Mr./Madam President,

Last week, the Senate had a chance to adopt measures that would protect the dignity of human life – not just unborn human life, but born human life.

And unfortunately, due to a minority of this body, we lost the opportunity to do so.
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Mr. President, I appreciate the opportunity to address these important issues today. I thank my friend and colleague from Oregon for outlining his reasons for objecting to this legislation. I feel the need to respond to a few things that he said because they call for an immediate response.

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Abraham Lincoln, in a message to Congress on July 4, 1861, wrote that the leading object of government was “to elevate the condition of men -- to lift artificial weights from all shoulders -- to clear the paths of laudable pursuit for all -- to afford all, an unfettered start, and a fair chance, in the race of life.”

It is no coincidence that he gave this message on the anniversary of our nation’s birth.
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Mr. President,

I rise today with my colleague, Senator Kaine, to support the resolution before us, which would prohibit the President from conducting offensive military strikes against Iran, unless and until Congress explicitly authorizes it.

This is how security policy in our republic is supposed to be made: Congress authorizes the use of military force, and the president – as commander in chief – directs the military to complete the missions.
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Mr. President,

On February 14, 1870 a remarkable thing happened in Utah – something that changed the course of history not just in our state, but in our entire nation.

Seraph Young, a twenty-three-year-old school teacher, became the first American woman to cast a vote in a political election under an equal suffrage law.

It was a moment that both followed and preceded a long line of remarkable contributions from Utah women – women who have pioneered and led in our state and in our nation.
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Mr. President, I have long maintained that most, if not all of the most serious vexing problems within our federal government can be traced to a deviation from the twin core structural protections of the Constitution.

There are two of these protections one that operates along a vertical axis, the other a horizontal. The vertical protection we call federalism, which states a very simple fact that in the American system of government most powers are to be reserved to the states.
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It’s December, Mr./Madam President. And so America’s attention turns once again to the great debate of our times: which is the best Christmas movie? White Christmas? Elf? A Christmas Story? Die Hard? I’m partial to It’s a Wonderful Life myself.

We have to debate the best Christmas movie that we all watch every year because there really is no debate about the worst. The worst Christmas movie is the one that runs every year on C-Span the week before Our Savior’s birthday: it’s called Omnibus.
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Mr./Madam President,

I rise today to honor Major General Jeff Burton, Adjutant General of the Utah National Guard, for his many years of devoted service to our nation and the great state of Utah.

As he closes a long chapter of 37 years of military service, he leaves behind a tremendous legacy as an American patriot and a true servant-leader. And so I would like to take a moment to pay tribute to that legacy today.
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Mr./Madam President,

There is no doubt that we are blessed with beautiful, useful, and fruitful lands in our nation. And there is no doubt that some of them should be preserved as national treasures.

But unfortunately, the federal government owns far more of these lands than it should – and far more than it can feasibly take care of.
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I would like to speak briefly about Sen. Durbin’s recent request for a hearing about the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act.

The Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act is a bill that many senators have worked on for nearly a decade, and has long been a top priority of mine. I have introduced this bill in the Senate every Congress since I was first elected in 2010. During that time it has been the subject of widespread debate and attention both on and off the Hill, and other members, including Senator Schumer, have sought to pass the bill, as I am doing, by unanimous consent.
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