by Rep. Gene Taylor (D-Mississippi), March 29, 2000
MOAKLEY. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Mississippi
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: