by Nancy Pelosi (D-California), March 29, 2000
Mr. MOAKLEY. Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the gentlewoman from California
Ms. PELOSI. Mr. Speaker, I
thank the gentleman for yielding and for his great leadership on human
rights throughout this hemisphere and throughout the world.
Mr. Speaker, it is almost
impossible to listen to the chairman of the Committee on Rules claim that
this is an open rule. Perhaps the word `open' to him means open only to
Republicans; Democrats need not apply with amendments.
This bill has been called
an emergency because we have an emergency in the drug abuse situation
in our country. Indeed, we do. Mr. Speaker, 5.5 million people in America
are in need of substance abuse treatment, but this rule is closed to any
consideration of those people. It allows 10 minutes for an amendment to
consider military assistance to Colombia in order to eradicate the coca
leaf which flies in the face of all of the research on how we reduce demand
in the U.S.
But do not take my word for
As the distinguished ranking
member referred to earlier, the gentleman from Wisconsin (Mr. Obey), the
Rand report, which was put together, the research was sponsored by the
Office of National Drug Control Policy, by the U.S. Army, and the Rand's
Drug Policy Research Center, this report says that for every dollar spent
on treatment on demand is 23 times more effective than coca leaf eradication
in the source country. What that means, Mr. Speaker, is that if one wants
to reduce substance abuse in this country 1 percent, one would spend $34
million, $34 million on treatment on demand; and that 1 percent reduction
in the source country would be $723 million for the same result.
Yes, we have an emergency
in our country. Mr. Speaker, 5.5 million, as I said, Americans are in
need of substance abuse treatment. Two million of them are receiving it,
and 3.5 million people are in need.
My amendment for $600 million
would have addressed the need of 5 percent of those people, 5 percent;
and yet this rule closed us down to have these Members on both sides of
the aisle recognize the need in our own country for treatment on demand
and for prevention. It is a dollar better spent. Everyone agrees to that.
It has a result that is documented, and yet we could not even have an
How can we have a drug bill
on this floor that talks about the emergency of substance abuse in our
country that does not allow $1 to be spent on prevention and treatment
on demand? It simply does not make sense.
Mr. Speaker, I oppose the
bill also because of not allowing a fuller debate on the subject of our
military assistance to Colombia. Perhaps we should go that route. We do
not know, my Republican colleagues do not know, because we have not discussed
I urge my colleagues, with
no reluctance at all, to vote resoundingly against this closed rule.
As of March 30, 2000, this
document was also available online at http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?r106:H29MR0-104: