Day Lee Briefing -- 5/24/2011

May 24, 2011

Today, Senator Lee appears on CSPAN’s Washington Journal and will attend a joint session of Congress featuring the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He meets with the Workers Compensation Fund of Utah and will call in to Lincoln Brown Radio Show in Vernal. Both the Foreign Relations and Judiciary Committee will be discussing nominations.

Day Lee Briefing -- 5/23/2011

May 23, 2011

Today, Senator Lee will give remarks at the Annual Utah Taxpayers Association in Salt Lake City. After travelling back to DC, he has an interview with Bloomberg News to discuss possible spending cuts in the budget

Day Lee Briefing -- 5/20/2011

May 20, 2011

Today’s Agenda

Today Senator Lee is in Utah visiting with constituents.

 

From the Senator’s Desk 

It has now been 60 days since Obama authorized military action in Libya.  This passage is from a letter I signed with Sens. Paul, DeMint, Johnson, Coburn, and Cornyn, which we sent to President Obama:

Congress received your report pursuant to section 4(a)(1) of the War Powers Resolution on March 21, 2011. Friday is the final day of the statutory sixty-day period for you to terminate the use of the United States Armed Forces in Libya under the War Powers Resolution. As recently as last week your Administration indicated use of the United States Armed Forces will continue indefinitely. Therefore, we are writing to ask whether you intend to comply with the requirements of the War Powers Resolution. We await your response.  –Mike Lee

 

#2nd Opinion

President Obama called for Israelis and Palestinians to return to the peace process using 1967 borders as a starting point.  I agree with Prime Minister Netanyahu that this move would leave Israel in a militarily indefensible position.


 

Around the Water Cooler

Oil shale development: “This legislation will bring down the cost of gas and give American energy producers the certainty they need”

Armed Forces Day: Tomorrow, May 21, is Armed Forces Day.  I would like to thank all the brave men and women in the armed forces who have kept us safe over the years.

Lee Condemns President's Statement on Israel's borders

May 19, 2011

WASHINGTON – Today, Senator Mike Lee criticized President Obama’s call for Israel to return to its pre-1967 borders.  He released the following statement:

"I condemn in the strongest possible terms the President's irresponsible suggestion that Israel return to its pre-1967 borders.  I agree with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that this move would leave Israel in a militarily indefensible position.”

Day Lee Briefing -- 5/19/2011

May 19, 2011

This morning, Senator Lee will meet with Ryan Crocker, the Administration’s nominee for Ambassador to Afghanistan. He has a Judiciary hearing to discuss the Environmental Crimes and Enforcement Act, and other legislation. This afternoon, the Senator will give a floor statement in opposition of Goodwin Liu’s appointment to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and will vote on numerous bills before the Water and Power Subcommittee on ENR, for which he is the Ranking Member. Finally, he has media interviews E&E News, as well as KCPX’s (Moab) Cari and Rob show.

Floor Statement on Goodwin Liu May 19, 2011

May 19, 2011

Several of my colleagues have expressed a number of concerns about the nomination of Goodwin Liu. I share many of those concerns and do not wish to belabor the points they have already made. I will limit my comments to two fundamental reasons why I find myself unable to support the nomination of Professor Liu to serve as a Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Lee Opposes Appellate Court Nomination

May 19, 2011

WASHINGTON – Today, Senator Mike Lee expressed his profound objection to the nomination of Goodwin Liu as a Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.  In a speech on the Senate floor, Senator Lee articulated two primary reasons for opposing the nomination.

“First, I am truly dismayed by the lack of judgment displayed in Professor Liu’s 2006 testimony regarding the confirmation of Samuel Alito as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court,” said Lee, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and former Assistant U.S. Attorney. 

During the confirmation hearing of Justice Alito, Liu made controversial and inflammatory remarks misrepresenting Justice Alito’s judicial record.

“His comments about Justice Alito were offensive not simply because they were unhelpful in his confirmation process, but because they were a misleading and unwarranted personal attack on a dedicated public servant.”

“Professor Liu’s treatment of Justice Alito, and his last minute and incomplete handling of the concerns raised by his remarks, lead me to believe that he lacks the judgment and discretion to be confirmed to a life-tenured position in the judiciary.”

Senator Lee also explained that “the judicial philosophy espoused by Professor Liu is fundamentally inconsistent with the judicial mandate to be a neutral arbiter of the Constitution and to uphold the rule of law.”

“Throughout the course of numerous speeches, articles, and books, Professor Liu has championed a philosophy that in my judgment is incompatible with faithfully discharging the duties of an appellate court judge in our constitutional republic,” he added.

Lee concluded: “Professor Liu’s appalling treatment of Justice Alito leaves grave doubt in my mind as to whether he possesses the requisite judgment to serve as a life-tenured judge.  And I have come to the conclusion that Professor Liu’s extreme judicial philosophy is simply incompatible with the proper role of a judge in our constitutional republic.  For these reasons, as well as those articulated by many of my colleagues, I am compelled to oppose this nomination.”

Click Here for Senator Lee's Full Remarks

Dailee Briefing -- 5/18/2011

May 18, 2011

Today’s Agenda

This morning, Senator Lee will meet with a group of policy leaders at an event hosted by Citizens Against Government Waste to talk about the nation’s fiscal crisis.  He has a meeting with the Judiciary Committee to discuss ways to make the immigration court system more efficient, and the Energy and Natural Resources Committee will discuss pending legislation before the Public Lands and Forests Subcommittee.   The Senator has media interviews with the Salt Lake Tribune, as well as Mid Utah Radio.  Finally, he will be hosting a Green Jell-O Social event for Utah constituents in Washington, D.C.

 

From the Senator’s Desk

“It has been 749 days, more than two years, since the Senate passed a budget resolution. The majority is now six weeks late in producing a budget for this year, as required by law.  Our budget is the roadmap that tells us where we’re going in our fiscal future.  It is a critical first step toward fixing the nation’s most pressing economic problems.

“Republicans in Congress have made public a number of proposals that would balance the budget, lower spending, eliminate our annual deficit, reform entitlements, simplify the tax code, and reduce the size of government.  Our side has the bulk of ideas being debated around the country, while the Democrats in Congress largely remain silent, terrified of what they perceive as the political cost of action.

“We are ready for a robust debate on the future of our country, but, as the majority, Senate Democrats must show some leadership first.  If they are unwilling to take up the proposals put forth by Republicans, then we expect the Democrats to put forward a budget of their own.”  - Mike Lee

 

#2ndOpinion

Yesterday, a cloture motion failed on legislation that would have repealed tax incentives averaging for America's top 5 oil and gas producers.  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said, “We have to do something about the exorbitant gas prices, and the best way to start with that is to do something about the five big oil companies getting subsidies they don't need.”

The truth is, according to the Joint Economic Committee in Congress, eliminating the incentives “will not affect the output or price of crude oil or natural gas.” 

@SenMikeLee: Tax hikes on America’s energy companies will not lower gas prices #2ndOpinion

 

Around the Water Cooler

DNews Ed: “Let the process to allow more drilling begin, and let it begin soon.”

SLTrib: Experts: Utah’s oil shale is about to start churning out fuel

Poll: “69 percent of Americans oppose raising the debt limit.”

 

A Look Ahead

On Thursday, the Subcommittee on Water and Power, for which Senator Lee is the Ranking Member, will review pending legislation.  Also, the Foreign Relations Committee will discuss the situation in Libya as the U.S. closes in on its 60th day of involvement in the conflict.

Day Lee Briefing -- 5/18/2011

May 18, 2011

Today’s Agenda

This morning, Senator Lee will meet with a group of policy leaders at an event hosted by Citizens Against Government Waste to talk about the nation’s fiscal crisis.  He has a meeting with the Judiciary Committee to discuss ways to make the immigration court system more efficient, and the Energy and Natural Resources Committee will discuss pending legislation before the Public Lands and Forests Subcommittee.   The Senator has media interviews with the Salt Lake Tribune, as well as Mid Utah Radio.  Finally, he will be hosting a Green Jell-O Social event for Utah constituents in Washington, D.C.

 

From the Senator’s Desk

“It has been 749 days, more than two years, since the Senate passed a budget resolution. The majority is now six weeks late in producing a budget for this year, as required by law.  Our budget is the roadmap that tells us where we’re going in our fiscal future.  It is a critical first step toward fixing the nation’s most pressing economic problems.

“Republicans in Congress have made public a number of proposals that would balance the budget, lower spending, eliminate our annual deficit, reform entitlements, simplify the tax code, and reduce the size of government.  Our side has the bulk of ideas being debated around the country, while the Democrats in Congress largely remain silent, terrified of what they perceive as the political cost of action.

“We are ready for a robust debate on the future of our country, but, as the majority, Senate Democrats must show some leadership first.  If they are unwilling to take up the proposals put forth by Republicans, then we expect the Democrats to put forward a budget of their own.”  - Mike Lee

 

#2ndOpinion

Yesterday, a cloture motion failed on legislation that would have repealed tax incentives averaging for America's top 5 oil and gas producers.  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said, “We have to do something about the exorbitant gas prices, and the best way to start with that is to do something about the five big oil companies getting subsidies they don't need.”

The truth is, according to the Joint Economic Committee in Congress, eliminating the incentives “will not affect the output or price of crude oil or natural gas.” 

@SenMikeLee: Tax hikes on America’s energy companies will not lower gas prices #2ndOpinion

 

Around the Water Cooler

DNews Ed: “Let the process to allow more drilling begin, and let it begin soon.”

SLTrib: Experts: Utah’s oil shale is about to start churning out fuel

Poll: “69 percent of Americans oppose raising the debt limit.”

 

A Look Ahead

On Thursday, the Subcommittee on Water and Power, for which Senator Lee is the Ranking Member, will review pending legislation.  Also, the Foreign Relations Committee will discuss the situation in Libya as the U.S. closes in on its 60th day of involvement in the conflict.

Congress is its own "walking waiver"

May 17, 2011

The point is, if all we can get are statutory spending caps - which we do need, they are necessary, I applaud them, I encourage them - but if that is all we have, that is not enough because Congress controls the law. It can waive its way out of the law. In the past, Congress has been its own walking, living, breathing waiver. We have to put into the text of the Constitution so that Congress can’t exempt its way out of it when times get tough.