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[Congressional Record: June 3, 2002 (Senate)]
[Page S4884-S4886]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access []


  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Under the previous order, the 
Senate will now proceed to the consideration of H.R. 4775, which the 
clerk will report.
  The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       A bill (H.R. 4775) making supplemental appropriations for 
     further recovery from and response to terrorist attacks on 
     the United States for the fiscal year ending September 30, 
     2002, and for other purposes.

  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Under the previous order, the text 
of S. 2551 is inserted in lieu thereof and considered as original text.
  The Senator from Nevada.
  Mr. REID. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so 
  Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, in September of 1862, in a sun-drenched 
cornfield near the Mason-Dixon Line, a devastation called Antietam 
happened. Twelve thousand young Americans on each side perished. 
Antietam is a name forever soaked in blood. It has come to symbolize 
the tragic nature of a domestic conflict called the Civil War--or the 
War Between the States.
  Now this Nation is challenged once again by war on our own shores. 
Another tragic loss of life on another sunny morning in the September 
of another century has recalled for us the special trauma of war on our 
homeland. This time the violence on our own land has roots in a 
cultural clash of worldwide proportions. It is, at once, a war at home 
and a war abroad.
  While we must fight on both fronts, these are conflicts of a very 
different nature. The brave men and women who serve in our military 
volunteer for that duty. They have the unquestioned support of the 
American people and, through the American people, of their Government. 
They fight aided by technology which is the envy of the world. Our 
military personnel accept and understand the discipline imposed on them 
while they serve for the cause of freedom. The weapons of destruction 
which engage them are easily discernible and their lethal potential is 
well understood.
  The war on our own shores is much more complex. We know that 
terrorists live among us and that they traverse our open borders with 
relative ease. We know the new enemy among us prefers weapons fashioned 
from the ordinary infrastructure of modern life--trucks, trains, 
planes, mail delivery systems, ports, energy sources, cyberspace, spent 
nuclear material. All of these, we are told, can be easily adapted to 
cause death and destruction, fear and panic. At home, our technology is 
deficient, with outdated computers in key government agencies unable to 
easily transmit vital information back and forth. In April and May, the 
Appropriations Committee heard testimony that indicate that our 
adversaries could cripple the U.S. economy without great difficulty or 
enormous cost. Yet we do not know much more. We do not know where this 
new shadowy enemy will strike, or when.
  Within the past few weeks, the concern seems to have grown. The Vice 
President has warned that a strike is ``almost certain.'' Secretary of 
Defense Donald Rumsfeld has stated that it is inevitable that 
terrorists will acquire weapons of mass destruction. Secretary of State 
Colin Powell has warned that ``terrorists are trying every way they 
can'' to get nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons. Security has 
been tightened around New York City landmarks. The FBI has warned that 
sites, such as the Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn Bridge, might be 
  With all of these warnings in mind, and with a realization of the 
many gaps in our homeland security network, the men and women of this 
Congress have an obligation to take immediate steps to protect American 
lives and to try to prevent future tragedies such as the one we 
witnessed last September.
  After several days of hearings by the Senate Appropriations Committee 
on the urgent supplemental request for defense and homeland security, 
what emerges is a picture of a nation conflicted. While united in the 
goal of fighting terrorism, we are conflicted about how to do so, how 
to go about it.
  Finite resources must be stretched to fulfill the mission of a 
military on a worldwide hunt for terrorists and a less defined, but 
just as urgent, need to protect our people here at home, which

[[Page S4885]]

must be executed by layers of bureaucrats responding to hundreds, if 
not thousands, of vulnerabilities.
  When the North wrestled the South for the soul of this Nation in the 
19th century, America stood at a crossroads. Then, as now, transcendent 
and solid leadership was essential to our ultimate success.
  In the 1860s, this Nation was blessed, as it often has been in its 
brief history, with a gifted leader, able to quiet the squabbling 
generals and calm the bureaucratic struggles that threatened to consume 
his single-minded effort to preserve the Nation and restore the peace. 
Abraham Lincoln was a giant. He saved the Nation.
  But what we as leaders are now faced with may well be without 
parallel in U.S. history. I say that because the events surrounding 
September 11 have underscored a revolutionary blurring of the lines 
between domestic danger and international danger for our people. We can 
no longer sit safely in our large and prosperous country, confident 
that we need not fear foreign attack. True, our military might on the 
battlefield is the envy of the world, but the enemy now lives and works 
among us.
  He is here. He crosses our borders with relative ease. He boards our 
airplanes. He rides our trains and hides in our ships. No longer is the 
enemy only on a far away and distant foreign shore.
  The question for all of the leaders of this Government is, Can we 
adapt? Can we restructure where we need to do so? Can we even fully 
comprehend at this point the intertwining nature of the dual conflict 
in which we find ourselves? Can we sustain military action on so many 
fronts and not shortchange a defense of the homeland? Can we be steady 
enough to know that, even if public attention strays from the dangers 
here at home, our attention must not stray from the dangers here at 
home? In many cases, the answers come down to funding questions.
  The Senate Appropriations Committee is doing its part. Senator 
Stevens and I are proud of our record on homeland defense. Last fall, 
we approved $10 billion for homeland defense programs, $4 billion more 
than had been requested by the President, and that $4 billion has made 
a difference.
  Over 2,200 more INS border agents and Customs inspectors are being 
hired on the northern and southern borders; the Immigration and 
Naturalization Service is now implementing a system for tracking 
foreign students in this country; our police, fire, and medical 
personnel are getting better training, better equipment for detecting 
and responding to potential biological, chemical, or nuclear attacks; 
the FBI is hiring hundreds of new agents; 750 more food inspectors and 
investigators are being hired; the number of ports with Food and Drug 
Administration investigators is being doubled; 324 additional 
protective personnel are being hired to protect our nuclear weapons 
complex. Additional resources are being spent on efforts to destroy or 
secure nuclear materials overseas.
  However, a great deal remains to be done. In recent weeks, the 
Appropriations Committee in the Senate held a series of hearings on 
homeland defense. Senator Stevens and I joined in identifying and 
inviting the witnesses. We heard from terrorism experts about the 
continuing threat to our Nation. We heard from Governors. We heard from 
mayors. We heard from first responders--our police, fire, and medical 
personnel. They all testified to a continuing need for resources to 
expand our capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to terrorist 
  We also took testimony from seven Cabinet officers and the Federal 
Emergency Management Agency. Our former colleagues, Sam Nunn and Warren 
Rudman, testified on the very real threat this Nation faces. The 
compelling message from our witnesses was that we need to do more and 
that we need to do more now. They also stressed the need for better 
Federal coordination and clearer standards for such efforts as securing 
our ports and making sure we have interoperable equipment that will 
allow our first responders to communicate with each other.
  The legislation before the Senate today, which totals $31 billion, 
fully funds the President's $14 billion request for defense programs. 
It provides over $8.3 billion for homeland defense programs. It 
provides $5.5 billion to augment the Federal response to New York City 
in response to the events of September 11. It approves $1 billion for 
the Pell grant shortfall. It includes $417 million for veterans' 
medical care. In addition, the bill includes $1.1 billion of mandatory 
spending for the Veterans Compensation and Pension Program.
  This bill contains $8.3 billion for critical homeland security 
efforts, efforts that we should not delay until the next fiscal year or 
the next calendar year.
  Within the homeland security package, more than $1 billion is 
directed to first responder programs. These are the people at the local 
level. They are the people who would be first on the scene. This 
funding will help to address those gaps that can endanger lives in case 
of an emergency.
  For instance, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has received 
grant requests from 18,000 fire departments across the country, 
requests that total more than $3 billion. The Senate legislation would 
begin to address this critical need for training and equipment. So we 
have equipment funds providing $300 million for our firefighters.
  Another $200 million is in the legislation to improve the ability for 
first responders to talk with each other. Currently, too many local 
police and fire departments have radio systems that are incompatible. 
They simply cannot talk with each other when responding to a crisis.
  The Appropriations Committee has included funding for the National 
Institute of Standards and Technology to establish uniform standards 
for interoperable equipment. We had several witnesses who testified to 
the need for such.
  Recently, the Brookings Institution released a report critiquing the 
administration's homeland defense strategy. One of the report's 
authors, Michael O'Hanlon, stated that the threat posed by terrorists 
using cargo containers entering our seaports ``may be our single 
greatest vulnerability that we have not yet made much progress towards 
addressing in this country.'' We heard from several witnesses to this 
  To take steps to address this danger, the committee has provided $666 
million for the Coast Guard for port and maritime security. This 
funding would expedite vulnerability assessments at our Nation's ports. 
It would expand the number of port strike teams trained to respond to 
biological, chemical, and radiation incidents. It would create two new 
maritime safety and security teams and purchase homeland security 
response boats, and it would expand surface and aviation assets, as 
well as the shore facilities to support them.
  Two hundred million dollars is included for port security grants. 
Fifty seven million dollars is provided to the Customs Service to 
improve cargo container inspections overseas, and $28 million is 
included to improve our technology on inspecting cargo containers.
  We cannot ignore looming gaps in our homeland security efforts. These 
gaps were exposed during those hearings. The committee listened. The 
committee has acted. The committee is going to do something about the 
problems that were brought to our attention by the witnesses who came 
before the Senate Appropriations Committee.
  That is why this legislation provides $387 million for bioterrorism, 
including funds to improve our toxicology and infectious disease lab 
capacity at the Centers for Disease Control.
  Our committee, the Senate Appropriations Committee, is responding to 
the needs of the country as expressed by the men and women who appeared 
recently before the Senate Appropriations Committee in those very 
important hearings. Congress has approved a $3 billion bioterrorism 
response authorization bill. This funding will move us toward meeting 
that bill's goal.
  The supplemental bill provides $200 million for security at our 
nuclear weapons facilities and nuclear labs. The bill provides $154 
million for cyber-security with a special emphasis on helping the 
private sector defend itself from attack.
  No witness before that committee was more impressive than the 
distinguished Senator from Utah, Bob Bennett, who testified as to the 
need for the private sector to be prepared against attack. He 
emphasized the dangers that confront the Nation. So the committee has 
responded by, as I say, appropriating $154 million for cyber-security.

[[Page S4886]]

  Then there is in the bill $125 million for border security, including 
resources for Immigration and Naturalization Service facilities on the 
borders of the Nation, and for deploying the system for rapid response 
criminal background checks to 30 more ports.
  The bill provides $100 million for nuclear nonproliferation programs. 
The bill provides $265 million for airport security, including $100 
million to help airports meet the new Federal standards for airport 
  The bill before the Senate provides $200 million to the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture for food safety labs, additional food 
inspectors, and for vulnerability assessments for rural water systems.
  The bill before the Senate provides $100 million for the EPA to 
complete vulnerability assessments on the security of our water 
  The bill before the Senate today provides $286 million for other 
homeland defense items such as Secret Service efforts to combat 
electronic crime, FBI counterterrorism efforts, and funds for the 
Justice Department to develop an integrated information system.
  The bill fully funds the President's $4.4 billion request for the new 
transportation security administration.
  The bill includes $1.95 billion for international programs. We have 
included $200 million for Israel and $50 million for disaster 
assistance for the Palestinians.
  The legislation contains $1.069 billion for nonemergency programs, 
with offsets to pay for them. The major items include $450 million for 
election reform grants, $100 million for the global AIDS trust fund, 
and $75 million for WIC. The bill also provides $110 million for flood 
relief and $55 million for Amtrak repairs and security.

  I could go on, but Senators and the American people already know we 
are vulnerable, and in many instances they know where we are 
vulnerable: Anthrax, smallpox, dirty bombs, border security, nuclear 
labs, powerplants, cyber-security, food safety, airport security, 
drinking water.
  So we do understand the gaps in our security structures. If we know 
where those gaps are, we can be sure terrorists know where they are.
  Many decisions, large and small, lie ahead. One thing is certain: We 
cannot afford delay. So I urge Senators to offer amendments, debate, 
vote, and help members of the Appropriations Committee expedite this 
much-needed assistance for our Nation. We say, ``May God bless 
America,'' but we can do a lot to help God to bless America.
  We must quickly enact this bipartisan effort to bolster our 
weaknesses, address our shortfalls, and protect American lives.
  I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Dorgan). The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. REID. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent the order for the 
quorum call be dispensed with.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.