The Largest Security-Cleared Career Network for Defense and Intelligence Jobs - JOIN NOW

Military

VOICE OF AMERICA
SLUG: 2-321526 Congress / Tsunami (L-O)
DATE:
NOTE NUMBER:

DATE=1-4-05

TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT

TITLE=CONGRESS / TSUNAMI (L-O)

NUMBER=2-321526

BYLINE=DEBORAH TATE

DATELINE=CAPITOL HILL

CONTENT=

VOICED AT:

HEADLINE: US Lawmakers Pass Resolution Expressing Sympathy For Tsunami Victims

INTRO: In Washington, a new U.S. Congress has been sworn in. In the Senate, the first order of business was approving a resolution expressing sympathy for the tsunami victims in South Asia. The House of Representatives is expected to follow suit shortly. Correspondent Deborah Tate reports from Capitol Hill.

TEXT: Speaking on the Senate floor, Majority Leader Bill Frist called for a moment of silence in the chamber in remembrance of those who died in the tragedy.

/// FRIST ACTUALITY ///

"These last nine days have brought upon each of us, our fellow Americans and indeed the entirety of the civilized world, profound sadness and sympathy."

/// END ACT ///

Congress is expected to approve, or possibly increase, the 350 million dollar aid request from President Bush for tsunami victims. Lawmakers expect the administration will seek more money for the region in the weeks ahead.

Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid praised the role of the U.S. military in responding to the humanitarian crisis in South Asia, saying it should help the war on terrorism, by casting the United States in a different light.

/// REID ACTUALITY ///

"With actions like this, we are going to be able to show to those people who are sympathetic to the terrorists that maybe their sympathy is not well-placed. I am confident we can do that, and in the process we will win the war on terror that is being perpetrated not only against us, but against the world."

/// END ACT ///

A number of lawmakers will be heading to South Asia in the coming days to survey the damage and assess the efficiency of U.S. aid distribution, including Senator Frist.

Senator Frist, who is also a medical doctor, says he will be prepared to offer medical service to victims during his stops in Sri Lanka and India.

/// FRIST ACTUALITY ///

"Survivors now face the disaster after the disaster, the risk of death from cholera, dysentery, malaria, typhoid, diarrhea, all potentially on an epidemic scale. The lack of potable water and the potential emergence of water-borne diseases pose enormous public health threat."

/// END ACT ///

Another congressional delegation, including Congressman Jim Leach, an Iowa Republican and Senator Jon Corzine, a New Jersey Democrat, will make a separate trip to Sri Lanka and India, as well as to Indonesia and Thailand.

Tuesday's congressional session opened with swearing-in ceremonies of members, including new lawmakers who were elected last November.

Vice President Dick Cheney, in his role as President of the Senate, swore in the 100 Senators, several at a time.

/// CHENEY ACTUALITY ///

"Please raise your right hand. Do you solemnly swear that you will support and defend the Constitution of the United States, against all enemies foreign and domestic, that you will bear true faith and allegiance to the same, that you take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that you will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which you are about to enter, so help you God."

/// LAWMAKERS ACT ///

"I do."

/// CHENEY ACT ///

"Congratulations."

/// END ACT ///

/// OPT /// The Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert, would swear in members of that chamber later in the day. /// END OPT ///

The House and Senate, which have larger Republican majorities than last year, face an ambitious legislative agenda this year. Among the issues expected to be considered include another administration request for funds to support the U.S. mission in Iraq and reform of the U.S. pension system, known as social security. (signed)

NEB/DAT/FC/RH



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list