Amendment Text: S.Amdt.124 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)

Shown Here:
Amendment as Proposed (01/27/2015)

This Amendment appears on page S529 in the following article from the Congressional Record.

[Pages S503-S537]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                  KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE ACT--Continued

  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Utah.


                          Guantanamo Detainees

  Mr. HATCH. Mr. President, today I rise in support of S. 165, which 
restores many of the terrorist detainee transfer safeguards that were 
weakened in the fiscal year 2014 National Defense Authorization Act, as 
well as imposes a 2-year bar on the transfer of detainees to Yemen.
  This legislation has been authored by Senator Kelly Ayotte, one of 
the Senate's foremost leaders on national security, and its cosponsors 
include the chairman of the Armed Services Committee, Senator John 
McCain, and the chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence, 
Senator Richard Burr, as well as the Senate's preeminent expert on 
military law, Senator Lindsey Graham.
  I am honored to add my name to the list of Senators who have 
cosponsored this legislation.
  Mr. President, the effect of this legislation is to preserve the 
ability of the

[[Page S504]]

United States to detain at our facilities at Guantanamo Bay members of 
Al Qaeda and the Taliban--the organizations responsible for the 
terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
  Why is keeping Guantanamo open so important?
  Simply put, Guantanamo affords our military a safe and secure 
location to detain those individuals held under the law of war or for 
violations of the law of war.
  If an enemy combatant is captured during an armed conflict, that 
individual can be held under the law of war. It is a generally accepted 
legal principle, affirmed repeatedly by the Supreme Court, that enemy 
combatants can be held at least until a conflict is concluded.
  If an individual is held for a violation of the laws of war, that 
means they are being detained until they can be prosecuted for a war 
crime they are alleged to have committed.
  The detainee population of Guantanamo contains battle-hardened 
terrorists. Indeed, the threat they pose is amply demonstrated since 29 
percent of Guantanamo detainees released so far are confirmed or 
suspected of rejoining the fight against the United States.
  Now, Mr. President, Cliff Sloan, who was the State Department's envoy 
for closing Guantanamo Bay, recently wrote in a New York Times 
editorial that this nearly 30 percent recidivism rate was ``deeply 
flawed.'' It appears Mr. Sloan only wants the Congress and the American 
people to consider the confirmed rate rather than the combined 
confirmed and suspected recidivism rate.
  Mr. President, if Congress and the American people are truly to 
understand the risks inherent in this administration's insistence on 
releasing Guantanamo Bay detainees, we must consider this combined 
number. How can that be deeply flawed?
  Mr. Sloan goes on to state that the level of recidivism is much lower 
since 2009. However, this lower rate, if accurate, undoubtedly does not 
include the five senior Taliban leaders who were illegally released to 
Qatar and whose 1-year travel ban is about to expire. Unless the Qatari 
Government prevents it, soon these terrorists will be free to go 
wherever they wish.
  I am also concerned that this new number might not fully incorporate 
the activities and future actions of those detainees who have been 
transferred in recent months. One of the major advantages of locating 
our detention operations at Guantanamo Bay is that it is well-settled 
law that the United States can hold individuals held under the law of 
war or for violations of the law of war at our facilities there.
  Now, I personally believe current Supreme Court precedent would 
enable us to hold both law of war and violations of law of war 
detainees in the United States. However, if these detainees are moved 
into the United States, every attorney representing detainees would 
rush to federal court and file new lawsuits seeking their clients' 
release. Indeed, there exists a very real possibility that a court 
might release a detainee into the United States, especially in light of 
the Obama administration's unwillingness, in some cases, to defend 
against detainees' habeas petitions to the fullest extent. As such, the 
risks of transferring these detainees into the United States are great.
  Guantanamo Bay also affords us a much better environment to bring and 
hold newly apprehended terrorists. Inside the United States, the 
Supreme Court has mandated that criminal suspects be read their 
rights--including their right to remain silent and right to a lawyer--
subject to only a narrow public safety exception. Such limits on 
interrogations severely hinder our ability to gather information from 
captured terrorists, who have time and again proven to be the source of 
vital intelligence.
  Consider, for example, how officials were only able to interrogate 
the Boston Marathon bomber for just 16 hours before he was read his 
rights and immediately stopped cooperating. As one of the longest 
serving members ever of the Intelligence Committee, I can assure you 
that it takes far longer to gather all of the important information we 
can from most terrorists.
  Moving detainees into the United States also presents serious 
domestic security concerns. A number of terrorist groups such as Al 
Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula have become quite adept at jailbreaks. 
Bringing a concentration of terrorist detainees into the United States 
therefore could create a particularly appealing target in the homeland 
for jihadist radicals, whereas at Guantanamo Bay they are essentially 
isolated in a facility well secured by the U.S. military.
  Clearly there are ample and compelling legal and national security 
reasons to maintain our detention operations at Guantanamo Bay. That is 
why Senator Ayotte's legislation is so important. It ensures we will 
continue to use this vital facility by restoring the transfer 
restrictions that have enabled us to keep these individuals in such a 
secure location.
  A little over a year ago, there was a profound change in the laws 
governing the transfer of Guantanamo detainees overseas. Before fiscal 
year 2014 legislation, the Congress had repeatedly enacted provisions 
in the annual Defense Authorization Act which all but prevented the 
transfer of Guantanamo detainees.
  Specifically, these previous laws required the Secretary of Defense 
to certify in writing, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State 
and in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, that 
certain criteria had been met before the transfer of a detainee abroad 
could occur--in particular, that the foreign entity receiving a 
detainee has ``taken or agreed to take effective actions to ensure that 
the individual cannot take action to threaten the United States'' as 
well as ``taken or agreed to take such actions as the Secretary of 
Defense determines are necessary to ensure the individual cannot engage 
or reengage in any terrorist activity.''
  Despite this, with few exceptions, the law prohibited the transfer of 
detainees to countries to which detainees had previously been 
transferred and subsequently reengaged in terrorism. Yet the law did 
afford the Secretary of Defense a national security waiver that negated 
the requirements if other standards were met.
  So the bottom line here is that under the old law it was very 
difficult--as it should be--to transfer Guantanamo Bay detainees 
overseas.
  But the Obama administration, bent on an ideological crusade to empty 
Guantanamo no matter the cost, successfully lobbied to relax these 
restrictions in the Fiscal Year 2014 Defense Authorization Act. The 
newly weakened provisions permitted the transfer of detainees overseas 
as long as the Secretary of Defense determined that ``the individual is 
no longer a threat to the national security of the United States.'' 
This is, of course, a lesser standard than requiring a certification 
that the individual cannot threaten the United States or reengage in 
terrorist activity.
  In addition, under the Fiscal Year 2014 law, the Secretary could even 
authorize the transfer of a detainee as long as the Secretary 
determined the transfer was in the interest of the United States and 
action had been or was to be taken which will substantially mitigate 
the chance of recidivism.
  While the statute does require the Secretary of Defense to take into 
consideration a number of factors before making this decision, the 
reality of the new regime is that the Secretary has far more ability to 
transfer detainees overseas.
  The Obama administration quickly seized on this new power. In the 
past year the number of Guantanamo Bay detainees has been decreased 
from 155 to 122. And despite this new transfer authority, the Obama 
administration had the audacity to violate even the relaxed transfer 
restrictions less than 6 months after the law's enactment--specifically 
by transferring five senior Taliban commanders to Qatar without 
providing Congress 30 days of notification. Since then, the 
administration, after a brief lull, has continued and even increased 
the pace of detainees being transferred overseas.
  These deeply troubling moves by the Obama administration demonstrate 
the vital importance of Senator Ayotte's bill. It restores the previous 
transfer restrictions. Specifically, it requires the Secretary of 
Defense, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State and in 
consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, to certify 
that certain safeguards are in place and that threat of recidivism is 
very small before a transfer can be undertaken.
  Furthermore, this legislation also places a 2-year ban on the 
transfer of detainees to Yemen. This restriction is especially 
important because approximately half of the remaining detainees at 
Guantanamo are from Yemen.

[[Page S505]]

  Yemen is one of our most critical partners in the fight against 
terror, and we cooperate closely with the Yemeni Government in the 
fight against Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. But because of the 
presence of this menacing group within Yemen's borders, the security 
situation there is dire, and it seems to be deteriorating as we speak.
  Just last week the Houthi, a Shia rebel group, seized control of 
Yemen's Presidential palace, forcing the resignation of the President, 
Prime Minister, and Cabinet. In December of 2013 AQAP launched a well-
coordinated assault on the Yemeni Ministry of Defense that left 52 
dead, not to mention a number of jailbreaks from the Yemeni 
correctional facilities in which, according to press reports, numerous 
members of AQAP were freed.
  The unvarnished truth is that it will take many years and much effort 
to bring about the security improvements in Yemen needed before we can 
be confident that detainees returned there will not return to the 
battlefield. That is why this section of Senator Ayotte's legislation 
is so important.
  Our policies must be based on defeating the real threats facing our 
Nation, not pacifying the ideological passions of an extreme few, which 
is why I was so disappointed by another recent New York Times editorial 
about this legislation. The Times called Senator Ayotte 
``opportunistic,'' if you can believe that, for citing the very real 
threat of a Paris-style attack on the homeland and termed her 
description of Yemen as ``the wild, wild West,'' as ``odd.'' I cannot 
imagine a better way to describe the disturbing security situation in 
Yemen. And based on years of evidence, one can only conclude Senator 
Ayotte is right. Frankly, I believe the New York Times owes Senator 
Ayotte an apology, and I hope they will be big enough to do that.
  We need this legislation because it restores proper protections from 
the threats posed by released detainees. I hope the rest of my 
colleagues will join me in supporting this legislation.
  I thank the Presiding Officer and yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Montana.
  Mr. TESTER. Mr. President, I would like to make a statement about the 
Keystone XL Pipeline. This first came before this body some 4 years 
ago. I said at the time that the pipeline was a good idea. Why? Because 
it would create construction jobs. It would reduce America's reliance 
on Middle Eastern oil for our energy. I said also that the pipeline 
must be built right. What does that mean? It means two things. First, 
Keystone must be built to the highest of safety standards. That only 
makes sense. And we must have respect for private property rights when 
that pipeline is built.
  Just like everything else in Washington, the Keystone was eventually 
made into a political football, and it has dragged on for 4 years. It 
has taken on a life of its own. And to be straight and level with you, 
folks on both sides of the aisle have turned it into something much 
bigger than it really is.
  At the start of the 114th Congress, I was hopeful that there would be 
enough momentum behind the pipeline to finally get it done and begin 
construction. But since the swearing-in ceremony 3 weeks ago, my faith 
in our ability to have a deliberative debate has been shaken. Last 
week's political stunts were simply unacceptable. We can't tell the 
American people we are going to responsibly govern when in fact we 
stopped Senators from even speaking on the floor about amendments they 
have offered.

  The majority decried these kinds of practices last Congress. Many of 
us agreed. But to start with these kinds of actions in the new Congress 
is discouraging, to say the least. I hope this week we can have an open 
debate, make this bill better, pick up a few more votes, and finally 
approve the Keystone Pipeline for building.
  Ten days ago an oil pipeline burst in eastern Indiana. It spilled 
about 40,000 gallons of oil into and around the Yellowstone River. Six 
thousand residents in Dawson County, MT, had their water cut off for 5 
days after oil got into the local water treatment plant. Cleanup crews 
are slowly making progress removing oil from an ice-covered river.
  This oilspill was unacceptable. What is worse, it was completely 
preventible. The pipeline that burst last week was nearly 60 years old. 
It had not been inspected in at least 2 years. Pipelines, just like 
roads and bridges and railroads, get old and they wear out. If we want 
pipelines to operate properly, they need to be regularly inspected and 
upgraded.
  In December, during the lameduck, Congress plussed up the budget for 
PHMSA--the agency that does pipeline inspections--giving PHMSA the 
resources to hire more than 100 pipeline safety inspectors. It is clear 
we need to get these folks hired, trained, and working on the ground. 
We also need to look at how PHMSA spends those dollars and whether 
resources are adequate to inspect the Nation's 2.6 million miles of 
pipeline.
  Despite the criticisms, pipelines are still the safest way to 
transport oil. We have seen the headlines--we have all seen them--in 
recent years of oil trains exploding, trucks running off the road that 
carry oil.
  In 2013, one explosion in Canada leveled an entire town. It killed 47 
people. Months later, another oil train traveling in North Dakota burst 
into flames and caused an entire town to evacuate.
  In northwestern Montana, the resort town of Whitefish is situated a 
few miles west of Glacier National Park. The town is home to a world-
class ski hill and one of the world's most pristine lakes. Every day 
oil tank cars run past Whitefish Lake carrying thousands of gallons of 
oil. The environmental impact of an explosion or spill on that railroad 
would devastate that lake, and it would devastate that region, its 
water supply, and have serious impacts on the State's economy.
  In fact, in 1989, a freight train derailed as it was circling 
Whitefish Lake and four cars slid into the water and leaked out some 
fuel. Twenty-three years later--just 2 years ago--they finally finished 
the cleanup. Imagine if those cars were carrying crude as they do 
today.
  Pipelines are the fastest way to transport oil. Until this body can 
agree that climate change is real and start making smart investments in 
alternative energy sources, our economy still needs traditional ways.
  I have said many times I still power my farm equipment with diesel 
fuel. I don't have any options. So it is clear to me we need a way to 
transport oil, and Keystone is that way. And, yes, in Montana, it will 
create jobs. According to the State Department's analysis, construction 
of the pipeline would create 3,700 jobs. Over $700 million worth of 
construction materials and support costs would come to eastern Montana. 
That is not to mention the tax base that would be increased. But safety 
must come first. We need the best materials; we need more inspections. 
We simply cannot afford another spill.
  Finally, I want to talk about eminent domain. Everyone in this body 
should agree that a foreign corporation should not be allowed to seize 
private property here in America. That is a fact. Unfortunately, we 
couldn't agree on that last Thursday. There was an amendment offered by 
Senator Menendez stating that TransCanada can only acquire land from 
willing sellers. But there are Members of the U.S. Senate who put 
profits of a foreign corporation above the constitutional rights of 
American citizens. If someone had told me in January of 2007, when I 
was first sworn in, that my colleagues would one day vote against such 
an amendment, I simply would not have believed it, but that is exactly 
what happened. I am disappointed that amendment failed, but I do 
believe we can improve upon this bill by including commonsense 
reporting requirements that would ensure this pipeline is built in a 
transparent way.
  Senator Cardin has an amendment to do just that, and I for one 
support it. Private property rights should not be a partisan issue, and 
I would hope my colleagues would join me in supporting this measure. 
Let's not race to cloture. Let's not race to trample private property 
rights of Americans. Let's get this bill passed, and let's do it in the 
right way.
  This pipeline is not a long-term solution for our energy problems, 
but it is one piece of the puzzle. We must make meaningful investments 
in research and development so we can make carbon-neutral energy 
sources more accessible and affordable. Until we do that,

[[Page S506]]

the reality is that this economy still runs on oil.
  This pipeline helps get us to the next step. I still believe in this 
pipeline. I believe Keystone can boost our energy independence and will 
create jobs in the short term and over the long haul, but we need to 
debate this bill. We need a chance to make it better, to make the 
pipelines safer, and send a message to the American people we are 
serious about investing in our long-term energy future. If we don't do 
that, we won't build the Keystone.
  I yield the floor, and I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. NELSON. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. NELSON. Mr. President, I would like to speak about the Keystone 
XL Pipeline. At the outset this Senator wants to say the conclusion of 
this Senator is that this is much more about politics than it is about 
energy policy, than it is about the economy of this country, 
particularly so since the price of oil has gone from something in 
excess of $100 a barrel down to the range of $46 a barrel.
  Likewise, the fact that the United States is now the No. 1 producer 
of oil in the world--in large part because of our brethren and sistren 
in the Senate who represent those Northern Plains States as well as the 
Southwestern States where they are producing all of this newly found 
oil from the shale rock which has strengthened the economic position of 
our country. Think about it, No. 1 producer in the world. That is us. 
As a result, we do not have to be nearly as dependent on the Middle 
East, from where we used to get at least 50, 60 percent of our oil or 
from other areas such as Nigeria or Venezuela.
  I have just mentioned three very unstable parts of the world. Yet 
that is the position we have been in, but that has changed. It is now 
the 21st century. As a result of new technologies, we are the No. 1 
producer of oil in the world. So back when we were not, when we were 
still dependent on foreign oil, there was a discovery in Canada--
Western Canada--the ability to extract oil from the heavy tar in these 
tar sands.
  The Canadians wanted an outlet for that. It made it much more 
appealing to us, to the United States back then, when oil was over $100 
a barrel and we were still importing a lot of it from abroad. But 
interestingly, the Canadians wanted and suggested a pipeline that would 
come right through the middle of the United States, from the north in 
Canada, through the middle of the United States, down to the gulf 
coast, to the refineries.
  Why didn't they go west from the western States of Canada to the 
Pacific to have an outlet? They had to cross the Rocky Mountains. Of 
course that was going to be expensive. It was also going to roil up a 
bunch of the Canadian environmentalists. So the idea of the Keystone XL 
was born.
  What does XL stand for? Extra large. Well, if it was extra large, it 
implies there is an existing pipeline. Indeed there is. I want to show 
it to you. This orange line is an existing pipeline coming from 
Alberta, northeast of Calgary, across Saskatchewan into Manitoba, and 
then it comes down through North Dakota, South Dakota, eastern 
Nebraska, and there it forks right at the Kansas line. One line goes 
east all the way into Illinois, and the other line goes south through 
Kansas into Oklahoma.
  I said at the outset this is much more about politics as opposed to 
energy policy, as well as economics because this all heated up--XL, 
extra large--during the last Presidential election. Of course those who 
raise this issue were trying to say: Unless you embrace this XL you are 
against the United States being energy independent.
  Well, an interesting thing happened along the way. From Cushing, OK, 
there was no line directly going to the gulf coast, where the 
refineries are in Houston and Port Arthur. The President approved that. 
That has been constructed. I am advised that has just opened in the 
last few days--so the existing line, all the way from Alberta, Canada, 
through the heartland of America, all the way to the gulf coast. That 
is that.
  But XL, extra large, to carry more oil, was proposed. The route that 
is now proposed is here. That looks like it makes sense because it cuts 
off the dogleg and does a straight line. But originally it had come 
much further to the west, right over the environmentally sensitive 
lands of the aquifer in central Nebraska where so much of the water 
resources for the entire Midwestern United States come from.
  This Senator said, back in the Presidential election of 2012: If you 
really want a bigger pipeline and you want to avoid all of the 
controversy over the environment, which this proposed route certainly 
has since it is extra large, why do you not just run it along the 
existing pipeline? The right of way is already there. Indeed, it is now 
complete all the way to the gulf coast. Why do you not run it just 
right along and you would have a lot less opposition?
  But no. This Senator comes back to his main point: This is all about 
politics. It is all about trying to make some look as though they are 
anti-energy and others look as though they are pro-energy. But it is 
what it is. It is 2 years later, and here we are.
  The proposal is to still come across parts of Montana, South Dakota, 
further east in Nebraska, and join with the existing pipeline. So what 
is confronting a Senator such as this who certainly wants us to be 
energy independent? Well, then, if we are going to have additional oil 
supplies as a backup, maybe that would be a good consideration. So 
let's make sure this new source of foreign oil--that we have a chance 
to use it in this country, since it is going to come right down the 
middle of America.
  No. No. No can do. This foreign oil, for those who are proposing what 
we are about to vote on, is going right down the gullet of America, 
right down the middle of America to the gulf coast, and it is going to 
be exported to foreign countries. So a little old country boy such as I 
wonders: Now, wait. Let me get this straight. You want foreign oil to 
build a big oil pipeline to run right through the middle of America as 
a conduit to send right out to other foreign countries and not be 
utilized in this country?
  Sadly, the answer to that is yes. That is what we are confronting. We 
had an amendment that Canada could not export it. We could use it here 
for American purposes. But sadly that amendment was defeated by the 
purists who want it to be exactly as they want it to be, a tool of 
foreign oil to send through the middle of America in a conduit to other 
foreign nations.
  This Senator does not think that is in the interests of this country.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Texas.
  Mr. CRUZ. Mr. President, I come first of all in celebration, in 
celebration that the Senate is finally working again. In just 27 days 
we have seen more amendments voted on on the floor of the Senate than 
under the Democratic majority in the entire year of 2014. We once again 
have a Senate where Republicans and Democrats can offer their 
amendments, can debate their amendments, and can vote them up or down.
  One of the resounding consequences of the election in November is the 
American people were tired of the Democratic do-nothing Senate. We have 
a Senate that has shown up to work.
  The bill we are voting on, the underlying bill, is an example of what 
the priorities should be in the Senate. The Keystone Pipeline bill 
ought to be a no-brainer. It ought to be an example of bipartisan 
cooperation.
  Indeed, one of the very first things I did 2 years ago when I was 
newly elected to this body was join with 10 Senators, 5 Democrats and 5 
Republicans, in sending a bipartisan letter to the President saying 
approve the Keystone Pipeline now.
  Why? No. 1, it will produce jobs, tens of thousands of high-paying 
jobs. No. 2, it will increase tax revenue. It will increase revenue for 
the Federal Government, for State and local governments. That revenue 
can be used to pay down our national debt to provide for our vital 
needs.
  No. 3, it will enhance our national security by allowing us to move 
toward North American energy independence

[[Page S507]]

rather than being dependent on foreign nations for oil, nations whose 
interests are very different and sometimes hostile to our own.
  No. 4, building the Keystone Pipeline is unequivocally better for the 
environment.
  Indeed, I have joked: If you are a bearded, tattooed, Birkenstock-
wearing, tree-hugging, Green Peace activist, you should love the 
Keystone Pipeline, because if the pipeline is not built, it means we 
will continue to bring our oil in on overseas tankers and on rail, both 
of which are far more dangerous for the environment than a pipeline, 
both of which we know to a certainty that as long as there are tankers 
on the oceans there will be spills, as long as there is rail there will 
be spills.
  Moreover, if the pipeline is not built north-south, it is not as 
though our friends the Canadians are simply going to leave the oil 
where it is, they are going to build the pipeline east-west, and 
instead of allowing it to be refined in America where it produces high-
paying jobs here up and down the gulf coast, the alternative is it 
would be refined in Asia and China in far dirtier refineries that 
pollute the environment even more.
  So this ought to be a no-brainer. This ought to be an example of 
where Republicans and Democrats come together in agreement. But, sadly, 
it is not, and it is not because the modern Democratic Party has made a 
decision between two traditionally favored children of the Democratic 
Party. The modern Democratic Party has made a decision that they care 
more about the campaign donations from California environmentalist 
billionaires than they do about the jobs for union members.
  I suggest that the 100 Senators who are elected to the Senate ought 
to be fighting for the hard-working men and women. We ought to be 
fighting for the union members, for all of the men and women who want 
good, decent-paying jobs, who want to provide for their kids, and who 
are tired of the stagnation of the Obama economy.
  Only last week we heard the President give his State of the Union 
Address, where he talked about how swimmingly the economy is going.
  Well, you know, he was right. If you happen to be one of those 
California environmentalist billionaires, if you happen to be in the 
top 1 percent--the millionaires and billionaires whom the President 
demagogues--then you have indeed become richer under President Obama.
  Today the top 1 percent earn a higher share of our economy than in 
any year since 1928. Those who walk the corridors of power in the Obama 
administration have gotten fat and happy.
  Yet for working men and women, union members, their lives have gotten 
harder and harder and harder. We have, today, the lowest labor-force 
participation since 1978. Median income in this country has stagnated 
for two decades.
  Yet what is the Democratic Party doing? Marshalling every vote it can 
to vote against union members, to vote against hard-working men and 
women, to stand with the big dollars coming out of California. What a 
sad, sad statement of priorities that is.
  So let me commend majority leader Mitch McConnell for bringing up an 
open process, allowing Democrats amendments. I would be happy to vote 
on Democratic amendments all day long and Republican amendments on the 
merit. Let me commend the majority as well for focusing on the issues 
that matter to the American people--namely, bringing back jobs and 
economic growth and opportunity.
  Now, in the course of this open amendment proceeding, I have 
submitted three different amendments. One would get rid of the 
longstanding anachronistic ban on exporting crude oil that was put in 
place in the 1970s. It makes no sense in the current environment and is 
hurting jobs and economic growth.
  A second would obviate the need for having this fight every time a 
cross-border pipeline was built. It would streamline the process for 
building pipelines so we could move ahead with economic growth.
  Both of those amendments, I believe, are sound policy. I think they 
are supported by the interests of Americans across this country.
  After long conversations with my friends and colleagues, Senator 
Murkowski and Senator Hoeven, we have agreed that we are going to have 
committee hearings in the coming months focusing on both of those 
issues, laying out the facts and the data to make clear that these are 
unambiguously good--whether you are a Republican or a Democrat or an 
Independent or a Libertarian--if you want jobs and economic growth. 
These reforms are sound reforms to bring back jobs, economic growth, 
and opportunity.


                            Amendment No. 15

  The third amendment I have submitted, which I am hopeful we will vote 
on either today or tomorrow, is an amendment to expedite exports of 
liquid natural gas. That is what I wish to speak about for just a few 
minutes.
  The amendment that I am presenting will expedite LNG exports to World 
Trade Organization members, removing unnecessary delays that have been 
caused by the arbitrary Department of Energy approval process.
  Currently, countries under free-trade agreements with the United 
States enjoy a streamlined, expedited approval process to import our 
LNG. For projects to FTA countries, current law deems those ``in the 
public interest'' and they get a permit ``without modification or 
delay.''
  Yet those without such an agreement must, instead, submit to an 
arduous case-by-case nonstandardized process that ends up discouraging 
LNG trade and related investments. It ends up killing jobs.
  For projects to non-FTA countries, right now there are no time limits 
and no standardized process by which the Department of Energy 
determines whether or not the project is ``in the public interest'' for 
receiving a permit. The amendment I have offered would open the doors 
of trade to more than 160 countries in the World Trade Organization to 
receive this same expedited treatment that we currently have in place 
for free-trade countries.
  This is particularly important not only for economic development, not 
only for jobs, not only for growth but also for the enormous 
geopolitical advantages that it will present to the United States.
  In the past several years we have seen the consequences of the Obama-
Clinton foreign policy. We have seen the United States receding from 
leadership in the world, and we have seen other nations--foreign 
nations--step into that void and use energy as a weapon, as a cudgel--
whether it is Venezuela or Iran or Russia.
  Allowing expedited LNG exports strengthens our hands against those 
who would be enemies of America, and it strengthens the hands of our 
friends and allies. Here at home, according to a 2013 study, in the 
United States LNG exports could create up to 450,000 new jobs by 2035.
  So we will see, when Republicans and Democrats vote on this 
amendment, where each Senator stands on whether we should allow the 
private sector to create up to 450,000 new jobs. Every Democrat who 
votes no can expect to go back to his or her State and face 
constituents--face the union members who would like to get some of 
those 450,000 new jobs--and explain why he or she voted against that 
hard-working man or woman having a job.
  Over the same time, GDP growth could generate anywhere from an 
additional $15.6 billion up to $73.6 billion. By 2035 the net gain in 
manufacturing jobs could mean up to 76,000 new jobs. A lot of the 
Members of this body like to talk about manufacturing, like to talk 
about the steel industry, the car industry. It used to be that the 
backbone of the American middle class was the blue-collar jobs where 
you could work with dignity, where you could provide for your family, 
and where you could provide for your kids.
  Every Senator who votes no to LNG exports because they want to 
continue receiving money from the California billionaires had better be 
prepared to return home to their States, look into the eyes of the 
manufacturing workers, and explain why he or she voted against 76,000 
new manufacturing jobs.
  Geopolitically, let's take Ukraine. All of us sat not long ago in the 
House of Representatives for a joint session when the President of 
Ukraine addressed us both. We stood over and over--standing, quite 
literally, alongside Ukraine. If we want action to match those words, 
then every Senator should vote yes on this amendment.

[[Page S508]]

  Ukraine currently relies on natural gas for 40 percent of its energy 
needs. More than 60 percent of the natural gas that Ukraine gets and 
depends on comes from Russia, and Russia uses that natural gas as a 
club to extract economic blackmail on Ukraine.
  Last spring I traveled to Ukraine, Poland, and Estonia. As I visited 
with leaders throughout Europe, these friends of ours said over and 
over: Help us free ourselves from energy blackmail from Russia.
  As of today, the Department of Energy has approved nine export 
permits to non-free-trade agreement countries within the past 2 years. 
Twenty-eight applications are currently pending stacked up on the desk, 
going nowhere.
  The increased energy production from allowing us to export the 
resources we have to friends and allies who want and need it would spur 
investment and create thousands of jobs for America. It would be a boon 
to countries such as Ukraine. It would be a boon to Europe, and it 
would be a boon to the Baltics, which are watching what is happening in 
Ukraine and wondering: Are we next? It would be a boon to friends of 
ours, such as Germany, who likewise depend on Russia for significant 
energy needs.
  Today this body faces a pivotal question. Will we lead the world into 
a new generation of American prosperity and energy prosperity led by 
the American energy renaissance we are experiencing or will we instead 
shut off our borders, erect walls, and allow our friends and allies to 
be dependent on tyrants such as Putin or Maduro.
  We need to come together in a bipartisan manner to say we support 
jobs, we support economic growth, and we support standing united 
alongside our friends and allies in defense of freedom.
  I urge my colleagues, both Republicans and Democrats, to support this 
amendment.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Lankford). The Senator from Texas.


                 Justice For Victims of Trafficking Act

  Mr. CORNYN. Mr. President, as we all know, there is a big game this 
weekend, and I wouldn't be surprised if our friends from Washington and 
from the New England area find themselves a little bit distracted 
beyond the ``snowpocalypse,'' I guess they call it, all the big 
snowstorms.
  In anticipation of the big game, I am told that 100 million Americans 
will actually tune in to the Super Bowl this weekend. And here is a 
shocking statistic. Some 1.25 billion chicken wings will be consumed--
1.25 billion chicken wings--and, of course, millions of pizzas, 
celebrating what has, of course, become in many ways an unofficial 
American holiday. I am still stuck on the 1.25 billion chicken wings.
  Well, while many of us will tune in to cheer our favorite team in the 
Super Bowl, unfortunately--and what I am on the floor to talk about--
there is the dark underbelly of events such as the Super Bowl that 
don't get the attention they really deserve. Most of us would, perhaps, 
prefer to avert our gaze or think about other, more pleasant, positive 
things, but what I want to talk about briefly is the practice of human 
trafficking.
  When many people hear about human trafficking, they think about 
something that doesn't happen in America; it happens somewhere else. 
They might envision brothels in foreign cities or girls being smuggled 
across other borders. But the sad reality is human trafficking is a 
problem all across the United States and at all times of the year. But 
it is especially a problem surrounding big, public events such as the 
Super Bowl.
  Yes, human trafficking is happening in our own backyard, and more 
than 80 percent of sex trafficking victims in America are U.S. 
citizens. They are not some person who has been brought to the United 
States from some foreign country. Eighty percent are U.S. citizens.
  As the father of two daughters, one of the most disturbing facts is 
that the average age of a child who first becomes a victim of sex 
trafficking is 13 years old.
  As I said, recent years have shown an uptick in human trafficking 
surrounding large events such as the Super Bowl. For example, in Dallas 
a few years ago, there was a 300-percent increase in sex-for-sale 
Internet ads. That was in 2011, of course. In 2012, in Indianapolis, 
police made 68 commercial sex arrests and recovered two human 
trafficking victims.
  One of the worst problems associated with human trafficking is that 
many of the victims don't actually consider themselves victims yet 
because they are so young and so vulnerable that they don't actually 
realize they are being used and their future is literally being 
destroyed.
  In 2013, in New Orleans, police made 85 arrests for suspected human 
trafficking. Of course, this year the Super Bowl is in Phoenix, and no 
doubt law enforcement in Phoenix will have a vigilant eye in an effort 
to identify and crack down on the perpetrators. But the truth is most 
of this is happening right under our nose and we don't even see it.

  We know the police are doing the best they can, but it won't be 
enough--it won't be enough--to stop each one of these crimes. Indeed, 
staggering numbers of these crimes will continue to be committed. The 
Super Bowl will be done and gone next Sunday, but after the confetti is 
cleared from the field and the fans catch their flights home, the work 
to end this heinous crime known as human trafficking will continue.
  As a matter of fact, January is National Slavery and Human 
Trafficking Prevention Month. Human trafficking is a form of human 
slavery. We thought that was eliminated from our history following the 
terrible Civil War that took the lives of 600,000 Americans. If you 
extrapolate the Civil War to today, in terms of population, that would 
be 3 million Americans who gave their lives. We had the Civil War in 
large part because of the bane and the scourge of slavery, but the 
truth is human slavery still exists in the form of sex trafficking.
  Awareness is important. As we are driving around our city streets--
particularly people driving around in Phoenix this weekend--we may 
actually see some underage girls or others who are actually victims of 
this crime, and so we need to be vigilant. We need to do what we can to 
be the eyes and ears of law enforcement and to call in suspicious 
circumstances. We simply need to do everything we can to stop human 
trafficking by all means necessary.
  This is something that strikes close to home, in Texas, where I come 
from. Sadly, Texas, in part because of our proximity to the U.S.-
Mexican border, sees more human trafficking than many other States. One 
out of 10 tips received by the National Human Trafficking Resource 
Center in 2013 involved incidents occurring in Texas--1 out of every 10 
tips. And Texas reported more than 1,000 suspected human trafficking 
incidents in 2007.
  So this is a big challenge and a big problem, and it is not going 
away. According to law enforcement authorities, sex trafficking is the 
fastest growing business of organized crime and the third largest 
criminal enterprise in the world.
  And here is something I really don't understand. When we talk about 
the criminal organizations--the transnational criminal organizations 
that smuggle people across the border--most recently in the context of 
these unaccompanied minor children who came from Central America whose 
parents paid human smugglers--the cartels, really--let's say $5,000 
apiece, these parents have no knowledge of what will happen to their 
children once they turn them over to these cartel members. Indeed, 
these criminal organizations are engaged in the money business, 
anything that will make a buck. They will traffic in children, they 
will smuggle immigrants, they will smuggle drugs.
  With regard to these same criminal organizations, somehow, some way, 
we tend to compartmentalize our brains and say: Well, sex trafficking 
is different from illegal immigration and smuggling. But it is not. It 
has the same corridors funded by the same people and operated by the 
same transnational criminal organizations.
  Now, back to sex trafficking after that parenthetical comment. This 
is one of those bipartisan subjects where there has been a lot of good 
work by Members on both sides of the aisle, and one of the things we 
have needed the most is to have the help of many nongovernmental 
organizations--these are faith-based organizations, these are

[[Page S509]]

local community organizations--that are designed to help victims of 
human trafficking escape, with the aid of law enforcement, and then 
somehow helping victims to rebuild their lives.
  Earlier this month, I partnered with the Senator from Oregon, Mr. 
Wyden, Senator Klobuchar from Minnesota, and Senator Kirk of Illinois 
to introduce a bill we call the Justice For Victims of Trafficking Act 
of 2015. I have talked to the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, 
Senator Grassley, and have urged him to give this bill an early markup 
in the Judiciary Committee so it will be eligible to come to the floor 
as soon as we can get it here, because I am going to be asking the 
majority leader to schedule floor action so we can have a debate and a 
vote on this important legislation.
  What does the legislation do? It provides additional funds for human 
trafficking support victims, with tens of millions of dollars of 
additional funds each year, and it would be financed entirely by 
criminal fines and fees. This wouldn't be tax dollars, this would be 
taking basically the fines and the fees paid by people who plead or are 
convicted of other crimes and putting those funds into a crime victims 
fund that could be used to help these organizations--these human-
trafficking victims support programs.
  Again, this legislation would be financed entirely by fines on 
predators convicted of child pornography, human trafficking, child 
exploitation, and commercial human smuggling.
  This legislation would also assure that victims would have greater 
access to restitution by requiring the Department of Justice to use 
criminally forfeited assets to compensate them through a process known 
as victim restoration.
  It is no secret the victims of this terrible crime end up with a lot 
of psychological baggage and other challenges. We need to help them get 
on with their lives and to address the terrible things they have 
experienced.
  This legislation would also enhance law enforcement tools to target 
both sophisticated criminal networks that engage in human trafficking 
and the predators who increase demand for sex slavery by purchasing 
innocent children.
  This bill now has 20 bipartisan cosponsors. So don't believe the 
cynics who say that nothing happens up here on a bipartisan basis. It 
is just not true. There are some things--and this is one of them, and 
perhaps one of the most important things--that happen on a bipartisan 
basis.
  The good news is the House of Representatives is voting on companion 
legislation today, so this legislation should be ready for Senate 
action, I hope, soon. I hope we can work with our House colleagues and 
get it to the President as soon as we possibly can.
  The bottom line is we need to take a stand against this modern-day 
slavery and lift up the victims of these crimes whoever and wherever 
they may be. Again, this is obviously not a political issue. This is 
something we have the power to address and we must take action to 
combat this human trafficking all around the world, and the place to 
start is in our own back yard.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The assistant Democratic leader.
  Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, let me first commend my colleague from 
Texas. We sit on opposite sides of the aisle, but there are many things 
that bring us together, and I certainly support what he has said about 
the impact of human trafficking.
  In a hearing before the subcommittee on the Constitution, which he 
now chairs, during this session of Congress, we brought in law 
enforcement victims and talked about some of the outrageous things 
which are occurring in exploiting young people, particularly young 
women. One of the points which my colleague has made, and I have 
listened carefully, is that we should consider these human trafficking 
victims as victims.
  Many times, sadly in the past, they have been prosecuted as if they 
were complicit, and many times they are children. They have no 
knowledge of their rights or obligations and are being exploited and, 
as a consequence, they are very reluctant to cooperate with law 
enforcement if they feel they too might end up in jail, having been 
victimized twice in the process.
  I thank him for his leadership and I look forward to looking closely 
at his legislation and I hope we can work closely together on that.


                            Amendment No. 67

  Mr. President, I want to speak briefly about a pending amendment 
which troubles me. I don't know if there will be much time for debate 
should we actually consider this amendment, and I want to make my 
feelings a matter of public record.
  This is amendment No. 67 offered by Senator Sullivan. This amendment 
would require--would require--the disarming of Federal law enforcement 
officers who work for the Environmental Protection Agency.
  There are currently about 180 law enforcement agents working for the 
Environmental Protection Agency. They are trained professional officers 
and are tasked with investigating and enforcing our Nation's 
environmental laws. They conduct investigations, execute warrants, and 
make arrests for misdemeanors and felonies under the laws of the 
Environmental Protection Agency.
  This is law enforcement work and it is dangerous work. Many times 
these officers face the same threats as all law enforcement officers 
face. According to the Bureau of Justice statistics, there are 73 
Federal agencies with law enforcement officers, ranging from the FBI to 
the Food and Drug Administration and NASA.
  EPA's criminal investigators were given law enforcement powers in a 
law signed by President Reagan in 1988. President Reagan stated his 
administration actively sought this authority and he was pleased to 
sign it into law.
  The amendment No. 67 of Senator Sullivan would prevent these EPA law 
enforcement officers from being armed while they are carrying out their 
law enforcement responsibilities. A lot of what these EPA agents do is 
to investigate suspected cases of illegal dumping of hazardous 
materials. This can lead to dangerous confrontations. The EPA reports 
its agents have frequently encountered weapons and armed individuals 
when they have conducted their work.
  I took a look at some of these cases. Many people mistakenly believe 
the Environmental Protection Agency is a group of government employees 
sitting behind desks and computers in Washington and regional offices 
who don't get out and about to see the actual violations that are 
taking place. They are mistaken.
  Let me give a few examples for the record. In Marathon, FL, EPA 
special agents, along with local sheriff's deputies, shot and arrested 
Larkin Baggett, a Federal fugitive from Utah, after he pointed an 
assault rifle at them. Baggett was initially arrested by the EPA on 
pollution-related crimes in the State of Utah. During the initial 
arrest of Mr. Baggett, a knife and handgun were recovered off his 
person. Mr. Baggett was considered armed and dangerous due to the 
amount of firepower he had in his possession.
  Firearms recovered from Mr. Baggett included an AR-10 assault rival, 
a 12-gauge shotgun, several rifles and handguns, and hundreds of rounds 
of ammunition. Mr. Baggett was ultimately sentenced to 13 years in 
prison for his assault conviction and his environmental crimes 
conviction.
  The Sullivan amendment would say the environmental officer who was 
trying to arrest this man had to be disarmed. In other words, the 
environmental law enforcement officer would have no firearm while Mr. 
Baggett would be holding an arsenal. That is what the Sullivan 
amendment would do.
  During a Mississippi search warrant, seven handguns and a sawed-off 
pistol-grip shotgun were secured during the warrant. During that same 
warrant, two handguns were removed from the sweatshirt pocket and hip 
holster from one subject. Another handgun was removed from the purse of 
another subject. The sawed-off pistol-grip shotgun was found stored in 
the cavity of a desk where a drawer was removed and the weapon was 
pointed directly at the agents of the Environmental Protection Agency 
when they entered.
  If you read the amendment offered by Senator Sullivan, he has removed 
the ability and right of these agents to be armed to protect themselves 
and to enforce the law, but he continues to require them to do the most 
basic things under the law. He requires them--continues to require 
them--to execute and

[[Page S510]]

serve any warrant or other process unarmed. He continues to require 
them under the statute to make arrests without warrant for any offense 
against the United States, including felonies. Under the Sullivan 
amendment they are to do so unarmed.
  I can go through a lengthy list here of real-life circumstances where 
people working for the Environmental Protection Agency literally risked 
their lives, and they did it at least with the comfort of being trained 
professional law enforcement officers equipped with firearms to protect 
themselves and enforce the laws of the United States.
  Senator Sullivan wants them to enforce the laws, but he doesn't want 
them to carry a firearm. That to me is ridiculous. In fact, it is 
dangerous. It is dangerous to send these men and women with the 
responsibility of doing their job into circumstances where they could 
literally lose their lives because of the Sullivan amendment.
  I ask unanimous consent that a letter dated January 24, 2015, signed 
by Jon Adler, be printed in the Record.
  There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in 
the Record, as follows:

                                       Federal Law Enforcement

                                         Officers Association,

                                 Washington, DC, January 24, 2015.
     Hon. Richard Durbin,
     U.S. Senate,
     Washington, DC.
       Dear Senator Durbin: On behalf of the 27,000 members of the 
     Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), I am 
     writing to express our strong opposition to the misguided 
     ``Keystone'' amendment put forth by Senator Sullivan that 
     calls for the disarming of EPA Criminal Investigators.
       EPA-CID currently employs approximately 180 sworn Criminal 
     Investigators, all of whom have completed the mandatory 
     Criminal Investigator Training Program at the Federal Law 
     Enforcement Training Center. These highly trained law 
     enforcement officers complete the same basic academy training 
     as their counterparts at the U.S. Marshals Service, the 
     Secret Service, NCIS, ICE and other credible federal law 
     enforcement agencies. They receive quarterly tactical 
     training to ensure firearms proficiency, defensive tactics 
     capability, and enforcement operation readiness. They should 
     not be denigrated and belittled like some Barney Fife 
     aberration gone wild.
       Unfortunately, Senator Sullivan has opted to employ 
     inflammatory language to mischaracterize EPA-CID 's execution 
     of court-issued search warrants as stampede-styled ``raids.'' 
     EPA Criminal Investigators employ proper law enforcement 
     tactics and techniques, while wearing the appropriate 
     protective equipment during field work. They issue proper 
     verbal commands, and do not scream ``Charge!'' like some 
     reckless group of bandits. Contrary to Senator Sullivan's 
     alarmist assertions, EPA Criminal Investigators invoke a 
     proper command presence in order to protect their safety as 
     well as those around them.
       While Senator Sullivan seeks to minimize the law 
     enforcement relevance of the EPA-CID mission, it is important 
     to note that the Criminal Investigators enforce the criminal 
     statutes of the United States Code, and investigate alleged 
     violations of the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the 
     Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. If Senator Sullivan 
     takes exception to a particular statute, he should focus on 
     amending the law and not disarming and jeopardizing the 
     safety of those who risk their lives to enforce it. 
     Furthermore, he should respect the fact that there are 
     criminals who knowingly and willfully harm our environment, 
     and EPA Criminal Investigator's expertise is needed to 
     investigate and apprehend these criminals.
       Recent current events, both domestic and abroad, have made 
     clear that terrorist groups are targeting law enforcement 
     officers. In New York City, a lone-wolf terrorist 
     assassinated two heroic NYPD Police Officers. In France, a 
     terrorist cell brutally murdered three law enforcement 
     officers, as well as civilians. So how does Senator Sullivan 
     come to any rational conclusion that it's appropriate to 
     disarm law enforcement officers who are protecting our 
     homeland? Perhaps Senator Sullivan is unaware of terrorists' 
     intent to deploy biological, chemical and radiological 
     weapons to harm our citizenry and institutions? EPA Criminal 
     Investigators are an integral, indispensable component of our 
     homeland defense against such attacks. Does Senator Sullivan 
     maintain in good faith that EPA Criminal Investigators should 
     conduct their criminal investigations unarmed in support of 
     the FBI Joint Terrorist Task Force?
       Each cabinet entity has an Inspector General's office that 
     employs highly trained Criminal Investigators to investigate 
     allegations of excessive force or misconduct. This includes 
     the EPA. In reaching his ill-advised conclusion to disarm EPA 
     Criminal Investigators, did Senator Sullivan draw upon any 
     Inspector General report to substantiate his position? While 
     there is no evidence to suggest any widespread incidents of 
     excessive force or misconduct by EPA Criminal Investigators, 
     a reasonable person is left to question the rational 
     motivation of Senator Sullivan's amendment.
       In closing, I reference a statement a FLEOA member who 
     serves honorably as a Criminal Investigator with EPA: ``We 
     conduct search warrants, arrest warrants, and interviews 
     which brings us into contact with individuals who may be 
     armed or have access to weapons. There is no way we can 
     accomplish our mission safely without a means to protect 
     ourselves.''
           Respectfully submitted,
                                                        Jon Adler.

  Mr. DURBIN. This letter says it all. It spells out how dangerous this 
is if the Sullivan amendment passes. To think that, for whatever 
reason, a U.S. Senator is going to take a firearm away from a law 
enforcement officer of a Federal agency who is putting his or her life 
on the line every single day is just plain wrong.
  If Senator Sullivan wants to take away the enforcement authorities of 
this Agency, so be it. We can argue and debate that. But to require 
this Agency to execute warrants and make arrests but require that their 
law enforcement officials be unarmed is sending them into dangerous--
even deadly--situations. This Sullivan amendment is not well-thought-
out. To offer this I think is a serious mistake.
  The Senator is offering it, he says, because of a 2013 incident in 
which EPA agents were part of a law enforcement task force that 
investigated a mining operation in Alaska based on allegations of 
environmental allegations. I don't know the particulars of that 
incident, but there was a review of the incident commissioned by the 
Governor of Alaska--a Republican Governor of Alaska--that found no 
evidence that these EPA agents broke any laws during the investigation.
  Isn't it odd that we have reached the point where, when we try to 
introduce an amendment which says that you will not sell a gun, a 
firearm, to someone at a gun show who is on the terrorist suspect 
list--many argue against that, saying even terrorist suspects have 
Second Amendment rights--and then turn around with the Sullivan 
amendment, this ill-advised amendment, and say law enforcement does not 
have a right to carry a firearm. That is the Sullivan amendment. I hope 
we vote against it on a bipartisan basis.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from North Dakota.
  Mr. HOEVEN. Mr. President, I rise to discuss the legislation before 
this body, the Keystone XL Pipeline Act. I wish to address three issues 
that have been brought up as we have continued this discussion.
  I start out by thanking the Senator from Alaska and the Senator from 
Washington who are leading this effort to bring forward amendments from 
both sides of the aisle. I think they are doing great work. They are 
heavily engaged in trying to make sure the people's amendments are 
brought forward and that we have a vote. So I thank them for that and 
again encourage everyone to work with both these bill managers who I 
believe all of us feel are doing an excellent job. So let's get going. 
Let's get voting on these amendments. Let's make them pending and have 
that vote.
  This is again, after all, an effort not only to advance this 
legislation but also to reestablish regular order in this body and move 
to an open amendment process--which is so important again not just in 
terms of people being heard on this legislation, having votes on 
amendments, but for other legislation that Senators want to bring 
forward for the good of this country, to have the debate, to offer 
their ideas, to get a vote, and to get things done for the American 
people. That is what it is all about. We have to keep that in mind and 
not lose track of that. This is truly about not just this legislation 
but getting to regular order, which I think is so important for the 
work we do, to accomplish the work we need to do on behalf of the 
American people.
  Let me touch on three aspects of the current legislation that have 
been brought up. One is that it is a bill for Canada rather than for 
the United States. It is something that is very much in the interest of 
the United States, so I want to address that. I also want to talk about 
some of the environmental aspects from the standpoint that there are 
hundreds of millions of dollars being invested in new technologies by 
major companies in the oil sands in Alberta, Canada, that are going to 
help deploy and develop things

[[Page S511]]

such as carbon capture and storage, which can be used not only to 
reduce the environmental footprint and the greenhouse emissions of oil 
produced in the Canadian oil sands, but that is technology then that 
will get adopted in this country and around the world because it 
enables us to produce more energy more cost-effectively, more 
dependably, and with environmental stewardship. So that is a win on 
both counts, and here is a place where it is being developed. So let's 
empower that investment that produces more energy with better 
environmental stewardship as we go forward into the future.
  Then the third area I want to touch on for just a minute is pipeline 
safety because some of the recent spills have been brought up. It is so 
important that we have the new infrastructure to replace older 
infrastructure.
  For example, the pipeline spill in Poplar, MO, near Glendive, MO, has 
been brought up. It is a pipeline that I think was originally built and 
put in place in the 1950s. So we are talking about a 50-year-old 
pipeline with 50-year-old technology. Whether it is roads or bridges or 
pipelines or transmission lines or any kind of infrastructure--we need 
infrastructure for this country, but we have to update it. Think about 
building a road 50 years ago and then not putting in a new one to 
replace and update it with the new technologies that have been 
developed to make it better.
  When we talk about trying to get these new infrastructure projects 
going--again, paid for 100 percent with private dollars--this generates 
revenue for the taxpayer. This doesn't take one penny of taxpayer 
money. This is an $8 billion state-of-the-art pipeline. It is important 
for all the reasons we have talked about, but it also is the kind of 
thing that will replace some of the older technologies and give us that 
updated new infrastructure we need.
  So I think when we hear about a spill, wherever it may occur, we want 
to make sure it is taken care of and fully remediated and take 
precautions so it doesn't happen again. But we have to understand we 
have to put the new infrastructure in place if we want to reduce the 
number of spills we have as we continue to rely on infrastructure that 
is 50 years old--when we don't make or allow these new investments to 
be made.
  So I will touch on all those for just a few minutes.
  Again, I know the bill managers are hard at work. They are having 
great dialogue. If they come out and are ready to go, I will yield the 
floor right away to do that. Again, the priority is to keep the process 
moving and get amendments up and have them voted on.
  The first issue: It is a Canadian project somehow, not a U.S. 
project. The first point I would make, on its face, is it is going to 
move domestically produced crude as well as Canadian crude. Everybody 
talks about the fact that it starts up in Hardisty and says it is going 
to move Canadian oil, and then they stop there. But it is not only 
going to move Canadian oil, it is going to move oil from North Dakota, 
Montana--light, sweet Bakken shale oil--out of this region of our 
country. So it is going to move both domestic crude as well as Canadian 
crude. So when somebody says it is just a Canadian project, that is not 
true. That would be akin to somebody saying it is only a U.S. project 
because it is moving U.S. oil.
  For beginners, it is important that people understand it is not just 
Canadian oil, it is oil we produce in our country that needs to get to 
refineries as cost-effectively and safely as possible.
  What is happening is because we are being blocked from getting these 
kind of pipelines developed because they can't get through the 
regulatory process, the oil production we are producing in our part of 
the country, in North Dakota, Montana, and the Bakken area, as well as 
other areas of the country is all having to move by rail.
  For example, right now my State of North Dakota produces 1.2 million 
barrels of oil a day, second only to Texas, and that number has been 
growing. That growth I think will slow down right now because the price 
of oil has come down so much. But the point is we are having to move 
700,000 barrels a day by rail because we don't have the pipelines, such 
as the Keystone XL Pipeline, approved.
  That creates other problems as well. We produce a tremendous number 
of ag commodities and ag products. We actually are the leader of 14 
different major ag commodities in the country--things such as wheat, 
for example, and many other farm commodities as well. All of those 
things get backed up on the rail system because we are trying to move 
so much oil on the rail that we can't handle all the congestion.
  So it is not just an issue in terms of energy for our country, but it 
is affecting our other commerce, our farmers, and other goods that are 
trying to be shipped. It is not just goods that originate from our part 
of the country but all the goods that go back and forth and are trying 
to go through that bottleneck.
  But the biggest reason it is very much a U.S. project is because it 
is about getting to energy security and energy independence.
  Right now the United States consumes about 18 million barrels of oil 
a day. We produce about 11 million barrels a day--which is up 
tremendously in recent years because of production on private and State 
lands in places such as North Dakota. That means we still import about 
7 million barrels a day. We use 18 million barrels of oil a day. We 
produce 11 million barrels a day. We import 7 million. The amount of 
oil we get from Canada is increasing. We are up to more than 3 million 
barrels a day that we import from Canada. So if we take the 11 million 
we produce plus the 3 million we get from Canada, that is 14. That 
leaves us 4 million short of what we use on a daily basis. We get that 
from places such as OPEC, Venezuela, and other parts of the world that 
have very different interests in many cases than our own.
  I think the American people very much want to get to a position where 
we don't have to rely on OPEC anymore for the oil we use. In fact, we 
are getting there. We are getting there. As I say, we are at the point 
now between ourselves and Canada where we have 14 million of the 18 
million a day we use covered.
  If we can continue to develop our energy resources and work with 
Canada, we can truly have North American energy security--meaning we 
don't have to rely on OPEC anymore for our oil. That is a national 
security issue. It is an energy issue. It is a jobs issue. It is an 
economic growth issue. It is a national security issue. Look at what is 
going on in the Middle East. Americans do not want to rely on OPEC for 
their oil anymore.
  Look at the benefit. As we produce more energy in this country and 
work with Canada, look at what is happening at the pump. Oil prices are 
down more than $1 from 1 year ago because we are producing so much 
more. Basic economics: More supply helps bring prices down. So it is 
not just about energy independence and energy security for our country, 
it is about lower energy costs for consumers, for small business. It is 
not only good for our hard-working Americans as they pull up to the 
pump and benefit every day from those lower gas prices, but it helps 
make our economy grow because energy is a foundational industry.
  When we have low-cost energy produced in this country that we know we 
can rely on, that makes us competitive in every other industry sector 
in a global economy.
  So when somebody says: This is just about a pipeline or it is just 
about a Canadian issue, it is not the case. This is very much about our 
energy future in this country and how we are going to build it, both to 
be energy secure and to make our economy go when we have to compete 
globally.
  The second issue--and I often show this chart because it makes the 
second part of that energy security point. If we don't work with Canada 
so that this oil comes to us and we control that oil and control our 
energy future, Canada is going to make other arrangements. They are 
going to build pipelines to their west coast, and that oil is going to 
China and we will continue to import oil from OPEC. That is how life 
works. We either take advantage of this opportunity with our closest 
friend and ally in the world or somebody else will.
  The next one I want to touch on for just a minute is the 
environmental. We hear about this so much, the environmental aspects of 
this project. I have

[[Page S512]]

been on the floor and I have talked about various aspects of the 
project based on the science and based on the fact that there have 
actually been five environmental impact statements produced. The 
environmental impact statements produced by the Obama administration 
say there will be less greenhouse gas emissions with the pipeline than 
without it because we will be able to move that 830,000 barrels a day 
of oil by pipeline, rather than moving it by either 1,400 rail cars or 
sending it to China where the refineries have higher emissions than 
ours do.
  But I would like to go beyond that and talk for a minute in a broader 
sense about our energy future and how we not only produce more energy 
more cost-effectively from all sources, from all kinds of energy, but 
how we can do it with better environmental stewardship. And the way 
forward there is really technology. It is the American ingenuity, the 
investment in technology, and the creativity of our companies and our 
entrepreneurs. That is the real key to success in the future in terms 
of producing more energy more cost-effectively, more independently, and 
with better environmental stewardship--by leading the way forward with 
technology development. We cannot export our regulations, but as we 
develop technologies, those, in effect, get exported around the world 
because other countries adopt those technologies.
  So I will talk just a minute about the technology development that is 
going on in the oil sands. Since 1990 the greenhouse gas emissions on a 
per-barrel basis in the oil sands have gone down by 28 percent, almost 
one-third. On a per-barrel basis they have reduced their greenhouse gas 
emissions by 28 percent since 1990. They are engaged in major projects 
now to develop and deploy new technologies that will help them produce 
oil in the oil sands region with a smaller footprint--which is what I 
am showing here--through in situ development and also through carbon 
capture and storage.
  We talk so often about developing carbon capture and storage in this 
country. That is being developed and deployed in the oil sands right 
now. The Quest project, which is a project Shell Oil Company is 
undertaking--let me read from a bit of a summary on their Quest 
project, which is a project for carbon capture and storage they are 
developing right now.
  This is a picture of it. It is in situ--which means drilling and 
using steam to bring the oil out rather than excavation, which is the 
old style--so it has a much smaller environmental footprint, but it 
also reduces greenhouse gas emissions because they capture the 
CO2 and they store it.
  A point of inquiry, Mr. President. I would like to ask the bill 
managers if they are ready to move forward or make any announcement. If 
we have any amendments, I would gladly yield the floor for that 
purpose.
  Mr. President, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Alaska.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I thank the Senator from North Dakota.
  As we mentioned earlier, we had a very productive morning trying to 
discern the universe of amendments we may have before us. I think it is 
very clear that there is genuine interest on both sides of the aisle to 
find that path forward so we can come to a conclusion on S. 1 and do so 
in an orderly way--a way that respects the legislative process and a 
way that allows Members to have opportunities to advance issues they 
feel strongly about and issues that merit debate on this floor.
  We have encouraged Members over the past couple weeks to present 
their amendments to us. At this point in time we have processed 24 
separate amendments. We do have some amendments that are pending on the 
Republican side--seven to be exact. I do know that there are others 
that Members would like to be made pending. I have one myself, and I 
know the Senator from Washington will be speaking to several additional 
Democratic amendments which they would like to offer on their side. So 
I think we have discussed a process here to get us moving in that 
direction so that we can get the amendments pending, and then 
hopefully, perhaps as early as this evening--I don't want to make any 
promises--we can begin voting on these amendments.
  What I would like to do at this time is turn to my colleague to not 
only speak to the gentlewomen's agreement we have in so far as a way 
forward but also to allow for a couple of amendments to be made pending 
on her side, and then we will come back and provide that opportunity on 
the Republican side.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Washington.
  Ms. CANTWELL. Mr. President, I thank the Senator from Alaska for her 
work on this process and for her legislation. As she said, she and I 
have a gentlewomen's agreement to move forward, and we would like to do 
that so we can finish business on this legislation, and we are working 
in good faith on that process. Just as she said, we are going to work 
on getting the next amendment before us. I thank the Senator for her 
hard work.
  I would like to turn to my colleague from California to call up her 
amendment.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from California.
  Mrs. BOXER. Thank you, Mr. President.
  I thank both of my colleagues for working so hard. I am trying to be 
a facilitator in this process as well, as the ranking member now on the 
Environment and Public Works Committee. I want to remind everyone that 
this bill deals with environmental law.


                  Amendment No. 130 to Amendment No. 2

  I ask unanimous consent to set aside the pending amendment so that I 
can call up amendment No. 130.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from California [Mrs. Boxer], for herself and 
     Ms. Cantwell, proposes an amendment numbered 130 to amendment 
     No. 2.

  Mrs. BOXER. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

    (Purpose: To preserve existing permits and the authority of the 
    agencies issuing the permits to modify the permits if necessary)

       On page 2, strike lines 20 through 23 and insert the 
     following:
       (c) Permit Savings Clause.--Nothing in this Act shall 
     affect the status of any Federal permit or authorization 
     issued before the date of enactment of this Act for the 
     pipeline and cross-border facilities referred to in 
     subsection (a).

  Mrs. BOXER. Mr. President, I have a very simple amendment. I hope it 
will be unanimously accepted. I think anyone within the sound of my 
voice who cares about the health and safety of people would support 
this amendment because we know this underlying bill facilitates the 
building of a Canadian project, with all the benefits going to Canada, 
none to America. We have established that there will be 35 permanent 
jobs. We have established that we could have oilspills because we have 
already had several serious oilspills and this oil is very hard to 
clean up. We have established by the Republicans' votes that they will 
not vote to keep the oil in America, so it doesn't even help us with 
energy independence. They even voted against the amendment to make sure 
the steel was from America. They voted against that.
  So this is a Canadian bill. This is a wonderful bill for Canadian oil 
interests. Frankly, that is not why I was elected. I was elected to 
fight for California, fight for American jobs, fight for middle-class 
jobs, and not sit by while we see what is happening here, which is that 
the very first bill brought to us by this new Republican Congress turns 
out to be a bill for Canadian oil.
  One of my colleagues--I don't know if it was Senator Cantwell who 
coined this or Senator Markey--said it is basically a big straw that 
runs from Canada and has the potential to spill all the way down, and 
then it is refined here, and all the filth and dirt gets stored here 
and goes into the air, and then it goes out of the country. It doesn't 
do a thing to help us. So all I am asking for is a little bit of relief 
for the people of this Nation.
  Right now, S. 1 says that all permits ``shall remain in effect'' for 
this TransCanada pipeline regardless of any actions taken in building 
the pipeline, even if the company violates the permits.

[[Page S513]]

  So we know this company had to go and get a number of permits. What 
this bill does is it says: Once you get a permit, TransCanada, no one 
can take it away from you.
  Imagine. We don't do that for our companies. They have to walk the 
walk and talk the talk.
  All we say here is, if you violate your permit, it can be revoked. 
You cannot willy-nilly get permits from the Commerce Department, EPA, 
the Corps of Engineers, or other entities and then violate them and 
know that the permit can never be taken away. I was stunned when I 
learned this.
  So this would very simply say that if, in fact, there is new 
information that requires a permit to be changed or modified, it can be 
done. We do not waive protecting the health and safety of the American 
people.
  Let me give an example. Back home I have a bridge that was built, 
unfortunately, with foreign parts, and those parts failed. It is a 
nightmare to try to fix it.
  If TransCanada violates their permit and uses the wrong materials--
let's say the bolts rupture--they still get to keep their permit. We 
are saying: No. Your permit can be revoked.
  Another example: This is the handling of hazardous waste. We know 
this is filthy, dirty oil, and we know what is in this oil. It is 
toxic. Peer-reviewed research established significantly higher levels 
of carcinogens. We know this. We have met with the people who live in 
Canada who have had to breathe in that air. Data collected by the Texas 
Cancer Registry indicates that cancer rates among African Americans in 
Jefferson County, Port Arthur, TX, are 15 percent higher than for the 
average Texans. They live right near the refineries.
  We know these permits are only as good as they are enforced. If they 
are enforced and we find they haven't lived up to their commitments on 
the handling of hazardous waste--by the way, to get their permit from 
Commerce, they also have to put out a plan that deals with a spill. 
Let's say there is a spill and they don't live up to the permit. They 
still get to keep the permit.
  This is an extraordinary piece of legislation. I have never ever in 
my time here or ever in history known of any American corporation 
getting a free pass in terms of the health and safety and the 
protection of the air and water that this company is getting. They 
could literally avoid following any of the steps they committed to in 
their permit, and this legislation gives them a free pass.
  My amendment simply says that we are able to revoke a permit if it is 
not followed.
  I would ask the Senator from Washington if I could at this point 
yield the floor. My amendment is pending. I appreciate the work of the 
Senator from Alaska in allowing this amendment to be offered, and I 
appreciate the work of my colleague from Washington.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Washington.
  Ms. CANTWELL. Mr. President, before recognizing the Senator from 
California, I failed to say that there is no way this legislation would 
be where it is today, moving forward in the process, without the 
Senator from California. She has been a great adviser all through this 
process and a great protector and advocate of the issues we are 
interested in on the environment, on security, and on safety. I thank 
her for her leadership, and I look forward to supporting her on this 
amendment.
  I would like to turn to my colleague from Michigan, if I could. We 
are going to offer a couple of amendments on our side and go back to 
the Senator from Alaska, but at this point in time I would like the 
Senator from Michigan, who has had a very devastating personal 
experience related to tar sands, to talk about his amendment and call 
up that amendment.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Michigan.


                  Amendment No. 70 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. PETERS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment and call up amendment No. 70, which is at the desk.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Michigan [Mr. Peters], for himself and Ms. 
     Stabenow, proposes an amendment numbered 70 to amendment No. 
     2.

  Mr. PETERS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of 
the amendment be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

    (Purpose: To require that the Administrator of the Pipeline and 
  Hazardous Materials Safety Administration make a certification and 
 submit to Congress the results of a study before the pipeline may be 
            constructed, connected, operated, or maintained)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. PHMSA GREAT LAKES RESOURCES AND STUDY.

       The pipeline described in section 2(a) shall not be 
     constructed, connected, operated, or maintained until the 
     Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety 
     Administration--
       (1) certifies to Congress that the Pipeline and Hazardous 
     Materials Safety Administration has sufficient resources to 
     carry out the duties of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials 
     Safety Administration for pipelines in the Great Lakes; and
       (2) submits to Congress the results of a study on 
     recommendations for special conditions on pipelines in the 
     Great Lakes, similar to the recommendations in Appendix B of 
     the environmental impact statement described in section 2(b).

  Mr. PETERS. Mr. President, this is a very commonsense amendment based 
on a simple premise. Before Congress intervenes to approve this new 
pipeline that is before us, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety 
Administration, PHMSA, the Federal agency which oversees pipeline 
safety, should certify that it has the resources required to carry out 
its duty.
  Specifically, the amendment before the Senate requires PHMSA to 
confirm that it has the resources to oversee pipelines in the Great 
Lakes and provide recommendations for special conditions for pipelines 
in the Great Lakes just as it provided recommendations for special 
conditions for the Keystone XL Pipeline.
  The people of Michigan know why it is so important that we ensure 
these pipelines are safe. We had a pipeline spill in Kalamazoo, MI, in 
2010 that spilled over 800,000 gallons of tar sands into the Kalamazoo 
River. The cleanup has now taken over 4 years at a cost of over $1.2 
billion. A pipeline accident in the Great Lakes, where we have some of 
these pipelines located now, would be absolutely catastrophic. We have 
to remind folks that the Great Lakes now provide drinking water to over 
40 million people and support 1.5 million jobs. It would be a disaster 
not just for folks in the State of Michigan, but throughout the Great 
Lakes region and throughout the country, if there were a pipeline 
break. We know it firsthand from what happened in Kalamazoo, the most 
expensive pipeline break in the history of this country.
  We have to ensure that the pipelines that operate in the Great Lakes, 
particularly in the Straits of Mackinac, which connect the Upper 
Peninsula with the Lower Peninsula, have the protections they need.
  I ask my colleagues to join me in supporting this amendment to make 
sure we protect the Great Lakes, not just for today but for future 
generations.
  I yield back.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Alaska.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I yield to Senator Collins from Maine 
to bring up an amendment.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Maine.


                  Amendment No. 35 to Amendment No. 2

  Ms. COLLINS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the pending 
amendment be set aside so I may call up amendment No. 35.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Maine [Ms. Collins], for herself and Mr. 
     Warner, proposes an amendment numbered 35 to amendment No. 2.

  Ms. COLLINS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of 
the amendment be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To coordinate the provision of energy retrofitting assistance 
                              to schools)

       After section 2, insert the following:

     SEC. __. COORDINATION OF ENERGY RETROFITTING ASSISTANCE FOR 
                   SCHOOLS.

       (a) Definitions.--In this section:

[[Page S514]]

       (1) School.--The term ``school'' means--
       (A) an elementary school or secondary school (as defined in 
     section 9101 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 
     1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801));
       (B) an institution of higher education (as defined in 
     section 102(a) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
     1002(a));
       (C) a school of the defense dependents' education system 
     under the Defense Dependents' Education Act of 1978 (20 
     U.S.C. 921 et seq.) or established under section 2164 of 
     title 10, United States Code;
       (D) a school operated by the Bureau of Indian Affairs;
       (E) a tribally controlled school (as defined in section 
     5212 of the Tribally Controlled Schools Act of 1988 (25 
     U.S.C. 2511)); and
       (F) a Tribal College or University (as defined in section 
     316(b) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
     1059c(b))).
       (2) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary 
     of Energy.
       (b) Designation of Lead Agency.--The Secretary, acting 
     through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, 
     shall act as the lead Federal agency for coordinating and 
     disseminating information on existing Federal programs and 
     assistance that may be used to help initiate, develop, and 
     finance energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy 
     retrofitting projects for schools.
       (c) Requirements.--In carrying out coordination and 
     outreach under subsection (b), the Secretary shall--
       (1) in consultation and coordination with the appropriate 
     Federal agencies, carry out a review of existing programs and 
     financing mechanisms (including revolving loan funds and loan 
     guarantees) available in or from the Department of 
     Agriculture, the Department of Energy, the Department of 
     Education, the Department of the Treasury, the Internal 
     Revenue Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, and 
     other appropriate Federal agencies with jurisdiction over 
     energy financing and facilitation that are currently used or 
     may be used to help initiate, develop, and finance energy 
     efficiency, renewable energy, and energy retrofitting 
     projects for schools;
       (2) establish a Federal cross-departmental collaborative 
     coordination, education, and outreach effort to streamline 
     communication and promote available Federal opportunities and 
     assistance described in paragraph (1) for energy efficiency, 
     renewable energy, and energy retrofitting projects that 
     enables States, local educational agencies, and schools--
       (A) to use existing Federal opportunities more effectively; 
     and
       (B) to form partnerships with Governors, State energy 
     programs, local educational, financial, and energy officials, 
     State and local government officials, nonprofit 
     organizations, and other appropriate entities to support the 
     initiation of the projects;
       (3) provide technical assistance for States, local 
     educational agencies, and schools to help develop and finance 
     energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy retrofitting 
     projects--
       (A) to increase the energy efficiency of buildings or 
     facilities;
       (B) to install systems that individually generate energy 
     from renewable energy resources;
       (C) to establish partnerships to leverage economies of 
     scale and additional financing mechanisms available to larger 
     clean energy initiatives; or
       (D) to promote--
       (i) the maintenance of health, environmental quality, and 
     safety in schools, including the ambient air quality, through 
     energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy retrofit 
     projects; and
       (ii) the achievement of expected energy savings and 
     renewable energy production through proper operations and 
     maintenance practices;
       (4) develop and maintain a single online resource website 
     with contact information for relevant technical assistance 
     and support staff in the Office of Energy Efficiency and 
     Renewable Energy for States, local educational agencies, and 
     schools to effectively access and use Federal opportunities 
     and assistance described in paragraph (1) to develop energy 
     efficiency, renewable energy, and energy retrofitting 
     projects; and
       (5) establish a process for recognition of schools that--
       (A) have successfully implemented energy efficiency, 
     renewable energy, and energy retrofitting projects; and
       (B) are willing to serve as resources for other local 
     educational agencies and schools to assist initiation of 
     similar efforts.
       (d) Report.--Not later than 180 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to Congress 
     a report describing the implementation of this section.

  Ms. COLLINS. I thank the Presiding Officer, and I thank the Senator 
from Alaska for yielding to me for this purpose and I commend her, as 
well as the Senator from Washington State, for their extraordinary 
management of this bill.
  I am pleased to report that the amendment I have called up and made 
pending is actually a bipartisan initiative. It is cosponsored by my 
colleague from Virginia, Senator Warner, and its purpose is to help 
school officials to learn more easily about Federal programs and 
incentives that are available to improve energy efficiency and thus 
lower costs for our Nation's schools.
  There are a number of Federal initiatives already available to 
schools to help them become more energy efficient, but in many cases 
schools are not taking full advantage of these programs. The reason for 
that is because they are scattered across several agencies and are 
difficult to access.
  I want to make it clear to my colleagues that Senator Warner and I 
are not proposing the creation of any new programs to help schools 
become more energy efficient but rather to have more coordination and 
to streamline those programs which already exist.
  Our amendment would require the Department of Energy to be the leader 
of these programs and help schools identify and navigate them, and that 
in turn would be a great service to our Nation's schools.
  As I said, by providing a streamlined coordinating structure, this 
amendment would help schools navigate available Federal programs and 
financing without authorizing new programs or funding. Decisions about 
how best to meet the energy needs of their schools would appropriately 
remain in the hands of States, school boards, and local officials.
  Specifically, the amendment would establish the Department of Energy 
as the lead agency for coordinating and disseminating information on 
existing Federal energy efficiency programs and financing options 
available to schools for initiating, developing, and financing energy 
efficiency, renewable energy, and energy retrofitting projects.
  The amendment would also require DOE to review existing Federal 
programs--scattered at the Departments of Agriculture, Education, 
Treasury, the IRS, and EPA--so schools know what is available.
  It would also streamline communication and outreach to the States, 
local education agencies, and schools and the development of a 
mechanism for forming a peer-to-peer network to support the initiation 
of the projects.
  Finally, the amendment would require the Department of Energy to 
provide technical assistance to help schools navigate the financing and 
development of such projects to better ensure their success.
  Assisting our nation's schools in navigating and tapping into 
existing federal programs to lower energy usage and save money makes 
good common sense.
  I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support the 
Collins-Warner amendment No. 35.
  I thank the Presiding Officer, and I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Alaska.


                  Amendment No. 166 to Amendment No. 2

  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the 
pending amendment be set aside to call up amendment No. 166.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Alaska [Ms. Murkowski] proposes an 
     amendment numbered 166 to amendment No. 2.

  Ms. MURKOWSKI. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment 
be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To release certain wilderness study areas from management for 
                      preservation as wilderness)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. _. RELEASE OF CERTAIN WILDERNESS STUDY AREAS.

       (a) Bureau of Land Management Land.--With respect to Bureau 
     of Land Management land identified as a wilderness study area 
     and recommended for a wilderness designation under section 
     603(a) of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 
     (43 U.S.C. 1782(a)), if, within 1 year of receiving the 
     recommendation, Congress has not designated the wilderness 
     study area as wilderness, the area shall no longer be subject 
     to--
       (1) section 603(c) of that Act; or
       (2) Secretarial Order No. 3310 issued by the Secretary of 
     the Interior on December 22, 2010.
       (b) Fish and Wildlife Service Land.--With respect to land 
     administered by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service 
     that has been recommended by the President or the Secretary 
     of the Interior for designation as wilderness under the 
     Wilderness Act (16 U.S.C. 1131 et seq.), if, within 1 year of 
     receiving the recommendation, Congress has

[[Page S515]]

     not designated the land as wilderness, the land shall no 
     longer be managed in a manner that protects the wilderness 
     character of the land.

  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, the amendment I am offering this 
afternoon is pretty straightforward. It would effectively release 
wilderness study areas if, within 1 year of receiving the 
recommendation, Congress has not designated this study area as 
wilderness.
  There has been a lot of discussion in the news of late with the 
President's announcement on Sunday that he is seeking to put an 
additional 12 million acres in the ANWR area--Alaska's North Slope--
into wilderness status, including the 1002 area which has specifically 
been designated for oil and gas exploration. I want to make sure people 
understand this is not just an ANWR amendment. This is about the 
wilderness study areas that we see that are currently on the books.
  According to the Congressional Research Service, as of the beginning 
of this year, Congress has designated 109.8 million acres of Federal 
land as wilderness. Just over half of this wilderness is in my State of 
Alaska. We have over 57 million acres of wilderness in Alaska. Ninety 
percent of the wilderness under the management of the Fish and Wildlife 
Service is in Alaska.
  As a practical matter, there is more out there. There are more acres 
that are proposed for wilderness designation. For example, the Bureau 
of Land Management manages 528 wilderness study areas containing almost 
12.8 million acres located primarily in the 12 States in the West as 
well as Alaska.
  We also have the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which has a 
wilderness study process through its land use planning to identify 
areas to be proposed as wilderness.
  There is some history as to how we got to dealing with these 
wilderness study areas. Areas that are identified by agency officials 
as having certain wilderness characteristics--as identified under the 
1964 Wilderness Act--were classified as wilderness study areas. BLM 
received specific direction in the Federal Land Policy Management Act 
of 1976 to inventory and study its roadless areas for wilderness 
characteristics. By 1980 the BLM completed field inventories which 
designated about 25 million acres of wilderness study areas. Since 1980 
Congress has taken a look at some of these. Some have been designated 
as wilderness and others have been released for nonwilderness uses. The 
BLM has also taken it upon itself to designate wilderness study areas 
through its land use process.
  The point here is that once an area has been designated under the BLM 
or the Fish and Wildlife Service study regime, it effectively becomes 
de facto wilderness. The designation then limits and restricts the 
ability to do just about anything for fear that it might impair the 
suitability of the area for preservation as wilderness.
  Until Congress makes a final determination on a wilderness study 
area, the BLM or the Fish and Wildlife Service manages these areas to 
preserve their suitability for designation as wilderness. Even if 
Congress has not acted--because it is Congress's purview to do so--the 
agencies have designated it as de facto wilderness.
  My amendment says we are going to change this, and we have to change 
this. Congress needs to reassert itself into this equation. As the 
final arbiter of what is or is not designated as wilderness, Congress 
can and should make the decisions in a timely manner about the 
wilderness status.
  What my amendment does is pretty simple. If Congress doesn't act 
within 1 year to designate as wilderness an area recommended for 
wilderness, the designation is released. It just goes back to multiple 
use. That way the agencies are not managing areas to preserve a 
possible wilderness designation as an option for Congress. Instead, 
they can get on with looking at a broader range of options for how to 
manage that land with the local people and other interested 
stakeholders through the land-use planning process that applies to each 
of the agencies.
  Some may argue that Congress needs more time on this. I would say we 
have had plenty of time to review these areas. Some of the wilderness 
study areas have been pending since the 1980s. That is plenty of time 
to figure out whether they should be put in wilderness status. Congress 
needs to make decisions.
  I ask my colleagues to support my amendment and take a look at what 
is contained and not just think about the ANWR situation but think 
about the applicability within their respective States.
  I know that Senator Sessions was seeking recognition. As Members are 
seeking to come to the floor to get their amendments pending, we would 
like to allow them to have recognition.
  At this point, I believe we need some clarification from the Senator 
from North Dakota.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from North Dakota.
  Mr. HOEVEN. I will wrap up in 2 minutes and will then yield the floor 
to the Senator from Alabama.
  I have been talking about a number of different points, but right now 
I would like to defer. I will be back on the issues as we continue this 
debate. Again, I thank the bill managers, and I am very pleased to see 
that Senators are coming down and making these amendments pending. That 
is what we need do now. I thank Senators on both sides of the aisle for 
doing that.
  With that, I yield the floor to the Senator from Alabama.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Alabama.
  Mr. SESSIONS. Mr. President, I thank Senator Hoeven for his hard work 
on this Keystone XL Pipeline bill, as well as Senator Murkowski and 
others who have worked together on it on both sides of the aisle.


                             Climate Change

  Mr. SESSIONS. We have been talking about global warming and climate 
change. I have been on the Environment and Public Works Committee for 
some time, and we have had a number of good hearings on the subject. I 
wish to share some thoughts on climate change because so much of what 
is driving our energy policies in America today is entirely dependent 
on a fear of the impact of global warming in the years to come.
  There have been a number of votes on global warming. I was asked by a 
reporter today: You voted with the Whitehouse amendment; why did you do 
that? Well, I just have this to say. It is true, to my understanding, 
and according to the best science we have, that the Earth has warmed by 
a degree in the last 100 years, and exactly what is causing that, we 
are not so sure.
  If that were to accelerate, then, to a significant degree, it would 
be a cause for concern. It would be a cause for America and the entire 
world to really begin to evaluate what our future is and what action 
might be taken. That is what has happened.
  The world has been engaged mightily in the effort to drive up the 
cost of electricity, drive up the cost of gasoline, drive up the cost 
of the production of products that use energy, and drive up the cost of 
transported items that you go to the grocery store and buy.
  I will just say this. The scare tactics we have been hearing are not 
coming to fruition. Over a time period, they were predicted to come to 
a fruition, but they just are not. As public servants--as elected 
officials who represent 320 million Americans--we need to ask 
ourselves: Should we press down an excessive, increased burden of 
energy costs on the backs of working Americans to meet the fears that 
we have been hearing about? And if we do that, how much can we afford 
to do? How much can we afford to ask of them?
  We are reducing CO2 emissions in the United States and 
doing a pretty good job of it. But the fear is--at least the concern 
from so many of us--is that we are now projecting--the President is 
projecting massive increases in regulations that will significantly and 
further hammer coal and hammer the price of energy in America.
  Many Members of Congress want to take drastic action that would 
increase the cost of electricity and gasoline from fossil fuels. It 
would do that. There is no doubt about that. And it would virtually end 
coal production in the United States, a product we have a lot of.
  They claim the science of global warming is settled, but I suggest 
questions remain. Global climate change advocates have, over many 
years, relied upon a number of climate models. These models are 
designed to predict the temperature over time, and they

[[Page S516]]

have done that, and I will show my colleagues the result of these 
models in a minute. They predict not only increasing temperatures but 
increasing droughts, increasing flux--droughts and flux--increasing 
severe weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes. These models 
have long predicted this. So we have a history of how well the models 
have performed over time. An easy measure, a critical measure, of the 
validity of any model is how well it compares to actual data. So the 
actual weather data, I tell my colleagues, is proving that the models 
have not been accurate.
  There are other facts we are dealing with that give concern to those 
of us who are less than certain about what the climate will do in the 
future.
  Last week, NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies claimed that 
2014 was the hottest year on record. Perhaps my colleagues heard that. 
It was based on their analysis of 3,000 ground-based thermometers 
around the world. They backtracked on that claim the very next day, 
however, because the increase was so small that the ground-based system 
fell within the margin of error.
  There are other problems with those assertions. Data gathered at the 
Earth's surface has limitations in measuring the temperature. It is a 
relatively small sample influenced by human construction. Instead, the 
best data, I think most scientists agree, for determining warming of 
the atmosphere is a method that can objectively gather far more data, 
and that is satellites.
  There are two research groups that track atmospheric data, one 
satellite and one balloon. They both show temperature data that has 
barely risen for 35 years. The balloons validate the accuracy of the 
satellites and the satellites tend to validate the accuracy of the 
balloons. So there is a wider and wider divergence over the years from 
what the models claim and what the actual temperature is doing. There 
just is.
  Other evidence can be seen in the Earth's ice coverage. A few years 
ago former Vice President Al Gore claimed the Arctic might be ice-free 
in the summertime by 2014. That was last year. That was a prediction. 
Another study said it would be ice-free by 2029. But this past summer, 
the ice coverage in the Arctic Ocean was 43 percent greater than it was 
in 2012.
  Senator Murkowski, that is an increase the size of the State of 
Alaska, which is a pretty sizable State, for heaven's sake. It has 
become well-known that ice coverage in Antarctica is also at its record 
recorded levels.
  There have been dire predictions made about extreme weather events. 
On the Weather Channel on our TV, they love to talk about storms, and 
it is exciting, and people watch it. I have had people call from 
Alabama and tell me, Have you gotten your food in? You are going to 
have a big storm. You are going to be shut in.
  When temperature data stopped supporting the applicants' claims of 
warming, they started claiming that storms and droughts would worsen; 
we would have more of them. We all heard that many times. It is hard to 
know what to think about it when we heard that over the years.
  It has now been nearly 3,400 days since the last major hurricane hit 
the United States. This is no little matter to me. I remember moving to 
Mobile in 1979, and that year we had Hurricane Frederic that slammed 
the city. Trees were down everywhere. Power was off for weeks. I 
believe it was a category 3 hurricane. Earlier we had Hurricane Camille 
hit, and that was in the 1960s. Then we had Hurricane Katrina that hit 
New Orleans and hit my hometown of Mobile a very significant blow. But 
it has been nearly 3,400 days since the last major hurricane hit the 
United States. That is a category 3, 4, or 5. That is almost 10 years. 
I think that is the longest period maybe this century.
  According to Dr. Roger Pielke, a professor at the University of 
Colorado-Boulder, who testified before our EPW Committee last year, he 
said hurricane seasons in the United States are 20 percent less intense 
and have seen 20 percent fewer landfalls than in 1900.
  We have received testimony in the Environment and Public Works 
Committee from Dr. Roy Spencer, who said this:

       There is little or no observational effort that severe 
     weather of any type has worsened over the last 30, 50, or 100 
     years.

  He said that in his testimony before the committee.
  The IPCC, the International Panel on Climate Change, fifth climate 
assessment released in 2013, what did they say about these predictions? 
Quote:

       Current data sets indicate no significant observed trends 
     in global tropical cyclone frequency over the last century.

  So I suppose they have acknowledged that prediction to be incorrect.
  That same report talked about floods. We have been told we will have 
more floods.
  The IPCC says:

       In summary, there continues to be a lack of evidence and 
     thus low confidence regarding the sign of trend in the 
     magnitude and/or frequency of floods on a global scale.

  According to the Palmer Drought Index, there is a statistically 
insignificant decrease in global droughts from 1982 to 2012.
  So, remember, CO2 is increasing in the atmosphere. It is a 
small part of the atmosphere. It is a clean gas. There is no damage to 
us. It is a gas that is plant food. If we understand photosynthesis, 
plants breathe in CO2, grow, and create carbon stalks and 
emit oxygen, which is good for us. So in itself, CO2 is not 
an inherently bad product.
  From 1982 to 2012, when we had some of the greatest increase in 
CO2--I guess the greatest increase in CO2 in the 
history of the planet, unless there was some volcano or some event--we 
have seen actually a decrease in droughts. Small, but a decrease 
nonetheless.
  Last July, the Budget Committee, which I was the ranking member of, 
had a hearing on the cost of climate change to the economy and the 
Democrats called that hearing. The Republican witnesses were Dr. Bjorn 
Lomborg and David Montgomery. Professor Lomborg, from the Copenhagen 
Institute in Denmark, said this:

       While some warming may have occurred, it will not mean the 
     end of the world. The total, discounted cost of inaction--

not doing anything on global climate change--

     over the next five centuries is about 1.2 percent of 
     discounted GDP. The cumulative cost of inaction towards the 
     end of the century is about 1.8 percent of GDP. While this is 
     not trivial, it by no means supports the often apocalyptic 
     conversation on global climate change.

  It goes on:

       The cost of inaction by the end of the century is 
     equivalent to losing one year's GDP growth.

  Last year we had, what, 2 percent GDP, using an average of 2.5 
percent, 2 percent, 1 year's worth; not 100 years' worth, 1 year's 
worth, the equivalent, he said, of a moderate 1-year recession. The 
cost of inaction by the end of the century is equivalent to an annual 
loss of GDP growth on the order of .02 percent, or two-hundredths of 1 
percent--not 2 percent; two-hundredths of 1 percent.
  Professor Lomborg, who believes that human activity has contributed 
to some global warming--he said that--also pointed out that climate 
control policy, based on current data, will cost far more than the 
``benefits'' it delivers.
  Isn't that the question we have to ask ourselves? When we impose a 
cost on the American people, shouldn't that cost produce more benefit 
than the cost in currency?
  He continues:

       A slightly warmer Earth means net benefits through the 
     first half of this century, until 2065.

  So until 2065 it will benefit America, warmer temperatures. After 
that, these models and other projections--he is taking them from the 
IPCC's own data--find that costs do begin to occur.
  He continues:

       However, an aggressive government response to warming now 
     can wipe out the benefits we can expect to receive.

  Plus we will have higher taxes; more spending, more regulations will 
cut jobs, reduce incomes, hurt savings, and, thus, set us back more as 
a nation.
  Dr. David Montgomery, who testified at the hearing, said: It is far 
from clear that recent weather events are anything more than normal 
variability in storm frequency and intensity and the nature, timing and 
extent of damage from climate change remains highly uncertain. This 
does not imply that no action is justified, but it does imply that 
costs and avoided risks must be balanced carefully.
  I think that is what we need to do, balance the cost and the risk.

[[Page S517]]

  In sum, these experts before the Budget Committee highlighted that 
the climate change could be happening and it could be a part of human 
action, but its costs in the near term certainly are not great. This 
compares to the cost of trying to stop climate change by reducing human 
activity as very large indeed.
  Congress considered legislation in 2009 and 2010 to put a price on 
carbon through a cap-and-trade system that President Obama supported. 
The cost was deemed too high. Congress said no. The bill that passed 
the House would cost $161 billion--it was in Democratic hands at the 
time--would cost $161 billion in the first year, and it increased in 
additional years. How much is $161 billion? Well, we are desperately 
trying to find $10 billion, $12 billion a year for the next 6 years to 
fund the highway bill. That is $10 billion a year. This is $160 billion 
a year. The amount we spend on education in America is about $100 
billion a year. This would be $161 billion a year. Over a decade, we 
are talking $2 trillion hammered onto the American economy.
  This is a serious matter and, fortunately, Congress did not yield. 
Congress rejected the legislation. So the President decided to pursue 
the same results, not through the elected representatives but through 
the regulatory process. In 2007, the Supreme Court sided with the State 
of Massachusetts in a critical case. It empowered EPA--if it chose--to 
regulate greenhouse gases, based on the Clean Air Act of the 1970s, 
when global warming was never dreamed of and nobody ever considered 
CO2 to be a pollutant. This was an activist Supreme Court 
decision, in my opinion. Congress would never pass this law. There has 
never been one time in the last 30 years, or certainly before that, 
that Congress would pass a law recommending huge regulatory powers to 
the EPA over CO2.
  So the Court did not require EPA to regulate gases, but the Court 
allowed that under the Clean Air Act. So now the EPA is developing a 
rulemaking called a Clean Power Plan. This regulation will cost between 
$41 billion and $73 billion annually, more than the road bill and 
almost as much as the educational bill according to analysts.

  On top of this, consumers will have to spend hundreds of billions 
conserving electricity. Electricity rates are going to increase by 
double-digit percentages throughout most of the country. These are the 
costs of only one of the regulations EPA is pursuing. In total, the 
Heritage Action expects the President's Climate Action Plan will cost 
$1.47 trillion in lost GDP by 2030. The costs of action far outweigh 
the cost of inaction, it seems to me. That is the basis of my concern 
about many of the extreme actions we are taking. The Nation is 
crisscrossed with pipelines. They are all over it.
  In my home State of Alabama, we are not having complaints about that. 
This idea that we shouldn't have a pipeline to bring oil from our ally 
and friend Canada to drive down further, hopefully, the cost of energy 
in the United States is an erroneous idea. It is all driven at the 
bottom by this global climate change idea. I am not a climate denier. I 
don't know what the truth is and what history will teach. I have 
assumed over the years scientists are on to something when they claim 
that CO2 will be a blanket effect in our atmosphere and 
temperature might increase. I do know that if we burn fossil fuels, 
burn plants, it creates CO2. I know that. It increases it in 
the atmosphere. The models which are predicted increasing temperatures 
from this steady rise in CO2 that has been occurring for 
over 100 years as the planet's population increases have been wrong.
  Let me show this chart. It is prepared by Dr. John Christy, who 
worked at NASA and the University of Alabama at Huntsville. The red 
line represents from 1975 to 2025, a projection average of all the 
models--and there are many of them; I think about 30 people doing 
modeling of the temperatures and the average shows this rise. This is 
an alarming rise. It was based on those predictions, those modeled 
effects, that people have demanded we change what we do with energy in 
America and we reduce fossil fuels and we pay more for energy to avoid 
this trend.
  We are getting not too far from 2025. That is a 50-year trend. Look 
at the reality though. These are the numbers, satellite data, and 
balloon data around the world. We basically had very little increase 
from 1980 to 2015. For 18 years or so it is basically totally flat. So 
what does that mean?
  I am not sure. Maybe it will start surging next year. Maybe we will 
see more. But at this point, as reasonable Congressmen and Senators, I 
don't believe we can conclude that we should burden this American 
economy weak as it is--high unemployment, December wages dropped 5 
cents an hour. The President kept talking about how great things are. 
Wages dropped 5 cents an hour in 1 month alone--December. We have the 
lowest percentage of Americans in the working ages actually working in 
America today since the 1970s. Things aren't going so well. We don't 
need to be driving up costs for our businesses, making them less 
competitive in the world marketplace, making gasoline more expensive 
for working moms, making electricity more expensive for our elderly who 
are at home and cold. We just don't.
  So who cares the most? I say we need to care about the people we 
represent. We need to care about their welfare.
  Mr. Steyer, with his tens of millions of dollars in contributions, 
demands we don't pass Keystone Pipeline, to carry out his theory--this 
billionaire that he is--and he doesn't care apparently about what is 
happening to jobs in America, competitiveness in America, and the 
welfare of the citizens of this country.
  Congress represents the interests of 320 million people. We need to 
defend their interests, not ideological activists. It is almost a 
religion to them. We have to be objective and realistic as we evaluate. 
So there can be no doubt that this agenda will increase energy prices, 
it will shrink the middle class, it will eliminate jobs, it will 
increase costs across the board, it will reduce wages, and it will 
throw millions of Americans out of work. It just will if we carry out 
this agenda.
  It is not being done in China. It is not being done in Russia. It is 
not being done in Brazil. So it is of utmost importance that the 
American people know about these claims and the effects of regulations 
before we go headlong into enacting them.
  The blocking of Keystone Pipeline is a clear example of what has 
happened. We will be denying struggling Americans and businesses 
another source of energy that will put further downward pressure on 
energy prices. We can have only one effect to produce the greatest 
supply and to help contain the price of oil. Whatever the price of oil 
is, it will be less with Keystone Pipeline than if we didn't have that 
source from the Keystone Pipeline in Canada.
  This will make us more dependent on foreign suppliers, many of which 
are not our friends. Canada is our friend, our best trading partner in 
the world, perhaps our best ally in the world. It is already causing 
great frustration with our friends in Canada.
  I met with the Canadian parliamentarians. Last year we had a meeting. 
I was surprised how deeply they felt about this. They were hurt. They 
cannot understand why we can't get this done. It is such a commonsense 
thing to them.
  Some of our Democratic colleagues argue our economy will not be 
affected by the agenda, the President's Climate Action Plan. Others 
acknowledge the cost but justify this as a speed bump and not 
significant. Congress represents most closely the people of the United 
States, and Congress has never voted to give unelected bureaucrats and 
officials the power to regulate CO2. We are not close to 
doing that today. It would never pass this Congress, either House or 
Senate. There is zero chance it would pass if it was actually voted on.
  As long as Congress has decided not to act, how can EPA act? It is 
acting against the wishes of the American people and the interests of 
the country. It takes the consensus of the American people to move 
large and costly legislation such as this, hundreds of billions, 
trillions of dollars. That consensus is not formed. It is not there.
  On Keystone and other key issues, the consensus is against government 
excess, not for the government to do more. Talk to the American people. 
Look at the polling data. Someday maybe things will change, it is true, 
I will acknowledge. Temperatures could start to rise significantly and 
storms

[[Page S518]]

could begin to worsen. But as long as the measured data fails to match 
the alarmists' climate models, I believe Congress should approve this 
pipeline and reject the agenda of the climate alarmists and conduct a 
policy that is beneficial to the people of our Nation.
  I thank the Chair, and I yield floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Ms. Ayotte). The Senator from Alaska.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Madam President, I know the ranking member had 
intended to offer an amendment on behalf of one of her colleagues, and 
she is off the floor right now. I want to respect the understanding we 
had, but I also want to respect that the Senator from Vermont is here 
and I believe prepared to speak to his amendment. I just want to 
acknowledge that Senator Cantwell intended to offer a couple of 
amendments.
  I yield to my colleague.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Vermont.


                  Amendment No. 23 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. SANDERS. I ask unanimous consent to set aside the pending 
amendment to call up my amendment, amendment No. 23, the Ten Million 
Solar Roofs Act, and it be made pending.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Vermont [Mr. Sanders], for himself, Mr. 
     Menendez, and Mr. Whitehouse, proposes an amendment numbered 
     23 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. SANDERS. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To increase the quantity of solar photovoltaic electricity by 
 providing rebates for the purchase and installation of an additional 
                10,000,000 photovoltaic systems by 2025)

       After section 2, insert the following:

     SEC. ___. REBATES FOR PURCHASE AND INSTALLATION OF 
                   PHOTOVOLTAIC SYSTEMS.

       (a) Definitions.--In this section:
       (1) Photovoltaic system.--The term ``photovoltaic system'' 
     includes--
       (A) solar panels;
       (B) roof support structures;
       (C) inverters;
       (D) an energy storage system, if the energy storage system 
     is integrated with the photovoltaic system; and
       (E) any other hardware necessary for the installation of a 
     photovoltaic system.
       (2) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary 
     of Energy.
       (b) Rebates for Purchase and Installation of Photovoltaic 
     Systems.--
       (1) In general.--The Secretary shall establish a program 
     under which the Secretary shall provide rebates to eligible 
     individuals or entities for the purchase and installation of 
     photovoltaic systems for residential and commercial 
     properties in order to install, over the 10-year period 
     beginning on the date of enactment of this Act, not less than 
     an additional 10,000,000 photovoltaic systems in the United 
     States (as compared to the number of photovoltaic systems 
     installed in the United States as of the date of enactment of 
     this Act) with a cumulative capacity of not less than 60,000 
     megawatts.
       (2) Eligibility.--
       (A) In general.--To be eligible for a rebate under this 
     subsection--
       (i) the recipient of the rebate shall be a homeowner, 
     business, nonprofit entity, or State or local government that 
     purchased and installed a photovoltaic system for a property 
     located in the United States; and
       (ii) the recipient of the rebate shall meet such other 
     eligibility criteria as are determined to be appropriate by 
     the Secretary.
       (B) Other entities.--After public review and comment, the 
     Secretary may identify other individuals or entities located 
     in the United States that qualify for a rebate under this 
     subsection.
       (3) Amount.--Subject to paragraph (4)(B) and the 
     availability of appropriations under subsection (c), the 
     amount of a rebate provided to an eligible individual or 
     entity for the purchase and installation of a photovoltaic 
     system for a property under this subsection shall be equal to 
     the lesser of--
       (A) 15 percent of the initial capital costs for purchasing 
     and installing the photovoltaic system, including costs for 
     hardware, permitting and other ``soft costs'', and 
     installation; or
       (B) $10,000.
       (4) Intermediate report.--As soon as practicable after the 
     end of the 5-year period beginning on the date of enactment 
     of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate 
     committees of Congress, and publish on the website of the 
     Department of Energy, a report that describes--
       (A) the number of photovoltaic systems for residential and 
     commercial properties purchased and installed with rebates 
     provided under this subsection; and
       (B) any steps the Secretary will take to ensure that the 
     goal of the installation of an additional 10,000,000 
     photovoltaic systems in the United States is achieved by 
     2025.
       (5) Relationship to other law.--The authority provided 
     under this subsection shall be in addition to any other 
     authority under which credits or other types of financial 
     assistance are provided for installation of a photovoltaic 
     system for a property.
       (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized 
     to be appropriated such sums as are necessary to carry out 
     this section.

  Mr. SANDERS. Madam President, it goes without saying I disagree with 
my good friend from Alabama in terms of his assessment of the climate 
situation. To my mind, the scientific community, the overwhelming 
majority of scientists have made it clear that climate change is real, 
caused by human activity, is already causing devastating problems in 
our country and around the world, that we have a limited opportunity to 
try to transform our energy system so a bad situation does not become 
much worse. One of the ways we transform our energy system is by moving 
to such sustainable energies as wind, solar, geothermal, and others.
  What this amendment does is propose to create over the next 10 years 
10 million solar rooftops in this country--a massive effort to expand 
solar energy in this country by giving a rebate on new solar systems. 
As we all know, the solar industry is booming. We are seeing 
significant increases in the number of people who are using solar. 
Today there are more than 13,000 megawatts of operating solar capacity, 
nearly half a million photovoltaic systems.
  We have made real progress in recent years. But we have a long way to 
go, and that is what this legislation would do. I wanted to say a word 
about an article that appeared in many of the papers today which I 
think is pretty scary stuff.
  It talks about the Koch brothers being prepared to spend almost $1 
billion in 2016 in order to bring forward their very rightwing agenda. 
When we hear these numbers about one family--the second wealthiest 
family in America, extreme rightwing family--prepared to spend almost 
$1 billion in the coming elections, I think the American people have to 
ask whether the foundations of American democracy have been uprooted 
and whether in fact we are moving to an oligarchic form of society. As 
many people know, what oligarchy is about is when you have very wealthy 
and powerful people controlling what goes on.
  What the history of America presumably has been about is ordinary 
people determining what happens in our country. Ordinary people elect 
Members of the House and elect Members of the Senate. Now what we have 
is one family worth some $85 billion prepared to spend in the next 
election almost as much as Obama spent and almost as much as Romney 
spent in the last Presidential election.
  My guess is in the coming years what we are going to see is the major 
and most effective and most powerful political party in America is not 
the Republican Party. It is not the Democratic Party. It is the Koch 
brothers party. They already have assembled, as I understand it, a 
political database which has more information than the Republican Party 
database.
  We have to take a very hard look at what is going on and determine 
whether this is what we believe our democracy should be--a billionaire 
family with more power than either the Democratic or Republican 
Parties.
  In the last election the Republican candidate for President, Mitt 
Romney, spent about $446 million from his campaign committee--about 
half of what the Koch network plans to spend next year. President Obama 
spent $715 million in 2012 from his campaign committee. The difference 
is that Obama and Romney raised significant sums of money from people 
all over the country, people who may have contributed 50 bucks or 100 
bucks, and now we have one family preparing to spend almost as much 
money as either Obama or Romney spent, and that is a frightening 
situation. It tells me loudly and clearly that we must overturn this 
disastrous Supreme Court decision called Citizens United.


                          Rebuild America Act

  Madam President, today I have introduced legislation that calls for a 
$1 trillion investment to rebuild our collapsing infrastructure; that 
is, our

[[Page S519]]

roads, bridges, wastewater plants, water systems, dams, levees, rail, 
airports.
  Everybody in the Senate and I hope everybody in America understands 
that our infrastructure is collapsing. We can't avoid dealing with this 
issue. We can't turn our backs on this issue. I am a former mayor, and 
what I can say is that infrastructure does not get better when we 
ignore it. It gets worse, and it becomes more expensive to fix.
  For most of our history the United States proudly led the world in 
building innovative infrastructure, from inland canals to the 
transcontinental railroad. We implemented huge flood-control projects 
and embarked on an ambitious rural electrification program. We built 
modern airports and the Interstate Highway System. In terms of 
infrastructure, we were the envy of the world. Sadly, that is no longer 
the case.
  Today the United States spends just 2.4 percent of GDP on 
infrastructure--less than at any point in the past 20 years. Europe 
spends twice that amount, and China spends close to four times our 
rate. We are falling further and further behind, and that is not where 
the United States of America should be.
  Today we are 12th in the world in terms of the quality of our 
infrastructure when we used to be No. 1. One out of every nine bridges 
in our country is structurally deficient and nearly one-quarter are 
functionally obsolete. Almost one-third of our roads are in poor or 
mediocre condition, and more than 42 percent of urban highways are 
congested. Urban and suburban transit systems are struggling to address 
deferred maintenance even as ridership steadily increases.
  No one argues about the need to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure. 
When we do that, we get an additional bonus because if we invest $1 
trillion over a 5-year period, we can create 13 million decent-paying 
jobs, and that is exactly what we should be doing. Real unemployment 
today is not 5.6 percent, it is 11 percent. Youth unemployment is 18 
percent. African-American youth unemployment is 30 percent. We need to 
create millions of decent-paying jobs, and the best way we can do that 
is by rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure.
  With that, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Maine.
  Ms. COLLINS. I ask unanimous consent that the pending amendments be 
set aside and that I be permitted to proceed as in morning business for 
up to 10 minutes.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


                       529 College Savings Plans

  Ms. COLLINS. Madam President, in President Obama's State of the Union 
Address last week, he outlined an agenda focused on what he called 
middle-class economics, which he described as providing Americans with 
the ``tools they needed to go as far as their effort and their dreams 
will take them.''
  Our country thrives when hard-working Americans prosper. The 
President was right to praise policies, such as the GI bill and Social 
Security, that have helped us to do just that. That is why I am 
perplexed at the President's proposal to tax the earnings of 529 
college savings plan accounts. Rather than help American families meet 
the onerous cost of a college education, this new tax would greatly 
diminish the benefits of a law that is helping millions of parents plan 
for their children's futures. The President's proposal undermines the 
very values we should be promoting--families making sacrifices today in 
order to better provide for their children tomorrow. The President's 
plan would also lead to more student loan debt for many young people at 
a time when concern over the level of debt is rising.
  I would also note that the President has proposed eliminating the tax 
deduction on interest on student loan payments.
  One of the first questions new parents ask themselves is how they 
will be able to pay for their children's education. For the past 14 
years the 529 accounts have been an important part of the answer. They 
have allowed parents to save for their children's education in tax-
advantaged accounts. Regular, affordable contributions made with after-
tax dollars from their paychecks grow over time. When college years 
start, those savings and the earnings from their investments can be 
withdrawn tax free for educational expenses. These small sacrifices 
made from paycheck to paycheck can have an enormous impact, making real 
the dream of higher education.
  Parents know that receiving a college degree greatly improves their 
child's future earnings potential. In fact, according to data compiled 
by the U.S. Census Bureau in the year 2011, individuals with college 
degrees earn approximately $1 million more over the course of their 
careers than do workers with high school diplomas. Census data also 
showed that people with higher levels of education are more likely to 
be employed full time year-round. College graduates also tend to have 
access to more specialized jobs that, in turn, yield higher wages.
  Critics of the 529 plans assert that they disproportionately benefit 
very high-income families who could afford to pay for college without 
the tax-free growth in these dedicated savings accounts. Data from the 
College Savings Foundation, however, counters this assertion. According 
to the foundation, the average value in one of these 529 accounts is 
$19,774. Additionally, the average contribution to accounts that 
receive regular electronic contributions, such as those coming from 
paycheck withholding, is just $175 a month. That is clearly more in 
line with hard-working families trying to make ends meet than with 
affluent families who enjoy significant disposable income.
  My home State provides a great example of the benefits of the 529 
law. After this law was passed in 2001, thousands of Maine families 
established these accounts, but then came a powerful extra incentive. 
In 2008 the Harold Alfond Foundation, which was established by one of 
Maine's greatest philanthropists, created the Harold Alfond College 
Challenge. This program now provides a $500 contribution to the college 
savings account of every baby born in Maine. To date, some 23,000 Maine 
families have used this generous gift to begin planning for the future 
education of their children. As their parents' own contributions are 
added to the account, the future becomes even brighter for these 
children and for our State. As the children grow and make their own 
contributions from afterschool and summer jobs, so too grows their 
appreciation of financial responsibility and self-reliance.
  The President says his proposal is driven in part by the need to 
simplify the Tax Code. Our Tax Code certainly needs simplification, and 
I hope that becomes a major accomplishment of this Congress. But the 
question must be asked--how does creating a difference between the 529 
contributions already made, which would remain untaxed, and new 
contributions, which would be taxed, simplify anything? And perhaps 
more to the point, in addition to simplification, our Tax Code needs 
predictability.
  Before I joined the Senate, I was employed at Husson University in 
Bangor, ME--an outstanding institution that has a high percentage of 
students who are the very first in their families to attend college. 
Every day, I saw how hard parents and students worked, how many 
sacrifices they made in order to make higher education a reality.
  My experience at Husson is the chief reason why one of the very first 
bills I introduced in this Chamber was the College Affordability and 
Access Act. That bill called for creating tax-preferred education 
savings account--the precursor to the Coverdell savings accounts--tax 
incentives for employer-provided educational assistance, and a tax 
deduction for student loan interest. Many provisions of that bill are 
now law but would also be harmed by the President's proposal.
  The 529 college savings plan program channels the determination that 
I saw while working at Husson University and that exists throughout our 
great country into a tangible benefit built upon the virtues of saving 
and planning for the future. Changing the tax rules for the 529 
accounts would break a promise to families across this country who are 
working hard to save for their children's educations to help them 
attain a brighter future.
  I urge my colleagues to join me in working to make college more 
accessible and more affordable and to save the 529 college savings plan 
program.

[[Page S520]]

  I thank the sponsors and managers of this bill.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Alaska.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Madam President, I rise and thank my colleague from 
Maine for bringing up this very important issue. I would like her to 
know that I join with her in a concern that has been raised with the 
President and this proposal.
  As the mom of two young men who are just finishing their years in 
college--I have one who graduated last year and one who will graduate 
in May. Very early on we participated in the 529 plan that was offered 
in the State of Alaska.
  In fact, in my early years as a State legislator, it was my 
legislation in the Statehouse that set up the University of Alaska 529 
College Savings Plan, and our boys were direct beneficiaries of that, 
if you will, because it allowed us, as parents, to begin our savings in 
a way we knew, when it came time for them to go to schools, we would be 
as prepared as we could be at that point in time.
  I don't think any family is ever really prepared, particularly for 
the extraordinary costs of higher education. We were fortunate in that 
our sons chose to attend schools that were not some of the most 
expensive schools in the country--they attended State universities--but 
what we paid as a family for their college education, and having two 
boys in college at the same time puts a stress on families that is very 
real. So the suggestion that somehow these 529s benefit a very limited 
group of families across the Nation, I think, belies the obvious.
  I think we all try to do the best we can by our kids, and saving for 
their future when they are very young is important.
  So when we have these programs that will allow and encourage families 
to do this, knowing there will be a tax benefit, it is important. It is 
important for the families, it is important for the young people 
looking to their opportunities in college and, hopefully, when they 
complete their college education, they are not bearing these incredibly 
crushing financial burdens.
  Again, I applaud the efforts of my colleague and I look forward to 
working with her on this very important issue.
  With that, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Oregon.


                  Amendment No. 174 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. MERKLEY. Madam President, I rise to ask unanimous consent to set 
aside the pending amendment and call up Merkley amendment No. 174.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Oregon [Mr. Merkley] proposes an amendment 
     numbered 174 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. MERKLEY. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

   (Purpose: To express the sense of Congress that the United States 
 should prioritize and fund adaptation projects in communities in the 
 United States while also helping to fund climate change adaptation in 
                         developing countries)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING FUNDING OF CLIMATE 
                   CHANGE ADAPTATION PROGRAMS.

       It is the sense of Congress that--
       (1) President Obama has committed $3,000,000,000 from the 
     United States to the Green Climate Fund, with the objective 
     of helping developing countries deal with the impacts of 
     climate change and advancing mitigation efforts;
       (2) many communities in the United States, including many 
     rural and indigenous communities, face social and economic 
     challenges that rival those in developing countries and are 
     also being impacted by climate change;
       (3) these communities include indigenous and traditional 
     communities in the Arctic region of the United States;
       (4) similar opportunities for adaptation projects exist 
     across rural and other vulnerable communities in the United 
     States; and
       (5) the United States should prioritize and fund adaptation 
     projects in vulnerable communities in the United States, 
     including rural and indigenous communities, while also 
     helping to fund climate change adaptation and mitigation in 
     developing countries.

  Mr. MERKLEY. Madam President, in very brief format, this amendment is 
about recognizing that global warming is having an impact on some of 
the poorest countries around the world, and that the United States 
should work with these nations in terms of helping them address some of 
those consequences. But the amendment also notes that we have 
communities in the United States that are poor and struggling with the 
impacts of climate change and that we should give much attention to 
helping those communities address the impacts as well and that these 
two issues--helping poor countries around the world and helping 
communities within the United States--are not in conflict with each 
other in that we should be doing both of these things.


                  Amendment No. 125 to Amendment No. 2

       (Purpose: To eliminate unnecessary tax subsidies and 
     provide infrastructure funding.)

  I wish to call up a second amendment, so I ask unanimous consent to 
set aside the pending amendment and call up amendment No. 125.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Oregon [Mr. Merkley] proposes an amendment 
     numbered 125 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. MERKLEY. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  (The amendment is printed in the Record of January 22, 2015, under 
``Text of Amendments.'')


 =========================== NOTE =========================== 

  
  On page S520, January 27, 2015, in the third column, the 
following language appears: (The amendment is printed in the 
Record of January 26, 2015, under . . .
  
  The online Record has been corrected to read: (The amendment is 
printed in the Record of January 22, 2015, under . . .


 ========================= END NOTE ========================= 

  Mr. MERKLEY. Madam President, this amendment recognizes that 
construction jobs can play a key role in strengthening our economy, and 
not just strengthening our economy with current jobs but rebuilding 
infrastructure or building new infrastructure that will facilitate a 
very successful economy in the future.
  This particular amendment proposes that we not create 4,000 
construction jobs in the pipeline but that we create 400,000 jobs 
rebuilding key infrastructure in a variety of ways across our Nation.
  I think as we wrestle with both the current economy and the strength 
of the future economy, this is an idea well worth considering.
  Madam President, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Washington.


                  Amendment No. 131 to Amendment No. 2

  Ms. CANTWELL. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside 
the pending amendment and call up my amendment No. 131.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Washington [Ms. Cantwell], for herself and 
     Mrs. Boxer, proposes an amendment numbered 131 to amendment 
     No. 2.

  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To ensure that if the Keystone XL Pipeline is built, it will 
  be built safely and in compliance with United States environmental 
                                 laws)

       In section 2(a), strike the period at the end and insert 
     the following:
     , subject to--
       (1) all applicable laws (including regulations);
       (2) all mitigation measures that are required in permits 
     issued by permitting agencies; and
       (3) all project-specific special conditions listed in 
     Appendix Z of the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact 
     Statement issued by the Secretary of State in January 2014.

  Ms. CANTWELL. Madam President, as my colleague said, we are going 
back and forth on offering amendments to this bill and I hope this 
process will lead us toward getting this bill wrapped up. I know many 
of my colleagues have been talking about various aspects of this 
legislation, and this particular amendment focuses on making sure that 
if this project goes forward that we meet certain environmental 
standards.
  I can't say how important that is because the first serious delay in 
the approval process came because a bad route was selected. The 
pipeline was

[[Page S521]]

originally proposed to go through an aquifer that is critically 
important to a large percentage of agriculture in the area. So this is 
very important to me, and that was a very glaring example that we need 
to get this right.
  What was wrong then is that Congress was set to intervene and 
basically say the State Department was wrong and just go ahead and 
approve this pipeline. So I feel we are about at that same point again 
in saying just forget the administrative process and let us go ahead 
and deem this approved. So if Congress, rather than the administration, 
approves this pipeline, the American people will lose all the 
protections and conditions attached as part of the national interest 
determination.
  Just so people understand, according to Executive Order 13337, the 
State Department can require permits to contain ``such terms and 
conditions as the national interest may . . . require.'' So the 
President can decide a pipeline is in the national interest if it is 
constructed to meet those specific standards.
  In this case, the State Department's environmental impact statement 
outlined hundreds of conditions that should be met to ensure the 
pipeline is built to the highest safety standard. To quote the 
environmental impact statement:

       If the proposed Project is determined to serve the national 
     interest . . . the applicant would be required to abide by 
     certain conditions listed in this Supplemental EIS and the 
     Presidential Permit.

  So these conditions, or mitigation measures, as the report refers to 
them, are compiled in one section of the report and it highlights the 
measures TransCanada needs to take to deal with and reduce the impacts 
when they are operating this pipeline. These are higher standards for 
environmental and public safety that the company would be obligated to 
meet.
  The problem is the bill before us would authorize the pipeline 
without those mechanisms and without those conditions. If TransCanada 
declined to meet these conditions, there would be no legal recourse for 
the injured parties to take TransCanada to court.
  I wish to talk about those conditions that are included in the 
environmental impact statement so that my colleagues understand what we 
are talking about when they say they would vote to bypass this process. 
I will give three examples of the conditions included in the 
environmental impact statement.
  First, along the proposed pipeline there are areas where the terrain 
is fragile. There has been a lot of discussion of the Sand Hills region 
of Nebraska and how difficult it would be to site a pipeline on those 
very fragile sandy soils. The Sand Hills are so fragile that the 
current route goes around them just to compensate. However, in southern 
South Dakota and northern Nebraska, there are areas that, according to 
the environmental impact statement, ``exhibit conditions similar to the 
Sand Hills Region and are very susceptible to wind erosion.''
  Let me read from the appendix about how TransCanada would be required 
to operate the pipeline in those areas.

       This document proves site-specific reclamation plans that 
     itemize construction, erosion control, and revegetation 
     procedures for those fragile areas . . . To reduce the 
     potential impacts related to severe wind and water and 
     erosion, the following summary . . . of best management 
     practices would be implemented during construction, 
     reclamation and post-construction.

  This document then goes on to list 16 specific bullet points outlined 
that TransCanada must meet. These conditions for the Sand Hills-like 
area along the route include: avoiding wetlands, avoiding erosion-prone 
areas such as ridgetops, working with landowners to build fences to 
prevent livestock from the construction, providing compensation to 
landowners who need to let pastures rest until vegetation can be 
reestablished.
  Most people would agree TransCanada should do these things. I think 
the American people would say follow the rules and do the things that 
are required. It makes sense to do these things for the protection of 
our environment and vulnerable areas and for the landowners whose 
livelihoods depend on the land around the pipeline. But if S. 1 became 
law, the State Department would not have the authority to ensure the 
things I just mentioned--that they build the fences, they compensate 
the ranchers as outlined, and the conditions be required that the State 
Department has laid out.
  So the State Department, the Fish and Wildlife Service, and 
TransCanada are working on a plan to ensure the protection of 
endangered species along the pipeline route and these important things 
are part of what we want to see addressed. Implementation of an 
agreement that is designed to avoid harm to these species is what we 
are trying to make sure of if the President has the authority to issue 
a permit.
  In contrast, the bill we are considering, S. 1, exempts the pipeline 
from further review under the Endangered Species Act. According to the 
State Department, the process that is now underway to establish these 
implementing agreements to protect these vulnerable species would 
stop--would stop--if this bill became law.
  Finally, the conditions would require TransCanada to improve its 
safety standards. And my colleagues may not know that TransCanada 
received a ``warning letter'' from the Federal Pipeline and Hazardous 
Materials Safety Administration for violating pipeline safety 
regulations over a year and a half ago. As outlined in a September 26, 
2013, letter from the administration:

       TransCanada experienced a high rejection rate for welding 
     and failed to use properly qualify welders.

  So in 1 week alone, 72 percent of TransCanada's welds had to be 
replaced. After TransCanada's shoddy work came to light, the State 
Department added 2 new safety conditions to the 57 conditions that the 
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration had already 
required.
  One of those conditions required TransCanada to hire a third-party 
contractor to monitor pipeline construction and report back to the U.S. 
Government whether that construction is sound.
  So this new condition was that TransCanada adopt a quality management 
program to ensure ``this pipeline is--from the beginning--built to the 
highest standards by both the Keystone personnel and its many 
contractors.'' But if this legislation is approved, this pipeline and 
all the conditions I just mentioned fall away. That is why I do believe 
that, with this legislation, we are acting prematurely. So I am 
offering this amendment.

  Last week we had a very big reminder that pipeline spills do happen 
when 30,000 gallons of oil spilled into the Yellowstone River in 
Montana--not the first spill into that river, unfortunately.
  So I ask my colleagues, why would we continue on a process without 
making sure that TransCanada follows the established safety issues on 
pipelines and we make sure that they comply with these environmental 
laws?
  I hope my colleagues will join me in voting for this amendment. I 
hope my colleagues will stand with 61 percent of the American people 
who believe that due process is more important than special interests.
  Madam President, I yield to my colleague from Alaska.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Alaska.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Madam President, we have a number of amendments 
pending on both sides of the aisle and there are other Senators who are 
working with us to offer them tonight. We will be working to set votes 
on many of these pending amendments tomorrow, with nongermane 
amendments set at a 60-vote threshold.
  So if there are other Senators on either side who have amendments 
they intend to offer, they should be coming down to the floor to talk 
with the bill managers and get those amendments pending. We do intend 
to try to get to the third reading of the bill before the end of the 
week.
  With that, I recognize the Senator from North Carolina, who is with 
us to offer an amendment.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from North Carolina.


                  Amendment No. 102 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. TILLIS. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment and call up my amendment No. 102.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:


[[Page S522]]


       The Senator from North Carolina [Mr. Tillis], for himself 
     and Mr. Burr, proposes an amendment numbered 102 to amendment 
     No. 2.

  Mr. TILLIS. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To provide for leasing on the outer Continental Shelf and the 
     distribution of certain qualified revenues from such leasing)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:
      TITLE ___--ATLANTIC OCS ACCESS AND REVENUE SHARE ACT OF 2015

     SEC. __01. SHORT TITLE.

       This title may be cited as the ``Atlantic OCS Access and 
     Revenue Share Act of 2015''.

     SEC. __02. DEFINITIONS.

       In this title:
       (1) Mid-atlantic producing state.--The term ``Mid-Atlantic 
     Producing State'' means each of the States of--
       (A) Delaware;
       (B) Maryland;
       (C) North Carolina; and
       (D) Virginia.
       (2) Mid-atlantic planning area.--The term ``Mid-Atlantic 
     Planning Area'' means the Mid-Atlantic Planning Area of the 
     outer Continental Shelf designated in the document entitled 
     ``Final Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program 
     2012-17'' and dated June 2012.
       (3) Qualified outer continental shelf revenues.--
       (A) In general.--The term ``qualified outer Continental 
     Shelf revenues'' means all rentals, royalties, bonus bids, 
     and other sums due and payable to the United States from 
     leases entered into on or after the date of enactment of this 
     Act.
       (B) Exclusions.--The term ``qualified outer Continental 
     Shelf revenues'' does not include--
       (i) revenues from the forfeiture of a bond or other surety 
     securing obligations other than royalties, civil penalties, 
     or royalties taken by the Secretary in-kind and not sold; or
       (ii) revenues generated from leases subject to section 8(g) 
     of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1337(g)).
       (4) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary 
     of the Interior.
       (5) South atlantic producing state.--The term ``South 
     Atlantic Producing State'' means each of the States of--
       (A) Florida;
       (B) Georgia; and
       (C) South Carolina.
       (6) South atlantic planning area.--The term ``South 
     Atlantic Planning Area'' means the South Atlantic Planning 
     Area of the outer Continental Shelf designated in the 
     document entitled ``Final Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas 
     Leasing Program 2012-17'' and dated June 2012.

     SEC. __03. OFFSHORE OIL AND GAS LEASING IN MID-ATLANTIC AND 
                   SOUTH ATLANTIC PLANNING AREAS.

       (a) In General.--The Secretary sha1l--
       (1) not later than July 15, 2016, publish and submit to 
     Congress a new proposed oil and gas leasing program prepared 
     under section 18 of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 
     U.S.C. 1344) for the 5-year period beginning on July 15, 2017 
     and ending July 15, 2022; and
       (2) not later than July 15, 2017, approve a final oil and 
     gas leasing program under that section for that period.
       (b) Inclusion of Mid-Atlantic and South Atlantic Planning 
     Areas.--The Secretary shall include in the program described 
     in subsection (a) annual lease sales in both the Mid-Atlantic 
     Planning Area and the South Atlantic Planning Area.
       (c) Prohibition On Leasing Certain Areas--
       (1) Petition.--Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b), the 
     leasing of areas within the administrative boundaries of a 
     Mid-Atlantic Producing State or South Atlantic Producing 
     State that are 30 miles or less off the coast of the State 
     shall be prohibited.

     SEC. __04. DISPOSITION OF QUALIFIED OUTER CONTINENTAL SHELF 
                   REVENUES FROM MID-ATLANTIC LEASING ACTIVITIES.

       (a) In General.--Notwithstanding section 9 of the Outer 
     Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1338) and subject to 
     this section, for each applicable fiscal year, the Secretary 
     of the Treasury shall deposit--
       (1) 50 percent of qualified outer Continental Shelf 
     revenues generated from leasing activities in the Mid-
     Atlantic Planning Area in the general fund of the Treasury; 
     and
       (2) 50 percent of qualified outer Continental Shelf 
     revenues generated from leasing activities in the Mid-
     Atlantic Planning Area in a special account in the Treasury 
     from which the Secretary shall disburse--
       (A) 75 percent to Mid-Atlantic Producing States in 
     accordance with subsection (b); and
       (B) 25 percent to provide financial assistance to States in 
     accordance with section 200305 of title 54, United States 
     Code, which shall be considered income to the Land and Water 
     Conservation Fund for purposes of section 200302 of that 
     title.
       (b) Allocation Among Mid-Atlantic Producing States.--
       (1) In general.--Subject to paragraph (2), the amount made 
     available under subsection (a)(2)(A) from any lease entered 
     into within the Mid-Atlantic Planning Area shall be allocated 
     to each Mid-Atlantic producing State in amounts (based on a 
     formula established by the Secretary by regulation) that are 
     inversely proportional to the respective distances between 
     the point on the coastline of each Mid-Atlantic Producing 
     State that is closest to the geographic center of the 
     applicable leased tract and the geographic center of the 
     leased tract.
       (2) Minimum allocation.--The amount allocated to a Mid-
     Atlantic Producing State each fiscal year under paragraph (1) 
     shall be at least 10 percent of the amounts available under 
     subsection (a)(2)(A).
       (c) Timing.--The amounts required to be deposited under 
     subsection (a)(2) for the applicable fiscal year shall be 
     made available in accordance with that paragraph during the 
     fiscal year immediately following the applicable fiscal year.
       (d) Administration.--Amounts made available under 
     subsection (a)(2) shall--
       (1) be made available, without further appropriation, in 
     accordance with this section;
       (2) remain available until expended; and
       (3) be in addition to any amounts appropriated under--
       (A) the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1331 
     et seq.);
       (B) chapter 2003 of title 54, United States Code; or
       (C) any other provision of law.
       (e) Distributed Qualified Outer Continental Shelf Revenues 
     Shall Be Net of Receipts.--For each of fiscal years 2017 
     through 2055, expenditures under subsection (a)(2) and shall 
     be net of receipts from that fiscal year from qualified outer 
     Continental shelf revenues from any area in the Mid-Atlantic 
     Planning Area.

     SEC. __05. DISPOSITION OF QUALIFIED OUTER CONTINENTAL SHELF 
                   REVENUES FROM SOUTH ATLANTIC LEASING 
                   ACTIVITIES.

       (a) In General.--Notwithstanding section 9 of the Outer 
     Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1338) and subject to 
     this section, for each applicable fiscal year, the Secretary 
     of the Treasury shall deposit--
       (1) 50 percent of qualified outer Continental Shelf 
     revenues generated from leasing activities in the South 
     Atlantic Planning Area in the general fund of the Treasury; 
     and
       (2) 50 percent of qualified outer Continental Shelf 
     revenues generated from leasing activities in the South 
     Atlantic Planning Area in a special account in the Treasury 
     from which the Secretary shall disburse--
       (A) 75 percent to South Atlantic Producing States in 
     accordance with subsection (b); and
       (B) 25 percent to provide financial assistance to States in 
     accordance with section 200305 of title 54, United States 
     Code, which shall be considered income to the Land and Water 
     Conservation Fund for purposes of section 200302 of that 
     title.
       (b) Allocation Among South Atlantic Producing States.--
       (1) In general.--Subject to paragraph (2), the amount made 
     available under subsection (a)(2)(A) from any lease entered 
     into within the South Atlantic Planning Area shall be 
     allocated to each South Atlantic producing State in amounts 
     (based on a formula established by the Secretary by 
     regulation) that are inversely proportional to the respective 
     distances between the point on the coastline of each South 
     Atlantic Producing State that is closest to the geographic 
     center of the applicable leased tract and the geographic 
     center of the leased tract.
       (2) Minimum allocation.--The amount allocated to a South 
     Atlantic Producing State each fiscal year under paragraph (1) 
     shall be at least 10 percent of the amounts available under 
     subsection (a)(2)(A).
       (c) Timing.--The amounts required to be deposited under 
     paragraph subsection (a)(2) for the applicable fiscal year 
     shall be made available in accordance with that paragraph 
     during the fiscal year immediately following the applicable 
     fiscal year.
       (d) Administration.--Amounts made available under 
     subsection (a)(2) shall--
       (1) be made available, without further appropriation, in 
     accordance with this section;
       (2) remain available until expended; and
       (3) be in addition to any amounts appropriated under--
       (A) the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1331 
     et seq.);
       (B) chapter 2003 of title 54, United States Code; or
       (C) any other provision of law.
       (e) Distributed Qualified Outer Continental Shelf Revenues 
     Shall Be Net of Receipts.--For each of fiscal years 2017 
     through 2055, expenditures under subsection (a)(2) and shall 
     be net of receipts from that fiscal year from qualified outer 
     Continental shelf revenues from any area in the South 
     Atlantic Planning Area.

  Mr. TILLIS. Madam President, earlier this week--actually, yesterday 
and today--the Department of the Interior announced a plan that will 
allow the permitting in 2017 for offshore oil and gas drilling off the 
Outer Continental Shelf of our beautiful east coast.
  The concern we have with this measure is not unlike the concern my 
friends may have in Alaska, with steps taken by the administration that 
actually limit the true potential of these regions. Like Alaska, we 
have a number of opportunities for offshore oil and

[[Page S523]]

natural gas drilling that have not been exploited in the past, and I am 
afraid that under the current course and speed of the administration's 
action, they will not be fully exploited to the benefit of North 
Carolinians and many east coast States.
  That is why Senator Burr and I have sponsored an amendment that 
directs the administration to take more decisive and more comprehensive 
action so we can seize the opportunity for North Carolina and many of 
our neighbor States.
  The main reason we are doing this is because I think North Carolina 
and the east coast can do their part to make our Nation an energy super 
power. We can also have enormously positive impact on our economy as we 
move forward. This slide depicts some of the initial estimates for the 
economic impact that we could have by simply directing the Department 
of the Interior to issue leases and to allow exploration and ultimately 
extraction off the coast.
  This graphic gives us an idea, from Delaware down to Florida, of the 
potential jobs creation. We can see that in North Carolina that is 
55,000 jobs. It is 55,000 jobs in some of the hardest hit areas of 
North Carolina, where people are out of work, and the unemployment rate 
is well above the State average. It is a jobs creation opportunity that 
we are just waiting to be able to provide to the States with the 
ultimate authority to decide whether they are going to move forward.
  In terms of the economic impact, it is over $190 billion in capital 
investment and nearly $51 billion in revenue to the Federal Government 
and to State governments between 2017 and 2035.
  This opportunity is something that I hope doesn't go without the full 
efforts of the State to actually determine how we can do it in an 
environmentally responsible way.
  I was speaker of the house before I came into this great body, and we 
took the steps to put into place a regulatory framework to allow 
potential natural gas drilling within the State of North Carolina. We 
did it in a very responsible way, and we did it in a way that made sure 
stakeholders had the opportunity--environmentalists, business people, 
travel and tourism--so we make sure we get it right. I believe we have 
laid the groundwork with the State. Now we want to do the same thing 
for the opportunity that we have near the Outer Continental Shelf.
  The process will involve the input of several stakeholders. It will 
involve the input of environmentalists and key stakeholders across the 
State to make sure we get this right. Ultimately, it gives the States 
the right to determine whether they want to pursue this--from Florida 
to Delaware.
  The other thing it does is addresses a number of concerns I heard 
when I was a legislator and since I was speaker. It has to do with one 
of the greatest assets we have in North Carolina; that is North 
Carolina's beautiful coast.
  This is a picture of a North Carolina beach today. It is beautiful. 
It is why we have millions of people come visit our coast every year. 
Based on our amendment, this is a picture of how that same beach will 
look after we authorize drilling and we are actually creating those 
jobs. It is that same beautiful beach because we have taken the steps 
to make sure that any drilling would be beyond the sight line of our 
beautiful beaches. I believe, as a result, we will have travel and 
tourism on our side because those jobs create additional opportunity to 
expand opportunities for travel and tourism.
  Then, finally, I want to talk about what good the revenue to the 
State can do for this very same area. We desperately need increased 
infrastructure in the eastern part of our State. We desperately need 
funds to renourish our beaches, and we desperately need funds to clear 
our inlet and outfit our ports so that North Carolina can play a part 
in the new shipping patterns that will occur post-Panama Canal upgrade.
  So in terms of economics, it is fairly simple. We are looking for 
about 50 percent of a revenue share, with 37 percent of that going to 
the States and for the effective regions for items such as inlet 
clearing and beach renourishment.
  We are also looking to have 12.5 percent of the revenues dedicated to 
the Land and Water Conservation Fund so we can continue the good work 
of setting aside irreplaceable lands and increase outdoor recreation 
activities.
  I believe this is an opportunity for North Carolina to do its part to 
make America the energy super power that we need it to be, to improve 
our economy in North Carolina, and to contribute to improving the 
economy of this great Nation.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Massachusetts.


                  Amendment No. 178 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. MARKEY. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the pending 
amendment be set aside and call up Markey amendment No. 178.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Massachusetts [Mr. Markey] proposes an 
     amendment numbered 178 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. MARKEY. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To ensure that products derived from tar sands are treated as 
     crude oil for purposes of the Federal excise tax on petroleum)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. ___. INCLUSION OF OIL DERIVED FROM TAR SANDS AS CRUDE 
                   OIL.

       This Act shall not take effect prior to 10 days following 
     the date that diluted bitumen and other bituminous mixtures 
     derived from tar sands or oil sands are treated as crude oil 
     for purposes of section 4612(a)(1) of the Internal Revenue 
     Code of 1986.

                  Amendment No. 141 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. MARKEY. Madam President, I have a second amendment, Markey 
amendment No. 141. I ask unanimous consent to set aside the pending 
amendment and call up Markey amendment No. 141.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Massachusetts [Mr. Markey] proposes an 
     amendment numbered 141 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. MARKEY. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of 
the amendment be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

 (Purpose: To delay the effective date until the President determines 
       that the pipeline will not have certain negative impacts)

       At the end, add the following:

     SEC. ___. EFFECTIVE DATE.

       Notwithstanding subsections (2)(a) and (2)(b), this Act 
     shall not take effect until any consultation, analysis or 
     review required by the National Environmental Policy Act, 
     Endangered Species Act, or any other provision of law that 
     requires Federal agency consultation or review, is completed 
     with respect to whether increased greenhouse gas emissions, 
     including the indirect greenhouse gas emissions over the 
     lifecycle of oil sands crude oil production, and 
     transportation from the diluted bitumen and other bituminous 
     mixtures derived from tar sands or oil sands transported 
     through the pipeline, described in section 2(a), are likely 
     to contribute to an increase in more extreme weather events.

  Mr. MARKEY. Madam President, the subject matter of these two 
amendments is, No. 1, the Canadian oil company that wants to build a 
pipeline through our country right now is exempt from having to pay 
taxes into the oilspill liability trust fund. In other words, if there 
is an actual accident in the United States, if the oil pipe breaks or 
something happens, the Canadians will not have paid into the oilspill 
liability trust fund the way every American pipeline company has to do.
  So my first amendment would just say that they cannot be exempt from 
that, and the hundreds of millions of dollars which they are 
responsible for would have to be put into the trust fund.
  The second amendment is an extreme weather amendment. That amendment 
would call for a requirement and analysis of the impact that global 
warming would have from the tar sands pollution and would require that 
we have that scientific analysis just so that we can understand it and 
its impact on extreme weather events in the United States and across 
the planet.
  We would need both of those amendments to be debated in order to make

[[Page S524]]

sure we fully understand the implications of what is being debated 
here.
  Finally, I wish to say that I note Senator Cruz from Texas has an 
amendment which would almost automatically approve any natural gas 
exports that were going to any WTO country in the world. I think that 
is a very bad stance for the Senate to take.
  We have to debate what the impact of the exportation of natural gas 
on a mass basis is going to be on the price of natural gas here in the 
United States--the price that utilities are going to have to pay for 
natural gas to generate electricity, the speed with which we will be 
able to transform our automotive sector from oil over to natural gas, 
the impact on the petrochemical industry and other industries that are 
now increasingly using low-priced natural gas in our country. We also 
have to deal with the fact that the Energy Information Agency says that 
the already-approved export of natural gas will lead to a more than 50-
percent increase in domestic natural gas prices for Americans at home.
  I understand why the natural gas industry wants to do it, but I think 
we have to have a big debate here in Congress over the impact that 
those natural gas imports are going to have, especially if they are 
approved automatically if they are heading to any WTO country in the 
world.
  I yield back the remainder of my time.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Rhode Island.


                  Amendment No. 148 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. WHITEHOUSE. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the 
pending amendment be set aside and I be allowed to call up my 
amendment, Whitehouse amendment No. 148.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Rhode Island [Mr. Whitehouse], for 
     himself, Mr. Leahy, Mrs. Boxer, Mr. Durbin, Mr. Brown, Mr. 
     Udall, Mrs. Shaheen, Ms. Baldwin, Mr. Murphy, and Mr. 
     Heinrich, proposes an amendment numbered 148 to amendment No. 
     2.

  Mr. WHITEHOUSE. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment 
be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

 (Purpose: To require campaign finance disclosures for certain persons 
                benefitting from tar sands development)

       At the end, add the following:

     SEC. __. CAMPAIGN FINANCE DISCLOSURES BY THOSE PROFITING FROM 
                   TAR SANDS DEVELOPMENT.

       Section 304 of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1974 
     (52 U.S.C. 30104) is amended by adding at the end the 
     following new subsection:
       ``(j) Disclosure by Tar Sands Beneficiaries.--
       ``(1) In general.--
       ``(A) Initial disclosure.--Every covered entity which has 
     made covered disbursements and received covered transfers in 
     an aggregate amount in excess of $10,000 during the period 
     beginning on December 1, 2012, and ending on the date that is 
     165 days after the date of the enactment of this subsection 
     shall file with the Commission a statement containing the 
     information described in paragraph (2) not later than the 
     date that is 180 days after the date of the enactment of this 
     subsection.
       ``(B) Subsequent disclosures.--Every covered entity which 
     makes covered disbursements (other than covered disbursement 
     reported under subparagraph (A))and received covered 
     transfers (other than a covered transfer reported under 
     subparagraph (A)) in an aggregate amount in excess of $10,000 
     during any calendar year shall, within 48 hours of each 
     disclosure date, file with the Commission a statement 
     containing the information described in paragraph (2).
       ``(2) Contents of statement.--Each statement required to be 
     filed under this subsection shall be made under penalty of 
     perjury and shall contain the following information:
       ``(A) The identification of the person making the 
     disbursement or receiving the transfer, of any person sharing 
     or exercising direction or control over the activities of 
     such person, and of the custodian of the books and accounts 
     of the person making the disbursement or receiving the 
     transfer.
       ``(B) The principal place of business of the person making 
     the disbursement or receiving the transfer, if not an 
     individual.
       ``(C) The amount of each disbursement or transfer of more 
     than $200 during the period covered by the statement and the 
     identification of the person to whom the disbursement was 
     made or from whom the transfer was received.
       ``(D) The elections to which the disbursements or transfers 
     pertain and the names (if known) of the candidates involved.
       ``(E) If the disbursements were paid out of a segregated 
     bank account which consists of funds contributed solely by 
     individuals who are United States citizens or nationals or 
     lawfully admitted for permanent residence (as defined in 
     section 101(a)(20) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 
     U.S.C. 1101(a)(20))) directly to this account for 
     electioneering communications, the names and addresses of all 
     contributors who contributed an aggregate amount of $1,000 or 
     more to that account during--
       ``(i) in the case of a statement under paragraph (1)(A), 
     during the period described in such paragraph, and
       ``(ii) in the case of a statement under paragraph (1)(B), 
     the period beginning on the first day of the preceding 
     calendar year and ending on the disclosure date.

     Nothing in this subparagraph is to be construed as a 
     prohibition on the use of funds in such a segregated account 
     for a purpose other than covered disbursements.
       ``(F) If the disbursements were paid out of funds not 
     described in subparagraph (E), the names and addresses of all 
     contributors who contributed an aggregate amount of $1,000 or 
     more to the person making the disbursement during--
       ``(i) in the case of a statement under paragraph (1)(A), 
     during the period described in such paragraph, and
       ``(ii) in the case of a statement under paragraph (1)(B), 
     the period beginning on the first day of the preceding 
     calendar year and ending on the disclosure date.
       ``(3) Covered entity.--For purposes of this subsection--
       ``(A) In general.--The term `covered entity' means--
       ``(i) any person who is described in subparagraph (B), and
       ``(ii) any person who owns 5 percent or more of any person 
     described in subparagraph (B).
       ``(B) Person described.--A person is described in this 
     subparagraph if such person--
       ``(i) holds one or more tar sands leases, or
       ``(ii) has received revenues or stands to receive revenues 
     of $1,000,000 or greater from tar sands production, including 
     revenues received in connection with--

       ``(I) exploration of tar sands;
       ``(II) extraction of tar sands;
       ``(III) processing of tar sands;
       ``(IV) building, maintaining, and upgrading the Keystone XL 
     pipeline and other related pipelines used in connection with 
     tar sands;
       ``(V) expanding refinery capacity or building, expanding, 
     and retrofitting import and export terminals in connection 
     with tar sands;
       ``(VI) transportation by pipeline, rail, and barge of tar 
     sands;
       ``(VII) refinement of tar sands;
       ``(VIII) importing crude, refined oil, or byproducts 
     derived from tar sands crude;
       ``(IX) exporting crude, byproducts, or refined oil derived 
     from tar sands crude; and
       ``(X) use of production byproducts from tar sands, such as 
     petroleum coke for energy generation.

       ``(C) Tar sands.--For purposes of this paragraph, the term 
     `tar sands' means bitumen from the West Canadian Sedimentary 
     Basin.
       ``(4) Covered disbursement.--For purposes of this 
     subsection, the term `covered disbursement' means a 
     disbursement for any of the following:
       ``(A) An independent expenditure.
       ``(B) A broadcast, cable, or satellite communication (other 
     than a communication described in subsection (f)(3)(B)) 
     which--
       ``(i) refers to a clearly identified candidate for Federal 
     office;
       ``(ii) is made--

       ``(I) in the case of a communication which refers to a 
     candidate for an office other than President or Vice 
     President, during the period beginning on January 1 of the 
     calendar year in which a general or runoff election is held 
     and ending on the date of the general or runoff election (or 
     in the case of a special election, during the period 
     beginning on the date on which the announcement with respect 
     to such election is made and ending on the date of the 
     special election); or
       ``(II) in the case of a communication which refers to a 
     candidate for the office of President or Vice President, is 
     made in any State during the period beginning 120 days before 
     the first primary election, caucus, or preference election 
     held for the selection of delegates to a national nominating 
     convention of a political party is held in any State (or, if 
     no such election or caucus is held in any State, the first 
     convention or caucus of a political party which has the 
     authority to nominate a candidate for the office of President 
     or Vice President) and ending on the date of the general 
     election; and

       ``(iii) in the case of a communication which refers to a 
     candidate for an office other than President or Vice 
     President, is targeted to the relevant electorate (within the 
     meaning of subsection (f)(3)(C)).
       ``(C) A transfer to another person for the purposes of 
     making a disbursement described in subparagraph (A) or (B).
       ``(5) Covered transfer.--For purposes of this subsection, 
     the term `covered transfer' means any amount received by a 
     covered entity for the purposes of making a covered 
     disbursement.
       ``(6) Disclosure date.--For purposes of this subsection, 
     the term `disclosure date' means--

[[Page S525]]

       ``(A) the first date during any calendar year by which a 
     person has made covered disbursements and received covered 
     transfers aggregating in excess of $10,000; and
       ``(B) any other date during such calendar year by which a 
     person has made covered disbursements and received covered 
     transfers aggregating in excess of $10,000 since the most 
     recent disclosure date for such calendar year.
       ``(7) Contracts to disburse; coordination with other 
     requirements; etc,.--Rules similar to the rules of paragraphs 
     (5), (6), and (7) of subsection (f) shall apply for purposes 
     of this subsection.''.

  Mr. WHITEHOUSE. Madam President, I just wish to speak briefly to this 
amendment, which I hope might help answer the mystery as to why the 
first order of business of the new majority in the Senate is S. 1, a 
bill that allows a foreign corporation to run a pipeline across our 
country, seizing American farms and ranches along the way. That would 
not ordinarily seem to be our country's first and highest order of 
business given all of the issues that we face.
  We have seen news reports just today that the legendary Koch brothers 
are gearing up to spend $900 million in the coming election. We have 
seen news reports that compare their political operation to the 
Republican National Committee's political operation--favorably to the 
Koch brothers as having a bigger political operation.
  We know that since Citizens United there has been a torrent of 
corporate money poured into our elections, and a great deal of it has 
come from the fossil fuel industry. We know also that beside that 
torrent of disclosed money has been another torrent of dark money that 
has poured into our elections. We don't know quite where that has come 
from, but there are plenty of reasons to suspect and to suggest that 
money has also come from the fossil fuel industry.
  So we have a situation right now where I think reasonable people 
could look at the facts and draw a sensible inference that the 
Republican Party has been acquired by the fossil fuel industry as its 
political subsidiary. If that were the case, then that might be an 
explanation of why S. 1 does this extraordinary service to a foreign 
corporation at peril to all of the American farms and ranches and 
families whose land would be taken from them in order to give this 
foreign corporation this great boon.
  This amendment would require that companies that will make more than 
$1 million off of the Keystone Pipeline should meet the disclosure 
obligations that we have voted on before in the Senate. These are 
disclosure obligations that Republican Senators have often supported in 
the past.
  Indeed, until 2010 and until the Citizens United decision actually 
showed where the money was coming from and to whom it was going, one of 
the most ardent and eloquent advocates for disclosure was none other 
than the distinguished Senator from Kentucky who is now our majority 
leader. So it would not seem to be out of place to ask for a little bit 
of disclosure, a little bit of transparency, about where the political 
contributions went from the corporations that are going to make so much 
money from this, whether it is more than $1 million made off the 
pipeline or whether it is opening up the tar sands and having tar sands 
leases.
  So I hope we will have a chance to vote on this, and if we are in 
favor of transparency and disclosure and voters understanding what is 
going on around here, this ought to be an amendment we ought to be able 
to support.
  With that, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Gardner). The Senator from New Jersey.
  Mr. BOOKER. First of all, I want to say how good it is to see the 
Presiding Officer, and also recognize that he is a member of the 
nascent Cory caucus, and I respect that quite a bit.


                  Amendment No. 155 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the pending 
amendment in order to call up amendment No. 155.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from New Jersey [Mr. Booker] proposes an 
     amendment numbered 155 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. BOOKER. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of 
the amendment be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

 (Purpose: To allow permitting agencies to consider new circumstances 
                          and new information)

       At the end of section 2, add the following:
       (f) Environmental Impact Statement Savings Clause.--Nothing 
     in subsection (b) relieves any Federal agency of the 
     obligation of the Federal agency to comply with the National 
     Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), 
     including the obligation of the Federal agency to prepare a 
     supplement to the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact 
     Statement described in subsection (b) in connection with the 
     issuance of any permit or authorization needed to construct, 
     connect, operate, or maintain the pipeline and cross-border 
     facilities described in subsection (a) if there are 
     significant new circumstances or information relevant to 
     environmental concerns and bearing on the environmental 
     impacts resulting from the construction, connection, 
     operation, and maintenance of the pipeline and cross-border 
     facilities, including from greenhouse gas emissions 
     associated with the crude oil being transported by the 
     pipeline.

  Mr. BOOKER. Mr. President, I want to say that amendment No. 155 is a 
very important amendment. It is common sense. It is practical. The 
National Environmental Policy Act, NEPA as it is known, is one of the 
most emulated statutes in the world. It is something that many people 
see as valuable in other countries because NEPA, in fact, by many is 
referred to as the modern-day environmental Magna Carta.
  NEPA regulations require agencies to supplement already-issued 
environmental impact statements when significant new circumstances or 
information is found to exist relating to the environmental impact of a 
project. The pending Keystone bill, however--and quite surprisingly--
would deem the final environmental impact statement issued last January 
to fully satisfy this NEPA requirement going ahead. This would remove 
the obligation from permitting agencies to supplement any environmental 
impact statements if significant new circumstances or information is 
discovered.
  This amendment I am putting forward, No. 155, would change that and 
would preserve a commonsense obligation of agencies to supplement the 
environmental impact statement for significant new circumstances or 
information. In other words, if very pertinent information comes 
forward, it would require there be a need to supplement the 
environmental impact statement.
  For example, if the proposed route of the pipeline were changed, it 
could mean that drinking water supplies or critical resources would 
have a higher risk of contamination from a spill. This amendment would 
simply require consideration of significant changes so we don't go 
blindly and put natural resources at greater risk without understanding 
the impact.
  This bill is for me common sense. It says, basically, if 
circumstances change, we should make sure a new environmental impact 
study is considered.
  I would ask my colleagues to support this amendment and not provide 
special treatment to a foreign company that American companies don't 
get that could result in harm to fellow Americans.
  Mr. President, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from North Carolina.


                           Amendment No. 102

  Mr. BURR. Mr. President, I come to the floor today to pledge my 
overwhelming support to Senator Tillis on the Outer Continental Shelf 
amendment that has been placed on the Keystone bill, and I think it is 
apparent with the direction the administration is going that they 
finally realize this is the right thing, but I think codifying that 
into this bill is important.


                  Amendment No. 92 to Amendment No. 2

  I also come today because many of my colleagues in this body support 
the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Just to remind some who might not 
have been here as long, the Land and Water Conservation Fund was 
created and funded by royalties off of this exploration explosion we 
have had over decades in this country.
  I might say a disappointment to me is that over the life of this 
trust fund we created, it never received the appropriations that it 
accrued in a balance. It accrues a certain amount off of royalties and 
it was directed in statute that money goes to fund the Land and

[[Page S526]]

Water Conservation Fund. Let me say to my colleagues, this is the best 
organization to choose where to make that investment. This is not about 
a land grab; this is about providing contiguous pieces of land that 
have restored value. But this is not about initiatives to create new 
national parks. It is to protect the infrastructure that is out there 
in their control, and we have battled for years.
  I would love to come to the floor right now and say I want to offer 
an amendment for full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, 
which should be $900 million a year, but we appropriate $350 million to 
$450 million a year to fund it.
  Unfortunately I am not here to offer that amendment, although I think 
it would receive tremendous support in this body, primarily because I 
would have to find about $8 billion worth of offsets. This is 
incredible, that we could have a trust fund that is funded with the 
royalties off of production that has an $8 billion balance but to 
actually say if we are going to begin to fully fund it, you have to 
come up with $8 billion worth of offsets because we spent the money on 
something else. We spent the money on something else, therefore we have 
got to find an offset.
  So I am not coming to the floor today to propose we fully fund it, 
although I am an advocate of it, and I think many people are.
  In a minute I will ask unanimous consent to have amendment No. 92 
pending, which is the Burr-Bennet-Ayotte amendment. It is to 
permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
  I am sure the President is aware that the program expires the end of 
September, and we can wait, but I don't think we should wait to 
reauthorize what I believe is, dollar for dollar, the most effective 
government program we have. We can save any kind of funding-level 
fights for another day. The simple truth is this program is a trust 
fund that is codified in law. So we are not debating whether this 
exists or doesn't exist. It does exist and every year $900 million in 
royalties are paid by energy companies that drill for gas or oil in the 
Outer Continental Shelf and are put into this fund, but for some 
reason, that group, that conservation effort, only finds what the 
appropriators are willing to pass on to it.
  Our amendment would reauthorize the program itself on a permanent 
basis, and I am going to ask all of my colleagues to support this 
amendment.
  Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the pending 
amendment to call up amendment No. 92.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from North Carolina, [Mr. Burr] for himself, 
     Ms. Ayotte, and Mr. Bennet, proposes an amendment numbered 92 
     to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. BURR. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of the 
amendment be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

 (Purpose: To permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation 
                                 Fund)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. PERMANENT REAUTHORIZATION OF LAND AND WATER 
                   CONSERVATION FUND.

       (a) In General.--Section 200302 of title 54, United States 
     Code, is amended --
       (1) in subsection (b), in the matter preceding paragraph 
     (1), by striking ``During the period ending September 30, 
     2015, there'' and inserting ``There''; and
       (2) in subsection (c)(1), by striking ``through September 
     30, 2015''.
       (b) Public Access.--Section 200306 of title 54, United 
     States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
       ``(c) Public Access.--Not less than 1.5 percent of amounts 
     made available for expenditure in any fiscal year under 
     section 200303 shall be used for projects that secure 
     recreational public access to existing Federal public land 
     for hunting, fishing, and other recreational purposes.''.

  Mr. BURR. Mr. President, I have spoken very briefly on this 
reauthorization because it is a very simple measure. I urge my 
colleagues, because it is now pending, when we have an opportunity to 
vote, and I think that will be sooner rather than later on a whole host 
of amendments, that you take the opportunity to permanently reauthorize 
a program that is clearly one that benefits this country and our 
National Treasury.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Delaware.


                  Amendment No. 115 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. COONS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment so that I can call up my amendment No. 115.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Delaware [Mr. Coons] proposes an amendment 
     numbered 115 to amendment No. 2.


 =========================== NOTE =========================== 

  
  On page S526, January 27, 2015, in the second column, the 
following language appears: The Senator from Delaware [Mr. KOONS] 
proposes an amendment . . .
  
  The online Record has been corrected to read: The Senator from 
Delaware [Mr. COONS] proposes an amendment . . .


 ========================= END NOTE ========================= 


  Mr. COONS. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To express the sense of Congress regarding climate change and 
                            infrastructure)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING CLIMATE CHANGE AND 
                   INFRASTRUCTURE.

       It is the sense of Congress that--
       (1) climate change is already impacting the safety and 
     reliability of the critical infrastructure systems of the 
     United States, including buildings, roads, bridges, tunnels, 
     rail, ports, airports, levees, dams, and military 
     installations through sea level rise, rising temperatures, 
     and more frequent and intense extreme weather events such as 
     droughts, floods, wildfires, and heat waves;
       (2) significant energy, industrial and transportation 
     infrastructure in the United States is located near the 
     coast, in floodplains, or in other areas vulnerable to sea 
     level rise;
       (3) the impacts to infrastructure described in paragraph 
     (1) have caused tangible economic costs that are likely to 
     increase over time;
       (4) it is fiscally prudent to prepare for and seek to 
     mitigate the impacts described in paragraph (1), as it is 
     estimated that every dollar spent on mitigation saves $4 in 
     disaster relief;
       (5) the Federal Government self-insures, offers insurance 
     programs such as crop insurance and the national flood 
     insurance program, and, in the case of extreme weather 
     events, also serves as the insurer of last resort for public 
     and private infrastructure;
       (6) the Federal Government has a crucial role to play as a 
     partner in working with State, local, tribal, and territorial 
     jurisdictions to help ensure coordinated efforts to keep 
     communities resilient;
       (7) the role of the Federal Government should include 
     prioritizing climate resilient projects when administering 
     Federal grants, providing technical support, and sharing of 
     data and information in user-friendly and accessible formats, 
     among other actions;
       (8) Federal agency climate change adaptation plans that 
     assess the risk to physical assets and missions of the 
     Federal agencies can help create savings for taxpayers; and
       (9) Federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, 
     should quantify the economic value of the physical risks of 
     the agencies from climate change.

  Mr. COONS. Mr. President, this amendment recognizes that climate 
change is not a hoax, that climate change is a reality, and that we 
need to do some things together to begin to plan for and prepare for 
the inevitable consequences and impacts on our infrastructure.
  As someone who was in local government for a long time before coming 
to this body--I was a county executive--I have a sense of what it means 
for our States, our municipalities, and our county governments to have 
to plan for and deal with the inevitable consequence, the impacts on 
our local infrastructure of the coming changes through climate change.
  I happen to represent the lowest mean elevation State in America, and 
our Governor Jack Markell and his able folks in the Delaware Department 
of Natural Resources and Environmental Control have led a grassroots 
statewide effort to begin planning for the future impacts of climate 
change. Because of the combination of subsidence and sea level rise, 
Delaware will see earlier than many States impacts on vital local 
infrastructure. So whether it is our sewer systems, our roads, our 
water systems or other infrastructure, we need to begin to plan now to 
bake resiliency into the future of our community.
  Given the unique and important role that the Federal Government plays 
in financing infrastructure and in responding to disasters such as 
Superstorm Sandy that destroyed a lot of the infrastructure in the 
nearby States of New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut, we need to be 
mindful of what these costs could be.

[[Page S527]]

  The U.S. Department of Defense is already preparing plans to 
understand how climate change will impact its infrastructure. My 
thinking is that the entire Federal Government should make responsible, 
timely, and thoughtful plans to assess and to prepare for prudent 
mitigation of the future impacts of climate change on our 
infrastructure. So I am hopeful that this will be among the many 
amendments that will be taken up, debated, discussed, and passed in the 
coming hours and days.
  I am grateful that we continue to have an open amendment process and 
the opportunity to discuss and debate the issues in front of us, and I 
very much look forward to passage of Coons amendment No. 115.
  With that, Mr. President, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Delaware.
  Mr. CARPER. Mr. President, two Senators from Delaware, back to back--
a double shot.


                  Amendment No. 120 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the pending 
amendment in order to call up my amendment No. 120.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Delaware [Mr. Carper], for himself, Mr. 
     Donnelly, and Ms. Heitkamp, proposes an amendment numbered 
     120 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. CARPER. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of 
the amendment be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

  (Purpose: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to extend the 
credits for new qualified fuel cell motor vehicles and alternative fuel 
                      vehicle refueling property)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. 3. EXTENSION OF CREDIT FOR NEW QUALIFIED FUEL CELL MOTOR 
                   VEHICLES.

       (a) In General.--Paragraph (1) of section 30B(k) of the 
     Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by striking 
     ``December 31, 2014'' and inserting ``December 31, 2019''.
       (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by this section 
     shall apply to property purchased after December 31, 2014.

     SEC. 4. EXTENSION OF CREDIT FOR ALTERNATIVE FUEL VEHICLE 
                   REFUELING PROPERTY.

       (a) In General.--Subsection (g) of section 30C, as amended 
     by the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014, is amended by 
     striking ``December 31, 2014'' and inserting ``December 31, 
     2019''.
       (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by this section 
     shall apply to property placed in service after December 31, 
     2014.

     SEC. 5. OFFSET.

       (a) 100 Percent Continuous Levy on Payment to Medicare 
     Providers and Suppliers.--Paragraph (3) of section 6331(h) is 
     amended by striking the period at the end and inserting ``, 
     or to a Medicare provider or supplier under title XVIII of 
     the Social Security Act.''.
       (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by this section 
     shall apply to payments made on or after the date which is 
     180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

  Mr. CARPER. Mr. President, I appreciate this opportunity today.
  My colleague from Delaware, Senator Coons, knows that Delaware, until 
4 years ago, developed and built more cars, trucks, and vans per capita 
than any other State in America. We lost within literally 6 months a GM 
plant that employed thousands of employees and a Chrysler plant that 
employed thousands of people. Those companies went into bankruptcy.
  For a number of years before that and since then, I have gone every 
year in January to the North American auto show in Detroit. I remember 
being there half a dozen or so years ago and walking through the 
demonstrations--they call them the stands--where the auto companies, 
whether they happen to be domestic, Ford, Chrysler, GM, or companies 
from Europe or Asia, had on display their vehicles, in some cases the 
vehicles they were introducing that year for the next buying year, and 
in some cases concept cars that may never be built but are just 
interesting, exciting new technologies that are represented in those 
vehicles.
  I have never forgotten about a half dozen years ago walking through 
this enormous cavernous auto show and coming across what they call the 
stand where a number of the Honda vehicles were being displayed. One of 
them was in a makeshift garage. I thought that was interesting. You 
don't see makeshift garages in the Detroit auto show.
  I asked the Honda people, what is this about? They said, imagine a 
vehicle that is in a garage alongside a house. The technology in this 
vehicle will actually provide for the propulsion of that vehicle, 
propel the vehicle, and the fuel this vehicle uses will also cool the 
house next to this garage in the summer and warm and heat this house in 
the winter. I said, you are kidding. I said, what kind of technology is 
this? He said, this is fuel cells. I said, no kidding. Are you really 
serious about this? He said, yes, we are.

  As it turns out, a few years after that, I was back in Delaware at 
Dover Downs. A lot of people think of Dover Downs now because we have 
musical festivals. Firefly was there, and we had 80,000 people there. 
We also have 80,000 people show up for a couple of Sundays every year 
for the auto show.
  A couple of years ago, I was at Dover Downs, and I had a chance to 
drive around the Monster Mile when no other cars were racing. I drove a 
GM minivan. The thing that was unique about the GM minivan was how much 
it cost. I have a Chrysler Town & Country minivan that has about 
386,000 miles on it. The vehicle I drove that day had less than 1,000 
miles on it, and it was powered by fuel cells.
  I said to the guy I was driving with, how much does this vehicle cost 
if I wreck it? He said, probably $1 million. I said, I better be 
careful. And right about then somebody came out of the infield and 
drove right in front of me and scared the guy next to me to death. I 
was able to avoid a crash.
  GM, Chrysler, and Ford have put a lot of money into fuel cell 
vehicles. One of the people who helped to run GM for a number of years, 
a fellow named Tom Davis, a longtime friend, when he stepped down from 
GM several years ago ran the part of the company that dealt with light 
trucks and SUVs. Almost half of their revenue was generated from those 
sources.
  Earlier this month he and I talked about the future of the auto 
industry and GM in particular. I said, what do you think the future is 
for providing propulsion for cars? Is it like the hybrid electric? He 
said, no, it is not. I said, is it like the diesel electric? He said, 
no, it is not. I said, is it pure electric? He said, no, it is not. I 
have said for years that the future is fuel cells. I said, no kidding. 
That is just like I saw at the auto show years ago and just like the 
fuel-cell powered minivan I drove at Dover Downs a couple of years 
after that. He said, that is the future.
  It turns out in Japan they have a word that actually means future 
that they use to describe this technology, and it is called ``mirai.'' 
Honda and Toyota are betting a little bit of their money--actually 
quite a bit--just as some of our domestic auto companies are betting 
some money of their own.
  The great thing about this technology is that it reduces the 
consumption of oil. We are still the leading consumer of oil in the 
world. A lot of our oil is from foreign sources, and some of it is 
unstable. I think some of the countries use our money to harm us. This 
technology has the ability to reduce our dependence on that foreign oil 
from unstable countries. It has the ability to further clean our air 
and to offer a great driving experience. I personally experienced it 
myself all those many years ago in Dover Downs on the Monster Mile.
  What I want do today is call up an amendment that will help us to 
seize the day and to take this technology, which is ready now, to be 
made commercial and to be introduced on both coasts and across the 
country in order to provide fuel cell vehicles and to help give it a 
little push, if you will, through the Tax Code to encourage them to be 
purchased by our consumers.
  There are actually two parts to my amendment. One of those is to 
provide a $4,000-a-year tax credit for alternative fuel vehicles. In 
this case I am talking about fuel cells, but it could be electric, and 
it could be others as well.
  The second half of the amendment is to provide the infrastructure. We 
have heard about fueling stations. Well, these would be infrastructures 
that would include fueling stations for fuel-cell-powered vehicles.

[[Page S528]]

  It is a two-fold amendment. It reduces our dependence on foreign oil, 
especially from unstable sources. It provides for new investment and 
for creation of jobs for that new investment. It is something that 
would help consumers, it would help our domestic auto industry, and it 
would enable us to compete with the rest of the world.
  There are two parts to this amendment--a tax credit of about $4,000 
for each vehicle for 5 years, and then an investment tax credit of 30 
percent to enable us to build the fueling stations. We have gas and 
diesel stations all across the country. We need alternative fueling 
stations, if you will, for these alternative vehicles if they are to 
realize their potential and we are to realize ours.
  Later in the week, I will ask to have the opportunity to offer this 
amendment, and I ask that my colleagues keep these arguments in mind, 
and if they see fit, to support this amendment. I hope they will.
  I thank the Presiding Officer, and I yield the floor.


                  Amendment No. 133 to Amendment No. 2

  Ms. HEITKAMP. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment and call up amendment No. 133.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from North Dakota [Ms. Heitkamp], for herself, 
     Mr. Donnelly, and Mr. Coons, proposes an amendment numbered 
     133 to amendment No. 2.

  Ms. HEITKAMP. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment 
be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

 (Purpose: To express the sense of Congress that the Internal Revenue 
  Code of 1986 should be amended to extend the credit with respect to 
     facilities producing energy from certain renewable resources)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING 5-YEAR EXTENSION OF 
                   CREDITS WITH RESPECT TO FACILITIES PRODUCING 
                   ENERGY FROM CERTAIN RENEWABLE RESOURCES.

       (a) Findings.--Congress finds that--
       (1) the energy policy of the United States is based on an 
     all-of-the-above approach to production sources;
       (2) an all-of-the-above approach reduces dependence on 
     foreign oil, increases national security and creates jobs;
       (3) smart investments in renewable resources are critical 
     to increase the energy independence of the United States, 
     reduce emissions, and create jobs;
       (4) wind energy is a critical component of an all-of-the-
     above energy policy and has a proven track record of creating 
     jobs, reducing emissions, and provides an alternative and 
     compatible energy resource to the existing generation 
     infrastructure of the United States;
       (5) the wind energy industry and utilities require long-
     term certainty regarding the Production Tax Credit for 
     project planning in order to continue build out of this 
     valuable natural resource; and
       (6) the stop-start unpredictability of short-term 
     Production Tax Credit extensions should be avoided, as short-
     term extensions have disrupted the wind industry, slowing the 
     ability of the wind industry to cut costs, as compared to 
     what would have occurred with a long-term, predictable policy 
     in place.
       (b) Sense of Congress.--It is the sense of Congress that--
       (1) section 45(d) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 
     should be amended by striking ``January 1, 2015'' each place 
     it appears and inserting ``January 1, 2020'' in--
       (A) paragraph (1);
       (B) paragraph (2)(A);
       (C) paragraph (3)(A);
       (D) paragraph (4)(B);
       (E) paragraph (6);
       (F) paragraph (7);
       (G) paragraph (9); and
       (H) paragraph (11)(B);
       (2) clause (ii) of section 48(a)(5)(C) should be amended by 
     striking ``January 1, 2015'' and inserting ``January 1, 
     2020''; and
       (3) the amendments that would be made by paragraphs (1) and 
     (2) should take effect on January 1, 2015.

  Ms. HEITKAMP. Keystone has been described two ways down here, an 
energy bill and a jobs bill--economic development offering economic 
opportunity. I don't think there could be an amendment that is offered 
that would fit more both slots of the description of the Keystone bill 
than the amendment that I am proposing, amendment No. 133.
  This is a bipartisan proposal that has always been supported by both 
sides of the aisle, and quite honestly, it has tremendous support 
across the country from the American people. Quite simply what the 
amendment does is to provide that it is the sense of the Senate that we 
should extend the production tax credits for the next 5 years to give 
certainty to alternative energy companies, particularly to wind energy 
companies. It would basically lay down the marker that this is an 
important part of our energy and jobs future. Importantly, as we have 
watched the ups and downs of our tax policy, or lack thereof, in the 
Senate and Congress, we have seen short-term extensions--or as we call 
them, extenders--being passed in the last moments of Congress, which 
does not give the certainty we need to provide the incentives that are 
included in those extenders.
  This sense of the Senate--to the extent it becomes legislation--
would, in fact, for the first time give us an opportunity to provide 
certainty with a glidepath out, and everyone understands that 
eventually this industry is going to have to stand alone.
  I wish to talk about the importance of the wind energy industry, not 
just from the energy standpoint but from the jobs standpoint. Today the 
wind energy industry sustains approximately 73,000 jobs and directs 
over $17.3 billion a year in private investment to the U.S. economy, 
including thousands of well-paid wind manufacturing jobs at over 500 
factories in 43 States that supply the United States industry.
  The United States currently has over 60,000 megawatts of installed 
capacity, and according to the American Wind Energy Association and 
USDA's Energy Information Administration, the United States produced 
over 167 billion kilowatts of wind power last year alone.
  If my colleagues on both sides of the aisle are serious about this 
being a jobs bill and serious about this being an energy bill, then 
they you will want to vote in favor of this amendment. Wind energy and 
the continued buildout of additional capacity in this country is an 
absolute critical piece of the ``all of the above'' energy policy. 
Every person in this building and every person you talk to about what 
their energy policy is will say all of the above. That has to have 
meaning, and it has to include this important and critical 
infrastructure and this important and critical tax credit for wind 
energy.
  The other benefit of this amendment is--as you have heard, we have 43 
States somehow involved in the manufacture and production of equipment 
in this industry, but we have over 1,000 utility-scale wind projects, 
which represent over 62,000 megawatts and over 46 wind turbines and are 
installed across 39 States and Puerto Rico. There are also more than 
500 wind manufacturing facilities spread across those 43 States.
  I am a little bias because we in North Dakota like to say we are the 
Saudi Arabia of wind, and wind is a critical part--in fact 15 percent--
of our capacity. We think we could do a lot more, but I will tell you 
the economic impact just in my State. A lot of you know the great 
energy renaissance that is going on in America that involves the 
development of fossil fuels--North Dakota being the second largest oil 
and gas producer with the shale development.
  What you don't know is that North Dakota truly represents all of the 
above. I want to talk about what we do in wind before I close out here. 
We have almost 1,600 megawatts of wind capacity installed and another 
740 megawatts under construction. The industry has invested over $3.4 
billion in my State with annual lease payments--and these are to 
farmers who are grateful for that additional revenue. The towers are on 
their property and over $5 million of lease payments goes back to 
farmers.
  I talked to farmers all across North Dakota who are proud that they 
are part of the energy renaissance in our State and grateful for the 
additional revenue.
  We have two educational institutions in our State that have wind 
energy training centers and do tremendous jobs training the workforce 
for additional wind energy. The wind energy industry supports close to 
3,000 jobs in North Dakota, and in a State of around 700,000 people, 
that is a significant factor. In 2013 wind energy was 15 percent.
  These are numbers that--I saw the Presiding Officer grin when I said 
that

[[Page S529]]

North Dakota is the Saudi Arabia of wind because I think he is thinking 
that Colorado might be the Saudi Arabia of wind. I know that the 
Presiding Officer is a great supporter of wind energy as well.
  But when we do these stops and starts, when we don't give a constant 
and predictable policy, we are living hand to mouth. Maybe we are 
making some decisions to deploy resources in a way that meets with the 
congressional schedule and doesn't meet with the business-like or 
orderly introduction and continuing development of this industry.
  If you are looking for a germane amendment that addresses both jobs 
and energy, this is a perfect amendment.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Maryland.


                  Amendment No. 124 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. CARDIN. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the pending 
amendment be set aside so I may be able to offer my amendment, 
amendment No. 124.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Maryland [Mr. Cardin] proposes an 
     amendment numbered 124 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. CARDIN. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To clarify that treaties with Indian tribes remain in effect)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. _. NO EFFECT ON INDIAN TREATIES.

       Nothing in this Act may change, suspend, supersede, or 
     abrogate any trust obligation or treaty requirement of the 
     United States with respect to any Indian nation, Indian 
     tribe, individual Indian, or Indian tribal organization, 
     including the Fort Laramie Treaties of 1851 and 1868, without 
     consultation with, and the informed and express consent of, 
     the applicable Indian nation, Indian tribe, individual 
     Indian, or Indian tribal organization as required under 
     Executive Order 13175 (67 Fed. Reg. 67249) (November 6, 
     2000).

  Mr. CARDIN. Mr. President, my amendment states that S. 1 may not 
``change, suspend, supersede, or abrogate any trust obligation or 
treaty requirement of the United States without consultation with, and 
the informed express consent of, any affected Indian nation, Indian 
tribe, individual Indian, or Indian tribal organization.''
  The need for this amendment becomes particularly relevant because on 
January 11 of this year, the Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association 
wrote to President Obama to express the association's unequivocal 
opposition to the Keystone XL Pipeline.
  The association speaks on behalf of 16 sovereign American Indian 
tribes and asserts that the pipeline violates the Fort Laramie Treaties 
of 1851 and 1868.
  I am not taking a legal position on whether the assertion is correct. 
Rather, I think it is important that the Senate go on record that our 
trust obligations and treaty requirements, which are with sovereign 
Nations, must be honored and that any changes to those obligations may 
only occur with consultation and their consent.
  I ask unanimous consent that the letter dated January 11, 2015, from 
the Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association and the Association's 
resolution regarding the KXL pipeline be printed in the Record.
  There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in 
the Record, as follows:

                                    Great Plains Tribal Chairman's


                                                  Association,

                                 Rapid City, SD, January 11, 2015.
     Re Veto Legislation to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline and 
         DO NOT Approve a Permit for the Pipeline.

     Hon. Barack Obama,
     President, United States of America,
     Washington, DC.
       Dear President Obama: The Great Plains Tribal Chairman's 
     Association (GPTCA) is made up of the 16 Sovereign American 
     Indian Tribes in the States of North Dakota, South Dakota and 
     Nebraska. All of our Tribes have signed Treaties with the 
     United States in which the United States pledged to protect 
     Indian Tribes, guarantee the right to Self-Government and 
     obligated itself to undertake Trust Responsibility. The Great 
     Plains Tribal Chairman's Association stands in solidarity 
     with the First Nations of Canada and with Tribal Nations in 
     the United States in opposing the Keystone XL pipeline.
       We are writing to alert you that TransCanada Keystone 
     Pipeline, LP (TransCanada) is in the midst of the 
     recertification process of its 2010 permit from the South 
     Dakota Public Utilities (SDPUC) for the Keystone XL pipeline. 
     While we are aware the Nebraska Supreme Court issued a 
     decision to vacate a lower court decision that held a 
     Nebraska statute concerning the Keystone XL pipeline 
     unconstitutional, we write to urge you to consider the fact 
     that TransCanada's permit to traverse South Dakota is still 
     under review and does not authorize construction of the 
     project in South Dakota unless and until the SD PUC grants 
     certification.
       Four Federally Recognized Tribes have signed on as Party 
     Intervenors in the SD PUC proceedings as well as numerous 
     Native and nonnative concerned citizens. The Tribes include 
     the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, the Cheyenne River Sioux 
     Tribe, Rosebud Sioux Tribe and the Yankton Sioux Tribe. Other 
     Great Plains Tribes are poised to comment and are monitoring 
     the proceedings. The pipeline is planned to traverse through 
     our homelands that still possess substantial treaty 
     obligations, cultural and natural resources and water rights 
     for all the Great Plains tribes. These are also the homelands 
     of numerous animals, birds and fish including several 
     endangered species.
       Under South Dakota law, TransCanada must declare that the 
     conditions under which the permit was issued in 2010 remain 
     the same despite submitting along with its application a 
     matrix of 30 Changed Conditions. These 30 Changed Conditions 
     show that significant design and construction changes are 
     planned for the pipeline that make it substantially different 
     in our eyes. The 2010 permit was also issued with 50 Special 
     Permit Conditions that TransCanada also must prove it still 
     meets before it can legally commence construction of the 
     project. While there is an evidentiary hearing currently set 
     for May 2015, it is unclear when a final decision will be 
     issued in that case.
       We therefore urge you, consistent with your stance on the 
     previously pending Nebraska litigation, to refrain from 
     making any decision regarding whether the Keystone XL 
     pipeline would be in the national interest until you have all 
     the necessary facts before you. Tribal leaders request you 
     deny the permit as contrary to the national interest.
       It is the position of the GPTCA that your administration 
     does in fact have incontrovertible evidence that the proposed 
     Keystone XL pipeline would be a detriment to the American 
     public and the national interest regardless of whether the SD 
     PUC ultimately authorizes construction under TransCanada's 
     2010 permit due to the risks the project poses regardless of 
     the particular route through South Dakota. The GPTCA urges 
     you to deny the Presidential Permit for the reasons set forth 
     in the attached GPTCA Resolution among others. However, 
     should you have reservations about denying the Presidential 
     Permit at this time, please grant South Dakota the same 
     respect you accorded Nebraska and refrain from making your 
     decision until after the legal processes regarding the South 
     Dakota permit have been resolved. We strongly urge you to 
     veto any legislation passed by Congress that mandates the 
     issuance of a presidential permit to TransCanada. We believe, 
     consistent with federal separation of powers, that a decision 
     to deny TransCanada a federal permit must be made by your 
     Executive branch and it is not appropriate for legislation.
       We further assert that construction of any pipeline 
     violates the Fort Laramie Treaties of 1851 and 1868, which 
     impact the greater population of the Oceti Sakowin or the 
     Seven Council Fires of the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota Tribes. 
     We are known to many as the Great Sioux Nation and are the 
     keepers of the sacred, cultural and natural resources located 
     in the KXL corridor. Literally, thousands of sacred and 
     cultural resources that are important to our life-ways and 
     for our future generations will potentially be destroyed or 
     compromised by the pipeline construction. Many of these 
     sacred sites have not been surveyed by outsiders less they be 
     looted or plundered but are known to those designated by our 
     people considered to be sacred keepers of this knowledge. The 
     Programmatic agreement entered into for compliance with the 
     National Historic Preservation Act acknowledges that 
     construction of the pipeline would cause destruction to many 
     sacred and cultural sited.
       With regards to our tribal federally reserved water rights 
     in the Great Plains Basin, the pollution risk via benzene and 
     other carcinogens from the tar sands sludge spilling into the 
     tributaries that lead into the Missouri River or leaching 
     into the Oglala Aquifer, should a pipeline break occur, is 
     too great. The Missouri River is the source of drinking water 
     for many communities along the Missouri River main-stem. The 
     Oglala Aquifer supplies drinking water throughout the Great 
     Plains region. All of this development further impacts 
     reserved rights of our Oceti Sakowin which were unceded by 
     treaties, including the right to live in a safe manner and be 
     in control of our human, cultural and natural resources as 
     outlined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of 
     Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). Consultation has not occurred in 
     a manner that recognizes free, prior and informed consent for 
     the construction of this

[[Page S530]]

     pipeline. We believe it is our Human Right to live safely on 
     our homelands with clean water and lands.
       Very importantly, the KXL Pipeline and the continued 
     development of the Alberta tar sands will increase the carbon 
     footprint in our sacred lands for the enrichment of foreign 
     countries and oil companies. As you know, climate change will 
     impact and affect all of us including the generations to come 
     unless we do something to stop it now. The Oceti Sakowin 
     tribes are making important strides toward renewable energy 
     with the Oceti Sakowin Power Project (OSPP) that recognizes 
     fossil fuels are relics that contribute to phenomenal climate 
     change. The OSPP leaders met with the White House 
     representatives in our effort to turn the tide against 
     globing warming through solar and wind development on our 
     lands. We do not have to be held prisoners of fossil fuels 
     but can create stories of redemption for Mother Earth through 
     exciting renewals development, not in the future but now.
       Because of the dire concerns outlined above, we request an 
     emergency meeting with Department of Interior Secretary Sally 
     Jewell, who as our Trustee, has a responsibility to hear 
     directly from tribal leaders in a government-to-government 
     meeting. We are prepared to put forth our concerns for 
     inclusion in the forthcoming Final Environmental Impact 
     Statement (FEIS) regarding the impacts the Keystone XL 
     pipeline may have on Tribal homelands as well as our sacred 
     sites, cultural resources, natural resources and water rights 
     protected by treaty and other agreements.
       The Executive Director of the GPTCA, Ms. Gay Kingman-
     Wapato, is the contact for the GPTCA and is empowered to work 
     with your administration staff to coordinate a meeting at 
     Secretary Jewell's earliest convenience. She can be reached 
     at Cell: 605-484-3036 or e-mail, [email protected]
           Sincerely,
                                                      John Steele,
     Chairman.
                                  ____


                       Resolution No. 30-9-28-11


           GREAT PLAINS TRIBAL CHAIRMAN'S ASSOCIATION (GPTCA)

       Opposition to Keystone XL (``Keystone II'') Pipeline now 
     being considered for authorization by the United States 
     Department of State, on the basis that construction of such 
     pipeline is not in the national interests of the United 
     States
       Whereas, The Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association 
     (GPTCA) is composed of the elected Chairs and Presidents of 
     the 16 Sovereign Indian Tribes and Nations recognized by 
     Treaties with the United States that are within the Great 
     Plains Region of the Bureau of Indian Affairs; and
       Whereas, The Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association was 
     formed to promote the common interests of the Sovereign 
     Tribes and Nations and their members of the Great Plains 
     Region which comprises the states of North Dakota, South 
     Dakota, Nebraska; and
       Whereas, The United States has obligated itself both 
     through Treaties entered into with the sovereign Tribes and 
     Nations of the Great Plains Region and through its own 
     federal statutes, the Snyder Act of 1921 as amended, the 
     Indian Self-Determination Act of 1976 as amended, and the 
     Indian Health Care Improvement Act of 1976 as amended; and
       Whereas, Indian Tribes are governments that pre-date the 
     United States, and through the Indian Commerce, Treaty and 
     Apportionment Clauses and the 14th Amendment, the United 
     States recognizes the status of Indian Tribes as sovereigns 
     and the status of American Indians as tribal citizens; and
       Whereas, In treaties, the United States pledged to protect 
     Indian Tribes, guaranteed the right of Tribal self-
     government, and has undertaken a trust responsibility to 
     promote the viability of Indian reservations and lands as 
     permanent homelands for tribes; and,
       Whereas, On September 28, 2011, the Tribal Chairmen and the 
     Tribal Council representatives from the Tribal Nations that 
     are members of the Great Plains Tribal Chairman's 
     Association, have been meeting at the GPTCA/BIA/USACE Tribal 
     Water Management Summit, discussing issues of great 
     importance to the Indian Tribal Nations of the Great Plains 
     Region and their members; and
       Whereas, a major oil transmission pipeline is planned to 
     extend from northern Alberta, Canada, from areas that have 
     sand mixed with tar and oil, called ``tar sands'', to 
     refineries in the United States; and
       Whereas, the route of the pipeline, called Keystone II, or 
     Keystone XL, because it is the second oil transmission 
     pipeline to be constructed by the same company that built the 
     first Keystone pipeline, crosses through Indian country in 
     northern Alberta, Saskatchewan, Montana, North Dakota, South 
     Dakota and Nebraska, near and potentially over, many 
     culturally significant areas for Tribal Nations within those 
     provinces and states; and
       Whereas, based on the relatively poor environmental record 
     of the first Keystone pipeline, which includes numerous 
     spills, U.S. regulators shut the pipeline down in late May, 
     2011, and, therefore, based on the record of the first 
     Keystone pipeline, and other factors, it is probable that 
     further environmental disasters will occur in Indian country 
     if the new pipeline is allowed to be constructed; and
       Whereas, the First Nations of Canada, representing the vast 
     majority of First Nations impacted by ``tar sands'' 
     development, have unanimously passed resolutions supporting a 
     moratorium on new ``tar sands'' development and expansion 
     until a ``cumulative effects management system'' is in place, 
     and are also in opposition to the pipeline; and
       Whereas, many U.S. Tribal Nations are also in opposition to 
     the Keystone XL pipeline, including several Tribal Nations in 
     the Great Plains, because it would threaten, among other 
     things, the Oglala aquifer and other major water aquifers, 
     rivers and water ways, public drinking water sources, 
     including the Mni Wiconi Rural Water System, agricultural 
     lands, animal life, cultural sites, and other resources vital 
     to the peoples of the region in which the pipeline is 
     proposed to be constructed; and
       Whereas, Indian tribes including the Affiliated Tribes of 
     Northwest Indians are also in opposition to the Exxon-
     Imperial ``Heavy Haul'' proposal to transport ``tar sands'' 
     equipment through the Nez Perce Reservation and across scenic 
     highways, and several Indian tribes have joined in litigation 
     to stop this proposal; and
       Whereas, the pipeline is unnecessary as a number of other 
     pipelines are not at full capacity to carry oil from Canada 
     to refineries in the U.S., and the oil is also not likely to 
     end up on the U.S. market but will be exported to foreign 
     countries; and
       Whereas, Tribal Nations and First Nations within Indian 
     country near the route of the proposed pipeline have already 
     stated their opposition to the proposed route of the 
     pipeline, and because of earlier opposition from both Tribes 
     and environmental groups, a supplemental environmental impact 
     statement has been required by the United States 
     Environmental Protection Agency from the proposed operators 
     of the pipeline, a draft of which is now available for public 
     comment; and
       Whereas, since the pipeline is designed to cross the U.S.-
     Canadian border, the United States Department of State is the 
     lead U.S. agency in evaluating whether the pipeline should be 
     allowed to be constructed in the U.S.; and
       Whereas, the First Nations of Canada and Tribal Nations 
     within the U.S. have a long history of working to ensure 
     protection of their environment, and the Keystone XL pipeline 
     poses grave dangers if it is constructed; and
       Whereas, the U.S. Department of State is continuing to 
     accept public comments until October 7, 2011, but despite the 
     concerns of the numerous Tribal Nations and the First Nations 
     of Canada has recently received notice from the U.S. 
     Environmental Protection Agency of a ``Finding of No 
     Significant Impact'' from the proposed pipeline; and
       Whereas, the U.S. Department of State did not properly 
     consult with the Tribes along the route of the Keystone XL 
     Pipeline and, as a result of the mechanisms used for what 
     consultation was provided, the affected Tribal Nations were 
     not provided the opportunity for ``free and informed 
     consent'' regarding the construction of the pipeline; and
       Whereas, the GPTCA hereby urges all its member Tribal 
     Nations to submit comments to the U.S. Department of State 
     regarding the Keystone XL project as not in the tribal nor 
     the national interest; and
       Whereas, Tribal Government Chairs and Presidents, 
     Traditional Treaty Councils, and US property owners, met with 
     the First Nations Chiefs of Canada, impacted by TransCanada's 
     proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and tar sands 
     development present at the Rosebud Sioux Tribe Emergency 
     Summit, September 15-16, 2011, on the protection of Mother 
     Earth and Treaty Territories, developed the Mother Earth 
     Accord for sign on by all First Nations and Tribal Nations: 
     Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, that the Great Plains Tribal Chairman's 
     Association stands in solidarity with the First Nations of 
     Canada and with Tribal Nations in the United States in 
     opposing the Keystone XL pipeline and the Exxon-Imperial 
     Heavy Haul proposal and their negative impacts on cultural 
     sites and the environment in those portions of Indian country 
     over and through which it is proposed to be constructed, and 
     disagrees with the Finding of No Significant Impact issued by 
     the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and agrees to file 
     these comments regarding this opposition to the Keystone XL 
     pipeline with the Secretary of State as soon as possible; and
       Be it further resolved that the Great Plains Tribal 
     Chairman's Association approves the Mother Earth Accord among 
     the First Nations of Canada and the Tribal Nations within the 
     United States; and
       Be it further resolved that the United States is urged to 
     reduce its reliance on the world's dirtiest and most 
     environmentally destructive form of oil--the ``tar sands''--
     that threatens Indian country in both Canada and the United 
     States and the way of life of thousands of citizens of First 
     Nations in Canada and American Indians in the U.S., and 
     requests the U.S. government to take aggressive measures to 
     work towards sustainable energy solutions that include clean 
     alternative energy and improving energy efficiency; and
       Be it finally resolved that the Great Plains Tribal 
     Chairman's Association requests a meeting with the Tribal 
     Leaders and Hilary Clinton, Secretary of State, and the 
     Administration to present the Mother Earth Accord and voice 
     the concerns of the US Tribal Nations and the First Nations 
     of Canada opposing the construction of the Keystone XL 
     Pipeline across Treaty Lands as not in the national interest: 
     Now, therefore be it finally

[[Page S531]]

       Resolved that this resolution shall be the policy of the 
     Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association until otherwise 
     amended or rescinded or until the goal of this Resolution has 
     been accomplished.


                             CERTIFICATION

       This resolution was enacted at a duly called meeting of the 
     Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association held at Rapid 
     City, SD on September 28, 2011 at which a quorum was present, 
     with 10 members voting in favor, 0 members opposed, 0 members 
     abstaining, and 6 members not present.
       Dated this 28th day of September, 2011.

  Mr. CARDIN. With that, I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a 
quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. COONS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. COONS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to speak as in 
morning business.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


                       State of the Union Address

  Mr. COONS. Mr. President, I come to the floor to speak about 
President Obama's State of the Union Address last week. It was a speech 
that I believe laid out a positive and forceful agenda for 
strengthening our middle class and for accelerating our Nation's 
economic recovery.
  Over the past year, our Nation's economic progress has become 
unmistakable and undeniable. In our home State of Delaware, more people 
are working. People spend much less time looking for work, and job 
growth has been the strongest it has been since the 1990s.
  Nationally, we are amidst the longest period of sustained private-
sector job growth on record. Of particular interest to me is that our 
manufacturing sector has come back and come back strongly as 
manufacturers have created nearly 800,000 jobs in the last 4 years--
jobs that make up the foundation of our 21st century middle class and 
our economy.
  Our unemployment rate has dropped to its lowest level since before 
the great recession. Our growing private sector is not just creating 
jobs now. They are also laying the foundation for the jobs of the 
future. As test scores continue to improve, high school graduation 
rates reach record highs, and, as our President said, ``More Americans 
finish college than ever before,'' we are laying a path that ensures 
that future generations of Americans can thrive as well.

  But our work remains unfinished. Although we are right to turn the 
page on the crisis here at home, crises do remain real in the lives of 
far too many Americans--families I listen to who are struggling to get 
into and stay in our middle class. For many in the middle class, wages 
have remained stubbornly stagnant as incomes for the wealthy have 
continued to grow. At the same time, too many Americans just stopped 
looking for work altogether during the recession and haven't begun that 
job search again. So we have a lot of work to do together to ensure 
that the middle class experiences the benefits of this recovery.
  On that note, I appreciated President Obama's call for an agenda that 
would do a lot to strengthen our middle class. Although this isn't what 
we will hear about on the news, many of these ideas should enjoy 
bipartisan support. I wish to spend a few minutes on some of the areas 
that I think are ripe for bipartisan cooperation and that would go a 
long way toward actually helping middle-class families and our Nation 
as a whole.
  First, it is no secret to anyone that our country's infrastructure is 
badly outdated and in need of repair. From our ports and roads, to our 
bridges and railways, we have steadily racked up a national debt of 
investment that we will need to pay for. The only question is when and 
how we do it. Historically, infrastructure--fixing roads and bridges 
and ports and railways--has not been a partisan issue. It is something 
that has been a core value of our Federal Government from its very 
founding. It is in no small part what the Federal Government was 
created to help do.
  Last Tuesday the President laid out ideas for thinking more 
creatively about how to make these core investments--from improving 
efficiency to bringing private capital off the sidelines--and I am 
encouraged to hear Republican colleagues discussing infrastructure as 
an initiative they can work on with us. So let's get this done. Let's 
solve our highway trust fund challenges for good and make the long-term 
investments that will put people back to work and strengthen our 
Nation's economic backbone.
  Second, the President's proposal to expand access to community 
colleges is an initiative that I hope will spark a broader discussion 
about how to make higher education more accessible and more affordable. 
I understand there is real disagreement here about how best to pay for 
it or how wide its scope should be, but that is what we can and should 
work on together.
  We all know that higher education is necessary to ensure Americans 
have the skills they will need in the 21st century. We know community 
colleges can and should play a central role in achieving that mission. 
In manufacturing in particular, community colleges such as Delaware 
Tech in my home State play a central role in partnering with local 
businesses to create a talent pipeline that sustains a community and 
its economy. In Delaware the SEED and Inspire scholarships give 
students who are willing to work hard the chance to go to college and 
to learn the skills that will help them to contribute to Delaware's 
economy after they finish school. We can replicate Delaware's example 
across the country and find ways to work together to make community 
college and further higher education affordable and accessible. So 
let's work on this together.
  Lastly, the President laid out some commonsense tax and work 
proposals to help give middle-class families more of a realistic leg 
up. Expanding the tax credits for families with children and 
streamlining childcare support makes sense to me. Making it easier for 
middle-class families to save for their kids' college education and to 
save for retirement at the same time would go a long way toward helping 
families to plan for the long term.
  Around the country, too many of our work places lack family and 
medical leave policies that appreciate what it really takes to raise a 
family and live a healthy life. The President's proposal to work with 
States to improve their policies would be a great step and would help 
those communities that choose to, to create policies that suit their 
own local situations.
  Let's work together on these ideas. Let's do something for middle-
class families in our country. With a Republican Congress and a 
Democratic White House, we need to come together if we are going to get 
anything meaningful done. As President Obama made clear, we have a lot 
of important and difficult work to do. Our economy has come a long way 
from the great recession, but there is still work to do to strengthen 
our middle class. There is still work to do to broaden the opportunity 
that has always been at the heart of the American dream. We can move 
forward together, and it is my sincere hope that we will rise to that 
occasion, that we will seize this opportunity and do the critical work 
of building and sustaining our vital middle class.
  Thank you, Mr. President.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Washington.


                  Amendment No. 48 to Amendment No. 2

  Ms. CANTWELL. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment and call up on behalf of Senator Gillibrand amendment 
No. 48.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Washington [Ms. Cantwell], for Mrs. 
     Gillibrand, proposes an amendment numbered 48 to amendment 
     No. 2.

  Ms. CANTWELL. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment 
be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

      (Purpose: To modify the definition of underground injection)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

[[Page S532]]

     SEC. __. DEFINITION OF UNDERGROUND INJECTION.

       Section 1421(d)(1) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 
     U.S.C. 300h(d)(1)) is amended by striking subparagraph (B) 
     and inserting the following:
       ``(B) includes the underground injection of natural gas for 
     purposes of storage.''.

  Ms. CANTWELL. Mr. President, this amendment amends the Safe Drinking 
Water Act to protect clean drinking water sources from hydraulic 
fracturing, commonly known as fracking, and from underground storage of 
natural gas.
  The Safe Drinking Water Act currently exempts underground injection 
of fracking fluids and underground storage of natural gas from 
regulation under the act. The Gillibrand amendment repeals those 
exemptions and makes underground injection of fracking fluids and 
underground storage of natural gas subject to those regulations.
  I know my colleague from New York has been on the floor many times--
actually three times, I think--at various times during this debate 
trying to offer this amendment. I am offering it on her behalf tonight. 
I am sure she will be looking for time to come and discuss it further.


                  Amendment No. 55 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. President, at this time I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment and call up amendment No. 55 on behalf of Senator 
Peters.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Washington, [Ms. Cantwell], for Mr. 
     Peters, for himself and Ms. Stabenow, proposes an amendment 
     numbered 55 to amendment No. 2.

  Ms. CANTWELL. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment 
be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

 (Purpose: To require a study of the potential environmental impact of 
                by-products of the Keystone XL pipeline)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. STUDY OF BY-PRODUCT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT.

       (a) In General.--Not later than 90 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Environmental 
     Protection Agency shall complete and make publicly available 
     on the Internet a study assessing the potential environmental 
     impact of by-products generated from the refining of oil 
     transported through the pipeline referred to in section 
     (2)(a), including petroleum coke.
       (b) Report.--On completion of the study required under 
     subsection (a), the Administrator of the Environmental 
     Protection Agency shall submit to Congress a report on the 
     results of the study, including a summary of best practices 
     for the transportation, storage, and handling of petroleum 
     coke.

  Ms. CANTWELL. Mr. President, the Peters amendment No. 55 would 
require the EPA to complete a study on the environmental impacts of 
petcoke. My colleague has been here on the floor speaking on the tar 
sands issue in general because Kalamazoo had one of the worst tar sands 
oilspills in the Nation's history. He has been on the floor talking 
about the things we need to do to protect people not just in the State 
of Michigan but throughout the United States.
  One of the aftermath effects of this issue is also petcoke, which my 
colleague from Illinois has been speaking to on the floor. This is a 
very big issue for midwest Senators who have an amount of petcoke in 
their communities and want to see the proper environmental treatment of 
it.
  I am sure Senator Peters will be back to the floor to speak in more 
detail on amendment No. 55, but I offer it on his behalf.
  I see the Senator from New Jersey, and I think he is here to speak on 
another matter, but I will yield the floor at this time.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from New Jersey.


            70th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz

  Mr. MENENDEZ. Mr. President, I thank the distinguished ranking member 
of the energy committee for yielding me some time this evening. I am 
not here for the purposes of legislation we have been debating; I am 
here to take time on the Senate floor on an occasion that I think is 
incredibly important to recollect, to commemorate, and to talk about.
  Seventy years ago today a Soviet soldier, Ivan Martynushkin, arrived 
with his unit at the death camp at Auschwitz, and he said in an 
interview that he was instantly struck by the silence, the smell of 
ashes, and the emptiness. But as they entered the gates, Ivan and his 
unit were unaware of the atrocities, the war crimes that were to come 
to light over time.
  Today I rise in memory of the 1.1 million persons who perished there, 
90 percent of them Jews. I rise in recognition of 1.1 million lost 
dreams, lost hopes, the lost wisdom of 1.1 million that will never be 
shared, never be known, and the lost potential of a generation that 
perished in that camp between 1940 and 1945.
  Ivan Martynushkin and his unit entered the camp thinking there would 
be a Nazi ambush, and then they noticed people behind barbed wire. ``It 
was hard to watch them,'' he said. ``I remember their faces, especially 
their eyes, which betrayed their ordeal.'' Ivan didn't know that the 
Nazis had evacuated another 58,000 prisoners 10 days earlier or the 6 
million who were killed in camps across Europe.
  He stood witness that day to the ultimate manifestation of man's 
inhumanity to their fellow man--7,000 prisoners left behind, 600 
corpses born of hatred, intolerance, prejudice, bigotry, and a seething 
anti-Semitism that is again rearing its ugly head in Europe, the Middle 
East, and around the world.
  There has been an alarming increase in anti-Semitic attacks and 
incidents in Europe that remain a challenge not only to stability and 
to security but to our shared morality, our mutually ethical core as 
human beings. Just two weeks ago, on January 9, 2015, four members of 
France's Jewish community were murdered during a hostage crisis at 
Hyper Cacher--a kosher supermarket--following the deadly terrorist 
attack on the Paris offices of the newspaper Charlie Hebdo.
  The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights issued a 2013 report 
on anti-Semitism in France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Belgium, 
Sweden, and the United Kingdom, where 90 percent of Europe's Jews 
reside, in which three-quarters of respondents said that anti-Semitism 
had worsened over the past 5 years where they lived.
  In France, home to Europe's largest Jewish population, it has been 
reported that the number of French Jews immigrating to Israel in 2014 
had doubled compared to 2013. And for the first time ever, more Jews 
moved to Israel from France than any other country in the world.
  Anti-Semitic acts in European countries in 2014 included violent 
attacks, death threats, and the desecration of Jewish homes, commercial 
property, cemeteries, and places of worship. On May 24, 2014, a gunman 
opened fire at the Jewish Museum of Belgium in Brussels, Belgium, and 
killed four people. On July 29, Molotov cocktails were thrown at the 
synagogue in Wuppertal, Germany, which had been burned to the ground by 
the Nazis during the 1938 Kristallnacht and had only been rebuilt in 
2002.
  We have all been shocked by the recent disturbingly stereotypical 
anti-Semitic utterances of President Erdogan of Turkey and those around 
him. He said in February of 2013, ``Today the image of the Jews is no 
different from that of the Nazis.'' Speaking at a campaign rally in the 
Black Sea province of Ordu, he said the ``terrorist State Israel has 
attacked Gaza once again, hitting innocent children who were playing on 
a beach,'' and the crowd chanted ``Down the Israel.'' Erdogan said, 
``The world's media is under the influence of Israel.'' He said, 
``Wherever Jews settle, they make money.'' He claimed during the 2013 
Gezi Park protests that the Europeans and what he stereotypically 
referred to as the ``interest-rate lobby'' were backing the 
antigovernment campaign, with the ultimate goal of dividing Turkey from 
within.
  A Turkish writer aligned with President Erdogan called for Turkish 
Jews to be taxed to pay for Gaza reconstruction. He said:

       The reconstruction of Gaza will be paid for by Jewish 
     businessmen.

  He went on to say:

       The penalty for failing to pay the tax should be the 
     revocation of the Jew's business license and the seizure of 
     his property.

  This is the kind of anti-Semitism we hear in Turkey today.

[[Page S533]]

  Around the world, the numbers are shocking. Based on the global 
survey, the ADL concluded that 1.09 billion people harbor anti-Semitic 
attitudes. Thirty-five percent never heard of the Holocaust.
  If the world does not stand together in never forgetting and if our 
schools, teachers, parents, and communities do not join together in the 
fundamental principle of never forgetting, how can we prevent this from 
ever happening again? How can we work together to confront the anti-
Semitism that enables hatred, violence, murder, and genocide around the 
world?
  We can only ask what tomorrow might bring. We cannot know what the 
future will hold, but we have learned from the past. What we remember 
today--70 years after the liberation of Auschwitz--is that the United 
States and the American people will always stand shoulder to shoulder 
with the Israeli people and Jewish communities across the world in 
ensuring never again. This means confronting modern-day anti-Semitism, 
whether from the world's leaders, from ivory tower academics, or from 
economic belligerence pushing the boycott, divestment, and sanctions 
movement. We must fight back against any and all efforts to 
delegitimize the Israeli State, the Jewish people, and the Jewish 
religion.
  As I have said many times, on many occasions, the Holocaust was the 
most sinister possible reminder that the Jewish population in exile has 
lived under constant threat. It is the definitive reminder that anti-
Semitism can appear anywhere, and its horrors galvanized international 
support for the State of Israel.
  But let's be very clear. While the Shoah has a central role in 
Israel's identity, it is not and never has been the reason behind 
Israel's founding, and it is not the main justification for its 
existence. The extreme characterization of this mistaken view is that 
Western powers established Israel in 1948 based on their own guilt, at 
the expense of the peoples who already lived there, and therefore the 
current state is illegitimate and, according to religious clerics such 
as Supreme Leader Khamenei, who retains his own aspirations for 
regional hegemony, should be wiped off the face of the map.
  This flawed argument is not only in defiance of basic human dignity 
but in plain defiance of history, in defiance of what we remember 
today. It is in defiance of ancient history, as told in biblical texts 
and through archeological evidence. It ignores the history of the last 
several centuries, and it stands in stark contrast to what we remember 
today. Several thousand years of history lead to an undeniable 
conclusion: The reestablishment of the State of Israel in modern times 
is a political reality with roots going back to the time of Abraham and 
Sarah.
  At the end of the day, the argument for Israel's legitimacy does not 
depend on what we say in speeches and what we say on an occasion like 
this. It has been made by the hard reality of history. It has been made 
by the men and women who made the desert green, by Nobel Prizes earned, 
by groundbreaking innovations and enviable institutions, by lives 
saved, democracy defended, peace made, and battles won.
  There can be no denying the Jewish people's legitimate right to live 
in peace and security in a homeland to which they have had a connection 
for thousands of years. And there can be no denying the suffering, the 
senseless slaughter of a generation, and all that the world realized we 
had lost when Ivan Martynushkin and his unit walked through those gates 
and liberated Auschwitz-Birkenau, a reminder for all times of the 
racism and hatred from the most devastating genocide in human history.
  As we commemorate the victims of the Holocaust, let us never forget. 
But let us be very clear as we look around the world today that the 
struggle is not over. Combating anti-Semitism is not only a Jewish 
issue of the past, it is a matter of basic civil and human rights 
today, now, in the present.
  Like those Russian soldiers 70 years ago, I have personally stood at 
the gates of Auschwitz-Birkenau. I felt the impact, the horror, the 
silence, the emptiness, and I felt the lives lost. It is a moving 
experience that should compel all of us to collectively reflect on how 
we must transform the lessons we should have learned into concrete acts 
to prevent history from repeating itself.
  Now is the time to renew the vow ``never again'' with even greater 
resolve.
  I yield the floor, and I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. GRASSLEY. I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum 
call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Daines). Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  Mr. GRASSLEY. I ask unanimous consent to speak as in morning business
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


                            Executive Action

  Mr. GRASSLEY. Mr. President, we Americans are so fortunate to enjoy 
the blessings of liberty. We protect our rights as individuals, and we 
have a legal system that demands that government officials respect 
those rights and respect the law.
  Historically some nations have lost their freedoms in revolutions. In 
others a leader gradually undermined the rule of law. Once the rule of 
law is dismantled, the road to dictatorship is easily traveled.
  In a country under the rule of law, government officials are bound by 
that law.
  When the Framers wrote our Constitution, they feared that the Federal 
Government might grow too strong. They divided and limited the powers 
among three branches. They made sure to preserve State power to serve 
as a check on the Federal power, and they also provided that where the 
Federal Government had the authority to make uniform laws, contrary 
State laws gave way.
  To make sure everyone would be subject to the law, they entrusted the 
President with the duty to ``take Care that the Laws be faithfully 
executed.''
  President Obama has repeatedly failed to take care that the laws be 
faithfully executed. He has repeatedly violated the Constitution. His 
administration has not conformed its conduct to law.
  His administration therefore has undermined the rule of law. Often 
patterns repeat. The President proposes legislation that the American 
people do not want, so the Congress naturally refuses to enact it.
  The President then decides that he will take Executive action as if 
Congress had enacted that law. Another pattern is he claims the 
authority to take various actions but fails to produce an opinion from 
the Department of Justice that coherently supports his authority. That 
creates a terrible lack of accountability.
  We have also seen the President pick and choose which laws he will 
enforce, claiming that the ability to make individual enforcement 
decisions extends to failing to enforce the laws in millions of 
instances, and the President has simply failed to take notice when the 
Supreme Court has ruled he has exceeded his powers.
  I know my colleagues think these are serious charges, and they are.
  I wish to outline a number of instances where the President or his 
administration, acting at his discretion, has failed to follow the 
Constitution or the laws. Regrettably I will only be able to touch on 
some of the examples.
  The President has attempted to unconstitutionally limit the powers of 
States through ObamaCare. He threatened the States that did not expand 
Medicaid would lose their existing Medicaid funds. The Supreme Court 
ruled 7 to 2 for the first time that a condition on Federal spending 
was so coercive to the States as to be unconstitutional.
  Another President might have been careful after such a rebuke by the 
highest Court in the land to be mindful of State power--after all, it 
included one of the Justices that the President himself appointed to 
the Supreme Court--but not this President taking notice of what the 
Court said.
  President Obama's EPA then turned around and has not followed the 
rule of law. It wrongly recognizes no limit to Federal power or to its 
own power.
  Despite the fact that Congress rejected his cap-and-trade proposal, 
his EPA issued greenhouse gas regulations

[[Page S534]]

that would require States to develop plans that meet EPA-established 
emission standards. Once EPA approved them, EPA would then order the 
States to enforce the standards.
  Supporters of EPA argued that the threat from pollutants under the 
Clean Air Act, a category in which they erroneously include carbon 
dioxide, justified EPA's action, but the ``end justifies the means'' is 
an argument that is totally at odds with the concept of rule of law.
  EPA's approach is unconstitutional. Just as a State cannot be coerced 
by Federal spending programs, it cannot be commandeered to enact 
Federal dictates. This is a well-established rule of the 10th 
Amendment, otherwise the States would lose their sovereignty.
  Responsibility and therefore accountability would be blurred as 
voters could not tell which level of government to blame for unpopular 
policies. Among those who recognize that EPA has acted 
unconstitutionally is the President's own liberal constitutional law 
professor, Laurence Tribe of Harvard.
  He wrote that it was his own view that the EPA is ``asserting 
executive power far beyond its lawful authority.''
  He also wrote: ``Frustration with congressional inaction cannot 
justify throwing the Constitution overboard.''
  President Obama also acted unconstitutionally when he made what he 
said were valid recess appointments, even though the Senate was not in 
recess. Although Presidents had been making recess appointments for 
more than 200 years, the President's use of the power was once again 
unprecedented.
  He was armed with a Justice Department opinion that laughably argued 
that the President could ignore when the Senate said it was in session 
to make such appointments.
  The Supreme Court rejected the President's so-called recess 
appointments unanimously. That meant of course that both of the 
Justices President Obama appointed rejected his claim that he could 
determine when the Senate was in recess, even though the Constitution 
makes it very clear, and it also rejected the Justice Department's 
arguments that supposedly allowed the President to make that recess 
appointment in violation of the Constitution.
  But the President, similar to the old French Kings, learns nothing 
and forgets nothing when it comes to respecting the limits of 
Presidential power.
  Despite the lodging of the power in the Constitution to Congress 
alone to enact uniform laws of naturalization, the President decided to 
enable millions of people who entered the country without documents to 
remain without congressional approval.
  In fact, at a recent Judiciary Committee hearing we heard testimony 
that the administration's misuse of parole authority under this 
directive would allow many individuals who are here illegally to obtain 
green cards without Congress changing a word of the immigration laws.
  This follows the President's earlier decision when Congress would not 
pass the DREAM Act to give benefits to undocumented aliens, as if that 
bill had been enacted into law.
  In both of these instances, the supposed justification for 
noncompliance with the law is that the need is so great. This is a 
siren song that supporters of the rule of law must reject.
  Texas and a number of other States have already filed suit 
challenging the immigration order's constitutionality, as well as its 
violation of the Administrative Procedure Act.
  In an unrelated case, Federal district court has already found parts 
of the order to be unlawful. The President also has claimed enforcement 
discretion in failing to enforce other Federal criminal laws.
  The Controlled Substances Act prohibits marijuana possession 
nationwide. Under the supremacy clause of the Constitution, State laws 
to the contrary are unconstitutional.
  Normally the Federal Government sues States that enact such laws. But 
when Colorado and other States legalized marijuana, the Obama 
administration directed Federal law enforcement to refrain from using 
its resources to enforce Federal law in those States. It did not make 
individualized prosecutorial decisions but a very blanket refusal to 
enforce Federal law, contrary to the oath.
  Nebraska and Oklahoma, rather than the Federal Government, have sued 
Colorado, as those neighboring States argue they face a significant 
increase in marijuana and other drug-related harms as a result of the 
Colorado law.
  To make matters worse, Attorney General Holder is expanding his 
refusal to apply Federal marijuana laws to Indian reservations. Those 
reservations depend upon Federal law enforcement.
  He plans to allow tribes to petition unelected local prosecutors to 
decide whether the same nonenforcement of marijuana laws' policy will 
apply to those reservations. Apart from the rule of law question, it 
must be kept in mind that these reservations are in States that still 
want to see marijuana illegal. As a matter of policy, rates of illegal 
drug use are higher on Indian reservations, with all of the associated 
health and crime consequences.
  Again, this goes to the heart of the rule of law.
  Does anyone believe if a State decided dealers could sell guns 
without conducting the federally required background checks, that the 
Obama administration would ignore those States? Anyone who approves 
what President Obama has done under the guise of enforcement discretion 
will have no cause to complain about a future President's decision to 
allocate scarce resources.
  For instance, he could decide that the ObamaCare individual mandate, 
which is constitutional according to the Supreme Court--only because it 
is a tax--will not be enforced against anyone who does not buy 
government-approved health insurance.
  President Obama has also violated the law when he released five 
Taliban fighters who were detained at Guantanamo in exchange for an 
American sergeant. As the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office 
concluded, the failure to notify Congress 30 days before such transfer, 
and to provide a justification, was a violation of law.

  I have asked the Justice Department for the justification they 
prepared for this move by the President. To this day, the President 
refuses to produce the Justice Department's opinion that purports to 
legally justify this action, contrary to the law passed by Congress.
  The American people can draw their own conclusions as to whether that 
means a well-reasoned legal argument exists that the President could 
legally act as he did.
  The rule of law ensures that government officials and agencies obey 
the law. Under the Constitution, Federal agencies can only exercise the 
power that Congress gives them. They cannot do whatever they want. Now 
that is obvious to any high school government class. But in the Obama 
administration, where too many agencies do not believe in limited 
government, agencies are lawlessly exceeding their powers. This 
lawlessness is a major reason why polls show that Americans believe the 
Federal Government is overregulated.
  Let's take a look at the EPA again. Not only has the EPA violated the 
Constitution and exceeded its powers on the Clean Air Act, that agency 
has violated a core Federal statute--the Administrative Procedures Act. 
The Administrative Procedures Act sets forth the process by which 
agencies can issue regulations and conduct other administrative 
business.
  For instance, under the APA, an agency can issue a regulation that is 
binding on citizens with penalties for noncompliance only if that 
agency pursues notice-and-comment rulemaking.
  This process, consistent with notions of due process and fairness, 
requires any agency to issue a proposed rule, seek public comment, 
respond to public comment, and modify the proposed rule to reflect 
those comments when it issues a final rule. The process is this way to 
assure accountability, to ensure transparency and input from regulated 
entities. Courts can strike down the regulation if the agency fails to 
comply with the Administrative Procedures Act.
  They can also strike down the regulation where the agency exceeds its 
statutory powers or where the agency's interpretation of law that is 
said to justify the regulation does not reflect a legitimate reading of 
the statute. Courts give greater deference to an agency's 
interpretations of statutes that are taken after proceeding through the 
notice-and-comment process.
  The EPA recently violated the Administrative Procedures Act in my own

[[Page S535]]

State of Iowa. The EPA wrote letters to Iowa municipalities setting 
forth specific requirements that they said must be followed to meet 
their obligations under the Clean Water Act. The cities challenged the 
EPA because the two letters effectively imposed new regulatory 
requirements. They argued the EPA could not impose regulatory 
obligations simply by letter but needed to proceed by notice-and-
comment rulemaking--the Administrative Procedures Act requirements.
  They also argued that so-called informal guidance imposes subtle 
pressures on regulated entities to comply even if the EPA does not call 
its actions a regulation.
  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit agreed and struck 
down the requirements EPA imposed on those cities just by issuing 
letters. However, the EPA has since publicly stated, as a lot of 
government agencies do, that the EPA would only comply with the ruling 
in the Eighth Circuit.
  So here we have a situation where there is a national law, the 
actions of the EPA are struck down in the Eighth Circuit, and now that 
law is going to be applied one way in the Eighth Circuit and the other 
way in the rest of the States. In other words, the EPA has proclaimed 
it intends to continue to impose these illegal requirements on 
municipalities in those States outside the Eighth Circuit, in clear 
violation of the APA.
  The EPA is not alone in failing to comply with the Administrative 
Procedures Act. The Department of Education issued what it termed 
informal guidance concerning campus sexual assault last year without 
public input.
  I hope we can see a pattern here, whether it is by letter by the EPA 
to Iowa municipalities or whether it is something called informal 
guidance by the Department of Education. These are all terms trying to 
get around the legal requirements of the Administrative Procedures Act 
to get things done faster by these agencies, because following the rule 
of law is kind of an encumbrance they do not want to go through.
  In regard to what the Department of Education did, at a HELP 
Committee hearing the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine 
Lhamon stated that she expected colleges and universities to comply 
with that guidance that was not a regulation under the Administrative 
Procedures Act. Of course, that meant what the Department was calling 
informal guidance was really a regulation that could only be issued 
after engaging in notice-and-comment rulemaking.

  When Senator Alexander, who is chairman of the committee now, asked 
her who gave her the authority to issue the guidance, she responded, 
incredibly--and I emphasize incredibly--``Well, with gratitude, you 
did, when I was confirmed.''
  So you get confirmed by 100 Members of the Senate and you can do 
whatever you want to regardless of law? No. This is the United States, 
where we operate under the rule of law and the constitution. It is not 
France in the age of Louis XIV where government officials say, L'Etat 
c'est moi. I am the State, in other words.
  Senate confirmation means only that a person has been legally 
installed in a job. But once confirmed, the agency official can only 
act in accordance with the laws governing their agency.
  I support the Department's overall goal of holding accountable those 
who commit campus sexual assault, but it has to be done lawfully. By 
issuing so-called guidance that, by her own admission, she expected 
colleges and universities to follow, the Department exceeded its lawful 
powers.
  Separate from excluding the public from having any say in the rules 
that have governed their conduct, bureaucrats have many incentives--too 
many incentives--to ignore the Administrative Procedures Act.
  Imagine: Formal rulemaking takes time. A formal notice of proposed 
rulemaking is followed by the public's comment period, then the agency 
responds to comments and modifies their proposed rule before it is made 
final. The Office of Management and Budget reviews the regulation and 
can block or modify it. The Office of Management and Budget makes 
agencies justify the costs and benefits of their rules, reduce burdens 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act, and also prepare a federalism impact 
statement for those proposed rules.
  Agencies that want to regulate without oversight can subvert the 
whole process of issuing binding rules under the cover of ``informal 
guidance.'' It is so much faster for bureaucrats to issue dictates to 
whomever they want for whatever reason they want.
  By avoiding the Administrative Procedures Act, these unelected 
agencies violate the whole separation of powers. They act legislatively 
in violation of the limited authority Congress provides a particular 
agency. Then they are free to issue even more rules, restricting the 
freedom of American people and increasing the role of unelected 
bureaucrats in telling other people what to do. Reductions in freedom 
are ultimately manifestations of a failure to follow the rule of law.
  We are already headed in that direction. The Supreme Court has before 
it a case now from the Labor Department, where one of the issues 
discussed at oral argument was whether that agency was required to 
proceed by notice-and-comment rulemaking rather than through 
interpretive rules. We shall see, then, whether the Court addresses 
that issue or focuses instead on what level of deference a court gives 
when agencies change their position without proceeding through 
Administrative Procedures Act rulemaking.
  But even if the issue of the necessity of engaging in notice-and-
comment rulemaking is not addressed in that case, the Court, before 
long, will reach that question. When it does, I believe it will find 
that what the Obama administration has been doing is clearly illegal.
  President Obama's claims of Executive power are unprecedented. He is 
creating a general precedent of a Presidency unrestrained by law.
  When Franklin Roosevelt was inaugurated in the darkest days of the 
Great Depression, he called on Congress to act to respond to the 
emergency as well as giving him powers to address it. He did issue 
Executive orders, such as declaring a bank holiday, but he did not say 
that he had a phone and a pen and that he would do whatever he felt was 
necessary regardless of whether Congress acted. Rather, he said that if 
the powers Congress gave him to address the emergency were inadequate, 
he would ask Congress to provide him with the powers Congress would 
give a President in the event of a foreign invasion.
  Those are extensive powers. But he was determined to ask Congress for 
power, not to act unilaterally because the ends justified the means. He 
wanted to use all the powers available under the Constitution, not 
exceed those powers.
  Not only does the Constitution further government compliance with the 
rule of law through the separation of powers, it also sets up an 
executive branch that can act to check itself. Executive officials have 
their own legal powers that the President cannot interfere with. They 
can also refuse to carry out illegal Presidential orders.
  We have a very good example from the dark days of Watergate. The 
Nixon administration exceeded its powers too. When that happened, there 
were administration officials who pushed back against their own 
President who appointed them. The appropriate Justice Department 
official told President Nixon he would haul him into Federal Court if 
there were evidence of his criminality. Attorney General Elliott 
Richardson and Deputy Attorney General Ruckelhaus resigned rather than 
fire the Watergate special prosecutor, as the President had 
ordered. People of conscience do sometimes resign or threaten to do so, 
and that increases public pressure on the President to obey the law.

  Who in the Obama administration has ever stood up against his 
lawlessness? No one, as far as I know. No one has resigned from the 
Justice Department as it has become a rubberstamp for wild claims of 
Presidential power that exceed the Constitution and violate the laws.
  What lawyer in the EPA or any other Department has stopped her agency 
from acting unconstitutionally by exceeding the powers that Congress 
has specifically delegated under various statutes? What lawyer has 
stopped an agency from violating the Administrative Procedures Act by 
issuing binding rules on the public without public comment?

[[Page S536]]

  I regret to say that the Congress up to now has too often been 
complicit with Presidential assaults on the rule of law. When President 
Obama eviscerated the core Senate prerogative of advice and consent by 
making unconstitutional recess appointments, not one single Democrat in 
this body objected. This is where the real harm of excessive 
partisanship manifests itself.
  Time and again, the previous majority in this body refused to take 
action against any Presidential action that violated the law if they 
agreed with the policy being pursued by the President. This sort of 
nonactivity is not why the Constitution created the Congress. Whatever 
its flaws, an active Congress that defends its legislative prerogatives 
and conducts effective oversight of Executive illegality is vital to 
preserving liberty.
  In one historical example, the process of transformation from 
democracy to dictatorship was completed when the Parliament voted 
itself out of existence.
  The Framers did not intend a Congress to sit idly by as the President 
violates the Constitution and the laws. In Federalist 51, James Madison 
wrote that the separation of powers was vital to the preservation of 
liberty. He noted that checks and balances would be effective in 
keeping each branch within its prescribed constitutional role because 
each had, in his words:

       . . . the necessary constitutional means and personal 
     motives to resist encroachments of the others. . . . Ambition 
     must be made to counteract ambition.

  Recently, the Senate has failed to counteract unlimited Executive 
ambition. That must change and, as a result of the last election, 
should change. Will it change? I sure hope so.
  I trust that under our new leadership, the Senate will take action 
for the government to control itself, and to restore the rule of law 
that has been so badly damaged in recent years, because if we take the 
spirit of the Declaration of Independence--and remember, prior to that 
Declaration, the colonies decided they did not want one person, George 
III, making decisions affecting millions of people on this side of the 
ocean. So they were very careful, when they declared independence and 
they wrote a Constitution a few years later, to make sure they carried 
out the spirit of the Declaration of Independence that:

       . . . they are endowed by their Creator with certain 
     unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and 
     the pursuit of happiness.

  Not by our government, but by nature or by our Creator.
  So they put into this Constitution assurances so there could never be 
a George III again, and separated all the powers so one person didn't 
have all the power.
  Now we see one person trying to exercise the power of several 
branches of government, as George III tried to do. So we are over that 
hurdle. All we have to do is make sure that the checks and balances the 
government worked--the same checks and balances that every high school 
kid learns in government class, to make sure that one person doesn't do 
it, and that our liberties are protected by a government that operates 
under the rule of law. And that Constitution is our rule of law.
  I yield the floor, and I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


                  Amendment No. 245 to Amendment No. 2

  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside 
the pending amendment so that I may call up amendment No. 245 on behalf 
of Senator Barrasso.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?
  Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Alaska [Ms. Murkowski], for Mr. Barrasso, 
     proposes an amendment numbered 245 to amendment No. 2.

  Ms. MURKOWSKI. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment 
be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To clarify that treaties with Indian tribes remain in effect)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. NO EFFECT ON INDIAN TREATIES.

       Nothing in this Act may change, suspend, supersede, or 
     abrogate any trust obligation or treaty requirement of the 
     United States with respect to any Indian nation without 
     consultation with the applicable Indian nation, as required 
     under Executive Order 13175 (67 Fed. Reg. 67249) (November 6, 
     2000).

  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. DAINES. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Ms. Murkowski). Without objection, it is so 
ordered.


                  Amendment No. 246 to Amendment No. 2

  Mr. DAINES. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent to set aside the 
pending amendment in order to call up amendment No. 246.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The clerk will report.
  The assistant bill clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Montana [Mr. Daines] proposes an amendment 
     numbered 246 to amendment No. 2.

  Mr. DAINES. I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be 
dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To express the sense of Congress that reauthorizing the Land 
           and Water Conservation Fund should be a priority)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. _. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING REAUTHORIZATION OF LAND 
                   AND WATER CONSERVATION FUND.

       It is the sense of Congress that--
       (1) the Land and Water Conservation Fund plays an important 
     role in improving wildlife habitat and increasing outdoor 
     recreation opportunities on Federal and State land; and
       (2) reauthorizing the Land and Water Conservation Fund 
     should be a priority for Congress and should include 
     improvements to the structure of the program to more 
     effectively manage existing Federal land.

  Mr. DAINES. Madam President, as a fifth-generation Montanan and 
lifelong sportsman, I have a deep appreciation for our public lands. 
Hunting, fishing, and hiking on our public lands are important parts of 
many Montanan's way of life. These are traditions I have enjoyed in my 
life and traditions I have also enjoyed with my kids.
  It is important our State's outdoor heritage is protected for future 
generations. That is why protecting and increasing access to public 
lands is so important. The Land and Water Conservation Fund has been 
instrumental in increasing access to our public lands, growing 
opportunities for outdoor recreation and protecting wildlife. There is 
great potential for the program to be used to improve the management of 
our existing Federal lands.
  In fact, there is much improvement to be made to make Federal land 
management more effective. My amendment will express the sense of the 
Congress that the Land and Water Conservation Fund plays an important 
role in improving wildlife habitat and increasing outdoor recreation 
opportunities on Federal as well as State land. It will also convey 
that reauthorizing the Land and Water Conservation Fund should be a 
priority for Congress and should include improvements in the structure 
of the program to more effectively manage existing Federal land.
  Montana's outdoor heritage is of great importance to our State's 
economy and thousands of Montanans' way of life. We must work to 
improve programs such as the Land and Water Conservation Fund so it 
will work better for Montanans and all Americans.
  Supporting and improving the Land and Water Conservation Fund will 
help us ensure this legacy is continued for future generations.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.

[[Page S537]]

  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Rounds). Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  Ms. MURKOWSKI. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that on 
Wednesday, January 28, 2015, at 2:30 p.m., the Senate proceed to vote 
in relation to the following amendments in the order listed: Cardin No. 
75, Peters No. 70, Sanders No. 23, Cruz No. 15, Merkley No. 125, Moran 
No. 73, Whitehouse No. 148, Daines No. 132, Coons No. 115, Collins No. 
35, Carper No. 120, Murkowski No. 166, Heitkamp No. 133, Gillibrand No. 
48, Barrasso No. 245, Cardin No. 124, Daines No. 246, and Burr No. 92, 
as modified with the changes at the desk; further, that all amendments 
on this list be subject to a 60-vote affirmative threshold for adoption 
and that no second-degrees be in order to the amendments. I ask consent 
that there be 2 minutes of debate equally divided between each vote, 
and that all votes after the first in the series be 10-minute votes.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment (No. 92), as modified, is as follows:

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. ___. PERMANENT REAUTHORIZATION OF LAND AND WATER 
                   CONSERVATION FUND.

       (a) In General.--Section 200302 of title 54, United States 
     Code, is amended--
       (1) in subsection (b), in the matter preceding paragraph 
     (1), by striking ``During the period ending September 30, 
     2015, there'' and inserting ``There''; and
       (2) in subsection (c)(1), by striking ``through September 
     30, 2015''.
       (b) Public Access.--Section 200306 of title 54, United 
     States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
       ``(c) Public Access.--Not less than 1.5 percent of amounts 
     made available for expenditure under section 200303 or 
     $10,000,000, whichever is greater, shall be available each 
     fiscal year for projects that secure recreational public 
     access to existing Federal public land for hunting, fishing, 
     and other recreational purposes.''.

                          ____________________