Floor Statements 2017
June 26, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the gentlewoman for yielding, and want to point out that, as we discuss healthcare, we have to notice that the Republicans are using a very flawed reasoning to try to sell TrumpCare to the American public. They say: ``We have a bill, and if you don't like the status quo, therefore, you have to support the bill.'' And if you ask: ``Well, what's in the bill?'' They say: ``Well, you have to do something.'' ``What's in your bill?'' ``I don't like the Affordable Care Act.'' ``What's in your bill?''
June 22, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor the Hampton Jazz Festival on its 50th Anniversary. The idea for a jazz festival emerged after a visit between friends--the President of Hampton Institute Jerome Holland and jazz entrepreneur and promoter George Wein, who was noted for his festivals in Newport, Rhode Island, New York, California, and New Orleans. This first festival was in 1968 when Hampton Institute--present day Hampton University--celebrated its 100th birthday with a musical night filled with jazz. This celebration took place on Hampton's campus at Armstrong Field. Artists that performed at the original festival included Dizzy Gillespie, Ramsay Lewis, Herbie Mann Quintet, Nina Simone and her Trio, Muddy Waters and his Blues Band, and many more.
June 22, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of H.R. 2353, the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, which will reauthorize the Perkins Career and Technical Education program. H.R. 2353 builds on the House's bipartisan efforts in the last Congress, when this Chamber passed CTE reauthorization by a vote of 405-5. The research is clear: The United States workforce is suffering a skills gap. According to Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, by 2020, 65 percent of all jobs in the United States will require at least some postsecondary education or skills acquisition. Yet, if the current trend holds, by 2020, our Nation will have more than 5 million fewer skilled workers than necessary to fill the high-skilled jobs which will be available. In Virginia alone, that is 30,000 open jobs; 17,000 are in the area of cybersecurity, and those jobs have salaries starting at $88,000.
June 8, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the ``Wrong'' CHOICE Act. In addition to what else is wrong with the bill, there are two significant problems with it impacting the jurisdiction of the Education and the Workforce Committee, where I serve as the ranking Democratic member. First, the bill essentially eliminates the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The Bureau has played a crucial role in making sure student loan borrowers are treated fairly and receive the protections that they deserve. It has shut down fraudulent student loan debt relief scams, resolved countless consumer complaints, and secured hundreds of millions of dollars in loan forgiveness for borrowers tricked into taking out costly private loans.
June 7, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of H. Con. Res. 33, designating the George C. Marshall Museum and George C. Marshall Research Library in Lexington, Virginia, as the National George C. Marshall Museum and Library. I appreciate my good friend, the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Goodlatte), for sponsoring the resolution and note that the entire Virginia delegation has signed on as original cosponsors.
May 25, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 1761. I first want to point out that the case outlined by the chair of the Judiciary Committee that failed in Federal court could have been brought in State court and the defendant would have been subjected to extremely long, lengthy prison time for the heinous conduct that he had participated in. Mr. Speaker, this legislation expands the use of preexisting mandatory minimum sentences. Although the bill does not technically create new mandatory minimums, it does expose additional defendants to preexisting mandatory minimum sentences of 15, 25, and 35 years.
May 23, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the gentlewoman from North Carolina (Ms. Foxx) and the gentleman from Minnesota (Mr. Lewis) for working with this side of the aisle on bipartisan comprehensive reauthorization of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act. Juvenile courts were established by States in the first half of the 20th century based on the emerging legal theory that children should not be held as fully responsible for their actions as adults, a theory borne out over time by scientific research on impulse control and brain development. The opportunity to rehabilitate children became the focus of the system rather than punishment of offenders. Congress first articulated national standards for juvenile justice in the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 1974, or JJDPA. Long overdue for reauthorization, the bill creates important core protections for our children in the juvenile justice system in each State.
May 23, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of H.R. 1808, the Improving Support for Missing and Exploited Children Act. This bill will strengthen recovery and prevention efforts of missing and exploited children by renewing and updating support for the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, or NCMEC. The terror experienced by parents of a missing child is unfathomable. Both the child and the parents experience pain, trauma, fear, and uncertainty. This is why affected families need the full support of law enforcement, schools, businesses, and other entities that may be able to assist in locating and recovering missing or exploited children.
May 22, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 1862. While I support the underlying goal of punishing sex offenders, the existing Federal statutes already severely punish these offenses. This legislation, unfortunately, will impose a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment. This expansion of mandatory minimum sentences of life without parole comes on the heels of Attorney General Sessions' memorandum of May 12, 2017, which has been roundly criticized for rescinding the Holder memo. The Sessions memo directs all Federal prosecutors to pursue the most serious charges and the maximum sentence to include mandatory minimum sentences. This directive takes away from Federal prosecutors and judges the ability to individually assess unique circumstances of each case, including any factors that may mitigate against imposing a life sentence in every case.
May 22, 2017
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 1842. While I support the underlying goal of punishing sex offenders, the existing sentencing laws already provide serious punishment for this conduct. Unfortunately, this legislation expands nonmandatory minimums to additional offenders. This expansion of mandatory of minimums comes at the heels of Attorney General Sessions' memo, which has been roundly criticized for rescinding the Holder memo and directing all Federal prosecutors to pursue the most serious charges and the maximum sentence, to include mandatory minimum sentences.