
programs. After that age, he or she is eligible for 9 Federal feeding 
programs. At 65, you're eligible for 5 different Federal feeding 
programs. We want to make sure no one falls through the cracks and no 
one goes hungry, yet at the same time, is it possible that some folks 
are eligible for not just three meals a day but maybe four and five?
  And can we enter into that discussion without a lot of finger-
pointing and a lot of emotion? Can we also talk about the fraud and the 
misuse and the administrative costs without a lot of screaming and 
hollering? I think we can. I look forward to that debate, and I 
recommend passage of this bill.
  I. 14 percent down.
  Reflects the House Rep/Ryan budget which reflects our attempt to deal 
with the national debt.
  A. I don't need to lecture anyone on the national debt but I need to 
remind all of us on a few facts:
  1. At $14T the national debt is 95 percent GDP.
  2. For every dollar we spend $.40 is borrowed.
  3. While both parties have been responsible for this the spending by 
this administration has been tremendous. For example, the national debt 
under President Bush increased $3.5 trillion in 8 years. Way too much! 
In contrast, however President Obama has increased it by $5T in 3 
years. That's 56 percent.
  4. Much of this almost half is due to foreign countries, China being 
a high leader.
  If we don't address our debtor crisis eventually our creditors will. 
With a communist country as a major competitor can you imagine what 
China could impose on us? It's nothing I want my children and future 
generations to deal with. We have to do it ourselves.
  B. Let me continue with the Ryan budget we hear non stop changes from 
its critics that it's too harsh but where is their alternative?
  1. The Potus has been all but absent. In fact his own budget was 
rejected by the Harry Reid Democrat led Senate 97-0.
  2. Other proposals have been furled as well:
  a. In the House:
  Congressional Black Caucus.
  H. Amdt. 256 to H. Con. Res. 34.
  Failed by recorded vote: 103-303.
  Congressional Progressive Caucus.
  H. Amdt. 257 to H. Con. Res. 34.
  Failed by recorded vote: 77-347.
  Republican Study Committee.
  H. Amdt. 258 to H. Con. Res. 34.
  Failed by recorded vote: 119-136.
  Democratic Caucus:
  H. Amdt. 259 to H. Con. Res. 34.
  Failed by recorded vote: 166-259.
  b. In the Senate:
  Toomey's plan to balance the budget in 9 years:
  Failed 42-55.
  Rand Paul's plan:
  Failed 7-90.
  3. Having failed to pass a budget in either the House or Senate, it 
seems the POTUS and Harry Reid have given up. That's correct there no 
ongoing negotiations, conferences or hearings. They have totally 
abandoned their duty and obligations.
  C. One can understand cowardice when we look at political realties.
  1. Today in America 61 million people receive monthly government 
checks. That's anything from welfare to Medicare, to farm payments, 
veteran retirement and social security. Lots of people receive lots of 
money.
  2. These programs are enormously popular and deeply integrated into 
our economic system and culture. Reforming these programs is at best 
politically difficult even if both parties dealt in good faith and 
earnestness.
  3. To further complicate the situation 47 percent of American 
households did not pay income taxes. For them the status quo is just 
fine.
  i. According to the tax policy center.
  D. Continuing our spending path has not created prosperity. Think 
about the big ticket items in the last few years. March '08 $29 billion 
to bailour Bear Sterns, May '08 $168 billion for the Bush Stimulus 
Package, July '08 $200 billion for the Fannie May/Freddie Mac bailout, 
Nov '08 $700 Billion TARP/Wall Street Bailout. Jan. '09 $878 billion 
for the Obama Stimulus bill which by the way was to keep unemployment 
below 8 percent but it has bounced between 9-10 percent ever since.

  Real growth comes from less government, less job killing regulations, 
a tax structure that is simpler, clean and fair.
  E. One last word on the Ryan budget. Despite the spending reduction 
in discretionary accounts be of entitlements, food stamps and school 
lunch there is a net increase in spending! That's right at $17.25 
billion, a reduction of $2.7 billion below FY2011 or 14 percent 
discretionary, the mandatory spending has still increased from $105 
billion to $108.3 billion, resulting in an overall increase of 283 
million! Food stamps have increased $5.6 and school lunch $1.5. Thus 
one more time underscoring the need for long term entitlement reform.
  II. Our bill attempts to move us in this direction. Mr. Farr and I 
have had 11 hearings. These were long with several rounds of questions. 
We don't agree on all issues but we found much common ground and where 
we disagree no one was shut out of the process.
  III. I will now go through some specific accounts.
  A. Research is funded at $2.2 billion. Almost half goes to 
Agriculture Research Service at $993 million. This allows ARS to focus 
on high priority items such as food defense and food safety.
  1. It also includes vital pest and disease research such problems 
with the:
  Brown Marmorated Stink Bug.
  Commerants.
  Cotton Pests.
  Sudden Oak Death.
  Equine Disease.
  2. Finally, I would like to point out that the bill assumes ARS will 
close 10 facilities, as proposed in the budget, and provides USDA with 
the authority to transfer those facilities to a land-grant or other 
agricultural college or university that agrees to continue agricultural 
related research at the facility for a minimum of 25 years.
  One billion dollars on this account goes to the National Institute of 
Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and gives level funding for land-grant 
university research.
  B. Farm Programs are funded at $1.7 billion discretionary and $18.3 
in mandatory or traditional as Ag programs specified in the five year 
authorized farm bill.
  1. These programs are the target of much of the criticism and at 
least one awkward int'l into agreement w/ the Brazilian government over 
cotton. Mr. Fluke offered an amendment to affect this and committee act 
was passed; however if it is out of order and will be struck. 
Nonetheless our AS committees are planning to address it.
  2. Also in this section of the Bill is Farm Service Agency funding at 
a level of $1.46. Modernization of FSA technology systems remains a 
committee priority.
  The MIDAS, Modernize and Innovate the Delivery of Agricultural 
Systems, request was $96 million on top of $49.5 million from last year 
but USDA had reprogrammed $23 million for salaries. The heart of the 
MIDAS initiative is to improve the delivery of FSA farm program 
benefits and services through the re-engineering of farm programs 
business processes and the adoption of enhanced and modernized 
information technology.
  3. Many members requested funding for the FSA Grassroots Source Water 
Protection program and the bill includes $3.6 million for this program.
  Agricultural Credit loan levels are at $4.7 billion which is $95.8 
million below the fiscal year 2011 level and the same as the fiscal 
year 2012 request.
  C. The majority of the $910 million in funds for the Marketing and 
Regulatory Programs is slated in the Animal and Plant Health Inspection 
Service-Salaries and Expense account at $790 million, which is $73.3 
million below the

[[Page H4110]]

fiscal year 2011 level. These funds will allow the agency to continue 
to control and eradicate plant and animal pests and diseases. The bill 
includes language that allows APHIS to access emergency funding to 
address pest and disease outbreaks.
  In addition to other related programs at USDA's Animal and Plant 
Health Inspection Serves, this Bill provides $147 million for Specialty 
Crop Pests to control or eradicate invasive pests and diseases, 
especially for those pests and disease in California, and the west. 
Although this funding level is below the President's Request, this 
Program is funded at $4.4 million above the level spent in the fiscal 
year 2010. Within the program, we have also supported language from 
members regarding Sudden Oak Death.
  D. Conservation Programs are funded at $787 million of which $770 
million is for NRCS's Conservation Operations, which is $99 million 
below the fiscal year 2011 level. This allows NRCS to maintain its core 
conservation mission and will drive efficiencies to create more farmer-
friendly programs.
  The Watershed Rehabilitation Program is funded at $15 million, which 
is $3 million below the fiscal year 2011 level.
  In addition to discretionary appropriations, USDA will provide $5.8 
billion to farmers and ranchers through its mandatory conservation 
programs in fiscal year 2012.
  (In the farm bill, the Agriculture Committee will review these 
especially the Conservation Reserve Program which pays farmers not to 
plant.)
  E. More than $2 billion is provided in the bill for Rural Development 
Programs including section 502 low income housing loan level of $24.845 
billion. The President's budget proposed a loan level for direct loans 
for $211 million and the bill provides for $845 million for this 
program that serves very low-income rural Americans.
  Rural Water and Waste--$730 million is provided for loans, which is 
$242 million below the fiscal year 2011 level. $430 million is provided 
for grants, which is $28 million below the fiscal year 2011 level. We 
received many requests from Members for funding for the Circuit Rider 
program, and the bill provides $14 million for this purpose.
  Electric and Telecommunications Program level is at $7.3 billion in 
the bill, which is on par with historical levels. The bill denies the 
budget request to limit the use of electric loans to renewable energy 
and retrofitting, and requests a report on baseload generation needs.
  F. Food Safety and Inspection--$973 million--a funding level that 
will allow FSIS to maintain meat, poultry, and egg products inspection, 
as well as to expand poultry inspection system that results in a safe 
and more efficient poultry inspection regime that will result in a 
safer food supply.
  III. Our committee had 2 good debates on the funding of Women, 
Infants, and Children (WIC) Nutrition programs.
  Our mark attempts to address the aggressive marketing growth of WIC 
w/a funding level of $5.9 billion. Or 1.2 below FY 2011, which was 
7,128,424,000.
  A. We will hear from many that this hurts the nations most vulnerable 
but lets look at some fact.
  1. Many critics act like WIC has never been cut but last year in 
order to pay for a completely unreduced program--a legal settlement on 
a farm loan dispute call Pigford the Democrats cut WIC by $562 m.
  2. The latest data from the USDA shows a drop of 300,000 participants 
between fiscal year 2010 and fiscal year 2011. However; our level still 
funds at the higher number of 8.7 m people which is the projection for 
FY 2012.
  Now if that changes and there is in unexpected jump in participation 
then we have 3 reserve accounts in which we can draw.
  Contingency fund: $125 million.
  Carryover Funds: $350 million+.
  Secretary's Interchange Authority: $210 million.
  3. So the issue is act one of kids at risk but one of politics.
  a. A couple of notes: 49 percent of children in America participate 
in WIC. Clearly a number that suggests it goes well beyond the poorest 
of our society.
  b. WIC is notorious for a high over head.
  As noted at the Full Committee hearing, administrative--as defined by 
all overhead and program delivery costs--equals 45 cents per benefits 
dollar spent in FY 2010.
  8.9 million participants for March. From the beginning of FY2009 to 
March 2011 (most up-to-date data), average monthly participation has 
dropped by 440,000.
  c. WIC has had its share of fraud, yet WIC officials seem dedicated 
to only keeping their funding stream rather than addressing these 
issues.
  4. Finally going beyond the politics let's put some force on it. Take 
a 3 year old child named Bob. Today Bob is eligible for 12 federal 
programs:
  Bob's Food Assistant Programs:
  At age 3, Bob is eligible for 12 programs:
  1. Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).
  2. Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP).
  3. Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program (FFVP).
  4. School Lunch Program (SBP).
  5. National School Lunch Program (NSLP).
  6. Special Milk Program (SMP) [Can receive if not on any other 
program].
  7. Summer Food Service Program (SFSP).
  8. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  9. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
  10. The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP).
  11. Women, Infant & Children (WIC).
  12. WIC's Farmers Market Nutritional Program (FMNP).
  At age 10, Bob is eligible for 9 programs:
  1. Child and Adult Care Food Program (CAFP).
  2. Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program (FFVP).
  3. School Lunch Program (SBP).
  4. National School Lunch Program (NSLP).
  5. Special Milk Program (SMP).
  6. Summer Food Service Program (SFSP).
  7. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  8. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
  9. The Emergency Food Assitance Program (TEFAP).
  At age 35, Bob is eligible for 7 programs:
  1. Child and Adult Care Food Programs.
  2. Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP).
  3. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  4. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
  5. The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP).
  6. Women, Infant & Children (WIC).
  7. WIC's Farmers Market Nutritional Program (FMNP).
  At age 65, Bob is eligible for 6 programs:
  1. Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).
  2. Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP).
  3. Sr. Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP).
  4. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  5. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
  6. The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP).
  At all ages, Bob can receive:
  1. Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservation (FDPIR) if living 
on Indian Reservation & Not receiving SNAP.
  2. Disaster Assistance Program (D-SNAP) if family experiences natural 
disaster.
  3. Nutrition Assistance Block Grant (NABG) if family lives in U.S. 
Territory.
  This doesn't sound like a nation that turning its back on the poor. 
Indeed the First Lady has made a campaign against over eating not 
hunger, and I will challenge our critics to take the discussion records 
from our learning. Google the world's hunger and obesity and see which 
one we talked about the most.
  B. As I stated earlier overall this bill is a net increase and that 
increase comes from these safety net food programs. Child nutrition 
programs are funded at $18.8 billion which is $1.56 above last year. 
This provides 68.8 percent of all school lunches and 85.5 percent of 
all school breakfasts at a free or reduced price.
  1. As respects to SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance 
program, or food stamps there is a $5.66 increase approx 45 million 
people participate in this program.
  2. Again, the administrators tend to ignore these problems. 
Overpayments of $141 receipt in Michigan for steak, lobster, and sodas 
were reported. The man was later arrested for selling goods.
  3. Michigan man won 2 million in lottery and still uses food stamps 
WIC--ex-WIC worker in Atlanta stated that no ID, no address and no 
income information was needed to apply for WIC. There was also an 
undercover film about the WIC clinic.
  C. We have hope to allow some flexibility between emergency and 
developmental accounts in order for groups like the World Food Program 
to meet unexpected challenges around the globe. I have met with Josette 
Sheeran and our food ambassador to the UN Ertharin Cousins, and commend 
their position and their commitment. Food air combines our humanitarian 
values and national security so our committee supports it. However; 
keep in mind we are borrowing from our own future generations to 
finance this, so we must be good stewards.
  Worldwide the U.S. provides 57% of food aid followed by EU 27 
percent, and Japan 6 percent.
  Food Aid and National Security/`International Harmony'
  We have heard several comments today about why we absolutely cannot 
reduce our

[[Page H4111]]

food aid programs this year. In spite of the fact that we are out of 
money, we have driven ourselves to a crippling level of debt and--from 
a more immediate perspective--we don't have the allocation for this 
bill to provide more to any program, we are told it is impossible to 
cut international food aid, even as we cut almost every other single 
line item in this budget out of necessity.
  Among other arguments, we hear it is a national security imperative. 
There are legitimate national security aspects to this issue. Food aid 
does provide a market to drive our domestic food production, which in 
turn helps ensure a perpetual safe and abundant domestic food supply as 
we provide surplus overseas.
  It also supports our merchant marine fleet, which provides an 
important cargo capacity for the armed forces in the event of a major 
deployment. This surge capacity might not be available, at least at a 
similar cost, without the support of the food aid programs.
  However, I don't think the argument that this assistance builds 
international goodwill to the U.S.--an enduring friendship that is 
reciprocated when we need it--pans out. For example, I have here the 
voting practices in the United Nations for 2010 as compiled by the U.S. 
Department of State. This list includes the nations by region who have 
received assistance through any of our international food aid programs 
along with the percentage they supported the U.S. position on votes the 
State Department deemed most important. Unfortunately, we see numbers 
like 16 percent, 0 percent, 30 percent, 36 percent, 27.3 percent, right 
down the line.
  It would be nice to see some of the oil rich countries to step 
forward and help out.
  IV. FDA.
  The Food and Drug Administration is funded at $2.2 billion which is 
$284 million below the fiscal year 2011 level of $2.457 billion. While 
the overall discretionary allocation to the subcommittee was a 
reduction of 13.4 percent, the overall FDA reduction is 11.5 percent.
  Total funding for FDA, including user fees, is $3.684 billion versus 
$3.681 that was provided in fiscal year 1022. We passed in fall 
committee an amendment that urged FDA to use sound science in making 
decisions.
  V. CFTC. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission is funded at $171 
million, which is $32 million below the fiscal year 2011 funding level. 
A number of concerns have been raised by the Inspector General at the 
Commission that proposed rules are not undergoing a thorough cost-
benefit analysis.
  VI. This bill takes spending to below pre-stimulus, pre-bailout 
levels while ensuring USDA, FDA, CFTC, and other agencies are provided 
the necessary resources to fulfill their duties. Our members have 
worked to root out waste and duplication and, where they have strayed 
from their core mission, we rein in agencies so they may better focus 
on responsibilities for which they are intended. In doing so, we 
balance the urgent need for fiscal restraint with the necessity to 
provide and abundant food supply, robust trade, prudent conservation 
measures, and strong rural communities.
  VII. Madam Chair, this legislation would not be passable without the 
great working relation I enjoy with our ranking member Mr. Farr. Again, 
we don't always agree but we do try to communicate and put together a 
sound product. I also thank all the staffers who have averaged about 
50-60 hours a week since Dec. to make this happen. Matt Smith and 
Martha Foley with the Minority, and Rochelle Dornatt and Troy Phillips 
with Ranking Member Farr's office, our majority staff clerk of many 
years Martin Delgado and his team Tom O'Brien, Betsy Bina, and Andrew 
Cooper. From my personal office, Allie Thigpen, Michael Donnal, Adam 
Sullivan, Chris Crawford, Caroline Black, and Mary Carpenter. You might 
not see them on the House floor, but their fingerprints are all over 
the bill.

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  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I yield myself as much time as I may consume.
  I rise today as the ranking member on the Agriculture appropriations 
subcommittee to draw concern to this bill. I know that we're in tough 
budget times, but even in tough budget times, people have to eat. It's 
my opinion that this bill makes it very hard for people to eat, 
particularly people who don't have any money.
  The allocation for the FY 2012 Agriculture appropriations bill, as 
approved in the full committee, is $17.250 billion. This is $5 billion, 
or 23 percent, below what President Obama asked for. It's 14 percent 
below what Congress enacted last year. It's 26 percent below what the 
Congress enacted the year before. It's even below what we enacted in 
2008. So it has taken the wind out of the hopes and food lockers of 
people who are most poor.
  With the allocation that Chairman Kingston was given, I don't envy 
his position. He was forced to make these drastic cuts that will affect 
every heart of farm country, and I do appreciate the effort that he has 
made to invest our very limited resources wisely and cost effectively. 
In tough budget times, everyone has to tighten their belts; we all know 
that. I want to point out, though, that it doesn't matter if you're a 
specialty crop producer in California or a cotton or peanut producer in 
Georgia; if the resources are not available to deliver the program, 
then the effects felt by both producers and consumers in urban and 
rural areas are the same.
  I know my friend Mr. Kingston did the best he could but agriculture 
is about feeding people. This isn't just about looking at the cost of 
everything. It's also examining the value. It's about making sure that 
America has the production capabilities and enough food to go around 
domestically and internationally. The bill almost makes that difficult, 
if not impossible, especially where nursing mothers and infant babies 
are concerned, because the WIC program gets whacked.
  The bill also calls into question the United States' commitment to 
our international neighbors who have hungry and malnourished people 
that depend on our assistance to stave off mass starvation because the 
Food for Peace program is chopped.
  I think there comes a point in budget exercise when you starve the 
program so much that it just can't function. I fear that this is where 
this bill is going, with several of the funding levels in this bill, 
such as implementing the Food Safety Modernization Act and the Dodd-
Frank and Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
  The United States is the greatest agriculture producer in the world. 
We produce more and we produce it more efficiently than any other 
country, but this bill will undermine the very resources that support 
our agricultural supremacy. I feel it is important to use this bill to 
strengthen our rural economy by investing our precious Federal 
resources, investing in expanding markets for agricultural products and 
supporting international economic development; by investing in 
developing alternative markets for agriculture products; by providing 
financing needed to help expand job opportunities and improve housing, 
utilities, and infrastructure in rural America, which the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture is responsible for; and most specifically, 
enhancing food safety and improving nutrition and health by providing 
food assistance and nutrition education and promotion. These are the 
things that America does best.
  Madam Chairman, as we move through this bill, through the process 
again, I want to make sure that you understand that there are dire 
consequences to adopting this bill.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield 4 minutes to the distinguished chairman of the 
committee, the gentleman from Kentucky (Mr. Rogers).
  Mr. ROGERS of Kentucky. I thank the chairman for yielding the time 
and congratulate him and Mr. Farr on producing, I think, a good bill.
  The bill answers the call from Americans to reduce government 
spending while still providing for critical programs that keep American 
agriculture competitive in a global economy. The $125.5 billion in both 
discretionary and mandatory funding in this bill will help our rural 
communities to thrive, provide daily nutrition to children and 
families, and keep our food and drug supply safe.
  However, we can't spend at the rate we used to. We've hit the debt 
ceiling. We're borrowing more than 42 cents on every dollar we spend. 
We're mortgaging our children's futures. We have to rein in spending, 
even if it may not be the most popular thing to do.
  Accordingly, Chairman Kingston and his subcommittee did not provide 
the agencies and programs funded by this bill with carte blanche. This 
bill trims lower priority services, eliminates duplicative and wasteful 
programs, and limits funding and increases oversight for agencies that 
have been less than transparent with taxpayer money. All in all, this 
bill cuts nearly $5 billion in discretionary spending from the 
President's request.

                              {time}  1450

  With this legislation, we are helping to put the Department of 
Agriculture, the FDA, and the other agencies funded by this bill back 
on a sustainable budget path that is accountable to the taxpayers of 
this country. In addition, more than taking the first steps to help 
balance our budgets, we're taking the necessary steps to increase 
transparency.
  Not only does this legislation encourage, but it requires, each and 
every agency to submit spending plans for every program funded by this 
bill. This commonsense oversight will go a long way in demonstrating to 
the American public our commitment to fiscal responsibility.
  I am confident not only that Chairman Kingston and his subcommittee 
have made the smart, but necessary, cuts in this bill to help balance 
our budgets but also that this bill adequately funds important 
government programs, including ag research, rural health and economic 
development, and safety net food and nutrition services.
  I want to commend the chairman, the ranking member, the subcommittee 
members, and the staff all for their dedicated and thoughtful work on 
this bill, and I urge support in its final passage.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman from 
Washington (Mr. Dicks), the distinguished ranking member of the full 
committee and an outstanding player in the Rose Bowl from the 
University of Washington.
  Mr. DICKS. I appreciate the gentleman from California yielding.
  With an allocation that cuts $2.9 billion below the current level and 
$5 billion below the amount requested by the Obama administration for 
the next fiscal year, the subcommittee has drafted an Agriculture 
appropriations bill that drastically reduces funding for food programs 
that serve women, children, and the elderly, and for the Food and Drug 
Administration, among other drastic cuts.
  The economy is still struggling, Madam Chairman. Unemployment is 
still far too high, and people around the country are still hurting. 
American families need help just to make ends meet. The bill slashes 
funding for WIC, the Women, Infants, and Children Supplemental 
Nutrition Assistance Program, and the Commodity Supplemental Food 
Program, leaving more people to fend for themselves during the worst 
recession since the Great Depression.
  While I am pleased that we were able to provide a slight increase for 
the WIC program in full committee markup with the acceptance of the 
DeLauro amendment, this bill still drastically underfunds this critical 
program. This bill reduces funding from $6.73 billion this year, 2011, 
to $6.5 billion, a cut of more than $650 million below current levels. 
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities estimates that the drastic 
reduction would require us to turn away anywhere from 200,000 to 
350,000 eligible low-income women and young children next year. That's 
a tragedy. Unemployment is still hovering around 9 percent, and the 
economic recovery has faltered since the new Republican majority took 
the reins with their illogical ``cut and grow'' strategy. Again, this 
is no time to be pulling the rug out from underneath the people who can 
least afford it, Madam Chairman.
  The cut to the budget of the Food and Drug Administration represents

[[Page H4123]]

another perfect example of the Republican majority's commitment to 
shortsighted budgeting. In the aftermath of several nationwide recalls, 
Democrats in Congress passed a food safety bill that added new and 
important capability to the FDA, but this bill actually moves us 
backward in protecting our food supply and medical products. It is 12 
percent below the current level and 21 percent below the amount 
requested by the administration. These cuts will increase the risk of 
recurring outbreaks of food-borne illness. The FDA would inspect fewer 
firms that manufacture food and conduct fewer inspections of imported 
food.
  This bill also takes a shortsighted approach with respect to our 
international food aid programs, cutting Food for Peace by $457 million 
below current levels and the McGovern-Dole Food for Education Program 
by $19 million, 10 percent below 2011. By slashing funding for these 
critical overseas programs, we risk exacerbating food insecurity and 
strife in some of the most vulnerable parts of the world and are 
essentially undermining our own national security interests.
  Beyond food programs, there are numerous other programs that take 
egregious cuts. Notably among those is the Commodity Futures Trading 
Commission. The CFTC takes a cut of $30 million below current levels 
and is funded at $136 million below the President's request.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. FARR. I yield the gentleman 30 seconds.
  Mr. DICKS. The requested increase for FY 2012 is needed in order to 
implement the measures put forward in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform 
bill and provide oversight and regulation of the options and futures 
markets that wrought such havoc on our economy just a few years ago.
  One can't help but notice the efforts in this bill to drastically cut 
food assistance to the poor while actively undermining any efforts of 
oversight and regulation of the wealthy on Wall Street. So I urge all 
Democrats to vote ``no'' on this bill.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman from 
Nebraska (Mr. Fortenberry).
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. I thank the gentleman from Georgia for the time.
  Madam Chair, farmers are good Americans. They understand our tight 
budgetary times and the need to tighten the belt, and they are willing 
to do their part. But before we vote on this bill, which does some very 
heavy lifting in this regard, let's consider the profound benefits 
American agriculture brings to people across the country. It's about 
food security. Today Americans pay only 10 to 12 percent of their 
income on food, compared to those in other nations who pay up to 50 
percent or more. Ag policy now is also about economic security, energy 
security, and even national security and global stability.
  Agriculture, Madam Chair, is one of the few bright spots in the 
American economy. Agriculture is consistently one of the few trade 
areas where the U.S. still holds a positive trade balance. And exports 
are growing as the world demands more and more American-grown food. 
Last year, ag exports neared $108 billion, and projections indicate an 
even stronger total this year.
  Agriculture is also helping strengthen our energy independence. From 
rural wind and solar farms to biofuels and biogas production from 
livestock waste, we are beginning to see the vast potential of 
renewable sources found on America's farms and ranches.
  Not only does food security bolster our own national security, but it 
also aids in global stability. Our farmers help feed the world and keep 
the peace in understated but very important ways. In my home State of 
Nebraska, for instance, our farmers are rebuilding war-torn fields in 
Afghanistan, countering the illicit poppy trade and helping to create a 
new sustainable and lawful agricultural production. I just came from a 
ceremony where we sent off 57 members of the agricultural unit of the 
Nebraska Air and Army National Guard, who will be using their farming 
skills to help the Afghan people with new irrigation techniques and new 
models for wheat and grassland production.
  Our farmers participating in global agricultural training projects 
achieve key humanitarian goals as well. We have made significant gains 
in empowering women producers, which gives rise to greater equality and 
social mobilization and engagement in their local communities. For 
instance, they are helping to rebuild Haiti's decimated agricultural 
sector in the aftermath of the terrible earthquake. And through various 
U.S. agricultural food aid programs, they are combating global hunger.
  Again, Madam Chairman, American farmers are ready to do their part 
and help fix our Nation's fiscal mess. But in cleaning up this mess, 
it's very important not to forget about the hard work our farm families 
put in day in and day out to help feed and fuel and protect all of 
America.
  Mr. FARR. How much time do we have remaining?
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from California has 22\1/2\ minutes 
remaining, and the gentleman from Georgia has 19 minutes remaining.
  Mr. FARR. I yield 3 minutes to the distinguished Member from Ohio, 
Marcy Kaptur, the former ranking member of this committee.
  Ms. KAPTUR. I want to thank the ranking member from California (Mr. 
Farr) for his hard work and Mr. Kingston, the chairman from Georgia, 
for bringing this bill before us today. And I am really sorry I can't 
support it. At a time of such instability in the American economy, this 
committee bill simply further destabilizes one of the most productive 
sectors of the American economy, agriculture, further, it hurts all 
Americans who depend on the Department of Agriculture for nutritional 
support during these hard times that we are experiencing.
  This legislation has some of the most destructive sections in it that 
eliminate, for all practical purposes, the Rural Energy for America 
Program, that was supposed to take America into a new energy future. It 
takes the cops off the beat at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission 
to hold Wall Street accountable and clamp down on speculation. We all 
know that hasn't been happening.

                              {time}  1500

  The drastic decrease in the nutrition and commodity supplemental food 
programs hurt people across this country and with decreases in the WIC 
program, children will be harmed. They can't speak for themselves here. 
As well, there is a dangerous directive included in the bill that would 
further erode the minimal competition in the meat industry in which 
real competition hardly exists at all. We must defend our farmers and 
ranchers to be treated on an equal par with the big packers and 
processors through the grain inspection, packer, and stockyards agency. 
Later in the consideration of the bill, I'll be dealing with that in a 
different way.
  But let me just say a word about the Commodity Futures Trading 
Commission. The level of funding provided in this bill is inadequate. 
We all know it's inadequate because of the mess we face in the 
derivatives market today. The small agency called the Commodity Futures 
Trading Commission provides a critical bulwark against the gouging of 
the American people in the type of manipulation, speculation, and 
outright fraud that led our country into the worst economic recession 
since the Great Depression.
  With gas prices now rising above $4 a gallon and food prices just 
skyrocketing, who's really the watchdog in charge of implementing 
market reforms to protect the consumer by regulating the market to 
prevent excessive speculation in all fields? I'd hate to think that 
this bill is being purposefully underfunded to prevent robust 
regulation of speculation and allow these massive interests on Wall 
Street--and in the Chicago futures market--to continue doing what they 
have been doing, and that is gouging the pocketbooks of the American 
people, whether it's gas prices or food prices or mortgage speculation.
  Just to give you an idea, this proposal would not fund the agency to 
implement reforms contained in the Dodd-Frank bill in a futures market 
that's grown from $13 trillion back in the mid 1990s to over $600 
trillion notional value today. The bill's funding level basically takes 
the cops off the beat. It takes the watchdogs away. And one might say, 
the bill gives a green light for Wall Street to harm America again.

[[Page H4124]]

  The CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. FARR. I yield the gentlewoman another 30 seconds.
  Ms. KAPTUR. In sum, this bill falls far short of what America needs. 
I mentioned the nutrition programs, and their serious underfunding 
affecting seniors, children and women across our Nation. I want to 
thank the chairman for accepting an amendment to restore just $1.3 
million to the Rural Energy for America Program, as America struggles 
to regain our energy independence. But we are a very long way from 
restoring our liberty. Rural America simply has to be a full partner in 
this effort. This bill does not do that. GIPSA needs to be strengthened 
not weakened and the CFTC must be allowed to severely regulate the 
future markets and clamp down on speculation to prevent another 
meltdown.
  And though we disagree on this bill and its funding levels, I 
congratulate both the new chair and ranking members on their hard work 
over the last several months to prepare this bill, though imperfect, 
and bring it to the floor.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I yield 3 minutes to the distinguished 
vice chair of the Republican Conference, Mrs. McMorris Rodgers of 
Washington.
  Mrs. McMORRIS RODGERS. I appreciate the gentleman yielding, and I 
appreciate his commitment to the future of America's agriculture.
  I rise in support of this legislation because I believe that it sets 
the important priorities that must be made in order to rein in the 
runaway spending of previous Congresses while still providing funding, 
important funding, for agriculture's safety net, vital research, 
oversight, and increased opportunity.
  I grew up in eastern Washington, working on my family's orchard, 
where the number one industry is agriculture, and I know what it's like 
to pick and eat what you pick and have your family's livelihood depend 
on the success of your annual crop.
  For the last 16 years, I have actively engaged the agriculture 
community in eastern Washington to identify solutions to ensure farmers 
remain productive and competitive. The success of the farmers in 
eastern Washington and all across our Nation hinge on two important 
issues: The ability to adapt and apply cutting edge research, and the 
ability to access markets.
  H.R. 2112, for the first time, directs ARS to prioritize its research 
and make the vital investments to see those top priorities implemented. 
We must all remember that it's the American farmer who has fed the 
world for the last hundred years, kept our Nation's food prices low as 
a percentage of our income, and has done more to combat poverty around 
the world than any other antipoverty program; and it's, in large part, 
due to scientific breakthroughs in agriculture research.
  We need to be focusing on research that has the potential to affect 
the global population. Two such initiatives have national and 
international importance, and those are crop protection and production 
research housed within the ARS. These initiatives are on the front line 
of the fight against stem rust, Ug99, stripe rust, which all have the 
potential to eliminate our Nation's and, in turn, the world's wheat 
supply.
  I applaud the gentleman from Georgia and his subcommittee for 
recognizing and including this specific language in the report to study 
and prevent the spread of these harmful diseases.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I yield 2 minutes to the Member from Memphis, 
Tennessee (Mr. Cohen).
  Mr. COHEN. I appreciate the Member from Carmel yielding time to the 
gentleman from Memphis.
  This is unfortunate. Mr. Kingston, in presenting his side of the 
budget, was almost apologetic about WIC, and I can understand that, why 
he would be apologetic.
  This is a sacred portion of the budget to people on my side of the 
aisle, and it should be sacred to all people in America--newborn 
mothers, babies, and children under 5 who are identified as 
nutritionally at risk, and yet we are cutting that budget 13 percent. 
There's good reason you'd be almost ashamed to introduce it. And the 
way he introduced it showed concern. He thought it was difficult, and 
it is.
  The fact is some people talk about, in difficult economic times, 
everybody has to tighten their belt and everybody ought to tighten 
their belts equally. Well, what about the obesely wealthy? They're not 
being asked to tighten their belt at all. In fact, there's not a belt 
big enough to go around their obesely successful selves. They are doing 
great.
  And it seems like in this budget there are only about two things that 
seem to be sacred. One is tax cuts for the rich. The Bush tax cuts that 
were created when there was a surplus created by a Democratic Congress 
and a Democratic President, Bill Clinton. Those tax cuts were passed 
because we had a surplus. Now we've got a great deficit and they are 
being extended, and even to people making over $1 million a year. There 
is rejection of having them pay more so that mothers, babies, and 
children under 5 identified as nutritionally at risk can get the WIC 
payments. There's something wrong here.
  Economists estimate that for every $1 invested in WIC, there are 
savings between $1.50 and $3 in health care costs just in the first 60 
days after an infant's birth. Talk about a return on investment.
  However, my colleagues on the other side of the aisle obviously think 
this return isn't good enough and so we should gut the program, just 
like what they want to do with Medicare, until it can no longer 
function adequately to serve so many of the Americans who need it the 
most.
  This measure funds the WIC program at $686 million less than the 
current level, which is the equivalent of kicking off 475,000 eligible 
mothers, infants, and children.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. FARR. I yield the gentleman an additional minute.
  Mr. COHEN. It's equivalent to kicking 475,000 eligible mothers, 
infants, and children off one of the most cost-effective programs in 
our country. It will cost Tennessee over $1 million. If we get rid of 
tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires for 1 week, we could pay 
for the entire WIC program for a year.
  I cannot see this. It seems to me it's distorted values, and I would 
ask that they reconsider and put the WIC program back to its basic 
level.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Arkansas (Mr. 
Crawford).
  Mr. CRAWFORD. Madam Chair, along with my Republican colleagues, I 
share a commitment to fiscal discipline in the fiscal year 2012 budget. 
And while it's important to find savings and carefully consider every 
item in the budget, it's also important to maintain commitments that 
have already been authorized.
  The 2008 farm bill authorized the Biomass Crop Assistance Program, or 
BCAP for short. So I stand here today to support at least partial 
funding for the BCAP program. In my district, hundreds of farmers have 
worked hard in preparation for planting a variety of switchgrass called 
Miscanthus giganteus, which has proven to be a viable cellulosic 
biofuel feedstock. In fact, 1 acre is capable of producing 20 tons of 
biomass, as opposed to corn, which produces less than 8, on average.
  This program will help our country produce renewable energy and 
accelerate economic growth. I hope my colleagues in the House will keep 
an open mind about the program and will find a way to give it the 
priority it deserves as this bill moves through the legislative 
process.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I yield 3 minutes to the distinguished Member 
from California (Mr. Garamendi), former Lieutenant Governor of the 
State of California.

                              {time}  1510

  Mr. GARAMENDI. Thank you, Mr. Farr.
  Each piece of legislation that passes the House is really a 
reflection of our values. It speaks to our heart; it speaks to what we 
care about and what's important to us. This particular bill does that 
in a way that more than ever highlights values. Is it about children, 
about infants? Or is it about tax breaks for the very, very wealthy? Is 
it about safe food? Or tax breaks for oil companies and subsidies for 
oil companies? Is it about those people around the world that are 
hungry and the Food for Peace program that provides them with

[[Page H4125]]

enough food to be able to survive and to live? Or is it about a 
continuation of very fat, unnecessary farm crop subsidies?
  It's about our values. It's about what we care about and what we 
think is important. And if there's anything that's important in life, 
it's food. It's the ability for our youngest children--I was on this 
floor not more than 2 hours ago with my granddaughter, 11 months old. 
Out there in America there are hundreds of thousands of young children 
that will not have the food that they need to be able to be healthy, 
will not be able to have the care they need. This is about our values.
  What does this bill say of our values? It says that those children 
are of little value. Is that what this is about? Is it about those 
people around the world that are starving that will not have the Food 
for Peace program? Is that the value of this Congress, that we cannot 
find the money, in this wealthiest of all nations, to provide the 
health care for our young children and the food for those around the 
world?
  What is it that we care about then? The very wealthy? About Wall 
Street? About the Commodity Futures Trading Commission not having the 
money that they need to regulate the programs that brought this country 
to its knees? What is it that we value? Big question.
  In this bill, obviously there's a great difference in what we value 
on our side and what this bill, brought to us by the Republican 
majority, values.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, may I inquire as to the time remaining.
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia has 16 minutes remaining, and 
the gentleman from California has 14 minutes remaining.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield 2 minutes to the gentlewoman from South Dakota 
(Mrs. Noem).
  Mrs. NOEM. Madam Chairwoman, we have important things to discuss, and 
it truly does deal with our values.
  As the previous speaker was talking about his grandchild that was on 
the House floor previously, I wondered if he had told the grandchild 
that from the moment they were born they owed $47,000 in Federal debt. 
That is their responsibility because of the spending that's gone on and 
because of the fact that when we are going to start with feeding 
programs and distribute food to other countries, we're going to borrow 
money from other countries and have our grandchildren and great-
grandchildren pay for that so we can do that.
  So this discussion truly is about values and getting back to our 
priorities and getting back to what's important in this country, and 
it's fiscal responsibility. There are tough decisions to make, but we 
talk about what we need to do. And the fact that we're increasing food 
and nutrition programs and spending shows that we dedicate ourselves to 
those values and taking care of our children into the future while 
remembering that we're not going to saddle them with a debt that they 
certainly cannot pay.
  Madam Chairwoman, I rise in support and to speak a little bit about 
the Biomass Crop Assistance Program, the BCAP, which is addressed in 
this bill as well. I just want to talk about some of the projects that 
have offered some alternatives in South Dakota.
  This program, authorized in the 2008 farm bill, is part of our all-
of-the-above energy program. BCAP promotes second-generation biofuels 
refined from renewable biomass and can reduce our dependence on foreign 
sources of energy.
  I have been a firm supporter of an all-of-the-above American energy 
plan, and this can certainly continue to play a role in that. It 
reduces barriers that farmers face to diversify their farms. BCAP, if 
funded and used as the program was intended as cellulosic biofuels, can 
spur economic growth in rural areas such as those in South Dakota.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I yield 4 minutes to the gentleman from 
Georgia (Mr. Johnson).
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I rise to point out that once 
again we find ourselves in a familiar situation. Once again, under the 
guise of fiscal responsibility, austerity, and a blind allegiance to 
supply-side voodoo economics gimmicks, Republicans have brought forth 
another effort to cut away the social safety net, this time kicking 
low-income mothers and their young children into the depths of hunger 
and food insecurity.
  It's like deja vu. Just months ago, Democrats defended the American 
people from the Ryan Republican plan to turn Medicare into a voucher 
program. Unfortunately, the plan to get rid of Medicare was passed with 
the unanimous support of every single Republican in the House. Now, 
here we stand once again trying to prevent Republicans from delivering 
a swift kick to the stomachs of low-income mothers, many of whom are 
already struggling to get by during this economic downturn.
  Reducing WIC funding by more than half a billion dollars in the name 
of deficit reduction while unanimously refusing to eliminate or even 
decrease tax cuts for big businesses, oil companies and wealthy 
individuals, Republicans have forgotten one of mankind's most basic 
human values: upholding our moral responsibilities to our fellow man.
  Recently, I received a gift from the House Members Bible study group, 
and I do appreciate it. My heart compelled me to open it today. When I 
turned the pages separated by the book divider, I was at Mark 6:33, and 
nothing could have been more appropriate for the day. It was the 
passage on Jesus feeding his followers.
  Just as Jesus walked with his disciples, preaching the Gospel and 
healing the sick, he also fed 5,000 of his followers who would have 
gone hungry without those five loaves of bread and two fish.
  If Jesus can feed 5,000 people with five loaves of bread and two 
fish, then surely America, the wealthiest Nation in the world, and 
surely this Congress, the greatest deliberative body in the world, 
should continue to provide for Americans in their time of need.
  Just as Jesus provided for his followers, He also broke with 
tradition and compassionately watched as His followers ate bread with 
impure hands--as they were called--unclean hands. This upset some of 
those righteous observers, and they asked Jesus, ``Why do your 
disciples not wash according to the tradition of the elders, but eat 
their bread with impure hands?'' Jesus called them hypocrites and then 
He said, ``Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition 
of men.'' Is that what we're doing here today? Does the man-made rule 
of reducing our country's debt trump our moral responsibility to 
provide for Americans in their time of need?
  We as Members of Congress must also feed the hungry among us. Isn't 
this our moral and civic duty? According to the USDA, 750,000 of our 
fellow citizens, women and children, could be turned away from WIC. 
This is unconscionable. And the result is crystal clear--more Americans 
will be left to fend for themselves in their time of need.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I yield the gentleman an additional 30 
seconds.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Meanwhile, the $800 million that we give away 
on one week of tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires, we could 
ensure, with that $800 million, that over 9 million WIC participants 
receive nutrition, education, food and services for an entire year.
  America is better than this. Don't hurt the women and the children 
who need help. I stand opposed to this bill.

                              {time}  1520

  Mr. KINGSTON. I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I yield 5 minutes to the distinguished 
gentleman from Boston, Massachusetts, Mr. Steve Lynch.
  Mr. LYNCH. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Madam Chair, I speak in favor of a measure that will be coming up 
shortly, offered by my friend Ms. DeLauro, which goes to a major 
weakness in the underlying bill.
  The core mission of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission is to 
ensure the integrity and transparency of derivatives markets. Yet, 
despite the recent spike in gasoline prices and despite the great 
difficulty we had in this recent financial crisis with respect to 
commodities-based swaps, we have to come to the floor today to fight 
for funding for the one agency that would police that activity. It is, 
indeed, unbelievable that this House would consider

[[Page H4126]]

a proposal that would eviscerate the agency with the central 
responsibility for regulating the commodities markets.
  But here we are.
  The price of everyday items, from milk to gasoline, depends on the 
fair and open operation of commodities markets policed by the CFTC, the 
Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The recent spike in gasoline 
prices is not due to a shortage of supply, as we have seen, or 
increased demand. Clearly, this is a problem of unchecked speculative 
interests making money off the commodities markets as there are some 
who believe that as much as $27 of a barrel of oil today is the result 
of sheer speculation.
  It is our hope that through the Dodd-Frank regulatory reform bill the 
CFTC's responsibilities will be expanded to include oversight of the 
nearly $300 trillion in previously unregulated domestic swaps on the 
market today. This is a key step to bringing the shadow markets, which 
helped crash the economy, under sensible regulation. This is where the 
CDOs, CDSs and other complex derivatives deals were made. This is how 
AIG helped bring down the economy. We have to regulate this financial 
market and these financial products. However, the notional size of the 
market that the CFTC now must supervise has increased seven-fold, and 
the CFTC needs more resources. But in this bill, we will see its budget 
slashed. Instead of giving the agency the tools it needs to prevent 
another financial collapse, we are planting the seeds for the next 
financial crisis.
  The result of this Republican legislation to delay reform and the 
underlying bill to starve this agency would allow large, interconnected 
financial companies to engage unsupervised in activities and 
transactions similar to the activities that got us into this crisis in 
the first place. This would perpetuate an era of no oversight, no 
regulation and no transparency--in a similar fashion that nearly 
destroyed our economy. CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler has warned that 
denying funding to this agency and delaying the implementation of Dodd-
Frank will greatly ``increase risk to the American people and leave 
significant uncertainty in the marketplace.''
  The CFTC is vital to the proper functioning of our financial markets 
and the American economy. Underfunding the commission is deeply 
irresponsible, so I urge my colleagues to support the DeLauro amendment 
to properly fund the CFTC.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Madam Chair, I wanted to respond to the discussion of the CFTC. It's 
very interesting to me that there are those Members of Congress who 
believe that bureaucrats control the price of oil. While bureaucrats 
certainly do have influence on the price of oil, if you're really 
concerned about the price of oil, you need to drill for it. It's pretty 
simple--increase the supply.
  Folks forget that Alaska is twice the size of Texas. The Arctic 
Wildlife Reserve area is the size of South Carolina. The proposed 
exploration area is 2,000 acres. It's about the size of National 
Airport here. We're talking about a business card on a basketball 
court. Yet you hear over and over again from people--who, incidentally, 
do drive fossil fueled cars--that we in America are inept and unable to 
drill for oil responsibly. If you want to decrease the price, you've 
got to increase the supply, and there is no better way than to drill 
your own oil.
  Think about the absurdity of President Obama going down to Brazil and 
telling them, We want you to drill offshore. Apparently, the Brazilians 
are technologically more advanced than we are, and the President has 
much more of a comfort level with the people of Brazil than he 
apparently has with the people from Louisiana or from Texas or from 
Florida. He goes down to Brazil and says, Go ahead and drill offshore. 
We're going to lend you money, and by the way, we want to be your best 
customer.
  Now, he never mentioned anything about the CFTC.
  Let me tell you what Democrat Commissioner Michael Dunn said. This 
was, by the way, on January 1, 2011: ``To date, CFTC staff has been 
unable to find any reliable economic analysis to support the contention 
that excessive speculation is affecting the markets we regulate or that 
position limits will prevent excessive speculation.''
  What I suggest to you, Madam Chair, is that the discussion of the 
CFTC and oil speculators is a red herring. The real issue that the 
Democrats have failed to address is that of drilling for oil in order 
to increase supply.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, how much time do both sides have remaining?
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from California has 6 minutes remaining, and 
the gentleman from Georgia has 12 minutes remaining.
  Mr. FARR. I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  I want to go back over this food situation. I and the gentleman from 
California, the ranking member, have had 11 hearings on this. We've had 
11 hearings on the Agriculture bill, not on feeding programs 
specifically.
  I want to again remind the Chair that this bill represents a net 
increase in funding, which is largely driven by the increase of $5.6 
billion in food stamps and in the School Lunch Program of $1.5 billion. 
I also want to remind Members of the many Federal feeding programs that 
we have. For a 3-year-old child, there are 12 different feeding 
programs. For a 10-year-old child, there are nine different programs. 
For a 35-year-old, there are seven programs, and for a 65-year-old, 
there are five programs that people can apply for.
  It is not the intention of this committee to let anyone fall through 
the cracks. The numbers that we have funded, for example, in WIC, 
contemplate what we believe is going to be the participation. Should 
that participation fluctuate, there are three contingency accounts that 
the USDA can access. It would certainly be our intention to have those 
accounts accessed before anyone fell through the cracks.
  Now, I share in the frustration of the stimulus program that was 
supposed to create last year's summer of recovery. I'm sorry it did not 
work, because I would like to be out celebrating with the President. 
Yet the stimulus program, which was supposed to keep unemployment below 
8 percent, actually increased unemployment to the level of 10 percent. 
Now it's hovering a little bit above 9 percent.
  The best thing in the world would be to have prosperity, and I 
believe that we can get there. One way we should get there is by 
drilling our own oil because, if you want to keep food prices down, 
you've got to keep the cost of distribution down, which would be 
something, I'd hope, that we could work together on.
  I also think we need fundamental tax reform because I know one of the 
things that some on the committee have talked about are some of the tax 
loopholes taken advantage of by certain companies. I agree with them. 
That's why I support the Fair Tax, which is a consumption tax. It would 
actually give a tax credit to the poor so that it does not 
disproportionately hurt them, but it would close all the loopholes. 
That would be something else that we could do that would create jobs in 
America.
  Finally, the excessive bureaucratic regulations that our farmers and 
small businesses have to put up with is killing job creation. If we 
want to do something to help people get off dependency and get to 
independency, we need to decrease the size of government. This bill 
moves us in that direction.
  I reserve the balance of my time.

                              {time}  1530

  Mr. FARR. I yield 2 minutes to the distinguished gentlewoman from 
Connecticut (Ms. DeLauro), the former ranking member of this committee.
  Ms. DeLAURO. I thank the gentleman.
  I want to comment on my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, 
who continue to make reference to wanting to reduce the deficit and 
that they are the only ones interested in reducing the deficit and that 
is what this debate is all about. The fact of the matter is that 
Democrats and Republicans are very interested in reducing the deficit. 
The biggest difference occurs in where one starts to effectuate a 
change in debt reduction, and I will tell you that that is what the 
basic divide is here.
  Now, there are a number of ways in which we can reduce the deficit. 
One is

[[Page H4127]]

that we can look at the $41 billion in the oil subsidies that we grant 
every year. The oil industry is flush with money, when one CEO can make 
$21.5 million a year, make profits that are overwhelming, and gasoline 
in the State of Connecticut is $4.39 a gallon for regular gas. So let's 
start with the $41 billion and we can reduce the deficit.
  How about the $8 billion that we provide to multinational 
corporations to take their jobs overseas? Now, that is another place 
where we could shut down the loopholes, gain some money and reduce the 
deficit.
  There is also a third area. What about agriculture subsidies; not to 
small farmers, not to dairy farmers, but to big agribusiness. It might 
be of interest, in a political article that appeared this week, to 
indicate that there are some Members on the other side of the aisle 
whose States and whose families are rich in the subsidies they are 
getting from the Federal Government. We could start there.
  Why are we starting with women, infants, and children and nutrition 
programs? That is an absolute dividing line of where one's values are. 
Democrats want to reduce the deficit. The place is: Where do you start? 
That is where your values are. We don't start with women, infants, and 
children and nutrition programs. Let's start with tax subsidies for the 
richest people in this country and with the special interests of this 
Nation.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I yield 3 minutes to the distinguished 
gentlewoman from Wyoming (Mrs. Lummis), a great member of the 
committee.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I thank the gentleman.
  Madam Chair, this is my third year in this Congress. During my first 
2 years, the Democrats controlled the House, the Senate, and the 
Presidency, and during that time the subsidies or tax loopholes for the 
rich, for the oil companies, for these bailouts of Wall Street were 
going on just like they allege they are now. And did they do anything 
about it when they controlled the entire government? No. Nope. They 
didn't do anything.
  Instead, they created massive new entitlement programs. Instead, they 
did TARP part two without accounting for part one. They did massive 
bailouts of the auto industry. They created huge new health programs. 
They gave massive blank checks to bureaucrats. They increased spending 
at the EPA, one agency, by 39 percent in 1 year. It is incredible. They 
taxed, they spent, yet they didn't go after the very people that today 
they allege are the source of the problem.
  Now, when the Republicans were elected in the House to do what the 
American people felt needed to be done, which is to grapple with 
spending first, spending being the problem in our country, amassing a 
huge amount of debt, deficits, borrowing money from foreign countries, 
risking our own credit rating, risking our own ability to borrow money, 
risking the value of our currency, now they are alleging we are 
addressing the wrong targets.
  Madam Chair, this very budget we are debating today increases 
spending for food programs. It increases funding for both food stamps 
and school lunch. It increases it more than we are cutting spending for 
WIC and other programs. It increases spending for the human needs that 
are legitimate for the people in this country by over one-quarter of a 
billion dollars.
  Madam Chair, I allege that this is a responsible budget, that we are 
beginning to get off that unsustainable path of spending that even the 
President acknowledges and get back on a path where we can live more 
reasonably, where we can protect our currency, where we can protect our 
job market, where we can protect our tax structure and improve it in a 
way that makes America strong for our grandchildren.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, how much time does each side have remaining?
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from California has 4 minutes, and the 
gentleman from Georgia has 6 minutes.
  Mr. FARR. I yield such myself such time as I may consume.
  I would like to, first of all, compliment Mr. Kingston, who is chair 
of this committee. He has come on as the chair, and I have come on as 
ranking member. We have both been on the committee for a long time and 
served under very distinguished chairs, two of whom are ranking members 
you heard here today.
  It is really tough, because he has been given the allocation to fit 
all the programs within the Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug 
Administration within the allocation given him, and one can argue that 
that is it. I mean, we have to hide behind the allocation that was 
given. You have to do it.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Will my friend yield a minute?
  Mr. FARR. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I just wanted to say that we actually have had one more 
speaker show up. It sounds like you are closing. You might want to 
reserve some time.
  Mr. FARR. Let me say in this moment, in this allocation of time, that 
it is about values, and I think the big debate here is not just about 
how you cut, squeeze, and trim spending.
  We have Members of Congress who have spoken today whose families 
receive millions of dollars in taxpayer money in commodity payments, in 
crop payments. We ought to be discussing that. What is the value of 
funding very wealthy people at the expense of taking food away from 
poor and starving children?
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman from Indiana (Mr. 
Burton).
  Mr. BURTON of Indiana. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Madam Chair, more than 2 years ago, Democrats claimed that their 
trillion dollar stimulus package would keep unemployment below 8 
percent, and we know now it is above 9 percent.
  Recently, the CBO released their annual budget and economic outlook 
report which projects the 2011 deficit will reach $1.48 trillion and 
our national debt, as everybody knows, is over $14 trillion. We are 
borrowing nearly 42 cents of every dollar we spend, much of it from the 
Chinese, and sending the bill to our children and grandchildren. Every 
child born today owes $45,500 to the debt.
  For the past few years, the American people have been told that 
government spending is the answer. They had their chance to prove this 
economic model, but it failed. It is time we changed our approach, 
because our country has a spending problem and not a revenue problem. 
Debt by the public is estimated to increase to 94 percent over the next 
10 years. Over 10 years, the annual government spending will consume an 
average of 23.5 percent of GDP, which is significantly higher than the 
post-World War II average of 20 percent.
  In a 2010 article for the Cato Policy Report, economists Jason Taylor 
and Richard Vedder outlined the lessons of the largest public sector 
drawdown in our country's history--the cuts to government spending 
after World War II. Taylor and Vedder point out that the Federal 
spending fell from $84 billion in 1945 to $30 billion in 1946, a 
reduction of more than 60 percent.

                              {time}  1540

  The point is that despite these warnings from economists that this 
withdrawal of Keynesian stimulus would sure lead to a second Great 
Depression, civilian employment grew by over 4 million between 1945 and 
1947, with unemployment remaining under 4\1/2\ percent in the first 
three postwar years. The postwar era provides a classic illustration of 
how government spending ``crowds out'' private sector spending and how 
the economy can thrive when government's shadow is dramatically 
reduced. The lesson from the 1945-1947 era is that a sharp reduction in 
government spending frees up assets for productive use and leads to 
renewed growth.
  When spending is slated to reach an all-time high of $3.7 trillion 
this year and we're living through the weakest jobs recovery since the 
Great Depression, it's time to get our fiscal house in order. Vigorous 
and sustained economic growth, fueled by investment and 
entrepreneurship, is needed for the private sector to create more jobs 
and increase incomes of the poor. In turn, this will generate the 
revenues that governments need to expand access to health, education, 
and infrastructure services and help improve productivity. Spending 
cuts work; tax increases

[[Page H4128]]

don't. Despite the evidence, many liberals continue to call for more 
spending, more taxing, and red tape.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield the gentleman an additional 30 seconds.
  Mr. BURTON of Indiana. These ideas won't solve the problem; they are 
the problem. Washington needs to stop creating uncertainty and get out 
of the way.
  I commend the Appropriations Committee, Chairman Rogers, and Chairman 
Kingston for crafting a bill that's $5.041 billion, or 22.6 percent 
less than the President's fiscal year 2012 budget request, and $2.672 
billion, or 13.4 percent less than the fiscal year 2011 enacted level. 
However, I believe the financial catastrophe facing our Nation requires 
us to do even more, and so I hope my colleagues will realize this and 
do what is necessary to get our fiscal house in order.
  Mr. FARR. I yield myself the balance of my time.
  Madam Chair, we've heard a lot today. We've heard a lot about 
spending, because that's what this bill is. It is an appropriations 
bill. But the talk about spending is wrong because it's not putting 
into the priorities what is really important in our service to the 
people of this country. We don't need to be here to protect the rich 
and to protect multinational corporations. We need to be here to 
protect the rights of people who don't have the wherewithal to have 
enough food on their table to take care of their kids.
  What you've seen in the debate today is tax spending for the rich is 
okay; tax spending for the poor is not. Tax breaks for oil companies 
are okay; food for the poor is not. Cutting our Commodity Futures 
Trading Commission is okay, but paying for police to police for 
speculation and misuse of public moneys is not a worthwhile 
expenditure. Our priorities are not straight, and that's why there's so 
much criticism for this bill.
  I applaud the chairman for working hard to try to get the committee 
to bring together a bill that could meet the allocation. But I think 
the allocation was all wrong and our priorities are wrong, and I ask my 
colleagues to oppose the bill.
  Mr. REYES. Madam Chair, I rise in strong opposition to the underlying 
bill for its drastic and extreme cuts to various critical food programs 
funded through the Department of Agriculture. While we face a great 
challenge in reducing the deficit and creating jobs, the greater 
challenge is to do this in a way that is consistent with our values. 
Slashing funds for programs that help put food on the table for the 
neediest of Americans, young children, pregnant mothers, the elderly, 
and those struggling to make ends meet, is not good policy.
  The Special Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for Women, 
Infants, and Children (WIC), the Commodity Supplemental Food Program 
(CSFP) which serves predominantly low-income seniors, and The Emergency 
Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) which works with states to assist food 
banks are just some of the programs that were targeted for extreme 
cuts.
  The cuts to WIC concern me the most. WIC provides food to new 
mothers, babies, and children under five who have been identified as 
nutritionally at risk. Nearly 50% of the babies born in our country 
each year rely on WIC. On top of that, it is incredibly cost-effective, 
serving nearly 10 million people each year, and costing less than $100 
per person.
  In my district, nearly 54,000 children and women suffer from food 
hardship, and depend on WIC to make ends meet.
  This is yet another chapter in the Republican attack on working 
families to give handouts to special interests.
  First they came after seniors who rely on Medicare, and now they're 
coming after children and mothers who rely on food assistance.
  We cannot let Republicans destroy programs on which our most 
vulnerable population depend to pay for $45 billion in tax breaks for 
millionaires.
  According to the Center for American Progress, if we got rid of tax 
breaks for millionaires and billionaires for one week, we would pay for 
the entire WIC program for a year.
  I urge my colleagues to protect working Americans, not millionaires 
and billionaires.
  Thank you.
  Mr. STARK. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the FY 2012 
Agriculture Appropriations Act. This bill makes devastating cuts to 
nutrition programs. It also undermines the ability of the Food and Drug 
Administration to protect our food supply and the Commodities Futures 
Trading Commission to rein in the reckless speculation that is driving 
up gas prices.
  The cuts to nutrition programs in this bill would put hundreds of 
thousands of our most vulnerable citizens at risk. Working families, 
the millions who remain out of work, and senior citizens trying to 
survive on fixed incomes are the Americans who continue to feel the 
effects of the recession most painfully. This bill adds insult to 
injury by literally taking food off of their tables.
  In my district, there are more than 90,000 people facing hunger each 
day. That is unacceptable. Fortunately, they have some support, 
including through the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program, which 
offers nutrition education to pregnant women and mothers and provides 
food to meet the nutritional needs of young children. The $686 million 
dollars that this bill cuts from WIC means 200,000 to 350,000 people 
will lose access to this program.
  This bill would also slash the Commodity Supplemental Food Program 
(CSFP), which primarily serves senior citizens living on less than 
$14,000 a year. The proposed $38 million in cuts to this program would 
force 150,000 seniors to lose the regularly delivered box of food that 
they depend on to survive.
  Perhaps those turned away from WIC or CSFP could go to a local food 
bank for assistance? No longer. This bill cuts $50 million from the 
Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) that supplies food banks, so 
the shelves will be empty when people come for help.
  Doing away with just one week's worth of the Bush tax cuts is more 
than enough to prevent the cuts to WIC, CSFP, and TEFAP proposed in 
this bill. Yet that's not what we're debating today.
  While Republican leaders defend their tax breaks for millionaires and 
billionaires, people are going hungry. Something is seriously wrong in 
this country if we are willing to pay for a week of tax cuts for the 
wealthy but cannot afford to feed all of our people.
  We cannot balance the budget or erase the deficit by taking more away 
from those who already have the least. I urge my colleagues to stand 
with me and oppose the FY 2012 Agriculture Appropriations Act.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam Chair, I rise in strong objection to the Fiscal Year 
2012 Agriculture Appropriations bill. The bill before us is simply 
inadequate. While there is little disagreement that we must reach 
agreement on a balanced framework to reduce our deficit, we cannot do 
so by quite literally taking food from the mouths of children. This 
hinders our long term prosperity, and it is simply wrong.
  In expressing serious concerns about this bill, the Administration's 
statement on this bill says: ``The Administration strongly objects to 
the level of funding provided for nutrition programs that are critical 
to the health of nutritionally at-risk women, infants, children, and 
elderly adults. The proposed funding levels would led to hundreds of 
thousands of participants being cut from the Special Supplemental 
Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) and the 
Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP), and reduce Federal support 
for food banks. These cuts would undermine efforts to prevent hunger 
and support sound nutrition for some of the most vulnerable members of 
our society.''
  The human impact of the bill would be devastating. Hundreds of 
thousands of low-income children, mothers and seniors would lose WIC 
assistance. The National Commodity Supplemental Food program estimates 
that more than one hundred thousand low-income seniors would lose 
access to nutritious food assistance. Feeding America estimates that 
approximately 32 million pounds of nutritious food would not be 
available at food banks and food pantries for working Americans 
struggling to feed their families.
  I want to say a word in particular about CSFP. This program is a 
vital component of our nutrition efforts because it reaches many 
seniors who qualify for no other program while providing delivery for 
those that are homebound. CSFP provides 600,000 food packages each 
month in 39 states and the District of Columbia, including seven new 
states as a direct result of increased funding in Fiscal Year 2010. 
This year 97 percent of the participants are elderly individuals with 
an income at or below $14,157. Food packages are designed to supplement 
needed sources of nutrients typically lacking in participants' diets, 
and are delivered through local providers in a very cost efficient 
manner: the typical food package has a retail value up to $50 but costs 
the Federal governments less than $20 per participant package.
  Earlier this year, a number of us wrote to the Appropriations 
Committee requesting that funding for CSFP simply be held at the 2011 
level of $176.8 million. Not an increase, though there is certainly 
greater need, just level funding. Instead, the Committee cut CSFP by 
more than 20 percent. As a result, if these cuts become law, more than 
100,000 low-income seniors will be at greater risk of hunger.

[[Page H4129]]

  Madam Chair, this bill represents the wrong priorities. Under the 
guise of deficit reduction, of which it does very little, it imposes 
harmful cuts on the most vulnerable among us. I urge all of my 
colleagues to reject it.
  Mr. BACA. Madam Chair, I rise today in strong opposition ot the 
unerlying bill--H.R. 2112--the FY 2012 Agriculture Appropriations Act.
  With continued unemployment and high home foreclosure rates--these 
are tough economic times for Americans everywhere.
  We all understand that our debt and deficit are significant issues--
that we must begin to address with intelligent spending cuts.
  But it is essential that we reduce the deficit in a way that is 
consistent with our American values--and not on the backs of 
impoverished women, children, and seniors.
  The Agriculture Appropriations bill we are considering today 
undermines the food security of the American people.
  In my district--in California's Inland Empire--my constitutents face 
a 16 percent unemployment rate; and a food insecurity rate of almost 22 
percent.
  Food banks throughout California are reporting a 30 to 40 percent 
increase in the number of people needing food assistance.
  This is the wrong time to cut nutrition benefits for struggling 
American families.
  Unfortunately--the bill the House is set to consider--takes food off 
the table for low-income women, children, and seniors.
  This bill:
  Cuts $650 million from WIC--causing hundreds of thousands of women 
and children to lose benefits;
  Cuts $50 million from TEFAP--forcing struggling familes to face empty 
shelves at the food bank;
  Cuts $38 million from the Commodity Supplemental Foods Program--
leaving thousands of seniors without help; and
  Cuts $2 billion from the SNAP reserve fund--at a time when a record 
44 million plus Americans need this assistance.
  Sadly, this bill is just the next chapter in the Repubilcan 
Congress's assault on middle class families.
  Already this year--Republicans have voted to end Medicare as we know 
it.
  And they've voted to cut thousands of jobs in order to give tax 
breaks to the ultra-rich, the big oil industries, and companies that 
ship jobs overseas.
  But with this bill--we may have sunk to a new low.
  It is wrong to dismantle the programs that our most vulnerable 
Americans rely on--in order to pay for $45 billion in tax breaks for 
millionaires.
  If we got rid of tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires for one 
week--we would save enough to pay for the entire WIC program for a 
year.
  During the last Farm Bill--in 2008--I served as Chair of the 
Agriculture Subcommittee on Nutrition.
  I am proud of the work we did to improve SNAP and other federal 
nutrition programs.
  These improvements helped feed 38 million hungry Americans.
  We must not turn back the clock.
  Let's focus on the real priorities of the American people--and stop 
these misguided funding cuts.
  I urge my colleagues to protect the health of working families--and 
vote ``no'' on the underlying bill.
  Mr. HANNA. Madam Chair, as Co-Chair of the Congressional Organic 
Caucus, I rise today in support of adequate resourcing for the Organic 
Data Initiative, ODI, in Fiscal Year 2012.
  Organic agriculture in my district in upstate New York and across 
this country is a thriving industry that is creating jobs and exporting 
American products across the world. Last week I visited an organic farm 
in Herkimer County that produces mike, beef, chicken, eggs, garlic and 
other vegetables, and field crops.
  The Organic Data Initiative collects and distributes organic 
agriculture price data. This data helps maintain stable markets for 
organic products, is crucial for the development of risk management 
tools, and is necessary to negotiate organic standards equivalency 
agreements with foreign governments. It is important that the organic 
agriculture has the same access to data that other agriculture sectors 
currently enjoy. The Organic Data Initiative is cost-effective and is 
vital to ensure a continued upward trajectory for the organic industry 
in the United States.
  Ms. WATERS. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the underlying bill, 
H.R. 2112, the Republican Appropriations bill for Agriculture, Food 
Safety and Nutrition Programs for the coming fiscal year. This bill 
drastically underfunds critical nutrition programs for hungry people 
throughout the United States.
  This bill is yet another chapter in the Republican attack on working 
families.
  First, the Republicans tried to cut benefits for seniors who rely on 
Medicare.
  Then, they went after low-income families who rely on Medicaid.
  They tried to dismantle health care reform and leave people with pre-
existing conditions at the mercy of profit-hungry insurance companies.
  Now, they're coming after hungry people who rely on food assistance.
  The bill cuts funding for the Women, Infants, and Children, WIC, 
nutrition program by more than $650 million below the fiscal year 2011 
level. The WIC program provides nutritious foods, counseling on healthy 
eating habits, and health care referrals to about 9 million low-income 
pregnant and postpartum women, infants, and children under five. WIC is 
an effective program with a long history of bipartisan support. For the 
past 15 years, Congresses and Administrations of both parties have 
always provided enough funds for WIC to serve all women, infants and 
children who qualify--until now. The Center on Budget and Policy 
Priorities estimates that the funding cut in this bill would force WIC 
to turn away between 200,000 and 350,000 eligible low-income women and 
young children next year, including 32,000 to 56,000 women and children 
in my home state of California.
  This bill also cuts funding for the Commodity Supplemental Food 
program, CSFP, by 22 percent below this year's funding level. CSFP is 
an agricultural commodity program that provides nutritious food 
packages to about 604,000 low-income people each month, 96 percent of 
whom are senior citizens who earn less than 130 percent of the federal 
poverty level. The Republicans' proposed funding cuts would result in 
loss of food for at least 130,000 low-income seniors.
  The bill cuts funding to The Emergency Food Assistance Program, 
TEFAP, by $51 million and cuts TEFAP administrative funding for food 
storage and distribution by 23 percent. TEFAP provides nutritious food 
commodities to low-income Americans in need of short-term hunger 
relief. TEFAP commodities are distributed by organizations like soup 
kitchens, food banks, homeless shelters, and faith-based food pantries 
at churches, mosques and synagogues. These cuts would force many local 
organizations to turn away hungry people.
  Finally, the bill underfunds the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance 
Program, SNAP. SNAP provides monthly benefits to 44 million low-income 
Americans using a grocery debit card. The Administration requested a $5 
billion reserve fund for SNAP to assure that there would be adequate 
resources to help needy people in the event of continuing high 
unemployment or unexpected increases in demand from events like natural 
disasters. The Republicans cut the reserve fund by $2 billion.
  Meanwhile, the Republican budget extends the Bush-era tax cuts beyond 
their expiration in 2012 and cuts the top individual tax rate down to 
25 percent from 35 percent. According to the Center for Tax Justice, 
the Republican budget cuts taxes for the richest 1 percent of Americans 
by 15 percent while raising taxes for the lowest income 20 percent of 
Americans by 12 percent.
  Madam Chair, if we got rid of the tax breaks for millionaires and 
billionaires for one week, we could pay for the entire WIC program for 
a year.
  I urge my colleagues to stand up for working families--not 
millionaires and billionaires! Vote ``no'' on this bill.
  Mr. POLIS. Madam Chair, I rise today in opposition to this 
legislation. Let's take a step back and talk about what this bill does; 
Instead of ending wasteful subsidies that go to multi-million dollar 
agri-business, the Republicans have decided to pay for a Brazil Cotton 
trade problem by cutting nutrition assistance to poor women and 
children, cutting conservation funding, and by raising gas prices for 
Americans by cutting those policing wall street oil speculators.
  These subsides aren't supporting family farms; they are supporting 
multi-billion dollar companies, changing the food we eat and the health 
of our country's citizens. I commend the progress that Congressman 
Flake has made in the Committee to lessen these wasteful subsidies, and 
ask my colleagues to support other floor amendments, like the 
Blumenauer amendment, which will ensure that subsidies are capped 
ensuring that any needed help is distributed to those who need it, not 
simply concentrated amongst a few mega-corporations.
  Madam Chair, I also strongly support the Woolsey Amendment, which 
would allow the U.S. Department of Agriculture to continue developing 
scientific-based nutritional standards for school meals. This amendment 
supports the USDA rule that carries out the intent of the Child 
Nutrition Act passed last year. The standards in this rule are central 
to students' nutrition, resulting in better child health, better 
student behavior, and better academic outcomes.
  It's been 17 years since the last update of the national school meal 
standards. The USDA recently proposed much-needed updates to those 
standards based on consensus recommendations from the Dietary 
Guidelines

[[Page H4130]]

for Americans. The proposed updates will ensure that school lunch and 
breakfasts provide recommended amounts of fruits, vegetables and whole 
grains; fat-free and low-fat milk; less salt; fewer unhealthy saturated 
and trans fats; and moderate calories. Instead, too may schools are 
currently serving too much sodium, sugar, unhealthy saturated and trans 
fats, and starchy vegetables, such as French fries. To make this 
change, USDA received over 130,000 comments from advocates, parents and 
concerned citizens in support of the rule.
  Yet, while school meal quality has been modestly improving in some 
schools, much more needs to be done. The proposed standards maximize 
the national investment in the school meal programs, helping to reduce 
both child hunger and obesity, and providing balanced meals to 31 
million children each day. Our current national investment in school 
lunch and breakfast is about $12 billion per year--we need to make sure 
that these meals are healthy.
  Delaying the rule--as this legislation would do--goes against what 
Congress passed and the president signed last year. It would damage the 
opportunities of our current and future generations by denying them 
healthy school meals, which limits their ability to live healthy lives. 
That's why this amendment is so important.
  We have heard specious arguments that the law saddles school 
districts with unfunded costs and mandates. Besides a 6 cent increase 
in school lunch reimbursements, the law's nutritional improvements in 
both school meals and school snacks will help increase student 
participation in school meals by 900,000 students according to USDA, 
raising school district revenues by an estimated $7.5 billion over the 
next five years on top of the $3.2 billion from the 6 cent increase. So 
there is funding for better nutritional food for children. Too many 
school districts are behind the times on ensuring that students have 
healthy foods.
  That is why we changed the law and why we need to move forward with 
timely implementation of the proposed rule. We need to get the most out 
of the national investment in the National School Lunch and Breakfast 
Programs. Our children's health and educational outcomes depend on it.
  Madam Chair, this bill is simply bad policy. I urge a ``no'' vote.
  Mr. LANGEVIN. Madam Chair, I rise today in strong opposition to the 
FY12 Agriculture Appropriations Bill. This measure includes a $650 
million cut to the WIC Program, which would cut up to 1,000 eligible 
recipients in Rhode Island.
  This program provides nutritious food, counseling on healthy eating, 
and health care referrals for low-income women and children under age 
five. In Rhode Island, the WIC program collaborates with local culinary 
programs and farmers markets on cooking demonstrations, healthy eating 
habits and children's activities.
  While all our constituents are feeling the effects of the economic 
downturn, our most vulnerable citizens are disproportionately affected 
by job cuts, higher food prices, turmoil in the housing market and 
other burdens, and the impact can be devastating. Programs like WIC 
support these families and help put food on the table.
  It is our responsibility to ensure that children born into poverty 
have the same opportunity to achieve the American Dream as any other 
child in our country and that cannot happen if children grow up 
malnourished and hungry. I urge my colleagues to vote against this bill 
and to reject these harmful cuts.
  Mr. FARR. I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I have no further requests for time, I move passage of 
the bill, and I yield back the balance of my time.
  The CHAIR. All time for general debate has expired.
  Pursuant to the rule, the bill shall be considered read for amendment 
under the 5-minute rule.
  During consideration of the bill for amendment, the Chair may accord 
priority in recognition to a Member offering an amendment who has 
caused it to be printed in the designated place in the Congressional 
Record. Those amendments will be considered read.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                               H.R. 2112

       Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of 
     the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the 
     following sums are appropriated, out of any money in the 
     Treasury not otherwise appropriated, for Agriculture, Rural 
     Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related 
     Agencies programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 
     2012, and for other purposes, namely:

                                TITLE I

                         AGRICULTURAL PROGRAMS

                  Production, Processing and Marketing

                        Office of the Secretary

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Secretary of 
     Agriculture, $4,293,000: Provided, That not to exceed $11,000 
     of this amount shall be available for official reception and 
     representation expenses, not otherwise provided for, as 
     determined by the Secretary.

  Ms. DeLAURO. I move to strike the last word.
  The CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Connecticut is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the underlying bill 
and to the drastic and ill-conceived cuts to the nutrition programs 
that are proposed in this appropriation.
  Under the majority's bill, our government cannot meet even its most 
basic responsibilities to the American people. For example, the Women, 
Infants, and Children program provides nutrition assistance grants to 
States for low-income pregnant, breast-feeding, and postpartum women, 
and infants and children up to the age of 5. It serves 9 million 
mothers and young children nationwide, and that includes 58,000 in 
Connecticut, my State. In fact, nearly half of the babies born in the 
United States every year participate in this program. It is a short-
term intervention that can help provide a lifetime of good nutrition 
and health behavior. Over the first 60 days of a child's life alone, 
every $1 invested in WIC saves between $1.77 and $3.13 in health care 
costs.
  But the budget before us today would leave WIC with a $650 million 
shortfall. According to the Center for Budget Policy and Priorities, 
that means as many as 350,000 eligible women and children will be cut 
from the rolls. In fact, Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack has warned 
our subcommittee that this number could be as high as 750,000. And if 
you read his letter carefully, there is no carryover, there is no 
contingency fund, and there will be substantial reductions in the 
number of people who will participate in the WIC program. It is 
unacceptable at a time of such great economic difficulty. With the 
unemployment rate over 9 percent, more and more families are having to 
rely on these dollars.
  In the past, support for WIC has never been a partisan issue. For 15 
years, Republicans and Democrats have always worked together in 
Congress to see that every woman and child eligible for WIC can 
participate in this lifesaving program. In fact, Republicans and 
Democrats on our committee voted together to pass an amendment that I 
offered to provide $147 million more in funding for WIC before the 
Rules Committee today arbitrarily overturned that vote.
  We cannot be taking food out of hungry people's mouths here at home 
in order to subsidize cotton production and to subsidize Brazilian 
cotton farmers. It makes no sense. As my colleague, Mr. Flake, on the 
other side of the aisle noted at the committee markup, it is quite 
ironic that we would subsidize Brazilian agriculture so that we can 
continue to excessively subsidize agriculture here. This bill flies in 
the face of our longstanding bipartisan commitment. It will leave women 
and children hungry.
  WIC is not alone on the chopping block. The Commodity Supplemental 
Food Program provides nutritious food to low-income seniors and those 
making less than $14,000 a year. According to a study by Feeding 
America, 30 percent of these households in need have had to choose 
between food and medical care, and 35 percent between food and paying 
for heat or utilities. But even in the middle of a very tough economy, 
this proposal slashes funding for the CSFP. That means an estimated 
150,000 seniors all across the country will lose access to this aid. 
They, once again, will have to go hungry.
  Take the Emergency Food Assistance Program, which works with States 
to supplement food banks, emergency shelters, pantries, soup kitchens. 
Right now, the hard work these organizations do in helping ensure 
access to food is more important than ever. In fact, the demand for 
emergency food assistance has shot up 46 percent over the past 5 years. 
This budget cuts funding for the Emergency Food Assistance Program by 
$38 million--nearly a quarter below last year's funding.
  Yet, while placing this tremendous burden on our most vulnerable 
citizens, the majority budget finds money to give subsidies to oil 
companies and tax

[[Page H4131]]

breaks to the wealthy. In fact, the cost of the Bush tax breaks for 
millionaires for 1 week is more than the cost of the proposed cut to 
the WIC program for the entire year. One day's tax breaks for the 
millionaires would pay for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program and 
for the Emergency Food Assistance Program.
  This is what the majority has done. It's tax cuts for millionaires 
versus nutrition assistance. These are not the right choices for 
America. The American people know it. Gutting nutrition programs to pay 
for tax breaks for the rich is more than just a terrible investment in 
the future; it's a failure of our responsibility to the American 
people.
  Oppose these reckless cuts.
  Mr. McGOVERN. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from Massachusetts is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. McGOVERN. I want to again rise in strong opposition to the 
underlying bill and express my deep outrage over the deep cuts in food 
and nutrition programs that benefit some of the most needy and 
vulnerable people in our country.

                              {time}  1550

  I am particularly outraged at the cuts in WIC. As we heard from our 
colleague from Connecticut (Ms. DeLauro), WIC is one of the most 
effective programs that exist. There has been a strong bipartisan 
tradition of fully funding the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program 
for Women, Infants and Children--WIC--to ensure that every eligible 
family that applies receives benefits. WIC is not an entitlement, but 
we have made a bipartisan, concerted effort in the past to make sure 
that everybody who qualifies and who needs it can actually get it. This 
is the first time since that commitment was established that the 
appropriations bill is providing less funding than what is needed to 
serve all eligible young children and pregnant or postpartum women.
  Now, Republicans argue that somehow they're not cutting anything, 
that everything will be okay. That's not at all the case. That's, in 
fact, a complete distortion. We are told by organizations that monitor 
this that as many as 350,000 women and children would be thrown off the 
program as a result of these cuts. That's a conservative estimate. And 
since we've passed the rule, which does not protect the amendment that 
Ms. DeLauro got into the appropriations bill, which basically said that 
we're going to increase WIC funding by cutting subsidies to Brazilian 
cotton farmers--that is not protected, so somebody on the other side of 
the aisle, I'm sure, will raise a point of order against that language, 
and just like that, $147 million will immediately be cut from the WIC 
program, throwing, again, 100,000 to 200,000 additional women and 
children off the program. This doesn't make any sense, Madam Chair.
  We're told by my friends on the other side of the aisle, well, don't 
worry, all the faith-based groups will take care of everything; that's 
what they're all there for. Well, talk to any leader in any faith-based 
community in this country, and they will tell you that they are working 
overtime right now to try to provide for the struggling families in 
their communities. In every part of this country, from urban to 
suburban to rural, faith-based communities are stepping up, but they 
cannot do it alone. They need us to be a partner. I don't know a single 
faith-based leader who would say to anybody in this Congress don't 
adequately fund WIC or don't adequately fund the TEFAP program or these 
other programs that provide food and nutrition to needy people.
  The fact of the matter is that is not an answer. To put the burden on 
the faith-based community is basically an excuse for us to do nothing, 
and that is just unacceptable.
  We've heard on the other side of the aisle, well, there are just so 
many programs out there, we're just eliminating all the duplication and 
triplication. Again, this is just another justification to try to 
rationalize the cuts that are being made here, but there's no basis of 
fact. That distortion ignores the fact that programs don't overlap; 
they complement each other. There is a difference between programs like 
SNAP and WIC and school lunch programs and summer feeding programs. 
They're not all the same. They're designed to complement each other. 
And in reality they do not provide enough benefits to eliminate hunger 
and food insecurity in this country.
  The problem is not that we're giving too much to low-income families. 
The problem is not that we're giving them too much food. That is not 
the problem. We have a hunger problem in the United States of America. 
Tens of millions of our fellow citizens don't have enough to eat. And 
we're the richest, most powerful country on the planet. We should be 
ashamed of that fact. We should be working overtime in this body to try 
to remedy that fact, to make sure that the neediest among us get what 
they need.
  By ignoring the plight of the poor, by ignoring the plight of those 
who are hungry in this country, they don't just all of a sudden go 
away. What we do is we end up creating other problems which turn out to 
be more costly. Hungry children can't learn in school. Hungry workers 
are less productive in the workplace. People who don't have enough to 
eat tend to have their immune systems compromised so that a common cold 
results in their staying in a hospital for a prolonged period of time. 
It costs this country a great deal that there is food insecurity in 
America. Hunger is not cheap. It costs a great deal, and we are paying 
billions and billions of dollars for that.
  I urge my colleagues to defeat this bill.
  Mr. BURTON of Indiana. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. BURTON of Indiana. Madam Chair, I don't know how old my colleague 
is who just spoke, but Lyndon Johnson worked very hard to pass what was 
called the Great Society. And when he passed the Great Society, he said 
we're going to do away with hunger, we're going to do away with poor 
people, we're going to do away with all the problems facing mankind in 
the United States. And what happened? Things are worse now than they've 
ever been with all these social programs.
  I just spoke a couple of minutes ago about what happened after World 
War II. In 1945 the spending was $84 billion. In 1946 it dropped 60 
percent to $30 billion. So a 60 percent reduction in spending, but it 
freed up money for the private sector, and as a result, in the next 2 
years there were 4\1/2\ million new jobs.
  All these giveaway programs and all these programs that you guys talk 
about indicating that we don't care about seniors, we don't care about 
kids, we don't care about anybody, we're heartless, the fact of the 
matter is the thing that's heartless is 9.1 percent unemployment. The 
President, when he took office, said he was going to keep it under 8 
percent. It's 9.1 and it's going up, not down. The economic figures we 
see today are terrible. Yet you want to continue to just keep spending 
money and spending money and spending money.
  What we need to do is we need to cut spending. We need to cut taxes 
so people will have more disposable income. We need to cut business 
taxes so that business has more money to invest so they'll create jobs 
and create plants and equipment. But, no, you want to just keep 
spending on these programs and don't want to make any cuts.
  Spending is out of control. The shortfall this year is going to be 
over $1.46 trillion. We don't have the money. The national debt is over 
$14 trillion right now, and it's going to get worse over the next 10 
years by about a trillion dollars a year.
  And yet every time we come down here and want to cut spending, you 
start saying we don't care about the poor, we don't care about the 
kids, we don't care about seniors. And then you see ads on TV with the 
little old lady's foot dragging as we throw her over the cliff.
  What kind of nonsense is that? If we don't get our fiscal house in 
order, we're all going over a cliff. This country is in terrible fiscal 
shape right now, and we have to get control of spending. And it really 
bothers me every time I come down here and I hear you guys talking 
about we don't care about the children, we don't care about the 
seniors, we don't care about anybody.
  What we care about is jobs and creating an economy that's growing so

[[Page H4132]]

that we can once again become the great economic power of the world. 
But everything that's going on with this administration and everything 
that you guys keep advocating is putting us more and more in the tank.
  And let me tell you something: The American people get it. And if you 
don't think they get it, look at what happened in the last election. 
People are tired of the spending, tired of the runaway, giveaway 
programs. They want jobs that will create a growing economy. And we're 
not going to get it with more and more spending.
  Keynesian economics, socialistic approaches to government do not 
work. Free enterprise does. And once again I want you to listen to 
these statistics:
  After 1945 we increased jobs by 4\1/2\ million. At the same time we 
cut spending by 60 percent because we freed up the free enterprise 
system. That's what we ought to be doing right now if we're going to 
lower unemployment and get this economy back on track.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. MOORE. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Wisconsin is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. MOORE. Madam Chair, I rise in strident opposition to the 
underlying bill.
  We've all heard Michael Masser and Linda Creed's lyrics, ``I believe 
the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the 
way.'' The song is sung by every megastar and quoted at every 
whistlestop by every politician.

                              {time}  1600

  Well, if we believe this, then our most basic and most fundamental 
obligation of a civilized society is not only to teach them well but to 
feed them.
  The WIC program is the USDA's largest discretionary program that 
provides assistance to children up to 5 years of age, to pregnant 
women, post-partum women, breast-feeding women who are nutritionally at 
risk because of inadequate nutrition and income.
  We've heard a great deal from the other side--just recently the 
previous speaker--talk about the importance of letting the free market 
system work, that we need jobs. Infants cannot work. They are helpless. 
And according to the most recent census, almost 20 percent of the 
Nation's children are living in poverty. A recent report estimates that 
the annual estimated cost of domestic hunger is $90.4 billion, the cost 
of hunger, the consequences of hunger.
  According to the American Community Survey, almost half of the 
children living in single, female-headed households in my district live 
in poverty and about 39 percent in Wisconsin are poor.
  This program represents in any decent society the basic obligation we 
have to our fellow citizens. Half of the babies born in our country 
each year rely on WIC. This bill cuts a devastating $650 million from 
the WIC program; and in my State, this represents about 4,800 people 
who would lose the WIC program.
  The Ryan budget cuts an astounding $833 million from the WIC program; 
and if you compare this to the Bush cuts, which gave the average 
millionaire a $139,199 tax break in 2011, or $2,700 a week, that comes 
up to a total of $866 million to the wealthiest people in 1 week. One 
week of the Bush-era tax cuts would pay that WIC for a year for the 20 
percent of our kids in this country who are hungry. So that really, in 
my mind, demonstrates what the priorities of this body are. One week of 
the Bush-era tax cuts could feed and fund this program.
  Now, if you truly believe that children are our future, note that 
numerous studies have shown that pregnant women who participate in the 
WIC program have longer pregnancies, lead to fewer premature births, 
fewer low and very low birth weight babies, experience fewer fetal and 
infant deaths, seek prenatal care earlier in pregnancy, and consume 
more of such key nutrients as iron, protein, calcium, vitamins A and C.
  Now, if you're not moved by the whole children are our future bit, at 
least be persuaded that not investing in WIC is a costly proposition, 
and I know the other side is very concerned about costs because several 
Members have pointed out that we have all these multiple feeding 
programs. They're concerned with fraud, and God forbid some of these 
kids might be getting three, four, five meals a day based on funding of 
all these programs.
  But pre-term births cost the U.S. over $26 billion a year, with the 
average first-year medical costs of the premature, low birth weight 
baby roughly costing $49,000 compared to $4,500 for a baby born without 
complications. WIC prenatal care benefits reduce the rate of low birth 
weight babies by 25 percent.
  Now, for those of you who support these gargantuan ag subsidies, 
moneys for the various wealthy, I commend to you the words of Theodore 
Parker, a minister and abolitionist in the early 19th century who's 
been quoted by both Abraham Lincoln, our 16th President, and by Dr. 
Martin Luther King, in their epic speeches. Theodore Parker said, ``The 
miser, starving his brother's body, starves also his own soul, and at 
death shall creep out of his great estate of injustice, poor and naked 
and miserable.''
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I move to strike the last word.
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. First of all, I think it would be real interesting, my 
friend from Massachusetts, and I mentioned this to you yesterday. I 
think we would both enjoy to see what the results would be if we 
googled our hearing and put in the word ``hunger'' and put in the word 
``obesity,'' which one showed up the most; and I believe you are going 
to find we talked far more about obesity than we did about hunger.
  The question that I have is, on the hunger, there are so many food 
programs out there and this bill does have a $5.6 billion increase in 
food stamps and $1.5 billion increase in school lunch, that maybe you 
and I together could focus on where this hunger is because it could be 
that there's maybe an ignorance issue more than a hunger issue, 
ignorance in that people do not know how to get these programs that are 
out there.
  Let me yield to my friend from Massachusetts.
  Mr. McGOVERN. Let me just say that I don't think poor people are 
ignorant.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Then let me reclaim the time, because I'm trying to 
have an adult conversation, and I clarified what ``ignorant'' means, 
and if you don't know about a program, then you're ignorant about its 
existence.
  Mr. McGOVERN. If the gentleman will yield, I would also say, the 
gentleman raised the issue of obesity. There is a relationship between 
food insecurity and obesity and poverty and obesity. And so what we're 
talking about here is the importance of good nutrition, and the fact of 
the matter is that a lot of the people that we are trying to target 
some of these programs to don't have access to good nutrition. They 
live in food deserts where they can't buy good food, where they can't 
afford fresh fruits and vegetables.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Let me reclaim the time, because I wanted to continue 
the discussion. One of the things that perhaps we could do a better job 
at is not only explaining to people where these programs are but also 
coordinating the actual program.
  Now, the previous speaker said that some children--and I can't quote 
her exactly--might be getting four or five meals a day. I think it 
would be good in a time of fiscal restraint that we talk about, well, 
can we coordinate better.
  Let me yield to my friend.
  Mr. McGOVERN. I think we're all for efficiency and good coordination, 
but I just want to read one line from a letter that Secretary Vilsack 
sent up here, where he says that he is confident the proposed funding 
level in your bill would lead to a substantial reduction in the 
program, meaning the WIC program, likely by hundreds of thousands of 
participants per month. That is substantial. That is something we can't 
afford.
  Mr. KINGSTON. And that is substantial. But let me say this, the 
numbers that we're operating on, 2010, there were 9.2 million 
participants. This year, it's 8.9. Next year, the projection is less 
than that because 450,000 people less are on it. The base number on the 
bill would be about 8.3 million; but with the contingency funds, it 
could go over 9 million people. And as I have said to my friend from 
Massachusetts

[[Page H4133]]

before, we want to make sure no one falls through the cracks.
  But I'm looking at these numbers, too, and I know that the group that 
has been cited many times, the numbers that they're using are a 
different base than what we're using. So I think some of this is 
actually about, well, what is that level, and I'm thinking it is the 8 
to 9 million.
  I yield to my friend.
  Mr. McGOVERN. I would also just point out to the gentleman that 
there's another phenomenon going on here, and that is the rising cost 
of food. So the numbers that group that you're referring to has 
mentioned are pretty conservative. Food costs have been going up and up 
and up, and I think every American family can feel that. As a result, 
we're going to need to step up and not undermine these programs that, 
quite frankly, provide people basic nutrition of food.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I agree that there is an unknown factor on the rising 
cost of food that we're not sure about.
  Will the gentleman also agree with me, though--and we've had a very 
spirited debate, which I know my friend----
  Mr. McGOVERN. But it's not an unknown factor. Food prices are rising.
  Mr. KINGSTON. We don't know the percentage food prices are rising, 
but we do know that this budget would allow with contingencies 9 
million to participate, which is above the current level.
  Now, I'm hoping that the economy does turn around, but I think it's 
very important, though, for us to be talking about some of these things 
that are in the mix like solid numbers, coordination of benefits, and 
also sources that people can go to, because the gentleman said, Folks 
don't know about this program, and we want to help them out.

                              {time}  1610

  Ms. DeLAURO. I want to offer some solid numbers.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Let me yield to my friend from Connecticut with the 
hopes that when my time runs out, my friend will yield to me as well.
  The Acting CHAIR (Mr. Bishop of Utah). The time of the gentleman has 
expired.
  Ms. CHU. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. CHU. Mr. Chair, I rise in strong opposition to the underlying 
bill where the House GOP guts critical food assistance programs that 
help America's low-income and less fortunate families at a time when 
they need it the most. This is yet another chapter in the Republican 
attack on working families to give handouts to special interests. First 
they came after seniors who rely on Medicare, and now they're coming 
after our young children and their mothers.
  Millions of Americans are now struggling to get through the worst 
economy since the Great Depression, and America's food assistance 
programs are proving to be an essential safety net for the jobless and 
low-income families of America. At a time when the need is greater than 
it's been in generations, Congress should be reaffirming our commitment 
to helping these needy families, not pulling the rug out from under 
them. But alarmingly, that's just what the Republican Agriculture 
appropriations bill does.
  This bill slashes funding for the nutrition program for Women, 
Infants, and Children by $686 million. WIC is a program that provides 
low-income pregnant women, new mothers, infants, and children with 
nutritious foods and improved access to health care. This funding is 
critical to ensuring America's new mothers, babies, and young children 
are fed right and grow up to be healthy, happy kids. But these slash-
and-burn cuts completely end food assistance for up to 350,000 low-
income women and children nationwide. Republicans, take the target off 
these kids.
  Now let's distinguish between wasteful spending and investments that 
help the less fortunate get back on their feet. How can anyone say that 
WIC is wasteful when it serves nearly 10 million people each year for 
less than $100 per person? To some, these dollars may not sound like 
much, but they mean all the difference for mothers like Amanda.
  Amanda was blessed with three children after she was told she 
couldn't even have one. But working in the food industry simply wasn't 
enough to support a family and certainly not one with as many needs as 
Amanda's. She has one son with disabilities, another that was born 
prematurely, and a third that requires special formula. All these 
demands quickly stretched her finances and her time. She couldn't 
afford the basics for her baby, like cereal, peanut butter, milk, and 
juice, much less the special formula that kept her son healthy. She was 
struggling to get by. But with WIC's help, she was able to make ends 
meet and even found time to get her bachelor's and master's through 
online classes while raising her kids. Now she is a registered nurse 
working on her Ph.D. And it was taking that first step to join WIC that 
helped keep her children healthy and helped her make a better life for 
her family. We should be investing in Amanda and her children, the 
future of our country, not leaving them to fend for themselves.
  But instead of helping build a stronger American workforce for our 
future, the Republicans are providing more breaks so Big Oil can line 
their pockets. This same bill blocks efforts to rein in oil speculators 
that are manipulating the energy markets at the expense of American 
families at the pump. And, in fact, in April, Goldman Sachs found that 
this type of unregulated speculation adds over 20 percent to the price 
of oil, and that's why our gasoline prices are going sky high.
  So what was the Republican reaction to this? They slashed $30 million 
in funding from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission which would 
stop this illegal speculation in the oil markets. So, as they gut 
funding from struggling mothers and tiny babies like this, Republicans 
are keeping gas prices high and pouring more profit into Big Oil's 
coffers.
  We cannot balance the Nation's budget on the backs of everyday 
Americans just so that Big Oil can make big profits. Stop these cruel 
cuts to women, children, and infants.
  Ms. FUDGE. Mr. Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Ohio is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. FUDGE. Mr. Chair, I rise in opposition to the underlying bill.
  A mother's greatest fear is not being able to provide food and 
security for her children, not being able to provide nourishment for 
her kids to grow up and to learn. She worries about where she will find 
their next meal. Each morning, she is greeted by growling stomachs and 
an all-too familiar sense of anxiety. This mother is desperate to 
provide food for her hungry children and depends on our local food 
banks. But when she arrives at the food bank, she finds that the 
shelves are empty. That is the time at which her anxiety turns to fear 
and desperation.
  Some of you might think that I am exaggerating, but if you come to my 
district and visit the city of Cleveland and other parts of my 
district, you can meet people who, for them, this is their reality, 
just as it is the reality for people throughout this Nation who rely on 
essential nutrition programs like TEFAP, WIC, and SNAP.
  The Emergency Food Assistance Program, better known as TEFAP, 
provides food to low-income Americans in need of short-term hunger 
relief through food banks. This bill caps TEFAP funding at $200 
million, which is a $51 million cut; and, in addition to that, another 
$12 million in grants for TEFAP for storage and distribution equipment 
is also being cut. These cuts affect the storage of food that requires 
refrigeration, forcing many food banks to only provide unhealthy, 
nonperishable foods.
  And to my friend Mr. Kingston, there is, indeed, a correlation 
between hunger and obesity. Twenty-five percent of the food distributed 
at Cleveland food banks is from TEFAP, and it is some of the most 
nutritious food they have available. Even without the cuts that are 
proposed in this bill, food banks are facing a shortage of food, 
impairing their ability to provide for their communities. Parents turn 
to food banks especially in the summer when school is out, when their 
children no longer have a guaranteed breakfast and/or lunch 5 days a 
week.
  And it didn't stop at TEFAP. Also on the chopping block is funding 
for WIC

[[Page H4134]]

and SNAP. Nearly 50 percent of the babies born in this country each 
year rely on WIC. The proposed cuts to SNAP and WIC would result in 
hundreds of thousands of low-income women, infants, and children losing 
needed nutrition assistance. These massive cuts to WIC would force 
vulnerable families to go hungry, to be completely dependent on food 
banks which, unfortunately, are losing vital funding through this 
legislation.
  WIC provides food to almost 9 million low-income pregnant and nursing 
women and young children. This bill cuts WIC by over $800 million; and 
it's estimated that, because of these cuts, between 350,000 and 475,000 
mothers and young children will be eliminated from the program. If we 
can just get rid of the tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires 
for 1 week, as my colleague has said, we can pay for the entire WIC 
program for an entire year. These cuts will cripple families and could 
have a detrimental effect on the futures of these children.
  A quarter of the people in my district have difficulty accessing 
affordable food. But the chairman, Mr. Rogers, indicated, ``this 
legislation reflects hard decisions to cut lower priority programs so 
that our Nation continues on the path to fiscal recovery.''
  To a hungry child, SNAP and WIC are not low-priority programs. These 
cuts will not set our Nation on a path to recovery but, rather, make it 
significantly more difficult for mothers to ensure the safety and 
health of their children.
  So what we are doing is punishing children for being poor. That is 
what we are doing. We're not talking about, necessarily, adults. 
Children have done nothing to us. I don't know how we sleep at night. 
The Bible tells us--and I know my friends like to talk about faith, and 
I am a person of strong faith. The Bible tells us that the poor will 
always be among us. So we need to make a provision to take care of the 
poor.
  First, Republicans came after seniors who rely on Medicare, and now 
they're coming after children and mothers who rely on food assistance. 
Who's next, Mr. Chair?
  I urge my colleagues to oppose this legislation and protect our 
children and pregnant women.

                              {time}  1620

  Mr. DAVIS of Illinois. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Illinois is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. DAVIS of Illinois. Mr. Chairman, I rise in strong opposition to 
the underlying bill, H.R. 2112, because of the deep cuts to the Women, 
Infants and Children's program.
  I've always been told that you can measure the greatness of a society 
by how well it treats its young, how well it treats its old, and how 
well it treats those who have difficulty caring for themselves. All of 
us know that there is no way that children, infants, can adequately 
care for themselves.
  The WIC program serves pregnant women through pregnancy up to 6 weeks 
after birth, or after pregnancy ends; breast-feeding women up to the 
infant's first birthday; and non-breast-feeding women up to 6 months 
after the birth of an infant or after the pregnancy ends, as well as 
infants up to their first birthday and children up to age 5.
  Poverty and an identified medical or nutritional risk are two 
eligibility requirements. Nutritious foods, nutrition education, and 
referrals to maternal and child health services are among the program's 
benefits. WIC serves 45 percent of all infants born in the United 
States.
  Now, there is no way that anyone can suggest that any of these 
individuals, especially the children, had anything at all to do with 
their level of poverty or the fact that there is not nutritious food 
available to them. And even if there were not food deserts, they 
wouldn't have the money to purchase what was available.
  How one can reconcile taking milk out of the mouth of babes, or how 
one can suggest that some way or another we are spending money when, as 
the gentlelady from Wisconsin pointed out, the additional health care 
cost resulting as a result of the individual's not having basic food 
and care far outweighs any money that you could possibly spend.
  And so it's not a matter of spending. It's a matter of investing. How 
do you invest in America? You invest by providing for those who have 
the greatest amount of need.
  I know that we debate whether or not we are spending more than we're 
taking in. Well, there's a way to rectify that. We just take in more. 
We just charge people more who can afford to pay.
  I don't believe in overspending. I don't believe in having huge 
deficits. But I don't believe in seeing people suffer and die because 
the society in which they live will not provide for them the basic 
necessities of life.
  I urge we vote against this legislation.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. NUGENT. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Florida is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. NUGENT. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  I do want to continue the discussion which we've had with our friends 
on the other side by pointing out something I think is very important. 
I have the vote from the CLAIMS Act, November 30, 2010, on which I 
voted ``no.'' This vote cut WIC $562 million. So far every speaker 
who's been on the floor voted ``yes'' to this bill. So in terms of 
following the rhetoric, it's very difficult.
  I also want to point out we had a vote earlier this year, no, late 
last year, on extending the Bush tax cuts. I voted ``no.'' Did others 
on that side vote ``no''?
  I'm glad my friend from Connecticut did.
  I also want to point out we had a vote last week on the Kucinich 
amendment to get us out of Libya. I voted ``no'' on that. I'm not sure 
how you guys voted. I know my friend, Mr. McGovern, has been an 
absolute, very consistent critic of the money that we are spending and 
engagement we are having in the Middle East. And I respect his 
philosophy on that.
  But the reason I want to point this out is because it appears that 
when one side tries to cut the budget, they're pushing children out the 
door. But when another side cuts the budget, it's okay.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. KINGSTON. The gentleman from Florida controls the time, and I 
recommend that he does yield to you.
  Mr. NUGENT. I yield to the gentlelady from Connecticut.
  Ms. DeLAURO. I thank the gentleman from Florida and the gentleman 
from Georgia. Let me first comment on the $562 million. There have been 
several references to this in the course of the afternoon. This is the 
truth of this effort: $562 million in unspent WIC funds were cut last 
year. But the cut did not affect any participants. The reason it didn't 
affect participants is that WIC foods cost less. There were fewer 
participants in fiscal year 2010, so the funds were not needed. That 
shows you that because there was extra money in WIC last year, the 
funds----
  Mr. NUGENT. Reclaiming my time, I yield to the gentleman from 
Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I want to comment on that. But that's exactly what 
we're doing.
  Ms. DeLAURO. But the----
  Mr. KINGSTON. My friend from Connecticut, you know that's what we're 
doing.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Can I finish?
  The Acting CHAIR. Members will suspend. The gentleman from Florida 
controls the time. To whom does he yield?
  Mr. NUGENT. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia has the time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. The participation in WIC in 2010 was $9.2 million. 
Today it's about $8.8 million. This bill, because the level has dropped 
and is dropping, is at a level of $8.3 million, but can go over $9 
million with the contingency. So I believe that when you cut WIC last 
year, you did it in good faith. I would only ask that you give us that 
good faith too.
  Ms. DeLAURO. If the gentleman from Florida would continue to yield, 
the cut in this bill is different because it does result in the loss of 
benefits to

[[Page H4135]]

participants. That's not my word, but the Secretary of Agriculture has 
said hundreds of thousands.
  And from our last conversation, which we didn't finish, you asked 
about rising food prices. And this is from the Center for Budget and 
Policy Priorities. I'm not making up the numbers. If the cost of WIC 
foods increases by 2 percent between fiscal years 2000 and 2012, the 
smallest increase likely, the proposed funding cut would force WIC to 
serve roughly 200,000 fewer people in 2012 and 2011. If it goes to 5 
percent, the food cost, you'd have to cut roughly 350,000 people. These 
are actual numbers.
  Mr. NUGENT. Reclaiming my time, I yield to the gentleman from 
Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Let me say my friend from Connecticut will agree, 
though, that if you, on your side, had not cut WIC $562 million, that 
money would still be there right now.
  Ms. DeLAURO. The fact of the matter is what we are not asking about 
is not utilizing funds if we don't need them.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Florida is yielding to the 
gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. The point that I'm making, Mr. Chair, is that WIC is 
$562 million, not because of any Republican action, but because of the 
Democrat action. And you know what? I don't question anyone's motives 
on this side, and I admire their passion. And my friend from 
Connecticut is one of the most passionate persons in this body when it 
comes to WIC. And I respect that.
  But we also have to look at some of these numbers because if they're 
just air-dropped into this bill, then I can certainly understand their 
outrage. But if we look at the long term, where WIC was 2 or 3 years 
ago, where it's going, and the fact that there are three contingency 
funds to pick up the slack on this, not to mention a number of other 
good programs.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.

                              {time}  1630

  Mr. COHEN. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Tennessee is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. COHEN. The gentleman from Illinois (Mr. Davis) brought up a quote 
about how you look at government. And it was Hubert Humphrey who said 
that governments are judged on how they treat those in the dawn of 
life--the young; in the twilight of life--the old; and the shadows of 
life--the disabled, people with handicaps. And that is the way you 
should judge it. I sometimes think with this budget and what we're 
seeing here from the other side is they think the way you judge a 
government is by the way it treats the millionaires, the billionaires, 
the way it treats the oil and gas industry, or the way it treats the 
Wall Street folks who do the hedge funds. And I think if that's the way 
you're being judged, it's going to be a harsh, harsh condemnation.
  My friend from Indiana (Mr. Burton) came down and he spoke and he 
said something about, look at what happened in the last election. Well, 
I'll tell you what happened in the last election--it was in New York 
State and the people spoke loudly. In a district that in 2010 was 
strongly Republican, they said we don't want Medicare destroyed, we 
want to keep Medicare, and they elected a Democrat. And the people are 
seeing what these budget cuts are doing.
  One of the reasons we've got all these problems and the reasons why 
we have more and more people falling into needs for the SNAP program 
and the WIC program and others is because the middle class is 
disappearing in this country because jobs are being shipped overseas. 
We're giving millionaires and billionaires tax breaks, and we're saying 
everybody should share, but the sharing isn't going to the rich; it's 
only going to the poor people, and they're getting cut and cut and cut.
  This WIC program, Women, Infants and Children, should be the last 
place anybody would consider cutting, it should be the absolute totally 
last place; and yet the cuts are there, 13 percent. The fact is those 
people are in the place in life where if we don't give moneys to the 
food for pregnant mothers we're going to have more infant mortality. In 
my district, we've got an infant mortality rate similar to Third World 
countries. We've tried to have programs passed up here to deal with 
infant mortality and to study it and to try to save the lives of 
babies, and we're not going to be doing that.
  I've heard a lot from the other side about being pro-life. We have a 
difference on that. I'm pro-choice, but I'm pro-life after birth. And 
pro-life shouldn't just be during a period of gestation; it should 
include a time after birth. And we're not hearing pro-life-type 
statements and pro-life-type budget provisions; it is all about saving 
money on the backs of the poor. This is something that is not 
appropriate, and it's something that I think should shame the other 
side.
  Mr. Kingston is a fine man. I heard him say he voted against the Bush 
tax cuts, which I did. I got confused on what you did on Libya, but I 
don't know what that had to do with it. You voted with Kucinich? Well, 
I didn't. I don't know what it has to do with women, infants, and 
children. There's a whole lot going on in Africa. That's another issue.
  The bottom line is he's a good man, but he has a bad provision here, 
and he could see to it that we change that. The women and the infants 
and the children are dependent on the man from Georgia to try to come 
up with a provision to help them.
  The lady from Connecticut wanted some more time a few minutes ago, 
and I would like to yield to her on this issue.
  Ms. DeLAURO. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  The point was is that we are looking at the potential and the fact of 
increased food prices. And again, the numbers are not mine, they belong 
to an organization that has very good credentials on both sides of the 
aisle in this town, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. They 
are very clear that if that 2 percent increase in food price--and 
that's viewed as the smallest increase likely--happens, we will see 
roughly 200,000 fewer people. If it's a 5 percent increase in food 
prices, that there would be a cut of 350,000.
  The Secretary of Agriculture said that the proposed amount of money 
would lead to hundreds of thousands of people being eliminated from the 
program. He also is very clear, as others have been, that there is no 
carryover money, there is no contingency fund. And the Center on Budget 
and Policy Priorities reiterates the same effort.
  With regard to the $562 million, my only point on that was, I am 
willing, others are willing to say if the funds are not needed at that 
juncture and they are extra, yes, they can be used for something else. 
No one is saying that the numbers have to be static all of the time. 
But the fact of the matter is we are in a different period in 2011 
going into 2012, where there is much more serious economic difficulty--
rising food prices, rising rates of people who need these programs--and 
we're just saying let's have the money that we need in order to move 
forward.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Ms. MATSUI. Mr. Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. MATSUI. I rise today in opposition to the underlying bill. This 
legislation makes dangerous cuts to essential antihunger and nutrition 
programs.
  In addition to their plan to privatize Medicare, House Republicans 
are now proposing to cut the Women, Infants and Children program, 
otherwise known as WIC. This is a much-needed, Federally funded health 
and nutrition program which provides support, resources, and education 
to low-income women.
  This preventative public health nutrition program connects mothers 
with prenatal care, increases healthy birth outcomes, and educates new 
mothers about caring for their children and providing healthy food 
options for their families.
  In my home State of California, there are 82 WIC agencies serving 
over 1.4 million women, infants, and children, but the bill before us 
today cuts $650 million from the program, and these cuts we cannot 
afford to make.
  There are two WIC programs at work in my district, and I recently saw 
firsthand the critical demand and needs for

[[Page H4136]]

their services. I witnessed a long line of women trying to provide for 
their families and trying to receive the support they need to have a 
healthy pregnancy. This WIC office alone has a case load of over 32,000 
individuals a month but can only serve 30,000 because of a lack of 
resources.
  In this economic downturn, people who never before knew about WIC now 
find themselves relying on its services to feed their families. These 
include State workers who were furloughed, nurses and teachers who have 
lost their jobs. Unfortunately, demand for these programs is 
increasing, not decreasing. With Sacramento's unemployment rate at 12 
percent, these resources are not only needed and appreciated but are 
vital.
  One recipient is a mother who once thought WIC was only about giving 
free food or formula to low-income families, but her perspective about 
the program changed dramatically when she enrolled in the program 
herself. As she was expecting her first and only child, she entered the 
program to help her family make ends meet. Throughout her pregnancy, 
she received nutrition information and referrals. Unfortunately, she 
was diagnosed with gestational diabetes, but because she was on WIC at 
the time she was seen by a dietitian every month. With WIC's support, 
her baby was born healthy and she had the support she needed to provide 
for her family.
  But the cuts in this legislation do not end at WIC. The Commodity 
Supplemental Food Program, which helps supplement meals for low-income 
individuals, and The Emergency Food Assistance Program, otherwise known 
as TEFAP, which provides food banks with food they distribute, are both 
on the chopping block.
  A month ago, I visited the Stanford Settlement Senior Center, which 
participates in the California Emergency Foodlink Senior Brown Bag 
Lunch run by volunteers, many of whom are recipients themselves. The 
California Emergency Foodlink distributes over 80,000 pounds of food 
per month to approximately 8,000 low-income seniors in need in 
Sacramento County. For many of these seniors this is the only 
nutritious food they will have for a week. TEFAP also provides funding 
for approximately 18 percent of food that comes into the Sacramento 
food bank. This food bank provides a 5-day supply of emergency 
groceries to those who are struggling to get by, and over 18,000 
individuals receive fresh groceries from this site every month.
  In addition to all of the cuts I've mentioned, the legislation also 
includes report language to stop the process of updating the school 
nutrition standards. It is essential for our students to have the 
nutrition they need to be productive and successful at school. In the 
Sacramento City Unified School District, approximately 67 percent of 
students are eligible for free and reduced lunches. Without an 
investment in proper nutrition, these students will not only fall 
behind in their studies, they can also face serious health issues.

                              {time}  1640

  Unfortunately, the legislation before us proposes some of the hardest 
cuts to endure. I urge my colleagues to oppose this legislation.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Wyoming is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Mr. Chairman, the speakers have chosen to cut $562 
million out of WIC, which would have carried forward into this year, 
and this year would have carried forward into next year. That's because 
the WIC Program has a 2-year carryover. So, when the previous speakers 
voted to cut WIC by $562 million, they truly were cutting money that 
could have been available now.
  The reason they chose to cut that is they found a higher priority 
expenditure than WIC, and when they made that choice, they took that 
money out of the program, money which could have been available now. 
They did that based on real numbers of WIC participation, not on 
estimates. They did it on real numbers, and the real numbers showed 
that WIC participation was in decline.
  We are now looking at about 8.3 million per month in WIC 
participation with about 9 million per month fundable via contingency. 
We are looking at funding WIC at 87 percent of what it has been. We're 
not looking at decimating it. We're not looking, like some people have 
said on the other side, at levels that will cause children to go hungry 
or to starve, as one of the people said on the other side of the aisle. 
We're funding it at 87 percent of the level it has been. In addition, 
there are State food programs. There are county food programs. There 
are city food programs. There are religious organization food programs. 
There is the Salvation Army--501(c)(3)-type programs--neighborhood 
programs, Meals on Wheels programs, food banks; and there are 
goodhearted, wonderful Americans who help their neighbors in need.
  This is an adequate budget in tough economic times. In addition, as I 
said earlier, we are funding a net increase in food programs because we 
are increasing the amount of money that will go to food stamps and 
school lunches.
  Mr. McGOVERN. Will the gentlelady yield?
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I yield to the gentleman from Massachusetts.
  Mr. McGOVERN. I thank the gentlelady for yielding.
  I guess my question to the gentlelady is: Does she believe we do not 
have a hunger or a food and security problem in this country and that 
everything is being taken care of?
  My other question is: Why are Brazilian cotton farmers more important 
than poor pregnant women and their children?--because that's another 
choice we're making here.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. In reclaiming my time, I do not believe that cotton 
farmers in either the United States or Brazil are more important than 
WIC Program participants.
  Mr. McGOVERN. Do you believe we have a hunger problem?
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Mr. Chairman, our committee is only able to look at 
discretionary spending. We cannot look at mandatory spending, and we 
cannot look at programs that are subject to the 5-year farm bill, such 
as subsidies for farmers. I think subsidies for farmers can go by the 
wayside, and I hope that when the Ag Committee meets to restructure the 
5-year farm bill that they will do away with farmer subsidies.
  I think it is ridiculous that we are paying cotton growers subsidies 
in this country that violate the World Trade Organization to an extent 
that we then have to subsidize Brazilian cotton growers in order to 
rectify our violation of the WTO. That's one of the most ridiculous 
things I've ever heard. I wish we could have addressed that in this 
bill.
  I wish we could have addressed the categorical eligibility that is 
available. Once you qualify for one type of Federal program, you're 
eligible for all of them whether you need them or not. I wish we could 
address how much money people get on earned income tax credits. I wish 
we could make sure that 100 percent of the people in this country paid 
a little bit of tax and that the rich people paid a lot more.
  None of that is true, and none of that is within the purview of the 
Appropriations Committee with regard to discretionary spending.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. WOOLSEY. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. WOOLSEY. I rise in opposition to the underlying bill. Mr. 
Chairman, it is often said that a society can be judged by how it 
treats its young, its elderly and the less fortunate. Today is a 
perfect example of that.
  Instead of feeding the women, infants and children, it appears that 
the Republicans in Congress are slashing the Ag budget to make room for 
more tax breaks for the wealthy. Let's have a look at how these 
priorities balance out. If we got rid of tax breaks for millionaires 
and billionaires for one measly week, we would pay for the entire WIC 
Program for a year--a full year. So let's get this straight.
  During these times when there is a job shortage, when a person has a 
job but wages are lower than they should be, when the cost of food is 
very high and when we have low taxes on the

[[Page H4137]]

rich, pregnant women will go hungry and their babies will be born 
underweight so that someone can afford another beach vacation. Kids 
will go without breakfast so that someone can buy a second home.
  First, the Republicans in Congress passed the Ryan budget act to 
dismantle Medicare for our seniors and for our disabled. Now they want 
to take food from the mouths of needy children and women. Honestly, Mr. 
Chairman, I don't know how they sleep at night.
  This shouldn't be a partisan issue. There are WIC recipients in every 
single congressional district in this country--red States, blue States. 
Hunger doesn't see political affiliation. This is not some abstract 
political theory. There are real women and children in every single 
congressional district who will have to forgo meals. How many of us 
have ever given up a meal so that a child could eat or have explained 
to a 3-year-old why there won't be lunch today or have soothed a crying 
baby who won't get formula?
  We should end this shameful spending of $10 billion a month in 
Afghanistan. We should bring our troops home. We should stop the war 
tax. We should tax millionaires and billionaires. We should create 
jobs. We should vote against this bill. Let's show America's working 
families that we stand with them and that we will be there for them 
during times of need.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Mr. Chairman, I know this is a very, very 
tough state of affairs and time frame that we are in. I also know this 
is a time when America calls upon all of us to stand not for our 
individual selfish interests but to look at the country as a united 
team that believes in lifting the boats of all people.
  I want to thank my friends who have struggled on this committee to 
deal with the bare necessities of life, of food. That is why I come 
today, unfortunately, to oppose this legislation, because it does not 
take into account that without sustenance and nutrition that people 
die.

                              {time}  1650

  It is plain and simple. We are not talking about knicknacks or 
trains, buses, highways, bridges, all very important and job creators, 
and in fact efforts that the Democrats have made very clear that they 
are the job creating caucus for the press and push that we have made or 
are making in America. We have asked our colleagues to join us. But 
today we talk about feeding people.
  I rose earlier today to say that it is in the DNA of the 18th 
Congressional District, because one of my predecessors, Mickey Leland, 
actually died delivering food to starving people around the world. He 
thought so much of hunger in America that he organized the Select 
Committee on Hunger, joined by Tony Hall and Congressman Emerson; and 
his legacy was that we cannot do without substance.
  So it makes no sense to cut $3 billion from WIC; a WIC program that 
indicates that WIC moms are more likely to have initiated breast 
feeding than low-income non-WIC moms. Middle- to high-income moms are 
more likely to have initiated breast feeding than both WIC and low-
income non-WIC. One in five children do not drink water easily. WIC 
children were more likely to drink juice daily than children not on 
WIC. Ninety-three percent of children drink milk daily. About one-
quarter of all children had drunk seven or more sugar-sweetened 
beverages in the previous week. These are without the ability to have 
nutritious meals. This is in my own State of Texas, which indicates 
that food does not matter in terms of how wealthy a State may be.
  So I can't imagine why, as my colleagues have said, we can't find $3 
billion from the $10 billion a month that is being spent in Afghanistan 
and the moneys that have been stolen in Iraq, where we don't even know 
where it is. It is all about priorities.
  So I rise today to express great consternation over the cut in WIC 
and to indicate that WIC is about growing, it is about providing 
nutrition so that children can think, so that they can be able to be 
strong leaders. It is to grow children healthy, it is to stop disease, 
it is to provide the kind of immune system that thwarts disease.
  In a State like Texas, the 18th Congressional District which I 
represent has a strong work ethic. I am so proud of them. But they also 
have a rate of poverty that is frightening. Food insecurity in my 
district ranks number 32 in the Nation. That means that there are only 
31 districts ahead that have that degree of food insecurity. And yet I 
am going to have to go home and tell them that the priorities of this 
Congress were something other than feeding children and providing 
mothers, prenatal and prenatal condition and after birth, the kind of 
resources to provide for a healthy child.
  That means my pre-K little babies will be going to school hungry. 
That means they will come home to a non-dinner. And that means that we 
as a country have failed in our natural value that we all are created 
equal with certain inalienable rights of life and liberty and the 
pursuit of happiness.
  It is shocking to be able to stand here today and know they are 
cutting Medicare and Medicaid, and now they add insult to injury that 
they are cutting food stamps and the WIC program. So I guess our 
soldiers, who themselves, young soldiers, young families on food 
stamps, will suffer as well.
  But the WIC program, that has gotten blamed for everything but what 
is right, and that is the Women, Infants and Children program provides 
nutrition for healthy children, and to stand here today to have to look 
Americans in the face and those in the 18th Congressional District who 
are 32nd in food insecurity and say that we do not have the money.
  Mr. Chairman, I am asking my colleagues to go back to the drawing 
board. Don't put this bill on the floor. Take it off, because you are 
now handing to the children of this Nation a ticket that says no food 
at the end, no food at this table, no food.
  Mr. CICILLINE. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Rhode Island is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. CICILLINE. I rise in opposition to the underlying bill.
  Mr. Chair, I rise today in defense of 76,000 residents of the First 
Congressional District of Rhode Island, which I have the privilege of 
representing who, according to the advocacy group Feeding America, are 
at risk of losing their ability to feed themselves and their families. 
That is because this week the majority party in the House is ready to 
vote on a measure that will undermine the safety net in this country 
designed for our Nation's women, infants and children.
  Mr. Chairman, we all know that one of the greatest challenges before 
us is reducing our deficit, but we have to do it in a way that is 
consistent with our values, consistent with the values of our great 
country. And this week we will be voting on a measure that fails those 
values miserably.
  If the majority party has their way and denies necessary funding to a 
critical safety net for some of our Nation's most vulnerable citizens, 
nearly 1,000 women, infants and children in Rhode Island's First 
District will be denied the assistance they need to survive.
  WIC represents the most basic obligation we have to our fellow 
citizens most in need--food and nutrition. On top of that, it is an 
incredibly cost-effective program, serving nearly 10 million Americans 
each year and costing less than $100 per person. In my district, more 
than 18 percent of the residents suffer from food insecurity and depend 
on WIC to make ends meet.
  At a time when the middle class in our country is being crushed with 
high unemployment and still reeling from a housing crisis that has left 
countless families in foreclosure, we are seeing more and more people 
in need of assistance just to get by. And it is not just affecting 
people without jobs. It is folks who have a job as well, but they have 
had their wages cut or they have had their wages diminished or their 
hours cut.
  This is not the time to allow people to lose the lifelines they need 
to survive. We have helped the auto industry. We have helped big banks. 
It is time to sustain support for families that are most in need and 
have been most devastated by this difficult economy.
  Yet we see again this week another attack by the Republican majority 
in

[[Page H4138]]

the House on working families while they continue to fight to protect 
subsidies for Big Oil and to protect tax breaks for the outsourcing of 
jobs overseas. First they come after seniors by trying to end Medicare, 
and now they are coming after women, children, and infants who rely on 
food assistance.
  We should not be destroying programs upon which citizens rely for 
their most basic needs in order to fund tax breaks for millionaires and 
billionaires or big subsidies for the big oil companies. If we got rid 
of tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires for one week, we could 
pay for the entire WIC program for an entire year.
  I urge my colleagues to reject this proposal, to ensure instead that 
families most in need who have been hardest hit by this recession have 
access to food and nourishment. We have the ability to provide 
nourishment to families, and that is a cornerstone of a free and decent 
society. We cannot abandon this great responsibility.
  I yield to the gentlelady from Wisconsin.
  Ms. MOORE. Thank you so much for yielding.
  I just wanted a few seconds to clarify something I have heard over 
and over again. We continue to say that first they have come after the 
seniors with Medicare and Medicaid and now they are coming after the 
children. No. We ended the entitlement to AFDC back in the nineties, 
and WIC is not an entitlement like the SNAP program, the food stamp 
program. It is not an entitlement like school lunch programs.
  So what this bill does is it double-downs on not providing food to 
infants and children. No, we have already cut the entitlement and 
snatched the safety net from underneath kids. This double-downs on 
that. We have torn the safety net for children, and now we are pulling 
it through the shredder for the second time.
  As a person who has personally had sugar sandwiches, mayonnaise 
sandwiches and mustard sandwiches, I can tell you that funding this 
program at only 87 percent of its value will mean we will see a lot 
more malnourishment in our communities.
  Mr. CICILLINE. I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. BARTLETT. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Maryland is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. BARTLETT. Mr. Chairman, I wanted to spend just a few moments 
putting our discussions in context. This year, the deficit will be 
perhaps as much as $1.6 trillion.

                              {time}  1700

  Now, our total discretionary spending--that's the money that we vote 
here to spend, and spend nearly a year doing it--is a little over a 
trillion dollars. A bit more than half of that is the Defense budget. 
What that means is if we didn't have any government that we vote to 
spend money for here, if we had no Defense, we had no Homeland 
Security, if we had no EPA, if we had no NIH, if we had no WIC program, 
if we had none of the myriad Departments of government that serve us 
every day, we'd still have a half-trillion-dollar deficit. I'm not sure 
that the reality of this has gotten through to our Congress or the 
American people.
  Another way of looking at this is that we have revenues of about $2.2 
trillion a year, but our mandatory spending--that's interest on the 
debt and our means-tested welfare programs and Medicaid and Medicare 
and Social Security--are several hundred billion dollars more than 
that. What that means is that one second after midnight on January 1, 
we're already in debt that year several hundred billion dollars, and we 
haven't even started to pay for the defense of our country, for 
Homeland Security, for NIH, for the WIC program, or for any of these 
many, many programs that our government supports.
  There is no way with the meager cuts that we're making in these 
budgets that we're voting on that we're ever going to get to anything 
near a balance.
  Mr. CONYERS. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. BARTLETT. I yield to the gentleman from Michigan.
  Mr. CONYERS. Thank you very much, sir. We're good friends.
  What you're telling me, I presume, is that you approve a $650 million 
cut from the Women, Infant, and Children's fund. Is that correct?
  Mr. BARTLETT. I was just trying to put in context our discussion here 
and what it means.
  Reclaiming my time, we have a $1.6 trillion deficit. We're coming 
close to that this year. The Ryan budget was kind of an expression of 
his roadmap. And in the last Congress only eight of us had the courage 
to sign on to his roadmap, because it was pretty tough. This year, when 
he filed that roadmap again, I think 13 of us signed on. And then we 
had the Ryan budget, which is even tougher, I think, than his roadmap, 
but what else was there to vote for, and almost nobody read it, so we 
voted for it anyhow.
  The Ryan budget doesn't balance for 25 years. It doesn't balance for 
25 years. That means with that budget, with all of its austerity, for 
25 years we still are accumulating more and more and more debt. Every 
six hours we have another billion-dollar deficit, which means another 
billion-dollar debt. About every 12 hours we have another billion-
dollar trade deficit.
  Mr. Chairman, I just wanted to put our discussions in context. I have 
10 kids and 17 grandkids and two great-grandkids. I sure would like to 
leave them a country better than the country as I find it. And it's 
going to be really tough to do that. What I want for us to do as 
Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals, is to sit down 
and talk through this. How are we going to solve this problem? 
Grandstanding and making these political points is not going to get us 
there.

  Mr. Chairman, we have got to do something serious. I don't see the 
Congress doing that.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. HOYER. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Maryland is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. HOYER. I thank you, Mr. Chairman.
  I thank Mr. Bartlett from Maryland for making the case. I tell my 
friends that when they say women and children first, it means to save 
them, not to throw them overboard. Women and children first means that 
they are the most vulnerable and need to be lifted up, need to be 
protected, need to be given the hand up, not the handout.
  Ladies and gentlemen of this House, I rise in opposition to this 
bill. I thank my friend from Maryland, for whom I have great respect. I 
think in fact he did put this in context. We will not balance the 
budget on the backs of children. We will not balance this budget on the 
backs of women who need nutrition and health care. That's not how we're 
going to balance the budget. And the gentleman from Maryland made that 
point I think very effectively.
  If we cut out all defense and discretionary spending, we wouldn't 
balance our budget. That's the magnitude of the problem that faces us. 
But a great country, America, should not ask our children who need 
nutritional programs, who need health programs, to pay the price--to 
pay the price of our responsibility because we have failed to pay for 
what we buy.
  But let us not repair to our little children and their mothers to pay 
the bill that we refuse to pay while at the same time we pass a rule 
the first day in this House that provides for $5 trillion in tax cuts 
for the wealthiest in America, including me. I don't want a tax cut if 
it means that a child goes hungry in America, the richest Nation on the 
face of the Earth. That is not my priority. That is not my morality. 
That is not my faith. Lift up the little children.
  Surely, America is not a country that wants to see its children go 
hungry or its pregnant women go without services they need for healthy 
babies. Surely, America is a generous enough country to feed those who 
need food. My faith tells me to feed the hungry, house the homeless, 
clothe those who have no clothes.
  I rise in opposition to this bill and I rise in strong opposition to 
attempts to dramatically cut the food programs that serve some of our 
most vulnerable constituents. Erskine Bowles, a Democrat, and Alan 
Simpson, a Republican and former member of the United States Senate, 
just issued a report. In that report it lays forth a number of premises 
on which that report is based.

[[Page H4139]]

And one of its first premises is: do not hurt the vulnerable in 
America. Because, as my friend from Maryland points out, that won't get 
you to where we need to get. And we need to get there. I'm going to 
work with my friend from Maryland, a Republican, and all Republicans 
who know that we need to get to balanced budgets to reduce debt, and my 
friends on my side of the aisle.
  This appropriations bill would sharply reduce funding for the vital 
nutrition programs for women, infants, and children. Surely, Americans 
did not send us a message to go to Washington and undermine women, 
infants, and children. At a time when we are still recovering from the 
worst economic crisis in a generation, where unemployment is 
unacceptably high, where people have lost their homes, where too many 
people are in great distress, surely this is not a time to say, We turn 
our back on you.
  This bill is pushing to cut $37 million in support for hungry, low-
income seniors, not just women, infants, and children. This bill cuts 
seniors as well. Surely, our people did not send us to this Congress to 
cut seniors. Also, $11 million in support for our community food banks. 
By the way, if you visited your food bank, you know that there is more 
demand on our food banks than there has ever been.
  Ladies and gentlemen, reject this bill. Stand up for the values of 
America and of our people.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CONYERS. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Michigan is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. CONYERS. I would like to follow on to our great whip's very 
moving statement and ask our good friend Roscoe Bartlett, a 
distinguished Member from Maryland, whether or not he would pass a bill 
that would cut funding in the amount of $650 million for women, infant, 
and children out of the Department of Agriculture's program.

                              {time}  1710

  So in the four decades that I have served and have been honored to 
serve in this Congress, I believe that we will have reached an all-time 
low today if we pass a bill that will cut funding for the Department of 
Agriculture's Women, Infants, and Children program.
  Ladies and gentlemen, my brothers and sisters, how can anybody in 
Congress with a conscience seriously consider passing a bill, or even 
proposing one, that would result in more hunger for hundreds of 
thousands of the poorest and neediest low-income children across this 
Nation who are already suffering from hunger and malnutrition?
  I fail to understand the logic of any elected official who serves in 
Congress who would actually support a $650 million cut from the Women, 
Infants, and Children program during one of the worst economic 
downturns since the Great Depression without feeling some kind of moral 
or ethical guilt for doing so.
  The Women, Infants, and Children program serves nearly 10 million 
people each year and costs less than $100 per person. What could be 
more important than supporting a Federal program that provides 
nutritious food to new mothers, babies, and children under 5 who have 
been identified as nutritionally at risk?
  Cutting the Women, Infants, and Children program for poor children 
and mothers is clearly an abandonment of our family values. Promoting 
policies that we know will result in scores of children feeling the 
painful sting of hunger, not being able to focus in school or not being 
able to do their homework, is far from what I would consider having 
good family values. It is simply un-American, immoral, heartless, and 
unconscionable to take food away from the mouths of hungry children in 
the name of deficit reduction. Ladies and gentlemen, have we no shame?
  The majority of Americans do not support slashing vital food and 
nutrition programs for our Nation's poorest children. Let's get rid of 
the tax breaks for billionaires so all children in this country can 
live the American dream and not go to bed hungry at night.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. SCHAKOWSKY. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Illinois is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. SCHAKOWSKY. I rise today in strong opposition to H.R. 2112, the 
Agriculture appropriations bill. And like so many before me, I'm 
particularly opposed to cuts in funding to provide food and nutrition 
to American families, to pregnant women and infants and children and 
seniors and families struggling in this country to put food on the 
table at a time of rising unemployment and poverty.
  I have to tell you I am at a loss to understand why my Republican 
colleagues are so insistent in providing even more tax breaks to 
millionaires and billionaires that they are willing to take food from 
children. In the Republican world view, apparently, tax cuts to the 
very wealthy and subsidies to big oil companies and companies that send 
jobs overseas are a bigger priority than Medicare and Medicaid and 
education. And, again, in this bill they even take food out of the 
mouths of hungry children to give those tax breaks.
  Understand what this bill does. The Commodity Supplemental Food 
Program, which provides low-income seniors with emergency food and 
nutrition education, is cut by more than 20 percent, or $40 million. In 
this bill the Republicans will take food out of the mouths of hungry, 
poor, old people.
  The SNAP reserve fund will get $2 billion less. SNAP, formerly called 
food stamps, provides critical nutrition support to low-income 
families, and the reserve helps meet the demands created by unexpected 
participation in higher-than-projected food costs, food costs everybody 
knows are going way up. And with high unemployment and food prices 
rising, the reserve fund is more likely to be tapped than ever before, 
and depleting reserve funds will increase the likelihood of a food 
crisis in the United States of America.
  Let me tell you what these cuts mean to people in Illinois. Lorraine 
Dzieginski is 82 years old and started receiving Social Security 
benefits at age 65. Her monthly benefit is $695 a month. But this 
amount doesn't even cover her property taxes, her home insurance, her 
supplemental health insurance and utilities. That amounts to well over 
$700. She relies partially on the SNAP, or food stamp program, to feed 
herself. Her monthly benefit is $16, the minimum SNAP allotment. 
Republican cuts likely mean that other seniors like Ms. Dzieginski will 
be turned away from SNAP if they find themselves in that circumstance 
next year. Our seniors deserve better.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Will the gentlewoman yield?
  Ms. SCHAKOWSKY. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I want to remind you SNAP actually goes up $5.6 billion 
on this, and you're not talking about it, but school lunch also goes up 
$1\1/2\ million. So I did want to say that the SNAP portion of this 
bill does go up $5.6 billion.
  I thank the gentlewoman for yielding.
  Ms. SCHAKOWSKY. Thank you very much. It's still $2 billion lower than 
the President's request.
  We want to make sure the money is there at a time of high 
unemployment, of disappearing 401(k)s and savings. And the Emergency 
Food Assistance Program is cut by more than 20 percent, or $60 million. 
And TEFAP provides commodities to food banks to assist in relief 
efforts. And with unemployment still high, and I know this in my 
district, many people who used to contribute to food banks are now 
waiting in line to get the food to keep food on their tables. And with 
diminished Federal support, they may show up only to find empty 
shelves.
  And then we get to the WIC program. I'm a mother and a grandmother, 
and for the first time in American history, we will turn away eligible 
mothers and children from the program, an effective program. With it, 
infants and children can get a healthy start in life, and without it 
they can suffer from lifelong health problems. For every dollar spent, 
WIC provides health care savings of as much as $3--$3 for every $1 
spent.
  So we talk a lot about children, we've talked a lot about seniors in 
this House, but let's be clear. The choice before us is not whether we 
have to deny children food in order to reduce the deficit. The choice 
is whether we will

[[Page H4140]]

make millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share so that low-
income mothers, infants, and children will be fed.
  The choice is clear. Vote ``no'' on this legislation.

                              {time}  1720

  Ms. CLARKE of New York. Mr. Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. CLARKE of New York. I rise today in opposition to the underlying 
bill, H.R. 2112, the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug 
Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2012, and 
the cuts to the WIC program.
  We want to talk about right to life. WIC is a right to life. It's an 
essential program that offers nutrition, education, breast feeding 
support, referrals, and a variety of nutritious foods to low-income 
pregnant, breast feeding and postpartum women, infants, and children up 
to the age of 5. The program is administered through county health 
departments, hospitals, mobile clinics, community centers, schools, 
public housing sites, migrant health centers and camps, and Indian 
health service facilities.
  In New York State, the WIC program provides services to nearly one-
half million low-income women, infants, and children through 103 local 
WIC agencies statewide. Local agencies such as Brooklyn's Healthy Start 
have provided WIC services to low-income women in my district for more 
than 20 years. It is the work of the Brooklyn Healthy Start and other 
WIC programs who are on the front lines that are fighting against this 
country's already shamefully high infant mortality rate. Decreasing 
funding to WIC programs will undoubtedly increase my district's infant 
mortality rate and infant mortality rates across this Nation.
  Given the spike in demand for WIC and other nutrition programs like 
SNAP and food stamps, school meals, summer, after-school, and child 
care food programs, it is unconscionable that the Republican-led 
Congress is seeking to cut these critical programs that help seniors, 
children, and low-income people who aspire to be part of our Nation's 
middle class.
  First, Republicans went after our Nation's seniors who rely on 
Medicare, and now they're going after the children and mothers who rely 
on our social compact for food assistance. If we got rid of tax breaks 
for multimillionaires and billionaires for just 1 week, we would pay 
for the entire WIC program for a year.
  It is my belief that cuts to the WIC program are based on an 
ideological political rationale that defies human understanding and not 
an honest desire to cut deficits. This Agriculture appropriations bill 
continues to protect tax cuts for multimillionaires while having poor 
women and children stuck to pay the dear price.
  WIC has been shown to improve the health of pregnant women, new 
mothers, and infants and children. The food provided through WIC is a 
good source of essential nutrients that are often missing from the 
diets of women and young children. WIC participants have longer, 
healthier pregnancies and fewer premature births.
  We all understand the need to reduce the deficit, but we must do so 
in a way that is consistent with our shared values. It is a moral 
imperative that we look after those who are forgotten, marginalized in 
our society. In the words of a prolific, poetic philosopher, Kanye 
West, ``How could you be so heartless?'' Republicans shouldn't destroy 
programs upon which citizens depend on the most in exchange to pay for 
$45 billion in tax breaks for multimillionaires. Shame.
  I urge my colleagues to vote against this bill and protect low-income 
women, infants, and children.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. ELLISON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Minnesota is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. ELLISON. Mr. Chairman, we're told that we're broke, we're broke, 
and because we're broke, we can't possibly pay for things like women, 
infants, and children. We can't have a jobs bill. We can't build our 
Nation's infrastructure. We can't, we can't, we can't. We have to cut 
because, according to some, we're broke.
  But when we think about how the bounty of this Nation is spread, 
we're not so broke that we can't give subsidies to oil companies. We're 
not so broke that we can't ask the richest Americans to do a little 
more. We're not so broke that we don't call upon people whom America 
has benefited and allowed them to become millionaires and say, You know 
what? Now your Nation needs you. We're told, No, those people don't 
have to sacrifice, but we're broke.
  So women and infants and children and seniors, they have to 
sacrifice. They have to go without. They have to tighten their belts. 
It's a shame.
  We're not asked to be one America, to bear the burden together. If 
there's a burden to be borne, surely oil companies can bear it with the 
American people. If there's a burden to be borne, surely the wealthiest 
among us can pitch in and help out. But not according to the Republican 
majority. According to them, we're broke, and the poor must suffer. The 
aged must do without. Those in need have to figure out how to make it 
one more day because we're broke, and we have to take food out of the 
mouths of infants and pregnant mothers. And because we're broke, we 
need to increase the risk of food-borne illness. And because we're 
broke, we cannot afford to pay cops on the beat who are going to 
regulate the speculators on Wall Street who drive up the price of 
gasoline and food. We can't pay for these important public servants 
because they say we're broke. But we're not too broke to ask our oil 
companies to help. We're not too broke to ask the top 2 percent to 
pitch in.
  The day must come, Mr. Chair, when the poor are not thought to have 
too much and the rich are not thought to have too little. The day must 
come when we have to be one America and come together to deal with the 
burdens of this Nation and not leave the wealthiest and the most 
privileged scott free while the other people have to bear the burden of 
``we're broke.''
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KUCINICH. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Ohio is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KUCINICH. Mr. Chairman, my colleagues, what we really have here 
is a discussion not so much as to which party has moral superiority 
here, but it's really a deeper question about what's the purpose of our 
Nation and whether we are aligned with the Founding Fathers' spiritual 
principles, because while the Founders separated church and State, they 
did not intend our Nation to be separated from spiritual principles.
  And I think that at this moment, if we really want to sincerely 
appreciate the dilemma that we have created with these cuts, we need to 
reflect on some of our own spiritual training for those of us who are 
Christian, when, in John 21:15, Jesus was dining with his apostles. And 
so when they dined, Jesus said to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, 
lovest thou me more than these?
  He said unto him, Yea, Lord, thou knowest that I love thee.
  And the Lord said to him, Feed my lambs.
  He said to him again, the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest 
thou me?
  He said unto him, Yea, Lord, thou knowest that I love thee.
  And the Lord answered, Feed my sheep.
  He said unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me?
  Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest 
thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things. Thou 
knowest that I love thee.
  Jesus said unto him, Feed my sheep.
  There are spiritual principles at stake here. We know what the right 
thing is to do. We know that feeding the hungry is a corporal work of 
mercy. We know that we have a responsibility to do this. We know that 
when the Bible says, Whatever you do for the least of my brothers and 
sisters, you do for me, in Matthew 25, that we're actually referring to 
how spiritual is the act of feeding the poor.

                              {time}  1730

  This decision that we make with respect to whether or not we are 
going to fully fund the Women, Infants, and

[[Page H4141]]

Children program does have profound spiritual consequences. We cannot 
escape them. ``For when I was hungry, you gave me food,'' remember 
that. When I was hungry, you gave me food. You didn't give me war. You 
didn't give me a tax break. You didn't give me an oil depletion 
allowance. When I was hungry, you gave me food. Who among you, the 
Bible asks, if his son asks for bread, would give him a stone? These 
are spiritual principles we're talking about here. This really goes to 
the core of who we are as a Nation, whether we recognize people who are 
out there are suffering. People may not have a roof over their head. 
Mothers may be living in a car, having to tend to their children.
  America today is not the country it was at its founding, but it can 
be a Nation that aspires to great things again. But it cannot do it if 
we forget the poor, if we forget the children, if we forget their 
mothers, if we tell them that, No, you cannot have the resources you 
need to be able to provide proper nutrition to your child so that he or 
she can grow up in this United States of America to be a full 
participant in the affairs of this Nation.
  This is a defining moment for who we are as a Nation. This isn't 
about whether we're Democrats or Republicans. This is about whether we 
are prepared to realign ourselves with the deeper truths of the 
spiritual mission of the United States of America. Feed the hungry. 
Feed my sheep. When I was hungry, you gave me food. Restore these cuts.
  Mr. YOUNG of Indiana. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. YOUNG of Indiana. I yield to my honorable colleague from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I thank the gentleman from Indiana for yielding. I want 
to make a couple of points.
  Number one, this bill increases food stamps by $5.6 billion. Now, 
somebody has said, But that's not as much as the President requested. 
Well, it is an increase of $5.6 billion. And I'm sorry, the President's 
crystal ball isn't always the best one. I don't need to remind you 
about last summer's celebration of recovery or whatever it was called. 
School nutrition goes up $1.5 billion under this bill.
  We did what has been done in the past with WIC. We fund the 
participation level that is anticipated. Last year, the Democrats voted 
to cut WIC funding by $562 million. I have got the votes right here for 
any Democrat who is not sure how he or she voted. I want to give you 
the vote. I will put it in the Record so everybody can have a chance to 
look at it because after a while, I have to wonder. I also have the 
vote record for extending the Bush tax cuts, which was signed by 
President Obama. I have the vote record for that. I want to say to some 
of my friends over there, I voted ``no'' on that. Very important.
  This bill funds WIC at 8.3 million participants. Now, if it goes up 
to over 9 million, the contingency fund is there to cover that. The 
contingency fund for WIC alone is $350 million. It would have been 
higher, Mr. Chairman, but the Democrats voted to cut it $562 million 
last year for an unrelated account. Now, to quote one of the well-known 
Democrats, That's an inconvenient truth to some of the speakers here 
tonight. But it is very important.
  It is not the intention of this bill to let anybody go hungry. And 
any time the Bible is quoted on the floor of the House, I think it's a 
good thing. But I think there are some lessons in there that if there 
is a target on children's backs, perhaps it's the fact that our Nation 
is over $14 trillion in debt; and for every dollar we spend, 40 cents 
is borrowed, much of that from China. And who do you think is going to 
pay that back? It's not going to be the generations who are making the 
decisions. It's going to be the children.
  So what our challenge is, Mr. Chairman, is to balance the fiscal need 
with the heart, and I believe that this budget very carefully does 
that. It increases food stamps $5.6 billion. It increases school 
lunches $1.5 billion. It funds WIC at a level of 8.3 million and has a 
contingency that will cover over 9 million participants. So for all the 
drama that we're hearing--and it is some very good rhetoric and some 
very good drama, but it's not accurate.

  Now we could be talking about the WIC overhead, the WIC 
administrative costs. We could be talking about the fraud in WIC. We 
could be talking about the coordination of feeding benefits. If a child 
is 3 years old in America, he or she is eligible for 12 different 
programs. At 10 years old, they're eligible for nine programs. At 65, 
they're eligible for five different feeding programs. Those are Federal 
programs. It does not mention any of the State or the local 
participation in programs that are out there. It doesn't mention any of 
the charitable organizations that are out there.
  So, again, we're hearing lots of great rhetoric, lots of drama; but 
it's not accurate. These numbers are important for reasonable debate 
for people who are trying to balance the runaway spending in this 
country--a 56 percent increase in the national debt under President 
Obama--and the need to take care of the poor.
  I want to say to my friend from Ohio (Mr. Kucinich), because I know 
he has been very consistent--and I do certainly agree that everybody 
here has passion and conviction and idealism, which I think we all need 
more of--I voted with you, Mr. Kucinich, last week. I think we are 
spending a lot of money in Libya. And those are things that are very 
important for us to be debating on the floor of the House before the 
President of the United States--of either party--goes and obligates 
billions of dollars in a new overseas contingency operation. We need to 
be discussing that. So I would say, put that on the table.
  Mr. McDERMOTT. Mr. Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Washington is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. McDERMOTT. I rise in opposition to this bill in part because the 
truth of the matter is that the $562 million that was cut in WIC funds 
last year did not affect participants. The reason it didn't affect 
participants was that the WIC foods cost less and there were fewer 
participants in fiscal year 2010. So the funds were not needed.
  Now, today it's Flag Day, and we're celebrating Flag Day, and I want 
to celebrate that great liberal of the United States of America, 
Richard M. Nixon. Richard M. Nixon put this program in. Now, we all 
know he was a bleeding heart liberal. Right? He just couldn't wait to 
give money to poor folks. And he also, by the way, put out here a 
universal health care plan.
  So there is some question you might ask yourself about why we have 
WIC. Well, the social safety net is like a spider web, and there are a 
whole lot of places that you have to help people. We have Social 
Security, and we have unemployment insurance, and we've got foster kid 
money, and we've got things for women and children.
  Now, the Republicans in this session have deliberately set out to go 
after women and children. The first place was Planned Parenthood. We 
don't want to give any young women any information about anything 
having to do with getting pregnant. Now more kids get pregnant. They're 
16 years old. They have a kid, and they don't have any counseling, and 
nobody talks to them about nutrition and gives them the things that 
they need.
  What is the result of that? The result of that is more low birth 
weight babies, more babies born with poor development because they 
didn't have the nutrition during the cycle of development. Do you know 
how much is the average amount spent on a woman in the WIC program? 
It's $100 to deal with the problems of infants and children, on 
average.

                              {time}  1740

  Now, I happen to know, being a physician, that if you get a premature 
baby who comes in at 2.5 pounds, and everybody's so excited that we can 
save these kids, but let me tell you, it costs money. If you can deal 
with a premature baby at the hospital for under a quarter of a million 
dollars, you have a real miracle, and you could have prevented it for 
100 bucks. You could have saved--if you're really about deficit 
reduction, I know you don't care about human beings particularly, but 
you do care about saving money. If you're going to save money, then 
you're going to put it into the children at the beginning.
  Now, there's other reasons for that. If they don't get good nutrition 
at the beginning and they don't get good brain

[[Page H4142]]

development and they don't do well in school, they drop out; right? And 
then we don't have a workforce in this country to do what needs to be 
done in this country. So we get immigrants to come in and do things. 
People don't want immigrants, then feed the children that you insisted 
that women have in this country.
  You don't want anybody to have any planning on birth, and then the 
kid comes and you won't feed him, you won't take care of him, and 
you're going to pay the price.
  I remember, there used to be a television commercial when I was a 
kid. It was called the FRAM commercial. It was an air filter on your 
automobile. And the commercial was, Pay me now or pay me later. Change 
the filter or you're going to pay having the engine redone.
  That's why we have all these kids dropping out of school, because we 
don't take--that's why it's fascinating.
  The children's feeding program in schools was from Harry Truman. Why 
did he do that? Well, they looked at the records of the Second World 
War and they rejected so many draftees because they didn't have good 
bones. They were malnourished. They were maldeveloped and they weren't 
fit to be soldiers. They put that school lunch program in so that they 
could make strong kids so we could have a strong army.
  This business about saving 100 bucks on a woman who has a child and 
doesn't know--she's 16 years old, she's 17 years old, she's 18 years 
old.
  This is the most shortsighted bill I've ever seen. Vote ``no.''
  Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the 
underlying bill and in strong support of the Women, Infants, and 
Children program that provides food to new mothers, babies, and 
children under 5 who have been identified as nutritionally at risk.
  WIC ensures that infants and children grow in a healthy manner. The 
program reduces levels of anemia, increases immunization rates, 
improves access to regular health care and Social Services, and it 
improves diets.
  Nearly 50 percent of babies born in this country each year benefit 
from the WIC program, and the success of the program is clear. Numerous 
studies have shown that pregnant women who participate in WIC have 
fewer premature births, fewer low and very low birth weight babies, 
experience fewer fetal and infant deaths, seek prenatal care earlier in 
their pregnancy, and consume more key nutrients during their pregnancy. 
Simply put, WIC infants are in better health than eligible infants not 
participating in WIC.
  But the benefits of WIC participation extend beyond the short term. A 
baby's physical, cognitive, and emotional growth and development depend 
largely on how much and what types of foods are eaten during pregnancy 
and the first years after birth, especially the first year after birth. 
This period is critical because more than half of a child's brain 
growth is completed by the child's first birthday, and malnutrition 
during this period can cause irreversible diminution in brain 
development. And so 4- and 5-year-olds whose mothers participated in 
WIC during pregnancy have better vocabulary scores than children whose 
mothers did not receive WIC benefits. This leads to better academic 
achievement, lower dropout rates, and other factors that we're trying 
to work on.
  Furthermore, Mr. Chairman, if we want our Nation's children to be the 
strongest and smartest they can be, we need to make sure that our 
children are receiving the nutritional support they need during these 
formative years.
  Finally, WIC is cost effective. Serving nearly 10 million people each 
year, it costs less than $100 a person. And that cost is so low that if 
we suspended the Bush tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires for 
only 1 week, we could pay for the entire WIC program for a full year. 
And we save a substantial amount of that little cost by reducing health 
care costs.
  Medical costs for a premature baby are much greater than those for a 
healthy newborn. For a baby born without complications, the average 
cost for first year medical costs is about $4,500, compared to a 
premature or low birth weight baby which will cost about $50,000 in 
short-term medical costs and significantly more in long-term costs 
resulting from high incidence of mental retardation and learning 
disabilities.

  And so, Mr. Chairman, for those interested only in the budget impact 
of WIC, the Department of Agriculture estimates that the health care 
cost savings within 60 days of a child's birth are between $1.77 and 
$3.13 for every dollar invested in the WIC program. Let me say that 
again. The Department of Agriculture estimates that the health care 
cost savings within 60 days of a child's birth are between $1.77 and 
$3.13 for every dollar invested in the program.
  So, Mr. Chairman, the benefits of the WIC program are not 
speculative; they are clear. And I commend my colleagues that are here 
fighting to maintain funding for this important program, and I urge 
others to do the same.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. TONKO. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chair, I rise in opposition to the underlying bill.
  It seems the Republicans aren't stopping at Medicare alone. Now 
they're cutting crucial assistance to women and to young children.
  In addressing our Nation's fiscal future, we simply cannot afford to 
lose our values. When the going gets tough, are we a Nation that 
abandons our most vulnerable while giving tax breaks to millionaires 
and billionaires? Or are we a Nation that holds close the most basic 
obligations we have to our fellow citizens, food for young children, 
Medicare and Social Security for our seniors, and an education for our 
students?
  We have many tough choices to make during these difficult economic 
times. Cutting a program that provides food assistance for families 
that would otherwise go without should absolutely not be one of them.
  The WIC program is one of our Nation's most cost-effective and 
successful programs. Nearly 50 percent of babies born in the United 
States rely on WIC. Ten million Americans benefit from this most basic 
food assistance at a cost of less than $100 per person. The drastic 
Republican cuts included in this legislation will leave as many as 
350,000 women, infants, and children without access to necessary food 
assistance.
  The Capital Region of upstate New York, my own community, ranks among 
the 100 most in need of food assistance. My constituents see the plans 
to cut Medicare and the plans to cut food assistance programs, and they 
are wondering why their health is being put on the line while some of 
our Nation's wealthiest individuals and corporations are let off the 
hook with $45 billion worth of tax breaks.
  The Republican budget simply doesn't add up, Mr. Chair. Every $1 we 
invest in WIC saves up to $3.13 in health costs per child just in the 
first 60 days after an infant's birth alone. Cutting this program 
doesn't cut spending, and it doesn't even help reduce our long-term 
deficit. This program brings down long-term health care costs and, most 
importantly, most importantly, it saves lives.
  In just 1 week, millionaire tax breaks cost our country $866 million 
and reach only 321,000 individuals. The WIC program, on the other hand, 
costs $33 million less for an entire year of serving 9.2 million women, 
infants, and children in need.
  It is clear from these numbers, Mr. Chair, where Republican 
priorities lie. We're all concerned about the Federal deficit. But the 
majority continues to insist upon cutting programs that work and work 
well for America's middle class and her families.
  WIC saves the taxpayers money in future health care costs and ensures 
some of our most vulnerable citizens that they will have the most basic 
food and nutrition assistance. Recent polls show that 64 percent of 
Americans are concerned that this budget plan will take away needed 
protections for the poor and underserved.

                              {time}  1750

  We have good reason to be concerned given the plan to end Medicare 
and this most recent attack on the WIC program.

[[Page H4143]]

  In these tough times, we must stand together in solidarity. This is 
not the time to abandon our friends and neighbors in need of a helping 
hand to make ends meet. From Medicare, to WIC, to education and housing 
assistance, we simply cannot turn our backs on our fellow Americans 
while we reward the wealthiest amongst us. That is not the 
compassionate thing to do, it is not the American thing to do, nor is 
it the answer to solving our debt problem. We can and we must do 
better.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, how many times will Republicans 
attempt to rob innocent Americans of their health and their wellness? 
First, they morally bankrupted themselves when they took a hatchet, or 
I should say a scythe--that's that thing that the Grim Reaper walks 
with--they took a scythe to Medicare in the Ryan budget, attempting to 
increase the health care cost to seniors, and passed it unanimously, 
unanimous Republican support for the Ryan ``Grim Reaper'' budget plan 
that cut Medicare. It really destroyed Medicare as we know it and 
replaced it with a voucher system. That's what they have passed in this 
House.
  And now the Grim Reaper is coming again, not to cut tax cuts to the 
rich, not to cut tax subsidies to big oil companies. The Grim Reaper is 
not here to cut from wealthy individuals all of the tax breaks that 
they have been getting. No, the Grim Reaper is here to cut something 
that is fundamental to life, and that is money for food for human 
beings. The Grim Reaper, moving slowly, not bouncing at all, just 
creeping through the night with his scythe, ready to cut the WIC 
program.
  I'm opposed to any effort to remove funding for nutrition assistance 
for women and children, leaving them to go hungry in the streets. 
During these difficult times, soup kitchens, pantry shelters, churches, 
nonprofits, including many in my district, they have reached their 
limits in terms of the assistance that they can give to those who need 
it.
  Mr. Chairman, the budget brought to the floor today will lead to a 
drastic multimillion-dollar shortfall for the WIC program, not only 
resulting in more individuals going hungry, but placing additional 
strain on many aid agencies who have already reached the end of their 
rope.
  This week, I have spoken to pastors, rabbis, and faith-based leaders 
of all stripes and haven't heard a single one of them express support 
for reducing nutrition assistance. In fact, many of them today right 
now are roaming the halls of Congress speaking to anyone who cares to 
listen to express their opposition to this bill. They are desperate, 
desperate to talk about the effects of these drastic cuts.
  I came down to the well of the House earlier today to speak about 
Republican efforts to take food out of the mouths of mothers and 
children across the country. Today, with the help of this bill, this 
Congress will accomplish something that has not been done in 14 years. 
Today, it looks like this Congress, as the Grim Reaper, will pass a 
bill that doesn't provide enough money to serve all WIC participants. 
Instead, we will pass a bill that forces vulnerable families to depend 
completely on the same food banks that have run out of food while we 
continue to subsidize tax breaks for millionaires, billionaires, and 
Big Oil. The Grim Reaper is not coming for them, doesn't want to bother 
them.
  I can't, in good conscience, support this effort of the Grim Reapers 
to rob low-income Americans of basic necessities like food while giving 
millions to those who no longer need our assistance. In a Nation as 
great as the United States, we should not be promoting corporate 
welfare while taking food out of the mouths of hungry children.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. PASCRELL. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New Jersey is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. PASCRELL. Mr. Chairman, I believe we are broke, but we're morally 
broke, that's how we're broke. Let's be straight here.
  What's our vision for America? That's got to be the barometer. What 
do we want this country to be in the future? We can say we certainly 
don't want it to be fiscally broke, but no one comes to this well with 
clean hands. This is something we should be sitting down and talking 
about together, how can we solve America's problems.
  So what's our vision? It may be a balanced budget, our vision; I 
could support that. It may be cutting waste and fraud; well, that 
sounds good, we should all be supporting that. It may be to get 
Americans back to work. Over 14 million are still unemployed. And the 
underemployed. It may be to halt the loss of our homes like we did on 
the Western frontier 150 years ago when people worked together to end 
those foreclosures. My vision does not include hurting our most 
vulnerable children and seniors just to make a point. You heard the 
gentleman from Maryland talk earlier about how little this means in 
bringing down the deficit for 1 year or 10 years. We've got our 
priorities screwed up.
  So yes, we want a balanced budget. Isn't it interesting that the last 
President who balanced the budget was a Democratic President? Yes, we 
want business investment. And isn't it interesting that in the past 
four decades the only President that reached over a 10 percent increase 
in business investment was a Democratic President? Bill Clinton; almost 
three times more than Ronald Reagan. Check your facts. We need a fact 
check here, a fact check.
  The last 4 years, the number of children affected has grown from 12.4 
million to 17 million. Have we no responsibility for that? In my 
district, 109,000 constituents suffer from food insecurity, only half 
of whom are eligible for Federal food aid programs. What do the other 
half do? Yet, here we are discussing cuts.
  And I understand neither party is privy to virtue on these issues, 
but you cannot tell me we can't rise above if we have a vision of 
America that encompasses everyone, not just some and not just the few. 
The long-term effects of a child struggling with hunger does not add up 
to any real savings. If a child is hungry, he cannot learn. A child who 
can't learn will not succeed in school. A child without an education 
will have difficulty finding a job.
  We know the records of those who are unemployed. And the records of 
how many years they are in school are greatly and essentially connected 
to how many years they have in school, and that tells you how many 
people are unemployed.

                              {time}  1800

  The children affected by these cuts that you're talking about in the 
Agriculture bill are our future. If they go hungry today, they will not 
be ready for tomorrow.
  I simply disagree, with all due respect, with the other side's logic 
behind these cuts. It's shortsighted, and we cannot simply cut the 
safety net while people are still in that net--seniors, children, the 
working poor. It doesn't make sense. What have we become as a Nation?
  We're not asking for handouts or giveaways. We are talking about 
people who are working, and many of them are poor. There are many of 
those, and it took a Republican President to recognize it. The Earned 
Income Tax Credit was something that your side created. So who would 
yet take away the incentive for people to keep working?
  The cuts that you have proposed to the Food and Drug Administration 
in this bill are $572 million below the President's request. This means 
fewer inspectors and fewer inspections, plain and simple. Oh, I forgot. 
That's the idea in this age of anti-regulation. So what we do want to 
do is go back to 2008. Let's go back to where we were. I say no. I say 
we are better than that--we are better than 2008--and if we work 
together, we can get over that hump.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. PELOSI. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR (Mr. Thornberry). The gentlewoman from California is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. PELOSI. Mr. Chairman, it is 6 o'clock across America, or at least 
in the eastern time zone. Families across America are getting ready to 
sit down for dinner at their kitchen tables in many homes in our 
country.

[[Page H4144]]

  Moms are saying to their children, ``Eat your vegetables. Eat your 
dinner.''
  But in some homes in America, there isn't adequate food on the table, 
and there isn't adequate nutrition for our children. It's hard to 
imagine that one in five kids in America may go to sleep hungry tonight 
with pains in their stomachs because they just didn't have enough food 
to eat.
  In its wisdom, the United States of America established the WIC 
Program awhile back for women, infants and children to make sure our 
Nation was strong. It was to make sure we fed our children. Our country 
made a decision that feeding our children was a priority. It sounds so 
obvious. Families make decisions within their budgets that they are 
going to feed their children. They wouldn't think of saving money by 
not feeding their children. Yet, for some in low-income areas and for 
others now, as this is into the middle class, it is very hard to make 
ends meet.
  So you wonder, in thinking of these people who are sitting down to 
dinner, how the Congress of the United States in trying to reduce the 
deficit, which we are all committed to do--that's important to our 
children as well--would decide to balance that budget on the little, 
tiny backs of our children, many of whom don't have enough to eat.
  I want to commend Congresswoman DeLauro for her leadership as a 
member of the Ag Subcommittee of Appropriations and as the former chair 
of that subcommittee. She successfully passed an amendment in committee 
which had bipartisan support--it would have to have bipartisan support 
to pass--to restore $147 million to the WIC Program to feed the 
children. I congratulate her for that. It is part of the bill that was 
supposed to come to the floor. The Republican leadership has decided 
not to protect that bipartisanly passed amendment. What we are seeing 
is that the cutting of support for Women, Infants and Children is in 
the context of something bigger.
  At the same time as we are making these cuts, we are giving tax 
subsidies to Big Oil. The price at the pump is also an imposition on 
the budgets of these families, and that is something that we can do 
something about by ending harmful speculation. To do that, we have to 
fund the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which is in this bill as 
well. The Republicans are saying they want to delay, delay, delay, and 
defeat the enforcement of laws which would end speculation, which would 
reduce the price at the pump, Goldman Sachs said, by at least 20 
percent. At the same time, this same Republican majority has passed a 
bill, not once but twice, to abolish Medicare.

  Food, price at the pump, Medicare, these are assaults on the middle 
class that are hard to withstand. In fact, they are hard to understand. 
It's hard to understand why we'd say to seniors, ``You're going to pay 
more for Medicare, and for fewer benefits as we abolish Medicare, while 
we give subsidies to Big Oil.'' We are going to say to seniors in 
nursing homes, ``You're going to go home and live with your families, 
who can probably ill-afford for you to do so, so we can give tax breaks 
to corporations to send jobs overseas.'' We are going to say to 
children whom we are not feeding that we are cutting education funding 
as well as making college more expensive for nearly 10 million students 
in our country and, for some, making it unaffordable to go to college 
while we give tax breaks to the wealthiest people in our country.
  So they are cutting support for Women, Infants and Children while 
handing a blank check to speculators. They are ending Medicare while 
they give subsidies to Big Oil. These choices do not reflect America's 
values and priorities. These are tough choices. They will not bring the 
growth we need to expand our economy and put people back to work as we 
create jobs. They will not make America strong. As moms across America 
are saying to children right now at 6 o'clock in the East, ``eat your 
vegetables; they will make you strong,'' we are acting on this floor to 
do just the opposite--to cut the funding for the initiative that will 
help feed the children of America.
  It is unthinkable that a family would say, ``We can't afford to feed 
the children.'' It is unthinkable that a Nation committed to the future 
would say, ``We can't afford to feed the children.'' These families 
need our help. It's a large amount of money, $147 million, but very 
small compared to the subsidies to Big Oil and a small price to pay for 
the health and well-being of our children and for the strength of our 
country as we go into the future.
  So I commend Congresswoman DeLauro for her tremendous leadership--for 
fighting for this, for not taking ``no'' for an answer in the 
committee. I would hope that we could prevail on the floor, but the 
Republican majority has left little option for that to happen.
  I also want to commend Congressman Farr, now the ranking member on 
the Ag Subcommittee. Probably nobody in the Congress knows more about 
this. There may be some who are his equal--I don't know--but probably 
no one knows more about this issue in his representing an agricultural 
region as he does and also being committed to the health and well-being 
and to the good nutrition of our children so that they can be strong, 
so that they can learn in school and so that they can be a part of our 
great country in the best possible way for them.
  So I thank you, Ranking Member Farr, for your leadership as well.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. WOMACK. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Arkansas is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. WOMACK. I appreciate the leadership of our subcommittee chair, 
whom I will recognize and yield some time to in just a moment.
  Obviously, we are spending more than we make. I don't know how many 
times we have to articulate the financial condition of our country: 
that we are borrowing over 40 cents on the dollar for everything we 
spend. The country is in a financial crisis, and you've got Members on 
this side of the aisle who are doing everything they can to bring 
fiscal sanity back to the table and to put America on a different path.

                              {time}  1810

  I am amused at how many times we continue to be portrayed as being 
insensitive to women, infants and children, to older folks, and how so 
many half-truths are being spoken about the things that this conference 
is trying to do in order to right America's financial ship.
  Suffice it to say that we have much work to do, and it is our intent 
to do it in a way that is rational and feasible and brings this country 
back to fiscal order and can take away that cloud of uncertainty that 
continues to hover over the job creators in this country, the threat of 
higher taxes, the tremendous deficit and debt, the overregulation that 
is keeping those entrepreneurs parked on the sideline for fear of 
higher costs to job expansion and higher energy prices. On and on and 
on, the challenges facing this country are many and we have much work 
to do.
  At this time, I would like to yield to the distinguished chairman of 
the subcommittee, the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I thank the gentleman from Arkansas for yielding. I 
wanted to make a couple of points that I think are very important, Mr. 
Chairman.
  Number one, the only budget that has passed is the Ryan budget. The 
Democrats, for all their crying, have not passed their budget. The 
Democrats are the majority party in the Senate. The majority party in 
the Senate, the Democrat Party, rejected President Obama, another 
Democrat, they rejected his budget by a vote of 97-0. Now, what did 
Harry Reid and President Obama do after that? Nothing. That is it. It 
went to the House. No problem. Where is the leadership? I guess it is 
the same place as the jobs are. We are still looking for it.
  If the Democrats were concerned about balancing fiscal responsibility 
and some of these vital programs which we are all trying to work 
through, then why aren't they working on a budget? That is point number 
one.
  Point number two, this bill increases food stamps $5.6 billion and 
the school lunch program $1.5 billion. It also increases from the 
committee mark WIC $147 million in the DeLauro amendment. It will not 
be offset by the

[[Page H4145]]

Obama WTO cotton agreement, but it will be offset. That amendment is 
intact as respects WIC.
  Number three, Big Oil. Well, when the Democrats were in charge of the 
House and the Senate and the White House, if they were concerned about 
tax cuts for Big Oil, why didn't they go after them? What they did do 
is extend the Bush tax cuts, which I voted against. If they were 
concerned about the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, why did President 
Obama and the Democrat House and the Democrat Senate extend them? I 
would ask you that, Mr. Chairman.
  What this bill does as respects WIC, it funds it at a level of 8.2 
million in participation. Should it go up to 9 million in 
participation, which is higher than the current level, there are three 
contingency funds that will pick up the difference.
  We have reduced WIC, as did the Democrats. The Democrats cut WIC 
funding $562 million. I have the vote right here. For those Democrats 
who are forgetting how they voted on it, they might want to look. But 
they voted to cut WIC funding. Therefore, the contingency fund is not 
as high as it could be.
  So if we want to talk about all these things, there is lots to talk 
about. But one thing that is very important for Members to realize is 
that no one is going to fall through the crack.
  I keep hearing about how this is going to starve people. WIC is $42 a 
month. That is why WIC isn't the only program for these people. That is 
very important for everyone to remember. I don't even think most 
Members, if you gave them a pop quiz, could say what WIC is, because it 
sounds like it is thousands of dollars a month. But I don't believe $42 
is anything more than a supplement. Yet that supplement will still be 
there, because, again, Mr. Chairman, we have funded this with an 
anticipated level of 8.3 million; but should it go up to 9 million--it 
has been trending down--but should it go back up, the contingency funds 
will be there that will pick up the difference.
  I thank the gentleman for his time.
  Mr. WOMACK. I encourage my colleagues to support the underlying bill, 
and I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I move to strike the last word.


                    Announcement by the Acting Chair

  The Acting CHAIR. Members are reminded to address their remarks to 
the Chair.
  The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I rise because I want to respond to my chair, 
who I respect deeply, but I think there is sort of a misstatement of 
fact here.
  The only budget that has ever been balanced in the last 20 years has 
been the budget that the Democrats did. We did an unholy thing that the 
other party can't accept that is going to be necessary to balance any 
budget, and that is we had to increase revenues. And what did we do? We 
closed the tax loopholes on the richest families in this country and 
corporations. We closed loopholes. And we made a lot of cuts, because 
we also dedicated revenue from those loophole closures to pay off the 
deficit. And, guess what? We paid it off. We paid it off ahead of 
schedule.
  When the Clinton administration left town and the Bush administration 
came on, we had an $800 billion surplus--a surplus. And what 
immediately did they do? They repealed the mechanism that was balancing 
the budget and said, no, we will give back those tax loopholes to the 
richest people in the country. And then we go to war. Whenever in 
history we have gone to war, people have paid for it. Not these wars. 
We just put it on the credit card.
  So, Mr. Kingston, you know, let's be factual about the Democrats 
being in charge. We were able to balance the budget, something that 
your party hasn't done.
  And just on this whole WIC thing, we all know that the administration 
administers the program and has to estimate how many people are going 
to be in need. That is the way we put together these big budgets, 
whether they be Medicare or WIC or other kinds of things. And last year 
what we found out is that the estimates were not needed, so in fact 
there was a surplus. But it was based on fact after the fact, not ahead 
of time.
  This year the economy is down. We have heard many, many speakers talk 
about the impacts in their districts, of the number of people that are 
unemployed and are seeking benefits like this. I think the chairman 
himself has indicated that almost 15 percent of the children in this 
country are using one or more of these programs.
  So this idea that this cut can be sustained, when it is based on a 
guesstimate, and a guesstimate that didn't take in, one, the rising 
food costs, and, two, the number of people that are still unemployed, 
and, frankly, people that are underemployed, including members of the 
military and their families who depend on this WIC funding.
  So I just want to put it in some kind of perspective here, that the 
budget has been balanced by this party and paid for and left in a 
surplus, and the fact that the guesstimates on these WIC cuts are going 
to do more to do harm than to do good.
  I now yield to my colleague from Connecticut, Rosa DeLauro.
  Ms. DeLAURO. I would reinforce what my colleague from California has 
said, but there is a repetition on the other side of the aisle that 
somehow there are contingency funds and carryover funds which can be 
used if there is a shortfall. You may continue to say it. It continues 
to be wrong. This is, again, the Center for Budget and Policy 
Priorities. The estimates reflect the use of all contingency funds, as 
well as the use of the carryover funds from fiscal year 2011 to close 
funding shortfalls, and the funding level would still result in the 
large participation cutbacks that have been outlined.
  There are no contingency funds and no carryover funds; and no matter 
how many times you say it, that money will not materialize.
  I thank the gentleman.
  Mr. FARR. I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MURPHY of Connecticut. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. MURPHY of Connecticut. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I just wanted to make sure that my friends, the ranking 
member and former ranking member, know that the contingency fund data 
that we get did come from the USDA.
  Mr. MURPHY of Connecticut. Mr. Chairman, I want to tell you about a 
young woman, a young woman named Sarah. She actually lives in a 
shoreline community in Connecticut in Representative DeLauro's 
district. She has got four kids. She was playing by the rules, did 
everything that we asked. She had a good job in purchasing, and last 
year she got laid off.

                              {time}  1820

  She got laid off, like thousands of other Connecticut residents. She 
has four kids ages 7 to 15. Since that day, she has been confronted 
every day with a decision. She's got about enough money to put one meal 
on the table for her kids. They'll get one meal while they're at 
school. And so she makes the decision: Does she put breakfast on the 
table to make sure that they have food in their bellies when they show 
up to school or does she put dinner on the table when they come back. 
That's her daily challenge every single day. Now, she gets a little bit 
of help from a food bank, from a soup kitchen around the corner from 
her--a soup kitchen that likely gets money from The Emergency Food 
Assistance Program, one of the programs that is cut 25 percent under 
the President's proposed budget. That's her daily reality.
  Let me tell you a story about another American. His name is Tony. He 
lost his job last year as well. He was the CEO of a big oil company. On 
his way out he got about a $1.6 million salary payout and a $17 million 
pension payout. He might be spending part of his summer on his yacht 
that he's nicknamed ``Bob.'' He might be sailing in the J.P. Morgan 
Asset Management Round the Isle Race, like he was a summer ago as one 
of his oil rigs collapsed in the Gulf. His struggle is that he's only 
been able to raise about $1.6 billion for his new oil exploration 
venture around the world.
  Franklin Roosevelt said, The test of our progress is not whether we 
add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we 
provide for those who have little.

[[Page H4146]]

  I have listened to my friends on the Republican side try to create a 
choice here today; that because our children later on are going to have 
to pay back the debts that this country owes, that we have to sacrifice 
the lives of kids who are living today. That's a false choice. The two 
are not mutually exclusive. The fact is we are making choices in the 
budget right now. We are making choices to give more and more money to 
the defense budget, which is already over-bloated, and cutting 25 
percent from The Emergency Food Assistance Program. We are handing 
another $40 billion subsidy to the oil industry. And we're cutting back 
funding for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program. As the Republican 
budget calls for, we are further cutting taxes for the richest 1 or 2 
percent of Americans while we underfund the WIC program that gets badly 
needed nutrition to kids like Sarah's kids.
  In my district, the story is the same. We've got 17 percent of 
households in my district who have reported going hungry. At the 
Friendly Hands Food Bank in Torrington they've had a 40 percent 
increase this year. New Britain's municipal food pantry has seen a 
hundred new families come through the doors this year. And they are 
watching with horror as we try to create some false choice between 
feeding kids today and protecting this country's fiscal situation down 
the line.
  When I meet Republicans and Democrats in my district, regardless of 
their political persuasion, they want this body to start working 
together to solve the biggest problems in this country. But I have news 
for my Republican friends. They want us to solve Sarah's problem, not 
Tony's problem.
  This budget, this bill, is a travesty, and I urge a ``no'' vote.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. TOWNS. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. TOWNS. Let me thank Congresswoman DeLauro and, of course, 
Congressman Farr, for the work that they're doing.
  Here we go again. I rise in strong opposition to the underlying bill. 
This bill reduces the amount of funds awarded to public nutrition 
programs such as SNAP, WIC, and many other programs that lend 
assistance to families in economically disadvantaged communities.
  This session of Congress has really been tough on those that are in 
need. First, our Nation's seniors are threatened with potential cuts to 
Medicare proposed by the Ryan budget. Now, hunger programs for women 
and children are being targeted. It is a tough year indeed. But let me 
tell you, I was not sent to Congress to sit back and watch these 
crucial programs be cut. I came here to fight for their existence. And 
I don't plan to stop now. I will not sit idly by as we destroy programs 
upon which citizens depend on the most to pay for $45 billion in tax 
breaks for millionaires and billionaires. It is a shame and it is a 
disgrace. For people to try and stand here and justify as to why we're 
doing it just does not make any sense at all. If we get rid of tax 
breaks for millionaires and billionaires for 1 week--just 1 week--I'm 
talking about 7 days--we would pay for the entire WIC program for 365 
days.

  Mr. Chair, I'm greatly disturbed by the negative impact this bill 
will have on those individuals who depend on public assistance to feed 
their families. It is projected that the expected funding cuts will 
result in 350,000 people losing their WIC benefits. Nearly 50 percent 
of the babies born in this country each year rely on WIC. On top of 
that, it is cost-effective, serving nearly 10 million people each year 
and costing less than $100 per person.
  I don't understand why we want to stand around here and try to hustle 
backwards. That's what they say in my neighborhood. We need to make 
certain that we do what is right and is going to benefit the children. 
Let's not forget that we're here to serve and meet the needs of our 
Nation. Supporting this bill would be a great disservice to those who 
elected us to Congress. Supporting this bill will significantly cut the 
funding to programs that feed thousands of families. Supporting this 
bill will lead to the devastation of many hunger programs. There are 
many families who depend on government funding to put food on the table 
every day and every night. Voting in support of this bill will only 
make their lives more than difficult. I urge all of my colleagues to 
vote ``no.'' This bill does not help those that are in need. It 
protects the millionaires and billionaires with their greed.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. BROWN of Florida. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. BROWN of Florida. When you're born, you get a birth certificate. 
When you die, you get a death certificate. That dash on your tombstone 
in the middle is what you've done to make this place a better place.
  I rise in strong opposition against this bill. I can't believe that 
the Republicans are attacking the disabled, the seniors, and now the 
children. I really do believe the Scripture, To whom God has given 
much, much is expected. They really do expect more out of this 
Congress, the people's House.
  I may be the only person in the House with any institutional memory 
because it seems as if no one remembers that we didn't get in this mess 
18 months ago. No. When President Bill Clinton left us, he left us with 
a surplus. And then we had 8 years of what I have called reverse Robin 
Hood. You know what I mean. You've got to be a certain age to know who 
Robin Hood was. But robbing from the poor and working people to give 
tax breaks to the rich.
  My colleagues talk about the fact that the President insisted on 
passing that $780 billion--not just for the rich and the millionaires, 
but the billionaires--in December.

                              {time}  1830

  And everybody was slapping themselves on the back, what a great job 
because we didn't raise the taxes on the average American. And I would 
have voted not to raise it on the average Americans, but I knew that in 
April we were talking about cutting funds, pension funds, and now 
cutting funds for the children, the babies. It is inconceivable that we 
would cut funds to WIC, providing food for new mothers, babies, and 
children under 5 years old. Nearly 50 percent of the babies born in our 
country are on the WIC program. In my State of Florida, as many as 
19,000 people would be affected by this cut.
  Lawton Chiles, former Governor of Florida, former Senator, used to 
have a slogan: ``This dog don't hunt.'' Folks, this dog don't hunt. The 
American people will wake up and wake up to what you're doing and wake 
up to the fact that when you have your head in the lion's mouth, the 
deficit, you've got to ease it out. You don't destroy programs 
affecting children and babies and senior citizens while giving tax 
breaks to billionaires and millionaires. And the sad fact is, if we put 
it on the board tomorrow, the Republicans would vote again to give the 
tax breaks to the billionaires and millionaires and yet leave the 
children and elderly people holding the bag. The American people need 
to wake up to what's going on. There is money in the House of 
Representatives, but you're choosing to give it to millionaires and 
billionaires.
  As I close, I really do believe what the Bible says: To whom God has 
given much, much is expected. And He's expecting more out of the people 
of the House of Representatives.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. PAYNE. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New Jersey is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. PAYNE. Mr. Chairman, I ask my colleagues to vote against any 
language in the Agriculture appropriations bill that would seek to cut 
funding for the WIC program.
  As you know, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, 
Infants and Children, WIC, makes it possible for vulnerable children to 
have a healthy start. The Republican cuts will deny many children a 
chance to receive nutritious food by cutting WIC funding from $6.73 
billion this year to $6.05 billion in 2012. This cut is a cut of more 
than $650 million below the fiscal level of 2011. And this is much less 
than the continuing cost of the high-end Bush tax cuts, oil company tax 
breaks, and various other write-offs for well-to-do taxpayers or 
powerful corporations.
  If we allow these cuts to take place, approximately 200,000 to 
300,000 women

[[Page H4147]]

and children nationwide will lose WIC benefits next year. In fact, in 
the State of New Jersey, approximately 4,000 to 6,000 low-income 
families will be turned away by WIC. This is very alarming to me 
because these cuts will negatively impact a substantial number of low-
income women and children in my district.
  As a former public school teacher in the inner city of Newark, New 
Jersey, I witnessed firsthand the effects of hunger and malnutrition on 
children trying to learn. When they came to school to take tests, they 
couldn't concentrate. They were unable to really focus on what they had 
before them. The reality is this: If a child is hungry, he simply 
cannot learn. If a child is hungry, he is unable to focus in class. 
What are his chances of thriving academically? If we are serious about 
closing the achievement gap and ensuring that students are career and 
college ready, cutting WIC will be in direct contradiction.
  In light of rising food prices and current unemployment rates, it 
would be catastrophic to strip funding from this vital program. I 
strongly believe that by cutting WIC funding, we risk neglecting and 
preventing children from getting a head start in recognizing the 
excellence of their human potential.
  We, as a nation, are still a great nation. We are the wealthiest 
nation in the world. We have the greatest ideals and opportunities for 
people. But I think that we are being shortsighted. We have a problem 
and we will deal with it, as we have done for all other problems. In 
World War II, we had no navy. We had no army that was significant. 
However, we built ships that floated. We trained people in 20 and 30 
days to rivet and to make our powerful defense mechanism work, and we 
won the war for the world.

  We can win this war of the deficit in this country. I think that even 
the constituents of my good friends on the other side of the aisle, my 
tea party friends, my Republican friends--go back home and ask people, 
Do you want to pull the food out of the mouths of babes? Because from 
the mouths of babes ofttimes come gems. And if our Nation is going to 
be a great nation in the world, as we are today, we're not going to do 
it by starving the children and harming the women. It's unconscionable, 
it's disgraceful, and it's a mark on the House of Representatives. It's 
really something that shouldn't be.
  Therefore, I urge my colleagues to vote against any provisions 
cutting funding for the WIC program.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. Mr. Chairman, I strongly object to this bill.
  In his second inaugural address, Franklin Delano Roosevelt laid out, 
I think, a very good test for us. It was a test for this Nation at one 
of its most desperate periods. We, too, find ourselves in a difficult 
situation. We do have a big deficit, and we need to make some tough 
choices. And today as we debate this piece of legislation, we are 
indeed making choices and we are being tested. We're being tested about 
our values. We're being tested about what we think is important. 
Franklin Delano Roosevelt suggested this be the test:
  ``The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the 
abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for 
those who have too little.''
  Ponder those words and apply those words to what we are debating and 
what we will soon vote for or against on this floor. The test of our 
progress, whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much. 
We've discussed many times here in the last couple of hours the options 
that are given to us on tax policy, continuing to provide subsidies to 
the wealthiest industry in the world, the oil industry, not to the tune 
of a couple of billion but, when you add it all up, some $40 billion a 
year. Whether we continue to provide a tax break to the wealthiest in 
this Nation, those whose annual incomes are in the millions and, 
indeed, some who are even in the billions. We're making choices and 
we're being tested. That's one option that our Republican colleagues 
seem to want to present to us.
  The other option is what we on the Democratic side have been debating 
and asking for, and that is the second part of what Franklin Delano 
Roosevelt said, and that is whether we provide enough for those who 
have too little.
  I was on this floor not more than 3 hours ago with my granddaughter, 
11 months old. And in the arms of mothers and grandfathers and 
grandmothers and parents across this Nation are children of that age 
who depend upon the Women, Infants, and Children program, which this 
Republican appropriation brought to this floor reduces by 10 percent. 
350,000 children will not be able to have the food that they need, the 
care that they need to be able to be healthy, to be able to grow, and 
indeed in the future, to be able to pay, as we will today, one way or 
another, for the deficit that we have.

                              {time}  1840

  A 10 percent reduction from last year, and is there anybody in this 
House that's prepared to argue somehow things are better out there and 
that a 10 percent reduction in the face of an increased number of women 
and children who need help, that that is a worthy choice for us to 
make? I think not.
  I think that this bill miserably fails the test that Franklin Delano 
Roosevelt laid out during the Great Depression. This does not provide 
for those who have too little.
  And it's not just in the Women, Infants, and Children program. Across 
the board, thousands, indeed, 48 million Americans become ill each year 
because of food-borne illnesses, and yet, in this budget, another 12 
percent reduction from last year's funding for food safety programs at 
a time when we have a new food safety program to implement. 350,000 
Americans wind up in the hospital as a result of food-borne illnesses, 
and the Republicans want to cut the money to provide the protection for 
Americans.
  It's about choices. It's about values. What do you value in this 
system? Yes, we have a deficit. Yes, we must deal with it. And yes, 
according to our Republican friends, we must take that food out of the 
children's mouths; we must make sure that people will not be able to be 
healthy. I don't understand.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Mr. Chairman, I ask unanimous consent to strike the last 
word.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the gentlewoman from Wyoming is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  There was no objection.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
  My colleagues on the other side of the aisle did not produce a 
budget. My colleagues on the other side of the aisle did not raise 
taxes on the mineral industry as they now assert we should. My 
colleagues ran this House for 6 years. My colleagues ran this House 
with a Democratic President and a Democratic U.S. Senate. The things of 
which they argue are the fixes are things you did not do when you were 
in control of all three: the House, the Senate, and the Presidency.
  Without a budget, with the Keynesian philosophy that you attempted to 
implement, and it was worth a try but it failed, the massive increases 
in spending, in social programs, in entitlement programs, the massive 
increase in spending that amounts to ObamaCare, the massive stimulus 
bill, the massive efforts that you made, all the time asserting that 
you had something called Pay-As-You-Go, PAYGO, when, in fact, there 
were more exceptions to PAYGO than the rule ever provided. You took 
half a trillion dollars out of Medicare. You destroyed Medicare. You 
destroyed it.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. Will the gentlelady yield?
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I yield to the gentleman from California.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. Thank you.
  If the gentlelady from Wyoming would recall the years past, she would 
recall what is known as the Senate filibuster. The graveyard of 
legislation that the Democrats put forth many, many times died in the 
Senate as a result of their filibuster.
  With regard to the issues of entitlements and this particular bill, 
we're talking here about the issue of how we care for those who have 
little. I'd be

[[Page H4148]]

happy to debate with you on this floor or any other place the import of 
the stimulus program, and, in fact, most every economist argues that 
without the stimulus program we would have fallen into a great 
depression, not just a very serious recession. I'm sure the gentlewoman 
recalls those words.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Reclaiming my time from the gentleman, the crisis is 
worse than the people realize, and, in fact, in some respects, the 
people are way ahead of us on this, which is why the people of this 
country chose to elect fiscal conservatives to run this House during 
the current Congress, and we presented to the American people what we 
intended to do, which is cut spending.
  We told the American people we have a spending problem, not a revenue 
problem. The American people chose to give my party the opportunity to 
lead and to exhibit the fiscal restraint that the American people voted 
for in the last election. We are now exercising that fiscal restraint 
in a way that preserves 87 percent of the funding level of the WIC 
program that is currently being alleged that we are destroying.
  Now, there are millions and millions of Americans who are functioning 
in this recession on 87 percent of what they used to make. In fact, we 
know that small businesses all over this country who are the drivers of 
our economy, the creators of jobs, are functioning on far less than 87 
percent of what they used to make.
  It is time for this House to exercise this fiscal restraint in a way 
that is sensitive to the needs of the people in this country, that we 
told the American people in November we would do.
  I yield back the balance of my time.


                    Announcement by the Acting Chair

  The Acting CHAIR. The Chair again reminds all Members that all 
remarks should be addressed to the Chair and not to others in the 
second person.
  Mr. NADLER. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. NADLER. Mr. Chairman, there seems to be a little amnesia in this 
Chamber today. In January of 2009, we were losing 775,000 jobs a month. 
Then the Obama administration and the Democratic Congress enacted 
remedial legislation and we stopped losing 775,000 jobs a month. We 
started gaining. We have gained a million and a half jobs in the 
private sector in the last year and a half, not enough with a million 
and a half jobs, but unfortunately State and local government had to 
lay off 1.2 million people because we didn't give them enough to 
prevent that. But we did reverse the results of the Bush policy of 8 
years, which was 775,000 jobs a month being lost.
  Don't forget, in 2000, in the Presidential election, the great debate 
was what should we do about the $5.6 trillion surplus over the next 10 
years. Bush got elected. They enacted the Bush tax cuts, which they 
said would stimulate the economy and pay for themselves. What happened? 
We had the slowest economic recovery of any economic recovery after any 
recession in the history of the United States, the only 8-year period 
in which we did not gain one net new job even before the 2008 recession 
from which we are now recovering, albeit too slowly.
  The American people did not vote to kill remedial programs last year. 
They voted for jobs. They were told, Vote for the Republicans; we'll 
get you jobs. You don't see any jobs. So let's forget this revisionist 
history.
  I rise in strong opposition to the Republican effort to cut funding 
for the special supplemental nutritional program for Women, Infants, 
and Children, known as WIC. This program provides food for low- and 
moderate-income mothers, babies, and children under 5. WIC provides the 
food pregnant women need to help their babies grow. After the baby is 
born, WIC provides the breast feeding support or infant formula to make 
sure the babies continue to develop and to grow. And for young 
children, WIC provides staples like milk, eggs, bread, fresh fruits and 
vegetables. Nearly 50 percent of the babies born in the United States 
each year rely on WIC to get a healthy start to life.

                              {time}  1850

  But in this time of rampant unemployment, the Republicans oppose--
they oppose extended unemployment benefits and now want to ensure that 
the wives and children of the unemployed who don't get unemployment 
benefits can't get food and baby formula. This bill says, Let them 
starve.
  This bill will mean that 200,000 to 350,000 pregnant women and 
children will be denied food. Knocking these families out of the WIC 
program is an about-face on a 15-year bipartisan commitment to ensure 
WIC funds cover all eligible women, infants, and children who apply.
  Shockingly, at the same time that the Republicans are demanding that 
pregnant women and children starve, they continue to promote tax 
holidays for millionaires and billionaires. If we suspended the Bush 
tax breaks to the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans for just 1 week, we 
could cover the cost of the Republicans' latest cut of $833 million to 
the WIC program.
  The debate over WIC funding, specifically, and the Federal budget, 
generally, is about priorities. By supporting the Republican proposal 
to slash WIC funding, forcing thousands of women and children from the 
rolls, the Republicans are saying that America prioritizes tax holidays 
for those who need it the least over providing food to pregnant women, 
infants, and small children.
  Mr. Chair, make no mistake about it. This is about literally taking 
food out of the mouths of babies. This Republican bill is immoral. Food 
for women and children is more important than tax cuts for 
millionaires, billionaires, and oil companies.
  Reject this bill. Reject this bill, and maybe, just maybe, the 
Republicans, given enough time, will find their consciences.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. TIPTON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Colorado is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. TIPTON. Mr. Chair, you know, it's remarkable, the theater that we 
see. Looking throughout America, throughout my Third Congressional 
District--at least in Colorado--I see people who care about their 
families, who care about our children. What are they asking for? Jobs. 
They want to be able to go back to work. And we're seeing far too 
often, from the opposition, people that are willing not to be a 
steppingstone to American success but to become a stumbling block, to 
have us rely on another government program.
  The proposed cuts, these are minor. These are minor in the sense of 
the real life that real Americans are living today. Come with me. Come 
with me and walk through my district. I have communities that are not 
in a recession; they are in a depression. They need to be able to get 
back to work. What do I hear as I walk through those communities? City 
councils, county commissioners, small businesspeople are saying that 
they are being inhibited from being able to get people back to work so 
that they can take care of their children, Mr. Chair, so that they can 
take care of their children by oppressive government regulations, by 
people who are not willing to allow us that opportunity to live that 
American Dream.
  I see, Mr. Chair, an America that can rise again and become the 
economic power that we all know that it can be; but this will not 
happen as long as we try to build reliance on government rather than 
the rugged individualism that has made this country great.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. TIPTON. In just a moment, ma'am.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Thank you.
  Mr. TIPTON. We have an opportunity. We have a challenge. The question 
is, Will we rise to meet that challenge?
  We have a $14.4 trillion debt in this country. Let's put that in a 
little bit of context. Sunday night, we saw the NBA finals. You had 
LeBron James, maybe one of the best basketball players the world has 
ever seen. He signed for $40 million a year to play basketball. Well, 
if he wants to earn just $1 trillion, he's going to have to play 
basketball for 25,000 years.
  This is the burden that we have put on the backs of our children and 
our grandchildren that they can no longer afford. The recipe is not the 
Keynesian economics that my colleague has

[[Page H4149]]

brought up. The answer is going to be found in the very solutions that 
made us the richest, the freest, and the most powerful Nation on the 
face of the Earth. That is going to be the free enterprise system. 
Let's encourage it. Let's get our people back to work. Let's create 
those opportunities once again.

  Ms. DeLAURO. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. TIPTON. I yield to the gentlelady from Connecticut.
  Ms. DeLAURO. I thank the gentleman.
  I would just talk about rugged individualism. And I will just quote 
to you from the Citizens for Tax Justice: 12 corporations, largest 
corporations in the Nation, pay an effective tax rate of negative 1.5 
percent on $171 billion in profits.
  Mr. TIPTON. I reclaim my time, and I thank the lady for bringing up 
that very point, Mr. Chair. This is the real challenge that we face, 
and she points to it directly. We have an oppressive, convoluted Tax 
Code that is stripping American business of that opportunity to be able 
to create wealth in this country. Let's simplify that Tax Code. Let's 
not punish success in this Nation, but let us reward success in this 
Nation to be able to get our people back to work.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Let's get them to pay their fair share of taxes.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Colorado controls the time.
  Mr. TIPTON. Mr. Chair, these are the challenges, and we have very 
distinct choices to be able to make. Will we continue to follow the 
pathway to poverty of government programs, government taxation, 
government solutions? Or will we follow that expressway to real 
enrichment in this country by getting the American people back to work?
  Mr. Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEWIS of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. LEWIS of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, I really want to thank Ms. 
DeLauro and Mr. Farr for their wonderful, unbelievable work.
  Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the underlying bill. Mr. 
Chairman, nutrition programs did not run our economy into the ditch. 
Nutrition programs did not drive us into debt or stop the banks from 
extending credit. But my colleagues want to cut programs to feed 
millions of women, infants, and children. Who is next? I ask you, Who 
is next? The Republicans went after the seniors' Medicare. Now they are 
going after the babies. Who is next?
  Mr. Chairman, the WIC program is a necessity. It is a lifeline. It is 
our obligation. This is not the way America treats our seniors. This is 
not the way America treats our mothers. This is not the way America 
treats our children. This is not the America we want to live in.
  If we repeal the tax breaks for the wealthy for just 1 week, we could 
pay for this entire program. Make no mistake, this bill will reduce the 
number of people served by nutrition programs. Right now, over 50 
percent of the children born in our country rely on this program every 
single day, every week. They serve almost 10 million people each year. 
My beloved brothers and sisters across the aisle know that, but they 
should also know that this bill will mean empty shelves at food banks 
and smaller portions at dinnertime--and not a dent in the deficit.
  Make no mistake, make no mistake, this bill will hurt people. It will 
reduce the number of people who receive assistance. The poor, the sick, 
the mothers, these little babies. They didn't overspend our credit 
card. They didn't do it. They didn't overspend our credit card. Why are 
we doing this? Why are we punishing? Why are we cutting the WIC 
program? It is a lifeline. No one in this country should have to go 
hungry. It is not right. It is not fair. It is not the just thing to 
do. It's not the good thing to do.
  The Atlanta Community Food Bank in my own district, in the heart of 
downtown Atlanta, is distributing 35 percent more food than last year. 
Their funding would be cut as well. Countless people are already on the 
waiting list. One such man in my own district, Johnny Battle, this man 
worked all of his life, and he worked very hard. Mr. Battle is 71, and 
his wife is 76. He can't look for work because his wife has fallen ill. 
He is her caregiver.

                              {time}  1900

  I say we should be their caregiver. We should look after those who 
are suffering through no fault of their own.
  They receive emergency food assistance from Antioch Baptist Church 
when they can and receive only $16 a month in food stamps. Assistance 
from the food bank would make a huge difference in their lives.
  Sixty thousand people depend on Atlanta Community Food Bank to make 
it through the month. We cannot allow more people to be pushed onto the 
waiting list like Mr. Battle and his wife.
  Mr. Chairman, and my colleagues, our country is hurting. Our people 
are hungry. They need our help. This is not how America treats her 
children. This is not how America treats her seniors. This is not how 
America treats her little babies, the mothers.
  I urge all of my colleagues to vote ``no.''
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. KAPTUR. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Ohio is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. KAPTUR. Rugged individualism. Oh, am I glad the gentleman brought 
that up. Rugged individualism produces a heartless bill like this.
  Now, if you look back to why we're in the dumpster economically, go 
back to the 1990s. Read Alan Greenspan, a great advocate of rugged 
individualism, and Ayn Rand; right? Just drive them into the ground. 
Make all of his friends rich. JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Goldman 
Sachs, Morgan Stanley--it's an interesting group of characters up there 
that took America to the cleaners. They took and outsourced our jobs. 
Now they took our home equity.
  And now, it's getting so bad we even have a bill that's going to take 
food away from about 350,000 women and children. Now, whose fault is 
that?
  Here's a little note from somebody in my district. She says--she 
signed up this plate at the food bank, the local food bank. She said: 
Without help from the food bank, I would be on the streets. I struggle 
every day to make ends meet so my kids have a place to lay their heads 
at night. I have a job, but with two kids, it's still very hard. I have 
a lot of trouble paying rent and bills. I just wish there were more 
help to parents like myself.
  That's from the rural part of my district.
  From the urban part of my district, a plate is signed at the food 
bank: My income is spent on bills, which leaves very little money for 
me to purchase food for myself and my two daughters.
  Now, you know, the majority of people in this House are Christian. 
And I'm not pushing that, though I am one of them. But the first 
Beatitude says, ``Feed the hungry.'' It doesn't say ``rugged 
individualism.''
  I'm as individualistic as anybody else in this Chamber, but I'll tell 
you what. There's a heartlessness that goes with people who take 
everything for themselves and turn their back on the rest of the 
American people. So when Big Oil makes record profits and pays no 
taxes, there's something really wrong. There's something really wrong 
with the country, and the American people know it.
  They didn't clean house here last November because they thought you 
were better; they just wanted a change. And they'll vote for it again 
if their lives don't get better. And their lives won't get better 
unless we fix what Alan Greenspan and Goldman Sachs and Bank of America 
and the whole rest of those buzzards up there did to this country. And 
they're taking bonuses. In fact, they're making so much money they take 
Members of Congress out. You know the average amount of a meal? $193, 
$193 a plate. These folks, a couple of bucks in a day they spend on 
food.
  So I stand with the American people, not those wealthy interests who 
took the Nation to the cleaners. You know, those hedge funds? They pay 
at a 15 percent tax rate.
  Mrs. Lummis talked about businesses in her district. They pay at a 35 
percent rate. Why don't we hold those accountable up on Wall Street for 
what they did? Let them pay their fair share

[[Page H4150]]

of taxes. We couldn't even take one penny of their bonuses, not a 
penny. This was the most gutless institution.
  And I'll tell you what. The real straw that broke the camel's back 
was 1998 when Glass-Steagall was thrown out, an act that had separated 
banking and commerce. And you know the name on that bill? There wasn't 
a single Democratic name. It was Gramm-Leach-Bliley, all Republicans, 
and they shoved it through this House. I didn't vote for it.
  And then Wall Street, oh, my gosh. You talk about rugged 
individualism. They hurt the Republic. They hurt our country, and they 
have not been held accountable. George Bush's Chief of Staff, Mr. 
Bolton, he came from Goldman Sachs. He was there. He was there in the 
fall of 2008 when the Treasury was just opened up to them. Isn't that 
an interesting coincidence? Very interesting when you look back and see 
what really happened.

  I refuse to have the people of my district or any district pay for 
what they did. I've got people who are lined up in our food banks 
because of unemployment, and I know who caused it. And I don't have 
enough power to hold them accountable, but I hope God does, because 
what they've done is unforgivable. Their rugged individualism is 
unpatriotic. It is un-Christian, and it hurt this country.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Ms. KAPTUR. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the gentlewoman's striking 
the last word a second time?
  Mr. KINGSTON. Mr. Chair, reserving the right to object, I want to say 
to my friend, the ranking member, that I understand the passion on that 
side and a number of people who want to start speaking, or who have 
been speaking. But if we are going to start speaking twice, then I hope 
you will give me the courtesy of speaking twice. I just want to mention 
that.
  I've just been informed Mrs. Lummis spoke twice while I was going to 
the restroom, so, once again, I will sit down.
  If I could continue on my reservation, I want to explain to my friend 
from Ohio that I was concerned about Members speaking twice. But I 
understand that you've done that now with Mrs. Lummis, so I certainly 
will not object.
  I withdraw my reservation.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the gentlewoman from Ohio is 
recognized for an additional 5 minutes.
  There was no objection.
  Ms. KAPTUR. I thank the gentleman. I thank you for yielding. We may 
not agree on everything, but I think if we agree on some of the history 
that brought us to this point, maybe we can do something right for the 
Republic, and certainly for those people who are lined up across this 
country as victims of the abuse that came from that rugged 
individualism for which there has been no justice. There has been no 
justice to this date. What a sad thing for us to say institutionally.
  If we look at this bill, nearly half of the babies born in our 
country rely on WIC, the Women, Infants and Children food program. They 
are in every district in this country. And I can guarantee you, for all 
the big shots that cleaned up at the expense of the American people, 
they've never even been to a WIC site. They've never seen sat with 
moms. They've never sat with families trying to figure out how they're 
going to make it from the beginning of the month to the end of the 
month on the few pennies that they have to live on.
  So I think that the sad fact of this bill is that, rather than Big 
Oil paying their fair share of taxes, rather than us taking those 
bonuses from those who truly don't deserve them because of what they 
did to the Republic, for all the tax breaks that are going to companies 
that are locating jobs overseas and taking our livelihoods away from 
us, the answer isn't to take food away from those people that are 
paying the price.
  So I want to thank my colleagues, and particularly Mr. Kingston for 
not objecting, to Mr. Farr for the great job you've done in trying to 
bring some justice to this bill, and to say, in closing, that there are 
many people who talk about life. Without decent nutrition, the children 
who will be affected, the hundreds of thousands of children who will be 
affected in this bill, their brains won't grow as fast. They won't have 
the kind of nutrients that produce strong bodies and strong minds for 
the future.
  This is the time to stand up in defense for those who are 
defenseless. And particularly with this economy, the last place to cut 
is food. Every Christian in here knows that's true. We need to do 
better as this bill moves forward.
  I urge my colleagues to vote ``no'' on the bill on final vote, and I 
thank my colleagues for yielding me additional time.
  I yield back the balance of my time.

                              {time}  1910

  Ms. HIRONO. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Hawaii is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. HIRONO. I rise in opposition to the underlying bill.
  Ours is a compassionate country. We have leaders who can put 
themselves in the shoes of Americans who are struggling, doing their 
best. We have compassionate leaders on both sides of the aisle. This is 
why it is so inexplicable that the underlying bill, as well as bill 
after bill brought by the Republican majority to this floor, makes cuts 
after huge cuts to people's programs--not corporate programs, not 
programs that hit Wall Street, but people's programs. And again today, 
in this agriculture spending bill, we are targeting cuts that hit 
women, infants, children and seniors in Hawaii and nationwide.
  In my district in Hawaii, 19.5 percent of our residents experienced 
food hardship in the last year. Let me repeat: nearly one in five 
people in my district did not have enough money to buy food that they 
and their family needed in 2010. Today's bill would cut crucial 
nutrition programs for thousands of Hawaii's most vulnerable and 
hundreds of thousands all across the country. And while the richest in 
our country continue to get billions in tax breaks and the oil 
companies continue to get their billions in tax breaks, why are we 
balancing the budget on the backs of women, infants, children and 
seniors?
  First, today's bill makes a $650 million cut to the women, infants 
and children, WIC, nutrition program for fiscal year 2012. This would 
cut as many as 350,000 eligible low-income women and young children 
from the program. WIC provides nutritious food, counseling on healthy 
eating, and health referrals to pregnant, postpartum and breast-feeding 
women and their children under age five. This program has had well-
documented success in improving the nutrition and health of families in 
poverty. WIC has reduced low-weight births, anemia and hunger. Let's 
put ourselves in the shoes of 350,000 women and their children who 
depend on this program.
  Second, the Emergency Food Assistance Program supports food banks on 
all of our islands and across the Nation to support the hungry. I have 
visited many of the food banks in my State, in my district; and we know 
that there is a growing need. There are many, many more families now 
relying on food banks; and yet this bill cuts $12 million from food 
banks at a time of great, great need. Let's put ourselves in the shoes 
of the hundreds of thousands of families all across our country who are 
relying on food stamps.
  Third, today's bill cuts 20 percent from the Commodities Supplemental 
Food Program, which provides food packages to over 600,000 people 
nationwide, and 96 percent of these recipients are low-income seniors. 
You've heard others say ending tax cuts for millionaires and 
billionaires for just 1 week alone would save $866 million. That is 
enough to support poor women, infants and children for the entire year. 
And when we say this bill brought to us by the Republicans literally 
takes food from babies to give tax breaks to millionaires and 
billionaires, we are not engaging in hyperbole. This is what is 
happening in this bill.
  Let's get our priorities in order. Balancing the budget on the backs 
of our most vulnerable is totally indefensible when we are giving tax 
breaks to those people, the richest people in our country, corporations 
that are making billions of dollars. It's indefensible. And where do we 
live? Do we live on Wall Street? People who want this bill, I think 
they live on Wall Street. Well, those of us who are opposing this bill,

[[Page H4151]]

we live on Main Street. That's where the majority of our people live; 
they live on Main Street. They expect us to support those people--
working people, families, women and children all living on Main Street.
  I urge my colleagues to oppose these anti-people, wrong-headed, 
downright cruel cuts to low-income women, infants, children and seniors 
all across our country.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. EDWARDS. Mr. Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Maryland is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. EDWARDS. I've been listening all afternoon and I've heard 
economic philosophy described as Keynesian and I've heard talk of 
fiscal conservatism and regulation and rugged individualism. We even 
heard talk of LeBron James. But one thing is really true, we haven't 
heard anyone on the other side of the aisle talk about hunger, and even 
LeBron James is not hungry.
  So I want to talk about a really simple economic theory and it's 
called hunger. It means when you wake up in the morning and you're a 
young child in this country and your parents can't afford to feed you, 
you're hungry. The demand of hunger when you're going to school and you 
can't think through the school day because you're hungry. It's about 
going home on a weekend after receiving a school lunch on a Friday but 
not eating through the entire weekend because you're hungry. And 
really, Mr. Chair, that's the only economic theory we need to discuss 
this afternoon.
  So just before I came to the floor, earlier in the day I had a 
physical. I had to go 10 hours without eating. I described myself as 
starving. But clearly, neither I nor any Member of this House of 
Representatives knows what it's like to be really hungry today. And so 
before I came to the floor, I had my piece of chicken. And you know 
what? That was more than the Republicans are prepared to give America's 
women, infants, and children.
  And so I rise today in opposition to these extreme cuts to the Women, 
Infant and Children program and the underlying bill. We know the 
program is essential to providing nutrition to our Nation's most 
vulnerable children.
  Now, I don't need a study to know what it means to be hungry; but 
studies show that women, infant and children programs reap tremendous 
benefits to the participants. They lead to fewer premature births, 
fewer fetal and infant deaths, and result in better cognitive and 
physical health for children. That's the difference between eating a 
nutritious meal and being hungry.
  I also rise today in support of my colleague, Lynn Woolsey's, 
amendment to block the GOP's attempts to roll back our USDA nutrition 
standards for our children because not only are some of our children 
hungry, but we need to make sure that they are eating to a standard 
that allows them to learn in our classrooms.
  The WIC program is essential to ensuring our youngest Americans 
receive the nutrition they need, and the underlying amendments will 
ensure that children continue to receive nutritious foods throughout 
their school day.
  Now, when I first came to Congress, I worked with our then-chairwoman 
and our friend, Rosa DeLauro, to secure the Afterschool Supper Program 
in my home State of Maryland for hungry children. We have fed millions 
of meals through this program. And so I know that in my State and all 
across the country the Women, Infant, and Children program served 
140,000 women, infants and children every month in the last year.
  The program serves 9.2 million low-income families across the 
country. And as our Nation continues to recover from a recession, the 
benefits provided to these families are an essential safety net for our 
vulnerable populations. And according to Feeding America, there's a 50 
percent increase in need amongst families, seniors, and children right 
now. This is a time when ensuring the economic security of the American 
people is critical, and we can't stand by the Republican pledge to cut 
essential safety net programs.
  It's no surprise to the American people that the Republican 
Conference selected yet another vulnerable group to slash while 
continuing to support big oil companies, farm subsidies and huge tax 
breaks for millionaires and billionaires instead of supporting women, 
infants, and children.
  In this 112th Congress, this new and bold Republican majority began 
with an attack on women. They proceeded to attack our seniors with a 
plan to eradicate Medicare, and now they are committed to an attack on 
our neediest and the health of our neediest infants and children.

                              {time}  1920

  It's actually really shameful. It's even hard to talk about because 
it's hard to believe, in America, that even those who sit on the other 
side of the aisle are willing to take away nutrition programs for needy 
women, infants and children rather than take away the tax breaks for 
billionaires and take away the subsidies for oil companies while our 
gas prices rise. I think that those on the other side of the aisle 
should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. I know that some of my 
colleagues have quoted Bible passages. I don't know. Maybe quote the 
Statue of Liberty. What is happening in this House is not American at 
all. It doesn't hold to the values that we hold to take care of our 
neediest, to take care of our poor.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Ms. EDWARDS. I'll be gaveled down, but we need to support Women, 
Infants and Children and to stop the slash and burn on the Nation's 
neediest children.
  Mr. HINCHEY. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. HINCHEY. I rise in opposition to the underlying bill.
  People across this country have agreed that we have to reduce our 
deficit, but they also understand that we shouldn't do it on the backs 
of working and middle class people who are already struggling to make 
ends meet. The Republican-sponsored Agriculture appropriations bill, on 
the other hand, cuts all the wrong things at exactly the wrong time. 
Here are five reasons that I plan on voting against it.
  First, this bill will raise gas prices by cutting anti-speculation 
efforts: With speculation at an all-time high, American families are 
paying now more than 60 cents more per gallon at the pump than they 
should be; but instead of ramping up anti-speculation efforts, this 
bill cuts almost half the funding for the Commodity Futures Trading 
Commission--the very agency charged with policing oil speculation.
  Second, this bill takes food out of the mouths of low-income mothers, 
babies and kids, cutting WIC for about 15,000 people just in New York 
State alone: The bill cuts food assistance for pregnant women, infants 
and children by $650 million, or 10 percent, denying food and health 
counseling for up to 475,000 low-income women, infants and young 
children throughout America over the course of the next year if this 
bill passes. The bill also would cut food aid for low-income seniors 
and would cut help for food banks.
  Third, this bill increases the risk to our food supply by cutting 
safety inspections: As many as 48 million Americans are sickened every 
year by contaminated food. That's why, with my support, last year we 
stepped up efforts to increase the inspections of food manufacturing 
plants and imported foods. With new strains of E.coli sickening 
hundreds throughout Europe, now is not the time to be gutting the 
funding for food safety inspections; but this legislation would do just 
that, making it impossible to implement the new safety standards and 
guaranteeing millions more Americans will get sick from bad food.
  Fourth, this bill cuts anti-childhood obesity efforts: Childhood 
obesity has tripled in the past 30 years. It's an epidemic. Obesity 
costs our country $147 billion a year in medical costs, and for the 
first time in American history, life expectancy for the next generation 
is going to be lower than for the current generation. But instead of 
boosting efforts to combat this problem, the Republican bill eliminates 
funding for the Healthy Food Financing Initiative, designed to combat 
childhood obesity by bringing healthy foods to underserved urban and 
rural communities.
  Finally, this bill raises the cost of prescription drugs: By severely 
cutting funding for the Food and Drug Administration, American 
consumers will get food and medical products that are less

[[Page H4152]]

safe due to the erosion of essential oversight and prescription drugs 
that are more expensive as a result of the agency's limited ability to 
approve less costly generics.
  Just for those five reasons, obviously big reasons, this bill should 
not be passed. While I oppose these cuts, I do support responsible ways 
in which we can reduce our deficit, such as cutting wasteful subsidies 
and give-aways for the oil industry, ending special tax earmarks for 
Wall Street bankers, and allowing Medicare to negotiate for bulk rate 
discounts on prescription drugs for seniors in the context of Medicare. 
These reforms in and of themselves--just those few--would save hundreds 
of billions of dollars without harming working and middle class 
Americans who are already struggling to get by.
  This Agriculture appropriations bill accomplishes the goal of deficit 
reduction in the wrong way. Let's move forward with a plan that does it 
in the right way.

  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. PALLONE. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New Jersey is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. PALLONE. Mr. Chairman, I think it is easy for my colleagues on 
the other side of the aisle to forget that this bill deals with 
programs on which the most vulnerable in our society rely.
  My Republican colleagues are proposing about $650 million in cuts to 
the WIC Program. This action would essentially kick 200,000 to 350,000 
women, infants and children off the rolls. Now, the Republicans claim 
that getting our fiscal house in order requires shared sacrifice. 
However, they are only requiring the sacrifice of those most in need. 
In fact, the cost of funding this program for 1 year is less than the 
revenue that would be generated by ending the Bush tax cuts to 
millionaires for just 1 week. Now you tell me, is that considered 
shared sacrifice?
  If we want to talk about being fiscally responsible, then there is 
almost no better investment and choice we can make than the WIC 
Program. For every dollar invested in WIC, $1.77 to $3.13 in health 
care costs are avoided in the first 60 days after an infant's birth. 
Doesn't this alone make fiscal sense?
  The WIC Program is preventative. It's preventative in terms of public 
health nutrition. It is a mission-driven program that seeks to improve 
birth outcomes, improve the nutrition of women and children, and 
provide nutrition education and food packages tailored to meet the 
needs of low-income women and children. I can't think of anything that 
is more preventative in nature and that ultimately saves money.
  WIC serves approximately 8.9 million low-income pregnant women, new 
moms, babies, and children under 5 who have been determined to be 
nutritionally at risk. Are these really the people that my Republican 
colleagues want to carry the burden and weight of shared sacrifice?
  What do the Republicans expect? I mean, do you honestly expect your 
constituents to find relief if they're not willing to provide even the 
most basic of services? You don't even want to provide basic services 
for people in need. Where are they going to get relief in this economic 
downturn that we face right now?
  If my Republican colleagues continue to pursue this kind of action, 
they're going to have hundreds of thousands of hungry and malnourished 
women and children on their consciences--and I really mean that, on 
your consciences--and that's not something that I am willing to accept.
  I urge my colleagues to vote against this appropriations bill and to 
give the necessary support to our Nation's most vulnerable members.
  I yield back the balance of my time.


                    Amendment Offered by Ms. DeLauro

  Ms. DeLAURO. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 2, line 14, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $136,070,000) (reduced by $136,070,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Connecticut is recognized for 
5 minutes.
  Ms. DeLAURO. My amendment offered with my colleagues, Representatives 
Kaptur, Boswell, Farr, Courtney, Larson, and Welch, would restore full 
funding for the President's request to the Commodity Futures Trading 
Commission.
  The CFTC's mission is to protect the American public from fraud, 
manipulation, abusive practices, systemic risk related to derivatives, 
including speculation in the oil markets that drive up gas prices, and 
to foster open, competitive and financially sound markets. Funding the 
CFTC at the President's request will put 159 more cops on the beat, 
will provide the agency with the updated technology it needs to 
properly regulate the multi-trillion-dollar derivatives market in order 
to protect American consumers, and will curb excessive speculation by 
Wall Street banks and oil companies.
  The current version of the bill, by gouging the CFTC by as much as 
$136 million, makes it clear that the majority is putting profiteering 
and special interests above the basic, commonsense priorities of the 
American people. Three years ago, we suffered an economic meltdown 
brought on by greed, corruption and a total lack of regulation in the 
Wall Street derivatives market.

                              {time}  1930

  We are still dealing with the economic ramifications of that collapse 
today. Millions of jobs disappeared, millions of homes foreclosed on, 
millions of families are struggling every day to get by.
  If that were not burdensome enough, the same families are paying 
excessive prices at the pump right now because of dangerous oil 
speculation. Goldman Sachs has found that unregulated speculation adds 
over $20 per barrel to the price of oil. Even Exxon's top executive 
recently conceded that the price of gas has been surging due to 
speculators, who now make up nearly 70 percent of the market.
  Because of all the bad behavior by Wall Street, we passed the Dodd-
Frank financial reform bill in the Congress last year which would 
reintroduce transparency and accountability in commodities markets and 
protect the public from future malfeasance. Among these reforms was the 
strengthening of the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, their 
ability to regulate derivatives and to prevent speculation in oil. Yet 
in this appropriations bill the majority is now trying to starve the 
CFTC of the resources that it needs to do the job.
  The decision helps Wall Street firms and big oil companies. If it 
passes, Wall Street can continue the risky manipulation of derivatives 
that brought on the last collapse. Big oil can continue to enjoy 
inflated profits every year due to artificially swollen oil prices. The 
losers are Americans families forced to pay more at the pump with this 
decision, or worse. Eviscerating the CFTC here, the majority is setting 
up taxpayers to pay for yet another costly bailout of Wall Street.
  The choices made in this legislation are reckless and disturbing, 
more to do with ideology than basic economics. Yet it is part of a 
pattern by this majority. Under their watch, gas prices reached an 
average of around $4 a gallon across the country, up dramatically from 
the $2.78 national average in 2010. And yet they still rush to protect 
billions in oil company subsidies, even as they cut the budget of the 
agency we know can do something about this speculation.
  CFTC has already made a difference. Earlier this year they charged 
five oil speculators with manipulating the price of crude, netting them 
more $50 million, even as oil prices climbed towards record highs of 
$147 a barrel in the summer of 2008. We need this type of 
accountability in our oil markets to protect American families. What we 
do not need is a Congress that puts the profit margins of Wall Street 
and oil speculators over the needs of American families and the 
American economy.
  We came here to represent the American people, not banks and oil 
companies, and that means giving the CFTC the resources that it needs 
to do its job properly. I urge my colleagues to put Main Street before 
Wall Street and to support this amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.


                         parliamentary inquiry

  Mr. KINGSTON. Mr. Chair, I have a parliamentary inquiry.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will state his inquiry.

[[Page H4153]]

  Mr. KINGSTON. I accept the amendment and was wondering if we could go 
ahead and call the question and move on.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Committee is proceeding under the 5-minute rule 
and debate will proceed on the amendment.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. It is interesting. I want to read this amendment, 
because I have heard some comments about this bill isn't serious or 
whatever. Well, look at this amendment. I don't think you could call it 
serious. It says on page 2, line 14, ``after the dollar amount insert 
increased by $136 million, reduced by $136 million.''
  The effect of this amendment is nothing. It is a legitimate vehicle 
on a parliamentary rule to discuss something. But if there is a problem 
with the CFTC not doing its job or being unable to do the job because 
of this, there should be an amendment that addresses that. This is not 
an amendment. This is just a discussion. But I will enter into the 
discussion.
  First of all, I want to quote Michael Dunn. He is a Democrat member 
of the commission. Here is what he had to say as far as oil speculation 
goes. ``The CFTC staff has been unable to find any reliable economic 
analysis to support the contention that excessive speculation is 
affecting the markets we regulate.''
  That is from the Democrat member of the CFTC. If I quoted a 
Republican member and they said the same thing, then the Democrats 
would be crying, no, no, no. But that was the quote of the Democrat 
member of the commission.
  Now, why are the Democrats so interested in blaming high energy costs 
on the CFTC? It is because they have opposed our own development of 
energy domestically. We do not want to explore for oil in Alaska, but 
the President of the United States goes down to Brazil and apparently 
understands or in his view believes that they are maybe technologically 
superior to Americans, that they can drill for oil off the shore of 
Brazil, and they can do a better job than the good people in Louisiana 
or Texas or Florida can. So the President of the United States, a 
Democrat, goes down to Brazil and says, drill for oil here, and we will 
lend you the money, and we want to be your best customer.
  Now, if we want to decrease the price of domestic energy, then we 
need to explore for our own energy, instead of this phony argument that 
somehow--and, by the way, I am not sure, but I think Goldman Sachs is a 
huge supporter of President Obama. In fact, I think they were his 
second-largest contributor. I am not 100 percent sure on that. I am 
sure somebody over here might be very quick to correct me if I am 
wrong.
  But I know this: that I have heard over and over again that somehow 
Goldman Sachs is the problem with this bill. I wasn't listening to 
every single speech, but that was one of the things that we kept 
hearing. But if we want to decrease the cost of energy in the United 
States of America, you need to increase the supply and the production 
of domestic energy and get away from this, well, it is the CFTC is not 
getting enough money.
  And I want to say this, which is very important about this budget 
number. The budget of the President of the United States, a Democrat, 
failed in the Senate, which is also run by the Democrats, by a vote of 
97-0. Now, I keep hearing, not this bill, not here, not now. Well, 
where? The Ryan budget is the only budget that has passed either body. 
It has not passed the Senate. But the President's budget failed 97-0. 
So if the Democrats are concerned, then why aren't they working on a 
budget that is acceptable to them?
  We had a number of budget votes here. None of them passed. There was 
one budget proposal, the RSC, Republican Study Committee budget that 
was Mr. Garrett's and Mr. Jordan's, and it failed because they felt the 
Ryan budget did not go far enough. But the Ryan budget did get a 
majority of votes. The President Obama budget did not. And what did the 
President and Harry Reid do when their budget failed? Nothing. They 
left. That was it. If they are concerned about funding for the CFTC and 
the USDA and the FDA, why aren't they working on a budget that is more 
acceptable? Isn't that what leadership is all about?
  So what we are having here now is, because we won't explore for our 
own energy and we won't develop it, we are going to blame it on the 
CFTC's funding level. I think that this amendment, although it does 
nothing, I think we should move on to more serious discussions.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. I move to strike the requisite number of 
words.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Massachusetts is recognized for 
5 minutes.
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. Mr. Chairman, having heard the 
subcommittee chairman's discussion of this amendment, I now understand 
why he didn't want to have a discussion of this amendment. He wanted 
simply to accept it so he would not have had to say nothing. Since it 
was not accepted, he did say nothing, he just took 5 minutes to say it.
  I take it back, he did say one very important thing, and it defines 
this issue. He apparently believes that speculation in oil is no part 
of the reason that oil prices go high, and he quoted a Democrat. He 
found a Democrat, one of the three Democratic members of the 
commission. The other two, of course, vehemently disagree.
  By the way, we did not say that this is something Goldman Sachs 
doesn't like. Goldman Sachs is on the gentleman's side. Goldman Sachs 
opposes regulation of derivatives. Goldman Sachs merely mentioned in an 
analyst report that they believe that $20 a barrel of the cost of oil 
comes from the speculation that they engage in. Maybe they were 
bragging. They certainly weren't objecting.
  Here is what speculation means. By the way, in our legislation that 
the Republicans are trying to undo and in what the CFTC is trying to 
do, people who use oil are not regulated. An airline trying to hedge 
against volatility in prices, they are left alone.
  Here is what we want to say. If you do not use oil, if you never go 
near a barrel of oil, in fact, if you are one of those people whole 
never goes near the gas pump because you have got somebody to pump it 
for you, if you never touch a barrel of oil and never use it, please do 
not buy it up, through derivatives, so that you put up only a little 
bit, large amounts so that you can keep it off the market and the price 
goes up. That is what we want to do.

                              {time}  1940

  The CFTC, we think, should be able to say to people who don't use the 
commodity, Please don't buy it up and hold it off the market so you can 
then sell it when the price goes up and make a profit. The gentleman 
from Georgia says speculation is not an issue. He says it's drilling. 
Mr. Chairman, I do not know a thoughtful person who thinks that complex 
issues like the price of a commodity have a single explanation, except 
the gentleman from Georgia. I wouldn't want to violate the rules by 
suggesting that I would exclude him from the ranks of the rational, but 
every other rational person says that things like the price are set by 
a number of factors.
  No, I do not think speculation is the major cause. Neither does 
Goldman Sachs. Neither does Wilbur Ross, the great investor. They say 
it's perhaps 20 percent. So we're not saying we're going to cut the 
price in half. We are saying you can reduce it by 20 percent. And, by 
the way, it's not just oil. We just had a debate about food. Well, 
frankly, the WIC program that they are cutting wouldn't cost so much if 
we would also limit speculation in food prices.
  And here's what we are talking about. Well, maybe the gentleman from 
Georgia speaks for his party. I've heard no dissent. The apparently 
official Republican position is: Speculation is fine. Let's not 
interfere with speculation. It's people who do not use the commodity, 
who don't use oil, who don't use the foodstuffs, if they want to buy it 
up and keep it off the market so they can then sell it when the price 
goes up--why else would they buy it? They're not collectors. This is 
not stamps. This is not a hobby. It's a way to make money. And how do 
they make money? By driving up the price of the commodity by buying it 
and withholding it and then selling it when

[[Page H4154]]

they can make a profit. What we want is for the CFTC to tell people who 
don't use it, No, there are limits on what you can buy. And we believe 
that contributes to the price of oil, unlike the gentleman from 
Georgia, who said, No, price only has to do with exploration and 
drilling. No one I think really thinks that--maybe not even the 
gentleman from Georgia. What they do is to say, No, the CFTC won't have 
that money. They in fact in their budget will give the CFTC less money 
in the next fiscal year than they have this year.
  We have given the CFTC new powers under the financial reform 
legislation, which they don't like, to cover swaps. By the way, it's 
not simply speculation that's at risk here. AIG helped plunge this 
country into an economic disaster by an absolutely irresponsible use of 
derivatives. And that's something, again, we would like the CFTC to be 
able to regulate. They were allowed to get in way over their heads.
  So what we have here is part of a one-two punch from the Republicans. 
They want to do it legislatively--and that will come up later--but here 
they're telling the CFTC, You should get less money as we give you this 
complicated issue of derivatives than you had before. And by the way, 
they also have added a Catch-22. If you read the current Republican 
arguments, they are very critical of the CFTC for not moving quickly 
enough. They aren't using the authority they've got.
  So, first, you complain that they aren't doing enough. Then you 
reduce the money that they need. And by the way, these are complicated 
things. They need to be able to hire very smart people. They need to be 
able to hire important information technology. You cannot have dumb 
people regulating. And I will give credit to those people out there 
manipulating derivatives and speculating--they're very smart. They have 
state-of-the-art equipment. And you want to put the CFTC in shackles. 
It is an effort to make speculation free of any regulation, with a 
consequent increase in food prices and energy prices. And I hope the 
bill is defeated.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I rise in support of this amendment. We are 
slowly rebounding from a financial crisis that crippled our economy and 
left millions of Americans out of work. Clearly, consumer protection is 
important now more than ever. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission, 
known as the CFTC, is an independent agency that protects market users 
and the public from abusive practices related to derivatives. This 
includes helping regulate oil speculation and food price speculation.
  Now, more than ever, we need a well-resourced CFTC. As Mr. Frank 
pointed out, this is new legislation. The agency is growing by hiring 
people who are going to be regulators, and expects by September 30 of 
this year to have in place what we have given the money for last year, 
which is 720 full-time equivalent positions. They will help ensure that 
the public is protected from fraud, manipulation, and systematic risk, 
and they will make sure that Americans aren't paying exorbitant prices 
at the pump and grocery stores. And the CFTC can do just that.
  In the past 3 years, the CFTC has obtained over $1.3 billion in 
judgments for Americans who have been victimized by thousands of 
profit-hungry investors around the country. And yet now, in fiscal year 
2012, this bill, the Agriculture appropriations bill, slashes the 
budget of the CFTC by 44 percent. So the first time that we begin to 
regulate an industry, we are going to cut it back by 160 jobs they will 
have to let go.
  Now, remember, they're regulating an industry that is seven times 
larger than all regulated industry and regulated markets today. Seven 
times bigger than all regulated markets. This job cut will dangerously 
undermine the CFTC's regulation of commodities and contribute to rising 
oil and food prices, as Mr. Frank pointed out. This is blatant fiscal 
irresponsibility because here's what these cuts mean. The CFTC can't 
put enough cops on the beat to prevent the big banks from making risky 
bets that could lead to another financial crisis. So the American 
taxpayer will foot the bill to bail out Wall Street all over again. 
This puts the needs of Wall Street over the needs of Main Street. But 
you know what else it means? It means Americans will be exposed to 
manipulation of oil and food prices at the very time when folks are 
scraping together pennies to pay for rent and cover groceries.
  Our job here in Congress is to be the best possible stewards of 
taxpayers' dollars. And this shortsighted cut will yield absolutely no 
return on investment. In fact, we could be lining ourselves up to lose 
big all over again. I urge my colleagues to support the DeLauro-Kaptur-
Farr-Larson-Courtney-Welch-Boswell amendment to restore funding to the 
CFTC and avoid this misguided attack on the American taxpayer.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. BOSWELL. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Iowa is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  (Mr. BOSWELL asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
remarks.)
  Mr. BOSWELL. I rise to support the fair and necessary funding for the 
Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The CFTC acts as a Wall Street 
watchdog, overseeing American markets that directly impact our Nation's 
workers, businesses, and families. Refusing to responsibly fund this 
Commission puts our constituents in danger of higher gas prices, higher 
food prices, and a greater likelihood that Wall Street will once again 
take advantage of them. While the derivatives market has grown by 400 
percent over the last 10 years, the U.S. Government has failed to match 
that growth in regulators. Now the majority wants to take even more 
cops off Wall Street, and as someone has said, it's like putting the 
Little League champions up against the New York Yankees. With 
speculators making up 70 percent of market players and an industry that 
invests $25 billion in technology each year, the Commission that 
regulates behavior on Wall Street cannot afford to be left behind. Our 
taxpayers cannot afford to pick up the bill again.
  To monitor and regulate this market, and to protect American 
taxpayers, last Congress we passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform 
Act. And I might add that that was not a knee-jerk operation. We took 
months and months, many, many hearings, as you well know, 
working across the aisle together to try to do something that would 
prevent a re-happening of what we were going through and still have the 
aftereffect of.

  As ranking member of the subcommittee that oversees the CFTC, I have 
heard from countless witnesses, including Chairman Gensler himself, 
that we must properly fund the CFTC to protect American consumers and 
market end-users. They need and must have the tools and the resources 
to do their job. Adequately funding the CFTC would allow the Commission 
to increase staff to do the job that Congress directed them to do, 
which is to prevent another 2008 financial crisis. It would allow the 
Commission to keep pace with the growth of the market they are charged 
to regulate and invest $66 million in technology to improve oversight 
of electronic trading.
  Still, the majority is dead set on delaying and defunding the CFTC. 
This legislation returns the CFTC to their 2008 level funding--the same 
level of funding that led to the taxpayer bailout of Wall Street and 
only allows half of what they need now to do the job correctly. 
Defunding and delaying this implementation is the majority's handout to 
Wall Street millionaires and billionaires, who have already been caught 
red-handed gambling with the pension plans of middle class Americans 
and speculating the cost of oil $20 a barrel beyond actual cost.

                              {time}  1950

  This is why I support and have cosponsored the amendment to increase 
CFTC funding to the fair level of $308 million. To fund the CFTC at 
2008 levels is an insult to the American taxpayers who were asked to 
foot the bill in 2008 as a result of Wall Street's reckless behavior.
  Our Nation has seen the effects of the 2008 funding level and what 
happens when our market lacks proper oversight. We must protect our 
constituents from the vulnerable situation that

[[Page H4155]]

led to a financial collapse, and we must fairly fund the CFTC.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Nebraska is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I thank the gentleman from Nebraska.
  I just want to say I find it incredible that I'm hearing people say 
that the fault of the Wall Street meltdown was because of the CFTC's 
not doing its job. I cannot believe that the meltdown and the financial 
situation is now being attributed to the CFTC and, to avoid it, we have 
to put in more money for the CFTC.
  I voted against the Wall Street bailout. The President of the United 
States voted for it as a Senator, and again as President he wanted part 
two of it. So I'm not buying that the Wall Street bailout--AIG was 
mentioned earlier. That was done by the Fed. The Bear Stearns bailout, 
that was done by the Fed. The bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, 
that was done by the House Democrats.
  So I don't need to be sitting here listening to people preach to me 
about bailouts and that the solution to lower gas prices is to fund a 
bureaucracy. It's a group that has been averaging about four 
regulations a year and between now and late summer 34 regulations.
  I understand that those in the Big Government circles of Washington 
love more regulations, more government growth; but to say to the 
taxpayers that funding CFTC at a higher, unprecedented level is going 
to avoid the need for bailouts is ridiculous. And, again, Mr. Chairman, 
I'm somebody who has consistently voted against these bailouts and 
these stimulus programs.
  I don't believe that government is the answer. I think the market 
still has the answer. I did not support the Dodd-Frank bill. What this 
is--a lot of it is just an overreach, more government telling people 
how to conduct their business.
  Do I think there's a role for CFTC? Certainly I do. And can CFTC be 
effective? Yes. But their own Democrat member says, and I will quote 
again: ``The CFTC staff''--not his personal opinion but the CFTC staff, 
which is over 700--``has been unable to find any reliable economic 
analysis to support the contention that excessive speculation is 
affecting the markets we regulate.'' Now, that's not my opinion; that's 
what the Democrat commission member says the CFTC staff has reported.
  Should we be concerned about speculation? Yes, we should. But I don't 
think it is fair for any Member of Congress to go back home to the 
taxpayers and say, I'm going to bring down the price at the pump 
because I have put millions of dollars into a Washington bureaucracy 
and they're really going to get tough on that Wall Street crowd now.
  If we want to bring down the price of energy in America, we have to 
increase our supply. And I don't know of any other way to do it. Supply 
goes up and the cost goes down. If we want to help the consumers at the 
pump, we have got to explore and develop our own domestic energy 
resources. And discussion about CFTC funding comes second, third, 
fourth, fifth tier to that. So if the objective is to bring down the 
price of gas at the pump, let's don't pretend that increasing spending 
for the CFTC is going to achieve that.
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. Reclaiming my time, Mr. Chairman, let me add as well 
it's a little difficult for me to sit here quietly and listen to the 
pontificating about Wall Street bailouts. I didn't support the Wall 
Street bailout either.
  There are now five banks who control over 50 percent of the assets, 
deposited assets, in the country. Those banks that were deemed ``too 
big to fail'' in reality are too big to succeed. It's the Main Street 
bank that's under constant competitive pressure from these large 
institutions that have been empowered by further consolidations by the 
actions of this very body. So it's very difficult to sit here and take 
that.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. COURTNEY. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Connecticut is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. COURTNEY. Mr. Chair, I rise in support of this amendment, as 
someone who also voted against the Wall Street bailout.
  I, however, would certainly disagree with the conclusion that 
speculation is not a factor in the price of oil and certainly the huge 
swing that we have seen just in the last 6 months in this country. And 
I would cite ExxonMobil as my validator in terms of that point.
  On May 14 in Forbes Magazine, hardly a Democratic left-wing 
publication, there was a story regarding an interview with Rex 
Tillerson, the CEO of ExxonMobil, who stated that the real price with 
traditional supply and demand for oil and gas should be roughly between 
$60 and $70 a barrel, not $115 a barrel, which it was back in mid-May. 
And this is what the article said: that Mr. Tillerson stated that the 
reason it's above $100 a barrel is due to the oil majors using futures 
contracts to lock in current high prices and speculation that is 
engineered by the high-frequency trading of quantitative hedge funds.
  Again, traditional supply and demand, according to ExxonMobil, 
suggests that the price of oil and gas should be roughly $60 to $70. 
Well, how will the CFTC bring us back to a market that is actually 
connected to supply and demand forces as opposed to the market that we 
have today?
  Under Dodd-Frank, what the CFTC was given was the authority to impose 
position limits on noncommercial interests that have swamped the 
commodities trading markets of this country since Congress foolishly 
deregulated the commodities markets back in 2000. Today, the number of 
noncommercial traders in the commodities markets is twice what it was 
in 2000 and using virtually no money down, because the margin limits 
are almost nonexistent. They have basically hijacked this market so 
that real end-users, the people who depend on futures trading to lock 
in positions, whether it's airlines or back home in Connecticut whether 
it's oil delivery guys who are trying to figure out whether they can 
offer lock-in contracts for next winter, they have been basically 
driven from this market. In Connecticut today you cannot get a lock-in 
contract for next winter because of the fact that these traders now 
have absolutely no confidence in whether or not this market will be in 
any rational place 6 months or 8 months from now.
  So the need for the CFTC to reimpose some reasonable ``appropriate 
limits,'' which is what the Dodd-Frank bill empowers them to do, is the 
reason why their staff needs to be put into place so that we can have a 
market that existed back in the 1990s, our parents' commodities trading 
market, which was a stable market which was basically for the use of 
end-users and not for people who were using high-frequency trading, 
which the CEO of ExxonMobil cited as the cause of the swing in prices 
that we're seeing.

  And let's be clear here, folks. Supporting this budget from the 
majority is not about being a deficit hawk. Secretary Ray Mabus from 
the Navy testified before the House Armed Services Committee that every 
$10-a-barrel increase of oil costs the Navy, in terms of annual fuel 
costs, $300 million a year. If you look at what the CEO of ExxonMobil 
says, the Navy right now is overpaying easily on an annualized basis 
anywhere from $300 million to $500 million a year, and that's just one 
branch of the military. The Air Force uses a greater amount of fossil 
fuels of oil and gas than the Navy does.
  So if you are truly a deficit hawk, if you really want to make sure 
that the Pentagon, which is going to be going through some gut-
wrenching decisions about whether or not to provide for the Warfighter 
in this country and protect weapons platforms that we need to defend 
this country, then we need a high-functioning CFTC to make sure that 
the Pentagon as well as the rest of the government at the State and 
local level are not overpaying for gas and oil.
  The taxpayer has a huge stake in making sure that this agency, the 
CFTC, has adequate funds to do its job because the savings to not just 
consumers and small businesses but the savings to the taxpayers will be 
in the billions and billions of dollars. It far exceeds any of the 
claimed savings that this budget seeks to obtain through the

[[Page H4156]]

cuts, through the unbelievably shortsighted cuts to the CFTC in terms 
of being able to do its job.
  We should oppose this budget. We should support this amendment which 
is on the floor of this House.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. COURTNEY. No, I will not yield.
  Not only small businesses and consumers but the taxpayer needs us to 
act to make sure that we have a rational oil trading market that is 
tied to real traditional supply and demand, which the CEO of ExxonMobil 
has told us is overpriced today to at least $20 to $30 a barrel.

                              {time}  2000

  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, I was listening to the previous 
speaker's arguments, and I'm glad to hear that he's concerned about the 
U.S. Navy's energy supplies, and I was going to ask him, if he had been 
kind enough to yield to me, whether he was in favor of us starting to 
develop our own energy resources here in the United States.
  We've got a tremendous amount of energy that our Creator has given us 
here in this country off the northern coast of Alaska, in the Western 
United States, in the gulf coast, and certainly, I would like to see 
the oil prices drop. The best way to get those oil prices to come down 
to a reasonable level is for us to start developing our own energy 
resources here in this country. Certainly, our oil and natural gas 
resources need to be developed, clean coal energy, alternative sources 
of energy, nuclear energy, all these other things.
  And I just hear all this pontification from my colleagues on the 
other side about the CFTC and the oil speculators. The best way to make 
the oil speculators lose money, which they would do when they increase 
the prices of oil by speculating on future prices, is by producing more 
oil here in this country. We've got a tremendous amount of uncertainty 
with all the things that are going on in the Middle East today, and 
that causes speculators to think the price of oil is going up.
  Now, I'm not one who's here arguing for the speculators by any means. 
I believe in the marketplace. I believe that the marketplace, 
unencumbered by government regulations and taxes, is the best way to 
control quality, quantity, and cost of all goods and services, 
including oil. And the best way to do that is to lower the cost of oil 
here in this country, natural gas and all of our energy supplies for 
the U.S. Navy as well as for the Federal Government and for everybody, 
to lower the cost of gasoline at the pump. It's best to develop our own 
natural resources, our God-given resources that are plentiful in this 
country.
  But I have seen in, now, three Congresses that I have been here my 
Democrat colleagues block every effort that we have made to develop our 
own resources. I never will forget in 2008, while we were coming during 
the August break and talking about the Republicans' all-of-the-above 
energy policy, that a Democratic staffer said that the Democrat Party's 
energy policy was drive a small car and wait for the wind. That's not 
an energy policy.
  We need to develop the God-given resources that we have here in this 
country, to lower the cost of gas at the pumps, to lower the cost of 
heating oil, particularly for our elderly citizens and poorest people 
across this Nation that this winter are going to be suffering, 
suffering tremendously economically because of the high cost of oil.
  It's not the speculators and the CFTC that's going to do that. 
Drilling for oil and natural gas and developing our own natural 
resources here in this country is going to be the solution. And I just 
encourage my Democratic colleagues to join with me and others here on 
our side, let's develop these resources, not just talk about the CFTC, 
not just talk about more regulations on the marketplace, because the 
more regulation we put on the marketplace, the higher the cost goes. So 
let's get the regulatory burden off of the energy sector so that we can 
start developing our own God-given resources here in this country.
  So, if the gentleman had been kind enough to yield, I would have 
asked him and congratulate him on being concerned about our U.S. Navy 
and how much extra they're paying for oil, for all the energy sources 
that our military has to spend. We've got to stop this outrageous 
spending that the Federal Government's been doing, and the way to do 
that is lower the cost of energy here and that will help everybody.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. KAPTUR. I move to strike the last word, Mr. Chairman.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Ohio is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. KAPTUR. I rise to associate myself with the fine efforts of 
Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro and Ranking Member Sam Farr to point out the 
anemic funding that is contained in the base bill for the Commodity 
Futures Trading Commission. The Republican bill reduces below the 
President's request by 44 percent the necessary funding for staff for 
the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and provides significantly 
fewer resources for the agency to do the job America expects.
  Now, why is this important? The CFTC is supposed to regulate betting, 
B-E-T-T-I-N-G, because really what's going on is all the American 
people know is a very sophisticated type of gambling that when the 
bettors lose, rather than absorbing their losses, they come to the 
American people, but they're very powerful and they create new 
mechanisms. They create mechanisms. They don't call it betting, but 
they have a term, ``collateralized debt obligations.'' That gives it a 
kind of luster. And from that, they might drive a credit default swap.
  But in the end, as the book by Joe Nocera, ``All the Devils Are 
Here,'' recounts what we really have is a Wall Street and a Chicago 
futures market that has run amok, where market manipulation, 
speculation, and outright fraud led our country into the worst economic 
recession since the Great Depression.
  Make no mistake about it: These folks are very powerful, and one of 
the most important trades involved in this very sophisticated gambling 
is oil. This particular chart shows the profits being made by the major 
oil companies and compares the profits in the first quarter of last 
year to this year. If you look at ExxonMobil, over $10 billion more 
profits this year than last year. And the list goes on. Whether it's 
Conoco at $2 billion, whether it's BP at $7.2 billion, these folks are 
not hurting.
  President Obama said, back in April, that part of the oil problem and 
the gas price problem is speculation. He's absolutely right. Even 
Goldman Sachs, one of the big beneficiaries of the betting, admits that 
a huge portion of the increase in the gas price is due to betting. And 
of all people, the chief executive officer of Exxon admitted in 
testimony in the other body recently that $60 to $70 per barrel of oil, 
whether it's $60, $70, $80, $90, $100, is actually due to speculation. 
So even those involved in it are admitting they're crying for help. So 
let's give it to them. Let's give them the help they want and 
desperately need.
  This Commodity Futures Trading Commission has been charged with 
shining a bright light into the dark recesses that Wall Street and the 
futures markets would love us to ignore. In fact, I think the currency 
markets actually got themselves exempted, so there's huge sections of 
trades that are going on in our world today that aren't even the 
subject, even if we were to have the staffing we need over at the CFTC, 
that would not be affected by it.
  But I ask myself: Could it perhaps be the intent and consequence of 
this restrictive funding proposal at the CFTC to prevent robust 
regulation of this market? If we look at what happened with mortgage-
backed securities and all the derivatives that flowed from that, we 
know absolutely for certain that the lack of regulation is the reason 
for our demise.
  We must make sure that the CFTC is able to take on speculation in the 
markets, and there's no more nontransparent market than this one in 
oil. So when the American people go to the pump and they cuss, they 
have to think about this little agency called the Commodity Futures 
Trading Commission that back in 2000 tried to get the

[[Page H4157]]

right to regulate derivatives, and they were denied that right by a 
vote right here in the Congress, and most Members had no idea what they 
were voting on because it was included in an omnibus appropriations 
bill.

                              {time}  2010

  Isn't that interesting? Legislating on an appropriation bill, and 
nobody found it. Well, they must have a lot of power in order to do 
that. So if we look at a few years ago when these derivative markets 
were worth about $13 trillion--now nobody I represent, including 
myself, can even imagine $13 trillion. But that derivative market grew 
from the mid-nineties to the present where it was about $40 trillion, 
and we had 475 employees over at the CFTC trying to figure out what was 
going on in all these markets. Well, today that market is over $600 
trillion in notional value and 15 times more than before, and there's 
not sufficient staff in order to regulate these markets. It's pretty 
obvious where we need support in order to rein in these abuses.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. WATT. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from North Carolina is recognized for 
5 minutes.
  Mr. WATT. Mr. Chairman, I don't come to the floor very often anymore 
to debate. I have kind of changed my pattern. Eighteen years ago, 19 
years ago, when I saw egregious things, I would be right here in the 
heart of the debate, ranting and raving, some people would say.
  When my colleagues and sometimes my constituents now ask me, Have you 
lost your passion, I tell them that there are some reasons that I don't 
come to the floor anymore. One is that I find that most of the time, my 
colleagues on the opposite side are tone deaf. They are not really 
listening to what anybody is saying to them. They are off on some 
radical right undertaking, falling off the right edge of the Earth, and 
they are not listening to anything I say.
  They don't share my values, and they don't really care about this 
debate that we had, 3 hours of talking about women, infants, and 
children going hungry. They really don't much care about that, I say to 
my constituents. And, third, they just make up stuff. You know, they 
have this--you know, if we repeat it enough, it's got to be true, and 
we will convince the American people of about anything if we just keep 
saying it over and over again. Or they . . . have convenient memories 
that forget that it was President Bush----
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will suspend.
  For what purpose does the gentleman from Nebraska rise?
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. The gentleman has accused our side of the aisle of 
lying. Is that a cause for having his words taken down?
  The Acting CHAIR. The Chair construes that as a demand that words be 
taken down. All Members will suspend. The gentleman will take his seat.
  The Clerk will report the words.

                              {time}  2020

  Mr. WATT. Mr. Chairman, in the interest of time, some people have 
said that I called somebody a liar and, obviously, that would be in 
violation of the rules. I am aware of that. So if I did, I ask 
unanimous consent that those words be removed from the Record. 
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman 
from North Carolina?
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from North Carolina may proceed in 
order.
  Mr. WATT. Can the Chair tell me how much time remains in my 5 
minutes?
  The Acting Chair. The gentleman from North Carolina has 3 minutes 
remaining of his 5 minutes.
  Mr. WATT. All right. Well, let me try to pick up essentially where I 
was without offending anybody else.
  There's some conveniently forgotten items that I think we need to be 
reminded of. Number 1, that it was President Bush who requested the 
government bailouts. That occurred on his watch. It was President Bush 
that was responsible for the tax cuts for the rich that got us out of 
surpluses as far as the eye could see and into this deficit spending. 
And it was rampant speculation and abuse of derivatives on Wall Street 
that resulted in a meltdown that made Dodd-Frank and the CFTC 
regulation that we're here debating necessary. Those are the three 
important things that I think we need to take note of.
  It also resulted in a tremendous economic downturn that resulted in 
more people needing food stamps and the benefit of the WIC program. So 
these two things are really not disconnected from each other, the 3 
hours of debate that we had previously and the debate on whether we are 
going to adequately fund the CFTC, which has been given authority under 
the Dodd-Frank legislation to rein in the speculation that is taking 
place that's driving up food prices, oil prices, and if we're not 
careful, will result in the same kind of economic meltdown that we 
experienced that got us into this in the first place.
  So this whole process of being in denial about this and ignoring the 
facts is something that I think we should not countenance on this 
floor. We need the CFTC to regulate derivatives and speculation. And to 
the extent that we cut the staff and the funding of the CFTC, we could 
be replicating exactly what led President Bush to say we needed a 
bailout in the first place.
  So, that's what this debate is all about. I think it's terrible that 
we are cutting funds under this bill for women, infants, and children, 
the most vulnerable in our society. But it's even more terrible that we 
are going to run the risk of allowing the same kind of rampant 
speculation, unregulated, to get us back into another meltdown that 
will result in our being back here trying to figure out how to dig 
ourselves out of this ditch. A year from now, 18 months from now, 2 
years from now we'll be right back here again.
  Now, this is not rocket science. It's all just connected to each 
other. And my colleagues can deny it all they want. They can say that 
this is about drilling for oil in the United States. That's not what 
it's about. All of the science I've seen says there's more supply of 
oil now than there is demand, and if we were operating in a regular 
domestic market on regular economics, the price of gas would be going 
down.
  We need to regulate the CFTC. We need to have them regulating 
derivatives and speculation.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. DAVID SCOTT of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last 
word.
  The Acting Chair (Mr. Reed). The gentleman is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. DAVID SCOTT of Georgia. It seems that if I'm the American people 
watching this on C-SPAN tonight, I think we have a very clear picture 
of the difference between what the Republicans want and what the 
Democrats want.
  Now, as my good friend from North Carolina very eloquently laid out 
the scenario of how we got to where we are, the question becomes: How 
do we solve this problem? The Democrats are saying we got into this 
problem because we did not have the proper oversight to abusive 
practices, to manipulation, to the use of derivatives, and allowing 
them to use a leveraging position that brought great havoc to our 
economic system in a way that brought about a havoc to our economic 
system not seen since the 1930s and the Depression.
  The American people, under the leadership of President George Bush 
and his Treasury Secretary Paulson, came to our Financial Services 
Committee with just one little piece of paper, but on that piece of 
paper it said, We need to be able to bring some oversight and 
regulation to this new area of derivatives and credit default swaps. It 
is tearing a hole in our economy. We moved. We moved and we passed the 
Dodd-Frank bill.
  Now, what we have before us now is a continuation of a very misguided 
policy by the Republicans. Let me remind you, this same scenario was 
carried out to cut Medicare. It's all been cutting programs, cutting 
efforts to respond to the basic needs of the American people.
  Now, my issue is this: If my Republican friends were very sincere 
about what they were doing--and let me qualify that because I don't 
want my words taken down. But ``sincerity'' is a very important word 
here. And my sincerity point is this:
  If they were sincere, why would they advocate cutting the very 
programs

[[Page H4158]]

that the American people need at the time and, at the same time, saying 
we're in such dire budget consequences but yet we can give billionaires 
and millionaires $2.5 trillion, but we cannot adequately fund the CFTC 
to go in and have the power to put forward the very controls needed so 
that we will never have the kind of meltdown that we had before?
  That is the hypocrisy here, Mr. Chairman. That's what the American 
people are watching tonight on C-SPAN in this debate, and I hope they 
see a very clear message of who it is that's standing up for the 
American people at their time of need.

                              {time}  2030

  And there's no greater need than to rein in these speculators who 
have been a primary cause to the high rise in gasoline. That's what 
they want us to do, and that's what we're doing. But the Republicans 
want to cut the budget so that we will not be able to have the 
staffing, so that we could go into the dark corners and the crevices 
and be able to shine the light and pull out these speculators that are 
driving up these gasoline prices to $5 a gallon.
  So I hope that tonight, after this debate, the American people will 
clearly see who's on the side of the American people. Without any 
question, without any doubt, it is the Democrats who are standing in 
the way to make sure that we do all we can to make sure the CFTC, our 
primary regulator, will be able to put in place those entities, those 
regulations that will prevent this meltdown from happening before and 
will rein in these speculators and give the American people the day 
that they deserve, a better day in the sun.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. Mr. Chairman, I ask unanimous consent to strike the 
last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the gentleman from Nebraska is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  There was no objection.
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. Mr. Chairman, I think it's important to address this 
issue of who's on the side of the American people. We have a $1.6 
trillion deficit this year. Over 40 cents on every dollar that the 
government is spending is borrowed. We have $14 trillion of debt. This 
is a very tough Agricultural appropriations budget. I don't like it.
  The CFTC is a very important organization; it does very important 
work. I think as well there are structural flaws in the commodities 
markets. Futures markets that are designed to decrease volatility and 
mitigate risk are actually increasing volatility and causing risk. 
There's a structural problem there. But the issue comes down to what 
are we going to prioritize and where.
  The CFTC has received--since the recklessness of Wall Street in 2008 
and those bailouts that were voted on by a majority of this body--has 
received a 53 percent increase in its funding. I wish it didn't have to 
be reduced, but it's being asked to share in this overall budget of 
reducing the entire cost of the Agricultural appropriations bill by a 
margin that is actually less than other parts of the bill.
  It's a tough budget. I don't like it either. But we've got to try to 
tighten our belt in a responsible manner. And given the increases that 
have occurred, I think it's important to have some historical 
perspective here.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Mr. Chairman, I represent metropolitan 
Detroit. And not too long ago I took some corporate officials for a 
tour of neighborhoods on the city's east side near where I grew up. I 
showed them blocks of big, beautiful brick homes, three and four 
bedroom homes. And when you got up close to those homes, you realized 
that none of them had windows, none of them. There were blocks and 
blocks and acres and miles of neighborhoods that have been devastated, 
devastated.
  Now, I'm a member of the Homeland Security Committee. My duty is to 
protect metro Detroit from terrorist attack or tornado or some other 
natural disaster, but it wasn't a flood or a fire that destroyed those 
neighborhoods. They were devastated because of foreclosures, 
foreclosures that this body--that I accused when I was a member of the 
Michigan legislature of not effectively addressing the housing crisis. 
But also foreclosures that were caused in part by a lot of rich folks 
around here who are hoping, praying, gambling, wishing, betting that 
homeowners would lose everything that they have. What kind of country 
is this that we encourage people to make money--billions of dollars--
off people losing everything? That's outrageous. That's not American. 
Come on, people. We want folks to get rich because families lose their 
homes and other neighbors stay in their homes but they lose their 
entire life savings that they invested in it? Of course not.
  This is why I ask us to support the Rosa DeLauro amendment, because 
the Commodity Futures Trading Commission needs more staff, it needs 
more resources. And some of you are saying, well, we can't afford it. 
But look at the cost, the cost to our families, the cost to our local 
units of government that can no longer afford to hire police and fire, 
the cost to our taxpayers who are now living in fear of crime because 
they don't have the protection of their first responders. That's a cost 
that we cannot afford to bear.
  I urge all of you to support the DeLauro amendment. It's something 
that we need, and it's right for this country. We want people to earn 
money from offering value, not by destroying neighborhoods. I'm 
appealing to the best in you, support this amendment.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Parliamentary inquiry, Mr. Chairman.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will state his parliamentary inquiry.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Isn't it true, for the record, that we do support the 
amendment?
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman has not stated a parliamentary 
inquiry.
  Ms. CASTOR of Florida. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. CASTOR of Florida. I rise in strong opposition to the underlying 
bill and in support of the DeLauro amendment.
  Mr. Chairman, hardworking families all across America have been 
whipsawed in recent years by Wall Street and special interests who have 
had free rein to place bets on mortgages and place bets on future oil 
prices. And you know what? We fought back. We fought back, and we 
passed a Wall Street reform law that outlaws risky financial practices 
by banks and lenders and that protects consumers.
  Taxpayers should never, ever again be left on the hook for Wall 
Street's reckless actions, and yet my GOP colleagues propose to do just 
that with this bill, let Wall Street off the hook and put consumers and 
our economy at risk again. This bill significantly cuts the Commodity 
Futures Trading Commission. The CFTC is a major piece of the landmark 
Wall Street reform law because the law put cops back on the financial 
beat into areas where the financial industry was left largely 
unsupervised. And you know who suffered because of that? American 
families suffered the firsthand consequences of an unsupervised and 
unregulated Wall Street.
  And now they're proposing a real double whammy to the American 
family, because my GOP colleagues are pairing their push to put 
consumers at risk and threaten their economic security with their GOP 
plan to end Medicare as we know it and undermine retirement security.
  I would have hoped that we would have all learned a lesson and that 
you do not return to the policies of the past that led to the financial 
meltdown and the economic hardship for all Americans, but it appears 
that some have not learned that lesson.
  And you have to ask why, why are we trying to go back to the same 
policies that led to the meltdown and led to such pain all across the 
country that started back in 2007?

                              {time}  2040

  I'll tell you why.
  I have an article that was published during the debate of the Wall 
Street reform legislation. It is dated December 8, 2009. The headline 
reads: ``House Republicans Huddle with Lobbyists to Kill Financial 
Reform Bill.''

[[Page H4159]]

  The article continues: ``In a call to arms, House Republican leaders 
met with more than 100 lobbyists at the Capitol Visitor Center on 
Tuesday afternoon to try to fight back against financial regulatory 
overhaul legislation.''
  Now, in another article written during the consideration of H.R. 1, 
the headline reads: ``Industry Looks to Derail Dodd-Frank 
Enforcement.''
  It continues: Republicans ``make no bones about their goal: to defang 
Dodd-Frank,'' our landmark Wall Street reform law that was put in place 
to protect consumers and hardworking American families.

                     [From Roll Call, Dec. 8, 2009]

 House Republicans Huddle With Lobbyists To Kill Financial Reform Bill

                            (By Anna Palmer)

       In a call to arms, House Republican leaders met with more 
     than 100 lobbyists at the Capitol Visitors Center on Tuesday 
     afternoon to try to fight back against financial regulatory 
     overhaul legislation.
       House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) kicked off the 
     4 p.m. meeting, along with Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) 
     and GOP Reps. Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), Scott Garrett (N.J.) 
     and Jeb Hensarling (Texas).
       ``The message was [House Financial Services Chairman 
     Barney] Frank and the Democratic majority are ruining 
     America, ruining capitalism, and stand up for yourselves,'' 
     said a lobbyist who attended the meeting. ``They said, `Look, 
     you all oppose this bill, but only a few of you have come out 
     publicly.' ''
       In addition to asking trade associations to get their 
     members in Congressional districts to write letters opposing 
     the legislation, Republicans asked for companies and trade 
     associations to use their Democratic consultants to gather 
     intelligence on where members of the Congressional Black 
     Caucus and the Blue Dog Coalition are in supporting the 
     legislation.
                                  ____


            Industry Looks To Derail Dodd-Frank Enforcement

                           (By Kelsey Snell)

       Wall Street and the banking industry, unable to stop 
     Congress from passing the huge Dodd-Frank financial reform 
     law last year, might get better traction this year by 
     squeezing regulators through the budget process.
       For the second year in a row, President Obama is pushing 
     for big budget increases at the Securities and Exchange 
     Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. But 
     Republican lawmakers are headed in exactly the opposite 
     direction, and they make no bones about their goal: to defang 
     Dodd-Frank.
       Both the SEC and the CFTC received broad new powers to 
     regulate the financial industry, especially the vast and 
     largely unsupervised swaps market for financial derivatives. 
     Both agencies need to hire hundreds of additional people to 
     both make and enforce a sweeping array of new rules and to 
     revive their depleted enforcement ranks.
       But Congress has frozen their budgets at 2010 levels, and 
     House Republicans now want to slash them even more.
       In a multi-pronged assault, banks and other financial firms 
     have been blanketing lawmakers with testimonials and 
     industry-funding ``studies'' that warn about the lost jobs 
     and lost economic growth that new financial regulation could 
     cause.
       But the real battleground is the budget.
       Under Obama's budget, the CFTC would see its budget nearly 
     double from about $169 million in 2010 to $308 million. The 
     SEC, which has new responsibilities to oversee hedge funds, 
     private equity funds, and complex new market tools, would see 
     its budget jump from $1.1 billion to $1.4 billion.
       House Republicans would move the other way. Under the House 
     GOP's stop-gap spending bill to fund government operations 
     for the remainder of this fiscal year, the CFTC's budget 
     would be slashed to just $112 million and the SEC's budget 
     would be essentially frozen at $1.07 billion.
       At a hearing Tuesday of the House Financial Services 
     Committee, Republican lawmakers made it clear they wanted to 
     stop the agencies in their tracks.
       ``When you look at this freight train of rulemaking that is 
     running down the track to a July deadline, I think not enough 
     alarm has been raised about the potential devastating impact 
     this rulemaking could have on the U.S.-based derivatives 
     marketplace,'' said Financial Services Capital Markets 
     Subcommittee Chairman Scott Garrett, R-N.J., in his opening 
     statement.

  Mr. Chairman, we need to ask ourselves: Who is being represented here 
in the Nation's capital? Do we come to this House to represent the 
people or do we come here to represent the special interests and the 
high-flying financiers of Wall Street who have already caused so much 
damage to this economy?
  The financial meltdown caused many people to lose their life savings, 
their pensions, their homes. I have had six foreclosure prevention 
workshops since 2008 in Florida. These were largely middle class 
Americans, our neighbors, and we are here to fight for them and not for 
those who caused the damage to the economy.
  But do you know what?
  Since January, under this new majority, day after day, we have to 
come to the floor of the House to fight the misguided agenda of the 
majority that wants to roll back policies that are beneficial to the 
middle class--roll back Wall Street reform and end Medicare as we know 
it. Big Oil gets to keep its tax break, and companies still get breaks 
for exporting jobs overseas.
  Meanwhile, the GOP majority has not brought one bill to create jobs 
across our great country, and instead thinks it is wise to undermine 
the economic and retirement security for American families, end 
Medicare as we know it, and roll back consumer protections under Wall 
Street reform--take the cops off the beat.
  Mr. Chairman, I think it is time for Representatives to represent 
their neighbors back home, to get their priorities in order--to 
represent these hardworking American families and put their interests 
before the special interests on Wall Street.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. I strongly oppose the underlying bill, and I support 
the proposed amendment.
  Earlier today, we had a long discussion about one portion of the bill 
that dealt with Women, Infants and Children and the way in which the 
legislation inadequately funds the necessities for pregnant women, 
infants and children to lead healthy lives. We are now on to another 
issue that is extraordinarily important.
  In the '90s, the idea of deregulation took hold and was expanded 
throughout the 2000 to 2008 period, so much so that we had the 
financial meltdown. We had Wall Street bankers and hedge funds running 
wild, gambling on the future, and America was the great loser in that 
gamble.
  Over the last several years, we have seen the derivative market 
increase from a $30-$40 trillion notional value to an over $300 
trillion notional value today. Every day across the Wall Street 
tickers--across the wires--and in the back rooms of the hedge funds and 
the big banks, $300 trillion of risk is traded back and forth, risk 
that is not backed up by assets but by bets that are made. It is the 
great crap shoot in the alley of Wall Street--$300 trillion.
  Where is the money? Where is the enforcer to make sure that the bet 
against Greece and the bet against the price of oil is going to be 
backed up? It's not there. It is the shell game of all shell games. 
There are no assets. I was the insurance commissioner, and we 
understood a couple of things very clearly: If an insurance company 
were going to make a bet that something would go wrong, then they had 
to have the asset to pay if that bet ever came to pass.
  That's not the case here. There is no regulation of this market.
  Understanding the need for this back in the 1930s, the Commodity 
Futures Trading Commission was established to make sure that, if bets 
were made on the future price of grain, somebody would be able to pay 
if that bet had to be paid off. It worked okay until the great period 
of deregulation. Let's understand the definition of ``insanity.'' It's 
when you repeat what you did before and expect a different answer.
  This bill is asking us to, once again, repeat the deregulation of the 
derivative market by defunding, not providing adequate funding, for the 
Commodity Futures Trading Commission. We are betting that things are 
going to work out, that this $300 trillion of notional value out there 
in the derivative market is somehow going to work out okay. We learned 
in 2007 and 2008 that it doesn't work out okay--literally collapsing 
the entire financial market of the world.

  Okay. Speculation? Let it rip. We did that once before. It is 
insanity to assume that this time it's going to work out okay.
  This amendment puts back in the necessary money for the Commodity 
Futures Trading Commission to adequately regulate a huge market beyond 
the imagination of all of us. We need

[[Page H4160]]

this money. We need the systems in place to make sure that this 
derivative market is adequately regulated so that we do not, once 
again, find this Nation bailing out or falling into a great recession 
and depression yet again.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Will my friend yield for a minute?
  Mr. GARAMENDI. No, I don't think so because, I suspect, I'm pretty 
much out of time.
  Let us understand what is at stake here. It is the very nature of our 
economy to be able to survive in an era of rapid speculation that has 
driven up the price of oil. We know from Goldman Sachs and we know from 
the CEO of Exxon that some $20 of the $100-per-barrel oil price today 
is speculation. We can take a look at the other markets where 
speculation is also running rapid, and it is the Commodity Futures 
Trading Commission that is specifically under Dodd-Frank required to 
rein in the excesses of this market, to end the speculation, to 
ultimately make a rational market out there for the futures market.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. NUGENT. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Florida is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. NUGENT. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  I want to point out to my friend from California of a number of the 
previous speakers who keep speaking about the DeLauro amendment. The 
DeLauro amendment does not do anything. We accept the DeLauro 
amendment, but I'm not sure that the folks over there who are speaking 
for the DeLauro amendment have read the DeLauro amendment because, if 
they had, they would know that it does nothing to restore the funding.
  I will be glad to yield to my friend from California because I 
understand your speech was right, but that's not what the amendment 
did.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Florida controls the time.
  Mr. NUGENT. I reclaim my time, and yield to the gentleman from 
California.
  Mr. GARAMENDI. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Let us understand that the underlying bill does not provide the 
necessary money for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to conduct 
the necessary oversight and regulations to adequately control the 
derivative market.
  Are we in agreement on that?
  Mr. NUGENT. I reclaim my time, and yield to the gentleman from 
Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. We are not in agreement on that. No, I did not support 
the Dodd-Frank bill, and I can tell you some of the problems with it.
  The gentleman sounds like somebody who has studied the CFTC; but as 
you know, of the many rules which they are planning to implement under 
Dodd-Frank, some of them actually were implied under Dodd-Frank and not 
specifically laid out. A number of them have no cost-benefit analysis, 
and a number of them will strap American companies and not the Asian or 
the European markets.

                              {time}  2050

  The reason why that is important is because you are a market. You 
know, it is not like a manufacturing plant where you are making 
automobiles or tanks or something like that. The commodity business is 
more computers. So if you change the rules in an international 
marketplace where American companies have to deal with things at one 
level and their Asian and European counterparts and competitors don't 
have to, then what is going to happen is these companies are going to 
go overseas.
  We keep talking about jobs, and the gentleman knows that this is the 
one-year anniversary of the summer of recovery, when I guess we were--I 
am not sure what we were celebrating last year because the jobs were 
not created. But this runs off jobs, and that is what we are concerned 
about.
  The CFTC has averaged four regulations a year, and this year they 
want to put in 36 regulations. I am concerned about the cost-benefit 
analysis. I am concerned that American companies will have a different 
set of rules than their competitors. I am concerned about the 
overreach. I am concerned about the way the rulemaking sequence is 
going.
  The gentleman also knows there is a lot of terms that they haven't 
even defined, like who is a swap dealer, a mega-swap dealer, a swap 
participant. And, by the way, I am not trying to filibuster. I think 
that franchise does not go to the Republican Party tonight.
  Mr. NUGENT. I reclaim my time, if you would allow me to speak just 
for a second.
  States and counties and cities have figured out that they don't have 
the money to spend. America has got to figure out, the Federal 
Government has to figure out that we in fact have to cut spending. I 
hear this across the aisle all the time, that we all agree that America 
has a debt of over $14 trillion and a deficit of over $1.4 trillion.
  We hear the same arguments, but we never hear how are we going to do 
it, other than one gentleman that was up here earlier that said we just 
need to raise taxes. That is the answer to all of our problems. That is 
not the answer. The answer to our problems is really about using the 
dollars that we have, spending them efficiently and looking at ways to 
maybe work harder with less.
  I will tell you, as a sheriff, we had to cut our budget and we worked 
harder with less. And, do you know what? The Federal Government doesn't 
believe in that. The Federal Government believes that how we solve a 
problem is to throw more people at it, to spend more money. And I think 
what the American people were telling us, what the American people told 
us back in November, was that we have got to get our house in order. We 
have got to get our spending under control. It is not about taxing us 
to death. It is not about overregulating us. It is about bringing 
common sense back into the Federal Government that has been sorely 
lacking.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. HIRONO. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Hawaii is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. HIRONO. Mr. Chair, I rise in opposition to the irresponsible cuts 
this bill makes to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission budget and 
in support of the DeLauro amendment which allows us to debate this 
issue.
  These cuts to CFTC indicate that the majority believes that CFTC can 
carry out its duties with even less funding this year than they had 
last year, or that their duties aren't of great importance to the 
American people to begin with.
  For those of us who may have forgotten, the financial crisis was the 
result of some very bad bets, bets made by Wall Street firms in the 
unregulated $300 trillion derivatives market. The bankruptcy of Lehman 
Brothers, the collapse of the mortgage market, and the bailout of AIG 
and other firms are all a result of these bad bets. The 14 million 
unemployed, the still weak job market, and the tremendous loss of hard-
earned home equity and retirement savings are also a result of these 
bad bets. That is why we worked so hard this last Congress to pass the 
Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. This act 
gives CFTC tremendous responsibility for making sure that the public 
never again has to bail out the Wall Street firms that rolled the dice 
with taxpayers ending up holding the bag.
  CFTC's new responsibilities are important, and so is the job that 
CFTC already does. The current role of the CFTC is to regulate the 
commodity futures and options markets in the United States. What began 
as a market for buying and selling agricultural products has become a 
complex, wide-ranging market for financial contracts. These contracts 
are based on commodities like oil, wheat, livestock, metal, and cotton, 
the types of products that we all use every single day. We have to 
prevent unnecessary increases in the cost of these necessities, 
increases brought about by speculation.
  Preventing speculative price increases for basic necessities is vital 
to consumers in Hawaii. As the only island State in the Nation, we must 
import 85 percent of our food and 90 percent of the oil we use for 
energy. We know what $6 a gallon gasoline is like in some parts of my 
district, and we constantly face higher prices than the mainland for 
food.

[[Page H4161]]

  So I am strongly opposed to underfunding CFTC, the cop on the beat 
that watches out for price manipulation. Without a strong CFTC, prices 
will increase for our basic necessities while speculators pocket 
millions of dollars. Make no mistake about that. We know this is true 
because the oil executives, themselves, have told us this is so. At a 
recent congressional hearing, the Exxon CEO testified that oil should 
``only'' cost--``only,'' that should be in quotations--$60 to $70 a 
barrel. Instead, the price has hovered around $100. Why? Because of 
speculation.
  Clearly, to protect the public from fraud, manipulation, abusive 
practices, and systemic risks, we need to fully fund the President's 
request for CFTC. This bill not only cuts $30 million from the current 
CFTC budget, it seeks to deny the agency the vital resources that it 
needs to meet its new responsibilities under Dodd-Frank. This bill is a 
de facto repeal of Dodd-Frank. What the Republican majority can't do up 
front, which is repealing Dodd-Frank, they are seeking to do by the 
back door by making sure CFTC can't do its job as the cop on the beat.
  To keep things in perspective, the Republicans are taking a meat ax 
to people's programs to address the $14 trillion debt, and yet they are 
perfectly happy to give Wall Street traders a $300 trillion unregulated 
playground. Talk about going backwards. Cutting the funding for an 
agency with such important responsibilities is a roll of the dice, and, 
again, the people of America will be the ones who lose.
  Once again I ask: Where do we live--on Wall Street, which is where 
cutting CFTC is, or on Main Street, where the rest of us live?
  I urge my colleagues to vote against the underlying legislation and 
the defunding of CFTC.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. PALLONE. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New Jersey is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. PALLONE. Mr. Chairman, I am listening to my colleagues on the 
other side of the aisle and I am really saying to myself, who are they 
kidding? They are saying that this effort to cut the CFTC is for 
deficit purposes because, of course, all agencies have to be cut in the 
name of cutting the deficit. But you have to look at everything, every 
cut and every agency in terms of what it actually does.
  And we all know, we all know what the GOP is up to. The Republicans 
side with big banks and Wall Street and big insurance companies and Big 
Oil and against the middle class. So here we go again. They are siding 
with the Wall Street speculators and the profiteers by cutting the 
CFTC.
  Well, what does the CFTC do? It is responsible for policing 
commodities trading and speculation, including oil and food products. 
Well, I have to tell you, last week we were at home, we weren't in 
session, and what did I hear from my constituents? All of them are very 
concerned about the price of oil going up and about the price of food 
going up. So you are basically taking money out of the middle class 
people's pockets.

                              {time}  2100

  The average American has got to pay more for oil because of 
speculation. And more for their food. And it hurts the economy because 
if people have to pay more money for that, then industry, for example, 
has to pay more if they want to function, because the oil costs more. 
And it has a downward effect on the economy. It not only impacts 
individual people and our constituents who can't afford to pay more for 
gasoline and for food, but it also has a downward impact on the economy 
itself because it means that businesses don't expand, they don't 
invest, and as a consequence we don't recover from the recession.
  The Agriculture appropriations bill reduces CFTC funding by $136 
million. That's from the President's request. What it essentially does 
is cripple the agency's ability to do its job. And make no mistake 
about the Republican intentions. They're defunding. And that's the same 
as deregulation. And deregulation will allow the speculators and 
profiteers to engage in the same reckless actions that caused the 
financial meltdown on Wall Street. The end result with commodities is 
higher gas prices and higher food prices. The Wall Street speculators 
get rich while everyone else pays at the pump and the grocery store. 
The speculators treat the markets like a casino, but the risk of 
another market meltdown is harm to everyone else.
  Some industry experts say that speculators have added $15 to a barrel 
of oil. Goldman Sachs put the figure higher at $27 a barrel. The bottom 
line is that the Dodd-Frank bill brought more oversight to Wall Street 
and provided resources to empower the CFTC to police speculators. The 
Republicans are trying to cripple the CFTC by slashing its funding so 
much that it would force layoffs of one-third to one-half of its staff. 
They're not doing this because they're trying to save money, save the 
taxpayers' money, trying to the reduce the deficit. They're doing it 
because they want to cripple this agency, force layoffs of one-third to 
one-half of its staff.
  In case there are any doubts about the Republicans' motives, they're 
also pushing legislation that would delay all the reform measures in 
Dodd-Frank. Terms like derivatives, leveraged positions, future 
markets, buying long and buying short, these are foreign to many 
Americans, but it's a vocabulary of practices that can be abused as 
easily as they are used. Most Americans know that allowing Wall Street 
bankers to run wild contributed to financial chaos and the recession. 
What they need to know and what we're stressing more and more on the 
floor is that allowing commodity traders to run wild contributes to 
higher gas and food prices.
  I am shocked, frankly--I shouldn't be, but I am--that my colleagues 
on the other side, when you go home, didn't you hear complaints about 
higher gas prices? Didn't you hear people complaining about higher food 
prices? That's what I heard when I went home. People want us to stand 
up for them. They want us to stand up for the little guy. They don't 
want us to stand up for the speculators. They don't want us to stand up 
for those people that caused the recession to begin with. And by doing 
this, all you're doing is prolonging the pain--the pain for the average 
American who's got to pay these higher prices and the downward impact 
on the economy. Because we know in the last couple weeks that the 
economy is struggling once again. We were starting to recover. But now 
signs are not good. So why in the world would you try to contribute to 
the same problem that caused this recession to begin with? A very 
simple answer: All you care about are the big banks, Wall Street, the 
big insurance companies, and Big Oil. The special interests. That's who 
you're for, and that's who you're always going to be for.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mrs. DAVIS of California. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mrs. DAVIS of California. Mr. Chairman, this underlying bill muzzles 
the Federal watchdog agency now responsible for regulating agriculture, 
energy, and financial markets while letting speculators run loose. By 
cutting 44 percent from the President's budget request for the CFTC, 
the Commodity Futures Trading Commission that we've been talking about, 
we're saying it's just okay to have fewer and less qualified regulators 
to protect us from market abuses, to protect our constituents from 
market abuses. Haven't we learned any lessons?
  Speculation on Wall Street has caused massive harm on Main Street. 
Not sufficiently funding the CFTC will hamper our efforts to recover 
from the recession and hinder middle class prosperity. Commodity 
futures and options markets are complicated systems. We know that. They 
require a complicated skill set to understand. Some of the smartest 
people are engaged in doing this. But this bill ensures that the 
playing field is tilted toward those who are in favor of the same risky 
practices that led to the financial crisis.
  Without full funding the CFTC will have 159 fewer full-time employees 
and an inability to procure the technology needed to properly regulate 
the derivatives market. If the last 5 years has taught us anything, we 
need more consumer protections, not more market speculation that will 
drive up gas prices, food prices, and play Russian roulette with our 
financial system.

[[Page H4162]]

  What is disturbing, Mr. Chairman, is that this bill continues the 
House majority's assault on lower- and middle-income families who are 
struggling to put food on the table and gas in their cars. I cannot 
support, I will not support, a bill that refuses to protect American 
families. And so I urge my colleagues to please review this bill 
carefully and join me in opposition.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. TONKO. Thank you, Mr. Chair.
  I rise today in support of my colleague from Connecticut to properly 
fund the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, otherwise known as the 
CFTC. All eyes are upon us. Well, at least we hope they are. 
Unfortunately, the regulatory eyes of the speculating process are 
slowly being closed. The CFTC represents the cops on the beat, the 
regulators in charge of overseeing Wall Street speculators, the eyes of 
the watchdog, specifically as it relates to the price of oil we're 
asked to pay.
  Let me be clear. Without a proper cop on the beat, the roads are not 
safe and wrongdoers will get away with whatever mischief they can. In 
the same way, without a cop on the beat of Wall Street, oil speculators 
will run rampant and drive the cost of oil and gasoline even higher 
than it is today. Make no mistake. Fluctuating oil prices with 
extremely high peaks make many on Wall Street extremely rich. But their 
gain becomes our loss. Their profit drains our pockets. Their greed 
causes our pain. Their joy drives our sticker shock at the pump, 
estimated to increase the cost per gallon by some 67\1/2\ cents due to 
speculation.
  To his credit, President Obama has asked for increasing the 
investment in cop count on the beat of speculators. Not only does the 
Republican bill reduce the President's request, but it ends up 
providing less funds than we have available this year, all while the 
CFTC is supposed to prepare itself to take on the enhanced powers and 
responsibilities granted to it under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform 
bill. This will mark the third time this year that House Republicans 
will vote to effectively cripple the CFTC by draining funds it needs to 
do its job.
  Since 1990, the number of oil speculators has more than doubled--from 
30 percent of the market to nearly 70 percent today. Even oil 
executives admit that oil prices are higher than they should be, with 
Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson recently testifying before Congress that a 
barrel of oil should cost some $60 to $70 based solely on supply and 
demand, not the $100 like it is today. Yet the Republicans are once 
again choosing Wall Street over Main Street. This bill chooses more 
pain at the pump over reason and fairness.
  The world's largest commodity trader, Goldman Sachs, recently 
admitted that speculation was to blame for higher oil prices, telling 
its clients that it believes speculators, like itself, had artificially 
driven the price of oil as much as $27 higher than supply and demand 
would dictate. Nearly 90 percent of all traders betting on rising 
prices are speculators, while about 12 percent of those bets were held 
by producers, merchants, processors, and users of the commodity.
  Our families and small businesses simply cannot afford the Wild, Wild 
West of Wall Street that runs roughshod over our wallets and family 
budgets. That is why I commend my colleague from Connecticut for her 
leadership on this issue and implore this body to increase the number 
of cops on the beat, not lessen them. And who wins in this scenario? 
The profit-rich oil industry, which is on pace to make over $100 
billion in profit this year alone.

                              {time}  2110

  And who loses? You got it--working families and middle class 
Americans that work hard and play by the rules and now are asked to pay 
for this free rein that keeps driving up prices.
  We cannot keep mindlessly handing billions of tax breaks to big oil 
companies that don't need it while they're raking in record profits at 
our expense. Again, we simply can't afford it.
  The best way we can control gas prices is by developing alternative 
technologies that will drive down our demand and compete in the 
marketplace. We can better use the billions going to oil companies in 
the form of tax breaks on clean energy alternatives that have the 
potential to make a real impact on our energy costs and on our wallets 
and will create jobs in the process.
  With that, Mr. Chair, I urge a ``no'' vote.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Mr. Chairman, I rise to support the 
gentlelady from Connecticut's amendment and thank her for her vision.
  I thank my good friend from Georgia who is the chairman of this 
committee, and I thank the manager who has represented our good friends 
very well tonight. I thank them for their courtesies. And I thank our 
ranking member, Mr. Farr, for his passion about ensuring that every 
person in America has an opportunity for good and healthy food. The 
Agriculture Department and the work that the Agriculture Department 
does is both domestic and international.
  But today we rise because there is an inequity and an unfairness. It 
is complicated to discuss something called the Commodity Futures 
Trading Commission. What is that and how does that have an impact on 
making sure that Americans have a quality of life that they are 
deserving of, hardworking, everyday Americans that get up at the sign 
of dawn and carpool their children and go to work and return at the end 
and attempt to be able to provide for their families? The Commodity 
Futures Trading Commission is that arbiter. It's the entity that will 
implement the consumer protection and armor that was given during the 
Dodd-Frank legislation.
  And how in the world can you work on behalf of consumers and 
Americans if the legislation that is before us obliterates this 
commission, eliminates 600 positions that would allow these hardworking 
Americans to gain what they deserve? And what is that? A better quality 
of life.
  I am glad my good friend from New York cited the energy industry as 
recognizing themselves that the price of oil has gone beyond reason, 
that the gasoline prices have gone beyond reason. But who is gaining? 
Speculators whom you cannot see. You couldn't find a speculator if you 
tried. And that is the purpose of a commodity trading commission, which 
is to find the individuals that want to cripple the system and make 
sure that the American public suffers.
  Look at this document that I'm holding in my hand. It lists the 
States and the districts that have the highest degree of poverty, 
States and districts that, in essence, have individuals who do not eat, 
for example, who have to borrow from one payment or one bill to take 
care of another need. So maybe the electric bill goes or the home 
mortgage or the rent goes so they can actually feed their families. Or 
they put the car up and cannot get to work because they cannot afford 
the gasoline.
  This is what the underfunding of the Commodity Futures Trading 
Commission will do. It will pile onto people who cannot afford any more 
pile-on; 600 workers taken away from implementing legislation and laws 
that protect the consumer from the daggers of high gasoline prices, the 
daggers from high food prices, and the daggers from a poor quality of 
life.
  There are people in the United States that go hungry. And in talking 
to seniors while I was home, you cannot understand their life until you 
talk to them one on one. When they get their benefits that they worked 
so hard for and they have to parcel out dollars for their needs and 
they go to the grocery store and the food prices are soaring, that is 
speculation. That's the speculators raising food prices. So seniors 
can't eat. Families that are on a single income, disabled persons, 
single parents, they can't have a nutritious meal; compounding them 
with the high costs of moving around, gasoline prices, the high cost of 
rent, and, of course, the difficulty sometimes in finding work.
  Let me say this. This administration and Democrats have been working 
hard to shove jobs out on this economy. And if you listen to the 
economists, they

[[Page H4163]]

believe that as bad as it is and how sympathetic we are and how we 
know that we can't rest, that we've got to put a jobs bill out here, 
there is some suggestion that those businesses will be hiring because 
we've tried to make sure that we study the economy. Do you think 
they'll be hiring with 600 jobs thrown out of the commodity commission 
that is supposed to regulate to ensure that consumers can get the best 
deal; that if you do get a job, you can pay for the gasoline; that if 
you're in need of a healthy meal, you can go to a grocery store and 
actually pay for it because the speculators haven't raised the prices 
of food?

  This is what we are talking about when we are arguing against the 
underlying bill and the elimination of $136 million to devastate this 
commission so that consumers cannot be protected.
  Mr. Chairman, it's time to recognize who's boss. It is the American 
people. And I like them being a boss. I'm going to stand with my boss, 
the good boss, and fight for them to be protected. This bill does not 
do that.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. WALZ of Minnesota. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. WALZ of Minnesota. I yield to the gentlewoman from Connecticut.
  Ms. DeLAURO. I thank the gentleman.
  In 2002, Warren Buffett called derivatives ``financial weapons of 
mass destruction.'' As Wall Street firms used these derivatives to 
construct highly leveraged speculative positions in 2008, these 
positions generated losses so large across the financial system that 
the Federal Government bailed out Wall Street to prevent a financial 
and an economic collapse. The cost of the bailout was $800 billion. By 
choosing not to sufficiently fund the CFTC, and we are talking about 
$130 million, the Republicans are ensuring average American taxpayers 
will once again have to bail out their friends on Wall Street 
potentially to the tune of $800 billion.
  Tonight on this floor, we heard a colleague say that the savings to 
the Navy in taking speculative trading out of the market would result 
in billions of dollars saved with regard to the cost of fuel. We are 
talking about $130 million to protect taxpayers.
  The 2012 Defense bill is $118 billion for two wars the American 
people did not support. The previous administration spent hundreds of 
billions of dollars without paying for it, and this majority is 
unwilling to pay $136 million to prevent another financial collapse.
  My colleagues on the other side of the aisle like to think that 
they're talking seriously about deficit reduction, about a country 
going broke, and that what they're here to do is to save money.
  Well, in trying to save $130 million, why don't we, once again, take 
a look at the $8 billion that we supply for agricultural subsidies, not 
to small farms like dairy farms in my community or specialty crop 
farms, but to big agribusiness? What about the $8 billion to the 
multinational corporations to take their jobs overseas? Why aren't we 
closing that loophole? What about the $41 billion to the oil industry 
where they're reaping profits hand over fist and speculating, driving 
up the costs so that American taxpayers cannot afford to go to work, 
can't afford to get their kids to school?
  That's what this is about. If you're really serious about it, do not 
permanently extend the tax cuts to the wealthiest 1 percent of the 
people in this country. That costs $750 billion, none of which is paid 
for. It only adds to the deficit.

                              {time}  2120

  You do not want to spend $130 million tonight. This is a false 
construct. The people of this country see right through what it is 
you're doing, and it is about protecting banks. It's about protecting 
the oil interests. It's about protecting the oil companies--that's 
where you come down--and not protecting the American people and 
American families who are struggling, struggling day in and day out to 
be able to provide a decent economic future and security for their 
family.
  Mr. DONNELLY of Indiana. Mr. Chair, I rise in support of the DeLauro 
amendment.
  The underlying bill slashes Commodity Futures Trading Commission 
funding to levels well below what is needed to implement the Dodd-Frank 
Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Dodd-Frank will ensure 
the CFTC receives information on swap trading and it also directs the 
CFTC to set position limits on swaps and futures. These provisions are 
crucial to monitoring and understanding the role of speculation in the 
energy commodity markets.
  Oil rose above $140 per barrel in the summer of 2008, only to fall 
below $40 per barrel six months later. The prices of commodities rise 
and fall; however, it is difficult to explain a 70 percent price drop 
without wondering about the role of speculators. Just 10 years prior to 
that oil shock, in 1998, hedgers--producers or commercial users of 
commodities who use the markets to offset price risk--outnumbered 
speculators by a ratio of three to one. Now speculators outnumber 
hedgers by a ratio of four to one.
  CFTC Commissioner Barton Chilton feels that the increased amount of 
speculation in the market is a reason to put limits on speculation. 
CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler has stated that it is necessary to ``address 
excessive speculation through aggregated position limits.'' Even 
Goldman Sachs reported that speculators could be driving up oil prices 
by up to $27 per barrel, saying that there was an eight to 10 cent 
increase in the price of oil for every million barrels of oil held by 
speculators.
  With all this in mind, I cannot understand why Congress would move to 
handcuff the CFTC. Earlier this year, oil topped $110 per barrel and 
gas prices hit $4 per gallon. Previous oil price spikes have come in 
the summer, and already in April working families had to make tough 
decisions as gas prices approach the all-time high. While speculators 
may not be the single driving force behind dramatically increasing oil 
and gas prices, I do believe their role is not insignificant and that 
we must ensure the CFTC has the resources it needs to keep speculators 
in check.
  I believe it is unconscionable that while Americans face the prospect 
of a summer of record-high oil prices, this bill would deny funding to 
the CFTC for putting in place position limits that could help deter, 
detect, and measure any inappropriate speculation that might drive up 
the costs of oil.
  Ms. WATERS. Mr. Chair, I rise in support of the amendment by 
Representative DeLauro to H.R. 2112, the FY 2012 Agriculture, Rural 
Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, which would fully fund the Commodities Futures 
Trading Commission (CFTC). By gutting funding for the CFTC, the 
underlying bill would fulfill the Republican agenda of dismantling the 
Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
  As Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and 
Government Sponsored Enterprises, I am very concerned that in the 
absence of this amendment, we will continue to see the same 
unregulated, unchecked, and unmitigated speculation in the derivatives 
market that led to the financial collapse, the impacts of which 
included:
  Over $10 trillion in household wealth destruction, with the average 
household losing 23 percent of its stored wealth;
  Nearly 10 million lost jobs;
  Wage losses of approximately $3,250 per household;
  12 million expected foreclosures; and
  A 30 percent peak to trough decline in home prices.
  Moreover, by underfunding the CFTC, this bill would contribute to the 
high gas prices that are already harming our economy and our 
constituents. The CFTC wants to set position limits on speculative 
trading, including speculation on gasoline. Without adequate funding, 
the CFTC will not be able to do this.
  We know that consumers felt the pain of runaway speculation at the 
pump. According to a recent poll by the Associated Press, 71 percent of 
Americans said rising prices will cause some hardship for them and 
their families, including 41 percent who called it a serious hardship. 
While gasoline prices have recently declined--several weeks ago the 
average cost of a gallon of gasoline in Los Angeles was $4.27--if 
speculation on gasoline rises to the levels it was several weeks ago, 
gasoline prices will shoot back up.
  According to Goldman Sachs, speculation on gasoline alone added $20 
to the price of a barrel of oil. The CFTC has a proposed rule that 
would prevent this type of abuse. But by underfunding the CFTC, H.R. 
2112 would stop that rule, an action that will ensure that our 
constituents continue to feel pain at the pump.
  As you can see, Mr. Chair, it is our constituents who suffer the 
consequences of unregulated derivatives. Underfunding the CFTC is not 
only irresponsible, it is a slap in the face to the taxpaying Americans 
that bailed out the institutions that cost them their retirement funds, 
their jobs, and their homes.
  This is why I support the amendment by the gentlewoman from 
Connecticut. If her amendment is not adopted, passage today of H.R. 
2112 will come at the expense of these Americans, who will see higher 
oil prices as a direct result of this bill.

[[Page H4164]]

  Mr. WALZ of Minnesota. Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my 
time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentlewoman from Connecticut (Ms. DeLauro).
  The amendment was agreed to.


                    Amendment Offered by Ms. DeLauro

  Ms. DeLAURO. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 2, line 14, after the aggregate dollar amount insert 
     ``(reduced by $200,000)''.
       Page 3, line 4, after the dollar amount insert ``(reduced 
     by $300,000)''.
       Page 3, line 10, after the dollar amount insert ``(reduced 
     by $100,000)''.
       Page 3, line 19, after the dollar amount insert ``(reduced 
     by $300,000)''.
       Page 7, line 17, after the dollar amount insert ``(reduced 
     by $50,000)''.
       Page 8, line 7, after the dollar amount insert ``(reduced 
     by $50,000)''.
       Page 51, line 18, after the aggregate dollar amount insert 
     ``(increased by $1,000,000)''.
       Page 53, line 17, after the dollar amount insert 
     ``(increased by $1,000,000)''.

  Ms. DeLAURO (during the reading). I ask unanimous consent that the 
amendment be considered as read.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentlewoman from Connecticut?
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. DeLAURO. My amendment would transfer $1 million to the Center for 
Food Safety and Applied Nutrition at the Food and Drug Administration. 
The funding would come from the U.S. Department of Administration from 
several of the administrative accounts: Office of the Secretary, the 
Chief Economist, Budget and Program Analysis, Chief Information 
Officer, Office of Communication, and General Counsel. The intent is 
that it will be used to protect the American public from E. coli 
sickness originating from FDA-regulated foods. This is something we 
have to do. Our primary responsibility as the people's representatives 
is to protect the health and safety of American families, and the 
current funding level for the FDA in this bill puts these at risk.
  We know that food-borne illnesses are always a major public health 
threat. They account for roughly 48 million illnesses, 100,000 
hospitalizations, and over 3,000 deaths in our country each year. Put 
another way, one in every six Americans becomes sick from the very 
foods they eat each year.
  Specific to E. coli, well over 200,000 sicknesses every year are 
because of this one type of food-borne bacterial sickness, and the 
threat of a more serious outbreak is also very real. Right now in 
Europe we are witnessing just such a lethal outbreak. In Germany, 
thousands have been affected, hundreds have become sick, and 37 have 
died from an E. coli outbreak. Just this morning, a 2-year-old German 
boy perished from kidney failure as a result of E. coli poisoning, 
which authorities think began with raw bean sprouts in northern 
Germany.
  This sort of fatal outbreak could all too easily happen here. In many 
ways, we have been extraordinarily lucky that it has not happened more 
often. In recent years, all types of food have become contaminated and 
forced into recall from Froot Loops to SpaghettiOs and salami to eggs. 
We have to be continually vigilant on the food safety front to keep 
families safe.
  That is also why we passed the Food Safety Modernization Act last 
year, to give FDA the tools to better respond to food-borne illness 
outbreaks and to hold industrial food production facilities to higher 
standards. But for no budgetary purpose to speak of, this legislation 
would undo all of these overdue and much-needed improvements.
  In so doing, it effectively ties the hands of the FDA, ensures it 
will not have the funds to implement or enforce the Food Safety 
Modernization Act or to fulfill its mandate to guard against 
contaminated foods. Once again, we will be stuck with the status quo, 
and that status quo means that people will continue to become sick and 
people may die.
  With so much food coming in from overseas, we should be improving our 
food safety system right now. For example, the GAO recently issued a 
report highlighting the shortcomings in our ability to ensure the 
safety of imported seafood.
  I urge my colleagues to vote for this amendment to restore $1 million 
in funding to food safety efforts at the FDA. We should be doing more, 
not less, to keep our fridges and our kitchen tables safe.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. And I wanted to say food safety is something that we 
all place a very high priority on and we're very concerned about, and 
we have been watching this situation in Europe daily as we're all 
concerned, and our prayers are with the people who have suffered and 
those who have died.
  I do want to read a quote that Secretary of USDA Mr. Vilsack said 
yesterday, and I will just quote: Secretary John Vilsack said he is 
``reasonably confident'' that U.S. consumers won't face the same sort 
of E. coli outbreak now plaguing Germany. And we're doing a lot and 
have done a lot in the last 15 years to make sure that we address 
potential E. coli infection. For example, the type of ground beef that 
has had a repeated problem with it has actually been cut in half.
  Also, I want to say I do have concerns about the FDA implementation 
of food safety. We hear quite often that 48 million people have 
suffered from food-borne illnesses--a very high number, a number that 
we're all very concerned about--but only 20 percent of these are from 
known pathogens. If you look at it even further, 60 percent of the 
illnesses from known pathogens come from norovirus.
  And how do we address this? Well, CDC said on March 4, to update the 
norovirus, that appropriate hand hygiene is the likely most single 
important method to prevent norovirus infection and control 
transmission. Reducing any norovirus present on hands is accomplished 
by thorough hand washing with running water and plain antiseptic soap.
  Now, in the FDA 630-page budget request, there was not one single 
mention of norovirus. I would ask anybody, isn't that odd to you? 
That's something we need to be concerned about. Why would they not 
mention that, if nearly 60 percent of the illnesses are from norovirus?
  Second highest cause of illness is from salmonella. And under the 
authority that FDA had before the Food Safety Modernization Act and the 
authority that the FDA has right now, they finalized the salmonella egg 
rule in July of last year, almost a year ago. According to the FDA's 
own press release, FDA said that as many as 79,000 illnesses and 30 
deaths due to consumption of eggs contaminated with salmonella may be 
avoided each year with new food safety requirements. They have that 
authority right now, and that was last year's budget. They can still do 
it this year with this budget.
  The third highest cause of food-borne illness comes from 
crossbreeding, and crossbreeding is mentioned one time in FDA's 2012 
budget request as it was related to food defense. And the reason why 
this is important is because the FDA always seems to be ready to take 
on new initiatives, and yet it doesn't seem to be tackling the food 
safety challenges that we have right now in an orderly fashion under 
its current budget.
  Now, the CDC statistics, which we got through hearings, go back to 
that 48 million food-borne illnesses a year, 128,000 hospitalizations, 
and 3,000 deaths, very high numbers, numbers that we are all concerned 
about. But if you look at 311 million Americans eating three meals a 
day, that would be 933 million meals eaten daily or 340 billion eaten 
each year. If you do the math on this, the food safety rate is 99.9 
percent safe.
  Why is that relevant? Because something's working without the FDA and 
without the USDA and without the nanny state saying we're in charge of 
everything. And that's how the private sector--the private sector is a 
dirty word for many people in Washington, D.C. But food processing 
companies are very concerned about food safety and their customers' 
safety, because the way you keep your customers coming back to buy more 
is to keep them happy, and that means to keep them safe.

[[Page H4165]]

                              {time}  2130

  And it would be hard for me to believe that some of the leading 
companies in America, such as McDonald's or Burger King or Coca-Cola, 
have anything on their minds except for food safety.
  So I appreciate the gentlewoman offering this amendment, but it's 
only $1 million. And if it were a serious amendment, certainly it would 
be more than that. But based on what we've seen so far, I don't think 
this amendment is going to do anything.

                            [From USA TODAY]

       Vilsack: U.S. Largely Safe From European E. coli Outbreak

                            (By Dan Vergano)

       Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said he is ``reasonably 
     confident'' that U.S. consumers won't face the same sort of 
     E. coli outbreak now plaguing Germany.
       But the European episode ``reinforces that we need to 
     remain vigilant here about food safety,'' Vilsack said 
     Monday, speaking with the USA TODAY editorial board.
       Public health experts, however, warned that another serious 
     outbreak in the U.S. is just a matter of time and luck.
       ``Could it happen here? It already has,'' says infectious-
     disease expert Larry Lutwick of SUNY-Downstate College of 
     Medicine in Brooklyn, citing past U.S. outbreaks that 
     involved strains of E. coli other than the one that has 
     struck Germany.
       He points to last year's romaine lettuce-related outbreak 
     of an E. coli strain that sickened 26 people, and the 2006 
     fresh spinach-related episode that hospitalized 199 people in 
     26 states.
       In Germany, officials backtracked Monday for the second 
     time in a week and said testing ruled out bean sprouts from 
     an organic farm as the possible source for the outbreak that 
     has killed 22 people and sickened more than 2,330 people 
     across Europe. Testing earlier ruled out cucumbers from Spain 
     as the culprit.
       ``This investigation has been a disaster,'' Michael 
     Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease 
     Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, tells the 
     Associated Press.
       ``This kind of wishy-washy response is incompetent,'' he 
     says, accusing German authorities of casting suspicion on 
     cucumbers and sprouts without firm data.
       Some U.S. health experts say government assurances face 
     constant trials.
       ``Food isn't just grown locally, it comes from all over the 
     world, which poses a lot of challenges'' for food safety, 
     says epidemiologist Elaine Scallan of the University of 
     Colorado-Denver. She notes the current system heavily relies 
     on rapid responses to outbreaks but is not as well positioned 
     to prevent them.
       ``We are relying on state and local health departments to 
     pick up these outbreaks, just like their equivalents in 
     Europe,'' she said.
       In January, President Obama signed a food safety act 
     ramping up Food and Drug Administration authority to police 
     food imports.
       But Caroline Smith DeWaal of the Center for Science in the 
     Public Interest warns those inspections may be cut in the 
     ongoing congressional budget battle.

  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentlewoman from Connecticut (Ms. DeLauro).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Mr. Chairman, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from 
Connecticut will be postponed.


             Amendment Offered by Ms. Jackson Lee of Texas

  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the 
desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 2, line 14, after the dollar figure, insert 
     ``(increased by $25,000,000)''.
       Page 5, line 5, after the dollar figure, insert ``(reduced 
     by $25,000,000)''.

  Mr. KINGSTON. Mr. Chairman, I reserve a point of order on the 
gentlewoman's amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. A point of order is reserved.
  The gentlewoman from Texas is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I thank the distinguished chairman from 
Georgia, who I am hoping will be inclined to recognize the importance 
of this amendment and work with those of us who are interested in 
healthy food.
  Mr. Chairman, my amendment would fund and seek to have the Secretary 
of Agriculture focus on the healthy food funding initiative. This 
initiative would increase the availability of affordable healthy foods 
in underserved urban and rural areas and, as well, particularly through 
the development or equipping of grocery stores and other healthy food 
retailers.
  We call these ``food deserts.'' And the reason why I am standing next 
to this tragic picture of the disasters that have hit the American 
public is to emphasize what Americans go through. In this instance, we 
see a disaster of unbelievable proportion, from Missouri to Alabama to 
the flooding that occurred up and down the Mississippi. I can assure 
you that these individuals are suffering from the lack of access to 
healthy food. We've got to get them back on their feet.
  This idea of food deserts impacts rural and urban areas, but it also 
impacts the millions of Americans, thousands upon thousands of 
Americans who have recently been impacted by disaster. Everything is 
gone. And although they are now probably experiencing the distribution 
of food from food centers sponsored by FEMA and volunteers, they will 
come back to a food desert. Particularly in the African American and 
Hispanic communities, for example, food comes from fast foods and 
convenience stores. And as I indicated before, those fast foods come 
from, if you will, the places where the expiration dates are sometimes 
way over the time of expiration.
  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 80 
percent of black women and 67 percent of black men are overweight. 
African American children from low-income families are at a much higher 
risk for obesity. Why? Because there is no access or limited access to 
good food. The CDC also estimates that African American and Mexican 
American adolescents ages 12 to 19 are more likely to be overweight at 
21 percent and 23 percent, respectively.
  This amount of money will allow us to focus on the importance of 
correcting food deserts.
  The U.S. Department of Agriculture identified 92 food desert census 
tracks in Harris County alone, and that is in the 18th Congressional 
District. These areas are subdivisions of a county with between 1,000 
to 8,000 low-income residents, with 33 percent of the people living 
more than a mile from a grocery store.
  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 32 percent of all children 
in Texas are overweight or obese. These statistics underscore the 
staggering effect food deserts have.
  I am asking that we look at the idea of ensuring healthy food. 
Targeting Federal financial assistance to food desert areas through the 
Healthy Food Finance Initiative will provide more healthy food to 
affected areas.
  We can create jobs, we can help farmers, and we can bolster the 
development in distressed areas. It is an easy fix, and the fix is to 
find a way to cooperate, collaborate--not do a handout, not dole out--
to make sure that we provide the incentives to come into our areas to 
ensure that we have a healthy child.
  This is a healthy child, we hope, getting access to health care. But 
I can assure you that their health is based upon not only health care 
but the food that this little one will eat.
  I can tell you, Mr. Chairman, that I represent communities that have 
the inability to access good food. This initiative will increase the 
availability of healthy food alternatives to the 23.5 million people 
living in food deserts nationwide.
  We must be reducing the deficit, I agree, but cutting programs that 
provide healthy food--and create jobs, because it would certainly 
create jobs by adding access to healthy food and sites for healthy 
food, meaning grocery stores, farmer's markets. All of those will be 
part of this initiative. And it would assist the many, many census 
tracks in Houston, alone, that are now suffering from the lack of 
access to good food.
  Just a picture of green vegetables inspires us to support this 
amendment. I would ask my colleagues to support this amendment.
  I thank the Chairman for this opportunity to explain my amendment to 
H.R. 2122, which allocates an additional $25 million to the budget of 
the Office of the Secretary, in order to fund President Obama's Healthy 
Food Funding Initiative (HFFI).
  Funding HFFI will increase the availability of affordable, healthy 
foods in underserved urban and rural communities, particularly through 
the development or equipping of grocery stores and other healthy food 
retailers.

[[Page H4166]]

  These ``food deserts'', communities in which residents do not have 
access to affordable and healthy food options, disproportionally affect 
African American and Hispanic communities. Fast food restaurants and 
convenience stores line the blocks of low income neighborhoods, 
offering few, if any, healthy options.
  Many of my colleagues across the aisle have made arguments about the 
economic climate, and the need for budgetary cuts, and I agree that we 
must work to reduce the deficit. We cannot, however, continue to make 
irresponsible cuts to programs for the underserved, lower income 
families, and minorities.
  Since the mid-1970s, the prevalence of overweight and obesity has 
increased sharply for both adults and children, and obesity is a grave 
health concern for all Americans. However, food deserts have taken a 
toll on low income and minority communities and exacerbated growing 
obesity rates and health problems.
  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 80 
percent of black women and 67 percent of black men are overweight or 
obese. African American children from low income families have a much 
higher risk for obesity than those in higher income families.
  The CDC also estimates African American and Mexican American 
adolescents ages 12-19 are more likely to be overweight, at 21 percent 
and 23 percent respectively, than non-Hispanic white adolescents who 
are 14 percent overweight. In children 6-11 years old, 22 percent of 
Mexican American children are overweight, compared to 20 percent of 
African American children and 14 percent of non-Hispanic white 
children.
  Food deserts have greatly impacted my constituents in the 18th 
Congressional District, and citizens throughout the State of Texas. 
Texas has fewer grocery stores per capita than any other State. The 
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) identified 92 food desert census 
tracts in Harris County alone. These areas are subdivisions of the 
county with between 1,000 to 8,000 low-income residents, with 33 
percent of people living more than a mile from a grocery store.
  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 32 percent of all children 
in Texas are overweight or obese. These statistics underscore the 
staggering effect food deserts have on the health of low-income and 
minority communities. In Houston and other cities across the country, 
local programs have proved that well targeted funding and assistance 
can create viable business outcomes and increase access to healthy 
food.
  Targeting federal financial assistance to food desert areas through 
the Healthy Food Funding Initiative will provide more healthy food to 
affected neighborhoods, open new markets for farmers, create jobs, and 
bolster development in distressed communities.
  The Healthy Food Funding Initiative is not a handout or a crutch. 
Funding through this program is intended to provide financial and 
technical assistance in support of market planning, promotion efforts, 
infrastructure and operational improvements, and increase availability 
of locally and regionally produced foods.
  This initiative will increase the availability of healthy food 
alternatives to the 23.5 million people living in food deserts 
nationwide. Yes, we must work toward reducing the deficit, but cutting 
programs that provide healthy food to those who simply do not have 
access to nutritional options, is not the way.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word, and I 
wanted to object to this and explain the point of order.
  The Acting CHAIR. Does the gentleman continue to reserve his point of 
order?
  Mr. KINGSTON. I continue to reserve.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.


                             Point of Order

  Mr. KINGSTON. The reason is that the amendment may not be considered 
en bloc under clause 2(f) of rule XXI because the amendment proposes to 
increase the level of funding and outlays in the bill. And under the 
House rule, the amendment has to be budget neutral with budget 
authority and with outlays. This only does one of those.
  I know the gentlewoman has worked very hard on this, and that was the 
intent. But because the budget authority and outlay both have to be 
considered, that is what the problem is under rule XXI. I know the 
gentlewoman is an expert in this, has put a lot of time and a lot of 
compassion in it, and it is something that the committee is not turning 
our backs on at all. But that's why we're objecting to it.
  And I know that my friend from Houston is very passionate on this and 
will be back again doing other things to try to make sure that we 
address food deserts and so forth. I appreciate her conviction on that, 
and I wanted to explain that.
  The Acting CHAIR. Does any other Member wish to be heard on the point 
of order?
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I would, Mr. Chairman.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Texas is recognized.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. First of all, let me thank the ranking 
member, Mr. Farr, as well as his staff for recognizing the importance 
of food deserts. And let me thank Mr. Kingston. If I might, I would 
offer, out of your thoughtfulness, I would even ask for the point of 
order to be waived in the face of 23.5 million individuals who live in 
food deserts.
  I will make the argument, in speaking to the point of order and, 
particularly, procedurally, of course, that, you know, it was a 
challenge to be able to frame language that would allow us to address 
this crisis. So I believe we made every effort to ensure that we were 
in compliance.
  It is my understanding that the language or funding for this 
initiative was not in this legislation or pulled. We wanted to give the 
discretion to the Office of the Secretary to not leave places like 
this, that I just lifted up, disasters, suffering from not having 
access to food.
  I would simply ask the gentleman in this moment when I'm asking for a 
waiver of the point of order to have the ability to work with this 
great subcommittee to think of this as a valuable issue and to work on 
this point that has to do with helping those who live in food deserts.
  I yield to the gentleman.

                              {time}  2140

  Mr. KINGSTON. I reluctantly have to insist on the point of order. 
It's actually scored by CBO at $5 million, and that is beyond my 
authority to waive anything. And it's not a numerical thing. It's just 
a rule.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Do you have an interest in working 
together?
  Mr. KINGSTON. Let me say, we'll see what we can do. I'm not fully 
versed on it. But the gentlewoman knows that the door is always open to 
my office, and we'll continue to work with you. But I do have to insist 
on the point of order.
  The Acting CHAIR. Members may not yield or engage in colloquy on a 
point of order. The Chair is prepared to rule on the matter.
  To be considered en bloc pursuant to clause 2(f) of rule XXI, an 
amendment must not propose to increase the levels of budget authority 
or outlays in the bill. Because the amendment offered by the 
gentlewoman from Texas proposes a net increase in the level of outlays 
in the bill, as argued by the chairman of the Subcommittee on 
Appropriations, it may not avail itself of clause 2(f) to address 
portions of the bill not yet read. The point of order is therefore 
sustained. The amendment is not in order.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                       Office of Tribal Relations

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Tribal Relations, 
     $423,000 to support communication and consultation activities 
     with Federally Recognized Tribes, as well as other 
     requirements established by law.

                          Executive Operations

                     office of the chief economist

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Chief 
     Economist, $10,707,000.

                       national appeals division

       For necessary expenses of the National Appeals Division, 
     $12,091,000.

                 office of budget and program analysis

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Budget and Program 
     Analysis, $8,004,000.

                      office of homeland security

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Homeland Security, 
     $1,272,000.

                    Office of Advocacy and Outreach

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Advocacy and 
     Outreach, $1,209,000.

                Office of the Chief Information Officer

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Chief 
     Information Officer, $35,000,000.


                  Amendment Offered by Mr. Fortenberry

  Mr. FORTENBERRY. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 3, line 19, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $1,000,000)''.

[[Page H4167]]

       Page 39, line 10, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $1,000,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Nebraska is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FORTENBERRY. Mr. Chairman, before I begin the discussion on the 
amendment, I'd like to correct the Record in regard to something I said 
earlier. The CFTC budget is actually decreased by a slightly higher 
amount than the overall Ag budget, rather than a slightly lower amount.
  In addition to that, I do wish to address a number of charges laid 
before the chairman of the Ag Appropriation Committee. We've heard for 
hours that this bill is about supporting Wall Street, Big Oil and tax 
breaks at the expense of food security. I think it's very important to 
note that food security is an important American value. It's important 
to me. It's important to many of us. So much so that in a time of very 
tight budgets, this bill actually raises food and nutrition spending by 
nearly $7 billion, approximately 7 percent more than current levels, 
because there are many vulnerable Americans out there who now qualify 
during these very tight economic times.
  Secondly, I also wish to reiterate, I did not support the Wall Street 
bailouts. Many of us didn't, both Democrat and Republicans. Five banks 
now control more than 50 percent of the deposited assets in this 
country. Main Street banks, many of whom had no role in the reckless 
behavior on Wall Street, are now under the constant competitive 
pressure from those banks that were deemed too big to fail, but in 
actuality are too big to succeed.
  Mr. Chairman, I'd also like to point out that I did not vote for the 
tax deal passed at the end of last year, an 11th-hour deal that was 
cobbled together because of the mismanagement of this institutional 
process. We could have done much better for the American people, both 
Democrats and Republicans.
  So the reality is this is a very difficult process we're in now to 
right-size our budget and make government more efficient and effective. 
In that regard, Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the opportunity to offer an 
amendment that invests in renewable energy in rural America.
  Clearly, America needs a bold new energy vision, and this amendment, 
I believe, can help. A sustainable energy future must include the 
integration of conservation and new technologies, powered by clean 
renewable sources such as wind and solar, geothermal, biofuels, and 
biomass. Increasing our energy portfolio and the diverse range of 
opportunities available to produce energy domestically is all the more 
important in light of skyrocketing fuel prices. Rural America should 
continue to play an important role in this regard.
  Specifically, Mr. Chairman, my amendment would transfer $1 million 
from the United States Department of Agriculture Office of the Chief 
Information Officer to the Rural Energy For America Program, also known 
as REAP. While I recognize the importance of funding for the Office of 
the Chief Information Officer, and its role in providing enhanced 
technology for the USDA, I believe it is appropriate to transfer a 
small amount by Federal standards, $1 million, to our Nation's 
renewable energy efforts.
  The REAP program funds a wide range of renewable energy projects that 
stimulate rural economies, help create jobs, and address environmental 
concerns. This funding promotes energy efficiency and renewable energy 
production, and is directed to farming communities and rural small 
businesses.
  Mr. Chairman, renewable energy is changing today's agriculture and 
rural communities. It is clearly in our national interest to help rural 
communities integrate a wide variety of renewable energy sources and 
technology as we move toward energy independence and environmental 
security.
  New development and signs of interest in renewable energy production 
are booming, Mr. Chairman. This amendment strengthens Congress' resolve 
to creatively develop new energy options throughout America, and I urge 
its adoption.
  I want to also thank my colleague from Minnesota (Mr. Walz) for his 
support of this amendment, a native son of Nebraska.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. We do accept the amendment with reservations. I want to 
say to my friend from Nebraska, he's been working very hard on this 
amendment, particularly in the last 5 hours. But we had a debate about 
this in the full committee. Ms. Kaptur offered an amendment that 
restored funding for the REAP account. It was my intention to zero it 
out because I do want to reduce the number of Federal programs that are 
out there. The full committee did restore it. I'm not sure what $2 
million in that account will do.
  I do support renewable energy, but I will say that there are dozens 
of programs and dozens of research channels available to people for 
renewable energy, particularly in the rural area.
  So I want to say to my friend from Nebraska and from Minnesota that 
we'll accept the amendment, but you need to keep your eye on us because 
it's not a program I particularly like. And I'm very serious about 
eliminating as many programs as possible. So we need to continue 
talking about that.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. WALZ of Minnesota. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. WALZ of Minnesota. Mr. Chairman, I would like to thank the 
gentleman from Georgia, first of all, for his generosity to us. And we 
certainly understand the position you're coming from.
  And I think yes, it's probably a small amount of money, but I think 
all of us recognize too the need to send a strong clear signal of the 
importance of these programs to the Senate and let them take a look at 
it over there.
  So with that, I do rise in support of the gentleman's amendment. I 
want to thank my colleague from Nebraska for his hard work on behalf of 
all rural communities.
  I certainly urge support of this amendment. It restores $1 million to 
the REAP program. And the gentleman's right. It is a small amount, but 
these are important programs.
  And I'd like to also thank Ms. Kaptur from Ohio for putting that back 
in this program. REAP's vitally important for rural communities. 
Farmers and rural small businesses in my district use REAP grants and 
loan guarantees to cut their energy bills and improve energy 
efficiency. REAP allows farmers and small businesses to help move our 
country to cleaner energy future by building wind, solar, biomass, 
anaerobic digester, geothermal, and cutting edge technologies that were 
funded by this.
  I think all of us recognize it's far better for us, Mr. Chairman, to 
get our energy needs and control our energy future from here at home 
instead of putting our national security, our energy security in the 
hands of countries that don't like us. We spend $400 billion a year on 
imported oil from countries that hate us. They'll hate us for free. We 
can keep the money at home through programs like this, investing in 
diversity to keep the jobs at home.
  And I want to say that I've seen this through the energy 
manufacturing supply chain in my district, that the spinoff from these 
jobs in the private sector is incredibly valuable.

                              {time}  2150

  Unfortunately, while I think the REAP amendment is a good one, the 
underlying bill I don't believe reflects the priorities of rural 
America.
  Our farmers and ranchers clearly understand that we've got to tighten 
our belts, cut our budgets, and become more efficient. I simply think 
this piece of legislation puts a disproportionate burden on those that 
are doing so much for this country. A 25 percent cut over the FY10 bill 
is irresponsible. In fact, I would argue that if it doesn't ensure that 
a safety net is there, that abundant, safe and affordable food supply 
that we keep talking about will be put in jeopardy.
  This bill decimates farm bill conservation programs, takes money away 
from proven nutrition programs, and strips, as you heard for the 
previous 3 hours, the CFTC of critical resources it needs to regulate 
irresponsible behavior. For that reason, I'm going to have

[[Page H4168]]

a difficult time supporting the overall bill.
  But I do believe the REAP program does give America a way to move 
towards energy independence. I have seen these programs that have 
worked in my district. I believe it lets us take control of our energy 
future, lets our farmers and ranchers be part of the solution, and lets 
us get back on the track to prosperity.
  So I want to thank the gentleman from Nebraska for his work on this 
and other issues in rural America, and I truly do thank the gentleman 
from Georgia for indulging us and for hearing us and letting us put it 
forward.
  Mr. BOSWELL. Mr. Chair, I rise today in support of this amendment and 
to stand up for rural America and our Nation's farmers.
  The appropriations bill in front of us today eliminates a program 
that helps rural communities invest in energy-efficient and renewable 
energy projects to improve their quality of life and local economies.
  The Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) has given Iowa farmers 
and businesses more than $57 million in grants and $74 million worth of 
loan guarantees since 1993 when it started, according to the USDA.
  The majority of the projects have helped growers purchase higher-
efficiency grain drying equipment which saves them thousands in propane 
costs. Additionally, helps farmers install geothermal heating and 
cooling systems and wind turbines. Just this year, Agriculture 
Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the Department would begin award grants 
to rural gas stations to install gas pumps for ethanol-blended fuel.
  Iowa is the largest beneficiary of REAP funds, and I am committed to 
working with my colleagues in the House and Senate to reach a 
compromise on its funding. REAP has already been cut by 25 percent for 
this fiscal year and the majority's intention to reduce its funding 
from $75 million to $1.3 million is unacceptable.
  When the House Appropriations Committee passed this legislation, 
Members chose to dismantle a program that helps rural communities 
thrive and their economies grow in order to maintain tax breaks for oil 
and gas companies and incentives for companies that outsource American 
jobs. This is not about reducing spending. It is an outright attack on 
Middle America to protect Corporate America.
  I will not stand by as appropriators blindly cut spending in programs 
that truly grow the economy and support rural businesses and 
communities.
  Every American needs an affordable and accessible food supply grown 
in the most efficient way possible. Effectively terminating the REAP 
program will reduce efficiency in food production, increasing prices in 
the grocery store, and, in the end, hurting every American family, not 
just rural America.
  I urge my colleagues to support this amendment which will slowly 
rebuild the REAP program and send a message to the Senate that this 
program is important to every American.
  Mr. WALZ of Minnesota. Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my 
time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Nebraska (Mr. Fortenberry).
  The amendment was agreed to.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                 Office of the Chief Financial Officer

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Chief Financial 
     Officer, $5,310,000: Provided, That no funds made available 
     by this appropriation may be obligated for FAIR Act or 
     Circular A-76 activities until the Secretary has submitted to 
     the Committees on Appropriations of both Houses of Congress 
     and the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform of the 
     House of Representatives a report on the Department's 
     contracting out policies, including agency budgets for 
     contracting out.


                   Amendment Offered by Mr. Sessions

  Mr. SESSIONS. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 3, beginning line 22, strike the proviso relating to 
     FAIR Act or Circular A-76 activities.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Texas is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SESSIONS. Mr. Chairman, I know that the Federal Government 
employs some 2 million executive branch, non-postal full-time and 
permanent employees; 850,000 of these employees hold jobs that are 
commercial in nature. Of the 850,000 commercial jobs, only a handful 
have been characterized as government employees or private sector 
workers who can perform these activities more efficiently and more cost 
effectively.
  My amendment strikes the current insourcing language found in this 
legislation which, as drafted, would prevent the funds spent by this 
bill from being used to conduct public-private competitions or to 
direct A-76 conversions for any program, project or activity within the 
United States Department of Agriculture without a contracting report to 
Congress by the Secretary.
  Two weeks ago, the House voted in favor of striking similar 
problematic and anti-competitive A-76 language from H.R. 2017, the 
Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill. The same change 
and reversal of bad policy which I undertook at that time should also 
be implemented in this legislation by striking this anti-competitive, 
free market language.
  The A-76 process provides a valuable option for taxpayers and 
requires real competition. A former assistant director at USDA, Shawn 
Kingsbury, managed information technology programs at the Department. 
Mr. Kingsbury, in his tenure, implemented A-76 by transitioning to the 
first performance-based project management organization within the 
USDA, and it resulted in over $100 million in savings.
  Without the ability to add competitive insourcing, ballooning 
deficits and out-of-control spending will continue in our government. 
It is time that Congress explores and gives all solutions to save 
taxpayers and the managers of the business in the government their 
hard-earned money.
  The Heritage Foundation has reported that subjecting Federal employee 
positions which are commercial in nature to a public-private cost 
comparison will generate on average a 30 percent cost savings 
regardless of who wins that competition. Rather than preventing market 
competition that would improve service and lower costs, we should be 
encouraging agencies to find the best way to deliver services to 
citizens of this great Nation. The role of government should be to 
govern, not to operate businesses inside the government.
  Our Nation's unemployment rate stands at 9.1 percent. We must allow 
the private sector the ability to create jobs without an unfair 
disadvantage. We must get more results for our money.
  I urge all of my colleagues to support this commonsense, taxpayer-
first amendment and ensure cost-saving competition is available to the 
managers within this agency. Congress should be looking to use all the 
tools that it can find to help save taxpayer dollars.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to this bill primarily 
because if it ain't broken, don't fix it.
  This has been a law for a long time. It allows our committee and the 
public to know what the A-76 circular review did. The report is on the 
Department's contracting-out policies and its budget for contracting 
out, that information, which Congress has been getting year after year 
without any problems. The language has been in the bill for many years, 
and we have always received the report allowing the contracting-out 
activities to proceed. It hasn't stopped anything.
  The language specifically requires a report to go to the authorizing 
committee reflecting the agreement reached with the former Republican 
chairman of the Oversight Committee many years ago. It was his 
amendment that did this.
  I have to say personally too that I've done the A-76 circular 
contracting out. We have a military base in my community, the Defense 
Language Institute, and the city of Monterey surrounds it. We ended up 
with an A-76 review, ended up where the city could provide the base 
operation services much cheaper than the Federal employees on the base, 
saving the Army about $4 million a year and having much better services 
delivered.
  So, again, delivering this report to Congress seems to me hasn't been 
a problem for anyone. And it ain't broke, so I don't think we ought to 
support fixing it with Mr. Sessions' amendment.
  I urge a ``no'' vote.

[[Page H4169]]

  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Sessions).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the ayes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Texas will 
be postponed.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

           Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Assistant 
     Secretary for Civil Rights, $760,000.

                         Office of Civil Rights

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Civil Rights, 
     $19,288,000.

          Office of the Assistant Secretary for Administration

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Assistant 
     Secretary for Administration, $683,000.

        Agriculture Buildings and Facilities and Rental Payments

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For payment of space rental and related costs pursuant to 
     Public Law 92-313, including authorities pursuant to the 1984 
     delegation of authority from the Administrator of General 
     Services to the Department of Agriculture under 40 U.S.C. 
     121, for programs and activities of the Department which are 
     included in this Act, and for alterations and other actions 
     needed for the Department and its agencies to consolidate 
     unneeded space into configurations suitable for release to 
     the Administrator of General Services, and for the operation, 
     maintenance, improvement, and repair of Agriculture buildings 
     and facilities, and for related costs, $209,505,000, to 
     remain available until expended; of which $151,396,000 shall 
     be available for payments to the General Services 
     Administration for rent; of which $11,452,000 shall be 
     available for payment to the Department of Homeland Security 
     for building security activities; and of which $46,657,000 
     shall be available for buildings operations and maintenance 
     expenses: Provided, That the Secretary may use unobligated 
     balances from prior years to cover shortfalls incurred in 
     prior year rental payments: Provided further, That the 
     Secretary is authorized to transfer funds from a Departmental 
     agency to this account to recover the full cost of the space 
     and security expenses of that agency that are funded by this 
     account when the actual costs exceed the agency estimate 
     which will be available for the activities and payments 
     described herein.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Farr

  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 5, line 5, after the dollar amount, insert ``(reduced 
     by $342,000)''.
       Page 5, line 10, after the dollar amount, insert ``(reduced 
     by $342,000)''.
       Page 17, line 25, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $300,000)''.

  Mr. FARR (during the reading). Mr. Chairman, I ask unanimous consent 
to waive the reading.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman 
from California?
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I am offering this amendment to move funding 
from the Agriculture Building and Facilities and Rental Payments 
account and investing that money in the Organic Data Initiative.
  Organic agriculture is a very important and growing sector of our 
farm and ranch community. It has continued to grow at a double-digit 
rate since Congress passed the Organic Act in 1990.
  The office collects and disseminates data regarding organic 
agriculture through the Agricultural Marketing Service, the Economic 
Research Service, and the National Agricultural Statistics Service. The 
organic sector should have the same access to data available to all 
agriculture--a building block to a successful U.S. agricultural 
economy.
  As the industry surpasses $29 billion, this information is vital to 
maintain stable markets, create proper risk management tools, and 
negotiate equivalency agreements with foreign governments. It is 
imperative that we continue to collect information gained by ODI.
  The AMS collects organic prices and disseminates the data through 
Market News Reports.

                              {time}  2200

  NASS conducts surveys and collects data used for the Census of 
Agriculture. The ERS published the consumer survey ``Marketing U.S. 
Organic Foods: Recent Trends from Farms to Consumers 2009,'' and 
continues to produce reports which used the data collected by AMS and 
NASS in addition to surveying Americans about their organic consumption 
patterns.
  This amendment is needed for the following reasons:
  The AMS needs to continue to expand organic price reporting services 
to more commodities and price points and distribute the data through 
Market News, creating price stability.
  The NASS will be collecting more information on organic production in 
the next agricultural census.
  It is needed to understand the size of the organic industry and 
create risk management tools.
  The ERS is continuing organic economic analysis and expanding to 
include organic trade data needed to expand export markets.
  The President's fiscal year 2012 budget requests $300,000 
specifically for AMS to continue the collection of and distribution of 
data.
  Mr. Chairman, I urge my colleagues to support this amendment to 
continue the Organic Data Initiative.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from California (Mr. Farr).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. FARR. Mr. Chairman, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from California 
will be postponed.


            Amendment No. 8 Offered by Mr. Broun of Georgia

  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 5, line 5, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $20,900,000)''.
       Page 5, line 6, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $20,900,000)''.
       Page 80, line 2, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $20,900,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. This amendment simply reduces by 10 percent the 
account for Agriculture Buildings and Facilities and Rental Payments.
  My friend from Indiana (Mr. Burton) and I have partnered to bring 
this commonsense amendment before the House, and I would like to thank 
him and his staff for all their hard work.
  Mr. Chairman, we are in an economic and fiscal emergency. The Federal 
Government spends too much money. It is irresponsible and immoral to 
keep spending beyond our means. Not only do we need to reduce our 
deficit, but we need to begin to make an impact on eliminating the huge 
debt that has been accumulating over the last few years.
  I greatly appreciate the effort and the difficult decisions the 
Appropriations Committee must make. That said, we must continue to make 
meaningful cuts to show the American people and the President that we 
are serious about controlling spending and serious about the future of 
our Nation.
  I urge my colleagues to support this commonsense amendment. Let's 
show the American people that we are serious about controlling spending 
and stopping the outrageous spending that has been going on here in 
Washington under Democrat as well as Republican leadership. I encourage 
a ``yes'' vote on this amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR (Ms. Foxx). The gentleman from California is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. FARR. I normally wouldn't oppose this because it cuts from the 
account that I just tried to cut from, but I only cut $300,000 to pay 
for something. This amendment cuts $20 million, and it pays for 
nothing. I just think that that's not a very good proposition.
  We have an awful lot of facilities that are around this country. 
Agriculture is everywhere--in every single

[[Page H4170]]

State and in almost every congressional district. I happen to represent 
the leading agricultural State in the United States--California--where 
we grow some 40, 50 crops that no other State grows in addition to 
hundreds and hundreds of other crops, so we need facilities out there.
  I know this is an account that is easy to be offset, and as I said, I 
tackled the same account myself. Yet, since the gentleman opposed my 
amendment, I think it's only good quid pro quo that I oppose his.
  Mr. BURTON of Indiana. Madam Chairman, I rise in support of the 
gentleman from Georgia's amendment to cut $20.9 million from the 
Department of Agriculture's Buildings and Facilities and Rental 
Payments account and redirect those funds for deficit reduction.
  I commend the Appropriations Committee, Chairman Rogers and Chairman 
Kingston for crafting a bill that is $5.041 billion or 22.6 percent 
less than the President's FY 2012 budget request, and $2.672 billion or 
13.4 percent less than the FY 2011 enacted level. However, I believe 
the financial catastrophe facing our Nation today requires us to do 
even more.
  Recently, the CBO released their annual Budget and Economic Outlook 
report which projects that the FY 2011 deficit will reach an all time 
record high of $1.48 trillion; the third year in a row our Nation's 
budget deficit has exceeded $1 trillion. Our national debt is a 
staggering $14.2 trillion, almost more than our entire economy.
  We are borrowing nearly 42 cents of every dollar we spend, much of it 
from the Chinese, and sending the bill to our children and 
grandchildren. Every child born today already owes $45,500 in debt they 
didn't create.
  Now, more than ever, it is clear that we must be bold and take the 
steps necessary to tackle the unprecedented deficits and debt facing 
our country and get our economy moving again. I urge my colleagues from 
both sides of the aisle to work together on this bill to cut spending 
where we can, get our fiscal house in order, and protect the American 
Dream for our future generations.
  In light of the looming and ever growing Federal deficit, an 
amendment like this is simply common sense. It merely cuts $20.9 
million a modest cut of only 10 percent; a very measured step that 
reduces spending without threatening the mission of the Department of 
Agriculture.
  Our country has a spending problem--not a revenue problem; support 
the Broun Amendment.
  Mr. FARR. I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Broun).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Georgia will 
be postponed.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                     Hazardous Materials Management

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For necessary expenses of the Department of Agriculture, to 
     comply with the Comprehensive Environmental Response, 
     Compensation, and Liability Act (42 U.S.C. 9601 et seq.) and 
     the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (42 U.S.C. 6901 et 
     seq.), $3,393,000, to remain available until expended: 
     Provided, That appropriations and funds available herein to 
     the Department for Hazardous Materials Management may be 
     transferred to any agency of the Department for its use in 
     meeting all requirements pursuant to the above Acts on 
     Federal and non-Federal lands.

                      departmental administration

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For Departmental Administration, $23,900,000, to provide 
     for necessary expenses for management support services to 
     offices of the Department and for general administration and 
     other miscellaneous supplies and expenses not otherwise 
     provided for and necessary for the practical and efficient 
     work of the Department: Provided, That this appropriation 
     shall be reimbursed from applicable appropriations in this 
     Act for travel expenses incident to the holding of hearings 
     as required by 5 U.S.C. 551-558.


              Amendment Offered by Mr. Clarke of Michigan

  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 6, line 11, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $5,000,000)''.
       Page 46, line 22, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $5,000,000)''.

  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan (during the reading). Madam Chair, I ask 
unanimous consent to dispense with the reading.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman 
from Michigan?
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. This amendment would restore $5 million to 
the Women, Infants and Children Farmers Market Nutrition Program. This 
would allow low-income pregnant women and low-income women who have 
just given birth to purchase food directly from farmers to benefit 
their young infant children up to age 5.
  This is very important in many areas around the country, especially 
in the area that I represent, the city of Detroit, where you don't 
really have that many markets around. Many times, families--even young 
mothers--have to go to gas stations and drug stores just to purchase 
groceries. That's not acceptable. That really encourages poor eating 
habits, poor nutrition, and it really increases our health care costs 
that all of us as taxpayers ultimately bear.
  So I urge you to consider this amendment. It's a fair proposal, and 
it's very cost-effective. It provides low-income mothers and their 
children with good nutrition, which is the best medicine for health 
care--helping to get better nutrition to prevent people from getting 
sick.
  The other thing, too, is that, throughout the entire debate on this 
budget, many of the speakers would say that those who benefit from 
these programs--low-income women, infants and children--really don't 
have a voice, so many of us here in Congress have to be their voice. 
I'd like to say, though, that the people who have benefited from these 
programs do have a voice.
  My mother, Thelma Clarke, was a single parent, and she raised me. She 
was a child of the Great Depression. Ironically, during the Great 
Depression, she passed out in her school classroom because of 
malnutrition. It was during the 1930s, and times were very dire in the 
city of Detroit. She was experiencing tough economic times all the 
while I was growing up as a young kid and as a teenager. She vowed what 
happened to her would never happen to me, so she provided me with all 
the food I wanted--great meals with groceries that she purchased with 
food stamps. It worked for our family, so I want to say this, not just 
about this amendment but about the role of government.

                              {time}  2210

  I think the reason why this country is so great, and I thank God that 
my dad immigrated to this country, the United States, as opposed to 
another one, we are so great because we understand the value of pooling 
our tax dollars together to help each other. That makes this country 
stronger. It provides everyone, everyone, with an equal opportunity. 
That is what makes this country one of the most extraordinary in modern 
civilization. So I ask for $5 million. Let's give every child that same 
chance.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chairman, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I was going to ask my friend if he is planning to offer 
his other amendment. Don't you have another related amendment?
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Well, it relates to a different issue. It 
deals with food safety, and that comes right after this. It does amend 
page 6 as well.
  Mr. KINGSTON. You don't have anything else on this section of the 
bill?
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. At least not dealing with this specific 
subject matter. I do have an amendment that amends this same page, page 
6, and page 17, but that deals with reinstating funding on a food 
safety bill.
  Mr. KINGSTON. You are taking from the same account twice?
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Let me consult with our staff here.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I wanted to explain to my friend about it. I am 
uncertain about this current amendment, but

[[Page H4171]]

that departmental account, as unglamorous as they are to all of us, has 
been cut about 15 percent, and then this cuts it, and then your food 
safety amendment will cut it as well. So that is what my dilemma is at 
the moment. I don't know if anybody over there has actually heard from 
the department. I am assuming they are going to be against it.
  Also I want to point out to my friend that one of the things that I 
think our authorizing friends should do is combine this program with 
food stamps anyhow, because there is duplication and overlap.
  I yield to the gentleman from California.
  Mr. FARR. The concern here is that this amendment double dips from 
the same account. Maybe we can work something out here. Mr. Broun took 
money out of this account. I took money out of this account.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Reclaiming my time, we were talking earlier about some 
of the overlaps in these Federal food assistance programs. To me, this 
is a case where this is a program where there is a lot of overlap with 
food stamps, and we should look at that, realizing that that is the 
authorizing committee's jurisdiction. There is not much more that I can 
do than comment on it.
  I yield to the gentleman from Michigan.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Thank you very much, and I will ask for a 
vote on this.
  Mr. KINGSTON. With that, I withdraw my objection, and we accept the 
amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Clarke).
  The amendment was agreed to.


               Amendment Offered by Mr. Young of Indiana

  Mr. YOUNG of Indiana. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 6, line 11, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $2,390,000)''.
       Page 80, line 2, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $2,390,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Indiana is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. YOUNG of Indiana. Madam Chair, this amendment is quite simple. 
The amendment would simply reduce by a modest 10 percent that part of 
the USDA's budget used for ``general administration and miscellaneous 
supplies.''
  This category of spending is so broadly defined that Washington 
bureaucrats could use this money as a sort of gift card for these 
general administration and miscellaneous expenses. My amendment would 
put over $2 million of the money back into the spending reserve account 
to reduce our Federal deficit. That, of course, will lead to lower 
future taxes, lower future interest rates and thus a lower future 
unemployment rate.
  I was sent here by the great people of Indiana's Ninth Congressional 
District to focus like a laser on creating jobs and to get our Federal 
spending under control so that we can keep our tax burden low. That 
will serve to the benefit of businesses and all that work for them 
around our country. Since being sworn in on January 5, that has been my 
mission, and I know it has been the singular focus of many of my 
colleagues.
  So this simple amendment advances this mission by trimming more 
bureaucratic fat from Washington, and it signals to all job creators 
and to our financial markets that we in Congress are serious, very 
serious, about cutting unnecessary spending wherever we can find it.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. Does any Member wish to speak in opposition to the 
gentleman's amendment?
  If not, the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman 
from Indiana (Mr. Young).
  The amendment was agreed to.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

     Office of the Assistant Secretary for Congressional Relations

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Assistant 
     Secretary for Congressional Relations to carry out the 
     programs funded by this Act, including programs involving 
     intergovernmental affairs and liaison within the executive 
     branch, $3,289,000: Provided, That these funds may be 
     transferred to agencies of the Department of Agriculture 
     funded by this Act to maintain personnel at the agency level; 
      Provided further, That no funds made available by this 
     appropriation may be obligated after 30 days from the date of 
     enactment of this Act, unless the Secretary has notified the 
     Committees on Appropriations of both Houses of Congress on 
     the allocation of these funds by USDA agency: Provided 
     further, That no other funds appropriated to the Department 
     by this Act shall be available to the Department for support 
     of congressional relations activities.

                        Office of Communications

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Communications, 
     $8,058,000.

                      Office of Inspector General

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Inspector General, 
     including employment pursuant to the Inspector General Act of 
     1978, $80,000,000, including such sums as may be necessary 
     for contracting and other arrangements with public agencies 
     and private persons pursuant to section 6(a)(9) of the 
     Inspector General Act of 1978, and including not to exceed 
     $125,000 for certain confidential operational expenses, 
     including the payment of informants, to be expended under the 
     direction of the Inspector General pursuant to Public Law 95-
     452 and section 1337 of Public Law 97-98.

                     Office of the General Counsel

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the General 
     Counsel, $35,204,000.

  Office of the Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Under Secretary 
     for Research, Education and Economics, $760,000.

                       Economic Research Service

       For necessary expenses of the Economic Research Service, 
     $70,000,000.


                   Amendment Offered by Mr. Chaffetz

  Mr. CHAFFETZ. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 8, line 15, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $43,000,000)''.
       Page 8, line 18, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $85,000,000)''.
       Page 9, line 5, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $650,000,000)''.
       Page 49, line 23, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $1,040,198,000)''.
       Page 80, line 2, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $1,818,198,000)''.

  Mr. CHAFFETZ (during the reading). I ask unanimous consent to 
dispense with the reading.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman 
from Utah?
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Utah is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. CHAFFETZ. Madam Chair, this amendment deals with three different 
services within the Department of Agriculture. The idea and the goal of 
the situation here is that perhaps they could take a reduction in 
funding, not totally zero them out, and really look at these 
duplicative programs as being something that can be ultimately unified 
over the course of time. My amendment simply drives down the cost of 
these, and the hope and desire is that they will somehow unify to do 
and accomplish what these duplicative services are. This relates to the 
Agricultural Research Service, the Economic Research Service, and the 
National Agriculture Statistics Service.

                              {time}  2220

  Now, the one other one that I would also point out that is funded is 
the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, where we are not 
suggesting a reduction in the amount. But the overall goal here is to 
reduce the amount of the expenditure here 50 percent from 2011 and 43 
percent from the current bill. I think this is common sense.
  We have to make difficult decisions. We recognize the value the 
Department of Agriculture brings. A lot of people rely on these types 
of statistics and information that is needed so that we can make sure 
that we have the very best Department of Agriculture that we can.
  But in these tough and difficult economic times, it is imperative 
that we make difficult decisions. And sometimes that means we are 
looking at duplicative programs, maybe scaling those back a little bit, 
and refocusing the mission so that they can actually do what matters 
most and prioritize their own mission.

[[Page H4172]]

  So we think it is the financially responsible thing to do. I would 
urge my colleagues to look closely at this. I urge my colleagues to 
vote in favor of this amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. This amendment cuts ERS by $43 million, and that's the 
Economic Research Service for Agriculture. Then it goes on to cut 
another $85 million out of the National Agriculture Statistical 
Service, which is essentially the census of Agriculture. And then it 
goes on and cuts $650 million out of the Ag Research Service, which is 
two-thirds of the entire budget--and a budget that is absolutely to 
keep America competitive.
  This is an agrarian world we live in. If we're going to stay ahead of 
the competition and not have all our food imported, we've got to stay 
ahead of the curve. That's the think tank, the creativity of America. 
It's also where we know whether we're getting all the bugs and 
infestation that's coming in. That's what agriculture research is all 
about.
  It zeroes out the Food for Peace program. My God, in the world that 
we're living in now, we don't want to have any friends left? It puts 
all that savings into a spending reduction account, does nothing to 
help anybody except do a lot of damage for agriculture, for all the 
economics of agriculture, the research of agriculture, and the Food for 
Peace program. I think this is a very bad amendment, and I hope we 
strongly oppose it.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. JORDAN. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Ohio is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. JORDAN. I first want to thank the committee, and in particular 
the chairman of the subcommittee, for the good work he's done on the 
bill overall. But I support the gentleman from Utah's amendment. Any 
Member of Congress can do this in their district. You're at any group 
giving any speech and you say, Do you think maybe there's a little 
redundancy, maybe a little duplication, maybe a little overlap in the 
Federal Government? And the whole audience begins to laugh and everyone 
raises their hand because they get the joke.
  In fact, we just had a hearing in the Subcommittee of Oversight 
dealing with regulation and overspending and the GAO was in there and 
they had done a study and we asked them, How many different means-
tested social welfare programs are there? And they said, Well, we 
really can't give you a number because we can't tell; it's so 
ridiculous in government. But there are over a hundred.
  They couldn't even tell us. But what they did tell us was there's a 
lot of redundancy, a lot of duplication, a lot of overlap. The 
gentleman from Utah's amendment just seeks to deal with that and says, 
Look, it recognizes a couple of facts. It recognizes that, yes, there 
is redundancy, but also we're broke. In fact, it's not we're going 
broke. We are broke. And we have to cut some spending, just like every 
single family, every single small business in this country has had to 
do over the last several years.

  Remember some of the numbers because at some point something has to 
give. And we've got to be willing to cut spending. We've got a $14 
trillion national debt. We've run trillion-dollar deficits for the last 
3 years in a row. The three largest deficits in American history have 
been in the last 3 years, and $200 billion we're paying each year in 
interest. Right now, interest rates are at lowest levels--historically 
low levels. They're going to go up.
  Something has to give. And the gentleman from Utah has a basic 
amendment which says, Let's reduce the spending in five programs that 
the Federal Government doesn't need and, frankly, cannot afford. And it 
would save the taxpayers of this great country $1.8 billion at a time 
when we're going broke. Some people would say we are broke.
  So this is a commonsense amendment, something we should do. It builds 
on the good work that the gentleman from Georgia is getting ready to 
speak on, the gentleman from Georgia, who's the chairman of the 
committee, has already done. But it builds on their good work and 
respects the taxpayers.
  I would urge a ``yes'' vote on the amendment.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, frankly, I think that statement is a flat 
Earth statement because it doesn't even look before you leap. It just 
says, Let's whack because there's redundancy. There is redundancy in 
our own body. We've got two eyes, two ears, two arms, and two legs. Why 
don't we just whack one of them out because you've got the other one.
  Look at the consequences. ARS is the Agricultural Research Service. 
Do you know what they do? They look at how we can make a plant 
structure more healthy, how we can combat the bugs that come in. I 
represent a county where we have glassy-winged sharpshooters that 
affect the wine industry. It's a multimillion-dollar eradication 
program. We wouldn't know how to eradicate it without the research. We 
have the brown apple moth that infects nurseries, multimillion dollars 
of attacks. This is a war, just like those disasters you have been 
seeing on television that are natural disasters. These are natural 
disasters, only they're small little bugs. Or E. coli that we've talked 
about. Why would you want to cut the very service that keeps American 
agriculture healthy and competitive? This amendment wipes out two-
thirds of the entire budget.
  I'm one of those that thinks there's a lot of redundancy in 
government, but what I do is try to get the agencies together in my 
district and figure out where they overlap and how we can consolidate 
them, how we can get them to do joint operations. I think if you want 
to really consolidate a lot of Federal Government, it's going to take a 
lot more than just whacking away with an amendment making a list of 
zeroing out money for economic research for the census for agriculture. 
That's the last thing we want to do. It's a huge, huge market. You've 
got to have market information. As I said, you certainly don't want to 
whack ARS. That's the competitive arm. That's where America stays ahead 
of the rest of the world.
  So redundancy is a problem, but it's not always smart just to knock 
off something because there's more of it, just like your arms, legs, 
and eyes. I ask for a ``no'' vote.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. GRAVES of Georgia. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. GRAVES of Georgia. I appreciate the gentleman from Utah bringing 
this forward. This is a time when we've got to be looking for every 
opportunity to be wise stewards of the taxpayers' dollars. And all 
we're asking here is $1.8 billion out of trillions of dollars of 
spending here in the Federal Government, $1.8 million more. I think the 
taxpayers understand that. They expect that.
  I don't know that anyone here has criticized the use of these funds, 
where it is going. It's not that. It's just the fact that the money is 
not there. How can you continue spending money you do not have? I think 
back on the average American families at home. They have to make 
difficult decisions. There are a lot of things that the average family 
would like to do each and every week; but if they don't have the 
resources to do it, they wait until they can save up and do it at 
another appropriate time. They enjoy it at a later date when they have 
the ability to do that.
  Madam Chair, right now we do not have that ability as a Federal 
Government. For far too long we've spent too much. It's not a partisan 
issue, necessarily. Both parties are responsible for the reckless 
spending that's gone on in Washington. But this is the day, this is the 
time that we can correct that course. We can correct the path. We don't 
have to continue down this same path that's been going on over and over 
and over again. The status quo is not acceptable.
  In fact, the American people, they deserve better. We have an 
opportunity

[[Page H4173]]

right now to send a strong message to the American people that $1.8 
billion is being sent back to the taxpayers. Just imagine that--taking 
money from the Federal Government that it's used to absorbing from the 
taxpayer and allowing the taxpayers to choose how they wish to spend 
it. What a great concept. How novel is that, to allow the taxpayers to 
choose how they invest their money, where they might spend it. Which 
leads to the number one issue facing this Nation--and it's jobs and the 
economy.
  If we want to see the economy improve, if we want to see revenues 
here in Washington improve, it's not through tax increases. It's 
through the economy improving. It's through the GDP, the engine of this 
Nation moving once again. And how do we do that? We release the dollars 
we hold as a Federal Government and the additional dollars that we're 
borrowing from foreign countries and we allow the private sector to 
hold that, allow the private sector to make those investments, allow 
them to be the dreamers. Those that have the ideas, those that have the 
ideas, entrepreneurs, allow them to be the risk-takers, the job 
creators we know they are and they want to be.

                              {time}  2230

  Instead, we hear again opposition which says, no, we know better as 
the Federal Government. Let us keep that money. Let us take it from 
your wallet. Let us distribute it out as we know best. I think I heard 
a speaker earlier today say the Federal Government is better at making 
decisions than the American people. I mean we've heard that concept 
expressed here already, that we know better. Well, the fact is the 
American people know better how to spend their money.
  So the gentleman from Utah brings up a great amendment that says $1.8 
billion in additional cuts, saving the taxpayers once again additional 
money. That only adds to the savings that the chairman of the 
subcommittee has already fought for, and I'm happy to serve with him on 
the committee. He's done a fabulous job of taking us back to 2006 
spending levels, an amazing effort on behalf of the subcommittee, and 
this just takes it back just a little bit further. Surely we can do 
that for the American people tonight in this House.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Madam Chairman, I move to strike the last 
word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I rise in opposition to this amendment.
  I heard a very instructive quote. Even as important as this 
legislation is, in actuality it appears that my friends on the other 
side of the aisle simply want to zero out this whole appropriation for 
the important agricultural work that is done in this Nation, just zero 
it out. Mr. Chaffetz's amendment seeks to zero out a very important 
program, which includes zeroing out Food for Peace, and it apparently 
ignores the basic purpose and the crisis that we're facing dealing with 
food insecurity in the world.
  The United Nations World Food Program acknowledges severe acute 
malnutrition affects an estimated 20 million children under the age of 
5 worldwide and is responsible in whole or in part for more than half 
of all the deaths of children. Malnutrition kills approximately 1 
million children each year, or an average of one every 30 seconds.
  This is not the direction we want for the world or the United States. 
There are priorities. And I ask my colleagues, what are their 
priorities?
  Now, I have a deal for them. Let's make a deal. Let's take the $10 
billion that we're spending every month in Afghanistan and spread it 
out on deficit reduction. I will take up that challenge and accept that 
challenge. In fact, we will be able to put $1 billion or $2 billion 
every week for a 4-week timeframe in deficit reduction if we bring the 
troops home from Afghanistan. And while we do that, we'll have the 
opportunity to answer the question that I'm asking to my colleagues: 
Who will stand by while a child dies, one every 30 seconds around the 
world?
  Food for Peace is a program that our farmers have bought into from 
the perspective of the service and the Good Samaritan that they do by 
providing the goods of the world's bread basket. The United States is 
the world's bread basket. We have been blessed with the bounty of 
topography and weather, in spite of the disasters we've now faced, to 
be able to feed the world. And Food for Peace is that program.
  Just a few hours ago, I stood on the floor of the House and I 
mentioned my colleague, the Honorable Mickey Leland. Some of my new 
friends should read about this unselfish man. I know she didn't ask me 
to call out her husband's name, but those of us who knew Mickey knew 
that he loved Congressman Emerson and Congressman Hall. They had a 
passion for finding out how can we stop the devastation of hunger. So 
they circled around programs that dealt with it, programs like Food for 
Peace or the Select Committee on Hunger or a number of other programs 
around the Agriculture appropriations, not to waste money but to 
partner between the great agricultural agrarian society of the United 
States, and its ability to grow food, to also be able to provide for 
those who cannot.
  Do I have to say it again? We buy the food from our farmers. Let me 
make it very clear. In the very places where, as I showed earlier 
today, the devastation of tornadoes and floods, these people are trying 
to come back. Some areas did not suffer. They're trying to get their 
goods to market. It cuts here in the very jobs that we are saying that 
we want to keep. We're cutting jobs. We're throwing people out of work, 
the work that farmers love. You try to get a farmer off his land or her 
land. They don't want to go because they love the soil. They love 
producing food. They love helping people. Yet my friend wants to come 
and cut this program that creates jobs, buys the food, and sends it to 
starving, dying children.
  I don't understand. In the legacy of our friends, some of them you 
did not know, but if you read about them, you will understand their 
passion and their heart. Mickey Leland used to bring us to tears 
because he would leave the devastation of Fifth Ward, Houston, where 
there was poverty, and he'd get on an airplane to deliver food to the 
dying around the world. He lost his life in the course of delivering 
food.

  My final word, Madam Chairman, is to ask my colleagues not to support 
this amendment and to support Food for Peace and support the underlying 
message of providing the jobs and a helping hand.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chairman, I oppose this.
  I want to say to my friends who have offered it, I did support this 
budget on the House floor and did support this 302(b) allocation in 
full committee. However, as I pointed out several times to my Democrat 
friends during the course of the debate today, the only budget that has 
passed is the Ryan budget. The President's budget failed in the Senate 
97-0. The RSC budget fell on the House floor. The Congressional Black 
Caucus budget fell on the House floor. The Progressive Caucus budget 
fell on the House floor.
  Our job is to try to move this under the circumstances that we have 
and the restraints that we have. The bill before us represents a cut in 
discretionary money of 13.4 percent, which is one of the largest cuts 
that we will be considering in the 12 appropriation bills.
  I want to point out also that in terms of P.L. 480, that account 
alone has been cut 31 percent. And I met with the World Food Program 
three different times now and certainly expressed lots of concerns 
about America's role around the globe. We need to be engaged in the 
countries that we are engaged in. Sometimes this program is oversold as 
national security, which I believe it contributes to. It is not 
necessarily everything people want it to be in national security, but 
it is a program that keeps America engaged around the world and 
therefore promotes stability around the world. And when you have 
instability, there is a concern in terms of national security. It also 
actually does have an implication for the merchant marine because 
there's a cargo preference clause to it. It keeps the American merchant 
marine healthy, and those are the ships

[[Page H4174]]

that take our military equipment overseas during engagements such as 
what we have going in Afghanistan and Iraq.
  Ms. Jackson Lee had raised some of the points about the war. I voted 
for the Kucinich amendment the other day because I do not think we 
should be in Libya at this time. I'm very concerned that that's going 
to be one of those classic cases of mission creep, that right now we're 
saying no troops on the ground, but after we get through blowing up 
their buildings, who do you think is going to rebuild it? It's going to 
be America. So that mission is going to morph into troops on the ground 
in one form or another. That's why I thought the Kucinich amendment was 
appropriate.
  I want to just conclude, though, that I think the spirit of the 
gentlemen--and they're very consistent in terms of their fiscal 
restraint, but, again, the only budget that has passed any body is the 
Ryan budget.

                              {time}  2240

  One of the balancing acts of this, if you go too far, you lose votes; 
if you don't go far enough, you lose votes. The Ryan budget got over 
the finish line and did not get all the Republicans voting for it, so 
I'm going to have to oppose this amendment, but I want to say to my 
friends, I appreciate the vigor in which you've offered it and your 
consistency on things.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Madam Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Wyoming is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I yield to the gentleman from Utah.
  Mr. CHAFFETZ. Thank you. I will be brief, Madam Chair. I recognize 
the spirit in which you are doing this, and I appreciate the process 
and the back-and-forth.
  I did want to say for the record, I would join with the gentlewoman 
from Texas, and I have advocated for a long time that we pull out of 
Afghanistan and that we put that towards deficit reduction. But I also 
think we have to bring back discretionary spending even further.
  And I would like to mention to this body that really what happens 
with the so-called Ryan budget, the budget that this House passed, is 
that sets ceilings but it doesn't set floors, and I believe that one of 
the greatest threats in security to our future is the out-of-control 
debt and deficit that this country is encompassing.
  Let's also remember that we spend in the neighborhood of $40 billion 
on U.S. aid. We haven't been able to take care of our own pocketbooks 
in our own country, and so it's very difficult to justify not only a 
very healthy and robust USAID budget--by the way, having conducted 
oversight is not necessarily accountable. You can't go back and 
actually look at the accounting and see where all this money is flowing 
and what it's doing. But let's also remember that then we still have 
tens of billions of dollars to help people across the world. We have 
149 countries in this world that are getting USAID money. They're 
getting aid from the United States of America through various programs.
  So, again, I would just want to briefly say I do think we can do 
better. I think we have to do better. The out-of-control spending in 
the past puts us in a perilous position where we spend $600 million a 
day just in interest on our debt. And so when I look at $1.8 billion in 
reduction and I look at the fact that our interest payment is $600 
million a day, the best thing we could probably do for the world and 
certainly for ourselves is to get that deficit under control. We could 
do a lot more good in this world if we were to take care of our own 
financial pocketbooks, and we have not yet done that.
  I thank the gentlewoman for yielding to me. I appreciate the spirit 
of this body allowing me to add this extra comment.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Utah (Mr. Chaffetz).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the ayes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Utah will be 
postponed.


            Amendment No. 4 Offered by Mr. Broun of Georgia

  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the 
desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 8, line 15, after the dollar amount, insert ``(reduced 
     by $7,000,000)''.
       Page 80, line 2, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $7,000,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chairman, I rise to offer my amendment 
that would reduce the budget for the USDA's Economic Research Service 
by $7 million. We don't know what's going to happen with the previous 
amendment, but whether it passes or fails, this would cut another $7 
million. It's just a modest 10 percent that would help end some of the 
duplicative research the USDA is currently conducting.
  For example, the USDA has four separate services that conduct 
research, as Mr. Chaffetz has already spoken about here on the floor. 
All four of these entities have numerous overlapping issues, and it 
would be more fiscally responsible to simply consolidate them, and I 
wish we had done so.
  The American people have demanded that we cut the outrageous spending 
that's going on here in Washington, and we must cut the spending in 
every corner of the budget possible. They deserve our very best efforts 
in being good stewards of their tax dollars. I urge my colleagues to 
support my amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. You know, it's very easy to just go through and start 
cutting these services because they sound like they're sort of 
bureaucracy offices, but, in fact, we've been on the committee a long 
time and we get, you know, oversight of these budgets. We get the 
Economic Research Service to come before us. And I remember a couple of 
years ago when they were before us, and I think the committee really 
got engaged because this is the research service that does the study on 
the WIC program, what the economic effects are, does the study on the 
economic conditions of rural America, something that's totally ignored. 
We've been finding out from them that essentially rural America has 
been in a recession for the last 10 years, maybe even a depression.
  So, if you're going to have strategies which are going to include the 
Federal Government as part of your strategy, it's also going to include 
local and State government, you've got to have the economic data on 
which to build those strategies. And I think to just go and take $7 
million out of there because you can and get no benefit out of it and 
hurt what they do, I mean, these services, whether they be the Economic 
Research, that information is also used in our marketing activity.
  Now, it's a little bit different than the census stuff that we talked 
about earlier, but I think that this is really a cut that does a lot 
more harm than the gentleman who's introducing it intends to do, and I 
think if he really understood what the full scope of the Economic 
Research Service was he wouldn't ask that he take 10 percent out of 
that Department just merely to reduce the amount of money that we're 
spending.
  So I oppose this amendment, and I think it does big harm to rural 
America.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Broun).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Georgia will 
be postponed.

[[Page H4175]]

  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                National Agricultural Statistics Service

       For necessary expenses of the National Agricultural 
     Statistics Service, $149,500,000, of which up to $40,000,000 
     shall be available until expended for the Census of 
     Agriculture.

                     Agricultural Research Service

                         salaries and expenses

       For necessary expenses of the Agricultural Research Service 
     and for acquisition of lands by donation, exchange, or 
     purchase at a nominal cost not to exceed $100, and for land 
     exchanges where the lands exchanged shall be of equal value 
     or shall be equalized by a payment of money to the grantor 
     which shall not exceed 25 percent of the total value of the 
     land or interests transferred out of Federal ownership, 
     $993,345,000: Provided, That appropriations hereunder shall 
     be available for the operation and maintenance of aircraft 
     and the purchase of not to exceed one for replacement only: 
     Provided further, That appropriations hereunder shall be 
     available pursuant to 7 U.S.C. 2250 for the construction, 
     alteration, and repair of buildings and improvements, but 
     unless otherwise provided, the cost of constructing any one 
     building shall not exceed $375,000, except for headhouses or 
     greenhouses which shall each be limited to $1,200,000, and 
     except for 10 buildings to be constructed or improved at a 
     cost not to exceed $750,000 each, and the cost of altering 
     any one building during the fiscal year shall not exceed 10 
     percent of the current replacement value of the building or 
     $375,000, whichever is greater: Provided further, That the 
     limitations on alterations contained in this Act shall not 
     apply to modernization or replacement of existing facilities 
     at Beltsville, Maryland: Provided further, That 
     appropriations hereunder shall be available for granting 
     easements at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center: 
     Provided further, That the foregoing limitations shall not 
     apply to replacement of buildings needed to carry out the Act 
     of April 24, 1948 (21 U.S.C. 113a): Provided further, That 
     funds may be received from any State, other political 
     subdivision, organization, or individual for the purpose of 
     establishing or operating any research facility or research 
     project of the Agricultural Research Service, as authorized 
     by law.


                    Amendment Offered by Mr. Nugent

  Mr. NUGENT. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 9, line 5, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $2,000,000)''.
       Page 48, line 11, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $2,500,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Florida is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. NUGENT. Madam Chair, every night millions of families sit down to 
meals where ingredients are produced here in the United States. The 
Agricultural Research Service is a vital part of our Federal 
Government's continued efforts to help farmers, producers and, 
ultimately, consumers.
  I firmly believe that the Federal Government has a terrible spending 
problem and that tough decisions must be made.

                              {time}  2250

  I have the utmost respect for Chairman Kingston and all of the 
members of the Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee. They have done 
a great job of crafting this piece of legislation.
  My amendment would reduce $2.5 million from the Foreign Agricultural 
Service and transfer $2 million of that money to the Agricultural 
Research Service. By adding these funds back to ARS's budget, we will 
be helping guarantee that our farmers remain competitive with farmers 
from other nations. We should be supporting increased food production 
here in America and maintain our domestic independence in this area of 
our economy and not increasing our usage and demand for foreign 
agricultural imports. There is still important work to be done by ARS, 
and that must be continued. There have been significant cuts made to 
the budget of ARS that jeopardize research already in progress.
  During my 5 months in Congress, I have had the great pleasure to meet 
and interact with many farmers and ranchers in my district. These men 
and women are some of the hardest workers that I know. They are the 
first up and the last to go to bed. Research must continue to be funded 
in order to guarantee that America's agriculture community is 
independent, that it remains the most productive and the greatest 
agricultural producer in the world.
  ARS's work has resulted in an oat-based cholesterol fighter, a 
replacement for blood plasma, a biofungicide to help prevent apple and 
pear rot--and I'm sure on grapes from California--and is a method to 
increase production of penicillin and other antibiotics.
  As you can see, ARS's research successes are not just limited to the 
agricultural community, but they help all Americans. So my goal is to 
make sure that America remains strong as an agricultural producer, that 
we don't outsource agricultural production to other nations to provide 
our food, and maintain a safe food source for Americans.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. I am very interested. One of your colleagues just cut the 
heck out of this Department, and you want to add money back in. I am 
kind of for that. But I am kind of curious because I understand--and 
the question is, do you intend in the general provisions of this bill 
later to add some language regarding cattle research?
  Mr. NUGENT. We have withdrawn any other amendment. There is no other 
amendment.
  Mr. FARR. So there is no other amendment? This hasn't to do with an 
earmark to try to stop closure of--
  Mr. NUGENT. Sir, there is no other amendment. We withdraw that 
amendment.
  Mr. FARR. I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I want to clarify some things on this that are 
important. Number one, I want to make sure that we all realize that ARS 
is currently, in this bill, funded at $993 million and that the Foreign 
Ag Service is at $175 million. And the Foreign Ag Service actually does 
have an invaluable role in representing U.S. agriculture overseas. And 
it's not all about importing their products as much as it is working 
and making sure that it's kind of a two-way street.
  But I wanted to yield to the gentleman if he wanted some more time to 
explain it. My inclination is to take the amendment--although ARS, as I 
am saying, has a pretty big funding level already. And I just wanted to 
invite you to speak a little bit more and maybe warm us up a little, 
because I am like Mr. Farr. There's a lot of criticism of ARS. So 
somebody coming in to increase it, the amendment is paid for. I don't 
know that $2 million is going to help significantly one way or the 
other.
  Mr. NUGENT. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield to the gentleman from Florida.
  Mr. NUGENT. Our goal with regards to strengthening ARS is to make 
sure that we strengthen the American ability to produce goods within 
this country. It is simple and focused. It's about keeping American 
agriculture strong. While we may be asking to reduce what we send 
overseas, I think it's more important that we have a strong 
agricultural base here.
  I will tell you, just in my home State, that agriculture accounts for 
over a third of the income to the State of Florida. It is one of the 
three legs that support Florida. One is tourism, the other one is 
industry, but the third one that has been there for Florida in this 
downturn economy has been agriculture. So our goal is to make sure that 
Americans can depend upon American sources of food that are safe for 
Americans.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I will accept the amendment. I want to say to my friend 
from Florida, we're going to be looking at all this as the process goes 
on, and we'll certainly work with you. We, Mr. Farr and I and the 
committee, do appreciate all the research that the ARS does and all of 
the good things. And I am glad to know that you are following them 
because I do think it's a significant agency within the USDA.
  Mr. NUGENT. I thank the gentleman.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Florida (Mr. Nugent).
  The amendment was agreed to.


             Amendment Offered by Ms. Jackson Lee of Texas

  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I have an amendment at the desk.

[[Page H4176]]

  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 9, line 5, after the dollar amount, insert ``(reduced 
     by $681,750,000'').
       Page 44, line 19, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $681,750,000'').

  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I reserve a point of order on the 
gentlewoman's amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. A point of order is reserved.
  The gentlewoman from Texas is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. As the gentleman rises, I ask myself the 
question and I ask this body, Who will speak for the children? And 
that's why my amendment attempts to fully fund the Women, Infants, and 
Children program that provides food for the Nation's children. It 
provides Federal grants to States for supplemental foods, nutrition, 
education, and health care referrals to low-income pregnant and 
postpartum women, infants, and children up to 5 years old.
  We must remember that children have always been the largest category 
of WIC participants. Of the 8.7 million people who received WIC 
benefits, each month in fiscal year 2008, about 4.33 million were 
children, and 2.2 million were infants. This bill cuts $650 million out 
of WIC, and I am so glad my good friend from Georgia--and I appreciate 
his friendship--just got up and said the Agricultural Research Service 
is pretty darn well funded, $900 million.
  I am simply asking to address the question of the staggering 
devastation of malnutrition in our children. And I have indicated that 
when you look at worldwide numbers, malnutrition can kill. But here in 
the United States, there are children that go to bed hungry. There are 
women that do not eat properly. There are babies that do not get 
nourishment.
  In Texas alone, between 23,000 and 40,000 people are expected to be 
dropped from the WIC program if the funding is not restored; and each 
and every State in the Union is going to receive that kind of 
devastating impact. Can you imagine 40,000 women, infants, and children 
not being able to eat because we won't restore full funding? Texas has 
three of the top 40 districts with the highest national food hardship 
rates; and in the 18th Congressional District, there are 159,000 food 
insecure people. The food insecurity rate is 23 percent, and Texas 
stands 32 in the Nation out of 435 districts. We are 32 in food 
insecurity.
  So, let me just say, alongside of obesity, eating wrong, we have to 
face the actual question of hunger. Children who are served by the WIC 
program in Texas are less likely to eat fast food in comparison to 
children who are not in this program.

                              {time}  2300

  Again, I want you to look at this picture. Healthy children need to 
eat healthy. And I ask my colleagues why, in fact, would we not want to 
fully fund the program of women and infant children?
  I will say that the impact of not eating healthy is obesity and poor 
health. This healthy baby, healthy-looking baby has a future that is 
undetermined when you have an issue of lack of healthy food and access 
to such.
  So $650 million, when we're, in essence, funding research for $900 
million, I believe you can share a little, because the WIC program is 
beneficial in helping the most vulnerable in our country.
  I ask the question: Who will speak for the children? It is important 
that the WIC program, 9.2 million through 10,000 clinics, among this 
group, 4.9 million children, 2.1 million infants, and 1 million women 
have the ability to be served around the Nation. It's a complementary 
program, having healthy mothers, healthy pregnant mothers to give birth 
to healthy babies, to raise healthy children, not obese, nourished and 
ready to be leaders in this Nation. Who are we if we are not going to 
speak for our children?
  And I ask my colleagues to consider waiving procedural issues to 
ensure that children are served. I believe that is an important issue. 
And in my district, in the 18th Congressional District, with 1,000 
census tracts of people who are food insecure, I am arguing vigorously 
for the full funding of the WIC program to help our women, our infants, 
and their children.
  Who will speak for our children? What will their future be, and how 
will they lead this country if we do not invest with them today?
  I ask my colleagues to support this amendment.
  I rise today in support of my amendment to H.R. 2112 ``Agriculture, 
Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 2112,'' as it restores full funding to the Women, 
Infant, and Children (WIC) program.
  As the Founder of the Children's Caucus and a Member of the Women's 
Caucus, I have firmly stood in support of the nutritional needs of our 
Nation's families. As a country we must protect and safeguard the 
health and nutrition of our Nation's low-income families. Women, 
Infant, and Children (WIC) provides Federal grants to states for 
supplemental foods, nutrition education, and health care referrals to 
low-income pregnant and postpartum women, infants, and children up to 
age 5 who are found to be at nutritional risk. During the final quarter 
of Fiscal Year 2009, the number of women, infants, and children 
receiving WIC benefits each month reached approximately 9.3 million. We 
must remember that children have always been the largest category of 
WIC participants. Of the 8.7 million people who received WIC benefits 
each month in Fiscal year 2008, about 4.33 million were children and 
2.22 million were infants.
  WIC is essential because it affords many women, especially women of 
color in lower income brackets, the opportunity to care for themselves 
and their newborns after birth. Without programs such as WIC, many 
mothers would not be able to maintain a healthy lifestyle during 
pregnancies and after childbirth.
  Because of WIC, mothers can afford the nutritional foods they need to 
sustain their pregnancies and avoid miscarriages, stillbirths and 
defects caused by malnourishment during pregnancy.
  Today, I am proud to support a full restoration of funding to WIC. 
This program, which is distinctly American, demonstrates that we place 
a high value on feeding our Nation's children and tending to the needs 
of our Nation's poor.
  Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence that we are 
endowed ``with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, 
Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, 
Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from 
the consent of the governed. . . .'' I believe that it is no 
coincidence that life is listed first--for without it, the Founders 
realized, no other rights can be realized. Over many years, the 
millions of Americans who could not access medical services were denied 
their right to life--a life with access to quality and affordable 
health care.
  Let me set the record straight, WIC is good for the American people 
and will go a long way in ensuring access to quality and affordable 
care to those millions of Americans who will need access to proper 
nutrition. WIC helps to ensure that our country will not succumb to one 
of the most staggering causes of death in children around the world: 
Malnutrition. Malnutrition remains a significant problem worldwide, 
particularly among children. It should not be a problem within the 
United States; that is why we have programs like WIC. According to the 
United Nations World Food Programme, severe acute malnutrition affects 
an estimated 20 million children under the age of five worldwide and is 
responsible in whole or in part for more than half of all deaths of 
children. Malnutrition kills approximately one million children each 
year, or an average of one every thirty seconds. This is not the 
direction we want to take the United States.
  Madam Chair, when I stand here today and reflect upon what we are 
about to embark upon, I cannot help but think of some of the last words 
that the Great Senator Ted Kennedy shared in his letter to President 
Obama. The Senator said, ``And so because of your (Obama's) vision and 
resolve, I came to believe that soon, very soon, affordable health 
coverage will be available to all, in an America where the state of a 
family's health will never again depend on the amount of a family's 
wealth. And while I will not see the victory, I was able to look 
forward and know that we will--yes we will--fulfill the promise of 
health care in America as a right and not a privilege.'' Well, Senator, 
your life's work shall today be proven to not be in vain. I continue to 
stand by protecting the health needs of low income families. And, yes, 
this program ensures the health of infants and children will never 
again depend on the amount of their family's income.
  In the words of the great President John F. Kennedy, ``the voters 
selected us, in short, because they had confidence in our judgment and 
our ability to exercise that judgment from a position where we could 
determine what were their own best interests, as a part of the nation's 
interest.''
  Madam Chair, while my colleagues on the other side of the aisle seem 
to believe that

[[Page H4177]]

without a cut to WIC this will harm Americans, nothing could be further 
from the truth. This bill is indeed in their best interests:
  There are 110 million school-aged children suffering from hunger 
every day, and they are counting on America's leadership and generosity 
to provide them with an opportunity to break the cycle of poverty. The 
WIC program provides that leadership and generosity and it is for this 
reason that I urge my colleagues to join me in voting for restoring 
full funding to WIC.
  In the words of the great civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther 
King, Jr., ``We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America 
of the fierce urgency of now.'' We cannot wait. We will not wait to 
protect the lives of our children. We can not delay in providing the 
most vulnerable citizens of this great Nation access to proper 
nutrition.


             facts on wic--the 18th congressional district

  In Texas, between 23,000 and 40,000 people are expected to be dropped 
from the WIC program if the funding levels are not restored.
  Texas has 3 of the top top 40 districts with the highest national 
food hardship rates. In the 18th Congressional district there are 
159,000 food insecure people. The food insecurity rate is 23% and ranks 
32nd nationally.


                          WIC Combats Obesity

  Let us remember that 1 in 3 American adults is overweight or obese 
and more than 9 million children are struggling with obesity. WIC aims 
to improve the eating habits of Americans, particularly our children 
through programs that provide children with healthy food. At its core, 
H.R. 2112 decreases funding for nutrition programs for children.
  Obesity is associated with 35 major diseases including chronic and 
life-threatening conditions such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease. 
It is important to keep our nation healthy by providing access to high 
consumption of vegetables and fruits to the future of our great 
country, our children. By supporting WIC we assure a healthy 
consumption of nutritional foods for children whose only crime is that 
their families are poor.
  Children who are served by the WIC program in Texas are less likely 
to eat fast food in comparison to children who are not in the program. 
These children are also more likely to eat home cooked meals. When 
children reduce their consumption of less fast food then they 
drastically lower their chances of developing heart problems, diabetes, 
and obesity which could again end up saving billions of dollars in the 
healthcare system. All the health issues that are currently 
contributing to health disparities among minorities in this country.
  Certain minorities have a higher rates of diabetes-related 
complications and death, in some instances by as much as 50 percent 
more than the total population. It is truly an epidemic. Combating 
obesity in from childhood utilizing programs like WIC is vital to 
decreasing health disparities.
  24% of Texans were obese in 2001, the 3rd highest rate in the nation. 
Nearly 31% of African American girls in the 4th grade were overweight 
and 52% were overweight or ``at risk of overweight'' in Texas in 2001. 
13% of Houston high school students are overweight and 17% are at risk. 
Over 71% of African American Texans are overweight or obese.
  Over 34% of African American women are obese, compared to 19% of 
white women.
  44% of African American women are projected to be obese by 2020, and 
47% by 2040.


                                Obesity

  Although the obesity rates among all Americans are alarming, as Chair 
of the Congressional Children's Caucus, I am especially concerned about 
the childhood obesity epidemic among African-Americans. More than 40 
percent of African-American teenagers are overweight, and nearly 25 
percent are obese.
  When ethnicity and income are considered, African-American youngsters 
from low-income families have a higher risk for obesity than those from 
higher-income families. Since the mid-1970s, the prevalence of 
overweight and obesity has increased sharply for both adults and 
children. Eighty percent of black women and 67 percent of black men are 
overweight or obese. According to the Centers for Disease Control and 
Prevention (CDC), among African-American male adults aged 20-74 years 
the prevalence of obesity increased from 15.0% in 1980 survey to 32.9% 
in the 2004.
  There were also increases in overweight among children and teens. For 
children aged 2-5 years, the prevalence of overweight increased from 
5.0% to 13.9%; for those aged 6-11 years, prevalence increased from 
6.5% to 18.8%; and for those aged 12-19 years, prevalence increased 
from 5.0% to 17.4%.
  Government reports indicate that an estimated 17 percent of children 
and adolescents aged 2-19 are obese. According to the Centers for 
Disease Control and Prevention, African American and Mexican American 
adolescents ages 12-19 are more likely to be overweight, at 21 percent 
and 23 percent respectively, than non-Hispanic white adolescents who 
are 14 percent overweight. In children 6-11 years old, 22 percent of 
Mexican American children are overweight, compared to 20 percent of 
African American children and 14 percent of non-Hispanic white 
children.


                  Impact of Obesity on Houston, Texas

  The obesity epidemic has also heavily impacted my district in the 
city of Houston. In 2005, Men's Fitness Magazine ranked Houston the 
Fattest City in the Nation. In 2006, Houston ranked as number five and 
in 2007, it was ranked the sixth fattest city in the Nation.
  These statistics underscore why we must continue to vigorously 
identify ways to address the childhood obesity crisis, by starting with 
programs such as WIC, that provides proper nutrition to low income 
families.
  As the debate over how to address the rising childhood obesity 
epidemic continues, it is important to continue to target and aid 
children who are nutritionally at risk.


       h.r. 2112 cuts more than $650 million from the wic program

  Since this bill seeks to cut more than $650 million from the WIC 
program, countless scores of women, children, and infants will also no 
longer have the same access to healthy food. According to the National 
WIC Association between 200,000-350,000 people will be cut from the 
program. That is hundreds of thousands of women, infants, and children 
who will not get the assistance they need. This is not simply about 
adding and subtracting numbers on a page this is a family tragedy. We 
cannot ignore the nutritional needs of our children; we should not 
starve low income families. As our economy awakens from this long, 
cold, slumber we must ensure that our nation's children are fed. This 
is a moral question.
  As financial hardships continue to impact millions of families, now 
is not the time for us to turn our backs on them. This is the time to 
show our compassion. I urge the full funding of WIC, because it will 
impact hundreds of thousands of people nationally, but also because it 
will end up costing billions more in the long run if we will have a 
nation of unhealthy families. Consider the consequences of children who 
lack the necessary nutrition as they grow into adults who have high 
health costs.


                     the wic program helps families

  The WIC program has been beneficial in helping some of the most 
vulnerable members of our country.
  Among the WIC's goals is to improve health care access for low and 
moderate income women and children at risk of developing health 
problems which include obesity and type 2 diabetes.
  WIC served 9.2 million through 10,000 clinics. Among this group were 
4.9 million children, 2.1 million infants, and 1 million women.
  WIC works with pregnant mothers to help reduce costs of prenatal 
care. Preterm births cost the U.S. over $26 billion a year. As a result 
of pregnant women getting the services they need, the National WIC 
Association states that Medicaid costs are reduced on average between 
$12,000 and $15,000 for every low birth-weight incident prevented. It 
is also estimated that $3.6 billion would be saved if current U.S. 
exclusive breastfeeding rates increased to at least 50% at 6 months.


                           facts on wic cuts

  If WIC funds are not fully restored the impact on low income families 
will be devastating. An estimated 200,000 to 350,000 will be cut from 
the WIC program. That's 200,000 to 350,000 low income Americans who 
will be denied access to nutrition.
  The cuts in the WIC program touches every state in this country. In 
my State of Texas between 23,000 and 40,000 people will be left out in 
the cold. We should be able to provide food to the young children of 
our country.
  Of the top 40 districts with the highest national food hardship 
rates, Texas has 3 of them. In the 18th Congressional district there 
are 159,000 food insecure people. The food insecurity rate is 23% and 
ranks 32d nationally.
  In 2005, in Harris County, there were 62 pregnant women who had 
prenatal care in the first trimester. In the State of Texas there were 
64 women. Without the WIC program, many of these women might not have 
been able to get the services they needed.
  WIC children in Texas are less likely to eat fast food over non-WIC 
children. WIC children are also more likely to eat home cooked meals 
compared to non-WIC children. Children who eat less fast food 
drastically lower their chances of developing heart problems, diabetes, 
and obesity which could end up saving billions of dollars in the health 
care system.
  As financial hardships continue to impact millions of families, now 
is not the time for us to turn our backs on them. Now is the time to 
show them that we care. I urge opposition to

[[Page H4178]]

this bill, not only because it will negatively impact hundreds of 
thousands of people nationally, but also because it will end up costing 
billions more in the long run. The American people are wondering when 
their bailout will come years after we saved Wall Street from the brink 
of destruction. This bill sends them a message that that day is not a 
priority of the Federal Government.
  We must continue to fight for pregnant mothers and low-income 
families and so I urge for full funding to be restored to the WIC 
program.
  I yield back the balance of my time.


                             point of order

  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I insist on my point of order.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for that purpose.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, the amendment may not be considered en 
bloc under clause 2(f) of rule XXI because the amendment proposes to 
increase the level of funding and outlays in the bill, and outlays in 
budget authority have to be equal.
  I ask for a ruling from the Chair.
  The Acting CHAIR. Does any other Member wish to be heard on the 
gentleman's point of order?
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. I would, Madam Chairman.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Texas is recognized.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Well, outlays have to do with the 
evenhandedness of spending at the same time, which section you take the 
monies out and which section you put them in.
  Again, the point that I want to make to this body is that my focus is 
on keeping our children in this country from being malnourished and 
pregnant mothers from not having the access to good healthy food that 
they need to give birth to a healthy child.
  And I've asked the question before, in the instance of speaking for 
our children and saving our children, a procedural waiver is in order. 
This is a procedural question. I have actually taken money from a 
legitimate account, and that is the Agriculture Research Service that 
my own friend and colleague had said is funded quite well. Now we've 
added another $2 million to the research program. $902 million.
  And I'm simply asking for a measure of that amount to help provide 
care and nourishment for our children. I believe it is appropriate to 
eliminate a procedural, if you will, flaw that only speaks to the 
timing of spending to be able to provide for the children of America. 
That's what agriculture is all about: our farmers, our families who 
need to eat good food, our undernourished and impoverished communities 
which are aplenty.
  As I spoke earlier today, those communities that are experiencing 
disasters and those mothers who are now pregnant and who need access to 
good food, we need to be able to not cut off in the State of Texas, in 
my district, 40,000 or so individuals that will not be able to be part 
of the WIC program because we're talking about a procedural flaw.
  And so, Madam Chairperson, I am suggesting that this amendment is in 
order, and I'd ask my colleagues to consider a waiver. But I'm also 
asking the Chairwoman to rule in my favor so that the people of America 
most vulnerable will have access to quality food and a healthy life.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Chair is prepared to rule on the gentleman from 
Georgia's point of order.
  To be considered en bloc pursuant to clause 2(f) of rule XXI, an 
amendment must not propose to increase the levels of budget authority 
or outlays in the bill. Because the amendment offered by the 
gentlewoman from Texas proposes a net increase in the level of outlays 
in the bill, as argued by the chairman of the Subcommittee on 
Appropriations, it may not avail itself of clause 2(f) to address 
portions of the bill not yet read.
  The point of order is sustained.
  The amendment is not in order.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

               National Institute of Food and Agriculture

                   research and education activities

       For payments to agricultural experiment stations, for 
     cooperative forestry and other research, for facilities, and 
     for other expenses, $600,800,000, as follows: to carry out 
     the provisions of the Hatch Act of 1887 (7 U.S.C. 361a-i), 
     $208,000,000; for grants for cooperative forestry research 
     (16 U.S.C. 582a through a-7), $30,000,000; for payments to 
     eligible institutions (7 U.S.C. 3222), $48,000,000, provided 
     that each institution receives no less than $1,000,000; for 
     special grants (7 U.S.C. 450i(c)), $1,250,000; for 
     competitive grants for Integrated Pest Management and 
     Biological Control (7 U.S.C. 450i(c)), $14,000,000; for 
     competitive grants (7 U.S.C. 450i(b)), $229,500,000, to 
     remain available until expended; for the support of animal 
     health and disease programs (7 U.S.C. 3195), $4,000,000; for 
     a program pursuant to section 1415A of the National 
     Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 
     1977 (7 U.S.C. 3151a), $4,200,000, to remain available until 
     expended; for a higher education multicultural scholars 
     program (7 U.S.C. 3152(b)(5)), $1,000,000, to remain 
     available until expended (7 U.S.C. 2209b); for an education 
     grants program for Hispanic-serving Institutions (7 U.S.C. 
     3241), $7,800,000; for competitive grants for the purpose of 
     carrying out all provisions of 7 U.S.C. 3156 to individual 
     eligible institutions or consortia of eligible institutions 
     in Alaska and in Hawaii, with funds awarded equally to each 
     of the States of Alaska and Hawaii, $2,700,000; for secondary 
     education, 2-year post-secondary education, and agriculture 
     in the K-12 classroom (7 U.S.C. 3152(j)), $900,000; for 
     aquaculture grants (7 U.S.C. 3322), $3,300,000; for 
     sustainable agriculture research and education (7 U.S.C. 
     5811), $12,300,000; for a program of capacity building grants 
     (7 U.S.C. 3152(b)(4)) to institutions eligible to receive 
     funds under 7 U.S.C. 3221 and 3222, $16,400,000, to remain 
     available until expended (7 U.S.C. 2209b); for payments to 
     the 1994 Institutions pursuant to section 534(a)(1) of Public 
     Law 103-382, $2,800,000; for resident instruction grants for 
     insular areas under section 1491 of the National Agricultural 
     Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (7 
     U.S.C. 3363), $900,000; for distance education grants for 
     insular areas under section 1490 of the National Agricultural 
     Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (7 
     U.S.C. 3362), $750,000; for competitive grants for policy 
     research (7 U.S.C. 3155), $3,000,000; and for necessary 
     expenses of Research and Education Activities, $10,000,000, 
     of which $2,500,000 for the Research, Education, and 
     Economics Information System and $2,000,000 for the 
     Electronic Grants Information System, are to remain available 
     until expended.

              native american institutions endowment fund

       For the Native American Institutions Endowment Fund 
     authorized by Public Law 103-382 (7 U.S.C. 301 note), 
     $11,880,000, to remain available until expended.

                          extension activities

       For payments to States, the District of Columbia, Puerto 
     Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands, Micronesia, the Northern 
     Marianas, and American Samoa, $411,200,000, as follows: 
     payments for cooperative extension work under the Smith-Lever 
     Act, to be distributed under sections 3(b) and 3(c) of said 
     Act, and under section 208(c) of Public Law 93-471, for 
     retirement and employees' compensation costs for extension 
     agents, $259,200,000; payments for extension work at the 1994 
     Institutions under the Smith-Lever Act (7 U.S.C. 343(b)(3)), 
     $3,600,000; payments for the nutrition and family education 
     program for low-income areas under section 3(d) of the Act, 
     $58,000,000; payments for the pest management program under 
     section 3(d) of the Act, $8,400,000; payments for New 
     Technologies for Agriculture Extension under section 3(d) of 
     the Act, $1,400,000; payments to upgrade research, extension, 
     and teaching facilities at institutions eligible to receive 
     funds under 7 U.S.C. 3221 and 3222, $16,700,000, to remain 
     available until expended; payments for youth-at-risk programs 
     under section 3(d) of the Smith-Lever Act, $7,100,000; 
     payments for carrying out the provisions of the Renewable 
     Resources Extension Act of 1978 (16 U.S.C. 1671 et seq.), 
     $3,400,000; payments for the federally-recognized Tribes 
     Extension Program under section 3(d) of the Smith-Lever Act, 
     $2,600,000; payments for sustainable agriculture programs 
     under section 3(d) of the Act, $4,000,000; payments for rural 
     health and safety education as authorized by section 502(i) 
     of Public Law 92-419 (7 U.S.C. 2662(i)), $1,500,000; payments 
     for cooperative extension work by eligible institutions (7 
     U.S.C. 3221), $36,000,000, provided that each institution 
     receives no less than $1,000,000; for grants to youth 
     organizations pursuant to 7 U.S.C. 7630, $1,500,000; for 
     payments to carry out the food animal residue avoidance 
     database program as authorized by 7 U.S.C. 7642, $1,000,000; 
     and for necessary expenses of Extension Activities, 
     $6,800,000.

                         integrated activities

       For the integrated research, education, and extension 
     grants program authorized under section 406 of the 
     Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 
     1998 (7 U.S.C. 7626), including necessary administrative 
     expenses, $8,000,000, as follows: for a competitive organic 
     transition program, $4,000,000; and for the regional pest 
     management centers program $4,000,000.

  Office of the Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Under Secretary 
     for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, $760,000.

               Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

                         salaries and expenses

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For necessary expenses of the Animal and Plant Health 
     Inspection Service, including

[[Page H4179]]

     up to $30,000 for representation allowances and for expenses 
     pursuant to the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 4085), 
     $790,000,000, of which $2,000,000, to be available until 
     expended, shall be available for the control of outbreaks of 
     insects, plant diseases, animal diseases and for control of 
     pest animals and birds (``contingency fund'') to the extent 
     necessary to meet emergency conditions; of which $16,000,000, 
     to remain available until expended, shall be used for the 
     cotton pests program for cost share purposes or for debt 
     retirement for active eradication zones; of which 
     $32,500,000, to remain available until expended, shall be for 
     Animal Health Technical Services; of which $54,000,000, to 
     remain available until expended, shall be used to support 
     avian health; of which $4,200,000, to remain available until 
     expended, shall be for information technology infrastructure; 
     of which $147,000,000, to remain available until expended, 
     shall be for specialty crop pests; of which, $9,000,000, to 
     remain available until expended, shall be for field crop and 
     rangeland ecosystem pests; of which $52,000,000, to remain 
     available until expended, shall be for tree and wood pests; 
     of which $2,300,000, to remain available until expended, 
     shall be for the National Veterinary Stockpile; of which up 
     to $1,500,000, to remain available until expended, shall be 
     for the scrapie program for indemnities; of which $1,000,000, 
     to remain available until expended, shall be for wildlife 
     services methods development; of which $1,500,000, to remain 
     available until expended, shall be for the wildlife damage 
     management program for aviation safety; and up to 25 percent 
     of the screwworm program shall remain available until 
     expended: Provided, That no funds shall be used to formulate 
     or administer a brucellosis eradication program for the 
     current fiscal year that does not require minimum matching by 
     the States of at least 40 percent: Provided further, That 
     this appropriation shall be available for the operation and 
     maintenance of aircraft and the purchase of not to exceed 
     four, of which two shall be for replacement only: Provided 
     further, That, in addition, in emergencies which threaten any 
     segment of the agricultural production industry of this 
     country, the Secretary may transfer from other appropriations 
     or funds available to the agencies or corporations of the 
     Department such sums as may be deemed necessary, to be 
     available only in such emergencies for the arrest and 
     eradication of contagious or infectious disease or pests of 
     animals, poultry, or plants, and for expenses in accordance 
     with sections 10411 and 10417 of the Animal Health Protection 
     Act (7 U.S.C. 8310 and 8316) and sections 431 and 442 of the 
     Plant Protection Act (7 U.S.C. 7751 and 7772), and any 
     unexpended balances of funds transferred for such emergency 
     purposes in the preceding fiscal year shall be merged with 
     such transferred amounts: Provided further, That 
     appropriations hereunder shall be available pursuant to law 
     (7 U.S.C. 2250) for the repair and alteration of leased 
     buildings and improvements, but unless otherwise provided the 
     cost of altering any one building during the fiscal year 
     shall not exceed 10 percent of the current replacement value 
     of the building.
       In fiscal year 2012, the agency is authorized to collect 
     fees to cover the total costs of providing technical 
     assistance, goods, or services requested by States, other 
     political subdivisions, domestic and international 
     organizations, foreign governments, or individuals, provided 
     that such fees are structured such that any entity's 
     liability for such fees is reasonably based on the technical 
     assistance, goods, or services provided to the entity by the 
     agency, and such fees shall be reimbursed to this account, to 
     remain available until expended, without further 
     appropriation, for providing such assistance, goods, or 
     services.

                        buildings and facilities

       For plans, construction, repair, preventive maintenance, 
     environmental support, improvement, extension, alteration, 
     and purchase of fixed equipment or facilities, as authorized 
     by 7 U.S.C. 2250, and acquisition of land as authorized by 7 
     U.S.C. 428a, $3,200,000, to remain available until expended.


              Amendment Offered by Mr. Clarke of Michigan

  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 17, line 20, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $1,000,000)''.
       Page 17, line 25, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $1,000,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Michigan is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, this amendment would restore $1 
million to the Microbiological Data Program. Now, this is a USDA 
program that collects and tests fruits and vegetables, domestic and 
imported fruits and vegetables for bacteria that could cause illness 
and even death. Recent tests have discovered salmonella and strains of 
E. coli similar to that found in the German food supply that resulted 
in the deaths of 24 people and which infected over 2,400. So this 
amendment is important in order to protect the public from food-borne 
pathogens that could make the public sick or that could put innocent 
lives at risk.
  I do urge your support.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I move to strike the last word and oppose the 
amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I'm continuing to study this. And you 
know, fortunately, one of the great things about the open rule that 
we've had is we've had a lot of good debate tonight, had a lot of 
speakers. I think we broke the record tonight on the speech contest 
about WIC. I'm not sure who Mr. Farr will be awarding, giving that 
award to, but we had a lot of good contenders.
  Mr. Clarke, unfortunately, I just, within the last minute, have seen 
this, and I'm not sure that it will do what you're saying or what your 
intention is, and so I'm going to oppose the amendment.
  I will promise to work with you. It's a million dollar transfer, and 
don't know that it accomplishes what you want. I don't know that it 
doesn't accomplish what you want. And I don't necessarily think it 
causes a big disruption in the bill either. But for right now, I'm 
going to have to oppose it. And let me continue to research it, and 
maybe as the process goes through we can see what we can do to work 
with you and Mr. Farr on it.

                              {time}  2310

  We are very concerned about food safety and the pathogens and the 
situation in Europe, and we want to make sure that we're studying this 
stuff very closely ourselves. So I reluctantly oppose it for the time 
being.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Madam Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Wyoming is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Madam Chairman, I rise to oppose the amendment not 
because it is unworthy, but because I believe that there are funds 
elsewhere in the bill that could be used to cover the services and 
research that the gentleman requests. I refer the gentleman to page 10, 
the National Institute of Food and Agricultural Research and Education 
Activities. Those activities include: for ag experiment stations, 
$600,800,000; for grants payable to eligible institutions, $48 million, 
provided that each institution receives no less than $1 million; for 
special grants, $1.2 million; for competitive grants for integrated 
pest management and biological control, $14 million; for competitive 
grants, $229.5 million to remain available until expended.
  This is sloshing with research dollars, sloshing. I think there's 
plenty in this bill to cover the worthy research that the gentleman has 
requested, so I urge my colleagues to defeat the amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. I yield to the gentleman from Michigan.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, the funding source that I'm 
using to offset the cost of this amendment I believe won't undercut the 
vital mission of this agency, unlike the other sources that have been 
mentioned. However, I am willing to work with the majority on 
negotiating a proper funding source. All I care, the bottom line, is 
that the public is safe and that we are diligent and do the best that 
we can to identify these bacteria sources that could make the public 
sick.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Will the gentleman from California yield?
  Mr. FARR. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I want to say that the concern that I have--again, not 
having the advantage of being able to research things thoroughly, but 
we're taking $1 million out of a $3 million account and putting it into 
a $77 million account, and it just seems disproportional at this point.
  I'm wondering if during the process there might be an opportunity to 
emphasize that we want the Ag Marketing

[[Page H4180]]

Service to really be sure that they're following the E. coli situation. 
That would be helpful. I certainly would be interested in doing that 
and working with him, but I want to continue to oppose the amendment at 
this point.
  Mr. FARR. I share your concerns, but I'd certainly like to see what 
we can do to accommodate my colleague.
  Madam Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Clarke).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Michigan 
will be postponed.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                     Agricultural Marketing Service

                           Marketing Services

       For necessary expenses of the Agricultural Marketing 
     Service, $77,500,000: Provided, That this appropriation shall 
     be available pursuant to law (7 U.S.C. 2250) for the 
     alteration and repair of buildings and improvements, but the 
     cost of altering any one building during the fiscal year 
     shall not exceed 10 percent of the current replacement value 
     of the building. Fees may be collected for the cost of 
     standardization activities, as established by regulation 
     pursuant to law (31 U.S.C. 9701).


            Amendment No. 9 Offered by Mr. Broun of Georgia

  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 17, line 25, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $7,750,000)''.
       Page 80, line 2, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $7,750,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chair, I rise to offer my amendment, 
which is simply a 10 percent cut in the Agricultural Marketing Service 
at the USDA.
  This year, the Agricultural Marketing Service will be allocated $77.5 
million for, as they state in their own Web site, ``administering 
programs that facilitate the efficient, fair marketing of U.S. 
agricultural products, including food, fiber, and specialty crops.''
  Madam Chair, since I've been a Member of Congress, I have stated that 
the marketplace, unencumbered, is the best way to control quality, 
quantity, and cost of all goods and services. So we need to get the 
encumbrances of the Federal Government off the marketplace, and this 
will just take 10 percent. Our Nation's crops are no exception to this 
rule.
  Madam Chair, I think the USDA is not giving American farmers enough 
credit. Our farmers are intelligent, resourceful men and women who know 
the best ways to market their products here and abroad. Madam Chair, 
when I was farming, I could market my products very well. I used to 
farm--I wish I could get back to it, actually. Allow these farmers to 
market their products without the government interference and use these 
funds to reduce spending.
  It's absolutely critical, Madam Chair, that we reduce the outrageous 
spending that Congresses, both Republican and Democrat, have put in 
place. As Admiral Mullen, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 
recently said, the greatest threat to our security is this huge debt. 
We absolutely have to cut spending, and this simple amendment would cut 
10 percent out of this program and put it in the deficit reduction 
package that is part of this bill.
  So I encourage my colleagues to support this simple amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the 
amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. CLARKE of Michigan. Madam Chair, this amendment would really 
undercut the whole purpose that I was offering an additional $1 
million: to help protect the American people from food-borne bacteria.
  Over 2,400 people were infected in Germany by a strain of E. coli; 24 
of them died. We don't want this to happen here in this country.
  The gracious chairman, the gentleman from Georgia, and I agreed to 
work something out to better protect the public. I'm just asking if 
maybe you could withdraw this amendment to give us a chance to work out 
something here.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FARR. Madam Chair, I oppose this amendment.
  This is a big cut out of a very important program, just indicated by 
Congressman Clarke from Michigan. For all the reasons he was trying to 
increase the program, this amendment goes just the opposite way. It 
knocks 10 percent of the money that's in the program out. There will be 
no way that he can increase it with this and work out a deal. And for 
all the reasons he indicated on food safety and issues like that that 
are very, very important, we ought not risk the ability to respond to 
those needs.

                              {time}  2320

  So I think this amendment does harm, and it does more harm than the 
good that it intends to do. That is the reason I oppose it, and would 
ask for a ``no'' vote.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I oppose the amendment.
  I want to go back to the earlier theme I brought up when we were 
discussing both WIC and the Chaffetz amendment earlier tonight. With 
regard to what Dr. Broun is doing, I think there is 10 percent with 
which you can make that argument there.
  What we've been trying to do is to stack a card house on the Ryan 
budget. That is the only budget that has passed one House. I will point 
out again that the budget of the President of the United States failed 
in the Senate 97-0. Similarly, three other budgets failed in the 
Senate, and four other budgets failed in the House. There was a budget 
that was offered that was further cut by the Republican Study 
Committee, and then there were others that were less cut, the 
Progressive Caucus', for example.
  So one of the balancing acts that this committee is trying to 
accomplish with this bill tonight is to reduce spending but also to get 
218 votes to pass the bill so that we can continue this with the U.S. 
Senate, which right now has not been able to pass one single 
appropriations bill. They have been very remiss in their duty, so I 
find myself having to balance some things that, if I were a free agent, 
I would probably be voting for and some things I would be voting 
against as I just told Mr. Clarke from Detroit in rejecting a $1 
million transfer of account because I didn't know exactly what it did. 
I want to keep that balance there.
  So, with this, I am going to oppose the 10 percent reduction offered 
by my friend and Georgia colleague, Dr. Broun.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Madam Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Wyoming is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. It appears from the text of this program, the Ag 
Marketing Service, that the $77.5 million appropriated may be derived 
from fees that are collected for the cost of standardization activities 
as established by regulation, because, if you look on page 18, line 9, 
it reads: not to exceed $61 million from fees collected shall be 
obligated during the current fiscal year for administrative expenses.
  My question then is: Is this a fee-for-service program rather than a 
generally funded, taxpayer-funded program?
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Will the gentlewoman yield?
  Mrs. LUMMIS. Madam Chair, I ask unanimous consent to reclaim my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentlewoman from Wyoming?
  There was no objection.

[[Page H4181]]

  Mrs. LUMMIS. I yield to the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. KINGSTON. The Ag Marketing Service actually gets that $77.5 
million in appropriation, and in addition, has the ability to collect 
up to $61 million in fees. If you think about it, that's not unusual in 
this account. The FDA actually does the same thing. I think they get 
over $1 billion in fees. So some of these accounts do get an 
appropriation, and then they on their own can go out and get some fees, 
not just to supplement them, but in some cases to almost match them as 
the AMS has done.
  Mrs. LUMMIS. I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Broun).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Georgia will 
be postponed.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                 limitation on administrative expenses

       Not to exceed $61,000,000 (from fees collected) shall be 
     obligated during the current fiscal year for administrative 
     expenses: Provided, That if crop size is understated and/or 
     other uncontrollable events occur, the agency may exceed this 
     limitation by up to 10 percent with notification to the 
     Committees on Appropriations of both Houses of Congress.

    funds for strengthening markets, income, and supply (section 32)

                     (including transfers of funds)

       Funds available under section 32 of the Act of August 24, 
     1935 (7 U.S.C. 612c), shall be used only for commodity 
     program expenses as authorized therein, and other related 
     operating expenses, except for: (1) transfers to the 
     Department of Commerce as authorized by the Fish and Wildlife 
     Act of August 8, 1956; (2) transfers otherwise provided in 
     this Act; and (3) not more than $20,056,000 for formulation 
     and administration of marketing agreements and orders 
     pursuant to the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 
     and the Agricultural Act of 1961.

                   payments to states and possessions

       For payments to State departments of agriculture, bureaus 
     and departments of markets, and similar agencies for 
     marketing activities under section 204(b) of the Agricultural 
     Marketing Act of 1946 (7 U.S.C. 1623(b)), $1,331,000.

        Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration

                         salaries and expenses

       For necessary expenses of the Grain Inspection, Packers and 
     Stockyards Administration, $37,000,000: Provided, That this 
     appropriation shall be available pursuant to law (7 U.S.C. 
     2250) for the alteration and repair of buildings and 
     improvements, but the cost of altering any one building 
     during the fiscal year shall not exceed 10 percent of the 
     current replacement value of the building.

        limitation on inspection and weighing services expenses

       Not to exceed $47,500,000 (from fees collected) shall be 
     obligated during the current fiscal year for inspection and 
     weighing services: Provided, That if grain export activities 
     require additional supervision and oversight, or other 
     uncontrollable factors occur, this limitation may be exceeded 
     by up to 10 percent with notification to the Committees on 
     Appropriations of both Houses of Congress.

             Office of the Under Secretary for Food Safety

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Under Secretary 
     for Food Safety, $689,000.

                   Food Safety and Inspection Service

       For necessary expenses to carry out services authorized by 
     the Federal Meat Inspection Act, the Poultry Products 
     Inspection Act, and the Egg Products Inspection Act, 
     including not to exceed $50,000 for representation allowances 
     and for expenses pursuant to section 8 of the Act approved 
     August 3, 1956 (7 U.S.C. 1766), $972,028,000; and in 
     addition, $1,000,000 may be credited to this account from 
     fees collected for the cost of laboratory accreditation as 
     authorized by section 1327 of the Food, Agriculture, 
     Conservation and Trade Act of 1990 (7 U.S.C. 138f): Provided, 
     That funds provided for the Public Health Data Communication 
     Infrastructure system shall remain available until expended: 
     Provided further, That this appropriation shall be available 
     pursuant to law (7 U.S.C. 2250) for the alteration and repair 
     of buildings and improvements, but the cost of altering any 
     one building during the fiscal year shall not exceed 10 
     percent of the current replacement value of the building.

    Office of the Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural 
                                Services

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Under Secretary 
     for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, $760,000.

                          Farm Service Agency

                         salaries and expenses

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For necessary expenses of the Farm Service Agency, 
     $1,176,500,000: Provided, That the Secretary is authorized to 
     use the services, facilities, and authorities (but not the 
     funds) of the Commodity Credit Corporation to make program 
     payments for all programs administered by the Agency: 
     Provided further, That other funds made available to the 
     Agency for authorized activities may be advanced to and 
     merged with this account: Provided further, That funds made 
     available to county committees shall remain available until 
     expended.


                  Amendment Offered by Ms. Richardson

  Ms. RICHARDSON. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 21, line 12, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $10,000,000'').
       Page 46, line 22, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $10,000,000'').

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. RICHARDSON. Madam Chairwoman, the Richardson amendment adds $10 
million to the Commodity Assistance Program by reducing by the same 
amount from the Salaries and Expenses section of the Farm Service 
Agency, which will provide additional funding for the Commodities 
Supplemental Food Program, which provides assistance to seniors who 
have incomes at or below $14,157. Ninety-seven percent of all 
Commodities Supplemental Food Program recipients are seniors who often 
receive these as the only fresh food packages that might come to their 
homes. Many of these seniors have no means of transportation to obtain 
these products. These seniors also have very limited resources with 
which to purchase the food that they need.
  Madam Chairwoman, I don't understand why those in the majority would 
believe that our seniors have caused our budget problems or, worse yet, 
are able to fix our budget problems.
  The Ryan budget proposes to make seniors pay an additional $6,000 
out-of-pocket for their health care needs. Second, they increase the 
prescription drug costs for our seniors by proposing to reopen the 
Medicare prescription drug doughnut hole, which Democrats closed in the 
last Congress. These are heartless legislative proposals that could 
force 136,000 seniors in the Los Angeles area to pay an additional $1.3 
billion for their prescription drugs over the next decade.
  Now Food for Low-Income Seniors is under attack as well. Our seniors 
deserve our support. They've earned it. Many of our seniors have served 
our country overseas during World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Their 
bravery and their sacrifices have made America the great country that 
it is. Our seniors have worked hard all of their lives to provide for 
their families. It is now our responsibility to help assist them.
  Madam Chairwoman, the Commodities Supplemental Food Program was cut 
by $37 million over fiscal year 2011 levels. This cut means nearly 
81,000 low-income seniors will lose their monthly food assistance. 
There are 6 million seniors who face the threat of hunger in this 
country, and with 12,000 baby boomers turning 60 every day by 2025, 
that number is expected to reach nearly the 10 million mark. There are 
52,000 senior citizens in my district, the 37th Congressional District 
in California, and between 10 and 20 percent of them depend on these 
very programs.
  The Richardson amendment restores $10 million in funding to the 
Commodity Assistance Program, which will help to ensure that more of 
our seniors will continue to receive food. We are talking about 
something as basic as that--food--that our seniors would be able to 
eat.

                              {time}  2330

  I urge my colleagues to support the Richardson amendment and support 
our seniors.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chair, I oppose the amendment and move to strike 
the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Georgia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KINGSTON. I want to point out that FSA, the Farm Service Agency, 
is already $181 million below the President's request and $32 million 
below 2011. It has been trimmed a great deal. But also I wanted to 
point out that we just accepted an amendment that increases the 
Commodity Supplemental

[[Page H4182]]

Food Program by $5 million. The gentlewoman may not be aware of that--I 
don't know if you were on the floor at the time. I know that doesn't 
mean that you wouldn't offer your amendment anyway, but I just wanted 
to point out that we did just increase it.
  More importantly though, I have been in a mode of rejecting a lot of 
amendments in the last couple of hours because this budget, this bill, 
our 302(b) allocation is a reflection of the Ryan budget, which is the 
only budget that has passed either body in its entirety. There were 
budgets offered in the House that would have cut more, at least one. 
There were other budgets that would have cut less or cut in different 
directions. Yet the Ryan budget in the House or the Senate is the only 
budget that has passed, and it is a card house. I know, as you know, if 
we add to it we lose votes, and if we take from it we lose votes. For 
that reason, I do oppose your amendment. But I understand your concern 
here.
  I want to point out, and I am sure the gentlewoman knows this, but a 
senior who is 65 years or older is actually eligible for six different 
Federal food programs, and it would certainly not be our intention to 
have anybody fall through the cracks. I think there is a lot to be said 
and some savings in combining the Commodity Supplemental Food Program 
and the SNAP program, and maybe cut out some of the administrative 
costs in order to increase the amount available.
  Ms. RICHARDSON. If the gentleman would yield, might I point out that, 
first of all, we would not be able to legislate on the floor having to 
deal with this appropriation bill before us.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Reclaiming my time, don't we know full well on this 
committee, because we have been champing at the bit to do a little bit 
of authorizing, but the authorizing committees keep a pretty strong eye 
on us. I certainly agree with that point.
  Ms. RICHARDSON. I just want you to know I am watching and paying 
attention carefully, sir. The other point I wanted to point out, as I 
stated in my comments, $37 million has been cut over the fiscal year 
2011, and given the $5 million that you did earlier accept, and I am 
suggesting $10 million, we would still be suggesting only restoring 
less than 50 percent from that level.
  I would just urge you, sir, in these tough times, I understand in 
future times, but in these tough times, not all other mechanisms could 
help our seniors, again who are only making at or below $14,000, and 
this would be a dire need, and I would strongly urge, please, your 
reconsideration.
  Mr. KINGSTON. Reclaiming my time, I do want to point out, and I am 
sure the gentlewoman knows, that this bill actually does increase SNAP 
$5.6 billion. Therefore, I think sometimes we do need to, even though 
that is an authorizing issue, I think as a practical issue that is 
something we need to explore and thrash about and make sure that we are 
not under-serving somebody because of two programs that could be so 
close that I don't know why we don't combine them. Again, I realize 
that would be farm bill authority to do that. But SNAP did go up $5.6 
billion because of the mandatory spending side of it.
  I need to continue to oppose your amendment, but I would not slam the 
door on looking at it as the process continues in the months ahead. 
Hopefully, the Senate might start doing their job and passing 
appropriations bills, and then we can get to conference without it 
being part of an omnibus, because I think in a conference we are going 
to do a lot better if it is just limited to agriculture and these 
accounts.
  Madam Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentlewoman from California (Ms. Richardson).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Ms. RICHARDSON. I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from California 
will be postponed.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                         state mediation grants

       For grants pursuant to section 502(b) of the Agricultural 
     Credit Act of 1987, as amended (7 U.S.C. 5101-5106), 
     $3,550,000.

               grassroots source water protection program

       For necessary expenses to carry out wellhead or groundwater 
     protection activities under section 1240O of the Food 
     Security Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3839bb-2), $3,605,000, to 
     remain available until expended.

                        dairy indemnity program

                     (including transfer of funds)

       For necessary expenses involved in making indemnity 
     payments to dairy farmers and manufacturers of dairy products 
     under a dairy indemnity program, such sums as may be 
     necessary, to remain available until expended: Provided, That 
     such program is carried out by the Secretary in the same 
     manner as the dairy indemnity program described in the 
     Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, 
     and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2001 (Public Law 
     106-387, 114 Stat. 1549A-12).

           agricultural credit insurance fund program account

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For gross obligations for the principal amount of direct 
     and guaranteed farm ownership (7 U.S.C. 1922 et seq.) and 
     operating (7 U.S.C. 1941 et seq.) loans, Indian tribe land 
     acquisition loans (25 U.S.C. 488), boll weevil loans (7 
     U.S.C. 1989), guaranteed conservation loans (7 U.S.C. 1924 et 
     seq.), and Indian highly fractionated land loans (25 U.S.C. 
     488) to be available from funds in the Agricultural Credit 
     Insurance Fund, as follows: $1,500,000,000 for unsubsidized 
     guaranteed farm ownership loans and $475,000,000 for farm 
     ownership direct loans; $1,500,000,000 for unsubsidized 
     guaranteed operating loans and $1,050,090,000 for direct 
     operating loans; Indian tribe land acquisition loans, 
     $2,000,000; guaranteed conservation loans, $150,000,000; 
     Indian highly fractionated land loans, $10,000,000; and for 
     boll weevil eradication program loans, $100,000,000: 
     Provided, That the Secretary shall deem the pink bollworm to 
     be a boll weevil for the purpose of boll weevil eradication 
     program loans.
       For the cost of direct and guaranteed loans and grants, 
     including the cost of modifying loans as defined in section 
     502 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, as follows: farm 
     ownership, $22,800,000 for direct loans; farm operating 
     loans, $26,100,000 for unsubsidized guaranteed operating 
     loans, $59,120,000 for direct operating loans; and Indian 
     highly fractionated land loans, $193,000.
       In addition, for administrative expenses necessary to carry 
     out the direct and guaranteed loan programs, $268,634,000, of 
     which $260,730,000 shall be paid to the appropriation for 
     ``Farm Service Agency, Salaries and Expenses''.
       Funds appropriated by this Act to the Agricultural Credit 
     Insurance Program Account for farm ownership, operating and 
     conservation direct loans and guaranteed loans may be 
     transferred among these programs: Provided, That the 
     Committees on Appropriations of both Houses of Congress are 
     notified at least 15 days in advance of any transfer.

                         Risk Management Agency

       For necessary expenses of the Risk Management Agency, 
     $68,016,000: Provided, That the funds made available under 
     section 522(e) of the Federal Crop Insurance Act (7 U.S.C. 
     1522(e)) may be used for the Common Information Management 
     System: Provided further, That not to exceed $1,000 shall be 
     available for official reception and representation expenses, 
     as authorized by 7 U.S.C. 1506(i).

                              CORPORATIONS

       The following corporations and agencies are hereby 
     authorized to make expenditures, within the limits of funds 
     and borrowing authority available to each such corporation or 
     agency and in accord with law, and to make contracts and 
     commitments without regard to fiscal year limitations as 
     provided by section 104 of the Government Corporation Control 
     Act as may be necessary in carrying out the programs set 
     forth in the budget for the current fiscal year for such 
     corporation or agency, except as hereinafter provided.

                Federal Crop Insurance Corporation Fund

       For payments as authorized by section 516 of the Federal 
     Crop Insurance Act (7 U.S.C. 1516), such sums as may be 
     necessary, to remain available until expended.

                   Commodity Credit Corporation Fund

                 reimbursement for net realized losses

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For the current fiscal year, such sums as may be necessary 
     to reimburse the Commodity Credit Corporation for net 
     realized losses sustained, but not previously reimbursed, 
     pursuant to section 2 of the Act of August 17, 1961 (15 
     U.S.C. 713a-11): Provided, That of the funds available to the 
     Commodity Credit Corporation under section 11 of the 
     Commodity Credit Corporation Charter Act (15 U.S.C. 714i) for 
     the conduct of its business with the Foreign Agricultural 
     Service, up to $5,000,000 may be transferred to and used by 
     the Foreign Agricultural Service for information resource 
     management activities of the Foreign Agricultural Service 
     that are not related to Commodity Credit Corporation 
     business.

                       hazardous waste management

                        (limitation on expenses)

       For the current fiscal year, the Commodity Credit 
     Corporation shall not expend more than $5,000,000 for site 
     investigation and cleanup expenses, and operations and 
     maintenance expenses to comply with the requirement of 
     section 107(g) of the Comprehensive

[[Page H4183]]

     Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (42 
     U.S.C. 9607(g)), and section 6001 of the Resource 
     Conservation and Recovery Act (42 U.S.C. 6961).

                                TITLE II

                         CONSERVATION PROGRAMS

  Office of the Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Under Secretary 
     for Natural Resources and Environment, $760,000.

  Mr. KINGSTON. Madam Chairman, I move that the Committee do now rise.
  The motion was agreed to.
  Accordingly, the Committee rose; and the Speaker pro tempore (Mr. 
Broun of Georgia) having assumed the chair, Ms. Foxx, Acting Chair of 
the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, reported 
that that Committee, having had under consideration the bill (H.R. 
2112) making appropriations for Agriculture, Rural Development, Food 
and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies programs for the fiscal 
year ending September 30, 2012, and for other purposes, had come to no 
resolution thereon.

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