[Congressional Record Volume 165, Number 87 (Thursday, May 23, 2019)]
[House]
[Pages H4153-H4158]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                    OUR SINGULAR AMERICAN REVOLUTION

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 3, 2019, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Gohmert) is recognized 
for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Mr. Speaker, it is wonderful to hear the great tributes 
to those who have served this country well, as we just heard. In fact, 
we have so many people to whom we should be eternally grateful.
  As Abraham Lincoln said, they gave their last full measure of 
devotion for the freedom of this country, not for some wishy-washy 
government in Washington, D.C., that can't figure out what it should do 
or not do, but for the idea of freedom.
  I heard more discussion again recently about the Revolution. I have 
read a few new books I hadn't read this year about the Revolution, the 
victory at Yorktown, and other aspects of the Revolution.
  And, still, there are so many historians who wonder why there was 
such a dramatic difference between the outcome of the United States 
Revolution, 1775 to 1783, and the French Revolution which followed.
  I think the historians have it right who have said that the key 
difference, the reason the U.S. Revolution lasted and was unlike the 
French, which resulted in so many heads being cut off and eventually 
resulted in a monarchy again, the key difference was that the U.S. 
Revolution was about liberty and freedom.

  It wasn't about vengeance. They weren't out to cut off as many of the 
British heads as possible. It was about liberty. Unfortunately, too 
many in the French Revolution, not all, but too many in the French 
Revolution were about revenge and not about liberty.
  So the great efforts of great heroes in France got hijacked. Many 
people lost their lives, and then they lost their effort to have a 
republican form of government, as we have had.
  A lot of people don't understand the difference between democracy and 
a republic. I think it is fair to say, as most historians do, we have a 
democratic republic.
  Democracy would mean the majority always rules, and our Founders 
realized that sometimes you can have too much passion and not enough 
time for clear reflection. You are better off, especially among a 
majority that really doesn't understand the total aspects and factors 
involved in a decision, selecting and electing representatives with 
majority votes, except for President.
  We set up the electoral college so all States would have a say in who 
was President, not just the few that had the most people.
  But all the other elections were about a majority--so a democracy--
electing representatives to their governmental entities locally, State, 
and Federal. So, really, we have a democratic republic.

                              {time}  1215

  It is interesting, as we saw this week, the Speaker of the House 
getting ready to go meet with a President of the United States from the 
other party, and he really wanted to talk about infrastructure and 
making this country stronger.
  I think probably most everybody on both sides of the aisle has seen 
the surveys regarding the permanent structures, the infrastructure of 
this country that helps tie us together as a nation, and most of the 
scores are D-minus, D, D-plus at best. And that is about all you see.
  We are better in some areas than we are in others, but whether it is 
dams, bridges, or highways, we have a lot of infrastructure needs. And 
that is something that I would hope that we could come together on and 
work out, as those who went before us were able to do.
  We are told in Proverbs that, where there is no vision, the people 
perish. And it is interesting, when you see towns that had community 
leaders with visions who could see certain things needed to be done to 
have a vibrant community 10, 50, 100 years later, you saw how blessed 
that community was to have leaders with vision.
  You go to some communities, and you find, gee, they haven't 
progressed very well. They seem to be eternally declining and holding 
on to what they have. Normally, you will find leaders in a community 
like that who have been spiteful, who didn't want somebody else to get 
credit for what was being done. And they prevented a community from 
flourishing for years into the future just because they were small-
minded and had petty differences and didn't want somebody else to get 
the credit.
  One of my heroes, Ronald Reagan, is often credited with the line that 
actually had been around for a great deal longer than President Reagan, 
but he used the line: It is amazing what you can get accomplished if 
you don't care who gets the credit. And that has been true since the 
beginning here in Washington and, even before Washington became the 
capital, in Philadelphia and New York.
  But the Speaker announced at a press event, before going over to the 
White House to talk about infrastructure, that the President of the 
United States had been engaged in a coverup. We weren't told a coverup 
of what. We were not told what was done to cover up.
  ``Coverup'' is a very ingenious term to be using, almost as brilliant 
as the term ``collusion,'' because neither the term ``collusion'' nor 
``coverup'' are crimes. There is no law that says it is a crime to 
cover up. There is no crime that says it is a violation of the law to 
collude.
  So words like that have been chosen and used and repeated over and 
over and over so that the public thinks, ``Oh, my goodness, crimes have 
been committed. There was collusion. There was a coverup.'' Well, of 
what?
  We now know that, after 2\1/2\ years of hearing about collusion with 
the Russian Government--and I am certainly no fan of Robert Mueller. He 
did more damage to the FBI than any FBI Director ever, including the 
worst of J. Edgar Hoover, when he was spying on Americans.
  We had Mueller's FBI that took innocent people, destroyed their 
lives. In the case of the longest serving Senator, Republican Senator, 
at the time, he even saw to it that he was convicted immediately before 
his election, and then that cost him the election.
  And then he was killed in a plane accident that he would never have 
been involved in if Mueller's FBI hadn't framed him for a crime he 
didn't commit and gotten him voted out of office right before or at his 
election. That was, of course, Senator Ted Stevens from Alaska.
  And Dr. Hatfill, who Mueller accused of committing the crimes of 
murder using anthrax right after the 9/11 attacks. There was no 
evidence to support that Dr. Hatfill committed the crimes.
  We are told that, at one point--though Mueller kept pursuing Hatfill 
and questioning his neighbors, telling the neighbors, through Mueller's 
minions, that Hatfill had committed murder with anthrax and they needed 
to be careful and report anything. They basically ruined the Hatfill 
family's lives.
  But, at one point, President Bush is reported to have called him in 
and said: There is no evidence that Dr. Hatfill is the guy who did 
this. Are you sure? I mean, there is just no evidence. And Mueller 
stated: I am 100 percent certain.
  So, when it turned out he was not the guy that had been involved with 
anthrax and should have been cleared--by anybody but Mueller--Mueller 
was asked if he had any regrets about destroying the life of an 
innocent man. He said, ``Absolutely not,'' and never apologized.

[[Page H4154]]

  Unfortunately, U.S. taxpayers paid millions of dollars in settlement 
for Mueller's vindictiveness with no evidence.
  Curt Weldon stood right here at this podium making speech after 
speech in my freshman term. This was obviously well after 9/11. I 
didn't get here until 2005. But in 2005, 2006, he was talking about a 
program through which information had gotten to the FBI, and, according 
to Curt Weldon--Able Danger, I think, was the name of the program that 
had identified some radical Islamist terrorists, wannabes, and that 
they were planning an attack in the United States.
  And according to Curt Weldon's speeches right here at this podium 
where I am standing, the FBI, if they acted, they probably could have 
prevented 9/11, but they didn't act.
  And I kept thinking: I don't know if what he is saying is true. I was 
not familiar with the Able Danger program at that time. But what I kept 
thinking was: Gosh, these are really serious allegations about the 
leadership of the FBI. Surely Mueller is going to have to come out and 
address these allegations from Congressman Curt Weldon of Pennsylvania. 
And the FBI never publicly addressed those issues, not that I have been 
able to find.
  But they did address them. Mueller's FBI, in fact, raided Weldon's 
adult daughter, a lawyer, her office, early in the morning. And, gee, 
somebody in the FBI committed a crime, apparently, and leaked it to the 
media so they could be there when the warrant was run early in the 
morning. And somebody alerted Democratic operatives. They had signs 
that morning around the office talking about, you know, Curt Weldon is 
caught red-handed, he is a thief, alleging all kinds of crimes.

  It turns out he hadn't committed any crimes. It turns out, some 
months later, they notified the Weldon family they could come get all 
the stuff that Mueller's FBI had collected during the raid. They were 
told: It has never been presented to a grand jury. We just did the 
raid. No prosecution, no grand jury, no indictment.
  But since they did that 2 weeks before his election, he narrowly lost 
that election.
  So it appeared to me pretty clear that Mueller's way of responding to 
allegations that his FBI--and, in fairness to him, he hadn't been there 
that long before 9/11, so he had plausible deniability: ``Gee, I just 
got there. I didn't know about Able Danger at the time.'' But, instead, 
what he chose to do was have his FBI affect an election adversely, 
causing a critic to lose.
  So these are all part of Robert Mueller's background.
  But even as much as he wanted to ruin Donald J. Trump, later 
President Trump, the guy that he begged for a second appointment as 
Director of the FBI, just shortly after he was begging Trump for 
appointment to Director of the FBI again and President Trump turned him 
down, he jumped at the chance to investigate and try to destroy the 
life of the sitting President who refused to hire him. And he spent 2 
years, virtually 2 years, on it. I have seen $25 million, $35 million 
that Mueller spent.
  Mueller took the unusual step of hiring people to assist him in the 
Special Counsel's Office who hated Donald Trump. Normally, when there 
has been a special counsel of integrity, they know they are going to be 
vilified, so they are careful to hire people that appear will be even-
handed.
  I can't imagine any person of integrity actually hiring people who 
contributed to the opponent of the person to be investigated, who would 
go to what they hoped would be her victory party, who despised the man 
who got elected. It is surprising he would go out of his way to make 
sure that he hired people that hated President Trump, whom they were 
supposed to investigate.
  But here again, the one good thing that I can say about Robert 
Mueller is--and he apparently served honorably and well in Vietnam, so 
I thank him for that service--the guy is consistent. When he decides he 
wants to destroy an innocent man, he gets after it.
  Weissmann hated President Trump. These other folks that hated Trump, 
some of them still work at the FBI. Many of them have been fired and 
run out of the FBI or DOJ in shame. They should have had more than that 
happen, and hopefully they will.
  But there was no crime committed. His report indicates that there 
were efforts by Russians to reach out and try to pull the Trump 
campaign into some type of conspiracy, but nobody in the Trump campaign 
took the opportunity that was presented by Russia, and there was no 
crime of conspiracy with Russians.
  And then, as we go along, the more we find out, we find out that, 
actually, it is a whole lot worse than Mueller indicated. Mueller 
indicated no collusion, no conspiracy, no crime that anybody in the 
Trump campaign committed with Russian agents. But if Mueller had been 
the man of integrity that I would have hoped, he would have 
investigated those who did conspire with Russian agents.
  Because, now, the information is coming out that the Clinton campaign 
had hired Fusion GPS. Perkins Coie law firm was helping them negotiate 
and work through some of these things, using their firm's name in the 
conspiracy--it sure seems like a conspiracy to me--as they hired a now-
disgraced foreign agent who had worked for MI6, Christopher Steele, to 
do digging to try to find some tie between the Trump campaign and 
Russia, any kind of dirt they could get.

                              {time}  1230

  They tried to lure Don Trump, Jr., into some kind of deal. They said, 
gee, there is a Russian person who has all kinds of negative 
information about Hillary Clinton.
  He agreed to meet and found right away that this is not what it was 
represented to be and got out of the meeting as quickly as he could.
  Here again, Christopher Steele was hired, apparently through Fusion 
GPS, to dig up dirt, true or not true, about Donald Trump. Fusion GPS 
hired this foreign, disgraced intelligence agent to do digging, using 
Russian agents.
  Fusion GPS also hired the spouse of one of the top FBI people, Bruce 
Ohr. That was his wife, Nellie. She was hired to dig up dirt, anything 
she could in Russia about Trump.
  I didn't realize until more recently that Christopher Steele was not 
even traveling to Russia to dig up this dirt. He was simply contacting 
people in Russia, trying to find somebody who had some dirt on Donald 
Trump.
  Apparently, he has now recently indicated: You know what? I guess 
there is a good chance that the people I was talking to in Russia who 
gave the false information about Donald Trump, yeah, they may have been 
working for Vladimir Putin.
  It appears the evidence is now starting to come out, no thanks to 
Robert Mueller and the tens of millions of dollars he wasted, the years 
that he wasted. The truth is starting to come out, and it is making 
people who are in positions of power very uncomfortable.
  We have heard Clapper and Brennan making really inappropriate 
statements for somebody who had been involved in our intelligence-
gathering agencies. But it is appearing that it was probably Brennan--
we will be finding out in the days ahead--who may have asked England's 
intelligence agencies to spy on American citizens involved with the 
Trump campaign because our intelligence community is not authorized to 
spy on American citizens. So there may be a wink and a nod.
  We need to get to the bottom of whether our intelligence community 
winks and nods, and says: Hey, we want to spy on our own citizens, but 
we are not allowed to legally. So how about you spy on these citizens, 
and we will spy on some for you in our country?
  We need to know if that kind of thing has really gone on. If it has 
gone on, if there is a quid pro quo, we need to know. We need to know 
if some of our top intelligence officials have committed crimes. This 
is serious stuff.
  It turns out there was no collusion, no conspiracy between anybody in 
the Trump campaign and Vladimir Putin or Russia. But it is appearing 
more and more that there was a conspiracy between people associated 
with the Clinton campaign, Fusion GPS, Perkins Coie, Christopher 
Steele, potential agents of Vladimir Putin, to try to destroy Donald 
Trump before the election and after the election.
  We expect to see more coming out as some of the information that was 
classified is declassified. It appears now we

[[Page H4155]]

are hearing, and we heard previously, that an Australian Ambassador had 
spoken to a member of the Trump campaign, just tangentially part of the 
campaign.
  But what we have found out now is, apparently, the Australian 
Ambassador was manipulated through the Democratic effort to defeat 
Donald Trump, recruited to tell a tangential member of the Trump 
campaign that the Russians had Hillary Clinton's emails.
  Then they set that same Trump marginal official up by asking him 
questions: Have you heard anything about Russia having information on 
Hillary?
  He said: Well, yes. I heard that Russians had Hillary Clinton's 
emails.
  Then they used that information to help them get a warrant to spy on 
the Trump campaign. It was a total setup by potentially our 
intelligence community, potentially British MI6.
  We have to get to the bottom of this. People who have committed 
crimes need to go to prison.
  In the meantime, there is all this animosity that has been stirred up 
against Donald Trump. Now we find out there was nothing to the 
collusion. He knew that he had not committed any kind of conspiracy 
with Russia. He knew that this was all bogus. He was hearing rumors 
that if there was a conspiracy, it involved the other campaign.
  What do you do? How do you act? I would submit, you act exactly as 
President Trump has acted, frustrated. He can't believe that his own 
United States Government is trying to set him up and say that he 
committed some crime that he never committed. He can't obstruct justice 
when he is doing everything he possibly can to ensure that justice gets 
done.
  That is where we have been. We heard the roadblocks, the things that, 
oh gee, there was collusion. When that didn't materialize, then: Well, 
there is a coverup.
  No allegations other than just the general term ``coverup.''
  Clearly, efforts are being made in this city to prevent President 
Trump from being successful in getting legislation through this House 
and through the Senate that could become law and help the country.
  Even on issues of securing our border, President Obama talked about 
the need to secure the border and stop illegal immigration. Senator 
Clinton had talked about the need to stop illegal immigration and 
secure the border. Most of the leaders on both sides of the aisle have 
talked about that at some point.
  Why don't we do it? Well, he would get credit for keeping a campaign 
promise, and apparently, it is more important to stop the President 
from keeping campaign promises than it is important to some to help the 
country.
  What it reminded me of, as I thought back--and I have been here 14 
years. Never expected to be here this long. I feel like I am kind of 
going to a scary movie. Get into it and I am sorry I went, but I can't 
leave until I see how it turns out. I want to make sure that we get on 
a proper footing here.
  I know in the 14 years that I have been here, I have not seen either 
party work so hard to prevent the other party's President from being 
successful.
  As I majored in history, I have never stopped studying history. 
American history is my favorite. I have tried to think back, okay, when 
was the last time, if there ever was a time before, when one party 
worked so hard to prevent another party's President from being 
successful and helping the country?
  I think it probably goes back to John Quincy Adams' days. John Quincy 
Adams, he was the first son of a former President to be elected 
President, and he did not get a majority of the vote. It ended up that 
he didn't get a majority of the electoral college.
  It was thrown here to the House of Representatives to decide, under 
the Constitution. Henry Clay, so beloved and respected here in the 
House of Representatives, he decided to throw his support to John 
Quincy Adams.
  I have studied John Quincy Adams, read a very thorough biography. I 
liked it. I chose it because it incorporated more of John Quincy Adams' 
own journal, where they kept calling him JQA. John Quincy Adams, 
apparently, kept more of a journal than any President we have ever had. 
He started very young, and he went until the last few weeks of his life 
when he could no longer see to write.
  I didn't know until I read that, for example, that his last night at 
home before he came to the House floor to give a speech against the war 
with Mexico, because he was concerned that that would perpetuate 
slavery longer, that the reason he had run for the House of 
Representatives after being President was to try to do what William 
Wilberforce had done in England, and that is to use his elected 
position to fight to end slavery.
  Wilberforce got it totally outlawed 3 days before he died in 1833. In 
1830, that is what Adams thought he was supposed to do. That is why he 
ran for Congress.
  The night before, he had a massive stroke. The next day, when he 
tried to stand up and speak against war with Mexico, he couldn't see.
  He couldn't sleep, and he asked his precious wife if she would mind 
reading him any of William Wilberforce's sermons. She chose one. She 
read it for him, and he finally dozed, listening to William 
Wilberforce's sermon the last night he slept at home, before he had his 
massive stroke on the House floor here in the Capitol.
  In 1824, John Quincy Adams was still a man of integrity. He was 
always a man of integrity. Some feel like it is possible that he was 
the smartest President we have ever had. Certainly, he was one of the 
top-educated Presidents we have ever had. He spoke a number of 
languages.
  One thing he had in common with our current President, he is the only 
other President to have had a wife who was not born in America. Much 
like President Trump's wife, John Quincy Adams' wife spoke multiple 
languages, very fluent. She herself was brilliant. So we share that 
with the current First Lady.
  John Quincy Adams even wrote some history books in German. His 
favorite foreign language was French. He was an amazing guy.
  He knew he was a man of integrity, and when studying his life, you 
figure out that he was a man of integrity.
  He asked Henry Clay for his support. Henry Clay threw his support 
behind John Quincy Adams for President. That got him the votes in the 
House to win the Presidency.
  When it came time to pick Cabinet members, President-elect Adams said 
that he believed the person who would make the best Secretary of State 
would be Henry Clay.
  Those people who were close to him, who loved him, said, yes, he was 
right, that Henry Clay would make a fabulous Secretary of State, but 
that if he appoints Henry Clay to be Secretary of State, it will look 
like he cut a deal with Clay in return for his support for him for 
President, which gave him the election. If he agreed to make him 
Secretary of State, people would think he made an illegal deal.

                              {time}  1245

  He said: He is the best person for the job. I didn't make any kind of 
deal with him. He threw his support behind me. I never mentioned 
Secretary of State to him. I never mentioned making him a Cabinet 
official, but I think the world of the man. I think he would be the 
best Secretary of State. People know I am a man of integrity. I 
wouldn't do an illegal deal to be elected President, so they just need 
to get over it. He is the best man. I am going to appoint the best man 
to be Secretary of State. People who know me will know that I never 
made a deal, promised him Secretary of State in return for throwing his 
House support behind me. That is just a lie, and I am not going to be 
prevented from appointing the best man for Secretary of State by my 
fear about what somebody might think.
  So he appointed Henry Clay to be Secretary of State, and people got 
really upset: There must have been a deal. He must have cut a deal with 
Henry Clay. In return for Henry Clay's support that won him the 
Presidency, Henry Clay gets to be Secretary of State.
  Apparently, there was no deal, but people thought there was. People 
felt like: This looks terrible. It looks like he made a deal. He must 
have made a deal. We know Adams is an honest guy, and so if he made a 
deal with Clay, he surely would have kept his end of the deal.
  There was no deal, but there were so many in the opposition party who 
were

[[Page H4156]]

mad about it, they just decided they were not going to let John Quincy 
Adams accomplish anything as President.
  He was elected in 1824, sworn in, in 1825. His term was 1825 to 1829. 
He was defeated by Andrew Jackson and defeated fairly easily because 
people thought he had cheated to win by making a deal he didn't make 
with Henry Clay.
  During those 4 years--anyone can do the research--he couldn't get 
much of anything done. There were even cases of Members of this House 
who were of the opposition party, the Democratic Party, there were 
Democrats who had actually written and sponsored bills they desperately 
wanted to get passed. When John Quincy Adams threw his support behind 
the bills because he thought they were a good idea, the person who 
wrote the bill, sponsored the bill, withdrew his support. He did not 
want John Quincy Adams to get credit for passing some important bill.
  He had some great ideas. He wanted a national observatory. He felt 
like it would be good to have a uniform system of weights and 
measurements. That had not happened. He wanted to create a naval 
academy for the country. He wanted to have a code, a systemized 
national bankruptcy law.
  Bankruptcy is mentioned in the Constitution. There were finally some 
laws passed before he was President, but it wasn't a uniform national 
bankruptcy law as it needed to be.
  He had some great ideas, but they weren't passed because people did 
not want him to get credit. They were willing to hurt the country to 
prevent John Quincy Adams from having a great victory.
  That is what went through my mind. Somebody may be able to find a 
case in which one party did everything it could to prevent a President 
from having any big successes.
  It is a little late. President Trump got a great tax bill. It wasn't 
as good as I had hoped it would be, but it was helpful to the country 
overall. He got that passed, signed into law.
  Hopefully, we are going to vote on the Mexico-Canada trade agreement. 
It is better than NAFTA was. Hopefully, we will get that done, and we 
won't keep harming the country by failing to bring that for a vote.
  For Adams, there was a tariff that was passed. That was about the 
biggest piece of legislation passed during his 4 years, but it didn't 
even get enacted until Andrew Jackson took over as President.
  So Adams, a man of integrity, was accused of making an illegal deal 
with Henry Clay to get himself elected President. The country suffered 
for 4 years. Those who despised John Quincy Adams, they were able to 
hurt the country for 4 years just to keep John Quincy Adams from having 
a major victory.
  It is important to learn from history. As we know from the old adage, 
those who refuse to learn from history are destined to repeat it. Of 
course, I also grew up learning there is a corollary to that, that 
those who do learn from history will find new ways to screw up. We have 
seen both of those play out in this country.
  I am hoping it will come together, and we will be able to pass some 
of the critical legislation to secure our border and to get some 
infrastructure built so we don't give a country to our children and 
grandchildren that has infrastructure crumbling and with so much debt 
that they can't afford to rebuild the infrastructure. We already know 
that we are the first generation in American history that didn't have 
as our driving goal to give a country to our children better than we 
had it.
  The debts continue to skyrocket, over $23 trillion now. We really 
need to come together on these important issues.
  With regard to the President's effort to try to secure the border, I 
continue to believe with all my heart, the most compassionate, caring 
thing we could do for the people of Mexico--and I was talking to the 
Ambassador from Guatemala yesterday. I sure like him. Guatemala, of 
course, was the only country to immediately recognize Jerusalem as the 
capital of Israel, as it was 3,000 years ago, and should be and is 
today, and will be for the future. Guatemala had the courage to back us 
up on that.
  Apparently, MS-13ers come mainly from El Salvador, but Guatemala 
wants to help. We ought to help Guatemala to help us. I hope that will 
be occurring.
  If we really want to be compassionate for the people of Mexico and 
Central America, the best thing we could do is secure the border, cut 
off the tens of billions of dollars every year, maybe into the hundred-
plus billion, that go to the drug cartels. It funds corruption in 
Mexico. It is the one thing that keeps Mexico from being one of the 
very top economies in the world.
  They have fantastic natural resources. They have a better location 
geographically than the United States does. They are between North 
America and South America. They are between two oceans. They have a 
great location. They have some of the most hardworking people in the 
world.
  I also am thrilled that the huge majority have faith in God. I think 
we could stand another boost of people who have faith in God, a 
devotion to family, a hard work ethic like we generally find among the 
huge majority of Hispanic people from Mexico and Central America. We 
could afford more of that here, but we have to enforce the law.
  If we secure the border, Mexico ought to be able to put down the drug 
cartel corruption and become a top economy. Then you won't have people 
doing everything they can, risking their lives, having their daughters 
raped repeatedly coming up here from Mexico or through Mexico to the 
United States. We can go back to having the kind of vibrant tourism 
that we once had in support of Mexico.
  But there are efforts that are being undertaken here in the House by 
friends across the aisle who do not want Donald Trump to have success 
in helping the United States, and, really, it would greatly help 
Mexico.
  What is the result? Well, here is a story from May 21, Washington 
Times, Steven Dinan: ICE says Prince George's County released illegal 
murder suspects.
  The story says: ``Two teens arrested last week on charges stemming 
from a horrific killing in Maryland were supposed to be deported last 
year, but local authorities didn't turn them over to ICE, the 
immigration agency said Tuesday.
  ``Prosecutors say the teens, Josue Rafael Fuentes-Ponce, 16, and Joel 
Ernesto Escobar, 17--suspected of being MS-13 gang members--feared they 
would be ratted out for an April robbery, so they and an accomplice 
snuffed out a 14-year-old suspected snitch. They made her strip before 
beating her with a baseball bat and chopping her with a machete. The 
girl's body was found in a creek this month.''
  This is in Prince George's County.
  ``U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, in a pointed statement 
Tuesday, said the crime could have been averted''--could have been 
completely prevented--``but for Prince George's County's sanctuary city 
policy.''
  That is what stopped it, or it is what kept our ICE agents from 
preventing the baseball bat and machete mutilation of this 14-year-old 
girl.
  ``Mr. Fuentes-Ponce and Mr. Escobar were in county custody last year 
on attempted murder charges for another crime. ICE placed a detainer on 
them, asking to be notified when they would be released so agents could 
deport them. ICE said the Prince George's County Department of 
Corrections defied the request.
  `` `These individuals had demonstrated violent criminal behavior 
before, and because they were released in spite of the lawful detainer, 
they were afforded an opportunity to take a life.' ''
  And not just take a life. They beat her, stripped her, beat her with 
a baseball bat and then chopped her up with a machete.
  Thank you very much, Prince George's County, for your sanctuary city. 
No telling how many people will have to lose their lives while you defy 
Federal law.
  This article says: ``ICE has placed new detainers for both teens 
after the murder charges. Prince George's corrections spokesman Andrew 
Cephas said the agency didn't release the teens into the community. He 
said the Corrections Department did have custody last year but remanded 
the teens to

[[Page H4157]]

Cheltenham Youth Detention Center, a State facility, after a judge's 
ruling.
  `` `Neither of these individuals were released to the public from 
Prince George's County Department of Corrections. They remained 
detained in the juvenile facility until the disposition of their cases 
earlier this year.' ''
  Yeah, right. The cases were disposed of, a little slap on the wrist 
for their attempted murders. But this says the county department does 
inform ICE--or the Prince George's County spokesman said they inform 
ICE about upcoming releases but did not provide notification in this 
case.
  ``ICE says the county should have given notification of any transfer 
out of custody so the agency could lodge a detainer with the new prison 
or jail.''

                              {time}  1300

  ``Under a 2014 Department of Corrections policy, county jails say 
they will notify ICE of impending releases but won't hold the migrants 
for pickup unless ICE has a signed warrant from a judge.
  ``Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration 
Studies, which advocates for stricter immigration controls, said the 
teens are at the center of several raging immigration debates.
  ``Mr. Fuentes-Ponce came to the U.S. in late 2015 as part of the 
surge of families from Central America who have overwhelmed the border 
in recent years.
  ``Under the Obama administration, the family was paroled into the 
U.S. to await its immigration case. Like many other families, Mr. 
Fuentes-Ponce didn't appear for his hearing and was ordered deported in 
absentia, ICE said.
  ``Mr. Escobar, meanwhile, entered the U.S. in 2016 as an 
unaccompanied alien child, the other major demographic in the border 
surge.''
  That is one of the things we debated for hours and hours yesterday in 
our Judiciary Committee. The committee's majority wants to have even 
more widespread amnesty than DACA, which President Obama had said 20-
something times it would be unconstitutional for him to do what he 
ultimately did creating the DACA program. He didn't even sign executive 
orders, I understand. He had the Secretary of Homeland Security do a 
couple of memos.
  So he changed Federal law without the bill being passed by the House 
and Senate, without signing it into law. He didn't even sign an 
executive order. He just had a couple of memos that changed the policy.
  ``Mr. Krikorian wondered whether the killing of the 14-year-old girl 
would receive as much attention as the death of an illegal immigrant 
teen in Border Patrol custody this week.''
  There was a teen who died from an apparent flu.
  ``That case prompted reporters to question Mr. Trump about what steps 
he would take.
  `` `The antiborder activists are quick to blame the Border Patrol for 
deaths that are out of their control, but rationalizes the crimes 
committed by people who would be removed if the law were enforced. 
There really is a double standard here.'
  ``The D.C. area has long had a large Central American population, 
making it one of the top destinations for families and unaccompanied 
alien children involved in the surge. Prince George's, Fairfax, and 
Montgomery Counties are among the top 10 locations.
  ``More than 5,660 unaccompanied alien children have been placed with 
sponsors in Prince George's County over the past 5 years, topping 
Fairfax at about 5,200 and Montgomery at about 4,300.
  ``The unaccompanied alien children have strained schools and, 
security experts say, created a breeding ground for gang recruitment.
  `` `Most of the Central Americans coming across the border are not 
criminals, but gangs have used this flow of people across the border to 
bring their members into the U.S., and others who weren't gang members 
in Central America have become gang members here,' Mr. Krikorian 
said.''
  So it would really help if we could come together, if the President 
wouldn't have to be building the wall without any help from a Democrat-
controlled House.
  It is a shame they want to do all they can to try to prevent the 
President from protecting the country, but we ought to learn a lesson 
from the damage that was done between 1825 and 1829 during the 
Presidency of John Quincy Adams, and we ought to come together, get the 
border secure.
  Let's not have any amnesties until the border is secure, then we can 
talk about them, debate them. But every time we talk about amnesty--I 
got a picture this week from a friend on the border, a 6-year-old and 
an 8-year-old, unaccompanied children, yet we are told: Oh, no. We are 
doing this DACA amnesty because the children were brought into the 
United States by their parents, and so these children were drug into 
the United States without their choice, and so we need to give them 
legal status.
  And yet you have got a 6-year-old and an 8-year-old that are coming 
in, as my friend across the aisle said yesterday: Well, they don't come 
in without help. She is right. The parents weren't with them. The 
parents weren't with them, forcing them.
  We also have been hearing that, since there is so much fuss made 
about allowing people to stay that had children with them, the children 
have now become a negotiable commodity. I have been there when children 
were passed back and forth between different adults--you know, who is 
going to claim these kids--and they are waiting for the border 
patrolmen to get down to them so they can answer the questions.
  But the drug cartels have figured out, the gangs have figured out--
gangs are often paid to bring people in illegally, and the gangs get 
paid by the drug cartels because, as we know, every inch of the border 
of the United States is controlled by some drug cartel.
  So the gangs make money, the drug cartels make money by bringing 
people in. And since they have learned they have a better chance of 
staying in if they bring somebody's kid with them, then more kids are 
coming in now.
  But it is interesting. I am wondering how the debates will go when we 
say, well, here is a person we want to give amnesty to because their 
parents dragged them into America, even though there were no parents 
with them. Well, so the gangs brought them in.
  Anybody in the drug cartel brings in a child, that means we are 
supposed to give them amnesty?
  At some point, we have got to secure the border. It is the most 
compassionate thing we can do. Mexico will become a great economy in 
the world, one of the top, and the wonderful people of Mexico, Central 
America will have a better standard of living. Heck, you might have 
United States citizens thinking maybe they would like to go work in a 
vibrant economy in Mexico if and when we can help stop the drug cartels 
with all the money that they have got coming in.

  Mr. Speaker, may I ask how much time I have left.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Texas has 3 minutes 
remaining.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Since we are going into Memorial Day weekend, I am 
thrilled Sergeant Derrick Miller has been released. I testified at two 
different hearings for him. I am thrilled he is released. He shouldn't 
have been incarcerated.
  Lieutenant Clint Lorance, hopefully that can be brought to an end and 
he can be released like American Taliban John Walker Lindh was.
  But I want to finish by mentioning Ross McGinnis. I promised his 
father, Tom, I would never forget him, and I haven't.
  Ross was 19 when he was in Iraq. Ross loved the Army. Ross finished 
high school in Knox, Pennsylvania, joined the Army. He loved it, and 
his platoon sergeant said everybody loved Ross. Ross helped energize 
people.
  Ross was a machine gunner up in the turret of a Humvee going through 
a village in Iraq. A grenade was projected into the bed of the Humvee, 
and Ross was the only one in a position to jump out and save himself. 
He yelled, ``Grenade.'' Ross saw the four people in the bed crouch. 
Ross knew they were going to die, so Ross jumped down, covered the 
grenade, and saved four people's lives.
  I went to Ross' funeral, his graveside in Arlington Cemetery, because 
two of the four people Ross saved were my constituents.
  Ross' sergeant and the two others who made it back from Iraq for the 
funeral came up after the ceremony,

[[Page H4158]]

knelt before Ross' remains, put their hands on Ross' remains, and as 
they told me, they thank God for Ross McGinnis, and they thank Ross for 
saving their lives.
  We should thank God for all of those who have served and protected us 
and thank the families of those that lost a loved one protecting us.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.

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