This is an August 2007 copy of a website maintained by the Center for International Policy. It is posted here for historical purposes. The Center for International Policy no longer maintains this resource.

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Last Updated:3/31/00
Speech by Rep. Gene Taylor (D-Mississippi), March 29, 2000
Mr. MOAKLEY. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Mississippi (Mr. Taylor).

Mr. TAYLOR of Mississippi. Mr. Speaker, on a daily basis I hear my colleagues, both Democratic and Republican, lament the fact that Americans are deployed all around the world, usually without congressional approval.

I asked the Committee on Rules to approve an amendment that would have limited American troop strength in Colombia to 300 personnel. I did that because Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution says that Congress has the power to declare war and only the Senate can involve this country in mutual defense treaties. I did that so that the $1.8 billion that is going to Colombia would not bring American troops with it.

Mr. Speaker, as we are getting ready to spend our money there, the Colombians have just changed their law so that if one has a high school diploma, one does not get drafted. They have just cut their spending for defense. My hunch is the Colombians think we are going to fight their war for them.

If it is the will of Congress to do so, then I think Congress ought to vote on this. However, far too often, both Republican and Democratic Congresses, by omission and comission, have not done their job and decided where and when young Americans will be called on to fight.

I am going to oppose this rule because, once again, the Committee on Rules has seen to it that we will not make that decision.

As of March 30, 2000, this document was also available online at http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?r106:H29MR0-104:

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