Demand info on background & monitoring of Syrian refugees
Gov. Bobby Jindal--a GOP presidential contender--said he wants more information from the White House "in hopes that the night of horror in Paris is not duplicated here." Jindal sent a letter to the White House, demanding to know how many
Syrian refugees have been resettled in his state. He also wants to know the extent of background screening before Syrians entered the U.S. United States as well as what monitoring would be done once the refugees make it to Louisiana.
Source: ABC News on Syrian Refugee Crisis
, Nov 16, 2015
Terrorists aren't martyrs; they're going straight to hell
We don't discriminate based on the color of skin or creed. You say to Muslim leaders, they have two responsibilities. One, it's not enough to denounce generic acts of violence. They have got to denounce the individuals by name and say
these are not martyrs. These terrorists are not martyrs; rather, they are going straight to hell. They are not going to enjoy a reward in their afterlife. Secondly, they have to embrace the same freedoms for everybody else they want for themselves.
Hillary should not be above the law in her email scandal
With Hillary Clinton, it just seems to be one scandal after another. If any private in the military, if any other government official, had handled classified information the way she is said to have handled classified information, there would have
been a court martial, there would have been even criminal prosecution. There would have certainly been consequences. She shouldn't be above the law. There shouldn't be a different set of rules for our elected leaders than for the rest of us.
Source: ABC This Week 2015 interviews of 2016 presidential hopefuls
, Aug 30, 2015
Name the enemy: radical Islamic terrorism
Unlike Obama, I'll actually name the enemy that we confront. We've got a president who cannot bring himself to say the words "radical Islamic terrorism." Obama loves to criticize America, apologize for us, criticize medieval Christians.
How can we beat an enemy if our commander-in-chief doesn't have the moral clarity to say that Islam has a problem, and that problem is radical Islam, to say they've got to condemn the individual murderers who are committing these acts of violence?
Source: Fox News/Facebook Second Tier debate transcript
, Aug 6, 2015
Ill-advised to scale back missile defense
The Obama administration wants to focus on disarmament. Like those who argue that guns can cause crime, Pres. Obama's team seems to believe that simple reducing the number of military weapons--including the weapons we ourselves possess--will
reduce conflict. But weapons, whether hunting rifles or tanks, are inanimate objects. I'm not worried about the objects themselves, but about who controls them and where they're being pointed. If Canada announces it is building a new missile,
I wouldn't be too concerned. But when Iran or North Korea do it, I'm a lot less sanguine. We can abolish as many of our missiles as we want, but that's just not going to convince international miscreants to do the same. That's why Pres.
Obama's decision to drastically scale back our missile defense program was ill-advised. The real cause of war and international conflict is not the existence of weapons, but authoritarian leaders trying to expand their power.
I don't see any reason to continue giving Miranda rights to foreign terrorists, as we did to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the would-be bomber of Flight 253. As Senators Collins and Lieberman wrote to Attorney General Eric Holder, the decision to treat
Abdulmutallab as an ordinary criminal "almost certainly prevented the military and the intelligence community from obtaining information that would have been critical to learning more about how our enemy operates and to preventing future attacks."
This is just common sense; intelligence is our first line of defense in war. That's why I voted in Congress to amend the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance
Act (FISA) so the president and the attorney general could authorize electronic surveillance of foreign agents without a court order. Extending full legal protections to foreign terrorists will simply mean more dead Americans.
Make no apologies when we must use our military strength
We live in a dangerous world, and America needs to be strong. We must remain not just strong, but the strongest power in the world, and we should make no apologies when we must use our military strength from time to time.
But this is not where our true strength lies. Military might is a means to an end, not an end in itself.
A strong military in the hands of a corrupt, wicked, or oppressive regime does not make that regime great.
Having military superiority is great--but it has to be tethered to a culture that promotes goodness, freedom, and justice. Without that, we would be no better than the old Soviet Union.
Claim of "poverty causes terrorism" justifies globalism
Islamic terrorists often hail from the richest Middle Eastern nations--fifteen of the nineteen 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia--while dirt poor Muslim countries like Mali, Bangladesh, and Niger produce few if any terrorists. Many suicide bombers ha
graduate degrees and well-paying jobs before they chose to murder innocent civilians in suicidal attacks. Nevertheless, the Obama administration continues to cling to the "poverty causes terrorism" theory because it supports the social work approach to
national security that it favors.
As we engage and defeat our enemies on the battlefield, we also need to win the battle of ideas by projecting confidence in our values, history, and our way of life. Our president has made a bad habit of apologizing t
foreign audiences for America's supposed transgressions. The American president must proudly represent the world's greatest democracy to the world. It is naive to think these apologies gain us respect--they simply convey a dangerous lack of confidence.
We must remember for all our troubles at home, dangerous enemies still seek our destruction. Now is no time to dismantle the defenses that have protected this country for hundreds of years, or make deep cuts in funding for our troops.
America's fighting men and women can do anything. If we give them the resources they need, they will stay on the offensive, defeat our enemies, and protect us from harm.
Source: GOP response to the 2009 State of the Union address
, Feb 24, 2009
Voted YES on restricting no-bid defense contracts.
Improving the Quality of Contracts--to restrict the contract period of noncompetitive contracts to the minimum period necessary to meet urgent requirements; and not more than one year unless the the government would be seriously injured.
Increasing Contract Oversight--to make publicly available (on websites) justification documents for using noncompetitive contract procedures.
Promoting Integrity in Contracting--to prohibit former federal officials from accepting compensation from contractors as lawyers or lobbyists.
Proponents support voting YES because:
In Iraq, we were told we needed Halliburton to get a contract without any competition because they were the only ones who know how to put out oil well fires. So they got a contract on a cost-plus basis even though they had a history of overcharging the taxpayers. And then later we found out that they didn't do anything about putting out oil well fires in the first Gulf war; it was Bechtel, not
Halliburton. Contractors were given special treatment by not having healthy competition.
In dealing with Hurricane Katrina, and we have seen the same mistakes again: No-competition contracts; cost-plus contracts. We have seen what the result has been: Wasted taxpayer dollars. This bill requires that if there is an emergency to give a contract, give it. But then have bidding within a year.
Opponents support voting NO because:
We support transparency and accountability in decision-making, but this bill asks for audit reports that are only advisory. To provide those to Congress not only gives you too much information, a lot of it can be misleading and can increase the number of contract disputes.
When you are fighting a war, you need to move quickly. You don't give a 6-month appeal to the folks that lose the competition. You don't give small business set-asides because there is one thing you don't have, you don't have time.
Reference: Accountability in Contracting Act;
Bill H R 1362
; vote number 2007-156
on Mar 15, 2007
Voted YES on allowing electronic surveillance without a warrant.
Amends the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) to allow the President & Attorney General to authorize electronic surveillance without a court order to acquire foreign intelligence information, after certifying that the surveillance is directed at the acquisition of communications of foreign agents.
Proponents support voting YES because:
Intelligence is the first line of defense in the war on terrorism. That means we have to have intelligence agencies and capabilities that are agile, that are responsive to changes in technology, and that also protect the civil liberties of Americans. Let me make an analogy. With modernization, we replaced Route 66 with Interstate 40. We no longer have the stoplights and the intersections. We created on ramps and off ramps and concrete barriers to protect the citizens where traffic was moving very quickly. That is like what we are trying to do here--FISA needs modernization.
Opponents support voting NO because:
We are legislating in the dark. We do not even know what the President is doing now because he will not tell us. The New York Times exposed that the administration had authorized secret surveillance of domestic conversations. When exposed, the President claimed he was operating under inherent powers, but court decisions have found that the President cannot simply declare administration actions constitutional and lawful, whether or not they are.
Yet rather than finding out what is going on, this legislation retroactively legalizes whatever has been going on. The President already has broad latitude to conduct domestic surveillance, including surveillance of American citizens, so long as it is overseen by the FISA court.
This bill does not enhance security, but it does allow surveillance without the traditional checks and balances that have served our Nation well.
Reference: Update the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978;
; vote number 2006-502
on Sep 28, 2006
Voted YES on continuing intelligence gathering without civil oversight.
A resolution providing for consideration of the bill (H.R. 5020) to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2007 for intelligence and intelligence-related activities. Voting YES indicates support of the current methods for intelligence-gathering used by the CIA and other agencies. The resolution's opponents say:
This bill could have and should have required a dedicated funding line for the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. The 9/11 Commission recommended this board to serve as a civil liberties watchdog on the potential erosion of the basic constitutional rights. Now, 15 months later, we find our concerns about basic civil rights to have been well founded, but the oversight board is barely up and running [and is not funded].
Many of us believe that when the President authorized the NSA surveillance of Americans, he broke the law, plain and simple.
We are talking about the most basic fundamental civil liberties that protect the American people, and the Republican leadership will
not even let us debate it. What are they afraid of?
If you believe that this President should have the ability to spy on Americans without a warrant and without going to the FISA court, then they should write that bill and bring it to the floor, then have a debate and a vote.
The resolution's proponents say:
We have had the good fortune in this country for the last 4 1/2 years to have not had another terrorist attack on our soil, and it is not because they haven't tried. The reason for that success boils down to two things: the courage of our soldiers and the quality of our intelligence. Exceptional intelligence is the first line of defense for America in the long war on terrorism.
I think as a responsible body we have to start out by getting the facts. That means hard work that is done largely in secret. Oversight is under way, and, for the most part, the National Security Agency has been very forthcoming.
Voted YES on federalizing rules for driver licenses to hinder terrorists.
REAL ID Act of 2005: To establish and rapidly implement regulations for State driver's license and identification document security standards, to prevent terrorists from abusing the asylum laws of the United States, to unify terrorism-related grounds for inadmissibility and removal, and to ensure expeditious construction of the San Diego border fence.
Title I: Amendments to Federal Laws to Protect Against Terrorist Entry - defining more factors relevant to credibility determinations in asylum cases.
Title II: Improved Security for Driver's Licenses and Personal Identification Cards - setting minimum security requirements, including the incorporation of specified data, a common machine-readable technology, and certain anti-fraud security features. Title III: Border Infrastructure and Technology Integration - studying ground surveillance technologies.
Reference: Bill sponsored by Rep. James Sensenbrenner [R, WI-5];
; vote number 2005-031
on Feb 10, 2005
Voted YES on continuing military recruitment on college campuses.
Expresses the continued support of Congress for, and encourages the executive branch to continue challenging any judicial decision against, specified provisions of Federal law prohibiting making certain Federal contracts with or grants to institutions of higher education that prevent military recruiters from having access to their campuses and to certain information about their students.
Reference: Resolution sponsored by Rep Mike Rogers [R, AL-3];
; vote number 2005-016
on Feb 2, 2005