Congressional Record: July 16, 2003 (Senate) Page S9448-S9484 DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2004 [...] Amendment No. 1275 Mr. CORZINE. Madam President, I call up my amendment which is at the desk and ask for its immediate consideration. The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will report. The legislative clerk read as follows: The Senator from New Jersey [Mr. Corzine] proposes an amendment numbered 1275. Mr. CORZINE. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the reading of the amendment be dispensed with. The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered. The amendment is as follows: At the appropriate place insert the following: [[Page S9472]] TITLE ______.--NATIONAL COMMISSION ON THE DEVELOPMENT AND USE OF INTELLIGENCE RELATED TO IRAQ SEC. 101. ESTABLISHMENT OF COMMISSION. There is established the National Commission on the Development and Use of Intelligence Related to Iraq. SEC. 102. FINDINGS. (1) The Congress underscores its commitment to and support for ongoing Congressional reviews regarding the collection and analysis of intelligence related to Iraq. SEC. 103. PURPOSES. The purposes of the Commission are to-- (1) examine and report upon the role of policymakers in the development of intelligence related to Iraq and Operation Iraqi Freedom; (2) examine and report upon the use of intelligence related to Iraq and Operation Iraqi Freedom; (3) build upon the reviews of intelligence related to Iraq and Operation Iraqi Freedom, including those being conducted by the Executive Branch, Congress and other entities; and (4) investigate and publicly report to the President and Congress on its findings, conclusions, and recommendations. SEC. 104. COMPOSITION OF THE COMMISSION. (a) Members.--The Commission shall be composed of 12 members, of whom-- (1) 3 members shall be appointed by the majority leader of the Senate; (2) 3 members shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives; (3) 3 members shall be appointed by the minority leader of the Senate; and (4) 3 members shall be appointed by the minority leader of the House of Representatives. (b) Chairperson; Vice Chairperson.-- (1) In general.--Subject to paragraph (2) the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson of the Commission shall be elected by the members. (2) Political party affiliation.--The Chairperson and Vice Chairperson shall not be from the same political party. (c) Qualifications; Initial Meeting.-- (1) Qualifications.--It is the sense of Congress that individuals appointed to the Commission should be prominent United States citizens, with national recognition and significant depth of experience in such professions as intelligence, governmental service, the armed services, law enforcement, and foreign affairs. (2) Initial meeting.--Once six or more members of the Commission have been appointed, those members who have been appointed may meet and, if necessary, select a temporary chairperson, who may begin the operations of the Commission, including the hiring of staff. (d) Quorum; Vacancies.--After its initial meeting, the Commission shall meet upon the call of the chairperson or a majority of its members. Six members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum. Any vacancy in the Commission shall not affect its powers, but shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made. SEC. 105. FUNCTIONS OF THE COMMISSION. The functions of the Commission are to-- (1) conduct an investigation that-- (A) investigates the development and use of intelligence related to Iraq and Operation Iraqi Freedom; and (B) shall include an investigation of intelligence related to whether Iraq-- (i) possessed chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, and the locations of those weapons; (ii) had links to Al Qaeda; (iii) attempted to acquire uranium in Africa, and if so, when; (iv) attempted to procure aluminum tubes for the development of nuclear weapons; (v) possessed mobile laboratories for the production of weapons of mass destruction; (vi) possessed delivery systems for weapons of mass destruction; and (vii) any other matters that bear upon the imminence of the threat to the national security of the United States and its allies. (2) submit to the President and Congress such report as is required by this title containing such findings, conclusions, and recommendations as the Commission shall determine, including proposing organization, coordination, planning, management arrangements, procedures, rules, and regulations. (A) Form of report.--Each report prepared under this section shall be submitted in unclassified form, but may contain a classified annex. SEC. 106. POWERS OF THE COMMISSION. (a) In General.-- (1) Hearings and evidence.--The Commission or, on the authority of the Commission, any subcommittee or member thereof, may, for the purposes of carrying out this title-- (A) hold such hearings and sit and act at such times and places, take such testimony, receive such evidence, administer such oaths; and (B) require, by subpoena or otherwise, the attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the production of such books, records, correspondence, memoranda, cables, e-mails, papers, and documents, as the Commission or such designated subcommittee or designated member may determine advisable. (2) Subpoenas.-- (A) Issuance.--Subpoenas issued under paragraph (1)(B) may be issued under the signature of the Chairperson of the Commission, the Vice Chairperson of the Commission, the chairperson of any subcommittee created by a majority of the Commission, or any member designated by a majority of the Commission, and may be served by any person designated by the Chairperson, subcommittee chairperson, or member. (B) Enforcement.-- (i) In general.--In the case of contumacy or failure to obey a subpoena issued under paragraph (1)(B), the United States district court for the judicial district in which the subpoenaed person resides, is served, or may be found, or where the subpoena is returnable, may issue an order requiring such person to appear at any designated place to testify or to produce documentary or other evidence. Any failure to obey the order of the court may be punished by the court as a contempt of that court. (ii) Additional enforcement.--In the case of any failure of any witness to comply with any subpoena or to testify when summoned under authority of this section, the Commission may, by majority vote, certify a statement of fact constituting such failure to the appropriate United States attorney, who may bring the matter before the grand jury for its action, under the same statutory authority and procedures as if the United States attorney had received a certification under sections 102 through 104 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (2 U.S.C. 192 through 194). (b) Closed Meetings.-- (1) In general.--Meetings of the Commission may be closed to the public under section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.) or other applicable law. (2) Additional authority.--In addition to the authority under paragraph (1), section 10(a)(1) and (3) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.) shall not apply to any portion of a Commission meeting if the President determines that such portion or portions of that meeting is likely to disclose matters that could endanger national security. If the President makes such determination, the requirements relating to a determination under section 10(d) of that Act shall apply. (c) Contracting.--The Commission may, to such extent and in such amounts as are provided in appropriation acts, enter into contracts to enable the Commission to discharge its duties under this title. (d) Information From Federal Agencies.--The Commission is authorized to secure directly from any executive department, bureau, agency, board, commission, office, independent establishment, or instrumentality of the Government information, suggestions, estimates, and statistics for the purposes of this title. Each department, bureau, agency, board, commission, office, independent establishment, or instrumentality shall, to the extent authorized by law, furnish such information, suggestions, estimates, and statistics directly to the Commission, upon request made by the Chairperson, the chairperson of any subcommittee created by a majority of the Commission, or any member designated by a majority of the Commission. (e) Assistance From Federal Agencies.-- (1) General services administration.--The Administrator of General Services shall provide to the Commission on a reimbursable basis administrative support and other services for the performance of the Commission's functions. (2) Other departments and agencies.--In addition to the assistance prescribed in paragraph (1), departments and agencies of the United States are authorized to provide to the Commission such services, funds, facilities, staff, and other support services as they may determine advisable and as may be authorized by law. (f) Gifts.--The Commission may accept, use, and dispose of gifts or donations of services or property. (g) Postal Services.--The Commission may use the United States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions as departments and agencies of the United States. SEC. 107. STAFF OF THE COMMISSION. (a) In General.-- (1) Appointment and compensation.--The chairperson and vice chairperson, in accordance with rules agreed upon by the Commission, may appoint and fix the compensation of a staff director and such other personnel as may be necessary to enable the Commission to carry out its functions, without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, and without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that no rate of pay fixed under this subsection may exceed the equivalent of that payable for a position at level V of the Executive Schedule under section 5316 of title 5, United States Code. (2) Personnel as federal employees.-- (A) In general.--The executive director and any personnel of the Commission who are employees shall be employees under section 2105 of title 5, United States Code, for purposes of chapters 63, 81, 83, 84, 85, 87, 89, and 90 of that title. (B) Members of commission.--Subparagraph (A) shall not be construed to apply to members of the Commission. (b) Detailees.--Any Federal Government employee may be detailed to the Commission without reimbursement from the Commission, and such detailee shall retain the rights, status, and privileges of his or her regular employment without interruption. [[Page S9473]] (c) Consultant Services.--The Commission is authorized to procure the services of experts and consultants in accordance with section 3109 of title 5, United States Code, but at rates not to exceed the daily rate paid a person occupying a position at level IV of the Executive Schedule under section 5315 of title 5, United States Code. SEC. 108. COMPENSATION AND TRAVEL EXPENSES. (a) Compensation.--Each member of the Commission may be compensated at not to exceed the daily equivalent of the annual rate of basic pay in effect for a position at level IV of the Executive Schedule under section 5315 of title 5, United States Code, for each day during which that member is engaged in the actual performance of the duties of the Commission. (b) Travel Expenses.--While away from their homes or regular places of business in the performance of services for the Commission, members of the Commission shall be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, in the same manner as persons employed intermittently in the Government service are allowed expenses under section 5703(b) of title 5, United States Code. SEC. 109. SECURITY CLEARANCES FOR COMMISSION MEMBERS AND STAFF. The appropriate executive departments and agencies shall cooperate with the Commission in expeditiously providing to the Commission members and staff appropriate security clearances in a manner consistent with existing procedures and requirements, except that no person shall be provided with access to classified information under this section who would not otherwise qualify for such security clearance. SEC. 110. REPORT OF THE COMMISSION; TERMINATION. (a) Report.--Not later than nine months after the date of the first meeting of the Commission, the Commission shall submit to the President and Congress a report containing such findings, conclusions, and recommendations for corrective measures as have been agreed to by a majority of Commission members. (b) Termination.-- (1) In general.--The Commission, and all the authorities of this title, shall terminate 60 days after the date on which the report is submitted under section (a). (2) Administrative activities before terminating.--The Commission may use the 60-day period referred to in paragraph (1) for the purpose of concluding its activities, including providing testimony to committees of Congress concerning its reports and disseminating the second report. SEC. 111. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS. There are authorized to be appropriated to the Commission to carry out this title $5,000,000, to remain available until expended. Mr. CORZINE. This amendment is premised on a strong view that intelligence and its honest analysis are vital tools in our war on terrorism. To protect the American people, our intelligence must not be shaped to win an argument, but must be used to inform. This amendment calls for a bipartisan commission to study the use of intelligence related to Iraq. The commission would examine several key issues, including intelligence related to the following questions: Whether Iraq possessed chemical, biological and/or nuclear weapons; Whether Iraq had links to Al-Qaida, and; Whether Iraq attempted to acquire uranium in Africa. Earlier today I joined in a growing expression of concern by my colleagues and the American people about the representation of intelligence information by the President and the administration in building its case for the war in Iraq. Without a thorough explanation of why many of the administration's statements are in conflict, and have included claims unsubstantiated by the best intelligence, the American people, their representatives, and many of our would-be international partners in post-conflict Iraq, will most certainly begin to lose confidence in the administration's intelligence analysis, if not their word. Simply put, the Nation's credibility, in my view, is at stake. This credibility is important for the security of the American people who have and continue to bear an enormously high cost, a heavy burden, in both life and treasure, with regard to our presence in Iraq. I know in my home State of New Jersey there have been seven soldiers who have been lost since the beginning of the conflict. It is something that impacts people's daily lives. We stand with our troops. We stand with the mission they are trying to do, to bring about democracy, but we do have a right, and they have a right to have credibility with regard to the intelligence that is presented. There have been a lot of accusations and allegations circulating in recent days. Some may be trying to politicize this debate. This amendment is an attempt to ensure that this debate does not become a political one, and that we focus in a bipartisan way on getting to the facts. In my view, in order to preserve the public credibility of the United States, we need a thorough public review, one that is above politics, one with conclusions that will be regarded as credible and definitive, not only in the U.S. but around the world. As we are now all well aware, in this year's State of the Union Address President Bush said: The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa. The power of the President's allegations in those 16 short words cannot be overstated. The Bush administration, using legalistic language, was leading people to embrace, at least in the opinion of many, the view that Saddam Hussein had an active nuclear program. The President did not say the British were claiming anything. He did not say they alleged anything. He said they ``learned'' that Saddam was attempting to buy uranium, implicitly accepting the charge as fact. Although just 16 words long, it was a powerful statement that resonated in the context of debates that had gone on throughout the Nation and the world for nearly 5 months, in every public forum, the floor of the Senate, the halls of the United Nations, and across the airwaves. Only after many months did we the people and the Congress learn this statement was based on information that our own intelligence agency earlier learned was false. In fact, the administration's own spokesperson said the statement was inappropriate for the State of the Union address. And the Director of Central Intelligence has stated that: These 16 words should never have been included in the text written for the President. Yesterday morning, Senator Levin, the distinguished ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, raised several areas of particular concern, including: the aluminum tubes; the Iraq-al-Qaida connection; whether Iraq reconstituted nuclear weapons; whether Iraq possesses chemical and biological weapons; allegations of mobile biological warfare labs. Furthermore, Senator Levin laid out seven questions about claims specifically regarding Iraq and the uranium. He argued that these should be answered in the context of a bipartisan investigation. I believe that is true, and I could not agree more. This is not just a concern about the African uranium issue. It is about whether there was a fair and full presentation to the American people. But to that list of questions, I would add several others. For example, if the information in the State of the Union Address was ``technically accurate,'' as administration officials have lately argued, why was it excluded in Secretary Powell's 90-minute presentation before the United Nations only 8 days later? Also, why did we learn about the misleading nature of these comments, not from the administration, but from the International Atomic Energy Agency and the media? This is not an academic matter. At stake is nothing less than the credibility of the United States, and that credibility is important for protecting the American people. That credibility gets weakened each day we fail to have a full accounting of the facts about what happened, facts such as who knew that certain information was false? When did they know it? Why was it expunged from one administration speech but not another? And why are we just learning about much of this now? Keep in mind, political leaders around the world, not just here at home, have staked their own reputations on their support of President Bush and the United States. As a consequence, many of our closest allies and their elected officials are facing enormous criticism from their own citizens, and sometimes--and this is quite telling--from their own political parties. We owe it not only to the American people but to all those who stood with us to be straight and to come clean immediately; otherwise, this episode will only undermine our ability to win support for other critical foreign policy interests in the future, and they are substantial. In fact, without a clear explanation, we put the American people at risk facing a world [[Page S9474]] where our partners question our credibility on many interconnected concerns: Korea, Iran, Syria, and the road map to peace in the Middle East. We need to understand whether this is part of a broader pattern of selective release of information or just a series of unfortunate snafus. Last October, for example, during the Iraq debate, Secretary James Kelly was in Pyongyang, meeting with the North Koreans. At that meeting, a meeting that occurred a full week prior to the Senate vote on the resolution authorizing force in Iraq, the North Koreans admitted to an active nuclear program. Yet despite its importance and relevance to the debate regarding Iraq and America's national security posture generally, administration officials waited until after the Congress had voted on the resolution--6 days, by the way--to authorize the use of force before revealing the details of the North Korean disclosure. To this Senator, that information was both relevant and timely to the Iraq debate. Was this information withheld because it might affect the tenor of the debate, or might impact the Congress's view of the Iraqi threat, or the relative view of the Iraq threat? As Senator Levin and others have explained, there may have been other instances in which the administration selectively, in some form or another, misrepresented or withheld information to support their case for the war in Iraq. For example, the administration claimed there were linkages between al-Qaida and Iraq. But many now believe those claims were overstated or exaggerated, and based on scant and circumstantial evidence. Another widely discussed issue relates to Iraq's purchase of aluminum tubes, where there was considerable debate within the intelligence community about whether the tubes were intended for use as part of a nuclear program. When these claims are added up, many people have concluded that the administration may have been seeking to win an argument--not inform the American public. And we need to know the truth. We need to be informed to make good decisions, to set priorities, to go forward, to protect the American people. The American people deserve to be informed accurately. The commission I am proposing would be completely bipartisan. It would neither supplant nor interfere with ongoing Congressional reviews regarding the collection and analysis of intelligence related to Iraq. So, again, I hope we can support this proposal. We need to ensure that the facts come out. We should do it on a bipartisan basis, and we should do it immediately. The safety and security of the American people are at stake. I yield the floor. The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Michigan. Ms. STABENOW. Madam President, I rise to support the Corzine amendment. I think this is an incredibly important amendment to this important bill. In doing so, once again, as I have done before on this floor, I commend our service men and women who have served us so well in Iraq, as well as around the world. We join in our pride and gratitude for their courage and their service. However, I must rise today to express my deep concern about revelation after revelation of the fragile nature of the facts presented to the American public and the world about the reasons we had to preemptively, unilaterally attack Iraq. Those misleading words in the President's State of the Union Address this past January have brought into question the credibility of our Government. This is extremely serious. It hurts our country because Iraq is not the only threat to our Nation, as the Senator from New Jersey indicated. We continue to be threatened by terrorists in emerging nuclear countries such as Iran and North Korea. In order to win the war on terrorism and ultimately disarm Iran and North Korea, we are going to have to work with NATO and other allies to protect American citizens. Unfortunately, the misleading statements about Iraq attempting to purchase uranium from Niger will make building such coalitions even more difficult. This means our homeland will be less safe and our American citizens less secure. This is a deep concern of mine. I wish the misleading statements about Iraq and Niger were the only statements in question that the President and his administration have made to the American people. Unfortunately, there have been others. First, let's go through what transpired with the statements on Iraq and Niger. Before the State of the Union referencing Iraqi purchases of uranium from Africa, the administration, at the direction of the CIA, took out a nearly identical line in a speech the President gave in Cincinnati last October justifying the use of force in Iraq. Then, the African uranium purchase was back in the State of the Union Address, although we were told now this was a mistake by the CIA director George Tenet. Then, the African reference was dropped from Secretary of State Powell's presentation on Iraqi weapons capabilities to the United Nations just 8 days later. Then, Saddam's nuclear weapons came back with certainty when Vice President Cheney appeared on Meet the Press in March and said, ``We believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons.'' This was one of the main assertions used that took us to war, and I believe the American people have a right to know which is it. If it was good intelligence, why the constant change of mind? Either Iraq had nuclear weapons or it didn't. If it was bad intelligence, who kept pushing to use it in the administration speeches and interviews? We need to know the answers to these questions. It is important for the credibility of our country and for the trust of the American people in our Government. It does not end there. We heard much about specially-made aluminum tubes that could be used to build centrifuges to create weapons-grade uranium. In the same State of the Union where he referenced uranium purchases from Africa, President Bush also said: Our intelligence sources tell us that he has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes suitable for nuclear weapons production. But, in fact, an unclassified intelligence assessment back in October stated some intelligence specialists ``believe that those tubes are probably intended for conventional weapons programs.'' Last February, Secretary of State Colin Powell told the U.N. Security Council that ``we all know there are differences of opinion,'' and that ``there is controversy about what these tubes are for.'' However, the International Atomic Energy Agency, after conducting its own study, concluded the uranium tubes were not for uranium enrichment. Which is it? Enough time has gone by; we should have and are entitled to answers. We are entitled to the truth. Most importantly, the American people are entitled to the truth. Although we now have more than 140,000 troops in Iraq, we have not yet found chemical or biological weapons or even the plants needed to make them. We have not found evidence of al-Qaida training camps, although in the runup to the war the administration not only said they were there in Iraq but that they knew precise locations. Again, this administration has taken us into a new age, an age where we claim the right to unilaterally, preemptively strike another nation because we believe our national survival is at stake. In such a world, the intelligence used as proof for striking first has to be unassailable, has to be totally credible, or the American people and our allies will be deeply suspicious of any future claims. The claims led to decisions to put American men and women in harm's way and in too many instances have led to the loss of life. We need to find out the truth behind the various claims and questions, legitimate questions that have arisen, questions that have been asked by colleagues on both sides of the aisle, questions that have taken us into the deserts of Iraq and put our men and women in harm's way. The only way we can get to the bottom of this is to set up an independent commission to get the facts, a bipartisan commission, a way to objectively look at what happened so it does not happen again. There is nothing more serious than a potential nuclear threat to our people. If there was ever a need for an independent commission, it is now. We now [[Page S9475]] face potential nuclear threats from Iran, from North Korea. We could face more in the future. American families and our American troops deserve answers to the questions that have been raised. We all deserve answers. We all deserve the truth. I hope my colleagues will join in support developing this independent commission. I believe nothing less than the credibility of our country is at stake. I hope we all join in supporting the Corzine amendment. I yield the floor. The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Alexander). The Democratic leader. Mr. DASCHLE. Mr. President, I rise for a couple of minutes to compliment the distinguished Senator from Michigan for her very eloquent statement and for the leadership of the Senator from New Jersey, a member of the Foreign Relations Committee. Both Members have made their points very ably. I am grateful to both of them for their leadership in this effort. The real question is, How do we assert the facts in the most logical and the most bipartisan manner? As we have seen on so many other occasions, the only way to ensure that is done with a public review of the information provided and all of the facts available to us is through this independent approach. The Intelligence Committee has done an outstanding job. I commend them for their session, even this afternoon as we speak, looking into the facts as they are presented from those within the intelligence community. As Senator Rockefeller has noted on several occasions, they are constrained by their own understandable jurisdictional review and do not have the capacity to go beyond that jurisdictional review when issues involving other branches of the Government, other agencies of the executive branch, and certainly the White House itself, are involved. So this affords an opportunity to do the right thing, to give the American people the confidence they need that we understand now what the facts are, what the story is, and how we can ensure as we make these judgments we are doing so with the very best policy and goals in mind. I think this is a very worthy amendment. I think it ought to pass on an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote. I am hopeful we can do that this evening, and I am grateful to those who have committed to this amendment, and especially for the leadership of Senators Stabenow and Corzine. I yield the floor. The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Minnesota. Mr. DAYTON. Mr. President, I rise also in support of Senator Corzine's amendment. Yesterday was a very grim day in Minnesota. We had the funeral service of the first Minnesotan to be killed in Iraq this year in the line of duty, PVT Edward James Herrgott. It is a grim reminder that 63 days after the President declared the hostilities almost over in Iraq, this young man lost his life on July 3, standing out in front, guarding the Baghdad Museum, the site where some of my colleagues and I had swept by, well protected, just 2 days before. He was killed, murdered by a sniper's bullet. At the age of 20, his life and all of its promise was snuffed out. We learned last week from the Secretary of Defense that, in his judgment, the military presence, some major component of which will have to be from the United States--hopefully much less will be, when we do as we must, which is to internationalize the continued development and hopefully economic recovery in Iraq--but as long as there is going to be a presence there, United States troops are going to be a big part of that, and it is almost unavoidable under the circumstances, especially as they exist today, the number of men and women who have lost their lives since May 1--which stands now at 79--will only increase. So, as Americans are faced, again and again, with a member of the family, a friend, an acquaintance, or just through the media a fellow citizen of that State, again and again they are going to be confronted with this question of, what are we doing in Iraq? What is the game plan to extricate our troops after achieving the success the military had so dramatically, remarkably in the 3 weeks it took from entering the country to sweeping into Baghdad with an incredible display of technology, the training, and most of all the dedication of those men and women who have really redefined the words ``courage'' and ``patriotism'' for this Senator. They continue to labor there under the most extreme conditions, 115- degree temperatures, all the other difficulties that are manifest there, not to mention the life-threatening danger that so many of them are under day and night. Given all that, I think it is imperative for our national security that we understand that we--all of us collectively in the Congress and the President, this administration--made what is the most momentous decision that can be made by this body and the administration, the decision whether or not to go to war--in this case, to initiate a war against another sovereign nation. To know that decision was made on accurate information from our intelligence operations, to me, is essential to our national security in the days and years ahead. It is also essential to our democracy to know the information we are getting from our leaders is truthful, accurate, to the best of their knowledge. There are enough questions that have been raised that must be answered, and they must be answered with the truth and with the facts as that can be determined objectively and dispassionately to be. I regret that the Senate Armed Services Committee, of which I am a member, is not going to be undertaking the bipartisan investigation into these issues as its counterpart, the Senate Intelligence Committee, has agreed to do. I think there has to be that kind of willingness on both sides of the aisle to seek the truth. I cannot understand why anybody would not want to find the truth and present it to the Members of this body and, even more importantly, to the American people. But that is a decision that evidently has been reached. In the absence of that, I think this independent commission is essential. We owe it to ourselves. We owe it to the Private Herrgotts whose lives have been sacrificed in this endeavor. We owe it to the future men and women who will be over in Iraq, in future engagements, if necessary. We owe it, ultimately, to our country, our democracy, and to ourselves. I yield the floor. [...] Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, we had a time agreement and the Senator from New Jersey and the Senator from Arizona have spoken. I will make a few brief remarks and yield to my colleague. Then it is my intention to move to table these two amendments. Let me state why. [...] With regard to the amendment offered by Senator Corzine, I have a problem, a decided problem with this. There is an ongoing investigation or series of hearings--I don't know whether you want to call it an investigation yet--of the items covered by this proposed amendment, creating a national commission on the development and use of intelligence related to Iraq. Iraq is still ongoing. To create a commission now to look into Iraq primarily based upon the problem related to the President's statement in his State of the Union Message--which, by the way, was true, but not really totally accurate in terms of the interpretation people gave to it--in order to start the campaign of 2004, at a time when we have men and women in uniform over there now, their commanders, Ambassador Bremer, all of the people who participated in the process of this intelligence activity, including the CIA and the National Security Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency, all of them will be involved in hearings before the commission. They are already in hearings before the House and the Senate, and they have unknown involvement in the internal investigation also going on in the Department. As I said previously, almost all of us heard the Secretary of State, my great friend Colin Powell, tell us about his involvement and how this train of circumstances developed with regard to how that statement was in the President's State of the Union Message. We all know Presidents don't write their own State of the Union Message. They review drafts, and they rely on their [[Page S9479]] subordinates to see that they are absolutely accurate. In the process, a statement was inserted that could be interpreted in a way that could mislead people. Already the Director of the CIA has admitted his system made a mistake. He has taken responsibility, as he should, for something that should have been taken out by the CIA reviewer. It was not. It was taken out of a previous statement at another time. No question was raised about its being taken out. In this instance, it was not taken out and Director Tenet said it should have been taken out. He takes the responsibility himself because of the failure of his Agency, just as I make a policy when any member of my staff makes a mistake, I treat it as my mistake. George Tenet didn't make the mistake. The process in the CIA made the mistake. The President didn't make a mistake. In the process of preparing that statement, there was a mistake made. I am tired of making a mountain out of a molehill on this one. I am particularly disturbed with the fact that people want to create another commission. This is not a time for a commission like the commissions we have known in the past. This is not Watergate. That is the impression. This is not a Watergate. It is not even a ``truth gate.'' The President read a speech that was prepared for him. We all clapped at it, and we all approved of it. It was one part of it, one tiny part of it that should have been taken out in the process of review. Now to create a commission primarily for that and all the rest of the garbage in this thing--pardon my French--all the statements in here as to what is going to be investigated with regard to the possession of mobile laboratories, with regard to an attempt to procure aluminum tubes--it wasn't an attempt; they were procured. But the concept of whether or not Iraq possessed delivery systems for weapons of mass destruction--we had 17 resolutions of the United Nations that were not complied with. Why were they passing 17 resolutions if there was nothing to investigate? But the main thing, why should we create a commission now to look into something that is ongoing? Once this is all tied down and we have our people home and Mr. Bremer is residing in the U.S., and the people involved in all of the intelligence activities that led to the statement are in the United States again, we can have some form of commission to review it. This Senator would not oppose that. But this is an ongoing operation, and this is an attempt to smear the President of the United States. I shall not permit that if I can possibly avoid it. As I understand it, there is no further time agreement. I have the floor. I intend to keep the floor until I make a motion to table this amendment. I am happy to yield to my friend from Arizona for a question. Mr. McCAIN. Mr. President, I will ask my colleague from Alaska a question. I will preface it by saying I do appreciate the cooperation that has been displayed while addressing this bill. I tell my friend from Alaska also that it has been very helpful for us to have the information and to be able to look at these amendments as they have come up. I hope next year we will see Hemingway, Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and others of my favorite authors included in this program. I also ask the Senator, concerning the Corzine amendment, isn't it true that the Senate Armed Services Committee is holding, and will be holding, hearings concerning the entire conflict, including friendly fire casualties, including the enormous success, including the issue of weapons of mass destruction; and those will be held openly and in a systematic manner, which Senator Warner and Senator Levin have been working on in a bipartisan manner? Didn't the chairman of the Intelligence Committee hold a closed hearing today, and will he not hold a public hearing next week? Aren't we going through an orderly process of hearings concerning the conduct of the war? The American people, of course, want to know about the friendly fire tragedy, and they also want to know how we did so well, how our equipment performed in such a magnificent fashion. It was one of the most rapid military victories in history. Isn't it true that we are going through an orderly process of hearings concerning this conflict, in a very appropriate manner? If at such time those hearings are not satisfactory to the American people, or they don't cover enough information, or something like that, wouldn't sometime later be more appropriate to say a commission should be appointed rather than at the time when the appropriate committees, as far as I can tell, are carrying out their responsibilities and reviewing the conduct of the war and the oversight policies dictating our military? Does the Senator agree with that? Mr. STEVENS. The Senator is absolutely correct. What is more, Senator Inouye and I went to the CIA and we talked to the Director, and he informed us that he sent a stack of material this high to the committee already for its review. It is going to take some time to review all that. It is ongoing. This would have us appoint a commission to review the same thing that we are already investigating in the Senate Intelligence Committee and that the House is investigating. I presume the Armed Services Committee has some jurisdiction on this matter, also. The Foreign Relations Committee has jurisdiction. Why should we appoint a commission to do what we should do--to do our work, particularly when it is not on a timely basis? As the Senator from Arizona stated in his question to me, the time may come when the public will question the results of our activities as Members of Congress. If they do, then the right thing for us to do--or the time may come when they develop such a conflict within Congress that it cannot be resolved, and that would be an appropriate time to perhaps look at a commission outside of the Congress. But right now is not the time. Mr. BOND. Will the chairman yield for a question? Mr. STEVENS. Yes, I am happy to yield. Mr. BOND. Mr. President, as a member of the Intelligence Committee, I know we have been having these hearings and the oversight hearings. We are conducting the investigations. I wonder if the chairman is aware of the fact that I believe the Office of the Inspector General of the CIA is conducting an investigation. I believe the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Panel had jurisdiction. Is it correct that the ranking member of the Armed Services Committee, Senator Levin, is conducting an inquiry? At my count, at least five different investigations are going on. I wonder if that number is accurate, and does the chairman think that a sixth, which would not start until later on, would add anything? Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, the question is relevant because the purpose of this commission is to support ongoing congressional reviews regarding the collection and analysis of intelligence data. We have not done it yet. We don't need any support that I know of. The support base is the executive branch and in the media to examine the report and the role of policymakers relating to Iraq and Iraqi freedom. That is not over yet. Again, there is a timeliness to commissions. But more than that, there is the ongoing impact coming into this Senator's soul that we are starting a campaign of 2004. It is too early to do that, when we have men and women overseas in uniform trying to defend themselves and carry out the orders of the Commander in Chief. It is not timely to do this, and I do object to it. Mr. President, I don't often do this. I am really going to be a little bit brash--you could not imagine I would do that, I am sure. Does the Senator from Nevada wish to ask a question? Mr. REID. No. I was hoping we could vote on Corzine first and McCain second. Mr. STEVENS. I was going to make that order. I am pleased that the Senator said that. Mr. President, in order that the Senator from Hawaii and I can go to an appointment we have involving World War II veterans, I will take it upon myself to move to table the Corzine amendment and to ask for the yeas and nays. The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there a sufficient second? There is a sufficient second. The yeas and nays were ordered. [[Page S9480]] Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent at this time that it be in order to move to table the McCain amendment, and for that purpose I ask for the yeas and nays. The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection. Without objection, it is so ordered. Is there a sufficient second? There is a sufficient second. The yeas and nays were ordered. Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, for the information of the Senate, following these two amendments, there will be a period for routine morning business. I ask unanimous consent that following the votes there be a period for routine morning business, and that the Senator from Rhode Island, Mr. Reed, make a statement. Mr. REID. He wants to speak on the bill. After that, we will go into morning business. Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, Senator Reed will be making a statement on the bill. Following his statement, I ask unanimous consent that there be a period for routine morning business until the Senator from Hawaii and I have returned from our event, which will be, I believe, about 8:15. The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection? Without objection, it is so ordered. Mr. REID. Mr. President, the only question I ask is this: We would love to have you back here, but I don't think there is need to come back tonight. We have a schedule set up for the morning. Mr. STEVENS. We have not done that. We need to have the time to do that. Mr. REID. If the Senator from Alaska wants to be here to do that, that is fine, but otherwise, valiant staff will take care of it and whoever is closing. We will see you back. That is fine. Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, in explanation, it is my intent to come back. The Senator from Hawaii will not have to come back. We want to enter into a unanimous consent agreement for the order of amendments. There will be two amendments. At 10 o'clock Senator Byrd will offer an amendment. I believe we will have an order for the Senate to come in sometime just prior to 9 o'clock. Mr. REID. Nine o'clock is fine. Mr. STEVENS. I am not going to make that order yet. That is the understanding I have, that we will come in around 9 o'clock and consider two amendments, and Senator Byrd is to offer his amendment at 10 o'clock. I ask for the yeas and nays. The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Coleman). The yeas and nays have been ordered on these requests. The PRESIDING OFFICER. The question is on agreeing to the motion to table amendment No. 1275. The clerk will call the roll. The assistant legislative clerk called the roll. Mr. REID. I announce that the Senator from Florida (Mr. Graham), the Senator from Massachusetts (Mr. Kerry), the Senator from Connecticut (Mr. Lieberman), and the Senator from Georgia (Mr. Miller) are necessarily absent. I further announce that, if present and voting, the Senator from Massachusetts (Mr. Kerry) would vote ``nay''. The PRESIDING OFFICER. Are there any other Senators in the Chamber desiring to vote? The result was announced--yeas 51, nays 45, as follows: [Rollcall Vote No. 284 Leg.] YEAS--51 Alexander Allard Allen Bennett Bond Brownback Bunning Burns Campbell Chafee Chambliss Cochran Coleman Collins Cornyn Craig Crapo DeWine Dole Domenici Ensign Enzi Fitzgerald Frist Graham (SC) Grassley Gregg Hagel Hatch Hutchison Inhofe Kyl Lott Lugar McCain McConnell Murkowski Nickles Roberts Santorum Sessions Shelby Smith Snowe Specter Stevens Sununu Talent Thomas Voinovich Warner NAYS--45 Akaka Baucus Bayh Biden Bingaman Boxer Breaux Byrd Cantwell Carper Clinton Conrad Corzine Daschle Dayton Dodd Dorgan Durbin Edwards Feingold Feinstein Harkin Hollings Inouye Jeffords Johnson Kennedy Kohl Landrieu Lautenberg Leahy Levin Lincoln Mikulski Murray Nelson (FL) Nelson (NE) Pryor Reed Reid Rockefeller Sarbanes Schumer Stabenow Wyden NOT VOTING--4 Graham (FL) Kerry Lieberman Miller The motion was agreed to. Mr. STEVENS. I move to reconsider the vote. Mr. INOUYE. I move to lay that motion on the table. The motion to lay on the table was agreed to.