Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi

Joint Statement of Democratic Members of House Select Committee on Homeland Security

July 19, 2002 

The Democratic Members of the House Select Committee on Homeland Security, Nancy Pelosi, Martin Frost, Robert Menendez and Rosa DeLauro, issued the following statement late tonight following the 5-4 vote to approve the markup of the homeland security bill offered by the Republican majority.

“Today the Republican majority missed an historic opportunity to approve a homeland security bill worthy of the American people. We had hoped for a strong bipartisan bill that would create a new Department of Homeland Security that would make the American people safer, while respecting its workforce and maximizing the advances of technology.

“Yet, time after time, the majority opposed our initiatives to reduce risk and respond to terrorists’ attacks. They even attempted to postpone indefinitely the deadline for deployment of explosive detection devices at our nation’s airports.

“And the Republicans defended the expatriate companies who have chosen profits over patriotism, rejecting an amendment that would have prevented these companies who avoid paying taxes from receiving government contracts to fight terrorism. They turned back the clock on civil service protection for workers and also voted to grant unprecedented liability protections for those who manufacture defective anti-terrorism devices.

“Despite tonight’s disappointing vote, we remain committed to a strong, effective Department of Homeland Security and will work to obtain bipartisan agreement during debate on the House Floor next week.”

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